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´╗┐Title: Father Bear and Bobby Bear
Author: Lowe, Samuel E. (Samuel Edward), 1890-1952
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Father Bear and Bobby Bear" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

  [Illustration: RURAL SCENE]

             Printed in the
        United States of America
  Western Printing & Lithographing Co.
              Racine, Wis.


  Father Bear and
     Bobby Bear

  Howard B. Famous





  THE BEARS' CAVE                           9

  BOBBY GROWS UP                           11



  OFF FOR THE HONEY                        26

  THE BEES CHASE BOBBY                     40


  THE FIGHT WITH THE WOLVES                55


  "BOBBY, BOBBY, GET UP AT ONCE"                              14

  THEY DRANK CIDER AND PLAYED CHECKERS                        23

  HIS FOOT CAUGHT IN A ROOT                                   35

  INTO THE WATER HE FELL                                      51

Bobby Bear


Over where the sun sank to rest every night like a great ball of
fire, there lived three brown bears.

There was Father Bear, with a great, gruff voice. And Mother Bear,
whose voice, while not so loud nor so gruff as father's, yet was not
nice for little boys and girls to hear. And there was little Bobby
Bear. His voice was sweet, for he was very young.

All of the bears had lovely, brown skins. When the sun shone on them
they looked like rich, brown velvet. And when they were curled up,
asleep, they looked like great balls of brown fur.

The bears' eyes were big, and round, and black as coals.

They had great, strong claws on all their paws.

With bears, you know, hands and feet are very much alike, and are
called forefeet and hindfeet--or front feet and back feet. So
instead of finger nails and toe nails they have claws.

But you are anxious to know something about Bobby Bear's home. It
was in a great, gloomy cave. Only the front part had the sunshine.
Away in the back part it was dark, pitch dark, like night.

The bears didn't mind this, of course, for when night came, instead
of reading books like children and grown-ups, they just went right
off to sleep.


Bobby Bear was growing to be a big bear, fast. Soon he would be a
big-boy bear.

Most of the time he stayed at home with Mother Bear, helping her in
the house when he wasn't playing.

It wasn't much fun for Bobby Bear to play. He had no other little
bears for company. So he had to play and pretend bears were with

He would say, "You sit there, Little Gray Bear," or "Now, Little
Black Bear, you be quiet."

One day Bobby Bear wandered down by the river, lonesome and sad. The
rippling waters seemed to say to him that some day he would have a
little playmate, just like little human children had.

And when he was in the forest he would stop and listen to the
whispering of the trees. They, too, seemed to tell of the time when
a little girl would bring a great joy to him--poor, lonely, little
Bobby Bear.

So, in his own way--the way that all bears have of thinking--he felt
sure that some day he would not be lonely any more, nor quiet, nor

It may have been that very day, while Bobby Bear wandered in the
forest, that Jane Bird was thinking of him, too. Such things do
sometimes happen.

You see, Jane Bird lived with her father and mother, near the great
forest where the Bear family made their home.

Jane Bird played with the other little children who lived near. Such
fun as they had--running, jumping, skipping. And they played
"school," and "keeping house," and pretended they were grown-up
people. The days were full of laughter and of joy.

Neither Jane Bird's father, nor Jane Bird's mother nor, of course,
Jane Bird herself, knew of what was soon going to happen.

They should have feared something, though, for one evening, just at
dusk, when the sun was going down, away over by the dark woods,
could have been seen three great forms. These were the bears going
home to their cave.


Early one morning, Bobby was wakened by his mother who called
sharply: "Come, it is time to get up. You know you must help me with
the dishes today. If you want to go with your father to get some
corn you must look sharp."

My, but Bobby was sleepy, for he had walked so far in the woods the
day before that he was quite tired out. So when his mother called
him, instead of jumping right out of bed as he usually did, he
turned over and went to sleep again.

