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´╗┐Title: An American Hobo in Europe - A True Narrative of the Adventures of a Poor American at - Home and in the Old Country
Author: Goodkind, Ben
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "An American Hobo in Europe - A True Narrative of the Adventures of a Poor American at - Home and in the Old Country" ***





Copyright 1907 by B. Goodkind


Chapter.                                  Page.

I.    Billy and Me                            1

II.   Frisco                                 41

III.  The Journey Overland                   85

IV.   New York City                         130

V.    Them Bloomin' Publishers              139

VI.   The Ocean Voyage                      148

VII.  The Steerage                          156

VIII. Glasgow                               171

IX.   Getting a Square Meal                 181

X.    The Glasgow Green (or Common)         188

XI.   Hunting for a Furnished Room          193

XII.  Dancing in the Green                  202

XIII. Taking in a Glasgow Show              214

XIV.  Robert Burns, the Poet                224

XV.   Sir Walter Scott                      276



Stranger, will you please permit me to give you an introduction to a
particular friend of mine, little Billy. Little Billy and I had long
been friends and had become so intimate that we were more like brothers
than friends. Some brothers indeed do not stick to each other as closely
as Billy and I did for we never quarreled and the worst that ever
happened between us was a little growl which we soon got over.

Billy and I had been on the bum together a long while and had prospected
for gold and other things in Utah, Nevada and California. The adventures
we had if I were to relate them would fill several such volumes as this.
And many of them were worth relating, too, but I will merely give a
general outline of our experiences, for his experiences were mostly

While hiking it along the railroad one day between Ogden and Salt Lake
City which is a distance of about thirty-seven miles, we ran across a
couple of pretty Mormon girls about half a mile from town and they made
goo-goo eyes at us. Billy, who is rather reserved with strangers, was
for moving on, but I, who am a friendly and sociable cuss, was in for
having a little time with them.

"What's the harm, Billy?" said I to my chum; "let's see what kind of
stuff the girls are made of."

"Oh, what's the use, Windy," responded Billy; "we might get into

"Trouble be blowed," said I; "they ain't agoing to make any trouble so
why should _we_. Let's see what their game is anyway."

We approached the ladies, tipped our hats, and passed the compliments of
the day. They responded pleasantly enough, entered into a conversation
with us and soon we all strolled further on from the town and sat down
on a viaduct spanning a rushing irrigation ditch. Billy was as chipper
as anyone when once he got started and held his end down in the
conversation first class. The girls were merry and talkative and seemed
to like to talk to the fellers. They told us all about the Mormons, how
they live, act, and what they do, and Billy wanted to know how Mormons
got married.

"Why don't you get married and find out?" asked one of the girls.

"I ain't no Mormon," spoke up Billy.

"You can be if you want to," says the girl, "religion is free."

"All right," says Billy, "I'll think it over."

The girls were giving us a game I thought, but we could stand it if they
could. We chinned away there for hours until it began to grow late, when
the girls concluded they would have to go. We were sorry to part from
such elegant company but it was a case of have to.

After they had gone we wondered what their little game was, whether it
was merely a case of flirtation or whether they were looking for
converts to their religion. Billy put the question to me and I told him
he could search me; I didn't know. Anyway, neither of us wanted to get
married just then, so after the girls left us we troubled our heads no
more about them.

We stopped in Ogden, Utah, a few days, and then beat our way to Virginia
City, Nevada, where we did some laboring work at the old Bonanza mines.
Neither of us were miners, although we had prospected some without
results. We found the miners to be a good-hearted set of fellows and
liked to be among them. Grub and booze could be had for the asking in
Virginia City when we were broke, but handouts were more plentiful than
work. Not many strangers wander to Virginia City these days, for the
town is off the main line and no bums visit it. It is on the decay
order. Its streets are in ruins, ditto the sidewalks and houses, and
over the whole place there is a musty odor. It is away high up in the
air about eight thousand feet above sea level and the wealth that once
was brought up from several thousand feet below the surface amounted to
billions, not millions of dollars. Today the big mill houses still stand
in their usual place in good order but little mining is done there.

Some of the big plants, such as the Ophir, Savage, Norcross and Hale,
Consolidated Virginia and Best & Belcher are still there, but where
there were a thousand miners working before there are not ten working
today. The place is strictly on the bum, just like me and my little
pardner. Once there were forty or fifty thousand people in Virginia
City, but today there are not five thousand, or anyways near that number
and the ruins and scenes of desolation make a fellow feel sad. The old
International Hotel where the nobs used to stop and spent a fortune
every day, is now run by a Chinaman at a cheap rate. There is plenty of
fine scenery around Virginia City, however, and plenty of Piute Indians,
but the Piutes don't enhance the scenery any. They are a dirty crowd and
sit around on decaying lumber piles and hillsides within the town,
playing cards and other gambling games. The miners are mostly
Cornishmen, Englishmen from Cornwall, England, and as Billy is English
he took to them very readily.

Carson was our next stopping place and we found it to be a nice little
town. It isn't far from Virginia City and is the capital of Nevada. It
contains a few thousand people, lots of tall poplar trees which stand
along the streets, sage-brush and alkali covered hills and plains, a
large stone railroad roundhouse, the State Capitol building (which is
enclosed in a park several acres in extent), a U. S. mint and that's
about all. No work to speak of is going on around there and as Billy and
me could not get anything to do we lived on hand-outs mostly. One
evening we saw a hen wandering about rather aimlessly, so to put her out
of misery we caught her, wrung her neck and took her out of town where
we roasted her over a slow fire. We rubbed her while she was cooking
with a little sage to make us think of Christmas and devoured her by
starlight. Bill said she reminded him of home and felt kind of blue for
a few moments. But he munched away and soon cheered up.

It may be the proper thing here to give a short description of Billy.

