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Title: Peck's Compendium of Fun
Author: Peck, George W. (George Wilbur), 1840-1916
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Peck's Compendium of Fun" ***

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Comprising the Choicest Gems of Wit, Humor, Sarcasm and Pathos
of America's Favorite Humorist,


Editor of "Peck's Sun" Milwaukee

Illustrated by Eminent Artists




    About Hell
    Another Dead Failure
    Anna Dickinson
    A Bald-headed Man Most Crazy
    A Case of Paralysis
    A Doctor of Laws
    A Hot Box at a Picnic
    A Lively Train Load
    A Mad Minister
    A Musical Critique
    A Peck at the Cheese
    A Plea for the Bull Head
    A Sewing Machine Given to the Boss Girl
    A Safe Investment
    A Tony Slaughter-House
    A Trying Situation
    An Arm That is not Reliable
    An Editor Burglarized
    Banks and Banking
    Bounced from Church for Dancing
    Boys and Circuses
    Boys will be Boys
    Broke up a Prayer Meeting
    Buying a Stone Crusher
    Camp Meetings in the Dark of the Moon
    Church Keno
    Colored Concert Troupes
    Dogs and Human Beings
    Effects of Mineral Water
    Expedition in Search of a Doughnut
    Failure of a Solid Institution
    Fishing for Pieces of Women
    Fooling with the Bible
    George Washington
    Granite Head Cheese
    Internal Improvements
    Joke on the Hat
    Killing Big Game
    Large Mouths are Fashionable
    La Crosse Nebecudnezzer Water
    Laying up Apples in Heaven
    Mr. Peck's Sunday Lecture
    Nearly Broke up the Ball
    Our Blue-Coated Dog-Poisoners
    Our Christian Neighbors Have Gone
    Palace Cattle Cars

      He Becomes a Druggist
      He is too Healthy
      He Quits the Drug Business
      His Pa an Inventor
      His Pa Dissected
      His Pa Goes Calling
      His Pa Goes Skating
      His Pa Gets Boxed
      His Pa Gets Mad
      His Pa Joins a Temperance Society
      His Pa Jokes Him
      His Pa is Discouraged
      His Pa Kills Him
      His Pa Mortified

    Religion and Fish
    Rope Ladders
    Seven Year Old Horses
    Summer Resorting
    Take Your Latin Straight
    Terror in Church
    The Bob-Tailed Badger
    The Boy and the Goat
    The Difference
    The Difference in Horses
    The Fire New Year's Day
    The Giddy Girl's Quarrel
    The Gospel Car
    The Infidel and His Silver Mine
    The Knight and the Bridal Chamber
    The Legend of the Lake
    The Man from Dubuque
    The Mistake About It
    The Naughty But Nice Church Choir
    The New Coal Stove
    The Sudden Fire-Works at Racine
    The Uses of the Paper Bag
    The Waters of La Crosse
    The Way to Name Children
    The Way Women Boss a Pillow
    The Woodcock
    Those Bold Bad Drummers
    Those Step Ladders!
    Tragedy on the Stage
    Trains Without Conductors
    Try to Save Two Shillings
    Unscrewing the Top of a Fruit Jar
    Why the Fever Did'nt Spread
    Woman-Dozing a Democrat
    Wonders of the Stage


    Anna Dickinson as "Mazeppa"
    A Black Bear at Onalaska
    A Dead Sure Thing
    A Fashion Item
    A Good Land Enough
    A Lecturer Should Know What He Talks About
    A Loan Exhibition
    A New Sparking Scheme
    An Odorous Bohemian
    Base Ingratitude
    Buttermilk Bibbers
    Cats on the Fence
    Christmas Trees
    Col. Ingersoll Praying
    Comforting Compensations
    Convenient Currency
    Crushing Nihilism
    Enterprising Chicago!
    Fish Hatching in Wisconsin
    Frozen Ears
    Gathered Waists!
    Geological Survey
    Give us War
    Good Templars on Ice
    Hard on Fond Du Lac
    He Would'nt Have His Father Called Names
    How Farmers May Get Rich
    "How Sharper Than a Hound's Tooth!"
    How to Invest a Thousand Dollars
    How to Reach Young Men
    Hunting Dogs
    Insecure Abodes
    Lunch on the Cars
    Mattie Mashes Minnesota
    Merrie Christmas
    More Dangerous Than Kerosene
    Mrs. Langtry
    One of Beecher's Converts
    Preparing for War
    Raising Elephants
    Registry of Electors
    Selling Clams
    She was no Gentleman
    Southern "Honaw"
    Spurious Tripe
    Sure of Heaven
    Supreme Court Judges and U.S. Senators
    Ten Days in Love
    The Advent Preacher and the Balloon
    The Day We Reached Canada
    The Dog Law
    The Glorious Fourth of July
    The Mule not the Eagle
    The Old Sweet Songs
    The Political Outlook
    The Power of Eloquence
    The Thirsty Gopher
    The Universalist Bath
    The Universal Object
    The Wicked Mon Kee
    The Wrong Corpse
    Three Inches of Leg
    To What Vile Uses May We Come
    Too Particular by Half
    What the Country Needs
    What the Democrats Will Do
    We Will Celebrate
    Why not Raise Wolves?


    A Scene in Paradise
    "Ah, my Friends, Look Down Into That Burning Lake!"
    An Intrusive Nigger
    At the Telephone
    Behind the Scenes
    Bossing the Pillow
    "Do not Pass me by!"
    Drummers Trying to Pray
    "Get Thee to a Nunnery!"
    "Happy New Year, Mum!"
    Hiawasamantha, the Dusky Daughter of the Golden West
    "I Want to be an Angel"
    It Looked Like an old Dripping Pan
    "It is F-f-four Sizes too Big!"
    John McCullough Killing a Texas Steer
    "Just as I am"
    Martindale Climbs a Pole
    "Me Long Lost Duke!"
    Mystery of a Woman's Clothes
    New Way of Taking Seidlitz Powders
    No More Apples for the Minister
    "Oh, That Will be all Right"
    "Pa Grabbed Her by the Polonaise"
    "Sard," and the Greek Slave
    Sacred Memories
    Slippery Oysters
    Swallow-Tails on the Climb
    The Lady of the Seventh Ward
    The Old Back Number Girl
    The Old Man Tries His Hand
    The Resorter
    The Rotund Urso
    The Sexton in all His Glory
    The Startled Cat
    The Tenor Arrayed in all His Glory
    The Wandering Oyster
    "Thereby Hangs a Tail."
    "This is too Allfired Much!"
    "Too Late, Pa, I Die at the Hand of an Assassin!"
    Turning the Proper Dingus
    "Yell, or go Down!"



We never had a coal stove around the house until last Saturday. Have
always used pine slabs and pieces of our neighbor's fence. They burn well,
too, but the fence got all burned up, and the neighbor said he wouldn't
build a new one, so we went down to Jones' and got a coal stove.

After supper we took a piece of ice and rubbed our hands warm, and went in
where that stove was, resolved to make her draw and burn if it took all
the pine fence in the first Ward. Our better-half threw a quilt over her,
and shiveringly remarked that she never knew what real solid comfort was
until she got a coal stove.

Stung by the sarcasm in her remark, we turned every dingus on the stove
that was movable, or looked like it had anything to do with the draft, and
pretty soon the stove began to heave up heat. It was not long before she
stuttered like the new Silsby steamer. Talk about your heat! In ten
minutes that room was as much worse than a Turkish bath as Hades is hotter
than Liverman's ice-house. The perspiration fairly fried out of a tin
water cooler in the next room. We opened the doors, and snow began to melt
as far up Vine street as Hanscombe's house, and people all round the
neighborhood put on linen clothes. And we couldn't stop the confounded

We forgot what Jones told us about the dampers, and she kept a
biling. The only thing we could do was to go to bed, and leave the thing
to burn the house up if it wanted to. We stood off with a pole and turned
the damper every way, and at every turn she just sent out heat enough to
roast an ox. We went to bed, supposing that the coal would eventually burn
out, but about 12 o'clock the whole family had to get up and sit on the


Finally a man came along who had been brought up among coal stoves, and he
put a wet blanket over him and crept up to the stove and turned the proper
dingus, and she cooled off, and since that time has been just as
comfortable as possible. If you buy a coal stove you got to learn how to
engineer it, or you may get roasted.



"Say, you leave here mighty quick," said the grocery man to the bad boy,
as he came in, with his arm in a sling, and backed up against the stove to
get warm. "Everything has gone wrong since you got to coming here, and I
think you are a regular Jonah. I find sand in my sugar, kerosene in the
butter, the codfish is all picked off, and there is something wrong every
time you come here. Now you leave."

"I aint no Joner," said the boy as he wiped his nose on his coat sleeve,
and reached into a barrel for a snow apple. "I never swallered no whale.
Say, do you believe that story about Joner being in the whale's belly, all
night? I don't. The minister was telling about it at Sunday school last
Sunday, and asked me what I thought Joner was doing while he was in there,
and I told him I interpreted the story this way, that the whale was fixed
up inside with upper and lower berths, like a sleeping car, and Joner had
a lower berth, and the porter made up the berth as soon as Joner came in
with his satchel, and Joner pulled off his boots and gave them to the
porter to black, and put his watch under the pillow and turned in. The
boys in Sunday school all laffed, and the minister said I was a bigger
fool than Pa was, and that was useless. If you go back on me, now, I won't
have a friend, except my chum and a dog, and I swear, by my halidom, that
I never put no sand in your sugar, or kerosene in your butter. I admit the
picking off of the codfish, but you can charge it to Pa, the same as you
did the eggs that I pushed my chum over into last summer, though I thought
you did wrong in charging Christmas prices for dog days eggs. When my
chum's Ma scraped his pants she said there was not an egg represented on
there that was less than two years old. The Sunday school folks
have all gone back on me, since I put kyan pepper on the stove, when they
were singing 'Little Drops of Water,' and they all had to go out doors and
air themselves, but I didn't mean to let the pepper drop on the stove. I
was just holding it over the stove to warm it, when my chum hit the funny
bone of my elbow. Pa says I am a terror to cats. Every time Pa says
anything, it gives me a new idea. I tell you Pa has got a great brain, but
sometimes he don't have it with him. When he said I was a terror to cats I
thought what fun there is in cats, and me and my chum went to stealing
cats right off, and before night we had eleven cats caged. We had one in a
canary bird cage, three in Pa's old hat boxes, three in Ma's band box,
four in valises, two in a trunk, and the rest in a closet up stairs.

"That night Pa said he wanted me to stay home because the committee that
is going to get up a noyster supper in the church was going to meet at our
house, and they might want to send me on errands. I asked him if my chum
couldn't stay too, 'cause he is the healthiest infant to run after errands
that ever was, and Pa said he could stay, but we must remember that there
musn't be no monkey business going on. I told him there shouldn't be no
monkey business, but I didn't promise nothing about cats. Well, sir, you'd
a dide. The committee was in the library by the back stairs, and me and my
chum got the cat boxes all together, at the top of the stairs, and we took
them all out and put them in a clothes basket, and just as the minister
was speaking, and telling what a great good was done by these oyster
sociables, in bringing the young people together, and taking their minds
from the wickedness of the world, and turning their thoughts into
different channels, one of the old tom cats in the basket gave a 'purmeow'
that sounded like the wail of a lost soul, or a challenge to battle. I
told my chum that we couldn't hold the bread-board over the clothes basket
much longer, when two or three cats began to yowl, and the minister
stopped talking and Pa told Ma to open the stair door and tell the hired
girl to see what was the matter up there. She thought our cat had got shut
up in the storm door, and she opened the stair door to yell to the girl,
and then I pushed the clothes basket, cats and all down the back stairs.
Well, sir, I suppose no committee for a noyster supper, was ever more
astonished. I heard Ma fall over a willow rocking chair, and say, 'scat,'
and I heard Pa say, 'well. I'm dam'd,' and a girl that sings in the choir
say, 'Heavens, I am stabbed,' then my chum and me ran to the front of the
house and come down the front stairs looking as innocent as could be, and
we went in the library, and I was just going to tell Pa if there was any
errands he wanted run my chum and me was just aching to run them, when a
yellow cat without any tail was walking over the minister, and Pa was
throwing a hassock at two cats that were clawing each other under the
piano, and Ma was trying to get her frizzes back on her head, and the
choir girl was standing on the lounge with her dress pulled up, trying to
scare cats with her striped stockings, and the minister was holding his
hands up, and I guess he was asking a blessing on the cats, and my chum
opened the front door and all the cats went out. Pa and Ma looked at me,
and I said it wasn't me, and the minister wanted to know how so much cat
hair got on my coat and vest, and I said a cat met me in the hall and
kicked me, and Ma cried, and Pa said 'that boy beats hell,' and the
minister said, I would be all right if I had been properly brought up, and
then Ma was mad, and the committee broke up. Well, to tell the honest
truth Pa basted me, and yanked me around until I had to have my arm in a
sling, but what's the use of making such a fuss about a few cats. Ma said
she never wanted to have my company again, 'cause I spoiled everything.
But I got even with Pa for basting me, this morning, and I dassent go
home. You see Ma has got a great big bath sponge as big as a chair
cushion, and this morning I took the sponge and filled it with warm water,
and took the feather cushion out of the chair Pa sits in at the table, and
put the sponge in its place, and covered it over with the cushion cover,
and when we all got set down to the table Pa came in and sat down on it to
ask a blessing. He started in by closing his eyes and placing his hands up
in front of him like the letter V, and then he began to ask that the food
we were about to partake off be blessed, and then he was going on to ask
that all of us be made to see the error of our ways, when he began to
hitch around, and he opened one eye and looked at me, and I looked as
pious as a boy can look when he knows the pancakes are getting cold, and
Pa he kind of sighed and said 'Amen' sort of snappish, and he got up and
told Ma he didn't feel well, and she would have to take his place and pass
around the sassidge and potatoes, and he looked kind of scart and went out
with his hand on his pistol pocket, as though he would like to shoot, and
Ma she got up and went around and sat in Pa's chair. The sponge didn't
hold more than half a pail full of water, and I didn't want to play no
joke on Ma, cause the cats nearly broke her up, but she sat down and was
just going to help me, when she rung the bell and called the hired girl,
and said she felt as though her neuralgia was coming on, and she would go
to her room, and told the girl to sit down and help Hennery. The girl sat
down and poured me out some coffee, and then she said, 'Howly Saint
Patrick, but I blave those pancakes are burning,' and she went out in the
kitchen. I drank my coffee, and then took the big sponge out of the chair
and put the cushion in the place of it, and then I put the sponge in the
bath room, and I went up to Pa and Ma's room, and asked them if I should
go after the doctor, and Pa had changed his clothes and got on his Sunday
pants, and he said, 'never mind the doctor, I guess we will pull through,'
and for me to get out and go to the devil, and I came over here. Say,
there is no harm in a little warm water, is there? Well, I'd like to know
what Pa and Ma and the hired girl thought. I am the only real healthy one
there is in our family."


Blanche Williams, of Philadelphia, who met with an accident at Fairmount
Water-works, by which one leg was broken, and rendered three inches
shorter than the rest of her legs, has recovered $10,000 damages. It would
seem, to the student of nature, to be a pretty good price for three inches
of ordinary leg, but then some people will make such a fuss.


The regular weekly murder is reported from Peshtigo. Two men named Glass
and Penrue, got to quarreling about a girl, in a hay loft, over a barn.
Glass stabbed Penrue quite a number of times and he died. There is nothing
much more dangerous, unless it is kerosene, than two men and a girl, in a
hay loft quarreling.


There is a fearfully harrowing story going the rounds of the papers headed
"Ten Days in Love." It must have been dreadful, with no Sunday, no day of
rest, no holiday, just nothing but love, for ten long days. By the way,
did the person live?


Not many months ago there was a meeting of ministers in Wisconsin, and
after the holy work in which they were engaged had been done up to the
satisfaction of all, a citizen of the place where the conference was held
invited a large number of them to a collation at his house. After supper a
dozen of them adjourned to a room up stairs to have a quiet smoke, as
ministers sometimes do, when they got to talking about old times, when
they attended school and were boys together, and _The Sun_ man, who was
present, disguised as a preacher, came to the conclusion that ministers
were rather human than otherwise when they are young.

One two-hundred pound delegate with a cigar between his fingers, blew the
smoke out of the mouth which but a few hours before was uttering a
supplication to the Most High to make us all good, punched a thin elder in
the ribs with his thumb and said: "Jim, do you remember the time we
carried the cow and calf up into the recitation room?" For a moment "Jim"
was inclined to stand on his dignity, and he looked pained, until they all
began to laugh, when he looked around to see if any worldly person was
present, and satisfying himself that we were all truly good, he said: "You
bet your life I remember it. I have got a scar on my shin now where that
d--blessed cow hooked me," and he began to roll up his trouser leg to show
the scar. They told him they would take his word, and he pulled down his
pants and said:

"Well, you see I was detailed to attend to the calf, and I carried the
calf up stairs, assisted by Bill Smith--who is preaching in Chicago; got a
soft thing--five thousand a year, and a parsonage furnished, and keeps a
team, and if one of those horses is not a trotter then I am no judge of
horseflesh or of Bill, and if he don't put on an old driving coat and go
out on the road occasionally and catch on for a race with some
wordly-minded man, then I am another. You hear me--well, I never knew a
calf was so heavy, and had so many hind legs. Kick! Why, bless your old
alabaster heart, that calf walked all over me, from Genesis to
Revelations. And say, we didn't get much of a breeze the next morning, did
we, when we had to clean out the recitation room?"

[Illustration: SACRED MEMORIES]

A solemn-looking minister, with red hair, who was present, and whose eyes
twinkled some through the smoke, said to another:

"Charlie, you remember you were completely gone on the professor's niece
who was visiting there from Poughkeepsie? What become of her."

Charlie put his feet on the table, struck a match on his trousers, and

"Well, I wasn't gone on her, as you say, but just liked her. Not
too well, you know, but just well enough. She had a color of hair that I
could never stand--just the color of yours, Hank--and when she got to
going with a printer I kind of let up, and they were married. I understand
he is editing a paper somewhere in Illinois, and getting rich. It was
better for her, as now she has a place to live, and does not have to board
around like a country school ma'am, as she would if she had married me."

A dark haired man, with a coat buttoned clear to the neck, and a
countenance like a funeral sermon, with no more expression than a wooden
decoy duck, who was smoking a briar-wood pipe that he had picked up on a
what-not that belonged to the host, knocked the ashes out in a spittoon,
and said:

"Boys, do you remember the time we stole that three-seated wagon and went
out across the marsh to Kingsley's farm, after watermelons?"

Four of them said they remembered it well enough, and Jim said all he
asked was to live long enough to get even with Bill Smith, the Chicago
preacher, for suggesting to him to steal a bee-hive on the trip. "Why,"
said he, "before I had got twenty feet with that hive, every bee in it had
stung me a dozen times. And do you remember how we played it on the
professor, and made him believe that I had the chicken pox? O, gentlemen,
a glorious immortality awaits you beyond the grave for lying me out of
that scrape."

The fat man hitched around uneasy in his chair and said they all seemed to
have forgotten the principal event of that excursion, and that was how he
tried to lift a bull dog over the fence by the teeth, which had become
entangled in a certain portion of his wardrobe that should not be
mentioned, and how he left a sample of his trousers in the possession of
the dog, and how the farmer came to the college the next day with
his eyes blacked, and a piece of trousers cloth done up in a paper, and
wanted the professor to try and match it with the pants of some of the
divinity students, and how he had to put on a pair of nankeen pants and
hide his cassimeres in the boat house until the watermelon scrape blew
over and he could get them mended.

Then the small brunette minister asked if he was not entitled to some
credit for blacking the farmer's eyes. Says he: "When he got over the
fence and grabbed the near horse by the bits, and said he would have the
whole gang in jail, I felt as though something had got to be done, and I
jumped out on the other side of the wagon and walked around to him and put
up my hands and gave him 'one, two, three' about the nose, with my
blessing, and he let go that horse and took his dog back to the house."

"Well," says the red haired minister, "those melons were green, anyway,
but it was the fun of stealing them that we were after."

At this point the door opened and the host entered, and, pushing the smoke
away with his hands, he said: "Well, gentlemen, you are enjoying

They threw their cigar stubs in the spittoon, the solemn man laid the
brier wood pipe where he got it, and the fat man said:

"Brother Drake, we have been discussing the evil effects of indulging in
the weed, and we have come to the conclusion that while tobacco is always
bound to be used to a certain extent by the thoughtless, it is a duty the
clergy owe to the community to discountenance its use on all possible
occasions. Perhaps we had better adjourn to the parlor, and after asking
divine guidance take our departure."



"Whew! What is that smells so about this store? It seems as though
everything had turned frowy," said the grocery man to his clerk in the
presence of the bad boy, who was standing with his back to the stove, his
coat-tails parted with his hands, and a cigarette in his mouth.

"May be it is me that smells frowy," said the boy as he put his thumbs in
the armholes of his vest, and spit at the keyhole in the door. "I have
gone into business."

"By thunder, I believe it is you," said the grocery man, as he went up to
the boy and snuffed a couple of times and then held his hand to his nose.
"The board of health will kerosene you if they ever smell that smell, and
send you to the glue factory. What business have you gone into to make you
smell so rank?"

"Well, you see Pa began to think it was time I learned a trade, or a
profession, and he saw a sign in a drug store window 'boy wanted,' and as
he had a boy he didn't want, he went to the druggist and got a job for me.
This smell on me will go off in a few weeks. You know I wanted to try all
the perfumery in the store, and after I had got about forty different
extracts on my clothes, another boy that worked there he fixed up a bottle
of benzine and assafety and brimstone, and a whole lot of other horrid
stuff, and labeled it 'rose geranium,' and I guess I just wallered in it.
It _is_ awful, aint it? It kerflummixed Ma when I went into the
dining-room the first night that I got home from the store, and broke Pa
all up. He said I reminded him of the time they had a litter of skunks
under the barn. The air seemed fixed around where I am, and everybody
seems to know who fixed it. A girl came into the store yesterday to buy a
satchet, and there wasn't anybody there but me, and I didn't know what it
was, and I took down everything in the store pretty near before I found
it, and then I wouldn't have found it only the proprietor came in. The
girl asked the proprietor if there wasn't a good deal of sewer gas in the
store, and he told me to go out and shake myself. I think the girl was mad
at me because I got a nursing bottle out of the show case with a rubber
muzzle, and asked her if that was what she wanted. Well, she told me a
sachet was something for the stummick, and I thought a nursing bottle was
the nearest thing to it."


"I should think you would drive all the customers away from the store,"
said the groceryman as he opened the door to let the fresh air in.

"I don't know but I will, but I am hired for a month on trial, and I shall
stay. You see, I sha'n't practice on anybody but Pa for a spell. I made up
my mind to that when I gave a woman some salts instead of powdered borax,
and she came back mad. Pa seems to want to encourage me, and is willing to
take anything that I ask him to. He had a sore throat and wanted something
for it, and the boss drugger told me to put some tannin and chlorate of
potash in a mortar and grind it, and I let Pa pound it with the mortar,
and while he was pounding I dropped in a couple of drops of sulphuric
acid, and it exploded and blowed Pa's hat clear across the store, and Pa
was whiter than a sheet. He said he guessed his throat was all right, and
he wouldn't come near me again that day. The next day Pa came in, and I
was laying for him. I took a white seidletz powder and a blue one, and
dissolved them in separate glasses, and when Pa came in I asked him if he
didn't want some lemonade, and he said he did, and I gave him the sour one
and he drank it. He said it was too sour, and then I gave him the other
glass that looked like water, to take the taste out of his mouth, and he
drank it. Well, sir, when those two powders got together in Pa's
stummick, and began to siz and steam and foam, Pa pretty near choked to
death, and the suds came out of his nostrils, and his eyes stuck out, and
as soon as he could get his breath he yelled 'fire,' and said he was
poisoned, and called for a doctor, but I thought as long as we had a
doctor right in the family there was no use of hiring one, so I got a
stomach pump and would have baled him out in no time, only the proprietor
came in and told me to go and wash some bottles, and he gave Pa a drink of
brandy, and Pa said he felt better. Pa has learned where we keep the
liquor, and he comes in two or three times a day with a pain in his
stomach. They play awful mean tricks on a boy in a drug store. The first
day they put a chunk of something blue into a mortar, and told me to
pulverize it and then make it up into two grain pills. Well, sir, I
pounded that chunk all the forenoon, and it never pulverized at all, and
the boss told me to hurry up as the woman was waiting for the pills, and I
mauled it till I was nearly dead, and when it was time to go to supper the
boss came and looked in the mortar, and took out the chunk and said, 'You
dum fool, you have been pounding all day on a chunk of India rubber,
instead of blue mass!' Well, how did I know? But I will get even with them
if I stay there long enough, and don't you forget it. If you have a
prescription you want filled you can come down to the store and I will put
it up for you myself, and then you will be sure to get what you pay for."

"Yes," said the grocery man, as he cut off a piece of limberg cheese and
put it on the stove to purify the air in the room, "I should laugh to see
myself taking any medicine you put up. You will kill some one yet, by
giving them poison instead of quinine. But what has your Pa got his nose
tied up for? He looks as though he had had a fight."

"O, that was from my treatment. He had a wart on his nose. You
know that wart. You remember how the minister told him if other peoples'
business had a button hole in it, Pa could button the wart in the
button-hole, as he always had his nose there. Well, I told Pa I could cure
that wart with caustic, and he said he would give five dollars if I could
cure it, so I took a stick of caustic and burned the wart off, but I guess
I burned down into the nose a little, for it swelled up as big as a
lobster. Pa says he would rather have a whole nest of warts than such a
nose, but it will be all right in a year or two."


"What is a loan exhibition?" asks a correspondent. Well, when a fellow
borrows ten dollars of you, to be paid next Saturday, and he lets it run a
year and a half, and don't pay it, and he meets you on the street and asks
for five dollars more, and you turn him around and kick him right before
the crowd, that is a loan exhibition.


Mon Kee, a Chinaman that was converted to regular United States religious
doctrines, and opened a mission in New York for the purpose of converting
more heathens and shethens, has been arrested for stealing. This is a
terrible blow, and Mon Kee was a terrible plower. A few weeks since the
religious papers made more blow over the coming into the fold of that
Chinaman than they did over all the editors in the country, who went not
astray. Now they have shut up their yawp about him, since he has proved to
be no better than Talmage or Beecher.


There is one thing that there should be a law passed about, and that is,
these glass fruit jars, with a top that screws on. It should be made a
criminal offense, punishable with death or banishment to Chicago, for a
person to manufacture a fruit jar, for preserving fruit, with a top that
screws on. Those jars look nice when the fruit is put up in them, and the
house-wife feels as though she was repaid for all her perspiration over a
hot stove, as she looks at the glass jars of different berries, on the
shelf in the cellar.

The trouble does not begin until she has company, and decides to tap a
little of her choice fruit. After the supper is well under way, she sends
for a jar, and tells the servant to unscrew the top, and pour the fruit
into a dish. The girl brings it into the kitchen, and proceeds to unscrew
the top. She works gently at first, then gets mad, wrenches at it, sprains
her wrist, and begins to cry, with her nose on the underside of her apron,
and skins her nose on the dried pancake batter that is hidden in the folds
of the apron.

Then the little house-wife takes hold of the fruit can, smilingly, and
says she will show the girl how to take off the top. She sits down on the
wood-box, takes the glass jar between her knees, runs out her tongue, and
twists. But the cover does not twist. The cover seems to feel as though it
was placed there to keep guard over that fruit, and it is as immovable as
the Egyptian pyramids. The little lady works until she is red in the face,
and until her crimps all come down, and then she sets it away to wait for
the old man to come home. He comes in tired, disgusted, and mad as a
hornet, and when the case is laid before him, he goes out in the kitchen,
pulls off his coat and takes the jar.

He remarks that he is at a loss to know what women are made for,
anyway. He says they are all right to sit around and do crochet work, but
when strategy, brain, and muscle are required, then they can't get along
without a man. He tries to unscrew the cover, and his thumb slips off and
knocks the skin off the knuckle. He breathes a silent prayer and calls for
the kerosene can, and pours a little oil into the crevice, and lets it
soak, and then he tries again, and swears audibly.


Then he calls for a tack-hammer, and taps the cover gently on one side,
the glass jar breaks, and the juice runs down his trousers leg, on the
table and all around. Enough of the fruit is saved for supper, and the old
man goes up the back stairs to tie his thumb up in a rag, and change his

All come to the table smiling, as though nothing had happened,
and the house-wife don't allow any of the family to have any sauce for
fear they will get broken glass into their stomachs, but the "company" is
provided for generously, and all would be well only for a remark of a
little boy who, when asked if he will have some more of the sauce, says he
"don't want no strawberries pickled in kerosene." The smiling little
hostess steals a smell of the sauce while they are discussing politics,
and believes she does smell kerosene, and she looks at the old man kind of
spunky, when he glances at the rag on his thumb and asks if there is no
liniment in the house.

The preserving of fruit in glass jars is broken up in that house, and four
dozen jars are down cellar to lay upon the lady's mind till she gets a
chance to send some of them to a charity picnic. The glass jar fruit can
business is played out unless a scheme can be invented to get the top off.


A man died in Oshkosh who was over eighty years of age. After the funeral
the minister who conducted the services, said to the son of the deceased,
"your father was an octogenarian." The young man colored up, doubled up
his fist, and said to the minister that he would like to have him repeat
that remark. The minister said, "I say your father was an old
octogenarian." He had not more than got the word out of his mouth before
the young man struck him on the nose, knocked him down, kicked him in the
ear, and when pulled off by a policeman, he said no holyghoster could call
his dead father names, not around him. The minister said he couldn't have
been more surprised if some one had paid a year's pew rent, than he was
when that young man's fist hit him.



"What are you loafing around here for," says the grocery man to the bad
boy one day this week. "It is after nine o'clock, and I should think you
would want to be down to the drug store. How do you know but there may be
somebody dying for a dose of pills?"

"O, darn the drug store. I have got sick of that business, and I have
dissolved with the drugger. I have resigned. The policy of the store did
not meet with my approval, and I have stepped out and am waiting for them
to come and tender me a better position at an increased salary," said the
boy, as he threw a cigar stub into a barrel of prunes and lit a fresh one.

"Resigned, eh?" said the grocery man as he fished out the cigar stub and
charged the boy's father with two pounds of prunes, didn't you and the
boss agree?"

"Not exactly, I gave an old lady some gin when she asked for camphor and
water, and she made a show of herself. I thought I would fool her, but she
knew mighty well what it was, and she drank about half a pint of gin, and
got to tipping over bottles and kegs of paint, and when the drug man came
in with his wife, the old woman threw her arms around his neck and called
him her darling, and when he pushed her away, and told her she was drunk,
she picked up a bottle of citrate of magnesia and pointed it at him, and
the cork came out like a pistol, and he thought he was shot, and his wife
fainted away, and the police came and took the old gin refrigerator away,
and then the drug man told me to face the door, and, when I wasn't looking
he kicked me four times, and I landed in the street, and he said if I ever
came in sight of the store again he would kill me dead. That is the way I
resigned. I tell you, they will send for me again. They never can run that
store without me.

"I guess they will worry along without you," said the grocery
man. "How does your Pa take your being fired out? I should think it would
brake him all up."

"O, I think Pa rather likes it. At first he thought he had a soft snap
with me in the drug store, cause he has got to drinking again, like a
fish, and he has gone back on the church entirely; but after I had put a
few things in his brandy he concluded it was cheaper to buy it, and he is
now patronizing a barrel house down by the river.

"One day I put some Castile soap in a drink of drandy, and Pa leaned over
the back fence more than an hour, with his finger down his throat. The man
that collects the ashes from the alley asked Pa if he had lost anything,
and Pa said he was only 'sugaring off.' I don't know what that is. When Pa
felt better he came in and wanted a little whisky to take the taste out of
his mouth, and I gave him some, with about a teaspoonful of pulverized
alum in it. Well, sir, you'd a dide. Pa's mouth and throat was so puckered
up that he couldn't talk. I don't think that drugman will make anything by
firing me out, because I shall turn all the trade that I control to
another store. Why, sir, sometimes there were eight and nine girls in the
store all at wonct, on account of my being there. They came to have me put
extracts on their handkerchiefs, and to eat gum drops--he will lose all
that trade now. My girl that went back on me for the telegraph messenger
boy, she came with the rest of the girls, but she found that I could be as
'hawty as a dook.' I got even with her, though. I pretended I wasn't mad,
and when she wanted me to put some perfumery on her handkerchief I said
'all right,' and I put on a little geranium and white rose, and then I got
some tincture of assafety, and sprinkled it on her dress and cloak when
she went out. That is about the worst smelling stuff that ever was, and I
was glad when she went out and met the telegraph boy on the corner. They
went off together; but he came back pretty soon, about the
homesickest boy you ever saw, and he told my chum he would never go with
that girl again because she smelled like spoiled oysters or sewer gas. Her
folks noticed it, and made her go and wash her feet and soak herself, and
her brother told my chum it didn't do any good, she smelled just like a
glue factory, and my chum--the darn fool--told her brother that it was me
who perfumed her, and he hit me in the eye with a frozen fish, down by the
fish store, and that's what made my eye black; but I know how to cure a
black eye. I have not been in a drug store eight days, and not know how to
cure a black eye; and I guess I learned that girl not to go back on a boy
'cause he smelled like a goat.

"Well, what was it about your leaving the wrong medicine at houses? The
policeman in this ward told me you come pretty near killing several people
by leaving the wrong medicine."

"The way of it was this. There was about a dozen different kinds of
medicine to leave at different places, and I was in a hurry to go to the
roller skating rink, so I got my chum to help me, and we just took the
numbers of the houses, and when we rung the bell we would hand out the
first package we come to, and I understand there was a good deal of
complaint. One old maid who ordered powder for her face, her ticket drew
some worm lozengers, and she kicked awfully, and a widow who was going to
be married, she ordered a celluloid comb and brush, and she got a nursing
bottle with a rubber nozzle, and a toothing ring, and she made quite a
fuss; but the woman who was weaning her baby and wanted the nursing
bottle, she got the comb and brush and some blue pills, and she never made
any fuss at all. It makes a good deal of difference, I notice, whether a
person gets a better thing than they order or not. But the drug business
is too lively for me. I have got to have a quiet place, and I guess I will
be a cash boy in a store. Pa says he thinks I was cut out for a bunko
steerer, and I may look for that kind of a job. Pa he is a terror since he
got to drinking again. He came home the other day, when the minister was
calling on Ma, and just cause the minister was sitting on the sofa with
Ma, and had his hand on her shoulder, where she said the pain was when the
rheumatiz came on, Pa was mad and told the minister he would kick his
liver clear around on the other side if he caught him there again, and Ma
felt awful about it. After the minister had gone away, Ma told Pa he had
got no feeling at all, and Pa said he had got enough feeling for one
family, and he didn't want no sky-sharp to help him. He said he could cure
all the rheumatiz there was around the house, and then he went down town
and didn't get home till most breakfast time. Ma says she thinks I am
responsible for Pa's falling into bad ways again, and now I am going to
cure him. You watch me, and see if I don't have Pa in the church in less
than a week, praying and singing, and going home with the choir singers,
just as pious as ever. I am going to get a boy that writes a woman's hand
to write to Pa, and--but I must not give it away. But you just watch Pa,
that's all. Well, I must go and saw some wood. It is coming down a good
deal, from a drug clerk to sawing wood, but I will get on top yet, and
don't you forget it."


We are in receipt of a circular from the American peace society,
requesting us to leave a sum of money, in our will, to the society to be
applied to the interest of peace. We are opposed to peace, on such terms.
Give us war, every time.


If there is anything the young men of Rescue Hose Company pride themselves
upon, it is in getting themselves up, regardless of expense, on New Year's
day, and calling upon their lady friends. On Monday last these young men
arrayed themselves in their best clothes and sat around in stores and
waited for the time to go calling. Solomon in all his glory, was not
arrayed like one of these firemen.


Just as the young gentlemen were about throwing away their last cigar at
noon, preparatory to calling at the first place on the list, the fire-bell
rang, and there was a lively procession followed the steamer down Fourth
street in a few minutes. It looked as though a wedding had been broken up
and bridegrooms were running around loose. The party arrived at the scene
of the fire, which was Matt. Larsen's hotel on the corner of Second and
King streets, and such a shinning of swallow-tailed coats up blue ladders
was never seen. The fellows that belonged in the house threw out bedsteads
and crockery on to stove-pipe hats, and emptied beds on to
broadcloth coats. The wedding party disappeared in the third story window
with the hose, in the smoke, and after half an hour's work they came out
looking as though they had been in the Ashtabula railroad accident. Young
Mr. Smith had a stream of dirty water sent up his trousers leg, which went
clear up to his collar, and wilted it beyond repair. Mr. Hatch entwined
his doeskin pants around the burnt ridge-pole of the roof, hung on to a
rafter with his teeth, and chopped shingles, and the pipemen kept him wet,
and he looked like a bundle of damp stuff in a paper mill. Mr. Spence was
on the top of the ladder, and Mr. Drummond was next below him. In falling,
Mr. D. caught hold of one tail of Mr. Spence's swallow hammer coat, and
stretched the tail about two feet longer than the other. Mr. Foote was as
dry as a bone, until the pipeman saw him, and they nailed him up against
the wall with a stream and Foote was damp as a wet nurse in a minute.

Young Mr. Osborne, confidential adviser of Hyde, Cargill & Co., got half
way up the ladder, and a leak in the hose struck him and froze him to the
ladder, and Mr. Watson had to strike a match and thaw him loose. He wet
his pants from Genesis to Revelations, and had to go calling with an
ulster overcoat on. The most of the young men, after returning from the
fire, stood by the stove and dried themselves, and went calling all the
same, but the girls said they smelt like burnt shingles. The boys were all
dry enough at the dance in the evening.


Bennett and May fought a duel in Maryland the other day, and as near as
the truth can be arrived at neither party received a scratch. But their
"honaw" was satisfied.



"For heaven's sake dry up that whistling," said the grocery man to the bad
boy, as he sat on a bag of peanuts, whistling and filling his pockets.
"There is no sense in such whistling. What do you whistle for, anyway?"

"I am practicing my profession," said the boy, as he got up and stretched
himself, and cut off a slice of cheese, and took a few crackers. "I have
always been a good whistler, and I have decided to turn my talent to
account. I am going to hire an office and put out a sign, 'Boy furnished
to whistle for lost dogs.' You see there are dogs lost every day, and any
man would give half a dollar to a boy to find his dog. I can hire out to
whistle for dogs, and can go around whistling and enjoy myself, and make
money. Don't you think it is a good scheme?" asked the boy of the grocery

"Naw," said the grocery man, as he charged the cheese to the boy's father,
and picked up his cigar stub, which he had left on the counter, and which
the boy had rubbed on the kerosene barrel, "No, sir, that whistle would
scare any dog that heard it. Say, what was your Pa running after the
doctor in his shirt sleeves for last Sunday morning? He looked scared. Was
your Ma sick again?"

"O, no; Ma is healthy enough, now she has got a new fur lined cloak. She
played consumption on Pa, and coughed so she liked to raise her lights and
liver, and made Pa believe she couldn't live, and got the doctor to
prescribe a fur lined circular, and Pa went and got one, and Ma has
improved awfully. Her cough is all gone, and she can walk ten miles. I was
the one that was sick. You see, I wanted to get Pa into the church again,
and get him to stop drinking, so I got a boy to write a letter to
him, in a female hand, and sign the name of a choir singer Pa was mashed
on, and tell him she was yearning for him to come back to the church, and
that the church seemed a blank without his smiling face, and benevolent
heart, and to please come back for her sake. Pa got the letters Saturday
night and he seemed tickled, but I guess he dreamed about it all night,
and Sunday morning he was mad, and he took me by the ear and said I
couldn't come no 'Daisy' business on him the second time. He said he knew
I wrote the letter, and for me to go up to the store room and prepare for
the almightiest licking a boy ever had, and he went down stairs and broke
up an apple barrel and got a stave to whip me with. Well, I had to think
mighty quick, but I was enough for him. I got a dried bladder in my room,
one that me and my chum got to the slotter house, and I blowed it partly
up, so it would be sort of flat like, and I put it down inside the back
part of my pants, right about where Pa hits when he punishes me. I knowed
when the barrel stave hit the bladder it would explode. Well, Pa came up
and found me crying. I can cry just as easy as you can turn on the water
at a faucet, and Pa took off his coat and looked sorry. I was afraid he
would give up whipping me when he saw me cry, and I wanted the bladder
experiment to go on, so I looked kind of hard, as if I was defying him to
do his worst, and then he took me by the neck and laid me across a trunk.
I didn't dare struggle much for fear the bladder would loose itself, and
Pa said, 'Now, Hennery, I am going to break you of this damfoolishness, or
I will break your back,' and he spit on his hands and brought the barrel
stave down on my best pants. Well, you'd a dide if you had heard the
explosion. It almost knocked me off the trunk. It sounded like firing a
firecracker away down cellar in a barrel, and Pa looked scared. I rolled
off the trunk, on the floor, and put some flour on my face, to make me
look pale, and then I kind of kicked my legs like a fellow who is dying on
the stage, after being stabbed with a piece of lath, and groaned, and
said, 'Pa you have killed me, but I forgive you,' and then rolled around,
and frothed at the mouth, cause I had a piece of soap in my mouth to make
foam. Well, Pa was all broke up. He said, 'Great God, what have I done? I
have broke his spinal column. O, my poor boy, do not die!' I kept chewing
the soap and foaming at the mouth, and I drew my legs up and kicked them
out, and clutched my hair, and rolled my eyes, and then kicked Pa in the
stummick as he bent over me, and knocked his breath out of him, and then
my limbs began to get rigid, and I said, 'Too late, Pa, I die at the hand
of an assassin. Go for a doctor.' Pa throwed his coat over me, and started
down stairs on a run, 'I have murdered my brave boy,' and he told Ma to go
up stairs and stay with me, cause I had fallen off a trunk and ruptured a
blood vessel, and he went after a doctor. When he went out the front door,
I sat up and lit a cigarette, and Ma came up and I told her all about how
I fooled Pa, and if she would take on and cry, when Pa got back, I would
get him to go to church again, and swear off drinking, and she said she


"So when Pa and the doc. came back, Ma was sitting on a velocipede I used
to ride, which was in the store-room, and she had her apron over her face,
and she just more than bellowed. Pa he was pale, and he told the doc. he
was just playing with me with a little piece of board, and he heard
something crack, and he guessed my spine got broke falling off the trunk.
The doctor wanted to feel where my spine got broke, but I opened my eyes
and had a vacant kind of stare, like a woman who leads a dog by a string,
and looked as though my mind was wandering, and I told the doctor there
was no use setting my spine, as it was broke in several places,
and I wouldn't let him feel of the dried bladder. I told Pa I was going to
die, and I wanted him to promise me two things on my dying bed. He cried
and said he would, and I told him to promise me he would quit drinking,
and attend church regular, and he said he would never drink another drop,
and would go to church every Sunday. I made him get down on his knees
beside me and swear it, and the doc. witnessed it, and Ma said she was so
glad, and Ma called the doctor out in the hall and told him the joke, and
the doc. came in and told Pa he was afraid Pa's presence would excite the
patient, and for him to put on his coat and go out and walk around the
block, or go to church, and Ma and he would remove me to another room, and
do all that was possible to make my last hours pleasant. Pa he cried, and
said he would put on his plug hat and go to church, and he kissed me, and
got flour on his nose, and I came near laughing right out, to see the
white flour on his red nose, when I thought how the people in church would
laugh at Pa. But he went out feeling mighty bad, and then I got up and
pulled the bladder out of my pants, and Ma and the doc. laughed awful.
When Pa got back from church and asked for me, Ma said that I had gone
down town. She said the doctor found my spine was only uncoupled and he
coupled it together, and I was all right. Pa was nervous all the
afternoon, and Ma thinks he suspects that we played it on him. Say, you
don't think there is any harm in playing it on an old man a little for a
good cause, do you?"

