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Title: Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 26, August, 1880 - of Popular Literature and Science
Author: Various
Language: English
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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 "Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 26, August, 1880 - of Popular Literature and Science" ***

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  LIPPINCOTT'S MAGAZINE

  OF

  _POPULAR LITERATURE AND SCIENCE._


  AUGUST, 1880.


Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1880, by J.B.
LIPPINCOTT & CO., in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at
Washington.


  Transcriber's note:

Variant spellings and unusual punctuation have been retained.



AMERICAN AËRONAUTS.

[Illustration: BALLOON ENTANGLED IN A TREE.]


Scattered here and there in this matter-of-fact, utilitarian age of
Business one finds instances of that love of daring for its own sake,
with an insatiable longing for new scenes and novel sensations, which in
the days of chivalry moved the mass of men to put saddle to horse and
ride off Somewhere seeking Something--just as occasional trilobites,
lonely and misshapen, are found in ages subsequent to the Silurian. Of
such stuff are our Arctic and African explorers made; the men who run
the lightning-expresses have a touch of it; it crops out in
steeple-climbers, cave-explorers, beast-tamers; it makes men assault
cloud-piercing and ice-mantled mountain-peaks and launch their frail
canoes for voyages down earth-riving cañons and across continent
sundering oceans. Sometimes action is denied, and then it strikes in and
makes poets--perhaps the most daring adventurers of all. It must be
difficult for the beaters of iron and the barterers in swine to
understand why such useless timber is allowed to cumber the great
workhouse; but then we don't know _exactly_ what the trilobites were
good for, and the utilitarians may find comfort in the reflection that
at the present rate the obnoxious family is likely to entirely disappear
with the Palæozoic.

Aëronauts have been free and accepted members of this order of modern
knights-errant, from hot-headed, ill-fated Pilâtre de Rozier down to
Gaston Tissandier, the man who still edits _La Nature_ in the lower
strata of an ocean into the treacherous upper depths of which he has
risen seven miles. Your true aëronaut is not an inventor of
flying-machines, not much concerned about what is known as the "problem
of aërial navigation." He is content to take the wings of the morning
and be carried away to the uttermost parts of the earth. Problems he
leaves to the scientists: he wooes the wilderness he cannot subdue. He
is an explorer of unknown regions, a beauty-worshipper at a shrine whose
pearly, sun-kissed portals open to him alone. People travel thousands of
miles horizontally to rest their eyes on scenes infinitely less novel,
beautiful and grand than one perpendicular mile of vantage would open to
them, little matter whence taken.

Having accepted the wind for his pilot, our argonaut seeks no
improvement upon his aërial raft. Like the bow and arrow, it long ago
reached perfection, and, though he may cherish some choice and secret
recipe for varnish or be the inventor of an improved valve, he generally
builds with a birdlike reliance on instinct and tradition. Gas-bag,
netting, concentrating-ring, basket, valve, anchor, drag-rope and
exploding cord,--what has the century of ballooning added to its
essentials? how can coming centuries improve this perfection of
simplicity? Aërial navigation is altogether another thing. A swallow
does not rise by displacing a volume of air whose specific gravity is
greater than its own, but by using the atmosphere as a fulcrum.
Otherwise it must possess a bulk which its tiny wings would be powerless
to impel against the opposing breeze. Mr. Grimley, the aëronaut, writing
of some experiments he has recently been making at Montreal with an
ingenious arrangement of revolving fans invented by two gentlemen of
that city, says: "The Cowan and Paje propelling and steering apparatus
worked as well as could be expected, but the air will never be navigated
by balloons driven by machinery. It is opposed to common sense." Few
fully appreciate the extreme mobility of the atmosphere or the intensity
of the force which wind exerts on surfaces opposed to its action. A
child with a palm-leaf fan can drive a balloon in equilibrium about at
will in an atmosphere entirely quiet, while the same balloon, under the
impulse of a lively gale, will tear itself loose from the aggregated
avoirdupois of all who can lay hands upon it, and wrench great branches
from the forest giants over which it skims. Doubtless, to the
disheartening influence of a practical knowledge of the real
difficulties in the way of aërial navigation is due the fact that the
great mass of those who have attempted it have been scientists without
practice, or fools without either scientific training or experimental
data.

However strongly, as devout utilitarians, we may feel it our duty to
disapprove, officially, of a class so little necessary to the body
politic, aëronauts are interesting talkers, being able, like
Shakespeare's Moor, to speak of "most disastrous chances, of _moving_
accidents by flood and field, of antres vast and deserts idle, rough
quarries, rocks and hills whose heads touch heaven."

Among American aëronauts none possessed a larger fund of such thrilling
incident or greater enthusiasm for his calling than he who recently paid
that last penalty which ever hovers over its followers--the venerable
John Wise. His autobiography, _Through the Air_, is a prose poem on the
glories of Cloudland. The following extract from a private letter
written by him in 1876, after an aëronautical career of forty years,
comprising nearly five hundred ascensions, illustrates this enthusiasm
and his views on the sanitary aspect of aëronautics: "I claim that the
balloon is the best sanitarium within the grasp of enervated humanity. I
can demonstrate its utility, by theory and by fact, for all chronic
diseases and for the improvement of the mental and physical functions.
Elevate a person ten or twelve thousand feet above the sea-level and his
whole texture expands: a wrinkled, cadaverous person fills out as plump
as a youth. Then the beauty and magnitude of the scenery within the
scope of vision exalt the mental faculties, soul and body become
exhilarated, the appetite is quickened and all the symptoms of
convalescence ensue. Why, my dear friend, I am bound to ascribe my
health and vigor at the age of over sixty-eight to my profession, and
only for that do I persist in it. When I make up my mind to rust and die
I will give up balloon-ascensions."

Since Mr. Wise was not of a nature to be easily reconciled to "rust and
die," can we doubt that the great transit could have come to him at no
kinder season than when it should seem but a brief pausing on his upward
flight? Though it will never be known just how or when he met the end,
we may be certain that he had walked hand in hand with Death too long to
greatly dread the final embrace. May we not think of him now as feasting
his spirit on the splendid visions of that Promised Land which,
Moses-like, it was permitted him to see prefigured in its earthly type?
Throughout his adventures, too generally known to require more than
passing allusion, one sees the same passionate devotion to the grand and
sublime in sight and sensation, the same calm disregard of danger,
whether exploding his balloon at an altitude of thirteen thousand feet
and coolly noting the "fearful moaning noise caused by the air rushing
through the network and the gas escaping above," preparing to test a
lifelong theory of a steady easterly current by attempting to make it
the medium of crossing the Atlantic, or participating with La Mountain
and others in a voyage which, begun at St. Louis at 6.30 P.M., July 1,
1859, met daybreak at Fort Wayne, extended over the length of Lake Erie,
included a view of Niagara from the altitude of a mile, and finally,
after skirmishing within thirty feet of the storm-tossed waves of Lake
Ontario for fifty miles and ploughing a tornado-track through a dense
forest, terminated in a treetop near Sackett's Harbor, Jefferson county,
New York, at 2.20 P.M.--twelve hundred miles in nineteen hours and forty
minutes! Puck's promise kept! the seven-league boots outdone!

[Illustration: JOHN WISE.]

Upon his son, Charles E. Wise, and his grandson, John Wise, Jr., he
bestowed his skill and engrafted his enthusiasm. The latter began his
aëronautical career with his teens, and though not yet out of them has
made over forty ascensions. One of these excursions, made in the autumn
of 1875 from Waynesburg, Greene county, Pennsylvania, sufficiently
demonstrates, if any demonstration is needed, that a boy's luck and
pluck are equal to anything. It had been raining the proverbial
pitchforks all day, and the hydrogen oozed into the gas-bag with even
more than its accustomed sluggishness. The curiosity of a country crowd
was not easily damped, however, and the basket was finally attached and
Master Johnny stepped on board. The aërostat sensibly refused to
consider the proposition for an ascension, although urged by the
successive relinquishment of barometer, lunch, water-bottle, coat,
drag-rope and grapnel. As a last resort, the entire lower third of the
gas-bag, which was uninflated, was cut away, the valve-cord by accident
sharing the same fate, leaving an opening about seventeen feet in
diameter. Then, "the crowd having given us room, father asked me whether
I felt timid about going. I told him I was determined to go if the
balloon would take me. He said, 'Good-bye, Johnny:' I said, 'Good-bye,'
and found myself shooting up into space on a cold, rainy October day,
coatless, without ropes, anchor or valve-cord, the rags of the balloon
fluttering in the breeze created by the sudden ascent; the multitude
vociferously cheering me one moment and the next calling me to come back
for God's sake! But I only replied by hurrahing and waving my hat,
feeling perfectly _cool_, and rather enjoying the excitement of the vast
crowd that was now fast disappearing below me. In seven minutes the
earth vanished from my sight, and I passed from a driving rain below the
clouds into a dense snowstorm above them. My feet and hands were almost
numb with cold, and the prospect was about as cheerless as it well could
be, when a thought passed through my brain that made me laugh outright.
I had heard of people coming down in bursted balloons, but I was the
first who had ever gone up in one. The idea appeared so ridiculous that
it really made me feel warmer." Think of this aërial babe in the woods,
with Nature's awful forces warring about him and the earth lost to view,
laughing himself warm over a joke at the expense of his terrible
situation! Truly, "he jests at scars that never felt a wound." Perhaps
it was the balloon, but I believe it could only have been his good
angel, that brought the boy safely down into a small cleared space in a
forest thirty-eight minutes and forty miles from the point of departure.

[Illustration: WASHINGTON H. DONALDSON.]

Another of Master John's voyages curiously illustrates the different
directions of coexistent currents. On July 4, 1878, he made an
ascension from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, landing ten miles south of the
city, while J.M. Johnston, of the _Lancaster Intelligencer_, who
ascended in another balloon at the same moment, came down at a point
equally distant in an exactly opposite direction from the city.

With the name of John Wise that of another aëronaut equally well known
is associated--not alone by their joint attempt to cross the Atlantic by
balloon, but also on account of the probably identical manner and
locality of the death of both--Washington H. Donaldson. While the
interest in the mysterious fate of Donaldson and Grimwood was yet fresh
in the public mind Mr. Wise published a pamphlet giving a fanciful
account of their adventures, as if related by the aëronaut. In the light
of the Wise-Burr tragedy its concluding paragraph has a singular
significance: "In the end I ask the world to deal charitably with me.
Should my body be found, give it decent burial and write for an epitaph:
'Here lies the body of a man whose reckless ambition and fear of being
accused of want of nerve have sacrificed his own life and betrayed a
fellow-mortal into the snares of death, with no higher object than to
serve the interests of a scheme which, to say the best of it, is but a
poor thing in the progress of art and refinement.'"

Donaldson was a man in many respects remarkable, in some admirable. With
scant schooling, his father gave him a thorough training as a
draughtsman and engraver. Allowed to choose for himself, he embarked in
the amusement business, his active and versatile temperament leading him
to become in turn a rope-walker, gymnast, actor, ventriloquist and,
singularly enough, electro-physician. For most of these varied callings
he had a certain adaptability by reason of his splendid physique,
perfect health, entire abstinence from stimulants, ready wit,
good-humor, fertility in expedients and promptitude and energy in
execution, as well as by the daring and ambition naturally associated
with such physical and mental qualifications. A friend writes of him:
"He was as ready to navigate a cockle-shell from the Battery to Long
Branch as he was to run a velocipede along a hundred yards of slack
wire." His drawings, particularly those illustrating aëronautical scenes
and incidents, were spirited and faithful. He tried his hand at
verse-making among the rest. The following brief outburst, written after
all the old loves had given place to that which became the absorbing
passion of his life, and printed on his letter-heads and
admission-cards, sufficiently illustrates the manner and matter of his
efforts in this direction:

    There's pleasure in a lively trip when sailing through the air.
    The word is given, "Let her go!"--to land I know not where.
    The view is grand: 'tis like a dream when many miles from home:
    My castle in the air I love, above the clouds to roam.

Not an ideal character certainly, but a complete one in its way, and
readily recognizable as belonging to a born aëronaut. The unromantic but
not unusual inability of a professional predecessor to pay his
board-bill, obliging him to leave his balloon with mine host as surety,
first placed in Donaldson's hands the means by which he became afterward
best known. Fearless as he undoubtedly was, an ascension was undertaken
with the misgivings which usually preface an initial stepping from terra
firma to the inconstant air. Once aloft, however, with the widespreading
splendor and endless immensity of the earth's surface unrolling beneath
him, and an exquisite physical exhilaration thrilling along his nerves,
Donaldson became heart and soul an aëronaut. The novel and sensational
expedients with which he embellished his subsequent ascensions are well
known. Becomingly dressed in tights, he delighted to sail away skyward
hanging by one hand from a trapeze-bar, generally terminating a variety
of feats thereon by poising himself a moment on his back, then suddenly
dropping backward, catching by his feet on the side-ropes--easy and safe
enough, doubtless, with his preliminary acrobatic training, but
blood-curdling to the breathless spectators beneath. He left drawings
for a jointed bar which, at the proper time, should apparently break in
two and leave him dangling to one of the pieces. For a consideration
which the citizens of Binghamton, New York, sensibly declined to give he
offered to ascend to the height of a mile in a paper balloon, there set
fire to it and descend in a parachute.

[Illustration: DONALDSON'S DANGER.]

A little incident, not generally known, illustrates the gentler side of
his nature. He had been giving one of his trapeze exhibitions at Ithaca,
New York, and was induced by some Cornell students to furnish them
captive ascensions from the university campus. As if specially for the
occasion, there came three days of delightful May weather with a
propitiously quiet atmosphere. To the natural elevation of the location
were added several hundred feet of rope, affording a bird's-eye view of
Cayuga Lake, the town and far-famed adjacent scenery. Two or three
hundred persons were "sent up," including several university professors.
Donaldson was in his element, and kept everybody laughing at his jokes
and amusing experiments. He had a crowd of children constantly at his
heels, and in the intervals of waiting for pay-passengers would tumble
them into the basket to the number of six or eight, and send them
skyward screaming with delight and pelting him with a shower of hats and
caps. Did their mothers know? Probably not, or there might have been
screaming of a less joyous kind. One diminutive but intrepid youth of
six won for himself the proud distinction of "our old experienced
aëronaut," being generally used as ballast in making up a load.

[Illustration: DONALDSON AND THE CHILDREN.]

Donaldson's fondness for proving his nerve in the face of a doubting
crowd led him into many difficulties, as it finally caused his death.
Once, when about to make an ascension at Pittsburg with a balloon that
had not been used since the previous season, his assistant, Harry
Gilbert, noticed that the ropes attaching the netting to the
concentrating-ring seemed rotten, and proposed to replace them with new.
This Donaldson insisted would take too much time, but he was finally
induced to allow eight of the sixteen to be renewed. While giving his
customary trapeze performance high above the housetops the old cords
began to snap, and before he could bring the balloon down every one of
them had parted--a startling intimation of how his rashness might have
resulted.

Among the unkilled American aëronauts undoubtedly the best known for
professional skill and experience is Samuel A. King. He seems to have
been a predestined air-sailor, for he made his first ascension
(Philadelphia, 1851) in his twenty-third year, and during more than two
hundred subsequent voyages, many of them extending over hundreds of
miles, and some adding darkness and proximity to large bodies of water
to the ordinary dangers, he has shown an intuitive knowledge of the
construction and management of the balloon and an appreciation of aërial
forces which, while they have not robbed his experiences of thrilling
incidents, have kept them singularly free from disastrous consequences.
One of the most memorable of these excursions was made from Plymouth,
New Hampshire, September 26, 1872, on which occasion Mr. King was
accompanied by his friend and frequent fellow-voyager, Luther L. Holden,
of the _Boston Journal_. The balloon used only held twenty thousand
cubic feet of gas, but was inflated with hydrogen. It was liberated at
4.18 P.M., and immediately manifested a determination to accompany some
dense black clouds which were hurrying in a north-easterly direction
toward the heart of the mountain-region on the verge of which Plymouth
lies. Over Mount Washington and across the Androscoggin Valley it flew
at the rate of fifty miles an hour. At six o'clock Lake Umbagog was
floating beneath our adventurers, and before they realized their
danger--so deceptive are time and space when reckoned from
balloons--night surprised them in the great Maine wilderness. The
alternative was between a descent in a trackless forest a hundred miles
from human habitation, with scant provisions and no firearms or
fishing-tackle, and an all-night voyage, trusting to luck and their
ballast for getting beyond the wilderness. They had taken chances
together before, and they went on now. If they failed to get out of the
woods, they could tear up the balloon, and, encasing the wicker-basket
with the waterproof material, float down some favoring stream. On and on
for hours in an unknown direction, over an unknown region, winged by the
wind and ally of the storm, they went, until, in the dismal watches of
the early morning, to darkness, uncertainty and the intensity of
isolation a new horror was added. The murmur of plashing forest-streams,
which had hitherto been the only sound greeting them from the nether
gloom, now gave place to the measured roll of the surf, and this, in
turn, to complete silence. They were drifting out to sea, and were
already far beyond the shore! The valve was opened at once, and as the
balloon slowly settled into a dense, chilly fog the occupants of the
basket momentarily expected a plunge-bath. The drag-rope, however,
behaved with distinguished consideration, holding them a few feet above
the waves, through which it whisked at a terrific rate. The weary and
anxious watchers were thus kept in suspense for nearly half an hour,
when suddenly there broke through the fog ahead the welcome outlines of
a forest-shore, and in a moment more the drag-rope had lifted them above
the tree-tops. By five o'clock it became light enough to note the time
and that they were travelling in a south-westerly direction exactly
contrary to their course of the evening before. At seven o'clock the
balloon was moored to a limb, and its passengers, climbing down the
drag-rope, made their way to a railroad-cutting which they had noticed
while aloft. It proved to be on the line of the Intercolonial Railway in
the county of Rimouski, Lower Canada, three hundred miles below Quebec.
They had been dancing along the southern border of the Gulf of St.
Lawrence, and, had they not descended from the upper current into the
water, were in a fair way to have next sighted land somewhere on the
coast of Labrador.

[Illustration: THE BUFFALO IN MONUMENTAL PARK, CLEVELAND.]

Mr. King first brought large balloons into use in this country, and has
thus been able to share the pleasures and perils of most of his sailings
up and down with one or more companions, generally journalists. Few of
the balloons in use twenty-five years ago would hold more than twenty
thousand cubic feet of gas. Of the large balloons the Buffalo became
widely known on account of its size and the number of notable voyages it
made. Capacity, symmetry, lightness and staying quality considered, it
was probably the best balloon ever built in America. When fully inflated
it contained ninety-one thousand cubic feet of gas, and would carry up a
dozen passengers. It was the Buffalo which on the memorable
press-excursion from Cleveland, September 4, 1874, gave the reporters
such a realizing sense of the pleasantness of dry land, the greater part
of the day being spent in sailing to and fro over Lake Erie, the voyage
being farther extended in the darkness of night across Essex county,
Ontario, Lake St. Clair and into Michigan. The writer happened to be on
the Cleveland steamer with the returning party, and had occasion to
notice that the amateurs were too busily engaged in writing up their
notes to thoroughly enjoy Mr. King's waggish allusions to
"sea-sickness."

A night-trip made from the city of Buffalo in its namesake on July 4,
1874, was noteworthy for the magnificent success attending the use of
the drag-rope. The balloon took a south-easterly course across the State
of Pennsylvania, going over the Alleghany Mountains and other ridges in
the southern section of the State, being kept close to the earth most of
the way. The relief of weight caused by a portion of the drag-rope lying
and trailing upon the tree-tops enabled the balloon to climb the side of
the mountain at about the same relative elevation. Swinging clear from
the crest of the ridge, the balloon would soon settle into the valley,
to repeat the same manoeuvre farther on. Sunrise met the party near
the Maryland line, and after a delightful sail across a portion of that
State, Delaware and Delaware Bay, a landing was made in Southern New
Jersey, four hundred miles and thirteen hours from the starting-point.
The Buffalo will also be remembered in connection with the ascension
from the exposition-grounds during the Centennial Exhibition.

The failure of the costly experiments undertaken by Mr. King for the
American Aëronautic Society, at Coney Island last season, simply affords
another illustration of the aëronautical axiom that "Captives are
uncertain." Under the most favorable circumstances, and at inland points
least exposed, on perhaps not more than a dozen days in the year will
the air be sufficiently quiet to make captive ascensions practicable and
pleasant, and the difficulty is of course greatly enhanced at the
seacoast. The society proposes to again thoroughly test the matter this
season, studying the velocity of the wind near the ocean from various
altitudes.

Charles H. Grimley, whose views on aërial navigation have been alluded
to, is a young Englishman who, while an expert air-sailor, has gained
his experience rather in the pursuit of pleasure than of money,
dedicating to the latter a more terrestrial vocation. His introduction
to the upper currents was in the capacity of assistant to Stephen A.
Simmonds, a wealthy enthusiast of London who made ascensions for the
British Aëronautical Society. Mr. Grimley has made between forty and
fifty aërial excursions, on one of them covering a distance of one
hundred and sixty miles in three and a half hours, and on another
occasion attaining a height of nineteen thousand four hundred feet. A
number of these voyages were made in Canada. Some of his descents have
resulted in severe bruises. One of these unpleasantly sudden landings
closed a brief trip made from Pittsburg in October, 1875, and took
place on the Monongahela River five miles above that city. Mr. Grimley
was accompanied by Harry Byram of the _Pittsburg Dispatch_. Two things
regulate the force of impact in a balloon descent--the strength of the
surface-current and the amount of ballast the aëronaut has with which to
overbalance the weight in excess of equilibrium causing the descent.
Both were against our adventurers. Most of their ballast had been
expended in getting into the air, and while they had found almost a calm
at an elevation of forty-five hundred feet, the surface-current was
terrific. The balloon approached the earth at an angle of about
forty-five degrees with fearful velocity, flew across Beck's Run and
tore into a clump of trees growing on a rocky ledge dividing the ravine
from the river. The basket was dashed from one tree-trunk to another,
and, the balloon finally impaling itself on the branches of a huge oak,
both its occupants were hurled halfway down the river-bank, the fall
rendering them insensible. With returning consciousness came a sense of
sundry bruises and cuts on their persons. A scalp-wound on Mr. Grimley's
forehead had bled profusely upon both, imparting a sad and sanguinary
cast to the countenances turned toward those who came to their
assistance.

[Illustration: INFLATING A BALLOON.]

While preparing for an ascent from Bethel, Vermont, in September, 1877,
a squall hurled the balloon over upon its side, causing a rent which
extended from the mouth upward for eighteen feet, and then along a
transverse seam some six feet. Mr. Grimley thus describes the result:
"This gaping hole caused a loss of several thousand feet of gas, but as
still enough remained to take me up, I determined to ascend, hoping that
when I was out of the disturbing influence of the wind the rent would
not extend. In this, however, I was disappointed, for, reaching an
altitude of twelve hundred feet, a counter-current struck the balloon,
causing it to sway violently and jerking the torn portion to and fro
until it ripped six feet farther around the seam. The balloon continued
to rise until it had attained an elevation of thirty-five hundred feet,
the gas meanwhile pouring in volumes from the hole. The weight of the
torn portion hanging down caused the rent to enlarge every minute, until
it extended nearly halfway round, the whole interior of the balloon
being plainly visible. I kept as still as possible, as the slightest
agitation of the car tended to hasten the ripping. The balloon had
slowly descended nearly a thousand feet when suddenly, with a sharp
crack, the rip extended upward about five feet more, until stopped by
another seam. I now began to be alarmed, fearing the balloon would
collapse entirely. I was over the roughest and most mountainous part of
Vermont, with no place in sight suitable for a landing. The balloon was
falling rapidly. I threw out everything in the car, anchor and ropes
included, to check the descent, but to no purpose. I struck the rocky
summit of Mount Tunbridge with a crash, instantly collapsing the balloon
and throwing me out of the basket, inflicting injuries from which I did
not recover for many months."

The press-excursions, originated, as hinted above, by Mr. King, and
brought into such prominence by Donaldson in connection with Barnum's
Hippodrome, produced a new and interesting class of aëronauts, peculiar,
I believe, to this country and decade. The reporter is the true author,
after all. If he have the courage and enthusiasm to plunge into the most
untried and dangerous of life's paths, and the skill to transcribe his
impressions in the freshest and most vivid colors, he possesses one form
of the only valid plea for a man's asking the world of readers to listen
to him--unhackneyed experience.

One of Mr. Holden's adventures has been described above. After
Tissandier, he is doubtless the veteran journalistic aëronaut of the
world. Beginning in 1861, he has made in all twenty-six voyages, some of
them perilously eventful, including several night-flights of hundreds of
miles. Most of his experience has been gained with Mr. King, though he
accompanied Donaldson on several occasions. At the request of Professor
Abby of the Signal Service, Mr. Holden took frequent barometrical and
hygrometrical observations in his later excursions. He has made no
ascensions for some years, his surplus time and enthusiasm being
diverted to European travel. The following bit of description admirably
illustrates his style: "It is a strange scene that bursts upon the
vision of the balloon-passenger as he rises above the housetops and
trees. There is a moment when he beholds the thousands of upturned
faces, the throngs of people in the street, at the windows and on the
housetops, teams moving lazily hither and thither, and amid all a
confused fluttering of leaves, frightened birds, waving flags and
handkerchiefs, and a general commotion quite indescribable. But in
another moment the men become mere black spots on a field of green, the
horses and carriages are reduced to toys and the houses to the
dimensions of the blocks children use at play. While all detail is
disappearing there is a seeming contraction of larger objects. Streets
have drawn nearer to each other: it is but a few steps from one
extremity of a town to the other, and remote places are brought within
slight distances of the objects beneath his feet."

Mr. Frank H. Taylor, of _Harpers Weekly_, has an aëronautical record
second only to that of Mr. Holden, having been basketed on several trips
each with Wise, Donaldson and King. Mr. Alfred Ford, of _The Graphic_,
who with Donaldson and Lunt started on the disastrous Transatlantic
voyage in the Graphic balloon, and Rev. H.B. Jeffries, of the
_Pittsburg Leader_, who officiated at the balloon-wedding over
Cincinnati, are also entitled to rank as veterans. The European
literature of ballooning, with its accurate and brilliant descriptions
by Glaisher, Tissandier, De Fonvielle and Dupuis-Delcour, has nothing
more graphic and absorbing than some of the accounts dashed off in the
white heat of enthusiasm by these and other American journalists. The
nervousness and chaffing before the start; the thrill and wonder of the
upward rush; the strange exhilaration coming with relivening confidence;
the unspeakable loveliness and grandeur of the prospect; the thousand
varied incidents of the too-brief journey; the short, sharp excitement
of the landing; the awe and curiosity of the impromptu crowd invariably
on the ground before the balloon, and reluctantly leaving it only when
the last whiff of gas is rolled out of it and the last rope thrown into
the wagon; the moonlight ride to the station with the gas-bag for a
pillow and the brain too busy with the strangeness of the day for much
talk,--all this and more, in endless diversity of circumstance and
treatment, these gentlemen have embalmed for the curious millions who
cannot or will not go "up in a balloon."

  WILL O. BATES.



ADAM AND EVE.

CHAPTER XXII.


The month of December was well advanced before Eve's letter had reached
Reuben May. It came to him one morning when, notwithstanding the fog
which reigned around, Reuben had arisen in more than usually good
spirits, able to laugh at his neighbors for railing against weather
which he declared was good weather and seasonable.

The moment the postman entered the shop his heart gave a great
bound--for who but Eve would write to him?--and no sooner had his eyes
fallen on the handwriting than his whole being rejoiced, for surely
nothing but good news could be heralded by such glad feelings. With a
resolute self-denial, of which on most occasions Reuben was somewhat
proud, he refused himself the immediate gratification of his desires,
and with a hasty glance laid the letter on one side while he entered
into a needlessly long discussion with the postman, gossiped with a
customer--for whose satisfaction he volunteered a minute inspection of a
watch which might have very reasonably been put off until the
morrow--and finally (there being nothing else by which the long-coveted
pleasure could be further delayed) he took up the letter and carefully
turned it first this side and then that before breaking the seal and
unfolding the paper.

What would it say? That she was coming back--coming home? But when? how
soon? In a month? in a week? now at once? In one flash of vision Reuben
saw the furniture polished and comfortably arranged, the room smartened
up and looking its best with a blazing fire and a singing kettle, and a
cozy meal ready laid for two people; and then all they would have to say
to one another--on his part much to hear and little to tell, for his
life had jogged on at a very commonplace trot, his business neither
better nor worse, but still, with the aid of the little sum his more
than rigid economy had enabled him to save, they might make a fair
start, free from all debt and able to pay their way.

These thoughts only occupied the time which Reuben took to undo the
complicated folds by which, before the days of envelopes, correspondents
endeavored to baffle the curiosity of those who sought to know more than
was intended for them. But what is this? for Reuben's eyes had been so
greedy to suck up the words that he had not given his mind time to grasp
their meaning: "Not coming back! never--any more!"--"I like the place,
the people, and, above all, my relations, so very much that I should
never be happy now away from them."

He repeated the words over again and again before he seemed to have the
least comprehension of what they meant: then, in a stupor of dull
despondency, he read on to the end, and learnt that all his hopes were
over, that his life was a blank, and that the thing he had dreaded so
much as to cheat himself into the belief that it could never happen had
come to pass. And yet he was still Reuben May, and lived and breathed,
and hadn't much concern beyond the thought of how he should best send
the things she had left to Polperro--the place she never intended to
leave, the place she now could never be happy away from.

Later on, a hundred wild schemes and mad desires wrestled and fought,
trying to combat with his judgment and put to flight his sense of
resolution; but now, as in the first moment of death, with the vain hope
of realizing his loss, the mourner sits gazing at the inanimate form
before him, so Reuben, holding the letter in his hands, returned again
and again to the words which had dealt death to his hopes and told him
that the love he lived for no longer lived for him. For Eve had been
very emphatic in enforcing this resolve, and had so strongly worded her
decision that, try as he would, Reuben could find no chink by which a
ray of hope might gain admittance: all was dark with the gloom of
despair, and this notwithstanding that Adam had not been mentioned, and
Reuben had no more certain knowledge of a rival to guide him than the
jaundiced workings of a jealous heart. Many events had concurred to
bring about this blamable reticence. In the first place, the letter
which Eve had commenced as a mere fulfilment of her promise had grown
through a host of changing moods; for as time went on many a sweet and
bitter found its way to that stream whose course did never yet run
smooth; and could the pages before him have presented one tithe of these
varied emotions, Reuben's sober nature would have rejoiced in the
certainty that such an excess of sensitiveness needed but time and
opportunity to wear itself out.

       *       *       *       *       *

It was nearly two months now since it had been known all through the
place that Adam Pascal was keeping company with his cousin Eve, and the
Polperro folk, one and all, agreed that no good could surely come of a
courtship carried on after such a contrary fashion; for the two were
never for twenty-four hours in the same mind, and the game of love
seemed to resolve itself into a war of extremes wherein anger, devotion,
suspicion and jealousy raged by turns and afforded equal occasions of
scandal and surprise. To add to their original difficulties, the lovers
had now to contend against the circumstances of time and place, for
during the winter, from most of the men being on shore and without
occupation, conviviality and merriment were rife among them, and from
Bell-ringing Night, which ushered in Gun-powder Plot, until Valentine's
Day was passed, revels, dances or amusements of any kind which brought
people together were welcomed and well attended. With the not unnatural
desire to get away from her own thoughts, and to avoid as much as was
possible the opportunity of being a looker-on at happiness in which she
had no personal share, Joan greedily availed herself of every
invitation which was given or could be got at, and, as was to be
expected, Eve, young, fresh and a novice, became to a certain degree
infected with the anxiety to participate in most of these amusements.
Adam made no objection, and, though he did not join them with much
spirit and alacrity, he neither by word nor deed threw any obstacle in
their way to lessen their anticipation or spoil their pleasure, while
Jerrem, head, chief and master of ceremonies, found in these occasions
ample opportunity for trying Adam's jealousy and tickling Eve's vanity.

Nettled by the indifference which, from her open cordiality, Jerrem soon
saw Eve felt toward him, he taxed every art of pleasing to its utmost,
with the determination of not being baffled in his attempts to supplant
Adam, who in Jerrem's eyes was a man upon whom Fortune had lavished her
choicest favors. Born in Polperro, Zebedee's son, heir to the Lottery,
captain of her now in all but name, what had Adam to desire? while he,
Jerrem, belonged to no one, could claim no one, had no name and could
not say where he came from. Down in the depths of a heart in which
nothing that was good or bad ever lingered long Jerrem let this fester
rankle, until often, when he seemed most gay and reckless, some
thoughtless word or idle joke would set it smarting. The one
compensation he looked upon as given to him above Adam was the power of
attraction, by which he could supplant him with others and rob him of
their affection; so that, though he was no more charmed by Eve's rare
beauty than he was won by her coy modesty, no sooner did he see that
Adam's affection was turned toward her than he coveted her love and
desired to boast of it as being his own. With this object in view, he
began by enlisting Eve's sympathies with his forlorn position, inferring
a certain similarity in their orphaned condition which might well lead
her to bestow upon him her especial interest and regard; and so well was
this part played that before long Eve found herself learning
unconsciously to regard Adam as severe and unyielding toward Jerrem,
whose misfortune it was to be too easily influenced. Seeing her strong
in her own rectitude and no less convinced of the truth of Jerrem's
well-intentioned resolutions, Adam felt it next to impossible to poison
Eve's ears with tales and scandals of which her innocent life led her to
have no suspicion: therefore, though the sight of their slightest
intercourse rankled within him, he was forced to keep silent, knowing as
he did that if he so much as pointed an arrow every head was wagged at
him, and if he dared to let it fly home every tongue was ready to cry
shame on his treachery.

So the winter wore away, and as each day lengthened Adam found it more
difficult to master his suspicions, to contend with his surroundings and
to control the love which had taken complete hold and mastery of all his
senses. With untiring anxiety he continued to dodge every movement of
Jerrem and Eve--all those about him noting it, laughing over it, and,
while they thwarted and tricked him, making merry at his expense, until
Jerrem, growing bolder under such auspicious countenance no longer
hesitated to throw a very decided air of lovemaking into his hitherto
innocent and friendly intercourse.

Shocked and pained by Jerrem's altered tone, Eve sought refuge in Joan's
broader experience by begging that she would counsel her as to the best
way of putting a stop to this ungenerous conduct.

"Awh, my dear," cried Joan, "unless you'm wantin' to see murder in the
house you mustn't braithe no word of it. 'Tw'ud be worse than death to
Jerrem if't should iver come to Adam's ears: why, he'd have his life if
he swung gallows-high for takin' of it. So, like a good maid, keep it
from un now, 'cos they'm all on the eve o' startin', and by the time
they comes home agen Jerrem 'ull have forgot all about 'ee."

Eve hesitated: "I told him if ever he spoke like that to me again I'd
tell Adam."

"Iss, but you won't do it, though," returned Joan, "'cos there ain't no
manin' in what he says, you knaw. 'Tis only what he's told up to scores
and hunderds o' other maidens afore, the rapskallion-rogued raskil! And
that Adam knaws, and's had it in his mind from' fust along what game he
was after. Us two knaws un for what he is, my dear--wan best loved where
he's least trusted."

"It's so different to the men I've ever had to do with," said Eve.

"Iss, but you never knawed but wan afore you comed here, did 'ee?"

"I only knew one man well," returned Eve.

"Awh, then, you must bide a bit 'fore you can fathom their deepness,"
replied Joan; "and while you'm waitin' I wouldn't advise 'ee to take it
for granted that the world's made up o' Reuben Mays--nor Adam Pascals
neither;" and she ran to the door to welcome a cousin for whose approach
she had been waiting, while Eve, worried and perplexed, let her thoughts
revert to the old friend who seemed to have quite forgotten her; for
Reuben had sent no answer to Eve's letter, and thus had afforded no
opportunity for the further announcement she had intended making. His
silence, interpreted by her into indifference, had hurt her more than
she liked owning, even to herself; and the confession of their mutual
promise, which she had intended making to Adam, was still withheld,
because her vanity forbade her to speak of a man whose affection she had
undoubtedly overrated.

Already there had been some talk of the furniture being sent for, and
with this in view the next time she saw Sammy Tucker she asked him if he
had been to Fowey lately, and if he had seen anything of Captain Triggs.

Sammy, as was his wont, blushed up to the eyes before he stammered out
something about having met "un just for a minit comin' down by Place,
'cos he'd bin up there to fetch sommit he was goin' to car'y to London
for Squire Trefry; but that was a brave bit agone, so, p'r'aps," added
Sammy, "he's back by now, 'cos they wos a-startin' away that ebenin'."

Eve made no other remark, and Sammy turned away, not sorry to escape
further interrogation, for it had so happened that the opportunity
alluded to had been turned by Sammy to the best advantage, and he had
contrived in the space of ten minutes to put Captain Triggs in
possession of the whole facts of Adam and Eve's courtship, adding that
"Folks said 'twas a burnin' shame o'he to marry she, and Joan Hocken
fo'ced to stand by and look on; and her's" (indicating by his thumb it
was his stepmother he meant) "ha' tooked on tar'ible bad, and bin as
moody-hearted as could be ever since."

Captain Triggs nodded his head in sympathy, and then went on his way
with the intuitive conviction that this bit of news, which he intended
repeating to "thickee chap in London," would not be received with
welcome. "However," he reflected, "'tis allays best to knaw the warst,
so I shall tell un the fust time I meets un, which is safe to be afore
long, 'cos o'the ole gentleman," meaning thereby an ancient silver watch
through whose medium Captain Triggs and Reuben had struck up an
intimacy. How Reuben blessed that watch and delighted in those ancient
works which would not go, and so afforded him an opportunity for at
least one visit!

Each time the Mary Jane came to London, Reuben was made acquainted with
the fact, and the following evening found him in the little cabin poring
over the intricacies of his antique friend, whose former capabilities,
when in the possession of his father, Captain Triggs was never weary of
recounting.

Standing behind Reuben, Triggs would nod and chuckle at each fresh
difficulty that presented itself, delighting in the proud certainty that
after all the London chap "'ud find the ole gentleman had proved wan too
many for he;" and when Reuben, desirous of further information, would
prepare his way for the next visit by declaring he must have another try
at him, Triggs, radiant but magnanimous, would answer, "Iss, iss, lad,
do 'ee come agen; for 'tis aisy to see with half a eye that 'tain't wan
look, nor two neither, that 'ull circumnavigate the insides o' that ole
chap if 'taint to his liken to be set agoin'."



CHAPTER XXIII.


It was some weeks after the receipt of Eve's letter that Reuben, having
paid several fruitless visits to Kay's Wharf, walked down one afternoon
to find the Mary Jane in and Captain Triggs on board. The work of the
short winter's day was all but over, and Reuben accepted an invitation
to bide where he was and have a bit of a yarn.

"You've bin bad, haven't 'ee?" Captain Triggs said with friendly anxiety
as, seated in the little cabin, their faces were brought on a level of
near inspection.

"Me--bad?" replied Reuben. "No. Why, what made you think of that?"

"'Cos you'm lookin' so gashly about the gills."

"Oh, I was always a hatchet-faced fellow," said Reuben, wondering as he
spoke whether his lack of personal appearance had in any way damaged his
cause with Eve, for poor Reuben was in that state when thoughts,
actions, words have but one centre round which they all seem unavoidably
to revolve.

"But you'm wuss than ever now. I reckon," continued Captain Triggs,
"'tis through addlin' your head over them clocks and watches too close,
eh?"

"Well, perhaps so," said Reuben. "I often think that if I could I should
like to be more in the open air."

"Come for a voyage with me, then," said Triggs heartily. "I'll take 'ee,
and give'ee a shake-down free; and yer mate and drink for the aitin'.
Come, you can't have fairer than that said, now, can 'ee?"

A wild thought rushed into Reuben's mind. Should he go with him, see Eve
once more, and try whether it was possible to move her to some other
decision? "You're very kind, I'm sure," he began, "and I feel very much
obliged for such an offer; but--"

"There! 'tis nothin' to be obliged for," interrupted Triggs, thinking it
was Reuben's modesty made him hesitate. "We'm a hand short, so anywise
there's a berth empty; and as for the vittals, they allays cooks a sight
more than us can get the rids of. So I'm only offerin' 'ee what us can't
ate ourselves."

"I think you mean what you're saying," said Reuben--"at least," he
added, smiling, "I hope you do, for 'pon my word I feel as if I should
like very much to go."

"Iss, sure, Come along, then. Us sha'n't start afore next week, and
you'll be to Bristol and back 'fore they've had time to miss 'ee here."

"Bristol?" ejaculated Reuben. "I thought you were going to Cornwall
again?"

"Not to wance, I ain't, but wouldn't 'ee rather go to Bristol? 'Tis a
brave place, you know. For my part, I'd so soon see Bristol as London:
'tis pretty much o' the same lookout here as there." But while Captain
Triggs had been saying these words his thoughts had made a sudden leap
toward the truth, and, finding Reuben not ready with a remark, he
continued: "'Tain't on no account of the young female you comed aboard
here with that's makin' 'ee think o' Cornwall, is it?"

"Yes, it is," said Reuben bluntly. "I want to see her. I've had a letter
from her, and it needs a little talkin' over."

"Awh! then I 'spects there's no need for me to tell 'ee that her's took
up with Adam Pascal. You knaws it already?"

Reuben felt as if a pike had been driven into his heart, but his
self-command stood him in good stead, and he said quite steadily, "Do
you happen to know him or anything about him?"

"Awh, iss: I knaws 'en fast enuf," said Triggs, who felt by intuition
that Reuben's desire was to know no good of him, "and a precious
stomachy chap he is. Lord! I pities the maid who'll be his missis:
whether gentle or simple, her's got her work cut out afore her."

"In what way? How do ye mean?"

"Why, he's got the temper o' the old un to stand up agen, and wherever
he shows his face he must be head and chief and must lay down the law,
and you must hearken to act by it or else look out for squalls."

Reuben drew his breath more freely. "And what is he?" he asked.

"Wa-all, I reckon he's her cousin, you knaw," answered Triggs,
misinterpreting the question, "'cos he's ole Zebedee's awnly son, and
the ole chap's got houses and lands and I dunno what all. But, there! I
wouldn't change with 'em; for you knaw what they be, all alike--a
drunk-in', fightin', cussin' lot. Lor's! I cudn't stand it, I cudn't, to
be drunk from mornin' to night and from night to mornin'."

"And is he one of this sort?" exclaimed Reuben in horror. "Why, are her
relations like that?"

"They'm all tarred with the wan brush, I reckon," replied Triggs. "If
not, they cudn't keep things goin' as they do: 'tis the drink car'ies
'em through with it. Why, I knaws by the little I've a done that ways
myself how 'tis. Git a good skinful o' grog in 'ee, and wan man feels
he's five, and, so long as it lasts, he's got the sperrit and 'ull do
the work o' five too: then when 'tis beginnin' to drop a bit, in with
more liquor, and so go on till the job's over."

"And how long do they keep it up?" said Reuben.

"Wa-all, that's more than I can answer for. Let me see," said Triggs,
reflectively. "There was ole Zeke Spry: he was up eighty-seben, and he
used to say he'd never, that he knowed by and could help, bin to bed not
to say _sober_ since he'd comed to years o' discretion. But in that ways
he was only wan o' many; and after he was dead 't happened just as 't
ole chap had said it wud, for he used to say, 'When I'm tooked folks
'ull get up a talk that ole Zeke Spry killed hisself with drink; but
don't you listen to it,' he says, ''cos 'tain't nothin' o' the sort: he
died for want o' breath--that's what killed he;' and I reckon he was
about right, else there wudn't be nobody left to die in Polperro."

"Polperro?" said Reuben: "that's where your ship goes to?"

"No, not ezactly: I goes to Fowey, but they bain't over a step or so
apart--a matter o' six miles, say."

There was a pause, which Captain Triggs broke by saying, "Iss, I thought
whether it wudn't surprise 'ee to hear 'bout it bein' Adam Pascal.
They'm none of 'em overmuch took with it, I reckon, for they allays
counted on 'im havin' Joan Hocken: her's another cousin, and another
nice handful, by all that's told up."

Reuben's spirit groaned within him. "Oh, if I'd only known of this
before!" he said. "I'd have kept her by force from going, or if she
would have gone I'd have gone with her. She was brought up so
differently!" he continued, addressing Triggs. "A more respectable woman
never lived than her mother was."

"Awh! so the Pascals all be: there's none of 'em but what's respectable
and well-to-do. What I've bin tellin' of 'ee is their ways, you knaw:
'tain't nothing agen 'em."

"It's quite decided me to go down and see her, though," said Reuben. "I
feel it's what her mother would have me do: she in a way asked me to act
a brother's part to her when she was dying, for she didn't dream about
her having anything to do with these relations whom she's got among
now."

"Wa-all, 'twas a thousand pities you let her go, then," said Triggs;
"and, though I'm not wantin' to hinder 'ee--for you'm so welcome to a
passage down to Fowey as you be round to Bristol--still, don't it strike
'ee that if her wudn't stay here for yer axin' then, her ain't likely to
budge from there for your axin' now?"

"I can but try, though," said Reuben, "and if you let me go when you're
going--"

"Say no more, and the thing's settled," replied Triggs decisively. "I
shall come back to London with a return cargo, which 'ull have to be
delivered: another wan 'ull be tooked in, and, that aboard, off us
goes."

"Then the bargain's made," said Reuben, holding out his hand; "and
whenever you're ready to start you'll find me ready to go."

Captain Triggs gave the hand a hearty shake in token of his willingness
to perform his share of the compact; and the matter being so far
settled, Reuben made his necessary preparations, and with all the
patience he could summon to his aid endeavored to wait with calmness the
date of departure.

While Reuben was waiting in London activity had begun to stir again in
Polperro. The season of pleasure was over: the men had grown weary of
idleness and merrymaking, and most of them now anxiously awaited the
fresh trip on which they were about to start. The first run after March
was always an important one, and the leaders of the various crews had
been at some trouble to arrange this point to the general satisfaction.

Adam's temper had been sorely tried during these discussions, but never
had he so well governed it nor kept his sharp speech under such good
control; the reason being that at length he had found another outlet for
his wounded sensibility.

With the knowledge that the heart he most cared for applauded and
sympathized with his hopes and his failures Adam could be silent and be
calm. To Jerrem alone the cause of this alteration was apparent, and
with all the lynx-eyed sharpness of vexed and wounded vanity he tried to
thwart and irritate Adam by sneering remarks and covert suggestions that
all must now give way to him: it was nothing but "follow my leader" and
do and say what he chose--words which were as pitch upon tow to natures
so readily inflamed, so headstrong against government and impatient of
everything which savored of control. And the further misfortune of this
was that Adam, though detecting Jerrem's influence in all this
opposition, was unable to speak of it to Eve. It was the single point
relating to the whole matter on which the two kept silent, each
regarding the very mention of Jerrem's name as a firebrand which might
perchance destroy the wonderful harmony which for the last week or so
had reigned between them, and which to both was so sweet that neither
had the courage to endanger or destroy it.

At length the day of departure had come, and as each hour brought the
inevitable separation closer Eve's heart began to discover itself more
openly, and she no longer disguised or hid from those around that her
love, her hopes, her fears were centred upon Adam.

In vain did Jerrem try, by the most despairing looks and despondent
sighs, to attract her attention and entice her to an interview. Away
from Adam's side--or, Adam absent, from Joan's company--Eve would not
stir, until Jerrem, driven into downright ill-humor, was forced to take
refuge in sullen silence.

It had been decided that the Lottery was to start in the evening, and
the day had been a busy one, but toward the end of the afternoon Adam
managed to spare a little time, which was to be devoted to Eve and to
saying the farewell which in reality was then to take place between
them.

In order to ensure a certain amount of privacy, it had been arranged
that Eve should go to an opening some halfway up Talland lane and there
await Adam's approach, which he would make by scrambling up from under
the cliff and so across to where she could see and come to meet him.

Accordingly, as soon as five o'clock had struck, Eve, who had been
fidgeting about for some time, got up and said, "Joan, if Jerrem comes
in you won't tell where I've gone, will you?"

"Well, seein' I don't knaw the where-abouts of it myself, I should be
puzzled," said Joan.

"I'm goin' up Talland lane to meet Adam," faltered Eve; "and as it's to
say good-bye, I--we--don't want anybody else, you see."

The tremulous tone of the last few words made Joan turn round, and,
looking at Eve, she saw that the gathered tears were ready to fall from
her eyes. Joan had felt a desire to be sharp in speech, but the sight of
Eve's face melted her anger at once, and with a sudden change of manner
she said, "Why, bless the maid! what's there to cry about? You'm a nice
one, I just say, to be a sailor's wife! Lor's! don't let 'em see that
you frets to see their backs, or they'll be gettin' it into their heads
next that they'm somebodys and we can't live without 'em. They'll come
back soon enough, and a sight too soon for a good many here, I can tell
'ee."

Eve shook her head. "But will they come back?" she said despairingly.
"I feel something different to what I ever felt before--a presentiment
of evil, as if something would happen. What could happen to them, Joan?"

"Lord bless 'ee! don't ax un what could happen to 'em. Why, a hunderd
things: they could be wracked and drowned, or catched and killed, or
tooked and hung." Then, bursting into a laugh at Eve's face of horror,
she exclaimed, "Pack o' stuff, nonsense! Don't 'ee take heed o' no
fancies nor rubbish o' that sort. They'll come back safe enuf, as
they've allays done afore. Nothin's ever happened to 'em yet: what
should make it now? T' world ain't a-comin' to an end 'cos you'm come
down fra' London town. There, get along with 'ee, do!" and she pushed
her gently toward the door, adding, with a sigh, "'Twould be a poor tale
if Adam was never to come back now, and it the first time he ever left
behind un anything he cared to see agen."

Eve soon reached her point of observation, and under shelter of the
hedge she stood looking with anxious eyes in the direction from which
Adam was to come. It had been a clear bright day, and the air blew fresh
and cool; the sky (except to windward, where a few white fleecy masses
lay scattered about) was cloudless; the sea was of a deep-indigo blue,
flecked with ridges of foam, which unfurled and spread along each wave,
crested its tip and rode triumphant to the shore. Inside the Peak, over
the harbor, the gulls were congregated, some fluttering over the water,
some riding on its surface, some flying in circles over the heights, now
green and soft with the thick fresh grass of spring. Down the spine of
the cliff the tangle of brier-wood and brambles, though not leafless,
still showed brown, and the long trails which were lifted and bowed down
as the sudden gusts of wind swept over them, looked bare and wintry.

Eve gave an involuntary shiver, and her eyes, so quick to drink in each
varied aspect of the sea, now seemed to try and shut out its beauty from
before her.