Billy was a little fellow, about five foot two, and was a Britisher, a
native of the city of York, in Yorkshire, after which New York is named.
He was what you might call a strawberry blonde, for he had light hair
and a moustache that was halfway between golden and red. It wasn't one
of your straggly kind of moustaches with big hairs sticking out all over
it, but small, neat and compact with just the cutest little turned up
spit-curls at each end of it you ever saw. Maybe Billy wasn't proud of
that moustache! He was dead stuck on it and was nearly always fussing
with it and fondling it. Quite often he trimmed it with the aid of a
little looking glass which he carried in his kit. Whenever the kit was
unrolled Billy got the glass and admired himself with it. And yet I
can't say the little cuss was vain, for whenever he met females he
seemed indifferent to their charms and looked another way. His eyes
were blue and his hands and feet small. Taken all together he wasn't a
bad looking chap. Billy had some folks in the old country, a mother and
two sisters but no father or brothers, and they lived in old York. Billy
was born and raised in York and at a very early age was apprenticed to a
harness-maker. His folks probably thought that the sooner he got out and
rustled the better for himself and all concerned. Apprentices don't get
much in old England, Billy told me, and have to serve long years at
their trade before they can become a journeyman. Billy worked seven or
eight years for his clothes and board and an occasional ha-'penny with
which he bought a meat pie or lollipops.

One day the idea struck him that he wasn't getting rich very fast. He
had been working a long time and hadn't a bean to show for it, so he
began to grow dissatisfied. He had heard some tales of how easy it is to
get rich in America and he thought that it might be a good thing if he
went there. His mother and sisters didn't agree with his notions but
Billy didn't seem to care for that. He just laid low for awhile and said
nothing. But the more he thought things over the more dissatisfied he
became and the more determined to flit. He slept in the back room of his
boss's shop and had to arise early every morning to take down the
shutters, sweep out, dust off, and get things in shape generally for

One day the boss came down and found the shutters still up, the place
unswept and no Billy. The boss probably wondered where little Billy was
but he had to take it out in wondering, for Billy had flown the coop and
was over the hills and far away on his way to London. The boss went to
Billy's folks and asked them if they knew where Billy was, but they told
him he could search them. They didn't know anything about Billy. The
boss probably did some pretty tall cussing just then and made up his
mind that something would happen to Billy when he turned up, but he
never did turn up and never will until he (Billy) gets rich. Then he'll
go back to visit his folks and settle with his master, he told me.
Billy says the boss don't owe him any money and he don't owe the boss
any, so it's a standoff financially between them; but Billy owes him a
few years of service which he says he is willing to put in if the boss
can catch him. Billy says he had a hard time of it in London and found
it difficult to secure passage to this country. Finally, after many
heart-breaking experiences he secured a job as steward on an ocean liner
by a fluke, merely because another chap who had previously been engaged
failed to show up. Billy was in luck, he thought. He landed in New York
with a little tip-money, for the steamship company would pay him no
wages unless he made the round trip according to an agreement previously
made in London and with this small sum of money he managed to live until
he found work. He secured a job as dishwasher in a restaurant and
received five dollars a week and his chuck as wages. Out of this big sum
he paid room rent and managed to save a little money which he sent home
to his mother. Compared with what he had been getting in the old
country Billy considered that he was on the road to fortune and he felt
elated. He held down his job for some months but got into a difficulty
one day with his boss over something or other and got fired. He took his
discharge much to heart and concluded to leave New York. He made his way
to Philadelphia, about one hundred miles west, and there secured work in
a small restaurant as a hashslinger. When he left this place because of
a little argument with another waiter, he concluded to go out West where
he was told the opportunities were great. I met him in a camp seated at
a fire one evening surrounded by a lot of 'bos in Wyoming. He didn't
look wealthy just then. We scraped up an acquaintance and I took to the
young fellow at the first go-off as I saw he was not a professional vag,
and we joined forces and have been together ever since.

Our trip from Carson in Nevada over the mountains into California was a
delightful one. From Carson to Reno the scenery is no great shakes
(although it was over hill and dale), for the hills looked lone and
barren. The crops had just been gathered from these hills and dales. The
leaves were turning color on the trees and it was the melancholy season
of the year when nature looks blue. Me and Billy weren't melancholy,
however, for we were good company to each other and never felt lonely.
At Reno early one morning we crept into an unsealed boxcar and rode
upward to the high Sierras. The scenery when day broke was so fine that
we were enchanted. No barren mountains were here and no sage-brush
covered plains, but well-timbered mountains whereon grew trees and
bushes of all kinds. To us it seemed like wakening from autumn to
spring. Billy and me couldn't understand this. A few miles away were
leaves that were turning in their autumn tints whilst here everything
was green and fresh like the dawning of life. It astonished us but made
us feel good all over. We were both as happy and joyous as if we were
millionaires. Here was a beautiful sheet of water with a big paper-mill
near it; further along was a little railroad station entirely
surrounded by hills. Nothing but lofty mountains towered all around us,
with a canyon running through them, along which we rode. Ice-ponds were
there with no ice in them just then, for it was the wrong season for
ice, but numerous huge ice-houses were there, which showed us what the
ponds were for. The iron horse wound around and around these lofty
mountains and the keen, pure air made us feel as good as if we had been
taking a nip. We sure felt gay and happy as larks. By-and-by we reached
a place called Truckee which seemed to be quite a town. We hopped off to
reconnoiter for we knew the freight train would be there some little
time, and noticed that there was only one street in the town, which
contained several stores, a butcher-shop or two, several restaurants,
two hotels and about a dozen or more saloons. As we walked along the
street we noticed a sign over a stairway leading into a cellar which
read, "Benny's Gray Mule." We started to go down the steps but found
that "Benny's Gray Mule" was shut up tight. Too bad! A saloon with such
a romantic name as that ought to thrive. We went into another saloon
and I ordered two beers and threw a dime upon the counter in payment.
"Come again," said Mr. Barkeep, giving me an evil glance. I hesitated.
"Another dime, pardner, all drinks are ten cents here," says barkeep.
"All right," says I, "don't get huffy; I didn't know the price." I laid
down another dime and this Mr. Barkeep swept into his till nonchalantly.