The grocery man said he supposed, in the interest of reform it was all
right, but if it was his boy that played such tricks he would take an ax
to him, and the boy went out, apparently encouraged, saying he hadn't seen
the old man since the day before, and he was almost afraid to meet him.


[Illustration: THE ROTUND URSO.]

The second lecture of the Library Association course was delivered on
Tuesday evening by a female lecturer named Camilla Urso, on a fiddle. The
lecturer was supported by a female singer, two male clamsellers, and a
piano masher, all of them decidedly talented in their particular lines.
The lecture on the fiddle gave the most unbounded satisfaction, and the
Association in taking this new departure, has struck a popular chord.
Scarcely a person in the vast audience but would prefer such an
entertainment to a dry lecture by some dictionary sharp. Of the
performance, it is unnecessary to go into details, as all our readers were
there, with few exceptions. The fat female, Urso, more than carved the
fiddle. She dug sweet morsels of music out of it, all the way from the
wish-bone to the part that goes over the fence last. She made it talk
Norwegian, and squeezed little notes out of it not bigger than a cambric
needle, and as smooth as a book agent. The female singer was fair, though
nothing to brag on, while the male grasshopper sufferers sang as well as
was necessary. But the most agile flea-catcher that has been here since
Anna Dickinson's time, was sixteen-fingered Jack, the sandhill
crane that had the disturbance with the piano. We never knew what the row
was about, but when he walked up to the piano smiling, and shied his
castor into the ring, everybody could see there was going to be trouble.
He spit on his hands, sparred a little, and suddenly landed a stunning
blow right on the ivory, which staggered the piano, and caused an
exclamation of agony. First knock down for Jack. He paused a moment and
then began putting in blows right and left, in such a cruel manner that
the spectators came near breaking into the ring. Whenever a key showed its
head he mauled it. We never saw a piano stand so much punishment, and
live, and Jack never got a scratch. The whole concert was a success, and
the troupe can always get a good house here.


The only persons that are real sure that their calling and election is
sure, and that they are going to heaven across lots, are the men who are
hung for murder. They always announce that they have got a dead thing on
it, just before the drop falls. How encouraging it must be to children to
listen to the prayers of our ministers in churches, who admit that they
are miserable sinners living on God's charity, and doubtful if they would
be allowed to sit at His right hand, and as they tell the story of their
unworthiness the tears trickle down their cheeks. Then let the children
read an account of a hanging bee, and see how happy the condemned man is,
how he shouts glory hallelujah, and confesses that, though he killed his
man, he is going to heaven. A child will naturally ask why don't the
ministers murder somebody and make a dead sure thing of it?



"What was the health officer doing over to your house this morning?" said
the grocery man to the bad boy, as the youth was firing frozen potatoes at
the man who collects garbage in the alley.

"O, they are searching for sewer gas and such things, and they have got
plumbers and other society experts till you can't rest, and I came away
for fear they would find the sewer gas and warm my jacket. Say, do you
think it is right when anything smells awfully, to always lay it to a

"Well, in nine cases out of ten they would hit it right, but what do you
think is the trouble over to your house, honest?"

"S-h-h! Now don't breathe a word of it to a living soul, or I am a dead
boy. You see I was over to the dairy fair at the Exposition building
Saturday night, and when they were breaking up me and my chum helped to
carry boxes of cheese and firkins of butter, and a cheese man gave each of
us a piece of limberger cheese, wrapped up in tin foil. Sunday morning I
opened my piece, and it made me tired. O, it was the offulest smell I ever
heard of, except the smell when they found a tramp who hung himself in the
woods on the Whitefish Bay road, and had been dead three weeks. It was
just like an old back number funeral. Pa and Ma were just getting ready to
go to church, and I cut off a piece of cheese and put it in the inside
pocket of Pa's vest, and I put another in the lining of Ma's muff, and
they went to church. I went down to church too, and sat on a back seat
with my chum, looking just as pious as though I was taking up a
collection. The church was pretty warm, and by the time they got up to
sing the first hymn Pa's cheese began to smell a match against
Ma's cheese. Pa held one side of the hymn book and Ma held the other, and
Pa he always sings for all that is out, and when he braced himself and
sang 'Just as I am,' Ma thought Pa's voice was tinctured a little with
biliousness, and she looked at him and hunched him, and told him to stop
singing and breathe through his nose, cause his breath was enough to stop
a clock. Pa stopped singing and turned around kind of cross towards Ma,
and then he smelled Ma's cheese and he turned his head the other way and
said, 'whew,' and they didn't sing any more, but they looked at each other
as though they smelled frowy. When they sat down they sat as far apart as
they could get, and Pa sat next to a woman who used to be a nurse in a
hospital, and when she smelled Pa's cheese she looked at him as though she
thought he had the small pox, and she held her handkerchief to her nose.
The man in the other end of the pew, that Ma sat near, he was a stranger
from Racine, who belongs to our church, and he looked at Ma sort of queer,
and after the minister prayed, and they got up to sing again, the man took
his hat and went out, and when he came by me he said something in a
whisper about a female glue factory.

[Illustration: "JUST AS I AM."]

"Well, sir, before the sermon was over everybody in that part of the
church had their handkerchiefs to their noses, and they looked at Pa and
Ma scandalous, and the two ushers they came around in the pews looking for
a dog, and when the minister got over his sermon, and wiped the
prespiration off his face, he said he would like to have the trustees of
the church stay after meeting, as there was some business of importance to
transact. He said the question of proper ventilation and sewerage for the
church would be brought up, and that he presumed the congregation had
noticed this morning that the church was unusually full of sewer gas. He
said he had spoken of the matter before, and expected it would be attended
to before this. He said he was a meek and humble follower of the lamb, and
was willing to cast his lot wherever the Master decided, but he would be
blessed if he would preach any longer in a church that smelled like a bone
boiling establishment. He said religion was a good thing, but no person
could enjoy religion as well in a fat rendering establishment as he could
in a flower garden, and as far as he was concerned he had got enough.
Everybody looked at everybody else, and Pa looked at Ma as though he knew
where the sewer gas came from, and Ma looked at Pa real mad, and me and my
chum lit out, and I went home and distributed my cheese all around. I put
a slice in Ma's bureau drawer, down under her underclothes, and a piece in
the spare room, under the bed, and a piece in the bath-room in the soap
dish, and a slice in the album on the parlor table, and a piece in the
library in a book, and I went to the dining room and put some under the
table, and dropped a piece under the range in the kitchen. I tell you the
house was loaded for bear. Ma came home from church first, and when I
asked where Pa was, she said she hoped he had gone to walk around the
block to air hisself. Pa came home to dinner and when he got a smell of
the house he opened all the doors, and Ma put a comfortable around her
shoulders, and told Pa he was a disgrace to civilization. She tried to get
Pa to drink some carbolic acid. Pa finally convinced Ma that it was not
him, and then they decided it was the house that smelled so, as well as
the church, and all Sunday afternoon they went visiting, and this morning
Pa went down to the health office and got the inspector of nuisances to
come up to the house, and when he smelled around a spell he said there was
dead rats in the main sewer pipe, and they sent for plumbers, and Ma went
out to a neighbors to borry some fresh air, and when the plumbers began to
dig up the floor in the basement I came over here. If they find any of
that limberger cheese it will go hard with me. The hired girls have both
quit, and Ma says she is going to break up keeping house and board. That
is just into my hand. I want to board at a hotel, where you can have a
bill-of-fare, and tooth picks, and billiards, and everything. Well I guess
I will go over to the house and stand in the back door and listen to the
mocking bird. If you see me come flying out of the alley with my coat tail
full of boots you can bet they have discovered the sewer gas."


America is to be visited by the most beautiful woman in all England, Mrs.
Langtry. It is said that she is so sweet that when you look at her you
feel caterpillars crawling up the small of your back, your heart begins to
jump like a box car, and a streak of lightning goes down one trousers leg
and up the other, and escapes up the back of your neck, causing the hair
to raise and be filled with electricity enough to light a circus tent, and
that when looking at her your hands clutch nervously as though you wanted
to grasp something to hold you up, a sense of faintness comes over you,
your eyes roll heavenward, your head falls helpless on your breast, your
left side becomes numb, your liver quits working, your breath comes hot
and heavy, your lips turn livid and tremble, your teeth chew on imaginary
taffy, and you look around imploringly for somebody to take her away. If
all this occurs to a person from looking at her, it would be sudden death
or six months illness, to shake hands with her. If she comes to Milwaukee,
there is one bald headed man going to the country where they are not so
bad. You bet!


Geo. W. Peck, of the _Sun_, recently delivered an address before the
Wisconsin State Dairyman's Association. The following is an extract from
the document:

_Fellow Cremationists:_ In calling upon me, on this occasion, to enlighten
you upon a subject that is dear to the hearts of all Americans, you have
got the right man in the right place. It makes me proud to come to my old
home and unfold truths that have been folded since I can remember. It may
be said by scoffers, and it has been said to-day, in my presence, that I
didn't know enough to even milk a cow. I deny the allegation; show me the
allegator. If any gentleman present has got a cow here with him, and I can
borrow a clothes-wringer, I will show you whether I can milk a cow or not.
Or, if there is a cheese mine here handy, I will demonstrate that I

The manufacture of cheese and butter has been among the earliest
industries. Away back in the history of the world, we find Adam and Eve
conveying their milk from the garden of Eden, in a one-horse wagon to the
cool spring cheese factory to be weighed in the balance. Whatever may be
said of Adam and Eve to their discredit in the marketing of the products
of their orchard, it has never been charged that they stopped at the pump
and put water in their milk cans. Doubtless you will remember how Cain
killed his brother Abel because Abel would not let him do the churning. We
can picture Cain and Abel driving mooly cows up to the house from the
pasture in the southeast corner of the garden, and Adam standing at the
bars with a tin pail and a three-legged stool, smoking a meerschaum pipe
and singing "Hold the fort for I am coming through the rye," while Eve sat
on the verandah altering over her last year's polonaise, and winking at
the devil who stood behind the milk house singing, "I want to be
an angel." After he got through milking he came up and saw Eve blushing,
and he said, "Madame, cheese it," and she chose it.

[Illustration: A SCENE IN PARADISE.]

But to come down to the present day, we find that cheese has become one of
the most important branches of manufacture. It is next in importance to
the silver interest. And, fellow cheese-mongers, you are doing yourselves
great injustice that you do not petition congress to pass a bill to
remonetize cheese. There is more cheese raised in this country than there
is silver, and it is more valuable. Suppose you had not eaten a mouthful
in thirty days, and you should have placed on the table before you ten
dollars stamped out of silver bullion on one plate and nine dollars
stamped from cheese bullion on another plate. Which would you take first?
Though the face value of the nine cheese dollars would be ten per cent
below the face value of ten silver dollars, you would take the cheese. You
could use it to better advantage in your business. Hence I say cheese is
more valuable than silver, and it should be made legal tender for all
debts, public and private, except pew rent. I may be in advance of other
eminent financiers, who have studied the currency question, but I want to
see the time come, and I trust the day is not far distant, when 412-1/2
grains of cheese will be equal to a dollar in codfish, and when the merry
jingle of slices of cheese shall be heard in every pocket.

Then every cheese factory can make its own coin, money will be plenty,
everybody will be happy, and there never will be any more war. It may be
asked how this currency can be redeemed? I would have an incontrovertible
bond, made of Limburger cheese, which is stronger and more durable. When
this is done you can tell the rich from the poor man by the smell of his
money. Now-a-days many of us do not even get a smell of money, but in the
good days which are coming the gentle zephyr will waft to us the
able-bodied Limburger, and we shall know that money is plenty.

The manufacture of cheese is a business that a poor man can engage in, as
well as a rich man, I say it without fear of successful contradiction, and
say it boldly, that a poor man with, say 200 cows, if he thoroughly
understands his business, can market more cheese than a rich man with 300
oxen. This is susceptible of demonstration. If any boy showed a desire to
become a statesman, I would say to him, "Young man, get married, buy a
mooly cow, go to Sheboygan county, and start a cheese factory."

Speaking of cows, did it ever occur to you, gentlemen, what a saving it
would be to you if you should adopt mooley cows instead of horned cattle?
It takes at least three tons of hay and a large quantity of ground feed
annually to keep a pair of horns fat, and what earthly use are
they? Statistics show that there are annually killed 45,000 grangers by
cattle with horns. You pass laws to muzzle dogs, because one in ten
thousand goes mad, and yet more people are killed by cattle horns than by
dogs. What the country needs is more mooley cows.

Now that I am on the subject, it may be asked what is the best paying
breed for the dairy. My opinion is divided between the south down and the
cochin china. Some like one the best and some the other, but as for me,
give me liberty or give me death.

There are many reforms that should be inaugurated in the manufacture of
cheese. Why should cheese be made round? I am inclined to the belief that
the making of cheese round is a superstition. Who had not rather buy a
good square piece of cheese, than a wedge-shaped chunk, all rind at one
end, and as thin as a Congressman's excuse for voting back pay at the
other? Make your cheese square and the consumer will rise up and call you

Another reform that might be inaugurated would be to veneer the cheese
with building paper or clapboards, instead of the time-honored piece of
towel. I never saw cheese cut that I didn't think that the cloth around it
had seen service as a bandage on some other patient. But I may have been
wrong. Another thing that does not seem to be right, is to see so many
holes in cheese. It seems to me that solid cheese, one made by one of the
old masters, with no holes in it--I do not accuse you of cheating, but
don't you feel a little ashamed when you see a cheese cut, and the holes
are the biggest part of it? The little cells may be handy for the skipper,
but the consumer feels the fraud in his innermost soul.

Among the improvements made in the manufacture of cheese I must not forget
that of late years the cheese does not resemble the grindstone as much as
it did years ago. The time has been when, if the farmer could not
find his grindstone, all he had to do was to mortise a hole in the middle
of a cheese, and turn it and grind his scythe. Before the invention of
nitro-glycerine, it was a good day's work to hew off cheese enough for a
meal. Time has worked wonders in cheese.


At the concert Wednesday night, the last piece sung was a trio, by Marie
Rose, Brignoli, and Carleton. The men stood on each side of the girl and
began to jaw at her. It was in some other language, and we could only
understand by the motion of their mouths and their actions. It seemed as
though the men were trying to sell clams to her. First Brignoli began to
whoop it up, and describe the clams he had to sell, and tried to get her
to invest. He yelled at her, and seemed really put out, and she was as
spunky as any girl we ever saw. When Brignoli got out of breath, Carleton
began to tell her that Brig had been lying to her, that his clams were
made of India rubber, and that she could never digest them in the wide
world, and he wound up by telling her that she could have his clams at ten
per cent discount for cash. By this time she was about as mad as she could
be, and she pitched into both of them, looking cross, and sung like
blazes, went away up the musical ladder to zero, and wound up by telling
them both, to their face, that she would see them in Chicago before she
would buy a condemned clam. And then they all went off the stage as though
they had been having a regular fight, and Brignoli acted as though he
would like to eat her raw. That's the way it seemed to us, but we are no



"What is that stuff on your shirt bosom, that looks like soap grease?"
said the grocery man to the bad boy, as he came into the grocery the
morning after Christmas.

The boy looked at his shirt front, put his finger on the stuff and smelled
of his fingers, and then said, "O, that is nothing but a little of the
turkey dressing and gravy. You see after Pa and I got back from the roller
skating rink yesterday, Pa was all broke up and he couldn't carve the
turkey, and I had to do it, and Pa sat in a stuffed chair with his head
tied up, and a pillow amongst his legs, and he kept complaining that I
didn't do it right. Gol darn a turkey any way. I should think they would
make a turkey flat on the back, so he would lay on a greasy platter
without skating all around the table. It looks easy to see Pa carve a
turkey, but when I speared into the bosom of that turkey, and began to saw
on it, the turkey rolled around as though it was on castors, and it was
all I could do to keep it out of Ma's lap. But I rasseled with it till I
got off enough white meat for Pa and Ma and dark meat enough for me, and I
dug out the dressing, but most of it flew into my shirt bosom, cause the
string that tied up the place where the dressing was concealed about the
person of the turkey, broke prematurely, and one oyster hit Pa in the eye,
and he said I was as awkward as a cross-eyed girl trying to kiss a man
with a hair lip. If I ever get to be the head of a family I shall carve
turkeys with a corn sheller.

"But what broke your Pa up at the roller skating rink?" asked the grocery

"O, everything broke him up. He is split up so Ma buttons the top of his
pants to his collar button, like a bicycle rider. Well, he had no business
to have told me and my chum that he used to be the best skater in
North America, when he was a boy. He said he skated once from Albany to
New York in an hour and eighty minutes. Me and my chum thought if Pa was
such a terror on skates we would get him to put on a pair of roller skates
and enter him as the 'great unknown,' and clean out the whole gang. We
told Pa that he must remember that roller skates were different from ice
skates, and that maybe he couldn't skate on them, but he said it didn't
make any difference what they were as long as they were skates, and he
would just paralyze the whole crowd. So we got a pair of big roller skates
for him, and while we were strapping them on, Pa looked at the skaters
glide around on the smooth wax floor just as though they were greased. Pa
looked at the skates on his feet, after they were fastened, sort of
forlorn like, the way a horse thief does when they put shackles on his
legs, and I told him if he was afraid he couldn't skate with them we would
take them off, but he said he would beat anybody there was there, or bust
a suspender. Then we straightened Pa up, and pointed him towards the
middle of the room, and he said, 'leggo,' and we just give him a little
push to start him, and he began to go. Well, by gosh, you'd a dide to have
seen Pa try to stop. You see, you can't stick in your heel and stop, like
you can on ice skates, and Pa soon found that out, and he began to turn
sideways, and then he threw his arms and walked on his heels, and he lost
his hat, and his eyes began to stick out, cause he was going right towards
an iron post. One arm caught the post and he circled around it a few
times, and then he let go and began to fall, and, sir, he kept falling all
across the room, and everybody got out of the way, except a girl, and Pa
grabbed her by the polonaise, like a drowning man grabs at straws, though
there wasn't any straws in her polonaise as I know of, but Pa just pulled
her along as though she was done up in a shawl-strap, and his
feet went out from under him and he struck on his shoulders and kept a
going, with the girl dragging along like a bundle of clothes. If Pa had
had another pair of roller skates on his shoulders, and castors on his
ears, he couldn't have slid along any better. Pa is a short, big man, and
as he was rolling along on his back, he looked like a sofa with castors on
being pushed across a room by a girl. Finally Pa came to the wall and had
to stop, and the girl fell right across him, with her roller skates in his
neck, and she called him an old brute, and told him if he didn't let go of
her polonaise she would murder him. Just then my chum and me got there and
we amputated Pa from the girl, and lifted him up, and told him for
heaven's sake to let us take off the skates, cause he couldn't skate any
more than a cow, and Pa was mad and said for us to 'let him alone,' and he
could skate all right, and we let go and he struck out again. Well, sir, I
was ashamed. An old man like Pa ought to knonv better than to try to be a
boy. This last time Pa said he was going to spread himself, and if I am
any judge of a big spread, he did spread himself. Some how the skates had
got turned around side-ways on his feet, and his feet got to going in
different directions, and Pa's feet were getting so far apart that I was
afraid I would have two Pa's, half the size, with one leg apiece.


"I tried to get him to take up a collection of his legs, and get them in
the same ward but his arm flew around and hit me on the nose, and I
thought if he wanted to strike the best friend he had, he could
run his old legs his self. When he began to separate I could hear the
bones crack, but maybe it was his pants, but anyway he came down on the
floor like one of these fellows in a circus who spreads hisself, and he
kept agoing and finally he surrounded an iron post with his legs, and
stopped and looked pale, and the proprietor of the rink told Pa if he
wanted to give a flying trapeze performance he would have to go to the
gymnasium, and he couldn't skate on his shoulders any more, cause other
skaters were afraid of him. Then Pa said he would kick the liver out of
the proprietor of the rink, and he got up and steaded himself, and then he
tried to kick the man, but both heels went up to wonct, and Pa turned a
back summersault and struck right on his vest in front. I guess it knocked
the breath out of him, for he didn't speak for a few minutes, and then he
wanted to go home, and we put him in a street car, and he laid down on the
hay and rode home. O, the work we had to get Pa's clothes off. He had
cricks in his back, and everywhere, and Ma was away to one of the
neighbors, to look at the presents, and I had to put liniment on Pa, and I
made a mistake and got a bottle of furniture polish, and put it on Pa and
rubbed it in, and when Ma came home, Pa smelled like a coffin at a charity
funeral, and Ma said there was no way of getting that varnish off of Pa
till it wore off: Pa says holidays are a condemned nuisance anyway. He
will have to stay in the house all this week.

"You are pretty rough on the old man," said the grocery man, "after he has
been so kind to you and given you nice presents."

"Nice presents nothin. All I got was a 'Come to Jesus' Christmas card,
with brindle fringe, from Ma, and Pa gave me a pair of his old suspenders,
and a calender with mottoes for every month, some quotations from
scripture, such as 'honor thy father and mother,' and 'evil communications
corrupt two in the bush,' and a bird in the hand beats two pair.' Such
things don't help a boy to be good. What a boy wants is club skates, and
seven shot revolvers, and such things. Well, I must go and help Pa roll
over in bed, and put on a new porous plaster. Good bye."


No person ever wants to tell us again how to save two shillings. When we
started for Chippewa Falls, to attend the celebration, we only had a few
hundred dollars along, and we felt like saving all that was possible. Just
before arriving at Sparta, where we were to take supper, Dan McDonald got
to telling about how to save twenty-five cents on meals at these eating
houses, when traveling. He said that all you had to do when you come out
from supper was to look like a bummer, or "traveling man," hand the
door-keeper fifty cents and wink twice with the left eye, and he would
pass you right out, as though you had paid seventy-five cents. If you
handed out a dollar bill, and he only gave you back twenty-five cents, you
only had to hold out your hand and wink a couple of times, and the man
would give you the other quarter. Dan said he always did that way, and he
had saved hundreds of dollars. He said these bummers only paid fifty cents
a meal, and there was no use of anybody else paying more, if they had
cheek enough to play it on the landlord.

[Illustration: "OH, THAT WILL BE ALL RIGHT!"]

We never had anything strike us any more reasonable than the statement of
Mr. McDonald, and we determined to try it. To a man who was traveling a
good deal lecturing, a saving of twenty-five cents a meal was worth
looking into, and we made up our mind to begin to economize that very
night. The train stopped and we walked across the platform as near like a
bummer as possible. With our hat on one side, we threw a cigar stub into
the parlor window, said "Hello, old tapeworm," to the landlord in a
familiar sort of way, chucked our hat into a chair; rushed into the
dining-room, took a seat at the head of the table, and told a girl to cart
out all she had got. The landlord looked at us as though he thought we
were one of Field, Leiter & Co.'s bummers, his good wife looked
frightened, as though she feared we would kick a leg off the table and
spill things. However, there is no use of describing the meal, and how we
went through brook trout and strawberry shortcake, and things. We couldn't
help feeling sorry for the man that was destined to furnish all that for
fifty cents. Finally we went out. We felt a sort of palpitation of the
heart when we approached the hungry-looking man at the door, taking the
money. He looked as though he was a sick orphan trying to save money
enough to get to a water cure. Picking our teeth with our finger, like a
Chicago bummer, and pulling our handkerchief out of our pistol pocket and
blowing our nose like a thirty-two pounder, just as we had heard a Chicago
fellow do, we handed the man fifty cents, winked a couple of times and
started to go by. The tobacco sign standing there said, "twenty-five cents
more, please." We looked at him, winked, and said, "O, that will be all
right." "Two shillings more, my friend," said the summer resort. We winked
some more, and punched him in the ribs with our thumb, and said, "O, now,
old tapeworm, don't try to play it on us boys." And we laughed a sickly
sort of laugh. The fact of it was, we began to have doubts about the thing
working, and had a suspicion that the twinkle in Dan McDonald's eye meant
that he had been playing it on us. The landlord said he should have to
have two shillings more, and that we were blocking up the thoroughfare,
and we fumbled around and found it and paid him, and went out, probably
the most disgusted excursionist that ever was. Dan, who had watched the
whole business, slapped us on the shoulder, and said, "How did it work?"
Though not particularly hungry, we could have eaten him raw. When we go
east now, we take a lunch along, and when the other passengers are in to
supper, we sit on the woodpile at Sparta, eat our lunch and gaze at the
fountains, talk with the brakemen, and wonder if the landlord would know
us if we should go in and take a toothpick off the counter. Not any more
bummer for us, and no man must ever tell us how to save two shillings on a


"How to reach young men," was the topic at the young men's prayer meeting
on Thursday. An old gentleman on the East Side who broke a toe nail by
kicking the gate post just as the young man went down the sidewalk, would
also like to know. Bait your hook with a mighty good looking girl that
wears a sealskin cloak, and you can reach the young men.


The Russian government is making an average of four thousand arrests a day
of persons charged with nihilism. At this rate it is only a question of
time when the last of the conspirators will be in prison, and the emperor
can walk out without fear of assassination from his wife and children, as
these will probably be all the people that will be left.


A fearful tale conies to us from Columbus. A party of prominent citizens
of that place took a trip to the Dells of Wisconsin one day last week. It
was composed of ladies and gentlemen of both political parties, and it was
hoped that nothing would occur to mar the pleasure of the excursion.

When the party visited the Dells, Mr. Chapin, a lawyer of Democratic
proclivities, went out upon a rock overhanging a precipice, or words to
that effect, and he became so absorbed in the beauty of the scene that he
did not notice a Republican lady who left the throng and waltzed softly up
behind him. She had blood in her eye and gum in her mouth, and she grasped
the lawyer, who is a weak man, by the arms, and hissed in his ear:

"Hurrah for Garfield, or I will plunge you headlong into the yawning gulf

It was a trying moment. Chapin rather enjoyed being held by a woman, but
not in such a position that, if she let go her hold to spit on her hands,
he would go a hundred feet down, and become as flat as the Greenback
party, and have to be carried home in a basket.

In a second he thought over all the sins of his past life, which was
pretty quick work, as anybody will admit who knows the man. He thought of
how he would be looked down upon by Gabe Bouck, and all the fellows, if it
once got out that he had been frightened into going back on his party.

He made up his mind that he would die before he would hurrah for Garfield,
but when the merciless woman pushed him towards the edge of the rock, and,
"Last call! Yell, or down you go!" he opened his mouth and yelled so they
heard it in Kilbourn City:

"Hurrah for Garfield! Now lemme go!"

Though endowed with more than ordinary eloquence, no remarks that he had
ever made before brought the applause that this did. Everybody yelled, and
the woman smiled as pleasantly as though she had not crushed the young
life out of her victim, and left him a bleeding sacrifice on the altar of
his country, but when she had realized what she had done her heart smote
her, and she felt bad.

[Illustration: "YELL, OR GO DOWN!"]

Chapin will never be himself again. From that moment his proud spirit was
broken, and all during the picnic he seemed to have lost his cud. He
leaned listlessly against a tree, pale as death, and fanned himself with a
skimmer. When the party had spread the lunch on the ground and gathered
around, sitting on the ant-hills, he sat down with them mechanically, but
his appetite was gone, and when that is gone there is not enough
of him left for a quorum.

Friends rallied around him, passed the pickles, and drove the antmires out
of a sandwich, and handed it to him on a piece of shingle, but he either
passed or turned it down. He said he couldn't take a trick. Later on, when
the lemonade was brought on, the flies were skimmed off of some of it, and
a little colored water was put in to make it look inviting, but his eyes
were sot. He said they couldn't fool him. After what had occurred, he
didn't feel as though any Democrat was safe. He expected to be poisoned on
account of his politics, and all he asked was to live to get home.

Nothing was left undone to rally him, and cause him to forget the fearful
scene through which he had passed. Only once did he partially come to
himself, and show an interest in worldly affairs, and that was when it was
found that he had sat down on some raspberry jam with his white pants on.
When told of it, he smiled a ghastly smile, and said they were all welcome
to his share of the jam.

They tried to interest him in conversation by drawing war maps with
three-tined folks on the jam, but he never showed that he knew what they
were about until Mr. Moak, of Watertown, took a brush, made of cauliflower
preserved in mustard, and shaded the lines of the war map on Mr. Chapin's
trousers, which Mr. Butterfield had drawn in the jam. Then his artistic
eye took in the incongruity of the colors, and he gasped for breath, and

"Moak, that is played out. People will notice it."

But he relapsed again into semi-unconsciousness, and never spoke again,
not a great deal, till he got home.

He has ordered that there be no more borrowing of sugar and drawings of
tea back and forth between his house and that of the lady who broke his
heart, and be has announced that he will go without saurkraut all
winter rather than borrow a machine for cutting cabbage of a woman that
would destroy the political prospects of a man who had never done a wrong
in his life.

He has written to the chairman of the Democratic State Central Committee
to suspend judgment on his case, until he can explain how it happened that
a dyed-in-the-wood Democrat hurrahed for Garfield.


A corpse got a good joke on the people of Quebec the other day. It came
there by express, and was only an ordinary, every-day man, but the Kanucks
were looking for a military corpse, and supposing our ordinary corpse to
be he, they got up a Fifth avenue funeral, and buried it with military
honors. The corpse, who didn't know a thing about military matters, must
have many a good laugh over the mistake. And how the military corpse must
have felt, when HE came!


D.H. Pulcifer, of Shawano, announces that he is about to prepare a
biography of all the members of the territorial legislature and subsequent
legislatures, state officers, members of congress, etc., and desires all
men who may have been great or may be so now, to send in the particulars.
Well, you can get our record at the adjutant general's office, though
there is one mistake in that record. It was in June, 1862 that we arrived
in Canada, the day before the draft.


Last week a train load of insane persons were removed from the Oshkosh
Asylum to the Madison Asylum. As the train was standing on the sidetrack
at Watertown Junction it created considerable curiosity. People who have
ever passed Watertown Junction have noticed the fine old gentleman who
comes into the car with a large square basket, peddling popcorn. He is one
of the most innocent and confiding men in the world. He is honest, and he
believes that everybody else is honest.

He came up to the depot with his basket, and seeing the train he asked
Pierce, the landlord there, what train it was. Pierce, who is a most
diabolical person, told the old gentleman that it was a load of members of
the legislature and female lobbyists going to Madison. With that beautiful
confidence which the pop corn man has in all persons, he believed the
story, and went into the car to sell pop corn.

Stopping at the first seat, where a middle-aged lady was sitting alone,
the pop corn man passed out his basket and said, "fresh pop corn." The
lady took her foot down off the stove, looked at the man a moment with
eyes glaring and wild, and said, "It is--no, it cannot be--and yet it _is_
me long lost Duke of Oshkosh," and she grabbed the old man by the necktie
with one hand and pulled him down into the seat, and began to mow away
corn into her mouth. The pop corn man blushed, looked at the rest of the
passengers to see if they were looking, and said, as he replaced the
necktie knot from under his left ear and pushed his collar down, "Madame,
you are mistaken. I never have been a duke in Oshkosh. I live here at the
Junction." The woman looked at him as though she doubted his statement,
but let him go.

He proceeded to the next seat, when a serious looking man rose up and
bowed; the pop corn man also bowed and smiled as though he might
have met him before. Taking a paper of popcorn and putting it in his coat
tail pocket, the serious man said, "I was honestly elected President of
the United States in 1876, but was counted out by the vilest conspiracy
that ever was concocted on earth, and I believe you are one of the
conspirators," and he spit on his hands and looked the pop corn man in the
eye. The pop corn man said he never took any active part in politics, and
had nothing to do with that Hayes business at all. Then the serious man
sat down and began eating the pop corn, while two women on the other side
of the car helped themselves to the corn in the basket.

[Illustration: ME LONG LOST DUKE.]

The pop corn man held out his hand for the money, when a man two seats
back came forward and shook hands with him, saying: "They told me you
would not come, but you have come, Daniel, and now we will fight
it out. I will take this razor, and you can arm yourself at your leisure."
The man reached into an inside pocket of his coat, evidently for a razor,
when the pop corn man started for the door, his eyes sticking out two
inches. Every person he passed took a paper of pop corn, one man grabbed
his coat and tore one tail off, another took his basket away and as he
rushed out on the platform the basket was thrown at his head, and a female
voice said, "I will be ready when the carriage calls at 8."

As the old gentleman struck the platform and began to arrange his toilet
he met Fitzgerald, the conductor, who asked him what was the matter. He
said Pierce told him that crowd was going to the legislature, "but," says
he, as he picked some pieces of paper collar out of the back of his neck,
"if those people are not delegates to a Democratic convention, then I have
been peddling pop corn on this road ten years for nothing, and don't know
my business." Fitz told him they were patients going to the Insane Asylum.

The old man thought it over a moment, and then he picked up a coupling pin
and went looking for Pierce. He says he will kill him. Pierce has not been
out of the house since. This Pierce is the same man that lent us a runaway
horse once.


Some idiot has invented a "cat teaser" to put on fences to keep cats from
sitting there and singing. It consists of a three-cornered piece of tin,
nailed on the top of the fence. We hope none of our friends will invest in
the patent, for statistics show that while cats very often sit on fences
to meditate, yet when they get it all mediated and get ready to sing a
duet, they get down off the fence and get under a currant bush. We
challenge any cat scientist to disprove the assertion.


Years ago we swore on a stack of red chips that we would never own another
dog. Six promising pups that had been presented to us, blooded setters and
pointers, had gone the way of all dog flesh, with the distemper and dog
buttons, and by falling in the cistern, and we had been bereaved _via_ dog
misfortunes as often as John R. Bennett, of Janesville, has been bereaved
on the nomination for attorney general. We could not look a pup in the
face but it would get sick, and so we concluded never again to own a dog.

The vow has been religiously kept since. Men have promised us thousands of
pups, but we have never taken them. One conductor has promised us at least
seventy-five pups, but he has always failed to get us to take one. Dog
lovers have set up nights to devise a way to induce us to accept a dog. We
held out firmly till last week. One day we met Pierce, the Watertown
Junction hotel man, and he told us that he had a greyhound pup that was
the finest bread dog--we think he said bread dog, though it might have
been sausage dog he said--anyway he told us it was blooded, and that when
it grew up to be a man--that is, figuratively speaking--when it grew up to
be a dog full size, it would be the handsomest canine in the Northwest.

We kicked on it, entirely, at first, but when he told us hundreds of men
who had seen the pup had offered him thousands of dollars for it, but that
he had rather give it to a friend than sell it to a stranger, we weakened,
and told him to send it in.

Well--(excuse us while we go into a corner and mutter a silent remark)--it
came in on the train Monday, and was taken to the barn. It is the
confoundedest looking dog that a white man ever set eyes on. It is about
the color of putty, and about seven feet long, though it is only
six months old. The tail is longer than a whip lash, and when you speak
sassy to that dog, the tail will begin to curl around under him, amongst
his legs, double around over his neck and back over where the tail
originally was hitched to the dog, and then there is tail enough left for
four ordinary dogs.

If that tail was cut up into ordinary tails, such as common dogs wear,
there would be enough for all the dogs in the Seventh Ward, with enough
left for a white wire clothes line. When he lays down his tail curls up
like a coil of telephone wire, and if you take hold of it and wring you
can hear the dog at the central office. If that dog is as long in
proportion, when he gets his growth, and his tail grows as much as his
body, the dog will reach from here to the Soldier's home.

[Illustration: 'THEREBY HANGS A TAIL'.]

His head is about as big as a graham gem, and runs down to a point no
bigger than a cambric needle, while his ears are about as big as a thumb
to a glove, and they hang down as though the dog didn't want to hear
anything. How a head of that kind can contain brains enough to cause a dog
to know enough to go in when it rains is a mystery. But he seems to be

If a man comes along on the sidewalk, the dog will follow him off, follow
him until he meets another man, and then he follows _him_ till he
meets another, and so on until he has followed the entire population. He
is not an aristocratic dog, but will follow one person just as soon as
another, and to see him going along the street, with his tail coiled up,
apparently oblivious to every human sentiment, it is touching.

His legs are about the size of pipe stems, and his feet are as big as a
base ball base. He wanders around, following a boy, then a middle aged
man, then a little girl, then an old man, and finally, about meal time,
the last person he follows seems to go by the barn and the dog wanders in
and looks for a buffalo robe or a harness tug to chew. It does not cost
anything to keep him, as he has only eaten one trotting harness and one
fox skin robe since Monday, though it may not be right to judge of his
appetite, as he may be a little off his feed.

Pierce said he would be a nice dog to run with a horse, or under a
carriage. Why, bless you, he won't go within twenty feet of a horse, and a
horse would run away to look at him; besides, he gets right under a
carriage wheel, and when the wheel runs over him he complains, and sings

What under the sun that dog is ever going to be good for is more than we
know. He is too lean and bony for sausage. A piece of that dog as big as
your finger in a sausage would ruin a butcher. It would be a dead give
away. He looks as though he might point game, if the game was brought to
his attention, but he would be just as liable to point a cow. He might do
to stuff and place in a front yard to frighten burglars. If a burglar
wouldn't be frightened at that dog nothing would scare him.

Anyway, now we have got him, we will bring him up, though it seems as
though he would resemble a truss bridge or a refrigerator car, as much as
a dog, when he gets his growth. For fear he will fall off a wagon track we
tie a knot in his tail.


Up to the present time the _Sun_ has struggled along from infancy to
middle age without a safe in its office. It has never needed one. It does
not need one now, but custom has to do with these things. The associations
that surround one, go far towards making these changes. When we look at
the immense safes in the office of out neighbor, filled with bonds and
mortgages, we feel that a safe will look well. So we purchased a sort of
an iron range, with a nickle plated knob, and a lock with as many figures
on it as a tax list or a lottery advertisement, and placed it where it
will strike the visitor on his first entrance. Ah, what an imposing affair
it is! As we lean back in a chair and 1ook at it, and close our eyes, we
can see millions in it, in our mind. It is a cross between Alex.
Mitchell's safe and a child's bank. It is not full, but it has evidently
been taking something. It is a grand feeling to walk along the streets and
feel that your head contains the secret which opens the safe. No one but
yourself and your maker, and the maker of the safe knows the three numbers
which will cause it to open. The numbers are safe with you, and the All
Seeing Eye you have confidence will not give it away, so that the only
show a burglar has is to get solid with the maker of the safe.

What a piece of mechanism is the lock of a safe! The man we bought it of
gave us the programme that opens it. You go to the dial turn the knob, put
your finger by your nose and wink. If you leave out the wink, the safe
will not open, but we never leave out the wink. The trouble is, if there
is a lady customer in with a bill, and we go to open the safe, we wink too
many times and have to go all over it again. Then we place the numbers in
their order, 4-11-44, and when the "four" is exactly opposite the
dipthong, we turn the knob back three revolutions, light a cigar,
and walk three times around the room. That is to give the mechanism in the
Inside time to coalesce. Then we put the "eleven" in its place, turn the
knob forward one revolution, and put on our hat and go out and take a
drink. That is in the programme, and we sometimes think the inventor of
the lock is interested in a brewery. Then we come back, wipe our mustache
on the tail of a linen coat, place the figures "44" directly over the
pointer, whistle "There's a land that is fairer than this," place the
right foot forward, then turn the knob, the door swings on its hinges, and
the untold wealth of the Indies lies before us, in our alleged mind.

O, safe, are you honest? Are you true to us? You look pure and chaste, and
your new overskirt of varnish, and your puffed ruching of gold and blue
sets you off to good advantage, but you may not be impregnable. You have
always gone in good society, and no scandal has ever been attached to your
name. Your purity and innocence has been remarked by all who have met you,
and there are none who would dare to intimate but that you would maintain
your reputation against any attack, but sometimes we think we should
hesitate to leave you all alone, with the light turned down all night and
over Sunday, in the company of an eloquent, persuasive, good-looking
burglar armed with a jimmy, and we fear that his warm hearted can of
powder would strike a responsive chord in your impulsive nature, and that
you would yield up the jewels confined to you, and your honor, your
reputation, your standing among safes would be forever ruined. And yet we
may be wrong.

But what would it profit a burglar to gain the whole contents and wear out
his soles. If he got in that safe, he would find a package of bills that
we tried for a year to collect, and we would give him the bills if he
asked for them, and he could save his powder. He would find one bill of
sixteen dollars, with an indorsement that one dollar is paid,
after thirteen dollars worth of shoe leather had been worn out. And yet
the burglar would have a soft thing on cigars with that bill, for every
time he visited the doctor he would tell him when to come again, and give
him a cigar. Another thing the burglar would find would be a protested
draft from a great Philadelphia patent medicine advertiser. The burglar
could take a tie pass that is in the safe, and walk to Philadelphia, and
trade out the twenty-five dollar draft by taking buchu on account.

But no burglar that has any respect for himself, we feel sure, will ever
do us the injury to scrape the paint off of that safe.


A fashion item says, "The drawers this year are made very short, and some
have lace ruffles." Some fashion reporter has evidently been looking over
our back fence at the clothes line. But they got awfully fooled. The
shortness of those drawers was caused by the flannel shrinking and the
"lace ruffles" the reporter noticed is where a calf chewed them when they
were hanging out to dry last fall on Black Hawk Island, when a gun kicked
us out of a boat. Some of these fashion reporters think they are smart.


