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Title: Noble Deeds of the World's Heroines
Author: Moore, Henry Charles
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.

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Noble Deeds of the

World's Heroines






4 Bouverie Street & 65 St. Paul's Churchyard



In these pages I have tried to show how women, old and young, in many
ranks of life, have proved themselves in times of trial to possess as
much courage and daring as men.  Some of these 'Brave Women' died for
their Master's sake, whilst others, in His cause, passed through dire
peril and grievous suffering.  All of them counted not their lives dear
unto them, so long only as they might do their duty.  I have designedly
omitted many familiar heroines in the hope of winning attention for
some whose deeds have been less widely recognised.

H. C. M.














It was two o'clock in the morning when this cry was heard in Union
Street, Borough, London, and the people who ran to the spot saw an oil
shop in flames, and at a window above it a servant girl, Alice Ayres,
screaming for help.  Some rushed off to summon the fire-brigade, but
those who remained feared that before it could arrive the place would
be gutted.

'Jump!  jump!' they shouted, and stretched out their coats to break her
fall.  But instead of jumping Alice Ayres disappeared from the window.
There were other people in the house, and she was determined not to
seek safety for herself until she had made an attempt to save their

Hurrying to the room where her master, mistress, and one child slept,
she battered at the door, and awakening them warned them of their
danger.  Then through smoke and flames she sped back to her own room,
where three children slept in her charge.  She gave one look out of the
window, but the firemen were not yet on the scene.

'Jump! jump!' the crowd shouted.

But Alice Ayres ignored the entreaties, for she had determined to save
the children or die in the attempt.  Her first idea was to tie two
sheets together and lower the children one by one; but, finding that
the sheets would not bear their weight, she dragged a feather bed to
the window and dropped it into the street.  Willing hands seized it and
held it out, expecting her to jump; but she disappeared again,
returning, however, a moment or two later, with a little white-robed
child in her arms.  Holding her at arms' length out of the window, she
glanced down at the bed, and seeing that it was ready, dropped her.  A
tremendous cheer from the crowd told her that the little one was safe.

Then she snatched up the second little girl, but the poor mite was
terrified, and throwing her arms around Alice's neck cried piteously,
'Don't throw me out of window!'  So tightly did the child cling to her
that Alice had great difficulty in getting her into a proper position
to drop her on to the bed, but she succeeded at last, and another loud
cheer from the crowd announced that she had saved two lives.

Scarcely five minutes had elapsed since the fire broke out, but the
contents of the shop were such that the flames spread at a fearful
rate, and the onlookers knew that if Alice Ayres did not jump quickly
she would be burned to death.

'Jump! jump!' they shouted excitedly.

But there was a baby lying in the cot, and back Alice Ayres went,
brought it safely through fire and smoke to the window, and dropped it
out.  She had saved three lives!

Weakened by the heat and the smoke, Alice Ayres now decided to leap
from the window, and the anxious people in the street watched her in
silence as she climbed to the window sill.  She jumped, but her body
struck one of the large dummy jars above the front of the shop and
caused her to fall head foremost on the bed, and then topple over on to
the pavement with a sickening thud.  Quickly and tenderly she was
lifted on to a shutter and carried into a neighbouring shop, where
medical aid was soon at hand.

In the meanwhile the firemen had arrived.  They had come as soon as
they were called, but they arrived too late to save the other three
inmates of the house from perishing in the flames.

But the interest of the crowd was centred in the condition of Alice
Ayres, and as she was being removed to Guy's Hospital there was
scarcely a man or a woman present whose eyes were not filled with
tears.  Many followed on to the hospital, in the hope of hearing the
medical opinion of her condition, and before long it became known that
she had fractured and dislocated her spine, and that there was no hope
of her recovery.

Alice Ayres died at Guy's Hospital on Sunday, April 26, 1885, aged 25,
and at the inquest, when her coffin was covered with beautiful flowers
sent from all parts of the land, the coroner declared that he should
not be doing justice to the jury or the public, did he not give
expression to the general feeling of admiration which her noble conduct
had aroused.  In the hurry and excitement of a fire there were few who
had the presence of mind to act as she had done, or who would run the
risks she had for the sake of saving others.  He deeply regretted that
so valuable a life, offered so generously, had been sacrificed.

In the Postmen's Park, which adjoins the General Post Office, there is
a cloister bearing the inscription, 'In Commemoration of Heroic
Self-Sacrifice.'  Within it are tablets to the memory of heroes of
humble life, and one of the most interesting of these is that on which
is inscribed:--'Alice Ayres, daughter of a bricklayer's labourer, who
by intrepid conduct saved three children from a burning house in Union
Street, Borough, at the cost of her own young life.  April 24, 1885.'


The steamer Georgette had sprung a leak while on a voyage from
Fremantle to Adelaide, and the captain knew that there was little hope
of saving his ship.  But there were forty-eight passengers, including
women and children, and to save these and the crew was the great desire
of the captain.  The ship's lifeboat was lowered, but this too was in a
leaky condition, and the eight persons who put off in it were drowned
before the eyes of their friends on the Georgette.

Seeing, soon, that there was absolutely no hope of saving his vessel,
the captain decided to run her ashore, hoping by that means to be able
to save all aboard her.  The vessel grounded some 180 miles south of
Fremantle on December 2, 1876; but she was some distance from the
shore, and it seemed to the captain that no boat could pass through the
surf which would have to be crossed to reach land.  He swept the coast
through his glass, but not a house or human being could he see, and he
gave up all hope of receiving help from the shore.

A boat was launched, but it had scarcely quitted the steamer's side
when it capsized, and before the crew could right it and bring it back
to the ship an hour had elapsed.  Once again it was lowered, but it
capsized again in two and a half fathoms of water, and the women and
children who escaped drowning clung to the overturned boat, and called
to those aboard the steamer to save them.  But help did not come from
that quarter.

Grace Bussell, the sixteen years old daughter of an English settler who
lived some twelve miles from the point opposite to which the Georgette
had gone ashore, was riding through the bush, accompanied by a native
stockman, and coming out towards the edge of the cliff saw the steamer
in distress, and witnessed the overturning of the small boat.
Horrified at the position of the poor people on the upturned boat, she
moved her horse forward and descended the steep cliff.

It was a terribly dangerous act, for had the horse slipped both beast
and rider would have fallen to certain death.  Behind her, on his own
horse, rode the stockman, which of course made the danger greater.

But Grace Bussell made nothing of the danger she was undergoing, her
sole thought being to reach the drowning people as quickly as possible.
The passengers and crew of the Georgette, watching her with a strange
fascination, expected every minute to see her fall and be killed.  To
their astonishment she reached the beach in safety, and rode straight
into the boiling surf.  The waves broke over her, and it seemed
impossible that she would ever reach the upturned boat and rescue the
exhausted people clinging to it.  Once the horse stumbled, but Grace
was a skilful rider and pulled him up quickly.

As she drew near to the boat, closely followed by the stockman, hope
revived in the hearts of the shivering women and children clinging to
it, and when at last she was alongside every mother besought her to
take her child.  Quickly she placed two little ones before her on the
saddle, and grasping hold of a third she started for the shore.  The
stockman, with as many children as he could hold, rode close behind her.

The journey outward had been difficult and dangerous, but now that her
horse was carrying an extra load it was infinitely more so.  However,
she proceeded slowly, and although on one or two occasions they were
nearly swept away they reached the beach in safety.

Having carefully placed her living load on dry land, she rode again
into the raging sea.  Her progress was slower this time, but she
returned to shore with children on her saddle and women clinging to her
skirt on each side.

Drenched to the skin and exhausted by the buffeting of the surf, Grace
Bussell might have pleaded that she had not the strength to make
another journey, but again and again, accompanied by the stockman, she
rode out into the dangerous sea, and not until four hours had passed,
and the last passenger was brought ashore, did she take a rest.

Hungry, tired, and shivering with cold, she sank to the ground; but she
soon noticed that many of those whom she had saved were more exhausted
than she, and that unless food and warm clothing were given them
quickly they would probably die.

So, rising from the ground, she mounted her dripping horse and galloped
off towards home.  The twelve miles were covered quickly, but on
dismounting at her home Grace fainted, and it was some time before her
anxious parents could discover what had caused her to be in such a
drenched and exhausted condition.

When at last she told the story of the shipwreck her sister got
together blankets and food and rode off to the sufferers, whom she
carefully tended throughout the night.  At daybreak Mr. Bussell arrived
with his wagon, and conveyed the whole party to his home, where they
remained tenderly nursed by mother and daughters for several days.
Mrs. Bussell, it is sad to say, died from brain fever brought on by her
anxiety concerning the shipwrecked people whom she had taken into her

Grace Bussell's bravery was not allowed to pass unnoticed.  The Royal
Humane Society presented her with its medal, and a medal was also
bestowed upon the stockman who had accompanied his mistress down the
steep cliff and on her many journeys to and from the upturned boat.


A terrible accident had occurred in one of the streets of Noyen.  The
men engaged in repairing a sewer had, on finishing their day's work,
neglected to take proper precautions for the safety of the public.
They had placed some thin planks across the opening, but omitted to
erect a barrier or to fix warning lights near the hole, with the result
that four workingmen, homeward bound, stepped on the planks and fell
through into the loathsome sewer.

An excited crowd of French men and women gathered round the hole, but
no one made any effort to rescue the poor fellows.  Soon the wives of
the imperilled men, hearing of the accident, ran to the spot, and with
tears in their eyes begged the men who were standing round the opening
to descend and rescue their husbands.

But not a man in the crowd was brave enough to risk his life for his
fellow-men.  They would be suffocated and eaten by rats, was their
excuse, and the frantic entreaties of the poor wives failed to stir
them to act like men.  Women were crying and fainting, men were
gesticulating and talking volubly, but nothing was being done to rescue
the poor fellows from the poisonous sewer.

But help came from an unexpected quarter.  Catherine Vasseur, a
delicate-looking servant girl, seventeen years of age, pushed her way
to the front, and said quietly, 'I'll go down and try to save them.'

It seemed impossible that this slightly built young girl could rescue
the men, but her willingness to make the attempt did not shame any of
the strong fellows standing by into taking her place.  All they did was
to lower her into the dark, loathsome hole.  On arriving at the bottom
she quickly found the four unconscious men, and tying the ropes round
two of them gave the signal for them to be hauled up.

The few minutes' work on the poisonous atmosphere was already telling
upon her, and finding herself gasping for breath she tied a rope around
her waist, and was drawn to the surface.  The women whose husbands she
had saved showered blessings upon her, and the other two implored her
to rescue theirs.  She replied that she would do so if possible, and
having regained her breath she again descended.

A third man was rescued, but before she could attend to the fourth she
felt herself becoming dazed.  She decided to go to the surface again,
and return for the fourth man when the fresh air had revived her.  It
was necessary that she should be drawn up quickly, but the rope which
had been tied around her waist had become unfastened, and it was some
minutes before she found it.  When she did find it she was too
exhausted to draw it down to tie around her.  For a few moments she
tugged at the heavy rope, but could not draw it lower than her head.

There seemed to be no escape for her, when suddenly a bright idea
occurred to her--she undid her long hair and tied it to the rope.  Then
she gave the signal to haul up.

Cries of horror and pity burst from the onlookers when they caught
sight of the brave girl hanging by her hair, and apparently dead.
Quickly untying her, they carried her into the fresh air, where she was
promptly attended to by a doctor, who eventually succeeded in restoring
her to consciousness.  She received the praise bestowed upon her with
the modesty of a genuine heroine, and was greatly distressed at having
been unable to save the fourth man.  The poor fellow was dead long
before his body was recovered by the sewermen, for none of the men who
had witnessed Catherine Vasseur's heroism had been brave enough to
follow her example.


It was at 11.25 on the morning of Thursday, March 30, 1899, that the
steamship Stella left Southampton for Guernsey with 140 passengers and
42 crew aboard.  Most of the passengers were looking forward to
spending a pleasant Easter holiday at Guernsey or Jersey, but a few
were natives of the Channel Islands returning from a visit to England.

For the first two hours the voyage was uneventful, but at about 1.30
the Stella ran into a dense fog.  The ship's speed was not reduced, but
the fog-horn was kept going.  There is nothing more depressing at sea
than the dismal hooting of the fog-horn, and it is not surprising that
some of the ladies aboard the Stella became nervous.  These Mrs.
Rogers, the stewardess, in a bright, cheery manner endeavoured to

Mary Rogers' life had been one of hard work and self-denial.  Eighteen
years previous to the Stella making her last trip Mary Rogers' husband
had been drowned at sea, and the young widow was left with a little
girl two years old to support; and a few weeks later a boy was born.
To bring her children up carefully and have them properly educated
became Mrs. Rogers' chief object in life, and to enable her to do this
she obtained her position as stewardess.

Her experience of the sea had been slight, and for five years after
becoming stewardess she scarcely ever made a trip without being
sea-sick.  Many women would have resigned the appointment in despair,
but Mary Rogers stuck to her post for the sake of her children.  Ill
though she might herself be, she always managed to appear happy, and to
attend promptly to the requirements of the lady passengers.  When at
last she was able to make a voyage without feeling sea-sick, her
kindness to the ladies in her care became still more noticeable.  In
foggy or rough weather her bright, sympathetic manner cheered the
drooping spirits of all who might be ill or nervous.  At night she
would go round, uncalled, and if she found any lady too nervous to
sleep she would stay and talk to her for a time.

Only a few months before the Stella's fatal trip, a lady passenger
assured Mrs. Rogers that her bright, cheery sympathy had done much to
make her trip pleasant.  'Well, you see, ma'am,' Mrs. Rogers replied,
'I don't believe in going about with a sad face, and it is such a
pleasure when one can help others.'

At this time Mrs. Rogers' prospects were very bright.  Her children,
whom she declared 'any mother might be proud of, they are so good,' had
grown up, and her daughter was to be married in the summer.  In three
years her son would finish his apprenticeship to a ship-builder, and it
was settled that then she was to retire from sea-life and live with her
daughter, continuing, as she had done for several years, to support her
aged father.  But the days to which she was looking forward with
pleasure she was never to see.

For two hours the Stella ran through the dense fog on this fatal March
30, and at about ten minutes to four the captain was under the
impression that the Casquets lay eight miles to the east.  But suddenly
they loomed out of the darkness, and almost immediately the Stella
struck one of the dreaded rocks.  Instantly the captain saw that there
was no hope of saving his ship.

'Serve out the life-belts!'  'Out with the boats!'  'Women and children
first!' were the orders he shouted from the bridge.

Mrs. Rogers did not for a moment lose her presence of mind, and by her
activity many women were saved who would in all probability never have
reached the deck.  The ladies' saloon was long, but the door was
somewhat narrow, and being round an awkward corner there would have
been a fearful struggle to get through it, had a panic arisen.  But
Mrs. Rogers, by her calmness and promptitude, prevented anything
approaching a panic, and got her passengers quickly on deck.

To all who had not provided themselves with them she gave life-belts,
and then assisted them into the boats.  The last boat was nearly
full--there was room for only one more--and the sailors in charge of it
called to Mrs. Rogers to come into it.

Before attempting to do so she took a last look round, to see that all
the ladies were gone, and saw that there was one still there, and
without a life-belt.  Instantly Mrs. Rogers took off her own, placed it
upon her, led her to the boat, and gave up her last chance of escape.
But the sailors who had witnessed her heroism did not wish to pull away
without her.

'Jump, Mrs. Rogers, jump!' they shouted.

'No, no,' she replied, 'if I get in, the boat will sink.  Good-bye,

Then raising her hands to heaven she cried, 'Lord, have me!' and almost
immediately the ship sank beneath her.

Seventy lives were lost in the wreck of the Stella, and the news of the
terrible calamity cast a gloom over the Easter holidays.  An inquiry
was held to determine the cause of the ship getting out of her course,
but the result need not be mentioned here.  One thing that soon came to
light was the story of Mary Rogers' heroism, which sent a thrill of
admiration through all who heard it.

Her well-spent life had been crowned with an act of heroism, and her
memory is deserving of more than the tablet which has been placed in
the Postmen's Park.



The Red Republicans had risen.  The factories and private residences of
the wealthy inhabitants of Buzançais were in flames, and owners of
property, irrespective of age and sex, were being dragged from their
hiding-places and murdered.

For some months it had been rumoured that the Red Republicans,
aggrieved at the high price of bread, intended to rise and kill all who
possessed wealth; but the people of Buzançais paid no attention to
these rumours, and were consequently unprepared to defend themselves
when, on January 14, 1853, the rising occurred.  Had they banded
themselves together, they could have quelled the riot, but, taken by
the surprise, the majority sought safety in hiding.

Meeting with no resistance, the Red Republicans pushed through the
town, leaving behind them a trail of fire and blood, and came at last
to a big house where lived Madame Chambert and her son.

Madame Chambert was a kind old lady, and generous to the poor; but the
Red Republicans, inflamed by wine which they had stolen from various
houses, forgot her good deeds, and remembered only that she was
wealthy.  And because she was wealthy they were determined to kill both
her and her son.

Madame Chambert and her son were in the drawing-room when the
infuriated mob burst into the house.  It was useless to attempt to
drive them out, as all the servants, with the exception of Madeleine
Blanchet and a man, had deserted them.  At last the armed mob, their
blouses stained with blood and wine, rushed into the drawing-room
hurling insults at the poor old lady, and charging her with crimes
which she had never committed.

Madeleine Blanchet fainted on hearing her mistress so grossly insulted,
but the man-servant rushed at the ringleader and knocked him down.  The
half-drunk murderers were eager to kill the Chamberts at once, plunder
the house, set light to it, and pass on; but as they stepped forward to
kill the old lady her son fired his gun and killed one of them.

The whole mob now rushed at Monsieur Chambert, who escaped from the
room, but was caught before he could find a hiding-place, and hacked to

In the meanwhile Madeleine Blanchet had recovered consciousness, and
going to her mistress, whom she had served for nine years, she hurried
her from the room to seek a place of safety.  But in the hall they came
face to face with the murderers returning from committing their latest
crime.  'Death! death!' they shouted, and attempted to strike the old
lady, but Madeleine Blanchet, with one arm around her waist, received
the blows intended for her.

'Go, go, my poor girl!' Madame Chambert murmured.  'I must die here.
Go away.'

But Madeleine Blanchet refused to leave her, and shouted to the
cowardly ruffians, 'You shall not kill my mistress until you have
killed me!'

Still parrying the blows aimed at her mistress, she implored the men
not to be such cowards as to kill a helpless old lady.  This appeal and
her devotion to her mistress touched the hearts of two of the Red
Republicans, who declared that the old lady should not be killed while
they could strike a blow in her defence.  Guarded by these two men,
Madeleine Blanchet carried her mistress to a neighbour's house, where a
hiding-place was found for her.

Assured that her mistress was safe from further molestation, Madeleine
Blanchet hurried back to the house, which the rioters were looting, and
saved many treasures from falling into their hands.  This dangerous
self-imposed task she performed several times.

The Red Republicans' reign at Buzançais was terrible, but it was short.
Scores of them were arrested, and Madeleine Blanchet was one of the
witnesses for the prosecution.  She told of the attack upon her
mistress's house and the murder of her young master, but not a word did
she say concerning her own bravery.  The President of the Court had,
however, heard of it, and was determined that her heroism should not be
unknown because of her modesty.

'We have been told,' he said to her, 'that you defended your mistress
with your body from the blows of the murderers, and that you declared
that they should kill you before they killed your mistress.  Is that

Madeleine replied that it was, and the President, after commending her
for her bravery and devotion to her mistress, declared that if there
had been twenty men in Buzançais with the courage she had shown, the
rioters would have been quickly dispersed and the terrible crimes
averted.  The story of Madeleine Blanchet's heroism spread rapidly
throughout France, and the Academy made a popular award, when it
presented her with a gold medal and five thousand francs.


On October 14, 1881, a gale raged throughout England, and in all parts
of the country there was a terrible destruction of lives and property.
Round our coasts ships were wrecked, and the number of lives lost at
sea on that day was appalling, while on shore many people were killed
by the falling of trees, chimney-pots and tiles.

In Sutton, Lancashire, the gale raged with tremendous fury, and the
children in the local National School, frightened by the roaring and
shrieking of the wind, could pay little attention to their lessons.
Hannah Rosbotham, the assistant mistress, was in charge of the school,
the head mistress being absent through ill-health.  She was very
popular among her pupils, and knew them all intimately, having herself
lived all her life in the village, and having been educated at the
school in which she was now a teacher.  She calmed the more timid of
her pupils, and endeavoured to carry on the school as if nothing
unusual were happening outside.

While she was teaching the bigger children, the infants (little tots of
three and four) were sitting in the gallery at the further end of the
room in the care of a pupil teacher.  Over this gallery was the belfry,
a large stone structure.  It had weathered many a storm, but none had
equalled this gale.  Suddenly about 11 o'clock Hannah Rosbotham was
startled by a loud rumbling, grinding noise, and almost at the same
moment a portion of the belfry crashed through the roof and fell in
pieces upon the poor little children in the gallery.

Immediately there was a stampede.  The pupils and the pupil teachers
rushed terror-stricken into the wind-swept playground, every one
anxious for her own safety.  But Hannah Rosbotham did not fly from the
danger; she thought only of the little children in the gallery.  The
air was filled with dust, but she groped her way to the gallery
staircase, which was littered with stone, wood and slates.  Hurrying up
she found, to her great joy, that many of the little ones had escaped
injury.  Some were crying, but others sat silent and terror-stricken,
gazing at the spot where several of their little friends lay buried in
the ruins.

Having hurried out the children who had so wonderfully escaped injury,
she set to work to rescue those who lay injured.  And the magnitude of
the task which lay before her may be realised from the fact that
sixteen-hundredweight of belfry-ruins had fallen through into the
gallery.  Quickly and unaided Hannah Rosbotham tore away the timber,
stone and slate that were crushing the little sufferers, whose pale
faces and pleading voices filled her heart with anguish, but gave
strength to her arms.  As she knelt tearing away with her bare hands
the mass of ruins, fragments of stone and slate fell continuously
around her, and she knew that at any moment she might be struck dead.
The gale was still raging, and as she glanced up through the hole in
the roof she saw the part of the belfry which had not yet given way.  A
continuous shower of fragments fell from it, but if the remaining
portion were blown down simultaneously, she and her infant pupils would
be crushed to death.

Working with tremendous energy she set free one by one the terrified
young prisoners.  Some were very little hurt, and were able to hurry
away into the playground, but there were others who had been severely
injured, and these she had to carry away.

At last her task was done, and happily without any serious results to
herself.  Although she had been throughout her brave work surrounded by
danger she escaped with nothing more serious than a few scratches.

When she came into the playground with the last of the children she had
rescued, she found that the villagers had arrived on the scene.  They
had heard of the accident, and had come to seek their children, and
having found them alive they joined in showering praise and blessings
upon Hannah Rosbotham.  Now that all danger was over the brave young
schoolmistress--she was only twenty years of age--broke down and cried
hysterically, but before long she was calm again, and started out to
visit at their homes the little ones whom she had saved.

Such bravery as Hannah Rosbotham had shown could not of course escape
recognition.  The Albert Medal was presented to her on January 11,
1882, and later the Managers of the Sutton National School gave her a
gold watch, on which was inscribed their appreciation 'of her
courageous behaviour in rescuing the school-children during the gale of
October 14, 1881, that destroyed the roof of the school, and for which
act of bravery she has been awarded the Albert Medal by Her Majesty.'





Alone among cannibals!  One can scarcely imagine a more terrifying
experience for a white woman.  No matter how friendly people around
might be, the knowledge that they were by long habit cannibals, whose
huts were adorned with human skulls, would be sufficient to strike
terror to the heart of the bravest.  One woman is known to have
experienced this trying ordeal, and she was a missionary's wife.

In the life of that noble missionary, James Chalmers,[1] we get
glimpses of a woman who was indeed a heroine, and who had the
unpleasant experience of being left for a time, without any white
companions, in the midst of cannibals.  This was Jane Chalmers the
martyr-missionary's first wife.

Jane Hercus was married to Chalmers in October, 1865, and in the
following January they sailed for Australia on their way to the South
Sea Islands.  At the very outset of their missionary career danger
assailed them.  A gale sprang up in the Channel, and for a time it was
believed that the ship and everyone aboard her would be lost.
Providentially, however, their vessel weathered the storm, although so
much damaged that she had to put into Weymouth, and remain there a
fortnight for repairs.  On May 20 they arrived in Adelaide, and in
August sailed from Sydney for the New Hebrides; but while approaching
Aneiteum, to land some passengers, the ship struck an unseen reef, and
could not be got off until some days had elapsed.  Temporary repairs
were made, and with men working at the pumps day and night the ship
slowly made her way back to Sydney.  After six weeks' enforced stay at
Sydney, Jane Chalmers and her husband made another start for their
destination, which, however, they were not to reach without further

On January 8 the ship struck on a reef which surrounds Savage Island,
and became a total wreck, but happily, without loss of life, as the
passengers and crew managed to get off in the boats.  They reached
shore in safety, but although Jane Chalmers was ill for some time,
neither she nor her husband were discouraged.

Six weeks after the wreck of the ship, Mr. and Mrs. Chalmers left on a
schooner for Samoa, and during the voyage Mrs. Chalmers' health
improved.  After a six weeks' stay at Samoa Chalmers and his wife
sailed for Rarotonga, and on May 20, 1867, arrived there.  In that
beautiful island Mr. and Mrs. Chalmers settled down at once to work.
'The natives,' Mrs. Chalmers wrote, 'have to be treated in all things
more like children at home than men.  They soon get weary and
discouraged in any work, but a few words of praise or encouragement put
fresh spirit within them.'  Missionaries had laboured at Rarotonga
before the arrival of the Chalmers, and the work was not exactly the
type which James Chalmers desired.  He longed to be a missionary to the
heathen; but it was not until he had spent ten years at Rarotonga that
his desire was gratified by his being appointed to New Guinea, then a
comparatively unknown land, the people of which were savages of the
most degraded type.

At Dunedin, where the Chalmers stayed for a time, Mrs. Chalmers was
frequently urged to remain behind until her husband was settled in his
new home.  'No,' she replied on every occasion 'my place is by my
husband's side.'  And so this brave woman, in spite of the
protestations of her friends, went forth with her husband to live among
cannibals.  The first native who spoke to Mrs. Chalmers on their
arrival at Suau was wearing a necklace of human bones, and wishing to
be gracious to her, this same cannibal offered her later a portion of a
man's breast ready cooked!  Signs of cannibalism were to be found
everywhere, and the chief's house in which the Chalmers took up their
residence until their own was built, was hung with human skulls.  Such
sights as Jane Chalmers witnessed were bad enough to appal any woman,
but she bore up bravely, and was soon busy learning the language from a
young warrior, whom, in return, she taught knitting and tatting.  Both
she and her husband made friends quickly, and some of their new
friends, intending to please them, invited the missionary and his wife
to a cannibal feast.

Nevertheless, it was not long before the Chalmers were in great danger
of losing their lives.  The vessel which had brought them to New Guinea
was still standing off the island, and the natives, in an attempt to
capture it, had one of their number killed.  For this they demanded
compensation from Chalmers, who, of course, was in no way responsible
for the man's death.  Chalmers promised to give them compensation on
the following day, but the natives demanded that it should be given
immediately, and departed very sulkily when their request was refused.
Later in the day a native warned Chalmers that he, his wife, and his
teachers from Rarotonga had better get away to the ship during the
night, as the natives had decided to murder them early in the following
morning.  Chalmers told his wife what the native had said, and added,
'It is for you to decide.  Shall we men stay, and you women go, as
there is not room enough for us all on the vessel? or shall we try all
of us to go? or shall we all stay?'

'We have come here to preach the Gospel and do these people good,' Mrs.
Chalmers replied.  'God, whom we serve, will take care of us.  We will
stay.  If we die, we die; if we live, we live.'

Then the teachers' wives were asked if they would like to go aboard the
ship, but their answer was that whatever Mrs. Chalmers did they would
do.  Therefore it was decided that they should all stay.

During the night the little band of Christians could hear the war-horn
calling the natives together, and the shouts of the cannibals as they
came in from all parts.

In the meanwhile Mr. and Mrs. Chalmers had made up in parcels the
compensation which they intended to offer the people; but when, at four
o'clock in the morning, the chief arrived to make a last demand he
declared that they were not sufficient.

'If you will wait till the steamer comes I may be able to give you
more,' Chalmers said, 'but at present I cannot.'

'I must have more now,' the chief declared, and departed.

The attack was now expected every minute, but hour after hour passed
and the natives did not re-appear.  At three o'clock in the morning
Chalmers turned in, but he had not long been asleep when his wife
discovered the cannibals approaching.  Chalmers, aroused by his wife,
ran to the door and faced the savages.

'What do you want?' he asked.

'Give us more compensation,' the leader replied, 'or we will kill you
and burn the house.'

'Kill you may, but no more compensation do I give,' Chalmers answered.
'Remember that if we die, we shall die fighting.'

Then Chalmers took down his musket and loaded it in sight of the
cannibals, who, having seen the missionary shoot birds, feared his
skill.  They withdrew and discussed what to do.  For about an hour and
a half the band of Christians waited for the attack to be made.  Many
of them were, naturally enough, much distressed at the thought of being
killed and eaten, but throughout this trying time Jane Chalmers
remained calm, assured that whatever might happen would be in
accordance with God's will.

But the Chalmers' life-work was not yet ended.  The chief of the
village decided that they should not be killed.  'Before this white man
came here with his friends I was nobody,' he said to the men who had
assembled from other parts of New Guinea.  'They have brought me
tomahawks, hoop-iron, red beads and cloth.  You have no white man, and
if you try to kill him, you kill him over my body.'

It would have been only natural if Jane Chalmers, after the experiences
she had undergone, had decided that she could no longer live at Suau;
but no such thought ever entered her head.  Some months later she did
as not one woman in a million would have done--remained for six weeks
among cannibals with not another white person in the place.

Her husband sailed away to visit the native preachers at other
villages, but she remained behind because she did not think it right
that they should both leave their Rarotongan teachers so soon after the
disturbances already described.  The natives promised Chalmers, before
he departed, that they would treat her kindly; and although the
temptation to kill and eat her must often have been great, they kept
their promise.  But nevertheless she knew that her life might be ended
at any moment, and it is easy to imagine her feelings when, one night
as she was preparing for bed, she heard a commotion outside the house,
men and women shouting and screaming loudly.  One of the teachers went
out to discover the meaning of the uproar, and returned with the
comforting news that there was an eclipse of the moon, and that the
natives were alarmed because they believed it would cause many of them
to die.

The cannibals were very proud of having taken care of Mrs. Chalmers,
and received with a conviction that they had well earned them, the
presents and thanks which her husband, on his return, bestowed upon
them.  At the same time Mrs. Chalmers' pluck in remaining among them
made a great impression on the cannibals, and caused them to have more
confidence than ever in the missionaries.