The place seemed tough and so did the barkeeper. Toward the rear of the
large room was a lunch counter where a square meal could be had for two
bits (25 cents), or coffee and hot cakes for fifteen cents; sandwiches
for a dime each; a piece of pie and coffee, ten cents. In convenient
places were gambling layouts where a fellow could shoot craps, play
roulette or stud-horse poker. It was too early in the day for gambling
but a few tough-looking nuts were there sitting around and waiting for a
chance to try their luck. We saw all we wanted of this place and sloped.
Truckee is the last big town in California going eastward, and it is a
lumber camp, railroad division and icing station (refrigerator cars are
iced there). A pretty rough old place it is. Me and Billy bought a
couple of loaves of bread and some cheese and then made tracks for our
box-car. We found it all right and climbed aboard. Our train had done a
lot of switching at Truckee and a good many cars had been added to the
train. Two big engines now were attached to the train instead of one and
soon with a "toot toot" we were off. It was uphill all the way and the
locomotives seemed to be having a hard time of it for their coughs were
loud and deep and the hissing of steam incessant. To Billy and me the
work was easy for all we had to do was to listen to the laboring engines
and look out at the pretty scenery. The scenery was fine and no mistake,
for the higher we went the prettier it got. Mountains we saw everywhere
with spruce, fir, pine and cedar trees upon them. The views were ever
changing but soon we came to a lot of snow-sheds that partly shut off
the views. They must have been a hundred miles in length, for it took
us an awful long time to get through them. The sheds were huge affairs
of timber built over the track to keep off the snow in winter, and I
felt like stopping and counting how many pieces of timber were in each
shed. It must have taken a forest to build these sheds.

Along in the afternoon we began to get hungry, so we jumped off at a
place called Dutch Flat, to see what we could scare up in the shape of a
handout. The outlook didn't seem promising to us for all we could see of
Dutch Flat was a lot of Chinese shacks strung along one side of the
railroad track.

"Billy, I guess we're up against it here," I remarked; "I don't see any
signs of a white man's house around. Where can we get anything to eat?"

"Let's try the Chinks; we've got to have something to eat, you know; we
can't starve," ruefully responded Billy.

We were both pretty hungry by this time for the bracing mountain air had
given us a hearty appetite.

I stepped up to the first hut we came to, rapped at the door and when a
chink opened it told him we were very hungry and would like something
to eat.

"No sabee," says the chink, slamming the door.

I tried other huts with the same result. It was "no sabee" with all of
them. I told Billy that my errand was a failure and his jaw dropped.

"How much money have you got, Billy?" I asked.

Billy dug down and brought up a lone nickel. I had a dime. I asked Billy
to give me his nickel and told him that as we couldn't beg any grub
maybe we might be able to buy fifteen cents' worth of something. With
the fifteen cents I strode forth to try my luck once more.

I saw a very old Chinaman in front of his hut and asked him if he would
sell me fifteen cents worth of grub.

"No gotee anything; only law (raw) meat."

"What kind of meat?"

"Pork chop," answered the old man, briefly.

"All right, here's fifteen cents; give me some meat."

I handed him the money and he went inside and brought out two fair
sized chops.

"You sabee cookee?" asked the aged celestial.

"Heap sabee, you bet; me cookee before," remarked I.

"All lightee," said the celestial, giving me a little salt and pepper.

The country around Dutch Flat was hilly so Billy and me hunted up some
secluded spot where we could eat our chops in peace and quietness. We
built a rousing fire, for wood around there was plentiful, and put the
chops upon long sticks which we hung over the fire. The grass around our
camp was pretty dry and the first thing we knew the fire began to spread
all over the country. When we stamped it out on one side it made good
headway on the other side, and do all we could we couldn't stop it. We
got scared, dropped our meat and sloped. It wasn't long before the
Chinamen saw the fire and then there was a whole lot of loud talk in
Chinese. The whole village was out in a jiffy with buckets, pails, empty
oil cans and any old thing that would hold water and at it they went,
trying to put out the fire. Not a few of the Chinamen procured wet sacks
with which they tried to beat out the flames, but it was no go. Me and
Billy returned and grabbed a sack each, wet it and aided all we could in
putting out the fire, but it had gained too much headway and defied us
all. I concluded that it was going to burn down all the Sierra mountains
before it got through. There was a laundry in the Chinese village for I
noticed a lot of white man's underwear and white shirts hanging on lines
to dry, and near by was the washerman's horse tethered to a stake. When
the horse saw and smelt the flames he became frantic and was a hard
horse to hold. His owner ran up and yelled and shouted at him in Chinese
but the horse either did not or would not understand what was said to
him for he tried to kick the stuffing out of his boss and everything
else that came near him. He kicked down every wash line that he could,
one after another, and did his best to break loose from his halter, but
it was no go. He wouldn't let his boss get anyway near him for his
heels flew in every direction and it made us laugh to hear the Chinamen
swear in Chinese. After the brute kicked down every line within reach of
his heels he finally broke loose and galloped over the hills at a
breakneck pace. For all that Billy and I know to the contrary he is
galloping yet. Billy and me concluded that it was about time for us to
skip out, too, so we did so. We had done all we could to help put out
the fire and lost our grub in the operation, so we felt that we had done
our duty. I have often thought of that fire since and wondered what the
result was, whether it ended in great damage to the country and the
destruction of the Chinese village, or whether the horse had ever showed
up again. There is no rainfall in California during the summer months, I
am told, and in consequence the grass and much of the vegetation dries
up and one has to be very careful where to light a fire. We didn't know
that, hence the disaster.