A man down east is lecturing on "Hell, Ingersoll, and Whisky." If the
lecturer is at all familiar with his subjects, we wouldn't believe him
under oath.



"Say, you are getting too alfired smart," said the grocery man to the bad
boy as he pushed him into a corner by the molasses barrel, and took him by
the neck and choked him so his eyes stuck out. "You have driven away
several of my best customers, and now, confound you, I am going to have
your life," and he took up a cheese knife and began to sharpen it on his

"What's the--gurgle--matter?" asked the choking boy, as the grocery man's
finger let up on his throat a little, so he could speak. "I haint done

"Didn't you hang up that gray torn cat by the heels, in front of my store,
with the rabbits I had for sale? I didn't notice it until the minister
called me out in front of the store, and pointing to the rabbits, asked
what good fat cats were selling for. By crimus, this thing has got to
stop. You have got to move out of this ward or I will."

The boy got his breath and said it wasn't him that put the cat up there.
He said it was the policeman, and he and his chum saw him do it, and he
just come in to tell the grocery man about it, and before he could speak
he had his neck nearly pulled off. The boy began to cry, and the grocery
man said he was only joking, and gave him a box of sardines, and they made
up. Then he asked the boy how his Pa put in his New Years, and the boy
sighed and said:

"We had a sad time at our house New Years. Pa insisted on making calls,
and Ma and me tried to prevent it, but he said he was of age, and guessed
he could make calls if he wanted to, so he looked at the morning paper and
got the names of all the places where they were going to receive, and he
turned his paper collar, and changed ends with his cuffs, and put some
arnica on his handkerchief, and started out. Ma told him not to
drink anything, and he said he wouldn't, but he did. He was full the third
place he went to. O, so full. Some men can get full and not show it, but
when Pa gets full, he gets so full his back teeth float, and the liquor
crowds his eyes out, and his mouth gets loose and wiggles all over his
face, and he laughs all the time, and the perspiration just oozes out of
him, and his face gets red, and he walks so wide. O, he disgraced us all.
At one place he wished the hired girl 'a happy new year' more than twenty
times, and hung his hat on her elbow, and tried to put on a rubber hall
mat for his over shoes. At another place he walked up a lady's train, and
carried away a card basket full of bananas and oranges. Ma wanted my chum
and me to follow Pa and bring him home, and about dark we found him in the
door yard of a house where they have statues in front of the house, and he
grabbed me by the arm, and mistook me for another caller, and insisted on
introducing me to a marble statue without any clothes on. He said it was a
friend of his, and it was a winter picnic. He hung his hat on an
evergreen, and put his overcoat on the iron fence, and I was so mortified
I almost cried. My chum said if his Pa made such a circus of himself he
would sand bag him. That gave me an idea, and when we got Pa most home I
went and got a paper box covered with red paper, so it looked just like a
brick, and a bottle of tomato ketchup, and when we got Pa up on the steps
at home I hit him with the paper brick, and my chum squirted the ketchup
on his head, and we demanded his money, and then he yelled murder, and we
lit out, and Ma and the minister, who was making a call on her, all the
afternoon, they came to the door and pulled Pa in. He said he had been
attacked by a band of robbers, and they knocked his brains out, but he
whipped them, and then Ma saw the ketchup brains oozing out of his head,
and she screamed, and the minister said. 'Good heavens, he is murdered!'
and just then I came in the back door and they sent after the
doctor, and they put Pa on the lounge, and tied up his head with a towel
to keep the brains in, and Pa began to snore, and when the doctor came in
it took them half an hour to wake him, and then he was awful sick to his
stummick, and then Ma asked the doctor if he would live, and the doc.
analyzed the ketchup and smelled of it and told Ma he would be all right
if he had a little Worcester sauce to put on with the ketchup, and when he
said Pa would pull through, Ma looked awful sad. Then Pa opened his eyes
and saw the minister and said that was one of the robbers that jumped on
him, and he wanted to whip the minister, but the doc. held Pa's arms and
Ma sat on his legs, and the minister said he had got some other calls to
make, and he wished Ma a happy new year in the hall, much as fifteen
minutes. His happy new year to Ma is most as long as his prayers. Well, we
got Pa to bed, and when we undressed him we found nine napkins in the
bosom of his vest, that he had picked up at the places where he had
called. He is all right this morning, but he says it is the last time he
will drink coffee when he makes New Years calls.

"Well, then you didn't have much fun yourself on New Years. That's too
bad," said the grocery man, as he looked at the sad eyed youth. "But you
look hard. If you were old enough I should say you had been drunk, your
eyes are red."

[Illustration: HAPPY NEW YEAR, MUM!]

"Didn't have any fun eh? Well, I wish I had as many dollars as I had fun.
You see, after Pa got to sleep Ma wanted me and my chum to go to the
houses that Pa had called at and return the napkins he had kleptomaniaced,
so we dressed up and went. The first house we called at the girls were
sort of demoralized. I don't know as I ever saw a girl drunk, but those
girls acted queer. The callers had stopped coming, and the girls were
drinking something out of shaving cups that looked like lather, and they
said it was 'aignogg.' They laffed and kicked up their heels wuss nor a
circus, and their collars got unpinned, and their faces was red, and they
put their arms around me and my chum and hugged us and asked us if we
didn't want some of the custard. You'd a dide to see me and my chum drink
that lather. It looked just like soap suds with nutmaig in it, but by gosh
it got in its work sudden. At first I was afraid when the girls hugged me,
but after I had drank a couple of shaving cups full of the 'aignogg' I
wasn't afraid no more, and I hugged a girl so hard she catched her breath
and panted and said, 'O, don't.' Then I kissed her, and she is a great big
girl, bigger'n me, but she didn't care. Say, did you ever kiss a girl full
of aignogg? If you did it would break up your grocery business. You would
want to waller in bliss instead of selling mackerel. My chum ain't no
slouch either. He was sitting in a stuffed chair holding another New
Year's girl, and I could hear him kiss her so it sounded like a cutter
scraping on bare ground. But the girl's Pa came in and said he guessed it
was time to close the place, unless they had a license for an all night
house, and me and my chum went out. But _wasn't_ we sick when we got out
doors. O, it seemed as though the pegs in my boots was the only thing that
kept them down, and my chum he like to dide. He had been to dinner and
supper and I had only been skating all day, so he had more to contend with
than I did. O, my, but that lets me out on aignogg. I don't know how I got
home, but I got in bed with Pa, cause Ma was called away to attend a baby
matinee in the night. I don't know how it is, but there never is anybody
in our part of town that has a baby but they have it in the night, and
they send for Ma. I don't know what she has to be sent for every time for.
Ma ain't to blame for all the young ones in this town, but she has got up
a reputashun, and when we hear the bell ring in the night Ma gets up and
begins to put on her clothes, and the next morning she comes in the dining
room with a shawl over her head, and says, 'its a girl and weighs ten
pounds,' or 'a boy,' if it's a boy baby. Ma was out on one of her
professional engagements, and I got in bed with Pa. I had heard Pa blame
Ma about her cold feet, so I got a piece of ice about as big as a raisin
box, just zactly like one of Ma's feet, and laid it right against the
small of Pa's back. I couldn't help laffing, but pretty soon Pa began to
squirm and he said, 'Why'n 'ell don't you warm them feet before you come
to bed,' and then he hauled back his leg and kicked me clear out in the
middle of the floor, and said if he married again he would marry a woman
who had lost both her feet in a railroad accident. Then I put the ice back
in the bed with Pa and went to my room, and in the morning Pa said he
sweat more'n a pail full in the night. Well, you must excuse me. I have an
engagement to shovel snow off the sidewalk. But before I go, let me advise
you not to drink aignogg, and don't sell tom cats for rabbits," and he got
out of the door just in time to miss the rutabaga that the grocery man
threw at him.


The _Wisconsin_ asks, "What will the Democrats do?" We trust it is not
betraying a confidence reposed in us by the manager of a party, but we can
not allow our neighbor to remain in such dense ignorance, as long as we
are possessed of the desired information. "What will the Democrats do?"
The Democrats will prove an _alibi!_


In response to a request from W.T. Vankirk, George W. Peck presented the
Rock County Agricultural Society with a sewing machine, to be given to the
"boss combination girl" of Rock County. With the machine he sent the
following letter, which explains his meaning of a "combination girl,"

MILWAUKEE, June 7, 1881.

W.T. VANKIRK--_Dear Sir:_ Your letter, in reference to giving some kind of
a premium to somebody, at your County Fair, is received, and I have been
thinking it over. I have brought my massive intellect to bear upon the
subject, with the follow result:

I ship you to-day, by express, a sewing machine, complete, with cover,
drop leaf, hemmer, tucker, feller, drawers, and everything that a girl
wants, except corsets and tall stockings. Now, I want you to give that to
the best "combination girl" in Rock County, with the compliments of the

What I mean by a "combination," is one that in the opinion of your
Committee has all the modern improvements, and a few of the old-fashioned
faults, such as health, etc. She must be good-looking, that is not too
handsome, but just handsome enough. You don't want to give this machine to
any female statue, or parlor ornament, who don't know how to play a tune
on it, or who is as cold as a refrigerator car, and has no heart concealed
about her person. Our girl, that is, our "Fair Girl," that takes this
machine, must be "the boss." She must be jolly and good-natured, such a
girl as would make the young man that married her think that Rock County
was the next door to heaven, anyway. She must be so healthy that nature's
roses will discount any preparation ever made by man, and so well-formed
that nothing artificial is needed to--well, Van, you know what I mean.

You want to pick out a thoroughbred, that is, all wool, a yard
wide--that is, understand me, I don't want the girl to be a yard wide, but
just right. Your Committee don't want to get "mashed" on some ethereal
creature whose belt is not big enough for a dog collar. This premium girl
wants to be able to do a day's work, if necessary, and one there is no
danger of breaking in two if her intended should hug her.

[Illustration: I WANT TO BE AN ANGEL.]

After your Committee have got their eyes on a few girls that they think
will fill the bill, then they want to find out what kind of girls they are
around their home. Find if they honor their fathers and their mothers, and
are helpful, and care as much for the happiness of those around them as
they do for their own. If you find one who is handsome as Venus--I don't
know Venus, but I have heard that she takes the cake--I say, if you find
one that is perfect in everything, but shirks her duties at home, and
plays, "I Want to Be an Angel," on the piano, while her mother is mending
her stockings, or ironing her picnic skirts, then let her go ahead and be
an angel as quick as she wants to, but don't give her the
machine. You catch the idea?

Find a girl who has the elements of a noble woman; one whose heart is so
large that she has to wear a little larger corset than some, but one who
will make her home happy, and who is a friend to all; one who would walk
further to do a good deed, and relieve suffering, than she would to
patronize an ice cream saloon; one who would keep her mouth shut a month
before she would say an unkind word, or cause a pang to another. Let your
Committee settle on such a girl, and she is as welcome to that machine as

Now, Van, you ought to have a Committee appointed at once, and no one
should know who the Committee is. They should keep their eyes open from
now till the time of the Fair, and they should compare notes once in a
while. You have got some splendid judges of girls there in Janesville, but
you better appoint married men. They are usually more unbiased. They
should not let any girl know that she is suspected of being the premium
girl, until the judgment is rendered, so no one will be embarrassed by
feeling that she is competing for a prize.

Now, Boss, I leave the constitution and the girls in your hands; and if
this premium is the means of creating any additional interest in your
Fair, and making people feel good natured and jolly, I shall be amply

Your friend



From an article in the _Leader_ we gather that Frank Drake, editor of the
Rushford _Star_, was horsewhipped by a woman who was dissatisfied with
some article of his that appeared against her, in the _Star_. A woman that
cowhides an editor is no gentleman.


Somehow, during the election excitement, Frank Hatch happened to bet right
just once. He bet a hat, and on Monday he went to Putnam & Philbrick and
selected one of the finest silk ones. When he went out in the street every
body noticed it, and a reception was held. They all congratulated Frank,
except Ike Usher. Ike's hat was a year old, and the contrast was so
remarkable that Ike would not walk on the street with Hatch. Frank said
that Ike's hat used to be a very fine looking hat, but at present it was a
disgrace to the force. Mr. Usher was offended, and he swore revenge. He
went to a professional drunkard on Division street, and said that if he
should happen to get drunk Monday night and Hatch should happen to arrest
him, he would give the drunkard five dollars if the drunkard would mash
Frank's new hat. The fellow said he would flatten it flatter than flatness
itself. Just after dark Mr. Hatch was walking down Third street, "Whoop,
hurrah for Tilden, (hic) 'endrix." The remark seemed so out of place that
Frank went down there. The man was lying on the sidewalk, and telling the
barrel to roll over and not take up all the bed. Mr. Hatch accosted the
man gently, telling him he would catch cold there, and that he had better
go with him to the city hotel. The man said he would--be counted in if he
did, and Hatch bent over him to take him by the lily white hand, when a
drunken boot came down on the top of that hat, and drove it clean down to
Frank's nose. Of course it could go no further. Then the man pulled Frank
down, and the hat struck the end of a salt barrel, knocked it off, and the
man raised up and sat down on it, and kicked it into the street. Frank got
the man away, and a boy brought his hat to the police station, just as
Usher and Littlejohn and Knutson, and all the policeman entered. It is
said that all stood on the corner over by Kevin's watching the
arrest. The hat was a sight to behold, as it laid in state on the safe,
and all the boys making comments on it. It looked like a six-inch stove
pipe elbow that a profane man had been attempting to fit to a five-inch
stove pipe. It looked like some old dripping pan that had been thrown out
in the street, and had been run over by wagons. It looked like the very
dickens. And yet we have no doubt Hatch will say this is a lie, because he
now wears a good hat, but we know the hat he now wears he got by trading a
flannel shirt to a grasshopper sufferer, and it no more resembles the
beautiful new hat he won on election than nothing. After Hatch went out of
the office, Usher let the man "escape," and he is five dollars ahead, and
Ike has got even with Hatch.



A Minnesota town got a fire steamer on trial, and tested it by trying to
drown out a gopher. After working it six hours, the gopher came out to get
a drink. He would have died of thirst if they had kept the hole closed
much longer.


Sometimes it seems as though the colored people ought to have a guardian
appointed over them. Now, you take a colored concert troupe, and though
they may have splendid voices, they do not know enough to take advantage
of their opportunities. People go to hear them because they are colored
people, and they want to hear old-fashioned negro melodies, and yet these
mokes will tackle Italian opera and high toned music that they don't know
how to sing.

They will sing these fancy operas and people will not pay any attention.
Along toward the end of the programme they will sing some old nigger song,
and the house fairly goes wild and calls them out half a dozen times. And
yet they do not know enough to make up a programme of such music as they
can sing, and such as the audience want.

They get too big, these colored people do, and can't strike their level.
People who have heard Kellogg, and Marie Rose, and Gerster, are sick when
a black cat with a long red dress comes out and murders the same pieces
the prima donnas have sung. We have seen a colored girl attempt a
selection from some organ-grinder opera, and she would howl and screech,
and catch her breath and come again, and wheel and fire vocal shrapnel,
limber up her battery and take a new position, and unlimber and send
volleys of soprano grape and cannister into the audience, and then she
would catch on to the highest note she could reach and hang to it like a
dog to a root, till you would think they would have to throw a pail of
water on her to make her let go, and all the time she would be biting and
shaking like a terrier with a rat, and finally give one kick at her red
trail with her hind foot, and back off the stage looking as though she
would have to be carried on a dust pan, and the people in the audience
would look at each other in pity and never give her a cheer,
when, if she had come out and patted her leg, and put one hand up to her
ear, and sung, "Ise a Gwine to See Massa Jesus Early in de Mornin'," they
would have split the air wide open with cheers, and called her out five

The fact is, they haven't got sense.

There was a hungry-looking, round-shouldered, sick-looking colored man in
the same party, that was on the programme for a violin solo. When he came
out the people looked at each other, as much as to say, "Now we will have
some fun." The moke struck an attitude as near Ole Bull as he could with
his number eleven feet and his hollow chest, and played some diabolical
selection from a foreign cat opera that would have been splendid if
Wilhelmj or Ole Bull had played it, but the colored brother couldn't get
within a mile of the tune. He rasped his old violin for twenty minutes and
tried to look grand, and closed his eyes and seemed to soar away to
heaven,--and the audience wished to heaven he had, and when he became
exhausted and squeezed the last note out, and the audience saw that he was
in a profuse perspiration, they let him go and did not call him back. If
he had come out and sat on the back of a chair and sawed off "The Devil's
Dream," or "The Arkansaw Traveler," that crowd would have cheered him till
he thought he was a bigger man than Grant.

But he didn't have any sense.


Mrs. Mattie A. Bridge is meeting with great success in Minnesota. In some
places she is retained until she lectures four times. She says the heart
of Minnesota is warm towards her. We shall feel inclined to put a head on
Minnesota, if it don't quit allowing its heart to get warm.


Portage City has had a sensation which, though at one time it looked
serious, turned out to be a farce. A girl was taken sick, and a physician
was called who pronounced it a case of yellow fever, and he made out a
prescription for that disease. Mr. Brannan, editor of the Portage
Register, who lives near, got the news, and imparted it to all whom he
met, and they in turn told it to others, and a stampede was looked for.
Fox turned the Fox House over to Bunker, and had his trunks checked for
the Hot Springs. Corning and Jack Turner hired a wagon to take them to
Briggsville. Hærtel, the brewery man, offered to sell out his brewery and
all his property for eight hundred dollars, and he bought a ticket for
Germany. Bunker left the Fox House to run itself, and went to Devil's
Lake. Sam. Branuan, telegraphed to George Clinton, at Denver, not
to come home, as the yellow fever was raging, and people were dying off
like rotton sheep. And Sam got vaccinated and went to Beaver Dam. The
excitement was intense. Men became perfectly wild, and were going to rush
off and leave the women and children to the mercies of the dead plague.
Chicago and Milwaukee bummers could be seen at the hotels, kneeling beside
their sample cases trying to pray, but they couldn't. Just before the
train started that was to carry away the frightened populace, the doctor
came up town and said that the girl with the yellow fever was better, and
that she was the mother of a fine nine pound boy. The authorities took
every precaution to prevent the spread of the yellow fever, by arresting
the brakemen whom the girl said was the cause of all the trouble. All is
quiet on the Wisconse now.



It is one of the mottoes of THE SUN never to publish anything that would
cause a blush to mantle the cheek of innocence, or anybody. And yet,
occasionally, a person finds fault. Not long since a man said he liked THE
SUN well enough, only it had too much to say about patched breeches, which
was offensive to some. Well, some people are so confounded high toned that
if they were going to have a patch put on they would have it way up on the
small of their back. Some of the best women in the world have sat up
nights to sew a patch on their husband's pants. Martha Washington used to
do it. But, G. Lordy, a family newspaper must not speak of a patch. When
you take patches away from the people you strike a blow at their
liberties. Don't be too nice.


The names of Indians are sometimes so peculiar that people are made to
wonder how the red men became possessed of them. That of "Sitting Bull,"
"Crazy Horse," "Man Afraid of his Horses," "Red Cloud," etc., cause a good
deal of thought to those who do not know how the names are given. The fact
of the matter is that after a child of the forest is born the medicine man
goes to the door and looks out, and the first object that attracts his
attention is made use of to name the child. When the mother of that great
warrior gave birth to her child, the medicine man looked out and saw a
bull seated on its haunches, hence the name "Sitting Bull." It is an
evidence of our superior civilization that we name children on a different
plan, taking the name of some eminent man or woman, some uncle or aunt to
fasten on to the unsuspecting stranger. Suppose that the custom that is in
vogue among the Indians should be in use among us, we would have instead
of "George Washington" and "Hanner Jane," and such beautiful names, some
of the worst jaw-breakers that ever was. Suppose the attending physician
should go to the door after a child was born and name it after the first
object he saw. We might have some future statesman named "Red Headed
Servant Girl with a Rubber Bag of Hot Water," or "Bald Headed Husband
Walking Up and Down the Alley with His Hands in His Pockets swearing this
thing shall never Happen Again." If the doctor happened to go to the door
when the grocery delivery wagon was there, he would name the child "Boy
from Dickson's Grocery with a Codfish by the Tail and a Bag of Oatmeal,"
or if the ice man was the first object the doctor saw, some beautiful girl
might go down to history with the name, "Pirate with a Lump of Ice About
as Big as a Soltaire Diamond." Or suppose it was about election time and
the doctor should look out, he might name a child that had a
right to grow up a minister, "Candidate for Office so full of Bug Juice
that His Back Teeth are afloat;" or suppose he should look out and see a
woman crossing a muddy street, he might name a child "Woman with a
Sealskin Cloak and a Hole in Her Stocking going Down Town to Buy a Red
Hat." It wouldn't do at all to name children the way Indians do, because
the doctors would have the whole business in their hands, and the
directories are big enough now.


The residence of John Turner, of the Mauston _Star_, was entered by
burglars a few nights since, and his clothes were stolen, containing all
his money and his railroad pass. We can imagine an editor around bare as
to legs, etcetery, and out of money, but to be without a railroad pass
must indeed be a sad state of affairs. When burglars burgle an editor it
is a sign that confidence is restored under Hayes' administration. We
trust that editors throughout the State who are blessed with this world's
goods to the extent of more than one pair of pants, will send one pair at
least to John Turner, Mauston, Wis., by express. We are probably as poor
as any editor, but we have sent him those alligator pants that have
created such a sensation in years gone by. It is true they are a little
bit fringy about the bottoms, and the knees are worn through, and
concealment, like a worm in the bud, has gnawed the foundation all out of
them, but in a little town like Mauston, such things will not be noticed.
John, take them, in welcome, and when the cold winds--but you better carry
bricks in your coat tail pockets. That is the way we wore them the last
three or four years.



"I understand your Pa has got to drinking again like a fish," says the
grocery man to the bad boy, as the youth came in the grocery and took a
handful of dried apples. The boy ate a dried apple and then made up a
terrible face, and the grocery man asked him what he was trying to do with
his face. The boy caught his breath and then said:

"Say, don't you know any better than to keep dried apples where a boy can
get hold of them when he has got the mumps? You will kill some boy yet by
such dum carelessness. I thought these were sweet dried apples, but they
are sour as a boarding house keeper, and they make me tired. Didn't you
ever have the mumps? Gosh, but don't it hurt though? You have got to be
darn careful when you have the mumps, and not go out bob-sledding, or
skating, or you will have your neck swell up biggern a milk pail. Pa says
he had the mumps once when he was a boy and it broke him all up."

"Well, never mind the mumps, how about your Pa spreeing it. Try one of
those pickles in the jar there, won't you. I always like to have a boy
enjoy himself when he comes to see me," said the grocery man, winking to a
man who was filling an old fashioned tin box with tobacco out of the pail,
who winked back as much as to say, "if that boy eats a pickle on top of
them mumps we will have a circus, sure."

"You can't play no pickle on me, not when I have the mumps. Ma passed the
pickles to me this morning, and I took one mouthful, and like to had the
lockjaw. But Ma didn't do it on purpose, I guess. She never had the mumps
and didn't know how discouraging a pickle is. Darn if I didn't feel as
though I had been struck in the butt of the ear with a brick. But
about Pa. He has been fuller'n a goose ever since New Year's day. I think
its wrong for women to tempt feeble minded persons with liquor on New
Year's. Now me and my chum, we can take a drink and then let it alone. We
have got brain, and know when we have got enough, but Pa, when he gets to
going don't ever stop until he gets so sick that he can't keep his
stummick inside of hisself. It is getting so they look to me to brace Pa
up every time he gets on a tear, and I guess I fixed him this time so he
will never touch liquor again. I scared him so his bald head turned gray
in a single night."

"What under the heavens have you done to him now?" says the grocery man,
in astonishment. "I hope you haven't done anything you will regret in
after years."

"Regret nothing," said the boy, as he turned the lid of the cheese box
back and took the knife and sliced off a piece of cheese, and took a few
crackers out of a barrel, and sat down on a soap box by the stove, "You
see Ma was annoyed to death with Pa. He would come home full, when she had
company, and lay down on the sofa and snore, and he would smell like a
distillery. It hurt me to see Ma cry, and I told her I would break Pa of
drinking if she would let me, and she said if I would promise not to hurt
Pa to go ahead, and I promised not to. Then I got my chum and another boy,
to help, and Pa is all right. We went down to the place where they sell
arms and legs, to folks who have served in the army, or a saw mill, or a
threshing machine, and lose their limbs, and we borrowed some arms and
legs, and fixed up a dissecting room. We fixed a long table in the
basement, big enough to lay Pa out on you know, and then we got false
whiskers and moustaches, and when Pa came in the house drunk and lay down
on the sofa, and got to sleep, we took him and laid him out on the table,
and took some trunk straps, and a circingle and strapped him down
to the table. He slept right along all through it, and we had another
table with the false arms and legs on, and we rolled up our sleeves, and
smoked pipes, just like I read that medical students do when they cut up a

"Well, you'd a dide to see Pa look at us when he woke up. I saw him open
his eyes, and then we began to talk about cutting up dead men. We put
hickery nuts in our mouths so our voices would sound different, so he
wouldn't know us, and was telling the other boys about what a time we had
cutting up the last man we bought. I said he was awful tough, and when we
had got his legs off and had taken out his brain, his friends came to the
dissecting room and claimed the body, and we had to give it up, but I
saved the legs. I looked at Pa on the table and he began to turn pale, and
he squirmed around to get up, but found he was fast. I had pulled his
shirt up under his arms, while he was asleep, and as he began to move I
took an icicle, and in the dim light of the candles, that were sitting on
the table in beer botles, I drew the icicle across Pa's stummick and I
said to my chum, 'Doc, I guess we had better cut open this old duffer and
see if he died from inflamation of the stummick, from hard drinking, as
the coroner said he did.' Pa shuddered all over when he felt the icicle
going over his bare stummick, and he said, 'For God's sake, gentlemen,
what does this mean? I am not dead.'

"The other boys looked at Pa with astonishment, and I said 'Well, we
bought you for dead, and the coroner's jury said you were dead, and by the
eternal we ain't going to be fooled out of a corpse when we buy one, are
we Doc?' My chum said not if he knowed his self, and the other students
said, 'Of course he is dead. He thinks he is alive, but he died day before
yesterday, fell dead on the street, and his folks said he had been a
nuisance and they wouldn't claim the corpse, and we bought it at the
morgue.' Then I drew the icicle across him again, and I said, 'I don't
know about this, doctor. I find that blood follows the scalpel as I cut
through the cuticle. Hand me the blood sponge please.' Pa began to wiggle
around, and we looked at him, and my chum raised his eye-lid, and looked
solemn, and Pa said, 'Hold on gentlemen. Don't cut into me any more, and I
can explain this matter. This is all a mistake. I was only drunk.' We went
in a corner and whispered, and Pa kept talking all the time. He said if we
would postpone the hog killing he could send and get witnesses to prove
that he was not dead, but that he was a respectable citizen, and had a
family. After we held a consultation I went to Pa and told him that what
he said about being alive might possibly be true, though we had our
doubts. We had found such cases before in our practice east, where men
seemed to be alive, but it was only temporary. Before we had got them cut
up they were dead enough for all practical purposes. Then I laid the
icicle across Pa's abdomen, and went on to tell him that even if he _was_
alive it would be better for him to play that he _was_ dead, because he
was such a nuisance to his family that they did not want him, and I was
telling him that I had heard that in his lifetime he was very cruel to his
boy, a bright little fellow who was at the head of his class in Sunday
school and a pet wherever he was known, when Pa interrupted me and said,
'Doctor, please take that carving knife off my stomach, for it makes me
nervous. As for that boy of mine, he is the condemndest little whelp in
town, and he isn't no pet anywhere. Now, you let up on this dissectin'
business, and I will make it all right with you.' We held another
consultation and then I told Pa that we did not feel that it was doing
justice to society to give up the body of a notorious drunkard, after we
had paid twenty dollars for the corpse. If there was any hopes that he
would reform and try and lead a different life, it would be different, and
I said to the boys, 'gentlemen, we must do our duty. Doc, you dismember
that leg, and I will attend to the stomach and the upper part of body. He
will be dead before we are done with him. We must remember that society
has some claim on us, and not let our better natures be worked upon by the
_post mortem_ promises of a dead drunkard.' Then I took my icicle and
began fumbling around the abdomen portion of Pa's remains, and my chum
took a rough piece of ice and began to saw his leg off, while the other
boy took hold of the leg and said he would catch it when it dropped off.
Well, Pa kicked like a steer. He said he wanted to make one more appeal to
us, and we acted sort of impatent but we let up to hear what he had to
say. He said if we would turn him loose he would give us ten dollars more
than we paid for his body, and that he would never drink another drop as
long as he lived. Then we whispered some more and then told him we thought
favorably of his last proposition, but he must swear, with his hand on the
leg of a corpse we were then dissecting that he would never drink again,
and then he must be blindfolded and be conducted several blocks away from
the dissecting room, before we could turn him loose. He said that was all
right, and so we blindfolded him, and made him take a bloody oath, with
his hand on a piece of ice that we told him was a piece of another corpse,
and then we took him out of the house and walked him around the block four
times, and left him on a corner, after he had promised to send the money
to an address that I gave him. We told him to stand still five minutes
after we left him, then remove the blindfold, and go home. We watched him,
from behind a board fence, and he took off the handkerchief, looked at the
name on a street lamp, and found he was not far from home. He started off
saying 'That's a pretty narrow escape old man. No more whisky for you.' I
did not see him again until this morning, and when I asked him where he
was last night he shuddered and said 'none of your darn business. But I
never drink any more, you remember that.' Ma was tickled and she told me I
was worth my weight in gold. Well, good day. That cheese is musty." And
the boy went and caught on a passing sleigh.


Bob. Ingersoll is taking a rest from his persecutions of the Creator, and
is traveling in the Yo Semite region of California. Bob does not believe
there is a God, but if he was riding a kicking mule, down the precipice
near the big trees, and the saddle should turn over with him, and his foot
should be caught in the stirrup, after the mule had kicked him a few times
in the judgement seat, which is the bowels, in his case, he would be very
apt to bellow like a calf, and say "O, Lord, please unbuckle that cussed
strap." We should like to hear Bob had met with some such accident, just
so he would recognize the foreign government of the Lord, which at present
he totally ignores. Not that we have anything against Ingersoll.


A young man advertises in a Milwaukee paper for a partnership. He wants to
invest one thousand dollars in some established business. Go to La Crosse
and go to betting on election. It pays, and is an established business.
There's millions in it.


There is one thing the American people have got to learn, and that is to
give scholars in schools a half holiday when there is a circus in town. We
know that we are in advance of many of the prominent educators of the
country when we advocate such a policy, but sooner or later the people
whose duty it is to superintend schools will learn that we are right, and
they will have to catch up with us or resign.

In the first place, a boy is going to attend a circus if there is one in
town, and the question before teachers and superintendents should be, not
how to prevent him from going to the circus, but how to keep his mind on
his books the day before the circus and the day after. There have been
several million boys made into liars by school officials attempting to
prevent their going to circusses, and we contend that it is the duty of
teachers to place as few temptations to lie as possible in the way of

If a boy knows that there will be no school on the afternoon of circus
day, he will study like a whitehead all the forenoon, and learn twice as
much as he will in all day if he can't go. If he knows there is a
conspiracy on foot between his parents and the teachers to keep him from
the circus, he begins to think of some lie to get out of school. He will
be sick, or run away, or something.

He will get there if possible. And after the first lie succeeds in getting
him out of school, he is a liar from the word go. There is something, some
sort of electricity that runs from a boy to a circus, and all the teachers
in the world cannot break the connection. A circus is the boys' heaven.

You may talk to him about the beautiful gates ajar, and the angel band in
heaven that plays around the great white throne, and he can't understand
it, but the least hint about the circus tent, with the flap
pulled to one side to get in, and the band wagon, and the girls jumping
through hoops, and the clown, and he is onto your racket at a jump.

You may try to paralyze him by the story of Daniel in the den of lions,
and how he was saved by faith in the power above, and the boy's mind will
revert to the circus, where a man in tights and spangles goes in and
bosses the lions and tigers around, and he will wonder if Daniel had a
rawhide, and backed out of the cage with his eye on the boss lion.

At a certain age a circus can hold over heaven or anything else in a boy's
mind, and as long as the circus does not hurt him, why not shut up shop a
half a day and let him go? If you keep him in school he wont learn
anything, and he will go to the circus in the evening and be up half the
night seeing the canvas men tear down the tent and load up, and the next
day he is all played out and not worth a continental. To some it would
look foolish to dismiss school for a circus, but it will cement a
friendship between teachers and scholars that nothing else could.

Suppose, a day or two before the circus arrives, the teacher should say to
the school: "Now I want you kids to go through your studies like a tramp
through a boiled dinner, and when the circus comes we will close up this
ranch and all go to the circus, and if any of you can't raise the money to
go, leave your names on my desk and I will see you inside the tent if I
have to pawn my shirt."

Of course it is a male teacher we are supposing said this. Well, don't you
suppose those boys and girls would study? They would fairly whoop it up.
And then suppose the teacher found forty boys that hadn't any money to go
and he had no school funds to be used for such a purpose.

How long would it take him to collect the money by going around
among business men who had been boys themselves? He would go into a store
and say he was trying to raise money to take some of the poor children to
the circus, and a dozen hands would go down into a dozen pockets in two
jerks of a continued story, and they would all chip in.

O, we are too smart. We are trying to fire education into boys with a shot
gun, when we ought to get it into them inside of sugar coated pills. Let
us turn over a new leaf now, and show these boys that we have got souls in
us, and that we want them to have a good time if we don't lay up a cent.


We have heretofore entirely overlooked the magnetic qualities of the La
Crosse water. It will be remembered that the Fond du Lac water is
advertised as magnetic water, and it has been said that a knife blade,
after being soaked in the water will take up a watch key or a steel pen.
That is nothing compared to the La Crosse water. Last week a man who had
been soaked in La Crosse water, took up a watch, key and all, and a
policeman who had been using the water took up the man, with the watch. A
pair of ice tongs, made of steel, on being soaked in water, took up a
piece of ice weighing over a hundred pounds, and a farmer named Dawson,
after drinking the water took up a stray colt. A young couple stopped the
other evening and took a drink of water and up Fourth street, and before
they got to Seymour's corner they were walking so close together that you
couldn't tell which the bustle was on. We have never seen water that had
so much magnetism in as this. A pot of it on a house is better than a
lightning rod.


In company with a couple of hundred others who were firm in the belief
that the Sardinapalus troupe were under the auspices of the Young Men's
Christian Association, we attended the performance on Monday evening. It
was heralded as coming from Booth's theater, N.Y., where it had a run of
four months. Most of them got away while on the trip here, and only a few
appeared. The scenery, which was also extensively advertised, was no more
than could have been fixed up with a whitewash brush in half a day, by
home talent. The play, what there was of it was well rendered, though many
doubted the propriety of the king calling around him a lot of La Crosse
soldiers, to hear him tell the Greek slave how he loved her. There was
much dissatisfaction about the Greek slave. All marble statues of the
Greek slave represent her with nothing on but a trace chain around one arm
and one leg. But the party who got up this play went behind the returns
and invested her with a white night gown, which detracted very much from
history. The "soldiers" were picked up among the La Crosse boys, and they
got tangled up, and couldn't form a line to save themselves, and when they
stood against the wall it was a melancholy fact that they tickled the
ballet girls in the ribs as they passed by. This was highly wrong. It
takes the romance out of the affair to gaze upon an Assyrian soldier,
covered with armor, and carrying a cover to a wash boiler in his hand, and
to think that he is covered with scars won in battle, and then look at him
through a glass and have him wink at you, and you find that you have seen
him thousands of times standing on the postoffice corner, spitting tobacco
juice across the sidewalk at the hydrant. Mrs. Sardinapalus did not
appear, having gone to visit her uncle, but "Sard." stuck to the Greek
slave like a sand burr to a boy's trousers. They laid down
together on a bale of paper rags and looked at the dance. The dance was
pretty good. First there came out about a dozen girls in tights, with
skirts as short as pie crust. Their legs were all round and well got up,
showing that the sawdust was evenly distributed, with no chance for
dissatisfaction. They capered around, and smiled at the reflection of the
red lights in the gallery upon the bald heads before them, and kicked up
like all possessed, and then they backed up against the wings and fooled
with the La Cross Assyrians, who came down like a wolf on the fold. Then
there came out two first-class dancers, one short, fat, plump, but mighty
small, so small that she didn't look as though she was big enough for a
cork to a jug. But she could dance. Well, she ought to, as she had no
clothes to bother her. Next came a brunette, evidently of French
extraction, with a face that was a protection against assault with intent
to kill, and legs of the Gothic style. Smith said she was spavined, but
that's a lie. She danced better than all of them, and walked on her big
toes till the audience yelled. Then the dancers all got tangled up
together, the brunette fell over on the little blonde, stuck her hind foot
right in the air as straight as a liberty pole struck by lightning,
somebody said "Tableau," and the curtain went down, and the audience
looked at each other as much as to say, "Let's go home." The boys in the
gallery cheered, and the curtain was rung up again, but her flag was still
there. Then they had a fighting scene, where everybody gets mad and goes
out into the dressing room and clashes old swords together, and come back
wounded. The king, after killing up a lot ahead, got a furlough and came
in and lallygaged with the Greek slave a spell, and then the battle was
lost, and "Sardine." said he might as well die for an old sheep as a lamb.
So he ordered a funeral pile built of red fire, and he got on it to be
burned up. The Greek slave said if that was the game she wanted a hand
dealt to her, as wherever "Sard." went she was going, as she had
an insurance policy against fire in the Northwestern Mutual. So he invited
her on to the kindling wood, and after hugging enough to last them through
perdition--and mighty good hugging it was too--the pile of slabs was
touched off, the flames rolled, and "Sard." and the Greek slave went down
to hell clasped in each other's embrace, and we went to the People's store
and bought a mackerel and went home and told our wife we had been to a
democratic caucus. We don't know what all the other fellows told their
wives, but there has been a heap of lying, we know that much.

[Illustration: "SARD." AND THE GREEK SLAVE.]


Four men fell out of the Oshkosh jail the other day. If Oshkosh would only
imitate Fond du lac, and paper the county jail with wall paper, it might
become safe.


There was one of those things occurred at a Chicago hotel during the
conclave that is so near a fight and yet so ridiculously laughable that
you don't know whether you are on foot or a horseback. Of course some of
the Knights in attendance were from the backwoods, and while they were
well up in all the secret workings of the order, they were awful "new" in
regard to city ways.

There was one Sir Knight from the Wisconsin pineries, who had never been
to a large town before, and his freshness was the subject of remark. He
was a large-hearted gentleman, and a friend that any person might be proud
to have. But he _was_ fresh. He went to the Palmer House Tuesday night,
after the big ball, tired nearly to death, and registered his name and
called for a bed.

The clerk told him that he might have to sleep on a red lounge, in a room
with two other parties, but that was the best that could be done. He said
that was all right, he "had tried to sleep on one of them cots down to
camp, but it nearly broke his back," and he would be mighty glad to strike
a lounge. The clerk called a bell boy and said, "Show the gentleman to

The boy took the Knight's keister and went to the elevator, the door
opened and the Knight went in and began to pull off his coat, when he
looked around and saw a woman on the plush upholstered seat of the
elevator, leaning against the wall with her head on her hand. She was
dressed in ball costume, with one of those white Oxford tie dresses cut
low in the instep, which looked, in the mussed and bedraggled condition in
which she had escaped from the exposition ball, very much to the Knight
like a Knight shirt. The astonished pinery man stopped pulling off his
coat and turned pale. He looked at the woman, then at the
elevator boy, whom he supposed was the bridegroom, and said:

"By gaul, they told me I would have to sleep with a couple of other folks,
but I had no idea that I should strike a wedding party in a cussed little
bridal chamber not bigger than a hen coop. But there ain't nothing mean
about me, only I swow it's pretty cramped quarters, ain't it, miss?" and
he sat down on one end of the seat and put the toe of one boot against the
calf of his leg, took hold of the heel with the other hand and began to
pull it off.

"Sir!" says the lady, as she opened her eyes and began to take in the
situation, and she jumped up and glared at the Knight as though she would
eat him.

He stopped pulling on the boot heel, looked up at the woman, as she threw
a loose shawl over her low neck shoulders, and said:

"Now don't take on. The book-keeper told me I could sleep on the lounge,
but you can have it, and I will turn in on the floor. I ain't no hog.
Sometimes they think we are a little rough up in Wausau, but we always
give the best places to the wimmen, and don't you forget it," and he began
tugging on the boot again.

By this time the elevator had reached the next floor, and as the door
opened the woman shot out of the door, and the elevator boy asked the
Knight what floor he wanted to go to. He said he "didn't want to go to no
floor," unless that woman wanted the lounge, but if she was huffy, and
didn't want to stay there, he was going to sleep on the lounge, and he
began to unbutton his vest.

Just then a dozen ladies and gentlemen got in the elevator from the parlor
floor, and they all looked at the Knight in astonishment. Five of the
ladies sat down on the plush seat, and he looked around at them, picked up
his boots and keister and started for the door, saying:

"O, say, this is too allfired much. I could get along well enough
with one woman and a man, but when they palm off twelve grown persons onto
a granger, in a sweat box like this, I had rather go to camp," and he
strode out, to be met by a policeman and the manager of the house and two
clerks, who had been called by the lady who got out first and who said
there was a drunken man in the elevator. They found that he was sober, and
all that ailed him was that he had not been salted, and explanations
followed and he was sent to his room by the stairs.

[Illustration: "THIS IS TOO ALLFIRED MUCH!"]

The next day some of the Knights heard the story, and it cost the Wausau
man several dollars to foot the bill at the bar, and they say he is
treating yet. Such accidents will happen in these large towns.