But although Jane Chalmers was as full of courage and faith as when she
arrived at Suau the trials and excitement of the life she had led there
began to impair her health.  Nevertheless, she did not complain, and
when the mission at Suau was established on a sound footing she
accompanied her husband on a voyage along the coast to visit places
where a white man had never yet been seen; but eventually it became
plain to herself and her husband that she needed rest and nursing.
Accordingly she sailed for Sydney, to wait there until her husband
could follow and take her to England.  But they never met again.  The
doctors at Sydney pronounced her to be suffering from consumption, and
held out little hope of her recovery.  She, however, was very hopeful,
and believed that before long she might be able to return to her
husband at New Guinea.  But this was not to be, and this heroic woman
passed away before her husband's arrival.

[1] _James Chalmers, his Autobiography and Letters_, by Richard Lovett,
M.A.  (Religious Tract Society.)


'The White Man's Grave' and 'No White Man's Land' are the ominous names
that have been bestowed on several unhealthy countries where Europeans
have been compelled to reside; but there were none, fifty years ago,
more deserving of being so described than Ashantee, Dahomey, and the
Yoruba country.  Nothing but the prospect of growing rich rapidly would
persuade a white man, unless he were a missionary, to live in any of
those countries, and a European woman was almost unknown there.

One of the first white women to risk the dangers of the Yoruba climate
was Anna Hinderer, to whom belongs the honour of being the first of her
colour to visit Ibadan.  It was not, however, a mere visit that she
paid to this unhealthy West African town; for seventeen years she lived
there with her husband, devoting herself almost entirely to educating
the native children.

Her mother died when she was five years old, and it was probably owing
to her own childhood being sad and lonely that Anna Martin, afterwards
Mrs. Hinderer, early in life began to take an interest in the welfare
of poor and neglected children.  In 1839, when only twelve years of
age, she went to live with her grandfather at Lowestoft, and soon made
two lifelong friends.  They were the Rev. Francis Cunningham, Vicar of
Lowestoft, and his wife, who was sister of that noble Quakeress,
Elizabeth Fry.  The friendship began by Anna Martin asking Mrs.
Cunningham to be allowed to take a Sunday School class.  She feared
that being only twelve years old her request would not be entertained,
but to her great joy it was granted at once.  A little later she went
to live with the Cunninghams, and was never so happy as when assisting
in some good work.  When only fourteen years of age she started a class
for ragged and neglected children, and eventually she had as many as
two hundred pupils.  Many other schemes for the happiness of children
were suggested by her, and, with the aid of Mr. and Mrs. Cunningham,
successfully carried out.

Anna Martin had long wished to be a missionary when she made the
acquaintance of the Rev. David Hinderer, who had returned to England
after labouring for four years in the Yoruba country, which stretches
inland from the Bight of Benin almost to the Niger Territory, and is
bordered on the west by Dahomey.  Anna Martin was deeply interested in
all that Mr. Hinderer told her of his little-known land, where lived
some three million heathen, broken up into many tribes, but speaking
one language.  Before long the missionary asked Anna Martin to become
his wife, and on October 14, 1852, they were married at the old parish
church of Lowestoft.

Seven weeks after their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Hinderer started for
Africa, and arrived at Lagos on Christmas Eve.  Mrs. Hinderer had
suffered greatly from sea-sickness throughout the voyage, and three
weeks after her arrival at Lagos she had her first attack of African
fever.  It was a sharp one, and left her very weak, but as soon as she
was sufficiently strong to travel they started in canoes for Abeokuta.
This was indeed a trying journey for a young woman who had been
accustomed to the comforts of a well-to-do English home; but she had,
of course, made up her mind to bear hardships in her Master's service,
and whether they were sleeping in a village or in a tent pitched by the
river-side, with fires lighted to keep wild beasts at a distance, she
made no complaint.  Sometimes she was home-sick, but these natural fits
of depression soon passed away.

On arriving at Abeokuta Anna Hinderer had another severe attack of
fever, which, as she stated in her diary, edited many years later by
Archdeacon Hone, and published with the title _Seventeen Years in the
Yoruba Country_, left her so weak that she could hardly lift her hand
to her head.  Her husband was also down with fever; a missionary with
whom they were staying died of it; and, a few weeks later, another
missionary passed suddenly away.  A more gloomy beginning to a young
worker's missionary career there could scarcely have been, but Anna
Hinderer was far from being disheartened, and was eager to reach their

At last they arrived at Ibadan.  Mr. Hinderer had made known that he
was bringing her, and when the news, 'the white mother is come,' spread
through the village, men, women and children rushed out to see her.
Very few of them had ever seen a white woman, for, as already stated,
Anna Hinderer was the first to visit Ibadan, and their curiosity was
somewhat embarrassing.  They followed her to her new home, and for days
hung about in crowds, anxious to catch a glimpse of her.

The mission-house was not an attractive or comfortable place.  It
consisted of one room, 30 feet by 6.  Anna Hinderer had to exercise her
ingenuity in making it appear homelike.  How she managed to do this we
gather from the following extract from a letter written by Dr. Irving,
R.N., who visited Ibadan shortly after they had settled down:--

'Mr. and Mrs. Hinderer at present live in such a funny little place;
quite a primitive mud dwelling, where no two persons can walk abreast
at one time.  And yet there is an air of quiet domestic comfort and
happiness about it that makes it a little palace in my eyes.  It is
unfortunate, however, for my temples, for in screwing in at one door
and out at the other, forgetting to stoop at the proper time, my head
gets many a knock.  At one end, six feet square, is the bedroom,
separated from the dining-room by a standing bookcase; my bedroom is at
one end of this, formed by a sofa, and my privacy established by a
white sheet, put across for a screen at bedtime.'

In a very short time Anna Hinderer became popular with the women and
children, and set to work to learn the language.  The boys being eager
to learn English she would point to a tree, pig, horse, or anything
near by, and the youngsters would tell her the Yoruba name for it.  In
return she told them the English name.  But long before she had
acquired anything like a useful knowledge of the language she managed
to make the women and children understand that Sunday was a day of
rest, and was delighted to see that many of them followed her example
and gave up their Sunday occupations.  The women were indeed deeply
attached to her.  If she looked hot they fanned her, and whenever they
saw that she was tired they insisted upon her sitting down.  When she
had an attack of fever they were greatly distressed, and constantly
inquiring how she was progressing.

Having at last acquired a fair knowledge of the Yoruba language, Anna
Hinderer started a day school for children, and to nine little boys who
were regular in their attendance she gave a blue shirt each, of which
they were immensely proud.  A little later she prevailed upon a chief
to allow his two children to come and live with her.  One was a girl
six years of age, and the other her brother, two years younger.
Throughout the day the little ones were very happy, but towards evening
the girl wanted to go home.  She was evidently frightened, and was
overheard saying to her brother, "Don't stay.  When it gets dark the
white people kill and eat the black."  Both, then, ran off home, but
returned the following morning.  A few days later the boy, in spite of
his sister's warnings, stayed all night.  The girl left him in great
distress, and at daybreak was waiting outside the mission-house,
anxious to see if he were still alive.  Her astonishment on finding
that he had been treated as kindly after dark as during daylight was

It was no easy task to manage a school of native children, but,
nevertheless, the experience she had gained among the Lowestoft
children made the task lighter than otherwise it would have been.
'Happy, happy years were those I spent with you,' she wrote to Mr.
Cunningham, 'and entirely preparatory they have been for my work and
calling.'  She managed to impress upon her dusky little pupils that it
was necessary to wash more than once or twice a week, and that they
must keep quiet during school and service.

One day while her husband was preaching he referred to idols, and
quoted the Psalm, 'They have mouths, and speak not.'  No sooner had he
said this than Mrs. Hinderer's boys burst into loud laughter, and
shouted, in their own language, 'True, very true.'

Soon after their temporary church--a large shed covered with palm
leaves--had been completed and opened there came a period of trial.
Mrs. Hinderer's horse stumbled and fell upon her, and although no bones
were broken she found later that she had received an injury which
troubled her until her death.  No sooner had she recovered from the
shaking she had received, than her husband had a bad attack of fever.
It was believed that he would die, but she nursed him day and night,
and eventually had the great joy of seeing him recover.  But soon she
was seriously ill.  Inflammation of the lungs set in, and for a time
her life seemed to be drawing to a close, but she recovered, and was
before long once more at work among the women and children.

It was about this time that Mrs. Hinderer wrote to her Lowestoft
friends:--'You will not think me egotistical, but this I do think, if I
am come to Africa for nothing else, I have found the way to a few
children's hearts, and, if spared, I think I shall not, with God's
blessing, find it very difficult to do something with them.  My boys
that I have now would never tell me an untruth, or touch a cowry or
anything they should not.  This is truly wonderful in heathen boys,
brought up all their lives, hitherto, in the midst of every kind of

After a stay at Abeokuta for the benefit of her health, Anna Hinderer
returned to Ibadan, to find the new church and mission-house finished.
The natives had taken great interest in the building of the
mission-house, and, soon after the Hinderers' return, the head chief,
accompanied by his wives and a host of attendants, came to see it.
They received a cordial welcome, but so many people swarmed into the
house that Mr. Hinderer began to fear it would collapse, and had to
keep out scores who wished to enter.  The chief found much to amuse him
in this European-furnished house, and was immensely amused when for the
first time he saw himself in a looking-glass.  His wives were shown
round by Mrs. Hinderer, and arriving at the bed-room they pointed to a
washstand and asked its use.  For reply Mrs. Hinderer poured out some
water and washed her hands.  Now the chief's wives had never before
seen soap, and to dry their hands after washing was a proceeding of
which they had never heard; therefore each became anxious to there and
then wash their hands in European fashion.  Water was splashed about
the floor and wall, and when they wiped their hands the indigo dye from
their clothes ruined the towel.

Anna Hinderer, although frequently in bad health, continued her work
among the children with unabated enthusiasm, and in November, 1885, she
had the joy of seeing eight of them baptized.  Two months later the
state of her health made it imperative that she should proceed to Lagos
for a rest.  Her husband accompanied her, but both were eager to get
back to their work, and were absent for only a few weeks.  But during
that short time much had happened at Ibadan.  The natives had begun to
persecute the converts, and some had forbidden their children to attend
the church or mission-school.

One girl who refused to give up attending church was shamefully
treated.  A rope was tied round her body, and she was dragged through
the streets while the mob beat her with sticks and stoned her.  As she
lay bleeding and half dead the native idols were brought out and placed
before her.  'Now she bows down,' the mob cried; but the girl answered.
'No, I do not; you have put me here.  I can never bow down to gods of
wood and stone who cannot hear me.'  Eventually, after suffering
ill-treatment daily, she ran away to Abeokuta.

For the next seven months Anna Hinderer continued without ceasing to
teach the children, nurse those who were sick, and adopt any little
girl-baby who had been deserted by her inhuman parents.  Then Mr.
Hinderer, after six months' illness, was stricken with yellow fever,
and it became imperative that he should go to England for his health's
sake.  On August 1, 1856, Mr. and Mrs. Hinderer sailed from Lagos for
home.  And yet Anna Hinderer did not feel as if she were going home,
but that she were leaving it, for Ibadan was beloved by her.  Husband
and wife were in bad health throughout the voyage, and the captain's
parting words to the latter as she went ashore at England were:--'You
must not come to sea again; it cannot be your duty.  A few more voyages
must kill you.'  Nevertheless, two years later, Anna Hinderer and her
husband, restored in health, were back at Ibadan.

Two years of hard work followed.  The school was filled, the natives
had ceased from persecuting the converts, and the prospects of
missionary work were brighter than ever, when suddenly the news came
that the fiendish King of Dahomey was marching on Abeokuta.  Mr. and
Mrs. Hinderer were at Abeokuta when the news arrived, and at once they
hastened back to Ibadan, although there was a danger of being captured
and tortured by the invading force.  They reached Ibadan in safety,
only, however, to find that the chief of that place was at war with the
chief of Ijaye, a neighbouring town.  The place was full of excitement
and a human sacrifice was offered, the victim, prior to the ceremony,
walking proudly through the town.

Anna Hinderer and her husband could at first have made their way to the
coast, but they decided to remain with their converts and pupils.  It
was a bitter war, and soon the Hinderers were cut off from all
communication with their fellow-missionaries in the Yoruba country.
Supplies ran short, and they were compelled to sell their personal
belongings to obtain food for themselves and the children.  'We sold a
counterpane and a few yards of damask which had been overlooked by us;'
runs an entry in Anna Hinderer's diary, 'so that we indulge every now
and then in one hundred cowries' worth of meat (about one pennyworth),
and such a morsel seems a little feast to us in these days.'  Many of
the native women were exceedingly kind to Anna Hinderer in the time of
privation.  The woman who had supplied them with milk insisted upon
sending it regularly, although told that they had no money to pay for

For four years the Hinderers were almost entirely cut off from
communication with the outer world, but they continued their labours
unceasingly throughout this trying time.  The girls' sewing class had,
however, to be discontinued, for the very good reason that their stock
of needles and cotton was exhausted.  It was a time of great privation,
but Anna Hinderer, although frequently compelled to endure the gnawing
pangs of hunger, always managed to keep her native children supplied
with food.

At last relief came.  The Governor of Lagos had made one or two
unsuccessful attempts to relieve the Hinderers, and in April, 1865,
devised a means of escape.  He despatched Captain Maxwell with a few
trustworthy men, to cut a new track through the bush.

It was a difficult undertaking, but successfully accomplished, and one
night, about ten o'clock, the Hinderers were surprised to see Captain
Maxwell enter the mission-house.  He brought with him supplies, and
also a hammock for Mrs. Hinderer's use on the return journey.

It was somewhat of a surprise to the gallant officer to find that the
missionaries for whom he had performed a difficult and dangerous
journey were by no means anxious to return with him.  It was the more
surprising as it was plain that both were in very bad health.  Mr.
Hinderer declared that he could not possibly leave his mission at seven
hours' notice, but he joined the captain in urging his wife to go,
assuring her that it was her duty to do so.  At last she was prevailed
upon to avail herself of the means of escape.  She was overcome with
grief at leaving her husband shut up in Ibadan, and her distress was
increased by her inability to say 'good-bye' to the little native
children to whom she had acted a mother's part.  They were asleep, and
to have awakened them would have been unwise, for there would certainly
have been loud crying, had the little ones been told that their "white
mother" was leaving them.  Their crying would have been heard beyond
the mission-house compound, and the news of Mrs. Hinderer's approaching
departure would have spread through the town, in which there were
probably spies of the enemy.

Seven hours after Captain Maxwell arrived he began his dangerous return
journey, his men carrying Mrs. Hinderer in the hammock.  They proceeded
by forced marches, keeping at the same time a sharp look-out for the
enemy, who would, they knew, promptly kill any Christian who fell into
their power.  On several occasions they suddenly found themselves so
close to the enemy that they could hear their voices, but, fortunately,
they were not discovered.  On the third day, however, they heard that
their departure had become known to the enemy, who was in hot pursuit.
It was a terribly anxious time for the invalid missionary, but Captain
Maxwell and his men were determined that she should not be captured.
Silently and without halting once, even for food, they hurried on hour
after hour, and finally arrived at Lagos, having done a six days'
journey in less than three and a half.  So carefully had Captain
Maxwell's men carried Anna Hinderer that she was little the worse for
the journey, and after a few days' rest sailed for England.  Two months
later her husband followed.

In the autumn of the following year Anna Hinderer and her husband
returned to Ibadan, where they were received joyfully.  Anna Hinderer
resumed her work with all her former enthusiasm and love, although she
found before long that she had not sufficient strength to do all that
she had done formerly.

Two years later the chiefs of the neighbouring tribes decided to expel
all white men from their territory, and they urged the Ibadan chiefs to
adopt a similar policy.  The only white people in Ibadan were the
missionaries, and these they refused to expel.  Announcing their
decision to the Hinderers, the chiefs said: 'We have let you do your
work, and we have done ours, but you little know how closely we have
watched you.  Your ways please us.  We have not only looked at your
mouths but at your hands, and we have no complaint to lay against you.
Just go on with your work with a quiet mind; you are our friends, and
we are yours.'

Another two years of hard work followed.  The schools were flourishing,
and among the pupils were children of the little ones whom, many years
previously, Anna Hinderer had taken into her home and cared for.  The
chiefs continued to be friendly, and only one thing was wanting to make
Anna Hinderer perfectly happy.  Frequent attacks of fever had so
weakened her that she began to feel that the work was beyond her
strength.  Her husband, too, was never free from pain.  They recognised
that they could not live much longer in Africa.  Gladly they would have
remained and died at Ibadan, but for the knowledge that their work
could now be better carried on by younger missionaries.  So with a sad
heart Anna Hinderer bade farewell to the people among whom she had
bravely toiled for seventeen years.  She had lost the sight of one eye,
and the specialist whom she consulted in London assured her that had
she remained much longer in Africa she would have become totally blind.

Although in a very weak state of health Anna Hinderer was not content
to remain idle, and in her native county of Norfolk began to interest
herself in factory girls and other children of the poor.  She was
always cheerful, and few people knew how much she was suffering from
the effects of years of hard work and privation in a pestilential
country.  She died on June 6, 1870, aged forty-three; and when the sad
news reached Ibadan there was great sorrow in the town, and the
Christian Church which she had helped to plant there forwarded to her
husband a letter of consolation and thankfulness for the work which she
had done among them.


Ann Judson was not only the first American woman to enter the foreign
mission field, but also the first lady missionary, or missionary's
wife, to visit Rangoon.  She was the daughter of Mr. John Hasseltine,
of Bradford, Massachusetts, and was born on December 22, 1789.  When
nearly seventeen years of age she became deeply impressed by the
preaching of a local minister, and decided to do all in her power
towards spreading the Gospel.  Sunday Schools had been started in
America about 1791, but they were very few.  Bradford did not possess
one, and probably it was not known there that such schools existed
anywhere.  Ann Hasseltine, being desirous of instructing the children
in religious knowledge, adopted the only course which occurred to her
as likely to lead to success; she became a teacher in an ordinary day

When she had been engaged in this and other Christian work about four
years, she made the acquaintance of Adoniram Judson, a young man who
had recently been accepted for work in the East Indies, by the newly
formed American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions.  Before
they had known each other many months, Judson asked Ann Hasseltine to
become his wife and accompany him to India.  He did not conceal from
her that in all probability her life as a missionary's wife would be
full of hardships and trials, but, after considering the matter for
some days, she promised to marry him, providing that her father gave
his consent.  Judson wrote to Mr. Hasseltine, and after stating that he
had asked his daughter to become his wife, and that she had consented,
continued: 'I have now to ask whether you can consent to part with your
daughter early next spring, to see her no more in this world; whether
you can consent to her departure for a heathen land, and her subjection
to the hardships and sufferings of a missionary life; whether you can
consent to her exposure to the dangers of the ocean; to the fatal
influence of the southern climate of India; to every kind of want and
distress; to degradation, insult, persecution, and perhaps a violent
death.  Can you consent to all this for the sake of Him who left His
heavenly home and died for her and for you; for the sake of perishing
immortal souls; for the sake of Zion and the glory of God?  Can you
consent to all this, in the hope of soon meeting your daughter in the
world of glory, with a crown of righteousness brightened by the
acclamation of praise which shall redound to her Saviour from heathens
saved, through her means, from eternal woe and despair?'

Mr. Hasseltine gave his consent, and on February 5, 1812, his daughter
was married to Adoniram Judson.  It had now become known throughout the
United States that Mrs. Judson intended to accompany her husband to the
mission field, and in all quarters her intention was denounced.  She
was accused of being both imprudent and lacking in modesty.  These
attacks caused Ann Judson considerable pain, but they did not weaken
her determination to accompany her husband.  They sailed for India on
February 12, and landed at Calcutta on June 18.  On the voyage they had
for fellow passengers some Baptist missionaries, and the result of
their intercourse with them was that ten days after their arrival at
Calcutta they were baptised.  By this step they lost the support of the
Board of Commissioners who had sent them out, but aid was soon sent
them by the American Baptists.

Missionary work in India was almost at a standstill when the Judsons
arrived at Calcutta.  The East India Company had issued an order,
withdrawn, however, in the following year, forbidding missionaries to
carry on their work in the Company's territory.  The Judsons received
notice to depart before they had been in the country many months, and
were undecided where to go.  They were anxious to settle in Rangoon,
but everyone assured them that Lower Burma was not yet ripe for
missionary work.  The Burmese were described to them as little better
than fiends, and stories were told of Europeans who had met with
torture and death at their hands.

Nevertheless, the Judsons sailed for Rangoon, and in July, 1813, were
ascending the Rangoon River, delighted with their first glimpse of the
country.  On either side of the mighty river was dense jungle,
extending far inland.  Here and there along the banks were small
fishing villages, with quaint little wooden huts built on tall poles to
prevent their being flooded or invaded by tigers, cheetahs or snakes.
Near every village were several pagodas whose spires rose above the
jungle; and there were many pagodas standing far from any habitation.

As the Judsons drew near to Rangoon they saw on the hill, near by, the
great Shway Dagon Pagoda with its tall, gilded spire shining in the sun
with a brilliancy that was dazzling.  But soon they turned from gazing
at the Mecca of the Burmese Buddhists to view the town, a big
collection of bamboo and mat huts protected by forts with guns, which
the people fondly believed would utterly destroy any foreign fleet
which dared to ascend the river.  Many trading vessels were riding at
anchor off the city, and canoes of various sizes and design were
passing to and from them.  It was a busy scene, made bright by the
gorgeous turbans of the rowers, and the brilliant attire of high

Mr. and Mrs. Judson landed at Rangoon not only unmolested, but with a
friendly greeting from the natives.  These swarmed round them smiling
pleasantly, and exhibiting none of the appearances of
atrocity-perpetrators.  The women were greatly interested in Mrs.
Judson, and when she smiled at them they laughed merrily.  This
unexpectedly pleasant reception greatly cheered the Judsons, and made
them eager to begin work.  But before they could do this they had to
learn the Burmese language, not a word of which they knew.  They could
not obtain an interpreter, for the reason that no one, with the
exception of a few merchants, understood English.  The European
merchants who at that time lived in Burma were, with scarcely an
exception, men of poor character.  A missionary was the last person
these men would welcome or help.

Having settled down in their home, Mr. and Mrs. Judson began to learn
the Burmese language, a difficult task, considering that they had
neither dictionary nor grammar to assist them.  Mrs. Judson, having to
buy food and superintend her servants, soon learnt a few Burmese
sentences, but her husband was learning the language scientifically,
with the intention of eventually translating the Bible into Burmese.
When both knew sufficient Burmese to make themselves understood, they
engaged teachers to help them with their studies.

Two years passed, and Mr. and Mrs. Judson were still learning the
language.  In September, 1815, a son was born to them, but to their
great grief he died eight months later, through want of medical
attention.  When the child was buried, some forty Burmese and
Portuguese followed the body to the grave.

In December, 1815, Mr. and Mrs. Judson began to make known to the
people the Gospel they had come to Burma to preach.  Until then they
had wisely refrained from doing so, knowing that mistakes they might
make in their speech would bring ridicule upon their religion.  But now
that they were confident of their knowledge of the language they
started hopefully on the work of winning converts.

The time to which they had long looked forward had arrived, but the
success which they had expected was not achieved.  The natives listened
attentively to everything Mr. or Mrs. Judson said to them, but their
answer was usually, 'Our religion is good for us, yours for you.'  Some
laughed, good-humouredly, at the idea of the missionaries expecting
them to give up the religion of their forefathers for that of the white
_kalas_[1] from across the sea, and others declared that they were mad.
No one, however, suggested that they should be forbidden to attempt to
gain converts.  It did not seem worth while interfering with them; for
what Burman living in sight of the Shway Dagon Pagoda, and near to the
monasteries where he had learnt the precepts of Guatama Buddha, would
even think of forsaking his religion?

This indifference of the Burmese was very disheartening to the Judsons,
and when a year had passed without their having made the slightest
impression upon any native they might well have been discouraged.  But
this was far from being the case, and in October, 1816, they were able
to look forward with still greater confidence to seeing their labour
crowned with success.  The printing press which they had long been
expecting arrived, and two Burmese tracts which Mr. Judson had prepared
were printed and circulated.  One was a clear explanation of
Christianity, the other a translation of the Gospel according to
Matthew.  The result of the wide distribution of these tracts was not
such as the Judsons had expected.  One or two Burmans made a few
enquiries concerning the subject of the tracts, but when their
curiosity was satisfied they showed no further interest in the matter.
Three years of steady hard work followed.  Mrs. Judson continued her
efforts to win the women, and gathered around her every Sunday a large
number to whom she read the Scriptures.  Her husband had in the
meanwhile finished his dictionary of the Burmese language, a work for
which successive generations of British officials, merchants and
missionaries have had cause to be thankful, and in 1819 began to preach
on Sundays.  Hitherto he had been speaking to individuals; now he
addressed himself to crowds.

The place in which he preached was a _zayat_ or rest-house, a big
one-room building erected for the convenience of pilgrims who came to
worship at the Shway Dagon Pagoda.  There was no furniture in the
place, and the pilgrims, or any one else who cared to enter, squatted
on the floor, or, if tired, lay down and slept.  Here, before a crowd
of men, women, and children, all, from the old men of seventy to
children of three or four, smoking big green cheroots, Mr. Judson
preached Sunday after Sunday, and on April 30, 1819, made his first
convert.  Two months later, on June 27, the convert was baptized.

The Judsons, refreshed by the knowledge that their six years' toil in a
sweltering, unhealthy country had not been wasted, continued their work
joyfully, and soon had further cause for thankfulness.  Several natives
were baptized, and the Judsons had every reason for believing that
their little band of Christians would increase rapidly.

Then their work received an unexpected check.  The news reached Rangoon
that the King of Burma was highly displeased at the conversion of his
subjects, and intended to punish both missionaries and converts.  No
sooner was this known than the Judsons were deserted by all but their
converts; the people who had flocked to hear Mr. Judson preach in the
_zayat_ no longer went there, and the women ceased to attend Mrs.
Judson's gatherings.

Mr. Judson suspected that the threats emanated from the Governor of
Rangoon, and not from the king, and, therefore, he started off,
accompanied by a young missionary who had recently joined him, to the
capital, to ask the king to prohibit any interference with them or
their converts.  His majesty not only received them graciously, but
promised, if Mr. Judson would come with his wife and settle in the
capital, to give them his protection and a piece of ground on which to
build a church.

Mrs. Judson's ill-health prevented their accepting that invitation at
once.  Besides attending to her domestic duties and her native classes
she had learnt the Siamese language, and with the aid of a native had
translated into Siamese her husband's Burmese tracts.  The Burmese
territory in the Malay peninsula had formerly belonged to Siam, and
after its annexation to Burma many of the Siamese came to live at
Rangoon.  Several thousands resided there at the beginning of the
nineteenth century, and it was that they might hear the Gospel that
Mrs. Judson learnt their language.  Suffering from over-work and the
unhealthiness of the city--in those days Rangoon was a pestilential
place--Mrs. Judson sailed for Calcutta, and proceeded to Serampore.
She was back again in January, 1821, after six months' absence, but
during the long rainy season she had such a severe attack of fever that
it was evident that to save her life she would have to return to
America for a complete rest.

After two years in America she returned to Rangoon in good health; and
Mr. Judson now decided to avail themselves of the King of Burma's
invitation to settle at Ava.  Leaving the Rangoon mission in charge of
his assistant missionaries, he started with Mrs. Judson on the long
journey up the Irrawaddy to the capital.  But before they had proceeded
far war broke out between England and Burma.  The Burmese were
possessed of the belief that they were the greatest military power in
the world, and, confident that they had nothing to fear from the
English, encroached upon the possessions of the East India Company.
Other acts of aggression followed, and the Company decided upon
reprisals.  Several battles were fought on the frontier, and the
Burmese under Bandoola won two or three victories.  Mr. and Mrs. Judson
on their journey up the Irrawaddy met Bandoola proceeding in great
state to take command of his army.  They were questioned by the Burmese
general's men, but on explaining that they were not British subjects
but Americans, and that they were proceeding to Ava by command of the
king, they were allowed to continue their journey.

On arriving at Ava the king and queen treated Mr. Judson very coldly,
and did not enquire after Mrs. Judson, whom they had previously desired
to see.  This was a discouraging beginning for their new work, but the
Judsons settled down to it, praying that the war might soon be ended.
But the end was far off.  On May 23, 1824, the news reached Ava that an
English force had captured Rangoon.  It had apparently not occurred to
the Burmese that the English might attack them elsewhere than on the
frontier, and the news of their success filled them with amazement and
indignation.  An army was despatched at once with orders to drive out
the invaders.

The king now became suspicious of Mr. Judson.  He knew that the
missionary had declared that he was not a British subject, but America
was a land of which he knew nothing.  The only white nations of which
he had any knowledge were England and France, and he was under the
impression that after the downfall of Napoleon the French had become
British subjects.  His courtiers were equally suspicious of Mr. Judson,
and one managed to discover that he had recently received some money
from Bengal.  This money was a remittance from America which had been
forwarded through a Bengal merchant, but the king and his advisers at
once came to the conclusion that Mr. Judson was a spy in the employ of
the English.

An order for his arrest was issued immediately, and an officer,
accompanied by a 'spotted face,' or public executioner, and a dozen men
proceeded to the Judsons' house.  The 'spotted face' rushing in flung
Mr. Judson to the ground and began to bind him.

In terrible distress Mrs. Judson besought the officer to set her
husband free, but all the notice he took of her was to have her
secured.  When the ropes had been tightly bound around Mr. Judson the
'spotted face' dragged him out of the house.  'Spotted faces' were
almost invariably criminals who had been sentenced to the most degraded
of duties--executing their fellow men.  So that they should not escape
from the work to which they were condemned, small rings were tattoed on
their cheeks, forehead and chin.  Loathed by all classes, the 'spotted
faces' treated with great barbarity all who came professionally into
their power.  The man who had bound Mr. Judson made the missionary's
journey to the prison as uncomfortable as possible.  Every twenty or
thirty yards he threw him to the ground, and dragged him along for a
short distance with his face downwards.  On arriving at the prison
allotted to men sentenced to death, Mr. Judson was fettered with iron
chains and tied to a long pole, so that he could not move.

Mrs. Judson was left at her home, with a number of soldiers outside to
prevent her escaping.  But these men were not satisfied with keeping
her prisoner; they added to her misery by taunting her, and threatening
her with a horrible death.  For two days she endured this agony, but on
the third she obtained permission to visit her husband.  Heavily
fettered, Mr. Judson crawled to the prison door, but after they had
spoken a few words the jailors roughly drove her away.  She had,
however, seen enough of the prison to make it clear to her that her
husband would die if he were not speedily removed from it.  By paying
the jailors a sum of money she managed to get him removed to an open
shed in the prison enclosure.  He was still fettered, but the shed was
far healthier than the prison.

Having attained this slight relief for her husband, Mrs. Judson now did
all in her power to obtain his release.  She called in turn on the
various members of the royal family and the high officials, assuring
them that her husband had done nothing to deserve imprisonment, and
asking for his release.  Many of the people were sympathetic, but none
dared ask the king to set the missionary free, for his majesty was
infuriated by the news which reached him, now and again, of the success
of the invaders.