Ten minutes later, his mother went into his bedroom to see if he was
nearly dressed. Imagine how annoyed she was to find him still

"Bobby, Bobby, get up at once. I will not call you again. Your
father is all ready to go, and you cannot go with him until you have
helped me around the house."

[Illustration: "BOBBY, BOBBY, GET UP AT ONCE"]

At this Bobby Bear jumped right up, for he had been looking forward
to the trip to the place where the corn grew. Besides he always
liked to go walking with his father because he loved him so much.

It was a beautiful morning and Bobby soon forgot how tired he was
when he saw the fine breakfast his mother set before him. But when,
breakfast over, he saw the pile of dishes and knew he had to wash
all those before he could go on his trip, he could not help crying.
Bobby Bear didn't like washing dishes.

The tears would come somehow and there was a big lump in his throat
which seemed to be there all the time although he swallowed it over
and over again.

"Now, my boy," cried his father, "how much longer are you going to
be? I have almost finished my pipe. Just as soon as I am through
smoking I am going to start."

Bravely forcing back his tears, Bobby Bear hurried with the drying
of the dishes which by this time were all washed.

A few minutes later, he cried joyfully: "All through! Now we're
ready to go," and he began to jump up and down, so pleased was he.

"Wait, my boy, till I fill my pipe, for we have a long way to go."
Father Bear took the little tobacco bag from his trouser pocket,
filled his pipe, pushed the tobacco down with his thumb and,
striking a match, was soon puffing away contentedly.

Bobby, meanwhile, was so glad to be going for a walk with his
father, that he was skipping merrily about, just like a little dog.

"You seem glad this morning," said Father Bear. Then, with a glance
at Mother Bear, who was standing by smiling he added: "Perhaps it
is because you're all through with your house work, eh?"

At this, Bobby Bear grew red in the face, for after all just washing
dishes wasn't much help to his mother with the housework.

He asked timidly, "Mother, perhaps before I go, I should help you
some more."

At this, both Father Bear and Mother Bear smiled. "Oh no, my boy,"
said his mother kindly. "You have helped me quite a lot as it is and
I am very willing to have my little Bobby Bear run off now and enjoy


"Where are you going to get the corn?" asked Bobby Bear, as he
trotted along beside his father that bright, sunny morning.

"Why," Father Bear replied, "we have been invited by Farmer Jenkins
to go and take as much as we like."

"He must be a kind man," answered Bobby.

"He is. Not all farmers are as kind as he. Yet it is fine for him,
too, as nobody steals from him. In that way he is better off than
the farmers who never help raccoons or bears, or badgers."

"How much corn can we have?" asked Bobby.

"We may bring away with us all we can carry, so I hope you are
feeling strong, my boy," replied Father Bear.

At this Bobby proudly bent his right arm, to show how big his muscle
was, just as lots of little boys do.

His father smiled. "You'll need all the strength you have, Bobby,
for we want to get enough corn today to last your mother all

On they went, mile after mile. Soon it became hot. Father Bear,
being big and strong, didn't get tired. Bobby, because he was so
young, soon became weary.

Do you think he showed it, though? Not he. He had been brought up to
bear pain, and hard work, and cold, and heat, without complaining.

My, how glad he was, though, to see the yellow mass some distance
ahead which told him they were near their journey's end.

"How do you like the looks of it, boy?" his father asked.

"Fine! And what a lot there is. There must be acres and acres and
acres of it."

Bobby had heard his father talking to a bear neighbor one day, and
they had used the word "acre" when describing things. So he, just
like lots of little boys, wanted to be "big" and he had used it now.

When Father Bear heard Bobby use the word "acres" he pretended not
to notice it. So he simply answered, "Yes, there's surely a lot of
corn here."

They had brought something to eat with them. Now they chose a big,
shady tree, and, sitting beneath it, munched away at the food.

Bobby felt very grateful for the rest, and when they again got on
their feet he was ready for anything.

Picking out that part of the field where the corn was richest,
Bobby Bear's father had him hold both arms out.

Then Father Bear loaded his arms and off they started for home. Each
had his arms full of corn.