We climbed into our car again, and were ready to move on whenever the
train did. We lit our pipes, indulged in a smoke, and laughed over our
recent experience. We must have laughed pretty loud, for a head was
suddenly thrust into the car doorway and a stern visage confronted us.
It was the brakeman's. "What you fellers doin' there?" asked Brakey.

"Only taking a ride," responded Billy.

"Where to?" asked Brakey.

"Down the line a little way."

"What are you riding on?" asked Mr. Brakeman.

"On a freight train," innocently answered Billy.

I guffawed, for I knew Billy had given the wrong answer, but Brakey
never cracked a smile.

"Got any money or tickets?" asked he, gravely.

"No," answered Billy.

"Get off then and be quick about it," was the stern command.

Off we hopped and quite crestfallen, too, for our journey for the time
being was ended. We wandered back to the railroad station to ascertain
when the next train would leave. There would be nothing until early the
next morning we learned, so there was nothing for us to do but to unroll
our blankets and lay off somewhere near by where we could catch a train
as it came by. We were very hungry, but turned in supperless, and chewed
tobacco to satisfy the cravings of our stomachs. We soon fell asleep but
kept one ear open to catch the sound of any freight train coming our
way. Wayfarers are wonderfully acute, even in their sleep, as regards
noticing the approach of trains. No matter how sound their sleep may be,
they will wake up at the proper time to board a train nine times out of
ten, unless they are too badly boozed. During the early hours of the
morning a long train full of empty cars came our way and we made it
easily. It was mighty chilly at that time of the day, but as we had on
heavy overcoats, our bodies did not suffer much. Our feet, however, did.
Fellows who beat their way, though, must put up with such little
inconveniences without kicking. It belongs to the business. They must
bear hunger, cold, thirst, dust, dirt and other trifles of that kind
and get used to it. Those who travel in Pullman and tourist cars pay
their money and sleep on feathers, but we slept just as well and nearly
as warmly, wrapped in our blankets in a box car. During our wanderings
we slept on the ground, in old shacks, barns, sidetracked cars or any
old place and got along fairly well. We didn't have washbasins to wash
in, but we carried soap, brushes and hand-glasses with us, and could
make our toilet at any place where there was running water. Water was
plentiful in the Sierra mountains.

We pulled out of Dutch Flat when the train got ready and flew down the
mountain side at great speed. We could go as lively as the train could
in our car, however, and the speed was exhilarating, but the morning
breeze was mighty keen and cutting. We would have given a great deal for
a cup of hot coffee just then, but of course it wasn't to be had.

When we neared a place called Auburn we saw a grove of trees, the
leaves of which were a deep green, and among them hung little balls of
golden yellow fruit that looked good to us.

"Hi, Billy," exclaimed I, "look at them yellow balls hanging on the
trees, will you? Wonder what they are?"

Billy looked at them fixedly for quite a while and then suddenly made a
shrewd guess.

"Them's oranges, Windy, as sure as we're alive."

These were the first oranges Billy or I had ever seen growing on trees
and they surely looked good to us. They reminded us of Christmas trees.
We would liked to have jumped out to get some oranges for breakfast, but
they were so near and yet so far that we desisted. How tantalizing it
was to see a tempting breakfast before you and not be able to eat it.
But the train didn't stop anywhere for refreshments, so that let us out.
When we got down to a place called Roseville, which was a junction, we
noticed several orange trees standing near the depot with plenty of
oranges hanging amid the leaves, and oh, how we did long to make a rush
for them. The train crew was on that side of the train, however, and
there were plenty of people near the depot so we dared not make the
venture. Oh, if this train would only stop twenty minutes for
refreshments maybe we could get a handout, but it didn't stop, so we had
to go hungry till we reached Sacramento.

We got to Sacramento, the Capital of California, before noon, and jumped
off the train in the railroad yard, keeping an eye on the bulls and
fly-cops that buzzed around there. No one got on to us so we walked
leisurely along with our blankets slung over our shoulders. The railroad
yards were quite extensive and it took us quite a while to traverse
them. In them were car shops, foundries and all kinds of buildings and
things pertaining to railroads. Sacramento is a railroad division, the
first out of Frisco, I believe, and we noticed a good deal doing in the
way of railroad manufacturing, but we were too hungry to care for such
things just then. We got to the passenger train shed which was a large
housed-over building of glass and iron, and outside of it came upon a
broad street which led into the town. Alongside of this street I noticed
a slough with green scum upon it which didn't look good to me for
swimming or any other purpose. On the other side of this pond was a big
Chinatown and Billy and me thought we might as well see what it looked
like. We entered it and saw a young workingman come out of a ten-cent
restaurant. Billy stepped up to him and boned him for the price of a
square meal. He listened to Billy's hungry tale of woe and coughed up a
dime with which we bought two loaves of bread. We then wandered through
the streets looking for a retired spot where we could sit down and eat
but the streets in that locality were so filthy and the Mongolians so
plentiful that we concluded to keep a moving. We came to J and then to K
Street, which were broad business thoroughfares full of stores and then
we walked along K Street until we saw a shady green park. To it we
wandered and found a comfortable rustic seat under the shade of a
spreading oak tree. We threw our blankets behind our seat and sat down
and blew off steam. We were tired, hot, dusty and hungry. While eating
we looked about us. The park wasn't a large one but it was a trim one.
The lawns were shaved down close, the winding walks were well-kept,
there were flowers to be seen, palm trees, pampas-plume bushes and, oh
ye gods! orange trees with oranges on them.

"Say Billy," remarked I with my mouth full of bread, "get on to the
orange trees, will you?"

"Where?" asked Billy, with wide-staring eyes.

"Why, right along the walk up that way," said I, pointing.

"Sure enough," says Billy, "keep an eye on my grub, will you, while I
get a hatful," said he excitedly.

"Keep your eyes peeled for cops," admonished I, as Billy rushed off.