What should she do if the wind blew and the waves rose as she had seen
them do of late, rejoicing in the sight, with Adam by her side? But
with him away, she here alone--oh, her spirit sank within her; and to
drive away the thoughts which came crowding into her mind she left her
shelter, and, hurrying along the little path, crossed the cress-grown
brook, and was soon halfway up the craggy ascent, when Adam, who had
reached the top from the other side, called out, "Hallo! I didn't think
to find you here. We'd best walk back a bit, or else we shall be just in
the eye of the wind, and it's coming on rather fresh."

"You won't go if it blows, Adam?" and Eve's face betrayed her anxiety.

"Oh, my dear one," he said kindly, "you mustn't think of the wind's
having anything to do with me. Besides, it's all in our favor, you know:
it'll rock us to sleep all the sooner."

Eve tried to smile back as she looked up at him, but it was a very
feeble attempt. "I don't want to feel frightened," she said, "but I
can't help it."

"Can't help what?"

"Why, thinking that something may happen."

"Oh, nonsense!" he said: "there's nothing going to happen. It's because
you care for me you think like that. Why, look at me: ain't I the same?
Before this I never felt anything but glad to be off and get away; but
this time"--and he drew a long sigh, as if to get rid of the
oppression--"I seem to carry about a lump of lead inside me, and the
nearer it comes to saying good-bye the heavier it grows."

This sympathy seemed to afford Eve some consolation, and when she spoke
again it was to ask in a more cheerful tone how long their probable
absence would be, where they were going, what time they would take in
getting there; to all of which Adam answered with unnecessary exactness,
for both of them felt they were talking, for talking's sake, of things
about which they knew all they could know already. Yet how was it
possible, in the light of open day, when at any moment they might be
joined by a third person, to speak of that which lay deep down in their
hearts, waiting only for a word, a caress, a tender look, to give it
voice?

Adam had had a dozen cautions, entreaties, injunctions to give to Eve:
he had been counting through every minute of the day the time to this
hour, and now it had come and he seemed to have nothing to say--could
think of nothing except how long he could possibly give to remaining.

"By Jove!" he exclaimed after more than an hour had slipped away--time
wasted in irrelevant questions and answers, with long pauses between,
when neither could think of anything to say, and each wondered why the
other did not speak--"By Jove, Eve! I must be off: I didn't think the
time had gone so quick. We mustn't start at the furthest later than
eight; and if I ain't there to look after them nobody'll think it worth
while to be ready."

They were back under shelter of the hedge again now, and Adam (who
possessed the singular quality of not caring to do his lovemaking in
public) ventured to put his arm round Eve's waist and draw her toward
him. "You'll never let me go again," he said, "without bein' able to
leave you my wife, Eve, will you? 'Tis that, I b'lieve, is pressing on
me. I wish now more than ever that you hadn't persisted in saying no all
this long winter."

"I won't say no next time," she said, while the hitherto restrained
tears began to fall thick and fast.

Adam's delight was not spoken in words, and for the time he forgot all
about the possibility of being overlooked: "Then, when I come back I
sha'n't be kept waiting any longer?"

"No."

"And we shall be married at once?"

"Yes."

Adam strained her again to his heart. "Then, come what may," he said, "I
sha'n't fear it. So long as I've got you, Eve, I don't care what
happens. It's no good," he said, after another pause. "The time's up,
and I must be off. Cheer up, my girl, cheer up! Look up at me, Eve,
that's a sweetheart! Now, one kiss more, and after that we must go on to
the gate, and then good-bye indeed."

But, the gate reached and the good-bye said, Eve still lingered. "Oh,
Adam!" she cried, "stop--wait for one instant."

And Adam, well pleased to be detained, turned toward her once more.

"Good-bye, Adam: God watch over you!"

"Amen, my girl, amen! May He watch over both of us, for before Him we
are one now, Eve: we've taken each other, as the book has it, for
better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health."

"Till death do you part," said the sepulchral tones of a voice behind
the hedge; and with a laugh at the start he had given them Jerrem passed
by the gate and went on his way.



CHAPTER XXIV.


Several weeks had now passed by since the bustle of departure was over,
and, though no direct intelligence had come from the absentees, a rumor
had somehow spread abroad that the expected run of goods was to be one
of the largest ever made in Polperro.

The probability of this fact had been known to the leaders of the
expedition before they started, and had afforded Adam another
opportunity for impressing upon them the great necessity for increased
caution.

Grown suspicious at the supineness which generally pervaded the revenue
department, the government had decided upon a complete revolution, and
during the winter months the entire force of the coast had been
everywhere superseded and in many places increased. Both at Looe and
Fowey the cutters had new officers and crews, and the men, inflamed with
the zeal of newcomers, were most ardent to make a capture and so prove
themselves worthy of the post assigned to them.

While all his comrades had affected to laugh at these movements, Adam
had viewed them with anxiety--had seen the graveness of their import and
the disasters likely to arise from them; and at length his arguments had
so far prevailed that a little better regulation was made for the
working of signals and ensuring that they should be given and attended
to if required. In case of danger the rule was to burn a fire on
different heights of the cliff, and small huts were even erected for
that purpose; but the lighting of these fires was often delayed until
the last moment: what had become everybody's business was nobody's
business, and secure that, in any case, the cruisers were no more
willing to fight than the smugglers were wanting to be fought, hazards
were often incurred which with men whose silence could not be bought
(for up to that time every crew had had its go-between) would most
certainly have proved fatal.

Upon the present force no influence could as yet be got to bear, and, to
prove the temper of their dispositions, no sooner was it known to them
that three of the most daring of the Polperro vessels were absent than
they set to watching the place with such untiring vigilance that it
needed all the sharpness of those left behind to follow their movements
and arrange the signals so that they might warn their friends without
exciting undue suspicions among their enemies.

Night after night, in one place or another, the sheltered flicker of the
flame shone forth as a warning that any attempt to land would prove
dangerous, until, word being suddenly brought that the cruiser had gone
off to Polruan, out went the fire, and, an answering light showing that
at least one of the vessels was on the watch, when the morning dawned
the Stamp and Go was in and her cargo safe under water. The Lottery, she
said, had contrived to decoy the revenue-men away, hoping that by that
means the two smaller vessels might stand a chance of running in, but
from their having to part company and keep well away from each other,
the Stamp and Go, though certain the Cleopatra was not far off, had lost
sight of her.

The day passed away, the evening light had all but faded, when to the
watchers the Cleopatra, with crowded sail and aided by a south-west
wind, was seen trying to make the harbor, close followed by the
cruiser. The news flew over the place like lightning, and but a few
minutes seemed to have passed before all Polperro swarmed the cliffs,
each trying to secure a vantage-point by putting forth some strong claim
of interest in those on board. With trembling hearts and anxious gaze
the lookers-on watched each movement of the two vessels, a dead silence
prevailing among them so long as they both followed in the same course,
but the instant a clever tack was made by which the pursuers were
baffled, up rose the shout of many voices, and cries were heard and
prayers uttered that the darkness would come quickly on and afford their
friends a safe entrance.

Except to such men as steered the Cleopatra, to enter Polperro harbor
amid darkness and wind was a task beyond their skill; and, knowing this,
and seeing by her adversary's tactics the near possibility of defeat,
the cruiser had resort to her guns, trying to cut away the Cleopatra's
gear, and by that means compel her to heave-to. But, though partly
disabled, the stout little vessel bore onward, and night's friendly
clouds coming to her aid, the discomfited cruiser had to withdraw within
hearing of the triumphant shouts which welcomed her rival's safety.

With the exception of the Lottery all was now safe, but no fears were
entertained on her account, because, from her superior size and her
well-known fast-sailing qualities, the risks which had endangered the
other two vessels would in no way affect her. She had merely to cruise
outside and await, with all the patience her crew could command, a
fitting opportunity for slipping in, escaping the revenue-men and
turning on them a fresh downpour of taunts and ridicule.

In proof of this, several of the neighboring fishing-boats had from time
to time seen and spoken to the Lottery; and with a view to render those
at home perfectly at ease every now and again one of these trusty
messengers would arrive with a few words which would be speedily
circulated among those most interested. The fact of her absence, and the
knowledge that at any time the attempt to land might be made, naturally
kept every one on the strain; and directly night set in both Joan and
Eve trembled at each movement and started at every sound.

One night, as, in case of surprise, they were setting all things in
order, a sudden shuffling made Joan fly to the door. "Why, Jonathan,"
she exclaimed, admitting the man whom Eve had never seen since the
evening after her arrival, "what's up? What brings you here, eh?"

"I've comed with summat for you," he said, casting a suspicious look at
Eve.

"Well, out with it, then," said Joan, quickly adding, as she jerked her
head in that direction, "us don't have no secrets from she."

"Awh, doant 'ee?" returned Jonathan in a voice which sounded the reverse
of complimentary. "Wa-all, then, there's what 'tis;" and he held toward
her a piece of paper folded up like a letter.

"Who's it from? where did 'ee get un?" asked Joan, while Eve exclaimed,
"Oh, Joan, see is it from them?"

"I can't stay no longer," said Jonathan, preparing to retreat.

"But you must stay till we've made out what this here is," said Joan.

Jonathan shook his head. "'Tain't nothin' to do with what I'm about," he
answered, determined not to be detained, "and I've got to run all the
faster 'cos I've comed round this way to bring it. But Jerrem gived it
to me," he whispered, "and Adam ain't to be tould nothin' of it;" and he
added a few more words which made Joan release her hold of him and seem
as anxious to see him gone as he was to go.

The first part of the whisper had reached Eve's ears, and the hope which
had leaped into her heart had been forced back by the disappointment
that Jerrem, not Adam, had sent the letter. Still, it might contain some
news of their return, and she turned to Joan with a look of impatient
inquiry.

"I wonder whatever 'tis about?" said Joan, claiming the right of
ownership so far as the unfolding the missive went. "Some random talk
or 'nother, I'll be bound," she added, with a keener knowledge of her
correspondent than Eve possessed. "I'll warrant he's a nice handful
aboard there 'mongst 'em all, with nothin' to do but drinkin' and
dice-throwin' from mornin' to night. Awh, laws!" she said, with a sigh
of discontent as the written page lay open before her, "what's the good
o' sendin' a passel o' writin' like that to me? 'T might so well be
double Dutch for aught I can make out o' any o' it. There! take and read
it, do 'ee, Eve, and let's hear what he says--a good deal more 'bout you
than me, I'll lay a wager to."

"Then I don't know why he should," said Eve.

"No, nor I neither," laughed Joan; "but, there! I ain't jealous o' he,
for, as I'm Jerrem's cut-and-come-agen, his makin' up to other maidens
only leaves un more relish for comin' back to the dish he can stick by."

Eve's eyes had by this time run over the carelessly-written, sprawling
page of the letter, and her face flushed up crimson as she said, "I
really do wish Jerrem would give over all this silly nonsense. He has no
business to write in this way to me."

"To you?" exclaimed Joan, snatching back the letter to look at the
outside. "Why, that ain't to you;" and she laid her finger on the
direction. "Come now, 'tis true I bain't much of a scholard, but I'm
blessed if I can't swear to my awn name when I sees un."

"That's only the outside," said Eve: "all the rest is to me--nothing but
a parcel of silly questions, asking me how he has offended me, and why I
don't treat him as I used to; as if he didn't know that he has nobody
but himself to blame for the difference!"

"And ain't there nothin' else? Don't he send no word to me?" asked Joan
ruefully.

Eve, who was only too glad that poor Joan's ignorance prevented her
reading the exaggerated rhodomontade of penitence and despair with which
the paper was filled, ignored the first question. "He says," she said,
turning to read from the page, "'As you won't give me the opportunity
of speaking to you, promise me that when we meet, which will be
to-morrow night--' Oh, Joan, can that be true? do you think he means
really to-morrow?" then, running her eyes farther on, she continued:
"Perhaps he does, for--listen, Joan--'You mustn't split on me to Adam,
who's cock-a-hoop about giving you all a surprise, and there'd be the
devil to pay if he found out I'd blown the gaff.'"

"Now, ain't that Jerrem all over?" exclaimed Joan angrily, anything but
pleased at the neglect she had suffered--"just flyin' in the face o'
everything Adam wants done. He knaws how things has got abroad afore,
nobody could tell how, and yet, 'cos he's axed, he can't keep a quiet
tongue in his head."

"I tell you what we'll do," said Eve--"not take a bit of notice of the
letter, Joan, and just act as if we'd never had it: shall we?"

"Well, I reckon 'twould be the best way, for I shouldn't wonder but they
be comin'," she added, while Eve, anxious to be rid of the letter,
hastily flung it into the fire and stood watching it blaze up and die
out. "Jonathan gave a hint o' somethin'," continued Joan, "though he
never named no time, which, if he was trusted with, he knaws better than
to tell of."

"I wonder they do trust him, though," said Eve, "seeing he's rather
silly?"

"Awh! most o' his _silly_ is to serve his own turn. Why, to see un
elsewheres you'd say he'd stored up his wits to Polperro, and left 'em
here till he gets back agen; and that's how 'tis he ferrets out the
things he does, 'cos nobody minds un nor pays no heed to un; and if he
does by chance come creepin' up or stand anigh, ''Tis only poor foolish
Jonathan,' they says."



CHAPTER XXV.


The sun which came streaming in through the windows next morning seemed
the herald of coming joy. Eve was the first to be awakened, and she soon
aroused Joan. "It won't make no difference to them because the day's
fine," she asked: "will it, Joan?"

"Not a bit: they don't care a dump what the day is, so long as the
night's only dark enough; and there'll be no show o' moon this week."

"Oh, I'm so glad!" said Eve, breaking out into a snatch of an old song
which had caught her fancy.

"Awh, my dear, don't 'ee begin to sing, not till breakfast is over,"
exclaimed Joan. "'Sing afore you bite, cry afore night.'"

"Cry with joy perhaps," laughed Eve; still, she hushed her melody and
hastened her speed to get quickly dressed and her breakfast over. That
done with, the house had to be fresh put in order, while Joan applied
herself to the making of various pies and pastries; "For, you see," she
said, "if they won't all of 'em be just ready for a jollification this
time, and no mistake!"

"And I'm sure they deserve to have one," said Eve, whose ideas of
merrymaking were on a much broader scale now than formerly. It was true
she still always avoided the sight of a drunken man and ran away from a
fight, but this was more because her feelings were outraged at these
sights than because her sense of right and wrong was any longer shocked
at the vices which led to them.

"I'll tell 'ee what I think I'll do," said Joan as, her culinary tasks
over, she felt at liberty to indulge in some relaxation: "I'll just run
in to Polly Taprail's and two or three places near, and see if the
wind's blowed them any of this news."

"Yes, do," said Eve, "and I shall go along by the Warren a little way
and look at the sea, and that--"

"Lord save the maid!" laughed Joan: "whatever you finds in the say to
look at I can't tell. I knaw 'tis there, but I niver wants to turn my
eyes that way, 'ceptin' 'tis to look at somethin' 'pon it."

"Wait till you've been in a town like I have for some time," said Eve.

"Wait? Iss, I 'spects 'twill be wait 'fore my turn comes to be in a town
for long. Awh, but I should just like to go to London, though," she
added: "wouldn't I just come back ginteel!" and she walked out of the
door with the imaginary strut such an importance would warrant her in
assuming. Eve followed, and the two walked together down Lansallos
street, at the corner of which they parted--Joan to go to Mrs.
Taprail's, and Eve along by the Warren toward Talland, for, although she
had not told her intention to Joan, she had made up her mind to walk on
to where she could get sight of Talland Bay.

She was just in that state of hope and fear when inaction becomes
positive pain, and relief is only felt while in pursuit of an object
which entails some degree of bodily movement. Joan had so laughed at her
fears for the Lottery that to a great extent her anxiety had subsided;
and everybody else seemed so certain that with Adam's caution and
foresight nothing could possibly happen to them that to doubt their
safety seemed to doubt his wisdom.

During this last voyage Adam had had a considerable rise in the opinions
of the Polperro folk: they would not admit it too openly, but in
discussions between twos and threes it was acknowledged that "Adam had
took the measure o' they new revenoo-chaps from the fust, and said they
was a cunnin', desateful lot, and not to be dealt with no ways;" and
Eve, knowing the opposition he had had to undergo, felt a just pride
that they were forced into seeing that his fears had some ground and
that his advice was worth following out.

Once past the houses, she determined no longer to linger, but walk on as
briskly as possible; and this was the more advisable because the day was
a true April one: sharp showers of mingled hail and rain had succeeded
the sun, which now again was shining out with dazzling brightness.

The sea was green and rippled over with short dancing waves, across
which ran long slanting shadows of a bright violet hue, reflected from
the sun and sky; but by the time Eve reached a jutting stone which
served as a landmark all this was vanishing, and, turning, she saw
coming up a swift creeping shadow which drew behind it a misty veil that
covered up both sea and sky and blotted them from view.

"Oh my! here's another hailstorm coming," she said; and, drawing the
hood of her cloak close over her face, she made all haste down the steep
bit of irregular rock toward where she knew that, a little way off the
path, a huge boulder would afford her shelter.

Down came the rain, and with it such a gust of wind that, stumbling up
the bit of cliff on which the stone stood, Eve was almost bent double.
Hullo! Somebody was here already, and, shaking back her hood to see who
her companion in distress might be, she uttered a sharp scream of
horror, for the man who stood before her was no other than Reuben May.

"Then you're not glad to see me, Eve?" he said, for the movement Eve had
involuntarily made was to put out her hands as if to push him away.

Eve tried to speak, but the sudden fright of his unexpected presence
seemed to have dried up her throat and tongue and taken away all power
of utterance.

"Your old chum, Capen Triggs, asked me how I should like to take a bit
of a trip with him, and I thought, as I hadn't much to keep me, I'd take
his offer; and, as he's stopped at Plymouth for a day or so, I made up
my mind to come so far as here and see for myself if some of what I've
been told is true."

"Why, what have you been told?" said Eve, catching at anything which
might spare her some of the unpleasantness of a first communication.

"Well, for one thing, that you're going to be married to your cousin."

Eve's color rose, and Reuben, thinking it might be anger, said, "Don't
make any mistake, Eve: I haven't come to speak about myself. All that's
past and over, and God only knows why I ever got such folly into my
head;" and Reuben thought himself perfectly sincere in making this
statement, for he had talked himself into the belief that this journey
was undertaken from the sole desire to carry out his trust. "What I've
come to do is to speak to you like a friend, and ask you to tell me what
sort of people these are that you're among, and how the man gets his
living that you're thinking of being married to."

Eve hesitated: then she said, "There is no need for me to answer you,
Reuben, because I can see that somebody already has been talking about
them to you--haven't they?"

"Yes, they have, but how do I know that what they've said is true?"

"Oh, I dare say it's true enough," she said: "people ain't likely to
tell you false about a thing nobody here feels ashamed to own to."

"Not ashamed of being drunkards, law-breakers, thieves?" said Reuben
sternly.

"Reuben May," exclaimed Eve, flaming up with indignation and entirely
forgetting that but a little time before she had held an exactly similar
opinion, "do you forget that you're speaking of my own father's
blood-relations--people who're called by the same name I am?"

"No, I don't forget it, Eve; and I don't forget, neither, that if I
didn't think that down here you would soon become ruined, body and soul,
I'd rather cut my tongue out than it should give utterance to a word
that could cause you pain. You speak of your father, but think of your
mother, Eve--think if she could rise up before you could you ask her
blessing on what you're going to do?"

Eve's face quivered with emotion, and Reuben, seizing his advantage,
continued: "Perhaps you think I'm saying this because I'm wanting you
for myself, but, as God will judge us, 'tisn't that that's making me
speak, Eve;" and he held out his hand toward her. "You've known me for
many a long year now--my heart's been laid more bare to you than to any
living creature: do you believe what I'm saying to you?"

"Yes, Reuben, I do," she answered firmly, though the tears, no longer
restrained, came streaming from her eyes; "and you must also believe
what I say to you--that my cousin is a man as honest and upright as
yourself, that he wouldn't defraud any one of the value of a pin's
point, nor take a thing that he didn't think himself he'd got a proper
right to."

"Good God, Eve! is it possible that you can speak like this of one who
gets his living by smuggling?" and a spasm of positive agony passed
over Reuben's face as he tried to realize the change of thought and
feeling which could induce a calm defence of such iniquity. "What's the
difference whether a man robs me or he robs the king? Isn't he stealing
just the same?"

"No, certainly not," said Eve, quickly. "I can't explain it all to you,
but I know this--that what they bring over they buy and pay for, and
certainly, therefore, have some right to."

"Have a right to?" repeated Reuben. "Well, that's good! So men have a
right to smuggle, have they? and smuggling isn't stealing? Come! I
should just like this cousin of yours to give me half an hour of his
company to argue out that matter in."

"My cousin isn't at home," said Eve, filled with a sudden horror of what
might be expected from an argument between two such tempers as Reuben
and Adam possessed. "And if you've only come here to argue, whether 'tis
with me or with them, Reuben, 'tis a waste of time that'll do no good to
you nor any of us."

Reuben did not speak. He stood and for a few moments looked fixedly at
her: then he turned away and hid his face in his hands. The sudden
change from anger to sorrow came upon Eve unexpectedly: anything like a
display of emotion was so foreign to Reuben that she could not help
being affected by it, and after a minute's struggle with herself she
laid her hand on his arm, saying gently, "Reuben, don't let me think
you've come all this long way only to quarrel and say bitter things to
me: let me believe 'tis as you said--because you weren't satisfied, and
felt, for mother's sake, you wanted to be a friend to me still. I feel
now as if I ought to have told you when I wrote that I was going to
marry my cousin Adam, but I didn't do it because I thought you'd write
to me, and then 'twould be easier to speak; and when you didn't take no
notice I thought you meant to let me go altogether, and I can't tell you
how hurt I felt. I couldn't help saying to myself over and over again
(though I was so angry with you I didn't know what to do), 'I shall
never have another such friend as Reuben--never.'"

Eve's words had their effect, and when Reuben turned his pale face to
her again his whole mood was softened. "'Tis to be the same friend I
always was that I've come, Eve," he said; "only you know me, and how I
can never keep from blurting out all at once things that I ought to
bring round bit by bit, so that they might do good and not give
offence."

"You haven't offended me yet," she said--"at least," she added, smiling
in her old way at him, "not beyond what I can look over; and so far as I
can and it will ease your mind, Reuben, I'll try to tell you all you
care to know about uncle and--the rest of them. I'm sure if you knew
them you'd like them: you couldn't help it--more particularly Joan and
Adam, if you once saw those two."

"And why can't I see them, Eve? It wouldn't seem so very strange, being
your friend--for that's all I claim to be--going there to see you, would
it?"

"No, I don't know that it would; only," and here she hesitated,
"whatever you saw that you didn't like, Reuben, you'd only speak to me
about. You wouldn't begin arguing with them, would you?"

Reuben shook his head. Then with a sudden impulse, he said, "And have
you really given all your love to this man, Eve?"

"Yes," she said, not averting her eyes, although her face was covered
with a quick blush.

"And whatever comes you mean to be his wife?"

"I don't mean to be anybody else's wife," she said.

"And he--he cares for you?"

"If he didn't be sure I should have never cared for him."

Reuben sighed. "Well," he said, "I'll go and see him. I'll have a talk
with him, and try and find out what sort of stuff he's made of. If I
could go away certain that things ain't as bad as I feared to find them,
I should take back a lighter heart with me. You say he isn't home now.
Is he at sea, then?"

"No, not at sea: he's close by."

"Then you expect him back soon?"

"Yes: we expect him back to-night."

"To-night? Then I think I'll change my plan. I meant to go back to
Plymouth and see what Triggs is about to do, for I'm going round to
London with him when he goes; but if you're expecting your cousin so
soon, why shouldn't I stop here till I've seen him?"

"Oh, but he mightn't come," said Eve, who in any case had no wish that
Reuben should appear until she had paved the way for his reception, and
above all things desired his absence on this particular occasion.

"Well, I must take my chance of that--unless," he added, catching sight
of her face, "there's any reason against my stopping?"

Eve colored. "Well," she said, "perhaps they mightn't care, as they
don't know you, about your being here. You see," she added by way of
excuse, "they have been away a long while now."

"Been to France, I s'pose?" said Reuben in a tone which conveyed his
suspicions.

"No," replied Eve, determined not to seem ashamed of their occupation:
"I think they've been to Guernsey."

"Oh, well, all the same, so far as what they went to fetch. Then they're
going to _try_ and land their cargo, I s'pose?"

"I don't know what they may be going to _try_ and do"--and Eve
endeavored to imitate the sneer with which Reuben had emphasized the
word--"but I know that trying with them means doing. There's nobody
about here," she added with a borrowed spice of Joan's manner, "would
care to put themselves in the way of trying to hinder the Lottery."

"'Tis strange, then, that they shouldn't choose to come in open
daylight, rather than be sneaking in under cover of a dark night," said
Reuben aggravatingly.

"As it happens," retorted Eve, with an assumption of superior nautical
knowledge, "the dark night suits them best, by reason that at high tide
they can come in close to Down End. Oh, you needn't try to think you can
hurt me by your sneers at them," she said, inwardly smarting under the
contempt she knew Reuben felt. "I feel hurt at your wanting to say such
things, but not at all at what you say. _That_ can't touch me."

"No, so I see," said Reuben hopelessly. Then, after a minute's pause, he
burst out with a passionate, "Oh, Eve, I feel as if I could take and
jump into the sea with you, so as I might feel you'd be safe from the
life I'm certain you're goin' to be dragged down to. You may think fair
now of this man, because he's only showed you his fair side; but they
who know him know him for what he is--bloodthirsty, violent, a drunkard,
never sober, with his neck in a noose and the gallows swinging over his
head. What hold will you have over one who fears neither God nor devil?
Yes, but I will speak. You shall listen to the truth from me," for she
had tried to interrupt him. "It isn't too late, and 'tis but fit that
you know what others say of him."

Eve's anger had risen until she seemed turned into a fury, and her
voice, usually low and full, now sounded hard and sharp as she cried,
"If they said a hundred times worse of him I would still marry him; and
if he stood on the gallows, that you say swings over his head, I'd stand
by his side and say I was his wife."

"God pity you!" groaned Reuben.

"I want no pity," she said, "and so you can tell those who would throw
it away on me. Say to them that you sought me out to cast taunts at me,
but it was of no use, for what you thought I should be ashamed of I
gloried in, and could look you and all the world in the face"--and she
seemed to grow taller as she spoke--"and say I felt proud to be a
smuggler's wife;" and, turning, she made a movement as if to go.

But Reuben took a step so as to impede her. "Is this to be our parting?"
he said. "Can you throw away the only friend you've got left?"

"I don't call you a friend," she said.

"You'll know me for being so one day, though, and bitterly rue you
didn't pay more heed to my words."

"Never!" she said proudly. "I'd trust Adam with my life: he's true as
steel. Now," she added, stepping on one side, "I have no more time to
stay: I must go back; so let me pass."

Mechanically Reuben moved. Stung by her words, irritated by a sense of
failure, filled with the sharpest jealousy against his rival, he saw no
other course open to him than to let her go her way and to go his.
"Good-bye, then, Eve," he said, in a dry, cold voice.

"Good-bye," she answered.

"I don't think, after what's passed, you need expect to see me again,"
he ventured, with the secret hope that she would pause and say something
that might lead to a fresh discussion.

"I had no notion that you'd still have a thought of coming. I should
look upon a visit from you as very out of place."

"Oh, well, be sure I sha'n't force myself where I'm not wanted."

"Then you'll be wise to stay away, for you'll never be wanted where I
am."

And without another glance in his direction she walked away, while
Reuben stood and watched her out of sight. "That's ended," he said,
setting his lips firmly together and hardening the expression of his
naturally grave face. "That mad game's finished, and finished so that I
think I've done with sweet-hearting for as long as I live. Well, thank
God! a man may get on very fairly though the woman that he made a fool
of himself for flings back his love and turns him over for somebody
else." Then, as if some unseen hand had dealt him a sudden thrust, he
cried out, "Why did I ever see her? Why was I made to care for her?
Haven't I known the folly of it all along, and fought and strove from
the first to get the better of myself? and here she comes down and sees
a fellow whose eye is tickled by her looks, and he gets in a week what
I've been begging and praying for years for; and they tell you that
God's ways are just and that He rewards the good and punishes the evil!"
and Reuben's face worked with suppressed emotion, for in spirit he stood
before his Creator and upbraided Him with "Lo! these many years have I
served Thee, neither transgressed I at any time Thy commandments; and
yet this drunkard, this evil-liver, this law-breaker, is given that for
which in my soul I have thirsted!" and the devils of envy and revenge
ran by his side rejoicing, while Fate flew before and lured him on to
where Opportunity stood and welcomed his approach.

  _The Author of "Dorothy Fox."_

  [TO BE CONTINUED.]



POSSESSION.


    She is thine own at last, O faithful soul!
      The love that changed not with the changing years
      Hath its reward: Desire's strong prayers and tears
    Fall useless since thy hand hath touched the goal.
    See how she yieldeth up to thy control
      Each mystery of her beauty: enter, thou,
      A vanquished victor. None can disavow
    Thy royal, love-bought right unto the whole
    Of love's rich feast. Oh outspread golden hair,
      White brow, red lips whereon thy lips are set
    With rapturous thrills undreamed of, past compare!
      Oh ecstasy of bliss! And yet--and yet--
    What doth it profit thee that every part
    Is thine except the little wayward heart?

    ELIZA CALVERT HALL.



AN OLD ENGLISH HOME: BRAMSHILL HOUSE.


A peculiar charm hangs about an Elizabethan country-house.

The castles belong to an utterly different state of things and
people--to a rougher, coarser time. Their towers and walls, where the
jackdaws build in the ivy; their moats, where the hoary carp bask and
fatten; their drawbridges and heavy doors and loopholed windows,--these
all tell of the unrest, the semi-war-like state of feudal days, when
each great seigneur was a petty king in his own county, with his private
as well as public feuds, and his little army of men-at-arms ready to do
his bidding, to sally forth and fight for the king or to defend his own
walls against some more powerful neighbor.

The great houses of the eighteenth century have a different character
again, with their Italian façades and trim terraced gardens, where the
wits and beauties of dull Queen Anne's time amused themselves after
their somewhat rude fashion. They speak of a solid luxury in keeping
with the heavy features and ponderous minds of the worthies of those
days.

But the Elizabethan, or even early Jacobean, house tells us of England
in her golden age. The walls of red brick, gray with lichens; the rows
of wide stone-mullioned windows and hanging oriels; the delicate,
fanciful chimneys rising in great clusters above the pointed gables; the
broad stone steps leading up to the hospitable door; the smooth green
terraces and bowling-lawns, walled in, it is true, but closed with gates
of curiously-wrought ironwork meant more for ornament than for
defence,--all these serve to recall the days when learning and wealth
joined hands with the Maiden Queen to raise England from the depths into
which she had sunk--the days of "the worthies whom Elizabeth, without
distinction of rank or age, gathered round her in the ever-glorious wars
of her great reign."

It was then that Burleigh and Walsingham talked statecraft; that Raleigh
and Drake, Frobisher and Grenville, sailed the seas and beat the Spanish
Armada; that the "sea-dogs" brought the treasures of the New World to
the feet of the queen, and filled men's minds with dreams of El Dorados
where gold and jewels were as common as the sand on the seashore. It was
then that English literature, all but dead during the storm of the
Reformation, began to revive. And then it was that a galaxy of poets
arose such as the world had never seen before; that Sidney wrote his
_Arcadia_, Spenser his _Faerie Queene_; that Christopher Marlowe,
Beaumont and Fletcher and merrie Ben Jonson founded the English drama;
and that Shakespeare, poet of poets, overshadowed them all with that
stupendous genius which has filled succeeding generations with wonder
and love.

Then it was that men began to think of their home as a casket in which
to enshrine the gentler tastes and luxuries which peace at home and
continental influences from without were fostering in England. The
casket must be fitted for its treasure; and so it came to pass that
throughout the length and breadth of the land those fair Elizabethan
mansions sprang up.

I see one such now in my mind's eye--one that I love well, for since my
earliest childhood it has filled me with awe and admiration and delight.
It was built by James I. as a hunting-box for his son, Prince Henry, but
ere the house was finished the young prince was dead, and all the
promise of his short life gone with him. Had he lived, our English
history for the next hundred years might have been a different story.
Bramshill then passed into other hands--first to Lord Zouch, then to the
Copes, who still own it--but in the finely-carved stone balustrade above
the great western door the three plumes of the prince of Wales's
feathers may still be seen, the sole memento of its royal origin. Only
half the original house remains: the rest was destroyed by fire a couple
of hundred years ago. Yet what still stands is verily a palace.

You enter through the heavily-nailed and barred doors, and find yourself
in a vast hall panelled up to the ceiling with old oak. The immense
fireplace with its brass dogs and andirons tells of the yule log that
still at Christmas burns upon the hearth, and trophies of arms of all
ages--from the Toledo blade that can be bent by the point into a
semicircle, so perfect is the temper of its steel, to the Sikh sword
that was brought home after the Indian mutiny--form fitting ornaments
for the walls.

Then come many rooms, with deep-embrasured windows looking out on the
terrace, each beautiful or curious in its own way--a noble dining-room
hung with old grisaille tapestry, from which you may learn the life of
Decius Mus if you have patience to disentangle the strange medley of
impossible figures in gardens with impossible flowers, where impossible
beasts roam in herds and impossible birds sing among the branches.

But the glory of the house is its first floor. The wide oak staircase
leads you up first to the chapel-room, with its oriel windows
overhanging the western door, its Italian cabinets, its rare china, its
chairs and couches covered with crewel-work more than two hundred years
old, yet with colors as fresh as on the day that Lady Zouch and her
maidens set in the stitches. Then there is the great drawing-room, with
its precious Italian marble chimney-piece, more brass dogs, more
tapestry, more recessed windows. Then the library, full of priceless
books, to which the present learned owner is constantly adding new
volumes. The mere ceilings are a study in themselves, for they are
covered with mouldings and traceries and hanging bosses of marvellous
workmanship of the time of Inigo Jones--designed, some say, by him, for
he used to stay at Eversley, hard by, with a friend and fellow-pupil of
Sir Christopher Wren. Then comes the long gallery, running the whole
width of the building, stored with curiosities, where we used to run
races and play hide-and-seek with the children of the house in bygone
days, and tremble when evening came on lest some bogie from his
lurking-place should spring out upon us. The bedrooms are panelled with
oak painted white, with splendid fireplaces and carved mantelpieces that
reach the ceiling.

And besides all these there are enchanting little rooms reached by
unexpected staircases, by secret doors in the wall, by dark passages
where one hears the rustle of ghostly brocade dresses. Those are the
most lovable rooms, for, once safely in them, one is at home and warm,
while in the state rooms one feels, as the dear old squire who died here
thirty years ago said, "like a pea in a drum."

Down from the house slopes the park, with its green glades, its
heather-covered knolls, its huge oaks, its delicate silver
birches--above all, its matchless Scotch firs, which James I. planted
here, as he did in many places in England, to remind himself of the land
of his birth. The hardy northern trees took kindly to their new home,
and they have seeded themselves and spread far and wide over vast tracts
of country. But nowhere south of Tweed are finer specimens to be found
than in this old Hampshire park. Three great avenues of them run round a
triangle half a mile across, and outside the shade of their black
branches the purple heather and waving bracken form a carpet fit for
elves and fairies.

From the western front of the house a double avenue of gigantic elms
leads down to the river that gleams in silver lines beneath the bridge,
and ends where the moors begin on the opposite hill a mile away. Up this
avenue in olden days the deer were driven toward the house, to be killed
at the feet of the ladies, who stepped down in hoops and furbelows and
dainty shoes to the iron gates between two pepper-box towers where
gorgeous peacocks now strut and sun themselves.

Those were the days when, sorely against his own wish, Archbishop
Abbot, my worthy ancestor, went a-hunting in the park on Sunday at the
command of the king his master, who with the archbishop was a guest of
Lord Zouch. Well for him had it been if he had resisted the royal will,
for, as it befell, the arrow from his crossbow, glancing from a tree,
struck one of the keepers and killed him then and there. The poor
archbishop, it is said, never smiled again, and his sad, tender face in
Vandyke's noble picture looks down on me from the wall as I write and
bears out the truth of the story. Often and often when we children were
playing in the park did we wander about, trying to settle from which
tree the arrow glanced, conjuring up before our eyes the whole
scene--the king's anger and the archbishop's despair at the
catastrophe--and feeling the while a proud personal interest in it all.
Ah, what good days those were, roaming about knee-deep in heather,
catching the rare moths, chasing the squirrels that whisked up the fir
stems and mocked us from their high perch, searching the hollow trees
for woodpeckers' nests, eating the beech-nuts or pricking our fingers as
we tried to open the husks of the Spanish chestnuts that grew by the
lake! From among the bulrushes the coots sailed out at our approach, and
the tiny dabchick dived so deep that we thought, "This time she _must_
be drowned," when, lo and behold! she would appear twenty yards off, a
little black ball with a yellow bill, only to take breath and plunge
again. Sometimes in a hard winter we would hear high in the sky the cry
of a weird pack of hounds. Nearer and nearer drew that unearthly music,
till we held our breath in a kind of delightful terror, and then above
our heads appeared a flock of wild swans on the search for water; and
down they dropped, like white cannon-balls, into the lake, sending a
mass of spray into the air and shivering the smooth black surface of the
water into a thousand ripples that circled away and lapped against the
banks in mimic waves.

But I think my most exquisite moment of happiness was one spring day
when I saw close by me a little fox-cub--a furry darling, about as big
as a four-months'-old kitten, with black stripes across his fat back. He
had ventured out of the fox-earths on the other side of the park
palings, and did not know how to get back to his anxious mother. I tried
to catch him, but that was not to be, and young Reineke soon found a way
home. Nevertheless, the joy was mine, never to be forgotten, of having
seen a real wild beast so near.

Even on dark and stormy days the park has its own strange charm as one
walks up the gloomy avenue on the soft fir-needles glistening with rain.
A murmur fills the air as of sea-waves beating on the shore: it is the
wet south-west wind soughing overhead and lashing the writhing branches.
One thinks of the German fairy-tales, and half expects to meet the old
woman who led Hansel and Grethel captive, or to come suddenly upon her
house with its ginger-bread roof and barley-sugar windows.

I remember once taking a well-known musician through those fir woods one
dark afternoon as the wind was making soft music above us. He was
silent, and I was disappointed, for I had fancied that the new country
would delight him and excite his imagination. But when we reached home
he sat down to the piano in the dark, and played on and on as if he were
pouring out his whole soul in the flood of sweet melody; and when, after
an hour of marvellous improvisation, he stopped and said to us, "I
couldn't help it: I had to reel off all that I have been seeing and
hearing this afternoon," then I was content, for I knew nothing had been
thrown away on our friend, and that if he could not talk about it all he
could do even better.

But if you would see Bramshill in all its pride come on some November
morning to the first meet of the season.

Well do I recollect the excitement of those happy days. How long the
night seemed before morning broke and I was sure it was not pouring with
rain! How pleasant to run down to breakfast all neat and trim in one's
habit! And then when flask and sandwiches were safely bestowed, white
gloves buttoned and hat firmly secured, how eagerly I watched for
half-past ten to walk out to the stables, where the horses were stamping
and snorting impatiently, knowing full well by their marvellous instinct
what enjoyment was before them! Then my little bay Sintram came dancing
out, followed by Puff, the dear old brown mare. I was tossed into the
saddle, and away we went at that peculiarly unpleasant and tiring pace,
a "cover trot," which for some inscrutable reason is the right thing if
you are going to a meet. Less than a trot, more than a walk, you can
neither sit still nor rise in your stirrup, but must just jog along till
you fairly ache. The horses pull and fight with their bits as we keep
them in the soft sandy ditch up the lane to spare their precious feet.
At the few cottages we pass women and children are all standing at their
garden-gates to watch the "quality" go by. The ploughmen in the fields
discover that the furrows nearest the road need a great deal of
attention; the shepherds fold their sheep to-day close to the hedge, so
as to secure front places for the show; and if we chance to run this way
every man will leave his work and follow us as long as his breath lasts,
and his master, who is riding, will not grumble, for if hounds are
running every man, be he rich or poor, has a right to run too.

Up the sandy hill we go, and out on the wide moors, covered with soft
brown heather, which stretch away with hardly a break twenty miles south
and east to Aldershot Camp or Windsor Forest. On the brow of the hill
grows a mighty bush of furze which always goes by the name of "Miss
Bremer's furze-bush." When the dainty Swedish novelist once came to
gladden Eversley Rectory with her presence she told how she longed to
see the plant before which Linnæus had fallen on his knees; and she
walked up this selfsame hill and with eyes full of tears gazed on the
prickly shrub with its mist of golden-colored, apricot-scented flowers.
The old Hampshire proverb says, "When furze is out of flower kissing is
out of fashion;" and, sure enough, there is not a month in the year in
which you may not find a blossom or two among the green spines.

Now we cross a green road, the Welsh Ride, which in the autumn is
covered with thousands of cattle making their way in great herds from
the Welsh mountains and Devonshire pastures to the winter fairs round
London. The drovers used to boast that they could bring their beasts all
the way from Wales without once going off turf or through a turnpike.
Now, alas! crowded cattle-trucks on the railway are fast superseding the
old-fashioned, wholesome way of travelling, and we seldom have the
autumnal air filled with the lowing of the herds, the barking of the
attendant dogs and the shouts of the drovers on their sturdy Welsh
ponies. But to-day the Welsh Ride looks gay enough, for it is dotted
with little knots of horsemen in black or red coats using it as a short
cut from Aldershot and Sandhurst. We turn off the moor into the shadow
of the fir avenue that leads half a mile up to the park-gates. The
ground, covered with a soft carpet of pine-needles and burrowed
everywhere by the roots of the trees, gives off a hollow echo to the
horses' clattering hoofs. The sombre avenue is alive in unwonted fashion
to-day. Now we pass a group of pedestrians from the village; now a young
farmer comes by on a half-broken colt which is to make its first
acquaintance with the hounds; then a break with a big party from a
country-house in Miss Mitford's village passes us with a gay greeting as
it rattles on. A tiny nutshell of a pony-carriage full of babies comes
trotting along, and its driver, poor Sheldon Williams, will make notes
of the scene and put them into one of his clever hunting-pictures,
little dreaming of the day when his early death will leave those babies
penniless. Now a group of the redcoats we saw on the Welsh Ride
overtakes us, and Sintram plunges and dances as a wild little
thorough-bred comes up to our side. His master, who has already gained
his Victoria Cross twice--first as a little lad in the trenches at
Sevastopol, and again for desperate deeds of valor in the Indian
mutiny--is to win yet further glory in 1879 at the head of the "flying
column" in Zululand--Evelyn Wood, the most gallant and humane of all
that gallant band.

The white park-gate is held wide open by a poor ne'er-do-weel in a
shabby old red coat--John Ellis by name. How he gets his living no one
knows, but if there is a meet of fox-hounds anywhere within ten miles,
there he is sure to be, holding people's horses or ready at a gate for
stray pennies and sixpences. There is usually such a hanger-on to every
pack of hounds in England--one who travels immense distances on foot to
turn up in unexpected places and get a few hard-earned shillings as his
reward. We jog along under the magnificent silver firs, only to be
equalled by those in the duke of Wellington's park at Strathfieldsaye,
hard by; then up the lime avenue which borders the cricket-ground, where
thirty years ago the most famous matches in Hampshire were played; and
as we reach the iron gates leading up to the house our little knot of
riders has swelled into a veritable cavalcade.

Down the drive we trot, past the stables, where the watch-dogs strain
angrily at their chains and a little green monkey jibbers with rage and
excitement, and in another moment we turn under the shadow of the great
house up to the western door. Here all is life and bustle. Twenty or
thirty carriages are drawn up by the widespreading lawn: grooms are
holding horses ready for their masters, who are refreshing the inner man
with cherry brandy and cold breakfast indoors. A tinkle of bells is
heard as the duchess of Wellington drives herself up with her three
ponies abreast, Russian fashion. Then a perfectly-appointed brougham,
with a pair of magnificent cobs, stops in a corner, and a soldier-like
foreigner in a red coat helps out a quiet-looking English lady wrapped
up in furs. She slips them off as her groom leads up a priceless horse
for her to mount, and in a moment is in the saddle, and will ride as
straight as any man in the field to-day. Her husband, Count Morella,
better known as the famous Carlist general Cabrera, whose strange and
terrible history many years ago fascinated the gentle English heiress,
now satisfies his war-like spirit by fox-hunting on the best horses that
money can buy, and has settled down into a quiet English country
gentleman.

The hounds have arrived before us. There they are--the beauties!--on the
green grass, and we ride in among them to have a word with Tom Swetman
the huntsman and good George Austin the whip, the latter of whom has
given me a lead over many a fence. Gallant Tom! the bravest and gentlest
of men, how little we thought that in a year or two we should never see
your honest face again on earth! But you will be long remembered, though
you are with us no more, and the story will be told for years to come of
a day when the hounds ran into their fox on the South-western Railway.
It was in a cutting fifty feet deep, with a tremendous fence at the top.
Tom arrived just in time to see his hounds on the rails, with poor
Reynard dead in their midst and the express train from Southampton
speeding up the hill at fifty miles an hour. He crammed his horse over
the great post and rails, down the almost perpendicular side of the
cutting, whipped the hounds off, and, as the train rushed screaming by,
rode out from under the very wheels of the engine and up the farther
bank with his rescued pack.

But now our master, Mr. Garth, comes down the steps--a signal that we
must no longer waste time talking with our neighbors, and like a good
old friend he gives us a private programme of the way we shall draw.
Stirrups are lengthened or shortened, girths tightened, restive horses
led away to unobserved corners where their owners can try to mount
without being seen by the assembled multitude. Sintram executes a
war-dance on his hind legs, to the delight of some schoolboys in a
wagonette, the terror of their fair companions and the extreme disgust
of his mistress at having to practice the _haute école_ before so large
an audience. Ah, my poor Sintram! He danced once too often, and one fine
day came to a sad end by falling backward and breaking his neck.

Tom now comes up to the master: "Shall we go, sir?"

"Yes--now, I think."

A crack of the whips and away trots Tom, followed by his splendid pack
and his two whippers-in. Then comes the master, and we all crowd after
them pell-mell with horses plunging and kicking, and as soon as we are
fairly out in the open a kind of stampede takes place among the unruly
young ones, and we see many an involuntary steeple-chase over the smooth
green cricket-ground. Through the dark avenues of fir trees we canter to
the temple, a little summerhouse on a promontory in the sea of wood that
lies below, and we stand admiring the far blue distant view away to the
Hogsback and the South Downs beyond Basingstoke as the hounds begin
their work. There they are: you can see their twinkling tails as they
draw the heather-covered slopes beneath us and disappear among the
golden-brown bracken, while one of the whips plunges down after them and
shakes a shower of amber leaves from the silver birches as he brushes
past them.

Something streaks away down a green drive. A young hound gives tongue,
but his note of triumph quickly changes to a yelp as the vigilant whip
catches him with the tip of his long lash and roars, "War'[1] hare!"
Poor little man! He has tried to run what is called a "short-tailed
fox," and returns to the pack a sadder and a wiser dog. But now the
tails twinkle faster than ever. A low whimper from some of the old
hounds, then a burst of joyous music from the pack.

"Gone away!" yells Tom, standing up in his stirrups and tooting his
horn.

Then that unmistakable screech which is supposed to mean "Tally-ho!"
from a group of beaters and keepers in the distance, and there, against
the park-palings, a beautiful red thing scudding along the soft ride,
flat to the ground, his bushy tail flying straight behind him. Reynard
himself! Now let all look out for themselves. Adieu, carriages! adieu,
poor pedestrians! We are off, and shall not see you again till
dinner-time. Through the park-gate we stream away, down the fir avenue,
along the Welsh Ride. We have got a splendid start, and our horses fly
on beside Countess Morella, who looks the perfection of a hunting lady
in her plain neat habit just down to her feet.

Reynard is making for Coombes's Wood, but the earths were all stopped
this morning at four o'clock; so away he speeds again, leaving the
rectory and its lovely meadows and the dear old church below us--away
past the bogs where the cotton-grass and the flycatcher, the blue
gentian and the yellow asphodel, grow among the treacherous
tussocks--away to Eversley Wood. Here the same fate--a fagot or three or
four sods in the mouth of each hole--awaits him; so, changing his
tactics, he strikes boldly across Hartfordbridge Flats for Lord
Calthorpe's woods at Elvetham.

And now woe to the unwary or to the newcomer who thinks our
heather-covered moors are all plain sailing! for along them run long
lines of ruts, the remains of the old pack-road of the Middle Ages, worn
by the traffic of centuries and now covered deep in purple heath. The
only way to get over them, unless you stop and walk, is to jump boldly
into the middle like the man in the nursery rhyme, and then jump out
again: horses that have been in the country for a while soon learn to do
this. But some luckless ensign who has lately joined his regiment at
Aldershot comes down bodily, and horse and man roll and struggle in the
deep ruts which William the Conqueror's pack-horses helped to tread out
as they came from London to Winchester.

Now the woods are drawing near, and we cross the old London road, the
high-road between the metropolis and Southampton, along which ninety
stagecoaches ran every day in the good old times. A mile off to our
right, down Star Hill, lies the famous White Lion Inn, now a miserable
pot-house, where George IV. used to stay, and where, on the day that the
London and South-western Railway was opened, the old ostler cut his
throat in sheer despair, for Othello's occupation was gone. Ten miles
up the road lies Bagshot Heath, the terror of travellers in those
coaching days. There stood, and stands still, a little wayside inn
called the Golden Farmer, where many of the coaches stopped to water the
horses. The wearied travellers of the end of last century, touched by
the tender solicitude of the charming landlord, confided to his
sympathetic ear their fears of the highwaymen who were said to infest
the heath. Cheered and encouraged with assurances from their host of the
perfect safety of the particular road they intended taking, the
travellers set out. But usually, when they had gone about a mile, the
coach would stop with a sudden jerk, and a masked man on a magnificent
horse would ride up, pistol in hand, and demand their money or their
life. Sometimes serious encounters took place with this leader and his
band, and then the wounded and terrified victims would drag themselves
back to the Golden Farmer, where the host, full of commiseration for
their misfortunes, would lavish care and kindness upon them. This went
on for years, and it was not until hundreds of robberies had been
committed that the discovery was made of the identity of the fascinating
landlord and the desperate captain of the highwaymen.