"How hot the sun--and how hard the road--and, oh, how far away home
is." These were some of the thoughts in the young bear's mind.

But did he think for a minute of giving up? Never--

Father Bear, however, saw how weary his little boy was and said,
kindly, "We'll rest awhile under the next shade tree we come to."

Each of them piled his load of corn beside him, then, stretching
out, they both slept.

It was Bobby who woke with a start. Old Man Snake was making off
with some of the corn.

"Father! Father!" cried the boy-bear. "Quick, Old Man Snake is
stealing my corn."

Awaking in an instant, Father Bear jumped up and with one blow
stretched the snake out--dead.

"Just in time, my boy. A few seconds later and the snake would have
eaten our corn. Then we would have been short many ears of corn."

Once more they started on the road home. This time they went
quicker, for the rest had done them good.

When Mother Bear saw what a lot of fine, rich, golden corn they had
brought, she said, "I'm glad you got a lot, for uncle, aunt and the
little cousins are all coming for a corn feast.

"Even then there will be lots over for us," she added. "I guess I'll
can it."

Imagine that night. By the light of a great, white moon they
feasted and danced and sang songs, in bear language, of course. And
they drank cider and played checkers.


Being good bears, however, they didn't stay up very late, so no one
was all tired out when morning came.

Bobby and his father felt as fresh as the morning dew. This was the
day they were to go and get the honey from the bees.


"Father, what is honey? Have I ever eaten any?" asked Bobby Bear, as
they started on their journey.

"Why, certainly you have," answered his father. "Don't you remember
that sweet, sticky stuff you had on your bread last year, when your
Uncle Grumpy came to visit us?"

"Oh," said Bobby, astonished, "was that honey?"

"Yes, and what we are going to get today will be just as nice,
perhaps nicer."

"Father, where do we get honey? Do we dig it out of the ground? Or
does it grow on trees?"

"Just wait and see. In a little while you will know," answered
Father Bear.

By now they had left their cave far behind them. Bobby Bear did not
feel so tired today as he did the morning before. Perhaps he was
getting used to walking.

The sun was not so hot, for there were some clouds in the sky and a
gentle breeze blew.

Soon they reached a great clover field at the end of which were a
number of large trees. They made their way toward the tallest of
these, a very big tree, one that it would have taken Bobby quite a
little while to go around.

"Father, what is that buzzing sound?" asked Bobby.

His father had a twinkle in his eye as he replied: "Why, my boy,
that's the honey growing."

This puzzled Bobby. "Honey growing, how do you mean?"

"Wait," said Father Bear, "you'll see."

"Oh, my, father," called out Bobby. "Look at all the flies! I can
count fifty hundred. Look, there's another. And here come some more.
Where are they all going?"

His father had been standing watching with a smile upon his face.

"You had better give up counting. There are far too many for me to
try to count. No little Bobby Bear could possibly do it. Now, my
boy, if you will look up in that tree you will see a great hole. Do
you see it?"

"Where?" asked Bobby, bending his neck, so that he was looking at
the very tip-top of the tree, where the branches seemed to hit the

Father Bear smiled as he called out: "No, no, not there. You're
looking away too high. See, much lower," and he pointed to the place
where the hole was.

"Oh, now I see it. I didn't look there. I thought you meant way up
high," said Bobby Bear. "What makes the hole so black, father? And
look, it's moving. Why, it's all flies."

"Now, my boy, I'll tell you all about the honey. Those little black
things up there, of which there are so many, are not flies. They are
bees. There are thousands of those bees swarming in and around that

"Why, where do they all come from?" asked the little bear, "and what
are they doing up there? And where's the honey? I don't see any

"Wait a moment and I'll tell you," answered Father Bear. "That hole
is the bees' home, just as the big cave is our house. And every
night the bees come to the hole to sleep. But they have been at home
many times in the day also.