Billy made the riffle all right and came back with four or five nice
looking oranges, which were all he could carry. He remarked that they
would do for the present. After stowing the bread and getting a drink of
muddy water from a fountain near by, we tackled the oranges and found
them dry and tasteless and bitter as gall.

"Call them things oranges!" sneered Billy, as he threw his portion away
with disgust; why they're bitter as gall. I've bought many a better
orange than that in the old country for a penny.

"I thought they raised good oranges in California," said I, "but if
they're all like these, then I don't want any of them," whereupon I
threw mine over my shoulder, too, into the shrubbery behind me. Oh,
weren't they bitter; Boo!

"Billy, we've been misinformed," said I, "the oranges in California are
N. G."

"Right you are, Windy, but as they didn't cost us anything we oughtn't
to kick."

After eating and resting, we took in the town. We found Sacramento to be
a sizeable place, containing about fifty thousand people, and the
people to us seemed sociable, chatty and friendly. We both liked the
place first class, and as we were broke, concluded to try our luck there
for awhile. We struck a street cleaning job and held it down for a week.
The water used in Sacramento comes from the Sacramento river, we were
told, and as it wasn't at all good, we took to beer, as did many others.
We were told about a class of people in Sacramento called Native Sons,
who monopolized all the good things in the way of jobs. Native Sons are
native born Californians who take a great deal of pride in their state
and have an organization which they call the Native Sons of the Golden
West. The aim of this organization is to beautify California, plant
trees, keep up the old missions, preserve the giant redwood trees,
forests, and the like. Lots of fellows spoke ill of the Native Sons, but
we didn't, for they weren't hurting us any. The native Californians we
met in Sacramento to us seemed a genial sort of people who are willing
to do strangers or anyone a good turn, if they can. Lots of them were
hustlers and full of business and their city surely is a snorter. There
are several large parks in Sacramento, fruit and vegetable markets, and
any number of swell saloons where a schooner of beer and a free lunch
can be had for a nickel. Then there is the Western Hotel, State House
and Capitol Hotels, all of which are big ones, and any number of fine
stores and lots of broad, well-shaded residence streets, traction cars,
electric lights, etc. The city is right up to date.

After we had been there about a week, Billy suddenly got a severe attack
of the shakes and seemed in a bad way. His lips turned blue, his eyes
burned with fever, his teeth rattled like clappers, and his body shook
as if he had the jim-jams. I went to a dispensary and had some dope
fixed up for him, but it didn't seem to do him any good. I then bought a
quart bottle of whiskey, and poured the whole of it down his throat. He
took to it as naturally as a kid does to its mother's milk, but every
day the poor little cuss got worse.

"Let's hike out of this place, Billy," said I; "the best cure for the
shakes is to go where there isn't any, for as long as we stay here
you'll be sick."

Billy, as usual, was willing to do as I said (and I was always willing
to do as he said), so we made tracks out of Sacramento in pretty short

We crossed the Sacramento river, which is about a half a mile across, on
a wooden bridge, and it was all Billy could do to walk across it. He was
as weak as a kitten and so groggy on his pins that he could hardly stand
up. Some people who saw him probably thought he was boozed, but he
wasn't, any more than I was. I took hold of his arm and led him along,
but the little cuss sat down on a string piece of the bridge and told me
to let him die in peace.

"Die nothing, you silly little Britisher: you ain't any nearer death
than I am," said I. "Sit down and rest yourself and then we'll take
another little hike. We'll make a train somewhere on the other side of
the river, then ho! for 'Frisco, where our troubles will soon be ended.
Brace up, old man, and never say die."

I jollied the little cuss along in that way until we got to a little
station where we could catch a train and we soon did catch one.

We rode on to Davis, which was a junction, and close to the station I
saw a large vineyard. I pointed it out to Billy.

"Stay where you are, Billy, and I'll get you some grapes," said I.

Grapes were ripe just then. I jumped over the fence and secured a big
hatful of fine big, flaming tokay grapes. They were delicious and did
Billy a world of good.

We were now fairly on our way to 'Frisco, the Mecca of all bums. We
never saw a bum yet who hadn't been in 'Frisco or who didn't know all
about the city.

Billy and me had heard about it, but hadn't seen it, and though we were
on the tramp, didn't consider ourselves bums. We worked when we could
find something to do, but when there was nothing to do, of course we
couldn't do it. Work is something a bum will never do. Lots of the bums
we met along the road were criminals and some of them pretty desperate
ones at that. A few were chaps who were merely traveling to get
somewhere and had no money to pay their way. Others had money and would
not pay. Some were honest laboring men flitting from point to point in
search of work, and not a few were unfortunates who had held high
positions and were down and out through drink or misfortune of some
sort. There were all sorts beating their way, and there always will be.
The professional vag is a low down fellow who has few redeeming
qualities. He is agreeable with his chums and that is about all. Neither
Billy nor I were low, base born fellows, or criminals, and our parents
were respectable, so that is why we took to each other. We were fellow
mortals in distress, that is all. We did not think it very wrong to take
a chicken if we were very hungry, but that was the extent of our evil
doing. We bought our own clothes, blankets, etc., and never broke into
a house to steal anything. One outfit that we were with at one time in
Utah, one night stole a suit case that was standing on the platform of a
railroad station and they divided up its contents among themselves. It
consisted of a coat, vest, pants, collars, ties, handkerchiefs, brush,
combs, etc., and had we been caught the whole bunch of us might have
been pinched, but the gang made tracks in a hurry and got as far away
from the scene of the robbery as they could. Some of the characters we
met in our travels would have contaminated a saint almost, for their
looks, actions and words revealed their disposition. The higher up in
crime some of these chaps were, and the abler and more desperate, the
more were they admired by some of their fellows. This kind of chaps were
generally the captains of the camp, and gave orders that were readily
obeyed by the others. One bum was generally commanded by the captain to
go and rustle up bread, another was sent for meat, a third for coffee, a
fourth for sugar, a fifth for pepper and salt, etc. No matter how
things were obtained, if they were obtained no questions were asked.