Many are the tales the old people at Eversley used to tell of the
"gentlemen of the road" in their fathers' and grandfathers' time. Even
in quiet Eversley itself a curate lived some hundred years ago whose
strange career ended on the gallows. He owned a splendid black horse
which no one ever saw him mount. But it was whispered that if any one
peeped into its stable in the morning the beautiful creature was seen
covered with foam, bathed in perspiration, trembling as if it had just
come in from a long gallop; and at last it was found out that Parson
Darby belonged to the gang of highwaymen on Bagshot Heath. He was caught
red-handed, and hanged close to the Golden Farmer in chains on a gibbet
of which the posts were still standing forty years ago. But what became
of his black horse no one ever could tell me. Now the London road is as
safe and quiet as any other well-kept highway, and the wildest
passengers upon it are a few wandering gypsies, who travel up and down
it from fair to race and from race to fair.

But Reynard is speeding away through the pleasant fir woods, and we are
following him as fast as we can lay legs to ground--scrambling over the
rotten banks, scurrying along the soft rides, lying low on our saddles
to avoid the sweeping boughs, and watching with all our eyes for the
slippery roots that crawl along the surface of the sandy soil. Down
through the bogs, across the bridge by the home farm, past the park,
into the fallow fields, with half a dozen tremendous fences which send
my heart up into my throat till Sintram lands me safe over each, into
the fir woods again, up to the foot of the Queen's Mounts; and there,
where good Queen Bess sat and watched the deer being driven up to her
feet, do we run into our gallant fox, and a "Whoo-hoop!" from Tom
proclaims that Reynard is no more.

But our run has led us far from home, and while the hounds trot on to
Dogmersfield Park to draw the coverts of the descendants of the old
regicide Mildmay, let us wend our way once more to Bramshill and linger
a while longer about the terraces and gardens of the dear old house.

Come back with me, gentle reader, through the iron gates under the
crumbling archways of the pleasaunce, where the Virginia creeper twines
its delicate wreaths and glorifies the old stones in autumn with a flush
of flame. The troco-ground, with its green turf as smooth as a
billiard-table, is just as it was in the days of King James. There in
the centre is the iron ring through which the lords and dames drove the
heavy wooden troco-balls; and if you go into the garden-hall through
that arched corridor you will see the actual balls that they used, and
the long poles, with a kind of iron cup at their ends, with which the
players pushed them--forerunners of the modern croquet-box that lies
beside them.

Under the sunny walls run straight wide borders, where the bees make
merry among pinks and lilies, mignonette and gilliflowers, and the walls
themselves are tangled with old-fashioned roses and honeysuckles. One
double yellow rose tree of prodigious age is kept as the apple of the
gardener's eye. Tradition tells that it was brought a hundred years ago
from Damascus--a fact which I am quite willing to believe, for the
knotted stem tells its own story, and certainly there never was a
sweeter rose or one more worthy of coming from the far-famed gardens of
the East. Many a thousand blossoms have I picked from its descendants,
for it is the ancestor of a hardy race: every sucker of the family grows
and thrives in the poorest soil, and covers itself each June with a
thick mass of canary-colored blossoms. During the three weeks that the
yellow briers were in flower every room in Eversley Rectory was decked
out with flat bowls of them on a ground of green ferns, and purple-black
pansies mingled with their golden blooms.

Round about the house masses of another yellow flower are planted with
no sparing hand--the great St. John's wort. It is pleasant to look upon,
but it has another value. Dare I tell it in the nineteenth century, this
age of railroads and telegraphs and iron-clads, when space and time are
in a fair way to be annihilated, and nothing is so sacred that it may
not be questioned, no problem so hard that men may not try to solve it?
In the days when Bramshill House was built our forefathers believed
firmly in a whole unseen or rarely-seen world around them of fairies,
ghosts, spirits and witches. In some out-of-the-way corners in
England--even in these days of board schools and competitive
examinations, when we are told that King Arthur never existed and that
William Tell is a "sun-myth"--some remnants of this belief still linger.
In Devonshire folks speak shyly and with bated breath of the "good
people;" and even in the year of grace 1879 a Warwickshire laborer was
had up before the magistrates for having with a pitchfork half killed a
poor old woman whom he declared to be a witch. But be that as it may, in
the reign of James I. no one doubted the existence of the spirit-world
about us, and on St. John's Eve all its denizens, good and bad, were
supposed to wander freely where they would. One only thing they feared,
and that was the great St. John's wort. Therefore, all who wished to
guard house and home from the unwelcome visitors, who pinched the maids,
turned the milk sour and plagued their victims with a thousand impish
tricks, planted it freely about their gardens; and thus it is that you
see its golden flowers amid their shining rich green leaves and crimson
shoots round nearly all old English homes.

Do not laugh at these old fables, gentle reader. When we wander over the
green turf and through the wide halls we seem to have opened a door that
leads us back into the past out of the turmoil of the nineteenth
century. And surely for a moment it can do us no harm to leave our
striving, hurrying, anxious modern life, and picture to ourselves the
days when our forefathers maybe were ignorant and superstitious, but
when they knew how to build and how to fight and how to write--the days
when England became "a nest of singing birds."

  ROSE G. KINGSLEY.


FOOTNOTES:

[1] In hunting dialect the warning "'ware" or "beware" is shortened to
"war'," as in the old advice, "War' horse, war' hound, war' heel!"



CANOEING ON THE HIGH MISSISSIPPI.

TWO PAPERS.--I.

[Illustration]


The Kleiner Fritz and Hattie of Louisville and the Betsy D. of
Cincinnati made the canoe-fleet which the Northern Pacific Railway
shunted out upon its station-platform at Detroit City, Minnesota, in the
early gray of last July's first Thursday. We had bargained by post with
Beaulieu, a shrewd, wiry, reckless French half-breed, for transportation
of ourselves, canoes, equipment and provisions to Itasca Lake, or to a
point upon the Mississippi five miles below the lake, as we might elect.
His assurance was that four days and forty-one dollars would carry us to
our first objective point. His helpers were a lively young half-breed,
son-in-law of the murdered chief Hole-in-the-Day, another big mongrel,
fat, plodding and reticent, and a young Indian who could speak a few
English words, but was destitute of ideas in either English or Chippewa.
Their motive-power was grazing on the open prairie back of the ragged
village. The Reservation Indian, denied liquor at home, reckons upon a
trip out of bounds as fair opportunity for a spree, so that catching and
harnessing the ponies and cattle was a tedious task that covered the
hours from breakfast well on toward noon; but at last the Hattie was
firmly imbedded in prairie-grass and soft luggage upon one wagon, the
Fritz and the Betsy were bound together upon a second, and the men of
the fleet, with the stores, filled the third.

From Detroit City to Itasca Lake is about forty miles in a straight
line, but no practicable way thither approximates to a direct line, and
he who would see the beautiful lake and the head of the great river must
travel for seven or eight days and endure many hardships. Sixty miles
were to be done on wheels. The first day's travel was to White Earth
Agency, twenty-two miles across a rolling prairie which steadily rises
toward its climax in the Hauteur des Terres. The soil is of rare
fertility, and the unbounded fields were clothed in the greenest of
green, flecked with wild flowers of every hue in luxuriant profusion.
Clumps of trees gave variety to the broad and beautiful view, while
scores of clear little lakes gemmed the prairie as with great drops of
molten silver. The eye swept an horizon of twenty miles, and once twenty
leagues were within our visual grasp. The plodding fat man went his way
in a dignified walk, but the passenger vehicle and that which bore the
other boats, travelling by order of Beaulieu, who had in him more
Detroit whiskey than ordinary discretion, came more than half the way at
a terrible gait, spite of our remonstrances and greatly to our
trepidation. Examination showed that the Betsy was racked and pounded
beyond all excuse, while the poor Fritz revealed a hole in its graceful
side like that made by a six-pound cannon-shot--a sad beginning for so
long a cruise. Thence we went on slowly to the agency, where our first
task was to find a clever Vermont Yankee reputed as the man to repair
the unwelcome and inexcusable damage. The ingenious and genial fellow
worked through the hot Fourth of July, while we mingled with the Indians
and took part in their celebration, the first ever conducted entirely by
themselves.

White Earth Agency is the seat of government of three reservations which
embrace the homes of all the Chippewas. White Earth Reservation is
thirty-six miles square, and is peopled by nearly seventeen hundred
Indians and half-breeds. These were formerly gathered upon Crow Wing
River, near Brainerd, where they existed in drunkenness, barbarism and
destitution. In 1868 they were removed here, and the institutions of
Christian civilization were introduced. They live in comfortable cabins
and bark lodges. The agent, Major C.A. Ruffee, is a gentleman of
capacity and integrity. Using his authority well and wisely, he is a
king throughout his dominion of thirteen hundred square miles. His happy
blending of civil and military government gives satisfaction to all who
are well disposed. The Chippewas deal kindly among themselves, and have
no quarrels with the whites. They have a well-arranged police system,
with a chief, lieutenants and sergeants, embracing sixteen men in all,
and directly responsible to the agent. No liquor is allowed on the
reservation. They have no pilfering, and the few locks and bolts are
rarely needed. In case of trespass or disagreement the parties come or
are summoned before the agent, who examines the case on its merits,
weighs the facts and the equities, decides; and there the quarrel ends.

The seat of the agency is an orderless village gathered about a
green-shored little lake, and includes the office of the agent, the
post-office, a warehouse for supplies, a meat-shop, two trading-stores
and an untidy and comfortless hotel. Near by is the neat cottage of the
agent, a large and comely boarding-school, an industrial school, and the
residences of the chief clerk and of the head-farmer, who teaches and
aids the Indians in practical farming. Not far away to the south is the
Roman Catholic church; a mile to the north is the hospital, a large and
cheerful building; and near the hospital are the tasteful Protestant
Episcopal chapel and the rectory of the Rev. Mr. Gilfillan, who for
fourteen years has worthily occupied a parish coextensive with the
Chippewa Nation. The true solution of the Indian question is being
worked out at White Earth in results that augur well for the future.
Each child may secure education, and the minds and morals of all ages
are cared for. Their churches are well attended and their schools have
outgrown present accommodations. Their religious services and schools
are conducted in their own language. They have an educated Indian
clergyman who can scarcely speak English, while Mr. Gilfillan speaks the
Chippewa as fluently as his mother-tongue. They have few quarrels, no
thieving, no drunkenness, no abject poverty. They are not more perfect
than others of human kind, but according to their light and sphere they
are as good as a similar average of whites anywhere. The wise purpose is
to make them kind, moral, educated and industrious Indians, not
make-believe white men, and the work is doing and promising well in
sincere and capable hands.

The Indian Fourth-of-July celebration took place in an open, treeless
prairie. The festivities centred in a series of races run in pairs by
the small and wiry Indian ponies over a curved, mowed and rolled
half-mile course. Nearly all the young men were betters, in stakes of
from twenty-five cents to ten dollars. There were no pools, but hard
running, straight betting and square paying. The chief of police was the
president of the course. All were in good-humor. There was no liquor,
neither was there a harsh word or a blow among the five hundred. After
the races eatables, tea, coffee and ice-water were enjoyed with laughter
and chat. In the evening we cruisers gave a show of rockets and Roman
candles, to the great delight of the Indians, and the day closed with a
dance in the large dining-hall of the boarding-school.

[Illustration: ACROSS THE PRAIRIE.]

Our damaged boats repaired and preparations completed for three weeks'
absence from civilization, we set out near mid-day of Saturday for the
march to Wild Rice River, eighteen miles. Our way lay among the cabins,
lodges and farms of the Chippewas, over a billowy, green immensity
bordered on the east by the lines of the Hauteur des Terres, which shut
us from the Mississippi Valley, and horizoned on the west by the slopes
beyond the famed Red River of the North. Our day's journey terminated,
in a driving rainstorm, on the banks of Wild Rice River, where are a
trading-store, the cabin of the trader and a neat chapel of the
Protestant Episcopal mission. Our habitation for the night was a dark,
muddy, odorous storehouse, in whose nether apartment we munched a frugal
supper, then climbed a ladder to beds upon the bare floor between stacks
of snake-root, which had accumulated from barterings with the Indians.
During the night the rainstorm grew to a gale which rocked our night's
home like a ship at sea to the music of heaven's grand diapasons. Sunday
morning, impelled by the expense of our large retinue and the
cheerlessness of our refuge, we pushed on for the foot of Wild Rice
Lake, twenty miles distant over prairies and through forests. Two miles
out we were overtaken by another fierce storm, which drove us to the
shelter of the last human habitation, save two others near by, that we
should see for three weeks. The broad, sweeping bow of the black cloud,
the peculiar detonations of thunder in that clear atmosphere, the rush
of wind, rain and hail, unhindered by the treeless and trackless moor,
were lessons of God's majesty and power more impressive than cathedral
mass or prayer and song and psalm of men. Out of the storm's first onset
we rushed unasked into the hut of an Indian family, and surprised a pair
of squaws and a six-months' pappoose squatting on a dirty and
rain-pooled floor in almost total darkness. In an hour the storm had
gone its eastward way, the sun shone out, and we resumed our trail among
spruces, pines, oaks and elms to the foot of the lake, where we were to
dismiss our prairie-schooners. Monday, with the early sun, we left teams
and drivers, to push on by lakes, up rivers and through the pathless
wilderness beyond all roads and habitations. Our party was reduced to
the barest needs for the severe work before us. Besides our three
selves we had a corps of five Indians as guides and packers, each of
whom was a character, and all bore themselves through four days of
severe work honestly, cheerfully and helpfully. They were Henry St.
Clair, a half-breed, our interpreter, to whom we could only address
measured monosyllables with any hope of imparting ideas, but always
faithful, frank and wise; Kewashawkonce, the guide, a man of push and a
genuine wag; Kawaybawgo, a huge hunter, whose old long shot-gun has
banged over almost every acre of these wilds; Metagooe, a sleepy,
thick-headed fellow; and Waisonbekton, young and active, always ready
for work or burden and constantly alert for new and interesting things
in Nature.

At the foot of Wild Rice Lake we prepared our canoes for voyaging, and
began our long paddle toward the source of the Mississippi, whence we
were to descend to civilization. A brief description of our little ships
and equipment will help to a better understanding of our cruise. Each
voyager had a Rob Roy canoe, slightly improved as to model and built
upon the incomparable plan of Mr. Rushton of Canton, New York. The
canoes are fourteen feet long, ten and a half inches deep and
twenty-seven inches wide, decked over except a man-hole sixteen by about
thirty-six inches, and weighing, with the mast and lug sail, from fifty
to fifty-six pounds. The paddle is eight feet long, bladed at each end,
grasped in the middle, and drives the canoe by strokes alternating on
each side. The traveller sits flat upon the boat's floor, facing the
bow. The canoe is not only a vehicle, but furnishes a dry and secure bed
for sleeping at night, and, with its rubber apron, is a refuge from rain
and storm. Each boat was equipped with an air-pillow, rubber blanket,
rubber poncho, woollen blankets, rubber navy-bag and haversack. The
general outfit represented a fine double shot-gun, a small and effective
rifle, a revolver, fishing-tackle for each man, compass, aneroid
barometer, thermometer, folding stove, stew-pans in nests, frying-pan,
broiler, table-ware, and provisions for three weeks based upon the army
ration, with dried fruits, condensed milk, brandy, medicines, etc.,
purchased at St. Paul.

Our stores and equipment suitably divided between the canoes, we paddled
up through the outlet and into the lake, followed by Metagooe and
Waisonbekton in a large birch-bark canoe bearing the provisions and
camp-supplies of the Indians, while their companions walked across the
country.

Wild Rice Lake is about one mile by five miles in extent. It is named
from the wild rice which grows up from its shallow depths over almost
its whole extent. Each autumn hundreds of Indians gather upon its shores
in tents and lodges to secure the crop. Two squaws pass slowly through
the thick rice in a birch canoe, one paddling at the stern and the other
at the bow, drawing the ripe rice over the gunwale and with a club
flailing the grain out of the straw into the boat. There and thus every
family upon the reservation may secure an important part of the winter's
provisions.

Through and over this green and productive sea we paddled about four
miles to the mouth of Wild Rice River, which flows out of Upper Wild
Rice Lake, then up the narrow, deep and crooked river. At our noon
rendezvous Kawaybawgo and his foot-companions came in with a fine deer,
the victim of his old but effective gun. In the early afternoon our
progress became slow and excessively wearying from the shallowing of the
river and its wonderful crookedness. The current ran like a mill-race
around hundreds of short turns, and had its own exasperating way upon
our keels. Finally, we were obliged to wade and drag the canoes after us
in water varying between ankle-and waist-deep. A few hours of this wore
us all out, and we called a halt and camp, utterly exhausted, with not
more than twelve miles to the credit of the hard day's work. The Betsy
D.'s skipper rolled over dead-beaten and sick; the Hattie's captain
floundered up into the deep grass, incapable of further effort; while he
of the Kleiner Fritz, scarcely better off, prescribed camphor and black
coffee for the one and cherry brandy for the other, discreetly mixing
the prescription for himself. Medication, an hour's rest and juicy
rashers of broiled venison from the Indians' generous store soon brought
the expedition to its wonted cheer and vigor.

[Illustration: TAKING WATER, WILD RICE LAKE.]

Supper over, we filled the pipes of the Indians with fine tobacco and
asked for a council. We all sat around a bright fire, and soon effected
a bargain with the Indians to drag our canoes on up the little river,
leaving us to walk across the country with the guide. Early the
following morning we started, four of our party with the canoes, and we
on foot with Kewashawkonce. The guide was pantomimed by our fat man for
a conservative pace becoming the hot morning and the difficult route.
Ke, as we abbreviated him, strode into an unbroken forest, grown with
dense underbrush, strewn with fallen trees at almost every step,
diversified by swamps and thickets through which he beat his way by main
strength, and now and then traversed by rivers--all streams are rivers
there--into which he plunged with never an interrogation-mark, and so on
briskly, up hill and down, till, with three miles of walking, wading,
climbing and struggling, we were brought to bay, tired out. Half an
hour's rest and some refreshing wild strawberries prepared us for such
another stage. Then an hour more of this terrible strain made us drop
again for rest. Another hour, and before noon, hot and jaded, we came
out upon a low bluff overhanging the river, and stopped for lunch. The
guide, apparently fresh and unwearied, cut a sheet of birch bark for
tinder, lit a fire as defence against mosquitos, and in sixty seconds
was snoring. We were not slow in following his example, and the sun was
dropping over into the west when we awoke. The guide examined the river,
and informed us that our wading section was yet below. Standing in
mid-stream drinking from his hands, he saw a fine pickerel's graceful
movements a rod away, reached out for a half-sunken bit of a tree's
branch, plunged it dexterously at the fish, struck it fairly in the
back, and brought it up to us with a satisfied grunt. We lounged the
afternoon away, and at six o'clock Metagooe came wearily to our camp
with the Fritz at his heels. Half an hour later his comrades came with
the other Rob Roys, their camp-traps loaded upon the decks and upon the
interpreter's back. Our inquiry as to what had become of their birch
canoe brought from Henry, as he dropped his pack, the sententious
answer, "Busted." Over the evening's pipes and camp-fire, less than
eight miles of actual distance accomplished, we resolved to abandon the
shallow river and to portage directly to Upper Wild Rice Lake. The
skipper of the Betsy proposed for the three of us a joint bed:
Cincinnati feet have a troublesome time under a Rob Roy's low deck. We
assented, stretched our rubber blankets, spread our woollens, adjusted
the Betsy's long mosquito-bar and crawled carefully under it in
expectation of a glorious sleep under the stars and the pines; but the
dreams of the Hattie's captain, the trombonings of the Betsy's nose, the
tossings of the Fritz and the savage industry of the mosquitos drove
anything but troubled sleep from our eyelids, and we welcomed the early
"Ho! ho! ho!" and improvised gong of the irrepressible Kawaybawgo.

[Illustration: MINNESOTA MOSQUITOS.]

Before we had done with our coffee, venison and slap-jacks the Indians
had made yokes for carrying the canoes on their heads and shoulders, and
had reduced the camp to packs. Soon we were off upon the first _pose_ of
a regular Indian portage. Each of three Indians had upon his shoulders
one of the canoes, his head within its hot and darkening sides, its bow
pointing forward high in the air and its stern hanging low behind his
heels. The other two squatted upon heel and toe, drew the broad strap of
their carrying-thongs over their foreheads, and with a plunge and a
grunt sprang to their feet, each with a great hump of six score pounds.
Then we plunged, in Indian file, into a trackless forest, and jogtrotted
our way for three miles, when in a clump of pines, without a word or a
signal, down came the boats and the packs. Three of the splendid fellows
loosed their pack-thongs and took their rest in tramping back unloaded
to camp for what had been left. The others, with us, rested a few
moments: then we pushed on till two miles brought us out upon the low,
jungled shore of a beautiful lake about one mile by two in extent. The
guide, without a word, laid down his load, but not his clothes, and with
a swift rush sprang far out into the lake, swam up and down, splashing,
shouting and laughing, came dripping to shore, lit his smudge-fire, lay
down in a sunny place, snored an hour, awoke dry and vigorous, and with
a whoop he and Waisonbekton dashed into the woods to go back for their
share of the luggage left behind. While they were gone we enjoyed our
lunch and gave a name to the lovely lake which had rippled so long, far
away from the haunts of men, without identity. We christened it Rob Roy
Lake, in honor of our fleet. It lies half a mile to the south-west of
Upper Wild Rice Lake, into which its waters flow, and is set down on
Colton's sectional map in the township range numbered thirty-seven. Our
entire party reunited, we canoeists paddled across to the lake's outlet,
a narrow, miry stream which loses itself in a swamp, and that in turn
merges into the Upper Wild Rice Lake. We paddled and poled down to the
end of the little river, and came to a dead stand in the matted roots of
the swamp-grass: then waded waist-deep in the mire and slime, each
dragging his canoe with the aid of an Indian, until we came out upon the
open water. Thence a paddle of two miles along the coast brought us to
another little stream flowing into the lake. As we came to its mouth
Kawaybawgo was feasting upon a duck he had killed and broiled, of which
he offered me a portion with a smile and interrogative grunt which
seemed to compassionate my wet, weary and forlorn appearance. A splendid
pike, two feet long, came gracefully out of the stream and hung
motionless in the clear water. I pointed him out to the Indian and the
Hattie's captain, both of whom were standing near him. At the instant
their eyes fell upon him he moved: then, as they started for him, he
darted like a flash for deep water, pursued by the two men at the top of
their speed through a sheet of water six inches deep for nearly a
hundred feet out. It was a fair race, and the six-feet-three Indian made
a splendid spurt, but the pike won.

[Illustration: THE MISSISSIPPI AT LAST!]

The stream bore us upward to the floating bog out of which it flowed. We
drew the canoes out upon a meadow which undulated in graceful billows at
our every movement. A step would shake all the surface for a rod about
us, while our combined tread sent waves of grassy earth in every
direction. A sudden leap so shook the cup of cold coffee sitting by one
of the Indians, six or seven yards away, that the liquid spilled over
the cup's edge. The whole meadow, solid to the eye, is but one of those
monster sponges that hold in abeyance waters which otherwise would sweep
like a flood down the great rivers. Beyond this billowy field we came to
the open water of another unnamed lake, about one mile long, fringed
about with green pines, to which we gave the name of Longworth, in honor
of Cincinnati's distinguished judge, and to a lovely little green island
thickly grown with trees we gave the name of another canoeist left
behind, Mr. Empson of Louisville. At the head of Longworth Lake, and in
plain view of Empson Island, within a space cleared out of a dense
jungle, we made our last camp before reaching the coveted Mississippi.
Our stay here was marked in red by the most vindictive attack from
mosquitos in all the cruise. No one unacquainted with the Northern
Minnesota wilderness in midsummer, or with a region having a similar
insect population, can at all imagine the number and fierceness of the
ravenous aërial hosts that had beset us all the way from White Earth. In
mid-day they keep one constantly alert, while at night they are beyond
credible report. They are small, shrewd and persistent. As I lay awake
their myriad voices about and above me made a great chorus, really grand
and impressive, out of which for a few seconds at a time there came
bursts of harmony which I could hardly separate from the idea of a
vast, distant chorus of human voices. Against their voracity no ordinary
bar is a bar at all. We had gone to their haunts provided with netting
which at home gave immunity, but through its meshes these mosquitos
inserted their bills, then their heads, then struggled through bodily,
and came down upon us like demons. We were dressed in woollens, our
hands were in dogskin gloves and our heads and necks in thick calico
hoods and capes, but all such protections were naught when those
screaming villains had a mind for blood. At one onslaught they would go
into the shrinking flesh through two thicknesses of wool and two of
cotton, or through a heavy dogskin glove, or through the thick and
hardened skin of the hand's palm or the foot's ball, or through a
buckskin moccasin and cotton hose--through any protection at our command
except a cotton canopy hung wide of our heads and bodies.

Sung and stung out of all endurance by the very centre of that army of
the wilderness, we were astir in the grayest of our second Thursday's
dawn, and were soon in readiness for our final portage over the crests
of the Heights of Land to the river, which out of our long and severe
march had become to us a veritable Mecca. Our way was up a gentle range
of hills, whose tops, but a few yards wide, divide the waters which flow
southward to the great Gulf from those which seek their far northward
trend through the Red River of the North. The first division of our
party reached the Mississippi before noon with a joy born out of a
week's toil and hardship, and in a trice I was drinking of and laving in
its swift, bright water. We could hardly realize that in this deep,
rushing brook, not more than four or five paces wide, we saw the
beginnings of that majestic current which drains half a continent. Soon
our second division came up, we ate our last lunch in company, and the
Indians, each shaking us by the hand with a grunt and a smile, then
going off into the forest with a cheer, left us alone in that vast and
uninhabited wilderness. Late in the afternoon we launched our canoes
into the little river, and loaded them for our journey to its head,
camping about three miles above our point of embarkation.

[Illustration: HEAD OF THE MISSISSIPPI.]

The next morning we started with light hearts upon what we supposed
would be but a short journey to the river's source, to meet an
exasperating disappointment. We had made a bargain for transportation
from the railway to Itasca Lake or to a point five miles below, all
fully diagrammed and understood by correspondence, but found ourselves
set down by the employés of the rascally half-breed--who had been
careful to leave us at Wild Rice Lake--in an unknown land, six days from
civilization, at a point nearly or quite thirty miles below the lake,
below a region of rapids and obstructions against which we had
especially stipulated, and up which no craft had ever travelled. A
mile's work brought us to the beginning of this second series of
troubles. Lying across the river at all heights, depths and angles were
the tough pine logs we had dreaded, and at every mile or two were
tumbling rapids. All that long Friday we took our turns with the axe,
lopping off branches that we might squeeze under or shunt over logs;
climbing with our stores and boats over great log-drifts held by the
grip of the rocky defiles; wading through shoals and dragging our canoes
through mud and sand; plunging suddenly into holes that engulfed us to
our armpits; paddling astride our decks over pools too deep for wading;
chopping and wrenching logs that forbade other means of passage;
fighting inch by inch up plunging gorges, down which and over whose
rugged boulders the narrowed waters foamed in almost resistless fury and
milky foam--on and up, rod by rod, half a mile in the hour, till we came
to a weary and desolate camp not two leagues from our breakfasts. There
we cooked our suppers and ate in hoods and gloves, fighting mosquitos
and black flies for every morsel, speculating as to the morrow's
probabilities and discussing the question of victory or defeat. We rose
from the night's sleep resolved upon seeing Itasca, and until
mid-afternoon fought over again the battles of yesterday, and at last
came out upon a smooth, placid stream, up which we paddled with easy
swing some nine miles. Then the river narrowed and shallowed, and we
again took to our feet upon a beautiful gravelly bottom. At times the
way was closed to sight by rushes and wild rice, and we could only beat
our way through. At last the water, thickly grown with reeds, broadened
and deepened, and a score of paddle-strokes carried us through the green
curtain out upon Itasca's beautiful surface, over which we glided, under
the shadows of the setting sun, up to Schoolcraft's Island for a
Sunday's quiet.

Our heavy and restful sleep was not broken till long after the sun was
glinting upon us through the trees. Our first work was given to building
a lodge of underbrush and making preparations for two days' stay on the
lonely island, completed by unfurling the signal of the New York Canoe
Club from a high stump hard by the camp-fire. Barring the mosquitos,
Sunday's rest was a pleasant and refreshing sequence to ten days of toil
and struggle, and Monday found us in hearty readiness for a thorough
exploration of Itasca Lake and its feeders. We took a lunch, our guns
and scientific instruments, and paddled up the south-west arm of the
lake to find and explore the leading tributary. We found the outlets of
five small streams, two having well-defined mouths and three filtering
into the lake through bogs. Selecting the larger of the two open
streams, we paddled into its sluggish waters, ten feet wide and one foot
deep where they enter the lake. Slow and sinuous progress of two hundred
yards brought us to a blockade of logs and to shallow water. We landed,
fastened the canoes, took our bearings by compass and started for a
tramp through thicket and forest to Elk Lake, which we reached after a
rapid walk of thirty-five minutes. This lake is an oval of about one
mile in its longest diameter. It lies about half a mile in a straight
line south from Itasca. Its shores are marshy, bordered by hills densely
timbered. Its sources are boggy streams having little or no
clearly-defined course. To all appearance, these bogs and this small
lake are the uttermost tributaries to Itasca Lake, and the latter,
concentrating these minor streams and sending them out as one, is the
true head of the Father of Waters.

Elk Lake was a place of misadventure to us. Our struggle through the
thicket and dense forest was hot and exhausting. Our scientist left
there a fine aneroid barometer, which a second hot walk failed to
recover. Our photographer, arrived at the lake with a grievous burden of
camera, plates, tripod, etc., found that he had forgotten his lens
tubes, and was compelled to double his tracks back to the canoes, then
wade out into the swampy borders of the lake, waist-deep in slime, to
secure a view of this highest Mississippi water, only to have his plate
light-struck and ruined by an accident on the homeward journey.

While the artist was gone for his forgotten lenses our Nimrod missed a
fine eagle which swept over our heads at long range. So we returned to
our island camp in no very good mood, but a successful troll for
lake-trout, and a good supper off two fine fellows baked under the coals
in birch jackets, sent us to bed in good spirits and with no regrets
save for the lost barometer.

  A.H. SIEGFRIED.



NATIONAL MUSIC AN INTERPRETER OF NATIONAL CHARACTER.


The popular music of any people is, in a great measure, the thermometer
of its physical sensitiveness and its moral sentiments; and the reason
of this is evident. The shepherd tending his flock, the fisherman
mending his nets, the soldier on the march, the peasant at the plough,
has no inducement to sing unless his heart's emotion incite him to it. A
true national music is, then, what the Germans call _Volksmusik_, and,
springing from the hearts of the people, it is psychologically one of
their best interpreters. For this reason the composers of national
melodies are seldom known to fame. A national song composes itself: the
musician's lyre is the musician's heart, and from the sorrow, triumph
and travail of life comes the child of song.

The assertion, then, that music is a universal language is only half
true: it has a great variety of dialects; and it is this very
sensitiveness to human influence which makes it so universally eloquent.
Let us turn first to the East, for it still retains its primitive music,
and at this very hour some muezzin is calling from his minaret or some
Jew intoning his Talmud in the same musical cadence with which Syrian
maidens sang the hymns to Cybele.

All Oriental music is distinguished by a pathetic, long--drawn, wailing
monotony quite in keeping with the stationary and contemplative
character of the people. We are struck at once with its frequent
repetitions of one note and its short and cautious transitions, the
intervals rarely being greater than a half, or at most a full, note. The
conclusion of a measure is generally a descent, and the commencement of
a new one seems to be a feeble effort to rise from the dreamy apathy in
which Eastern imagination delights; but it is immediately followed by
the fall of the rhythmus, re-establishing its languid repose. The
frequent use of half notes induces a predominance of the minor key, and
this, with the constant recurrence of the rhythmical fall, imparts to
Semitic and Hindoo music that melancholy, lethargic uniformity which
expresses in a striking manner the benumbed energies and undeveloped
spirit of the people among whom it is found. When a race has substituted
habit and custom for national feeling, its music is necessarily
monotonous and characterless, for the stronger the national feeling of
any people, the more intense, vivid and pronounced will be its music.

Hindoo music is almost untranslatable to Western ears, but Sir W. Jones,
in an essay on the musical modes of the Hindoos--to be found in the
third volume of the _Asiatic Researches_--makes an attempt to render one
of their most popular songs. The original, of which he also gives a
copy, looks like a mixture of Egyptian hieroglyphics and Chinese
characters, and how far our notation represents it it is impossible to
say; for, though Sir W. Jones was an erudite Oriental scholar, that of
itself would not render him a good translator of Hindoo music. The air
is a song of love and spring, and the measure is indicated, "rapid and
gay:"

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

Kindred to Semitic and Hindoo music, though venturing on bolder
intervals, is Chinese, Persian and Arabian. The almost untranslatable
airs of India assume in China something like an artless melody. Their
smallest intervals are semitones, which have been in use, like
everything else in China, from time immemorial. Nevertheless, in the
diatonic series of seven intervals the Chinese usually avoid the two
semitones by omitting the fourth and the seventh, so that their scale
consists really of only five intervals, and as they regard F as their
principal key (just as we regard C as ours), the Chinese scale stands
thus:

[Illustration: CHINESE SCALE.]

This scale is, however, by no means confined to China, but is met with
in several Asiatic countries--Japan, Siam, Java, etc. In order to judge
how it affects the character of music, I have copied the following
Chinese air and Japanese song from Carl Engel's _Researches into Popular
Songs and Customs_:

[Illustration: CHINESE AIR, "MOO-LEK-WHA."]

[Illustration: JAPANESE AIR.]

Arabic music, which is Asiatic in its foundation, shows decided traces
of the wider civilization and greater independence of character to which
this race attained. The delicate gradations of sounds are still adhered
to in the form of multitudes of grace-notes, but the intervals are
longer and the melodies more decided. The overloading of the melody by
an excessive use of trills and grace-notes by Persians, Arabians, and
even Spaniards, in their popular music, indicates some common sentiment;
and it is remarkable that the European Jews preserve this same Oriental
ornamentation in the vocal performances of their synagogues. Numerous
examples of Arabic music may be found in Lane's _Modern Egypt_. This
writer professes great admiration for it, and says he "never heard the
song of the Mekka water-carriers without emotion," though it consists of
only three notes:

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

The translation of the line is, "Paradise and forgiveness be the lot of
him who gave you this water!" It is said that the Arabic music is a
powerful exponent of the wild, fierce and yet romantic nature of that
people, though it did not commend itself to Engel and other musicians at
the Paris Exposition. But, however void of beauty and expression any
national music is to us, it is certainly felt to possess these qualities
by the people to whom it belongs; and it is very likely that our music
would seem to them just as unintelligible and discordant. When the
French missionary Amiot played some of Boildieu's and Rossini's melodies
to a Chinese mandarin he said, with a polite shake of the head, "They
are sadly devoid of meaning and expression, while the Chinese music
penetrates the soul."

Both Venice and Spain show traces of Arabic influence in their national
music. In Venetian airs it is only a dim memory, manifesting itself by
the frequent repetition of single notes, whereas the Spanish melodies
are often so Moorish in construction and sentiment that it is easy to
fancy in them tones like the call of the muezzin. Thus, too, the
following Spanish song, judged by its repetitions and short intervals,
might easily be taken for an Arabic air:

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

It is to be noted that instruments of percussion are the natural
exponents of such primitive music, and that, therefore, the East has its
drum, gong and cymbals, Arabia its tambourine, Spain its castanets.

The Sclavs, being a pure race, have also a very decided national music.
Its peculiarity is smooth, lisping, sibillating sounds, analogous to the
rustling of leaves in a forest. Having no native accent in their own
language, they easily imitate that of others; and this imparts to the
Sclavonic races that admirable facility for speaking foreign languages
which distinguishes them. This characteristic of their speech is
faithfully reproduced in their music, especially in that of the southern
Sclavs. It is indicated by continuous notes of the same value, and by a
compass scarcely ever exceeding a fifth. Its negative peculiarities
harmonize exactly with the history of the Russians. The sad, doleful
monotony of their existence in the past is pathetically interpreted by
their narrow, sombre, subdued melodies. They are the voice of a people
whose ideas revolved in a narrow circle--of people who dwelt on vast
gray plains dotted with sad brown huts, and who heard no sounds but the
sighing of the wind through the dark pine forests. The "Vesper Hymn,"
known to every ordinary player, is a very good example of the general
character of Russian melodies. The songs of the peasants are further
distinguished by their frequent modulation from the major to the minor
key, as if not long could they be joyful, and also by the peculiar way
in which they are rendered. The tonic and the dominant are the prevalent
intervals, and the intermediate notes are slurred or slightly sounded.
Rochlitz found it impossible to convey this peculiarity by notation, but
gives the following melody as a favorite accompaniment to the serf-songs
of Northern Russia:

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

The Poles, members of this family, have had a great national existence,
and their national music echoes its history and its character. The
heartstirring strains of their mazurkas make many a bosom beat and ache
as they remind the listeners of past times. Polish music is the voice of
a light-minded, brave-hearted people who lived in a gay turmoil and
drained with eager lips and reckless spirits the cup of glory and of
joy. The Polish polkas and mazurkas, with their changing and fugitive
rhythmus and their lively, uneven time, admirably embody the light and
graceful spirit of this people.

In striking contrast to the character and music of the Slavic peoples
are the character and music of the Hungarians. Living on the confines of
the East and West, this people belong to the former by descent and to
the latter by civilization. Between two elements, they have been exposed
to the attacks of both, and their history records only a continual
struggle for existence as a nation. This prolonged warfare has made
_nationality_ the uppermost thought in the life of the Hungarian: it is
the influence controlling all his ideas, his feelings, his poetry and
his art. His music embalms a thousand years of struggle for it, and
every note of its wild, melancholy strains breathes tales of war and
sorrow, of hope and triumph. The music interpreting such an intense
nationality ought to be a peculiar one; and it is. A foreigner, having
once heard it, can never mistake its sounds for those of any other
national music.

But to understand the Magyar music you must apprehend the Magyar's
character. He is a singular mixture of East and West, habitually passive
and melancholy, yet easily roused to the wildest excitement. His step is
slow, his face pensive, his manners imposing and dignified; yet when
once roused he rushes forward with a furious impetuosity which his
enemies have learned to estimate and dread. His eloquence is wonderful,
and after success he throws aside his solemnity and gives himself up
with wild abandon to the feast, the dance and the song. All this various
character he has imparted to his national music: it is full of pathos
and earnestness, yet often impetuous and even hilarious. The "Rákótzy"
is so perfectly national that it thrills like a shout from the Hungarian
heart, and it is no wonder that the Austrian government found it
necessary to forbid it to be played on public occasions, and even to
confiscate all printed copies of it. "When I hear the 'Rákótzy,'" said a
famous Hungarian, "I feel as if I must arise and conquer the world." As
my readers can easily procure a copy of it, it would be a kind of
sacrilege to give so grand a march shorn of any of its noble
proportions; and I can with far more justice give an example which
embraces two of the most predominant traits of Hungarian songs--the
Scotch _catch_ introduced in the middle or end of the bar, instead of at
the beginning as in Scotch music, and the beautiful modulations from the
major to the minor key of the minor third--a change very unusual in any
national music but the Hungarian:

[Illustration: HUNGARIAN AIR.]

We cannot leave Hungarian music without noticing the fact that it has
been greatly influenced by the gypsies of that country, by whom it is
mainly cultivated as an art. In Hungary, indeed, there is no stately
festival, no public rejoicing, no private merrymaking, without some
gypsy band; and it would be impossible to find more sympathetic
interpreters of its intense and passionate spirit. But if professional
musicians, they are nomadic ones: they wander through all the towns and
villages of Transylvania and Wallachia, and are everywhere welcome. In
dance-music the life and impetuosity of their musical movements, their
varying rhythms and the strange thrill of their wild dissonances are
absolutely enthralling. Charles Boner, in his work on Transylvania, says
that even the aged find it impossible to resist the dance when a gypsy
band invites them to it. Their prelude is slow and sonorous, the music
quickens, there is a rush of tones, the fantastic melody hastens on at a
head-long pace--every one, old and young, is under its spell.

Many of the Hungarian gypsies are composers as well as performers.
Pougrátz and Patikárus are names beloved wherever the "Czardas" is
listened to; and where, in Hungary, is not the "Czardas" listened to? No
one can play a "Czardas" like a gypsy, and he is often rewarded for it
in the most exaggerated manner; for he soon has his audience so excited
that they call for it again and again, and heap recompense on
recompense, until, in their passionate delight, the last ducat, the last
watch, ring, and even horse, has been bestowed. The gypsies of Hungary
conclude all pieces ending in the minor key by substituting the major
chord for the minor chord; for instance, a passage written thus,

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

they finish thus:

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

following instinctively a rule which we find frequently observed in the
most classical compositions. The following is a martial dance of the
gypsies, but the most elaborate notation would only be the skeleton of
any example: the best parts of all their performances are those they
improvise while playing:

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

It may be said that the gypsy has no nationality, and can therefore have
no national music. This is hardly true. The gypsy has no country, but
his sentiment of nationality is strong and persistent, and his music is
as peculiar as his language and customs. It is true that he steals the
music of the country in which he sojourns just as readily as he steals
the poultry from the roost or the linen from the line, but he always
imparts to it some echo of his far Eastern home and some flavor of the
tent and the hedgerow. Twice in my life this fact has struck me in a
remarkable manner. Once, on the skirts of a pine forest in the wilds of
Argyleshire, I came suddenly on a gypsy-camp celebrating a wedding. The
women were dancing the "Romalis" to a violin and tambourine. The music,
the dance, the conical tents, the flashing swarthy faces, the careless
piquant dresses, were all so Oriental in character that in spite of the
mountains, the moors and the heather I found it hard to realize that I
was in the heart of Scotland. Even when the most distinctive Scotch
pibrochs were played I was quite conscious of an Eastern clash in them
which no Scot could or would have given. Again: eighteen months ago I
found a camp of English gypsies in the Rocky Mountains a little beyond
Golden. One man was leaning against a tree fiddling negro melodies to
the birds, but negro melodies with the flavor of the tent instead of the
cabin. At my request he played "Yankee Doodle," and imparted to it a
revolutionary dash, a piquant mocking defiance, which convinced me that
he knew its history and was interpreting it from his own heart--a fact
which a subsequent conversation confirmed. I often wonder that no
musical speculator has ever organized a band of Russian, Hungarian and
English gypsies. Certainly, it would give us a far more characteristic
entertainment than bands of blackened "minstrels."

The Swiss love their national music as they love their mountains and
their freedom; and at first sight it seems singular that a people so
blended with the progress of liberty should possess a music singularly
simple and pastoral. But in this fact we perceive how truly music
explains character, for as early as the fourteenth century their
political faith, like their mode of life, was simple and averse to
display. In a few ordinary words the deputies of Appenzell said all that
has since been said with infinite bombast: "We are convinced that
mankind are born for order, but not for servitude--that they must have
magistrates whom they themselves elect, but not masters to grovel
under." The essentials of true freedom having thus early become an
every-day enjoyment, a people so plain and simple sang naturally
melodies suggestive of the calm pastoral life so dear to them.

[Illustration: SWISS SONG.]

We must notice that the favorite instrument of the Swiss, the Alp-horn,
has caused a predilection for a certain progression of intervals. The
Alp-horn is a long tube of fir-wood having the same compass as the
trumpet. But on both these instruments the upper F is not an exact F,
neither is it an exact F sharp, and thus in most Alpine tunes there are
passages like the following, where the notes marked × ought to be F
natural, but are nearly F sharp. However, this irregular tone charms the
Swiss, and is one of the peculiarities of their "Ranz des Vaches:"

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

But it is in the national music of the Celtic race that we find the most
familiar examples of melody symbolizing character. The purest form of it
is undoubtedly the Irish; and who will not bear witness that in its
half-laughing and half-sobbing notes we hear the voice of the race? Its
musical distinction is the emphatic and striking introduction of the
sixth major, but this peculiarity is also prominent in Scotch and Welsh
airs, and is a favorite termination in all mountainous countries. To a
fine sensibility there is, I think, a much more peculiar trait in Irish
music, whether gay or sad--a strain of _longing_ which imparts a charm
like songs of memory--a strain so subtle that my explanation can only be
intelligible to those who have already apprehended it.

Kindred to the Irish is the Welsh and the Scotch music. The Welsh has a
more hopeless sob, the Scotch a wilder mirth. We feel in the old Welsh
tunes that terrible struggle they had, first with the Romans, and then
with the Anglo-Normans; and whoever has heard the "March of the Men of
Haerlech" will understand why King Edward slew the Welsh Bards.

The most striking examples of Scotch music are the pibrochs and
strathspeys. These compositions generally ring with a wild laughter that
is almost harassing, especially when it is enhanced by the abrupt close
with the fifth instead of the keynote. The ear, which has been longing
for the rest, has a sense of being teased and deluded with the
rollicking strain. As exponents of the cautious, cannie Scot we should
think them a satire did we not know what a wild vein of Celtic wit runs
through the granite foundation of his character. If it be true that
national musics embalm peculiar humanities, of no country is this so
true as of Scotland, for no people and no history is so highly
picturesque and so full of the broadest lights and shadows. In their
earliest history we find this antithesis. They lived rudely as peasants:
they fought as if possessed by the very spirit of chivalry. When they
abolished the magnificence of the papacy they inaugurated the barest of
churches. They were the first to betray Charles Stuart, and the last to
lay down arms for the rights of his descendants. They are worldly-wise
to a proverb, and yet wildly susceptible to poetry and romance.

The songs of such a people have necessarily a great variety: the color
and the perfume of life are in them. Listen to the mocking, railing
drollery of "There cam' a young man," the sly humor of the "Laird o'
Cockpen," or "Hey, Johnnie Cope!" and you may understand one side of
Scottish character. The Border ballads, that go lilting along to the
galloping of horses and jingling of spurs, are the interpretation of
another side. The same _active_ influence accompanies the Jacobite
songs--"Up wi' the bonnets for bonnie Dundee!" filled many a legion for
Prince Charles--and the blood kindles yet to their fife-like and
drum-like movements. Again, the stately rhythm and march of some of the
oldest airs make them peculiarly suitable for patriotic songs; and Burns
took advantage of this when he adapted "Scots wha hae" to the air of
"Hey, Tuttie Taittie!" for to this spirit-stirring strain Bruce and his
heroes marched to the field of Bannock-burn.

Scotch music is a good example of the fact that the favorite musical
instruments of the different nations have undoubtedly caused some
favorite group of notes, constituting _motives_ of a peculiar rhythm,
which are employed with evident preference. Thus, the use of the minor
seventh instead of the major seventh (as in "Wha'll be King but
Charlie?"), and the sudden modulation from the minor key to the major
key, a whole tone below, are in exact accord with the bagpipe, and are
more certain in the strathspeys, reels and dances which are universally
played on that instrument; the intervals of which are

[Illustration: MUSIC.]

with the bass of the drone emitting A, so that A minor must be regarded
as the principal key of this instrument. Indeed, Macdonald, in his
_Complete Tutor for the Great Highland Bagpipe_, gives the odd rule that
the "piper is to pay no attention to the flats and sharps marked on the
clef, as they are not used in pipe-music."

In Scotch music are also continually found motives of a rhythm in which
the first note has only one-fourth the duration of the second. This is
known as the Scotch catch or snap, and evidently originated in the
strathspeys, though it is now a distinction of many fine songs, notably
so of "Roy's Wife of Aldavalloch."

That these old melodies are the voice of ancient Scotland is proved by
the fact that no modern musician has been able to imitate them. Haydn
tried to rearrange some of them, and failed, and Geminiani blotted
quires of paper in attempting to write a second part to the "Broom o'
the Cowdenknowes." No: ere we can add anything to the national music of
Scotland we must restore the precise national conditions of which it was
the articulate idea.

English music, until the days of the Tudors, was really French: England
sang, as all Europe did, the songs of the Troubadours. But the "Chanson
de Roland" and the "Complaint of the Châtelain de Courcy" were not
English strains, for a national song is a winged fact. France was the
legitimate successor of the Troubadours, and many of their oldest songs
would serve to-day as _airs de vaudeville_. The French national music
has mostly grown out of civil dissensions and party conflicts. What
scenes do the "Carillon," the atrocious "Carmagnole" and the
"Marseillaise" bring up! The "Carillon" had been Marie Antoinette's
favorite tune: it pursued her from her palace to her prison, startled
her on her way to her trial, and was probably the last sound she heard
as she lay bound under the guillotine.

When not breathing blood and anarchy French popular music has a
wonderful range: it is gallant, mocking, elegant, or full of absolute
nonsense and frivolity. In fact, French music has always been so
intensely national that it would have been impossible for England to
have long borrowed it; and in the days of the Tudors we find English
character beginning to explain itself in those admirable tunes and
ballads which form a regular and successive declaration of English
principles, with their sound piety, broad fun, perfect liberty of speech
and capital eating and drinking. They have neither the wailing grief nor
the boisterous merriment of Celtic music, and they lack entirely the
monotonous tenderness of the Troubadours; but they are full of buoyant,
daring independence, and have a certain _homeliness_ which strikes in a
very powerful manner some chord in the Anglo-Saxon heart.

The cosmopolitan nature of the German speaks to all the world in his
music. Of all national musics it is the grandest and the most developed:
we see this in the position it gives to rhythms. National musics with
undeveloped rhythms are the speech of people just awakening, while
music that has them strongly marked and regularly introduced belongs to
people of fully-matured energies. Only in the _Jodlers_ and _Landlers_
of the Tyrolese, Austrian and Swiss mountains is the original Teutonic
iambic preserved in its purity. In all other German music every kind of
rhythm is met with, no kind being predominant. For the musical language
of Germany embraces not only the few octaves of passion, but the whole
keyboard of existence. It has preludes, symphonies and sonatas for every
phase of life. Nothing smaller than this range would suffice to express
the multiform ideas of a people so thoughtful and cosmopolitan. And
though by this universal sympathy German music may have lost a purely
national life, it is a most sufficing compensation to have gained the
power of expressing the ideas of a whole epoch.

Musical taste in America is in progress of formation. We have no
national music: we have not even a decided preference for any style. We
like Beethoven and Chopin, but we also like Rossini and Donizetti and
delight in Lecocq and Sullivan. In no respect is the national pride so
utterly forgotten as in music. We give to all schools a fair hearing.
The great German masters are household words: the national music of
every land is welcome. We have been learning to like Italian opera at an
insane cost; we have kindly winked at the follies of opera-bouffe;
probably nowhere in the world are the intellectual depths of a German
symphony and the passionate declamation of an Italian recitative more
thoroughly appreciated. This is the natural musical exposition of our
complex and various life. This wondrous variety, which indicates
possibilities not yet revealed, pleases us without being always clear to
our feelings and intellect. Still, we shall not ask, with the Frenchman,
"Sonate, que veux-tu?" We are satisfied with what the present affords,
and what new masters shall appear or what new instruments be invented we
know not. Always the epochs will have their own interpreter. One hundred
years ago who had imagined a Weber or Steinway piano, that piece of
furniture with a soul in it?