"Haven't you ever seen the bees flying around the flowers? Perhaps
you thought they were flies. Do you know what they were doing? They
were getting honey from the flowers."

Bobby Bear was puzzled. "Honey from the flowers?" he repeated. "If
the flowers have honey, why do we have to come all this way to get
the honey? Why can't we go to the flowers the way the bee does and
get all the honey we want?"

"If we did that, my boy," his father answered, "it would take us
many years to fill even a small cup with honey. No, there are
thousands and thousands of bees that come and go all day long and as
they do nothing else, very soon they have a lot of honey all in one
place. That is what we have come for today."

Leaving that great tree, they went and looked at many others. Some
of the trees had big holes where bees buzzed around; most of them
had no bees at all.

Bobby was getting impatient. "Why don't we get the honey, father?
Why do we walk around all day?"

Father Bear replied: "All in good time, my boy. First of all, we
must find where the honey is, then we can come back and get it.
Besides the reason I have been going from tree to tree is because I
wish to find which one has most honey. You know I will have to climb
the tree and dig all the honey out, so I want to get as much honey
as I can at one time."

"Look, father," cried Bobby Bear. "See all those bees over there. It
seems to me there are more at that tree than at any tree we have
seen yet."

"I guess you are right," Father Bear replied. "We'll go a little
closer and see."

Sure enough, when they got beneath the tree which Bobby had pointed
out, there were the bees swarming in hundreds. The buzzing noise
they made would have given the bears a headache, only bears don't
get such things.

Father Bear certainly was pleased. "Why, my boy, from that tree
alone, if I am any judge, we can get enough honey to last us for
months. In fact, you can have bread and honey for breakfast every
morning, if you wish."

Bobby replied: "I can't exactly remember what the honey was like
that Uncle Grumpy brought, for it is so long ago. But I don't think
I would like to have bread and honey every morning. Some mornings I
would like preserves, or eggs, or fish."

His father laughed. "Well, you won't have to eat honey every morning
unless you wish. I only meant that there would be lots of it. Now
let us get started."

Father Bear now looked carefully at all his claws to see that they
were quite sharp. In order to climb the tree he would have to dig
his claws deeply into the bark.

Bobby Bear, noticing this, said: "Why do you look to see if your
claws are sharp, father? You filed them this morning before we came

"I know I did," his father answered, "and I am not worrying about
the claws on my hands. However, we have done such a lot of walking,
I thought perhaps the claws on my feet might have worn some on the
rough ground."

Bobby looked up at the tree where all the bees were flying around
and around, keeping up a most noisy buzzing. Then he thought of his
father going all alone up the tree to take the honey from all those
bees, which surely would not want to part with it.

Father Bear did not seem to be afraid. He had already dug his claws
into the thick bark at the foot of the tree and was about to climb.

"Now, my boy," he said to Bobby, "when I get a little way up the
tree, you hand me the big brown jar. I can easily climb the rest of
the way with one hand, because the claws in my feet are very big
and strong."

Bobby picked the jar up. My, but it was heavy. It was just about as
much as he could do to lift it. However, he managed to get it well
above his head and walked toward the tree.

He was so anxious to reach his father, that he did not look where he
was going and his foot caught in a root, and down went Bobby, jar,
and all.


The terrible crash made Father Bear turn around and when he saw what
had happened he grew quite angry.

"Dear me, what a careless boy you are. That was the biggest jar your
mother had. Now, not only shall we have to give up getting the honey
today, but when we come tomorrow we will have to bring two small
jars. This will mean you will have to carry one of the jars, as a

Bobby felt tears coming to his eyes, but being a brave little
bear, he struggled against crying. "I am very sorry, father, and I
will be more careful next time."

"Being sorry won't bring the jar back," but you could see from his
face, he was not as angry as he had been at first when the jar

All the way home, Bobby was very quiet. Every once in a while his
father would look at him and think that Bobby was still worrying
about the broken jar. This was not a fact, however, for something
had happened which Bobby felt he could not tell his father.