At last, in the autumn, Bandoola arrived at Ava.  He had been summoned
from the frontier to proceed towards Rangoon to drive out the British,
and on arriving at Ava he was received with wild enthusiasm.  Even the
king treated him with respect, and allowed him to have a free hand.
Mrs. Judson, seeing Bandoola's power, determined to appeal to him for
her husband's release.  She was given an audience, and after hearing
her petition, Bandoola promised that he would consider the matter, and
dismissed her with the command to come again to hear his decision.  The
gracious manner in which she had been received filled Mrs. Judson with
hope, but on calling for Bandoola's reply two days later she was
received by his wife, who said that her husband was very busy preparing
to start for Rangoon; as soon as he had driven out the English he would
return and release all the prisoners.  It was a terrible
disappointment, but Mrs. Judson did not break down, although her health
was far from good.  She continued doing as she had done for many
months, trudging two miles to the prison with her husband's food and
walking back in the dark.  Every morning she feared to find that her
husband had been murdered, for the news of the British successes
continued to reach Ava, and the people were in a state of excitement,
and continually vowing vengeance on the white _kalas_.  However, her
worst fears were not realised.  Her husband remained in chains, but, as
he was not treated very harshly, she began to hope that the Burmese
would release him when the war was ended.

But the end of the war was a long way off, and in the middle of
February it became known that the English had quitted Rangoon and were
marching to Ava.  Mr. Judson was immediately taken from his shed and
flung into the common prison--one room occupied by over a hundred
prisoners--loaded with five pairs of fetters.  It was the hot season,
and Mr. and Mrs. Judson knew that he could not live long in that place.
Indeed, he was quickly attacked with fever, and Mrs. Judson, growing
desperate, so persistently implored the governor to allow her to remove
him that at last he consented.  Mr. Judson was removed speedily to a
small bamboo hut in the courtyard, where, made comfortable and nursed
by his wife, he recovered.

In the meanwhile Bandoola had been killed in action, and his successor
appointed.  The latter was a man of fiendish tastes, and he decided
before proceeding down the Irrawaddy to take up his command, to remove
the prisoners from Ava, and have them tortured in his presence.  So Mr.
Judson and two or three white traders were taken away to Amarapoora.
Mrs. Judson was absent when her husband was removed, and when she
returned and found him gone she feared that what she had been long
dreading had happened--that her husband had been killed.  The governor
and the jailors protested, untruthfully, that they did not know what
had become of him; but at last Mrs. Judson discovered where he had been
taken, and started off with her few months' old baby and her native
nurse-girl to find him.

Travelling first by river and then by bullock-cart, she arrived to find
her husband in a pitiable state of health, caused by the ill-treatment
he had received from his warders on the march from Ava.  He was in a
high fever, his feet were terribly swollen, and his body covered with
bruises.  Mrs. Judson obtained permission to nurse him, but on the same
day her child and nurse-girl developed small-pox.  She nursed all three
patients, and to her great joy they all recovered.  But the strain on
her fever-weakened strength had been great, and she felt that her life
was quickly drawing to a close.  But she bore up bravely, and journeyed
to Ava to fetch her medicine chest.

Neither she nor her husband knew of the intention of the Burmese
general.  It was never carried out, for he was suspected of high
treason, and promptly executed.

Time passed, and the King of Burma becoming alarmed at the advance of
the English towards his capital, sent his representatives to treat with
them.  Mr. Judson accompanied them to act as interpreter.  He was not
in fetters, but he was still a prisoner.  On his return he found that
his wife had been again ill with fever, and had been delirious for many
days.  But the prospect of peace being soon declared cheered the
much-tried missionaries, and gave them fresh strength.

The terms offered by the English general had been refused by the King
of Burma; but when he found that the enemy would soon be at his capital
he quickly agreed to them, and sent the first instalment of the
indemnity down river to the victors.  Mr. Judson was sent with the
Burmese officers to act as interpreter, and when the money had been
handed over to the English he was set free, after having undergone
twenty-one months' imprisonment, during seventeen of which he was in
fetters.  That he had managed to live through that long imprisonment
was due to his wife's bravery and devoted attention.  She had suffered
more than he, and her constitution, ruined by fever, privation, and
anxiety, was unable to withstand the illness which attacked her soon
after she had settled down again to missionary work.

She died on October 24, 1826, aged 37, and the husband whom she loved
so dearly was not at her bedside.  He was acting as interpreter to the
Governor-General of India's embassy to the court of Ava, and did not
hear of her illness until she was dead.  The baby girl who had been
born in the midst of sad surroundings only lived for a few months after
her mother's death.

[1] Foreigners


The boy or the girl who does not at an early age announce what he or
she intends to be when 'grown up,' must be a somewhat extraordinary
child.  The peer's son horrifies his nurse by declaring that he intends
to be an engine-driver when he is 'grown up,' and the postman's wife
hears with not a little amusement that her boy has decided to be Lord
Mayor of London.

These early aspirations are rarely achieved, but there are some notable
instances of children remaining true to their ambition and becoming, in
time, what they had declared they would be.

Sarah Hall, when quite a little child, announced her intention of
becoming a missionary, and a missionary she eventually became.  She was
born at Alstead, New Hampshire, in 1803, her parents being Ralph and
Abiah Hall.  They were refined and well-educated, but by no means
wealthy, and Sarah would have left school very young, had not the
head-mistress, seeing that she was a clever child, retained her as
pupil teacher.  Quiet, gentle, and caring little for the amusements of
girls of her own age, her chief pleasure was in composing verse, much
of which is still in existence.  The following lines are from her
'Versification of David's lament over Saul and Jonathan,' which was
written when she was thirteen years of age:--

  The beauty of Israel for ever is fled,
  And low lie the noble and strong:
  Ye daughters of music, encircle the dead
  And chant the funereal song.
  Oh, never let Gath know their sorrowful doom,
  Nor Askelon hear of their fate;
  Their daughters would scoff while we lay in the tomb,
  The relics of Israel's great.

At an early age, as already stated, she expressed a wish to be a
missionary to the heathen, and the wish grew stronger with increasing
years.  But suddenly it became evident to her that there was plenty of
work waiting for her close at hand.  'Sinners perishing all around me,'
she wrote in her journal, 'and I almost panting to tell the far heathen
of Christ!  Surely this is wrong.  I will no longer indulge the vain,
foolish wish, but endeavour to be useful in the position where
Providence has placed me.  I can pray for deluded idolaters and for
those who labour among them, and this is a privilege indeed.'  She
began at once to take an active part in local mission work; but while
thus employed her interest in foreign missions did not diminish, and
the death of the two young missionaries, Wheelock and Colman, who went
to Burma to assist Mr. Judson, made a deep impression on her.
Wheelock, while delirious from fever, jumped into the sea and was
drowned, and Colman, after a time, died at Arracan from the effects of
the unhealthy climate.  On hearing of Colman's death she wrote 'Lines
on the death of Colman,' the first verse of which is:--

  'Tis the voice of deep sorrow from India's shore,
  The flower of our Churches is withered and dead,
  The gem that shone brightly will sparkle no more,
  And the tears of the Christian profusely are shed.
  Two youths of Columbia, with hearts glowing warm,
  Embarked on the billows far distant to rove,
  To bear to the nations all wrapped in thick gloom,
  The lamp of the Gospel--the message of love.
  But Wheelock now slumbers beneath the cold wave
  And Colman lies low in the dark, cheerless grave,
        Mourn, daughters of India, mourn!
  The rays of that star, clear and bright,
  That so sweetly on Arracan shone,
  Are shrouded in black clouds of night,
  For Colman is gone!

These lines were read by George Dana Boardman, a young man, twenty-four
years of age, who had just been appointed to succeed Colman at Arracan.
He obtained an introduction to Sarah Hall, and in a short time they
became engaged.  They were married on July 3, 1825, and thirteen days
later sailed for Calcutta, where they landed on December 2.  The war in
Burma prevented their proceeding to Rangoon, so they settled down at
Calcutta, to study the Burmese language with the aid of Mr. Judson's
books.  At this they were engaged almost continuously until the spring
of 1827, when they sailed for Amherst, in Tenasserim, a newly built
town in the recently acquired British territory, to which Mr. Judson
had removed with his converts soon after the conclusion of the war.

The Boardmans' stay at Amherst was, however, short.  Towards the end of
May they were transferred to another new city--Moulmein.  A year before
their arrival the place had been a wide expanse of almost impenetrable
jungle; now it had 20,000 inhabitants.  Wild beasts and deadly snakes
abounded in the jungle around the city and, across the river, in the
ruined city of Martaban, dwelt a horde of fiendish dacoits, who
occasionally made a night raid on Moulmein, robbing and murdering, and
then hurrying back to their stronghold.  The Boardmans had been settled
in their bamboo hut barely a month when they received a visit from the
dacoits.  One night Mr. Boardman awoke, to find that the little lamp
which they always kept burning was not alight, and suspecting that
something was wrong he jumped out of bed and lit it again.  The dacoits
had entered, and stolen everything they could possibly carry off.
Looking-glasses, watches, knives, forks, spoons, and keys had all
disappeared.  Every box, trunk, and chest of drawers had been forced
open, and nothing of any value remained in any of them.  This was the
first home of their own that the Boardmans had ever had, and to be
robbed so soon of practically everything they possessed was indeed
hard.  They had, however, the satisfaction of knowing that the dacoits
had not, as usual, accompanied robbery with murder.  But that the
dacoits would have murdered them had they awoke while they were
plundering was plain.  Two holes had been cut in the mosquito curtain
near to where Mr. and Mrs. Boardman and their one-year-old child lay,
and by these holes dacoits had evidently stood, knife in hand, ready to
stab the sleepers if they awoke.  It was a great shock to Mrs.
Boardman, who was in bad health, but soon she was joining her husband
in thanking God for having protected them.

After the robbery the officer commanding the British troops stationed
two sepoys outside the mission house, and some idea of the dangers
which surrounded the Boardmans may be formed from the fact that one day
the sentry was attacked by a tiger.

But, exposed as the Boardmans were to perils of this kind, they
continued their work among the rapidly increasing population, and met
with considerable success.  Many native Christians, converted under Mr.
Judson at Rangoon, lived at Moulmein, and consequently the Boardmans'
work was not entirely among the unconverted.  Indeed, before long
nearly all the native Christians in Burma were residing at Moulmein,
Amherst having declined in public favour.  When the majority of the
inhabitants of Amherst migrated to Moulmein the missionaries
accompanied them, and soon nearly all the missionaries to Burma were
working in one city.  Neither the missionary board in America nor Mr.
Judson considered this to be wise, and some of the missionaries were
removed to other places, Mr. and Mrs. Boardman being sent to Tavoy,
some 150 miles south of Moulmein.  The dialect of the people of Tavoy
differed considerably from Burmese, and the Boardmans had practically
to learn a new language.  As the written characters of both languages
were the same, the task was not very difficult, and before long the
missionaries were preaching the Gospel to the Tavoyans.

Soon after they had settled down some Karens invited Mr. Boardman to
visit them.  Their country was not far away, but the missionary could
not as yet leave Tavoy.  The Karens, however, told him something that
excited his curiosity.  A foreigner passing through the land had given
them a book, and told them to worship it.  They had done so.  A
high-priest had been appointed, and he had arranged a regular form of
worship, Mr. Boardman asked the Karens to let him see the book, and
they promised to bring it to him.  Soon a deputation, headed by the
high-priest, attired in a fantastic dress of his own designing, arrived
at Tavoy with the book, which was carefully wrapped up and carried in a
basket.  On having the book handed to him Mr. Boardman saw that it was
a Church of England Prayer-book.  He told the Karens that although it
was a very good book it was not intended to be worshipped, and they
consented to give it to him in exchange for some portions of Scripture
in a language they could read.  It was never discovered who gave the
Prayer-book to the Karens, but it may be taken for granted that they
misunderstood the donor's meaning.  This book was afterwards sent home
to the American Baptist Missionary Society.

On July 8, 1829, Mrs. Boardman was plunged into grief by the death of
her little daughter, aged two years and eight months.  Other troubles
followed quickly.  One night Mrs. Boardman was awakened by hearing some
native Christians shouting, 'Teacher, teacher, Tavoy rebels!'  The
inhabitants of Tavoy had revolted against the British Government, and
had attempted to seize the powder magazine and armoury.  The Sepoys had
driven off the rebels, who were, however, far from being disheartened.
They burst open the prison, set free the prisoners, and began firing on
the mission house.  Bullets passed through the fragile little
dwelling-place, and the Boardmans would soon have been killed had not
some Sepoys fought their way to their assistance, with orders to remove
them to Government House.  As Mrs. Boardman with her baby boy in her
arms hurried through the howling mob of rebels she had several narrow
escapes from being shot, but fortunately the whole of the little party
from the mission house reached Government House in safety.  The
Governor of Tavoy was away when the rebellion broke out, and as the
steamer in which he had departed was the only means of rapid
communication between Tavoy and Moulmein, the little British force
settled down to act on the defensive until reinforcements arrived.
Soon it was found that Government House would have to be evacuated, and
eventually the British and Americans took shelter in a six-room house
on the wharf.  In this small house the whole of the white population,
the soldiers, and the native Christians were sheltered.  The rebels,
strongly reinforced, attempted to burn them out, but a heavy downfall
of rain extinguished the flames before much harm had been done.

At last, to the great relief of the defenders, the governor's steamer
was seen approaching.  The governor was considerably surprised to find
the natives in revolt.  Immediately after his arrival he sent his wife
and Mrs. Boardman aboard the steamer, which was to hurry to Moulmein
for reinforcements.  Mrs. Boardman begged to be allowed to remain and
share the danger which was threatening both the whites and the native
converts, but the governor firmly refused to allow her to do so.

As soon as the rebellion was quelled Mrs. Boardman returned to Tavoy
and resumed her work, but troubles now came upon her quickly.  On
December 2, 1830, her baby boy died, making the second child she had
lost within twelve months.  Her husband, too, was in very weak health,
although still working hard.  On March 7, 1831, he reported that he had
baptized fifty-seven Karens within two months, and that other baptisms
would soon follow.  But the latter he did not live to see, for he died
of consumption three weeks after writing his report.

The Europeans at Tavoy considered it natural and proper that, now Mrs.
Boardman was a widow, she should, return to America, and they were
somewhat surprised when she announced her intention of remaining at
Tavoy.  'My beloved husband,' she wrote, 'wore out his life in this
glorious cause; and that remembrance makes me more than even attached
to the work and the people for whose salvation he laboured till death.'
As far as possible she took up the duties of her late husband, and
every day from sunrise until ten o'clock at night she was hard at work.
Her duties included periodical visits to the Karen villages.  This was
a most unpleasant work for a refined woman, and from the fact that she
scarcely ever alluded to these visits we may conclude that she found
them extremely trying.  But, as there was no man to undertake the work
which her late husband had carried on with conspicuous success, she
knew unless she did it herself a promising field of missionary
enterprise would be uncared for.

Preaching, teaching and visiting was not, however, the only work in
which the young widow engaged.  She translated into Burmese the
_Pilgrim's Progress_.

Adoniram Judson and Mrs. Boardman had known each other from the day the
latter arrived in Burma, and the former, as the head of the
missionaries in that country, was well aware of Mrs. Boardman's
devotion to duty.  On January 31, 1834, he completed his translation of
the Scriptures, and on April 10 he and Mrs. Boardman were married.

Mrs. Sarah Judson's home was now once more in Moulmein, and into the
work there she threw herself at once heart and soul.  She superintended
schools, held Bible classes and prayer meetings and started various
societies for the spiritual and physical welfare of the women.  Finding
that there was a large number of Peguans in Moulmein, she learnt their
language, and translated into it several of her husband's tracts.

Until 1841 her life was peacefully happy, but in that year a period of
trouble began.  Her four children were attacked with whooping-cough,
which was followed by dysentery, the complaint which in Burma has sent
many thousands of Europeans to early graves.  No sooner had the
children recovered from this distressing illness than Mrs. Sarah Judson
fell ill with it, and for a time it was feared that she was dying.  As
soon as she was able to travel Mr. Judson took her to India, in the
hope that a complete rest at Serampore would give her back her
strength.  She returned in fairly good health, but in December, 1844,
she grew so weak that Mr. Judson decided to have his first furlough,
and take her home to America.  On the voyage she grew worse, and died
peacefully while the ship was at anchor at St. Helena.  She was buried
on shore, and Adoniram Judson, a widower a second time, proceeded on
his journey to America.


The Chinese dislike to foreigners settling in their country is so old
that one cannot tell when it began.  But in 1900 the Boxer rising
proved that the anti-foreign feeling is strong as ever, and perhaps
more unreasonable, and the whole civilized world was horror-stricken by
the news of the massacre of men, women and children, who had been
slaughtered, not only because they were Christians, but because they
were foreigners.

The list of missionaries who were murdered by the Boxers in 1900 is
long and saddening; but it is some consolation to know that to many of
the martyrs death came swiftly, and was not preceded by bodily torture.
In fact, some of the missionaries who escaped death must have been
sorely tempted to envy their martyred colleagues, so terrible were the
trials they underwent before reaching a place of safety.

Mrs. Ogren was one of the representatives of the China Inland Mission,
who escaped death only to meet perils and privations such as few women
have ever survived.  She and her husband had worked in China for seven
years, and had been stationed for about twelve months in the city of
Yung-ning when the Boxer troubles began.  Until then the natives had
been well disposed towards them, but two emissaries of the Boxers,
describing themselves as merchants, spread evil reports concerning
them.  They declared that the missionaries had poisoned the wells, and
when the people went to examine them they found that the water had
turned red.  The men who accused the missionaries had, before bringing
this charge against them, secretly coloured the water.  Other false
accusations, artfully supported by what appeared to be conclusive
evidence, were made against them, and naturally aroused the anger of
the people, whose demeanour became unmistakably threatening.

On July 5 the sad news of the murder of two lady missionaries at
Hsiao-i reached Mrs. Ogren and her husband, and a mandarin, who had
secretly remained friendly towards them, urged them to escape from the
city as soon as possible, and for their travelling expenses the
secretary of the yamên brought them, in the middle of the night, Tls.
10 (£15).  Mr. Ogren gave a receipt for the money, and prepared for
their flight, but it was not until July 13 that they were able to start.

Early in the morning, before day-break, a mule-litter was brought to
the back door of the mission garden.  Quickly and silently Mr. and Mrs.
Ogren, with their little nine months' old boy, mounted, and started on
their perilous journey to Han-kow.

They arrived uninjured at the Yellow River, where, however, they found
a famine-stricken crowd, armed with clubs, eager to kill them.  The
starving natives had been told, and believed, that the scarcity of food
was due to the foreigners' presence in China, and their hostile
attitude can scarcely be wondered at.  However, the guard which had
been sent to protect the missionaries succeeded in keeping off the
people, who had to content themselves with yelling and spitting at the
fugitives.  Hiring a boat, for which they had to pay Tls. 50, the
Ogrens and their guard started down river for T'ung-kuan.  The current
of this river is exceedingly swift, and the missionaries expected every
moment that their boat would be wrecked.  No mishap occurred, however,
and after travelling seventeen miles the party made a halt.  It was
necessary to do so, as at this place they were to be handed over to a
new guard.  Here, too, they found it would be impossible to proceed on
their journey without more money, and a messenger was despatched to the
mandarin at Yung-ning, asking for a further loan.  Until the result of
this appeal was known there was nothing for the Ogrens to do but wait
where they were.  It was an anxious time, but on the fourth day they
were delighted to see the secretary of the yamên approaching.  He had
brought with him the money they required.

'Praising God for all His goodness,' Mrs. Ogren writes in her account
of their trials,[1] 'we started once more, and though beset by many
difficulties, the goodness of God, and the cordial letter of
recommendation granted us by our friendly mandarin, enabled us to
safely reach a place called Lung-wan-chan, 170 miles from our
starting-place, and half way to our destination, T'ung-kuan.'

At Lung-wan-chan they heard of the rapid spread of the Boxer movement,
and of the massacre, on July 16, of a party of men and women
missionaries.  They realised now that the prospect of their escaping
the fury of the Boxers was small; but there came a ray of hope, when a
Chinaman, eighty years of age and a friend of the Yung-ning mandarin,
offered to hide them in his house.  It was an offer which was
gratefully accepted; but as they were about to start for their
hiding-place, which was some twenty-five miles from the river, a party
of soldiers arrived.  Their orders were, they said, to drive the
foreigners out of the province; but the aged Chinaman gave them a
feast, and, having got them into a good humour, extracted a promise
from them that they would not harm the missionaries.  But although they
kept their promise to the extent of not doing them any bodily injury,
they took from them all the money they possessed.

When the soldiers had departed, the Ogrens started on their twenty-five
miles' journey to the friendly old Chinaman's house, thankful at having
escaped one danger, and hopeful that they would reach their destination
in safety.  But their hope was not realised.  Before they had gone far,
their way lay along a track where it was necessary to proceed in single
file.  Mrs. Ogren, riding a mule, led the way; a second mule carrying
their personal belongings followed, and Mr. Ogren with their baby-boy
in his arms came last.  On one side of them was the rushing river; on
the other, steep, rocky mountains.

Suddenly a number of armed men sprang out from behind the rocks and
barred their way.  Brandishing their weapons ominously, they demanded
Tls. 300.  Mrs. Ogren, dismounting from her mule, advanced to a man who
appeared to be the leader, and told him that they had no money.  She
begged him to have pity on them, and to spare her at least her baby's
things.  Her appeal was not entirely wasted, for while they were
helping themselves to their things the leader handed her, on the point
of his sword, _one_ of the baby's shirts.

Having taken everything that they fancied, the robbers now looked
threateningly at the prisoners.  Their leader began whetting his sword,
shouting as he did so, 'Kill, kill!'  Again Mrs. Ogren pleaded for
mercy, and finally they relented, and departed without injuring them.

The fugitives now came to the conclusion that it would be certain death
if they remained in the province, and as soon as possible they crossed
the river in the ferry.  It was a dark, wet night when they reached the
other side, and it was only after much entreaty and promises of reward
that the ferrymen allowed them to take shelter in the dirty smoky caves
where they lived.  Mr. Ogren at once despatched a message to their old
Chinese friend asking for help, and four days later the man returned
with some money, nearly the whole of which the ferrymen claimed, and
obtained by means of threats.  With little money in their pockets, the
Ogrens started off on foot towards the promised place of refuge.  It
was a trying journey, for the heat was intense, and aroused a thirst
which could not be quenched.  Once Mrs. Ogren fell exhausted to the
ground; but after a rest they continued their tramp, and on the second
day reached their destination, there to experience a bitter
disappointment.  The people whom they expected would be friendly proved
hostile.  They refused to give them food, and only after much entreaty
did they permit them to take shelter in a cave near by.  This, however,
proved to be a very insecure hiding-place, and twice they were robbed
by gangs of men.

Leaving this place, the Ogrens tramped further into the hills, and
found another cave, where they could have remained in safety until the
rising was quelled, had they been able to obtain food.  Mrs. Ogren and
her husband would have endured the agony of long-continued hunger, but
they could not see their little baby starve.  For some time he was fed
on cold water and raw rice, but when their small stock of the latter
ran out, they tramped back to make another appeal to the people who had
so recently refused to help them.  Their reception was even worse than
on the previous occasion.  One of the men had heard of the Boxers'
offer of Tls. 100 for the head of every foreigner brought to them, and
was anxious to earn the money.  Seizing his sword, he rushed at the
fugitives and would have killed them, had not some of his relatives,
perhaps moved by pity, intervened.  They held him fast while the Ogrens
hurried away as quickly as their weakness would permit.

Over the mountains they wended their way, sometimes having to crawl up
the steep hillsides.  It was their intention to make their way back to
Yung-ning, and seek protection from the mandarin who had always been
friendly towards them.  It must not be forgotten that during the
anti-foreign outbreak there were hundreds of Chinamen, besides the
Christian converts, who, although well aware that a price was placed on
the head of every foreigner, scorned to betray them, and did all in
their power to facilitate their escape to a place of safety.  On their
journey over the mountains, Mrs. Ogren and her husband met with many of
these people, who gave them food and sheltered them at night.

Having forded a wide, swiftly-flowing river, the Ogrens came to a
village where the natives treated them so kindly that they remained
there for two days.  But on departing from this place their brief
period of comparative happiness came to an end, for, towards night, as
they drew near to a village, hoping to experience a repetition of the
hospitality they had recently received, they found that they were
likely to have a hostile reception.

It was too late to turn back or to attempt to avoid the place, for they
had already been discovered, so they trudged on through the village,
the people laughing and jeering at them.  But just as they were
quitting the village, hopeful that they would be permitted to continue
their journey unmolested, they were seized and cast into prison.  The
following morning two men were told off to take them out of the
province; but it soon became evident to the prisoners that their escort
intended to hand them over to the Boxers.  They were a particularly
heartless pair, and one of them took from Mrs. Ogren her baby's pillow,
which she had managed to retain through all their wanderings, and
emptying out the feathers burned them.

The following day they arrived at the Yellow River, and as they crossed
in the ferry the prisoners saw that the village to which they were
being taken was decorated with red lanterns.  This was a sign that the
place was held by the Red Lantern Society, one of the divisions of the
Boxer army.  On landing, the missionaries were at once surrounded by a
crowd of jeering natives, and one fellow, with brutal glee, told Mrs.
Ogren of the massacre of the lady missionaries at Ta-ning.

After Mr. Ogren had been closely questioned, he was told they would be
taken back to Yung-ning, but when they left the village they found that
they were being led in quite a different direction.  At night they were
placed in a cave, and on the following morning were marched off to the
Boxer general's headquarters, a temple.  Mr. Ogren was at once taken
before the general, Mrs. Ogren sitting in the courtyard with her baby
on her knee.  She was suffering excruciating pain from a swollen eye,
caused by the heat and glare, but her mental agony was no doubt
greater, for in a few minutes her husband's fate would be decided.  She
heard him answering the general's questions, heard him pleading for
their lives.  Soon his voice was drowned in the sound of swords being
sharpened, and a few minutes later she heard moans.  Her husband was
being tortured.

'My feelings were indescribable,' Mrs. Ogren writes.  'I could only
pray God to cut short my husband's sufferings, and fill his heart with
peace, and give me courage to meet my lot without fear.'  Soon the
moaning ceased, and she concluded that her husband was dead.

That night Mrs. Ogren was imprisoned in a tomb, and her baby, although
he had nothing but water for his supper, slept soundly on the cold
ground wrapped up in her gown.  On the following morning she was given
some rice and porridge, but before she had finished her meal the guard
set her free.  At once she decided to endeavour to reach Ta-ning, where
other missionaries were imprisoned, preferring imprisonment among
friends to the wandering life she had led for so long.  Hearing that
there were some Christians in a village on the other side of the river,
she forded the stream--narrowly escaping drowning, but only to find
that she had been misinformed.  The villagers jeered at her when she
told her story, and asked for food for herself and baby.  Departing
from these inhospitable people, Mrs. Ogren lay down with her baby in
the open.  Both were hungry and shivering, and probably their trials
would have ended that night in death, had not two native Christians
found them, and led the way to a cave.  Taking Mrs. Ogren to this place
of shelter was, however, all that these men could do for her.

The following day, while trudging along towards Ta-ning Mrs. Ogren was
again captured by Boxers, and would have been promptly killed, had not
the headman of the village protected her, and, in spite of the anger of
the mob, appointed an escort to accompany her to Ta-ning.  It was a
consolation to Mrs. Ogren to feel that she would soon be in the company
of fellow missionaries; but to her sorrow she heard, on being placed in
the Ta-ning prison, that they had been set free two days previously,
and had started for the coast.

The prison in which Mrs. Ogren was now confined was a filthy place,
swarming with vermin, but the warders were kind to her, and gave her
food for herself and baby.  Even the mandarin was moved when he heard
of the sufferings she had undergone, but he did not release her.  Sleep
was impossible that night, but, at daybreak, as Mrs. Ogren lay dozing
with her child beside her, she fancied she heard her name called.
Jumping up she ran into the courtyard, and looked eagerly around.

'Olivia!'  It was her husband's voice, and there at the prison gate
stood he whom she had thought dead.  'Praise God! oh, praise God!' she
cried, her heart full of thankfulness; but he was too overcome with
emotion to speak.  Truly Mr. Ogren was in a terrible plight.  His
clothes hung in rags, and his head was bound with a piece of dirty,
blood-stained linen.  One of his ears was crushed, and there were
ghastly wounds in his neck and shoulders.  Even now he was not out of
danger for as he stood at the gate Mrs. Ogren saw to her dismay a mob
of infuriated Boxers rushing towards him, and it seemed as if he would
be killed before her eyes.  But the yamên servants protected him, and,
later in the day, he was brought to his wife and child.  The people had
evidently taken pity on the poor missionaries, for they supplied Mrs.
Ogren with some water to wash her husband's wounds and a powder that
would heal them.  Moreover they supplied them with rice and mutton, and
the secretary of the yamên's wife sent them a bowl of meat soup.

When Mr. Ogren's wounds had been dressed, and he had eaten the first
good meal he had tasted for many days, he related to his wife all that
had happened to him since they were separated by the Red Lantern Boxers.

Briefly his story was as follows:--On being taken before the Boxer
general he was bound to a block of wood, with his hands tied behind his
back, and while in this helpless state the Boxers kicked him and beat
him with sticks, cursing the name of Jesus, and shouting, 'Now ask your
Jesus to deliver you.'  After thus torturing him they untied him from
the block, and led him with his hands bound behind his back to the
river-side, with the intention of killing him and casting his body into
the water.  Arriving there, they forced him down on his knees, and at a
signal set upon him on all sides with swords and spears; but in their
eagerness to slay him their weapons struck one against another, and
instead of being killed instantly he received several wounds, which
although severe did not disable him.

Suddenly he sprang to his feet, and rushing through the crowd jumped
into the river.  The Boxers, recovering from their surprise, rushed
into the water after him, but remembering that his hands were tied
behind his back they broke into jeering laughter, and waited to see him
drown.  But the brave, persecuted missionary managed to reach the other
side in safety, and running inland was soon lost in the darkness.  With
his hands tied behind his back, and barefooted--his shoes were lost in
the river--he tramped some fifteen miles before resting.  Then he
severed the cords which bound his hands by rubbing them against a rock
until they were cut through.  In the hills he found a native Christian,
who not only supplied him with food, water and a little money, but took
him to a hiding-place for the night.  On the following morning Mr.
Ogren started off again, with the intention of making his way back to
Yung-ning, but before he had gone far he caught sight of Boxers
scouring the country.  Finding a cave he hid in it throughout the day,
resuming his journey at night.  After many hardships he met some
natives, who informed him that his wife was in prison at Ta-ning, and
at once he set off for that city, and entered it unnoticed by the
Boxers.  It was only when he had almost reached the yamên that they
heard of his presence and rushed after him.  How he escaped their fury
has already been told.