An old farmer once said, "What a year it must have been for colts seven
years ago this spring." No person who has never attempted to buy a horse
can appreciate the remark, but if he will let it be known that he wants to
buy a good horse, he will be struck with the circumstance that all the
horses that are of any particular account were born seven years ago.
Occasionally there is one that is six years old, but they are not plenty,
Now, those of us who lived around here seven years ago did not have our
attention called to the fact that the country was flooded with colts.
There were very few twin colts, and it was seldom that a mother had half a
dozen colts following her. Farmers and stock raisers did not go round
worrying about what they were going to do with so many colts. The papers,
if we recollect right, were not filled with accounts of the extraordinary
number of colts born. And yet it must have been a terrible year for colts,
because there are only six horses in Milwaukee that are over seven years
old, but one of them was found to have been pretty well along in years
when he worked in Burnham's brick yard in 1848, and finally the owner
owned up that he was mistaken twenty-six years. What a mortality there
must have been among horses that would now be eight, nine or ten years
old. There are none of them left. And a year from now, when our present
stock of horses would naturally be eight years old they will all be dead,
and a new lot of seven years old horses will take their places. It is
singular, but it is true. That is, it is true unless horse dealers lie,
and THE SUN would be slow to charge so grave a crime upon a useful and
enterprising class of citizens. No, it cannot be, and yet, don't it seem
peculiar that all the horses in this broad land are seven years old this
spring? We leave the suject for the youth of the land to wonder over,



"Don't you think my Pa is showing his age a good deal more than usual?"
asked the bad boy of the grocery man, as he took a smoked herring out of a
box, and peeled off the skin with a broken bladed jack-knife, and split it
open and ripped off the bone, threw the head at a cat, took some crackers
and began to eat.

"Well, I don't know but he does look as though he was getting old," said
the grocery man, as he took a piece of yellow wrapping paper and charged
the boy's poor old father with a dozen herrings and a pound of crackers;
"But there is no wonder he is getting old. I wouldn't go through what your
father has, the last year, for a million dollars. I tell you, boy, when
your father is dead, and you get a step-father, and he makes you walk the
chalk mark, you will realize what a bonanza you have fooled yourself out
of by killing off your father. The way I figure it, your father will last
about six months, and you ought to treat him right, the little time he has
to live."

"Well, I am going to," said the boy, as he picked the herring bones out of
his teeth with a piece of a match that he sharpened with his knife. "But I
don't believe in borrowing trouble about a step-father so long before
hand. I don't think Ma could get a man to step into Pa's shoes, as long as
I lived, not if she was inlaid with diamonds, and owned a brewery. There
are brave men, I know, that are on the marry, but none of them would want
to be brevet father to a cherubim like me, except he got pretty good
wages. And then, since Pa was dissected he is going to lead a different
life, and I guess I will make a man of him, if he holds out. We got him to
join the Good Templars last night."

"No, you don't tell me," said the grocery man, as he thought that
his trade in cider for mince pies would be cut off. "So you got him into
the Good Templars, eh?"

"Well, he thinks he has joined the Good Templars, so it is all the same.
You see my chum and me have been going to a private gymnasium, on the west
side, kept by a Dutchman, and in the back room he has all the tools for
getting up muscle. There, look at my arm," said the boy, as he rolled up
his sleeve and showed a muscle about as big as an oyster. "That is the
result of training at the gymnasium. Before I took lessons I hadn't any
more muscle than you have got. Well, the Dutchman was going to a dance on
the south side the other night, and he asked my chum to tend the
gymnasium, and I told Pa if he would join the Good Templars that night
there wouldn't be many at the lodge, and he wouldn't be so embarrassed,
and as I was one of the officers of the lodge I would put it to him light,
and he said he would go, so my chum got five other boys to help us put him
through. So we steered him down to the gymnasium and made him rap on the
storm door outside, and I said 'who comes there?' and he said it was a
pilgrim who wanted to jine our sublime order. I asked him if he had made
up his mind to turn from the ways of a hyena, and adopt the customs of the
truly good, and he said if he knew his own heart he had, and then I told
him to come in out of the snow and take off his pants. He kicked a little
at taking off his pants, because it was cold out there in the storm door
dog house, but I told him they all had to do it. The princes, potentates
and paupers all had to come to it. He asked me how it was when we
initiated women, and I told him women never took that degree. He pulled
off his pants and wanted a check for them, but I told him the Grand Mogul
would hold his clothes, and then I blind-folded him, and with a base ball
club I pounded on the floor as I walked around the gymnasium, while the
lodge, headed by my chum, sung, 'We won't go home till morning' I
stopped in front of the ice water tank, and said, 'Grand Worthy Duke, I
bring before you a pilgrim who has drank of the dregs until his stomach
won't hold water, and who desires to swear off.' The Grand Mogul asked me
if he was worthy and well qualified, and I told him that he had been drunk
more or less since the reunion last summer, which ought to qualify him.
Then the Grand Mogul made Pa repeat the most blood-curdling oath, in which
Pa agreed, if he ever drank another drop, to allow anybody to pull his
toe-nails out with tweezers, to have his liver dug out and fed to dogs,
his head chopped off, and his eyes removed. Then the Mogul said he would
brand the candidate on the bare back with the initial letters of our
order, 'G.T.,' that all might read how a brand had been snatched from the
burning. You'd a dide to see Pa flinch when I pulled up his shirt, and got
ready to brand him.

"My chum got a piece of ice out of the water cooler, and just as he
clapped it on Pa's back I burned a piece of horses hoof in the candle, and
held it to Pa's nose, and I guess Pa actually thought it was his burning
skin that he smelled. He jumped about six feet and said, 'Great heavens,
what you dewin,' and then he began to roll over a barrel which I had
arranged for him. Pa thought he was going down cellar, and he hung to the
barrel, but he was on top half the time. When Pa and the barrel got
through fighting I was beside him, and I said, 'Calm yourself, and be
prepared for the ordeal that is to follow.' Pa asked how much of this dum
fooling there was, and said he was sorry he joined. He said he could let
licker alone without having the skin all burned off his back. I told Pa to
be brave and not weaken, and all would-be well. He wiped the prespiration
off his face on the end of his shirt, and we put a belt around his body
and hitched it to a tackle, and pulled him up so his feet just
off the floor, and then we talked as though we were away off, and I told
my chum to look out that Pa did not hit the gas fixtures, and Pa actually
thought he was being hauled clear up to the roof. I could see he was
scared by the complexion of his hands and feet, as they clawed the air. He
actually sweat so the drops fell on the floor. Bime-by we let him down,
and he was awfully relieved though his feet were not more than two inches
from the floor any of the time. We were just going to slip Pa down a board
with slivers in to give him a realizing sense of the rough road a reformed
man has to travel, and got him straddle of the board, when the Dutchman
came home from the dance fullern a goose, and he drove us boys out, and we
left Pa, and the Dutchman said, 'Vot you vas doing here mit dose boys, you
old duffer, and vere vas your pants?' and Pa pulled off the handkerchief
from his eyes, and the Dutchman said if he didn't get out in a holy minute
he would kick the stuffing out of him, and Pa got out. He took his pants
and put them, on in the alley, and then we came up to Pa and told him that
was the third time the drunken Dutchman had broke up our lodge, but we
should keep on doing good until we had reformed every drunkard in
Milwaukee, and Pa said that was right, and he would see us through, if it
cost every dollar he had. Then we took him home, and when Ma asked if she
couldn't join the lodge, too, Pa said, 'Now you take my advice, and don't
you ever join no Good Templars. Your system could not stand the racket.
Say, I want you to put some cold cream on my back.' I think Pa will be a
different man now, don't you?"

The grocery man said if he was that boy's pa for fifteen minutes he would
be a different boy or there would be a funeral, and the boy took a handful
of soft-shelled almonds and a few layer raisins and skipped out.


Among the recent inventions is a pillow holder. It is explained that the
pillow holder is for the purpose of holding a pillow while the case is
being put on. We trust this new invention will not come into general use,
as there is no sight more beautiful to the eyes of man than to see a woman
hold a pillow in her teeth while she gently manipulates the pillow case
over it.

[Illustration: BOSSING THE PILLOW.]

We do not say that a woman is beautiful with her mouth full of pillows. No
one can ever accuse us of saying that, but there is something home-like
and old-fashioned about it that cannot be replaced by any invention.

We know that certain over fastidious women have long clamored for some new
method of putting on a pillow case, but these people have either lost
their teeth, or the new ones do not grasp the situation. They have tried
several new methods, such as blowing the pillow case up, and trying to get
it in before the wind got out, and they have tried to get the pillow in by
rolling up the pillow case until the bottom is reached, and then placing
the pillow on end and gently unrolling the pillow case, but all these
schemes have their drawbacks.

The old style of chewing one end of the pillow, and holding it the way a
retriever dog holds a duck, till the pillow case is on, and then
spanking the pillow a couple of times on each side, is the best, and it
gives the woman's jaws about the only rest they get during the day.

If any invention drives this old custom away from us, and we no more see
the matrons of our land with their hair full of feathers and their mouths
full of striped bed-ticking, we shall feel that one of the dearest of our
institutions has been ruthlessly torn from us, and the fabric of our
national supremacy has received a sad blow, and that our liberties are in


They are making everything out of rubber now. A man has invented a hunting
dog that can be carried in the pocket. When you get in the field, all you
have to do is to blow the dog up, and start it to going. This will be a
great saving, as hunters will not have to pay baggage men a dollar for
tying their dogs to a trunk, when they go off hunting.


Chicago is to have a hotel built exclusively for men. Under no
circumstances will a woman be admitted into it. There are so many men who
go to Chicago, who are liable to wink at women at the table of the hotel,
before they know their own heart, to lead a different life, that this new
hotel, without temptation, has been decided upon. There will only be a few
old bald headed roosters and persons with red noses and sore eyes stopping
at the new hotel. A hotel without women would be almost as cheerful as a
reform school.


There is probably the maddest minister living at Black River Falls, that
can be found in America to-day. He is a real nice man, and his name is
Burt Wheeler. He preaches good sound sense, and everybody likes him. He
has got friends at Neillsville, and all around there. At Black River Falls
there is no license, and liquor is unknown, while at Neillsville there is
license, and one can have benzine at every meal. The other day the express
took a jug from Neillsville to the Falls, directed to the reverend
gentleman, and on the card attached to the jug handle was the following

"Old Bourbon--We have license here, and knowing you have none in your town
we thought it but kindness to remember your wants."

When a jug, or a keg arrives at the Falls by express, every citizen
notices it, and they investigate, and when the jug came into the express
office the expressman winked, and in a few minutes half the population of
the darling little village was there. They read the note on the card and
winked at each other. One man as he took a piece of cut sugar out of a
barrel, said he had long suspected that Burt liked his toddy. Another
fellow, picking a mouthful off a codfish, remarked that you couldn't
always tell about these confounded ministers. Frank Cooper, the editor of
the _Banner_, though he looked pained when he saw the name "Old Bourbon"
on the jug, and noticed the immense size of the jug remarked that it was
the best way not to condemn a man till the returns were all in. The
reverened gentleman was interrupted in his preparation of his sermon by a
neighboring lady who just dropped in to tell the news, and when she sighed
and told him that his jug of whisky which he had ordered from Neillsville,
was in the express office, he could hardly believe his ears. He had
always, to the best of his knowledge and belief, tried to lead a
different life, and this was too much--too much bourbon. Scratching out
the last line that he had written, which was something about something
biting like an anaconda, and stinging like a ready reckoner, he put on his
coat and started down town, resolved to face the multitude, conscious of
his innocence. He approached the express office a little nervous. The
crowd filled the street, and as he passed a raftsman with red breeches on,
said he wouldn't have such a nose as that on him for a hundred dollars.
"He is full now," said another, as the Reverend gentleman put his hand on
an awning post to steady himself in the trying emergency. A man who was
sitting on a salt barrel, whittling a shingle, and who had one trousers
leg tucked in his boot, and a red sash around him, said if it could be
proved that Wheeler was a drinking man it would be a hard blow at
religion, but he didn't know as he cared a blank anyway. The elder went in
the express office and the crowd fell back to give the chief mourner a
chance to look at the late lamented. There was a different expression on
every face. Some looked as though they were glad he had been caught in the
act, while others wore a mournful expression, as though they had been
suddenly bereaved. He was pale, yet determined, and as he read the
inscription he said, so help him John Rogers, he had never ordered any
whisky, and never drank any, and didn't know anything about this jug.
Turning to those present he said: "This is some horrid nightmare." The
expressman said it was no nightmare, it was whisky. Wheeler said if the
charges were paid he would take it, and taking the jug out doors he raised
it high in the air and dashed it upon the pavement, amid the applause of
his friends. At this point Hon. Wm. T. Price come along, and was told what
had happened. He looked at the amber liquid oozing down between the stones
on the pavement, put his finger in some of it, smelled of it,
touched it to his tongue, and turning to the yet pale and excited
Reverend, he said:

"Wheeler, you have maintained a noble principle, but you have destroyed
four gallons of the d--dest finest maple syrup that was ever brewed in
Clark county."

It was true, Doc. French and Tom Reed, of Neillsville, two good friends of
the Rev. Wheeler, had sent him the syrup, knowing that he could use it in
his family, and being jokers they had put the Bourbon card on the jug,
just for fun, with the alleged result above stated. Temperance men should
always smell of the cork, at least, before smashing the jug. We have
practiced that a good many years, and never lost a gallon of maple syrup.


Anna Dickinson is to go upon the stage, and it is said that she will open
in San Francisco, in the play of "Mazeppa." If there is any society for
the prevention of cruelty to animals on the Pacific coast, we trust before
Anna is tied on the wild horse of Tartary, that some one will see to it
that a cushion is put on the back of the horse.


We like to see young Good Templars have a hankering after cold water,
bright water; but when a Juvenile Lodge about to start on a picnic,
deliberately loads a hunk of ice belonging to _The Sun_ into an omnibus,
we feel like reaching for the basement of their roundabouts with a piece
of clapboard.


The Presbyterian synod at Erie, Pa., has turned a lawyer named Donaldson
out of the church. The charge against him was not that he was a lawyer, as
might be supposed, but that he had danced a quadrille. It does not seem to
us as though there could be anything more harmless than dancing a cold
blooded quadrille. It is a simple walk around, and is not even exercise.
Of course a man can, if he chooses, get in extra steps enough to keep his
feet warm, but we contend that no quadrille, where they only touch hands,
go down in the middle, and alamand left, can work upon a man's religion
enough to cause him to backslide.

If it was this new "waltz quadrille" that Donaldson indulged in, where
there is intermittant hugging, and where the head gets to whirling, and a
man has to hang on to his partner quite considerable, to keep from falling
all over himself, and where she looks up fondly into his eyes and as
though telling him to squeeze just as hard as it seemed necessary for his
convenience, we should not wonder so much at the synod hauling him over
the coals for cruelty to himself, but a cold quadrille has no deviltry in

We presume the wicked and perverse Dr. Donaldson will join another church
that allows dancing judiciously administered, and may yet get to heaven
ahead of the Presbyterian synod, and he may be elected to some high
position there, as Arthur was here, after the synod of Hayes and Sherman
had bounced him from the Custom House for dancing the great spoils walk

It is often the case here, and we do not know why it may not be in heaven,
that the ones that are turned over and shook up, and the dust knocked out
of them, and their metaphorical coat tail filled with boots, find that the
whirligig of time has placed them above the parties who smote
them, and we can readily believe that if Donaldson gets a first-class
position of power, above the skies, he will make it decidedly warm for his
persecutors when they come up to the desk with their gripsacks and
register and ask for a room and a bath, and a fire escape. He will be apt
to look up to the key rack and tell them everything is full, but they can
find pretty fair accommodations at the other house, down at the Hot
Springs, on the European plan, by Mr. Devil, formerly of Chicago.


"A young fellow and his girl went out sleighing yesterday, and the lad
returned with a frozen ear. There is nothing very startling in the simple
fact of a frozen ear, but the idea is that it was the ear next to the girl
that he was foolish enough to let freeze." A girl that will go out
sleigh-riding with a young man and allow his ears to freeze is no
gentleman, and ought to be arrested. Why, here in Milwaukee, on the
coldest days, we have seen a young man out riding with a girl, and his
ears were so hot they would fairly "sis," and there was not a man driving
on the avenue but would have changed places with the young man, and
allowed his ears to cool. Girls cannot sit too close during this weather.
The climate is rigorous.


Forest street, Fond du Lac, is going to be a great place for sparking, one
of these days. For three years all the children born on that street have
been girls. Some lay it to the artesian well water.


About seventy-five traveling men were snowed in at Green Bay during a late
blockade, and they were pretty lively around the hotels, having quiet fun
Friday and Saturday, and passing away the time the best they could, some
playing seven up, others playing billiards, and others looking on. Some of
the truly good people in town thought the boys were pretty tough, and they
wore long faces and prayed for the blockade to raise so the spruce-looking
chaps could go away.

The boys noticed that occasionally a lantern-jawed fellow would look pious
at them, as though afraid he would be contaminated. So Sunday morning they
decided to go to church in a body. Seventy-five of them slicked up and
marched to the Rev. Dr. Morgan's church, where the reverend gentleman was
going to deliver a sermon on Temperance. No minister ever had a more
attentive audience, or a more intelligent one, and when the collection
plate was passed every last one of the travelers chipped in a silver


When the sexton had received the first ten dollars the perspiration stood
out on his forehead as though he had been caught in something. It was
getting heavy, something that never occurred before in the history of
church collections at the Bay. As he passed by the boys, and dollar after
dollar was added to his burden, he felt like he was at a picnic, and when
twenty-five dollars had accumulated on the plate he had to hold it with
both hands, and finally the plate was full, and he had to go and
empty it on the table in front of the pulpit, though he was careful to
remember where he left off, so he wouldn't go twice to the same drummer.

As he poured the shekels out on the table, as still as he could, every
person in the audience almost raised up to look at the pile, and there was
a smile on every face, and every eye turned to the part of the church
where sat the seventy-five solemn looking traveling men, who never wore a
smile. The sexton looked up to the minister, who was picking up a hymn, as
much as to say, "Boss, we have struck it rich, and I am going back to work
the lead some more." The minister looked at the boys, and then at the
sexton as though saying, "Verily, I would rather preach to seventy-five
Milwaukee and Chicago drummers than to own a brewery. Go, thou, and reap
some more trade dollars in my vineyard."

The sexton went back and commenced where he left off. He had his
misgivings, thinking maybe some of the boys would glide out in his
absence, or think better of the affair and only put in nickels on the
second heat, but the first man the sexton held out the platter to planked
down his dollar, and all the boys followed suit, not a man "passed" or
"renigged," and when the last drummer had been interviewed the sexton
carried the biggest load of silver back to the table that he ever saw.

Some of the silver dollars rolled off on the floor, and he had to put some
in his coat pockets, but he got them all, and looked around at the
congregation with a smile and wiped the perspiration from his forehead
with a bandanna handkerchief and winked, as much as to say, "The first man
that speaks disrespectfully of a traveling man in my presence will get
thumped, and don't you forget it."

The minister rose up in the pulpit, looked at the wealth on the table, and
read the hymn, "A charge to keep I have," and the congregation joined, the
travelers swelling the glad anthem as though they belonged to a
Pinafore chorus. They all bowed their heads while the minister, with one
eye on the dollars, pronounced the benediction, and the services were

The traveling men filed out through the smiles of the ladies and went to
the hotel, while half the congregation went forward to the anxious seat,
to "view the remains." It is safe to say that it will be unsafe, in the
future, to speak disparagingly of traveling men in Green Bay, as long as
the memory of that blockade Sunday remains green with the good people


Anna Dickinson is going upon the stage again and is to play male
characters, such as "Hamlet," "Macbeth," and "Claude Melnotte." We have
insisted for years that Anna Dickinson was a man, and we dare anybody to
prove to the contrary. There is one way to settle this matter, and that is
when she plays Hamlet. Let the stage manager put a large spider in the
skull of Yorick, and when Hamlet takes up the skull and says, "Alas, poor
Yorick, I was pretty solid with him," let the spider crawl out of one of
the eye holes onto Hamlet's hand, and proceed to walk up Miss Dickinson's
sleeve. If Hamlet simply shakes the spider off, and goes on with the
funeral unconcerned, then Miss Dickinson is a man. But if Hamlet screams
bloody murder, throws the skull at the grave digger, falls over into the
grave, tears his shirt, jumps out of the grave and shakes his imaginary
skirts, gathers them up in his hands and begins to climb up the scenes
like a Samantha cat chased by a dog, and gets on top of the first fly and
raises Hamlet's back and spits, then Miss Dickinson is a woman. The
country will watch eagerly for the result of this test, which we trust
will be made at the Boston Theatre next week.


"'Twas midnight's holy hour, and silence was brooding like a gentle spirit
o'er the still and pulseless world." Not a sound was heard, except
Robert's dog baying at a sorrel haired young man and a muchmussed girl,
who were returning home from a suburban picnic. As they passed out of
hearing, and the dog was peacefully cannibalizing on a link of sausage
that had been condemned by the board of health, owing to a piece of brass
padlock that showed through the silky nickel plating made of fiddling
string material, a soft cry of a child was heard in an upper room of a
mansion owned by a prosperous business man. The head of the house heard it
and sat up in bed to still the small voice, but couldn't, when the mother
of the child said that she had forgotten to bring up anything for the
child to eat in the night, and she must go down cellar and get a doughnut.
The man said he could never stay there and enjoy himself in bed and think
of his wife, groping around in the dark below stairs after it. After
telling him that he would probably come up with a pickle, ehe let him go.
Carefully he got out of bed, in an angelic frame of mind and a night
shirt, and barefooted he prepared to make the descent. As he stopped to
hold one foot in his hand, the instep of which had struck the rocker of
the baby crib, she told him the doughnuts were in the third crock in the
pantry on the floor. He said it was one evidence of a clear headed man,
that he could walk all over his own house in the dark. At the head of the
first pair of stairs he tripped on a baby cart and the tongue flew up and
struck him on the knee, but by hanging to the bannisters he saved himself.
At the foot of the stairs he tumbled over a block house and broke off a
toe nail. He said it was a mean man that wouldn't sacrifice a few toe
nails for his little baby, and he laughed. He fell over a dining room
chair, and sat down in another, and when he got up he felt that
though he was not proud, he was stuck up, for on his night shirt was a
sticky fly paper that had been placed in readiness to catch the unwary
early fly. After peeling off the sticky paper, and subterraneously
swearing a neat, delicate little female swear, he groped to the cellar
door, and began to go down.

[Illustration: THE STARTLED CAT.]

Now, if there is anything a boy ought to be punished for, it is for
surreptitiously eating a large slice of musk melon and leaving the rind on
the top stair. It tends to make a boy disliked. The head of the family
stepped with his bare feet on the piece of melon, and sat down so quick
that it made his head swim. It made him swim all over, and under, and
everywhere. But if he sat down soon, he got up sooner. If there is one
thing that a house cat should be taught, it is to sleep elsewhere than on
the top stair. When he fell and struck the sleeping cat there was a
crisis. He took in the situation at once. An occasional disengaged feline
toe nail, and a squall, told him in burning words that, while his title to
the seat was contested, it would be impolitic to wait for a commission of
unbiased judges to decide which was entitled to it. His opponent was
armed, and had possession, and he felt that it would tend to prevent riot
and bloodshed if he quietly gave up. But he felt that while in his present
position the cat was comparatively harmless, if he attempted to rise she
would bring the whole army and navy into action, and perhaps cripple his
resources. So he decided to jump up in a hurry before the cat had time to
think of her toe nails much. His position was not pleasant, to say the
least, but he jumped up in a hurry, hoping the cat would remain and
continue her nap. She was not a remaining cat and as soon as his weight
was removed from her person, she gave a yell as though frightened, and
began to walk up and down his legs, inside of his night shirt.
The question as to how many toe nails a cat has got, has never been
decided, but he says they have a million, and he can show the documents to
prove it. She went up him as though he was a fence post, and a dog after
her, and he flew around as though his linen was on fire, and yelled until
his wife came down to see what was the matter. By unbuttoning the top
button the cat was coaxed out, under protest however, and after a light
was lit there was seen about the maddest man in the world. He took a
candle and went down after the doughnuts, and after running his hand into
a jar of preserved peaches, and another of pickled pig's feet, he struck
the right one, and after hot grease from the candle had run down his
fingers he came up with a doughnut, and then the baby wouldn't eat it,
then he sat down side-ways in a cushioned chair, applied arnica and swore
till daylight. A single shot was heard in the cellar that
morning, and the young life of that cat went out. As he rode down on the
street car the next morning, people marvelled that he should stand up on
the back platform, when there were so many vacant seats, and when a
neighbor asked him to be seated he said, with a yawn, "No thank you, I
have been sitting down a good deal during the night," and he looked mad.
It is such things that drive men to commit crimes.


The school board, at its last session adopted the following rule: "The
continental system of pronounciation shall be taught in the high schools
of La Crosse, and no other allowed except by direction of board of
education." We are glad the rule has been adopted, as there is no doubt
that the continental system is the best. We have been pained beyond
measure, as no doubt all of the school board have, at hearing the scholars
pronounce Latin by 'tother system. No longer ago than last Saturday, when
we were in Mons. Anderson's, a girl came in and asked for a pair of Latin
corsets, by the Onalaska system of pronounciation. The clerk, not
understanding, went and got a pair of those undershirts and drawers,
complete in one number, with no tale to be continued. The girl blushed,
the clerk did not understand, and we had to explain by the continental
system, and the girl got her corsets, but suppose there had not been a
Latin scholar standing around there waiting for his wife to buy a package
of safty pins, what a predicament the girl would have been in. On behalf
of the people, THE SUN thanks the board of education for adopting the
continental system of pronounciation, only they ought to go further, and
make it a crime punishable with suicide for anybody to pronounce it in any
other way. There has been suffering enough by pronouncing it the old way.



"There, I knew you would get into trouble," said the grocery man to the
bad boy, as a policeman came along leading him by the ear, the boy having
an empty champagne bottle in one hand, and a black eye. "What has he been
doing Mr. Policeman?" asked the grocery man, as the policeman halted with
the boy in front of the store.

"Well, I was going by a house up here when this kid opened the door with a
quart bottle of champagne, and he cut the wire and fired the cork at
another boy, and the champagne went all over the sidewalk, and some of it
went on me, and I knew there was something wrong, cause champagne is too
expensive to waste that way, and he said he was running the shebang and if
I would bring him here you would say he was all right. If you say so I
will let him go."

The grocery man said he had better let the boy go, as his parents would
not like to have their little pet locked up. So the policeman let go his
ear, and he throwed the empty bottle at a coal wagon, and after the
policeman had brushed the champagne off his coat, and smelled of his
fingers, and started off, the grocery man turned to the boy, who was
peeling a cucumber, and said:

"Now, what kind of a circus have you been having, and what do you mean by
destroying wine that way! and, where are your folks?"

"Well, I'll tell you. Ma she has got the hay fever and has gone to Lake
Superior to see if she can't stop sneezing, and Saturday Pa said he and me
would go out to Oconomowoc and stay over Sunday, and try and recuperate
our health. Pa said it would be a good joke for me not to call him Pa, but
to act as though I was his younger brother, and we would have a
real nice time. I knowed what he wanted. He is an old masher, that's
what's the matter with him, and he was going to play himself for a
batchelor. O, thunder, I got on to his racket in a minute. He was
introduced to some of the girls and Saturday evening he danced till the
cows came home. At home he is awful fraid of rheumatiz, and he never
sweats, or sits in a draft; but the water just poured off'n him, and he
stood in the door and let a girl fan him till I was afraid he would
freeze, and just as he was telling a girl from Tennessee, who was joking
him about being 'a nold batch,' that he was not sure as he could always
hold out a woman hater if he was to be thrown into contact with the
charming ladies of the Sunny South. I pulled his coat and said, 'Pa how do
you spose Ma's hay fever is to-night, I'll bet she is just sneezing the
top of her head off.' Wall, sir, you just oughten seen that girl and Pa.
Pa looked at me as if I was a total stranger, and told the porter if that
freckled faced boot-black belonged around the house he had better be fired
out of the ball room, and the girl said 'the disgustin' thing!' and just
before they fired me I told Pa he had better look out or he would sweat
through his liver pad.

"I went to bed and Pa staid up till the lights were put out. He was mad
when he came to bed, but he didn't kick me, cause the people in the next
room would hear him, but the next morning he talked to me. He said I might
go back home Sunday night, and he would stay a day or two. He sat around
on the veranda all the afternoon, talking with the girls, and when he
would see me coming along he would look cross. He took a girl out boat
riding, and when I asked him if I couldn't go along, he said he was afraid
I would get drowned, and he said if I went home there was nothing there
too good for me, and so my chum and me got to firing bottles of champagne,
and he hit me in the eye with a cork, and I drove him out doors
and was just going to shell his earth works, when the policeman collared
me. Say, what's good for a black eye?"

The grocery man told him his Pa would cure it when he got home. "What do
you think your Pa's object was in passing himself off for a single man at
Oconomowoc?" asked the grocery man, as he charged up the cucumber to the
boy's father.

"That's what beats me. Aside from Ma's hay fever she is one of the
healthiest women in this town. O, I suppose he does it for his health, the
way they all do when they go to a summer resort, but it leaves a boy an
orphan, don't it, to have such kitteny parents?"


The only persons that are real sure that their calling and election is
sure, and that they are going to heaven across lots, are the men who are
hung for murder. They always announce that they have got a dead thing on
it, just before the drop falls. How encouraging it must be to children to
listen to the prayers of our ministers in churches, who admit that they
are miserable sinners, living on God's charity, and doubtful if they would
be allowed to sit at His right hand, and as they tell the story of their
own unworthiness the tears trickle down their cheeks. Then let the
children read an account of a hanging bee, and see how happy the condemned
man is, how he shouts glory hallelujah, and confesses that, though he
killed his man, he is going to heaven. A child will naturally ask, why
don't the ministers murder somebody, and make a dead sure thing of it?


You may organize a church choir and think you have got it down fine, and
that every member of it is pious and full of true goodness, and in such a
moment as you think not you will find that one or more of them are full of
the old Harry, and it will break out when you least expect it. There is no
more beautiful sight to the student of nature than a church choir. To see
the members sitting together, demure, devoted and pious looking, you think
that there is never a thought enters their mind that is not connected with
singing anthems, but sometimes you get left.

There is one church choir in Milwaukee that is about as near perfect as a
choir can be. It has been organized for a long time, and has never
quarreled, and the congregation swears by it. When the choir strikes a
devotional attitude it is enough to make an ordinary Christian think of
the angel band above, only the male singers wear whiskers, and the females
wear fashionable clothes.

You would not think that this choir played tricks on each other during the
sermon, but sometimes they do. The choir is furnished with the numbers of
the hymns that are to be sung, by the minister, and they put a bookmark in
the book at the proper place. One morning they all got up to sing, when
the soprano turned pale, as an ace of spades dropped out of her hymn book,
the alto nearly fainted when the queen of hearts dropped at her feet, and
the rest of the pack was distributed around in the other books. They laid
it onto the tenor, but he swore, while the minister was preaching, that he
didn't know one card from another.

One morning last summer, after the tenor had been playing tricks all
spring on the rest of the choir, the soprano brought a chunk of
shoemaker's wax to church. The tenor was arrayed like Solomon in
all his glory, with white pants, and a Seymour coat. The tenor got up to
see who the girl was that came in with the old lady, and while he was up
the soprano put the shoemaker's wax on the chair, and the tenor sat down
on it. They all saw it, and they waited for the result. It was an awful
long prayer, and the church was hot, the tenor was no iceberg himself, and
shoemaker's wax melts at ninety eight degrees Fahrenheit.


The minister finally got to the amen, and read a hymn, the choir then
coughed and all rose up. The chair that the tenor sat in stuck to him like
a brother, and came right along and nearly broke his suspenders.

It was the tenor to bat, and as the great organ struck up he pushed the
chair, looked around to see if he had saved his pants, and began to sing,
and the rest of the choir came near bursting. The tenor was called out on
three strikes by the umpire, and the alto had to sail in, and while she
was singing the tenor began to feel of first base to see what was the
matter. When he got his hand on the shoemaker's warm wax his
heart smote him, and he looked daggers at the soprano, but she put on a
pious look and got her mouth ready to sing "Hold the Fort."

Well, the tenor sat down on a white handkerchief before he went home, and
he got home without anybody seeing him, and he has been, as the old saying
is, "laying" for the soprano ever since to get even.

It is customary in all first-class choirs for the male singers to furnish
candy for the lady singers, and the other day the tenor went to a candy
factory and had a peppermint lozenger made with about half a teaspoonful
of cayenne pepper in the centre of it. On Christmas he took his lozenger
to church and concluded to get even with the soprano if he died for it.

Candy had been passed around, and just before the hymn was given out in
which the soprano was to sing a solo, "Nearer My God to Thee," the wicked
wretch gave her the loaded lozenger. She put it in her mouth and nibbed
off the edges, and was rolling it as a sweet morsel under her tongue, when
the organ struck up and they all arose. While the choir was skirmishing on
the first part of the verse and getting scored up for the solo, she chewed
what was left of the candy and swallowed it.

Well, if a democratic torch-light procession had marched unbidden down her
throat she couldn't have been any more astonished. She leaned over to pick
up her handkerchief and spit the candy out, but there was enough pepper
left around the selvage of her mouth to have pickled a peck of chow-chow.
It was her turn to sing, and as she rose and took the book, her eyes
filled with tears, her voice trembled, her face was as red as a spanked
lobster, and the way she sung that old hymn was a caution. With a sweet
tremulo she sung, "A Charge to Keep I Have," and the congregation was
almost melted to tears.

As she stopped, while the organist got in a little work, she
turned her head, opened her mouth and blew out her breath with a "whoosh,"
to cool her mouth. The audience saw her wipe a tear away, but did not hear
the sound of her voice as she "whooshed." She wiped out some of the pepper
with her handkerchief and sang the other verses with a good deal of
fervor, and the choir sat down, all of the members looking at the soprano.

She called for water, the noble tenor went and got it for her, and after
she had drank a couple of quarts, she whispered to him: "Young man, I will
get even with you for that peppermint candy if I have to live a thousand
years, and don't you forget it," and then they all sat down and looked
pious, while the minister preached a most beautiful sermon on "Faith." We
expect that tenor will be blowed through the roof some Sunday morning, and
the congregation will wonder what he is in such a hurry for.


I would call your attention to a change that it seems to me should be made
in the method of selecting U.S. Senators and Supreme Judges. Heretofore it
has been noticeable that the men who carried the longest pole knocked down
the senatorial persimmons. In the matter of the election of Judges of the
Supreme Court, it has been the practice to secure men for those places at
an enormous salary, when other men would be willing to do the work and
board themselves. The suggestion I would make is that you pass a law
letting the offices of United States Senator and Judges of the Supreme
Court to the lowest bidder. This method will be economical and will secure
to the state men who can legislate and judge things well enough for all
practical purposes. The way times are now we must get things at panic
prices or go without.


It pains us to announce that the Young Men's Christian Association, which
has had rooms on two sides of our office for more than a year, has moved
away. We do not know why they moved, as we have tried to do everything it
was possible to do for their comfort, and to cheer them in their lonely
life. That their proximity to the _Sun_ office has been beneficial to them
we are assured, and the closeness has not done us any hurt as we know of.

Many times when something has happened that, had it happened in La Crosse,
might have caused us to be semi-profane, instead of giving way to the
fiery spirit within us, and whooping it up, we have thought of our
neighbors who were truly good, and have turned the matter over to our
business manager, who would do the subject justice or burst a flue.

When the young Christians have given a sociable, we have always put on a
resigned and pious expression and gone amongst them about the time the
good bald-headed brother brought up the pail full of coffee, and the
cheerful sister cut the cake.

No one has been more punctual at these free feeds than we have, though we
often noticed that we never got a fair divide of the cake that was left,
when they were dividing it up to carry home for the poor. We have been as
little annoyed by our neighbors as we could have been by anybody that
might have occupied the rooms.

It is true that at times the singing of a church tune in there when we
were writing a worldly editorial has caused us to get tangled, but the
piety that we have smuggled into our readers through the church music will
more than atone for the wrath we have felt at the discordant music, and we
have hopes the good brothers will not be averse to saying a good
word for us when they feel like it.

When we lent the young Christians our sanctum as a reception room for the
ladies when they gave the winter picnic to the dry goods clerks, we _did_
feel a little hurt at finding so many different kinds of hair pins on the
carpet the next morning, and the different colors of long hair on our
plush chairs and raw silk ottoman would have been a dead give away on any
other occasion, but for this, even, we have forgiven the young Christians,
though if we ever do so again, they have got to agree to comb the lounge
and the chairs before we shall ever occupy the rooms again.

There is nothing that is so hard to explain as a long hair of another
color, or hair pins and blue bows and pieces of switch. They are gone and
we miss them. No more shall we hear the young Christian slip on the golden
stairs and roll down with his boot heel pointing heavenward, while the
wail of a soul in anguish comes over the banisters, and the brother puts
his hand on his pistol pocket and goes out the front door muttering a
silent prayer, with blood in his eyes.

No more will the young Christian faint by the wayside as he brings back
our borrowed chairs and finds a bottle and six glasses on our centre
table, when he has been importuning us to deliver a temperance speech in
his lecture room. Never again shall we witness the look of agony on the
face of the good brother when we refuse to give five dollars toward
helping discharged criminals to get a soft thing, while poor people who
never committed a crime and have never been supported by the State are
amongst us feeling the pangs of hunger. No more shall we be compelled to
watch the hard looking citizens who frequent the reading room of the
association for fear they will enter our office in the still watches of
the night and sleep on the carpet with their boots on.

They are all gone. They have crossed the beautiful river, and
have camped near the _Christian Statesman_ office, where all is pure and
good except the houses over on Second street, beyond the livery stable,
where they never will be molested if they do not go there.

Will they be treated any better in their new home than they have been with
us? Will they have that confidence in their new neighbors that they have
always seemed to have in us? Well, we hope they may be always happy, and
continue to do good, and when they come to die and go to St. Peter's gate,
if there is any backtalk, and they have any trouble about getting in, the
good old doorkeeper is hereby assured that we will vouch for the true
goodness and self-sacrificing devotion of the Milwaukee Young Men's
Christian Association, and he is asked to pass them in and charge it up to
the _Sun_.


The immense consumption of buttermilk as a drink, retailed over the bars
of saloons, has caused temperance people to rejoice. It is said that over
two thousand gallons a day are sold in Milwaukee. There is one thing about
buttermilk, in its favor, and that is, it does not intoxicate, and it
takes the place of liquor as a beverage. A man may drink a quart of
buttermilk, and while he may feel like a calf that has been sucking, and
want to stand in a fence corner and bleat, or kick up his heels and run
around a pasture, he does not become intoxicated and throw a beer keg
through a saloon window.

Another thing, buttermilk does not cause the nose to become red, and the
consumer's breath does not smell like the next day after a sangerfest. The
complexion of the nose of a buttermilk drinker assumes a pale hue which is
enchanting, and while his breath may smell like a baby that has nursed too
much and got sour, the smell does not debar his entrance to a temperance


There are lots of ludicrous scenes to be observed on the railroads and
conductors are loaded with stories that would cause a marble monument to
keep its sides a laughing. Some day we are going to borrow a conductor,
and take him out in the woods, and place a revolver to his head and make
him deliver a lot of stories. The other day as conductor Fred Underwood's
train from Chicago, arrived on the trestle work on the south side, the
whistle blew, the air break was touched off, and the train came up
standing so quick that a woman lost her false teeth in the sleeper, and
everybody's hair stood up like a mule's ears. Every window had a head out,
and when the conductor got out on the platform he saw the engineer and
fireman on the ends of the ties looking down into the mud and water,
shading their eyes as though looking for the eclipse.

There, sticking out of the mud were two human legs, and as one leg had a
piece of listing around it, just above the veal, the conductor knew,
instinctively, that the surface indications showed that there was a woman
in there. Then he thought that the engine had probably struck a female,
and tore her all to pieces, and of course he knew that the company would
expect him to bring home enough for a mess, or a funeral. Spitting on his
hands he called a brakeman with a transom hook out of the sleeper, to fish
with, they rolled up their trousers and waded in, after telling a porter
to bring a blanket to put the pieces in. The brakeman got there first and
took hold of one foot, when the conductor got hold of the brakeman's coat
tail and pulled. The passengers turned away sick, expecting to see the
mangled remains brought to the surface. They pulled, and directly the
balance of the deceased came up. It was an Irish lady, with a tin pail,
who had been on the way to take her husband's dinner to him, and
she stood on one side to let the train pass, and had lost her balance and
fallen into the mud. As her head came out of the mud, she squirted water
out of her mouth, kicked the brakeman in the ear and said,

"Lave go of me, I am a dacent woman!"

The conductor asked her if she was hurt.

"Hurted is it," said she, "Ivery bone in my body is kilt intirely, and I
have lost me tay cup," and she looked in her tin pail in distress.

After vainly trying to get the conductor to wade in and search for her
"tay cup," she permitted them to assist her into the car, where an old
doctor from Racine volunteered to examine her to see if she was mortally
injured. He put his hand on her shoulder and asked her if she was in any

"Divil the pain, except the loss of me tay cup," said she, "and kape yer
owld hands off me, for I am a dacent woman."

She shook herself in the car and got mud all over everybody, and finally
took her pail and jumped off at a crossing before arriving at the depot.
As the train came into the depot ten minutes late, and the conductor
jumped off, all mud from head to foot, as though he had been playing
spaniel and retrieving a wounded duck, Supt. Atkins looked at his clothes
and said, "Where in ---- have you been all the time?" The conductor took a
wisp of straw to wipe himself off, and as he threw it under a car he said
he had been in the artificial propagation of the human race. In fact he
had been engaged in the noble work of raising woman to a higher sphere. He
was allowed to go on probation and wash himself. The brakeman went down
there the next day and was fishing in the same hole. He said he didn't
know but there might be more woman in there, but they say he was after the
"tay cup."