It had taken place while the two bears were walking from tree to
tree looking for the one that had the most honey. A small tree with
very bright green leaves had bent over and touched Bobby on the
shoulder and had whispered in his ear: "What about Jane Bird? Don't
forget, you must see her and must not give up until you find her."

Perhaps this, as well as the root of the big tree had been one of
the causes of Bobby's stumbling when he went to give his father the
big brown jar.

When Father Bear and Bobby Bear reached their cave, Mother Bear was
standing waiting for them. The first thing she said was: "Where's
the honey? Didn't you bring any?"

Bobby said nothing. He was too ashamed of his carelessness. By this
time, Father Bear's anger had all gone and he felt sorry for Bobby.
So he said to Mother Bear:

"The jar fell to the ground and broke. We're going again tomorrow.
It doesn't matter, we can take two small jars."

This did not satisfy Mother Bear, however. "What am I going to do
for a big jar?" she asked. "I've had that one so long I can never
get along without it."

"Don't worry, mother," Father Bear answered. "The next time I go to
the store, I'll get you one twice as big as the one that broke, if
you wish."

After dinner, Bobby came timidly to his mother and asked: "Can I
help you wash the dishes?"

"Oh, my, what's the matter with the boy? Did you hear that?" she
asked Father Bear.

"Oh, that's nothing, mother. Aren't you always glad to have Bobby
help you?" Father Bear was having his after dinner smoke and never
liked to be bothered when he was enjoying himself that way. Besides
he felt he had scolded Bobby Bear enough and he didn't want Mother
Bear to know how the jar had really been broken.

Soon after, both Mother Bear and Father Bear went for their
afternoon naps and Bobby ran out to play with another little
boy-bear who had come to visit him that afternoon.

Bobby was not a very good playmate that afternoon, for he could not
help thinking from time to time of what the little tree with the
bright green leaves had said to him.


A few mornings later, before the sun was up, Father Bear and Bobby
were at the bee tree.

They had brought with them the large brown jar which Father Bear had
bought for Mother Bear, as he had promised her he would do. In order
to get the jar he had had to make a special trip to the store.

There was really no need for Father Bear to have gone into town, as
the bear family had sufficient groceries to last another week, but
Bobby had urged his father so strongly to go and get the honey, that
he had made a special trip to town just to buy the jar.

It surely was a big, brown jar, much bigger than the one that was
broken. Bobby tried to carry it, but it was too heavy for his
little arms.

"How will you manage today, father? I can't reach the jar up to you,
it's too heavy. You will have to get the honey all alone."

"That's all right, my boy. I could have done that yesterday just as
well as not. But I wanted to see what kind of a little helper my
Bobby was."

Father Bear started up the tree. Bobby watched him climb. He was
very proud of his great, strong father. Bobby wondered when he would
be big enough and strong enough to go after honey alone.

It was quite a distance from the ground to where the bees were, and
for some time the bees did not see Father Bear.

When his great, shaggy head appeared in front of their house the
bees were very angry, and buzzed around making a very loud noise.

"Father, father," cried Bobby, "be careful, they'll sting you.
Remember what you told me about what bees do to little bears."

"Don't fear for me, Bobby. My skin is tough and no bee can possibly
hurt me. Just watch so that you will know how to get the honey when
you grow into a big, strong bear."

Father Bear thrust the sharp claws of his two powerful feet into the
tree. He pressed the jar against the trunk, holding himself firmly
by his left hand.

Then with a great blow of his other arm he scattered the bees right
and left. They roared louder than ever and thousands of them flew

Such a great, black cloud was in front of Father Bear's face that
Bobby Bear could hardly see him. This time, however, he did not call
out, for he had faith in his father and knew that he would get the
honey and reach the ground unharmed.

A strong east wind was blowing which helped Father Bear somewhat, as
it was hard for the bees to keep on the wing against such a wind.
When it blew stronger than ever Bobby saw his father thrust a great
paw into the black hole in the tree. Great masses of golden, yellow
honey were put quickly into the jar. Again and again father put in
his hand just as though no bees were around at all.