Two days after Mr. Ogren had rejoined his wife the authorities sent
them with an escort out of the city on two donkeys, the men who
accompanied them being instructed to take them from city to city until
they arrived at the coast.  But on the second day the officials of a
city through which they would have to pass warned them that they would
not be allowed to enter it, and therefore the much-tried missionaries
were taken back to Ta-ning, and placed once more in the loathsome
prison.  Here Mrs. Ogren endured fresh trials.  Her baby, weakened by
exposure and semi-starvation, became seriously ill, and for a time it
seemed as if he would not recover.  When, however, the danger was
passed Mrs. Ogren's second eye became terribly inflamed and caused her
intense agony, and her husband becoming delirious with fever, had to be
tied down to his bed.  Nevertheless, she did not lose her faith, and
the prisoners, aware of all she had endured, and was enduring,
marvelled to see her praying to God.  When, in the course of a few
days, her husband began to gain strength they sang hymns, prayed, and
read the Bible together.

A month later the Ogrens were told that in two days they were to be
escorted to the coast, and the comforts which were at once provided for
them made it clear that the authorities had received instructions to
protect them and treat them well.  New clothes were given them, and
when they started on their journey, Mr. Ogren, being far too weak to
ride, was carried with the baby in a sedan chair.  Mrs. Ogren rode a
horse.  The officer and ten soldiers who comprised their escort treated
them kindly, and their example was copied by the inhabitants of the
villages through which they passed.

It was a welcome change, but it came too late.  Nine days after leaving
Ta-ning Mr. Ogren became very weak, and in spite of every attention
died on the following morning, October 15, from the effects of the
cruelty to which the Boxers had subjected him.

Can anyone imagine a more crushing sorrow for a woman than this which
Mrs. Ogren had to bear?  To lose her husband just when their long
months of persecution were ended, and they were looking forward to
happy days of peace, was indeed the hardest blow she had suffered.  Her
escort, touched to the heart by this sad ending to her troubles, did
all that they could to comfort her.

It was not until February 16, that Mrs. Ogren and her two children--a
girl baby, healthy in every way, had been born at P'ing-yang-fu on
December 6,--arrived at Han-kow, where everyone strove to show kindness
to the much-tried widow.  Peter Alfred Ogren's name is inscribed on the
roll of Christian martyrs, and Olivia Ogren is a name that will ever
stand high in the list of Christian heroines.

[1] _Last Letters and Further Records of Martyred Missionaries of the
China Inland Mission_.  (Morgan & Scott.)



When, in the year 1900, the anti-foreign feeling in China culminated in
the massacre of defenceless men and women, the three missionaries whose
names head this chapter were working in the city of Ta-ning.  The
inhabitants of this little city among the hills had always treated the
missionaries with kindness, and it was not until Boxer emissaries
arrived and stirred up the people by spreading untruths concerning the
reason of the foreigners' presence in China, that a change occurred in
the behaviour of some of them.

The news of the Boxer rising was soon carried to the three ladies at
Ta-ning; but it was not until July 12 that, at the earnest entreaty of
the native pastor, Chang Chi-pen, they left the city to take shelter in
one of the villages high up in the mountains.  They started at 7.30 in
the morning, and, travelling through the heat of the day, arrived at
Muh-ien, where they were welcomed by the inhabitants, both native
Christians and unconverted, with kindness.  The knowledge that two lady
missionaries had recently been murdered at Hsiao-i made the inhabitants
of this hill-village anxious to show kindness to the three ladies who
had come to seek shelter among them.  They gave them food, which
although not very palatable to Europeans was the best to be had, and
provided them with lodging.

The following day was passed peacefully.  Native friends came out from
Ta-ning, bringing the comforting assurance that there were no signs of
the Boxers coming in pursuit of the fugitives.  They told the
missionaries that eighteen warships belonging to various nations had
arrived, but had gone aground near Fuh-Kien.  The news of the arrival
of these vessels naturally caused satisfaction to the three
missionaries, and made them believe that the Boxer rising would soon be

Sunday, July 15, was a very happy day.  Native Christians came in from
the neighbouring villages, and the old pastor, Chang Chi-pen, had
stolen out from Ta-ning.  A service was held, and afterwards the
missionaries were overwhelmed with invitations to take up their
residence in various villages where they would be, they were assured,
perfectly safe from the Boxers.  'It was really worth while being in
such a position, to see how loyal the Christians were to us,' May
Nathan wrote in her diary.[1]  'We are certainly in a better position
than most other foreigners, being amongst such simple, loyal,
God-fearing men.'

The following morning, soon after breakfast and prayers, a boy arrived
from Ta-ning with the unpleasant news that 500 soldiers, who were in
sympathy with the Boxers, had entered the city.  The inhabitants at
once urged the ladies to flee to a more distant village, and, taking up
their Bibles, the missionaries started off quickly, with a native
Christian for their guide.  Rain fell heavily, and they arrived at
their destination, Tong-men, wet to the skin.  Food was given them, and
in the afternoon they lay down and slept in a shed full of straw.  The
natives were determined, however, that they should have a better place
in which to pass the night, and prepared a cave for them, spreading
clean mats on the brick beds.  But, late in the afternoon, a Christian,
whom the missionaries had sent to Ta-ning to obtain information
concerning the movements of the soldiers, returned with the pleasing
news that there were none in the city, nor had any been there.
Thankful that the alarm had been a false one, the three missionaries,
one feeling somewhat unwell, trudged back to the Muh-ien, and refreshed
themselves with tea.  Throughout the day, or rather from breakfast
until their return after dark, they had drunk nothing, tea, strange to
say, being an unknown luxury in the place where they had sought
temporary shelter.

On the following day soldiers did enter Ta-ning, but as an official
despatch arrived almost at the same time instructing the yamên to
protect foreigners, the three ladies decided not to remove from
Muh-ien.  This proclamation, a copy of which was brought to the
missionaries, stated that all foreigners who remained quietly at their
stations would be unmolested, and was a great improvement on the
previous one, which ordered that foreigners were to be exterminated.
The arrival of the allied forces had of course made the Chinese deem it
advisable to withdraw the former proclamation.

Nothing occurred during the next two days to make the missionaries
think that they were in immediate danger of being massacred.  They
spent the time in reading, sewing and talking to the sympathetic people
who called on them.  But on the third day they received the sad
information that seven of their missionary friends had been murdered on
July 16.

'Oh, it is sad, sad,' May Nathan wrote in her diary, 'such valuable
lives; and who will be the next?  Perhaps we shall, for why should we
be spared when, for my own part, I know that the lives of those who
have gone were so much more valuable than mine?  I don't want to die,
and such a death; but if it comes, well, it will be for a little, and
after, no more sorrow--no pain.  Day by day we are without knowledge of
what news may come!  Darling mother, don't be anxious whatever news you
may hear of me.  It will be useless in the eyes of the world to come
out here for a year, to be just getting on with the language and then
to be cut off.  Many will say, 'Why did she go?  Wasted life!'
Darling, _No_.  Trust; God does His very best, and never makes
mistakes.  There are promises in the Word that the Lord will save His
servants, and deliver them from the hands of evil men.  Dear, it may be
the deliverances will come through death, and His hands will receive,
not the corruptible, but the incorruptible, glorified spirit.'

Early the following morning, just as they were about to begin
breakfast, a friendly Chinaman arrived, with the warning, that a party
of Boxers was coming up the mountains and searching everywhere on the
way for them.  Instant departure was imperative, so, snatching up their
Bibles and a few biscuits, they hurried off higher up the mountains,
halting only for a few minutes among some native Christians, to deliver
three short prayers.  Their Christian guide hurried them onward when
the last prayer was finished, and soon they were climbing up steep,
unfrequented sheep-paths.  A ruined temple on the top of a mountain was
to be their hiding-place, and when they reached it, tired out, they lay
down on the ground with stones for their pillows.

How long they remained hiding in this mountain-top temple is unknown.
Nor, as the last entry in May Nathan's letter is dated July 23, do we
know the sufferings which they underwent during the next three weeks.
All that is certain is that, after wandering about the mountains, they
were captured by the Boxers on August 12, and dragged to a temple near
Lu-kia-yao, where, hungry and thirsty, they were compelled to spend the
night surrounded by a mob of fiends.  At day-break they were brought
out and killed.

[1] _Last Letters and Further Records of Martyred Missionaries of the
China Inland Mission_.  Edited by Marshall Broomhall.  (Morgan and


Of all the stories that have been written for young people none have
been more popular than those describing adventures among the Red
Indians of North America.  Fenimore Cooper's books have delighted many
generations of readers; but on much of the ground where that author's
famous characters lived, hunted, fought and died, big towns have sprung
up, and the Indians, driven to live in reservations and to become,
practically, pensioners of the Government, have been shorn of nearly
all their greatness.

When the white man gained the ascendency in North America there came a
better opportunity for missionary work, and notable among those who
went to labour among the Indians was Mary Riggs, who, with her husband,
worked for thirty-two years among the Sioux--the Red Indians of Dakota.
She was born on November 10, 1813, at Hawley, Massachusetts, her father
being General Thomas Longley, who had fought in the war of 1812.
Evidently he was not a wealthy man, for Mary began her education at the
common town school, where she had for her schoolfellows the children of
some of the poorest inhabitants.  Later, she attended better schools,
and at the age of sixteen became a teacher in one at Williamstown,
Massachusetts.  Her salary was only one dollar a week, but she gave her
father the whole of her first quarter's earnings, as a slight return
for the money he had spent on her education.  After a time she obtained
a better appointment at a school at Bethlehem, and while there she met
Stephen R. Riggs, a young man who was studying for the Presbyterian
ministry.  They became engaged, and a few months later Stephen Riggs
told his future wife that he should like to become a missionary to the
Red Indians, among whom work had recently been started.  She expressed
her willingness to accompany him, and, therefore, he at once offered
himself to the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, by
whom he was accepted.

The young people were married on February 16, 1837, and about a
fortnight later began their long journey to the Far West.  Travelling
was in those days, of course, very different from what it is now, and
the young missionaries had to go by stage _viâ_ New York, Philadelphia,
and across the mountains to Pittsburg until they came to the Ohio.
Snow, rain and mud made their journey by stage particularly unpleasant,
but rest and comfort came on the steamer which bore them down the river.

On June 1, 1837, they arrived at Fort Snelling, near where the
Minnesota joins the Mississippi.  Here they remained until the
beginning of September, living in a log-house, and learning the Dakota
language with the help of a missionary who had been in the field for
three years.  From Fort Snelling they departed on September 5, 1837,
for their destination Lac-qui-parle, travelling with two one-ox carts
and a double wagon.  On September 18 they arrived at the station to
which they had been appointed, and received a hearty welcome from the
two missionaries who had settled there some time before at the earnest
request of a Lac-qui-parle trader.  Lac-qui-parle was a small place, a
mere collection of buffalo-skin tents, in which lived some 400 Red
Indians.  Mr. and Mrs. Riggs found a home in a log-house belonging to
one of the other missionaries.  Only one room could be spared them, and
although it was but 10 feet wide and 18 feet long they made themselves
comfortable.  Mr. Riggs wrote as follows in his account of their work
among the Sioux[1]: 'This room we made our home for five winters.
There were some hardships about such close quarters, but, all in all,
Mary and I never enjoyed five winters better than those spent in that
upper room.  There our first three children were born.  There we worked
in acquiring the language.  There we received our Dakota visitors.
There I wrote, and re-wrote, my ever-growing dictionary.  And there,
with what help I could obtain, I prepared for the printer the greater
portion of the New Testament in the Dakota language.  It was a
consecrated room.'

When Mrs. Riggs and her husband took possession of their one-room home
they had much difficulty in making it comfortable, as they had been
unable to bring on their furniture and domestic utensils.  One person,
however, lent them a kettle, another provided them with a pan, and bit
by bit they collected the most necessary articles.

In the East missionaries have never experienced a difficulty in
obtaining servants, but in Dakota neither male nor female Sioux would
enter the Riggs' service.  Consequently Mrs. Riggs had to perform all
the household duties.  They bought a cow, but neither of them knew how
to milk her.  Both Mr. and Mrs. Rigg tried to perform the task, but not
until the cow had experienced considerable discomfort did Mrs. Riggs
become acquainted with the art.  Washing clothes was a performance
which filled the Sioux women with wonder, for they were in the habit of
wearing their garments unwashed until they became too old to be worn
any longer.  Very soon they adopted the white woman's custom, and,
becoming fond of standing over the washing-tub, they took to washing
Mrs. Riggs' clothes as well as their own.  For doing so they were, of
course, paid.

The missionaries who had preceded the Riggs at Lac-qui-parle had not
been very successful, if success be judged by the number of converts
made.  The native Church consisted of seven people, but before the
Riggs had been there many months nine were added.  Most of these were
women, and it was they, and not the men, who assisted in the building
of the first church at Lac-qui-parle.

When Mr. and Mrs. Riggs had worked for some time with success at
Lac-qui-parle they removed to a new station--Traverse des Sioux.  But
four years later the news reached them that since their departure from
Lac-qui-parle there had been a sad falling back into heathenism among
the converts, and they hurried back to their old station.  Backsliders
were reclaimed, and the missionary work carried on with increased

But the missionaries had much to contend with.  The Indians were hard
pressed for food, and occasionally shot the mission cattle.  Grog shops
had been opened in the neighbourhood, and many of the Sioux bought
drink when they should have purchased provisions.  Excited by the
fire-water, the Indians were frequently riotous, and, although they
never assaulted the missionaries, it was clear that they might massacre
them.  On one occasion Mrs. Riggs had a very unpleasant experience.
While her husband was away, twenty-six Sioux warriors paraded in front
of mission house and fired their guns in the air.  Mrs. Riggs was
naturally somewhat frightened, until she found that they were not bent
on murder and scalping.  They had been searching for some Chippewas,
but, having failed to find them, they fired their guns for practice.

Mr. and Mrs. Riggs continued their work with but few interruptions
until 1862, when the Sioux rising occurred.  It began in this way.  The
Sioux had assembled at Yellow Medicine to receive their annual
allowance from the Government official.  While distributing the
allowance the official announced that the Great Father (President
Lincoln) was anxious to make them all very happy, and would therefore
give them, very shortly, a bonus.  The Indians, having recently
suffered greatly from want of provisions, were delighted at the
prospect of an additional grant, and waited in the vicinity of the
agency for its arrival.  When it arrived the Sioux found to their
dismay that it was a paltry gift of $2.50 a man.  Their disgust and
anger were increased by the knowledge that during the time they had
been waiting for this insignificant present they could have earned from
$50 to $100 by hunting.  Unintentionally, a Government servant added
fuel to the fire, and the Sioux, maddened, began their terrible
massacre of the scattered settlers.

The news of the rising was carried quickly to the Riggs by friendly
Indians, who urged them to hurry away as quickly as possible to a place
of safety.  But the missionaries were not disposed to consider the
rising serious.  The seizure of their horses and cows, and various
other unfriendly actions performed by the people among whom they had
lived for many years, soon, however, convinced them that it would be
wise to depart.  So gathering together a few belongings the little band
of missionaries, some carrying children, crept away by night to an
island in the Minnesota River.  But on the following day the friendly
Indians sent word to them that they were not safe on the island, and
urged further flight.

Acting on this advice, the Christians waded the river and started on a
tramp to the Hawk River, and on the way met other settlers, hurrying
like themselves, to escape from the infuriated Sioux.  Joining forces
they proceeded on their journey, the women and children riding in two
open carts, and soon met a wounded man, whom they tenderly lifted into
one of the wagons.  He was the sole survivor of a band of settlers
which had been attacked by the Sioux.

Keeping a sharp look-out for the Indians, the fugitives continued their
journey across the prairie.  On the second night the rain fell heavily,
and as the women and children could obtain no shelter in the open carts
they crept under them.  Wet and shivering, the fugitives found, when
daylight came, that they had scarcely any food.  Wood was collected, a
fire built, and one of the animals killed and roasted.

A day later they were espied by an Indian, who fortunately proved to be
friendly.  He advised the fugitives to hurry to Fort Ridgely, and
assured them that all the whites, with the exception of themselves, who
had not taken shelter in the fort had been killed.  Acting on his
advice, they proceeded in the direction of the fort, but travelled very
cautiously, for there were signs that Indians were in the neighbourhood.

One of the fugitives crept into the fort, but the news he brought back
to his comrades in distress was not cheering; the fort was already
overcrowded with women and children, and there was a very small force
of soldiers to defend it.  For five days they had been continually
attacked by the enemy, and unless reinforcements arrived quickly the
fort would probably be captured.

The Riggs and their fellow fugitives decided, therefore, to hurry on to
some other place, fully aware of the danger they were running in
travelling through a neighbourhood which abounded with the
scalp-seeking Indians.  One of Mary Riggs' daughters wrote of this
period in their flight: 'Every voice was hushed, except to give
necessary orders; every eye swept the hills and valleys around; every
ear was intensely strained for the faintest sound, expecting
momentarily to hear the unearthly war-whoop, and see dusky forms with
gleaming tomahawks uplifted.'


Hour after hour the tired and footsore fugitives trudged on without
being discovered.  Then four of their number, believing the danger was
passed, bade adieu to the remainder of the party and proceeded in a
different direction; but before they had gone far they were killed by
the Indians.  The Riggs and their party heard the fatal shots, but the
tragedy was hidden from their sight by the bush.  Fortunately, the
proximity of the larger party of fugitives was not discovered by the
Sioux; and at last, after a long, weary journey, the Riggs and their
friends arrived at the town of Henderson, where their appearance
occasioned considerable surprise, as their names had been included in
the list of massacred.

Over a thousand settlers were killed during the rising, and there were
many people who escaped death, but never recovered completely from the
horrors of that terrible time.  Mary Riggs returned with her husband to
the work among the Sioux; but her health grew slowly worse, and when,
in March, 1869, an ordinary cold developed into pneumonia she had not
the strength to battle against it.  She died on March 22, 1869, in
Beloit, Wisconsin, worn out with her thirty-two years' work in the

[1] _Mary and I; Forty Years with the Sioux_.  By Stephen R. Riggs.
Philadelphia, 1887.




Florence Nightingales's noble work among the sick and wounded in the
Crimean War is known to everyone; but very few people are aware that
there was another woman, working apart from Miss Nightingale, who
performed deeds of bravery and humanity in the same campaign which
entitle her to a high place in any list of brave and good women.  Sir
William Russell, the famous war correspondent of the _Times_, wrote, in
1858, of Mary Seacole: 'I have witnessed her devotion and her courage;
I have already borne testimony to her services to all who needed them.
She is the first who has redeemed the name of 'sutler' from the
suspicion of worthlessness, mercenary business and plunder; and I trust
that England will not forget one who nursed her sick, who sought out
her wounded to aid and succour them, and who performed the last offices
for some other illustrious dead.'  England seems to have forgotten her,
but it is hoped that this account of her life may help to remove the

Mary Seacole was born at Kingston, Jamaica, her father being a
Scotchman and her mother a native.  The latter kept a boarding-house
which was patronised chiefly by naval and military officers stationed
at Kingston, but she was also widely known in the West Indies as a
"doctoress."  Officers, their wives and children were her chief
patients, and she is reputed to have healed many troublesome complaints
with medicines made from the plants which she herself gathered.  Mary
inherited her mother's tastes, and when quite a child decided to become
a "doctoress."  She bandaged her dolls in the way she had seen her
mother bandage patients, and on growing older she doctored any stray
dogs and cats who could be prevailed upon to swallow the medicine she
had made.  After a time she became anxious to try her skill upon human
beings, but as no one would consent to take her medicine, she drank it
herself, happily without any serious effects.

When Mary Seacole (as she afterwards became) was about twelve years of
age her mother began to allow her to assist in waiting upon the invalid
officers staying at the boarding-house, and whilst thus engaged she was
able to obtain a knowledge of nursing which was of the greatest value
in after years.  While still a girl she paid a visit to England, and
remained there, with some relatives, for some months.  She visited
England again a few years later, and saw that there was a good opening
in London for West Indian commodities.  Therefore, on her return, she
exported guava jelly, pickles and various preserves, and being anxious
to add to the variety of her wares, she visited the Bahamas, Hayti and
Cuba, to inspect the productions of those places.

On returning from her travels among the islands she settled down again
to nurse her mother's invalid boarders, and before long married one of
them, a Mr. Seacole.  Her married life was, however, short for Mr.
Seacole died a few months after the wedding.  A little later her mother
passed away, and Mary Seacole was left without relatives in Jamaica.
She continued to manage the boarding-house; but her generosity to the
poor was so unlimited that when she had a bad season she was without
money to support herself.  However, she struggled on until her
boarding-house was once more filled with well-paying invalids.  But in
1843 she had a very serious loss; her house was burnt in a fire which
destroyed a large portion of Kingston.  The boarding-house was,
however, rebuilt, and prosperity returned.  Many a white man asked her
to become his wife, but she refused every offer, and devoted all her
spare time to the task of adding to her store of medical knowledge.
Several naval and military surgeons, surprised to find that her
knowledge of medical matters was, for a woman, great, assisted her with
her studies.

In 1850 cholera broke out in Jamaica, and raged for a greater portion
of the year, and a doctor who was living at Mary Seacole's house gave
her many valuable hints concerning the treatment of cholera cases.
Before long the knowledge thus obtained proved to be the means of
saving many lives.

Shortly after the cholera had ceased to rage in Jamaica Mary Seacole
proceeded on a visit to her brother, who owned a large, prosperous
store at Cruces in California.  On arriving there, she found the place
crowded with a mixed mob of gold-diggers and speculators, some
proceeding to the gold-fields, others returning.  The men returning
were drinking, gambling and "treating" those who were bound for the
gold-fields.  It was a degrading sight, and Mary Seacole wished that
she had not left Jamaica.  There was nowhere for her to sleep, wash or
change her travel-stained clothes, for every room in her brother's
house was engaged by the homeward-bound gold-diggers.  Until they
departed she had to manage to exist without a bed.

These parties of miners arrived at Cruces weekly, and the scenes of
dissipation were the same on each occasion.

Quarrels which ended in the death of one of the combatants were
frequent and little noticed, but the very sudden death of a Spaniard
who resided at Cruces caused great excitement.  He had dined with Mary
Seacole's brother, and on returning home was taken ill and suddenly
died.  Suspicion fell upon Mary Seacole's brother, and it was said
openly that he had poisoned the man.  Mary Seacole, indignant at the
accusation brought against her brother, went to see the body, and knew
at once that the man had died from cholera.  No one believed her, but
the following morning a friend of the dead man was taken ill with the
same disorder, and the people who had scoffed at her became

There was no doctor at Cruces, and Mary Seacole set herself to battle
single-handed with the plague.  Fortunately, she never travelled
without her medicine-chest, and taking from it the remedies which had
been used in Jamaica with great success she hurried to the sick man's
bedside, and by her promptitude was able, under God, to save his life.
Two more men were stricken down and successfully treated, and Mary
Seacole was beginning to hope that the plague would not spread, when a
score of cases broke out in one day.  The people were now helpless from
terror, and Mary Seacole was the only person who did not lose her
presence of mind.  Day and night she was attending patients, and for
days she never had more than a hour's rest at a time.  Whenever a
person was stricken, the demand was for 'the yellow woman from
Jamaica,' and it was never made in vain.

When the cholera had been raging for some days, Mary Seacole despatched
a messenger to bring a medical man to the place; but the Spaniard who
arrived in response to the summons was horror-stricken at the terrible
scenes, and incapable of rendering any assistance.  Mary Seacole was
compelled, therefore, to continue her noble work unaided.

One evening she had just settled down to a brief rest when a mule-owner
came and implored her to come at once to his kraal, as several of his
men had been attacked with cholera.  Now Mary Seacole had been visiting
patients throughout the day and the previous night, but without the
slightest hesitation she went out into the rain and made her way to the
sick muleteers, whom she found in a veritable plague-spot.  Men and
mules were all in one room, and the stench was so great that a feeling
of sickness came over her as she stood at the door.  But with an effort
she overcame the feeling, and entering flung open the windows, doors
and shutters.  Then, as the much-needed fresh air poured in, she looked

Two men she saw at once were dying, but there were others whom she
thought there was a possibility of saving, and these she attended to at
once.  For many hours she remained in this strangely crowded room, and
when she did quit it she only went away for an hour's sleep.  On her
return to the plague-spot she found fresh patients awaiting her, one, a
little baby, who in spite of her efforts died.  Everything was against
Mary Seacole in this pestilential stable, but nevertheless she was the
means of saving some lives.

At length, when the plague was dying out, the brave woman who had so
nobly fought the disease was herself stricken with it, but happily for
the British army she recovered.

Throughout the plague Mary Seacole had treated rich and poor alike.
The centless man and the down-trodden muleteer received as much
attention from her as the wealthy diggers returning home with their
bags of gold dust.  The latter paid her liberally for having tended
them, but the majority of her patients had nothing but thanks to give
her.  Possibly she appreciated the latter most, for some of her rich
patients seemed to think that having rewarded her they had wiped out
the debt of gratitude.

On June 4 some of her wealthy patients gave a dinner party, and invited
Mary Seacole to be present.  One speaker proposed her health, and after
referring to her having saved their lives continued in the following
strain: 'Well, gentlemen, I expect there are only two things we are
vexed for.  The first is that she ain't one of us--a citizen of the
great United States; and the other thing is, gentlemen, that Providence
made her a yellow woman.  I calculate, gentlemen, that you're all as
vexed as I am that she's not wholly white, but I do reckon on your
rejoicing with me that she's so many shades removed from being entirely
black; and I guess if we could bleach her by any means we would, and
thus make her as acceptable in any company as she deserves to be.
Gentlemen, I give you Aunty Seacole.'

Mary Seacole's reply to this ill-mannered speech was as follows:
'Gentlemen, I return you my best thanks for your kindness in drinking
my health.  As for what I have done in Cruces, Providence evidently
made me to be useful, and I can't help it.  But I must say that I don't
appreciate your friend's kind wishes with respect to my complexion.  If
it had been as dark as any nigger's, I should have been just as happy
and as useful, and as much respected by those whose respect I value;
and as to the offer of bleaching me, I should, even if it were
practicable, decline it without any thanks.  As to the society which
the process might gain me admission into, all I can say is, that,
judging from the specimens I have met here and elsewhere, I don't think
that I shall lose much by being excluded from it.  So, gentlemen, I
drink to you, and the general reformation of American manners.'

In 1853 Mary Seacole returned to Jamaica, and before she had been there
many weeks yellow fever broke out.  It was the worst outbreak that had
occurred for many years, and soon Mary Seacole's boarding-house was
full of patients, chiefly officers, their wives and children.  In
nursing her boarders, and procuring proper food for them, Mary Seacole
had more work than most women would care to undertake; but when the
military authorities asked her to organise a start of nurses to attend
to the men in Up-Park Camp, Kingston, she set to work on this
additional task, and, carrying it out with her customary thoroughness,
rendered a great service to the army.

After the yellow fever had subsided Mary Seacole sold her
boarding-house, and opened a store in New Granada, where she speedily
obtained popularity because of her medical skill.  On war being
declared against Russia, she determined to go to the Crimea to nurse
the sick and wounded, and started for London as quickly as possible,
arriving there soon after the news of the battle of Alma had been
received.  She had anticipated no difficulty in getting sent to the
front, as there were many officers who could testify to her nursing
abilities; but she found on arriving in London that every regiment to
whom she was known had been sent to the Crimea.  However, as the news
of the sufferings of our men at the front had reached London, and the
necessity of nurses being sent out was recognised, she imagined that
her services would be promptly accepted.

Soon she found, greatly to her sorrow, that the colour of her skin was
considered, in official circles, a barrier to her employment.  She
applied in turn at the War Office, the Quartermaster General's
Department, the Medical Department, and the Crimea Fund, but at each
place some polite excuse was made for declining her services.  It was
indeed a foolish act on the part of the officials.  Nurses were sorely
needed, and here was Mary Seacole, who had far greater experience of
nursing British soldiers than any woman living, refused employment.
She declared in her little book of adventures,[1] published soon after
the war ended, that at her last rebuff she cried as she walked along
the street.

But Mary Seacole's determination to proceed to the Crimea was not
shaken by her inability to prevail upon the authorities to accept her
services, and after consideration she decided to go to the front at her
own expense.  She had sufficient money to pay her passage to Balaclava,
and to support her for some months after her arrival, but not enough to
enable her also to supply herself with the medical outfit necessary for
work at the seat of war.  The only way in which she could hope to be in
a position to help the sick and wounded was by earning money in the
Crimea, and therefore she decided to start an hotel at Balaclava for
invalid officers.  By the next mail she sent out to the officers who
had known her at Jamaica a notice that she would shortly arrive at
Balaclava, and establish an hotel with comfortable quarters for sick
and convalescent officers.

While Mary Seacole was making preparations for her departure she met a
shipper named Day, who, hearing of her plans, offered to enter into
partnership with her in the proposed hotel.  This offer she accepted,
as with a partner she would be able to devote more time to the wounded.

At Malta Mary Seacole found herself once more among people who knew and
appreciated her.  Some medical officers who had been stationed at
Kingston were among those who welcomed her, and believing that Florence
Nightingale would be glad of her help, gave her a letter of
introduction to that noble Englishwoman.  Having made arrangements for
her work in the Crimea, Mary Seacole had now no desire to become
attached to any nursing staff, but she accepted the letter of
introduction, as she was anxious to make the acquaintance of Florence
Nightingale, who was then at the barracks at Scutari, a suburb of
Constantinople, which were being used as a hospital for British troops.

When Mary Seacole arrived at Scutari, Florence Nightingale was too busy
to grant her an interview immediately, so she spent the period of
waiting in inspecting the wards.  As she passed along, many of the
invalid soldiers recognised her and called to her.  Some of them she
had nursed in Jamaica, and the sight of her kindly brown face filled
them with recollections of happy days in the West Indies.  To every man
who recognised her she said a few cheering words, and in several cases
rearranged bandages which had slipped.  While thus engaged, an officer
entered the ward, and was about to reprimand her, when he saw, much to
his surprise, that she was as skilful as any doctor or nurse in the
hospital.  When she had finished her self-imposed task, he thanked her
for her thoughtful kindness.

At last Mary Seacole saw Florence Nightingale, whom she describes in
these words: 'A slight figure, in the nurse's dress, with a pale,
gentle, and withal firm face, resting lightly on the palm of one white
hand, while the other supports the elbow--a position which gives to her
countenance a keen, enquiring expression which is very marked.
Standing thus in repose, and yet keenly observant, was Florence
Nightingale--that Englishwoman whose name shall never die, but sound
like music on the lips of British men until the hour of doom.'

Naturally Florence Nightingale was interested in the woman who came to
her warmly recommended by British medical officers, and made many
enquiries concerning her intentions.  On the following morning Mary
Seacole resumed her journey, but these two good women met several times
before the war was ended.