One fellow returned to camp with a quarter of a lamb one night and
boastfully told how he had got it. It had hung up outside a butcher shop
and he stole it. The captain mumbled his approval in low tones, for he
was too mighty to praise loudly or in many words.

The ways of hobos are various, and it would take up a great deal of
space to describe them in detail.

It was along toward sundown when we made a train out of Davis. Davis,
like Sacramento, was a pretty hard town to get out of, and the best we
could do was to ride the rods. That was easy enough, even for Billy, who
was rather delicate at that time. The rods under some freight cars are
many and well arranged for riding purposes. They are fairly thick bars
of iron set close together, stretching from one side of the car to the
other, underneath the body of the car, and though not very often soft,
when an overcoat is strung across them, with rolled up blankets for a
pillow, they are the next best thing to a berth in a Pullman car. When
one side of our body ached, we just turned over to the other side, and
it beat riding on the bumpers or brake-beams all hollow. A berth in a
Pullman costs about five dollars per night, fare extra, so we were
saving lots of money. Beating our way on a railroad we considered no
crime at all, for to judge from what I can read in the newspapers, the
railroads rob the people, so why shouldn't the people rob them? That's a
good argument, ain't it?

The measly old train must have been a way-freight, for she made long
stops at every little excuse of a town she came to. About ten o'clock at
night she came to a place called Benicia, and there the train was cut in
two, so I hopped off to see what the difficulty was. On both sides and
ahead of us was water. I rushed back to Billy and told him to get off in
a hurry.

"What's the matter?" asked Billy.

"There's water all around us, and I guess they're going to carry the
cars over on a ferry boat. I suppose our journey for the night will end

"Not much, Windy," replied Billy; "I want to get to 'Frisco tonight and
maybe we can pay our way across on the boat."

We walked boldly on a boat that we saw the cars being pulled onto by a
locomotive, and when we got near a cabin a ship's officer stepped up to
us and wanted to know where we were going.

"To 'Frisco," said I.

"To 'Frisco?" said he with a grin. "Well, you'll have to pay your way
across the ferry on this boat."

"What's the fare?" asked Billy.

"Seeing that you two are good-looking fellows, I'll only charge you ten
cents apiece," said the captain, or officer, jokingly.

We both drew a long breath of relief, for we thought the boat was going
to 'Frisco and that we'd have to pay a big price. I handed the
good-natured officer two dimes for us both and we felt happy once more.
The boat wasn't long making the trip, only about ten minutes or so, and
on the other side we found no difficulty in making our train again,
after she was made up. We held her down until she reached Oakland, which
is opposite 'Frisco. There we learned there was one more ferry to cross
before we could get into 'Frisco, so Billy and I decided to remain where
we were for the night, for it was late. We prowled around until we found
an open freight car, and turned in for a snooze.

The next morning was a beautiful one, and we were up and out by
daylight. The weather wasn't cold, the sun was bright and cheery, but
over 'Frisco we could see a sort of fog hanging. It was easy enough to
see across the bay of San Francisco, for the distance is only about five
miles, but the length of the bay we could not determine, for it
stretched further than the eye could reach. We noticed an island in the
bay not far from Oakland, and from Oakland a long wharf extended far out
into the harbor, maybe a mile or so. We walked along this wharf until we
came to a big train-shed and ferry house combined, where we coughed up
two more dimes and got upon a large ferry-boat. As it was very early in
the morning, very few passengers were on the boat. We walked to the
front of the boat and drank in the delicious morning breeze. The
ferry-boat was as large and fine a one as I had ever seen. It was a
double-decker with large cabins below and aloft, and with runways for
vehicles between. The cabins were very spacious and handsomely fitted

At about half past five the boat started on her way across, and now we
were making a straight shoot for 'Frisco. Talking of 'Frisco, by the
way, permit me to say a word about the name. The people of San Francisco
don't like to have their city called 'Frisco, but prefer to have it
called by its full title. They think the abbreviation is a slur. I can't
see it in that light. 'Frisco is short and sweet and fills the bill;
life is too short to call it San Francisco.

The ride across the bay was fine and lasted about half an hour. We
passed an island which someone told us was Goat Island, and Billy and
me wondered whether there were any billies or nannies on it. We didn't
get close enough to see any. Further on we saw another island which was
hilly like Goat Island. It was called Alcatraz. It contained an army
post and was fortified. It looked formidable, we thought. Not very far
away, and straight out, was the Golden Gate, which had no gates near it
that we could see, but just two headlands about a mile or so apart.
Outside of the Golden Gate is the Pacific Ocean.

We were now nearing 'Frisco, which lay right ahead of us. Nothing but
steep hills could we see. They were built up compactly with houses. As
we got close to the shore we saw plenty of level streets and wharves,
and alongside of the wharves, ships. We steered straight for a tall
tower on which there was a huge clock, which told us the time--six
o'clock. We entered the ferry slip, moored fast and soon set foot in



Our first glimpse of 'Frisco made us like the place. Near the ferry slip
were eating joints by the bushel, more saloons than you could shake a
stick at, sailors' boarding houses, fruit stands containing fruit that
made our teeth water; oyster-houses, lodging-houses--in fact there was
everything there to make a fellow feel right at home. 'Frisco is all
right and everyone who has been there will tell you so. What she ain't
got ain't worth having. Every bum that I ever saw spoke well of the town
and gave it a good name. It is a paradise for grafters. You can get as
good a meal there for ten cents as you will have to pay double for
anywhere else. Fruit is fine, plentiful and cheap; vegetables are
enormous in size and don't cost anything, hardly; any and every kind of
fish is there; meats are wonderful to behold, and not dear; and say,
it's an all-around paradise, sure enough. Every kind of people can be
found there--Greasers, Greeks, Scandinavians, Spanish, Turks, Armenians,
Hebrews, Italians, Germans, Chinese, Japanese, negroes and all sorts. It
is a vast international city.