A party of well meaning young people from Ripon nearly broke up a dance at
Hazen's cheese factory, out in the country a spell ago. The people around
there are quiet, sober country people, who confine themselves in dancing,
to plain quadrilles and country dances, with an occasional monnie musk, or
a plain waltz. These young Ripon people are on the dance bigger than a
wolf, and they have learned all the Boston dips, and Saratoga bends, and
Newport colic dances, and everything new. There is one dance they have
learned which is peculiar to say the least. It is a species of waltz, but
the couple get together so odd that a person who sees it for the first
time just leans against something and fans himself. When the music strikes
up a waltz the young man opens his arms and doubles himself up like a boy
with the cholera infantum, his hind leg cramps and his head lops over on
one side, and he looks sick, his back humps up like a case of chronic
inflammatory rheumatism, and he is ready. The girl who is with him, when
he begins to have spasms, at once seems to go into a trance. Her back gets
up like a cat, she bends over towards him, her forward leg gets out of
joint at the knee, her neck takes a cramp, her mouth opens and she lolls,
her eyes roll like a steer that has turned the yoke, and just before she
dies she falls into the arms of the deceased and they are ready. For a
moment they stand and squirm like angle-worms on a hook, and froth at the
mouth, and look, as they stand there, like a pile driver that has been run
into by an engine. They teeter up and down a little, and then fly off on a
tangent, and they flop around in unexpected places among the other
dancers, jump like a box car, bump against other couples, and at every
bump they are driven closer together, until they are so near that it does
seem as though they will have to be pried apart with a handspike;
they look into each other's eyes as though they would bite, and they keep
going around till their backs are broke. Well, a party of these kind of
dancers went to the cheese factory where the country people were gathered,
and after dancing a few quadrilles, the fiddlers struck up an old
fashioned waltz. While the visiting dancers were going into spasms to get
ready to wade in, the floor filled with the country couples, who were
waltzing around old fashioned, when all of a sudden those Ripon people
began to work. They flopped across the cheese factory, knocked down a
couple from Pickett's Corners, caromed on a fellow and his girl from
Brandon and sent them against a barrel of lemonade, glanced across the
hall and struck an old lady amidships that had just started to call her
girl off the floor because she was afraid the girl would catch those Ripon
cramps, knocked her under a bench, where she lay and called for her
husband Isaiah, to come and pick her up in a basket. In less than two
minutes all the other dancers hauled off, and stood on benches and looked
at them. Some of the country girls hid their heads and said they wanted to
go home. The visitors slid around the hall, caught each other on the fly,
run the bases, and come under the wire neck and neck, just as the man who
played second fiddle fell over the base viol in a dead faint, and the man
that played the piccalo rolled under the music stand, striken with
apoplexy. The manager of the dance called a constable who was present, and
told him to arrest the party, and handcuff them and take them to the
Oshkosh insane asylum, where they had escaped. The young men explained
that they were not crazy, and that it was only a new kind of dance, and
they were reluctantly allowed to remain, on condition that they "wouldn't
cut up any more of them city monkey shines, not afore folks."


The other day a business man who has one of the nicest houses in the
nicest ward in the city, and who has horses and carriages in plenty, and
who usually looks as clean as though just out of a band box and as happy
as a schoolma'am at a vacation picnic, got on a street car near the depot,
a picture of a total wreck. He had on a long linen duster, the collar
tucked down under the neck band of his shirt, which had no collar on, his
cuffs were sticking out of his coat pocket, his eyes looked heavy, and
where the dirt had come off with the perspiration he looked pale and he
was cross as a bear.

[Illustration: THE RESORTER.]

A friend who was on the car, on the way up town, after a day's work, with
a clean shirt on, a white vest and a general look of coolness, accosted
the traveler as follows:

"Been summer resorting, I hear?"

The dirty-looking man crossed his legs with a painful effort, as though
his drawers stuck to his legs and almost peeled the back off, and

"Yes, I have been out two weeks. I have struck ten different
hotels, and if you ever hear of my leaving town again during the hot
weather, you can take my head for a soft thing," and he wiped a cinder out
of his eye with what was once a clean handkerchief.

"Had a good, cool time, I suppose, and enjoyed yourself," said the man who
had not been out of town.

"Cool time, hell," said the man, who has a pew in two churches, as he
kicked his limp satchel of dirty clothes under the car seat. "I had rather
been sentenced to the House of Correction for a month."

"Why, what's the trouble?"

"Well, there is no trouble, for people who like that kind of fun, but this
lets me out. I do not blame people who live in Southern States for coming
North, because they enjoy things as a luxury that we who live in Wisconsin
have as a regular diet, but for a Chicago or Milwaukee man to go into the
country to swelter and be kept awake nights is bald lunancy. Why, since I
have been out I have slept in a room a size smaller than the closet my
wife keeps her linen in, with one window that brought in air from a
laundry, and I slept on a cot that shut up like a jack-knife and always
caught me in the hinge where it hurt.

"At another hotel, I had a broken-handled pitcher of water that had been
used to rinse clothes in, and I can show you the indigo on my neck. I had
a piece of soap that smelled like a tannery, and if the towel was not a
recent damp diaper than I have never raised six children.

"At one hotel I was the first man at the table, and two families came in
and were waited on before the Senegambian would look at me, and after an
hour and thirty minutes I got a chance to order some roast beef and baked
potatoes, but the perspiring, thick-headed pirate brought me some boiled
mutton and potatoes that looked as though they had been put in a wash-tub
and mashed by treading on them barefooted. I paid twenty-five
cents for a lemonade made of water and vinegar, with a piece of something
on top that might be lemon peel, and it might be pumpkin rind.

"The only night's rest I got was one night when I slept in a car seat. At
the hotel the regular guests were kept awake till 12 o'clock by number six
headed boys and girls dancing until midnight to the music of a
professional piano boxer, and then for two hours the young folks sat on
the stairs and yelled and laughed, and after that the girls went to bed
and talked two hours more, while the boys went and got drunk and sang
'Allegezan and Kalamazoo.'

"Why, at one place I was woke up at 3 o'clock in the morning by what I
thought was a chariot race in the hall outside, but it was only a lot of
young bloods rolling ten pins down by the rooms, using empty wine bottles
for pins and China cuspidores for balls. I would have gone out and shot
enough drunken galoots for a mess, only I was afraid a cuspidore would
carom on my jaw. Talk about rest, I would rather go to a boiler factory.

"Say, I don't know as you would believe it, but at one place I sent some
shirts and things to be washed, and they sent to my room a lot of female
underclothes, and when I kicked about it to the landlord he said I would
have to wear them, as they had no time to rectify mistakes. He said the
season was short and they had to get in their work, and he charged me
Fifth Avenue Hotel prices with a face that was child-like and bland, when
he knew I had been wiping on diapers for two days in place of towels.

"But I must get off here and see if I can find water enough to bathe all
over. I will see you down town after I bury these clothes."

And the sticky, cross man got off swearing at summer hotels and pirates.
We don't see where he could have been traveling.



"What on earth is that you have got on your upper lip?" said the grocery
man to the bad boy, as he came in and began to peel a rutabaga, and his
upper lip hung down over his teeth, and was covered with something that
looked like shoemaker's wax, "You look as though you had been digging
potatoes with your nose."

"O, that is some of Pa's darn smartness. I asked him if he knew anything
that would make a boy's moustache grow, and he told me the best thing he
ever tried was tar, and for me to rub it on thick when I went to bed, and
wash it off in the morning. I put it on last night, and by gosh I can't
wash it off. Pa told me all I had to do was to use a scouring brick, and
it would come off, and I used the brick, and it took the skin off, and the
tar is there yet, and say, does my lip look very bad?"

The grocery man told him it was the worst looking lip he ever saw, but he
could cure it by rubbing a little cayenne pepper in the tar. He said the
tar would neutralize the pepper, and the pepper would loosen the tar, and
act as a cooling lotion to the lacerated lip. The boy went to a can of
pepper behind the counter, and stuck his finger in and rubbed a lot of it
on his lip, and then his hair began to raise, and he began to cry, and
rushed to the water-pail and ran his face into the water to wash off the
pepper. The grocery man laughed, and when the boy had got the pepper
washed off, and had resumed his rutabaga, he said:

"That seals your fate. No man ever trifles with the feelings of the bold
buccanner of the Spanish main, without living to rue it. I will lay for
you, old man, and don't you forget it. Pa thought he was smart when he got
me to put tar on my lip, to bring my moustache out, and to-day he
lays on a bed of pain, and to-morrow your turn will come. You will regret
that you did not get down on your knees and beg my pardon. You will be
sorry that you did not prescribe cold cream for my bruised lip, instead of
cayenne pepper. Beware, you base twelve ounces to the pound huckster, you
gimlet-eyed seller of dog sausage, you sanded sugar idiot, you small
potato three card monte sleight of hand rotten egg fiend, you villain that
sells smoked sturgeon and dogfish for smoked halibut. The avenger is on
your track."

"Look here, young man, don't you threaten me, or I will take you by the
ear and walk you through green fields, and beside still waters to the
front door and kick your pistol pocket clear around so you can wear it for
a watch pocket in your vest. No boy can frighten me by crimus. But tell
me, how did you get even with your Pa?"

"Well, give me a glass of cider and we will be friends and I will tell
you. Thanks! Gosh, but that cider is made out of mouldy dried apples and
sewer water," and he took a handful of layer raisins off the top of a box
to take the taste out of his mouth, and while the grocer charged a peck of
rutabagas, a gallon of cider and two pounds of raisins to the boy's Pa,
the boy proceeded:

"You see, Pa likes a joke the best of anybody you ever saw, if it is on
somebody else, but he kicks like a steer when it is on him. I asked him
this morning if it wouldn't be a good joke to put some soft soap on the
front step, so the letter-carrier would slip up and spill hisself, and Pa
said it would be elegant. Pa is a Democrat, and he thinks that anything
that will make it unpleasant for Republican office holders, is legitimate,
and he encouraged me to paralyze the letter-carrier. The letter-carrier is
as old a man as Pa, and I didn't want to humiliate him, but I just wanted
Pa to give his consent, so he couldn't kick if he got caught in his own
trap. You see? Well, this morning the minister and two of the
deacons called on Pa, to have a talk with him about his actions in church,
on two or three occasions, when he pulled out the pack of cards with his
handkerchief, and played the music box, and they had a pretty hot time in
the back parlor, and finally they settled it, and were going to sing a
hymn, when Pa handed them a little hymn book, and the minister opened it
and turned pale and said, 'what's this?' and they looked at it, and it was
a book of Hoyle's games instead of a hymn book. Gosh, wasn't the minister
mad! He had started to read a hymn and he quit after he had read two lines
where it said, 'In a game of four-handed euchre, never trump your
partner's ace, but rely on the ace to take the trick on suit.' Pa was
trying to explain how the book came to be there, when the minister and the
deacons started out, and then I poured the two quart tin pail full of soft
soap on the front step. It was this white soap, just the color of the
step, and when I got it spread I went down in the basement. The visitors
came out and Pa was trying to explain to them, about Hoyle, when one of
the deacons stepped on the soap and his feet flew up and he struck on his
pants and slid down the steps. The minister said 'great heavens, deacon,
are you hurt? let me assist you,' and he took two quick steps, and you
have seen these fellows in a nigger show that kick each other head over
heels and fall on their ears, and stand on their heads and turn around
like a top. The minister's feet slipped and the next I saw he was standing
on his head in his hat, and his legs were sort of wilted and fell limp by
his side, and he fell over on his stomach. You talk about spreading the
gospel in heathen lands. It is nothing to the way you can spread it with
two quarts of soft soap. The minister didn't look pious a bit, when he was
trying to catch the railing he looked as though he wanted to
murder every man on earth, but it may be he was tired.

"Well, Pa he was paralyzed, and he and the other deacon rushed out to pick
up the minister and the first old man, and when they struck the steps they
went kiting. Pa's feet somehow slipped backwards, and he turned a
summersault and struck full length on his back, and one heel was across
the minister's neck, and he slid down the steps, and the other deacon fell
all over the other three, and Pa swore at them, and it was the worst
looking lot of pious people I ever saw. I think if the minister had been
in the woods somewhere, where nobody could have heard him, he would have
used language. They all seemed mad at each other. The hired girl told Ma
there was three tramps out on the sidewalk fighting Pa, and Ma she took
the broom and started to help Pa, and I tried to stop Ma, 'cause her
constitution is not very strong and I didn't want her to do any flying
trapeze business, but I couldn't stop her, and she went out with the broom
and a towel tied around her head. Well, I don't know where Ma did strike,
but when she came in she said she had palpitation of the heart, but that
was not the place where she put the arnica. O, but she _did_ go through
the air like a bullet through cheese, and when she went down the steps
a-bumpity-bump, I felt sorry for Ma. The minister had got so he could set
up on the sidewalk, with his back against the lower step, when Ma came
sliding down, and one of the heels of her gaiters hit the minister in the
hair, and the other foot went right through between his arm and his side,
and the broom liked to pushed his teeth down his throat. But he was not
mad at Ma. As soon as he see it was Ma he said, 'Why, sister, the wicked
stand in slippery places, don't they?' and Ma she was mad and said for him
to let go her stocking, and then Pa was mad and he said, 'look-a-here you
sky-pilot, this thing has gone far enough,' and then a policeman
came along and first he thought they were all drunk, but he found they
were respectable, and he got a chip and scraped the soap off of them, and
they went home, and Pa and Ma they got in the house some way, and just
then the letter-carrier came along, but he didn't have any letters for us,
and he didn't come onto the steps, and then I went up stairs and I said,
'Pa, don't you think it is real mean, after you and I fixed the soap on
the steps for the letter-carrier, he didn't come on the step at all,' and
Pa was scraping the soap off his pants with a piece of shingle, and the
hired girl was putting liniment on Ma, and heating it in for palpitation
of the heart, and Pa said, 'You dam idjut, no more of this, or I'll maul
the liver out of you,' and I asked him if he didn't think soft soap would
help a moustache to grow, and he picked up Ma's work-basket and threw it
at my head, as I went down stairs, and I came over here. Don't you think
my Pa is unreasonable to get mad at a little joke that he planned

The grocery man said he didn't know, and the boy went out with a pair of
skates over his shoulder, and the grocery man is wondering what joke the
boy will play on him to get even for the cayenne pepper.


Andrews' _Bazar_ says: "Gathered waists are very much worn." If the men
would gather the waists carefully they would not be worn so much. Some men
go to work gathering a waist just as they would go to work washing sheep,
or raking and binding. They ought to gather as though it was eggs done up
in a funnel-shaped brown paper at a grocery.


While the most of our traveling men, our commercial tourists, are nice
Christian gentlemen, there is occasionally one that is as full of the old
Nick as an egg at this time of year is full of malaria. There was one of
them stopped at a country town a few nights ago where there was a church
fair. He is a blonde, good-natured looking, serious talking chap, and
having stopped at that town every month for a dozen years, everybody knows
him. He always chips in towards a collection, a wake or a rooster fight,
and the town swears by him.

He attended the fair and a jolly little sister of the church, a married
lady, took him by the hand and led him through green fields, where the
girls sold him ten-cent chances in saw dust dolls, and beside still
waters, where a girl sold him sweetened water with a sour stomach, for
lemonade, from Rebecca's well. The sister finally stood beside him while
the deacon was reading off numbers. They were drawing a quilt, and as the
numbers were drawn all were anxious to know who drew it. Finally, after
several numbers were drawn it was announced by the deacon that number
nineteen drew the quilt and the little sister turned to the traveling man
and said, "My! that is my number. I have drawn it. What shall I do?" "Hold
up your ticket and shout keno," said he.

The little deaconess did not stop to think that there might be guile
lurking in the traveling man, but being full of joy at drawing the quilt,
and ice cream because the traveling man bought it, she rushed into the
crowd towards the deacon, holding her number, and shouted so they could
hear it all over the house, "_Keno!_"

[Illustration: "KENO!" ]

If a bank had burst in the building there couldn't have been so much
astonishment. The deacon turned pale and looked at the poor little sister
as though she had fallen from grace, and all the church people
looked sadly at her, while the worldly minded people snickered. The little
woman saw that she had got her foot into something, and she blushed and
backed out, and asked the traveling man what "keno" meant. He said he
didn't know exactly, but he had always seen people, when they won anything
at that game, yell "keno." She isn't exactly clear yet what "keno" is, but
she says she has sworn off taking advice from pious looking traveling men.
They call her "Little Keno" now.


A Boston girl sings: "What is home without a mother," while the old lady
is mending her daughter's stockings. There is something sweet about those
old songs.


We are astonished to see that a Boston dealer in canned goods has failed.
If there is one branch of business that ought to be solid it is that of
canning fruits and things, for there must be the almightiest profit on it
that there is on anything. It must be remembered that the stuff is canned
when it is not salable in its natural state.

If the canners took tomatoes, for instance, when they first came around,
at half a dollar for six, and canned them, there would be some excuse for
charging twenty-five cents for a tin thing full, but they wait until the
vines are so full of tomatoes that the producer will pay the cartage if
you will haul them away, and then the tomatoes are dipped into hot water
so the skin will drop off and they are chucked into cans that cost two
cents each, and you pay two shillings for them, when you get hungry for
tomatoes. The same way with peas, and peaches, and everything.

Did you ever try to eat canned peas? They are always old back numbers that
are as hard and tasteless as chips, and are canned after they have been
dried for seed. We bought a can of peas once for two shillings and
couldn't crack them with a nut cracker. But they were not a dead loss, as
we used them the next fall for buck shot. Actually, we shot a coon with a
charge of those peas, and he came down and struck the water, and died of
the cholera morbus the next day.

Talk of canned peaches; in the course of a brilliant career of forty years
we have never seen only six cans of peaches that were worth the powder to
blast them open. A man that will invent a can opener that will split open
one of these pale, sickly, hard hearted canned peaches, that swim around
in a pint of slippery elm juice in a tin can, has got a fortune.
And they have got to canning pumpkin, and charging money for it.

Why, for a dollar, a canning firm can buy pumpkins enough to fill all the
tin cans that they can make in a year, and yet they charge a fellow twenty
cents for a can of pumpkin, and then the canning establishment fails. It
must be that some raw pumpkin has soured on the hands of the Boston firm,
or may be, and now we thing we are on the right track to ferret out the
failure, it may be that the canning of Boston baked beans is what caused
the stoppage.

We had read of Boston baked beans since school days, and had never seen
any till four years ago, when we went to a picnic and bought a can to take
along. We knew how baked beans ought to be cooked from years of
experience, but supposed the Boston bean must hold over every other bean,
so when the can was opened and we found that every bean was separate from
every other bean, and seemed to be out on its own recognizance, and that
they were as hard as a flint, we gave them to the children to play marbles
with, and soured on Boston baked beans. Probably it was canning Boston
beans that broke up the canning establishment.


The registry law has proved a conspicuous failure, inasmuch as it has
taken ten years of persistent efforts by its use to make a change in the
admistration. I would suggest that you amend the registry law by providing
that all qualified voters have their ears punched, immediately after
voting, by the inspectors of elections, the same as conductors punch
tickets. This method will obviate the difficulties heretofore experienced,
and check illegal voting and prevent repeating.


An item is going the rounds of the papers, to illustrate how large the sun
is, and how hot it is, which asserts that if an icicle a million miles
long, and a hundred thousand miles through, should be thrust into one of
the burning cavities of the sun, it would be melted in the hundredth part
of a second, and that it would not cause as much "sissing" as a drop of
water on a hot griddle.

By this comparison we can realize that the sun is a big thing, and we can
form some idea of what kind of a place it would be to pass the summer
months. In contemplating the terrible heat of the sun, we are led to
wonder why those whose duty it is to preach a hell, hereafter, have not
argued that the sun is the place where sinners will go to when they die.

It is not our desire to inaugurate any reform in religious matters, but we
realize what a discouraging thing it must be for preachers to preach hell
and have nothing to show for it. As the business is now done, they are
compelled to draw upon their imagination for a place of endless
punishment, and a great many people, who would be frightened out of their
boots if the minister could show them hell as he sees it, look upon his
talk as a sort of dime novel romance.

They want something tangible on which they can base their belief, and
while the ministers do everything in their power to encourage sinners by
picturing to them the lake of fire and brimstone, where boat-riding is out
of the question unless you paddle around in a cauldron kettle, it seems as
though their labors would be lightened if they could point to the sun, on
a hot day in August, and say to the wicked man that unless he gets down on
his knees and says his "Now I lay me," and repents and is sprinkled, and
chips in pretty flush towards the running expenses of the church,
and stands his assessments like a thoroughbred, that he will wake up some
morning, and find himself in the sun, blistered from Genesis to
Revelations, thirsty as a harvest hand and not a brewery within a million
miles, begging for a zinc ulster to cool his parched hind legs.

Such an argument, with an illustration right on the blackboard of the sky,
in plain sight, would strike terror to the sinner, and he would want to
come into the fold _too_ quick. What the religion of this country wants,
to make it take the cake, is a hell that the wayfaring man, though a
Democrat or a Greenbacker, can see with the naked eye. The way it is now,
the sinner, if he wants to find out anything about the hereafter, has to
take it second handed, from some minister or deacon who has not seen it
himself, but has got his idea of it from some other fellow who maybe
dreamed it out.

Some deacon tells a sinner all about the orthodox hell, and the sinner
does not know whether to believe him or not. The deacon may have lied to
the sinner some time in a horse trade, or in selling him goods, and beat
him, and how does he know but the same deacon is playing a brace game on
him on the hereafter, or playing him for a sardine.

Now, if the people who advance these ideas of heaven or hell, had a
license to point to the moon, the nice, cool moon, as heaven, which would
be plausible, to say the least, and say that it was heaven, and prove it,
and could prove that the sun was the other place, which looks reasonable,
according to all we have heard about 'tother place, the moon would be so
full there would not be standing room, and they would have to turn
Republicans away, while the sun would be playing to empty benches, and
there would only be a few editors there who got in on passes.

Of course, during a cold winter, when the thermometer was forty
or fifty degrees below zero, and everybody was blocked in, and coal was up
to seventeen dollars a ton, the cause of religion would not prosper as
much as it would in summer, because when you talked to a sinner about
leading a different life or he would go to the sun, he would look at his
coal pile and say that he didn't care a continental how soon he got there,
but these discouragements would not be any greater than some that the
truly good people have to contend with now, and the average the year round
would be largely in favor of going to the moon.

The moon is very popular now, even, and if it is properly advertised as a
celestial paradise, where only good people could get their work in, and
where the wicked could not enter on any terms, there would be a great
desire to take the straight and narrow way to the moon, and the path to
the wicked sun would be grown over with sand burs, and scorched with lava,
and few would care to take passage by that route. Anyway, this thing is
worth looking into.


The _Sun_ is no alarmist, but it can see in recent events what it believes
to be a preparation for war. All of the manufactories of fire arms and
cartridges are working night and day, and the Oneida community have just
received an order to immediately can 24,000 cans of baked beans. When the
war will break out we do not know, but all this fixed amunition is not
being fixed for no 4th of July. It is trouble.


A Milwaukee paper copies what THE SUN said about killing hogs while under
the influence of chloroform, at Keine & Wilson's packing house, and
intimates that it is all a lie. Have we lived to this age to have our word
doubted by a Milwaukee editor? This is too much. Why, bless the dear man,
the half has not been told. The firm we speak of is desirous of building
up a trade for gilt edged pork and hams, so every improvement known to the
trade is inaugurated. We did not think it necessary to describe the whole
process, but now that our word is doubted, it is necessary to do so. When
the late lamented hog is transferred from the parlor where he was
chloroformed, his body is gently, yet firmly placed in a gold lined tank,
filled with boiling Florida water and cologne, where the body remains
until the bristles become loose, when it is transferred to a table covered
with purple velvet, and the bristles are removed by the gentlemanly
ushers, dressed in the fashions of the time of George III, armed with gold
candle sticks, studded with diamonds. Then the body is taken by easy
stages, into the presence of the intestine transporter, who reclines upon
a downy couch. He raises up, brushes a particle of dust from his sleeve,
and with a silver knife cuts the hog from Dan to Beersheba, and the patent
insides are received on a silver salver, and divided among attendant
maidens. The inside of the hog is washed with bay rum, and sweet majorum
is put in. Then the hog is removed and cut up. The portions salted are
salted for keeps, and the hams and bacon are smoked in a room filled with
incense, and when the smoked meat comes out it is good enough for a king,
or a queen, or a Milwaukee editor. Lie, indeed! We should like to see
ourselves lying for one hog.


A young fellow about nineteen, who is going with his first girl, and who
lives on the West Side, has got the symptoms awfully. He just thinks of
nothing else but his girl, and when he can be with her,--which is seldom,
on account of the old folks.--he is there, and when he cannot be there, he
is there or thereabouts, in his mind. He had been trying for three months
to think of something to give his girl for a Christmas present, but he
couldn't make up his mind what article would cause her to think of him the
most, so the day before Christmas he unbosomed himself to his employer,
and asked his advice as to the proper article to give. The old man is
bald-headed and mean. "You want to give her something that will be a
constant reminder of you?" "Yes," he said, "that was what was the matter."
"Does she have any corns?" asked the old wretch. The boy said he had never
inquired into the condition of her feet, and wanted to know what corns had
to do with it. The old man said that if she had corns, a pair of shoes
about two sizes too small would cause her mind to dwell on him a good
deal. The boy said shoes wouldn't do. The old man hesitated a moment,
scratched his head, and finally said:

"I have it! I suppose, sir, when you are alone with her, in the parlor,
you put your arm around her waist; do you not, sir?"

The young man blushed, and said that was about the size of it.

"I presume she enjoys that part of the discourse, eh?"

The boy said that, as near as he could tell, by the way she acted, she was
not opposed to being held up.

"Then, sir, I can tell you of an article that will make her think of you
in that position all the time, from the moment she gets up in the morning
till she retires."

"Is there any attachment to it that will make her dream of me all
night?" asked the boy.

"No, sir! Don't be a hog," said the bad man.

"Then what is it?"

The old man said one word, "Corset!"

The young man was delighted, and he went to a store to buy a nice corset.

"What size do you want?" asked the girl who waited on him.

That was a puzzler. He didn't know they came in sizes. He was about to
tell her to pick out the smallest size, when he happened to think of

"Take a tape measure and measure my arm; that will just fit."

The girl looked wise as though she had been there herself, found that it
was a twenty-two inch corset the boy wanted, and he went home and wrote a
note and sent it with the corset to the girl. He didn't hear anything
about it till the following Sunday, when he called on her. She received
him coldly, and handed him the corset, saying, with a tear in her eye,
that she had never expected to be insulted by him. He told her he had no
intention of insulting her; that he could think of nothing that would
cause her to think of the gentle pressure of his arm around her waist but
a corset, but if she felt insulted he would take his leave, give
the corset to some poor family, and go drown himself.

He was about to go away, when she burst out crying, and sobbed out the
following words, wet with salt brine.

"It was v-v-v-very thoughtful of y-y-you, but I _couldn't feel it_! It is
f-f-four sizes too b-b-big! Why didn't you get number eight? You are
silent, you cannot answer, enough?"

[Illustration: "IT IS F-F-FOUR SIZES TOO B-B-BIG."]

They instinctively found their way to the sofa; mutual explanation
followed; he measured her waist again; saw where he had made a mistake by
his fingers lapping over on the first turn, and he vowed, by the beard of
the prophet, he would change it for another, if she had not worn it and
got it soiled. They are better now.


A man on King Street gave a boy a goat the other day, and he tied a rope
around its neck to lead it home. The boy wanted to go through the gate,
but as the goat concluded to jump over the fence and pull the boy through
between the pickets, he let the goat have its own way. The boy got through
the fence in instalments, leaving his shirt collar and one pants leg on
the pickets, the goat dragged him out into the middle of the street, and
then there occurred a sanguinary encounter to see whether the boy or the
goat should boss the moving. At one time the spectators thought the goat
would take the boy home. The animal used the boy for a cultivator, and
they tore up the street like hands working on the road, till the goat
slipped the rope over his head, and then the boy gathered himself up by
the armful, and went and told his mother that he got his rope back anyway.
She combed him with a piece of barrel.



"I was down to the drug store this morning and saw your Ma buying a lot of
court-plaster, enough to make a shirt I should think. What's she doing
with so much court-plaster?" asked the grocery man of the bad boy, as he
came in and pulled off his boots by the stove and emptied out a lot of
snow that had collected as he walked through a drift, which melted and
made a bad smell.

"O, I guess she was going to patch Pa up so he will hold water. Pa's
temper got him into the worst muss you ever see, last night. If that
museum was here now they would hire Pa and exhibit him as the tattooed
man. I tell you, I have got too old to be mauled as though I was a kid,
and any man who attacks me from this out, wants to have his peace made
with the insurance companies, and know that his calling and election is
sure, because I am a bad man and don't you forget it." And the boy pulled
on his boots and looked so cross and desperate that the grocer-man asked
him if he wouldn't try a little new cider.

"Good heavens!" said the grocery man, as the boy swallowed the cider, and
his face resumed its natural look, and the piratical frown disappeared
with the cider. "You have not stabbed your father have you? I have feared
that one thing would bring on another, with you, and that you would yet be

"Naw, I haven't stabbed him. It was another cat that stabbed him. You see,
Pa wants me to do all the work around the house. The other day he bought a
load of kindling wood, and told me to carry it into the basement. I had
not been educated up to kindling wood, and I didn't do it. When supper
time came, and Pa found that I had not carried in the kindling wood, he
had a hot box, and told me if that wood was not in when he came
back from the lodge, that he would warm my jacket. Well, I tried to hire
some one to carry it in, and got a man to promise to come in the morning
and carry it in and take his pay in groceries, and I was going to buy the
groceries here and have them charged to Pa. But that wouldn't help me out
that night. I knew when Pa came home he would search for me. So I slept in
the back hall on a cot. But I didn't want Pa to have all his trouble for
nothing, so I borrowed an old torn cat that my chum's old maid aunt owns,
and put the cat in my bed. I thought if Pa came into my room after me, and
found that by his unkindness I had changed to a torn cat, he would be
sorry. That is the biggest cat you ever see, and the worst fighter in our
ward. It isn't afraid of anything, and can whip a New Foundland dog
quicker than you could put sand in a barrel of sugar. Well, about eleven
o'clock I heard Pa tumbing over the kindling wood, and I knew by the
remark he made as the wood slid around under him, that there was going to
be a cat fight real quick. He came up to Ma's room, and sounded Ma as to
whether Hennery had retired to his virtuous couch. Pa is awful sarcastic
when he tries to be. I could hear him take off his clothes, and hear him
say, as he picked up a trunk strap, 'I guess I will go up to his room and
watch the smile on his face, as he dreams of angels. I yearn to press him
to my aching bosom.' I thought to myself, mebbe you won't yearn so much
directly. He come up stairs, and I could hear him breathing hard. I looked
around the corner and could see he just had on his shirt and pants, and
his suspenders were hanging down, and his bald head shown like a calcium
light just before it explodes. Pa went into my room, and up to the bed,
and I could hear him say, 'Come out here and bring in that kindling wood
or I will start a fire on your base burner with this strap.' And then
there was a yowling such as I never heard before, and Pa said,
'Helen Blazes,' and the furniture in my room began to fall around and
break. O, _my_! I think Pa took the torn cat right by the neck, the way he
does me, and that left the cat's feet free to get in their work. By the
way the cat squawled as though it was being choked I know Pa had him by
the neck. I suppose the cat thought Pa was a whole flock of New Foundland
dogs, and the cat had a record on dogs, and it kicked awful. Pa's shirt
was no protection at all in a cat fight, and the cat just walked all
around Pa's stomach, and Pa yelled 'police,' and 'fire,' and 'turn on the
hose,' and he called Ma, and the cat yowled. If Pa had had presence of
mind enough to have dropped the cat, or rolled it up in the mattrass, it
would have been all right, but a man always gets rattled in time of
danger, and he held on to the cat and started down stairs yelling murder,
and he met Ma coming up.

"I guess Ma's night cap or something frightened the cat more, cause he
stabbed Ma on the night-shirt with one hind foot, and Ma said 'mercy on
us,' and she went back, and Pa stumbled on a hand-sled that was on the
stairs, and they all fell down, and the cat got away and went down in the
coal bin and yowled all night. Pa and Ma went into their room, and I guess
they annointed themselves with vasaline, and Pond's extract, and I went
and got into my bed, cause it was cold out in the hall, and the cat had
warmed my bed as well as it had warmed Pa. It was all I could do to go to
sleep, with Pa and Ma talking all night, and this morning I came down the
back stairs, and haven't been to breakfast, cause I don't want to see Pa
when he is vexed. You let the man that carries in the kindling wood have
six shillings worth of groceries, and charge them to Pa. I have passed the
kindling wood period in a boy's life, and have arrived at the coal period.
I will carry in coal, but I draw the line at kindling wood."

"Well, you are a cruel, bad boy," said the grocery man, as he
went to the book and charged the six shillings.

"O, I don't know. I think Pa is cruel. A man who will take a poor kitty by
the neck, that hasn't done any harm, and tries to chastise the poor thing
with a trunk strap, ought to be looked after by the humane society. And if
it is cruel to take a cat by the neck, how much more cruel is it to take a
boy by the neck, that had diphtheria only a few years ago, and whose
throat is tender? Say, I guess I will accept your invitation to take
breakfast with you," and the boy cut off a piece of bologna and helped
himself to the crackers, and while the grocery man was out shoveling off
the snow from the sidewalk, the boy filled his pockets with raisins and
loaf sugar, and then went out to watch the man carry in his kindling wood.


Another thing that is being largely counterfeited is tripe. Parties who
buy tripe cannot be too careful. There is a manufactory that can make
tripe so natural that no person on earth can detect the deception. They
take a large sheet of rubber about a sixteenth of an inch thick for a
background, and by a process only known to themselves veneer it with a
Turkish towel, and put it in brine to soak. The unsuspecting boarding
house keeper, or restaurant man buys it and cooks it, and the boarder or
transient guest calls for tripe. A piece is cut off the damnable tripe
with a pair of shears used in a tin shop for cutting sheet iron, and it is
handed to the victim. He tries to cut it, and fails; he tries to gnaw it
off, and if he succeeds in getting a mouthful, that settles him. He leaves
his tripe on his plate, and it is gathered up and sewed on the original
piece, and is kept for another banquet.


On circus day W.H.H. Cash, the great railroad monopolist of New Lisbon,
was in the city. He had just made a few hundred thousand dollars on a
railroad contract, and he decided to expend large sums of money in buying
dry goods. He went into one of our stores and was passing along up the
floor, when a black-eyed girl with a dimple in her chin, pearly teeth, red
pouting lips, who was behind the counter, shouted, "_cash, here!_" Mr.
Cash turned to her, a smile illuminating his face as big as a horse
collar. He is one of the most modest men in the world, and as he extended
his great big horny hand to the girl, a blush covered his face, and the
perspiration stood in great beads on his forehead. "How do yeu dew?" said
Cash, as she seemed to shrink back in a frightened manner. They gazed at
each other a moment, in astonishment, when another girl, perhaps a little
better looking, further on, said, "Here, Cash, quick!" He at once made up
his mind that she was the one that had spoken to him the first time, so he
said, "Beg your pardon, miss," to the black-eyed girl, and went on to
where the other girl was wrapping up a corset in a base ball undershirt.
As he approached her she smiled, supposing he wanted to buy something. He
thought she knew him, and he sat down on a stool and put out his hand and
said, "How have you been?" She didn't seem to shake very much, but asked
him if there was anything she could show him. He thought may be it was
against the rules for the clerks to speak to anybody, unless they were
buying something, so he said, "Yes, of course. Show me corsets, stockings,
anything, gaul dumbed if I care what." She was just beginning to look upon
him as though she thought he had escaped, when a little blonde on the
other side of the store, as sweet as honey, shouted, "Cash, Cash, I need
thee every hour. Come a running." To say that Cash was astonished, is
drawing it mild. He knew that they all wanted him, but he couldn't make
out how they seemed to know his name. He looked at the little blonde a
minute, trying to think where he had met her, when he decided to go over
and ask her. On the way over he thought she resembled a girl that used to
live in Portage. He went up to her, and with a smile that was childlike
and bland, he said, "Why, how are you, Samantha?" The little blonde looked
daggers at him. "Didn't you use to wait on tables there at the Fox House,
at Portage?" The girl picked up a roll of paper cambric, and was about to
brain him, when the floor walker came along, and asked what was the
matter. Cash explained that since he came into the store, three or four
girls had yelled to him, and he couldn't place them. "There," says he, as
another girl yelled "Cash," "there's another of 'em wants me," and he was
going to where she was, when the floor walker asked him if his name was
Cash. "You bet your liver it is," said Cash. It was then explained to him
that the girls were calling cash boys. He thought it over a minute and
said, "Sold, by the great baldheaded Elijah. Won't you go down and take
something? Invite all of them. The girls can take soda. I'll be gaul
blasted if I ever had such a rig played on me." And he went out into the
glare of the sunlight, with his hat pulled down over his eyes, and just
then the circus procession came along, and he followed off the elephants.
There are lots of worse men than Cash.


A dispatch from Chicago, says that three men were shot on "a boat used for
the vilest purposes." We never knew that the newspapers were printed on
boats there in Chicago.


There occasionally occurs an accident in this world that will make a
person laugh though the laughing may border on the sacrilegious. For
instance, there is not a Christian but will smile at the ignorance of the
Advent preacher up in Jackson county who, when he saw the balloon of King,
the balloonist, going through the air, thought it was the second coming of
Christ, and got down on his knees and shouted to King, who was throwing
out a sand bag, while his companion was opening a bottle of export beer,
"O, Jesus, do not pass me by."

[Illustration: "DO NOT PASS ME BY!"]

And yet it is wrong to laugh at the poor man, who took an advertising
agent for a Chicago clothing store for the Savior, who he supposed was
making his second farewell tour. The minister had been preaching the
second coming of Christ until he looked for him every minute. He would
have been as apt to think, living as he did in the back woods, that a
fellow riding a bicycle, with his hair and legs parted in the middle,
along the country road, was the object of his search.

We should pity the poor man for his ignorance, we who believe that when
Christ _does_ come he will come in the old-fashioned way, and not in a
palace car, or straddle of the basket of a balloon. But we can't help
wondering what the Adventist must have thought, when he appealed to his
Savior, as he supposed, and the balloonist shied a sand bag at him and the
other fellow in the basket threw out a beer bottle and asked, "Where in
---- are we?"

The Adventist must have thought that the Savior of mankind was traveling
in mighty queer company, or that he had taken the other fellow along as a
frightful example. And what could the Adventist have thought when he saw a
message thrown out of the balloon, and went with trembling limbs and
beating heart to pick it up, believing that it was a command from on high
to sinners, and found that it was nothing but a hand bill for a Chicago
hand-me-down clothing store.

He must have come to the conclusion that the Son of Man had got pretty low
down to take a job of bill posting for a reversible ulster and paper
collar bazar. It must have been food for reflection for the Advent
preacher, as he picked up the empty beer bottle, shied at him from the
chariot that he supposed carried to earth the Redeemer of man. He must
have wondered if some Milwaukee brewer had not gone to heaven and opened a

Of course we who are intelligent, and would know a balloon if we saw it,
would not have had any such thoughts, but we must remember that this poor
Advent preacher thought that the day had come that had been promised so
long, and that Christ was going to make a landing in a strong Republican
county. We may laugh at the Adventist's disappointment that the balloon
did not tie up to a stump and take him on board, but it was a
serious matter to him.

He had been waiting for the wagon, full of hope, and when it came, and he
saw the helmet on King's head and thought it was a crown of glory, his
heart beat with joy, and he plead in piteous accents not to be passed by,
and the confounded gas bag went on and landed in a cranberry marsh, and
the poor, foolish, weak, short-sighted man had to get in his work mighty
lively to dodge the sand bags, beer bottles, and rolls of clothing store

The Adventist would have been justified in renouncing his religion and
joining the Democratic party. It is sad, indeed.


The papers all around here are saying that I have a new Sunday Lecture,
with a bad title. The way of it was this. A man in a neighboring city
telegraphed me to know if I would deliver a "Sunday Lecture," and telling
me to choose my subject, and answer by telegraph. I thought it was some
joke of the boys. The idea of me delivering a Sunday lecture was
ridiculous, so, in a moment of thoughtlessness I telegraphed back, "What
in the d---- do you take me for?" I supposed that that would be enough to
inform the man that I was not in the business. What do you suppose he did?
He telegraphed back to me as follows: "All right. We have advertised you
for Sunday. Subject, 'What the d---- do you take me for.'" You can judge
something of my surprise and indignation.

That is how it was.


Newspaper reports of the proceedings of the Sunday School Association
encamped on Lake Monona, at Madison, give about as many particulars of big
catches of fish as of sinners. The delegates divide their time catching
sinners on spoon-hooks and bringing pickerel to repentance. Some of the
good men hurry up their prayers, and while the "Amen" is leaving their
lips they snatch a fish-pole in one hand and a baking-powder box full of
angle worms in the other, and light out for the Beautiful Beyond, where
the rock bass turn up sideways, and the wicked cease from troubling.

Discussions on how to bring up children in the the way they should go are
broken into by a deacon with his nose peeled coining up the bank with a
string of perch in one hand, a broken fish-pole in the other, and a pair
of dropsical pantaloons dripping dirty water into his shoes.

It is said to be a beautiful sight to see a truly good man offering up
supplications from under a wide-brimmed fishing hat, and as he talks of
the worm that never, or hardly ever dies, red angle worms that have dug
out of the piece of paper in which they were rolled up are crawling out of
his vest pocket. The good brothers compare notes of good places to do
missionary work, where sinners are so thick you can knock them down with a
club, and then they get boats and row to some place on the lake where a
local liar has told them the fish are just sitting around on their
haunches waiting for some one to throw in a hook.

This mixing religion with fishing for black bass and pickerel is a good
thing for religion, and not a bad thing for the fish. Let these Christian
statesmen get "mashed" on the sport of catching fish, and they will have
more charity for the poor man who, after working hard twelve hours a day
for six days, goes out on a lake Sunday and soaks a worm in the
water and appeases the appetite of a few of God's hungry pike, and gets
dinner for himself in the bargain. While arguing that it is wrong to fish
on Sunday, they will be brought right close to the fish, and can see
better than before, that if a poor man is rowing a boat across a lake on
Sunday, and his hook hangs over the stern, with a piece of liver on, and a
fish that nature has made hungry tries to steal his line and pole and
liver, it is a duty he owes to society to take that fish by the gills, put
it in the boat and reason with it, and try to show it that in leaving its
devotions on a Sunday and snapping at a poor man's only hook, it was
setting a bad example.

These Sunday school people will have a nice time, and do a great amount of
good, if the fish continue to bite, and they can go home with their hearts
full of the grace of God, their stomachs full of fish, their teeth full of
bones; and if they fall out of the boats, and their suspenders hold out,
they may catch a basin full of eels in the basement of their pantaloons.
But we trust they will not try to compete with the local sports in telling
fish stories. That would break up a whole Sunday school system.


When you see an article in the editorial columns of a paper headed, "The
Political Outlook," look at the bottom line, and if it says "sold by all
druggists," don't read it. There is such an article going the rounds,
which is an advertisement of a patent medicine. It is a counterfeit well
calculated to deceive. Don't read a political article unless the owner's
name is blown in the bottle.