On arriving at Balaclava Mary Seacole received hearty welcome from the
troops.  Men who had been stationed in Jamaica told their comrades of
her bravery and kindness, and everyone hailed her as a great friend.
Many officers, including a general and that gallant Christian, Captain
Hedley Vicars, met her as she landed, and expressed their thanks to her
for coming to the Crimea.

Mary Seacole was soon at work among the wounded, assisting the doctors
to transfer them from the ambulances to the transports.  While engaged
in this work, on the day after her arrival, she noticed a wounded man
who was evidently in great pain, and saw at once that his bandages were
stiff, and hurting him.  Having rearranged them she gave the poor
fellow some tea, and as she placed it to his lips his hand touched
hers.  'Ha!' he exclaimed, too weak even to open his eyes, 'this is
surely a woman's hand.  God bless you, woman, whoever you are!  God
bless you!'

A few days later, as she was busy at her usual work of attending to the
sick and wounded, the Admiral of the Port placed his hand on her
shoulder, and said earnestly, 'I am glad to see you here among these
poor fellows.'  A day or two before--when she had made some enquiries
concerning the landing of her stores--this admiral had declared
brusquely that they did not want a parcel of women in the place.  When
at last Mary Seacole's stores were put ashore, she started business in
a rough little hut, made of tarpaulin, on which was displayed the name
of the firm--Seacole and Day.  The soldiers, however, considered that
as Mary Seacole's skin was dark, a better name for the firm was Day and
Martin, and as such it was generally known.

Towards the end of the summer, Seacole and Day's British Hotel was
opened at Spring Hill.  It had cost £800 to build, and was an excellent
place for sick officers to rest.  Adjoining the hotel, and belonging to
the same proprietors, was a store at which could be purchased creature
comforts and useful articles.  At first the store was opened every day
of the week.  Mary Seacole had a strong dislike to opening it on
Sunday, but the requirements of the soldiers made it almost a
necessity.  After a time, when the most pressing needs of the men had
been met, she gave notice that the store would be closed on Sundays,
and this rule she refused to alter, in spite of being constantly urged
to do so.

Many officers, instead of going into hospital when ill, became boarders
at Mary Seacole's, and among these was a naval lieutenant who was a
cousin of Queen Victoria.  These officers she doctored and nursed with
her customary skill, and for every vacancy in her hotel there were
half-a-dozen applicants.

One day it became known in camp, that among the things which Mary
Seacole had received from a recently arrived ship was a young pig,
which she intended to fatten and kill.  Immediately she was overwhelmed
with orders for a leg of pork, and if the pig had possessed a hundred
legs she could have sold every one of them.  An officer to whom she did
eventually promise a leg of pork was so anxious that there should be no
mistake about the matter, that he made the following memorandum of the
transaction:--'That Mrs. Seacole did this day, in the presence of Major
A-- and Lieutenant W--, promise Captain H--, a leg of _the_ pig.'

Every portion of the pig was sold long before the animal was fit to be
killed, and then the purchasers began to fear that it would be stolen.
Everybody took an interest in tins pig, and it was considered the
correct thing for every soldier who passed the sty to assure himself
that the animal was still there.  One day two officers, coming off
duty, galloped up to the hotel and shouted excitedly, 'Mrs. Seacole!
Quick, quick, the pig's gone!'  It was not a false alarm; the pig had
been stolen.  As, however, the nest in the sty was warm, it was evident
that the pig had only recently been taken, and a party of officers
started in pursuit of the thieves, shouting laughingly as they rode
off, 'Stole away!  Hark away!'  The thieves, two Greeks, were quickly
overtaken, and the precious pig was brought back in triumph to Mary

It must not be thought that Mary Seacole devoted herself entirely to
the officers, for her best work was done among the privates on the
battlefield.  Sir William Russell bore testimony to her courage and
humanity.  'I have seen her,' he wrote, 'go down under fire, with her
little store of creature comforts for our wounded men; and a more
tender or skilful hand about a wound or broken limb could not be found
among our best surgeons.  I saw her at the assault on the Redan, at the
Tchernaya, at the fall of Sebastopol, laden, not with plunder, good old
soul! but with wine, bandages, and food for the wounded or the

The Inspector-General of Hospitals praised her work, and the
Adjutant-General of the British Army wrote on July 1, 1856:--'Mrs.
Seacole was with the British Army in the Crimea from February, 1855, to
this time.  This excellent woman has frequently exerted herself in the
most praiseworthy manner in attending wounded men, even in positions of
great danger, and in assisting sick soldiers by all means in her power.'

From officers who could afford to pay for her medicine or wine she
accepted payment, but a man's need, and not his ability to pay, was her
first thought.  On the battle-field she gave strengthening food to
wounded privates which she could easily have sold, at a large profit,
to the officers.

Regardless of the danger she was running--she had many narrow escapes
from shot and shell--she bandaged the wounded, administered
restoratives to the unconscious, and prayed with the dying.  Scores of
dying men gave her messages for their loved ones at home, and these she
despatched as speedily as possible.  She saw many an old friend laid to
his last rest, and among these was Hedley Vicars, with whom she had
been associated in much good work in Jamaica.

Mary Seacole was known to have a very poor opinion of our French ally,
but a wounded Frenchman received as much attention from her as an
Englishman.  The enemy, too, had good cause to bless her, for many a
wounded Russian would have died on the battle-field but for her skilful
and prompt aid.  One Russian officer, whose wounds she bandaged and
whom she helped to lift into the ambulance, was greatly distressed at
being unable to express his thanks in a language which she understood.
Taking a valuable ring from his finger, he placed it in her hand,
kissing her hand as he did so, and smiled his thanks.

Mary Seacole continued her noble work until the war ended.  But her
generosity to the sick and wounded had been a great strain upon her
finances, as the whole of her share of the profits in the firm of
Seacole and Day, and much of her capital, had been spent on her
charitable work.  And, to make matters worse, when the British troops
had departed from the Crimea, the firm had to dispose of its stock at
one-tenth of the cost price.  Proceeding to England, Seacole and Day
started business at Aldershot, but after a few months the partnership
was dissolved, and Mary Seacole found herself almost penniless.  But as
soon as her unfortunate position became known, friends hastened to
assist her.  _Punch_ recorded some of her good deeds in verse, and made
a humorous appeal on her behalf.

The red-coats did, at _Punch's_ invitation, 'lend a willing hand;' for,
although all ranks were sorry to hear of Mary Seacole's misfortune,
they were glad to have an opportunity to prove to her that they had not
forgotten her noble work in the Crimea.  Subscriptions to the fund that
was started for her benefit poured in, and a sufficient sum was
received to enable her to spend the regaining years of her life in

[1] _The Wonderful Adventures of Mary Seacole_.  Edited by W. J. S.


Many years ago, when His Majesty King Edward VII. was in Canada, he
paid a visit to Mrs. Laura Secord, a very old and revered Canadian
lady.  The news of the visit of the Prince of Wales (for such, of
course, His Majesty then was), and the present which he afterwards
bestowed upon her, was heard with pleasure throughout Canada, for Laura
Secord is a heroine of whom the Canadians are justly very proud.

The brave deed for which she is famed is here told:

On June 18, 1812, the United States of America declared war against
Great Britain.  The conquest of Canada was the object President Madison
had in view, and he was confident that he would achieve it with little
difficulty.  Truly he had good reasons for his confidence.  In the
whole of Canada there were less than 4500 regular troops, and it was
known that Napoleon's activity in Europe would prevent the British
Government from sending out reinforcements.

Naturally, the news that America had declared war filled the Canadians
with dismay; but this feeling was quickly succeeded by a determination
to repel the invaders, or die in the attempt.  The call to arms was
sounded throughout the country, and an army composed of farmers,
fur-traders, clerks, artisans, French Canadians, Red Indians, and negro
slaves was soon formed.

Among the white men who volunteered was James Secord, who had married
Laura Ingersoll, the daughter of a sturdy loyalist who quitted the
United States, after the War of Independence, to live under the British
flag in Canada.  Mr. and Mrs. Secord were living at Queenston, on the
banks of the Niagara River, when the war broke out, and it was at
Queenston that a fierce battle was fought, four months later.

About two o'clock in the morning of October 13 the British discovered
that the Americans had crossed the river under cover of darkness, and
that some were already scaling the cliffs at various points.  A fierce
fire was opened upon the invaders on the beach, who concealed
themselves behind the rocks and fired whenever they saw an opportunity.
The American losses were great, and it appeared as if they would either
have to surrender or be annihilated, when suddenly a volley was poured
into the rear of the British.

Unseen by the defenders, a body of Americans had scaled the cliffs, and
taken up a strong position above the British, who were now between two
fires.  The British general--Brock--was mortally wounded, and for a few
moments his men stood aghast.  Then the cry, 'Avenge Brock!' was
raised, and with a cheer the British force advanced to drive out the

A terrible hand-to-hand fight ensued, and slowly but surely the
Americans were driven to the edge of the cliff.  Several hundred
surrendered, and many more might have been taken prisoners but for the
fact that the Indians had got beyond control, and refused to give
quarters to their hated foe.  Seizing men who were willing to
surrender, they hurled them from the cliff into the water below.
Scores of Americans, fearing the vengeance of the Indians, jumped from
the cliff and were drowned, and many others fought stubbornly until
they reached the brink and fell backwards.  A terribly sanguinary fight
had resulted in a victory for the British; but it had been dearly
bought.  The British general was dead, and the battle-field was strewn
with the bodies of brave volunteers who had died in defence of their
homes and liberty.

Before the last of the invaders had surrendered or been killed, Laura
Secord was on the battlefield searching for her husband.  She found
Captain Secord's men, but he was not with them, and not one of them
knew where he was.  In the hand-to-hand fight they had lost sight of
their captain, but they pointed out to the distressed lady the spot
where they had fought.

Hither Laura Secord hurried, and where the dead and dying lay thick she
found her husband terribly wounded.  Falling on her knees beside him,
she called him by name, but he gave no sign that he heard her.
Believing him to be dead, she cried bitterly, and taking him up in her
arms carried him to their house.  Then as she laid him down she found
to her great joy that he still breathed.

By her tender nursing she saved his life, although his recovery was
very slow.  Winter and spring passed, and summer came, and Captain
Secord was still an invalid and unable to walk.  It was a great trial
to him to be kept to the house, fur another American force had landed
at Queenston, and occupied the town and neighbourhood.  It had been
impossible to remove Captain Secord when the other Canadians retired,
and thus he and his wife were left in the midst of the Americans.  But,
as it turned out, it was a happy thing for the British that he was too
ill to be removed.

One day, towards the end of June, some American officers entered the
Secords' house, and commanded Laura to give them food.  She did so, and
while waiting on them listened to all they said.  Of course she did not
let them see that she was taking an interest in their conversation, and
succeeded in making them believe that she was a very simple and
unintelligent person.  Imagining that she would not understand what
they were saying, they began to discuss their general's plans, and
unwittingly revealed to her the fact that a surprise attack was to be
made on the British force.  When the officers, having eaten a hearty
meal, departed, Laura Secord repeated to her husband all that they had

Captain Secord was at a loss what to do.  The British would have to be
warned of the attack, but who could he get to pass the American pickets
and carry a message through twenty miles of bush?  Never before had he
felt so keenly his helpless condition.

But his despair was short-lived, for his wife declared that she would
carry the news to the British general.  Quickly she told him her plans,
and although it seemed to him that there was little prospect of her
being able to carry them out, he did not attempt to dissuade her from
the undertaking.

At daybreak the following morning Laura Secord, disguised as a
farm-maid, quitted the house bare-footed and bare-legged, and walked
straight to the cow to milk her.  But she had scarcely begun her task
when the cow kicked over the milking pail and ran forward towards the
bush.  The American soldiers laughed heartily at the mishap, but
ignoring them Laura Secord picked up her stool and pail and ran after
the cow.  Her second attempt to milk her ended in the same way--the cow
kicked over the pail and frisked a few yards nearer to the bush.  To
the delight of the soldiers this performance was repeated several
times, and chasing the cow Laura Secord passed the pickets and entered
the bush.  The Americans saw her make another and equally unsuccessful
attempt at milking.  Soon cow and milk-maid were lost to sight.  Again
Laura Secord approached the cow and began to milk her, and this time
the animal stood quietly.

The pinch which Laura Secord had given the cow on the previous
occasions was not repeated, and the milking could soon have been
finished, had the brave woman time to spare.  Sitting on her stool, she
peered in the direction whence she came and listened.  Convinced that
the soldiers had not had their suspicions aroused, she sprang up and
leaving cow, pail and stool, started on her long journey.

Hour after hour she pressed forward, fearful that at any moment she
might come face to face with the enemy's scouts.  Nor was this the only
danger she had to fear.  The bush was infested with venomous snakes,
and on several occasions she found one lying in her path.  Sometimes
she succeeded in frightening away the reptile, but frequently she was
compelled to make a detour to avoid it.  Her feet and legs were torn
and bleeding, but still she plodded on, across hill and dale, through
swamp and stream.

When night came she was still wearily trudging along, but uncertain
whether she was proceeding in the right direction.  Again and again she
fell to the ground, and would have lain there, but for the knowledge
that the lives of hundreds of her countrymen would be lost if she did
not reach the British lines quickly.  This thought spurred her on.

Exhausted, bleeding and hungry, she continued her journey, praying to
God to give her strength to reach her destination.

Hours passed, and at length she became so exhausted that her hope of
reaching the British grew faint.  She felt that if she fell again she
would not have the strength to rise.  Then suddenly the air was filled
with the war-whoop of the Red Indians, and a score of the dreaded
savages sprang from their hiding-places and surrounded her.

Indians were fighting for the Americans as well as for the British, and
the atrocities which they perpetrated made the war of 1812 one of the
most bitter, most unchivalrous, that had been waged between civilized
nations for many years.  Believing her captors to be allies of the
Americans, Laura Secord felt that her last hour had come, but imagine
her joy when, a few moments later she discovered that they were scouts
of the British force.

Quickly she was carried to the British lines, and at her own request
was taken at once to the officer in command, whom she told of the
impending attack.  After praising Laura Secord for her bravery, and
ordering that her wants should be attended to immediately, the officer
proceeded to make use of the information she had brought him; and so
well did he lay his plans, and so quickly were they carried out, that
the Americans, instead of surprising the British, were themselves
surprised, and every man in the force captured.


During the Great Rebellion many brave deeds were performed by women.
Royalists and Parliamentarians each had their heroines, and we can
honour them all, irrespective of party, for their devotion to the cause
which they had espoused, and rejoice in the fact that they were British

Lady Bankes was a woman whom Roundheads as well as Cavaliers admitted
to be a noble specimen of an English lady.  She was the wife of the
Right Honourable Sir John Bankes, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas and
a member of His Majesty's Privy Council.

When it began to appear that the differences between King Charles and
his Parliament would be settled by arms, Lady Bankes retired with her
children to Corfe Castle, in Dorsetshire.  Sir John was on circuit at
the time, but it was soon discovered that he had supplied the king with
money to carry on war against his Parliament, and for this reason he
became a marked man.  He was not, however, a Royalist who hoped to keep
his appointment by concealing his opinions from the Roundheads.  At the
Salisbury assizes he made his charge to the grand jury an opportunity
for denouncing as guilty of high treason several peers who had taken up
arms against the king.  For this Parliament denounced him as a traitor,
and declared his property forfeited.

No attempt was, however, made to seize Corfe Castle until May 1643,
when all the other castles in the neighbourhood having been captured,
it was the only one held by a Royalist.  The Parliamentary army was
well aware that Sir John Bankes was not at the castle, and that Lady
Bankes had a very small force of servants to protect her, and
consequently it was, for some time, not considered necessary to capture
it.  It was believed that Lady Bankes, shut up in her own castle, was
powerless to harm Cromwell's army.  But, eventually, it was decided
that it was unwise not to interfere with a place that was notoriously a
Royalist possession, and it was decided to capture it.

The day fixed for the event was the first of May.  On that day it was
the custom of the gentlemen of Corfe Castle to hunt a stag on the
island, and any one who liked to do so might participate in the sport.
The Roundheads decided to attend the hunt, seize the men from the
castle, and then capture the castle itself.  But the arrival of an
exceptionally large number of people to attend the hunt aroused the
suspicions of the few Royalists, who quickly withdrew to the castle and
gave instructions that the gates were to be kept shut against anyone
seeking admission.

Having failed to capture the Royalists in the hunting-field, the rebels
came to the castle, and pretending that they were peaceable country
folk, craved permission to be allowed to see the interior.  The
permission was refused, and some of the soldiers, angry at the failure
of the plot, forgot the part they were playing, and threatened to
return and gain admission by force.  The officers, anxious not to
arouse Lady Bankes's suspicions, loudly reprimanded their men for
making foolish threats, and assured her ladyship that they had no
intention of doing as their men had vowed.

Lady Bankes did not, however, believe the rebel officers, and,
convinced that an attack would shortly be made on the castle, she
prepared to defend it.  She had no Royalist troops whatever in the
castle, and her first step, therefore, was to call in a number of men
whom she could rely upon.  But no sooner were the men instructed in
their duties than the rebels demanded that the four small guns which
were mounted on the wall should be given up.

Lady Bankes refused to surrender them, and some days later forty seamen
came and demanded them.  Now at that hour Lady Bankes had only five men
in the castle, but pretending that she had a large garrison, she
refused the seamen's demand, and caused one of the guns to be fired
over their heads.  The report of this gun, which only carried a
three-pound ball, so alarmed the seamen that they fled in dismay.  They
must have been very different from the men who sailed under Blake, and
made the Commonwealth's navy world-famed.

No sooner had the timorous seamen fled than Lady Bankes summoned to the
castle all her tenants and friendly neighbours, to assist her to hold
the place until her husband should return.  They came in quickly, many
bringing arms, and vowed to fight for her and King Charles; but the
Roundheads, discovering who had entered the castle, went to the homes
of these men, and told their wives that unless their husbands returned
home their houses would be burned to the ground.  The frightened wives
thereupon made their way to the castle and implored their husbands to
return.  Some of the men did as their wives desired, but others would
not break the promise they had made to the mistress of Corfe Castle.

The enemy now decided to starve out Lady Bankes, and threatened to kill
anyone caught conveying food to the castle.  This measure was
effective, for Lady Bankes, being without sufficient food and
ammunition to withstand a siege, agreed to deliver up the guns, on the
condition that she should remain in possession of the castle unmolested.

Lady Bankes had, however, little confidence in the honour of the
attacking party, and felt assured that they would before long, in spite
of their promise, endeavour to take possession of the castle.  This was
made evident by the behaviour of the soldiers, who, although they did
not enter the castle, did not hesitate to boast that it belonged to
them, and that they would take possession of it whenever it was
required.  But Lady Bankes was determined that it should not, if she
could possibly prevent it, fall into the hands of the enemy.  Therefore
she gave instructions that the men appointed to watch the castle should
be supplied liberally with food and drink, with the result that they
neglected to do their duty, and allowed Lady Bankes to smuggle in
sufficient provisions and ammunition to withstand a long siege.
Moreover, Lady Bankes despatched a messenger to Prince Maurice, asking
him to send a force to help her hold the castle against the enemy, and
in reply to her appeal Captain Lawrence and some eighty men arrived
upon the scene.

The Parliamentarians had now become aware of the fact that Lady Bankes
was taking steps to render the castle capable of withstanding a siege,
and they decided to occupy it at once.

On June 23, 1643, Sir Walter Earle arrived before the castle with a
force of about 600 men, and called upon Lady Bankes to surrender, which
she firmly but courteously declined to do.  Her refusal greatly
incensed the besiegers, who thereupon took an oath that 'if they found
the defendants obstinate not to yield, they would maintain the siege to
victory, and then deny quarter unto all, killing without mercy men,
women and children.'

The Parliamentarians, possessing several pieces of ordnance, opened
fire on the castle from all quarters, but did comparatively little
damage, and their attempts to carry it by assault were equally

When some days had passed, and the attacking forces were no nearer
capturing the castle than when they first arrived, the Earl of Warwick
sent to their assistance 150 sailors, a large supply of ammunition and
numerous scaling-ladders.  Possessing these ladders, the Roundheads
anticipated that the castle would soon be in their hands.  They divided
their force into two parties, one assaulting the middle ward, which was
defended by Captain Lawrence, and the other, the upper ward, where Lady
Bankes, her daughters, women-servants and five soldiers were the sole

As the Parliamentarians fixed their ladders against the castle wall
Lady Bankes and her brave assistants showered down upon them red-hot
stones and flaming wood.  The soldiers too, delighted at the bravery of
the mistress of the castle, fought desperately, and not one of the
enemy succeeded in gaining entrance to the castle.

Sir Walter Earle, seeing that he could not carry the castle by assault,
withdrew with a loss of one hundred killed and wounded.  He would in
all probability have made another attack, but during the evening the
news reached him that the king's forces were approaching, and overcome
by fear he ordered a retreat, leaving behind muskets, ammunition and
guns, all of which fell into the hands of Lady Bankes and her gallant

After this siege, which had lasted for six weeks, Lady Bankes was
allowed to remain for two years in undisturbed possession of the
castle; but she lived in the knowledge that at any time another attempt
to capture it might be made, as it was the only place of any importance
between Exeter and London that remained loyal to the royal cause.
Threats were constantly reaching her from certain members of the
Parliamentary party, and to add to her trials her husband, whom she had
not seen for two years, died at Oxford on December 28, 1644.

In October, 1645, the Parliamentary army decided to make another and
more determined effort to capture Corfe Castle, and a large force was
sent to besiege it.  Lady Bankes and her handful of men had now pitted
against them some of the best regiments in the victorious
Parliamentarian army, but they scorned to surrender to them.

It was in January of the following year that a young officer--Colonel
Cromwell--determined to make an effort to rescue Lady Bankes, and
riding with a specially picked troop from Oxford he passed through the
enemy without its being discovered that he was a Royalist until he
arrived at Wareham, the governor of which fired upon the troop.  A
fight ensued, but the daring troopers speedily captured the governor
and other leading men, and rode off to Corfe Castle, only, however, to
find that between them and the besieged lay a strong force of the
enemy.  They did not hesitate, but prepared instantly for the fight,
and the besieged, cheering them loudly, made ready to sally forth and
assist them.

Afraid of being caught between the two Royalist parties, the besiegers
retired, and Colonel Cromwell rode up in triumph to the castle walls,
and handed over to Lady Bankes, for safe custody, the Governor of
Wareham and other prisoners whom he had taken.

Greatly to Colonel Cromwell's surprise, Lady Bankes declined to avail
herself of the opportunity for escape which he had contrived, declaring
that she would defend the castle as long as she possessed ammunition.
Thinking that he could render the king greater service in the open than
in a besieged castle, Colonel Cromwell rode off with his troop, but
losing his way he and many of his men were captured by the enemy.
Those who evaded capture made their way back to Corfe Castle, and
assisted in its defence.

Days passed without the enemy improving his position in the slightest
degree, and Lady Bankes would have kept the royal flag flying for many
months more, had there not been traitors in the castle.  Colonel
Lawrence, who had gallantly assisted in the first defence of Corfe
Castle, was persuaded by the Governor of Wareham to help him to escape,
and to accompany him on his flight.  The treachery of Lawrence was a
heavy blow for Lady Bankes, but she did not despair, believing it
impossible that any other of her friends would turn traitor.
Unfortunately she was mistaken.  An officer, who had hitherto been
loyal and energetic as Colonel Lawrence, secretly sent word to the
officer commanding the besieging force that if protection were given
him he would deliver up the castle.  The proposal was welcomed, and
after much secret correspondence it was settled that fifty men of the
Parliamentarian army should disguise themselves as Royalists, and be
admitted into the castle by the traitor.

This plan succeeded.  The men were admitted without arousing any
suspicion, and not until the following morning did the garrison
discover that they had been betrayed.  A brief fight ensued, but
resistance was useless, and with a sad heart Lady Bankes surrendered
the castle which she had so nobly defended for nearly three years.

The Parliamentarian officer who accepted the surrender was a humane
man, and took care that his troops should not fulfil their vow to put
to death every man, woman and child found in the castle.  After the
place had been plundered, an attempt was made to destroy it, but the
walls were so massive that its destruction was impossible, and to-day
much of it is still standing.

Lady Bankes was not kept prisoner for long, and Oliver Cromwell
ordained that she should not be made to suffer for her loyalty and
bravery.  Throughout the Commonwealth the heroine of Corfe Castle lived
peacefully, and did not die until Charles II. had been upon the throne
nearly a year.  She died on April 11, 1661, and in Ruislip Church,
Middlesex, there is a monument, erected to her memory by her son, Sir
Ralph Bankes, on which is inscribed a record of her brave defence.



It was at the beginning of the year 1776 that Major Acland was ordered
to proceed with his regiment to America, to take part in the attempt to
quell the rising of the colonists.  His wife, to whom he had been
married six years, at once asked to be allowed to accompany him, but he
hesitated to give his consent, being doubtful whether she would be able
to bear the hardships of a campaign.

Hitherto her life had been one of comfort.  She was the third daughter
of the first Earl of Ilchester, and her training had not been such as
would qualify her for roughing it.  Major Acland did not, however,
offer any objections when his wife, fearing that he thought the life
would be too hard for her, declared that she had made up her mind to
accompany him.

Arriving in Canada, she soon found that campaigning was more arduous
than she had imagined.  Her husband's regiment was continually on the
march, and she suffered greatly from cold, fatigue and want of proper

When they had been in Canada about a year, Major Acland became
dangerously ill, and his wife, herself in ill-health, was his only
nurse.  Although the twenty-seven years of her life had been without
any experience of nursing, she soon became efficient, and before long
had the pleasure of knowing that by her care and attention she had
saved her husband's life.  But before Major Acland had fully regained
his strength he was ordered to rejoin his regiment, to take part in the
attack upon Ticonderoga.

So far Lady Harriet had followed her husband from place to place, and
she prepared to accompany him to Ticonderoga; but, knowing that the
fight would be a severe one, he insisted upon her remaining behind.
She obeyed him, but was miserable during his absence, and would have
preferred the greatest hardships to sitting idle, waiting to hear the
result of the battle.  It was a hard-fought one, but Ticonderoga was
captured by the British, and the news filled Lady Harriet with joy, for
her husband, who sent her the message, told her that he was unhurt.
The joy was short-lived, however.  Two days later Lady Harriet was
informed that on the day following the capture of Ticonderoga her
husband had been dangerously wounded.  Reproaching herself for having
been away from him in time of danger, she started off at once to where
he lay, and by careful nursing she again saved his life.

Lady Harriet had decided, during her husband's last illness, to follow
him everywhere, no matter how great the danger; and when she was once
more on the march some of the artillerymen, anxious to make her
self-imposed task lighter, constructed for her a small two-wheeled

Major Acland commanded the grenadiers, whose duty it was to be at the
most advanced post of the army, and consequently Lady Harriet was
always in danger of being killed or captured.  She, like the officers,
lay down in her clothes, so that she might be ready at any moment to
advance.  One night the tent in which she and her husband were sleeping
caught fire, and had it not been for the prompt and gallant conduct of
an orderly-sergeant, who at great personal risk dragged them out, they
would have been suffocated or burnt to death.  As it was, Major Acland
was severely burnt, and all their personal belongings were lost.

Instead of being disheartened by the hardships and mishaps which fell
to her lot, Lady Harriet became more cheerful as time went on; but
another severe trial was in store for her.  Major Acland informed her
that as they would in all probability engage the enemy in a day or two,
she would have to remain in the care of the baggage guard, which was
unlikely to be exposed to danger.  Lady Harriet protested, being
anxious to accompany her husband into battle, but she was compelled to
do as the major desired.  Here among the baggage she had for companions
two other ladies, wives of officers.

When the action began Lady Harriet was seated in a small hut which she
had found unoccupied, and here she remained listening to the artillery
and musketry fire, and praying that her husband might come out of the
fight uninjured.  Soon, however, she had to vacate the hut, for the
surgeons told her that they required it, as the fight was fierce, and
the men were falling fast.  Unwittingly the surgeons had alarmed her.
If men were falling fast there was little chance of her husband, whose
place was in the front line of attack, escaping injury.

For four hours the battle raged fiercely, but Lady Harriet could obtain
no news other husband.  He was not among the wounded or dead who had
been brought to the rear, but she feared that at any moment she might
see him lying white and still on a stretcher.  The two ladies who
waited with her were equally anxious for news from the front, and for
them it came soon, and cruelly.  The husband of one was brought back
mortally wounded, and a little later the other was told that her
husband had been shot dead.

The battle ceased, and the last of the wounded was brought to the
surgeons, but still Lady Harriet was without news of Major Acland, and
it was not until many hours later that she heard he was still alive.
Her joy was tempered by the knowledge that the fighting would be
renewed before many days had elapsed.

At last, on October 7, 1777, the second battle of Saratoga was fought.
Lady Harriet was once again doomed to listen to the sound of cannon and
musketry, and to see a sad procession of wounded moving to the rear.
As time passed without any news of her husband reaching her, she began
to hope that he would pass through the battle uninjured; but this was
not to be.  Soon the news came that the British, under General
Burgoyne, had been defeated, and that Major Acland, seriously wounded,
had been taken prisoner.

For a time Lady Harriet was overcome with grief, but growing calmer she
determined to make an attempt to join her husband in the American camp
and nurse him there.  'When the army was upon the point of moving after
the halt described,' General Burgoyne wrote in his account of the
campaign, 'I received a message from Lady Harriet, submitting to my
decision a proposal (and expressing an earnest solicitude to execute
it, if not interfering with my designs) of passing to the camp of the
enemy, and requesting General Gates's permission to attend her husband.
Though I was ready to believe (for I had experienced) that patience and
fortitude in a supreme degree were to be found, as well as every other
virtue, under the most tender forms, I was astonished at this proposal.
After so long an agitation of the spirits, exhausted not only for want
of rest, but absolutely want of food, drenched in rains for twelve
hours together, that a woman should be capable such an undertaking as
delivering herself to the enemy, probably in the night, and uncertain
of what hands she might first fall into, appeared an effort above human
nature.  The assistance I was enabled to give was small indeed; I had
not even a cup of wine to offer her; but I was told she had found, from
some kind and fortunate hand, a little rum and dirty water.  All I
could furnish to her was an open boat and a few lines, written upon
dirty and wet paper, to General Gates, recommending her to his

Accompanied by an army chaplain and two servants, Lady Harriet
proceeded up the Hudson River in an open boat to the enemy's outposts;
but the American sentry, fearing treachery, refused to allow her to
land, and ignoring the white handkerchief which she held aloft,
threatened to shoot anyone in the boat who ventured to move.  For eight
hours, unprotected from the night air, Lady Harriet sat shivering in
the boat, but at daybreak she prevailed upon the sentry to have her
letter delivered to General Gates.  The American general readily gave
permission for her to join her husband, who, she found, had been shot
through both legs, in addition to having received several minor wounds.
His condition was serious, but Lady Harriet succeeded in nursing him
into comparatively good health.