In fact Father Bear was actually laughing at the bees, so little was
he bothered by their angry attack.

"Are you there, my boy?" he called, looking down.

"Yes, father, I'm here," cheerily answered little Bobby.

"All right then, I'm coming down and I have such a feast of honey in
this jar that it will make your mouth water."

In a moment or two he reached the ground and Bobby saw such a sight
as he looked into the jar that his eyes opened wide as saucers.

"My goodness, what a lot of honey! I don't know how you managed to
carry it. Why, even the empty jar was too much for me."

"Yes, my boy," his father answered, "but you must remember you are
only a little fellow. Nobody expects little Bobby Bears to do the
things that big bears can do."

"May I eat a little of the honey, or must I wait till I get home?"
asked Bobby.

"No, go ahead and dip your hand in the jar. There's plenty of it."

Bobby did so and began to eat. "Yum, yum, this is ever so much
better honey than what uncle brought. This is fine and sweet."

Just at this moment his father uttered a cry of warning.

"Run, my boy, as fast as you can. Here come the bees! I'll look
after the honey."

Father Bear knew he could not keep the bees from stinging Bobby
whose skin was soft and tender. They couldn't hurt an old bear like
himself, as his skin was tough. That's why he told Bobby to run on
ahead. He thought he would fool the bees. They would all stop and
buzz around him and forget to follow Bobby.

Little Bobby ran as fast as he could. Most of the bees stopped near
Father Bear, but a few caught up with Bobby and gave him a sting or

Soon, however, Father Bear drove the bees away with a great branch
of a tree. Then he hurried and caught up with Bobby and together
they ran as fast as the wind. Soon they reached home safely with
their great jar of delicious honey.

When Father Bear told of their adventure, Mother Bear was anxious.

"Didn't my little boy get stung by the bees?" she asked Bobby.

"Oh," he replied, "one or two did bite me in the face. But it
doesn't hurt much." Bobby was brave, you see, and had been taught
not to complain about trifles.

"Still, you had better let me put something on the stings," said his
mother, "or else they might grow worse." So she brought some
bear-liniment and rubbed it on the bites.


A few mornings later, Father Bear said: "Let's go fishing. We
haven't tasted nice, fresh fish for a long time."

"That's a good idea," said Mother Bear. "The fish you get in cans
aren't anything like the fish you catch yourself."

Bobby Bear didn't say anything at first. He was wondering whether
the fish would sting, as the bees did.

"How about it, my boy?" his father asked. "Shall we go fishing?"

"Surely, father. Let us go now. What do we have to take along?"

"Well," replied Father Bear, "first, we must have lines and floats,
and hooks. We can cut a pole when we get to the river. But we must
have worms."

"I saw worms in the garden, father, when mother was sowing seed last
Spring," said Bobby.

"You did, eh? That's fine. Let us go and dig some up. Ask your
mother for an old tin can to put them in."

It was a lovely day when, about an hour later, they started out
fishing. Father Bear had the lines, all fixed, in his trouser
pocket. He had been careful to push all the hooks into the cork
floats so no harm could be done.

Bobby Bear was very proud to be carrying the worms. After they had
gotten almost a hundred they had put some soft, moist earth on top,
so you could see no worms. If you hadn't known they were there,
you'd have thought the can had nothing but dirt.

It wasn't nearly as far to the river as it had been to the
cornfield. Bobby was glad of this.

They found a nice, mossy bank to sit on. Bobby Bear rested while his
father got two poles. Taking the lines from his pocket, he tied one
to each of the fish poles and there they were, all ready to fish.

"What do you do, father?" asked the boy-bear. "How do you know when
you have a fish on the line?"

His father answered, "First, we bait the hooks; that is, we put a
worm on each of our hooks, so when it hangs dangling in the water
the fish jump at it.