It has been suggested to me while writing this paper that national
melodies are in a great measure influenced by the physical features of
the country in which they rise. I think very little so. It is true that
the music of all mountainous countries has many points of resemblance,
but it is because the people of such countries have strong mental and
moral similitudes. Savages are not inspired by the most lovely scenery,
and a collection of national airs from different parts of the world
would not reveal to us whether they were written in valleys or on
mountains or by the sounding seashore.

There are distinct ensigns by which national music may be as promptly
detected as a ship by its colors. Spanish airs have in them the rapid
twinkling, so to speak, of the guitar; the mountain-melodies of
Switzerland recall the open notes of the Alp-horn; the Irish and Scotch
musics have their marks as plainly impressed upon them as the
physiognomy of the peoples is distinct, and it is nothing to the
purpose to say that they have been cleverly imitated: the mark still
remains a fact, and is the mysterious specialty that thrills the rich,
the poor, the soldier and the churchman, the peasant and the exile.
Whatever analogy exists between a country and its music is mainly with
the inward character of the people themselves, and is generally too
profound to be theorized upon. We only know that at every step we
advance in the science of music we are deciphering what is written
within us, not transcribing anything from without.

Nor as Americans are we insensible to the value of a national music. The
few airs which have any claim to represent us in this capacity have done
service that no money can estimate. During the late war wherever the
rebel flag was raised it was necessary to silence "Yankee Doodle." Like
the "Marseillaise," it was an institution before which its enemies
trembled; and when we have produced or annexed something infinitely
grander we shall not forget the saucy, free-and-easy,
mind-your-own-business melody that carried the nation cheerfully through
two great crises.

  AMELIA E. BARR.



MALLSTON'S YOUNGEST.


The railroad-village of Fairfield woke up one spring morning and found a
clumsy blue car, with a skylight in its roof, standing on the common
near the blacksmith-shop. Horses and tongue were already removed, the
former being turned into the tavern pasture and the latter stowed in the
tavern barn. A small sky-colored ladder led up to the door of this
artistic heaven, which remained closed long after a crowd of loungers
had gathered around it.

The Fairfield loungers were famously lazy savages, though to the last
degree good-natured and obliging. They wore butternut overalls and
colored shirts, a few adding the picturesque touch of bright
handkerchiefs and broad straw hats: there were a few coats in various
stages of rags and grease, and one or two pairs of boots, but the
wearers of these put on no airs over the long ankles and sprawling toes
which blossomed around them. The whole smoking, stoop-shouldered,
ill-scented throng were descendants of that Tennessee and Carolina
element which more enterprising Hoosiers deplore, because in every
generation it repeats the ignorance and unthrift branded so many years
ago into the "poor white" of the South.

Those who could read traced the legend "Photographic Car" on the sides
of the vehicle, and with many a rude joke each bantered the other to
have his picter took for such purposes as skeerin' stock off the
railroad-track or knockin' the crows stiff. Their scuffling and haw-haws
waked the occupant of the car, who rose in his bunk and drew the curtain
from a window. The boys saw his face and hushed. Raising the window, he
scattered a bunch of handbills among them, which set them all to
scrambling, and, when they had caught the bills, to struggling with
large and small type which announced that an unrivalled photographer
would be in that vicinity in a very few days with his beautiful
travelling-car, giving everybody an opportunity of securing such
tin-types and photographs as only the large cities turned out, and at
the lowest possible prices.

Presently the photographer appeared at his own door and looked abroad.
The tender spring morning, though it glorified surrounding woods and
rich farming-lands, could do little for this dilapidated village, which
consisted of one lane of rickety dwellings crossed at right angles by
the Peru Railroad, a stern brick building, a wooden elevator and a mill.
It was a squalid sight, though the festive season of the year and that
glamourous air peculiar to Indiana brooded it. The photographer surveyed
his new field with an amused sneer, and descended the steps to go to his
breakfast at the tavern, a peak-roofed white frame set among locust
trees--the best house on the street. Before it stood that lozenge-shaped
sign on a fat post which stands before all country taverns, making a
vague, lonesome appeal to the traveller.

The loungers moved in groups on the station-platform, their hands in
their pockets and their necks stretched forward, eying the stranger.

Out of the blue distance on the railroad two plumes of steam rose
suddenly: then a black object stood up on the track and gave two calls
at a crossing. Double-shuffles were danced on the platform, as if the
approaching train charged these vagabonds with some of its own strength.
It screamed, and bore down upon this dilapidated station to stop for
one brief minute, change mail-sacks and gaze pityingly out of its one
eye at the howling crew which never failed to greet it there. People in
the cars also looked out as if glad they were not stopping, and a few
with long checks in their hats, who appeared to be travelling to the
earth's ends, were envied by a girl approaching the post-office in the
brick block.

She waited near the photographic car until the train passed, her lip
curling at this blue van and the pretensions of its owner.

Later she came out of the post-office by a back hall, and, darting a
fierce look at Jim Croddy, who ran against her in his performance of the
double-shuffle, took her way across the common, crushing her letters in
her hand. This time she scarcely looked at the photographic van, but
with dilated eyes and set teeth pursued her path into the springing
weeds. The photographer, who had returned, looked at her, however, and
found her individuality so attractive that he watched her swift step
until it took her out of sight within the doorway of a brick residence
detached from the village by a meadow and long lawn.

The young man opened his car and prepared for business. His landlady was
going to bring her grandchild to be photographed. A locker received his
primitive couch, and he further cleared the deck for action by stowing
in the back apartment where he prepared his chemicals all remaining
litter. Jim Croddy and kindred spirits ventured to look in.

"See here, boys," inquired the photographer, "couldn't one of you get me
a bucket of water from somewhere?"

They would all do it. The heartiest and most obliging set of idlers in
the world, they almost fought for the pail, and two, taking it between
them, cantered to the pump in front of the post-office. The rest were
fain to enter, treading each other's bare heels as they tumbled up the
steps.

"Don't you want your pictures taken?" inquired the artist, quizzically
surveying his shaggy crowd.

"We ain't got no money," replied Bill Stillman, the smallest but
readiest-tongued.

"You got money, Bill," retorted Leonard Price, a parchment-colored wisp
of nineteen who had recently become a widower.

"I got to git clo'es with it if I hev'. There's Mallston: git him to set
for _his_ picter."

Mallston was hooted for as he came across the dewy grass on feet of
brawn, shaming puny rustics by his huge physique. The photographer
mentally limned him: a bushy, low-browed head and dark, reddish,
full-lipped face, bearded; muscle massed upon his arms and
tatter-clothed legs; a deep, prominent chest; hands large, black,
powerful; the whole man advancing with a lightness which in some
barbaric conqueror would have been called dignified grace.

Mallston had nothing to answer for himself. He stood folding his arms
and looking in. It was said he had African blood in his veins--barely
enough to stain the red of his skin, pinch up his children's hair and
give them those mournful, passionate black eyes through which the
tragedy of the race always looks. But so vague, so mere a hearsay, was
this negro stain, if it existed at all, that he had married a white
wife, and moved in society unchallenged by these very fastidious
descendants of Carolina and Tennessee.

Mallston's wife had lately added a son to his family. He had two sons
before, also two daughters. From any standpoint it seemed an unnecessary
addition when the economist considers that he had no means of support
except his big-fingered paws, and these, though very willing, depended
on chance jobs and days' works given him by other men. In face of these
facts the youngest was there as well as the oldest--scarcely seven; the
second, scarcely five; and the third and fourth, aged three and a half
and two--in his rented house of one room, containing beds in opposite
corners, a table and a cooking-stove in front of the fireplace. A
generous family and scant provision for it being the mode in Fairfield,
however, Mallston may not have seen his desperate position, especially
with summer and harvest wages coming. Just now he was out of a job,
having finished a ditching contract, and his black, speculative eyes
looked anxiously at the photographer.

"Come, clear now!" exclaimed that young man with some authority to his
loafers: "I am going to have some sitters."

The landlady and her grandchild were already coming to take advantage of
morning sunlight and the domestic lull before dinner. With them came a
curious neighbor in ill-made, trailing calico and dejected sun-bonnet,
who walked with her hands on her hips and puckered her upper lip, with
consciousness of the loss of two front teeth, when she laughed. As they
proceeded at a pace regulated by the toddling child, they encountered an
old woman with no teeth at all, whose nose and chin leaned very much
toward each other: her grizzled hair curled under a still more dejected
sun-bonnet, and, setting down a basket of clothes, she stood panting
from exertion and wiping her wan face on the bonnet cape.

"I'm a-garn to hick'ry that Bill," she exclaimed weakly. "I tole him to
carry me wash-water, and here he is stannin' round thish yer car! George
and John's just out, too, and so's Foster. Soon's they git the'r vittles
they up and leave me to do the best I kin. Laws! who's garn to pay out
money fer fortygraphs? If folks all had to work as hard as I do, they
wouldn't have no money fer no such things, so they wouldn't. It 'ud
stan' 'em in hand to be savin'."

"Why don't you drive off some yer good-fer-nothin' boys and make 'em do
somethin', Mis' Stillman?" bantered the neighbor.

"Well, they've all been a-workin'," relented the mother. "Bill, he's as
good a feller to work as ever was if he don't git with a lot of orn'ry
boys. Hit hurts Fawt to work stiddy, so it does.--Bill, come here and
tote these clo'es home fer me."

Bill came, ruddy and laughing from a scuffle, and walked off with the
basket.

"And git the wash-water and make a fire under the kittle," called his
mother.

"I'll be apt to," responded Bill.

"Come along into the daguerreyan car, Mis' Stillman," invited the
landlady. "You never see the inside o' one, did you?"

"Laws! is that wher' you're garn to? I can't stop but a minute. Hit
looks mighty fine. The boys said this feller was drivin' into town last
night when meetin' broke. Who's garn to have their picter took?--You,
Jane?"

"Me?" replied the neighbor. "Laws! no: I ain't rich."

"Oh, you'll change your minds," drawled the landlady patronizingly, as
became a lady of means: "he takes 'em reel cheap."

The photographer met this group at his door and assisted them into the
car, from which all his earlier visitors had dispersed except Mallston.

Mallston stood at the steps and watched the landlady's grandchild
prepared for a sitting. The rabble had begun their morning business of
pitching horseshoes, but his interest was held by that little child--its
fresh clothes, rings of black hair and pomegranate coloring. The artist,
having placed his camera, was in the farther room preparing his plate.
When he came out and was in the act of closing the door he noticed
Mallston, and asked, "Do you want a job?"

The barbarian did decidedly.

"Come into the back room, then, and help me."

Mallston went striding through the car, and placed himself in an
obedient attitude behind the partition.

"Laws!" exclaimed Mrs. Stillman, standing between the camera, where the
artist was burying his head under a black cloth, and the object to be
photographed, "when we lived in Bartholomew county--'twas the year after
we moved f'm Johnson county--Foster and John they was little fellers
then, and I did want the'r picters that bad, so I did. But the'r pap he
'lowed it was a waste o' money. Pore man! he was a mighty hard worker:
he'd go a mile'd to make a cent, and then he'd lose it all with bad
management, so he would. But I had easy times them days, with everything
to my han': I spun and wove all the jeans the men-folks wore, and we
milked a dozen cows--"

"Will you please move aside?"

"Git out o' the way, Mis' Stillman: the man can't see through ye."

"Oh!" exclaimed the old woman, jerking herself from the photographer's
line of vision, "I didn't go fer to git in the way. But this ain't doin'
my washin'," she added, moving toward the entrance. Here, on a little
shelf, she found some tiles and brushes, which she took up to examine
and hold before the other women, who were seated awaiting the
picture-taking. "What's these here things?"

"Artists' materials," replied the photographer, removing his head from
under the black cloth, and that from the camera.--"Now, my little man,
look straight at the hole in the box, and don't move.--That large brick
house--keep perfectly quiet--across the field seems a good point to
sketch from. Who lives there?"

"Harbisons," replied the landlady.

"Harbisons, eh? I suppose it was Miss Harbison I saw go past this
morning?--Don't move, my little man."

"I do' know," demurred the washer-woman, whose sole recreation in life
was the faculty of speech. "I ain't seen Mis' Harbison to town to-day.
They's him and her and the boys. Both the boys is away f'm home now.
What-fer lookin' woman?"

"It was a young lady in a wide hat."

"Oh, that's Miss Gill: she's some kin to 'em. She's a school-teacher to
Bunker Hill or Peru. Laws! I hate to see anybody so proud."

"That's a good boy!" said the photographer. He removed his plate and
carried it to the rear room, where he required the assistance of
Mallston, who had watched the process with silent interest. Presently
reappearing with the dripping negative, which he held for the women to
see, he repeated incidentally, "Proud, is she, this Miss Gill?"

"Yes, she is, kind o'," testified the neighbor who was called
Jane.--"It's a reel good one, ain't it?"

"If ye take as good as this all the time," cried the pleased landlady,
holding off the negative and giving that excited drawl to the terminal
word which may distinguish Kentuckians, for she claimed to be one,
"every girl in town 'll be comin' after the'r picter-uh!"

"Except the proud Miss Gill."

The landlady, who had a moustache, bristled it over her square mouth: "I
never ast much about her. She's kind o' yaller-complected, but some says
she's smart. Bill Harbison was smart too, but he's all broke up now.
They don't own nothin' but the house and grounds they're livin' in."

"Laws!" poured in the steady washer-woman, "I used to work fer Mis'
Harbison when she was well off--I done knit socks and pieced quilts--and
she was always liber'l, so she was. When we fust come here he was
gittin' down with his last sickness, and we left a good place in
Bartholomew county, fer _his_ folks they kep' a-writin', 'Here's the
place, Billy: this is wher' you'll find the flitter tree and the honey
pond.' And it wasn't never my will, but come we must; and you orto seen
Fairfield then. Why, ther' wasn't nothin' but mud, so ther' wasn't.--My
soul! if thern don't go Bill, and I know he ain't carried me no
wash-water."

The artist helped her down the steps and asked her to come again, which
courtesy she distrusted. She 'lowed he was p'tendin'. He throwed his
head up like he was big-feelin'. It ruffled her that anybody should be
big-feelin' over a pore widder-woman that took in days' washin's, and
had a pack o' triflin' boys that et her out o' house and home.

Still, this old woman enjoyed the fruit trees' budding promise as she
patted along the railroad, and perhaps some old thrill shot again as a
meadow-lark uttered his short, rich madrigal from the weather-darkened
fence.

"Ho, Mis' Stillman," called Mallston's wife, standing in her door with
the youngest on her arm, "le's go over and see that ther' picter car."

"I done done it," responded the old woman.

By the end of two weeks this photographic car had done good execution on
the community. The artist himself appeared friendly, which greatly
assisted his trade, openness to familiarity being a prime virtue in all
rustic neighborhoods. Every youngster who came to the store after
groceries, with a bag slung over the horse's neck in which to carry
them, gave pap no peace until means were furnished for a rosy-cheeked
tin-type of himself in a pink, green or purple case. The Appledore
girls, handsome daughters of a rich farmer, and therefore able to sit
for pictures in Kokomo, or even Indianapolis, yet put on all their
chains, rings and bracelets and went to the car to test this young
photographer's skill. Mrs. Stillman received money from her daughter in
Ellwood, together with the written command: "You go and git your
fortygraph took fer me, mother: we don't none of us never know what's
a-garn to happen." So she removed her black alpaca from its peg on the
wall for her adornment, and came also, explaining to the neighbors that
Kit sent the money, so she did, and was makin' a pore mouth about not
havin' no picter of mother. And having got the picture, she used all her
past trials and present misfortunes to save half the price, which she
succeeded in doing.

Every day the artist had a few sitters. It was surprising how many of
the bilious, bare-legged children who collected to gaze at his framed
specimens were brought to be photographed, for most of the villagers
were squalidly poor and the farmers were entering their busy season.
During this time he had opened the Harbison domicile to himself, being
son of a friend who had sat in the State legislature with Mr. Harbison.
All Fairfield knew that he went there nearly every day, and that it was
not to shoot with the long-bow on the lawn. They had no idea how he
loved to lounge from one empty room to another of this picturesque,
half-furnished house, and how he was gratified by the fitness of the
inhabitants to their abode. He liked to see Miss Gill tuck a bunch of
peach-blossoms in her coil of hair, and to feel the quickening
influences of spring supplemented by her electricity.

Mrs. Harbison took her earth-loving hands from garden-making and went to
show the young people the ferns in the woods. She pulled her sun-bonnet
over her eyes and trod out with the solid steps of a woman bred to love
the soil under her feet. The photographer sketched along the way, but he
finally sat down by Little Wildcat where the water boiled over boulders,
and Mrs. Harbison went farther to dig ginseng. There was a joyful hurry
of birds all around. That leopard of the Indiana woods, the sycamore,
repeated itself in vistas.

"Sycamores always look like dazzling marble shafts blackened with
patches of moss," said the young man.

"And their leaves," said the girl sitting on the log not far from him,
"smell like poetry. I spread them on my face late in summer after a
shower and suck up their breath. But I never can put the sensation into
words."

"How's that for a sycamore?" he asked, showing a scrap.

She examined it with great satisfaction: "Why do you go about with a
photographic car? Why don't you set out to be an artist?"

He laughed: "Because there is so much of the vagabond in me, I suppose.
Then I never had any education in art. Folks as poor as Job's turkey."

"But a man can do so much or so little."

"Well, when I'm going about with the car I see a great many odd people,
and can pick up little striking things for studies. I get a living, too,
such as it is, which I shouldn't do if I set up as an artist. Look
here!" He turned over his book and showed an etching of Mallston
stepping across the common carrying his youngest, with the four older
children at his heels. One had sprawled, and was evidently lifting a
howl to the paternal ear. They both laughed at it.

"He's a good fellow," remarked the photographer, "but there's no end to
the ignorance and misery such creatures bring upon the world. He
couldn't take decent care of himself, and he has a wife and five
children hanging on him."

"It is just so with nearly all these people," exclaimed Miss Gill in
high scorn. "They have no idea of what life should be--no ambition, and
scarcely a soul to divide around among them all. It smothers me!" She
threw her arms out impetuously. "I want such different things--the
society of the cultivated, the stimulus of great natures. Maybe I could
write something that would get before the public then."

"Have you ever sent anything East?" he inquired with a Hoosier's vast
respect for older civilization.

"Yes," she answered with a falling inflection of voice and head. "But
it's no use: I never shall amount to anything with my surroundings."

The water gurgled over its boulders and the green landscape sent up an
exquisite loamy breath. The young people, both representing the afflatus
of the State, met in one tragic look which ended in a smile.

Next morning Mallston took his usual post in the car, shifting from one
bare foot to the other, while the photographer lounged on his locker
waiting for custom. The native frequently parted his shaggy jaws, but
considered how he should offer his information. He watched his employer
with real attachment, and his dark red face deepened its hue around the
eyes as he broke out, "We've got a little feller t' 'r house."

"What! not another one?"

"He's two month ole," explained Mallston.

"Oh, your youngest. Why, yes, I've seen him." Mallston was evidently
surprised that so humble a creature as his youngest had attracted the
great photographer's notice. "He's a fine youngster," added the latter.

Mallston was then emboldened to blurt out, "We've named him."

"You have? Well, what do you call him?"

"We called him after you."

"Why, here's an honor! How did you come to name him for me?"

"_I_ done it."

"Let me see: what can I do for him? Suppose you bring him over now while
we aren't very busy and I'll take his picture."

Mallston grinned with pleasure: "My woman wanted his picter. My woman
'lowed mebby you wouldn't charge for it if you knowed he was a
namesake."

"Certainly I won't. So bring him right along and we'll do our best for
him."

It was some time before he reappeared, carrying his youngest in his
arms, its cheeks polished and its wet hair turning over in rings, decked
in its chief finery, a blue quilted cloak. The mother came along to hold
her cherub in her lap. She was a long, raw-boned woman, immature in face
under all her crust of care and tan, evidently distressed in her free
waist by the tightness of her calico dress and in her unfenced feet by
shoes.

"What are you going to do with the baby?" inquired Miss Gill kindly as
she encountered this group at right angles on her return from the
post-office.

"Garn with him to the man to git his picter. Come in and see him took,"
invited Mrs. Mallston timidly.

The young woman, ready to seize on any distraction, went in, scarcely
understanding that her bruised ambition reached for healing to such
homely, lowly natures as these.

The artist was glad to see her, and she sat on the locker while
preparations went on. She exchanged amused glances with him when the
other Mallstons flocked to the steps, bellowing in various keys for
their mother, and on their being swung in by one arm and placed in a row
on the opposite locker, she gazed at them in turn, wondering what the
future held out to such lumps of dirt and sombre black eyes.

Mallston set his youngest on the mother's lap and looked at it with
sneaking fondness. The whole tribe seemed equally dear to him, but this
youngest appealed to his strength. Mrs. Mallston was not celebrated as a
tender mother. She went after pails of water and left her children
playing beside the railroad-track; their tattered and ludicrous
appearance bespoke her unskilfulness with the needle; she was said to
have scalded the eldest boy with a skilletful of hot water in which she
had soaked bacon, pouring it out of the window on his head. But she
probably did as well as she knew how, and Mallston did much better. The
photographer watched him go back a dozen times to straighten the baby's
sturdy legs, tap it under the chin with his colossal fore finger, cluck
in the laughing red cavern of his mouth and change the folds of its
quilted cloak with quite a professional air. What were poverty, the
world's neglect, hard labor and circumscribed life to this man? That
muscle which gathered and distributed the streams of his body may have
been to him a heaven in which these five youngsters ministered as
angels.

The young man felt moved with an emotion he resisted: "My God! can it be
that this savage is right in his instincts, and I am wrong? Can some
peculiar blessing of Heaven rest on the man who dares Fate for family
love? Or is the poor wretch's fondness a recompense for his overburdened
lot?"

The baby took a fine picture. Mallston stood by a window and gazed at
the large tin-type. His full lips dropped apart and his head leaned
sidewise. He turned to his wife and said with a foolish expression, "If
the little feller 'ud happen to drop off now we got sumpin' to remember
him by."

"My childern's kind o' sickly," remarked his wife, marshalling forth her
quartette, "fer all they look so hearty."

       *       *       *       *       *

The photographic car remained day after day, although sitters seldom
came now, for even the loafers were helping to put in crops. The horses
which should have dragged it out almost any dewy morning were not
exactly eating their heads off, being turned upon pasture, but the
landlord was famous for getting his entertainment's worth. As long as
weekly board-bills were paid he said it was none of his business if the
man stayed all summer.

On Monday the photographer resolved, "I will start on Wednesday;" on
Wednesday he decided, "I will wait till Saturday;" and on Saturday,
"It's too late in the week now, but I _must_ go next Monday."

Mrs. Harbison, when interviewed about the generous portion of time he
spent on her lawn with her summer visitor, answered with downrightness,
"Well, what if he does like to come to our place? We know all about his
folks. And if them two wants to sit and talk, they're fit company fer
each other, and I reckon it won't hurt 'em. So what you going to do
about it?"

The village was going to talk about it. The female population gathered
at the storekeeper's house, their favorite rallying-place because the
storekeeper's wife had no opinions of her own, but made a good echo to
whatever was said, and there they judged that Gill girl for taking up
with strangers like she done, so stuck up, and hoped it would turn out
he was a married man, and wouldn't that bring her down?

Meanwhile, the photographer stretched himself on his oilcloth-cushioned
locker and stared at the now fully-unfurled woods, without one mental
glance at the vivid moss in its shades, its four varieties of ferns or
the ruined cabin with one side thrown down, showing nickers of sunlight
through the gaps of its fireplace. He called himself ill names for
remaining where he was, and made a crazy picture of a photographic car
seesawing along the country roads, with a figure he well knew sitting on
the platform beside him as he drove. It was so absurd, but he quoted
Mrs. Dalles's song of "Brave Love" while he etched:

    We could not want for long,
      While my man had his violin
    And I my sweet love-song.

    The world has aye gone well with us,
      Old man, since we were one:
    Our homeless wanderings down the lanes,
      They long ago were done.

Then, across some chasm of indefinite time, he saw a studio and himself
happy at an easel, with this devoted dark face resting against his side,
reciting her work to him and quivering with joy at some sign of success.
But the whole panorama dissolved at a breath.

"Now, aren't you a nice fellow," he addressed himself, "a brilliant
rascal, a wise genius, to be thinking of such a thing?"

Miss Gill was returning from the woods with a full basket before the
morning heat came on. A few women at the storekeeper's fence looked
sidewise at each other as she paused to chat under the photographer's
window.

The morning was so clear that every object stood in startling relief. A
plume of steam far up the leafy railroad vista heralded the Peru
express's lightning passage through the town. Scarcely a lounger was
left on the platform. Mallston had a job of cleaning the cellar for the
storekeeper, and at intervals appeared from its gaping doors with a
basket of decayed potatoes on his shoulders. The landscape rung with
bird-songs, and the girl, who had skimmed the cream off such a morning,
looked up and laughed at her dejected friend. She had purple violets
tucked into her coil of hair, her belt and under her collar.

"What are you doing here? Why aren't you out trying to catch the effect
of day-twilight in the thick woods?"

"I've been trying," he replied without smiling, "to catch the effect of
a rash action--and a woman's face."

"How solemn! Let me see it. Is it Mrs. Stillman's?"

"No, it isn't: it's my wife's."

Her half-lifted hand dropped. While her eyes met his without blenching
she turned ghastly white, her face seeming to wither into sudden age.

The express-train whistled. Only a moment before its steam-plume had
been her symbol of rushing success in life, and now, for some scarcely
apprehended reason, she felt that the train and Fate were running her
down. With intuitive resistance and a defiant sweep of her body she
turned toward it and screamed aloud.

The photographer could not credit this rapid change to himself when he
saw upon the track a small rough cart drawn by Mallston's oldest girl
and containing his youngest stretched upon a dirty pillow. The express
was coming down-grade at full speed, but at its whistle the oldest child
turned off the track and tried to drag her burden across the rail. The
cart upset, and the baby sprawled, crying, between the rails, while his
sister fled crying toward home.

This whole occurrence was a flash: it seemed to the spectators they had
barely started forward with their blood curdling, the engine had but
screamed, and Mallston was merely seen dropping a basket of potatoes and
leaping with upright hair and starting eyes, before the whole thing was
over. The train stopped with such a recoil that many passengers were
thrown from their seats: the engineer dropped from his cab, and there
was a crowd.

Mallston was jammed into a heap against a tall board fence which
surrounded the store-lot. The baby sprawled near him, where he had
thrown it when the engine struck him.

"Are you hurt?" asked the photographer, turning him over.

He sat up, looking dazed and ludicrous: "Wher's the little feller?"

"I got him," panted the breathless mother, shaking the child from side
to side as she showed it to him.

"_He's_ all right," cried the engineer, "but I hit you. Where are you
hurt?"

"I ain't hurt no place," said Mallston, crawling up on all fours, "'cept
wher' my back and head hit the fence." He stood up grinning at the
excited crowd, and put his sneaking, protecting fingertips under the
baby's chin. The youngest had ceased to yell during the fright, but this
touched him off again.

"You skeered the poor little feller," said Mallston severely, but the
engineer was already mounting his cab, laughing with relief. The train
passed on, people crowding the platforms.

Women felt the baby's limbs: there were no hurts except a bruise on one
fat leg and a little more than the usual amount of dirt on its face.

"Are you sure you aren't injured?" urged the photographer, shaking his
man.

But Mallston looked into his eyes with a preoccupied mind, and said, as
to the only person present who would appreciate the depth of the remark,
"I couldn't a-stood that, by jeeminy!" Tears stood in his big bovine
eyes.

The group dispersed, many glad to have enjoyed such a genuine
sensation, Mrs. Stillman declaring to the neighbor and the landlady she
hadn't had such a skeer since the time _he_ was took in the dead o'
night with bleedin' at the lungs, and not a doctor in ten mile, and
every minute like to be his last, so it was.

The artist followed Miss Gill from the spot. She picked up her basket
beside the photographic car, her face so sublimated it seemed never to
have known any other look.

"I didn't understand human nature," she confessed to the photographer,
who had entered his car and again appeared at the window above her.
"That fellow has the poetry in him that I can't write out. I'm afraid
I'm going to cry."

The artist held down his sketch-book to her. Dabbing back her tears with
one hand, she took it with the other and exclaimed at once, "Why, you've
sketched _me_!"

"When a man like that dares so much for home happiness in this world, I
think I can dare a little, poor, struggling dog as I am. I called that a
while ago the picture of my wife; and it shall be--my _woman_," infusing
the idiom of his native State with its primitive, tender meaning.

She handed back the book, and he took it, with her hand.

"Do you dare?" trembled the girl with a laugh, mindful that all
Fairfield was out.

"I think I do," he replied, smiling also as he followed her eyes toward
a group proceeding down the railroad--"even in spite of that."

Mrs. Mallston was walking beside her husband, making a display of
ankle-bone under her scant calico wrapper, her sun-bonnet flapping to
her nose, the four juveniles able to walk dangling from her fingers or
drapery. Mallston, straight as a hickory tree, carried his youngest on
his bosom, patting its cheek with his horny, potato-scented palm.

  M.H. CATHERWOOD.



THE EARLY DAYS OF MORMONISM.


For many years both before and after the Revolution the western part of
New York was claimed by Massachusetts. The dispute was finally settled
in 1786 by the latter State retaining the title to the soil westward of
a meridian line extending from Pennsylvania to Lake Ontario. The line
was afterward ascertained to be the meridian of Washington. It passed
near Elmira, through the county of Seneca, and pierced the town of Lyons
in the county of Wayne. The area of the Massachusetts claim was more
than seven million acres, or about fifteen counties as they are now
arranged. The entire tract was sold in 1787 to Oliver Phelps and Daniel
Gorman for one million dollars. Phelps and Gorman immediately proceeded
to Canandaigua and obtained the Indian title to one third of the tract.
A land-office was opened in that village, the first of its kind in
America. But the sales, although rapid, prevented the ruin neither of
the purchasers nor of Robert Morris, the financier of the Revolution,
who came forward to help them. The Holland Land Company profited by
these misfortunes. The rich valleys of the Genesee and its tributaries
more than made good its promises to actual settlers, as is readily
proved by the waving fields of grain which greet the traveller through
that section to-day.

In the year 1815 there came to the town of Palmyra, in Wayne county, a
family by the name of Smith. Their former home was Sharon, Vermont. The
father's name was Joseph, the mother's maiden name was Lucy Mack, and
they were both of Scotch descent. Their son Joseph, afterward "the
Prophet," was born on December 23, 1805. Hyrum, another son, helped his
father at the trade of a cooper. Joseph, Jr., grew up with the
reputation of being an idle and ignorant youth, given to
chicken-thieving, and, like his father, extremely superstitious. Both
father and sons believed in witchcraft, and they frequently "divined"
the presence of water by a forked stick or hazel rod. Orlando Sanders of
Palmyra, a well-preserved gentleman of over eighty, tells us that the
Smith family worked for his father and for himself. He gives them the
credit of being good workers, but declares that they could save no
money. He also states that Joseph, Jr., was "a greeny," both large and
strong. By nature he was peaceably disposed, but when he had taken too
much liquor he was inclined to fight, with or without provocation.

The profession of a water-witch did not bring enough ducats to the Smith
family; so the attempt was made to find hidden treasures. Failing in
this, the unfolding flower of Mormonism would have been nipped in the
bud had not Joe's father and brother been engaged in digging a well upon
the premises of Clark Chase in September, 1819. Joseph, Jr., stood idly
by with some of the Chase children when a stone resembling a child's
foot was thrown from the well. The Chase children claimed the curiosity,
as it was considered, but Joe seized and retained it. Afterward, for a
series of years, he claimed that by the use of it he was enabled to
discover stolen property and to locate the place where treasure was
buried.

After living in Palmyra for about ten years, the Smith family moved
southward a few miles and settled in Manchester, the northern town of
Ontario county. Their residence was a primitive one, even for those
days. William Van Camp, the aged editor of the _Democratic Press_ at
Lyons, recalls the fact that it was a log house from the following
circumstance. Martin Harris, a farmer near Palmyra, visited the Smiths
while he was yet in doubt concerning the doctrines of Mormonism. One
night, while he was in his room, curtained off from the single large
room of the interior, there appeared to him no less a personage than
Jesus Christ. Harris was informed that Mormonism was the true faith, and
Van Camp knows that it was a log house, although no vestige now
remains, because Harris told him that his celestial visitor was lying on
the beam overhead!

One mile from the Smith residence was the farm of Alonzo Sanders, now
owned by William T. Sampson, commander in the United States Navy. This
farm is four miles south of Palmyra, on the road toward Canandaigua. It
includes a barren hill which rises abruptly to the height of one hundred
and fifty feet. The ridge runs almost due north and south, and from the
summit there are beautiful views of the hills surrounding Canandaigua
and Seneca Lakes. It is known to the present generation as "Gold Bible
Hill:" to Joe Smith it was known as "the Hill Cumorah," where the angel
Moroni announced to him the presence of the "golden plates" giving an
account of the fate which attended the early inhabitants of America.
With these plates would be found the only means by which they could be
read, the wonderful spectacles known as the "Urim and Thummim." Joe was
not averse to such a revelation, for his hazel rod and his "peek-stone"
had already failed him. There had been various religious awakenings in
the neighborhood, and when the various sects began to quarrel over the
converts Joe arose and announced that his mission was to restore the
true priesthood. He appointed a number of meetings, but no one seemed
inclined to follow him as the leader of a new religion. In September,
1823, an angel appeared to him, forgave his many lapses from grace and
announced the golden plates.

These plates, however, were not found for several years. In the mean
time the scene of Smith's operations shifted along the banks of Seneca
Lake and down the tributaries of the Susquehanna to the point where that
river sweeps southward into Pennsylvania past a borough of its own name,
and then northward into New York, before it finally crosses Pennsylvania
on its way to the Chesapeake. The borough of Susquehanna forms an
important station on the Erie Railway, one hundred and ninety miles
north-west of New York City. All about the locality houses are built in
little groups upon the steep hillsides: even the railroad-shops could
not be erected before the ground was levelled for them. When the river
first cut a channel through the Appalachin Mountains it was very saving
of its strength. Should anything besides the river attempt to enter this
valley it must either hang against the sides or swim.

Joe Smith had paid several visits to this region when the first settlers
were struggling with the wilderness. It was a much wilder country than
that about Palmyra, and the inhabitants were much more credulous. Upon
these people Smith practised with his peek-stone. A number of aged
persons now living in that vicinity give this description of the
prophet: He was six feet or a trifle over in height; of stout build, but
wiry; his hair and complexion were light; his eyes were blue and mild;
and "he did not look as if he knew enough to fool people so," as one old
lady expresses it. When "peeking" he kneeled and buried his face in his
white stovepipe hat, within which was the peek-stone. He declared it to
be so much like looking into the water that the "deflection of flight"
sometimes took him out of his course. On a wilderness-hill--now a part
of Jacob J. Skinner's farm--his peek-stone discovered a ton of silver
bars which had been buried by weary Spaniards as they trudged up the
Susquehanna. An expedition for their recovery was undertaken as soon as
Smith could muster enough followers to do the work. Unlike St. Paul, Joe
did not work with his own hands, and he did not hesitate to be
chargeable to any one. Several round excavations were made on the crown
of a hill, the largest of which was about thirty-five feet in diameter
and of about the same depth. The water was drained toward the south, and
a shanty covered the hole from the eyes of the scoffers and the profane.
The diggers had proceeded with great labor, and were just ready to grasp
the silver, when the charm moved it three hundred feet to the
north-east. Joe tracked it with his peek-stone to its hiding-place. It
was not so far under the surface this time--only about twenty feet--and
the faithful again worked with a will. The dilatory movements of the
silver caused anxiety to Mr. Isaac Hale, with whom the diggers had been
"boarding round." Hale was a stiff old Methodist whose business judgment
told him that he was taking too much stock in this "big bonanza." For
all his anxiety, the silver again flitted away, and alighted fifty feet
beyond the big hole. They determined to capture it if they ran the hill
through a sieve. The third hole had been sunk fifteen out of the
necessary twenty feet when the treasure once more jumped to the other
side of the big hole. Then the prophet had a vision: the blood of a
black sheep must be shed and sprinkled around the diggings. Black sheep
were scarce, and while they waited for one the faithful obtained their
needed rest. At length, no sheep appearing, Joe said that a black dog
might answer. A dog, therefore, was killed, and the blood was sprinkled
on the ground. After that the silver never went far away. Still, it
waltzed about the big hole in such a lively manner that frequent
tunnelling to effect its capture availed nothing. At last the prophet
decided that it was of no use to dig unless one of their number was made
a sacrifice. None of the faithful responded to his call, and thus the
magnificent scheme was abandoned. Oliver Harper, one of the diggers who
furnished the money, was soon afterward murdered. The prophet thought
this might answer for a sacrifice: he again rallied the diggers, but the
charm remained stubborn and would not reveal the silver.[2]

There was, however, another object for which Smith said the Lord had
sent him to Susquehanna; and that was--a wife. Until he obtained one
there was no use in trying to get certain buried treasures at Palymra. A
headless Spaniard guarded it with great vigilance, but would, it
appeared, be driven away if Smith should shake millinery and dry-goods
bills at him. Joseph stopped at the house of Isaac Hale, already noticed
as having furnished board to the diggers. Mr. Hale owned a farm on the
north side of the river, a mile and a half below the present borough of
Susquehanna. He had three daughters, two of them already married. The
second daughter, Emma, was easily persuaded to join her fortunes with
those of the adventurer. The father, however, made so much opposition
that they crossed over into the State of New York, and were married at
Windsor, a neighboring town. This was probably early in 1826. Mr. Hale
threatened to shoot his son-in-law--the "Peeker," as he called him--if
he ever returned.

About these days, every other means of gaining a living without honest
work having been exhausted, the prophet thought it was time to find the
golden plates. Returning to the vicinity of Palmyra, Smith and his
followers began to dig for the plates on the eastern side of the hill.
It was announced that each one of the diggers must be pure in deed, and
that no evil thought must cross his mind as he worked. One night a spade
struck an iron box at the same moment that an evil thought seized one of
the diggers. The box sank to lower depths amid thunder and lightning,
while Smith announced that nothing could be done that night but to go
home and pray. They were more fortunate, however, in leaving their evil
thoughts at home on the night of September 22, 1826, for then, according
to the faithful, the golden plates were taken from "the Hill Cumorah
with a mighty display of celestial machinery." It is recorded that after
the prize had been delivered to the prophet by angels his eyes were
opened and he saw legions of devils struggling with a celestial host to
keep the plates concealed. On his return to Susquehanna with a bandaged
head, Smith gave out that he had had an encounter with the chief devil,
and been severely wounded by a blow "struck from the shoulder."

With the golden plates were also found the Urim and Thummim, the magic
spectacles or religious peek-stones, "transparent and clear as crystal,"
which should translate the hieroglyphics on the plates. There were three
witnesses who swore by all that was sacred that the angel of the Lord
laid these plates before them, and that "they were translated by the
gift and power of God." The three witnesses were Oliver Cowdery, who was
finally expelled from the brotherhood in Missouri; David Whitner, who
abandoned the Mormons and settled in Richmond, Missouri, where he still
lives; and Martin Harris, who quarrelled with Smith in the same State
and returned to New York to live.

Such a precious treasure as was now in the hands of Smith was not to be
"borne in earthly vessels frail." He applied to Willard Chase, a son of
that Clark Chase on whose premises the original peek-stone was
discovered, to make him a wooden box for the plates. The compensation
was to be a share in the prospective profits from the "Gold Book."
Chase's lack of faith in both the man and the book caused him to decline
the work. Smith thereupon thrust his gold plates and the rings which
connected them into a bag of beans and started for Susquehanna. Twenty
miles above that borough lies the village of Harpersville. Here lived
Benjamin Wasson, who married one of Mrs. Smith's sisters. Wasson was a
cabinetmaker, and, although not a Mormon, he made a strong box for the
plates. Smith announced that no one could look into the box and live,
but when his father-in-law, Hale, wished to try it Smith hid the box in
the woods. Hale, in his statement of 1834, declared that Smith
translated the plates in his own house, "with the stone in his hat and
his hat over his face," while the plates were still hid in the woods.

Fortunately for Smith, he did not have to depend upon Hale for a place
in which to carry on his operations. His wife had a six-acre place in a
corner of her father's farm, adjoining the farm of Joseph McKune. Upon
this little strip of land Smith moved a partly-finished house,
twenty-six feet broad, eighteen feet deep and fourteen feet in the
posts. It is evident, from the stovepipe through the roof, that the
edifice was never finished. After Smith left this region Martin Harris
came from Palmyra and sold the house to McKune, whose widow lived in it
for about forty years. It is now the farm-residence of her son, Benjamin
McKune, high sheriff of Susquehanna county, and lies close to the track
of the Erie Railway, a mile and a half west of Susquehanna Dépôt. The
elder McKune strongly suspected that Smith and his gang were
counterfeiters.

The prophet's original plan was that the plates should be translated by
an infant son, who should perform other miracles and become his
successor. But his expectations were doomed to disappointment, for in a
little fern-grown cemetery near at hand is a tottering slab of black
sandstone with the simple inscription, "In memory of an infant son of
Joseph and Emma Smith, June 15, 1828." Hence the magic spectacles were
very opportunely found with the plates. The little low chamber in
Smith's house was used as a translating-room. The prophet and his plates
were screened even from the sight of his scribes, Martin Harris, Oliver
Cowdery and Reuben Hale, by blankets secured with nails. While the
translation was going on the neighbors frequently called to discuss the
forthcoming book, which, it was alleged, would make the Hale family very
rich. Occasionally a visitor was allowed to feel the thickness of the
Golden Book as it reposed within a pillow-case, but no one was permitted
to see it.[3]

The "celestial machinery" for the translating process was very simple.
A copy of the hieroglyphics was taken, and then Smith either wrote his
translation on a slate or dictated for others to write on paper. Martin
Harris having taken a scroll containing some of the hieroglyphics to
Professor Anthon, the characters were pronounced to be partly Greek,
partly Hebrew and partly Roman inverted, with a rude copy of Humboldt's
Mexican calendar at the end. That the prophet was not well advanced
either in Greek or English appears from a story related by the Rev.
Henry Caswall, who visited Nauvoo, Illinois, in 1842. He had with him a
copy of the Psalter in Greek, which he handed to the prophet and asked
him to explain its contents. Smith looked at it a few moments, and then
replied, "No, it ain't Greek at all, except perhaps a few words. What
ain't Greek is Egyptian, and what ain't Egyptian is Greek. This book is
very valuable: _it is a dictionary of Egyptian hieroglyphics_." Pointing
to the capital letters at the beginning of each verse, he said, "Them
figures is Egyptian hieroglyphics, and them which follows is the
interpretation of the hieroglyphics, written in the reformed Egyptian.
Them characters is like the letters that was engraved on the golden
plates." Upon this the Mormons began to congratulate Mr. Caswall on the
information he was receiving. "There!" they said, "we told you so: we
told you that our prophet would give you satisfaction. None but our
prophet can explain these mysteries." The prophet then attempted to buy
the book, on the ground that it could be of no use to Caswall, because
he did not understand it! Refusing to sell, Caswall inquired the meaning
of certain of the hieroglyphics on the papyrus of the prophet. When
cornered the prophet slipped out of the room, and Caswall saw him no
more.

Mrs. McKune relates the particulars of an incident which took place
early in 1828. Martin Harris had advanced so much money to Smith that
his wife came from Palmyra in great alarm to arrest the destruction of
property and to reclaim her husband if possible. Harris showed her the
sacred writings, already nearly completed, as an inducement for her to
hold her peace. She found where the manuscript was concealed, and at
once secured it. When asked to return it she replied, "Joe Smith may
peek for it." This he attempted to do, but accused her of unfairly
removing the manuscript whenever the attendants had almost reached it.
After waiting a little time, she produced a portion of the roll and
declared Smith to be a fraud. The remainder of the manuscript she
retained, and finally burned it, with the remark, "If it cannot be found
there will be an end to the partnership between Joe Smith and my
husband." Joe never undertook to use his wonderful spectacles for a
second translation of the matter in the missing manuscript: he feared
that Mrs. Harris might produce a totally different Bible consisting of
his first translation.

Mrs. Squires and Mrs. McKune agree in saying that no converts were made
by Smith and Harris in the vicinity of Susquehanna. The scene of the
Mormon endeavors was suddenly moved along the beautiful valley of the
Susquehanna to a point north of the Appalachin Mountains and just within
the borders of New York. In the locality of Harpersville and Nineveh a
broad plain had been settled by a colony of emigrants called "the
Vermont Sufferers," from their having formerly occupied land which was
claimed by both Massachusetts and New York. Three miles above Nineveh
lies Afton, just on the edge of Chenango county, and a short distance
above are Sidney, in Delaware county, and Otego, in Otsego county. Smith
and his followers operated with the peek-stone in this part of the
valley, where he was a comparative stranger. George Collington, one of
the most substantial farmers in Broome county, was then a lad of
sixteen. One evening, at twilight, he discovered Smith, Joseph Knight,
William Hale (uncle of Smith's wife) and two men named Culver and
Blowers in the act of dodging through the woods with shovels and picks
upon their shoulders, their object being to discover a salt-spring by
the agency of the peek-stone. He followed them, under cover of the
brush, to a point where they stopped for consultation and finally
decided to dig the next day. Noticing that Bostwick Badger, who then
owned the farm now occupied by Collington, had felled an oak near the
place, and that he had drawn out the timber, Collington obtained
permission to cut the top for wood. Collington's axe and the prophet's
diggers began operations about the same time on the following morning.
Out from the treetop came Collington and asked what they were doing.
They told him to mind his business, which he did by thoroughly
publishing them about the neighborhood--a proceeding that brought them a
number of unwelcome visitors in the place of one. Frederick Davenport
furnished young Collington with a half bushel of salt to be deposited in
the hole at night. By morning the water had dissolved the salt and
retained its briny flavor. Bottles were filled for exhibition, and the
stock of the converts in the peek-stone ran high until the trick was
discovered. It was claimed that the peek-stone also pointed out an
extensive silver-mine on the farm of Abram Cornell at Bettsburg, nearly
opposite Nineveh. No silver was found except that furnished by Josiah
Stowell, a not over-bright man whose little all went into the pocket of
Smith.

However much he might fail in discovering material treasures, Smith's
hold upon the religious infatuation of his followers grew more and more
strong. John Morse, an aged convert to Mormonism, had recently died, and
Smith was sent for to restore him to life. After looking at him Smith
declined, because it would be a pity to have him suffer rheumatism and
die again so soon! This was something like Brigham Young's refusal to
restore a lost leg to one of his Mormons, on the ground that if he did
it the man would be obliged to walk on three legs all through eternity!

Mrs. Marsh says that Joseph Knight and his sons were on one occasion in
her husband's hay-field, and boldly declared that Smith could perform
miracles. On being challenged for an example, Joseph Knight said, "The
prophet cast the Devil out of me. He looked like a black cat; and he
ran into a pile of brush." The prophet prayed for a deceased shoemaker
in Greene, Chenango county. This man had joined their Church, and the
Mormons needed his property to help them in leaving the country. The
widow refused to sign the property over until the prayers had been
offered for the return of her husband. The prayers having availed
nothing, the executor sought to recover the property. Thomas A. Johnson,
then a law-student and a brother of Mrs. Marsh, was sent to Harpersville
to get possession. Smith's followers were encamped in the barn of Joseph
Knight, and they threatened to shoot. By the advice of friends Johnson
compromised the matter by taking a valuable horse.

All accounts agree that Smith drank freely, both in the Susquehanna and
in the Harpersville neighborhoods. Mrs. McKune relates that one night
Smith volunteered to pray the frost away from the corn-field of his
brother-in-law, Michael Morse. The field was not saved, probably because
it had an exposure toward the north and the west. A number of witnesses
in the vicinity of Nineveh remember that the prophet set a day for that
village to sink, but that he afterward repented and withdrew his curse.
He did, however, announce that on a certain evening, about twilight, he
would walk on the water. The place of his selection was watched by
Gentile boys until one of Smith's followers was seen to construct a
bridge of planks just under the surface. Watching their opportunity, the
boys removed the outer planks. Before the prophet made the attempt to
walk he exhorted his followers to have strong faith. When his bridge
suddenly gave way he swam ashore and said, "Woe unto you of little
faith! Your faith would not hold me up."

There were other boys in the neighborhood who thought it rare sport to
annoy the Mormons. The same Joseph Knight who has already figured in
this narrative owned a small farm on which he had built a combined
grist- and carding-mill. The power was obtained by means of a small
stream, the outlet of Perch Pond to the Susquehanna River, opposite
Harpersville. This stream was dammed, so that the Mormon converts might
be baptized by immersion. The day for the ceremony was fixed, but the
boys so persistently destroyed the dam that the Mormons did not attempt
to rebuild it till the night before, and then they were obliged to stand
guard until the hour for the baptism had arrived. Knight's barn was a
rude structure of about forty by thirty feet, but it served the purpose
of a tabernacle in the wilderness for a number of months. The prophet
himself was not a very successful preacher, but the versatile Sidney
Rigdon more than made up for his defects. Smith Baker gives Rigdon the
credit of being "a decent speaker, as preachers averaged in those days."

A semblance of persecution having strengthened the Church, the Gentile
inhabitants of the Susquehanna Valley were glad when a "revelation"
caused the sixty Mormons to pack their traps and move westward. Some of
the followers were moved by a spirit of adventure, while others placed
their property in the common lot and determined to accompany the prophet
to his earthly as well as to his heavenly kingdom. Smith Baker was one of
the teamsters, and reports that the train consisted of three baggage- and
eleven passenger-wagons. The exodus was along the old State road, north of
Binghamton, to Ithaca, and thence, across Cayuga Lake, to Palmyra.

The Saints in the region about the Gold Bible Hill had not been idle
while these things were occurring in Susquehanna. William Van Camp
relates that he and all the other boys believed Hen Pack Hill, a mile
east of Palmyra, would open to allow a giant to step forth and place his
foot upon Palmyra to crush it. This would be the end of all disbelievers
in Mormonism, and the Saints would at once be gathered together in that
vicinity. "I did not know then," says Mr. Van Camp, "how easy it is for
men to lie."