When Major Acland was sufficiently recovered to be able to travel he
returned with his wife to England, where the story of Lady Harriet's
bravery and devotion was already well-known.  A portrait of her, in
which she is depicted standing in the boat holding aloft a white
handkerchief, was exhibited in the Royal Academy and engraved.  Sir
Joshua Reynolds also painted a portrait of her.

Lady Harriet, 'the heroine of the American War,' lived, admired and
respected, for thirty-seven years after her husband's death, dying
deeply mourned at Tatton, Somersetshire, on July 21, 1815.

'Let such as are affected by these circumstances of alarm, hardship and
danger, recollect,' General Burgoyne wrote, 'that the subject of them
was a woman, of the most tender and delicate frame, of the gentlest
manners, habituated to all the soft elegances and refined enjoyments
that attend high birth and fortune.  Her mind alone was formed for such
trials.'  But in very many cases heroines have been women from whom few
would have expected heroism.  The blustering braggart does not often
prove to be a hero in time of danger, and the gentle, unassuming woman
is the type of which heroines are frequently made.  The aristocracy the
middle and the lower classes, have each given us many heroines of this


Napoleon was entering Moscow in triumph.  It was night, and the streets
of the Russian capital were deserted, but at a window of one house past
which the victorious troops were marching sat a French lady, eagerly
scanning the faces of the officers.  Her husband, Captain Ladoinski, of
the Polish Lancers, was somewhere among the troops, but she failed to
recognise him as he rode by.  Soon, however, he was at her house, and
great was the joy of meeting after long separation.

After the first greeting, Aimée Ladoinski noticed that her husband was
wounded, and although he spoke lightly of his wound, it was not a
slight one.  Moreover, it had been aggravated by want of attention, for
Napoleon's surgeons did not at this time possess the proper appliances
for dressing wounds.  Captain Ladoinski's wound had been dressed with
moss and bandaged with parchment!  In a few minutes after making this
discovery Madame Ladoinski had bandaged her husband's wound with lint
and linen.  It was a great relief to the warrior, and settling down in
a comfortable chair he proceeded to question his wife as to how she had
fared during his absence, and then to relate his own adventures.

Suddenly, as they sat talking, a fierce red light shone into the room,
which had until then been in darkness, except for the feeble glimmer
from a shaded lamp in the corner.  Rising quickly, Madame Ladoinski
went to the window, closely followed by her husband, who uttered an
exclamation of surprise when he saw that a fire was raging in the newly
captured city.

Taking up his lance Captain Ladoinski hurried out, to order his men to
assist in subduing the fire, but at the doorway he was met by a
messenger who made known to him Napoleon's command, that the troops
billeted in that portion of the town were not to leave their quarters.
Surprised at this order, Captain Ladoinski returned to his wife, and
together they watched from their window the rapidly extending fire.
The burning part of the city was at a considerable distance from where
they stood, but it seemed to them that unless prompt measures were
taken it would be impossible to save the city from utter destruction.
Hundreds of soldiers were resting near them who might have been busily
employed in checking the progress of the flames.  The truth dawned on
both of them.  Napoleon did not see his way to save Moscow from this
new calamity.

Now Aimée Ladoinski had resided for some time in Moscow, and its
streets and palaces were familiar to her, and the thought of their
ruthless destruction to thwart the designs of one man filled her with
shame--shame that he who had caused this act of vandalism was a

Madame Ladoinski did not admire Napoleon, for she was at heart a
Bourbon, and regarded him as an usurper.  The reckless sacrifice of
thousands of his fellow countrymen for his own aggrandisement filled
her with loathing for the man, and she did not conceal her feelings
from her husband, who made no attempt to defend the emperor.  It was
not for love of him that Captain Ladoinski had fought under 'the Little
Corporal.'  He was a Pole, and it was because Napoleon was fighting the
oppressor of the Polish race--Russia--that he fought for the French.
The Russians had been humbled, and he, a Pole, had marched as one of a
victorious army into their capital.  But secretly he wondered if the
condition of much-persecuted Poland would be better under Napoleon than
it was under Russia.  His wife candidly declared that it would not be.
Napoleon had promised he would free Poland from the Russian yoke, but
she felt convinced that it would simply be to place the country under
French rule.

'And, wherefore,' she said to her husband, as we read in Watson's
_Heroic Women of History_, 'should Poland find such solitary grace in
the eyes of Europe's conquerors?  Shall all the nations lie prostrate
at his feet, and Poland alone be permitted to stand by his side as an
equal?  Be wise, my dear Ladoinski.  You confess that the conqueror
lent but a lifeless ear to the war-cry of your country.  Be timely
wise; open your eyes, and see that this cold-hearted victor--wrapped in
his own dark and selfish aims--uses the sword of the patriot Pole only,
like that of the prostrate Prussian, to hew the way to his own throne
of universal dominion....  Believe it, this proud man did not enslave
all Europe to become the liberator of Poland.  Ah! trust me, that is
but poor freedom which consists only In a change of masters.  O
Ladoinski!  Ladoinski! give up this mad emprise; return to the bosom of
your family; and when your compatriots arise to assert their rights at
the call of their country, and not at the heartless beck of a stranger
despot, I will buckle the helmet on your brow.'

Captain Ladoinski was inclined to believe that his wife had spoken the
truth when she said that Napoleon would forget the Poles, now that
Russia was crushed.  Posing as a disinterested man eager to deliver the
Poles from the hands of their oppressor, Napoleon had gathered round
him a band of brave men, who fought with the determination of men
fighting for their homes and liberty.  They had served his purpose, and
he would reward them, not with the freedom he had promised, but with
the intimation that they were now his subjects.  It was a terrible
disappointment, but Captain Ladoinski consoled himself with the belief
that French rule would not be so hard to bear as the Russian had been.

The fire spread apace.  It was a grand yet terrible scene, the like of
which, it is to be hoped, will never again be witnessed.  Soon the heat
became unbearable in the quarter of the city where the Ladoinskis stood
and watched, and sparks and big flaring brands fell in showers.  Unless
they departed quickly they would be burned to death.

Captain Ladoinski could not seek safety in flight, for he had been
commanded to remain in his quarters, and the order had not been
cancelled.  Assuring his wife that he would soon be at liberty to leave
his post, he urged her to depart with their child and wait for him
outside the city.  This she refused to do, declaring that as long as he
remained where he was she would stay with him.  And this determination
he could not alter, although he used every persuasion possible to that

On came the flames, crackling, hissing and roaring, and soon the houses
facing the Ladoinskis would be engulfed in them.  The captain would not
quit his post without orders, and his wife would not leave him.  Death
seemed certain, and they were preparing to meet it, when suddenly an
order came from head-quarters ordering the troops to evacuate the city
with all despatch.  Instantly the retreat began, but many men fell in
the scorching, suffocating streets never to rise again.  Captain
Ladoinski and his wife and child had many narrow escapes from the fiery
brands which fell hissing into the roads as they hurried on towards the
suburbs, but fortunately they received no injury.

Arriving on high ground, and safe from the fire's onslaught, the
Ladoinskis stood, with thousands of Napoleon's army, gazing at the
destruction of Moscow.  The captain, remembering the havoc which the
Russians had wrought by fire and sword in Warsaw, rejoiced to see their
capital in flames; but his wife checked his rejoicing by warning him
that the destruction of Moscow would not bring freedom to Poland.

And now began Napoleon's retreat.  Terrible were the sufferings of the
men, but it is only with Madame Ladoinski's trials that we are
concerned.  Knowing that after the burning of Moscow it would be
dangerous for any French person to remain in Russia, she, with many
other people of her nationality, accompanied the French army on its
disastrous retreat.  She travelled in a baggage-wagon, which at any
rate afforded her and her child some protection from the frost and
snow.  To her the journey was not so terrible an undertaking as to some
of her compatriots, for she had the pleasure of being daily with her
husband, after some years of separation.  But her pleasure soon
received a rude shock.  The Cossacks hung on with tenacity to the
remains of the great French army, swooping down at unexpected times
upon some dispirited, disorganised section, cutting it to pieces, and
recapturing some of the spoil with which the troops were loaded.

Captain Ladoinski was present when one of these attacks was made, and,
while assisting to repel the attackers, received a dangerous wound.  A
place was found for him in the baggage-wagon, and there he lay for
days, tenderly nursed by his wife.  The road was blocked in many places
with abandoned guns, dead horses, and broken-down wagons, and
travelling was difficult.  Some of the wagons had not broken down
accidentally or through hard wear, but had been tampered with by the
drivers.  Many a terrible act was perpetrated in baggage-wagons during
the retreat from Moscow.  In these wagons, among the spoil taken from
the capital, were placed the wounded, frequently unattended and without
protection.  Many of the drivers, anxious to possess some of the spoil
with which their wagons were loaded, weakened the axle, so that it
should collapse.  The bedraggled soldiers would march on, and when the
drivers were well in rear of the force they murdered their wounded
passengers and looted the wagons.

One night Madame Ladoinski was awakened by the stoppage of their wagon.
She had heard stories of the murdering of the wounded by wagon-drivers,
but she had not believed them, and after peeping out at the
snow-covered country, and seeing that soldiers and other wagons were
near, she lay down again, and in a few minutes was sleeping soundly--a
sleep from which in all probability she would not have awakened, so
intense was the cold, had not the wagon arrived at Smolensk, a depôt of
the French army, an hour later.  Her life was saved by the prompt
attention of a young officer, who glanced into the wagon, and was
surprised to find her lying insensible with her child beside her.
Calling to some brother officers, he jumped into the wagon and poured a
little brandy into Madame Ladoinski's mouth.  Then, when she began to
show signs of returning consciousness, he and his companions lifted her
from the wagon to carry her and her boy to a house where they would be
properly warmed, fed and nursed.

On the way some of the officers recognised her as Captain Ladoinski's
wife, and they were naturally surprised to find her in such a sad
condition.  'Where is Ladoinski?' they asked each other; and one
replied that on the previous day he had seen him, wounded, in the wagon
with his wife and child.  Some expressed the belief that he had died of
his wounds, but others declared that he must have been murdered by the
wagon-drivers, who, scoundrels though they were, had possessed
sufficient humanity to spare the woman and child.

As in a dream, Madame Ladoinski had heard the conversation of the
officers, and suddenly she grasped the meaning of what they had said.

'My husband! my husband!' she cried, wildly.  'Where is he?'

The officers, distressed at her grief, told her that when the wagon
arrived at Smolensk, she and her boy were the only people in it.  Of
her husband they had seen or heard nothing, and the wagon-drivers had
disappeared soon after reaching the city.  They endeavoured to cheer
her, however, by assuring her that he was, no doubt, not far away, and
would soon return to her.  But she, remembering what they had said when
they believed her to be unconscious, was not calmed by their
well-intentioned words.

Two days passed, and nothing was seen or heard of Captain Ladoinski,
although the officers who had taken an interest in his wife made every
effort to obtain news of him.  They were in their own minds convinced
that he was dead, but in order that a searching enquiry might be made,
they obtained for her an interview with two of the most powerful of
Napoleon's officers--the King of Naples and Prince Eugène Beauharnais,
Viceroy of Italy.  These officers listened quietly to the story of her
husband's disappearance, and having expressed their sympathy with her,
an aide-de-camp was summoned and ordered to make immediate enquiries
among the wagon-drivers as to the fate of Captain Ladoinski.  The
aide-de-camp answered respectfully that he and several of his brother
officers had already closely questioned every wagon-driver they could
find, and that the men had sworn that Captain Ladoinski had died during
the night of cold and of his wounds, and that his body had been thrown
out into the snow.  Madame Ladoinski, they declared, was insensible
from cold when her husband died.

Clasping her boy, Madame Ladoinski burst into tears.  For a few minutes
she sat sobbing bitterly, but then, in the midst of her grief, she
remembered that she was encroaching on the time of the officers before
her.  Controlling her tears as well as she was able, she asked for a
safe-conduct for herself and child.  As a Frenchwoman and the widow of
a Polish rebel she would receive, she reminded her hearers, no mercy if
she fell into the hands of the Russians.  Her husband had fought for
the French, and she claimed French protection.  Instantly the two
marshals declared that she should have the protection she asked, and
Prince Eugène offered her a seat in a wagon that would accompany his
division when it started in the course of a few days.

Madame Ladoinski accepted the offer with gratitude, whereupon the
aide-de-camp was informed that she was to be placed in a baggage-wagon,
and that the drivers were to be told that if their passengers did not
reach the end of the journey in safety they would answer for it with
their lives.  On the other hand, if she arrived safely in Poland, and
declared that she and her boy had been well-treated on the way, each
driver would receive five hundred francs.

In a few days Madame Ladoinski was once again in a baggage-wagon; but
Napoleon's 'Grand Army' was now in a terrible condition.  Ragged,
starving, dispirited by the constant harassing from the enemy, and the
continuous marching through snow, it made but slow progress.  The
gloomy forests through which the miserable army tramped on its way to
attempt the passage of the Beresina were blocked with snow, and so
difficult was it to move the guns that Napoleon ordered that one half
of the baggage-wagons were to be destroyed, so that the horses and oxen
might be utilised for dragging forward the artillery.  The wagon in
which Madame Ladoinski rode was one of the number condemned to
destruction, but the men who had been ordered to protect her speedily
found room for her in another vehicle.

A day or two later, when the bedraggled army was nearing the Polish
frontier, Madame Ladoinski was startled from her dejection by hearing
loud joyful shouts, and on enquiring of the driver the reason of the
noise she was told that a reinforcement under Marshal Victor had
unexpectedly arrived.

Soon the reinforcements were passing the wagon, but Madame Ladoinski
possessed neither the energy nor the curiosity to glance out at them.
She could think of nothing but her dead husband and her little orphaned
boy.  But suddenly as she sat brooding over her great loss she heard,
'Forward, lancers!' uttered in Polish.  Believing that it was her
husband's voice she had heard, she sprang up and looked out at the
troop trotting ahead.  But she could not recognise her husband among
the lancers, and she turned to sit down, believing that she was the
victim of a delusion.  To her surprise she saw her little son standing,
with a finger uplifted to urge silence, listening eagerly.

'What is it, darling?' she asked.

'Father!' he replied.

Again Madame Ladoinski's spirits rose, but they fell quickly when she
remembered that the Polish Lancers had quitted Smolensk before she and
her boy arrived there.  It was madness, therefore, to imagine that her
wounded husband could be with Marshal Victor's army, and she dismissed
the hope from her mind.

Days of terrible suffering for Napoleon's army followed, but eventually
Studzianka, on the left bank of the Beresina, was reached, and the
soldiers hoped that once in Poland their trials would diminish.  Madame
Ladoinski, her spirits reviving at the prospect of soon being in her
husband's native land, lay listening to the noise of the men busily
engaged in building the bridges over which the French army was to pass.
Suddenly there was a tremendous uproar; shouts of joy, cries of
triumph.  Looking out Madame Ladoinski saw at once the cause of the
excitement--the enemy who had been encamped on the opposite bank of the
river was in full retreat.  The fierce battle which she had dreaded, in
case her boy might be injured, would not be fought.  Falling on her
knees in the wagon, she thanked God for averting the danger she feared.

Now that the Russians were gone, the cavalry swam their horses across
the river, and took up a position that would protect the crossing of
the foot soldiers.  The bridges were completed at last, and quickly the
ragged regiments hurried over them.  The baggage-wagons were to be left
until the last, and for hours Madame Ladoinski sat watching regiment
after regiment hurry across.  Napoleon, stern and silent, passed close
to her, and a mighty shout of 'Vive L'Empereur' burst from his
trusting, long-suffering troops, when he gained the opposite bank.

Soon after Napoleon had crossed, Prince Eugène came along, and seeing
Madame Ladoinski he rode over to her, and told her cheerfully that she
would soon be among her husband's friends, and that her trials would
then be at an end.  Then, turning to the drivers, he commanded them not
to forget the order he had given concerning their behaviour and care of
the lady entrusted to them.

When at last more than half the troops had crossed, the news arrived
that the Russians had suddenly turned about and were marching back to
the position they had vacated, while another strong body of the enemy
was advancing to attack in the rear the troops which had not yet
crossed.  Instantly there was a panic, and the wagon-drivers, anxious
for their own safety, turned Madame Ladoinski and her companions out of
the wagon, so that their weight might not impede their progress.
Madame Ladoinski reminded them of Prince Eugène's instructions, but
they took no notice.  Neither fear of punishment nor hope of reward had
any influence over them now; they were anxious only for their own

For a minute or two Madame Ladoinski knew not what to do.  To attempt
to cross either of the bridges on foot would, she soon saw, result in
her and her child being crushed to death.  Others, men and women, had
come to the same conclusion, and were wandering, shivering with cold,
along the bank of the river.  These Madame Ladoinski hastened to,
believing, as did they, that before long the bridges would be less
crowded, and they would be able to cross in safety.

But soon the sound of the Russian guns was heard in the rear of Madame
Ladoinski and her fellow-sufferers, and a little later the cheers of
the advancing enemy could be heard distinctly.  Marshal Victor's force,
which lay between these unfortunate people and the Russians, fought
gallantly at first, but at last they began to give way, and Madame
Ladoinski feared that all was lost.  Nearer and nearer came the enemy,
and many of their musket balls reached the despairing creatures by the
riverside.  Approaching nearer to one of the bridges, Madame Ladoinski
decided to join the crowd of terrified fugitives that was struggling
across it.  But before she reached it there was a terrible rush for it,
and she stood aghast looking at the awful scene.  Every one in the
living mass was terrified, and each was fighting for his own life.
Those who fell were quickly trampled to death by the hurrying mob, or
crushed beneath the wheels of baggage-wagons and artillery.  Now and
again some terrified man, possessed of more than average strength,
would be seen making his way along the crowded bridge by seizing and
pitching into the river any who barred his way.  And to add to the
horror of the scene a terrible storm burst.

Madame Ladoinski, horrified by what she saw, decided to make no attempt
to cross, but to remain where she was.  Musket balls were now falling
rapidly around her, and, to save her boy from the chance of being
wounded, she laid him down on the ground, and placed herself in such a
position that no ball could touch him unless it passed through her.
Thick and fast the balls were flying, and Madame Ladoinski expected to
receive at any minute a fatal wound, but, although men and women fell
close around her, she remained unhurt.

Slowly but surely Victor's men were driven back on the crowd that was
still struggling to cross the bridge, and whose condition was made
still more awful by the Russian infantry firing on it.

At last some of the regiments fled in disorder before the advancing
enemy, and a troop of horse dashed back within a few yards of Madame

'Stand, lancers, stand!' the officer was shouting to his men, and his
voice sent a thrill of joy through Madame Ladoinski, for it was her

She was confident of it this time, and almost immediately a strong gust
of wind blew aside the smoke, which hung heavily over the battlefield,
and there, not many yards away, was he whom she had believed to be
dead.  In stirring tones he called upon his men to charge once again
into the ranks of the enemy.

'My love, my husband!' Madame Ladoinski called, still sheltering her
boy with her body.  'It is I, it is Aimée.'  But the din of warfare and
the roaring of the wind drowned her voice.  Again she called, but still
he did not hear.

'Lancers! forward,' he shouted.  'For God and Poland!  'For God and
Poland!' his men answered, and spurring their horses they dashed
forward once more to meet the enemy.  Ladoinski had not seen his wife,
and perhaps he would never see her again!  Madame Ladoinski wept
quietly; but as night began to draw nigh she determined to cross the
bridge, thinking that she and her boy might as well risk being crushed
on the bridge as being shot by the enemy.  But when she saw the crowd
of human beings turned by terror into demons, she decided to remain
where she was.

A few minutes later, as she lay protecting her boy and gazing at the
struggling mob, she saw the largest bridge sway, and almost instantly
it collapsed and fell, with its struggling mass of human beings, into
the icy river.  For a few minutes the terrified shrieks of the drowning
men and women were heard even amidst the noise of battle and the
roaring of the wind; then they ceased.

It seemed to Madame Ladoinski that there was to be no end to the
terrors of that day.  She felt that she was going out of her mind, and
prayed that she and her boy might die quickly.

Throughout the night Madame Ladoinski lay beside her boy in the snow.
But she did not sleep a minute.  The thunder of the enemy's artillery,
the sound of the musketry, and the noise of the disordered mob of
soldiers who fought like demons to get safely across the one remaining
bridge, would have prevented almost anyone from sleeping.

When daylight came the Russians were so near that it was clear to
Madame Ladoinski that unless she crossed the bridge immediately she
would soon be a prisoner.  Lifting her boy, and sheltering him as much
as possible, she hurried towards the bridge, but two or three times,
when the enemy's fire increased in severity, she took cover for a few
minutes.  At last she reached the bridge.  The crowd was not now great,
and it would have been possible for her to cross without any fear of
her boy being crushed, but no sooner had they put their feet on the
bridge when shouts of 'Go back, go back!  Give yourselves up to the
Russians,' burst from their comrades who had already crossed the river.
Stupefied, the people fell back, and almost at the same moment the last
bridge burst into flames.  To prevent the Russians from pursuing them,
the French had burnt the bridge and left hundreds of their fellow
countrymen to fall into the hands of the enemy.

The Cossacks, who were first of the Russian army to reach the river,
were more eager for plunder than slaughter, and Madame Ladoinski fled
along the river bank with her child pressed to her bosom.  She had no
idea of what to do, and for a time she escaped molestation.  Then she
decided to make an attempt to struggle through the river.  She knew
that there was very little probability of her being able to reach the
other side, but it would be better for her and her little son to die
than to fall into the hands of the semi-savage Cossacks.  Tying her boy
to her, so that the fate of one might be the other's, she approached
the water; but on the brink she was seized by a Russian.  Terrified,
she screamed for help, and it was fortunate that she did so, for the
remnants of the Polish Lancers--last to cease fighting the
Russians--were entering the river not many yards away, and Captain
Ladoinski heard her cries.  Calling to his men to come back, he urged
his horse up the bank, and galloped along the riverside until he came
to his wife and child.  The Russian fled at the approach of the Polish
Lancers, and Captain Ladoinski lifted his wife and child on to his
horse without recognising them.  Then quickly he put his horse to the
river, and soon they were plunging through it with the water sometimes
more than half over them, and musket balls lashing the river around

Madame Ladoinski had recognised her husband the instant he placed her
before him on his horse, and, overcome with joy, she had swooned before
she could utter a word.  He remained quite unconscious of whom he had
rescued until, in mid-stream, the shawl which had been over his wife's
head and shoulders slipped and disclosed her face.  Joy did not cause
the Polish captain to lose his wits, but made him more careful of his
precious burden.  He had been in a reckless mood, courting death in
fact, during the last quarter of an hour of the fight, but now he was
anxious to live.  It would indeed be sad, he thought, if now, when
safety was almost reached, a shot should lay him, or still worse, his
wife, low.  But on through danger the brave horse struggled with his
heavy load, and soon Captain Ladoinski was able to place his wife and
son on dry land, and to give them the warmth and food which they sadly

Then when Madame Ladoinski had recovered from the excitement of again
meeting her husband, he told her that he had long since been assured
that both she and their boy were dead.  He, as the wagon-drivers had
sworn, had been thrown out of the wagon for dead, but some of his men
came along soon after, and seeing him lying in the snow dismounted to
see if he were alive.  Finding that his heart was beating, they set to
work and restored him to consciousness, and then took him on to
Smolensk, whence he sent back to enquire after his wife and child.  The
message that was brought to him was that his wife and child had been
murdered on the road.  Believing this to be true, he went on with his
regiment--before they arrived at Smolensk--with henceforth only one aim
in life--to avenge Poland's wrongs.

The story of Captain Ladoinski's extraordinary rescue of his own wife
and child created some excitement among Napoleon's soldiers, dispirited
though they were by the terrible march they had undergone, and numerous
and hearty were the congratulations which husband and wife received.
Prince Eugène was one of the first to congratulate them, and Captain
Ladoinski seized the opportunity to express his deep gratitude to the
prince for the kindness he had shown to his wife in her sorrow, a
kindness that was all the more creditable because Prince Eugène knew
that Madame Ladoinski was a member of a Royalist family and an enemy of
the Napoleonic dynasty.  For some considerable time after the terrible
retreat from Moscow, Captain Ladoinski fought in Prince Eugène's army,
but when, at last, the Prince's military career came to an end he
retired into private life.  He had long since come to the conclusion
that his wife was right when she said that Napoleon never had any
intention of setting Poland free, but had obtained the services of the
brave Poles under false pretences.

Madame Ladoinski deserved years of happy domestic life after her
fearful experiences with the French army, and it is pleasant to be able
to say that she had them.  Until death parted them, many years later,
she and her husband enjoyed the happiness of a quiet life unclouded by
domestic or political troubles.


'Fighting Bob' was the nickname affectionately bestowed upon Sir Robert
Sale by his comrades-in-arms.  Truly the name was well deserved, for
wherever the fight was thickest there Sale was to be found, and the
histories of his life abound with stories of his bravery and disregard
of danger.

When twenty-seven years of age he married Florentia Wynch, a girl of
nineteen, who proved before long to be almost as brave as he.
Throughout his life she was his companion in danger, and many times
nursed him back to health when seriously wounded.  Adventures such as
are rarely encountered by women were continually falling to her lot,
but the greatest hardships which she was compelled to undergo were
those attending the British retreat from Kabul in January, 1842.

Discontent with British rule had led to rebellion in Afghanistan, and
Sir Robert Sale was sent with a brigade to clear the passes to
Jelalabad.  Lady Sale remained at Kabul, where the signs of discontent
became daily more evident.  The British native troops were
disheartened, and eventually it was decided to retreat from the city.

At half-past nine in the morning of January 6, 1842, the British force,
consisting of about 4500 soldiers, mostly native, and 12,000 followers,
quitted Kabul.  The snow lay a foot deep on the ground, and the
thermometer registered several degrees below freezing-point.  The
bullocks had great difficulty in dragging the guns, and it took two
hours and a half to cover the first mile.  This slow rate of progress
was not, however, entirely due to the state of the weather, as some of
the delay was caused by a bridge of boats having to be made across the
Kabul river, which lay about half a mile from the city.  The camp
followers refused to cross by any means but a bridge, but Lady Sale and
her daughter, Mrs. Sturt, rode through with the horsemen.  Immediately
they reached the opposite bank their clothes froze stiff, and they
could not change them for others, for as the rear-guard quitted the
city the Afghans fired upon them and captured, without meeting any
resistance, nearly the whole of the baggage, commissariat and
ammunition.  That night the British force, cold, hungry and dispirited,
slept in the snow.  There were no tents, but an officer erected a small
pall over the hole in the snow where Lady Sale and her daughter lay.

At half-past seven on the following morning the march was resumed, but
the force had not proceeded far when a party of Afghans sallied out
from a small fort and carried off three guns.  The British fought
bravely, but the sepoys made scarcely any resistance, and hundreds of
them fled for their lives.

As the British force advanced they saw the Afghans gathering in
strength on either side, and before they had gone five miles they were
compelled to spike and abandon two six-pounders, the horses not having
sufficient strength to drag them.  They were now in possession of only
two guns and very little ammunition.

Men, hungry and numbed with cold, dropped out of the ranks, to be left
to die from starvation, or to be massacred by the enemy.  Another night
was spent in the open, and when daylight came there were many frozen
corpses lying on the ground.  The troops were now utterly disorganised,
and the Afghans continued to harass them, both while bivouacing and on
the march.  It was a terrible time, but Lady Sale was calm, and
endeavoured to instil with courage other women of the party.  Soon the
British arrived at a spot where, some time previously, Sir Robert Sale
had been wounded, and there a fierce attack was made upon them.  A ball
entered Lady Sales' arm, her clothes were riddled with bullets, and her
escape seemed impossible, so fierce was the fire of the enemy, who were
in a strong position about fifty yards distant.  Nevertheless she did
escape, but only to find that her daughter's husband, Lieutenant Sturt,
had been mortally wounded.  Five hundred soldiers and two thousand five
hundred camp followers were killed, and many women and children were
carried off by the Afghans.  Others lay dying in the fast-falling snow.

Lady Sale and her daughter were in great distress at the death of
Lieutenant Sturt, and took little interest in the proposal that all the
women should be placed under the protection of Mahommed Akbar Khan, who
had suggested this step.  However, with the other women, they accepted
the proffered protection, and were taken to a fort in the Khurd Kabul,
and eventually they heard that the force with which they had quitted
Kabul had been annihilated.

On January 17, Lady Sale and her companions, among whom were now
several British officers whom Mahommed Akbar Khan had captured, arrived
at Badiabad, where, in a small mud fort the party, consisting of 9
women, 20 men and 14 children, were kept prisoners.  However, they were
not molested, and as food of a kind was supplied to them, they did not
complain.  Their uncomfortable surroundings were, however, made more
unpleasant by a series of earthquakes.

On February 19, Lady Sale was spreading some clothes out to dry on the
flat roof of the fort, when a terrible shock occurred, causing the
place to collapse.  Lady Sale fell with the building, but rose from the
ruins unhurt.  Even the wounds received by her on the day Lieutenant
Sturt was killed were not aggravated by the accident.  Before dark that
day there were twenty-five distinct shocks, and about fifteen more
during the night.  For some weeks after this they were constantly
occurring.  At one spot, not far away, 120 Afghans and 20 Hindus were
buried in the ruins of buildings shaken to the ground.

During her captivity Lady Sale had been able to write letters to her
husband, who was shut up with his garrison in Jelalabad, and her great
desire was that he should be able to hold the place until relief
arrived.  On March 15 a rumour reached her that it had been captured by
the Afghans, but to her great delight she heard later that the rumour
was false.  She was exceedingly proud of her husband, and gloried in
his successes.  A successful defence of the city would, she knew, add
considerably to his reputation.  During the following five months Lady
Sale and her daughter were continually being moved from one place to
another, and before long it became clear to them that the Afghan
rebellion was being rapidly quelled.  Rumours of British victories
reached them, and the man who was in charge of them, while moving from
place to place, made it understood that for Rs. 20,000 and Rs. 1000 a
month for life he would effect their escape.

But soon, on September 15, the good news was received that the British
were coming to their rescue, and, guided by the bribed Afghan, Lady
Sale and her companions moved off secretly to meet them.  Two days
later they arrived at the foot of the Kalu Pass, where they met Sir
Richmond Shakespeare, with 600 native horsemen, coming to their rescue.

Lady Sale was naturally anxious to hear of her husband's doings, and
Sir Richmond Shakespeare was able to make her happy by telling her of
how gallantly he had defended Jelalabad.  Soon, however, she heard from
his own lips the story of his defence.  On September 19, a horseman
arrived with a message from Sir Robert Sale, saying that he was
advancing with a brigade.  Lady Sale had been feeling weak for several
days, but the news of her husband's approach gave her fresh strength.