"They, of course, don't know there's a hook inside. They think it's
a regular worm. When they pull at the worm you must jerk your rod
ever so little. This is so you will catch the hook in the fish's
mouth. He struggles to get away, and you pull him in.

"There's one thing I want to be sure of, that is, that you don't let
the pole fly out of your hand. So, I'll tie it to your wrist."

They started fishing. Father Bear got a bite. He pulled his pole up
quickly. No fish--but a clean hook. So he put another worm on, threw
the line in, and waited.

This time when the fish bit Father Bear was too quick for it, and in
a moment he had it up on the bank.

Bobby was all eagerness now. He wanted to catch a fish too.

"Oh, father," he cried. "I've got a bite. Look at me--"

But he didn't finish his sentence, for something heavy on his line
gave a jerk. He lost his balance and fell off the rock on which he
had been sitting. Into the water he fell--splash--but he hung
tightly to his rod. The current was swift and the big weight on his
line kept dragging him away from shore.

[Illustration: INTO THE WATER HE FELL]

Sure enough, Bobby Bear had a bite.

Bobby Bear was struggling in the water, trying to swim to shore. It
was pretty hard work, for the fish on the end of his line was nearly
as big as he.

At first Father Bear thought it was just an ordinary little fish on
Bobby's line. Besides he knew his boy could swim so he thought he
would let him get back to shore by himself. He wanted to teach Bobby
Bear to depend on himself on all occasions.

Suddenly he saw a great fish flop up out of the water and then he
realized what a monster Bobby had on his line. He immediately threw
down his fish line and plunged in to his son's rescue. With a few
strokes of his powerful arms he reached Bobby Bear.

Grasping the boy-bear around the waist, he drew him to land. The
fish, caught as it was on the hook, couldn't help coming too.

My, but it was a wonderful fish. Bobby was indeed very proud to
think he had caught such a big fish.

"No wonder I fell into the water, father, with such a big fellow on
my line," he said.

"Yes," answered his father, "that's the biggest fish I have seen in
these parts for many a year. Your mother will certainly fix up a
feast for us with that fish. She can stuff it and add a few slices
of nice, sweet bacon."

"Yum, yum," said Bobby, "it makes my mouth water to think about it.
Can't we go right home now?"

"Oh, no," said his father. "The fish are biting so well today, we
had better stay a while longer. Besides it will give us a chance to
dry our clothes, sitting here in this hot sun. I don't want you to
catch cold, you know. It's shady all the way home through the

"But what will we do with the big fish? He's liable to get away.
Just look at him flopping about on the bank."

"Don't you worry about that fish. I'll fix him." So saying, Father
Bear took a stout cord from his pocket. One end he passed through
the fish's mouth--the other he tied around a young tree. Then he
threw the fish back into the river to keep it fresh until it was
time to go home.

Being a bright, sunny day, Bobby and his father soon were dry. Bobby
rolled in the long grass, then sat on a stump in the sun. Father
Bear who laughed at cold and heat, and trouble, and danger, simply
shrugged his shoulders and lit his pipe. Then he went on fishing.

Many more fish were caught before the sun going down warned them it
was time to go home. They rolled up their lines, threw the poles in
the river, then tossed the worms after them and started back through
the thick woods to their cave.

Father Bear had a big string of fish. Bobby proudly carried the one
which had pulled him into the water. It was so heavy it made a load
in itself. He wanted his mother to see him with his first fish--and
a monster at that.


Perhaps it was the smell of the fish. Maybe it was because of the
noise that Bobby and his father made, singing and whistling as they
walked along. Whatever the cause, five gray wolves, gaunt and lean,
met them at the turn of a road.

"Ho! ho! Here's supper for us. And we won't have to work to get it,"
cried the biggest wolf, in a loud, gruff voice.

"Fine, fresh fish," said the next largest wolf. "And all ready for
us to take."

"Well, we surely are lucky," the third wolf cried. "I'll make short
work of my portion."

"Let us see, let us see. Five gray wolves, to two bears. This will
be an easy job for us." So spoke wolf number four.