The law to compel hotel keepers to provide rope ladders for every room
above the second floor, is said not to be enforced, though it should be by
all means. The law ought to be amended so as to compel guests to get up
once or twice during the night and run up or down the rope ladder, outside
the window, in their night clothes, so as to be in practice in case of
fire. When every room is provided with rope ladders there will be lots of
fun. Those men who invariably blow out the gas, will probably think they
have got to come down stairs on the rope ladder in the morning, and it
will take an extra clerk to stand in the alleys around a hotel, with a
shot gun, to keep impecunious guests from going away from the tavern via
rope ladder. And then imagine an Oshkosh man in a Milwaukee hotel, his
head full of big schemes, and his skin full of beer. He has been on a
"bum," and is nervous, and on being shown to his room he sees the rope
ladder coiled up under the window, ready to spring upon him. He stares at
it, and the cold sweat stands all over him. The rope ladder returns his
gaze, and seems to move and to crawl towards his feet. For a moment he is
powerless to move. His hair stands on end, his heart ceases to beat, cold
and warm chills follow each other down his trousers legs and he clutches
at the air, his eyes start from their sockets, and just as the rope ladder
is about to wind around him, and crush his life out, he regains strength
enough to rush down stairs head over appetite, and tell the clerk about
the menagerie up stairs. O, there is going to be fun with these rope
ladders, sure.


A doctor at Ashland is also a Justice of the Peace, and when he is called
to visit a house he don't know whether he is to physic or to marry.
Several times he has been called out in the night, to the country, and he
supposed some one must be awful sick, and he took a cart load of
medicines, only to find somebody wanted marrying. He has been fooled so
much that when he is called out now he carries a pill-bag and a copy of
the statutes, and tells them to take their choice.

He was called to one house and found a girl who seemed feverish. She was
sitting up in a chair, dressed nicely, but he saw at once that the fatal
flush was on her cheek, and her eyes looked peculiar. He felt of her
pulse, and it was beating at the rate of two hundred a minute. He asked
her to run out her tongue, and she run out eight or nine inches of the
lower end of it. It was covered with a black coating, and he shook his
head and looked sad. She had never been married any before, and supposed
that it was necessary for a Justice who was going to marry a couple to
know all about their physical condition, so she kept quiet and answered

She did not tell him that she had been eating huckleberry pie, so he laid
the coating on her tongue to some disease that was undermining her
constitution. He put his ear on her chest and listened to the beating of
her heart, and shook his head again. He asked her if she had been exposed
to any contagious disease. She didn't know what a contagious disease was,
but on the hypothesis that he had reference to sparking, she blushed and
said she had, but only two evenings, because John had only just got back
from the woods where he had been chopping, and she had to sit up with him.

The doctor got out his pill bags and made some quinine powders, and gave
her some medicine in two tumblers, to be taken alternately, and
told her to soak her feet and go to bed, and put a hot mustard plaster on
her chest, and some onions around her neck.

She was mad, and flared right up, and said she wasn't very well posted,
and lived in the country, but if she knew her own heart she would not play
such a trick as that on a new husband.

The doctor got mad, and asked her if she thought he didn't understand his
business; and he was about to go and let her die, when the bridegroom came
in and told him to go ahead with the marrying. The doc. said that altered
the case. He said next time he came he should know what to bring, and then
she blushed, and told him he was an old fool anyway, but he pronounced
them man and wife, and said the prescription would be five dollars, the
same as though there had been somebody sick.

But the doc. had cheek. Just as he was leaving he asked the bridegroom if
he didn't want to ride up to Ashland with him, it was only eighteen miles,
and the ride would be lonesome, but the bride said not if the court knew
herself, and the bridegroom said now he was there he guessed he would
stay. He said he didn't care much about going to Ashland anyway.


If a farmer's wheat is killed by rain, he is consoled by the fact that
rain is just what his corn needs. If his cattle die of disease, his
consolation lies in the hope that pork will bring a good price. If boys
steal his watermelons, he knows by experience that they will have the
cholera morbus. So everything that is unpleasant has its compensation.



They tell a good story at Portage City, at the expense of Senator Barden,
or a minister, we don't know which. Barden had a lot of apples sent him
last fall, and he was anxious to sell them, before winter set in. One day
he thought of a new minister that had settled in Portage, so he made up
his mind to take him up a couple of barrels, supposing that when he went
to heaven and saw the big ledger opened, there would be a credit about as

                  L.W. BARDEN,
                      in acc't with Providence,

    Oct. 21. By two bbls. apples, @ $3    $6.00
     "    "  "  drayage                     .30
                              Total       $6.30

Barden loaded them on a dray, and got on it, with his pants in
his boots, and went up to deliver them himself. He stopped at the
minister's gate, and hurried the apples off and rolled them inside the
gate, and tried to get away before the minister had time to thank him.
Just as he was about to drive away the door opened and the man of God came
out, and says he:

"Look here! You put them apples in the cellar!"

Barden told him he was in something of a hurry, and really he could not
spare the time. The minister raised his voice to a sort of "auction
pitch," and said:

"Here, now. You don't know your business, Mr. Drayman. You roll them
apples into the cellar, or I won't accept them."

The senator was by this time as mad as senators usually get. He jumped off
the dray, threw the two barrels of apples on, and drove off, saying he
didn't care a continental dam if the minister eat dried apples all winter.
And he took them back to his store, and it is safe to say that he will not
give many more apples to that minister.

MORAL:--Never despise a man because he wears a ragged coat, for he may be
a senatorial granger angel in the disguise of a drayman. And you may have
to fill up on turnips instead of apples.


Since Beecher, the great revivalist, was here, and spoke so eloquently on
the fall of man, and the need of making arrangements for the future, I
have become a changed man. It hurts me to lie now, and when anything
hurts, then I quit. It is wrong to lie, and a man who follows it up will
come to some bad end.


The proceedings of the council of the city of Milwaukee shows that the
aldermen are about to buy a stone crusher, to be run by steam, for the
purpose of crushing stones to be used on the streets. If the city has
never indulged in the luxury of a stone crusher, it should interview some
city that has owned one, before it closes a contract with any party that
wants to sell one. Every party that owns one does want to sell it.
Statistics show that. The first city in Wisconsin that bought one was
Madison. The city owned it for a year or two, and after that no man that
was in the council when it was bought could ever get in it again. The
mayor that winked at the purchase of the stone crusher was defeated, and
there was trouble. No person would ever say what was the matter, but you
say "stone crusher" to a citizen of Madison, and he would reach his right
hand around to his pistol pocket, and the conversation would cease.

La Crosse heard that Madison had a stone crusher, and so she wanted one.
La Crosse is bound to have anything that any other town has, whether it is
a railroad, an insane asylum, or a speckled hen. La Crosse could have
bought Madison's stone crusher at a discount, but she wanted one new, with
the paint all on, fresh. Second-hand stone crusher? Not any for La Crosse.
So the city ordered a brand new one, right from the mint, at an expense of
about $5,000.

The idea was that it would be about as big as a straw cutter, or a job
press, and people were anxious to see it work.

Finally the city was notified that one train of cars loaded with the stone
crusher had arrived, with red flags on, betokening extra trains running
wild behind, and the city was told to come down to the depot and pay the
first installment of freight, and take the stone crusher away--that part
of it that had arrived. The aldermen went down and took an
inventory of the hardware, and some of them went and jumped in the river.
At a cent a pound one can buy a good deal of cast iron for five thousand
dollars. The city bonded itself, and paid the freight, and during the
spring all of the trains loaded with the stone crusher arrived. It was
argued that the only way to get the stone crusher up to the city building
would be to give the railroad the right of way up town, right through Main

Some were in favor of letting the railroad company keep it for freight,
but the company threatened to get out an injunction on the city. Finally a
man who took contracts to move brick buildings agreed to move it up town
on shares, and during the summer the most of it was got up there and
corded up on some vacant lots. If all the cast iron in it came out of one
mine it must have been an immense mine. People would look at it and weep.
Every alderman swore he voted against buying it. Occasionally some one in
the council would suggest that the stone crusher be taken out to the
bluffs, a couple of miles, and set to work, when another one would move,
to amend by inserting a clause that the bluffs be moved into the city to
be crushed, as it would save expense. Then the matter would drop. For
three years that stone crusher stood there, and it never crushed a pebble.
New mayors and aldermen were elected, and every day they passed that
crusher, but they never spoke to it. Finally a job was put up to get rid
of it. There was a man there who owned a stone quarry, and it occurred to
somebody to sell it to him. He was a truly good man, and did not believe
there were any bad men in the world, who would kanoodle him with a stone
crusher. A committee was appointed to sell it to him. The committee was
composed of men who had traded horses, sold lightning rods, and been
insurance agents, and when they told the poor man that the city had
noticed that he was a deserving man, that they had decided to
help him along, and would sell him that stone crusher, and he could pay
for it in crushed stone, and the city would pay him in cash half a dollar
more than the stone was worth, he said he would take it. They got it on to
him by buying crushed stone of him and paying cash for it.

We have never heard whether the man lived or not, and have never heard
whether the city bought any stone of him, but the city got rid of it, and
then had a celebration. Why, they figured it up, and the thing could crush
enough stone in twenty-four hours to pave the streets a foot thick all
over town and thirteen miles in the country. To run it a week would
bankrupt the State of Wisconsin, It could go up to the stone quarry and
tunnel a hole right through the hill. It was the biggest elephant that
ever a city drew in a legalized lottery. Milwaukee will make money if she
does not buy a stone crusher, not as long as it can buy stone in the
rough, and have it crushed by tramps, at nothing a day.


What proportion of the people who wish each other merry Christmas, do you
suppose think of the reason that the day is a holiday? Not one in a
thousand. Do the young fellows who put on a clean shirt and go down town
and play pool all day, and drink yellow stuff out of a shaving cup, and
get chalk on their fingers, and eat liver sausage, think that Christ died
to save them? No! All they think of is the prospect of sticking some other
fellow for the game. Do the hundreds of thousands of people who get up a
big feed, and gormandize, think of Christ, or the poor all about them who
have little to eat to-day, and little prospect of more to eat to-morrow?
Many of them do not think of the poor, or of anything else except to
prospect upon how much they will hold and not get sick.


There has been a great change in livery horses within the last twenty
years. Years ago, if a young fellow wanted to take his girl out riding,
and expected to enjoy himself, he had to hire an old horse, the worst in
the livery stable, that would drive itself, or he never could get his arm
around his girl to save him. If he took a decent looking team, to put on
style, he had to hang on to the lines with both hands, and if he even took
his eyes off the team to look at the suffering girl beside him, with his
mouth, the chances were that the team would jump over a ditch, or run
away, at the concussion. Riding out with girls was shorn of much of its
pleasure in those days.

We knew a young man that was going to put one arm around his girl if he
did not lay up a cent, and it cost him over three hundred dollars. The
team ran away, the buggy was wrecked, one horse was killed, the girl had
her hind leg broken, and the girl's father kicked the young man all over
the orchard, and broke the mainspring of his watch.

It got so that the livery rig a young man drove was an index to his
thoughts. If he had a stylish team that was right up on the bit, and full
of vinegar, and he braced himself and pulled for all that was out, and the
girl sat back in the corner of the buggy, looking as though she should
faint away if a horse got his tail over a line, then people said that
couple was all right, and there was no danger that they would be on
familiar terms.

But if they started out with a slow old horse that looked as though all he
wanted was to be left alone, however innocent the party might look, people
knew just as well as though they had seen it, that when they got out on
the road, or when night came on, that fellow's arm would steal
around her waist, and she would snug up to him, and--Oh, pshaw, you have
heard it before.

Well, late years the livery men have "got onto the racket," as they say at
the church sociables, They have found that horses that know their business
are in demand, and so horses are trained for this purpose. They are
trained on purpose for out-door sparking. It is not an uncommon thing to
see a young fellow drive up to the house where his girl lives with a team
that is just tearing things. They prance, and champ the bit, and the young
man seems to pull on them as though his liver was coming out. The horses
will hardly stand still long enough for the girl to get in, and then they
start off and seem to split the air wide open, and the neighbors say,
"Them children will get all smashed up one of these days."

The girl's mother and father see the team start, and their minds
experience a relief as they reflect that "as long as John drives that
frisky team there can't be no hugging a going on." The girl's older sister
sighs and says, "That's so," and goes to her room and laughs right out

It would be instructive to the scientists to watch that team for a few
miles. The horses fairly foam, before they get out of town, but striking
the country road, the fiery steeds come down to a walk, and they mope
along as though they had always worked on a hearse. The shady woods are
reached, and the carriage scarcely moves, and the horses seem to be
walking in their sleep. The lines are loose on the dash board, and the
left arm of the driver is around the pretty girl, and they are talking
low. It is not necessary to talk loud, as they are so near each other that
the faintest whisper can be heard.

But a change comes over them. A carriage appears in front, coming towards
them. It may be someone that knows them. The young man picks up the lines,
and the horses are in the air, and as they pass the other carriage it
almost seems as though the team is running away, and the girl that was in
sweet repose a moment before acts as though she wanted to get out. After
passing the intruder the walk and conversation are continued.

If you meet the party on the Whitefish Bay road at 10 o'clock at night,
the horses are walking as quietly as oxen, and they never wake up until
coming into town, and then he pulls up the team and drives through the
town like a cyclone, and when he drives up to the house the old man is on
the steps, and he thinks John must be awful tired trying to hold that
team. And he is.

It is thought by some that horses have no intelligence, but a team that
knows enough to take in a sporadic case of buggy sparking has got sense.
These teams come high, but the boys have to have them.


I remember once of offering a lady from Eau Claire a slice of bread and a
half of a red onion in a railroad car. She looked hungry, and yet she said
she didn't care to eat. Thinking she had a delicacy about accepting food
at the hands of one who was almost a stranger to her, I turned the bread
and onion into her lap, and said she was entirely welcome to it. What did
she do? Instead of eating it, and thanking me, she threw it out of the
window, and went and sat by the stove. I was never so offended in my life.
That woman may see the time she will want that onion, and I would see her
almost perish of starvation before she could have any more of my onion.


One of the great female writers on dress reform, in trying to illustrate
how terrible the female dress is, says:

"Take a man and pin three or four table cloths about him, fastened back
with elastic, and looped up with ribbons, draw all his hair to the middle
of his head and tie it tight, and hairpin on five pounds of other hair and
a big bow of ribbon. Keep the front locks on pins all night, and let them
tickle his eyes all day, pinch his waist into a corset, and give him
gloves a size too small, and shoes the same, and a hat that will not stay
on without torturing elastic, and a little lace veil to blind his eyes
whenever he goes out to walk, and he will know what a woman's dress is."

Now you think you have done it, don't you sis? Why, bless you, that
toggery would be heaven compared to what a man has to contend with. Take a
woman and put a pair of men's four shilling drawers on her that are so
tight that when they get damp, from perspiration, sis, they stick so you
can't cross your legs without an abrasion of the skin, the buckle in the
back turning a somersault and sticking its points into your spinal
meningitis; put on an undershirt that draws across the chest so you feel
as though you must cut a hole in it, or two, and which is so short that it
works up under your arms, and allows the starched upper shirt to sand
paper around and file off the skin until you wish it was night, the tail
of which will not stay tucked more than half a block, though you tuck, and
tuck, and tuck; and then fasten a collar made of sheet zinc, two sizes too
small for you, around your neck, put on vest and coat, and liver pad and
lung pad and stomach pad, and a porous plaster, and a chemise shirt
between the two others, and rub on some liniment, and put a bunch of keys
and a jack-knife and a button hook, and a pocket-book and a pistol and a
plug of tobacco in your pockets, so they will chafe your person,
and then go and drink a few whiskey cocktails, and walk around in the sun
with tight boots on, sis, and then you will know what a man's dress is.

Come to figure it up, it is about an even thing, sis,--isn't it?


There has got to be a law passed to punish the hardware dealers for
selling those step ladders that shut up like a jack-knife. A Ninth Street
woman got onto one the other afternoon when it looked as though there was
going to be a frost, to take her ivies down and carry them in the house.
We don't care how handsome a woman is naturally, you put a towel around
her head and put her up on a step ladder about seven feet high, with a
tomahawk in her left hand, trying to draw a big nail out of a post on a
veranda, and she looks like thunder. This woman did. Her husband tried to
get her to let him do the work, but she said a man never knew how to do
anything, anyway. So he sat down on the steps to see how it would turn
out. She said afterwards that he kicked the ladder, but however that may
be, there was an earthquake, and when he looked up the air was filled with
calico, toweling, striped stockings, polonaise, trailing arbutus, red
petticoats, store hair and step ladder. He said the step ladder struck the
veranda last, but as he picked her off of it, it seemed as though it must
have lit first. He said the step ladder must have kicked up. In coming
down she run one leg through the baby wagon, and the other through some
flower pots, and a boy who was passing along said he guess she had been to
the turning school.


There is no person in the world who is easier to overlook the
inconsistencies that show themselves on the stage at theatres than we are,
but once in a while there is something so glaring that it pains us. We
have seen actors fight a duel in a piece of woods far away from any town,
on the stage, and when one of them fell, pierced to the heart with a
sword, we have noticed that he fell on a Brussels carpet. That is all
wrong, but we have stood it manfully.

[Illustration: BEHIND THE SCENES.]

We have seen a woman on the stage who was so beautiful that we could be
easily mashed if we had any heart left to spare. Her eyes were of that
heavenly color that has been written about heretofore, and her smile as
sweet as ever was seen, but behind the scenes, through the wings,
we have seen her trying to dig the cork out of a beer bottle with a pair
of shears, and ask a supe, in harsh tones, where the cork-screw was, while
she spread mustard on a piece of cheese, and finally drank the beer from
the bottle, and spit the pieces of cork out on the floor, sitting astride
of a stage chair, and her boot heels up on the top round, her trail rolled
up into a ball, wrong side out, showing dirt from forty different stage

These things hurt. But the worst thing that has ever occurred to knock the
romance out of us, was to see a girl in the second act, after "twelve
years is supposed to elapse," with the same pair of red stockings on that
she wore in the first act, twelve years before. Now, what kind of a way is
that? It does not stand to reason that a girl would wear the same pair of
stockings twelve years. Even if she had them washed once in six months,
they would be worn out. People notice these things.

What the actresses of this country need is to change their stockings. To
wear them twelve years even in their minds, shows an inattention to the
details and probabilities, of a play, that must do the actresses an
injury, if not give them corns. Let theatre-goers insist that the
stockings be changed oftener, in these plays that sometimes cover half a
century, and the stockings will not become moth-eaten. Girls, look to the
little details. Look to the stockings, as your audiences do, and you will
see how it is yourselves.


The artificial propagation of fish has attracted much attention of late
years, and the success of experiments has shown that every farmer that has
a stream of water on his land can raise fish enough to get rich in five
years, four months and twenty-one days.


About as mean a trick as we ever heard of was perpetrated by a doctor at
Hudson last Sunday. The victim was a justice of the peace named Evans. Mr.
Evans is a man who has the alfiredest biggest feet east of St. Paul, and
when he gets a new pair of shoes it is an event that has its effect on the
leather market.

Last winter he advertised for sealed proposals to erect a pair of shoes
for him, and when the bids were opened it was found that a local architect
in leather had secured the contract, and after mortgaging his house to a
Milwaukee tannery, and borrowing some money on his diamonds of his
"uncle," John Comstock, who keeps a pawnbrokery there, he broke ground for
the shoes.

Owing to the snow blockade and the freshets, and the trouble to get hands
who would work on the dome, there were several delays, and Judge Evans was
at one time inclined to cancel the contract, and put some strings in box
cars and wear them in place of shoes, but sympathy for the contractor, who
had his little awl invested in the material and labor, induced him to put
up with the delay.

On Saturday the shoes were completed, all except laying the floor and
putting on a couple of bay windows for corns and conservatories for
bunions, and the judge concluded to wear them on Sunday. He put them on,
but got the right one on the left foot, and the left one on the right
foot. As he walked down town the right foot was continually getting on the
left side, and he stumbled over himself, and he felt pains in his feet.
The judge was frightened in a minute. He is afraid of paralysis, all the
boys know it, and when he told a wicked Republican named Spencer how his
feet felt, that degraded man told the judge that it was one of the surest
symptoms of paralysis in the world, and advised him to hunt a doctor.

The judge pranced off, interfering at every step, skinning his
shins, and found Dr. Hoyt. The doctor is one of the worst men in the
world, and when he saw how the shoes were put on he told the judge that
his case was hopeless unless something was done immediately. The judge
turned pale, the sweat poured out of him, and taking out his purse he gave
the doctor five dollars and asked him what he should do. The doctor felt
his pulse, looked at his tongue, listened at his heart, shook his head,
and then told the judge that he would be a dead man in less than sixty
years if he didn't change his shoes.

The judge looked down at the vast expanse of leather, both sections
pointing inwardly, and said, "Well, dam a fool," and "changed cars" at the
junction. As he got them on the right feet, and hired a raftsman to tie
them up for him, he said he would get even with the doctor if he had to
catch the small pox. O, we suppose they have more fun in some of these
country towns than you can shake a stick at.


With so many new holidays, and so many new people, it is hardly to be
wondered at that the day of all days, the day that should be dearest to
the heart of every American, is in danger of being passed over in silence,
and were it not for the fire cracker, that begins to get in its work about
the first of June, in many instances this Anniversary of American
Independence would be passed without the customary mouth shootzen-fest
from alleged orators, but when the small boy begins to stir around and
clandestinely look down the muzzle of the always loaded fire cracker, the
patriotism of the boys still begins to assert itself, the old man's eyes
begin to snap, and he talks to his neighbor about how they used to
celebrate when he was a boy, the stuff begins to work over the
neighborhood, the village catches it, the country begins.


Lorillard, the New York tobacco man, had a poodle dog stolen, and has
offered a reward of five hundred dollars for the arrest of the thief, and
he informs a reporter that he will spend $10,000, if necessary, for the
capture and conviction of the thief. [Applause.]

The applause marked in there will be from human skye terriers, who have
forgotten that only a few weeks ago several hundred girls, who had been
working in Lorillard's factory, went on a strike because as they allege,
they were treated like dogs. We doubt if they were treated as well as this
poodle was treated. We doubt, in case one of these poor, virtuous girls
was kidnapped, if the great Lorillard would have offered as big a reward
for the conviction of the human thief, as he has for the conviction of the
person who has eloped with his poodle.

We hope that the aristocracy of this country will never get to valuing a
dog higher than it does a human being. When it gets so that a rich person
would not permit a poodle to do the work in a tobacco factory that a poor
girl does to support a sick mother, hell had better be opened for summer
boarders. When girls work ten hours a day stripping nasty tobacco, and
find at the end of the week that the fines for speaking are larger than
the wages, and the fines go for the conviction of thieves who steal the
girl's master's dog, no one need come around here lecturing at a dollar a
head and telling us there is no hell.

When a poor girl, who has gone creeping to her work at daylight, looks out
of the window at noon to see her master's carriage go by, in which there
is a five hundred dollar dog with a hundred dollar blanket on, and a
collar set with diamonds, lolling on satin cushions, and the girl is fined
ten cents for looking out of, the window, you don't want to fool
away any time trying to get us to go to a heaven where such heartless
employers are expected.

It is seldom the _Sun_ gets on its ear, but it can say with great
fervency, "Damn a man that will work poor girls like slaves, and pay them
next to nothing, and spend ten thousand dollars to catch a dog-thief!" If
these sentiments are sinful, and for expressing them we are a candidate
for fire and brimstone, it is all right, and the devil can stoke up and
make up our bunk when he hears that we are on the through train.

It seems now--though we may change our mind the first day at the fire--as
though we had rather be in hades with a hundred million people who have
always done the square thing, than to be in any heaven that will pass a
man in who has starved the poor and paid ten thousand dollars to catch a
dog-thief. We could have a confounded sight better time, even if we had
our ulster all burned off. It would be worth the price of admission to
stand with our back to the fire, and as we began to smell woolen burning
near the pistol pocket, to make up faces at the ten-thousand-dollar-dog
millionaires that were putting on style at the other place.


A Bohemian on the train last night had some cheese in his vest pocket that
was too ripe, and the conductor had to disinfect the car, and order the
Bohemian to be quarantined before the train would be allowed to enter the
city. Cheese is all right in its place, but it don't want to be allowed to
lay above ground too long after it has departed this life. If farmers will
pay a little attention to cheese in its different stages, much trouble can
be avoided. In union there is strength. So there is in a smoking car.


The tendency of the stage is to present practical, everyday affairs in
plays, and those are the most successful which are the most natural. The
shoeing of a horse on the stage in a play attracts the attention of the
audience wonderfully, and draws well. The inner workings of a brewery, or
a mill, is a big card, but there is hardly enough tragedy about it. If
they could run a man or two through the wheel, and have them cut up into
hash, or have them drowned in a beer vat, audiences could applaud as they
do when eight or nine persons are stabbed, poisoned or beheaded in the
Hamlets and Three Richards, where corpses are piled up on top of each

What the people want is a compromise between old tragedy and new comedy.
Now, if some manager could have a love play, where the heroine goes into a
slaughter house to talk love to the butcher, instead of a blacksmith shop
or a brewery, it would take. A scene could be set for a slaughter house,
with all the paraphernalia for killing cattle, and supe butchers to stand
around the star butcher with cleavers and knives.

The star butcher could sit on a barrel of pigs' feet, or a pile of heads
and horns, and soliloquize over his unrequitted love, as he sharpened a
butcher knife on his boot. The hour for slaughtering having arrived,
cattle could be driven upon the stage, the star could knock down a steer
and cut its throat, and hang it up by the hind legs and skin it, with the
audience looking on breathlessly.

As he was about to cut open the body of the dead animal, the orchestra
could suddenly break the stillness, and the heroine could waltz out from
behind a lot of dried meat hanging up at one side, dressed in a lavender
satin princess dress, _en train_, with a white reception hat with ostrich
feathers, and, wading through the blood of the steer on the
carpet, shout, "Stay your hand, Reginald!"

The star butcher could stop, wipe his knife on his apron, motion to the
supe butchers to leave, and he would take three strides through the blood
and hair, to the side of the heroine, take her by the wrist with his
bloody hand, and shout, "What wiltest thou, Mary Anderson de Montmorence?"
Then they could sit down on a box of intestines and liver and things and
talk it over, and the curtain could go down with the heroine swooning in
the arms of the butcher.


Seven years could elapse between that act and the next, and a scene could
be laid in a boarding house, and some of the same beef could be on the
table, and all that. Of course we do not desire to go into details. We are
no play writer, but we know what takes. People have got tired of
imitation blood on the stage. They kick on seeing a man killed in one act,
and come out as good as new in the next. Any good play writer can take the
cue from this article and give the country a play that will take the

Imagine John McCullough, or Barrett, instead of killing Roman supes with
night gowns on, and bare legs, killing a Texas steer. There's where you
would get the worth of your money. It would make them show the metal
within them, and they would have to dance around to keep from getting a
horn in their trousers. It does not require any pluck to go out behind the
scenes with a sword and kill enough supes for a mess.


A few years ago there was some excitement at Grand Rapids over the
discovery of a bed or quarry of granite. Some of it was taken out, from
the top of the quarry, and polished, and proved to be as fine as any that
is imported. Further working of the quarry, however, has developed a
strange thing. The further they go down the softer it is, and it has been
learned that the quarry is all head cheese, such as is sold by butchers.
On top it is petrified, and polishes very nicely, but a little below it is
nice and fresh, and can be cut out with a knife, all ready for the table.
A friend in Milwaukee, who has an uncle living at Grand Rapids, has
furnished us with a quantity of it, some of which we have eaten, and were
it not for the fact that we know it came from the quarry, it would be hard
to convince us that it was not concocted out of the remains of a butcher
shop. The people up there talk of running Hon. J.N. Brundage for Congress,
on the head cheese ticket, in order that he may use his influence to get
head cheese adopted as an army ration, and also as currency with which to
wipe out the national debt.



"Ha! Ha! Now I have got you," said the grocery man to the had boy, the
other morning, as he came in and jumped upon the counter and tied the end
of a ball of twine to the tail of a dog, and "sicked" the dog on another
dog that was following a passing sleigh, causing the twine to pay out
until the whole ball was scattered along the block. "Condemn you, I've a
notion to choke the liver out of you. Who tied that twine to the dog's

The boy choked up with emotion, and the tears came into his eyes, and he
said he didn't know anything about the twine or the dog. He said he
noticed the dog come in, and wag his tail around the twine, but he
supposed the dog was a friend of the family, and did not disturb him.
"Everybody lays everything that is done to me," said the boy, as he put
his handkerchief to his nose, "and, they will be sorry for it when I die.
I have a good notion to poison myself by eating some of your glucose

"Yes, and you do about everything that is mean. The other day a lady came
in and told me to send up to her house, some of my country sausage, done
up in muslin bags, and while she was examining it she noticed something
hard inside the bags, and asked me what it was, and I opened it, and I
hope to die if there wasn't a little brass padlock and a piece of red
morocco dog collar imbedded in the sausage. Now how do you suppose that
got in there?" and the grocery man looked savage.

The boy looked interested, and put on an expression as though in deep
thought, and finally said, "I suppose the farmer that put up the sausage
did not strain the dog meat. Sausage meat ought to be strained."

The grocery man pulled in about half a block of twine, after the
dog had run against a fence and broke it, and told the boy he knew
perfectly well how the brass padlock came to be in the sausage, but
thinking it was safer to have the good will of the boy than the ill will,
he offered him a handful of prunes.

"No," said the boy, "I have swore off on mouldy prunes. I am no
kinder-garden any more. For years I have eaten rotten peaches around this
store, and everything you couldn't sell, but I have turned over a new leaf
now, and after this nothing is too good for me. Since Pa has got to be an
inventor, we are going to live high."

"What's your Pa invented? I saw a hearse and three hacks go up on your
street the other day and I thought may be you had killed your Pa."

"Not much. There will be more than three hacks when I kill Pa, and don't
you forget it. Well, sir, Pa has struck a fortune, if he can make the
thing work. He has got an idea about coal stoves that will bring him
several million dollars, if he gets a royalty of five dollars on every
cook stove in the world. His idea is to have a coal stove on castors with
the pipe made to telescope out and in, and rubber hose for one joint, so
you can pull the stove all around the room and warm any particular place.
Well, sir, to hear Pa tell about it, you would think it would
revolutionize the country, and maybe it will when he gets it perfected,
but he came near burning the house up, and scared us half to death this
morning, and burned his shirt off, and he is all covered with cotton with
sweet oil on, and he smells like salad dressing.

"You see Pa had a pipe made and some castors put on our coal stove, and he
tied a rope to the hearth of the stove, and had me put in some kindling
wood and coal last night, so he could draw the stove up to the bed and
light the fire without getting up. Ma told him he would put his foot in
it, and he told her to dry up, and let him run the stove
business. He said it took a man with brain to run a patent right, and Ma
she pulled the clothes over her head and let Pa do the fire act. She has
been building the fires for twenty years, and thought she would let Pa see
how good it was. Well, Pa pulled the stove to the bed, and touched off the
kindling wood. I guess maybe I got a bundle of kindling wood that the
hired girl had put kerosene on, cause it blazed up awful and smoked, and
the blaze bursted out the doors and windows of the stove, and Pa yelled
fire, and I jumped out of bed and rushed in and he was the scartest man
you ever see, and you'd a dide to see how he kicked when I threw a pail of
water on his legs and put his shirt out. Ma did not get burned, but she
was pretty wet, and she told Pa she would pay five dollars royalty on that
stove and take the castors off and let it remain stationary. Pa says he
will make it work if he burns the house down. I think it was real mean in
Pa to get mad at me because I threw cold water on him instead of warm
water, to put his shirt out. If I had waited till I could heat water to
the right temperature I would have been an orphan and Pa would have been a
burnt offering. But some men always kick at everything. Pa has given up
business entirely and says he shall devote the remainder of his life
curing himself of the different troubles that I get him into. He has
retained a doctor by the year, and he buys liniment by the gallon.

"What was it about your folks getting up in the middle of the night to
eat? The hired girl was over here after some soap the other morning, and
she said she was going to leave your house."

"Well, that was a picnic. Pa said he wanted breakfast earlier than we was
in the habit of having it, and he said I might see to it that the house
was awake early enough. The other night I awoke with the awfulest pain you
ever heard of. It was that night that you give me and my chum the
bottle of pickled oysters that had begun to work. Well, I could't sleep,
and I thought I would call the hired girls, and they got up and got
breakfast to going, and then I rapped on Pa's and Ma's door and told them
the breakfast was getting cold, and they got up and came down. We ate
breakfast by gas light, and Pa yawned and said it made a man feel good to
get up and get ready for work before daylight, the way he used to on the
farm, and Ma she yawned and agreed with Pa, 'cause she has to, or have a
row. After breakfast we sat around for an hour, and Pa said it was a long
time getting daylight, and bimeby Pa looked at his watch. When he began to
pull out his watch I lit out and hid in the storeroom, and pretty soon I
heard Pa and Ma come up stairs and go to bed, and then the hired girls,
they went to bed, and when it was all still, and the pain had stopped
inside of my clothes, I went to bed, and I looked to see what time it was
and it was two o'clock in the morning. We got dinner at eight o'clock in
the morning, and Pa said he guessed he would call up the house after this,
so I have lost another job, and it was all on account of that bottle of
pickled oysters you gave me. My chum says he had colic too, but he didn't
call up his folks. It was all he could do to get up himself. Why don't you
give away something that is not spiled?"

The groceryman said he guessed he knew what to give away, and the boy went
out and hung up a sign in front of the grocery, that he had made on
wrapping paper with red chalk, which read, "Rotten eggs, good enough for
custard pies, for 18 cents a dozen."


This land of the free is good enough, if we make it good, and if we make
it bad, it is just as bad as any country under the sun. It all depends on
how the people act.


It is a rainy day, and nothing has occurred of a local nature, that is,
nothing of a hair standing nature, so we will just spoil a few sheets of
paper relating, in a Sunday School book style, the circumstances of an
excursion after woodcock, the other day, indulged in by W.C. Root, the
Wisconsin amateur Bogardus, Jennings McDonald, Captain of a breech-loading
steamboat, and the subscriber. In the first place, it may be well to state
that the woodcock, or "Timber Doodle," as Prof. Agassiz calls it, is a
game bird. We know it is a game bird, because they charge a dollar apiece
for them in New York. The meat is about as sweet as deceased cow's liver,
but they are worth a dollar apiece. The "Timber Doodle" is a patriotic
bird, because he gets ripe on the 4th of July. He is about the size of a
doughnut, with a long bill, like a lawyer.

We took passage per skiff at twelve o'clock. If there was one drawback, it
was the fact that the oar-locks of the boat had been mislaid. After
consuming an hour in not finding them, Frank Hatch became discouraged at
seeing us lay around the levee, so he tied the oars on with tarred rope
and we got off, three of us besides the other dogs. The water was so high
that we crossed Barron's island, only having to get out and pull the boat
over two or three sand-bars and a raft or two. Every time we got out to
pull the boat, the dogs would get out to look for woodcock, around the
stumps, and when they got in the boat would be full of water and mud, and
of course we had our best clothes on. Did it ever occur to you how much
water a dog could carry in his hair? A dog is worse than a sponge. An
ordinary dog, with luck, can fill a skiff with water at two jumps. Not,
however, with us in the boat to bail out the water. The woodcock's tail
sticks up like a sore thumb. We are thus particular to describe
the woodcock, so if you ever see one you can go right away from him.
Woodcock and mosquitoes are in "cahoots." While the woodcock bores in the
ground for snakes and other feed that makes him fat and worth a dollar in
New York, the mosquito stands on the ramparts and talks to the boys.

Well, speaking about woodcock, after riding five miles, through bushes,
brambles and things, we got out of the boat and only had to walk a couple
of miles to get where the birds were. Right here we wish to state that we
shouldn't have gone after the woodcock at all, only everybody said it was
such fun. Root showed us a picture of a woodcock in a book, and if that
didn't convince us, the fact that a small boy came in town and sold three
dozen, did. Then we wanted to go. There never has been a year when
woodcock were so plenty at places we didn't visit. The most fun was at a
ditch which was about a foot wider than any of us could jump. Root gave
his gun to McDonald and plunged in. Then McDonald threw a gun to Root. It
hit him on the thumb-nail and dropped in the ditch out of sight. Mc.
thought it was Root's gun, and he apologized to Root for throwing it so
carelessly. Root supposed it was Mc.'s gun, and he apologized for not
catching it. We never saw men more polite in the world. Mc. started to
jump across, when a dog got between his legs, and both went in up to their
knees. You never can jump as well with a dog tangled up amongst your legs.
The dog looked at Jennings as though he wanted to swear. We waded through
the ditch and only got two feet wet. The rest of them had more than that

But about the woodcock. This is, kind reader, purely a woodcock story, and
more or less must be said about the dollar bird. But this is neither here
nor there. It was over in the Root river bottoms. Finally we got on the
woodcock ground and went to work. Talk about mosquitoes! There was no end
to them. We ought not to say that, either, because there are spots on our
person that just fit the end of a mosquito. There was an end to them. If
you never saw mosquitoes in convention, you want to go over there. And
right here we will give a recipe for keeping mosquitoes from biting. You
take some cedar oil and put on your coat collar, if you are a man, and if
you are a woman put it on that gingerbread work around your neck, and a
mosquito will come up and sing to you and get all ready to take toll, when
she will smell that oil. She is the sickest mosquito you ever saw. She
turns over on her back and sends her husband for the nearest doctor. We
had a bottle of cedar oil, and if Jennings hadn't left it hanging up in
Hogan's store in his coat, we should have made those mosquitoes sick. As
it was they did it to us. There isn't a spot on us as big as a billiard
table but what you can find artesian wells made by mosquitoes.

Woodcock sell higher in the market than any other bird. Lots of people
that never saw them eat snakes, eat them. When they get up to fly they
talk Bohemian, and get behind a bush. You shoot right into the bush, and
if you kill one you think you are a good shot. Talk about getting tired.
You walk around in the woods several miles, with mosquitoes getting
acquainted with you, and all the time your nerves strung up in
anticipation of seeing a dollar bill fly up, and if you don't sleep
without rocking, we are no prophet. The sport, however, is exhilerating,
and we are glad we went. We are glad because it learned us one thing, and
that is, if we ever want a woodcock real bad, it will be cheaper, easier,
and better to buy it. It will be inferred that we did not see a woodcock.
Such is the case.

But we made the blackbirds sick.


Last Wednesday the bell to our telephone rung violently at 8 o'clock in
the morning, and when we put our ear to the earaphone, and our mouth to
the mouthaphone, and asked what was the matter, a still small voice,
evidently that of a lady, said, "Julia has got worms, doctor."

We were somewhat taken back, but supposing Julia was going fishing, we
were just going to tell her not to forget to spit on her bait, when a male
voice said, "O, go to the devil, will you?" We couldn't tell whose voice
it was, but it sounded like the clerk at the Plankinton House, and we sat

There is no man who will go further to accommodate a friend than we will,
but by the great ethereal there are some things we will not do to please
anybody. As we sat and meditated, the bell rang once more, and then we
knew the wires had got tangled, and that we were going to have trouble all
day. It was a busy day, too, and to have a bell ringing beside one's ear
all day is no fun.

The telephone is a blessed thing when it is healthy, but when its liver is
out of order it is the worst nuisance on record. When it is out of order
that way you can hear lots of conversation that you are not entitled to.
For instance, we answered the bell after it had rung several times, and a
sweet little female voice said, "Are you going to receive to-morrow?" We
answered that we were going to receive all the time. Then she asked what
made us so hoarse? We told her that we had sat in a draft from the bank,
and it made the cold chills run over us to pay it. That seemed to be
satisfactory, and then she began to tell us what she was going to wear,
and asked if we thought it was going to be too cold to wear a low neck
dress and elbow sleeves. We told her that was what we were going
to wear, and then she began to complain that her new dress was too tight
in various places that she mentioned, and when the boys picked us up off
the floor and bathed our temples, and we told them to take her away, they
thought we were crazy.

[Illustration: AT THE TELEPHONE.]

If we have done wrong in talking with a total strangers who took us for a
lady friend, we are willing to die. We couldn't help it. For an hour we
would not answer the constant ringing of the bell, but finally the bell
fluttered as though a tiny bird had lit upon the wire and was shaking its
plumage. It was not a ring, but it was a tune, as though an angel, about
eighteen years old, a blonde angel, was handling the other end of the
transmitter, and we felt as though it was wrong for us to sit and keep her
in suspense, when she was evidently dying to pour into our auricular
appendage remarks that we ought to hear.

And still the bell did flut. We went to the cornucopia, put our
ear to the toddy stick and said, "What ailest thou darling, why dost thy
hand tremble? Whisper all thou feelest to thine old baldy." Then there
came over the wire and into our mansard by a side window the following
touching remarks: "Matter enough. I have been ringing here till I have
blistered my hands. We have got to have ten car loads of hogs by day after
to-morrow or shut down." Then there was a stuttering, and then another
voice said, "Go over to Loomis' pawn shop. A man shot in"--and another
voice broke in singing, "The sweet by and by, we shall meet on that
beautiful"--and another voice said--"girl I ever saw. She was riding with
a duffer, and wiped her nose as I drove by in the street car, and I think
she is struck after me."

It was evident that the telephone was drunk, and we went out in the hall
and wrote on a barrel all the afternoon, and gave it full possession of
the office.


What we want is a currency that every farmer can issue for himself. A law
should be passed making the products of the farm a legal tender for all
debts, public and private, including duties on imports, interest on the
public debt, and contributions for charitable purposes. Then we shall have
a new money table about as follows:

  Ten ears of corn make one cent.
  Ten cucumbers make one dime.
  Ten watermelons make one dollar.
  Ten bushels of wheat make one eagle.


    Because there are cars for the luxurious, and smoking cars for
    those who delight in tobacco, some of the religious people of
    Connecticut are petitioning the railroad companies to fit up
    "Gospel cars." Instead of the card tables, they want an organ and
    piano, they want the seats arranged facing the centre of the car,
    so they can have a full view of whoever may conduct the services;
    instead of spittoons they will have a carpet, and instead of cards
    they want Bibles and Gospel song books.--_Chicago News_.

There is an idea for you. Let some railroad company; fit up a Gospel car
according to the above prescription, and run it, and the porter on that
car would be the most lonesome individual on the train. The Gospel hymn
books would in a year appear as new as do now the Bibles that are put up
in all cars. Of the millions of people who ride in the trains, many of
them pious Christians, who has ever seen a man or woman take a Bible off
the iron rack and read it a single minute? And yet you can often see
ministers and other professing Christians in the smoking car, puffing a
cigar and reading a daily paper.

Why, it is all they can do to get a congregation in a church on Sunday;
and does any one suppose that when men and women are traveling for
business or pleasure--and they do not travel for anything else--that they
are going into a "Gospel car" to listen to some sky pirate who has been
picked up for the purpose, talk about the prospects of landing the cargo
in heaven?

Not much!