'It is impossible to express our feelings on Sale's approach,' she
wrote in her diary.  'To my daughter and myself happiness so long
delayed as to be almost unexpected was actually painful, and
accompanied by a choking sensation which could not obtain the relief of

The men loudly cheered Lady Sale and her daughter, and pressed forward
to express their hearty congratulations at their escape.  'And then,'
Lady Sale continued in her diary, 'my highly-wrought feelings found the
desired relief; and I could scarcely speak to thank the soldiers for
their sympathy, whilst the long withheld tears now found their course.
On arriving at the camp, Captain Backhouse fired a royal salute from
his mountain train guns; and not only our old friends, but all the
officers in the party, came to offer congratulations and welcome our
return from captivity.'

After a visit to England, Sir Robert and Lady Sale returned to India in
March, 1844.  Towards the end of the following year the Sikh War broke
out, and at the battle of Mudki, fought on December 18, Sir Robert's
left thigh was shattered by a grape shot, and he died three days later.

Lady Sale continued to reside in India after her husband's death, her
comfort secured by a pension of £500 a year, granted to her by Queen
Victoria, as a mark of approbation of her own and Sir Robert's conduct.
She died at Cape Town, which she was visiting for the benefit of her
health, on July 6, 1853, aged sixty-three.



Until late in the last century it was a common thing for the ruler of a
native Eastern state to celebrate his accession to the throne by
slaughtering his brothers and uncles.  This drastic measure reduced the
possibilities of the new ruler being deposed, and was considered by the
majority of the natives a wise precaution.  The Maharajah of Manipur
was more humane than many rulers, and although he had seven brothers,
he refrained from killing any of them.

For several years the brothers lived on friendly terms with each other,
but eventually quarrels arose through two of them wanting to marry the
same woman.  The eight brothers divided into two parties, and
quarrelled so incessantly, that the maharajah deemed it wise to
abdicate and leave the country.  Mr. Grimwood the British Political
Agent, did his utmost to dissuade the  maharajah from abdicating, but
without success.  He departed, and one of his brothers became ruler.

Mr. Grimwood and his wife had lived for three years in Manipur when the
maharajah abdicated, and during that time the natives had always been
friendly towards them.  Even the royal brothers, while quarrelling
among themselves, maintained their usual friendly relations with them.

Manipur is an out-of-the-way place, lying in the heart of the
mountainous region, which is bordered on the north by the Assam Valley,
on the east and south by Burma, and on the west by the Cachar district.
During the greater portion of their stay in Manipur Mr. and Mrs.
Grimwood were the only white people in the place, and consequently the
news that the Chief Commissioner was on his way to hold a durbar at the
Residency afforded them much pleasure.  But the information that his
excellency was accompanied by 400 men of the 42nd and 44th Ghurkhas,
made it clear that some political event of considerable importance was
about to take place.  The Chief Commissioner had, in fact, decided to
arrest the jubraj, the maharajah's brother, at the durbar which was
fixed for eight o'clock in the morning of March 23, 1891.

But the jubraj had his suspicions aroused by the military force which
accompanied the Chief Commissioner.  He did not attend the durbar, but
sent a message to say that he was too unwell to be present.  Four hours
later, Mr. Grimwood was sent to the palace to inform the jubraj that he
was to be arrested and banished, and to persuade him to surrender
peacefully.  This the jubraj refused to do, and consequently it was
decided to storm the palace and capture him.

Fighting began on the following day, shortly before daybreak.  The
palace walls, some sixty yards from the Residency, and separated from
it by an unfordable moat, were loop-holed, and soon a fierce fire was
opened on the attackers.  Mrs. Grimwood sought shelter in the little
telegraph office, but bullets were soon crashing through it, and her
position was one of extreme danger, but after the first fright she
settled down to help the doctor attend to the wounded.

The British attack on the palace was not, however, successful, and the
Manipuris crept round to the back of the Residency, and made an attack
upon it.  They were beaten off, but the British force was soon in a
critical position; for, shortly after 4 o'clock, some big guns opened
fire on the Residency, where the whole of the force was now
concentrated.  Mrs. Grimwood states in her book, _My Three Years in
Manipur_, that the first shell fired at the Residency made her
speechless with fear; but others who were present state that a few
minutes later she was hard at work attending to the wounded under fire.
The cellars under the Residency were used as a hospital, and terrible
were the sights which the brave woman witnessed.  Every hour the
position of the British became more desperate.  Men were falling
quickly, and the ammunition was running out.

At last a message was sent to the jubraj asking on what conditions he
would cease firing on the Residency.  His reply was to the effect that
the British must surrender unconditionally.  Finding that the British
would not agree to this, he sent word that if the Chief Commissioner
would come to the palace gates he would discuss terms with him.  His
excellency and Mr. Grimwood went forward, but as they reached the gates
they were pushed inside the palace enclosure, and the gates closed
behind them.  Then the Manipuris shouted that the white men were
prisoners, and again opened fire on the Residency.  The British troops
replied, but their position was now critical.  Very little ammunition
remained, and shells were bursting over the Residency.  One burst near
to Mrs. Grimwood's feet, but fortunately she only received a slight
wound in the arm.

At midnight the British officers decided to evacuate the Residency and
retreat to Cachar.

Mrs. Grimwood being the only person who knew the way to the Cachar
road, acted as guide, and led the retreating force through hedges, over
mud walls, and across a river.  Looking back when they had gone four
miles, Mrs. Grimwood saw that the Residency, her home for three happy
years, was in flames.  Her husband a prisoner, and her home destroyed,
it would not have been surprising if Mrs. Grimwood had been too
grief-stricken to continue the journey on foot.  But she plodded on
bravely in her thin house-shoes, and with her clothes heavy with water.
Sometimes the hills were so steep that she had to climb them on hands
and knees, but she never complained, and did not hamper the progress of
the force.  Not until twenty miles had been covered did she have a
rest, and then, thoroughly exhausted, she wrapped herself in the
overcoats which the officers lent her, and lay down and slept.

A few hours later the retreating force, hungry, tired and somewhat
dispirited, resumed its march.  Mrs. Grimwood's feet were cut and sore,
but she tramped on bravely in the military boots which had been given
her to replace her thin worn-out shoes.  They had now travelled beyond
the country with which Mrs. Grimwood was familiar, and no one knew the
way.  They pushed on in the direction which they believed to be the
right one, but without being able to obtain anything to eat.  When,
however, they had been two days without food, they came suddenly upon
some Manipuri soldiers cooking rice.  The Manipuris, taken by surprise,
fled quickly, leaving their rice to fall into the hands of the starving
British force.

Refreshed by the meal which they had so unexpectedly obtained, the
British resumed their journey, but they had not gone far when they
found a stockade barring their way.  The defenders opened fire on them
at once, and as the British had no ammunition they rushed the stockade,
causing the Manipuris to run for their lives.

The British officers now decided to remain for a time in the captured
stockade, but soon a large body of men was seen advancing towards it.
Were they Ghurkhas or Manipuris?  No one could tell, and reliance could
not be placed on a bugle call, as both Ghurkhas and Manipuris had the
same one.  It was believed by the majority that the advancing men were
Manipuris, and one of the officers told Mrs. Grimwood that he had two
cartridges left, one for her and one for himself, if the men proved to
be the enemy.

But they were not the enemy.  A sharp-eyed man discovered a white
officer among the advancing soldiers, and this was ample proof that
they were Ghurkhas.  A cheer from the stockade was answered by one from
the approaching men, who were proceeding to Manipur, but had only heard
a few hours before of the retreat of their comrades-in-arms.  They had
plenty of provisions with them, and quickly gave the tired, hungry men
a good meal.

The remainder of the journey to the frontier was made in comparative
comfort, but Mrs. Grimwood's trials were not yet ended.  Soon the sad
news of her husband's death was broken to her.  He and his fellow
prisoner had been executed with horrible brutality by order of the

The story of Mrs. Grimwood's heroism in attending to the wounded under
fire, and her bravery during the long and trying retreat, aroused
admiration throughout the civilized world.  In consideration of her
exceptional services, the Secretary of State for India in Council
awarded her a pension of £140 a year, and a special grant of £1000.
The Princess of Wales--our present Queen--was exceedingly kind to her,
and Queen Victoria invited her to Windsor Castle, and decorated her
with the well-deserved Red Cross.


In December, 1880, a detachment of the 2nd Connaught Rangers was
escorting a wagon-train, nearly a mile in length, from Leydenberg to
Pretoria.  Until more than half the journey had been travelled the
Boers, whom the British met on the way, had shown no disposition to be
unfriendly, but, one morning, as the convoy slowly wended its way up a
hill, studded with clumps of trees, a strong force of Boers jumped out
from their places of concealment and called upon the British to
surrender.  They sent forward, under a flag of truce, a written demand
to that effect, but, seeing that the British officer in command had no
intention to order his men to lay down their arms, they treacherously
disregarded the white flag that was flying, and opened fire upon the

The British were caught in an ambush, and the Boers, who greatly
outnumbered them, wrought terrible havoc.  The Boers were concealed
behind trees and stones, but the British could obtain scarcely any
cover.  Their colonel was mortally wounded early in the fight, and soon
there was only one officer unhurt.

When the attack on the convoy began there were three women in one of
the wagons.  Mrs. Marion Smith, widow of the late bandmaster, was
travelling down country, with her two children, to sail on a troopship
for England.  The other two women were Mrs. Fox, wife of the
sergeant-major, and Mrs. Maistre, wife of the orderly-room clerk.
Scarcely had the massacre begun when Mrs. Fox received a bullet wound
as she sat in the wagon, and fell backwards, badly hurt.

Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Maistre were naturally alarmed at finding
themselves suddenly in a position of such great danger.  But they were
soldiers' wives, and soon all fear vanished, and having made Mrs.
Smith's children comparatively safe in a corner of the wagon they
stepped out to render aid to the wounded.  It was a terrible sight for
them.  The ground was strewn with dead and dying, and nearly every face
was familiar to them.  Regardless of the bullets that whizzed past
them--one grazed Mrs. Smith's ear they tore up sheets to make bandages,
and passing from one wounded man to another, stanched the flow of blood
and bound the wounds.

At last, when it became clear to the mortally wounded colonel that the
annihilation of his force would be the result of a continuation of the
fight, the 'Cease fire' was sounded, and the outnumbered British
delivered up their arms.

The soldiers' work was finished; Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Maistre had still
much to do.  On the battle-field the wounded lay thick, and for hours
the two brave women worked at their self-appointed task.  Many a dying
lad had his last minutes made happy by their kindly words and actions.

From December 20 until March 31, 1881, the three women remained
prisoners in the hands of the Boers.  They might, had they cared to do
so, have led lives of idleness during their imprisonment, but, instead,
they were busy from morning until night nursing the wounded.  Mrs.
Fox's courage was indeed wonderful, for the wound she had received in
the attack was very serious, and the doctors had told her that she
could not expect to live long.  Her husband, too, had been severely
wounded early in the fight, but nevertheless she was as indefatigable
as Mrs. Maistre and Mrs. Smith in doing good.  The three women were
adored by the wounded soldiers, for whom they wrote letters home,
prepared dainty food, and read.

When peace was declared the three brave women returned to England, and
Mrs. Smith was decorated with the medal of the Order of St. John of
Jerusalem.  She was reported, in the application that was made on her
behalf, to have been 'unremitting in her attention to the wounded and
dying soldiers during the action, and that her conduct while living
under canvas was beyond all praise.  She did the utmost to relieve the
sufferings of the men in hospital, and soothed the last moments of many
a poor soldier, while sharing their privations to the full.'

After a time Mrs. Smith's whereabouts became unknown to the
authorities; they did not in fact know whether she were alive, and
consequently she was not recommended for the Red Cross.  Mrs. Fox and
Mrs. Maistre received the coveted decoration, but the former did not
long survive the honour.  She died in January, 1888, at Cambridge
Barracks, Portsmouth, and in making her death known to the regiment the
colonel said:--'Mrs. Fox died a soldier's death, as her fatal illness
was the result of a wound received in action, and aggravated in
consequence of her noble self-devotion afterwards.'

The Commander-in-Chief--H.R.H. the Duke of Cambridge--ordered that
military honours should be paid to the dead woman.  It was a very
unusual thing, but the honour was well-merited, and crowds lined the
streets to see the coffin borne past on a gun carriage.  Over the
coffin was laid a Union Jack, and on this was placed the brave woman's
Red Cross.  The men who bore her from the gun carriage to her grave in
Southsea Cemetery were six non-commissioned officers who had been
wounded in the fight of December 20, 1880, and whom she had nursed.

* It is interesting to note that the publication of this volume quickly
led to Mrs. Smith (now Mrs. Jeffreys) being traced; and, in response to
an appeal to the War office, the authorities awarded the heroine the
coveted decoration of the Royal Red Cross.




'The Indians are coming!'

It was on September 1, 1782, that a scout employed to watch the
movements of the Red Indians rushed into the West Virginian village of
Wheeling, shouting the dreaded warning of the savages' approach.
Instantly the inhabitants took refuge in the fort, and prepared to
offer a determined resistance.  The fort had no regular garrison, it
being the duty of the settlers to defend it.  Colonel Silas Zane took
command, and felt confident that, although he had only twenty men under
him, he would be able to beat off the savages.

The Governor of Wheeling was Colonel Ebenezer Zane, and with two white
men he decided to remain in his private residence, which was about
forty yards from the fort, to prevent the ammunition which was stored
there from falling into the hands of the Indians.  The scout who had
brought the news of the Indians' approach was soon followed by the
savages themselves, who, brandishing their tomahawks and waving their
scalping-knives, instantly demanded the surrender of the white men.
The reply they received was a volley fired at the standard which they
bore aloft.  With a terrible war-whoop the Indians rushed to the
assault, but the men in the fort and in the house were good shots, and
it was rarely that one of them missed his mark.  Happily, there was a
good stock of arms in both strongholds, and taking advantage of this,
the women loaded the muskets and handed them to the men, who were thus
enabled to fire quickly and were spared the fatigue of loading.

Again and again the Indians attacked the house and the fort, but on
every occasion they were driven back.  When darkness came on the
attacks ceased, but the white men did not grow less vigilant, for they
were confident that before daybreak the savages would make an attempt
to surprise them.  And this proved to be the case.  In the dead of
night one of the defenders espied an Indian crawling towards the house.
He watched him until he rose to his feet and kindling a torch that he
carried, attempted to set fire to the building.  Then the watcher
fired, and the Indian dropping his torch fled, wounded.

At daybreak it was seen that the Indians were still surrounding the
fort and the house, and that they were evidently unusually excited.
Could they have captured any of the defenders?  Enquiries shouted from
the fort to the house elicited the assurance that no one was missing.

Suddenly there was a tremendous explosion at the spot when the Indians
were thickest, and the surprised white men could see that several of
the enemy had been killed and many injured.  The explosion was caused
in this way: On the preceding evening, after the firing had ceased,
some of the Indians surprised a boat ascending the river with cannon
balls for the fort.  The boatman escaped, but the cannon balls fell
into the hands of the Indians, who believed that all they now wanted to
demolish the house and fort was a cannon.  Therefore they decided to
make one.  They procured a log of wood, bound it tightly with chains,
and then made a hole in it large enough to admit the ball.  Then they
charged it heavily, and when it was pointed towards the fort the match
was applied.  Instantly the cannon burst, killing many of the men who
stood near and injuring others.

This accident did not, as one might suppose, dishearten the Indians.
On the contrary, it excited them to further efforts to capture the
whites.  Maddened with excitement they rushed boldly forward to the
attack, but the steady, deadly fire which the defenders maintained
drove them back time after time.

But now the defenders in the fort began to get anxious, for their stock
of gunpowder was nearly exhausted.  There was a plentiful supply at the
house, and someone would have to undertake the perilous task of running
to it and returning under fire with a keg of powder.  There were plenty
of volunteers for this dangerous undertaking, but among them was a
woman--Elizabeth Zane, the youngest sister of the two Colonels Zane.
She had been educated in Philadelphia, and until her arrival at
Wheeling, a few weeks previously, had experienced none of the hardships
of frontier life.  But now, in the hour of danger, she was brave as if
she had been brought up in the midst of stirring scenes.

It was pointed out to her that a man would run less risk than she, from
the fact of his being able to run faster; but she answered that if he
were shot in the act, his loss would be severely felt.  'You have not
one man to spare, she declared.  'A woman will not be missed in the
defence of the fort.'

The men did not like the idea of allowing her to run so great a risk,
but she overcame their objections, and started on her perilous journey.

The moment the gate was opened she bounded through, and ran at full
speed towards the house.  Surprised at her sudden appearance in the
open, the Indians seized their muskets, but quickly recognizing that
she was a woman they exclaimed, 'Only a squaw,' and did not fire.

Arriving at the house she announced to Colonel Ebenezer Zane the object
of her journey, whereupon he fastened a table-cloth around her waist,
and emptied a keg of powder into it.

The moment that she appeared again in the open, the Indians noticed the
table-cloth around her waist, and, guessing at once that she was
carrying to the fort something that was necessary for its defence;
promptly opened fire on her.  Undeterred by the bullets which whizzed
past her Elizabeth Zane ran quickly towards the fort; and reached it in
safety.  It is needless to say that the brave young woman received an
enthusiastic greeting from the garrison who had witnessed with
admiration her daring act.

The defenders of the fort, their stock of ammunition replenished,
fought with renewed confidence when the Indians again attacked, and
repulsed them with a deadly fire.  As time went on the assaults became
less frequent, and on the third night they finally ceased.  The task of
massacring the settlers of Wheeling had, contrary to the Indians'
expectation, been too formidable for them, and therefore they raised
the siege and crept quietly away by night.  Their losses had been
great, but during the three days' fighting the casualties of the
defenders were only two men wounded.


In the tiny cabin of a canal-boat which had but recently started on its
long journey from the Midlands to London, lay a woman seriously ill.
And by her side lay her two days' old baby.  Her husband was on deck
steering the boat, but every few minutes he hurried down to see if
there were anything he could do to make his wife comfortable.  He could
do but little, however.

Never before had he felt so helpless; never had he experienced so
acutely the isolation of barge-life.  The district through which he was
travelling was thinly populated, and to obtain a doctor the bargeman
would have to trudge some miles across country, leaving his wife alone
on the canal.  He could not leave her unattended, and consoled himself
with the hope that before long he would meet someone whom he could send
for a doctor.  But he was disappointed; he met no one.

At last he arrived at Stoke Bruerne, in Northamptonshire, and, having
tied up his barge, hurried to the post-office--a little general shop
kept by Mrs. Nellie Amos, who was well-known to the canal boatmen.  He
told her of his wife's illness, and asked her if she would be good
enough to come to his barge and see if she could discover the nature of
her illness.  Without the slightest hesitation Mrs. Amos accompanied
the man to his barge, and found his wife very feverish.

Mrs. Amos could not discover what was the matter with the invalid, but
one thing was very plain to her--the poor woman could not be expected
to get well in her present quarters.  The cabin was low-roofed, about
eight feet by six in size, and near the door stood the stove in which
the meals were cooked.  In such close quarters the sick woman had
little chance of recovery, and Mrs. Amos did not conceal this fact from
the husband.  She told him also that if a doctor would certify that she
could be removed with safety, she would take her to her house and nurse
her and the baby.  As soon as the bargeman hurried away to fetch a
doctor, Mrs. Amos made the sick woman some beef-tea, tidied the bed,
and took charge of the baby.

The doctor was soon with the patient, and, having examined her, gave
his permission for her removal to Mrs. Amos's house, to which she was
quickly taken.  Mrs. Amos had a husband and six children, and her house
was a small one; but nevertheless she was able to give the mother and
baby a comfortable room.  Day after day she nursed them tenderly, but
to her surprise the mother did not show any signs of improvement.  The
doctor came regularly to see her, and one day, when he had been
attending her for about a week, he announced that she was suffering
from small-pox.

For a few minutes Mrs. Amos was overcome with horror at the danger to
which she had unintentionally subjected her six children.  Nearly all
of them had nursed the baby and waited on the sick woman, and it seemed
to her certain that they would be stricken down with the disease.  It
would probably spread through the village, and she would be the cause
of the sorrow that would ensue.

These fears she soon overcame, and bravely faced the danger.  She
declared that she would not have the poor creature removed from the
house unless the doctor insisted upon it, and that she would continue
to nurse her.  The patient was allowed to remain, but steps were, of
course, taken to guard against the disease spreading.  The shop was
closed, and Mrs. Amos's only means of earning a living was gone, at any
rate for a time.  Her children were sent away, and watched carefully
for any signs of the disease appearing in them.  Anxiety concerning her
own family and the loss occasioned by the suspension of her business
might well have made her willing to hand over to the local medical
authorities the innocent cause of her trouble.  But Mrs. Amos would not
relinquish her self-imposed duty.  She nursed mother and child as
tenderly as if they had been her relatives, and if it had been possible
to save their lives they would have been saved.  The child died, and a
week later the woman herself passed away.  Happily, neither Mrs. Amos
nor any of her children contracted the disease.

'I prayed earnestly that God would spare the village,' Mrs. Amos told
the writer of this book, 'and He did.  Not one case resulted from it.'

It was some time before the little shop was re-opened, but many people,
hearing of Mrs. Amos's bravery, came forward to help her tide over her
difficulties.  The landlord set a good example by sending her a receipt
for rent which she had been unable to pay, and several Brentford
ladies, having been told of her conduct by Mr. R. Bamber, the London
City missionary to bargemen, presented her with a tea and coffee


Anna Gurney was a cripple from her birth.  Unable to walk, and
consequently debarred nearly all the pleasures of childhood, it would
not have been surprising had she become a sad, peevish woman.  The fact
that her parents were rich, and able to supply her with comforts such
as poor cripples could not receive, may have prevented her from
becoming depressed, but it must be remembered also that the knowledge
that they were in a position to give her every reasonable pleasure a
girl could desire might well have caused her to be continually
deploring her crippled condition.

She did not, however, brood over her infirmity, and although she was
never entirely free from pain, she was always bright and happy.
Intellectually clever, she was ever anxious for self-improvement, and
her knowledge of languages was remarkable.  No sooner had she become
thoroughly conversant with one than she began to learn another.

Early in life she became deeply interested in foreign missions, and in
after years was a generous supporter of them.  Her desire to do good
was not, however, satisfied by the money she gave to various societies,
and being unable to offer herself as a missionary to the heathen, she
found a sphere of usefulness in working to improve the moral and
spiritual condition of the poor of Cromer.  She invited the mothers to
her home, North Repps Cottage, and held classes for young men, young
women and children.  Humble visitors were continually calling to tell
her of their joys or sorrows, and were never refused admittance.  She
might be busy in her library or suffering acute pain, but with a bright
smile she would wheel herself forward in her mechanical chair to greet
her visitor.

The fishermen along the coast regarded her with reverence, for she was
their friend, adviser and patron.  For many years she could be seen
almost daily on the foreshore with a little group of weather-beaten men
around her.  She knew the dangers and disappointments of their calling,
and was genuinely delighted whenever she heard that the fleet had
returned with a good catch.  And when the boats were out and a storm
sprang up, she was anxious as any fish-wife for their safety.  At her
own expense she provided a lifeboat and complete apparatus for saving
life, and, with the thoroughness characteristic of her, she made
herself at once acquainted with the proper working of it.

Whenever there was a shipwreck, she would be down on the shore giving
directions for the rescue of the people aboard the vessel.  No matter
the weather or the hour, she was always on the spot.  Many a time the
news came to her in the middle of the night that there was a ship in
distress, and in a few minutes her man was wheeling her quickly down to
the shore.  The wind might be howling, the rain falling in torrents,
but this did not deter her from being at her self-appointed post.  When
she first came out in rough weather, the fishermen begged her to return
home, but they soon discovered that she was determined to remain.

When the boat had been launched she would remain in the cold, waiting
anxiously for its return.  Often she was in great pain, but only her
attendant was aware of this.  To the fisher-folk she would be cheerful,
and express confidence that her lifeboat would rescue all aboard the
ship.  And when the lifeboat did return with the rescued people, who
were sometimes half dead from exposure, there was more self-imposed
work for her.  She superintended the treatment of the shipwrecked folk,
and arranged where they were to be taken.  Many were removed to her own
house, and kept there until they were able to proceed to their homes or
to London.  So kindly were the rescued people treated, that it became a
saying along the East Coast, that to be taken care of by Miss Gurney,
it was worth while being shipwrecked.

Anna Gurney died at Cromer in June, 1857, aged sixty-one.  She was
buried in Overstrand Churchyard, being carried to her last
resting-place by fishermen who had known and loved her for many years.
The news of her death had spread rapidly along the coast, and over a
thousand fishermen were present at her funeral.  Their sorrow was
great, and they were not ashamed to show it.

The following lines, written by Anna Gurney on the death of a friend
whom she dearly loved, might truly have been her own epitaph;--

  Within this frame, by Jesu's grace,
  High gifts and holy held their place;
  A noble heart, a mighty mind,
  Were here in bonds of clay confined.


There was rejoicing at Redbraes Castle, Berwickshire, in February,
1676, for Sir Patrick Hume had returned home after seventeen months'
imprisonment in Stirling Castle.

No one was more delighted at his return than his little ten years' old
daughter, Grizel, who loved him dearly, and was proud that he had
suffered imprisonment for conscience sake.  He had been imprisoned as
'a factious person,' because he refused to contribute to the support of
the soldiers stationed in the country for the suppression of the
meetings of the Covenanters.

Grizel was a very intelligent child, and surprised her father by her
knowledge of the political events of the day, and her detestation of
the Government.  Some men would have been simply amused at her interest
in politics, but Sir Patrick saw that she was an exceptionally clever
child, and told her many things which he would have confided to few of
her seniors.  One thing that he told her was of his desire to get a
letter conveyed to his friend Robert Baillie of Jerviswoode, who was
confined in the Tolbooth of Edinburgh for rescuing a minister--his
brother-in-law--from the hands of the Government's servants.

Grizel at once volunteered to take the letter, and having overcome her
father's objections to sending her on such a dangerous mission, she
started on her long journey to Edinburgh, which she reached without

Being at Edinburgh she had now to devise some means of getting into
Robert Baillie's prison.  For a child of her age to outwit the prison
officials one would think an impossibility; but she did.  Joanna
Baillie states that she slipped in, noiselessly and unobserved, behind
the jailer, and hid in a dark corner until he withdrew, when she
stepped forward and presented the letter to the astonished prisoner.
Whether or not this be true, it is a fact that she gained admission to
the prison, delivered her letter, and escaped with the reply.

Two years later, Sir Patrick Hume was again arrested, and although he
was neither tried nor told of what he was accused, he was kept in
prison for fifteen months.  At first he was confined at Edinburgh, but
afterwards he was removed to Dumbarton Castle.

At both of these places Grizel was allowed to visit him, but the
authorities never suspected that such a child would be used as a
political messenger.  In the presence of the jailer she would give Sir
Patrick news of home.  She showered kisses upon him, and delivered
loving messages from her mother, sisters, and brothers.  But when the
jailer had withdrawn she gave her father an account of the movements of
his political friends, and delivered many important verbal messages,
which they had entrusted to her.  By her means Sir Patrick was kept
informed of his friends' actions, and was able to assist them by his

On being released from Dumbarton Castle he returned to his home in
Berwickshire, and for a time led a peaceful life, conscious that the
Government would have him arrested again if they could find a pretext
for doing so.

In October, 1683, information was brought to him that his friend,
Robert Baillie, had been arrested in London, and imprisoned for alleged
connection with the Rye House Plot.  Sir Patrick's friendship for
Robert Baillie was well known, and Grizel feared that her father would
soon be arrested on a similar charge.  Sir Patrick was of the same
opinion, but the Government did not act with the promptitude he had

It was not until nearly a year had elapsed that a lady sent word to him
that soldiers had arrived at her house, and that she had discovered
that they were on their way to arrest him.  Instant flight was
imperative, for there was no place in Redbraes Castle in which he could
conceal himself from soldiers skilled in searching for enemies of the
Government.  His wife and Grizel--the only people in the castle who
knew of his danger--discussed with him the most likely means of
escaping detection, and finally it was decided that he should hide in
the family vault in Polwarth Church, which stood about a mile and a
half from Redbraes Castle.

In the middle of the night Grizel and a carpenter named Winter carried
bed and bedding to the vault.  It was a weird hiding-place for Sir
Patrick, as the vault was littered with the skulls and bones of his
ancestors.  Grizel shuddered at the sight, but she knew that the vault
was the only place which the soldiers would be unlikely to search.

They arrived at Redbraes Castle confident that they would find Sir
Patrick there, and great was their surprise when they searched it from
cellar to turret without finding him.  Even then they would not believe
that he had escaped them, so they made a second and still more thorough
search.  Every cottage, stable, and shed in the neighbourhood of the
castle was searched, but no one examined the vaults in Polwarth Church.

Sir Patrick Hume was safe from discovery in his gruesome hiding-place,
but he could not live without food, and the difficulty was to convey it
to him without being detected.

This dangerous task Grizel, now nineteen years of age, undertook, and
every night, when all in the castle but herself were asleep, she crept
out with a stock of provisions for her father, and trudged the mile and
a half of country which lay between the castle and Polwarth Church.

It was a trying journey for Grizel, for not only had she to fear being
seen by the soldiers, or some villager out late on poaching bent, but
she believed implicitly in ghosts--as did the majority of people in
those days.  Frequently she was startled by the cry of a bird aroused
by her footsteps, and on several occasions a dog detected her, and
barked furiously.

It can easily be understood that Grizel's visits were a great comfort
to Sir Patrick, for she was the only person who ventured to go to him.
She would spread out on the little table in the vault the provisions
which she had brought him, and while he ate his supper she amused him
by humorously relating the difficulties she met in obtaining them.
Lady Hume, Winter and herself were the only people who knew that Sir
Patrick was in the neighbourhood.  Grizel's brothers and sisters and
the servants believed that he had fled from the country, and Grizel was
very anxious that they should not be undeceived, for the children might
unintentionally divulge the secret, and among the servants there were,
possibly, some who would be ready to earn a reward by betraying their

But her fear of admitting the children and servants into her secret
made the task of obtaining provisions exceedingly difficult.  Had they
seen her taking food into her room, they would at once have suspected
that it was for her father, and that he was somewhere close at hand.
The only way in which she could get the food she required for him was
by slipping some of her dinner from her plate into her lap.  This was
not an easy thing to do without being detected by some of her brothers
and sisters, of whom there were many at table, she being the eldest but
two of eighteen children.  Once she feared that she had been
discovered.  Her mother had given her a large helping of chicken,
knowing well that the greater portion of it would be taken that night
to Sir Patrick.  One of Grizel's younger brothers had noticed the large
helping she had received, and was somewhat jealous that he had not been
served as liberally.  A few moments later he glanced again at her
plate, and saw to his surprise that it was nearly empty.

With a brother's acknowledged right to make personal remarks, he loudly
called attention to the fact that Grizel had eaten nearly all her big
helping before anyone else had scarcely started.  Lady Hume promptly
reprimanded the boy, and ordered him to confine his attention to his
own plate.  The youngster made no further remarks concerning his
sister's appetite, but Grizel often found him glancing at her during
meals, and was in constant fear that he would detect her slipping the
food into her lap.