"I'm so hungry, oh, so hungry. When are we going to start eating the
fish?" wailed the smallest wolf of the lot.

All the time the wolves were talking they were slinking around
Father Bear and Bobby.

Now they rushed forward, thinking it would be very easy to overcome
the bears and take the fish for themselves. But they reckoned wrong.
They didn't know that Father Bear had won many prizes as the
greatest fighting bear for miles around.

Why, he even had been known to conquer a lion--so strong were his
great arms and legs, and so powerful his jaws. So, when four gray
wolves rushed at him at once he was ready for them. Wolf number one
went down with a blow which killed him at once. The next two were
cruelly wounded by Father Bear's powerful claws. And the fourth,
seeing how badly the rest were getting on, ran away, as fast as he

What about little Bobby Bear all this time? Remember, he had a fish
to guard, and this fish was almost as big as himself. The fifth wolf
had attacked Bobby, who never had seen such awful white teeth and
angry eyes.

He hardly knew what to do. One thing he was determined on, though,
and that was that this boy-wolf would never get the fish from him.
What, the fish he had caught himself? The idea.

So he quickly struck with all his might at the wolf, grabbing him as
he stumbled. Then the wolf found out how strong Bobby was.

"Please, Mr. Bear, let me go, and I'll never again try to harm you,"
he called out.

"Will you run right away and never come near me again?" Bobby
panted, for he was using all his strength.

"Yes, yes, anything, only let me go," said the little wolf.

With this Bobby let go. The wolf fell to the ground--he was so
tired. He lay there a few moments, then with much grunting got on
his feet and ran off.

For some time Father Bear had been watching his boy. Very proud
indeed was he of what was going on.

Now that all danger was past he rushed over and embraced Bobby. "My
boy, how well you fought. You're a credit to Bearland."

Gathering up their fish, they once more started for home.

The battle with the wolves had not taken more than a few minutes,
although, as Bobby now told his father, it had seemed a long, long
while to him.

"I was so afraid the little wolf would steal my fish," said Bobby.

"It is well to be able to take care of yourself, isn't it?" asked
Father Bear.

"Yes," said Bobby. "If you keep on taking me out with you every
day, I shall grow up to be a very strong bear. I can see that."

His father said nothing, but smiled to hear his little boy talk so

It was almost dark when they got home, but there still was light
enough for the two tired bears to see Mother Bear.

She, growing anxious, had thrown a red shawl over her shoulders and
was sitting in a rocking chair, outside the cave, watching for the
return of the fishermen.

How proud she was to see her boy with such a great fish which was
nearly as big as Bobby himself. She threw her arms around him and
kissed him. Such a fine boy-bear, he was!

"Mother," grunted Father Bear, "let's have fish for supper. And let
it be the fish that Bobby caught. The others we can eat for

So Mother Bear busied herself cleaning Bobby's big fish, and in a
very little while it was stuffed and baked and supper was ready.

They all enjoyed it--especially the one who had caught it. How much
nicer a thing tastes when one has had some trouble in getting it.

Bobby dreamed much that night. If you think he dreamed about the
fish you are mistaken, for it was to little Jane Bird and her sweet
face, that his fancies wandered.

       *       *       *       *       *


      Briggs' Cartoons
        IN BOOK FORM

        Mr. and Mrs.

          Ain't It
          a Grand
        and Glorious

The King-pin of cartoonists. His wonderful cartoons are put out in
handy and popular sizes but at about half the price of other cartoon

  _Briggs at His Best
   A Laugh On Every Page_


       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's note:

Minor punctuation errors have been corrected without notification.

For consistency with the rest of the book, 'boy bear' was replaced
with 'boy-bear' in Bobby Catches a Fish: "Grasping the _boy-bear_

Illustration caption was changed from "BOBBY, GET UP AT ONCE" to
"BOBBY, BOBBY, GET UP AT ONCE" to match the list of illustrations.

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