The women are too much engaged looking after their baggage, and keeping
the cinders out of their eyes, and keeping the children's heads out of the
window, and keeping their fingers from being jammed, to look out for their
immortal souls. And the men are too much absorbed in the object of their
trip to listen to gospel truths. They are thinking about whether they will
be able to get a room at the hotel, or whether they will have to sleep on
a cot.

Nobody can sing gospel songs on a car, with their throats full of
cinders, and their eyes full of dust, and the chances are if anybody
should strike up, "A charge to keep I have," some pious sinner who was
trying to take a nap in the corner of the gospel car would say:

"O, go and hire a hall!"

It would be necessary to make an extra charge of half a dollar to those
who occupied the gospel car, the same as is charged on the parlor car, and
you wouldn't get two persons on an average train full that would put up a

Why, we know a Wisconsin Christian, worth a million dollars, who, when he
comes up from Chicago to the place where he lives, hangs up his overcoat
in the parlor car, and then goes into the forward car and rides till the
whistle blows for his town, when he goes in and gets his coat and never
says thirty-five cents to the conductor, or ten cents to the porter. Do
you think a gospel car would catch him for half a dollar? He would see you
in Hades first.

The best way is to take a little eighteen-carat religion along into the
smoking car, or any other car you may happen to be in.

A man--as we understand religion from those who have had it--does not have
to howl to the accompaniment of an asthmatic organ, pumped by a female
with a cinder in her eye and smut on her nose, in order to enjoy religion,
and he does not have to be in the exclusive company of other pious people
to get the worth of his money. There is a great deal of religion in
sitting in a smoking car, smoking dog-leg tobacco in a briar-wood pipe,
and seeing happy faces in the smoke that curls up--faces of those you have
made happy by kind words, good deeds, or half a dollar put where it will
drive away hunger, instead of paying it out for a reserved seat in a
gospel car. Take the half dollar you would pay for a seat in a gospel car
and go into the smoker, and find some poor emigrant that is going west to
grow up with the country, after having been beaten out of his money at
Castle Garden, and give it to him, and see if the look of thankfulness and
joy does not make you feel better than to listen to a discussion in the
gospel car, as to wheiher the children of Israel went through the Red Sea
with life-preservers, or wore rubber hunting boots.

Take your gospel-car half dollar and buy a vegetable ivory rattle of the
train boy, and give it to the sick emigrant mother's pale baby, and you
make four persons happy--the baby, the mother, the train boy and yourself.

We know a man who gave a dollar to a prisoner on the way to State prison,
to buy tobacco with, who has enjoyed more good square religion over it
than he could get out of all the chin music and saw-filing singing he
could hear in a gospel car in ten years. The prisoner was a bad man from
Oshkosh, who was in a caboose in charge of the sheriff, on the way to
Waupun. The attention of the citizen was called to the prisoner by his
repulsive appearance, and his general don't-care-a-damative appearance.
The citizen asked the prisoner how he was fixed for money to buy tobacco
with in prison. He said he hadn't a cent, and he knew it would be the
worst punishment he could have to go without tobacco. The citizen gave him
the dollar and said:

"Now, every time you take a chew of tobacco in prison, just make up your
mind to be square when you get out."

The prisoner reached out his hand-cuffed hands to take the dollar, the
hands trembling so that the chains rattled and a great tear as big as a
shirt-button appeared in one eye--the other eye had been gouged out while
"having some fun with the boys" at Oshkosh--and his lips trembled as he

"So help me God, I will!"

That man has been boss of a gang of hands in the pinery for two
winters, and has a farm paid for on the Central Railroad, and is "square."

That is the kind of practical religion a worldly man can occasionally
practice without having a gospel car.


The subject of banking has engrossed the attention of your excellent
Governor for, lo! these many weeks, and he is constrained to say that some
radical changes must be made in the method of receiving deposits by banks,
where an equivalent is not rendered, of His Excellency will be compelled
to emerge from his present aristocratic quarters and take up his abode in
the poor-house. I would call your attention to the practice certain banks
have of issuing checks in lieu of cash. If these checks were available at
the groceries it would be better than it is. Banks have got in a habit of
issuing a species of ivory button in receipt for the green coin of the
realm which is only good at the counter of the bank. These checks are not
issued by the National Banks, but by the State Banks, denominated "Keno"
and "Faro." I would not charge that there is "skullduggery" or
"shenanagen" going on in these institutions, as the president of one of
them informed me, confidentially, that he dealt on the "square," but it is
a noticeable fact that the dividends received by those who do business
with the banks, are almost, as it were, imperceptible. I trust that you
will cause this branch of industry to be thoroughly investigated, and
report by bill or otherwise. Our finances should be beyond suspicion of


The fashion papers, which are authority on the styles, claim that ladies
with large mouths are all the fashion now, and that those whose mouths are
small and rosebud like are all out of style. It is singular the freaks
that are taken by fashion. Years ago a red-headed girl, with a mouth like
a slice cut out of a muskmelon, would have been laughed at, and now such a
girl is worth going miles to see.

It is easier to color the hair red, and be in fashion, than it is to
enlarge the mouth, though a mouth that has any give to it can be helped by
the constant application of a glove stretcher during the day, and by
holding the cover to a tin blacking box while sleeping. What in the world
the leaders of fashion wanted to declare large mouths the style for, the
heavens only can tell.

Take a pretty face and mortise about a third of it for mouth, and it seems
to us as though it is a great waste of raw material. There is no use that
a large mouth can be put to that a small mouth would not do better, unless
it is used for a pigeon hole to file away old sets of false teeth. They
can't certainly, be any better for kissing.

You all remember the traveling man who attended the church fair at
Kalamazoo, where one of the sisters would give a kiss for ten cents. He
went up and paid his ten cents, and was about to kiss her when he noticed
that her mouth was one of those large, open face, cylinder escapement, to
be continued mouths. It commenced at the chin and went about four chains
and three links in a northwesterly direction, then around by her ear,
across under the nose and back by the other ear to the place of beginning,
and containing twelve acres, more or less.

The traveling man said he was only a poor orphan, and had a family to
support, and if he never came out alive it would be a great hardship upon
those dependent upon him for support, and he asked her as a
special favor that she take her hand and take a reef in one side of the
mouth so it would be smaller. She consented, and puckered in a handful of
what would have been cheek, had it not been mouth. He looked at her again
and found that the mouth had become a very one-sided affair, and he said
he had just one more favor to ask.

[Illustration: "GET THEE TO A NUNNERY!"]

He was not a man that was counted hard to suit when he was at home in
Chicago, but he would always feel as though he had got his money's worth,
and go away with pleasanter recollections of Kalamazoo, if she would
kindly take her other hand and draw the other side of her mouth together,
and he would be content to take his ten cents' worth out of what was left

This was too much, and she gave him a terrible look, and returned him his
ten cents, saying, "Do you think, sir, because you are a Chicago drummer,
that for ten cents you can take a kiss right out of the best part
of it? Go! Get thee to a nunnery," and he went and bought a lemonade with
the money.

We would not advise any lady whose mouth is small to worry about this new
fashion, and try to enlarge the one nature has given her. Large mouths
will have their run in a few brief months and will be much sought after by
the followers of fashion, but in a short time the little ones that pout,
and look cunning, will come to the front and the large ones will be for
rent. The best kind of a mouth to have is a middling sized one, that has a
dimple by its sides, which is always in style.


Under this heading I can think of nothing that appears more appropriate
than the subject of the artificial propagation of fish. It is a subject
that has arrested the attention of many of the ablest minds of the
country, and the results of experiments have been thus far so satisfactory
that it is almost safe to predict that within the next ten centuries every
man, however poor, may pick bull-heads off of his crab apple vines and
gather his winter supply of fresh shad from his sweet potato trees at less
than fifty cents a pound. The experiments that have been made in our own
state warrant us in going largely into the fish business. A year ago a
quantity of fish seeds were sub soil plowed into the ice of Lake Mendota,
and to-day I am informed that boarders at the hotels there have all the
fish to eat that any reasonable man could desire. The expense is small and
the returns are enormous. It is estimated that from the six quarts of fish
seeds that were planted in the lake there are now ready for the market at
least 11,000,000 car loads of brain-producing food, if you spit on your
bait when you go fishing.



"You don't want to buy a good parrot, do you?" said the bad boy to the
grocery man as he put his wet mittens on the top of the stove to dry, and
kept his back to the stove so he could watch the grocery man, and be
prepared for a kick, if the man should remember the rotten egg sign that
the boy put up in front of the grocery last week.

"Naw, I don't want no parrot. I had rather have a fool boy around than a
parrot. But what's the matter with your Ma's parrot? I thought she
wouldn't part with him for anything."

"Well, she wouldn't until Wednesday night, but now she says she will not
have him around, and I may have half I can get for him. She told me to go
to some saloon or some disreputable place and sell him, and I thought
maybe he would about suit you," and the boy broke into a bunch of celery,
and took out a few tender stalks and rubbed them on a codfish to salt
them, and began to bite the stalks, while he held the sole of one wet boot
up against the stove to dry it, making a smell of burned leather that came
near turning the stomach of the cigar sign.

"Look-a-here boy, don't you call this a disreputable place. Some of the
best people in this town come here," said the grocery man as he held up
the cheese knife and grated his teeth as though he would like to jab it
into the youth.

"O, that's all right, they come here 'cause you trust; but you make up
what you lose by charging it to other people. Pa will make it hot for you
the last of the week. He has been looking over your bill, and comparing it
with the hired girl, and she says we haven't ever had a prune, or
a dried apple, or a raisin, or any cinnamon, or crackers and cheese out of
your store, and he says you are worse than the James brothers, and that
you used to be a three card monte man, and he will have you arrested for
highway robbery, but you can settle that with Pa. I like you, because you
are no ordinary sneak thief, you are a high-toned, gentlemanly sort of a
bilk, and wouldn't take anything you couldn't lift. O, keep your seat, and
don't get excited. It does a man good to hear the truth from one who has
got the nerve to tell it.

"But about the parrot. Ma has been away from home for a week, having a
high old time in Chicago, going to theatres and things, and while she was
gone, I guess the hired girl or somebody learned the parrot some new
things to say. A parrot that can only say 'Polly wants a cracker,' don't
amount to anything--what we need is new style parrots that can converse on
the topics of the day, and say things original. Well, when Ma got back I
guess her conscience hurt her for the way she had been carrying on in
Chicago, and so when she heard the basement of the church was being
frescoed, she invited the committee to hold the Wednesday evening prayer
meeting at our house. First, there were four people came, and Ma asked Pa
to stay to make up a quorum, and Pa said seeing he had two pair, he
guessed he would stay in, and if Ma would deal him a queen he would have a
full hand. I don't know what Pa meant, but he plays draw poker sometimes.
Anyway there was eleven people came including the minister, and after they
had talked about the neighbors a spell, and Ma had showed the women a new
tidy she had worked for the heathen, with a motto on it which Pa had
taught her: 'A contrite heart beats a bob-tailed flush,'--and Pa had
talked to the men about a religious silver mine he was selling stock in,
which he advised them as a friend to buy for the glory of the church, they
all went in the back parlor and the minister lead in prayer. He
got down on his knees right under the parrot's cage, and you'd a dide to
see Polly hang on to the wires of the cage with one foot, and drop an
apple core on the minister's head. Ma shook her handkerchief at Polly, and
looked sassy, and Polly got up on the perch, and as the minister got
warmed up and began to raise the roof, Polly said, 'O, dry up.' The
minister had his eyes shut, but he opened one of them a little and looked
at Pa. Pa was tickled at the parrot, but when the minister looked at Pa as
though it was him that was making irreverent remarks, Pa was mad.

"The minister got to the 'amen,' and Polly shook hisself and said 'What
you giving us?' and the minister got up and brushed the bird seed off his
knees, and he looked mad. I thought Ma would sink with mortification, and
I was sitting on a piano stool looking as pious as a Sunday school
superintendent the Sunday before he skips out with the bank's funds; and
Ma looked at me as though she thought it was me that had been tampering
with the parrot. Gosh, I never said a word to that parrot, and I can prove
it by my chum.

"Well, the minister asked one of the sisters if she wouldn't pray, and she
wasn't engaged, so she said with pleasure, and she kneeled down, but she
corked herself, cause she got one knee on a cast-iron dumb bell that I had
been practising with. She said 'O my,' in a disgusted sort of a way, and
then she began to pray for the reformation of the youth of the land, and
asked for the spirit to descend on the household, and particularly on the
boy that was such a care and anxiety to his parents, and just then Polly
said 'O, pull down your vest.' Well, you'd a dide to see that woman look
at me. The parrot cage was partly behind the window curtin, and they
couldn't see it, and she thought it was me. She looked at Ma as though she
was wondering why she didn't hit me with a poker, but she went on, and
Polly said 'wipe off your chin,' and then the lady got through
and got up, and told Ma it must be a great trial to have an idiotic child,
and then Ma she was mad, and said it wasn't half so bad as it was to be a
kleptomaniac, and then the woman got up and said she wouldn't stay no
longer, and Pa said to me to take that parrot outdoors, and that seemed to
make them all good natured again. Ma said to take the parrot and give it
to the poor. I took the cage and pointed my finger at the parrot and it
looked at the woman and said 'old catamaran,' and the woman tried to look
pious and resigned, but she couldn't. As I was going out the door the
parrot ruffed up his feathers and said 'Dammit, set 'em up,' and I hurried
out with the cage for fear he would say something bad, and the folks all
held up their hands and said it was scandalous. Say, I wonder if a parrot
can go to hell with the rest of the community. Well, I put the parrot in
the woodshed, and after they all had their innings, except Pa, who acted
as umpire, the meeting broke up, and Ma says it is the last time she will
have that gang at her house.

"That must have been where your Pa got his black eye," said the grocery
man, as he charged the bunch of celery to the boy's Pa. "Did the minister
hit him, or was it one of the sisters?"

"O, he didn't get his black eye at prayer meeting!" said the boy, as he
took his mittens off the stove, and rubbed them to take the stiffening
out. "It was from boxing. Pa told my chum and me that it was no harm to
learn to box, cause we could defend ourselves, and he said he used to be a
holy terror with the boxing gloves when he was a boy, and he has been
giving us lessons. Well, he is no slouch, now I tell you, and handles
himself pretty well for a church member. I read in the paper how Zack
Chandler played it on Conkling by getting Jem Mace, the prize fighter, to
knock him silly, and I asked Pa if he wouldn't let me bring a
poor boy who had no father to teach him boxing, to our house to learn to
box, and Pa said certainly, fetch him along. He said he would be glad to
do anything for a poor orphan. So I went down in the Third ward and got an
Irish boy by the name of Duffy, who can knock the socks off any boy in the
ward. He fit a prize fight once. It would have made you laugh to see Pa
telling him how to hold his hands and how to guard his face. He told Duffy
not to be afraid, but strike right out and hit for keeps. Duffy said he
was afraid Pa would get mad if he hit him, and Pa said, 'nonsense, boy,
knock me down if you can, and I will laugh ha! ha!' Well, Duffy he hauled
back and gave Pa one on the nose, and another in both eyes, and cuffed him
on the ear and punched him in the stomach, and lammed him in the mouth and
made his teeth bleed, and then he gave him a side winder in both eyes, and
Pa pulled off his boxing gloves and grabbed a chair, and we adjourned and
went down stairs as though there was a panic. I haven't seen Pa since. Was
his eye very black?"

"Black, I should say so," said the grocery man. "And his nose seemed to be
trying to look into his left ear. He was at the market buying
beefsteak to put on it."

"O, beefsteak is no account. I must go and see him and tell him that an
oyster is the best thing for a black eye. Well, I must go. A boy has a
pretty hard time running a house the way it should be run," and the boy
went out and hung up a sign in front of the grocery: "_Frowy Butter a


There is too much dress parade about Christmas. Too many Christmas trees
where rich children get club skates, and gold napkin rings, and poor
children get pop corn strung on a string, and cornucopias full of
peppermint candy.


The last legislature, having nothing else to do, passed a law providing
for a change in the coat-of-arms of the State. There was no change
particularly, except to move the plows and shovels around a little, put on
a few more bars of pig lead, put a new-fashioned necktie on the sailor who
holds the rope, the emblem of lynch law, tuck the miner's breeches into
his boots a little further, and amputate the tail of the badger. We do not
care for the other changes, as they were only intended to give the
engraver a job, but when an irresponsible legislature amputates the tail
of the badger, the emblem of the Democratic party, that crawls into a hole
and pulls the hole in after him, it touches us in our patriotism.

The badger, as nature made him, is a noble bird, and though he resembles a
skunk too much to be very proud of, they had no right to cut off his tail
and stick it up like a sore thumb. As it is now the new comer to our
Garden of Eden will not know whether our emblem is a Scotch terrier,
smelling into the archives of the State for a rat, or a defalcation, or a
_sic semper Americanus scunch_. We do not complain that the sailor with a
Pinafore shirt on, on the new coat-of-arms, is made to resemble Senator
Cameron, or that the miner looks like Senator Sawyer. These things are of
minor importance, but the docking of that badger's tail, and setting it up
like a bob-tail horse, is an outrage upon every citizen of the State, and
when the Democrats get into power, that tail shall be restored to its
normal condition if it takes all the blood and treasure in the State, and
this work of the Republican incendiaries shall be undone. The idea of
Wisconsin appearing among the galaxy of States with a bob-tailed badger is
repugnant to all our finer feelings.


A ridiculous scene occurred at Palmyra, the other day. The furnace in the
basement of the church is reached by a trap door, which is right beside
the pulpit. There was a new preacher there from abroad, and he did not
know anything about the trap door, and the sexton went down there to fix
the fire, before the new minister arrived. The minister had just got
warmed up in his sermon, and was picturing to his hearers hell in all its
heat. He had got excited and told of the lake of burning brimstone below,
where the devil was the stoker, and where the heat was ten thousand times
hotter than a political campaign, and where the souls of the wicked would
roast, and fry, and stew until the place froze over.

Wiping the perspiration from his face, he said, pointing, to the floor,
"Ah, my friends, look down into that seething, burning lake,
and--" Just at this point the trap door raised a little, and the sexton's
face, with coal smut all over it, appeared. He wanted to come up and hear
the sermon.


If hell had broke loose, the new minister could not have been more
astonished. He stepped back, grasped his manuscript, and was just about to
jump from the pulpit, when a deacon on the front seat said, "It's all
right, brother; he has only _been down below to see about the fire_." The
sexton came up and shut down the trap door, the color came back to the
face of the minister, and he went on, though the incident seemed to take
the tuck all out of him.

A traveling man who happened to be at the church tells us that he knows
the minister was scared, for he sweat so that the perspiration run right
down on the carpet and made a puddle as though a dipper of water had been
tipped over there. The minister says he was not scared, but we don't see
how he could help it.


I would suggest that you permit the subject of the artificial hatching of
fish to engage your attention, and that you appropriate several dollars to
purchase whale's eggs, vegetable oysters and mock turtle seeds. The
hatching of fish is easy, and any man can soon learn it; and it is a
branch of industry that many who are now out of employment, owing to
circumstances beyond their control, will be glad to avail themselves of.
How, I ask you, could means better be adapted to the ends than for the
retiring officers of our State to go to setting on fish eggs?


Since the introduction of the patent air brake on passenger trains, by
which brakemen have been dispensed with, a number of patent right men have
been studying up some contrivance to do away with conductors. All have
failed except one, and that fortunate inventor is Col. Johnson, of the
Railroad Eating House, Milwaukee. He has been engaged for two years on
this patent, and has got it so near completed that he has filed a caveat
at the Patent Office, and as his rights are secured, it can do no harm to
describe the invention, as it is destined to work quite a revolution in
the railroad business. It has been Col. Johnson's idea that an arrangement
could be made so that an engineer of a train could have the whole train
under his charge, to stop it, start it, collect fares, and bounce
impecunious passengers, from his position on the engine, and do it all by
steam, wind and water. A series of pneumatic tubes run from the door of
each car to the engine, with speaking tubes. A passenger gets on the
platform, and through the speaking tube asks the engineer what the fare is
to such a place. The answer is returned, the fare is put in the hopper of
the pneumatic tube, it goes to the engineer, he pulls a string, the door
flies open and the passenger enters. Not the least important part of the
machinery is the patent "æolian bouncer," as it is called. A pair of ice
tongs are placed so as to grasp the passenger by the seat of the pants or
the polonaise, as the case may be, when he or she gets on the platform.
These tongs are connected with the air brakes, in such a manner that by
the engineer's touching a spring the whole force of the compressed air
takes possession of the tongs, and the passenger is snatched bald-headed,
metaphorically speaking. For instance, a passenger gets on the platform at
Portage, and the ice tongs grasp him or her securely. If he or she pays
the fare, the door is opened, the tongs release their hold, and
the person is allowed to enter. But if the engineer should find that they
had no money, or that their pass had run out, and they were trying to beat
their way, he would pull the string and they would be lifted back on the
depot steps and stood on their heads, raised in the air and made to see
stars. Col. Johnson has been offered a fabulous sum for his patent, but he
has not decided whether to sell or lease it. A trial trip was made at
Milwaukee, the other day, and though the machine was not perfect, the
experiment was not altogether a failure. A car was arranged with the
apparatus, and went out to the Soldier's Home. Col. Johnson and a number
of prominent railroad men were on board. They got a veteran soldier and a
Polack waman to allow the machine to experiment on them. The machine took
hold of the soldier and the engineer jerked. The man had one leg torn off,
and the seat of his overcoat was ruined. He wouldn't try again, so they
let the woman step on the platform. The engineer turned it the wrong way,
and the car seemed full of compressed air, and a smell of limberger cheese
pervaded the premises. When the smoke cleared off the woman was not to be
found. After voting the machine a success the party started for Milwaukee.
On nearing the city a pair of wooden shoes were seen in the air coming
down, and they lit in the the canal by the tannery. A pair of corsets
struck on Plankinton's packing house, and sections of spinal cord, and one
leg of a pair of red drawers came down on the Soldier's home, and hair was
found on the top of the car. It is thought the engineer loaded the air
bouncer too heavy, and that it kicked. However, Col. Johnson was not
discouraged, and will soon have his patent on all cars. The husband of the
Polack woman wanted Johnson to pay him three dollars, but he said he
didn't want to buy the woman. All he wanted was to hire her, anyway. Col.
Johnson is a great inventor. It was he that invented the stomach
pump, and the automatic candle enunciator, for awakening guests in the
night to take early trains. The latter he sold to Mr. Williams, of Prairie
du Chien, for a large amount and took his pay in trade.


Why not go to raising elephants? A good elephant will sell for eight
thousand dollars. A pair of elephants can be bought by a community of
farmers pooling their issues and getting a start, and in a few years every
farm can be a menagerie of it own, and every year we can rake in from
eight to twenty-four thousand dollars from the sale of surplus elephants.
It may be said that elephants are hearty feeders, and that they would go
through an ordinary farmer in a short time. Well, they can be turned out
into the highway to browse, and earn their own living. This elephant
theory is a good one, and any man that is good on figures can sit down and
figure up a profit in a year sufficient to go into bankruptcy.


A justice of the peace at Menasha, wanted to kill Pratt, the editor of the
_Press_. The matter has been compromised, however. Pratt got the justice
cornered up, and delivered one of the speeches to him that he delivered
during the campaign last fall, and the justice got on his knees and said,
"Pratt, this thing is all right, I surrender."


It was along in the winter, and the prominent church members were having a
business meeting in the basement of the church to devise ways and means to
pay for the pulpit furniture. The question of an oyster sociable had been
decided, and they got to talking about oysters, and one old deaconess
asked a deacon if he didn't think raw oysters would go further at a
sociable, than stewed oysters.


He said he thought raw oysters would go further, but they wouldn't be as
satisfying. And then he went on to tell how far a raw oyster went once
with him. He said he was at a swell dinner party with a lady on each side
of him, and he was trying to talk to both of them, or carry on two
conversations, on two different subjects at the same time.

They had some shell oysters, and he took up one on a fork--a
large, fat one--and was about to put it in his mouth, when the lady on his
left called his attention, and when the cold fork struck his teeth, and no
oyster on it, he felt as though it had escaped, but he made no sign. He
went on talking with the lady as though nothing had happened. He glanced
down at his shirt bosom, and was at once on the trail of the oyster,
though the insect had got about two minutes start of him. It had gone down
his vest under the waistband of his clothing, and he was powerless to
arrest its progress.

He said he never felt how powerless he was until he tried to grab that
oyster by placing his hand on his person, outside his clothes; then, as
the oyster slipped around from one place to another, he felt that man was
only a poor, weak creature.

The oyster, he observed, had very cold feet, and the more he tried to be
calm and collected, the more the oyster seemed to walk around among his

He says he does not know whether the ladies noticed the oyster when it
started on its travels or not, but he thought, as he leaned back and tried
to loosen up his clothing, so it would hurry down toward his shoes, that
they winked at each other, though they might have been winking at
something else.

The oyster seemed to be real spry until it got out of reach, and then it
got to going slow as the slikery covering wore off, and by the time it had
worked into his trousers leg, it was going very slow, though it remained
cold to the last, and he hailed the arrival of that oyster into the heel
of his stocking with more delight than he did the raising of the American
flag over Vicksburg, after the long siege.


A dispatch from Brooklyn states that at the conclusion of a performance at
the theatre, Fanny Davenport's wardrobe was attached by Anna Dickinson and
the remark is made that Fanny will contest the matter. Well, we should
think she would. What girl would sit down silently and allow another to
attach her wardrobe without contesting? It is no light thing for an
actress to have her wardrobe attached after the theatre is out. Of course
Fanny could throw something over her, a piece of scenery, or a curtain,
and go to her hotel, but how would she look? Miss Davenport always looked
well with her wardrobe on, but it may have been all in the wardrobe.
Without a wardrobe she may look very plain and unattractive.

Anna Dickinson has done very wrong. She has struck Fanny in a vital part.
An actress with a wardrobe is one of the noblest works of nature. She is
the next thing to an honest man, which is the noblest work, though we do
not say it boastingly. We say she is next to an honest man, with a
wardrobe, but if she has no wardrobe it is not right. However, we will
change the subject before it gets too deep for us.

Now, the question is, what is Anna Dickinson going to do with Fanny's
wardrobe? She may think Fanny's talent goes with it, but if she will
carefully search the pockets she will find that Fanny retains her talent,
and has probably hid it under a bushel, or an umbrella, or something,
before this time. Anna cannot wear Fanny's wardrobe to play on the stage,
because she is not bigger than a banana, while Fanny is nearly six feet
long, from tip to tip. If Anna should come out on a stage with the
Davenport wardrobe, the boys would throw rolls of cotton batting at her.

Fanny's dress, accustomed to so much talent, would have to be
stuffed full of stuff. There would be room enough in Fanny's dress, if
Anna had it on, as we remember the two, to put in a feather bed, eleven
rolls of cotton batting, twelve pounds of bird seed, four rubber air
cushions, two dozen towels, two brass bird cages, a bundle of old papers,
a sack of bran and a bale of hay. That is, in different places. Of course
all this truck wouldn't go in the dress in any one given locality. If Anna
should put on Fanny's dress, and have it filled up so it would look any
way decent, and attempt to go to Canada, she would be arrested for

Why, if Dickinson should put on a pair of Davenport's stockings, now for
instance, it would be necessary to get out a search warrant to find her.
She could pin the tops of them at her throat with a brooch, and her whole
frame would not fill one stocking half as well as they have been filled
before being attached, and Anna would look like a Santa Claus present of a
crying doll, hung on to a mantel piece.

Fanny Davenport is one of the handsomest and splendidest formed women on
the American stage, and a perfect lady, while Dickinson, who succeeds to
her old clothes through the law, is small, not handsome, and a quarrelsome
female who thinks she has a mission. The people of this country had rather
see Fanny Davenport without any wardrobe to speak of than to see Dickinson
with clothes enough to start a second hand store.


The object that every man has in view, whether he be farmer, mechanic,
preacher, editor, or tramp, is to make money.


There is nothing that is more touching than the gallantry of men, total
strangers, to a lady who has met with an accident. Any man who has a heart
in him, who sees a lady whose apparel has become disarranged in such a
manner that she cannot see it, will, though she be a total stranger, tell
her of her misfortune, so she can fix up and not be stared at. But
sometimes these efforts to do a kindly action are not appreciated, and men
get fooled.

This was illustrated at Watertown last week. People have no doubt noticed
that one of the late fashions among women is to wear at the bottom of the
dress a strip of red, which goes clear around. To the initiated it looks
real nice, but a man who is not posted in the fashions would swear that
the woman's petticoat was dropping off, and if she was not notified, and
allowed to fix it, she would soon be in a terrible fix on the street.

It was a week ago Monday that a lady from Oshkosh was at Watertown on a
visit, and she wore a black silk dress with a red strip on the bottom. As
she walked across the bridge Mr. Calvin Cheeney, a gentleman whose heart
is in the right place, saw what he supposed would soon be a terrible
accident, which would tend to embarrass the lady, so he stepped up to her
in the politest manner possible, took off his hat and said:

"Excuse me, madame, but I think your wearing apparel is becoming
disarranged. You might step right into Clark's, here, and fix it," and he
pointed to the bottom of her dress.

She gave him a look which froze his blood, and shaking her dress out she
went on. He said it was the last time he would ever try to help a woman in

She sailed along down to a grocery store and stopped to look at some
grapes, when the practiced eye of Hon. Peter Brook saw that
something was wrong. To think is to act with Peter, and he at once said:

"Miss, your petticoat seems to be dropping off. You can go in the store
and get behind that box of codfish and fix it if you want to."

Now that was a kind thing for Peter to do, and an act that any gentleman
might be proud of, but he was amazed at her when she told him to mind his
own business, and she would attend to her own petticoat, and she marched
off just a trifle mad.

She went into the postoffice to mail a postal card, just as Mr. Moak, the
postmaster, came out of his private office with Hon. L.B. Caswell, the
congressman. Mr. Moak, without the aid of his glasses, saw that there was
liable to be trouble, so he asked Caswell to excuse him a moment, and
turning to the delivery window where she was asking the clerk what time
the mail came in, he said:

"I beg a thousand pardons, madame. It ill becomes a stranger to speak to
one so fair without an introduction, but I believe that I am not violating
the civil service rules laid down by Mr. Hayes for the guidance of
postmasters when I tell you, lady, that something has broke loose and that
the red garment that you fain would hide from the gaze of the world has
asserted itself and appears to the naked eye about two chains and three
links below your dress. I am going abroad, to visit Joe Lindon, the
independent candidate for sheriff, and you can step into the back office
and take a reef in it."

He did not see the look of fire in her eyes as he went out, because he was
not looking at her eye. She passed out, and Doc Spaulding, who has got a
heart in him as big as a box car, saw it, and touching his broad brimmed
felt hat he said, in a whisper:

"Madame, you better drop into a millinery store and fasten up your--"

But she passed him on a run, and was just going into a hardware
store, with her hand on her pistol pocket, when Jule Keyes happened along.
Now, Jule would consider himself a horse thief if he should allow a woman
to go along the street with anything the matter with her clothes, and he
not warn her of the consequences, so he stopped and told her that she must
excuse him, a perfect stranger, for mentioning her petticoat, but the fact
was that it was coming off.


By this time the woman was mad. She bought a pistol and started for the
depot, firmly resolved to kill the first man that molested her. She did
not meet anybody until she arrived at the Junction, and she sat down in
the depot to rest before the train came.

Pierce, the hotel man, is one of the most noticin' persons anywhere, and
she hadn't been seated a York minute before his eye caught the discrepancy
in her apparel.

He tried to get the telegraph operator and the expressman to go
and tell her about it, but they wouldn't, so he went and took a seat near

"It is a warm day, madame," said Pierce, looking at the red strip at the
bottom of her dress.

She drew her pistol, cocked it, and pointed it at Pierce, who was
trembling in every leg, and said:

"Look-a-here, you young cuss. I have had half a dozen grown persons down
town tell me my petticoat was coming off, and I have stood it because I
thought they were old enough to know what they were talking about, but
when it comes to boys of your age coming around thinking they know all
about women's clothes it is too much, and the shooting is going to

Mr. Pierce made one bound and reached the door, and then got behind a
white greyhound and waited for her to go away, which she soon did. As she
was stepping on the car the conductor, Jake Sazerowski, said to her:

"Your apparel, madame, seems to be demoralized," but she rushed into the
car, and was seen no more.

Since then these gentlemen have all learned that the fashion calls for a
red strip at the bottom of a dress, and they will make no more mistakes.
But they were all serious enough, and their interference was prompted by
pure kindness of heart, and not from any wicked thoughts.


A number of fathers who have daughters, have formed a society, the object
of which is to charge young men who visit the girls, for meals, gas, wear
and tear of furniture, etc. There has been so much sparking going on which
did not mean business, that the organization has seemed necessary.


A woman from Milwaukee, stopping at Sparta for the summer, had a serious
accident the other day. She had her dress pinned back so tight that the
exclamation point where she was vaccinated on the left arm was plainly
visible, and as she stooped over at the artesian well to dip up a cup full
of physic, a little dog belonging to a lady from Pilot Knob took hold of
her striped stocking and shook it, thinking it was a blue racer. The lady
was overcome with heat and sank down on the damp ground, and the result
was congestion of the dog, for when she got up she kicked that dog over
the Court house and sprained her stocking. It is said that beautiful and
healthful summer resort is fast filling up and everybody swears it is the
most enjoyable place on the continent. It is certainly the cheapest for us
La Crosse folks to go. We don't know of a place where, for the money
invested, one can have so much fun and get so much health. You can leave
La Crosse at 5:45, and arrive at Sparta at 6:20, after a delightful ride
of thirty miles, and you will enjoy a race, your train beating the
Northwestern train, and running like lightning. If you have a pass, or sit
on the hind platform, it will cost you nothing. You can walk down town, at
small expense. You want to take supper before leaving home, if economy is
what you are seeking in addition to health. Go to Condit, at the Warner
House, and talk as though you were looking for a place to send your
family, and he will hitch up and drive you all over town. Tell Doc.
Nichols you never tried a Turkish bath, but that you are troubled with
hypochondria and often wish you were dead, and that if you were sure the
baths would help you, you would come down and take them regular. He will
put you through for nothing, and give you a cigar. Then you can get a
tooth pick at Condit's and put your thumb under your vest and go to the
springs and talk loud about railroad stocks and bonds and speculating in
wheat. (It takes two to do it up right. Frank Hatch and the writer are
going down some night to "do" the watering place). Then you can swell
around till half past ten, and sneak off to the depot on foot and come
home, and your pocket book will be just as empty as when you started,
unless you get a subscriber, and you will have added bloom to your cheek,
and had a high old time, and next winter you can talk about the delightful
time you passed at Sparta last summer during the heated term.

Let's get up a party and go down some night.


What the country needs is a melon from which the incendiary ingredients
have been removed. It seems to me that by proper care, when the melon is
growing on the vines, the cholera morbus can be decreased, at least, the
same as the cranberry has been improved, by cultivation. The experiment of
planting homeopathic pills in the hill with the melon has been tried, but
homeopathy, while perhaps good in certain cases, does not seem to reach
the seat of disease in the watermelon. What I would advise, and the advice
is free to all, is that a porous plaster be placed upon watermelons, just
as they are begining to ripen, with a view to draw out the cholera morbus.
A mustard plaster might have the same effect, but the porous plaster seems
to me to be the article to fill a want long felt. If, by this means, a
breed of watermelon can be raised that will not strike terror to the heart
of the consumer, this agricultural address will not have been delivered in


Last week, a young man from the country west of here came in on the
evening train and walked up to Grand avenue, with a fresh looking young
woman hanging on to one handle of a satchel while he held the other. They
turned into the Plankinton House, and with a wild light in his eye the man
went to the book and registered his name and that of the lady with him.

While the clerk was picking out a couple of rooms that were near together,
the man looked around at the colored man who had the satchel, and as the
clerk said, "Show the gentleman to No 65 and the lady to 67," he said,
"Hold on, 'squire! One room will do."

On being shown to the room, the bridegroom came right out with the bell
boy and appeared at the office. Picking out a benevolent looking
gentleman, with a good place to raise hair on his head, who was behind the
counter, the groom said:

"Say, can a man enjoy religion in this house?"

Mr. White said a man could if he brought it with him. They had none on
hand to issue out to guests, but they never interfered with those who had
it when they arrived.

"Why," says the manager of the house, "has anybody interfered with your
devotions here?"

"No, not here," said the man, wiping his forehead with a red handkerchief.
"But they have at Dubuque. I'll tell you how it was. I was married a
couple of days ago, and night before last I put up at a Dubuque hotel. My
wife never had been married before any at all, and she is timid, and
thinks everybody is watching us, and making fun of us! She jumps at the
slightest sound.

"Well, we went to our room in the afternoon, and she began to cry, and
said if she wasn't married she never would be the longest day she
lived. I sort of put my arm around her, and was just telling her that
everybody had to get married, when there was a knock on the door, and she
jumped more than thirty feet.

"You see that finger. Well, a pin in her belt stuck clear through, and
came near making me faint away. I held my finger in my mouth, and telling
her the house was not on fire, I went to the door and there was a porter
there who wanted to know if I wanted any more coal on the fire. I drove
him away, and sat down in a big rocking chair with my wife in my lap, and
was stroking her hair and telling her that if she would forgive me for
marrying I never would do so again, and trying to make her feel more at
home, when there came another knock at the door, and she jumped clear
across the room and knocked over a water pitcher.

"This seal ring on my finger caught in her frizzes and I'll be cussed if
the whole top of her head didn't come off. I was a little flurried and
went to the door, and a chambermaid was there with an armful of towels and
she handed me a couple and went off. My wife came into camp again, and
began to cry and accuse me of pulling her hair, when I went up to her and
put my arm around her waist, and was just going to kiss her, just as any
man would be justified in kissing his wife under the circumstances, when
she screamed murder and fell against the bureau.

"I looked around and the door had opened, and there was a colored man
coming into the room with a kerosene lamp, and he chuckled and said he
begged my pardon. Now, I am a man that don't let my temper get away with
me, but as it was three hours before dark I didn't see what was the use of
a lamp, and I told him to get out of there. Before 6 o'clock that evening
there had been twenty raps at the door, and we got sick. My wife said she
would not stay in that house for a million dollars. So we started for

[Illustration: AN INTRUSIVE NIGGER.]

"I tried to get a little sleep on the cars, but every little while a
conductor would wake me up and roll me over in the seat to look at my
ticket, and brakemen would run against my legs in the aisle of the car,
and shout the names of stations till I was sorry I ever left home. Now, I
want to have rest and quietude. Can I have it here?"

The manager told him to go to his room, and if he wanted any coal or ice
water to ring for it, and if anybody knocked at his door without being
sent for, to begin shooting bullets through the door. That settled it, and
when the parties returned to Iowa they said this country was a mighty
sight different from Dubuque.


The late meeting of the State Fish Commissioners at Milwaukee was an
important event, and the discussions the wise men indulged in will be
valuable additions to the literature of the country, and future readers of
profane history will rise up and call them blessed. It seems that the
action of the Milwaukee common council in withdrawing the use of the water
works from the commissioners, will put a stop to the hatching of
whitefish. This is as it should be. The white fish is an aristocratic
bird, that will not bite a hook, and the propagation of this species of
fish is wholly in the interest of wealthy owners of fishing tugs, who have
nets. By strict attention to business they can catch all the whitefish out
of the lake a little faster than the State machine can put them in. Poor
people cannot get a smell of whitefish. The same may be said of brook
trout. While they will bite a hook, it requires more machinery to catch
them than ordinary people can possess without mortgaging a house. A man
has got to have a morocco book of expensive flies, a fifteen dollar bamboo
jointed rod, a three dollar trout basket with a hole mortised in the top,
a corduroy suit made in the latest style, top boots of the Wellington
pattern, with red tassels in the straps, and a flask of Otard brandy in a
side pocket. Unless a man is got up in that style, a speckled trout will
see him in Chicago, first, and then it won't bite. The brook trout is even
more aristocratic than the whitefish, and should not be propagated at
public expense.

But there are fish that should be propagated in the interest of the
people. There is a species of fish that never looks at the clothes of the
man who throws in the bait, a fish that takes whatever is thrown to it,
and when once hold of the hook never tries to shake a friend, but submits
to the inevitable, crosses its legs and says "Now I lay me," and
comes out on the bank and seems to enjoy being taken. It is a fish that is
a friend of the poor, and one that will sacrifice itself in the interest
of humanity. This is the fish that the State should adopt as its trade
mark, and cultivate friendly relations with, and stand by. We allude to
the bullhead.

The bullhead never went back on a friend. To catch the bullhead it is not
necessary to tempt his appetite with porter house steak, or to display an
expensive lot of fishing tackle. A pin hook, a piece of liver, and a
cistern pole, is all the capital required to catch a bullhead. He lays
upon the bottom of a stream or pond in the mud, thinking. There is no fish
that does more thinking or has a better head for grasping great questions,
or chunks of liver than the bullhead. His brain is large, his heart beats
for humanity, and if he can't get liver, a piece of a tin tomato can will
make a meal for him. It is an interesting study to watch a boy catch a
bullhead. The boy knows where the bullhead congregates, and when he throws
in his hook it is dollars to buttons that "in the near future" he will get
a bite. The bullhead is democratic in all its instincts. If the boy's
shirt is sleeveless, his hat crownless, and his pants a bottomless pit,
the bullhead will bite just as well as though the boy is dressed in purple
and fine linen, with knee breeches and plaid stockings. The bull head
seems to be dozing--bulldozing we might say--on the muddy bottom, and a
stranger might say that he would not bite. But wait. There is a movement
of his continuation, and his cow-catcher moves gently toward the piece of
liver. He does not wait to smell of it, and canvas in his mind whether the
liver is fresh. It makes no difference to him. He argues that here is a
family out of meat. "My country calls and I must go," says the bullhead to
himself, and he opens his mouth and the liver disappears.

It is not certain that the boy will think of his bait for half an
hour, but the bullhead is in no hurry. He lays in the mud and proceeds to
digest the liver. He realizes that his days will not be long in the land,
or water, more properly speaking, and he argues if he swallows the bait
and digests it before the boy pulls him out, he will be just so much
ahead. Finally the boy thinks of his bait, and pulls it out, and the
bullhead is landed on the bank, and the boy cuts him open to get the hook
out. Some fish only take the bait gingerly, and are only caught around the
selvage of the mouth, and they are comparatively easy to dislodge. Not so
with the bullhead. He says if liver is a good thing you can't have too
much of it, and it tastes good all the way down. The boy gets down on his
knees to dissect the bullhead, and get his hook, and it may be that the
boy swears. It would not be astonishing, though he must feel, when he gets
his hook out of the hidden recesses of the bullhead, like the minister
that took up a collection and didn't get a cent, though he expressed his
thanks at getting his hat back. There is one drawback to the bullhead, and
that is his horns. We doubt if a boy ever descended into the patent
insides of a bullhead, to mine for Limerick hooks, that did not, before
his work was done, run a horn into his vital parts. But the boy seems to
expect it, and the bullhead enjoys it. We have seen a bullhead lay on the
bank and become dry, and to all appearances dead to all that was going on,
and when the boy sat down on him and got a horn in his elbow, and yelled
murder, the bullhead would grin from ear to ear, and wag his tail as
though applauding for an _end core_.