Mr. Van Camp is about seventy years old, and Major John H. Gilbert, who
still resides in Palmyra, is about seventy-six. Both of these gentlemen
were working in the office of the _Wayne Sentinel_, E.B. Grandin
proprietor, during the months from September, 1829, to March, 1830, the
time during which the Book of Mormon was in process of printing. The
office was in the third story of a building now known as "Exchange Row,"
in the principal street of Palmyra. The foreman was Mr. Pomeroy Tucker,
who afterward published a work on Mormonism. Major Gilbert was a
compositor and also a dancing-master. His duties in the latter calling
took him away from his "case" so frequently that Van Camp "distributed"
in order to give him a chance to work the next day. The "copy" was on
ruled paper--an expensive thing in those days--and the letters were so
closely crowded together that words like _and_ or _the_ were divided at
the end of the line. The copy was in Cowdery's handwriting, but it was
produced from a tightly-buttoned coat every morning by Hyrum Smith. One
day's supply only was given at a time, and even this was carefully taken
away at night, there being but one occasion when permission was given to
Major Gilbert to take it away from the office. Major Gilbert and others
say that David Whitner of Richmond, Missouri, has this manuscript copy;
and it has been stated recently that he has been called upon by
officials from Salt Lake City to produce it, and refused.[4]

There were no marks of punctuation in the copy--a sore trial to both
Tucker and Gilbert in "reading proof." At such times Cowdery
occasionally "held the copy." In the absence of Cowdery the
proof-readers often resorted to the orthodox Bible to verify some foggy
passage. The "matter" was "paged" so that thirty-two pages could be
printed at a time on one of Hoe's "Smith" six-column hand-presses. After
the sheets had been run through once and properly dried, they were
reversed and printed on the other side. The bookbinder then folded them
by hand, and severed them with an ivory paper-cutter. The result was
that the twenty-five hundred large sheets made five thousand small
sheets, with sixteen pages printed upon each side. Major Gilbert has an
unbound copy of the book, which he saved, sheet by sheet, as it came
from the press.

Martin Harris furnished the funds for printing the book by a mortgage of
three thousand dollars on his farm. He celebrated the completion of the
work by inviting all the printers to his house. Mrs. Harris (the same
who secreted the manuscript at Susquehanna) had not signed the mortgage.
Harris brought his guests within the door--as Van Camp relates it--and
introduced them to his wife, who bowed coldly and took no pains to
welcome them. At length Harris asked for the cider-pitcher, and went to
the spot indicated by his wife. Returning with it in his hand, he showed
a large hole in the bottom. "Well," said Mrs. Harris, "it has as much
bottom as your old Bible has." There was enough bottom to the Bible,
however, to give a comfortable sum of money to "Joseph Smith, Jr.,
Author and Proprietor." Orlando Sanders, son of Alonzo Sanders before
mentioned, says that the Smiths made too much money to walk any longer:
he sold them a horse, and he now has a Bible which he took in payment
for a bridle.

The most reasonable theory of the origin of the Book of Mormon connects
the work directly with Solomon Spalding, a soldier of the Revolution
from Connecticut and a graduate from Dartmouth in the class of 1785.
Failing health induced Spalding to leave the ministry and to join his
brother in a mercantile life at Cherry Valley and Richfield, New York.
In 1809 he removed thence to Conneaut, in Ashtabula county, the extreme
north-eastern corner of Ohio. Next west of Ashtabula is Lake county,
wherein is located Kirtland--a place of great historic interest to the
Mormons, as will appear before our narrative closes. While Spalding was
in Conneaut he wrote a few novels of so unmeritorious a nature that no
one would publish them. At length the opening of an Indian mound gave
him a basis of facts upon which he built a story relating to the Indian
population of America and its descent from the Lost Tribes of Israel. He
announced that the title of his novel would be _The Manuscript Found_,
and that he proposed to publish a sensational story of its discovery in
a cave in Ohio. Spalding frequently read extracts to his friends, and
one of them furnished him with money, so that he could proceed to
Pittsburg and have the novel printed. The manuscript remained in the
office of Patterson & Lambdin in that city for some time, but it was
never published. It is probable that it was taken away by Spalding, who
died shortly after (in 1816) at Amity, Washington county, near
Pittsburg. While it was in the office it is believed that Sidney Rigdon,
a young printer, was so pleased with the novel that he took a copy for
future use. Rigdon was born in Alleghany county, Pennsylvania, February
19, 1793. He received a fair English education, and in 1817 became an
orthodox Christian preacher. He soon gave forth strange doctrines, which
were founded on the manuscript in his possession, and then he abandoned
preaching for a number of years "to study the Bible," as he expressed
it. Moving into Lake county, Ohio, he prepared the minds of his
followers for some new _ism_. It cannot be accurately stated just when,
where and how he met Joseph Smith and added his religious enthusiasm to
the humbuggery of the Peeker. But that such a union was formed appears
from the talk of Smith regarding the gold plates, and from the actual
finding of them in the manner proposed by Spalding fourteen years
before. The union is still more evident when we listen to witnesses who
had heard Spalding's readings, and who afterward recognized them in the
Book of Mormon, with additions of a religious nature. These witnesses
noted certain inconsistencies in the Book of Mormon which they had
formerly discovered in Spalding's novel. History records that the widow
of Spalding sent the manuscript to Conneaut, where it was publicly
compared with the printed book and the fraud exposed. Soon afterward the
manuscript was spirited away from Mrs. Spalding, probably to avoid the
certainty of a still more convincing disclosure. Major Gilbert
testified that Rigdon dogged Smith's footsteps about Palmyra for nearly
two years before the Bible was printed. He is of opinion that Rigdon was
among those who listened to Spalding in Conneaut, and took notes on
those occasions. The Bible itself is full of the religious questions
which stirred the people of Western New York in those days--a most
strange thing in a celestial work of such great antiquity.

Immediately after the publication of the Book the Church was duly
organized at Manchester. On April 6, 1830, six members were ordained
elders--Joseph Smith, Sr., Joseph Smith, Jr., Hyrum Smith, Samuel Smith,
Oliver Cowdery and Joseph Knight. The first conference was held at
Fayette, Seneca county, in June. A special "revelation" at this time
made Smith's wife "the Elect Lady and Daughter of God," with the
high-sounding title of "Electa Cyria." In later years this lady became
disgusted with her husband's religion, and refused after his death to
leave Illinois for Utah. She remained in Nauvoo, and married a Gentile
named Bidamon. For a long time she kept the Mansion House in that place,
where she died April 30, 1879.

Another revelation was to the effect that Palmyra was not the
gathering-place of the Saints, after all, but that they should proceed
to Kirtland in Ohio. Consequently, the early part of 1831 saw them
colonized in that place, the move being known as "The First Hegira."
Still another revelation (on the 6th of June) stated that some point in
Missouri was the reliable spot. Smith immediately selected a tract in
Jackson county, near Independence. By 1833 the few Mormons who had moved
thither were so persecuted that they went into Clay county, and thence,
in 1838, into Caldwell county, naming their settlement "Far West." The
main body of the Mormons, however, remained in Kirtland from 1831 till
they were forced to join their Western brethren in 1838. Brigham Young,
another native of Vermont, joined at Kirtland in 1832, and was ordained
an elder. The conference of elders on May 3, 1833, repudiated the name
of "Mormons" and adopted that of "Latter-Day Saints." The first
presidency consisted of Smith, Rigdon and Frederick G. Williams. In May,
1835, the Twelve Apostles--among them Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball
and Orson Hyde--left on a mission for proselytes. During the same year
Rigdon's _Book of Doctrine and Covenants_ and his _Lectures on Faith_
were adopted. A professor of Hebrew also joined them, and all the male
adults entered upon the study of that language with a will.

Rigdon was by far the ablest man in the band. His earlier religious
affiliations were with the Campbellites, now called Disciples. At the
time of the Mormon advent he lived in Mentor, the next town to Kirtland,
but he had no farm or any other property to offer them, as has been
frequently stated. Those of his followers whom he found in Kirtland
frequently remarked that they "had a good time before Joe Smith came." A
very clear idea of his religious power may be gained by the following
statement of Judge John Barr, ex-sheriff of Cuyahoga county, Ohio, and a
most excellent authority on the history of the Western Reserve. The
statement has never been made public hitherto: "In 1830 I was deputy
sheriff, and, being at Willoughby (now in Lake county) on official
business, determined to go to Mayfield, which is seven or eight miles up
the Chagrin River, and hear Cowdery and Rigdon on the revelations of
Mormonism. Varnem J. Card, the lawyer, and myself started early Sunday
morning on horseback. We found the roads crowded with people going in
the same direction. Services in the church were opened by Cowdery with
prayer and singing, in which he thanked God fervently for the new
revelation. He related the manner of finding the golden plates of Nephi.
He was followed by Rigdon, a famous Baptist preacher, well known
throughout the eastern part of the Western Reserve and also in Western
Pennsylvania. His voice and manner were always imposing. He was regarded
as an eloquent man at all times, and now he seemed fully aroused. He
said he had not been satisfied in his religious yearnings until now. At
night he had often been unable to sleep, walking and praying for more
light and comfort in his religion. While in the midst of this agony he
heard of the revelation of Joe Smith, which Brother Cowdery had
explained: under this his soul suddenly found peace. It filled all his
aspirations. At the close of a long harangue in this earnest manner,
during which every one present was silent, though very much affected, he
inquired whether any one desired to come forward and be immersed. Only
one man arose. This was an aged 'dead-beat' by the name of Cahoon, who
occasionally joined the Shakers, and lived on the country generally. The
place selected for immersion was a clear pool in the river above the
bridge, around which was a beautiful rise of ground on the west side for
the audience. On the east bank was a sharp bluff and some stumps, where
Mr. Card and myself stationed ourselves. The time of baptism was fixed
at 2 P.M. Long before this hour the spot was surrounded by as many
people as could have a clear view. Rigdon went into the pool--which at
the deepest was about four feet--and after a suitable address, with
prayer, Cahoon came forward and was immersed. Standing in the water,
Rigdon gave one of his most powerful exhortations. The assembly became
greatly affected. As he proceeded he called for the converts to step
forward. They came through the crowd in rapid succession to the number
of thirty, and were immersed, with no intermission of the discourse on
the part of Rigdon. Mr. Card was apparently the most stoical of men--of
a clear, unexcitable temperament, with unorthodox and vague religious
ideas. He afterward became prosecuting attorney for Cuyahoga county.
While the exciting scene was transpiring below us in the valley and in
the pool, the faces of the crowd expressing the most intense emotion,
Mr. Card suddenly seized my arm and said, 'Take me away!' Taking his
arm, I saw that his face was so pale that he seemed to be about to
faint. His frame trembled as we walked away and mounted our horses. We
rode a mile toward Willoughby before a word was said. Rising the hill
out of the valley, he seemed to recover, and said, 'Mr. Barr, if you had
not been there I certainly should have gone into the water.' He said the
impulse was irresistible."

Kirtland is on the Kirtland branch of the Chagrin River, so named from
the disappointment of a party of early surveyors, who thought they were
in the valley of the Cuyahoga, the first river to the westward. The
village is nine miles west of Painesville, three from Willoughby and
twenty-two from Cleveland. Mentor is the nearest station on the Lake
Shore Railway. Besides the Temple, the Mormons erected a number of
substantial buildings, which show that they expected to remain in
Kirtland. The residences of Smith and Rigdon are almost under the eaves
of the Temple, and the theological seminary is now occupied by the
Methodists for a church. A square mile was laid out in half-acre lots,
and a number of farms were bought--the "Church farm" being half a mile
down one of the most beautiful valleys which it is possible to conceive
in a range of country so uniformly level.

Many an interesting story is told regarding the Mormon methods of
carrying on business with the merchants of Cleveland. A bank was
started, like other "wild-cat" banks of that period, without a charter
from the State of Ohio. The institution was called "The Kirtland Safety
Society Bank." A number of its bills of issue may be seen at the rooms
of the Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland. An examination
of these bills shows that early in 1837 Smith was cashier and Rigdon was
president, Two or three months later either Rigdon or Williams was
secretary, and Smith was treasurer. Thus the process of inflation must
have been both easy and rapid. Richard Hilliard, a leading merchant of
Cleveland, received their bills for a few days, and then took possession
of all their available assets. They were also in debt for their farms
and for goods bought in New York. The bubble burst, and many in the
vicinity of Kirtland were among the sufferers. Smith and Rigdon fled to
Far West, after having been tarred and feathered for their peculiar
theories of finance.

The Mormons were driven from Missouri by Governor Boggs's "Extraordinary
Order," which caused them to gain sympathy as having been persecuted in
a slave State. They moved to Hancock county, Illinois, in 1840, and
built up Nauvoo by a charter with most unusual privileges. Smith here
announced a new revelation, sustaining polygamy, which was supplemented
by Young in 1852. His rebellious followers started a paper, which he
promptly demolished. He was under arrest by the State authorities when a
mob shot him on the 27th of June, 1844. On his death Brigham Young
tricked the expectant Rigdon out of the successorship. Rigdon then
refused to recognize Young's authority, and for this contumacy he was
excommunicated and delivered to the Devil "to be buffeted in the flesh
for a thousand years." Returning to Pittsburg, Rigdon led a life of
utter obscurity, and finally died in Friendship, Allegany county, New
York, July 14, 1876. Cowdery, Whitner and Harris either deserted or were
cut off. The Legislature of Illinois repealed the charter of Nauvoo in
1845. Most of the Mormons gathered at Council Bluffs, Iowa, in June,
1846. Those who were left in Nauvoo were driven out at the point of the
bayonet. Early in 1847 pioneers crossed the Plains to Salt Lake Valley,
whither Young followed them in July. A crop was raised that year. In
1848 the main body of the Mormons were safely lodged within the confines
of Utah.

By far the most important and enduring monument left by the Mormons in
Kirtland is their Temple. The advent of several hundred strangers into
the midst of the insignificant hamlet was an event of considerable
importance, but when they selected a most commanding site, of easy
access to the public highway, and commenced the building of a church,
all Northern Ohio looked on in wonder. A structure of such pretensions
would be a tax upon a goodly-sized town of this generation, but the
several hundred Mormons who built it gave cheerfully each one his tenth
in labor, materials or money for the four years from 1832 to 1836, the
entire cost being estimated at forty thousand dollars. The visitor, come
from whatever direction he may, has the Temple constantly in view as a
reminder of the quainter style of "meeting-houses" in New England. Its
architectural superiority over the meeting-houses is probably due to the
fact that Smith had a "revelation" which gave him the exact measurements
and proportions. The size upon the ground is eighty feet by sixty, and
the eastern gable runs up into a square tower, surmounted by a domed
belfry, to the height of one hundred and twenty-five feet. Two lofty
stories above a low basement are covered by a shingled roof pierced with
dormer windows. Large Gothic windows of the Henry VIII. shape are filled
with seven-by-nine glass, and afford relief to the solid walls of stone
and stucco that have so well survived the ravages of nearly half a
century, though the iron rust streaking the exterior, the moss-grown
shingles, the wasps' nests under the eaves, and the two immense chimneys
already tottering to their fall, give evidence of approaching ruin.

As much as this even the careless passer-by cannot well avoid seeing.
The more patient and accurate visitor may readily repeat my own
experience as I went in search of the key on a bleak day in December.
"The people ought to fix it up," said one informant: "it is a good thing
for Kirtland;" the force of which remark I did not realize till I called
upon an old Mormon woman who was said to have the keys. Inquiry at her
little cabin resulted in my being directed to "go to Electy Stratton's."
The latter personage, my cicerone, stated that her parents were
Mormons--that her father had spent several hundred dollars in the cause;
and so "it was thought best that their family should have the keys for a
while now." The small fee for visiting the Temple was the "good thing
for Kirtland," and the custody of the keys was not to remain long in one
family. Opening a rickety gate, we entered the churchyard. High aloft,
just under the pediment, I could read this inscription in golden letters
upon a white tablet: "House of the Lord, built by the Church of Christ,
1834." Instead of the words "of Christ" the original inscription read
"of the Latter-Day Saints." The Temple faces the east. Solid green
doors, with oval panels, open into a vestibule extending across the
entire front, and terminating on either hand in a semicircular stairway.
The ceiling is cut away from the front wall to allow a flood of light to
enter from a huge square window above, and the open space is railed off
like a steamer's cabin. At the right, under the stairway, is the "Temple
Register Room," containing a record of visitors. On the left is the
"Library," with a curious collection of whale-oil chandeliers. On the
left of the wall, parallel with the front, is the "Gentlemen's
Entrance:" on the right is the "Ladies' Entrance." Between these doors
are the inscriptions: "Laus Deo," "Crux mihianchora," "Magna veritas, et
prevalebit." The auditorium occupies all the rest of the first story,
but one could wish that the wall which divided it from the vestibule
need not have spoiled one of the beautiful windows at either end, thus
leaving an ungainly half window in the auditorium. A row of wooden
pillars on either side gives the effect of galleries as the room is
entered, but a closer view shows that the space between the rows is
arched toward the centre of the ceiling. One of the pillars contains a
windlass, which in former times controlled the heavy canvas curtains
from above. The larger curtain fell into grooves between the high-back
pews in such a manner as to separate the men from the women: the smaller
curtains, at right angles to the other, divided both the men and the
women into separate classrooms. Thus the audience was quartered or
halved at pleasure, and the whole audience was enabled to face either
westward or eastward by simply changing the movable benches from one
side of the pews to the other. Clusters of richly-carved pulpits, rising
by threes, in three tiers, fill up either end of the room. The eastern
cluster is devoted to the Aaronic Priesthood, which also includes the
Levitical Priesthood, and administered the temporal affairs of the
Church. Each of the three pulpits in the upper tier has upon the front
the letters "B.P.A.," meaning Bishop Presiding over Aaronic Priesthood;
the middle tier has the letters "P.A.P.," Presiding Aaronic Priest; the
lower tier has the letters "P.A.T.," Presiding Aaronic Teacher; a
smaller pulpit below is labelled "P.A.D.," Presiding Aaronic Doorkeeper.
The pulpits against the western end are built up against an outer
window, with alternate panes of red and white glass in the arched
transom. These pulpits were occupied by the spiritual leaders, or the
Melchisedec Priesthood, Joe Smith's seat being in the highest tier. This
tier of pulpits is marked "M.P.C.," Melchisedec President of
Counsellors; the middle tier is marked "P.M.H.," Melchisedec Presiding
High Priest; the lower tier is "M.H.P.," Melchisedec High Priest.
Curtains from above were arranged to come down between the different
tiers of the priesthood, but so arranged that while those of one degree
might shut themselves away from the audience "for consultation," they
could not hide themselves from their superiors in ecclesiastical rank.
Strings and nails in the ceiling are the only remnants of these
remarkable partitions. A simple desk below the Melchisedec pulpit bears
the title "M.P.E.," Melchisedec Presiding Elder. The letters are in red
curtain-cord, and the desk itself, like all the pulpits above, is
covered with green calico. In the days of the Temple's glory rich velvet
upholstery set off all the carved work of the pulpits, and golden
letters shone from spots which are now simply marked by black paint. The
gilt mouldings which formerly set off the plain white finish of the
woodwork were first despoiled by the vandals, and then entirely removed
by the faithful to prevent further destruction. These mottoes still
remain upon the walls: "No cross, no crown;" "The Lord reigneth, let His
people rejoice;" and "Great is our Lord, and of great power." Over the
arched window behind the ten Melchisedec pulpits, and just beneath the
vertical modillion which forms the keystone of the ornamental wooden
arch, is the text, "Holiness unto the Lord."

Such is the auditorium to-day--a room which will comfortably hold six
hundred people, but which was often packed so full that relays of
worshippers came and went during a single service. The high pews in the
corners were for the best singers in Israel; and in one of these pews,
the natives assert, an insane woman was in the habit of rising and
tooting on a horn whenever the sentiments of the officiating minister
did not meet with her approval. Smith was in the habit of announcing
from his lofty pulpit, "The truth is good enough without dressing up,
but Brother Rigdon will now proceed to dress it up."

Over the auditorium is a similar room with lower ceilings and plainer
pulpits, each marked with initials which it would be tiresome to
explain. This hall was used as a school of the prophets where Latin and
Hebrew were taught. Marks of the desks remain, but the desks themselves
have long since been carried away, and the hall has been used for an Odd
Fellows' lodge and for various social purposes. On one of the pillars is
this remarkable announcement: "THE SALT LAKE MORMONS.--When Joseph Smith
was killed on June 27, 1844, Brigham Young _assumed_ the _leadership_ of
the Church, telling the people in the winter of _1846_ that all the
_God_ they wanted _was him_, and all the _Bible_ they wanted was in
_his_ heart. He led or drove about two thousand people to Utah in 1847,
starting for Upper California and landing at _Salt Lake_, where, in
1852, Brigham Young presented the _Polygamic Revelation_(?) to the
people. The _True_ Church remained disorganized till 1860, when Joseph
Smith took the leadership or Presidency of _the_ Church at Amboy,
Illinois. _We_ (thirty thousand) have no affiliation with the _Mormons_
whatever. They are to us an _apostate_ people, _working all manner of
abomination_ before _God_ and man. We are no part or parcel of them in
_any sense whatever_. Let this _be distinctly_ understood: _we are not
Mormons_. Truth is truth, wherever it is found."

In the vestibule of the Temple there is a photograph of Joseph Smith,
Jr., and over it is the inscription, "Joseph Smith, Jr., M.P.C.
President of the _Re_-organized Church of J.C. of L.D.S. He resides at
Plano, Kendall county, Illinois." Mr. Smith, who is a son of the
prophet, was born in Kirtland November 6, 1832. He removed with his
parents to Missouri and Illinois, and was in his twelfth year when his
father was killed at Nauvoo. He was a farmer, a school-director and
justice of the peace. Removing to Canton, Illinois, he studied law, and
has held various city offices. In 1860 he began to preach Mormonism
according to the notice nailed on the pillar of the Temple. In 1866 he
removed to Plano to take charge of _The Latter-Day Saints' Herald_, a
position which he still retains, in connection with the presidency of
the Church. Under date of December 23, 1879, Mr. Smith writes: "I am now
pretty widely recognized as the leader of that wing of the Mormon Church
declaring primitive Mormonism, but denying and opposing polygamy and
Utah Mormonism.... We hope they [the Utah Mormons] are waning in power.
We are maintaining an active ministry in Utah, striving to show the
people there their errors.... It is not my province to state whether the
Church will return to Kirtland or not."

From Mr. Smith's further statements it seems that the various
sects--such as Rigdonites, Strangites, etc.--into which the Mormons were
broken after leaving Kirtland are very few in numbers and very widely
scattered. His reformed Church believes in the Trinity, future
punishment, the laying on of hands, an organization like the primitive
Church, continued revelations, single marriages, and the creed of most
orthodox churches relating to the atonement and the ordinances of the
gospel. The title to the Church property at Kirtland is now in Mr. Smith
and a Mr. Forscutt, who derived their title through a Mr. Huntley, the
purchaser under a mortgage sale against the prophet. Proceedings to
remove the cloud from the title are now in the Ohio courts. "It is
believed," writes Mr. Smith, "that the real title is in the Church, and
not in Joseph Smith as an individual nor in his legal heirs or
assignees."

The space under the roof is utilized by a series of school-rooms, each
with falling plastering and "ratty" floors. Here the young Mormons were
taught to ascend the Hill of Science by trudging up some scores of steps
several times a day. Strange and dark cubbyholes stare at the visitor
from all sides. In one of these was kept the body of Joseph, the son of
Jacob, known by a roll of papyrus which was found in his hand. Joe Smith
translated the characters on the roll, being favored with a "special
revelation" whenever any of the characters were missing by reason of the
mutilation of the roll.

Still up the stairway within a small square tower, now without a bell,
I thrust my way until a little trap-door allowed an egress. But the
railing had gone, and I clung to the belfry-blinds while I surveyed the
cold waters of Lake Erie on the north, the rise of Little Mountain on
the south, and, between them the broad tract of rolling country divided
by the Chagrin River. I descended through labyrinthine passages, and
came again to the ground and to the outer air with a sense of relief
after my two hours' sojourn within the Mormon Temple.

  FREDERIC G. MATHER.


FOOTNOTES:

[2] On a scorching day in July I visited Susquehanna to obtain an
authentic narrative from several parties who were eye-witnesses of the
events which they related. At the residence of Mrs. Elizabeth Squires I
found both herself and Mrs. Sally McKune, the widow of Joseph McKune.
Mrs. Squires is considerably over seventy, and Mrs. McKune is about
eighty, years of age. Both these ladies lived in the neighborhood at the
time of the Smith manifestations. The statement given above with regard
to the digging for treasure is that of Mrs. McKune, supplemented by Mrs.
Squires. Jacob J. Skinner, the present owner of the farm, was about
sixteen years old at the time of the search. For a number of years he
has been engaged in filling the holes with stone to protect his cattle,
but the boys still use the north-east hole as a swimming-pond in the
summer.

[3] Among the callers was Samuel Brush, now a vigorous man of
seventy-five, who carries on a large farm and a lumber-mill three miles
south-west of Susquehanna. At the time of the translation he often
called Reuben Hale away from his work, and the pair went for a walk.
Reuben also explained the phenomenon of the peek-stone on the theory of
"deflected light." Mr. Brush declares that Martin Harris was a believer
in "second sight," and that "Smith was a good and kind
neighbor"--testimony which is also given by Mrs. McKune, Mrs. Squires
and Mr. Skinner.

[4] A note of inquiry has elicited from this sole survivor of the
original "three witnesses" the information that he has this manuscript.
Perhaps he may yet startle the Mormon world by publishing a _facsimile_
edition of the original "translation."



A VENGEANCE.


    From savage pass and rugged shore
        The noise of angry hosts had fled,
    The bitter battle raged no more
        Where fiery bolts had wrought their scars,
      And where the dying and the dead
    In many a woeful heap were flung,
    While night above the Ægean hung
        Its melancholy maze of stars.

    One boyish Greek, of princely line,
      Lay splashed with blood and wounded sore;
      His wan face in its anguish bore
    The delicate symmetry divine
      Carved by the old sculptors of his land;
      A broken blade was in his hand,
    Half slipping from the forceless hold
      That once had swayed it long and well;
      And round his form in tatters fell
    The velvet raiment flowered with gold.

    But while the calm night later grew
      He heard the stealthy, rustling sound
        Of one who trailed on laggard knees
      A shattered shape along the ground;
    And soon with sharp surprise he knew
      That in the encircling gloom profound
        A fierce Turk crawled by slow degrees
    To where in helpless pain he lay.
    Then, too, he witnessed with dismay

    That from the prone Turk's rancorous eye
        Flashed the barbaric lurid trace
      Of hate's indomitable hell--
      Such hate as death alone could quell,
    As death alone could satisfy.

    Closer the loitering figure drew,
      With naked bosom red from fight,
      With ruthless fingers clutching tight
    A dagger stained by murderous hue,
    Till now, in one great lurch, he threw
      His whole frame forward, aiming quick
        A deadly, inexorable blow,
    That, weakly faltering, missed its mark,
      And left the assassin breathing thick,
        Levelled by nerveless overthrow,
    There near the Greek chief, in the dark.

    Then he that saw the baffled crime,
      Half careless of his life's release,
        Since death must win him soon as prey,
    Turned on his foe a smile sublime
      With pity, and the stars of Greece
        Beheld him smile, and only they.

    All night the two lay side by side,
      Each near to death, yet living each;
    All night the grim Turk moaned and cried,
        Beset with pangs of horrid thirst,
      Save when his dagger crept to reach,
    By wandering, ineffectual way,
    The prostrate Greek he yearned to slay,
        And failure stung him till he cursed.

    But when soft prophecies of morn
      Had wrapped the sea in wistful white,
    A band of men, with faces worn,
      Clomb inland past a beetling height
    To find the young chief they adored,
      Sought eagerly since fall of sun,
    And now in ghastly change restored....
        One raised a torch of ruddy shine,
      And, kneeling by their leader, one
        Set to his mouth a gourd of wine.

    Then the young Greek, with wave of hand,
      Showed the swart pagan at his side;
    So, motioning to the gathered band,
    That none could choose but understand,
      "Let this man drink," he said, and died.

    EDGAR FAWCETT.



STUDIES IN THE SLUMS.

IV.--JACK.


"I've never told the whole straight ahead, ma'am. The Lord knows it all,
an' there've been times I couldn't ha' done it, an' wouldn't ha' done it
if I could ha' helped it. For, you see, in spite of the deviltry I never
quite got rid of the sense that God sat lookin' at me, an' that, I do
suppose, came from what stuck to me, whether or no, in the school. An'
you'd wonder that anything stuck or could.

"I'll begin at the beginnin'. Drink? No, it wasn't _my_ drinkin'. You'd
think that must ha' been it, but it wasn't, for all I came up in the
Fourth Ward--the only sober bartender the ward ever see, or ever will
see, I reckon.

"The very first thing that ever I remember is my mother dead drunk on
the floor. I thought it was dead without the drunk, an' stood screamin';
an' my father come up an' some of the neighbors. We was all respectable
then, an' one of them says, 'The Lord help you, Mr. Brown! She's begun
ag'in.' He didn't speak, but just lifted her up an' put her on the bed,
and then he sat down and covered up his face with his hands, an' was so
still I thought he was dead too. I crawled up to him whimperin', an' he
lifted me up.

"'Jack,' he says, 'my heart's broke. It's no use: she's bound to go to
the bad, an' maybe you'll take after her.'

"I screamed ag'in, though I didn't know what that meant, but he hushed
me. 'Jack,' he said, 'you're a little fellow, an' your troubles ain't
begun yet. I'd give my life this minute to take you with me.' He held me
up to him tight an' took my breath, so 't I couldn't ask him where; an'
then he cried.

"That was the beginnin' of me, if gettin' a gleam of sense means
beginnin' for folks; for, though I didn't know what it all meant, I did
know he wanted comfort bad as I did, an' we hugged up to one another.
But I know now all the ins and the outs, for I was told by one that knew
them both.

"She was a pretty girl in a mill in Fall River--fast, like some of them,
but with an innocent face an' big blue eyes, like a child's, to the very
last. Many's the time I've seen 'em with no more sense, nor as much, as
a baby's in 'em. He was a young shoemaker, that fell in love with the
pretty face, an' married her out of hand then an' there, an' took her to
New York, where he'd got a good place--foreman in a factory. His folks
lived in Fall River, and hers off somewheres. I haven't never seen any
of 'em, an' good reason not to want to.

"She liked fine clothes, an' thought she was goin' to be a lady an' do
nothin'; an' when the first baby come it was a bother to her, for she
wasn't strong, an' one of the neighbors told her to drink beer. There's
no use spinnin' it out. It began with beer, but it ended with whiskey,
an' the first my father ever knew was the dead baby that she'd killed
rollin' over on it in a drunken sleep.

"That cured her for a year. She was afraid of my father, for at first,
in his fury, he swore he'd give her up to the officers; an' then she
cried so, an' went on day after day, till he couldn't but be sorry for
her ag'in. An' then I come along--many's the time I've cursed the
day--an' till I was four all was well enough. Then it came. She'd been
takin' a little slyly a good while, but nobody knew till it got to be
too much for her ag'in. It was partly trouble, I will say, for my father
was weakly an' goin' with consumption, an' she was fond of him. But this
time there was no stoppin' her. She'd pawn everything: she's taken the
jacket off me in a winter's day an' sent me with it to the pawnbroker's,
an' I not darin' not to go. To the last minute my father did what he
could. I was six when he died, an' he'd dress me himself an' try to
keep me decent. She was drunk the very night he died, an' not a soul
near. I sat on the bed an' looked at him. 'Jack,' he said, 'hate whiskey
long as you live: it's killed me, an' it'll kill your mother. It's a
devil.'

"There was a saloon under us then. We had got lower and lower, for, fix
up as father might, there was never any surety he wouldn't find things
smashed or sold out; an' at last there wasn't anything to sell. An' when
he was gone I can't remember as I ever see her sober. I got to hate the
smell of it so it sickened me. It does now, though it was my trade to
sell the stuff, an' I never minded that.

"I lost track of her. I was a newsboy an' lookin' out for myself when I
was eight, an' sometimes I'd hunt her up, an' she'd hug me an' go on
over me if she wasn't too drunk; but mostly I didn't. I might ha' been
respectable enough, for I liked my work, but I got in with a set of boys
that had learned to pick pockets. It was good fun. I had quick ways, an'
the first time I ever hauled out a handkerchief I thought it about the
smartest game anybody could play. It's more for the excitement of it,
half the time, than from real native cussedness, that boys begin; an' I
didn't think one way or another. But the time come when I did think. I
was caught with fellows that had been up half a dozen times, an' because
I was little they sent me to the house of refuge.

"Now, I ain't goin' to say more'n I can help about that, for there was
one man I sha'n't ever forget. He's dead now, but he meant work with
them boys, an' he did it. I believe he loved 'em every one just because
they had souls. But what I do say is, that, far's I know, eight boys out
o' ten come out worse'n when they went in. Why not? They're mostly the
worst sort, an' it's a kind of rivalry amongst them which'll tell the
most deviltry. There ain't a trick nor turn you can't be put up to, an'
I learned 'em every one. I learned some other things too. We had to
study some, an' I was quick, an' I learned Bible-verses so well they
thought I was a crack scholar; an' we all laughed, thinkin' how easy
you can humbug a teacher. But the last year I was wild to get away an'
try my hand at some of the new kinks I'd learned. I was fourteen and
full grown, so't I was always taken for twenty; an' I thought I was a
man, sure. I run away twice, an' was brought back, an' it went hard with
me, for they flogged me each time so't I couldn't stir for a week.

"At last time was up. I'd made up my mind what to do: I'd settled it by
that time that everybody was ready to humbug, an' the pious-talkin' ones
worst of all, for I'd seen some that I'd spotted in lies many a time.
The first thing I did was to chuck away the Bible they'd given me an'
make straight for Micky Hagan's. You don't know what that means? I'll
tell you. Micky Hagan's was one of the receivin'-places for
river-thievin'. He had boats to let, an' bought out an' out or advanced
on the swag, just as you pleased; an' mostly you're in his debt, because
you get into the way of swappin', an' he sets his own price on the thing
you fancy.

"Now, I've thought it all out, ma'am, many a time. If there'd been
anybody to take hold of us in the right way I don't believe we should
have come out as we did. I wasn't bad all through then: I mean, I was
ready to do a good turn if I could, an' bound for a lark anyhow. But
we'd smuggled in novels and story-papers till our heads was full of what
fine things we'd do. They didn't give us better things. There was
books--yes, plenty of 'em--but mostly long-winded stuff about fellers
that died young, bein' too good for this world. There wasn't anybody to
tell us we'd a right to some fun, and the Lord meant us to enjoy life,
nor to get us busy in some way that would take our minds off real
wickedness. These preachers hadn't ever been boys: they'd been born in
their white chokers, I believe, an' knew no more of real human nature
than they did of common sense. If I had a boy growin' up I'd keep him
hard at something, an' try an' have him like it, too. A boy don't mind
work if there's anything he can see to be got by it. Why, see how I did.
At fifteen out all night long, up an' down the river, schemin' all ways
to circumvent the watchmen, for they're that 'cute it needs all your
brains an' more to get ahead of 'em. You see, a ship'll come in an'
unload partly, an' there's two or three days they're on the keen lookout
till they're nigh empty; an' then's the best time for light
plunder--ropes an' such. But I went in for reg'lar doin's--bags of
coffee or spice, or anything goin'. We had a dodge for a good while they
couldn't make out--goin' along soft, oars muffled, hardly drawin' a long
breath, till we'd got under the dock, where I'd seen the coffee-bags
lie, an' a man on 'em with pistol cocked. Then, slow an' easy, bore with
a big auger up through them beams and straight into the bag, an' the
coffee'd pour down into the bag we held under. Went off with seven bags
that very way one night, an' I was that full of laugh! I walked back
down the dock when we'd landed 'em, an' saw the watchman jest dancin'
an' swearin', he was so mad.

"'What's up?' I says, innocent as could be, goin' up to him.

"'It's them d---- river-thieves,' he says, 'with a new kink,----'em!
I'll be even with 'em yet. Here's seven holes right up through, an' the
Lord only knows how they could do it an' I not hear 'em. They're that
thick I believe there's one to every bag of coffee on ship or off; but
I'll get 'em yet.' He looked at me sharp as a rat, but I kept my face
straight till I'd walked off, an' then I believe I laughed a day without
stoppin'.

"That went on three years. I'd got to think no man alive could take me,
for I'd been grabbed a dozen times, an' always slipped out somehow. I'd
been shot at, an' hit twice; been knocked overboard, an' swum under the
dock--'most froze an' stiff with ice before I could get out. An' then to
think that it was only a coil of rope took me at last! I thought 'twas
spices, but the captain'd been too quick for us, an' every bag was in
the government storehouse. I crawled up the side like a cat an' felt
round, mad enough to find only that rope; an' I'd just dropped it over
the side when there was a light, an' three men on me. I dropped, but
they had me. I fought like mad, but the handcuffs were on, an' I was
marched off quicker'n I can tell it. An' one was the very man that had
sworn to be even with us, an' he knew me on the spot. That trial didn't
take long. 'In consideration of my youth,' the judge said, I was to have
'only ten years.' Only ten years! He didn't know how it looked to me,
that loved my own life an' freedom so't I couldn't bear a house over me
even a day, but must be out in the air. I swore I'd kill whoever took
me, an' I fought with the keeper till they chained me like a wild beast;
an' that's the way I went to Sing-Sing, an' all warned they'd got the
devil's own to deal with.

"There was six months I fought: there wasn't a week I wasn't up for
punishment. Do you know what that means? It's better now, they say. Then
it meant the shower-bath till you fainted dead, an' when you came to,
put back to have it ag'in. It meant the leather collar an' jacket, an'
your head wellnigh cut off when, half dead, you had to let it drop a
bit. It meant kicks an' cuffs an' floggin's an' half rations. I was down
to skin an' bone. 'You're goin', sure, Jack,' I said; an' then I said,
'What's the use? Behave yourself an' maybe you'll get pardoned out, or,
better yet, maybe you'll get away.'

"It was tough work. I hated that keeper so't I could have brained him
joyfully any minute. I'd set my teeth when he came near, for the
murder'd run down my arms till my hands twitched an' tingled to get at
him. I swore I'd kill him if I ever got a chance to do it quietly, for
he'd treated us worse than dogs. But I mended my ways. It took a year of
hard work before I could hold on to myself. I'd get a sight at the sky
when we crossed the yard, an' my heart was up in my throat every time.
Oh, to be out! If only I could be on the river ag'in an' smell the salt
an' feel the wind! I've lain on my floor in the cell many a night an'
cried like a baby for only ten minutes' freedom. I'm that way yet:
there's wild blood in me from somewhere, an' I'd make a better Indian
than white man any day."

Jack's restless motions were the best proof of his theory. As his story
began he had sat quietly in the little mission-parlor, but now he was
walking hastily up and down, stopping a moment at some special point,
then starting again--a tall, lean figure, with characteristic New
England face, very thin now, and with a hectic flush on the sunken
cheeks, but shrewd and kindly--the narrow chin and high cheek-bones,
prominent nose and soft thin hair, seeming to belong wholly to the type
of New England villager, and by no possibility to the rough and
desperate native of the Fourth Ward. Born in his own place on some quiet
inland farm, he would have turned peddler, or, nearer the sea, have
chosen that for his vocation; but it was impossible to look upon him as
an ex-convict or to do away with the impression of respectability which
seems part of the New England birthright.

"At last," he went on, "things changed. A new chaplain came, for one
thing, an' I'd got so quiet they changed my cell an' put me on the other
side the buildin'. I went on in a kind of dream. I worked like two, an'
they begun to take notice of me. The chaplain 'd come an' talk to me,
an' he worked over me well; but he might as well have talked to the
dead. But my very keepin' still made him think he'd half got me, an'
he'd fetch books an' papers; an' things got easier that way. I read an'
studied: I was bound now to know something, an' I worked at that hard as
I did at everything else; an' there come a time when I was recommended
for pardon, an' five years an' a day after I went in he brought it to
me. I couldn't speak: I could have gone on my knees to him, an' he had
sense to know how I felt.

"'Jack,' he said, 'you're very young yet, an' now is your chance. Try to
be an honest man an' pray for help. I wish I knew if you will pray.'

"'You'd make me if any one could,' I says, 'but I ain't sure of the use
of it yet: I wish I was.'

"He just looked at me sorrowful, for I hadn't said even that much
before, an' I went off.

"An' I did mean to keep straight. I'd had enough of prison; but when I
went round askin' for work, not a soul would have me. A
jail-bird!--well, they thought not. I grew mad ag'in, an' yet I wouldn't
take to the river, for, somehow, I'd lost my courage. Then I met an old
pal, an' he took me round to Micky's saloon. The barkeeper'd just been
stuck in a fight. I'd been a profitable one for Micky, an' maybe he
thought, beginnin' there, I'd go back to the river once more. An' there
I was three years, an' fights nigh every night of the year. I could stop
'em when no one else could, for I was always sober.

"'Why don't you drink?' they'd say, an' I'd tell 'em I wanted what
brains I had unfuddled. But I hated it worse an' worse. I'd have stopped
any minute if there'd been one alive to take me by the hand an' say,
'Here's honest work.' I looked at folks when I went out, to see if there
was one that could be spoken to. An' at last I made up my mind for
another try. I'd saved some money an' could live a while, an' one
Saturday night I just left when Micky paid me. 'Get another man,' I
said: 'I'm done;' an' I walked out, with him shoutin' after me.

"Then I waited three months. I answered advertisements, an' I put 'em
in. I went here an' I went there, an' always it was the same story, for
I answered every one square. An' at last I was sick of it all: I had
nothing to live for. 'I'm tired of living with rascals,' I said, 'an'
good folks are too good to have anything to do with me. I've had all I
want. If work don't come in a week I'll get out of this the easiest
way.'

"It didn't come. My money was gone: I'd gone hungry two days. I'd been
on half rations before that, till my strength was all gone: I'd pawned
my clothes till I wasn't decent. Then I hadn't a cent even for a place
on the floor in a lodgin'-house, an' I sat in the City Hall Park long as
they would let me. Then, when I was tired of bein' rapped over the head,
I got up an' walked down Beekman street to the river--slow, for I was
too far gone to move fast. But as I got nearer something seemed to pull
me on: I began to run. 'It's the end of all trouble,' I said; an' I
went across like a shot an' down the docks. It was bright moonlight, an'
I had sense to jump for a dark place where the light was cut off; an'
that's all I remember. I must have hit my head ag'inst a boat, for when
they took me out it was for dead. Two of my old pals hauled me out, an'
worked there on the dock to bring me to, till the ambulance come an'
took me to Bellevue.

"I wouldn't have lived, but I didn't know enough not to, bein' in a
fever a month. Then I come out of it dazed an' stupid, an' it wasn't
till I'd been there six weeks that I got my senses fairly an' knew I was
alive after all.

"'I'll do it better next time,' I said, bein' bound to get out of it
still; but that night a man in the bed next me began to talk an' ask
about it. I told him the whole. When I got through he says, 'I don't
know but one man in New York that'll know just what to do, an' that's
McAuley of Water street. You go there soon's you can stir an' tell him.'

"I laughed. 'I'm done tellin',' I said.

"'Try him,' he says; an' he was that urgent that I promised. I'd ha'
given a hand if I hadn't, though.

"I went out, tremblin' an' sick, an' without a spot to lay my head; an'
right there I stood by the river an' thought it would come easier this
time. But I'd never go back on my word, an' so I started down, crawlin'
along, an' didn't get there till meetin' had begun. I didn't know what
sort of a place it was.

"It was new then, in an old rookery of a house, but the room clean an'
decent, an' just a little sign out, 'HELPING HAND FOR MEN.' I sat an'
listened an' wondered till it was over, an' then tried to go, but first
I knew I tumbled in a dead faint an' was bein' taken up stairs. They
made me a bed next their own room. 'You'd better not,' I said: 'I'm a
jail-bird an' a rascal, an' nobody alive wants to have anything to do
with me.'

"'You be quiet,' says Jerry. 'I'm a jail-bird myself, but the Lord Jesus
has forgiven me an' made me happy; an' He'll do the same by you.'

"They kept me there a week, an' you'd think I was their own, the way
they treated me. But I stuck it out: 'When I see a man that's always
been respectable come to me an' give me work, an' say he's not afraid or
ashamed to, then maybe I'll believe in your Lord Jesus Christ you talk
about; but how am I goin' to without?'

"An' that very night it came. You know him well--the gentleman that
looks as if the wind had never blown rough on him, an' yet with an eye
that can't be fooled.

"'You don't need to tell me a word,' he says: 'I believe you are honest,
an' you can begin to-morrow if you're strong enough. It's light work,
an' it shall be made easier at first.'

"I looked at him, an' it seemed to me something that had frozen me all
up inside melted that minute. I burst out cryin', an' couldn't stop. An'
then, first thing I knew, he was down on his knees prayin' for me. 'Dear
Lord,' he said, 'he is Thy child, he has always been Thy child. Make him
know it to-night: make him know that Thy love has followed him and will
hold him up, so that his feet will never slip again.'

"These words stayed by me. I couldn't speak, an' he went away. He knew
what he'd done.

"That's all. Some of the men shake their heads: they say it wasn't
regular conversion. All I know is, the sense of God come into me then,
an' it's never left me. It keeps me on the watch for every soul in
trouble. I'm down on the docks o' nights. I know the signs, an' now an'
then I can help one that's far gone. I'm goin' myself, you see. There
ain't much left of me but a cough an' some bones, but I shall be up to
the last. God is that good to me that I'll go quick when I do go; but,
quick or slow, I bless Him every hour of the day for the old mission an'
my chance."

  HELEN CAMPBELL.



WESTBROOK.


Ruth looked very warm and tired as she came up the path in the strong
sunlight; and in striking contrast to her sat Miss Custer in the
sheltered veranda, with her cool gray draperies flowing about her in the
most graceful folds that could be imagined, as though a sculptor's hand
had arranged them. Her dress was cut so as to disclose her white throat
rising, swan-like, above a ruffling of soft yellow lace; and her
sleeves, flaring a little and short enough to reveal a good deal of the
exquisitely-moulded arms, were edged with the same costly trimming,
throwing a creamy shadow on the white skin and giving it a tinge like
ivory.

Miss Custer liked being considered a brunette, and directed all the arts
of her toilette to the bringing out of that idea. She had not much to
commence with, however. Her eyes were brown, it is true, but they were a
sort of amber-brown, large and serene, with dusky, long-fringed lids
drooping over them; and her hair, which was dark in the shadow of the
veranda, all hemmed in with trees in thick foliage, was bright gold in
certain lights.

She was an amply-framed, finely-proportioned person, and rejoiced in her
physique, having a masculine pride in her breadth of shoulders and depth
of chest. But in all other respects she was exquisitely feminine: she
never displayed either strength or agility. Westbrook was a country
place, and in the young folks' rambles about town and out over the hills
she was more often fatigued than anybody else, and obliged to accept
support from some one of the gentlemen, all of whom were eager enough to
offer their services.

She had been in Westbrook only two weeks--she had come to rest herself
from the burdens of fashionable life--but she was already very much at
home with the place and the people. She was one of those persons who
immediately interest the whole neighborhood, and of whom people say,
"Have you met her? Have you been introduced to her?"

She was not an entire stranger: there were a good many people in
Westbrook who had known her parents years before, and who took her at
once upon the credit of her family.

Ruth looked tired and warm, I say, as she came up the path. It was after
four o'clock, and school was just out. She was the teacher of the
grammar department in the ugly red-brick school-house down at the other
end of the town, and she had had a tiresome walk through the heat.

Miss Custer dropped her work, some delicate embroidery, in her lap and
folded her white hands upon it, and smiled down at her. She liked Ruth,
and was glad to see her coming: the afternoon had been rather dull
because she was alone, and she was not constituted for solitude.

Doctor Ebling had said at the dinner-table that, with Ruth's
permission--at which Ruth blushed and said something rather saucy, for
her--he would read _The Spanish Gypsy_ to Miss Custer out in the shade.

"It is so confoundedly healthy at this particular season," he said,
"especially up among these Connecticut hills, that a physician's
occupation's gone."

First, however, he went down town--going part of the way with Ruth--to
make sure that no orders were awaiting him at his office, intending to
come back immediately.

Miss Custer stepped across the hall from the dining-room into the
sitting-room, made cool by having the blinds closed, and struck a few
chords on the piano. Herbert Bruce, a young attorney of some wealth and
some renown, and bosom friend of Doctor Ebling, followed her, and stood,
hat in hand, with his shoulder against the door-jamb. "So you have never
read _The Gypsy_?" he remarked.

Miss Custer turned quickly and came a step toward him. "Oh yes, I have
read it," she returned. "Or, rather, a good many people have read it to
me. But one can stand hearing a poem a good many times, you know."

"By Jove! that's a cooler!" thought Bruce. "No doubt she has been bored
to death by that wretched _Gypsy_, and now Ebling is going to martyrize
her again, and make a fool of himself into the bargain."

"Won't you be seated?" Miss Custer asked, "and let me play you
something?"

In the shaded room, with her languid eyes intensified, she was a decided
brunette, and a very brilliant and beautiful one. Mr. Bruce, pleading
business, although he knew there was not a soul stirring down street,
and nothing more to be done in his office than in that of Mortimer
Lightwood, Esq., declined rather ungraciously and stalked off.

"A born coquette!" he muttered with his hat pulled over his eyes.
"Ebling's a fool: Ruth Stanley is worth a dozen of her."

Miss Custer went up stairs and made her afternoon toilette, then got out
her embroidery and came down to her accustomed rustic arm-chair,
smilingly conscious of the perfection of all that pertained to herself,
from the soft ringlets on her broad forehead, so different from the
stiff, frowsy crimps of the country-girls, to the small Newport ties
with their cardinal-red bows, the only bright color about her. She was
just beginning to wonder what kept the doctor so long, when, raising her
eyes from a reverie which had been almost a nap, she saw him driving by
at a fast trot, with a farm-boy galloping on horseback beside him. He
waved his hand to her.

Just then Hugh, son and heir of Aunt Ruby, mistress of this Westbrook
boarding-establishment, who had been sent down town after dinner to do
some marketing, came in at the gate with a basket on his arm, eating an
apple. He paused when he came up, and rested himself by putting one foot
on the lower step and settling his weight upon the other. "There's a man
out east bin awfully cut up in a mowin'-machine," said he, glancing up
at Miss Custer sideways from under his broad-brimmed straw hat, sure
that she would appreciate the news, he being the first to tell it; for
he had a boyish conceit that Miss Custer had a very high opinion of him,
and even indulged the fancy that if he were a man--say
twenty-one--instead of a youth of seventeen, he could cut out all them
downtown fellers that hung round her.