After giving her father the day's news of home and political events she
would start on her return journey, leaving Sir Patrick alone for
another twenty-four hours in his gruesome hiding-place.  Many men would
have been driven out of their mind by a month's sojourn in a
skull-and-bone-littered tomb, but Sir Patrick was a man of high
spirits, and his daughter never once found him depressed.  During a
previous imprisonment he had committed to memory Buchanan's translation
of the Psalms, and he obtained much comfort from repeating them while
in the Polwarth vault.

One day as he sat at his little table deep in thought he fancied that
he saw a skull lying on the floor move slightly.  He watched it, and
saw to his surprise that it was undoubtedly moving.  He was not
alarmed, but stretching out his cane turned over the skull and startled
a mouse from underneath it.

Grizel was determined that her father should not remain in the vault
longer than was absolutely necessary, and with the assistance of the
trusty Winter was preparing a hiding-place for him at the castle.
There was a room on the ground floor, the key of which was kept by
Grizel, and under this they dug a big hole with their bare hands,
fearing that the sound of a spade, if used, would be heard.  Night
after night, when all but they two were asleep, they scratched out the
earth, and placed it on a sheet spread on the floor.  Then, when their
night's work was done, they silently opened the window and emptied the
earth into the garden  The hole in the floor they covered by placing a
bed over it.

At last, when Grizel's finger nails were worn almost completely away,
the subterranean hiding-place was finished, Winter placing in it a
large box which he had made for the purpose.  Inside the box was a bed
and bedding, and fresh air was admitted through holes pierced in the
lid and sides.  In this box Sir Patrick was to hide whenever the
soldiers searched the house.

But before telling her father that he could with safety return home
Grizel examined the underground room daily, to see that it was not
flooded.  Feeling confident at last that the water would not percolate,
she told Sir Patrick of the hiding-place prepared for him, and during
the night he crept back to the castle.

When he had been there a week without anyone but Grizel, her mother,
and Winter knowing of his presence, the water burst through into the
subterranean room and flooded the box.  Grizel was for a few minutes
terror-stricken, for if the soldiers paid another visit to the castle,
there would be nowhere for her father to hide, and he would be
captured.  She hurried to him to advise him to return that night to the
vault; but being an active man he disliked the prospect of prolonged
idleness, and decided to make an attempt to escape to Holland, where
many of his political friends had already found safety.

Grizel now set to work to alter her father's clothes, so that he might
appear to be a man of humble station.  Throughout the day and all
through the night she plied her needle, but her task was not finished
when the news reached the castle that Robert Baillie of Jerviswoode had
been executed at Edinburgh.  Knowing that her father would meet a
similar fate if captured, she finished his disguise quickly, and urged
his instant flight.  He acted on her advice, and had not been gone many
hours before the soldiers arrived and searched the castle thoroughly.

After some narrow escapes from being recognised and arrested Sir
Patrick arrived at London, and crossed to France, making his way thence
to Holland.  But before he had been there long he was declared a rebel,
and his estates confiscated.  Lady Hume and her children were turned
out of the castle, and found themselves almost penniless.  Grizel and
her mother, financially assisted by some friends, journeyed to London,
to petition the Government for an allowance out of the confiscated
estates, and after much difficulty succeeded in obtaining a paltry
pittance of £150 a year.

Sir Patrick's hatred of the Stuarts was naturally increased by the
treatment his wife and children had received at their hands, and he
threw himself heart and soul into the conspiracy for invading England
and Scotland.  He took part, under the Duke of Argyle, in the invasion
of Scotland, and on the failure of the enterprise remained in hiding
until he found an opportunity to escape to Ireland, and thence to
Holland _viâ_ France.  Here Lady Hume, Grizel, and all the children but
one soon joined him.

Sir Patrick had very little money at this time, and Grizel was soon
sent back to Scotland to attend to some business on his behalf, and
collect money owing to him.  She was also to bring back with her a
sister who had been left with friends in Scotland.

Grizel having performed the business entrusted to her, sailed for
Holland with her sister, but before they had been at sea many hours a
terrible storm arose, which, of course, considerably prolonged the
voyage.  This would not have been a great hardship, had the captain
been an ordinary man.  He happened to be a cowardly bully, and being
short of food for himself, he forcibly took from Grizel and her sister
the biscuits which they had brought aboard for their own use.  These he
ate in their presence.  But this was not the worst.  Grizel had paid
for a cabin bed for herself and sister, but the captain appropriated
it, and they were compelled to sleep on the floor.  However, they
arrived in safety at their destination, and Sir Patrick was exceedingly
pleased with the way in which Grizel had transacted his business.

The three years and a half which followed were comparatively uneventful
for the British exiles in Holland.  Grizel devoted herself almost
entirely to domestic duties, for her father was too poor to keep
servants, and the only assistance she had was from a little girl who
was paid to come in daily to wash the plates and dishes.  Every morning
she rose at six o'clock, and was busy until she retired to bed at
night.  She washed and dressed the children, assisted her father in
teaching them, mended their clothes, and performed other duties which
it would be tedious to enumerate.  The few hours during which she
managed to be free from domestic duties she devoted to practising music
and studying French and German.

Grizel was now a beautiful young woman, and her gentle manner and
sweetness made her a favourite of all with whom she came into contact.
Two Scotch exiles fell in love with her, but she declined their offers
of marriage, greatly to the surprise of her father, who did not know
that she was the promised wife of another man--George Baillie, son of
his old friend Robert Baillie.  George and Grizel had known each other
for many years.  George was visiting his father in prison at Edinburgh
when Grizel, to the surprise of both of them, slipped out from a dark
corner and delivered her father's letter.

The bravery of the little girl made a lasting impression on the boy,
and during the troublous years that followed he managed to see her on
several occasions.  Each liked the other, and their liking changed to
love long before they were out of their teens.  George's estates had
been confiscated, and he was serving as a private in the Prince of
Orange's Guards, where he had for his chum one of Grizel's brothers.
When off duty he was frequently at the Humes' house, and there, one
day, Grizel promised to become his wife.  They kept their engagement a
secret, for Grizel did not wish it to be known until the good days,
which she was convinced were in store for Great Britain, arrived.

The good days came at last.  The Prince of Orange's troops landed at
Torbay, and the last of the Stuart kings fled from the land he had
misruled.  Honours were now conferred upon the men who had suffered at
the hands of Charles II. and James II.  Sir Patrick Hume had his
estates restored to him, and was created Lord Polwarth.  Six years
later he was made Earl of Marchmont and Lord Chancellor of Scotland.
The queen greatly admired Grizel, and asked her to become one of her
maids of honour, but she declined the offer, as George Baillie, whose
estate had been restored to him, wanted her to fulfil her promise.  She
was quite willing to do so, and they were married on September 17, 1692.

In 1703 Lady Hume died.  On her death-bed she looked at those standing
around her and asked anxiously 'Where is Grizel?'  Grizel, who had been
standing back so that her beloved mother should not see her tears, came
forward at once.  'My dear Grizel,' Lady Hume said, holding her by the
hand, 'blessed be you above all, for a helpful child you have been to

Grizel's married life was exceedingly happy, and lasted for forty-six
years.  She often declared that during those years she and her husband
never had the slightest quarrel or misunderstanding.  Throughout her
married life she was indefatigable in good works for the poor, and she
continued her kindly deeds after her husband's death.  The rebellion of
1745 caused much distress in her native land, and her money was given
freely to the ruined of both parties.  Her own income had been greatly
reduced, as her impoverished tenants were unable to pay her, and soon
she found herself pressed for money.  All that she had possessed had
been given to those in distress, and now, in her eighty-first year, she
was unable to pay for the common necessaries of life.  She called
together the tradesmen, whom she had hitherto paid promptly, and told
them that she was now poor, and would have to remain so until her
tenants were prosperous enough to pay their rents.  Perhaps they would
not be in a position to do so during her lifetime, and she left it to
them, the tradesmen, to decide whether or not they would continue to
serve her, and run the risk of not being paid.  Unanimously and
promptly the tradesmen declared that, as heretofore, she should have
the best of their stock.  Joanna Baillie gives their reply in the
following lines:--

  No, noble dame! this must not be.
  With heart as warm and hand as free
  Still thee and thine we'll serve with pride,
  As when fair fortune graced your side.
  The best of all our stores afford
  Shall daily smoke upon thy board;
  And should'st thou never clear the score,
  Heaven, for thy sake, will bless our store.

The tradesmen were paid eventually, but not by Lady Grizel Baillie, for
she died on December 6, 1746, before prosperity came to her tenants.  A
long life had been given her, and she had spent it nobly exhibiting all
the good qualities which a woman should possess.


One morning in the spring of 1638 a large number of people had
assembled at a Richmond Church to witness the marriage of John
Hutchinson, eldest son of Sir Thomas Hutchinson, with Lucy Apsley, the
daughter of Sir Allen Apsley.  The bride, who was only eighteen years
of age, was, according to her contemporaries, exceedingly beautiful and
very accomplished; her future husband was learned, well-bred and
handsome.  Both had a host of friends, and thus it was that a large
crowd had gathered at the church to witness their marriage.

The time for the bride to arrive at the church had come; but she was
not there.  Minutes passed, and soon a messenger arrived with the news
that the marriage would not take place that day.  'But why was it
postponed?'  This was the question which the disappointed friends
asked, and the answer was soon forthcoming.

Lucy Apsley had been seized with small-pox on her wedding morning.  In
those days small-pox was far more feared than it is at the present
time, and the crowd quickly dispersed, some of the people fearing that
the messenger who brought the bad news might also have brought the
dreaded disease.

For some time it was thought that Lucy Apsley would die from the
complaint, but she recovered.  There were many people, however, who
declared that it would have been better if she had died, for the once
beautiful girl was now much disfigured, and the Society gossips
expressed their confidence that John Hutchinson would never marry her.

It was unjustifiable for these people to talk of John Hutchinson as if
he were a scoundrel, for he was a manly, honourable, young fellow, and
quite unlikely to refuse to marry Lucy Apsley because she had lost her
beauty.  He told her that he was thankful to God for having spared her,
and urged her to marry him as soon as it was possible.

They were married at St. Andrew's Church, Holborn, on July 3, 1638, the
bride presenting such a shocking appearance that the clergyman who
performed the ceremony could not look at her a second time.  It is
highly satisfactory to be able to say that in the course of time Lucy
Hutchinson regained some of her beauty; but the contemporary writer's
statement that she became as beautiful as ever she had been must be
received with a certain amount of doubt.

However, it is not for her beauty but for her bravery that Lucy
Hutchinson deserves to be remembered.  When she had spent a few happy
years of married life, the troubles which ended in the execution of
Charles I. began.  It was impossible for any man or woman to refrain
from siding with one or the other party in this momentous struggle, for
any person who claimed to be neutral would have been suspected by both
parties.  Lucy Hutchinson's husband was of a studious disposition, and
had little taste for the frivolities and dissipation in which the
majority of men of his position indulged, and it is therefore not
surprising that, when it became necessary to take part in the struggle,
he determined to espouse the cause of the Parliamentary party.

This step caused Lucy Hutchinson some sorrow, for her brother and many
other members of her family were fighting for King Charles.  However,
she felt that it was her duty to hold the same political opinions as
her husband, and she became a staunch Parliamentarian.

The Cavaliers, hearing that John Hutchinson had proclaimed sympathy
with the Roundheads, decided to take him prisoner immediately, but
warning of their intention reached him, and he fled to Leicestershire.
Lucy joined him at the earliest opportunity, but they had little peace,
for the Cavaliers were constantly in search of John Hutchinson.

After fleeing from place to place he arrived at Nottingham, soon after
the battle of Edgehill.  The Cavaliers were on their way to take
possession of Nottingham, and John Hutchinson and others urged the
citizens to defend the town.  The militia was organised, and John
Hutchinson was appointed a lieutenant-colonel.

Lucy Hutchinson was at this time living at their home at Owthorpe, but
her husband, thinking that she would be safer in Nottingham than alone
in a neighbourhood which abounded with Royalists, sent a troop of horse
to remove her by night.  It was an adventurous journey, but was
accomplished safely.  Finding that the citizens of Nottingham were
prepared to offer a determined resistance, the Cavaliers did not attack
the town, but passed on with the intention of returning later to
capture it.

The citizens of Nottingham, pleased with the energy shown by Colonel
Hutchinson, elected him Governor of Nottingham Castle.  It was a high
post for a man only twenty-seven years of age, but Colonel Hutchinson
soon proved that he was well fitted for it  The castle, although
standing in an excellent position, was in a dilapidated condition and
required much strengthening before it could be considered strong enough
to withstand a determined attack.  The required alterations were
carried out under Colonel Hutchinson's supervision, and at length all
that was needed to withstand a siege was a stock of provisions and a
larger garrison.  These, however, the governor could not obtain.

A period of waiting followed.  Again and again the rumour spread that
the Cavaliers were approaching to capture the castle, but they did not
attack it.  Their guns were heard in the distance, but for some reason
known only to themselves they did not deliver the long-expected
assault.  Lucy Hutchinson had an unenviable time.  Loving a peaceful,
domestic life, she was compelled to live in the midst of turmoil.  She
saw to the feeding of the soldiers, a trying task considering that so
far the Parliamentary party had allowed her husband nothing whatever
towards defraying the cost of maintaining the garrison, and that the
stock of provisions was running low.  Moreover she was often troubled
concerning the safety of her relatives.  Her eldest brother, Sir Allen
Apsley, of whom she was exceedingly fond, was fighting gallantly for
the king, and believing that the Parliamentarians would triumph, she
feared that if he escaped death on the battle-field, it would only be
to suffer imprisonment and the confiscation of his estate.

At last, in 1644, the Earl of Newcastle sent a messenger to Colonel
Hutchinson calling upon him to surrender Nottingham Castle to the
Royalists, a demand that was promptly refused.  'If his lordship would
have that poor castle,' the colonel said to the messenger, 'he must
wade to it in blood.'

The messenger departed, and Colonel Hutchinson made preparations to
withstand a siege.  Greatly to his surprise, however, the attempt on
the castle was not made, the Earl of Newcastle having been compelled to
march his forces to the assistance of Royalists in another part of the

Before long, however, the citizens of Nottingham veered round to the
Royalist party, and decided to betray the town.  One night they
secretly admitted 600 Cavaliers, commanded by Colonel Hutchinson's
cousin, Sir Richard Byron, and before daybreak the town was in their
hands.  But not the castle.  With only eighty men, Colonel Hutchinson
determined to hold it against the enemy until not a man remained alive.
His force should have been much larger, but many of his men had on the
previous evening quitted the castle without permission and entered the
town.  While enjoying themselves the Cavaliers arrived and made them

Among the Parliamentarians who were taken prisoners in Nottingham were
the surgeons, and the defenders of the castle entered into the fight
with the unpleasant belief that if they were wounded there would be no
one to attend to their wounds.

They were mistaken.  When the battle had been raging for some minutes,
and the wounded defenders were being removed from further danger, Lucy
Hutchinson came forward, and skilfully and tenderly dressed their
wounds.  For five days, attending to the wounded was her chief duty,
and many a poor fellow's life was saved by her promptitude and skill.

One day, while resting from her labours, she saw three Royalists being
led away to the dungeon.  They were wounded, and had been captured in
the latest assault on the castle.  Seeing that they were wounded, Lucy
Hutchinson at once dressed their injuries, and while thus employed one
of her husband's officers angrily upbraided her for having pity on
them, concluding with the assertion that 'his soul abhorred to see this
favour to the enemies of God.'

'I've done nothing but my duty,' she replied.  'These are our enemies,
but they are also our fellow-creatures.'

For five days the little band of Roundheads held out against the strong
force of Cavaliers, and they were fully prepared for a long siege,
when, to their surprise, they saw the enemy beat a hurried retreat.  In
a short time they knew the cause.  A strong Parliamentary force was
advancing to the relief of Nottingham Castle.

For his good defence of the castle, Parliament ratified the appointment
made by the citizens, and promoted Colonel Hutchinson to be governor of
the town as well as of the castle.

Unable to obtain the castle by force of arms, the Royalists now tempted
Colonel Hutchinson, by offering him any terms he might name, if he
would surrender it and join their party.  These attempts to suborn him
he ignored, and held the castle for the Parliamentary party until peace
was declared, and he was able to return with his wife and children to
his ruined home at Owthorpe.  In the meanwhile, Lucy Hutchinson was
anxious concerning her brother, Sir Allen Apsley, who had held
Barnstaple for the king as gallantly as her husband had held Nottingham
Castle for the Parliament.  He was a marked man, but Colonel Hutchinson
used his now great influence to obtain immunity from molestation for
the gallant Cavalier.

Until the death of Cromwell, Lucy Hutchinson and her husband lived very
happily with their children at their rebuilt Owthorpe home.  But
immediately after that event troubles began.  The Royalists, hoping to
bring about a restoration of monarchy, were eager to obtain arms, and
planned a raid on Owthorpe; but their designs were repeated to Lucy
Hutchinson by a boy who overheard the conspiracy, and when the robbers
arrived they were speedily put to flight.

As the prospects of a Restoration became greater, Lucy Hutchinson grew
alarmed for the safety of her husband, who was one of the men who had
signed the death-warrant of Charles I.  The friends of the exiled king
had promised him pardon and preferment if he would become a Royalist,
but this he had firmly declined to do.

On May 29, 1660, Charles II. was restored to the throne, and little
mercy could be expected from him by those who had signed his father's
death-warrant.  Some of Colonel Hutchinson's friends urged him to
follow Ingoldsby's example, and declare that Cromwell had held his hand
and compelled him to sign it, but he rejected this advice with the
greatest indignation.

In a terrible state of anxiety Lucy Hutchinson applied to her brother
for assistance and advice.  Sir Allen Apsley was naturally in high
favour at court, where his gallant fight for Charles I. was well known,
and he was glad of an opportunity to help the brother-in-law who had
protected him in time of danger.  Moreover, there was another reason
why he was anxious to help Colonel Hutchinson--he, Sir Allen, had
recently married his sister.

Sir Allen Apsley worked exceedingly hard to obtain his brother-in-law's
pardon, and at last he had the joy of telling his sister that her
husband's name was inserted in the Act of Oblivion, and his estates
unconditionally freed to him.

Great was Lucy Hutchinson's joy at the pardon of her husband, and she
looked forward to spending the remainder of their days in peace at
their beloved Owthorpe.  Alas! this was not to be.  There were many
Royalists who were highly displeased at Colonel Hutchinson's receiving
a pardon, and they determined to ruin him.  Very conveniently they
discovered, or said that they had discovered, a Puritan plot for a
rising, and that Colonel Hutchinson was one of the conspirators.  As
far as Colonel Hutchinson was concerned the story was utterly untrue,
but, nevertheless, on the strength of it, he was arrested for treason,
carried to London and placed in the Tower.  After ten months in the
Tower, during which his wife visited him regularly, he was removed to
Sandown Castle, where, in a damp cell against the walls of which the
sea washed, he contracted ague.  Lucy Hutchinson implored the governor
to be permitted to share her husband's prison, but he refused, and
treated both her and him with brutality.

Sir Allen Apsley, hearing of the treatment accorded to his
brother-in-law, used his influence to bring about a change in his
condition, but the alteration came too late, and he died on September
11, 1664.  Lucy Hutchinson was not present when he died, but the
message he sent to her was:--'Let her, as she is above other women,
show herself on this occasion a good Christian, and above the pitch of
ordinary minds.'

Little is known of Lucy Hutchinson after her husband's death, beyond
that she soon sold Owthorpe, and that some years later she referred to
herself as being in adversity.  By adversity she probably referred to
her widowed state, for it is very unlikely that with many rich
relatives a woman of simple tastes would be in want of money.  But of
this we may be sure: that, whether old age found her rich or poor, it
found her a noble-minded, Christian Englishwoman.


When Samuel White Baker decided to make an attempt to discover the
sources of the Nile, his young wife determined to accompany him and
share his dangers and hardships.  On April 15, 1861, they started from
Cairo, and after a twenty-six days' journey by boat they disembarked at
Korosko, and plunged into the dreary desert.  Their camels travelled at
a rapid pace, but the heat was terrible, and Mrs. Baker was taken
seriously ill before arriving at Berber.  She was, however,
sufficiently recovered to accompany her husband when he started off
along the dry bed of the Atbara, and soon had a novel experience, which
Baker in _The Nile Tributaries of Abyssinia_, describes as follows:--

'At half-past eight I was lying half asleep upon my bed by the margin
of the river, when I fancied that I heard a rumbling like distant
thunder.  Hardly had I raised my head to listen more attentively, when
a confusion of voices arose from the Arabs' camp, with the sound of
many feet; and in a few minutes they rushed into my camp, shouting to
my men in the darkness, "El Bahr!  El Bahr!"'[1]  The rolling flood was
sweeping down the dry bed of the river.  'We were up in an instant.
Many of the people were asleep on the clean sand in the river's bed;
these were quickly awakened by the Arabs....  Hardly had they (the
Arabs) descended, when the sound of the river in the darkness beneath
told us that the water had arrived; and the men, dripping with wet, had
just sufficient time to drag their heavy burdens up the bank.  All was
darkness and confusion.  The river had arrived like "a thief in the

When daylight came a mighty river was flowing where yesterday there was
only dry land.

Proceeding to Kassala, Baker engaged additional camels and attendants,
and then crossing the Atbara at Korasi proceeded to Sofi, where he
decided to halt for five months.  Big game abounded, and Baker enjoyed
excellent sport.  Shooting and studying Arabic occupied nearly all his
attention, until Mrs. Baker was taken ill with gastric fever.  For a
time it was not expected that she would recover; but, fortunately, she
was spared to assist her husband in the arduous labours which followed.

Mr. and Mrs. Baker arrived at Khartoum on June 11, 1862, and remained
there for six months, waiting for the rains to cease, and for the
northerly winds to set in.  Quitting Khartoum on December 18, 1862,
they arrived at Gondokoro on February 2, 1863.  Baker was the first
Englishman to visit the place, and the reception which the
slave-traders accorded him was far from cordial.  Believing him to be a
spy of the British Government, they concealed their slaves, and waited
anxiously for him to depart.  In the meanwhile they made friends with
his men, sowed discontent amongst them, and succeeded in inciting them
to make a raid for food on the natives in the next village.

Baker, hearing of the proposed raid, promptly forbade it, whereupon his
men mutinied.  Seizing the ringleader, Baker proceeded to give him a
sound thrashing, but was at once attacked by the rest of the men, and
would certainly have been killed had not Mrs. Baker rushed to the
rescue.  Her sudden appearance on the scene--for it was known she was
ill with fever--and her appeals to some of the men to help her save her
husband caused the mutineers to hesitate.  Instantly Baker saw his
opportunity.  'Fall in!' he commanded, and so accustomed were the men
to obeying his orders that the majority fell in instantly.  The
ringleader and a few others refused to obey, and Baker was about to
administer another thrashing to the former when his wife besought him
not to do so.  He acted on her advice, and promised to overlook the
mutineers' conduct if they apologised, which they promptly and
profusely did.

The slave-traders now declared that they would not permit the Bakers to
penetrate into the interior, but, ignoring the threats, husband and
wife resumed their journey.  Soon they came into contact with a
well-armed party of these traders, and a fight would have resulted had
not Mrs. Baker suggested that they should make friends with the leader.
'Had I been alone,' Baker writes, 'I should have been too proud to have
sought the friendship of the sullen trader; and the moment on which
success depended would have been lost....  The fate of the expedition
was retrieved by Mrs. Baker.'

It was, of course, a trying task for Mr. and Mrs. Baker to be on
friendly terms with a slave-trader, and they both felt it to be so, but
it was productive of good.  The slave-trader informed Baker that his
(Baker's) men intended to mutiny and kill him and his wife.  Baker was
on his guard, and nipped the mutiny in the bud.

After many hardships and perils borne uncomplainingly by Mrs. Baker,
they reached the territory of the King of Unyoro, where his majesty's
brother, M'gambi, was continually asking for presents.  Having received
a great number from Baker, M'gambi went on to demand that Mrs. Baker
might be given to him.  'Drawing my revolver quietly, I held it within
two feet of his chest,' Baker writes, 'and looking at him with
undisguised contempt, I told him that if I touched the trigger, not all
the men could save him: and that it he dared to repeat the insult I
would shoot him on the spot.  At the same time, I explained to him that
in my country such insolence would entail bloodshed; and I looked upon
him as an ignorant ox who knew no better; and that this excuse alone
could save him.  My wife, naturally indignant, had risen from her seat,
and maddened with the excitement of the moment, she made a little
speech in Arabic (not a word of which he understood) with a countenance
almost as amiable as the head of Medusa.  Altogether the
_mise-en-scène_ utterly astonished him.  The woman, Bacheta, although
savage, had appropriated the insult to her mistress, and she also
fearlessly let fly at him, translating as nearly as she could the
complimentary address that "Medusa" had just delivered.

Whether this little _coup de théâtre_ had so impressed M'gambi with
British female independence, that he wished to be "off his bargain," I
cannot say; but, with an air of complete astonishment, he said; "Don't
be angry!  I had no intention of offending you by asking for your wife;
I will give you a wife if you want one; and I thought you had no
objection to give me yours: it is my custom to give my visitors pretty
wives, and I thought you might exchange.  Don't make a fuss about it;
if you don't like it, there's an end of it: I will never mention it
again."  This very practical apology I received very sternly.'

After this interview with M'gambi, the Bakers resumed their journey,
escorted by 300 local men, whose services Baker soon discovered it
would be advisable to dispense with.  He was now left with only twelve
men, and it was doubtful whether he would be able to reach his
destination and get back to Gondokoro in time to catch the last boat to
Khartoum that season.  If he failed to do so, it meant another year in
Central Africa, and he did not wish his wife to endure that.  But Mrs.
Baker was interested deeply in her husband's work, and urged him not to
consider her health before accomplishing his task.

A few days later she received a sun-stroke, and for several days lay in
a litter in an unconscious state.  Brain fever followed, and no one
believed that she could possibly recover.  A halt was made, and the men
put a new handle to the pick-axe ready to dig a grave, the site of
which had been selected.  But the preparations were premature.  Mrs.
Baker recovered consciousness, and two days later the weary march was
resumed, to be crowned on March 14, 1864, with success, for on that day
they saw before them the tremendous sheet of water now well known by
the name the discoverer gave it, there and then,--the Albert Nyanza.

We can imagine Mrs. Baker's joy on finding that their expedition had
been crowned with success, and that the perils and hardships which she
had shared uncomplainingly with her husband had not been endured in
vain.  It would perhaps have only been natural if she had now urged her
husband to return to civilisation as quickly as possible, but she did
not do so.

For thirteen days they explored in canoes the eastern shore of the
newly-discovered lake, coming at last to the mouth of Somerset or
Victoria Nile.  Ascending the river they discovered a series of
cataracts, ending in a magnificent fall.  These Baker named Murchison
Falls, as a compliment to the President of the Royal Geographical
Society.  Continuing the journey on foot, they came to a deserted
village, where they were compelled to remain for two months through the
treachery of the King of Unyoro.  This dusky potentate had promised
Baker every assistance that he could give, but having decided to make
an attack on two neighbouring tribes he asked the Englishman to
accompany his force and fight for him.  This Baker refused to do, and,
in revenge, the king sent secret orders to Baker's followers to desert
him, and leave him and his wife to starve.  In a desolate spot, unable
to obtain provisions, Mr. and Mrs. Baker existed for two months,
growing weaker daily from fever and want of proper food.  However,
after many attempts, Baker managed to obtain an interview with the
king, and persuaded him to treat them humanely.  The king would not,
however, allow them to quit his territory, and it was not until
November, 1864, that they succeeded in escaping.

After many adventures they arrived at Khartoum on May 3, 1865, where
their arrival created great surprise among the Europeans, who had long
since been convinced that they were dead.

On reaching England in October, 1865, the Bakers were given an
enthusiastic reception.  Various learned societies at home and abroad
bestowed their highest honours upon Baker, and Queen Victoria conferred
a knighthood upon him.

Mrs. Baker's bravery in accompanying her husband through so many
dangers was naturally praised by all classes, and it was felt by many
people that some honour should be conferred upon her.  In Messrs.
Murray and White's _Sir Samuel Baker: a Memoir_ (Macmillan), it is
stated that Mr. W. E. Gladstone proposed that a subscription should be
started for presenting a suitable testimonial to her.  This was,
however, prior to her becoming Lady Baker, and perhaps it was
considered that having received an honour the testimonial was
unnecessary.  At any rate Mr. Gladstone's suggestion was not carried

In the spring of 1869, Sir Samuel and Lady Baker returned to Africa.
The Khedive had appointed Sir Samuel Governor-General of the Equatorial
Nile Basin, to suppress the slave-trade, to develop the natural
resources of the country, and open the great lakes to navigation.  This
was a formidable task, and made more difficult by the jealousy of the
Egyptian authorities, who neglected to give him the support which they
should have done.

For two years Sir Samuel Baker was busy fighting slave-traders and
native tribes, and throughout this exciting period he was accompanied
by his wife, who was subjected to the same dangers as he or any man in
his force.  At one time she was in great danger of being laid low at
any moment by bullet or spear.  This was during the retreat from
Masendi, a position which Sir Samuel Baker was compelled to abandon on
June 14, 1872.  For eighty miles the little band, composed of about 100
men, marched in double file through tangled forest and gigantic grass,
fighting the whole distance.  Bullets whizzed past Lady Baker, and many
a spear went within an inch of her, but unalarmed she marched on
_carrying ammunition_.  The enemy hoped to annihilate the party before
it got clear of the long grass, but the determined men who were
fighting for their lives discovered the ambuscades and drove out the
enemy.  Night and day the hidden foe harassed the party, and Lady Baker
knew that any moment might be her last.  Nevertheless, she trudged on
with her burden of ammunition, and on some occasions marched sixteen
miles at a stretch.  It was a weary march through that
grass-jungle--which harboured hundreds of the enemy--and it seemed that
it would never end.  To accelerate their retreat, the cattle were
abandoned and loads of valuable goods were burnt or thrown away.  At
times it seemed as if they could not possibly escape, and, in fact,
news reached England that they had been slaughtered during the retreat
from Masendi.

However, they got through safely, and shortly afterwards inflicted a
crushing defeat on the enemy.  Lady Baker was present at this battle,
but although the bullets whizzed to the right, to the left, and above
her, she escaped injury.  Sir Samuel not only praised her bravery, but
he wrote of her: 'She has always been my prime minister, to give good
counsel in moments of difficulty and danger.'

On completion of the four years' service for which the Khedive had
engaged him, Sir Samuel Baker returned with his wife to England, where
once more they received an enthusiastic reception.  When they again
travelled abroad it was in more civilised parts of the world, and
unattended by the perils which had assailed them in Africa.  Sir Samuel
Baker died on December 30, 1893, at Sandford Orleigh, near Newton
Abbot, aged 72.  He was a brave and clever man, but not a little of his
success was due to the fact that he had a wife who shared his ambition,
and did all that lay in her power to bring his undertakings to a
successful issue.

[1] The river.


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