The bullhead never complains. We have seen a boy take a dull knife and
proceed to follow a fish line down a bullhead from his head to the end of
his subsequent anatomy, and all the time there would be an expression of
sweet peace on the countenance of the bullhead, as though he
enjoyed it. If we were preparing a picture representing "Resignation," for
a chromo to give to subscribers, and wished to represent a scene of
suffering in which the sufferer was light hearted, and seemed to recognize
that all was for the best, we should take for the subject a bullhead, with
a boy searching with a knife for a long lost fish hook.

The bullhead is a fish that has no scales, but in lieu thereof is a fine
India rubber skin, that is as far ahead of fiddle string material for
strength and durability as possible. The meat of the bullhead is not as
choice as that of the mackerel, but it fills up a stomach just as well,
and the _Sun_ insists that the fish commissioners shall drop the hatching
of aristocratic fish and give the bullhead a chance. There's millions in


You devote a good deal of time and labor to the raising of sheep, and what
do you get for it. The best sheep cannot lay more than eight pounds of
wool in a season, and even if you get fifty cents a pound for it, you have
not got any great bonanza. Now, the state encourages the raising of
wolves, by offering a bounty of ten dollars for a piece of skin off the
head of each wolf. It does not cost any more to raise a wolf than it does
to raise a sheep, and while sheep rarely raise more than two lambs a year,
a pair of good wolves are liable to raise twenty young ones in the course
of a year, if it is a good year for wolves. In addition to the
encouragement offered by the state, many counties give as much more, so
that one wolf scalp will bring more money than five sheep. You will
readily see that our wise legislators are offering inducements to you that
you should be thankful for. You can establish a wolf orchard on any farm,
and with a pair of good wolves to start on, there is millions in it.


One of those Fourth of July accidents that are always looked for but
seldom occur, happened at Racine, Monday night, which struck terror to the
hearts and other portions of the bodies of many eminent citizens, and that
none were killed we can all thank Providence, who tempers the fire-works
to the sweaty citizen in his shirt sleeves. The enterprizing citizens had
contributed a large sum of money, which had been judiciously expended in
all kinds of fire-works, and one side of the public square was given up to
the display.

Thousands of citizens had gathered there, from city and country, and
bright Roman candles shone o'er fair men and brave women, and sixteen
thousand nine hundred and twelve hearts beat happy, while music arose with
its voluptuous swell, and soft eyes looked love to eyes which spake again,
or words to that effect. At least that was what a young fellow from Racine
told us, who was here to see a specialist to have a splinter from a rocket
stick removed from his ear.

A few pieces had been shot off, a few bunches of crackers had had their
tails tied together and been hung over a wire clothes line, like cats, to
fight it out, and the crowd was holding its breath for the next boom, when
there was an explosion; the earth seemed to tremble, and the air was full
of all kinds of fire-works. The whole supply of fire-works had become
ignited, and were blowing off where they listeth, without regard to
anybody's feelings.

The crowd became panic stricken, and there never was another such a scene,
and never will be until the last great day, when a few thousand people
suddenly find that they have got into hell, by mistake, when they thought
they were ticketed through to the other place. It was perfectly awful.
Prominent citizens who usually display great pluck, became fearfully

A man named Martindale, a railroad man who weighs over two
hundred pounds, was standing near a telegraph pole, and as the firing
commenced he climbed up the pole as easy as a squirrel would climb a tree,
and when it was over they had to get a fire ladder to get him down; as his
pants had got caught over the glass telegraph knob, and he had forgotten
the combination, and besides he said he didn't want to take off his
clothes up there and come down, even if it _was_ dark, because it would be
just his luck to have some one fire off a Roman candle when he got down.


The Hon. Norton J. Field was another man who lost his nerve. He was
explaining to some ladies one of the pieces that was to be fired off,
which was an allegorical picture representing the revolution, when the
whole business blew up. He thought at the time, that the explosion was in
the programme, and was just reassuring the ladies, by telling them it
reminded him of battle scenes he had witnessed when he was on the military
committee in the assembly, when he noticed a girl near him whose polonaise
had caught fire, and he rushed up to her, caught her by the dress,
intending, with his cool hands, to put out the fire.

The girl felt some one feeling, as she supposed, for her pocket-book, and
she started to run, yelling, "pickpocket," and left the burning polonaise
in Mr. Field's hands. He blushed, and was about to explain to his lady
friends how the best of us are liable to have our motives misconstrued,
when somebody threw a box of four dozen of those large firecrackers right
at his feet, and they were all on fire. Ten of them exploded at once, and
he grabbed the polonaise in one hand and his burning coat tail in the
other, and started west on a run.

The steward of the Gideon's Band Club House, at Burlington, said he
arrived there at daylight on the morning of the 5th, and he still held the
pieces of dress, but the whole back of his coat was burned off, and the
suspenders just held by a thread. He said the comet struck the earth at
Racine, at 9:30 the night before, and knocked the town into the lake, and
he and another fellow were all that escaped.

The narrowest escape was that of young Mr. Oberman. He is a small man, all
except his heart and feet, and when the air began to fill with patriotic
missiles, he started to run. On passing the _News_ office he had to jump
over an old coal stove that stood there, and while he was in the air, six
feet from the sidewalk, a sky rocket stick passed through his coat tail
and pinned him to the building, where he hung suspended, while other
rocket sticks were striking all around him, Roman candle colored balls
were falling on his unprotected head, etc. and one of these nigger chasers
that run all over the ground, climbed up the side of the building and
tried to get in his pants pocket.

Mr. Oberman begged Mr. Wright, the postmaster, to cut him down, but Mr.
Wright, who was using both hands and his voice trying to disengage a
package of pin-wheels from the back portion of his coat, which were on
fire and throwing out colored sparks, said he hadn't got time, as he was
going down to the river to take a sitz bath for his health.

The man that keeps the hotel next door to the _News_ office came out with
a pail of water, yelled "fire," and threw the water on Mr. Curt Treat's
head. Mr. Treat was very much vexed, and told the hotel man if he couldn't
tell the difference between an auburn haired young man and a pin-wheel,
he'd better go and hire somebody that could. Friends of Mr. Treat say that
he would be justified in going into the hotel and ordering a bottle of
pop, and then refusing to pay for it, as the water took all the starch out
of his shirt.

Those who saw the explosion say it was one of the most magnificent, yet
awful and terrible sights ever witnessed, and the only wonder is that
somebody was not hurt. What added to the terror of the scene was when they
went to the artesian well to get water to put out the fire and found that
the well had ceased flowing. On investigation they found that Mr. Sage,
the assembly man, had crawled into the pipe.

By the way, Mr. Oberman finally got down from his terrible position by the
aid of the editor of the _Journal_, to whom Mr. Oberman promised coal
enough to run his engine for a year. Very few men displayed any coolness
except Mr. Treat and Mr. Sage.


It is the great ambition of our life to bring to the notice of the people
of the world the curative powers of the La Crosse water, that all who may
be suffering from any disease, however complicated, may be cured, and all
men may become healthy, and women too, and doctors will have to go out
harvesting. The La Crosse artesian well, was begun last fall, and
completed as soon as the contractor found he couldn't make any money at
it. It was rumored that he struck granite, and in fact several little
specks of granite were found in the stuff that come from the hole, but it
is pretty generally believed now that the granite particles got in from
the top, unknown to the contractor. The water came to within ten feet of
the surface, and struck. It never would come any further, and the world
would have remained in ignorance of its curative powers, only for Powers,
who put in a hydraulic ram, and the blockade was broken, the water now
flows to the surface, and all is well.

Attention was first called to the curative powers of the water, by a
singular incident. A teamster whose duty it was to haul stone, was in the
habit of stopping at the well to water his mules. One of the mules was in
a sad state. He was blind in one eye, had a spavin, a ringbone, the
heaves, his liver was torpid, his lungs were badly affected, and his
friends feared that he was not long for the stone quarry. He had no
family. Soon after the mule began to drink the water, the driver noticed a
great change come over him. Previously he had seemed resigned to his fate,
but latterly he was ambitious. One day while playfully mashing the mule
over the head with a sled stake, the driver noticed that a new eye had
grown in the place of the former cavity, and as the mule kicked him with
more than his accustomed vigor, he noticed that the spavin and ring bone
were gone, and the former plaintive melody of his voice gave
place to a bray that resembled the whistle of the Alex. Mitchell. When it
was known that the mule had been cured, others tried the water, men who
had never drank it before, until to-day there are thousands who will
testify to the benefits arising from its use. We could give the names of
many who have been snatched from the grave--the La Crosse water is a
regular body snatcher--but we will first give an analysis of the water.

Believing that the water was destined to play a prominent part in solving
the great question of how to euchre death, we sent a quantity of it to the
eminent Prof. Alonzo Brown, M.D.V.S. of Jefferson, Wis., with a letter of
transmittal authorizing him to analyze it thoroughly, and give us the
result, at our expense. The following is Prof. Brown's analysis:

August 3, 1877.

Lieut. GEO. W. PECK,
4th Wis. Cavalry,

Dear Sir:

Yours of July 25th, received. I should have attended to the water before,
but have had several cases of blind staggers in my barn, which has kept me
busy. I have examined the water by every process known to science, and
pronounce it bully. I took it apart at my leisure, and find that it
contains to one U.S. washtub full, of 741 cubic inches, the following

  Chloride, of Sodium, (common salt).............2 sacks.
  Chloride of Pilgarlic.....................40,021 grains.
  Bicarbonate of erysipelas.................11,602   "
  Bicarbonate of pie plant...................2,071   "
  Blue pills................................21,011   "
  Bicarbonate of soda water (vanilla.)......17,201   "
  Sulphate of Potasalager beer..............61,399   "
  Bicarbonate corrugated iron...............18,020 grains.
  Mustang Liniment.............................240   "
  Boneset and summer savory.................10,210   "
  Dow's Liver Cure, (6 bottles for $1.).....16,297   "
  Bromide of Alcock's Porous Plaster........22,222   "
  Flouride of Pain Killer (for cucumbers,).....055   "
  Paris green..................................001   "
  Spruce gum and Vinegar Bitters...............075   "

In submitting this analysis permit me to say that I find traces of mock
turtle soup, and India Rubber. I consider the La Crosse Nebecudnezzer
water the most comprehensive water that I have ever analyzed, and I would
recommend it for any disease that human beings or animals may have.

Very Respectfully,


Prof. of Chemistry in Jefferson Livery stable, and late Veterinary Surgeon
4th Wis. Cavalry.

       *       *       *       *       *

We have known Mr. Brown long and well, and his statement in regard to the
water can be relied upon. Citizens should retain a copy of this analysis
for future reference.

Mr. E.W. Keyes, of Madison, writing under date of August 1st, says: "The
La Crosse water you sent me has caused an entire new crop of hair to grow
upon my head. I had been bald for years, and offered five hundred dollars,
for any medicine that would cause hair to grow. Enclosed find five hundred
dollars, and send me more water. I want to try it on Murphey, of the
Sentinel. I think it would be a good joke on Murphey."

But wait till we get all the letters written from prominent men who have
been cured.


It is announced in the papers that Colonel Ingersoll, the dollar-a-ticket
infidel, has struck it rich in a silver mine, and is now worth a million
dollars. Here is another evidence of the goodness of God. Ingersoll has
treated God with the greatest contempt, called him all the names he could
think of, called him a liar, a heartless wretch, and stood on a stump and
dared God to knock a chip off his shoulder, and instead of God's letting
him have one below the belt and knocking seven kinds of cold victuals out
of him, God gives him a pointer on a silver mine, and the infidel rakes in
a cool million, and laughs in his sleeve, while thousands of poor workers
in the vineyard are depending for a livelihood on collections that pan out
more gun wads and brass pants buttons to the ton of ore than they do

This may be all right, and we hope it is, and we don't want to give any
advice on anybody else's business, but it would please Christians a good
deal better to see that bold man taken by the slack of the pants and
lifted into the poor house, while the silver he has had fall to him was
distributed among the charitable societies, mission schools and churches,
so a minister could get his salary and buy a new pair of trousers to
replace those that he has worn the knees out of kneeling down on the rough
floor to pray.

It is mighty poor consolation to the ladies of a church society to give
sociables, ice creameries, strawberry festivals and all kinds of things to
raise money to buy a carpet for a church or lecture room, and wash their
own dishes than hear that some infidel who is around the country calling
God a pirate and horse thief, at a dollar a head, to full houses, has
miraculously struck a million dollar silver mine.

To the toiling minister who prays without ceasing, and eats
codfish and buys clothes at a second hand store, it looks pretty rough to
see Bob Ingersoll steered onto a million dollar silver mine. But it may be
all right, and we presume it is. Maybe God has got the hook in Bob's
mouth, and is letting him play around the way a fisherman does a black
bass, and when he thinks he is running the whole business, and flops
around and scares the other fish, it is possible Bob may be reeled in, and
he will find himself on the bottom of the boat with a finger and thumb in
his gills, and a big boot on his paunch, and he will be compelled to
disgorge the hook and the bait and all, and he will lay there and try to
flop out of the boat, and wonder what kind of a game that is being played
on him.

Everything turns out right some time, and from what we have heard of God,
off and on, we don't believe he is going to let no ordinary man,
bald-headed and appoplectic, carry off all the persimmons, and put his
fingers to his nose and dare the ruler of the universe to tread on the
tail of his coat.

Bob Ingersoll has got the bulge on all the Christians now, and draws more
water than anybody, but He who knows the sparrow's fall has no doubt got
an eye on the fat rascal, and some day will close two or three fingers
around Bob's throat, when his eyes will stick out so you can hang your hat
on them, and he will blat like a calf and get down on his knees and say:

"Please, Mr. God, don't choke so, and I will take it all back and go
around and tell the boys that I am the almightiest liar that ever charged
a dollar a head to listen to the escaping wind from a biown-up bladder. O,
good God, don't hurt me so. My neck is all chafed."

And then he will die, and God will continue business at the old stand.


Every noted place of resort has an Indian legend, and the first thing I
did after getting my dinner was to look up the legendist. I wanted to hear
how it was that the Indian had ceased to frequent this spot. So in looking
for the boss legendist I struck Judge Lamoreaux, of Dodge county, who had
been herewith a party of friends, Mr. Hayes, and Mr. Van Brunt, with all
their wives. They had been searching for ferns and legends and they had a
car load. The Judge had heard of the legend, and he took me one side, and
with tears in his eyes related to me the horrible story just as he had
received it from an Indian named O'Flanegan, who sells relics in the shape
of rye. If I can control my emotion long enough to write it, it will be a
big thing for history.


Years ago an Indian chief who lived in a dog tent and caught
rattlesnakes for a side show, had a daughter, a beautiful maiden, about
the color and odor of smoked bacon, and she wore a red blanket cut biased,
and a tilter, under a polonaise made over from her last year's striped
silk. She was the belliest squaw in the hills, and took the premium at all
the county fairs, and she could shoot a deer equal to any buck Indian. Her
name was Hiawasamantha, and she had two lovers, a Frenchman and a young
Indian. In figuring up the returns there was some doubt as to who was
elected, so the father of the girl decided to go behind the returns, and
settle it by a commission. There was an eagle's nest half way up the
rocks, with young eagles in it, and the old chief said that the one that
got there first and brought him a young eagle, should have the squaw. The
Frenchman climbed up the back stairs and got there ahead of the Indian,
when the young Indian drew from his trousers leg a bar of railroad iron
and drove it to the hilt in the breast of the Frenchman, not, however,
till the Frenchman had drawn from his pistol pocket a 300 ton Krupp gun
and sent a solid shot weighing 280 pounds crashing into the skull of the
Indian, and both rolled to the bottom of the bluff, dead. Dr. Hall, of
Baraboo, was called, and he probed for the ball, but could not find it,
and neither could he get the bar of railroad iron out of the Frenchman,
and so they were buried on the spot where now stands the Cliff House. The
squaw looked around for another fellow, but they all had other
engagements, the excursion train having arrived from La Crosse, and so she
went up on a crag and said, "Big Injun me," and jumped off and was dashed
into 1,347 pieces, and the wedding was broke up. Pieces of the squaw can
now be found among the rocks, petrified, but retaining the odor of the
ancient tribe. I got a piece of her, evidently a piece broken off her ear,
which retains its shade perfectly, and will long be a reminder of
my visit to Devil's Lake. (P.S.--Disreputable parties are selling pieces
of stuff purporting to be genuine remains of this beauteous maiden, but
they are base imitations. None genuine unless the trade mark is stamped on


The Geological Survey is being prosecuted as well as could be expected
with the limited means at the hands of the searchers in the bowels of the
earth. They have already found, I am informed, that the earth on which we
live, and move, and have a being, is composed largely of dirt. The
discovery of this fact is alone worth the price of admission. This great
discovery, which will be of such value to the future historian, has only
cost the state the insignificant sum of $8,280. Rather than remain in
ignorance of this astonishing fact, I would willingly pay the money
myself--out of the public treasury. It is rumored that parties employed by
the State to dive down into the ground and bring up sand in their claws,
have discovered symptoms that the world was at one time sick to its
stomach, and threw up divers and sundry kinds of rocks and things, and
there is a probability that lead ore may be discovered. This will be
valuable to make bullets in case of a war with Oshkosh. In peace it is
always best to prepare for war, and I trust you will lend your countenance
to the able men who are investigating the Lower Silurian age.


Reports from the stationers show that there is no demand at all for the
revised edition of the Bible, and had it not been for the newspapers
publishing the whole affair there would have been very few persons that
took the trouble to even glance at it, and it is believed that not one
reader of the daily papers in a hundred read any of the Bible, and not one
in ten thousand read all of it which was published. Who originated this
scheme of revising the Bible we do not know, but whoever it was made a
miscue. There was no one suffering particularly for a revision of the
Bible. It was good enough as it was. No literary sharp of the present day
has got any license to change anything in the Bible.

Why, the cheeky ghouls have actually altered over the Lord's Prayer, cut
it biased, and thrown the parts about giving us this day our daily bread
into the rag bag. How do they know that the Lord said more than he wanted
to in that prayer? He wanted that daily bread in there, or He never would
have put it in. The only wonder is that those revisers did not insert
strawberry shortcake and ice cream in place of daily bread. Some of these
ministers who are writing speeches for the Lord think they are smart. They
have fooled with Christ's sermon on the Mount until He couldn't tell it if
He was to meet it in the Chicago _Times_.

This thing has gone on long enough, and we want a stop put to it. We have
kept still about the piracy that has been going on in the Bible because
people who are better than we are have seemed to endorse it, but now we
are sick of it, and if there is going to be an annual clerical picnic to
cut gashes in the Bible and stick new precepts and examples on where they
will do the most hurt, we shall lock up our old Bible where the critters
can't get at it and throw the first book agent down stairs head
first that tries to shove off on to us one of these new-fangled,
go-as-you-please Bibles, with all the modern improvements, and hell left

Now, where was there a popular demand to have hell left out of the Bible?
Were there any petitions from the people sent up to this self-constituted
legislature of pinchbeck ministers, praying to have hell abolished, and
"hades" inserted? Not a petition. And what is this hades? Where is it?
Nobody knows. They have taken away our orthodox hell, that has stood by us
since we first went to Sunday school, and given us a hades. Half of us
wouldn't know a hades if we should see it dead in the road, but they
couldn't fool us any on hell.

No, these revisers have done more harm to religion than they could have
done by preaching all their lives. They have opened the ball, and now,
every time a second-class dominie gets out of a job, he is going to cut
and slash into the Bible. He will think up lots of things that will sound
better than some things that are in there, and by and by we shall have our
Bibles as we do our almanacs, annually, with weather probabilities on the

This is all wrong. Infidels will laugh at us, and say our old Bible is
worn out, and out of style, and tell us to have our measure taken for a
new one every fall and spring, as we do for our clothes. If this revision
is a good thing, why won't another one be better? The woods are full of
preachers who think they could go to work and improve the Bible, and if we
don't shut down on this thing, they will take a hand in it. If a man hauls
down the American flag, we shoot him on the spot; and now we suggest that
if any man mutilates the Bible, we run an umbrella into him and spread it.

The old Bible just filled the bill, and we hope every new one that is
printed will lay on the shelves and get sour. This revision of the Bible
is believed to be the work of an incendiary. It is a scheme got
up by British book publishers to make money out of pious people. It is on
the same principle that speculators get up a corner on pork or wheat. They
got revision, and printed Bibles enough to supply the world, and would not
let out one for love or money. None were genuine unless the name of this
British firm was blown in the bottle.

Millions of Bibles were shipped to this country by the firm that was
"long" on Bibles, and they were to be thrown on the market suddenly, after
being locked up and guarded by the police until the people were made
hungry for Bibles.

The edition was advertised like a circus, and doors were to be opened at
six o'clock in the morning. American publishers who wanted to publish the
Bible, too, got compositors ready to rush out a cheap Bible within twelve
hours, and the Britons, who were running the corner on the Word of God,
called these American publishers pirates. The idea of men being pirates
for printing a Bible, which should be as free as salvation. The newspapers
that had the Bibles telegraphed to them from the east, were also pirates.

O, the revision is a three-card monte speculation; that is all it is.


A black bear was brought into town for sale on Friday, having been killed
by Tom Rand, near Onalaska. He killed it with a little rifle that didn't
look big enough to hurt a hen. If bears are so sociable as to come within
sight of La Crosse to be killed, it will be a good excuse for husbands to
stay at home nights.


Again we are called upon to apologize to our readers for advertising what
we had reason to expect would occur at the time advertised, but which
failed to show up. We allude to the end of the world which was to have
taken place last Sunday. It is with humility that we confess that we were
again misled into believing that the long postponed event would take
place, and with others we got our things together that we intended to take
along, only to be compelled to unpack them Monday morning.

Now this thing is played out, and the next time any party advertises that
the world will come to an end, we shall take no stock in it. And then it
will be just our luck to have the thing come to an end, when we are not
prepared. There is the worst sort of mismanagement about this business
somewhere, and we are not sure but it is best to allow God to go ahead and
attend to the closing up of earthly affairs, and give these fellows that
figure out the end of all things with a slate and pencil the grand bounce.

It is a dead loss to this country of millions of dollars every time there
is a prediction that the world will come to an end, because there are lots
of men who quit business weeks beforehand and do not try to earn a living
but go lunching around. We lost over fifteen dollars' worth of advertising
last week from people who thought if the thing was going up the flue on
Sunday there was no use of advertising any more, and we refused twenty
dollars' worth more because we thought if that was the last paper we were
going to get out we might as knock off work Friday and Saturday and go and
catch a string of perch. The people have been fooled about this thing
enough, and the first man that comes around with any more predictions
ought to be arrested.

People have got enough to worry about, paying taxes, and buying
strawberries and sugar, to can, without feeling that if they get a tax
receipt the money will be a dead loss, or if they put up a cellar full of
canned fruit the world will tip over on it and break every jar and bust
every tin can.

Hereafter we propose to go right along as though the world was going to
stay right side up, have our hair cut, and try and behave, and then if old
mother earth shoots off into space without any warning we will take our
chances with the rest in catching on to the corner of some passing star
and throw our leg over and get acquainted with the people there, and maybe
start a funny paper and split the star wide open.


On this great day we are accustomed to leave our business to hired men,
and burn with patriotism, and ginger pop, fill ourselves with patriotic
ferver, and beer, shout the battle cry of freedom, and go home when the
day is over with our eye-winkers burned off, and to sleep with a
consciousness that a great duty has been performed, and that we have got
bank notes to pay on the morrow. For three hundred and sixty-four days in
the year our patriotism is corked up and wired down, and all we can do is
to work, and acquire age and strength. On the 4th of July we cut the wire,
the cork that holds our patriotism flies out, and we bubble and sparkle
and steam, and make things howl. We hold in as long as we can, but when we
get the harness off, and are turned into the pasture, we make a picnic of
ourselves, with music all along the line.


A First Ward man was told by his wife to bring home a quart of oysters on
New Year's night, to fry for supper. He drank a few prescriptions of egg
nog, and then took a paper bag full of selects and started for home. He
stopped at two or three saloons, and the bag began to melt, and when he
left the last saloon the bottom fell out of the bag and the oysters were
on the sidewalk.

[Illustration: SLIPPERY OYSTERS.]

We will leave the man there, gazing upon the wreck, and take the reader to
the residence where he is expected.

A red-faced woman is putting the finishing touches to the supper table,
and wondering why her husband does not come with the oysters. Presently a
noise as of a lead pencil in the key-hole salutes her ear, and she goes to
the and opens it, and finds him taking the pencil out of the
key-hole. Not seeing any oysters, she asks him if he has forgotten the

"Forgot noth(hic)ing," says he.

He walks up to the table and asks for a plate, which is given him by the
unsuspicious wife.

"Damsaccident you ever(hic)see," said the truly good man, as he brought
his hand out of his overcoat pocket, with four oysters, a little smoking
tobacce, and a piece of cigar-stub.

"Slipperysoystersev(hic)er was," said he, as he run his hands down in the
other pocket, bringing up five oysters, a piece of envelope, and a piece
of wire that was used as a bail to the pail.

"Got all my pock(hic)ets full," said he, as he took a large oyster out of
his vest pocket. Then he began to go down in his pants pocket, and finding
a hole in it, he said:

"Six big oys(hic)ters gone down my trousers leg. S'posi'll find them in my
boot," and he sat down to pull off his boot, when the lady took the plate
of oysters and other stuff into the kitchen and threw them in the swill,
and then she put him to bed, and all the time he was trying to tell her
how the bag busted just as he was in front of All Saints Ca(hic)thedral.


Mr. E.H. Lane is canvassing the city for the Universalist Bath. We don't
know why it should be called a "Universalist Bath," as it more nearly
resembles a Baptist Bath, as we remember it. The bath is a queer thing,
consisting of an India rubber hop sack, fastened to an immense ox bow. The
ends are placed on to chairs, the water put in, and you get in and
hippotamus and take a complete bath from Dan to Beersheba in a tea cup
full of water.


The conductors on the St. Paul railroad are most all good sports with a
shot gun. There is Howard and Clason, and Russell, who never tire of
talking of the millions of chickens, ducks, wild turkeys and so forth that
they have killed. They have tried to get Conductor Green interested in
field sports, but he always said the game was not big enough for him. He
said he had his opinion men that would surround a little chicken with
spike tailed dogs, and then kill it and call it sport. What he wanted was
big game. Nothing less than a bear would do him. Last week the owners of
the cinnamon bear that was brought down from the Yellowstone, decided to
have it killed, and some one told them to get Green to kill it, as he was
an old bear hunter from the Rocky Mountains. Green said he was rusty on
bears, not having had a tussel with a grizzly in several years, but if
they couldn't get anybody else to chance the bear he would make hash of
it. So they went down to the ice house where the bear was. Green said he
didn't want anybody to go in with him, because they might get hurt. He put
on Clason's hunting suit, took a carving knife in his teeth and a revolver
in his hand, and went in and looked the bear in the eye. The bear knew
Green meant business, and he began to feel around for his ticket. The
conductor advanced to within eleven feet of the bear when all at once the
animal sprang at him, growling and showing his teeth. Green's first
impulse was to pull the bell rope, and order the cuss to get out of the
ice house, but he saw the bear coming through the air towards him, and
there was not four hours to lose, so he drew the revolver, took aim at the
bear's left eye, and pulled. There was a puff of smoke, and the bear fell
lifeless at his feet. Placing the animal in his game sack, he wiped the
blood from his knife and said to some men who stood outside, their faces
ashy pale: "Always shoot bears in the left eye." The men were
pleased to see him come out alive and they shook him warmly by the hand.
The other conductors, the shooters, are jealous of Green, and they are
telling how he killed the bear by going up in the loft of the ice house
and falling on him, and one conductor says Green shot the bear with a crow
bar through a knot hole. Another said the bear had all four of his legs
tied and that a dose of poison was administered through a syringe,
attached to a pole, while another says that the bear died from fright. All
these stories are the result of jealousy. The bear was killed just as we
say, and there are few men that would tackle him--that is, few men aside
from conductors.


The bird that should have been selected as the emblem of our country, the
bird of patience, forbearance, perseverance, and the bird of terror when
aroused, is the mule. There is no bird that combines more virtues to the
square foot than the mule. With the mule emblazoned on our banners, we
should be a terror to every foe. We are a nation of uncomplaining hard
workers. We mean to do the fair thing by everybody. We plod along, doing
as we would be done by. So does the mule. As a nation we occasionally
stick our ears forward, and fan flies off of our forehead. So does the
mule. We allow parties to get on and ride as long as they behave
themselves. So do does the mule. But when any nation sticks spurs in our
flanks, and tickles our heels with a straw, we come down stiff-legged in
front, our ears look to the beautiful beyond, our voice is cut loose, and
is still for war, and our subsequent end plays the snare drum on anything
that gets in reach of us, and strikes terror to the hearts of all tyrants.
So does the mule.


"Papa, the cruel policeman has murdered little Gip? He sneaked up and
frowed a nice piece of meat to Gip, and Gip he eated it, and fanked the
policeman with his tail, and runned after him and teased for more, but the
policeman fought Gip had enough, and then Gip stopped and looked sorry he
had eaten it, and pretty soon he laid down and died, and the policeman
laughed and went off feeling good. If Dan Sheenan was the policeman any
more he wouldn't poison my dog, would he, pa?"

The above was the greeting the bald-headed _Sun_ man received on Thursday,
and a pair of four-year-old brown eyes were full enough of tears to break
the heart of a policeman of many years' standing, and the little, crushed
master of the dead King Charles spaniel went to sleep sobbing and
believing that policemen were the greatest blot upon the civilization of
the nineteenth century.

Here was a little fellow that had from the day he first stood on his feet
after the scarlet fever had left him alive, been allowing his heart to
become entwined with love for that poor little dog. For nearly a year the
dog had been ready to play with the child when everybody else was tired
out, and never once had the dog been cross or backed out of a romp, and
the laughter and the barking has many a time been the only sound of
happiness in the neighborhood.

If the boy slept too long after dinner, the dog went and rooted around him
as much as to say, "Look a here, Mr. Roy, you can't play this on your
partner any longer. You get up here and we will have a high old time, and
don't you forget it." And pretty soon the sound of baby feet and dog's toe
nails would be heard on the stairs, and the circus would commence.

If the dog slept too long of an afternoon, the boy would hunt him
out, take hold of his tail with one hand and an ear with the other, and
lug him into the parlor, saying, "Gip, too much sleep is what is ruining
the dogs in this country. Now, brace up and play horse with me." And then
there was fun.

Well, it is all over; but while we write there is a little fellow sleeping
on a tear-stained pillow, dreaming, perhaps of a heaven where the woods
are full of King Charles' spaniel dogs, and a door-keeper stands with a
club to keep out policemen. And still we cannot blame policemen--it is the
law that is to blame--the wise men who go to the legislature, and make
months with one day too much, pass laws that a dog shall be muzzled and
wear a brass check, or he is liable to go mad. Statistics show that not
one dog in a million ever goes mad and that they are more liable to go mad
in winter than in summer; but several hundred years ago somebody said that
summer was "dog days," and the law makers of this enlightened nineteenth
century still insist on a wire muzzle at a season of the year when a dog
wants air and water, and wants his tongue out.

So we compel our guardians of the peace to go around assassinating dogs.
Men, who as citizens, would cut their hands off before they would injure a
neighbor's property, or speak harsh to his dog, when they hire out to the
city must stifle all feelings of humanity, and descend to the level of
Paris scavengers. We compel them to do this. If they would get on their
ears and say to the city of Milwaukee, "We will guard your city, and
protect you from insult, and die for you if it becomes necessary; but we
will see you in hades before we go around assassinating dogs," we as
people, would think more of them, and perhaps build them a decent station
house to rest in.


An Oshkosh young man started for a picnic in a buggy with two girls, and
when they got half way they got a hot box to the hind wheel of the buggy,
and they remained there all the afternoon pouring water on the wheel,
missing the picnic. There is nothing that will cause a hot box in a buggy
so quick as going to a picnic with girls. Particularly is this the case
when one has two girls. No young man should ever take two girls to a
picnic. He may think one cannot have too much of a good thing, and that he
holds over the most of the boys who have only one girl, but before the
picnic is over he will note the look of satisfaction on the faces of the
other boys as they stray off in the vernal shade, and he will look around
at his two girls as though his stomach was overloaded. We don't care how
attractive the girls are, or how enterprising a boy he is, or how
expansive or far-reaching a mind he has, he cannot do justice to the
subject if he has two girls. There will be a certain clashing of interests
that no young boy in his goslinghood, as most boys are when they take two
girls to a picnic, has the diplomacy to prevent. Now, this may seem a
trifling thing to write about and for a great pious paper to publish, but
there is more at the bottom of it than is generally believed. If we start
the youth of the land out right in the first place they are all right, but
if they start out by taking two girls to a picnic, their whole lives are
liable to become acidulated, and they will grow up hating themselves. If a
young man is good natured and tries to do the fair thing, and a picnic is
got up, and the rest of the boys are liable to play it on him. There is
always some old back number of a girl who has no fellow, who wants to go,
and the boys, after they all get girls and buggies engaged, will canvass
among themselves to see who shall take this extra girl, and it always
falls to the good-natured young man. He says of course there is
room for three in the buggy. Sometimes he thinks may be this old girl can
be utilized to drive the horse, and then he can converse with his own
sweet girl with both hands, but in such a moment as ye think not, he finds
out that the extra girl is afraid of horses, dare not drive, and really
requires some holding to keep her nerves quiet. The young man begins to
realize by this time that life is one great disappointment. He tries to
drive with one hand, and consoles his good girl, who is a little cross at
the turn affairs have taken, with the other, but it is a failure, and
finally his good girl says she will drive, and then he has to put an arm
around them both, which will give more or less dissatisfaction the best
way you can fix it. If we had a boy that didn't seem to have any more
sense than to make a hat rack of himself to hang girls on in a buggy, we
should labor with him, and tell him of the agonies we had
experienced in youth, when the boys palmed off two girls on us to take to
a country picnic, and we believe we can do no greater favor to the young
men who are just entering the picnic of life than to impress upon them the
importance of doing one thing at a time, and doing it well. Start right at
first, and life will be one continued picnic buggy ride, but if your mind
is divided in youth you will always be looking for hot boxes and



A Dartford man, who has been attending a camp meeting at that place,
inquires of the Brandon _Times_ why it is that camp meetings are always
held when the moon does not shine. The _Times_ man gives it up and refers
the question to the _Sun_. We give it up.

It does not seem as though managers of camp meetings deliberately consult
the almanac in order to pick out a week for camp meeting in the dark of
the moon, though such meetings are always held when the moon is of no
account. If they do, then there is a reason for it. It is well known that
pickerel bite best in the dark of the moon, and it is barely possible that
sinners "catch on" better at that time.

There may be something in the atmosphere, in the dark of the moon, that
makes a camp meeting more enjoyable. Certainly brethren and sisterin' can
mingle as well if not better when there is no glaring moon to molest and
make them afraid, and they can relate their experience as well as though
it was too light.

The prayers of the righteous avail as much in the darkness of the closet
as they do in an exposition building, with an electric light, and as long
as sinners will do many things which they ought not to do, and undo many
things that they never ought to have done, the dark of the moon is
probably the most healthy.


The papers are publishing accounts of the arrival east of a train of
palace cattle cars, and illustrating how much better the cattle feel after
a trip in one of these cars, than cattle did when they made the journey in
the ordinary cattle cars.

As we understand it the cars are fitted up in the most gorgeous manner, in
mahogany and rosewood, and the upholstering is something perfectly grand,
and never before undertaken except in the palaces of the old world.

As you enter the car there is a reception room, with a few chairs, a
lounge and an ottoman, and a Texas steer gently waves you to a seat with
his horns, while he switches off your hat with his tail. If there is any
particular cow, or steer, or ox, that you wish to see, you give your card
to the attendant steer, and he excuses himself and trots off to find the
one you desire to see. You do not have long to wait, for the animal
courteously rises, humps up his or her back, stretches, yawns, and with
the remark, "the galoot wants to interview me, probably, and I wish he
would keep away," the particular one sought for comes to the reception
room and puts out its front foot for a shake, smiles and says, "Glad you
came. Was afraid you would let us go away and not call."

Then the cow or steer sits down on its haunches and the conversation flows
in easy channels. You ask how they like the country, and if they have good
times, and if they are not hard worked, and all that; and they yawn and
say the country is splendid at this season of the year, and that when
passing along the road they feel as though they would like to get out in
some meadow, and eat grass and switch flies.

The steer asks the visitor if he does not want to look through the car,
when he says he would like to if it is not too much trouble. The
steer says it is no trouble at all, at the same time shaking his horns as
though he was mad, and kicking some of the gilding off of a stateroom.

"This," says the steer who is doing the honors, "is the stateroom occupied
by old Brindle, who is being shipped from St. Joseph, Mo. Brindle weighs
1,600 on foot--Brindle, get up and show yourself to the gentleman."

Brindle kicks off the red blanket, rolls her eyes in a lazy sort of way,
bellows, and stands up in the berth, humps up her back so it raises the
upper berth and causes a heifer that is trying to sleep off a debauch of
bran mash, to kick like a steer, and then looks at the interviewer as much
as to say, "O, go on now and give us a rest." Brindle turns her head to a
fountain that is near, in which Apollinaris water is flowing, perfumed
with new mown hay, drinks, turns her head and licks her back, and stops
and thinks, and then looking around as much as to say, "Gentlemen, you
will have to excuse me," lays down with her head on a pillow, pulls the
coverlid over her and begins to snore.

The attendant steer steers the visitor along the next apartment, which is
a large one, filled with cattle in all positions. One is lying in a
hammock, with her feet on the window, reading the Chicago _Times_ article
on Oleomargarine, or Bull Butter, at intervals stopping the reading to
curse the writer, who claims that oleomargarine is an unlawful
preparation, containing deleterious substances.

A party of four oxen are seated around a table playing seven-up for the
drinks, and as the attendant steer passes along, a speckled ox with one
horn broken, orders four pails full of Waukesha water with a dash of
oatmeal in it, "and make it hot," says the ox, as he counts up high, low,
jack and the game.

Passing the card players the visitor notices an upright piano,
and asks what that is for, and the attendant steer says they are all fond
of music, and asks if he would not like to near some of the cattle play.
He says he would, and the steer calls out a white cow who is sketching,
and asks her to warble a few notes. The cow seats herself on her haunches
on the piano stool, after saying she has such a cold she can't sing, and,
besides, has left her notes at home in the pasture. Turning over a few
leaves with her forward hoof, she finds something familiar, and proceeds
to walk on the piano keys with her forward feet and bellow, "Meet me in
the slaughter house when the due bill falls," or something of that kind,
when the visitor says he has got to go up to the stock yards and attend a
reception of Colorado cattle, and he lights out.

We should think these parlor cattle cars would be a success, and that
cattle would enjoy them very much. It is said that parties desiring to
charter these cars for excursions for human beings, can be accommodated at
any time when they are not needed to transport cattle, if they will give
bonds to return them in as good order as they find them.


He could not tell a lie, George couldn't. Washington, it is probable,
never knew what it was to stow away a schooner of beer, and history makes
no mention that he ever, on any pretext, eat limberger cheese. At least no
mention was made of it in his farewell address. He never was President of
a savings bank. Washington never lectured. He never edited a newspaper. He
could not tell a lie at the rates editors charge. No he was a good man,
with none of the small vices that are so prevalent these days.


A few months ago the spectacle presented itself of a very respectable lady
of the Seventh ward wearing a black eye. There never was a case of
ante-election that was any more perfect than the one this lady carried.

We have seen millions of black eyes in our time, some of which were
observed in a mirror, but we never saw one that suggested a row any
plainer than the one the Seventh ward lady wore. It was cut biased, that
being the latest style of black eye, and was fluted with purple and orange
shade, and trimmed with the same. Probably we never should have known
about the black eye had not the lady asked, as she held her hand over one
eye, if there was any truth in the story that a raw oyster would cure a
black eye. She came to us as an expert.


When we told her that a piece of beef-steak was worth two oysters she
uncovered the eye. It looked as though painted by one of the old masters.

Rather than have anybody think she had been having a row, she explained
how it happened. She was sitting with her husband and little girl in the
parlor, and while, the two were reading the little one disappeared. The
mother went to the girl's room on tiptoe, to see if she was
asleep. She found the girl with all her dolls on the floor having a dolls'
prayer meeting. She had them all down on their knees and would let them
pray one at a time, then sing. One of the dolls that squeaked when pressed
on the stomach was the leader of the singing, and the little girl bossed
the job. There was one old maid doll that the little girl seemed to be
disgusted with because the doll talked too much, and she would say:

"There, Miss, you sit down and let some of the other sisters get in a word
edgeways. Sister Perkins, won't you relate your experience?"

After listening to this for a few moments the mother heard the girl say:

"Now, Polly, you pass the collection plate, and no one must put in
lozengers, and then we will all go to the dancing school."

The whole thing was so ridiculous that the mother attempted to rush down
stairs three at a time, to have her husband come up to the prayer meeting,
when she stubbed herself on a stair rod, and--well, she got the black eye
on the journey down stairs, though what hit her she will probably never
know. But she said when she began to roll down stairs she felt in her
innermost soul as though she had broke up that prayer meeting prematurely.


The dog law is as foolish as the anti-treating law, and if it were not
enforced, no harm would be done. Our legislators have to pass about so
many laws anyway, and we should use our judgment about enforcing them.


There is nothing that so gives a man away as to open a satchel and take
out a lunch. I have been riding on the cars and have made the acquaintance
of people who would listen to my stories, and take in every word as gospel
truth. They would seem to hang on my words with pleasure, and be
apparently glad they had become acquainted with one who combined so many
graces of mind and person, and they would gather around so as not to miss
a single lie that I might tell. And yet when I took a paper parcel out of
my valise and opened up a lunch, consisting of bread and onions, and
sausage and sweitzer cheese, they would draw coldly away from me and sit
in the farther part of the car, and appear never to have known me.

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