"Oh! poor man!" said Miss Custer with a sweetness of sympathy that must
have comforted the wounded person immensely had he heard it.

"Burnses' boy came in for Doc Ebling," continued Hugh. "They don't know
whether they can patch him up again or not."

"I suppose the doctor will find out," said Miss Custer complacently; and
Hugh flung away his apple-core and walked on around the house.

Miss Custer hardly knew what to do with herself. She went back to her
room, and was tempted to lie down, but then it would rumple her dress
and spoil her hair. She thought of the invalid lady, Mrs. Tascher, whose
room was at the other end of the hall, but she had an uncomfortable
intuition that Mrs. Tascher disliked her. For herself, she disliked
nobody: there were people who were not congenial to her, but she never
took the trouble to get up a feeling against them. But it seemed to her
Mrs. Tascher had not only clearly defined but conscientious likes and
dislikes. She had tried to overcome the opposing current so far as it
concerned herself, because it was unpleasant; and, although not wholly
unaccountable--for she was conscious of some weaknesses, as most mortals
are--so far as Mrs. Tascher was affected by her shortcomings the
prejudice seemed unfounded. She had never injured her--never, except in
that large sense in which all good souls are injured by wrong-doing;
which large sense Miss Custer, perhaps, had but a dim consciousness of
even when stung--for she was very susceptible--by the criticism, open or
implied, of certain high, discriminating natures.

After a while she went down to the back regions, and glided in upon the
white kitchen-floor with her sweeping skirts.

Aunt Ruby looked up with an exclamation of surprise. She was picking
over raspberries for tea: "Oh, you oughtn't to come in here, Miss
Custer: you'll spoil your clothes."

"Impossible," said Miss Custer, glancing around at the cleanness of
everything with flattering significance, and seated herself in a low
splint-bottomed chair.

"To be sure, Peggy scrubbed this morning," said Aunt Ruby with a feeling
of satisfaction, "but one can't ever be very sure about a
kitchen-floor."

"I could always be sure enough of yours to scatter my best things upon
it," said Miss Custer, who, wishing to be entertained, was exceedingly
good-natured; though, for that matter, she was seldom otherwise.

Aunt Ruby, who was greatly taken with the fine-lady boarder who made
herself so common, entertained her better than she thought, for Miss
Custer took a curious interest in most of the people she met, and liked
to study them.

Of course Aunt Ruby could not spend time for her own or anybody else's
amusement merely: when she got through with the raspberries she went at
something else, her loose slippers clattering over the floor back and
forth wherever her duty called her. But still, she talked, and Miss
Custer sat looking out into the clean-swept back yard with its boxed-up
flower-beds blooming with the gayest annuals, and its cooped-up hens
with their broods of puffy chickens scratching and picking and chirping
outside.

"Have Doctor Ebling and Miss Stanley been long engaged?" Miss Custer
asked, the conversation having somehow led up to that query.

"Oh, la! yes," Aunt Ruby answered--"for more'n a year. The way of it
was: Ruth's guardian, Mr. Murray, who was a minister, went off to some
forrin country several years ago to be a missionary, and left Ruth here
to finish her education. He was to send for her to come an' teach in a
mission-school if she wanted to go--an' she al'ays said she did--after
she'd graduated in the normal. But she came up here to stay a spell
after graduatin', an' met Doctor Ebling; an' they took a notice to each
other right away, an' were engaged. She wrote to Mr. Murray about it,
an' he gave his consent to the marriage. But it couldn't take place just
yet, for the doctor had only just begun his practice an' wasn't ready to
settle down."

"That is, I suppose, he had not sufficient means to set up
housekeeping?" said Miss Custer, smiling.

"Well, perhaps not in the way he'd like," Aunt Ruby returned evasively,
not being a gossip in the mischievous sense.

"And your other gentleman-boarder, Mr. Bruce--" began Miss Custer, and
then stopped.

"Oh, he's got enough money to set up housekeeping like a king," said
Aunt Ruby, feeling that this was safe ground. "If he had anybody to set
up with him," she added, and laughed at her own wit.

"But did Miss Stanley really think of going to teach in a foreign
mission-school?" Miss Custer asked.

"To be sure she did," said Aunt Ruby. "She's a Christian girl, if ever
there was one. You might look the world over, Miss Custer, an' you'd
hardly find another girl like Ruth Stanley. She's the same as a
missionary right here at home, because she looks out for every poor an'
sick body in the town, an' spends half her wages to help them."

"Just the sort of person, then, for a doctor's wife," laughed Miss
Custer, and gathered up her embroidery to go back to the veranda.

Instead of going through the dining-room, the way she had entered, she
crossed over to the door of the back sitting-room, which was ajar, and
pushed it open. She started and her cheeks crimsoned, at the
recollection of her conversation with Aunt Ruby, on finding the
sitting-room occupied.

Mrs. Tascher sat in Aunt Ruby's great arm-chair, with its calico
cushions, looking over some fashion-plates in the carelessly-indolent
way that very warm weather induces. She had some pieces of muslin and a
pair of scissors beside her on the table, as though she had been cutting
out. She looked up with a smile that was intended simply as an
expression of politeness, and not such a smile as she would give a
friend, and nodded: "Good-afternoon, Miss Custer."

Miss Custer, feeling herself compromised by having been caught
gossiping--and by Mrs. Tascher, of all people!--fortified herself by a
little accession of pride in her usually suave demeanor.
"Good-afternoon," she returned, passing on through the room. "How
stiflingly warm it is here!"

"Yes. I have been thinking of going into the parlor," said Mrs. Tascher:
"it is always cool there, because the blinds are kept closed."

"Does she say that to prevent my taking refuge in the parlor?" thought
Miss Custer, and moved on and went outside.

By and by some soft piano-strains came through the window, the sash of
which was raised, at her back. When they ceased she became conscious,
without turning her head to look through the shutters, that Mrs. Tascher
had seated herself in an easy-chair and taken up a book from the
centre-table, which held the usual stock of gilt-edged
poems--Whittier's, Tennyson's, etc.

Nearly an hour passed in sultry silence, broken only by the buzzing of
flies and, now and then, a subdued sound of wheels on the sandy road
below. At last the gate-latch clicked, and Ruth came in, walking slowly
up the path.

Doctor Ebling had driven by a few moments before, and gone up the alley
to the stable, and just as Ruth reached the steps, shutting her parasol
and smiling up rather wearily at Miss Custer, he came around the corner
of the house, lifting his hat and wiping the perspiration from his face.

"Why, where have you been?" Ruth asked in surprise.

"In the country," said he.

"And just think, Miss Stanley," exclaimed Miss Custer, speaking to Ruth,
but looking a smiling reproach at the doctor, and for a moment
forgetting the parlor occupant at her back, "here I have been sitting
this whole blessed afternoon! I could have borne the infliction of my
own solitary company better, of course, if I had not been promised an
entertainment."

"You must charge your disappointment to a poor fellow who got himself
cut to pieces by a grass-mower," said the doctor.

"Who was it?" asked Ruth quickly, with a sympathetic play of facial
muscles.

"A man by the name of Burgess, out east of town."

"And is he in a bad way?"

"Rather."

Ruth stood for a moment with her eyes upon the ground, absorbed in the
thought of a fellow-being in distress, and the doctor, glancing from her
up to Miss Custer, was conscious of the strong contrast between them.

Miss Custer was ten years Ruth's senior, but just now it looked as if it
might be the other way: teaching gave Ruth a jaded look that seemed like
age. But she was only eighteen. She wore a plain brown dress and linen
cuffs and collar, all of which bore the stamp of the school-room. Her
shoes were dusty, and her hair, untouched since early morning, had
settled into a mass at the back of her neck, more artistic than stylish.

By and by she excused herself and went into the house. It was her habit
to take a bath and dress herself before tea. The doctor came up and
seated himself on the top step, and remarked that he didn't know whether
it would be worth while to go up town before supper or not. Miss Custer
was about to persuade him that it would not be worth while, when a
movement on the part of Mrs. Tascher recalled her to the consciousness
of that lady's proximity and put her under a sort of constraint. "Do you
suppose your office to be strewn with orders for your immediate
attendance upon wounded individuals?" she asked carelessly.

"If I thought it was," said he, "I'd make for the woods over yonder and
hide myself."

"Unnatural physician! I always supposed medical men to be the most
devoted to their profession, and the fondest of exercising it, of all
beings."

"As to devotion," said the doctor, "I agree with you--we _are_ a devoted
class. But as to exercise of any description, that is contrary to all
human inclination in such a temperature as this."

"And yet Miss Stanley endures it," said Miss Custer, and could have
bitten her tongue the next moment.

A grave expression settled upon the doctor's face. "Yes," said he, "her
brave spirit surmounts everything. She is of a different make-up from
all the other people I know. And, by the way, it always seems to me
irrelevant to bring her into comparison with ordinary mortals," he
added; and, getting up and settling his hat upon his head, he strode
off.

Miss Custer felt a pang of keen regret. "I have offended him," she
thought.

But at the supper-table, an hour or two later, there was no evidence of
offence in his attitude toward her, though it must be allowed that he
paid rather more attention to Ruth than usual when she came down stairs
freshened up in a light-colored lawn dress and her dark hair handsomely
coiled and ornamented with a half-blown rose. She sat just opposite
Doctor Ebling and beside Miss Custer, and stood the contrast with that
amber-eyed beauty very well. Doctor Ebling thought so, and it had a
tendency to elevate his spirits. The three carried on an animated
dialogue. Mr. Bruce, at the end of the table, was abstracted, and ate
his supper with great diligence, except when Mrs. Tascher, being his
nearest neighbor, addressed a remark to him: then he turned to her with
the utmost deference and replied as elaborately as friendly politeness
demanded.

"Any of you folks in for a boat-ride this evening?" called up Hugh from
the lower end of the table. "My Sally Lunn is anchored down by the big
oak if you want her, and here's the key," holding it up.

"Why, yes," said Doctor Ebling, taking it upon himself to answer. Hugh's
questions and remarks were usually addressed to the company
collectively, and the doctor generally was tacitly elected
spokesman.--"Don't you want to go, ladies?" he asked, "and you, Bruce?"

The ladies, Ruth and Miss Custer, assented with bright looks.

Mr. Bruce replied deliberatively that he was not sure he could leave the
office.

"Oh, come now, Bruce, that's put on," said the doctor. "No man, whatever
his profession, unless he be a farmer, can convince me of a pressure of
business at this season. Banish the delusive idea and make yourself
agreeable for once."

Mr. Bruce raised his head, showing at the same time a flash of his white
teeth and his black eyes. "For once?" he repeated. "Making myself
agreeable, or making a grotesque caricature of myself in my struggles to
be agreeable, has been the business of my life."

"Oh, Mr. Bruce!" laughed Ruth. "Everybody knows you are delightful, but
the idea of your making an effort in that direction is too absurd."

"If I had made that speech," thought Miss Custer, "Mrs. Tascher would
have looked a severe criticism."

Mrs. Tascher, as it was, looked across at Ruth and said laughingly,
"That hits him hard, my dear, but he ought not to wince."

Mr. Bruce _had_ colored slightly and broken up the gravity of his face.

Later, when they all rose from the table, Mrs. Tascher, under some
pretext or other, detained him a moment. "Do go!" she said: "you see how
it is--Ruth never has the doctor to herself a moment any more. They used
to take delightful little moonlight strolls together, and were as happy
as a pair of young lovers ought to be. Now there is always a third
party."

"Oh! So you think I ought to sacrifice myself to the happiness of the
precious lovers? And what if I get enthralled myself? Who will come to
my rescue?"

"I am willing to trust you," laughed Mrs. Tascher. "You have thirty
years upon your head, and a vast amount of hard practicality in it: Dr.
Ebling lacks something of both."

The girls had got their hats and were already out upon the veranda.

"Come, Bruce: have you decided whether there is an important case
pending or not?" called the doctor.

Mrs. Tascher gave him a little push, and he sauntered out. She stood in
the doorway and saw him, with a feeling of satisfaction, pair off with
Miss Custer after they had got outside the gate. "I believe she likes
him twenty times better than she does the doctor," she soliloquized.
"And yet with what persistency she clings to Ruth and her lover! Poor
Ruth! She takes her down in good faith."

The stream upon which Westbrook was built was about half a mile distant,
and the sun was going down when they reached the big oak where the boat
was anchored. Doctor Ebling clambered down the steep bank and unlocked
it, and got in and rowed up a little way to where there was a better
descent.

"Now, then, shall we all go at once," said he, "or take turns?"

"It is such a diminutive vessel," said Bruce, eying it doubtingly, "that
perhaps Miss Custer and myself had better 'pause upon the brink' here,
and wait until you two have made a short voyage."

"Oh, we shall not make a very short voyage," said Ruth, running down the
bank and grasping the doctor's hand as he held it out to steady her in
stepping into the boat. "I want to go up as far as the bridge and make a
sketch to-night: the sunset and the moon-rise are lovely."

"Better come on--don't think we'll upset," said the doctor, beginning,
nevertheless, to push off.

Bruce looked about and found a log to sit on. "Just spread your shawl on
it," said he; and Miss Custer was obliged to unfold her beautiful white
burnous.

"What an idea!" she thought, "and how ungallant he is!"

And yet he had a remarkable power of fascination, though, as Ruth said,
he made no effort to please.

He took a seat beside her, and for some time his eyes followed the boat.
After a while he said, "And did you manage to get through with _The
Spanish Gypsy_ again?"

"Oh no," said Miss Custer. "Didn't you know? The doctor was called into
the country."

"Ah! he was?"

"Yes."

"Then you lost your afternoon's entertainment? That must have been a
great deprivation."

He turned his head and looked at her with a lingering, exploring gaze
that was difficult for her to fathom. How should she answer? He was
certainly the only being of his sex who baffled or embarrassed her.

"It was indeed," she returned demurely, and yet with a hope that he
might discover that she was but half in earnest. Her eyelids drooped and
her lips were curved with a smile. She was pleasurably conscious of his
prolonged gaze, and hoped something from it, knowing from much previous
experience the power of her beauty.

The silence was very eloquent. He broke it--or intensified it indeed--by
repeating from _The Gypsy_, in a low and remarkably well-modulated
voice,

                              "Do you know
    Sometimes when we sit silent, and the air
    Breathes gently on us from the orange trees,
    It seems that with the whisper of a word
    Our souls must shrink, yet poorer, more apart.
    Is it not so?

Do you know the answer?" he asked, never once taking away his eyes.

She raised hers and gave it with equal effect:

              "Yes, dearest, it is true.
    Speech is but broken light upon the depth
    Of the unspoken: even your loved words
    Float in the larger meaning of your voice
    As something dimmer."

There was nothing audacious in her manner of repeating it--no coquettish
reference, in voice or glance, to him. She threw into her eyes an
expression of complete absorption in the spirit and story of the poem,
and appeared to be far away with Don Silva and Fedalina.

Her seriousness and evident intensity of feeling were a surprise to him.
He had simply been trying her with a careless stroke, but he seemed to
strike true flint. "I could have sworn," he thought to himself, "that
she was making fun of Ebling's proposition to read to her to-day when
she said one could stand hearing a poem a good many times." And he
actually went on repeating passage after passage, while she sat with her
hands folded and her eyes fixed dreamily, drinking it in like distant
music sounding all the way from the Spanish shores.

They were both so absorbed--not in the poem, but in thoughts that
floated under the poem and circled right around themselves--that they
did not hear the dipping of the oars as the doctor rowed back to shore
in the white moonlight--not softened now, as it had been a while ago, by
the mellow tints in the west. "Hallo!" he called. "Come down now and
embark."

"Shall we?" asked Bruce in a voice so low that it seemed almost tender.

She answered by getting up, and he took the burnous off the log and
folded it about her shoulders. It gave her a conscious thrill.

They sauntered down, and Bruce gave her his hand to make the descent of
the bank. Ruth sprang up like a gazelle while the doctor held the boat
to shore, and then pushed it off when the occupants were seated.

"I'm the poorest rower in Christendom," said Bruce, taking up the oars
and making a few awkward strokes.

"Never mind about rowing," said Miss Custer. "When we get out into the
current let us drift: I like it just as well."

Bruce did so, resting the handles of the oars upon his knees.

Perfect silence reigned. The moon was strangely bright, making the very
air silvery. Miss Custer, with the rarest tact, let the stillness alone,
knowing there was power in it.

By and by Bruce murmured,

      "With dreamful eyes,
      My spirit lies
    Under the walls of Paradise.

What a strange effect moonlight and water have upon us, Miss Custer!
They seem almost to disembody us. I can hardly ever recall a single line
of poetry in the daytime when the sun is shining. But moonlight brings
out all the delicate images of the mind's palimpsest."

"Pray, then, go on and repeat something more," said Miss Custer in a
low voice: "I like to hear you. Repeat the rest of 'Drifting.'"

Bruce complied, and then struck upon Byron, and was surprised and
delighted to find that Miss Custer followed him even there. The truth
was, Miss Custer had rehearsed all these things many times before with
different actors. The whole plot lay before her, ending and all. Bruce
was certainly hooked, and all she had to do was to draw the line
carefully in. To be sure, he was an odd specimen, a sort of man she was
not much acquainted with; but that made him all the more interesting,
and she was conscious of her power to manage him.

At last Bruce put the boat about without consulting her, and rowed back
to the landing in silence and with considerable dexterity, considering
his self-depreciation as a rower. Ruth and the doctor, who had no doubt
been affected by the moonlight too, stood on the bank waiting for them.
They all went home together, a rather merry party, and immediately
dispersed for the night.

The next morning, when Miss Custer came down to breakfast radiant and
joyous, with a consciousness of being in perfect keeping with the
unpoetic sunshine, she was stricken with consternation at finding Mr.
Bruce as distant and nonchalant as ever. No lingering, exploring glance
this morning--nothing but the usual flash of his dark eyes as he bowed
to her. Was it possible that all the fine effects of last night had
passed out of his consciousness?

Some time during the day Bruce found an opportunity to say to Mrs.
Tascher, "Don't ask me to do it again: I came near making a fool of
myself last night. Got to quoting poetry and all that."

"Did you, indeed?" said she, laughing. "If the siren had that effect on
you, a hardened bachelor, consider how it would go with Ebling."

"Ebling's heart is supposed to be preoccupied," said Bruce: "mine is an
'aching void.'"

That evening Hugh challenged Miss Custer to a game of croquet, and she,
with secret reluctance, but a very good grace--being one of those
sweetly-amiable people who never speak ill of any one, and never
manifest the least boredom, no matter who undertakes the office of
entertainer to them--accepted. However, she would make the most she
could out of it. She invited the rest of the company to come down and
look on and see that she had fair play. Bruce, at whom she glanced
appealingly, paid no heed, but put on his hat and went down town with
the air of a man greatly preoccupied and oppressed with business cares.
Mrs. Tascher never went out when the dew was falling, and so there was
nobody but Ruth and the doctor. They complied at once, and took seats on
a rustic bench under the trees.

Miss Custer was conscious of showing to advantage in this picturesque
game, and paid far more attention to her attitudes than her strokes: as
a consequence, she was beaten, and immediately threw down her mallet.

"I'll give you another chance," said Hugh wistfully.

"Oh, I could never redeem myself with you if we should play till
doomsday," she answered.

"You _have_ beaten me," persisted Hugh.

"But I have a presentiment that I can't do it to-night," she returned.

"Well, then, Hugh," said the doctor, getting up and helping himself to a
mallet, "if she is so disheartened, suppose we give her a chance to come
off second best by taking a game with me?"

Hugh, smiling, but a little put out, stepped back, and the contest
began, with far more animation on the part of Miss Custer. Presently
Hugh's mother called him, and he went away. After a time Ruth called to
the players, who were both at the other end of the ground, "Say, folks,
if you'll excuse _me_ I'll go in."

Miss Custer turned round and answered, "Oh, poor child! I presume you do
find it dull."

Ruth ran up to Mrs. Tascher's room. Her acquaintance with that lady she
counted among the best things of her life. The world had seemed larger
and brighter and better since she had known her.

Mrs. Tascher was a widow: she had considerable wealth, but being an
invalid she was deprived of the enjoyment of it to a great extent. She
welcomed Ruth's friendly little visits always with a smile that seemed
to make her soul stand out upon her face. She was what one might call a
woman of the world. That is, she had travelled much, read much, studied
people much, and mingled all her previous life in intelligent and
refined society.

"Why, where is the rest of your party, my dear?" she asked as Ruth
tapped on the door and came in.

"Hugh's mother wanted him," Ruth answered, "and I left Frank and Miss
Custer playing a game."

Mrs. Tascher's smile faded. She felt tempted to speak a word of warning,
but it seemed too bad to destroy the innocent faith of this high-minded,
unsuspecting girl. She gave Ruth a chair, and Ruth begged her to read
something: Mrs. Tascher's reading was sweeter than music to her. She
complied readily, because it gave her pleasure to do anything Ruth
asked. "Here is a poem by Whittier, just out," she said, taking up a
magazine, the leaves of which she had cut only that afternoon. She began
it, and Ruth leaned back in her chair and closed her eyes the better to
see the images that passed in her mind. Mrs. Tascher read on until the
light grew so dim that she could not see the lines, and then she got up
and went to the window to finish. She glanced out as she did so, and
stood silent. At last she said, "Come here, Ruth."

Ruth got up and went and looked out.

Away down at the farther end of the lawn stood Miss Custer and the
doctor with their elbows resting upon the fence, evidently very deeply
absorbed in each other. The spot was very lonely and still, hemmed in by
trees, and would not have been visible from below--perhaps from hardly
any other point but this window.

"Doesn't it strike you, Ruth, that a couple of young people must be
rather sentimental to stray away like that?" asked Mrs. Tascher.

Ruth laughed, but not very joyously, and immediately turned away from
the window, as though the sight hurt her.

Mrs. Tascher did so too, and struck a match to light her lamp. "If I
were you, Ruth," she said as she settled the shade over it, "I would go
down to the croquet-ground, from where you can see those people, and
call to them."

"Oh no," said Ruth with a shiver.

"Why, you see," continued Mrs. Tascher, "it doesn't look well. Miss
Custer ought to know better, but she is so vain of her influence over
gentlemen that she exercises it upon every occasion that offers. It
doesn't appear to make any difference who the gentleman is: it would be
all the same to her now if it were Hugh instead of the doctor. I believe
she does care something for Bruce, and he is her lawful prey; but she
knows the doctor is not in the market."

Ruth threw back her head proudly. "He _can_ be in the market," she said
hoarsely.

"No, no, my dear," said Mrs. Tascher, shaking her head. "I don't want
you to get reckless: I want to see you play this game with Miss Custer
with a cool hand and come out ahead. You can do it, and you will be
stronger and safer in the end."

Ruth pretty soon went out. She entered her room with her hand upon her
heart, and sat down by the window without striking a light. In the
course of half an hour the doctor and Miss Custer appeared in sight,
walking slowly toward the house. They passed directly under her window,
but their voices were so low that she could distinguish no word. By and
by she heard the piano going. A moment after Mrs. Tascher tapped on her
door, and, turning the knob, put her head in and called, "Ruth!"

Ruth got up and came forward.

"Come," said her visitor, "let us go down to the parlor."

"I cannot," said Ruth: "please don't ask me."

"Foolish child!" said Mrs. Tascher. "I am a thousand times sorry that I
brought this thing to your notice."

"It was brought to my notice long ago," said Ruth brokenly; and Mrs.
Tascher turned and went down stairs.

The doctor was leaning back in an easy-chair, completely absorbed in
watching the exquisite figure at the piano and listening to the strains
she evoked.

"One _would_ think she had feeling," commented Mrs. Tascher mentally as
she entered the room and swept across to the vacant seat beside the
doctor, dispelling somehow, with her strong presence, the spirit of
sentimentalism that pervaded the atmosphere. "Why, Doctor Ebling, are
you here?" she asked: "I supposed you had gone to town. Where is Miss
Stanley?"

"I--I don't know," said the doctor--honestly enough, to be sure.

"I thought you all went down to the croquet-ground?"

"Yes, we did. But she came back, and left Miss Custer and myself to
finish our game."

"Oh, then I presume she is in her room.--Have you finished playing, Miss
Custer?" with a smile of placid indifference as Miss Custer turned round
on the piano-stool.

"Yes," said Miss Custer, getting up and taking a chair. "Doctor Ebling
wished to hear the 'Last Hope.'"

"You haven't come to that in your experience yet, have you, doctor?"
laughed Mrs. Tascher, though she was not in the habit of playing upon
words.

"No," said the doctor. "It seems to me the 'last hope' is that we feel
when we draw our last breath."

The three spent the evening together, and Mrs. Tascher brought into
exercise the old charms and graces of manner and conversation that years
ago had made her one of the most brilliant and fascinating women society
could boast of. She was not old--not more than thirty-five--and when
animated she was still beautiful: her face became illuminated and stars
shone in her eyes. She so far outdid Miss Custer in the matter of
pleasing and entertaining that when the doctor went away he hardly
thought of the latter. He said to himself as he went down town, "What a
remarkably brilliant woman Mrs. Tascher must have been in her day! And
is yet, for that matter. Husband been dead six years: wonder why she
never married again?"

Then he wondered with a slight feeling of uneasiness where Ruth had kept
herself all the evening. "How affectionately and admiringly Mrs. Tascher
always speaks of Ruth!" he said, and added, "Well, she is a noble girl."

There was an indefinable hardness in Ruth's manner the next morning. Her
voice was hollow and her smile seemed ironical, though she was unusually
gay. Mrs. Tascher, who observed her closely and with some uneasiness,
thought her mockingly attentive to Miss Custer. Something was said at
the dinner-table again about the doctor's promise to read to Miss
Custer, and Ruth exclaimed, "By all means!--Miss Custer, make him stay
at home and read you that poem."

The doctor of course fell readily in with the idea, and said he would
not go down town this time to see if there were any orders: if anybody
wanted him it was generally known that if he was not in his office he
was at his boarding-place.

"Why _did_ you do it?" said Mrs. Tascher, putting her handkerchief on
her head and going down to the gate with Ruth.

"Because," said Ruth with drawn lips and heaving bosom, "I do not want
to get him unfairly. If there is some one else who interests him more
than I, he is still at liberty to choose."

"Ruth," said Mrs. Tascher, and her eyes flashed, "do you think she is
getting him fairly? You have no conception of the scheming of that
woman."

"Oh yes, indeed I believe I know it all," said Ruth, and hurried away.

In a few days school closed, and Ruth packed her trunk and went up to
Merton, a little village about twenty miles distant, to visit her aunt.
Almost as soon as she was gone Miss Custer was taken sick. Aunt Ruby
insisted upon her occupying the spare bedroom, a cool, spacious
apartment opening off the back sitting-room. The professional services
of Doctor Ebling were of course engaged at once, and he proved himself
very attentive at least.

To save appearances and for Ruth's sake, although she had little hope,
Mrs. Tascher took up her position in the sick-room and compelled the
doctor to give all his directions to her. He pronounced the malady a low
fever brought on by the extreme heat of the season. Mrs. Tascher thought
it was the result of exposure to night-dews, carelessness in regard to
diet and lack of proper exercise.

Her presence, it must be allowed, put but little constraint upon the
extraordinary intimacy of the pair. The doctor was all devotion, and
Miss Custer all languor and dependence. She made a beautiful invalid,
with her rare complexion and her white, lissome hands lying so restfully
and helplessly on the counterpane. One day, after being freshly dressed
in an embroidered gown of the finest texture, and instructing Mrs.
Tascher how to wind her hair, which was long and abundant, around the
top of her head in a coronet that was very becoming to her, she
requested to have Mr. Bruce sent in when he came to his dinner. She had
some affairs that must be looked into immediately by a legal eye.

"Had you not better just send him a message?" asked Mrs. Tascher.

"No: I prefer to attend to it myself," she returned coldly.

Bruce was therefore sent in, and Mrs. Tascher stepped out into the
sitting-room. Miss Custer, who was certainly very white, raised her
dusky eyelids, smiled faintly and held out her jewelled hand. Bruce,
standing awkwardly enough by the bed-side, took it, but without apparent
appreciation of its loveliness.

The invalid had chosen an inopportune moment: despite the subdued light
of the chamber, it was high noon and the sun shone burningly outside,
and Bruce, who had just eaten a hearty dinner, was utterly devoid of
sentiment and indifferent to nice effects. There was a tumbler of dewy
roses on a little table beside the bed, and he picked out one, and,
sitting down, began eating the leaves one by one. "I hope," said he,
thinking it a good plan to rally the sick a little, "you haven't got so
discouraged by this indisposition--which the doctor tells me is not at
all serious--that you wish to make your will?"

"No," she returned, hardly able to conceal her disgust at the unfeeling
wretch: "I merely wish to send to my attorney for some money."

"Oh, is that it?" said Bruce, laughing. "Then the doctor was right. So
long as a person takes a controlling interest in his affairs he is
safe."

"A _person_!" thought Miss Custer, and really curled her lip. She gave
him her lawyer's address, stated the sum she wanted and told him he
might say that she was ill.

"And unable to write," added Bruce. "All right! I shall be as prompt in
the execution of your commission as the exigences of the case appear to
demand."

He took up his hat and went out cheerily, and Miss Custer turned her
face to the wall and cried. For a day or two she was worse: then she
grew better, and was finally able to sit up. At the expiration of two
weeks Ruth came back. She was very pale and her face had a rigid look.
Miss Custer met her sweetly, being still under the subduing influence of
invalidism, and Ruth tried to feel kindly to her; which was a great
vexation to Mrs. Tascher.

"Let me alone," said Ruth passionately one day. "Don't you see how I
hate her? I could almost kill her! I am trying to fight down the demon
in me."

The doctor, who had himself grown thin and haggard-looking, welcomed
Ruth back with an air of constraint.

One day the young folks of the village got up a picnic and invited Aunt
Ruby's boarders. The doctor at first hesitated about giving his
permission for Miss Custer to go, but she coaxed, and he finally
consented. The evening before the picnic Ruth requested an interview
with the doctor, and they walked out into the grove. She told him she
wished to release him from his engagement, and it was a painful
satisfaction to her to see the agony that was in his face. He accused
himself bitterly--said he had broken up her happiness and ruined her
life, that he could never forgive himself, and ended by refusing to
accept his release, and declaring that he should never avail himself of
any of the advantages it offered.

The next morning he went to Bruce with white face and strained eyes,
and begged him, for the love he bore him, to take Miss Custer to the
picnic and to stay by her.

"So, my boy," said Bruce, not a little affected, "you have got into the
ditch and want me to help you out? Well, I will do what I can.--Thank
the Lord, his eyes are opened at last!" he muttered as Ebling went away.

The picnic-ground was a wooded hillside that sloped down into a grassy
meadow a mile from town. The company all got together at the appointed
hour--two in the afternoon--in the street below Aunt Ruby's, and waited
for her boarders to come out. Ruth had persuaded Mrs. Tascher to go, and
the doctor, with a painful attempt to appear natural, kept beside her
and was scrupulously attentive to her comfort. Ruth playfully claimed
Hugh as her escort. Bruce, true to agreement, monopolized Miss Custer in
a masterly way, much to her surprise. She tried to snub him at first,
but he ignored all her efforts in that direction with consummate
stupidity, and in the end she submitted with a charming grace that was
torture to the doctor.

Everybody seemed in fine spirits, but on the part of two or three
members of the company we have reason to suppose that it was _only_
seeming. And perhaps a little general knowledge of the affairs of
mankind might justify us in the suspicion that there were others not so
happy as their bright looks seemed to warrant. But, however that might
be, every one threw in his or her contribution to the pleasure and
amusement of the day. The doctor helped to lay out a croquet-ground and
fixed the target for archery-practice; Hugh was active in putting up
swings; some of the older and more dignified gentlemen, including Bruce,
took upon themselves the lighter duty of entertaining the ladies; when
lunch-time came some of the young fellows kindled a fire, and Ruth
boiled the coffee. After that there was a good deal of pairing off and
walking about, or sitting cozily upon old mossy, fallen trunks of trees.

Miss Custer, who had not yet risen from the grass-plot where she had
sat to eat her dinner, looked away down across the green meadows with
sleepy, half-shut eyes, and asked, "What is that pile of stones in the
corner yonder?"

A youthful jeweller whom she remembered among her distant admirers
answered, "It's an old well. This place here used to be a stock-farm,
but it hasn't been used for that for a good many years; so the framework
and buckets have been taken away."

Miss Custer, seized with a sudden impulse, sprang up and exclaimed, "I
have a great mind to go down and take a look into it. Old wells have a
peculiar fascination for me, and that one looks so lovely and romantic!"

She had a thought that Bruce might volunteer to accompany her, but that
indolent barrister, sprawling upon the grass at her feet, hardly felt
called upon by the nature of his agreement with Ebling to undergo quite
so much as that. He reflected that it was his business to keep the
charmer out of mischief for the day. "And if she meanders away to that
fascinating well," he thought, "in her own solitary company, nobody will
be damaged, so far as I can see."

But Miss Custer, seeing no other way and feeling the position a little
awkward, appealed to Ruth, who got up and started with her. When they
had clambered down the rather steep hill to the meadow's edge Miss
Custer affectionately took her arm. "Don't you think picnics are stupid
things?" she asked confidingly.

"Why," said Ruth, "we didn't think so this morning."

"Oh no, not when we were anticipating, but

    One of the pleasures of having a rout
    Is the pleasure of having it over.

I shall be glad when we get back home, though I suppose we shall not
start till near sundown."

When they reached the well Miss Custer stepped upon the flat white
stones with which it was walled up to the surface of the ground and
gazed down into its dark depths. "What a queer feeling that is which one
is almost sure to have standing upon the edge of danger!--a sort of
reckless impulse to throw one's self forward. Did you ever feel it?"
Ruth, standing just behind her as she leaned over, saw her hands
involuntarily clutch her dress, as though the strange temptation were so
great that she must hold herself forcibly back from it. "I have--a
thousand times," she added; "and I feel it now."

"Take care!" cried Ruth, catching at her.

Miss Custer, in turning away her charmed gaze, lost her balance from
sheer dizziness and plunged forward. Ruth, with a look and cry of
horror, bent over and saw the fearful descent, so quick and so noiseless
until the dull splash was heard and the black water opened and closed
again. Then she threw up her hands and started to run toward the hill,
calling loudly. But already they had seen and were coming. One--Doctor
Ebling--was far ahead of the rest. Ruth met him and turned back with
him.

"Ruth, you did it: I saw you push her," he found breath to say. But
Ruth's sensibilities were too shocked to feel the accusation.

The doctor was halfway down the well before any one else reached the
spot. Bruce had had the forethought to cut down a swing and bring the
rope. In a very few minutes Miss Custer--or what was believed to be her
lifeless body--was lying wet upon the grass and the doctor, also
dripping, was making a hasty examination of her condition. "I think she
will live," was his verdict, "but we must get her home with all speed."

A light wagon coming up the road was signalled to, and they got her into
it and drove furiously to town. By the time the rest of the party
reached home she was partially recovered, though very weak and terribly
shaken.

As soon as it was said that she was out of danger and would probably
suffer no serious consequences Ruth recalled the doctor's frightful
words: "You did it: I saw you push her."

She rushed in search of him. He was in the parlor, walking back and
forth with a troubled air. She went up to him: "Frank, you accused me
of doing that dreadful thing. I have just remembered what you said--that
you saw me push her. I did not: I put out my hand to save her."

"I hope to God you did!" said he, but his look was doubting and
reproachful.

"Why, Frank," she said, with scarcely enough breath to speak the words,
"if you do not believe me it will kill me!"

Just then some one came to the door and beckoned to him, and he went
out. Ruth turned, with a breaking heart, to go up stairs. The youthful
jeweller was talking to Mrs. Tascher in the hall. "Yes," he was saying,
"I saw it all. She was standing leaning over the well, and was just
turning to step back when she gave a sort of lurch as if she had got
dizzy, and Miss Stanley reached out her hand and caught her by the
shoulder. But she had got the start of her, and over she went in a
twinkling. The whole thing was done in an instant."

"Oh, Mr. Omes, I wish you would explain all that to Doctor Ebling," said
Ruth, coming up.

"Oh, he knows all about it: he saw it the same as I did," said the young
man.

A suspicion crossed Ruth's mind that the doctor _knew_, but she could
not believe him so base.

Miss Custer was doomed to have a serious time of it, after all. The
great excitement brought on fever again, and for some days her recovery
was thought doubtful. Everybody in the house did all that was in her or
his power to do, and the doctor was more devoted than ever. It became a
fixed idea that he would marry Miss Custer as soon as she was able to
sit up. He and Ruth scarcely spoke to each other.

One day Mrs. Tascher told Ruth she must go away.

"Yes, I know," answered Ruth: "I am going."

She packed her trunk again--this time taking all her things--and went
back to her aunt's. In less than a week Mrs. Tascher had a letter from
her stating that she had started, under the escort of a friend of her
guardian's, for Beirut.

It was so great a shock to Mrs. Tascher that she scarcely left her room
for ten days after it, and indeed did not wholly recover until another
letter came, dated from far-off Syria, with a curious commingling of the
strange and the familiar in the well-known handwriting and the foreign
post-mark, assuring her that her young friend was safely sheltered under
the protection of her guardian and his estimable wife. Ruth dwelt
entirely upon her new experience, and never mentioned the old. She had
not so much to say about her journey, though it was interesting and
delightful, as about her arrival and the meeting with her dear friends,
whose loved faces were so sweetly familiar in that strange, strange land
that she fell upon their necks and wept. She drew vivid pictures of the
magnificent scenery that lay around her in her new home--the gardens,
the orange-groves, the figs and olives, the terraced slope of Mount
Lebanon, the glorious Mediterranean.

Mrs. Tascher was comforted, though the void made by Ruth's absence was
almost like death, the wide space seemed so unspannable. She wrote back
at once in all the fulness of her heart, and Ruth was not so absorbed in
grief for the loss of her lover but that she appreciated and was deeply
grateful for the tender, unfailing affection of her friend. Mrs.
Tascher, who felt that the sharpest knife was the best to be used in a
case of urgent surgical necessity, wrote briefly that the doctor and
Miss Custer were married--that Miss Custer had begged for at least three
months' preparation, but the doctor was impatient; and so, as soon as
she was able to stand the journey to Boston, where her friends and
property were, they had joined hands and started.

"The marriage took place in the parlor," Mrs. Tascher wrote, "and the
household were invited to be present. I, however, had a bad headache and
could not get down stairs; Bruce pleaded 'business;' and poor Hugh,
whose boyish affections have been cruelly tampered with, had a fishing
engagement. So there was nobody but Aunt Ruby and her 'help' to witness
the touching ceremony except the minister and his wife. It _was_
touching, I suppose: Miss Custer wept bitterly at being so 'neglected,'
and Ebling is mortally offended with Bruce."

Three years went by; which space of time Mrs. Tascher spent chiefly in
Florida and New York, going back and forth as the seasons changed in
obedience to medical authority. At last she concluded to try a few weeks
in Westbrook again. Aunt Ruby, who still kept boarders--all strangers,
however--gave her the old rooms up stairs with their pleasant windows.
Here she sat and wrote to Ruth a few days after her arrival.

Ruth had become quite contented, and even happy, under the warm Syrian
sun, watching with earnest, loving eyes the development of barbarism and
heathenism into civilization and Christianity, though it seemed very
much to her sometimes as if she had lost her place and personality in
the world. She was swallowed up in the great pagan East, and was nothing
to the land that owned her--to the people that were her people. She was
dead to the life and world to which she had been born.

The family of her guardian, together with some of their pupils, had
removed to a little village up the side of the mount to spend a few of
the hottest weeks, as was their custom. The mail was regularly brought
up by a young Arab riding a mule. One evening, when Ruth had gone to sit
alone on one of the grassy terraces overlooking the sea and the
luxuriant foliage and vegetation below--a thing she liked, though it
usually made her pensive and a little sad--a young Syrian girl ran down
and gave her a letter. It was Mrs. Tascher's, and I will take the
liberty to transcribe a part of it here:

"Aunt Ruby has furnished me with a good many surprising items in regard
to the fortunes and actions of our old associates. Bruce (he was a
splendid fellow--wasn't he?--solid, practical and all that), who, you
remember, had a good deal of means, has built himself a house, something
quite elegant. It stands on that little knoll on the other side of the
town, overlooking the river. I mean to go over and take a look at it
some day: it is said to be beautifully furnished, and is kept by an old
maiden aunt of our friend. Bruce, by the way, is in Europe, though what
took him there I cannot conjecture, unless he means to bring home a
European exportation in the shape of a wife. I wish, my dear, _you_ had
taken a fancy to him: I always thought he admired you. You don't mind my
probing an old wound--do you?--because I want to speak of some of the
others. Miss Custer's fortune, as it turned out, was extremely limited.
She had, I believe, enough to furnish a small rented house here, and she
and the doctor immediately went to housekeeping. But time, which settles
all things and places them in their true light and relations, has
brought to the notice of this precious pair that they are very ill
adapted to each other: it is even said that they quarrel. The coarser
gossips affirm that Mrs. Ebling is lazy and shiftless, and that the
doctor is disheartened and neglects his business. I have seen him once,
and can judge something of his state by his bearing and looks. He is
certainly not the sort of man I once thought he would make. Whether
there is better stuff in him than what we see developed, or whether he
owes what he is entirely to circumstances, is an unsolvable question. I
am inclined to think that every person has the making of two individuals
in him--one bad, the other good. What a pity that a man usually has only
one chance! If he makes a mistake he is lost. My dear Ruth, in the whole
course of my life I have kept my eyes upon the infallible law of cause
and effect; and I know this, that wrong-doing inevitably brings its own
retribution."

When Ruth took her eyes from this letter and fixed them upon the distant
blue water-depths they were brimful of tears. "Yes, wrong-doing is
followed by retribution," she thought, "but where is the reward for
right-doing?"

Oh, she felt so lonely in that far-off heathen land, with the shadow of
others' wrong-doing lying always across her path! Why must she suffer
and be alone?

A step from behind startled her, and she sprang up and turned round. A
pair of black eyes were smiling at her from a handsome, familiar face.
"Oh, Mr. Bruce!" she cried, and flew up the steps, holding out both her
hands.

"I have come such a long way to see you," said Bruce, "that my motive
must be pretty conspicuous: I don't mean to try to conceal it. Perhaps
you have never thought of me as a man you would be at all likely to
marry. Still, I have made it my business to come and ask you, and I
thought I might better let you know my errand at once, instead of
leaving you to guess it from any clownish efforts of mine to do the
agreeable to you."

He certainly broke it to her very well, smiling and holding her
hands--so well that she laughed heartily and was at home with him in a
moment.

One day it was rumored in Westbrook that Bruce had come home with a
wife. The news had but just reached Aunt Ruby's premises when Bruce
himself came rapidly up the path and asked for Mrs. Tascher. She came
down at once. "I have come for you to go and call upon my wife," said
he.

"Why, Mr. Bruce--" she began.

But he stopped her, and in spite of her demurring carried her off.

"You certainly _have_ a lovely place, Mr. Bruce," she said, looking
admiringly round as they mounted the front steps of his residence. The
door flew open, and there, waiting to welcome her, stood the
bride--Ruth.

  ALICE ILGENFRITZ.



WHERE LIGHTNING STRIKES.


The air has been growing hotter for many days, with "occasional
counteracting influences" (as "Probabilities" says), until the
sunshine-loving doves hide under shadowing gables and the robins and
sparrows sit on the lower branches of the trees with little wings lifted
from their palpitating sides. The multitudinous shrilling of the
grasshoppers adds emphasis to the white heats of the air. Even the
housefly seeks the shade and hums drowsily in complicated orbits about
the upper part of the room, or, with too keen proboscis, destroys my
last crumb of comfort, the post-prandial nap.

My eyes open upon a world that dreams. The trees stand motionless. Among
their tops the bull-bat darts erratically. The pale star of thistledown
mounts on some mysterious current, like an infant soul departing
heavenward. The hum of the near city is hushed. The sound of the
church-bells is muffled. The trumpeting of the steamer comes from the
bay, as though some lone sea-monster called aloud for companionship.
There is a sudden rattle and roar as a train rushes by, and then the
smoke drifts away over the glowing landscape.

But there is an increasing opaque dimness in the western horizon that
steadily deepens in color. Fleece-like clouds rapidly increase in height
and density, and a sheet of pale flame flashes from the midst and is
gone. A glowing, crinkly line marks the edge of the cloud, and
disappears.

Now swallows soar far up in the sky, the doves make wild, uncertain
flights above the steeples, and the hoarse trumpet of the steamer again
calls for recognition. At the west another bright line falls, zigzag, to
a distant hill, revealed an instant, then lost in the shadow of the
cloud. Soon there is a low, momentary rumble, and you are assured that
the swift, delightful, dangerous shower, that cools the earth without
interrupting our pleasures for dreary days, is approaching. No one whose
dwelling is not better protected than most of those which bear the vain
and flimsy decorations called "lightning-rods" can know whether his own
house may not in a few moments receive a ruinous stroke, or that it may
not be his lot to enter eternity with the first flash from that dark,
towering mass of sulphurous hue that already casts its ominous shadow
upon his face.

Timid persons should experience gladness rather than alarm at the sound
of the thunder and the flash of the lightning, both being signals that
personal danger is past for the time. Persons who have been struck and
rendered insensible, but who have afterward recovered, had not seen or
heard what hurt them. Unless we are acquainted with the locality, and
know the points likely to receive the fiery bolt; if a disruptive
discharge occurs near us there is no telling the spot of danger or of
safety in open ground. A discharge from the front of the cloud may take
a downward angle of forty-five degrees, and, passing over hill and
forest, strike an insignificant knoll or a moist meadow half a mile in
advance of the cloud. For myself, if overtaken in the country by a
thunderstorm, I would seek the nearest and most convenient shelter from
the rain and take my chance with the lightning.

Teams and the persons accompanying them appear to be peculiarly in
danger during a thunderstorm. Caves, and even deep mines, afford no
absolute safety, for the thunderbolt has been known to enter even these.
Tall trees are more dangerous than low ones, but none of them appear
capable of affording protection against this mysterious element. The
people of different countries have regarded various kinds of trees as
exempt from the electric stroke, but inquiry has always shown that every
species has suffered in one locality or another. The beech, from some
cause, has probably escaped more generally than any other tree of
considerable size in northern latitudes. But it is the neighborhood of a
good conductor, not a sheltering non-conductor, that affords safety.
Some scientific men have advised a station of fifteen to forty feet from
a tree, or such a position between several trees, but it has sometimes
happened that such open spaces have received the bolt. In cities and
villages, likewise, open spaces are not found to be places of
safety.[5]

The question whether the small metallic articles usually carried about
the person increase the danger is a matter of some concern. Many persons
on the approach of a thunderstorm customarily relieve themselves of
these things. Hair-pins, clasps and the metallic springs often used in
the dresses of ladies are not, however, so easily got rid of. From the
record of the effects of lightning upon the human body we reach the
conclusion that metal is dangerous about the person only according to
its position. Constantine mentions that during a thunderstorm a lady
raised her arm to close a window, when a flash of lightning entered: her
golden bracelet was entirely dissipated, but without the slightest
injury to the wearer. A similar case is reported in the _Edinburgh New
Philosophical Journal_ for 1844. During a violent thunderstorm a
fishing-boat belonging to Midyell, in the Shetland Islands, was struck
by lightning. The discharge came down the mast (which it tore into
shivers) and melted a watch in the pocket of a man who was sitting close
by, without at all injuring him. He was not even aware of what had
happened until, on taking out his watch, he found it fused into one
mass. Instances might be cited where a portion of the shoe was carried
away without serious injury to the wearer, and where knitting-needles,
scissors and other household implements have been struck, sometimes
conducting the current to the person with fatal effect.

During a thunderstorm in France in July, 1858, a peasant-woman, on her
way home from the fields, was struck down by lightning. No wound was
detected upon her person, but her hair was singed and a part of a silver
comb melted. Here metal seems to have conducted the electricity to the
body. On the other hand, the traveller Brydone relates a circumstance
which happened to a lady who was regarding a thunderstorm from her
window. At a flash of lightning her bonnet was reduced to ashes, nothing
else about her being affected. Brydone supposes the electric current to
have been attracted by the metallic wire which maintained the shape of
her bonnet. Hence he proposes that either these wires be abandoned or in
times of danger a metallic chain be attached to the bonnet, by which the
charge might pass to the earth. Accordingly, we find that it became
fashionable in France at that period to wear on the top of the bonnet an
ornament of bright metal connecting with a small silver chain dropping
down to the ground. At about the same time umbrellas were carried fitted
with wires and chain for a similar purpose.

In July, 1819, lightning fell upon the prison of Biberach in Suabia, and
there struck, in a common apartment, among twenty prisoners, one only--a
condemned captain of brigands, who was chained about the waist. A
similar arrangement of metal proved fatal in another case. On the 9th of
October, 1836, on the coast of Italy, a young man was struck by
lightning and killed. It was found that he wore a girdle containing gold
coins. Undoubtedly, danger or safety depends on properly placing the
conducting object. It may convey the current to the vital organs or it
may ward off the stroke. Probably any line of metal parallel with the
length of the body when upright would be in some degree a protection.
The noted Dr. King once saw a military company receive a discharge of
electricity from the clouds upon their bayonets, whence their muskets
conducted it to the ground without harm or any painful shock. On the
other hand, a battalion of French infantry, while marching between
Mouzon and Stenay, June 2, 1849, was struck by lightning, and two men
killed, while about two hundred were struck to the ground. Blood flowed
from their mouths, ears and noses. This effect appears to have been the
result of the concussion. Similar results sometimes follow from heavy
discharges of artillery.

Uniform testimony goes to show that men in metallic armor have never
been fatally injured by lightning. A complete suit of metallic armor
embodies the principle of the well-known electrical cage of Faraday.
This is simply a basket of wire network with its open side to the
ground. If the wire is of proper size and the capacity sufficient, this
cage is the most effectual protection possible, unless the walls be of
solid iron.

If one places beside him a better direct conductor to the earth than his
own body, he will not be fatally injured by the electric current,
though, if it pass very near, he may be blinded by the glare or deafened
by the noise--effects which are usually temporary. Equal safety for
buildings may be similarly secured.

Glass being so well known as an excellent non-conductor, some have been
led to suppose it effectual in warding off the disruptive stroke. Hence
chambers or cases of glass have actually been made for the use of
individuals who were apt to be overcome with terror during the
prevalence of a thunderstorm. In this belief, also, the vane of Christ
Church in Doncaster, England, was furnished with a glass ball; but the
spire was afterward struck, causing great damage. Many also think they
may sit beside a closed window in safety, but records of holes being
melted in the glass and whole windows crumbled to powder by lightning
are too numerous to admit of any reliance upon such a precaution.