Bums are there in unlimited quantities, any number of criminals,
bunco-men, "chippies" till you can't rest, highbinders by the score up
in Chinatown, and lots of bad people. The town is noted for being pretty
lively. It surely is wide open and you can sit in a little game at any
time. Californians in particular and Westerners generally take to
gambling as naturally as a darky does to watermelons and pork chops. The
'Frisco gambling houses are never closed. Efforts have been made to
close them but they were futile. Might as well try to sweep back the
ocean with a broom. There are lots of good people in 'Frisco, but the
bad ones are more than numerous. I think 'Frisco is about the liveliest,
dizziest place on the continent today, of its size. It has more
restaurants, saloons, theaters, dance halls, pull-in-and-drag-out
places, groceries with saloon attachments to them, than any place I
ever struck. Money is plentiful, easy to obtain and is spent lavishly. A
dollar seems less to a Californian than a dime to an Easterner. He will
let it go quicker and think less of it. If he goes into a restaurant or
saloon and buys a drink or meal which does not suit him, he pays the
price and makes no kick, but don't go there again. He don't believe in
kicking. He was not brought up that way. He will lose his money at the
races and try his luck again. "Better luck next time," says he, and his
friends to him. He will take his girl out and blow in his money for her
on the very best of everything. The best theater, the best wine supper
are none too good for his girl. What if he does go broke, there's plenty
more money to be had. Money is no object to a 'Friscoite. Billy and I
weren't in 'Frisco long before we got onto these things. Californians
are sociable and will talk to anyone. Billy concluded to live and die
there, the place suited him so well. Work was plentiful, wages were
high, and the working hours few. Billy said it beat the old country all
hollow. Ha'-pennies or tup-pennies didn't go here; the least money used
was nickels and dimes. Nothing could be purchased for less than a nickel
(five cents) for even a newspaper of any kind cost that much. No wonder
the newsboys could shoot craps or play the races. Even the servant girls
gambled in something or other. 'Frisco is all right. Bet your sweet
life! The rest of America ain't in it with her. Lots of Britishers live
there, too; that is why Billy liked it so well. Everyone who ain't sick
or got the belly ache, or some other trouble, likes 'Frisco. As regards
climate! They have it in 'Frisco. About sixty degrees by the thermometer
all the year round. No snow, ice, cyclones or mosquitoes; but bed-bugs,
fleas, earthquakes and fogs. As for fleas, they are thick in 'Frisco and
mighty troublesome. When you see a lady or gent pinch his or her leg
that means a bite--flea. As 'Frisco is built on a sandy peninsula, that
may be the reason why fleas are so plentiful, for it is said they like
sandy spots.

Billy and I had a little money which we earned in Sacramento, so we
concluded that the first thing to do was to get a square meal. We sought
out a likely looking restaurant along the water front where a good meal
could be had for ten cents and in we went. I ordered a steak and Billy
ordered mutton chops; Billy wanted tea and I wanted coffee. Each of us
had a bowl of mush first, then potatoes, bread and butter, hot cakes,
tea or coffee, and meat. More than we could eat was put before us and I
had a horse-like appetite. Billy was a little off his feed. The meal was
as good as it was cheap. The next thing to be done was to hunt up a
lodging place. There were any number of them in the vicinity, and we
soon found a joint where the two of us could room together for a dollar
and a half per week. The place was over a saloon, and though it wasn't
high-toned, it seemed neat enough.

The next event on the program was sight-seeing. We left our things under
lock and key in our room and leisurely strolled along the water front
to see what we could see. While strolling along the street facing the
wharves, we were passing a clothing store when a Hebrew gentleman
stepped out and asked us if we wanted to buy a suit of clothes. We told
him no, but he didn't seem to want to take "no" for an answer.

"Shentlemens, I got some mighty fine clothes inside and I'll sell them
very cheap."

"Ain't got no money, today," said I, as we tried to pass on.

"Don't be in der hurry," said the Hebrew gentleman; "come in and take a
look, it won't cost you noddings."

I was for moving on, but Billy said, "What's the harm? Let's go in and
see what he's got."

In we went, slowly and cautiously, but we knew the old Jew couldn't rob
us in open daylight.

"What size do you wear?" asked he of Billy.

"Damfino," says Billy; "I didn't come in to buy any clothes today."

"Let me measure you," says the Israelite, "I got some clothes here that
will make your eyes water when you see dem."

Billy stood up and let his measure be taken. This done, the vender of
clothes made an inspection of the clothing-piles, calling out to Jakie
in a back room to come forth and assist. Jakie appeared, and seemed a
husky chap of twenty-five or so. Jakie had been eating his breakfast.
The two storekeepers went through the clothing piles.

"Aha!" triumphantly exclaimed the old Hebrew. "I've got a fine suit
here. Dey'll make you look like a gentleman. Try 'em on," turning to

He brought forth the clothes where Billy could examine them, but after
examination Billy shook his head.

"You don't like 'em?" exclaimed the old gent; "what's de matter with

"Oh, I don't fancy that kind of cloth," said Billy.

It looked like gray blotting paper.

"What kind do you like?" asked the Hebrew, rather aggressively.

"Oh, I don't know," answered Billy.

The Jew was getting mad, but he brought forth another suit after a
short search.

"Here is something fine; you kin wear 'em for efery day or Sunday."

Billy examined the clothes, but shook his head.

"Dry 'em on! Dry 'em on! You'll see they'll fid you like der paper on
der vall!"

"What's the use trying 'em on?" said Billy, quietly; "I don't like 'em
and they wouldn't fit me anyway."