In the case of silken garments the evidence met with does not warrant a
statement either for or against them; yet there appears to be no reason
why this non-conductor should be more of a safeguard than any other. No
doubt an abundance of gold and silver lace, or cloth having threads of
these metals, might prove a protection. Feather beds, too, have been
regarded as places of safety, but persons have been killed by lightning
while in bed. Dr. Franklin advised especially that the vicinity of
chimneys be avoided, because lightning often enters a room by them. All
metallic bodies, mirrors and gilded ornaments, he held, should likewise
be shunned. Contact with the walls or the floor or proximity to a
chandelier, a projecting gas-pipe, a position between two considerable
pieces or surfaces of metals, unless distant, are all hazardous.
Draughts of air are also to be avoided. Bell-wires may generally be
considered as protective, though too small to be effectual. Perhaps a
hammock, in addition to the preceding precautions, will afford as much
security as can be derived from insulation. But in a building having
continuous iron walls, posts or pillars from top to bottom, or in one
which is properly supplied with conductors in other forms, all the
foregoing precautions may be neglected without apprehension. Yet, as was
suggested early in this article, the great number of buildings damaged
by lightning while furnished with rods has caused much distrust of this
system of protection.

From the large number of trees receiving the electric current it has
come to be thought by many that these may be the best protectors of
buildings if properly placed. In a case coming under my observation a
tree received (or at least deflected) the current and communicated it to
the house. In many instances, however, the building is struck while tall
trees near by are untouched.

There is no doubt that lightning generally strikes elevated rather than
low objects, and therefore it has been thought that a building
surrounded by steeples had nothing to fear. As previously stated,
however, the bolt sometimes selects a low object when high ones are at
hand. For example, lightning fell upon a house occupied by Lord Tilney
in Naples, although it was surrounded on all sides, at the distance of
four or five hundred paces, by the towers and domes of a great number of
churches, all wet with a heavy rain.

In considering the matter of protection from lightning we must bear in
mind that trees, buildings, masts and other elevated points exert no
attractive power on the thundercloud except in connection with the great
plane where they are situated. The primary cause of the discharge is not
in the metals of the building, the exact point or line in which the
insulation by the air breaks down being determined by a variety of
causes. The elevated points of a building or ship may form a channel for
the passage of the current, but it is not the only one nor the cause of
the discharge, which would take place sooner or later though the ship or
building were absent altogether.

There has been a difference of opinion in regard to the area protected
by lightning-conductors, early notions on this point having been much
exaggerated. Leroy's, in 1788, is the earliest positive statement which
I have met. It is, that a conductor protects a horizontal space around
it equal to somewhat more than three times the height of the metal rod
above the building to which it is attached. The physical section of the
Academy of Sciences of Paris, on being consulted by the Minister of War
in 1823, expressed the opinion that a lightning-conductor protects a
circular space of which the radius is equal to the height of the rod.
Here, apparently, is a wide difference, but possibly the estimates refer
to different elevations. Leroy clearly intended an area at a level with
the top of the building: thus, supposing the rod to be attached to a
chimney six feet in height and to rise a foot and a half above the
chimney, then it would protect a radius of about ten feet on the roof.
The estimate of the Academy of Sciences speaks of the total height of
the rod, and refers to a horizontal area at the base of the measurement,
whether this began at the ground or at the top of the structure to which
the rod is attached. In this view the estimates do not differ so much as
might appear, the latter being about one-third less than that of Leroy.
Other French writers estimate the area protected as having a radius of
double the height of the rod above the highest point of the connected
structure, being twice the radius allowed by the Academy. Later
physicists have been cautious in giving figures, for experience has
shown that estimates of protection are not accurately observed by the
descending bolt. For instance, when Her Majesty's corvette Dido,
furnished with the best system of conductors, was struck by lightning,
the discharge fell in a double or forked current upon the main royal
mast, one of the branches striking the extreme point of the royal yard
arm and passing along to the conductor on the mast, while the other fork
fell on the vane, spindle and truck; which last was split open. As soon
as the discharge reached the conductor all damage ceased.

The practice of the best electricians has now long been to protect all
angles and projections, the latter by a branch of the rod, and the
former by running a line of rod over them, having at every few feet
sharp points of an inch or two in length attached to and standing out at
right angles with the rod. Indeed, some go even beyond this, forming
points along the whole length of the conductors by notching the corners
of a square rod with a chisel. Sometimes a rod is twisted for ornament,
but with a loss for practical uses, for in a twisted rod the electrical
current is retarded, and a portion of the charge is more liable to leave
the conductor.

In England, during our Revolutionary war, an active scientific
discussion was carried on as to whether the upper end of a
lightning-conductor should be sharp or blunt. "The scientific aspect of
the question soon became lost in political acrimony, those who, with Dr.
Franklin, advocated sharp conductors, being classed with him and the
Revolutionary party, while those who advocated blunt conductors were
held to be loyal subjects and good citizens." There is a difference in
the action of a sharp conductor and one with a blunt end or terminating
in a ball. In the first the point silently receives the current, while
in the other the opposite electricities of the rod and cloud may meet
with explosion; but the building will not necessarily be injured from
this cause. M. Michel proposed to combine the advantages of the two
systems by having the rod terminate in a spherical enlargement from
which should project points in various directions. This, he thought,
would lessen the danger of fusion and control the current at distances
where it might escape other forms of terminal. Some American
electricians now use a modification of this form, surmounting the rod
with a branching tip, while others prefer the single point. The latter
is the form used in the American and British navies. The vane, with its
appurtenances, is sometimes made the terminal of the conductor, and
should at least always be connected.

The practice is also a good one of combining balustrades, finials and
other metal-work at the tops of buildings with the system, by which
protection is rendered more complete. Especially is it important to
connect with a metallic roof at its lower edge, and with the gutters,
unless the rain-conductors connect with the earth to its moist mass.

In regard to the material for conductors, copper is undoubtedly the
best, but more expensive than iron. The latter is more liable to rust,
and on account of its lower conductive power is more easily melted. An
electrical explosion which only melts a copper wire would utterly
destroy an iron wire of twice the diameter of the former. In being
heated a rod contracts in length, and is then liable to fracture by the
shrinkage, but if of sufficient size these results are not likely to
occur. An iron rod, by successively receiving an electrical discharge,
is sometimes reduced in size.

The conducting power of metals likely to be found in buildings is as
follows: taking the power of lead as _one_, that of tin will be
_two_--that is, tin conducts electricity twice as well as lead; iron,
nearly two and a half times as well; zinc, four times; and copper,
twelve times. From this comparison of conducting power the important
fact will appear that when any two of these metals are used in the same
line of conduction, the one of low power should be proportionately
larger. Sir W.S. Harris--perhaps the best authority on lightning-rods
in general--advises that the size of the rod, if of iron, should be
three-fourths of an inch in diameter, although he admits that probably
never in the experience of man has a rod half an inch in diameter been
melted by an electrical discharge. He regarded the extent of surface
rather than quantity of metal in the conductor as the measure of its
power, while many other electricians hold the contrary opinion.

It is important that the conductor should form an unbroken line
throughout its extent, otherwise there is danger that a portion of the
charge may be diverted from it. For instance: a large barn struck not
long since had a conductor at each of three corners. In order to
maintain the uniformity of the four angles of the square hip roof, a rod
was run from the main conductor down the fourth angle to the hip, where
it terminated in an erect point. A heavy discharge struck the main rod
at the cupola, and, descending, divided among the four branches. That on
the short branch jumped from its end to the metal sheathing along the
angle of the roof, which it followed to the gutter, passing along this
to one of the conductors, doing some damage on the way. Had not the
charge found a line of metal on which to continue its course from the
end of the rod, it would have done greater damage, and most likely have
set the building on fire.

Another point of importance is, that the connection of the joints of the
rod be perfect, as explosions and fusion occur wherever the surface in
contact is less than the size of the rod, unless the latter is much
larger than necessary. The hook and the lap joints, if not very
carefully made, are liable to this objection. The best connection, no
doubt, is that of the screw coupling.

The insulation of the rod from the building is an expense not only
without the least advantage, but the contrary. Harris (_Thunderstorms_,
pp. 129, 131) says: "This practice is not only useless, but
disadvantageous, and is manifestly inconsistent with the principles on
which conductors are applied." Dr. Franklin says: "The rod may be
fastened to the wall, chimney, etc., with staples of iron. The lightning
will not leave the rod to pass into the wall through these staples. It
would rather, if any were in the wall, pass out of it into the rod, to
get more readily by that conductor to the earth." The practice may have
gained vogue from an observance of the use of glass knobs as insulators
of telegraph-wires. Many intelligent people have failed to apprehend the
vast difference between the low tension of voltaic electricity and
frictional electricity, lightning being in the nature of the latter. The
fact that when lightning strikes the telegraph-wire it jumps from the
wire to the posts, often tearing in pieces half a dozen in a row, ought
to be conclusive in regard to insulating lightning-rods.

The same considerations will also effectually dissipate the fallacy by
which the horizontal lightning-rod has duped so many people in certain
portions of the West; for if the wire be cut off from the
ground-connections (in which condition it accords with the conductor in
question) the posts (which answer to the building thus "protected") must
suffer still greater damage. So far from being insulated, the rod should
be connected with all considerable masses of metal in the building,
these having also a good connection with the earth. Frequently during a
thunder-shower--sometimes even on the approach of one--all metallic
objects will be electrified, and those of considerable size will often
yield a spark; and this without the building containing these objects
being struck. When struck, the larger masses of metal might occasion a
dangerous explosion from induction, though at some distance from the
rod: for this reason, as before stated, they should be connected with
the ground. Being then liable to receive a part of the current from the
conductor in case this be too small, they should be connected with it,
as otherwise the current would cause damage in its passage. In a word,
therefore, all metal bodies in a building should, as far as possible, be
made a part of the system of conduction. This matter is not well
understood generally. A dwelling in Boston having been struck by
lightning a few years since, a neighbor remarked that "it was fortunate
the lightning did not reach the gas-pipe, for it would then have gone
all over the house." The fact was, that the bolt did not go more than
five feet inside the house before it struck the pipe, and there all
damage ended. The idea may be novel to most people, but if the gas-or
water-pipes were carried above the roof to the usual height of
lightning-rods, they would form a very efficient system of conductors so
long as they were connected with the main pipes in the street. Knowing
the destructive character of lightning when it passes through air, wood,
brick, stone or other non-conductor, people are naturally fearful of
allowing the current to run through their houses. But the lion and the
lamb are not more different than are the disruptive discharge while
passing through a non-conductor and the same current passing through a
good conductor.

The system of lightning-conductors in use in the British navy goes
through the woodwork of the vessel, the conductors sunk in the side of
the masts connecting with the sea through the metal bolts in the hull.
After the terrible charge of electricity had fallen on the Chichester,
Captain Stewart wrote: "I examined the planks about the bolts, and found
all quite fair and water-tight." (These "bolts" formed the lower part of
the system of conduction, passing through the bottom of the vessel and
connecting with the water.) After twenty-five years' use there had not,
as we learn from the _British Nautical Magazine_ for March, 1853, been a
solitary instance of serious damage by lightning on ships fitted with
these conductors, though many had been struck by heavy discharges. In
our own navy the conductors pass from the upper part of the mast over
the side of the vessel.

It is not, however, to advocate making the gas-and water-pipes the main
lines of conduction that I have made these citations, but to remove in
some degree the dread of "having the lightning come into the house." A
better conductor would be the metal covering of the roof when such
material is used. When a good metallic connection is made between a
metal roof and metal rain-conductors, which, in their turn, are well
connected with the earth, nothing further is needed for complete
protection than a rod soldered to the roof for each chimney or other
projection. But as the lightning is liable to melt the plate at the
point where it enters, especially if the metal be tin or zinc, it is
well to solder points at the angles. Some, "to make assurance doubly
sure," carry the rods over the whole distance quite to the ground in
addition. All authorities consider such a system as this to be as
complete a defence against lightning as possible.

"If," says Harris, "a building or a ship were perfectly metallic in all
its parts, no damage could possibly arise to it when struck by
lightning, since the explosive action would vanish the instant the
electrical agency entered the metal. In applying lightning-conductors,
therefore, as a means of guarding against the destructive effects of
lightning, our object should be to carry out this principle in all its
generality, and bring the building or ship as nearly as possible into
that state of passive electrical resistance it would have supposing the
whole mass were iron throughout."

After the most careful and extended inquiry possible to him, it is the
writer's conclusion that in nearly every case of serious damage by
lightning to a building having conductors of any well-known system
(except the horizontal, which is not a conductor at all in the usual
sense of the word), the failure to protect has been on account of a
_defective ground-connection_. The fact is the more surprising as this
connection is so much within control and is the least costly part of the
system. This fault has arisen from the failure of lightning-rod men, as
well as owners of buildings, to apprehend what constitutes a
ground-connection for electricity. If the eye sees the end of the
conductor pass a short distance beneath the surface, all the connection
necessary is thought to be effected, because "the ground is always wet
enough in a shower." In the cities it is customary to connect the rod
with the water-or gas-pipes in the street, which makes the conduction
perfect. In the absence of these it is best to carry the rod to a well;
and it is always desirable to enlarge the lower end of the conductor,
which may be done by soldering it there to a sheet of copper. If the
termination of the line cannot be carried to a well, it should be
deeply buried in a bed of coke or charcoal that has been subjected to a
red heat.

A season or two ago a large barn in the vicinity of Boston was struck by
lightning, and though there were rods at three of the four corners,
three kine were killed by the discharge. The barn stood upon the side of
a hill, having a cellar and sub-cellar, the bottom of the last being
very moist. An ox stood in one corner, a cow in another and a heifer at
a third, and each received a fatal stroke. On examination it was found
that the rods entered the ground to the depth of only about one foot,
and the soil, being dry, perfectly insulated them. Consequently, on the
way to damp earth the currents jumped to the nearest conductors, which
happened to be these unfortunate animals. In placing conductors it must
not be forgotten that dry earth in general is not a conductor. Neither
will any small quantity of surface water serve to check the rage of the
electric stroke, unless there is a connection of moisture with the mass
of moisture below the soil.

The depth to which lightning may penetrate before it is so dissipated as
to lose its dangerous character is shown by the fulgurites, or
"lightning-tubes," sometimes found in sandy soils. Their formation has
been conclusively traced to disruptive electrical discharges from the
clouds, which have melted the sand by the intense heat generated in
passing through to a moist earth. These tubes generally divide into
prongs, like a parsnip, as they descend. The inner surface is smooth and
very bright. It scratches glass and strikes fire as a flint. They are
sometimes found three inches in external diameter, and extending to a
depth of thirty feet. In one instance five of these tubes were found in
a single hill.

This tendency of certain localities to receive the electrical discharge
is further illustrated by the number of times certain buildings in every
considerable town have been struck. As before stated, the elevation of
the structure does not seem to be the determining influence in directing
the stroke, for the unfortunate edifice often stands much lower than
some others in the vicinity which have always been struck. Numerous
illustrations of this can be found in the records of European countries.
Hollis Street Church in Boston has been struck several times, though the
ground on which it stands is but little above the level of the sea,
while the State-House, on the very apex of Beacon Hill, with great
quantities of metal in surface and mass, is not known ever to have
received a disruptive discharge. It has been supposed that the copper
covering of the roof, including the gilded dome, its rain-pipes and four
excellent lightning-rods, have had the effect of neutralizing the air
about it by constant conduction of mild currents. Yet the rod on the
spire of Somerset Street Church, nearby and eastward of the State-House,
but lower, has been seen to receive a disruptive discharge. Bunker Hill
Monument, about a mile north-west and some twenty feet higher, has
several times received powerful discharges, which a good conductor has
always carried harmlessly away.

There has also been observed a tendency of the current not only to
strike certain buildings, but to enter the earth at a certain point
whenever such buildings are struck. Some of our oldest and most
successful appliers of rods believe that at certain points there are
natural electric currents, or at least readier conduction for them than
at others. Yet these points can become known only by repeated disasters.
Lightning-rod men who are adepts in their business now take care to
overcome adverse currents by enlarging the lower part of the conductors
and by carrying them to greater depth.

Soon after the powder-magazine of the Boston Navy Yard was completed the
neighboring residents grew fearful, and petitioned the authorities that
it should be better protected from lightning. It had already four
excellent rods, one at each corner of the building; but to these
peaceful and unwarlike citizens every thunderstorm was a great battle in
which their homes were in danger of destruction and their own lives in
jeopardy. The result of their action was, that a trench four feet deep
was dug entirely around the magazine, and in its bottom was laid a
continuous line of sheet copper four inches in width: to this the plate
of each rod was soldered, and then the soil was replaced.[6] No one
could doubt now that the stealthy upward stroke would be caught and the
mysterious earth-currents overcome. It is supposed that thenceforth the
tremors of the good citizens ceased. The massive magazine with its fiery
contents yet stands, though terrible peals of thunder have shaken it and
fearful bolts have fallen near.

  GEORGE J. VARNEY.


FOOTNOTES:

[5] Among other beliefs in regard to lightning is that of the upward
stroke. It has even found expression in the _American Journal of Science
and Arts_. On careful consideration of the cases offered in support,
both printed and unprinted, I find that every one is susceptible of a
reasonable explanation without this theory.

[6] It is not usual that the body of moisture can be reached so near the
surface, but this magazine is situated on low ground.



THE SEA'S SECRET.


    Just as it is, it hath been, love, I know--
          So long ago
    That time and place have faded: I forget
    What rivers ran, what hills closed round us; yet
    Thus much my soul remembers: thou and I
    Saw the sun's rise and set, felt life slip by.

    And then it was that first the deep-voiced sea
          Sang low to thee and me
    Its ancient secrets by the lonely shore;
    And we two watched the strange birds dip and soar
    Between the fading sea-line, far and dim,
    And the white dazzle of the sands' long rim.

    All that thou saidst--all that we heard and told
          In some lost language old--
    Has perished like the speech; yet _this_ remains:
    From the vast desert of the ocean-plains
    A great moon climbing, with a dull red glare
    Like smouldering fire, far up the purple air.

    And then--I cannot grasp it--yet I _know_
          That something, long ago,
    Held fast thy soul to mine with cords of pain
    And marvellous joy, and love's sweet loss and gain.
    All save that love the years have swept away--
    A thousand years, a single yesterday!

    But when my soul dreams, by the lonely sea,
          Back to eternity,
    I hear an echo, through its hollow moan,
    From those lost lives drowned in the centuries gone:
    I catch the haunting memory, and I know
    The secret that you told me long ago.

    G.A. DAVIS.

     It is not usual that the body of moisture can be reached so near
     the surface, but this magazine is situated on low ground.



DUNGENESS, GENERAL GREENE'S SEA-ISLAND PLANTATION.


Southernmost of those famed "Sea Islands" of Georgia, lying right in
sight of Florida's northern shore, on the northern verge of the tropic
border-land, Cumberland Island presents its beach-front to the ocean. It
unites within itself all those attractions which have made Florida
famous--all but river and lake: it has the balmiest climate in the
South; the vegetation of its forests is semi-tropical; it has game in
abundance. It has all these, and yet its territory is now a waste.

In November I visited it, and again in April, and later in August. To
reach it one must go first to St. Mary's, the town farthest south on the
Georgia coast, or to Fernandina, the northernmost city in Florida. In
either case he will have to hire a boat and a boatman, and in either
case he must carry with him his provisions.

St. Mary's in April is St. Mary's in August--a drowsy, quaint old town,
warm in the daytime and cool at night; hot in the sunlight, but with
cool sea-breezes. The streets of St. Mary's are her glory: they are one
hundred feet wide, carpeted with a green sward smooth as a shaven lawn,
lined with live-oaks and china trees. In April the latter are in full
bloom, their lilac blossoms hanging in dense panicles, the green leaves
flecking them just enough to afford contrast, and the sombre Spanish
moss depending gracefully from every branch and limb. Great gaudy
butterflies are continually hovering over them and fluttering uneasily
from flower to flower, and gleaming humming-birds, our own Northern
summer visitors (the _Trochilus colubris_), are flashing from tree to
tree, now poised a moment in air, now sipping honey from the tiny cups.

From the lighthouse dome at Fernandina one can look over half the
island, trace the white sand-beach miles to the south--follow it north
till it curves inland where Amelia Sound, the mouth of the St. Mary's
River, forms the harbor. Away north runs up Cumberland Beach, and among
the trees and over a broad stretch of marsh gleam white the ruins of
"Dungeness." West, again, one sees the gloomy pines of the main land,
behind which the sun goes down, lighting gloriously the marsh and silver
threads of the river.

Unlike the seasons of the North, there is here no perceptible line of
demarcation between them. We cannot positively assert that spring has
opened or summer or winter begun. As for autumn and harvest-time, the
crops are being continually gathered in. So since the year came in I
have seen various plants and shrubs in bloom that ought to open with
spring. Up the Ocklawaha in January I saw the blackberry or dewberry in
blossom; and ever since, along the St. John's in that month and
February, on the banks of the St. Mary's in February and March, and even
here, in Fernandina and St. Mary's, it is blossoming and bearing fruit.
It is this week--the first week in April--that we obtained the first
fruit for the table, buying it for ten cents a quart. It puzzles one to
think of planting. When must he begin? Last Christmas one of our
truck-farmers had a large crop of peas ready to harvest: a chance frost
gobbled them up, however: now (April) peas and potatoes are in their
prime.

By the middle of April the china trees have dropped their blossoms, and
the streets beneath are strewn with withered flowers. The fragrance that
filled the air has departed with the humming-birds and butterflies. The
pomegranate still continues in bloom: its vividly-scarlet flowers have
delighted us ever since the middle of March. The figs commenced leafing
with the month: now they are green with broad leaves, and in the axil of
each appears the rudiment of a fruit. They are grotesquely gnarled and
twisted, taking most unthought-of shapes and positions. The
mocking-birds have mated and begun the construction of their nests.
Their music is delightful: nearly all the day long they sing, and
sometimes in the night. It seems almost wicked--to mercenary man--to
think that birds worth twenty-five dollars apiece are freely fluttering
about unharmed. When the breeding season has opened, however, it will
not close without some family of mocking-birds being made desolate, for
the young Ethiopian hath an ear for music, and most eagerly seeketh the
young bird in its downy nest, trusting to the unsuspecting Yankee for
remuneration therefor.

The month went out in glorious style: every morning of its thirty days
had opened with unclouded sky, and each night's sun went down with a
blaze of glory that flooded the marshes with golden light and left
painted on the sky clouds of royal purple and crimson. Two or three
showers sprang upon us in the afternoon, ending after a stay of an hour
or two, cooling the air and refreshing weary man most wonderfully. Plums
and peaches are nearly grown and turning color. They afford another
illustration of the dilatory motions of vegetation here. In January I
left some plum trees in full bloom: returning a month later, I found the
same trees still white with flowers. The peaches were pink with bloom in
February and March, and even in April some blushing flowers appear.

This was Fernandina and St. Mary's in April: in August the latter town
had changed but little. The streets were as green as in early spring:
the flowers were fewer, but the air was heavy with the fragrance of
crape-myrtle and orange. It was hot in the morning, but an early breeze
from the ocean soon came in, blowing with refreshing coolness all day
long. It was even pleasanter than in spring and winter, the air clearer
and more bracing, and annoying insects had disappeared.

St. Mary's is intimately connected with Cumberland Island in history. In
the war of 1812 the island was taken, and the slaves were offered their
freedom by Admiral Cockburn; but such was their attachment to the place
and their masters that but one availed himself of this opportunity to
escape. At Point Peter, where the main land of Georgia terminates in
the marshes of St. Mary's, a fight occurred, and there are yet the
remains of an earthwork thrown up by the Americans to repulse the
British fleet in its advance on St. Mary's.

The oldest inhabitant of St. Mary's, who is said to have scored a
century, old "Daddy Paddy"--a negro who bears in his face the tattooing
of his native Africa--participated in that fight. He lives in a little
cabin on a street by the wharf, and devotes his time to fishing, at
which he is very expert. Upon being questioned regarding the fight, he
seemed rather hazy as to dates, but was positive as to the time he first
saw America: "De wah ob de rebenue was jes' clar' peace when I land at
Charleston from Afriky. Was young man den, jes' growd. No, sah, nebah
saw Gin'l Wash'tun, but heah ob him, sah: he fout wid de British, sah,
an' gain de vic'try at New Orleans, sah."

"That was General Jackson, uncle."

"No, sah! Gin'l Jackson mout ha' ben thar, but Gin'l Wash'tun, he hab a
han' in it. Yes, sah, I'se de fust settlah, sah: was in St. Mary's afo'
a street was laid out [in 1787], an' 'twas all bay-gall an' hammock."

The Indian name of Cumberland Island was Missoe ("beautiful land"), and
this was changed when Oglethorpe visited the island, at the request of
an Indian chief who had received some kindness from the duke of
Cumberland. It is related in an old English record, of which I have seen
a copy, that the duke was so well pleased at this evidence of good-will
that he caused a hunting-lodge to be erected there, and named it
Dungeness, after his country-seat, Castle Dungeness, on the cape of
Dungeness in the county of Kent. From that time until the breaking out
of the Revolution it was "owned successively by peers of the British
realm."

The island is eighteen miles in length and from half a mile to three
miles in breadth. The soil is sandy, adapted to the culture of cotton,
corn, potatoes, etc.: pomegranates, olives, dates, figs, limes, lemons,
oranges and melons yield abundant crops. The great frost of 1835, which
extended over the entire peninsula of Florida, destroyed the fine groves
of orange trees: at one time this fruit was shipped in schooner-loads,
and from one tree three thousand oranges have been gathered. The forest
trees are live-oak, cedar and a few pines. A most interesting fact in
the history of the island is found in its chronicles, for here were
obtained the timbers for the Constitution (Old Ironsides), that noble
frigate so well known to every American. Some of the stumps of the
indestructible live-oak from which the timber was cut for her ribs may
yet be seen. Deer, raccoons, bear and 'possum are abundant in the thick
forest. The climate is temperate and healthy: many of the former slaves
live to a great age. The island has never been afflicted by fever: while
the town of Brunswick, to the north, and Fernandina, just across the
channel to the south, have been scourged by Yellow Jack, Cumberland has
ever remained untouched. St. Mary's, across the marshes on the main
land, also boasts this immunity.

The creeks of the marshes swarm with fish of every sort, and there are
oyster-beds containing large and toothsome bivalves. With 'possums and
'coons, fish and oysters, is it strange that Cuffie clung to his old
home long after his master had left it? is it a matter of wonder that
there yet remains a remnant of the old slave population, houseless and
poverty-stricken, clinging to the island that once gave them so
delightful a home? At the close of the war, it is related, Mr. Stafford,
proprietor of the central portion of the island, burned his negro houses
to the ground, telling his people to go, as he had no more use for them
nor they for him. Cumberland to-day is nearly depopulated, the fertile
cotton-and corn-fields run to waste, and wild hogs and half-wild horses
roam over the pasture and scrub that cover once-cultivated fields.

The history of this island commences with that of Georgia. We read that
in 1742 the Spaniards invaded Georgia and landed on the island. With a
fleet of thirty-six sail and with more than three thousand troops from
Havana and St. Augustine, they entered the harbor of St. Simons, north
of Cumberland, and erected a battery of twenty guns. General Oglethorpe,
with eight hundred men, exclusive of Indians, was then on the island. He
withdrew to his fort at Frederica, and anxiously awaited reinforcements
from Carolina. By turning to account the desertion of a French soldier
he precipitated the attack of the Spaniards, and on their march to
Frederica they fell into an ambuscade. Great slaughter ensued, and they
retreated precipitately. The place of conflict is to this day known as
"Bloody Marsh." The Spaniards retreated south along the coast in their
vessels, and on their way attacked Fort William, at the southern
extremity of Cumberland Island, but were repulsed with loss. This fort,
which was constructed, I think, by Oglethorpe, is placed on the extreme
southern end of Cumberland in a map of the island made in 1802. Even
then the fort was half submerged at high water, and at the present day
its site is far out in the channel. The water of the river-mouth is
constantly encroaching upon the land, and the ruins of a house once
standing upon the southern point may be seen, it is said, beneath the
water at low tide. Old Fort William has been seen within the memory of
residents of St. Mary's, but likewise beneath the waves.

About 1770 that rare naturalist and botanist, William Bartram, landed
here and traversed the island, being set across to Amelia Island
(Fernandina) by a hunter whom he found living here. He was then at the
commencement of his romantic journeyings among the Seminole Indians up
the St. John's River, then running through a wilderness. Another
fortification, Fort St. Andrew, situated on the north-west point of the
island, may still be traced by the ruins of its walls. A well is known
there into which, it is said, the English threw ten thousand pounds in
silver upon the approach of the Spaniards. In this way, by vestiges of
foundation-walls, are indicated the various settlements of the
island--mansions and cabins that have passed away, leaving no other sign
but these sad memorials of the past.

At the conclusion of peace, and immediately after the close of the
Revolution, the southern portion of Cumberland Island came into the
possession of General Nathaniel Greene. It is said by some to have been
presented to him by the State of Georgia in connection with the
beautiful estate of Mulberry Grove, where he removed with his family and
took up his residence. His lamentably premature death prevented the
consummation of his design to build here a retreat in which to spend the
hot summer months. He had resided but a year upon his estate of Mulberry
Grove, and had hardly commenced to beautify and adorn this chosen
residence of his maturer years, when a sun-stroke cut him down in the
prime of his life.

The general had selected the site of the mansion to be built at
Dungeness, and had planned the grounds, laid out a garden--which
subsequently became famous for its tropical products and roses--and had
lined through the forests of live-oak those avenues which have since
grown to such magnificent proportions. As has been related, he did not
live to see the completion of his work, but died almost at its very
inception. In 1786 the year of his death, the foundation-walls were laid
of the mansion-home of Dungeness, but the building was not finished till
1803. Even after it had been occupied for years, and during the sixty
years and more it was used as a residence by the descendants of General
Greene, there remained a few unfinished rooms. A tradition in the family
to the effect that some great misfortune would befall it if the building
were finished prevented, it is said, its completion. In the early part
of the present century it was the most elegant residence on the coast.

A mound of shells, the accumulation of centuries and the result of
countless Indian feasts, rose high above the southern marsh of
Cumberland. A forest of live-oaks surrounded it on three sides, and at
its feet ran the broad creek which wound through the marsh for miles,
seeking the Sound at a point opposite the Florida shore. Here, for ages
of time, the Indians of the South had resorted to feast upon the
oysters with which the creek was filled. The Creek Indians--the most
honorable with whom the United States ever had dealings, from whom
sprang the Seminoles, and who occupied the entire territory of Georgia
and Carolina at the period of the white man's advent--were the last who
aided in the erection of this monument to a race now passed away. The
summit of this shell-mound was levelled for the site of the house, and a
terraced area of an acre or more constructed with the shells. Upon this
base, raised above the general level of the island, its foundations were
laid. It was four stories in height above the basement, and from
cellar-stone to eaves was forty-five feet. There were four chimneys and
sixteen fireplaces, and twenty rooms above the first floor. The walls at
the base were six feet in thickness, and above the ground four feet.
They were composed of the material known as "tabby," a mixture of
shells, lime and broken stone or gravel with water; which mass, being
pressed in a mould of boards, becomes when dry as hard and durable as
rock. The walls are now as solid as stone itself. The second story above
the terrace contained the principal rooms: the room in the south-east
corner was the drawing-room in the time of the Shaws and the
Nightingales. The room immediately back of the drawing-room, in the
north-east corner, was the dining-room: a wide hall ran through the
centre, upon the opposite side of which were two rooms, used
respectively as school- and sewing-room. Above these apartments, in the
third story, were the chambers. That directly above the drawing-room is
the most interesting of all, for it was occupied by General Harry Lee,
who was confined there by sickness, and there died. The interior of the
house corresponded with its exterior in beauty of finish and
magnificence of decoration and appointments.

Enclosed by a high wall of masonry (the "tabby" just described) was a
tract of twelve acres devoted to the cultivation of flowers and tropical
fruits. This wall, now broken down in places and overgrown with ivy-and
trumpet-vines, yet divides the garden from the larger fields once
devoted to cotton and cane. The gardener's house was next the mansion,
and joined to it by this high wall. The garden lay to the south,
reaching the marsh in successive terraces. On and about the semicircular
terrace immediately around the house were planted crape-myrtle, clove
trees and sago-palms: some yet remain to indicate what an Eden-like
retreat was this garden of spices and bloom half a century ago. The
first broad terrace, which ran the entire length of the garden-wall east
and west, was divided by an avenue of olives, which separated in front
of the house, leaving a space in which were two noble magnolias. A broad
walk ran from the house to the lower garden, which was divided from the
other by a thick-set hedge of mock-orange: in this garden was another
walk bordered by olives. This space was entirely devoted to flowers: on
each side was a grove of orange trees, and in the lower garden were the
fig, India-rubber and date-palm, the golden date of Africa. Of trees
there were the camphor tree, coffee, Portuguese laurel, "tree of
Paradise," crape-myrtle, guava, lime, orange, citron, pomegranate,
sago-palm and many others whose home is in the tropics. The delicious
climate of this island, several degrees warmer than that of the main
land in the same latitude, enabled the proprietors of this insular
Paradise to grow nearly all the fruits of the torrid zone.

A little tongue of land runs from the garden into the marsh, an
elevation of the original shell-mound, covered with oaks hung with long
gray moss. This was called "The Park," and here the inhabitants of this
favored estate would resort for recreation in the afternoon and evening.
Near this strip of land, beneath the shade of an immense live-oak,
luxuriates a clump of West India bamboo, said to have originated from a
single stalk brought here by General Lee. The feathery lances clash and
rattle with all the wild abandon characteristic of them in their native
isles. I have not seen a more perfect group outside the islands of the
Caribbean Sea.

From the walls of the second story--if you wish to view the
wide-extended prospect to the south you must clamber there--you can look
across three thousand acres of salt marsh to Fernandina and St. Mary's,
along the river and beach, across miles of ocean. Ivy climbs the corner
wall of the ruins and covers garden-wall and trees. Ruin everywhere
stares you in the face: on every side are deserted fields and
gardens--fields that employed the labor of four hundred negroes; fields
that were fertile and yielded large crops of the famous "Sea-Island
cotton." Bales from this estate were never "sampled." The Sea-Island
cotton that took the prize at the World's Fair in London was raised on
this island.

East of the garden, stretching toward the ocean-beach, is the
olive-grove. Seventy years ago the first olive trees were imported from
Italy and the south of France. They grew and flourished, and years ago
this grove yielded a profit to its owners. In 1755, Mr. Henry Laurens of
South Carolina imported and planted olives, capers, limes, ginger, etc.,
and in 1785 the olive was successfully grown in South Carolina; but
probably there is not at the present day a grove equal in extent to
this. It was estimated that a large tree would average a gallon of oil
per year: there were eight hundred planted and brought to a flourishing
and profitable stage of growth. There are several hundred now, scattered
through a waste of briers and scrub and overgrown with moss.

But the avenues? In the hottest day there are shade and coolness beneath
the intertwined branches of the live-oaks that arch above them. The eye
is refreshed in gazing down these vistas over the leaf-strewn floors of
sand. The sunshine sifts through the arch above, flecking the roadway
with a mosaic of leaves and boughs in light and shade. From the limbs
hang graceful pennons of Spanish moss, festooned at the sides, waved by
every wind, changing in every light. Grapevines with stems six inches in
diameter climb into the huge oaks and swing from tree to tree, linking
limb with limb: the tree-tops are purple with great fruit-clusters. To
the whole scene the dwarf palmetto gives a semi-tropic aspect. There
are no signs of life, save a lizard darting over the leaves, stopping
midway to look at you with bright eyes. In the evening the squirrels
come out in countless numbers, and their crashing leaps may be heard in
all directions; bright cardinal-birds, Florida jays and gay nonpareils
enliven the gloom; the jays chatter in the branches and mocking-birds
carol from the topmost limbs. It is one of the joys of earth to walk
through the Grand Avenue of Dungeness at sunset.

There were, when the estate was in prosperous condition, eleven miles of
avenues, seven miles of beach, eight miles of walks and nine miles of
open roads. Grand Avenue, running midway the length of the island, was
cleared eighteen miles, to High Point. There are now but three miles
cleared, but you can look straight down beneath the arch of live-oaks
for more than a mile of its length. From the Sound to the beach,
crossing Central Avenue, ran River Avenue for a distance of about a
mile.

This live-oak forest, which covers several thousand acres, is densely
filled with scrub palmetto, impenetrable almost, and so difficult to
pierce that the deer with which the forest swarms choose the old paths
and roadways in their walks from sleeping- to feeding-grounds. The
hunters take advantage of this, and after starting their dogs in the
scrub post themselves on the main avenues where the paths intersect, and
shoot the deer as they jump out. The deer of the island are estimated by
thousands, and a State law which prohibits the hunting of deer with
dogs, except with the owner's permission, has aided in their increase.
Halfway up the island are numerous ponds, to which ducks resort in the
winter in vast numbers. Bear are plentiful in the deep woods, and their
tracks, with those of the deer in greater abundance, are often found
crossing the abandoned fields.

Three hundred feet in width, hard as stone, shell-strewn, between
wind-hollowed sand-dunes and foaming surf, this beach of Cumberland
stretches for twenty miles. The sands that border it are covered with a
network of beautiful convolvulus, tufts of sea-oats with nodding plumes,
and picturesque clumps of Spanish bayonet (_Yucca gloriosa_) with
pyramids of snowy flowers. This and the prickly pear suggest the climate
of the tropics. I find them on the sandhills bordering the ocean-beach,
the wind-swept dunes between the "beach-hammock" and the hard sand of
the wave-washed beach. They are called barren by many, these sandhills
of the Atlantic coast, but I never find them so. To me they are always
attractive, whether I am traversing the sand-slopes of Cape Cod or the
similar ones of Florida. Even the grasses possess a character of their
own--gracefully erect, tiny circles traced about them where the last
wind has caused them to brush the sand. Here too are grasses rare and
beautiful--the feathery fox-tail, the tall, loose-branched sea-oats, and
many others with names unknown, which you may see ornamenting the famous
palmetto hats.

So fascinating are these sand-dunes that one wanders among them for
hours, following in the paths worn by the feet of cattle which roam
these hills and the neighboring marsh in a half-wild state. Sometimes
the banks will shelve abruptly, hollowed out by the wind, and one can
look down into a hole ten or twenty feet deep, arched over by
thorn-bushes, grapevines and a species of bay. These sand-caverns are of
frequent occurrence. There are clumps of scrubby oak completely covered
with scarlet honeysuckle and trumpet-flower. While seeking to
investigate one of these I startled a hen-quail, which, after whirring
rapidly out of sight, returned and manifested much anxiety by plaintive
calls. This is a queer place for quail: in the neighborhood of old
fields, where they can easily run out and glean a hasty meal from weeds
and broken ground, is their chosen place for a nest.

Along the surface of the sea long lines of pelicans pursue a lumbering
flight; graceful terns (sea-swallows) skim the waves; a great blue heron
stalks across the hard sand, majestic, solitary and shy of man's
approach; and dainty little beach-birds, piping plover in snowy white
and drab, glide rapidly past the surf-line. A mile below Beach Avenue is
a high sandhill shelving abruptly toward the beach, half-buried trees
projecting from its western slope: it is now known as "Eagle Cliff," so
called by the proprietor of Dungeness from the fact of my shooting an
eagle there one day in November.

In the beach-hammock are the same wind-hollowed hills, rooted into
permanence by twisted oaks and magnolias. Upon their limbs in April the
Spanish moss and air-plants were just blossoming, the former into little
star-like, hardly-discernible flowers, the latter throwing up a green
stem with a pink terminal bud, which in August had burst into a spike of
crimson flowers. Curious lichens cover the rough trunks of these
oaks--some gray, some ashy-white, some pink, some scarlet like blotches
of blood. The _Mitchella_, the little partridge-berry, is here in bloom,
and has been since the year came in.

The marsh that borders the beach-hammock and spreads a sea of silvery
green before the mansion is not barren of attractions. Inquisitive and
faint-hearted fiddler-crabs are darting in and out of their holes in the
mud: an alligator now and then shows a hint of a head above the water of
the creek, along whose banks walk daintily and proudly egrets and herons
robed in white, and from the reeds of which myriads of water-hens send
up a deafening chatter.

Midway between the mansion and the beach, in the southern corner of the
orchard of olive trees, which overhang and surround it, is the graveyard
of the family. It is the last object to which in this narrative I call
attention, but to the visitor it is the most interesting, the fullest of
memories of the past. By a winding and secluded path from the deserted
garden, along the banks of the solitary marsh, beneath great water-oaks
hung with funereal moss, one reaches this little cemetery, a few roods
of ground walled in from the adjoining copsewood--

    A lonesome acre, thinly grown
    With grass and wandering vines.

Three tombs and three headstones indicate at least six of the graves
with which this little lot is filled. In one of these graves rest the
bones of her who shared the fortunes of the gallant general, the
"Washington of the South," when he rested after the last decisive battle
and retired to his Georgia plantation. In another lies buried his
daughter, and in another the gallant "Light-Horse Harry," who so ably
assisted him at Eutaw Springs--the brave and eloquent Lee. Upon the
first marble slab is engraven, "In memory of Catherine Miller (widow of
the late Major-General Nathaniel Greene, Commander-in-Chief of the
American Revolutionary Army in the Southern Department in 1783), who
died Sept. 2d, 1814, aged 59 years. She possessed great talents and
exalted virtues." Phineas Miller, Esq., a native of Connecticut and a
graduate of Yale College, who had been engaged by General Greene as
law-tutor to his son, managed the widow's estates after the general's
death, and later married her. His grave is here, though unmarked by any
stone.

And this name revives the memory of one of the greatest inventions of
the eighteenth century. Eli Whitney, the inventor of the cotton-gin, was
born in Westborough, Massachusetts, December 8, 1765. In 1792 he
obtained a position as tutor to the children of a Georgia planter, but
owing to the imperfect postal regulations his letter of acceptance was
not received, and on arriving in Savannah he found his place occupied by
another. Without means or friends, he was in great want, when his
circumstances became known to Mrs. Greene (then residing at Mulberry
Grove), who, being a lady of benevolent heart, invited him to make her
house his home until he should find remunerative employment.

One day, while this lady was engaged in working a sort of embroidery
called "tambour-work," she complained to young Whitney that the frame
she was using was too rough and tore the delicate threads. Anxious to
gratify his benefactress, Whitney quickly constructed a frame so
superior in every respect that she thought it a great invention. It
chanced shortly after that a party of gentlemen, many of them old
friends and officers who had served under General Greene, met at her
house, and were discussing the merits and profits of cotton, which had
been lately introduced into the State. One of them remarked that unless
some machine could be devised for removing the seed it would never be a
profitable crop (the cleaning of one pound of cotton being then a day's
work). Mrs. Greene, who heard the remark, replied that a young man, a
Mr. Whitney, then in her house, could probably help them. She then sent
for Whitney, introduced him, extolled his genius and commended him to
their friendship. He set to work under great disadvantages, having to
make his tools, and even his wires, which at that time could not be had
in Savannah. By Mrs. Greene and Mr. Miller he was furnished with
abundant means wherewith to complete his machine. It was first exhibited
privately to a select company, but it could not long remain a secret,
and its fame, which spread rapidly throughout the South, was the cause
of great excitement. The shop containing the model was broken open and
the machine was stolen: by this means the public became possessed of the
secret, and before another could be made a number of machines were in
successful operation.

A partnership was entered into between Miller and Whitney, and in 1793 a
large area was planted with cotton in expectation that the new gin would
enable them to market it at little expense. In 1795 their shops, which
had been removed to New Haven, were destroyed by fire, thus reducing the
firm to the verge of bankruptcy. The faith and energy of Mr. Miller are
well shown in the following letter, written from Dungeness to Whitney in
New Haven: "I think we ought to meet such events with equanimity. We are
pursuing a valuable object by honorable means, and I believe our
measures are such as are justified by virtue and morality. It has
pleased Providence to postpone the attainment of this object. In the
midst of all the reflections called up by our misfortunes, while feeling
keenly sensitive to the loss, injury and wrong we have sustained, I
feel an exultant joy that you possess a mind similar to my own, that you
are not disheartened, that you will persevere and endeavor at all
hazards to attain the main object. I will devote all my time, all my
thoughts, all my exertions, all the fortune I possess and all the money
I can borrow, to compass and complete the business we have undertaken;
and if fortune should by any future disaster deprive us of our reward,
we will at least have deserved it."

While thus embarrassed information came from England that the cotton
cleaned by their gins was ruined. Whitney nearly gave way under the
strain, and wrote to Mr. Miller at Dungeness: "Our extreme
embarrassments are now so great that it seems impossible to struggle
longer against them. It has required my utmost exertions to exist,
without making any progress in our business. I have labored hard to stem
the strong current of disappointment which threatens to carry us over
the cataract, but have labored with a shattered oar, and in vain unless
some speedy help come. Life is short at best, and six or seven of its
best years are an immense sacrifice to him who makes it."

Returning South, he constructed a new model (it is said at Dungeness),
with the object in view so to improve upon the old one as to remove the
seed without injury to the staple. It was first tried in the presence of
Mrs. Greene and Mr. Miller, but found lacking in an important
particular. Mrs. Greene exclaimed, "Why, Mr. Whitney, you want a brush,"
and with a stroke of her handkerchief removed the lint. Comprehending
her idea at once, he replied, "Mrs. Greene, you have completed the
cotton-gin."

With the further fortunes of the brave inventor we have no more to do,
as that part of his history intimately connected with Dungeness ends
here. His subsequent trials, disappointments, triumphs, all the world
knows. His friend and partner, who so nobly sustained him, lies buried
here, so tradition says, having died in 1806 of lockjaw caused by
running an orange-thorn through his hand while removing trees from
Florida to Dungeness.

Near the tomb of Mrs. Miller is another: "Sacred to pure affection.
This simple stone covers the remains of James Shaw. His virtues are not
to be learned from perishable marble; but when the records of Heaven
shall be unfolded it is believed they will be found written there in
characters as durable as the volumes of eternity. Died January 6th,
1820, aged 35 years." And by the side of this latter another marble
slab, with this inscription, which explains itself: "Louisa C. Shaw,
relict of James Shaw, Esq., and youngest daughter of Major-General
Nathaniel Greene of the Army of the Revolution. Died at Dungeness,
Georgia, April 24th, 1831, aged 45 years."

This ends the record of the residence of the family of General Greene at
Dungeness. That they made it their home for many years is evident--that
they removed here soon after the death of the general is probable. In
the division of General Greene's possessions Dungeness became the
property of Mrs. Shaw, his youngest daughter: she, dying childless, left
it to her nephew, Phineas Miller Nightingale. Mrs. Nightingale, wife of
the grandson of General Greene, to whom this property was given, was
daughter of Rufus King, governor of New York, and granddaughter of Rufus
King, minister to Great Britain during the elder Adams's administration.
The Nightingales, descendants of General Greene, remained in undisturbed
possession until the late war, dispensing unbounded hospitality at their
princely mansion. During the war the house was occupied by Northern
troops until its close, when, through the negligence of some negro
refugees, it was burned. Its ruins alone testify to the wealth of former
years which now is departed, and the broad acreage of untilled fields
and the ruined negro cabins cry out loudly for those who will never
return to bless them.

Let us turn once more to that cemetery in the olive-grove. Another stone
claims our attention, a tablet to the memory of him who pronounced those
glowing words, "First in war, first in peace, first in the hearts of his
countrymen:" "Sacred to the memory of Gen. Henry Lee of Virginia. Obiit
25 March, 1818, ætat. 63." In 1814, General Lee was injured by a mob in
Baltimore, and never recovered. Early in 1818 he arrived at Dungeness
from Cuba, whither he had gone to regain his health. He landed from a
schooner at the river landing, a weak, decrepit old man, in whom it
would have been difficult to recognize the dashing Light-Horse Harry of
the Revolution. A grandson of General Greene's, Phineas Miller
Nightingale, was loitering near the landing. Calling him, General Lee
learned who he was, and despatched him to his aunt, Mrs. Shaw, with the
intelligence of his arrival. "Tell her," said he, "that the old friend
and companion of General Greene has come to die in the arms of his
daughter."

A carriage was sent for him, and he was installed in the southern
chamber above the drawing-room, and everything done to alleviate his
pain that the kindest forethought could suggest. He lingered here some
two months, and then passed away, and was buried in the family
burying-ground. His only baggage at the time of his arrival was an old
hair-covered trunk nailed round with brass-headed nails.

An anecdote is preserved in the family relating to the general's
residence there. One of the servants, Sara by name--commonly called "the
Duchess" from her stately demeanor--incurred his ill-will. General Lee
once threatened to throw his boot at her, and the Duchess turned upon
him and replied, "If you do I'll throw it back at you." This answer so
pleased the old general that he would afterward permit no other servant
to wait upon him.

Some years after his death a stone was placed above his grave by his
son, General Robert E. Lee, who a few months prior to his death visited
his father's grave in company with his daughter.

       *       *       *       *       *

These are some of the associations that cluster about the ruins of
Dungeness, giving to those ivy-grown walls, to forest and shore, an
interest which mere attractions of scenery and climate could not awaken.

  FREDERICK A. OBER.



OUR MONTHLY GOSSIP.

"WESTERN MEMORABILIA."


One of the pioneers of the old-book trade in New York was William J.
Gowans, whose career as a dealer in old and rare books covered a period
of nearly fifty years, and brought him into a contact more or less
intimate with all the literary and many of the other notables of his
day. Gowans had some literary aspirations, and in his old age projected
a book which he proposed to call _Western Memorabilia_, and which was to
consist of sketches and reminiscences of the famous men he had met in
his career. This book was never published--somewhat to the loss of
American literature, I am inclined to think after perusing some of its
scattered fragments which have recently come into my possession. These
are full of detail, and, as throwing light on the characters of some
persons of whom far too little is known, are certainly worthy of
preservation.

On Poe I find the following notes: "The characters drawn of Poe by his
various biographers and critics may with safety be pronounced an excess
of exaggeration, but this is not to be much wondered at when it is
considered that these men were his rivals, either as poets or
prose-writers, and it is well known that such are generally as jealous
of each other as are the ladies who are handsome of those who desire to
be considered so. It is an old truism, and as true as it is old, that in
the multitude of counsellors there is safety. I therefore will show you
my opinion of this gifted but unfortunate genius: it may be estimated as
worth little, but it has this merit: it comes from an eye-and
ear-witness, and this, it must be remembered, is the very highest of
legal evidence. For eight months or more, 'one house contained us, us
one table fed.' During that time I saw much of him, and had an
opportunity of conversing with him often; and I must say I never saw him
the least affected with liquor, nor ever descend to any known vice,
while he was one of the most courteous, gentlemanly and intelligent
companions I have ever met. Besides, he had an extra inducement to be a
good man, for he had a wife of matchless beauty and loveliness: her eye
could match that of any houri, and her face defy the genius of a Canova
to imitate; her temper and disposition were of surpassing sweetness; in
addition, she seemed as much devoted to him and his every interest as a
young mother is to her first-born. During this time he wrote his longest
prose romance, entitled the _Adventures of Arthur Gordon Pym_. Poe had a
remarkably pleasing and prepossessing countenance--what the ladies would
call decidedly handsome. He died after a brief and fitful career at
Baltimore, October, 1849, where his remains lie interred in an obscure
burying-ground."

Of Simms he writes, under date of Oct. 15, 1868: "To-day I had the
pleasure of a call from William Gilmore Simms, the novelist. He is quite
affable in conversation, and apparently well stocked with general
information, which he can impart with fluency. He appears somewhat
downcast, or rather, I should say, has a melancholy cast of countenance:
he is advanced in years, with a profusion of hair around his face, chin
and throat--is apparently between sixty and seventy years of age. I
requested him to enroll his name in my autograph-book, which he did with
readiness. He remarked that he was often requested to do so, especially
by the ladies. I replied that this was a debt which every man incurred
when he became public property either by his words, actions or writings.
He acquiesced in the justice of the remark. Mr. Simms was in search of a
copy of Johnson's _History of the Seminoles_, to aid him in making a new
book. He was accompanied by Mr. Duykinck."

Halleck is thus introduced: "On a certain occasion I was passing a
Roman Catholic church in New York: seeing the doors open and throngs of
people pressing in, I stepped inside to see what I could see. I had not
well got inside when I beheld Fitzgreene Halleck standing uncovered,
with reverential attitude, among the crowd of unshorn and unwashed
worshippers. I remained till I saw him leave. In doing so he made a
courteous bow, as is the polite custom of the humblest of these people
on taking their departure.

On the subject of compliments paid him for poetical talents, Mr.
Halleck once said to me, 'They are generally made by those who are
ignorant or who have a desire to please or flatter, or perhaps a
combination of all. As a general thing, they are devoid of sincerity,
and rather offensive than pleasing. There is no general rule without its
exception, however, and in my bagful of compliments I cherish one which
comes under that rule, and reflecting upon it affords me real pleasure
as it did then. On a warm day in summer a young man came into the office
with a countenance glowing with ardor, innocence and honesty, and his
eyes beaming with enthusiasm. Said he, "Is Mr. Halleck to be found
here?" I answered in the affirmative. Continued he, with evidently
increased emotion, "Could I see him?"--"You see him now," I replied. He
grasped me by the hand with a hearty vigorousness that added to my
conviction of his sincerity. Said he, "I am happy, most happy, in having
had the pleasure at last of seeing one whose poems have afforded me no
ordinary gratification and delight. I have longed to see you, and I have
dreamt that I have seen you, but now I behold you with mine own eyes.
God bless you for ever and ever! I have come eleven hundred miles, from
the banks of the Miami in Ohio, mainly for that purpose, and I have been
compensated for my pains."'

"Mr. Halleck told me that he had been solicited to write a life of his
early and beloved friend Drake. 'But,' said he, 'I did not well see how
I could grant such a request: I had no lever for my fulcrum. What could
I say about one who had studied pharmacy, dissection, written a few
poems, and then left the scene of action? I had no material, and a mere
meaningless eulogy would have been out of the question.'

"In personal appearance Halleck was rather below the medium height and
well built: in walking he had a rather slow and shuffling gait, as if
something afflicted his feet; a florid, bland and pleasant countenance;
a bright gray eye; was remarkably pleasant and courteous in
conversation, and, as a natural consequence, much beloved by all who had
the pleasure of his acquaintance. But to that brilliancy in conversation
which some of his admirers have been pleased to attribute to him in my
opinion he could lay no claim. His library was sold at auction in New
York on the evening of October 12, 1868. If the collection disposed of
on that occasion was really his library in full, it must be confessed it
was a sorry affair and meagre in the extreme. In surveying the
collection a judge of the value of such property would perhaps pronounce
it worth from one hundred and twenty-five to one hundred and fifty
dollars. The books brought fabulous prices--at least ten times their
value. The company was large, good-humored and just in the frame of mind
to be a little more than liberal, doubtless stimulated to be so from a
desire to possess a relic of the departed poet who had added fame to the
literature of his country. The following are the names of a few of the
books and the prices they brought: _Nicholas Nickleby_, with the
author's autograph, $18; Bryant's little volume of poems entitled
_Thirty Poems_, with the author's autograph, $11; Campbell's _Poems_,
with Halleck's autograph, $8.50; _Catalogue of the Strawberry Hill
Collection_, $16; _Barnaby Rudge_, presentation copy by the author to
Halleck, $15; Coleridge's _Poems_, with a few notes by Halleck, $10;
_Fanny_, a poem by Mr. Halleck, $10. The sum-total realized for his
library was twelve hundred and fifty dollars."

Aaron Burr is the subject of some interesting reminiscences: "Shortly
after I came to New York, Aaron Burr was pointed out to me as he was
slowly wending his way up Broadway, between Chambers street and the old
theatre, on the City Hall side. I frequently afterward met him in this
and other streets. He was always an object of interest, inasmuch as he
had become an historical character, somewhat notoriously so. I will
attempt to describe his appearance, or rather how he appeared to me: He
was small, thin and attenuated in form, perhaps a little over five feet
in height, weight not much over a hundred pounds. He walked with a slow,
measured and feeble step, stooping considerably, occasionally with both
hands behind his back. He had a keen face and deep-set, dark eye, his
hat set deep on his head, the back part sunk down to the collar of the
coat and the back brim somewhat turned upward. He was dressed in
threadbare black cloth, having the appearance of what is known as shabby
genteel. His countenance wore a melancholy aspect, and his whole
appearance betokened one dejected, forsaken, forgotten or cast aside,
and conscious of his position. He was invariably alone when I saw him,
except on a single occasion: that was on the sidewalk in Broadway
fronting what is now the Astor House, where he was standing talking very
familiarly with a young woman whom he held by one hand. His countenance
on that occasion was cheerful, lighted up and bland--altogether
different from what it appeared to me when I saw him alone and in
conversation with himself. Burr must have been a very exact man in his
business-affairs. His receipt-book came into my possession. I found
there receipts for a load of wood, a carpenter's work for one day, a
pair of boots, milk for a certain number of weeks, suit of clothes,
besides numerous other small transactions that but few would think of
taking a receipt for. The book was but a sorry, cheap affair, and could
not have cost when new more than fifty cents."

Edwin Forrest is thus mentioned: "At the time when Forrest was earning
his reputation on the boards of the Bowery Theatre I was connected with
that institution, and of course had an opportunity of seeing him every
night he performed. Mr. Forrest appeared to be possessed of the
perfection of physical form, more especially conspicuous when arrayed in
some peculiar costumes which tended to display it to the best advantage.
He had a stentorian voice, and must have had lungs not less invulnerable
than one of Homer's heroes. He had a fine masculine face and
prepossessing countenance, much resembling many of the notable Greeks
and Romans whose portraits have come down to our time, and a keen
intellectual eye. His countenance at times assumed an air of hauteur
which doubtless had become a habit, either from personating characters
of this stamp or from a consciousness of his merited popularity. He left
the impression on the beholder of one intoxicated with success and the
repletion of human applause. He kept aloof from all around him, and
condescended to no social intercourse with any one on the stage, and
appeared to entertain a contempt for his audience.... He has now lost
that mercurial, youthful appearance which was then so conspicuous, and
which doubtless aided in laying the foundation of his widespread
reputation. He was then straight as an arrow and elastic as a
circus-rider, the very beau-ideal of physical perfection: now he bears
the marks of decay, or rather, as is said of grain just before harvest,
he has a ripe appearance. If he would consult his renown he would retire
from the stage, and never set foot upon it again."

The fragments also contain notes on Bryant, Parton, Mrs. Siddons and
several eminent divines and journalists. Of the latter class the fullest
relate to James Gordon Bennett, founder of the _Herald_, and his
coadjutor, William H. Attree. The following are extracts: "I remember
entering the subterranean office of Mr. Bennett early in the career of
the _Herald_ and purchasing a single copy of the paper, for which I paid
the sum of one cent only. On this occasion the proprietor, editor and
vender was seated at his desk busily engaged in writing, and appeared to
pay little or no attention to me as I entered. On making known my object
in coming in, he requested me to put my money down on the counter and
help myself to a paper: all this time he continued his writing
operations. The office was a single oblong, underground room. Its
furniture consisted of a counter, which also served as a desk,
constructed from two flour-barrels, perhaps empty, standing apart from
each other about four feet, with a single plank covering both; a chair,
placed in the centre, upon which sat the editor busy at his vocation,
with an inkstand by his right hand; on the end nearest the door were
placed the papers for sale. I attribute the success of the _Herald_ to a
combination of circumstances--to the peculiar fitness of its editor for
his position, to its cheapness, and its advertising patronage, which was
considerable. In the fourth place, it early secured the assistance of
William H. Attree, a man of uncommon abilities as a reporter and a
concocter of pithy as well as ludicrous chapters greatly calculated to
captivate many readers. In fact, this clever and talented assistant in
some respects never had his match. He did not, as other reporters do,
take down in short-hand what the speaker or reader said, but sat and
heard the passing discourse like any other casual spectator: when over
he would go home to his room, write out in full all that had been said
on the occasion, and that entirely from memory. On a certain occasion I
hinted to him my incredulity about his ability to report as he had
frequently informed me. To put the matter beyond doubt, he requested me
to accompany him to Clinton Hall to hear some literary magnate let off
his intellectual steam. I accordingly accompanied him as per
arrangement. We were seated together in the same pew. He placed his
hands in his pockets and continued in that position during the delivery
of the discourse, and when it was finished he remarked to me that I
would not only find the substance of this harangue in the _Herald_ the
next day, but that I would find it word for word. On the following
morning I procured the paper, and read the report of what I had heard
the previous evening; and I must say I was struck with astonishment at
its perfect accuracy. Before Mr. Attree's time reporting for the press
in New York was a mere outline or sketch of what had been said or done,
but he infused life and soul into this department of journalism. His
reports were full, accurate, graphic; and, what is more, he frequently
flattered the vanity of the speaker by making a much better speech for
him than he possibly could for himself. Poor Attree died in 1849, and is
entombed at Greenwood."

It is probable that other fragments of this work are in existence, and
if so it is hoped that the publication of these will tend to their
discovery.

  C.B.T.



CONCERNING NIGHT-NOISES.


Many a time these summer nights am I startled out of my midnight sleep
by a conversation like the following as two friends pause on the corner
beneath my suburban window:

"Well, good-night."

"_Good_-night."

"Hold on a moment. I want to--"

"Oh yes. Rely on me. Do you think he will--"

"He promised."

"Oh, then he'll do it. Well, then, good--"

"Good-night, good-night."

"Wait an instant. But how shall I--"

"... Now you understand?"

"Oh yes. Good-night."

"Good-night."

"_Good_-night."

After these exclamations, uttered with piercing distinctness, have been
exchanged, the belated revellers from some club or whist-party or an
evening at the theatre in town terminate their sweet sorrow at parting
by going their several ways to their different homes, where, no doubt,
on retiring to rest they sink at once into blameless slumber, ignorant
of the fact that for me they have murdered sleep.

I had gone to bed betimes, wornout with hard mental labor: I had hoped
for a night's repose to recruit my energies for the morrow. This sleep I
craved was no luxurious indulgence of pampered inclination, but my stock
in trade--my bone, my sinew, my heart's courage, my mental inspiration,
the immediate jewel of my soul.

    Who steals my purse steals trash; 'tis something, nothing:
    'Twas mine, 'tis his, and has been slave to thousands;
    But he that filches from me my NIGHT'S SLEEP
    Robs me of that which not enriches him,
    And makes me poor indeed.

But let me now repose again: tenderly entreated, softly courted, sleep
may return. There are many specifics for bringing slumber to mutinous
eyelids. Let me remember what they are.

_First._ To think of the wind blowing on a field of grain. Watch with
your mind's eye the long wavy undulations, the golden sheen which takes
the light. What a dreamy, exquisite rhythm! (Still, I don't sleep.)

_Second._ Repeat the multiplication-table backward, from twelve times
down to twice. (Hopeless, the only result being to render my
mathematical powers acutely, preternaturally awake, so that I begin to
estimate the magnitude of my summer expenses.)

_Third._ Try to decide where to spend the August vacation. I am thinking
of Lake George, the Saguenay, Sea Girt, the White Mountains, when all at
once I begin to yield drowsily to the influence of long conversations
about nothing which take possession of my mind--mere gibberish, strings
of words without sense. Thank Heaven, I am off! I am actually going to
sleep. _Not yet!_

Down the street comes a man with an accordion. He is playing "Annie
Laurie." Every now and then he strikes a wrong note. Excruciating agony!
Did he render it correctly it might blend with a romantic dream, but
when he insists on flatting persistently, as for bonnie Annie Laurie he
offers to lay him down and die, who is to bear it? And why does he not
consummate the proffered sacrifice by dying at once? I would cheerfully
bury him. He passes slowly, lingeringly, seeming to pause outside of my
window, as if my casement enshrined that form like the snowdrift and
that throat like the swan's. But, although he vanishes finally, the
street has become alive. Two men pass in deeply-interesting
conversation, one of them assuring the other that he has not done "a
stroke's work" in two years. He is maudlin, of course. "A stroke's
work"? And as if any man could expect to find work and to do it after
keeping such hours as these!

And now comes "the whistler." I had been expecting him. He is to-night
whistling airs from _Pinafore_. The _Pirates_, thank Heaven! furnishes
him no airs. He whistles--let me confess, reluctant although I am to do
it--he whistles to perfection. There is nothing experimental, nothing
tentative, in his notes, which come clear, sharp, in perfect time and
tune.

The clock strikes two. It is the voice of doom, for presently the 2.19
freight-train will thunder slowly through our end of the town. It
renders my case utterly hopeless. One might as well expect to sleep in
momentary expectation of the Juggernaut. I know its every sound: I can
feel the bridge at ---- Junction, five miles away, tremble under it. I
listen and wait, every nerve on edge. A mile and a half the other side
of our station the engine will first snort, then begin a series of
shrieks--shrieks suggestive of warning, imminent danger, supreme peril,
the climax of a tragical catastrophe. For at least five minutes shall I
be compelled to listen while the engineer--if it be a real living
engine-man who impels this chorus of fiends--runs the full scale of his
shrill tooting, perhaps deeming it essential to the safety of the town,
which ought to be asleep, or to the dignity of his long, creeping train
of coal- and freight-laden cars.

Even the Juggernaut passes: it is gone. I emerge, faint and wornout from
the trial. Now that it is toward three o'clock, everybody except the
policeman in bed, and no more trains to come until after five, one might
suppose there was some chance for an interval of peace, of repose. I get
up and walk about a little in order to feel, with the opportunity, the
inclination for slumber. Yes, it will come....

Scarcely have I ventured to close my eyes again before there begins a
chirp, a twitter, a general thrill of sound. All the birds are awake,
and are soon in full chorus. Presently a flush of color will run around
the horizon, and it will be dawn. The actual night has flown. I can
hear Smith, our grocery-man around the corner, setting off into the
country for his milk and eggs. Several marketcarts are abroad.... There
goes an extra train, shrieking direly along the curve.

It is actually growing light. With the first gleam of day my excellent
aunt--who embodies all my future expectations of wealth--sleeping in the
next chamber, turns in her bed, yawns loudly and unreservedly, gets up
and takes an observation, opening and closing her shutters with a bang.
By breakfast-time my revered relation becomes a respectable and no
longer a riotous member of society, but during the early morning hours
her inventions for disturbing her neighbors are ingenious and
diabolical.

By five o'clock the morning-trains begin, followed at half-past six by
fifty factory-whistles. The children are awake and stirring. The
housemaid is banging her utensils on piazza and in hallway: the cook is
flirting with the milk-and butter-man at the back gate, and exclaiming
"Oh Laws!" to some news or pleasantry of his. The licensed venders are
abroad. There are all sorts of cries. It is less than an hour to
breakfast. The night is lost: one foolish, intolerable noise has spoiled
all.

  L.W.



TABARIN, THE FRENCH MERRY-ANDREW.


The French word _tabarin_ is almost obsolete, and its English synonym,
_merry-andrew_, is not much in vogue, but as they are andronymics, to
coin a word, embalming the memories of two famous charlatans, they
possess an abiding interest apart from all question of their use or
disuse.

Andrew Borde and Tabarin were both charlatans and both famous, but here
all resemblance between them ceases. The former was a witty and
eccentric quack, who travelled about from place to place and country to
country selling drugs and practising medicine in fairs and marketplaces,
where his glib tongue readily gathered crowds and earned him the
nickname which has since passed current in English as a generic term for
buffoons of all sorts and conditions. The tenth volume of the _Extra
Series_ of the Early English Text Society is wholly devoted to Borde,
and well repays perusal, although probably few who read it will agree
with Mr. Furnivall, the editor, that "any one who would make him more of
a merry-andrew than anything else is a bigger fool than he would make
Borde."

Tabarin, however, was a veritable and inimitable clown, and his name has
figured in French literature both as a proper and a common noun almost
from the day that he and his partner, Mondor, set up their booth on the
Pont Neuf. They began their sale of ointments and liniments in Paris
about the year 1618, attracting custom by their absurd dialogues in the
vein of the circus-clown and ring-master of to-day. Occasionally they
left the city to try their luck in the provinces, but during most of
their career they were to be found on the bridge near the entrance to
the Place Dauphine. Tabarin retired from the business about 1630, but
his partner continued at the old stand with a new clown, who must have
been either less witty or more obscene than Tabarin, for in 1634 Mondor
was abated as a nuisance by the authorities.

Tabarin was blessed with a wife and daughter: his wife's name was
Francisquine; his daughter married the celebrated buffoon Gaultier
Garguille. The story goes that when he left Mondor he bought a small
country-place near Paris, where he passed his latter days comfortably on
his earnings. There are two traditions current as to the manner of his
death: according to one, he was killed by some noblemen in a hunting
quarrel; according to the other, he died from the effects of heavy
drinking for a wager. He is said to have styled himself Tabarin because
he usually appeared in a little tabard, called in Italian _tabarrino_,
but his true name and his nationality are alike unknown.

Tabarin's pleasantries, as jotted down by members of his audiences, have
been given to the world at divers times in various forms, and have
latterly been collected and published in a body with those of his less
successful rival Grattelard; but very few of them are suited to
nineteenth-century taste, and most of them are gross to the last degree.
Some of the presentable ones are here given, and may serve as specimens
of his manner, though they will scarcely account for his reputation:

_Tab._ Who are the politest people in the world, master?

_Mon._ I've travelled in Spain, Italy and Germany, and I assure you that
the French nation is by all odds the most courteous. They are the only
people in the world that kiss and compliment, and above all take off
hats.

_Tab._ Take off hats! If that's courtesy I don't want any of it.

_Mon._ Taking off hats, Tabarin, is an ancient custom originating among
the Romans. It is done in token of good-will.

_Tab._ So you say taking off hats is the pink of politeness? Now, if
that's so, do you want to know who I think are the politest people?

_Mon._ Yes: who?

_Tab._ Why, our Paris street-thieves, for they don't stop at taking off
hats, but take cloaks off too.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Tab._ Master, why don't they let women take orders?

_Mon._ Because the sex is frail, Tabarin, and not worthy to conduct the
services of the Church, which are sacred mysteries.

_Tab._ Humbug! It's because they always will have the last word, so it
wouldn't do to let them give the responses. Why, the services would
never end.

By similar logic Tabarin demonstrates, among others, the following
propositions:

An ass is a better linguist than his master, because he understands when
he is spoken to, while his lingo is all lost upon the man.

A fiddler has the hardest lot of all mankind, because his life depends
upon a bit of wood and a piece of cord, for all the world like a
malefactor's.

Cut-purses are the most liberal of all men, for they not only empty
their own purses, but those of other people.

If you put a miller, a tailor, a bailiff and an attorney in a bag, the
first thing to come out will be a thief.

The most wonderful gardener and the most wonderful tree in the world
are respectively Jack Ketch and the gallows tree, because when the
hangman plants that unpleasant vegetable it bears fruit the same day.

If you see six birds on a tree, and shoot three, there will be _none_
left, for of course the remaining three will fly away. This last jest is
so trite to-day as to be absolutely threadbare.

Tabarin's wits were not exhausted by this kind of buffoonery. He issued
comic proclamations and almanacs, and even produced short farces in
which his wife performed with him. From one of these farces Molière is
supposed to have borrowed the ideas for his sack-scene in the
_Fourberies de Scapin_.

La Fontaine stole one of Grattelard's dialogues bodily, and converted it
into the celebrated fable of _The Acorn and the Pumpkin_. Grattelard was
contemporary with Tabarin, as remarked above: he and his partner,
Désidério Descombes, sold quack medicines at the north end of the Pont
Neuf. The dialogue in question follows, at least so much of it as is in
point, and will serve as tailpiece to the specimens of Tabarin's wit:

_Grat._ I had a great discussion this morning with a philosopher, trying
to prove to him that Nature often makes great mistakes.

_D. D._ No, no, Grattelard: everything that Nature does is done for the
best.

_Grat._ Just wait now: let me tell you how I had to give in.

_D. D._ Well, how was it?

_Grat._ We were walking in the garden, and pretty soon we came across a
tremendous pumpkin, as big as a Swiss drum. "There!" said I: "Nature has
no better sense than to hang a great thing like that on such a slender
vine that the least breeze can break it off."

_D. D._ Then you blamed Nature in the matter of the pumpkin?

_Grat._ Yes, for of course there ought to be some proportion _inter
sustinens et sustentum_; but, by Heavens, I soon changed my mind, for
just as I was passing under a great oak tree down fell an acorn and
struck me on the nose. Of course I had to admit that Nature was right,
after all, for if she had put a pumpkin up there I should have been in a
pretty pickle.

_D. D._ Yes indeed, Grattelard: you would have cut a fine figure
drinking out of a bottle with your nose in a sling.

_Grat._ By the Georgics of Virgil, 'twould be all up with spectacles for
my old age.

Tabarin was the first of the series of clowns that enlivened the streets
of Paris for two hundred years, or, at any rate, the first to attain
celebrity: Bobèche in our own century was the last. He made a great
noise in his day, but nothing keeps his memory green except the Bobèche
of Offenbach's _Barbe-Bleue_. Tabarin, however, has a new lease of life
in two of the handy little-volumes of the _Bibliothèque Elzévirienne_.

  S.E.T.



A LEGION OF DEVILS.


"Everybody knows," said Beppo, my Roman model, "that the English are
mad, signor. For has not the padre told me so? and does he not say that
the fires of Purgatory burn within them? Else why do they roll about in
a tub of water every morning, if not to cool their vitals? It is an
insult to an Italian to wash him: we only wash dead bodies;" and Beppo
draws his huge frame up to its full height, while his black eyes flash,
and I mentally acknowledge him and his begrimed rags picturesque if
filthy.

"Si, si, they are all mad," he continues, "and they keep horses and dogs
as mad as themselves; and they ride out, dressed in the very color of
the flames of Purgatory, to run screaming and shouting after poor foxes
over the Campagna, notwithstanding the Holy Father has rigorously
prohibited that sort of insanity, and has placed his gendarmerie
purposely to stop it. But who can stop _il diavolo e gli suoi angeli_?
Why, signor, if they want foxes, I myself, Beppo Donati, would catch
them any number for a paul or two. But they are all mad, all mad. And
the dogs, it is well known how they became possessed; for," lowering his
voice and coming nearer me, "I myself saw the arch-fiend himself and his
legions enter them bodily. I will tell the signor how it was.

"The signor has been in the Catacombs of the blessed martyrs, but
cannot know as much about them as myself, who was custodian for many a
year in the dangerous and least frequented ones; and it was there that I
received the hurt that caused me to turn model. Many are the hours I
have passed in the remote ones lying miles away from the Eternal City,
where the only available entrance was a tortuous, chimney-like hole
almost filled with rubbish, and so insignificant in appearance that it
had remained concealed by a few bushes from the time it was last used by
the blessed martyrs themselves till to-day.

"To descend this aperture, signor, one struggles along with much
difficulty: lying on one's chest, and with a lighted taper in one hand,
the other holding a rope that has been made fast to a tree outside, one
slides down by degrees feet foremost. The passages are usually narrowed
and choked by the rubbish, and descend nearly perpendicularly to where,
lower down, they open wider and your feet touch steps cut roughly in the
rock; but you must not trust them, for the soft stone will crumble with
your weight. After descending some sixty or seventy feet you suddenly
bump against an old stone doorway, and you are at the bottom. But on
passing the doorway your position is even worse, as the stagnant pools
of muddy water reach up to your knees, and the passages are too low to
admit of your standing upright, while you stretch your taper into a
thick darkness that closes over everything a few yards distant and
prevents your seeing anything but the horizontal niches in tiers, one
above the other, where the mortal remains of the beatific lie surrounded
by the symbols of the faith they died for. Here they keep their vigil
century after century over our Holy City, while they await their
glorious resurrection.

"I have been miles under the Campagna in these subterranean cemeteries.
No one has yet ascertained their entire extent. They branch out in every
direction, and the ramifications are so countless--not only on a level,
but in stories underlying one another--and so many of them have fallen
in or been filled with water, that no successful attempt has ever been
made to follow them to their extremities. Nor can it be found out
whether they communicate with one another or remain as they were
originally, distinct from each other.

"You have heard, signor, that the early Christians celebrated the feasts
of the Church by visiting the then newly-decorated and consecrated
subterranean cemeteries, and that on one of these occasions, when a
large crowd of persons had entered to celebrate a festival, it occurred
to the ruling authorities that the opportunity might be advantageously
used to lessen by so many the troublesome and ever-increasing population
of the new faith. Accordingly, a number of huge stones were brought and
the entrance built up and rigidly guarded till all the unfortunate
prisoners had died a martyr's death.

"After that, to guard against a repetition of such an act, various
apertures of exit were made, and may now be frequently found on the
Campagna, where, when one's foot sinks into a doubtful-looking hole
filled with rubbish, one knows it penetrates to the depths beneath.
Secret passages were also made to debouch in the private houses of
well-known Christians or buildings set apart for Christian worship; and
it was from one of these walled-up doorways that I, Beppo Donati, myself
saw _un miracolo_ performed and a legion of devils let loose.

"It was in the church of St. Prassede. St. Prassede, the signor knows,
was one of the daughters of the senator Pudens mentioned by St. Paul as
sending his greetings to Timothy. The present church stands on the site
of the very house once inhabited by this Christian family, and in the
dark crypt under the high altar there is a walled-up doorway with the
sign of the cross upon it. The crypt was originally the cellar of the
ancient house, into which debouched one of the secret entrances to the
Catacombs: at one extremity of the crypt is the doorway in question, now
strongly built up, with the cross impressed in its superficial stucco.

"For many centuries the subterranean excavations behind the crypt have
been haunted by the Evil One and his coadjutors, who break forth from
time to time in unearthly noises, racings, scamperings, moanings and
yellings, and scarcely a man, woman or child in the vicinity but has
heard them with their own veritable ears. Many special services of
exorcism have been performed in the church above to meet the occasions
as they might arise, but with no permanent effect. And, signor,
notwithstanding the cloud of witnesses that can testify to these
supernatural sounds, the city contains sceptics, and none more
determined than the learned Father Xavier of the Holy Propaganda.

"The day of the miracle that I am about to tell you of was a dark, wet
Thursday in November, when my wife Teresina and myself attended high
mass at St. Prassede, in honor of Teresina's festa. At the conclusion of
the mass strange sounds were heard behind the walls of the crypt, and
more especially at the back of the walled-up door. Gasps, yellings,
scamperings, and then a cessation, and again a repetition of the same
unearthly sounds with increased vehemence. Sometimes they would seem to
recede till they died away in the distance, and then come rushing as if
a whole legion of the enemy were close at hand. From the body of the
church the crypt is approached by an open passage down a wide flight of
steps immediately in front of the high altar, and the walled door, as
well as the whole of the crypt, can be distinctly seen from the top of
the steps. When the mysterious noises were first heard most of the
congregation had retreated precipitately to the doors, but some of the
more pious or venturesome--among whom were Teresina and myself--had
remained, and were leaning over the balusters while the padre descended
with his attendants to perform the special service appointed for the
occasion. The exorcism took effect, for the noises, from being very
uproarious, suddenly ceased altogether, and the arch-fiend seemed
pacified, if not utterly routed, until at the close of the service, a
bell was rung as appointed in the office. The sound of this bell had the
effect of increasing the demoniac uproar to such a degree that the
padre officiating was fain to hurry through the rest of the service as
best he could and beat a precipitate retreat, with the acolytes, bells
and all, to the sacristy.

"Teresina and myself had fled to the door of the church, where we
stationed ourselves in a convenient place for a start when the occasion
might require it. We had not been there long when we saw Father
Xavier--the sceptic I told the signor about--enter the church with two
assistants armed with crowbars and pickaxes, and proceed immediately to
the crypt, where no doubt could exist as to the noises at that moment,
as the yellings, scamperings and scramblings were loud enough in all
conscience. The sacristan came out from the body of the church and
suggested another exorcism to the reverend father, who answered that he
preferred the pickaxe, and, turning to beckon to his workmen, found they
had fled. Nowise daunted, the reverend gentleman took off his coat,
rolled up his sleeves and went to work with a will, making the vault
re-echo with his blows. This operation, while it had the effect of
thinning the audience still further in the church, where Teresina and I
lingered, certainly abated the noises behind the door, until the padre's
blows, continuing with unabated energy, effected a breach where the very
head and claws of the Evil One himself were actually to be seen
protruding through the aperture: in one moment more the whole troop of
the enemy had dashed through the opening, upset the padre, and were in
full career through the church, from whence the whole assembly took
flight into the streets, uttering frantic shouts and seeking safety in
the houses. The legionaries of Satan had it all to themselves, and
continued their career until they arrived at the place where the English
keep their hounds, where, with a tremendous yell, they leaped over the
gate and disappeared in the kennels.

"I myself saw this, signor," said Beppo, giving his head an emphatic
nod, "and have I not every reason for saying that the hounds, as well
as their masters, are possessed?"

Beppo's story still leaving some physiological questions unsolved in my
dark Protestant mind, I took occasion to speak to Father Xavier himself
about it when I next met him. From him I learned that on the morning in
question a party of English left the city on a hunting-excursion on the
Campagna. A fox was unearthed after considerable delay, and a sharp run
started, when suddenly fox, dogs and all disappeared down one of the
numerous holes leading to the Catacombs. As the occurrence was not
unusual, the hunt waited, expecting them to reappear up some other
aperture; but after lingering the greater part of the day they were
obliged to return to the city without the dogs, who had found their way
through the dark and intricate passages to the door of the crypt, where
the sceptical padre, as we have seen, liberated them.

  M.S.D.



THE DEMIDOFFS.


Readers of the agreeable memoirs of Madame Le Brun may remember the
passage in which she speaks of a certain "M. Demidoff, le plus riche
particulier de la Russie." His father, she goes on to say, had left him
an inheritance of great value in the shape of mines, the products of
which he sold to the government on very profitable terms. His enormous
wealth enabled him to obtain the hand of a Miss Strogonov, the daughter
of one of the most ancient families of the land. Their union was an
harmonious one, and they left two sons, "of whom one," concludes our
author, "lives most of the time at Paris, and, like his father, is very
fond of art."

Madame Le Brun's friend was Nicolai Demidoff (1774-1828), one of the
least distinguished members of his family, who have been the
mining-kings of Russia for two centuries. The contemporary of Peter the
Great was ennobled by him (without receiving a title), and in the patent
it was decreed that the family should be for ever free from military and
other service, "that they may devote themselves to the discovery of
metals." Nicolai's son Anatoli was born in Moscow March 24, 1813: he
was sent to Paris to be educated, and remained there till his eighteenth
year, studying at various institutions, including the law-school and the
École Polytechniqne. Shortly after his return his father died, and he
came into possession of an enormous property, which he immediately began
to spend, lavishly, but generously. In St. Petersburg he bought and
furnished a large building to serve as a charitable institution. From
its kitchen two hundred thousand meals are given yearly to the poor, and
in it one hundred and fifty orphans are housed and fed, one hundred and
fifty girls are trained to be capable servants, and forty impoverished
gentlewomen find a home. When the cholera raged in the same city not
long afterward he not only established a hospital, but is said to have
devoted himself personally to the care of the sick. In the furtherance
of science and art he was still more munificent. He founded the Demidoff
prizes, which annually distribute nearly four thousand dollars to the
authors of the most useful works published during the year, while from
his mines in Siberia eight young men went forth yearly to acquire a
thorough technical education at his expense. In 1837, urged by the great
need of coal felt by the Russian industrial classes, he began a three
years' exploration of the Black Sea country, accompanied by a staff of
six professors, who produced a detailed report, not only of the
coal-deposits, but also of the zoology, botany and geology of the region
traversed. The results of their labors are described in four octavo
volumes--_Voyage dans la Russie méridionale, exécutée sous la direction
de M. Anatole de Demidoff_--and inscribed to the emperor Nicholas. One
reward of this labor was election to the Institute de France, his
competitors being Parry and Sir John Franklin.

Some years before this time he had entered the diplomatic service, being
attaché, first, at Vienna, then at Rome, then chargé d'affaires at
Florence. Here he met and married Mathilde Bonaparte, who, through her
mother, was closely connected with his sovereign. Nicolai's daughter had
been allowed to make a love-match in marrying the duke of Leuchtenberg,
son of Eugène Beauharnais, and the emperor was by no means pleased to
have another mésalliance in the family. What most offended him, however,
was the fact that M. Demidoff, in the Catholic as well as in the Greek
marriage ceremony, had promised to educate his children in the faith of
the officiating priest. In consequence of this he was deprived of such
titular honors as he possessed and was ordered to live abroad. As the
married pair did not get on very well, and as, after a childless union
of four years, they agreed to separate, Demidoff was again received into
the imperial favor. He had meantime bought the fine estate and mansion
of San Donato, near Florence; and as he thought the possessor of so much
wealth and the husband of so noble a lady deserved to have a title, he
dubbed himself "prince," and continued to enjoy this self-given title,
probably in the hope that an uncontested use would give him a
prescriptive right to bear it. In this hope he was disappointed, for
Count Medem, an attaché of the Russian embassy at Paris, noticing
"Prince Demidoff" on the list of the members of the Jockey Club, crossed
the name out, adding the observation, "Il n'y a pas de prince Demidoff."
A bloodless duel followed.

In the lately-published memoirs of the German novelist Hackländer--who
in 1843 figured as secretary to the crown-prince of Würtemberg during
his visit to Italy--we have an agreeable picture of M. Demidoff at San
Donato. "His paintings, sculptures, odd furniture, bronzes and weapons
were arranged in an irregular and apparently arbitrary fashion, so that
they did not produce the wearisome effect of an ordinary collection, but
looked rather like treasures with which their owner had surrounded
himself partly for use, partly only to look at." Demidoff "was a tall,
thin man," continues Mr. Hackländer, "with light, almost yellow,
complexion, and always dressed with extreme elegance. On the occasion of
our first visit to his town-house the princess was painting in her
studio, in which art she was more than a dilettante. The prince went
first to her with Demidoff, and after they had come back we heard from
her a peal of the heartiest laughter, which rung down through five large
rooms. Soon after she came out and greeted us in the kindest fashion.
She was then a young and handsome woman, with a splendid figure,
graceful curves, fine eyes and complexion,--all beautified and illumined
by her pleasant voice and happy manner."

In 1851, Demidoff bought the villa of San Martini, which Bonaparte
occupied during his stay in Elba, improved the building at a cost of
forty thousand dollars, and made of it a museum in which were to be seen
all sorts of curiosities connected with the great emperor--hats,
swords, pistols, portraits of the king of Rome, and manuscripts for
which he paid one hundred thousand dollars. His uncle's other
collections the present M. (or, if you like, Prince) Demidoff sold at
auction the present year: I have not heard whether the Elba relics were
sold with them.

Florence, as well as St. Petersburg, owes much to M. Demidoff--among
other things, an asylum in which fifty boys are trained in silk-weaving.
It was in Paris, however, not in the city which he so long honored with
his residence, that in 1870 this philanthropic and enterprising man took
leave of worldly vanities.

  A.V.



LITERATURE OF THE DAY.

     A History of Classical Greek Literature. By the Rev. J.P. Mahaffy,
     M.A., Fellow and Professor of Ancient History, Trinity College,
     Dublin. New York: Harper & Brothers.


It is easy to imagine a history of Greek literature which should be not
only useful and stimulative to the student, but fascinating to the
general mass of intelligent readers. The literature of Greece is not,
like that of modern nations, the mirror of a many-colored life; but the
originality, variety and perfection of its forms make it on the whole
the most complete and splendid representation of thought and imagination
which the world possesses. While it owed little or nothing to any
foreign influence, it was itself the source of all later conceptions of
literary art, and though it exists only in fragmentary remains, these
still furnish the chief standard of excellence in nearly every
department. The subject is therefore unique both in the value of its
materials and in the definiteness of its limits. What is demanded for
the adequate treatment of it is not universal knowledge, but minute and
thorough scholarship; not a wide and diversified experience, an
unlimited range of sympathies, the power of detecting subtle motives and
disentangling complicated threads of action, but a comprehension of the
simple and eternal elements of character and conduct, the faculty of
tracing a specific development from its origin to its decline, while
indicating its connection with other indigenous growths of the same
soil, and a vivid sense of the marvellous rapidity and exquisite beauty
of the simultaneous or successive unfoldings. Given these powers,
unhampered by any defect of mere technical skill, and it is hard to see
how any mind susceptible of being interested in their application to
such a topic could resist their sway.

We do not know what ideal Mr. Mahaffy may have formed of the task he has
undertaken or of the qualities demanded for it. His preface gives no
intimation on this point, and his "introduction" affords only negative
evidence in his refusal to follow "the usual practice with historians of
Greek literature" and "begin with a survey of the character and genius
of the race, the peculiar features of the language, and the action which
physical circumstances have produced upon the development of all these
things." Instead of any discussions of this nature, which "in many
German books are," it appears, "so long and so vague that the student is
wearied before he arrives at a single fact," the natural division of
literature into poetry and prose is made the starting-point. The former,
in accordance with "a well-known law of human progress," precedes the
latter, but is gradually supplanted by it. "This may be seen among us in
the education of children, who pass in a few years through successive
stages not unlike those of humanity at large in its progress from mental
infancy to mature thought. We know that little children can be taught to
repeat and remember rhymes long before they will listen to the simplest
story in prose." On the other hand, "when the majority of people begin
to read, poetry loses its hold upon the public, and the prose-writer,
who composes with greater simplicity and less labor, at last obtains an
advantage over his rival the poet, who is put into competition with all
the older poets now circulating among a more learned public." In
accordance with this profound yet simple theory--from which we gather
that the Golden Age of the poets was that in which there were no
readers--the work is divided into two nearly equal parts, the first
dealing with poetry and the second with prose, and this "is now the
accepted order among the German writers on the subject."

In the first volume epic, lyric and dramatic poetry are dealt with in
the order in which they are here named, while in the second the
arrangement is strictly chronological, taking up historians,
philosophers and orators as they appeared upon the scene. Except in the
case of the epic and the drama there is no examination of the rise or
nature of any particular form of composition, and the exceptions merely
touch the familiar ground of the origin of the Homeric poems and the
rise of the Æschylean tragedy. Some account is given of the principal
authors, their works are more or less fully enumerated and some of them
analyzed, style and similar matters are discussed in a summary and
decisive tone--critics, ancient and modern, who have held different
views from those of Mr. Mahaffy being sharply reprehended--and the final
sections of some of the chapters are devoted to bibliography, including
modern imitations and translations. Although Mr. Mahaffy is never
otherwise than terse--or, more properly speaking, curt--he sometimes
condescends to repetition. Thus he tells us in three or four different
places that Sophocles and Thucydides "play at hide-and-seek with the
reader." These two authors, thus happily classed together, represent
"the artificial obscurity of the Attic epoch," in distinction from "the
pregnant obscurity" of Heracleitus and Æschylus and "the redundant
obscurity of some modern poets." The attempt of "Classen and others" to
explain the involutions and anacolutha of Thucydides by "the undeveloped
condition of Attic prose, and the difficulties of wrestling with an
unformed idiom to express adequately great and pregnant thoughts," is
triumphantly refuted by the statement that "Euripides and Cratinus had
already perfected the use of Attic Greek in dramatic dialogue," and "in
Attic prose Antiphon had already attained clearness, as we can see in
his extant speeches." As Classen, in his discussion of the question, has
not omitted to notice Antiphon, it may be doubted whether he would
accept this fact as conclusive. Another point in regard to Thucydides is
introduced in a manner that prepares us for some startling disclosures:
"As regards the historian's trustworthiness, it has been so universally
lauded that it is high time to declare how far his statements are to be
accepted as absolute truths." But expectation subsides when we are
assured in the next sentence that "on contemporary facts his authority
is very good, and so far there has been no proof of any inaccuracy
brought home to him." He is open to doubt, it appears, "only when he
goes into archæology," by which term Mr. Mahaffy understands early
Sicilian history, which "reaches back three hundred years, nay to three
hundred years before the advent of the Greeks." It has "only lately," it
appears, been discovered that Thucydides had no personal knowledge of
the events of that remote period, but "copied from Dionysius of
Syracuse," and hence "the whole tradition requires careful
consideration." In that case, we fear, the "high time" for deciding on
the "absolute truth" of the historian's statements will have to be
indefinitely postponed. Meantime we learn from the work before us the
striking fact, that "the night-escape of the Plateans from their city,"
as related in the third book of Thucydides, "has been reproduced in our
own day by Sir E. Creasy, in his Greek novel, _The Old Love and the
New_." It has sometimes been debated whether the Greeks had any novels:
it is now settled that they had one--written by an Englishman. It is to
be hoped that this discovery will give a new impetus to the interest in
Greek literature, which must be at a low ebb if Mr. Mahaffy be correct
in stating that "even diligent scholars find it a task to read a
dialogue of Plato honestly through." To be sure, if Plato's style and
matter were simply such as Mr. Mahaffy describes them, there would be no
great inducement to make the attempt. The same remark would apply to
most of the extant plays of Sophocles. The _Oedipus Rex_, in
particular, reveals itself in Mr. Mahaffy's analysis as a mere farrago
of inconsistencies and absurdities. In allusion to the very different
estimate of Professor Campbell, Mr. Mahaffy remarks, "Though I deeply
respect this simple-hearted enthusiasm, it does not appear to me the
best way of stimulating the study of any writer." Still, Mr. Mahaffy can
occasionally defend a Greek author against the strictures of other
critics. Thus he cannot agree with Mr. Simcox in giving "some credence
to the attacks on Demosthenes charging him with unchastity. These," he
observes, "the whole man's life and his portrait-statue forbid us to
believe." We do not quite understand how the fact that Demosthenes was a
"whole man" tends to rebut the charge referred to, and if what Mr.
Mahaffy meant to say be "the man's whole life," this is simply begging
the question, a part of that whole being the point of dispute. But the
evidence of the "portrait-statue" is, of course, resistless, and one
cannot but regret, in the interests of public decency, that testimony so
conclusive is not admitted in modern trials involving a similar issue.
One great characteristic of Mr. Mahaffy's style is an unsparing use of
the first personal pronoun. "I think," "I do not think," "I conceive,"
"I believe," "I advocate," "I infer," "I would select," "I had
predicted," are forms of expression strewn abundantly, often in
clusters, over the pages of the work, the subject to which they refer
being generally one on which most other people do not "think" or
"conceive" as Mr. Mahaffy does. One is reminded of an epigram on
Whewell, master of Trinity College (Oxford, not Dublin), after the
appearance of his _Plurality of Worlds_:

    His eye, as it ranges through boundless infinity,
    Finds the chief work of God the master of Trinity.


     William Cowper. By Goldwin Smith. (English-Men-of-Letters Series.)
     New York: Harper & Brothers.

Much thoughtful and sympathetic criticism has been written on the life
and writings of Cowper, without any new facts being brought to light or
any decided progress made. His character reveals itself and his life is
minutely recorded in his correspondence; but the few points which his
letters leave unexplained still remain obscure after long search and
study. The question of his rupture with Lady Austen, for instance, is
just where Hayley left it. His poems present elements so apparently
irreconcilable that, while their qualities are universally recognized,
their place in literature is still an unsettled one. The reader of _The
Task_ may ask himself in one breath whether it is poetry at all, or
whether it be not great poetry. There is no trace of the instinctive
poetic utterance of bards such as Shelley and Keats, but there is a
constant appeal to the strongest and most elementary human feelings,
rarely met with in any but the greatest works of art. It was never
Cowper's fate to be exposed to that brilliant but unsympathetic
criticism which is the most short-sighted kind. No comprehension of him
can be got without bringing in feeling as a factor of judgment, and it
would not be singular if the moral beauty of his verse should blind
readers to its artistic faults. As a matter of fact, however, the
tendency now-a-days is to exaggerate Cowper's position rather than his
qualities, and this arises not from warmth of feeling, but from hasty
dogmatizing. There is a marked difference between _The Task_ and any
poem preceding it, but the distance from _The Task_ to _The Excursion_
is still wider. The resemblance to Wordsworth in the former poem is
tolerably superficial: it is a likeness with a difference. Cowper was
the observer, not the priest, of Nature, watching her minutely and
tenderly, but with none of Wordsworth's passion. The finest passages in
_The Task_ are wholly descriptive, and of description pure and simple
there is very little in Wordsworth's writings. Neither is there any
strong proof of Cowper's influence in the work of his successor, though
the influence felt most strongly by each was the same--that of Milton.
When M. Taine speaks of the revolution effected by Cowper as one of
style, when Mr. Lowell characterizes Wordsworth's blank verse as
"essentially the blank verse of Cowper," those eminent critics agree in
exalting Cowper above his age at the very point where he is most closely
bound to it. In sentiment he made a certain advance toward Wordsworth,
though on a lower plane, but in diction he is distinctly of the
eighteenth century. His style is often as artificial as that of any of
its rhymesters: it is full of inversions, freighted with long, formal
words, and still more marred by others of a false dilettante ring.
Wordsworth would never have spoken of "embellished Nature," "embroidered
banks," or applied the word "elegant" to a rose, any more than he would
have used "lubricity" or "stercoraceous" in verse.

Yet, formal as Cowper's language often is, narrow as are the ideas which
take up a large part of his writings, the essence of his poetry is its
truth. A false note in feeling he seldom struck, and the most artificial
language cannot hinder his lines from going direct to the heart. The
high-water mark of his genius was reached in two or three poems in which
the words are in full harmony with the thought and reflect it limpidly,
with no attempt at the "embellishment" which he too frequently employed.

In a book designed to introduce the subject to many readers we could
have wished for a little more sympathy of tone than Mr. Goldwin Smith
has allowed himself in his otherwise admirable volume. It is hardly
necessary, for instance, to insist on the obvious narrowness of Cowper's
religion. That the book is too short is a failing on the right side, and
chargeable to the plan of the series rather than the writer, whose terse
style and excellent arrangement make it full of interest. Cowper's life
and poetry are bound together in a singularly close union. He belongs by
circumstances rather than by genius to those unfortunate minds which,
thrown off the proper balance, have gained a deeper insight and a
stronger hold upon others through their very weakness. What lends a
peculiar pathos and charm to his figure is the purity and gentleness of
his mind, the efforts by which he clung to truth in the cruel darkness
of mental disease, and the innocent gayety and light-heartedness which
alternated with gloom. Like Rousseau, Cowper had, by the very reaction
from sadness, a rare keenness of enjoyment. Little things were enough to
feast it, and hence the most trivial matters came naturally into his
verse. His poems have certainly had a varied history. Written to afford
occupation to a mind on the verge of madness, linked with the slightest
events of his daily life, it has been their fate to serve for a long
time as poetic tracts, and afterward to be exalted by critics as
prophecies of a new order of things, the beginning of a literary
revolution.



_Books Received._


Barbara; or, Splendid Misery. By Miss M.E. Braddon.--For Her Dear Sake.
By Mary Cecil Hay.--Daireen. By Frank Frankfort Moore.--Two Women. By
Georgiana M. Craik.--Prince Hugo. By Maria M. Grant.--From Generation to
Generation: A Novel. By Lady Augusta Noel.--Young Lord Penrith: A Novel.
By John Berwick Harwood.--Clara Vaughan: A Novel. By R.D.
Blackmore.--The Heart of Holland. By Henry Havard. Translated by Mrs.
Cashel Hoey.--Reata: What's in a Name? A Novel. By E.D. Gerard.--Mary
Anerley: A Yorkshire Tale. By R.D. Blackmore.--Poet and Peer: A Novel.
By Hamilton Aidé.--The Pennant Family. By Anne Beale. (Franklin Square
Library.) New York: Harper & Brothers.

The Diary of a Man of Fifty, and A Bundle of Letters. By Henry James,
Jr.--Tales from the Odyssey, for Boys and Girls. By
"Materfamilias."--Life of Charlemagne. By Eginhard.--The Right Honorable
William Ewart Gladstone: A Biographical Sketch. By Henry W. Lucy. With
Portrait.--British and American Education. By Mayo W. Hazeltine.--Mrs.
Austin. By Margaret Veley.--Business Life in Ancient Rome. By Charles G.
Herbermann, Ph.D. (Harper's Half-Hour Series.) New York: Harper &
Brothers.

The Spell-bound Fiddler: A Norse Romance. By Kristofer Janson.
Translated from the original by Auber Forestier. Chicago: S.C. Griggs &
Co.

Studies of Irving. By Charles Dudley Warner, William Cullen Bryant and
George Palmer Putnam. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

Sketches and Studies in Southern Europe. By John Addington Symonds. 2
vols. New York: Harper & Brothers.

Eminent Israelites of the Nineteenth Century. By Henry Samuel Morais.
Philadelphia: Edward Stern & Co.

The Throat and its Functions. By Louis Elsberg, A.M., M.D. Illustrated.
New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

The Independent Movement in New York. By Junius. New York: G.P.
Putnam's Sons.

Preadamites. By Alexander Winchell, M.D. Chicago: S.C. Griggs & Co.

Ethylization. By R.J. Levis, M.D. Philadelphia.





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