"Not like 'em!" exclaimed the now thoroughly enraged clothing merchant;
"I don't think you want to buy no clothes at all; you couldn't get a
finer suit of clothes in San Francisco, and look at der price, too; only
ten dollars, so hellup me Isaac!"

"The price is all right, but I don't like the cut of the clothes," said

"You don't like der style?"

The angry man now got the thought through his noddle that Billy wasn't
going to buy any clothes, whereupon he grew furious.

"What you come in here for, you dirty tramp. Get out of here, or I trow
you out."

Here I stepped up and told the miserable duffer what I thought of him. I
expected there was going to be a knock down and drag out scene, but as
there were two of us, the two Israelites thought better of it than to
tackle us. The young feller hadn't said a word, but the old man was mad
clear through. If he had been younger I would have swiped him one just
for luck. We got out of the place all right, the old man and I telling
each other pretty loud what we thought of each other. I told Billy he
ought not to have gone in there at all for he didn't intend to buy any

"He wanted me to go in, didn't he, whether I wanted to or not?" asked

"Of course, he did. You should have given him a kick in the rump and
skipped out. That's what I would have done."

"I'm glad it didn't end in a row. We might have got into trouble,"
concluded Billy.

We strolled along the wharves to see the shipping. The ferry-house at
the foot of Market Street is a huge granite building (with a lofty
clock-tower on top) wherein are to be found the various ticket offices
of the Southern Pacific, Santa Fe, the North Shore, California & North
Western and other railroads. Up stairs in the second story is an
extensive horticultural exhibit, where are displayed the products of
California; there are the offices of various railroad and other
officials, there, too. To take a train on any railroad one must cross
the bay on a ferry-boat. Each railroad line has its own line of
ferry-boats and slips. One line of boats crosses to Oakland, Alameda and
Berkeley; another to Tiburon; a third to Sausalito; a fourth to Point
Richmond, etc. Every boat is a fine one and those of the Santa Fe
Railroad plying to Point Richmond are all painted yellow. The traffic at
the ferry building is considerable at all hours of the day and night.

The next wharf, which is also a covered one like the ferry-house, is
the landing-place of the Stockton steamboats. There are two lines of
these boats plying between 'Frisco and Stockton, and they are rivals.
The distance between Stockton and 'Frisco by water is about one hundred
miles, yet the fare is only fifty cents. There are sleeping berths
aboard, if one cares to use them, at fifty cents each, and meals may be
had for twenty-five cents. Fifty cents in Western lingo is called four
bits, and twenty-five cents, two bits. A dime is a short bit and fifteen
cents a long bit; six bits is seventy-five cents, and a dollar is simply
called a dollar.

A few of the wharves we noticed were roofed over, but some were not. The
Folsom Street Wharf is devoted to the United States Army transport
service, and a huge transport ship going to Manila and other eastern
countries can be seen there at any time, almost. No one is allowed on
this wharf, except on business. As we hadn't any particular business on
this wharf we didn't care to go upon it. There was a watchman at the
gate. At a wharf or two from this one all the whaling vessels dock, and
'Frisco today is the greatest whaling port in America, we were told.
There was one whaling vessel there at the time, but she didn't look good
to us. She was short, squat, black and grimy, and smelled loudly of oil.
Billy and I concluded we wouldn't care to sail in such a ship for a
hundred dollars per month. Near by was a long uncovered wharf which
extended quite a way out into the water. At either side of it were
moored big deep-sea going vessels. One was the Dumbarton, of Glasgow,
another the Selkirk, a third the Necker--all foreigners. The Selkirk was
British, and Billy's heart warmed to her. When he saw an English flag
flying on one of the masts tears came to his eyes and he got homesick.
He walked up the gang-plank and wanted to go on board, but a sailor on
deck told him there was no admittance. Billy marched down again much
crestfallen. There are lots of evil characters in 'Frisco, so that is
why the mariners are wary.

We slowly sauntered along the wharf, and at a string piece at the end
of it we came across other idlers, several of whom were engaged in
fishing. We saw several young sharks pulled up and several other kinds
of fish that we didn't know the names of. After watching the fishing for
a while we moved on and went into some of the side streets. They were
full of saloons, some of which were fitted up very handsomely with
plate-glass, fine woodwork, marble floors and elaborate bars with free
lunch counter. Other saloons were mere groggeries in which we could see
and hear sailors and longshoremen singing and dancing. Steam beer and
lager was five cents a glass and whiskey ten cents. Sailors'
boarding-houses were numerous in these localities, as were hotels,
stores of all kinds, ship-outfitting shops, lumber yards, coal offices,
foundries, iron works and the like.

We now strolled up Market Street, which is the main thoroughfare of
'Frisco. It is a broad street, flanked on either side by wholesale and
retail commercial establishments, high-toned saloons and restaurants.
Many street car lines traverse this street by means of cables, and
there are one or two horse-car lines.

The street was a lively one, and thronged with people and vehicles.
Billy and I had heard a great deal about the Golden Gate Park, the Cliff
House, the Seal Rocks and the Sutro Baths, so we concluded to take a
little jaunt out that way to see what those places were like.

The first things we wanted to see were the seals.

We boarded a street-car running out to the Cliff House, and found the
ride a long and interesting one. The distance was many miles and the
fare only five cents. There was much to be seen. Long stretches of
unfamiliar streets rolled by, residence and business sections, strange
looking houses, hills and valleys, and the like. The air was wonderfully
balmy and bracing and not a bit cold. The car whirled us along very
rapidly and revealed to us a great deal of Golden Gate Park, and further
on lofty tree-covered hills, bare sand hills, and a very extensive
public building of some sort which was perched on a tree clad hillside,
and then it skimmed along parallel with the ocean. We saw no ships on
the ocean, but it was a grand sight nevertheless. We rushed by a
life-saving station at railroad speed, which we regretted, for we should
like to have seen more of it, and after riding about a mile or so more,
finally stopped alongside a shed, which was the end of the car line.
Here we hopped off with the rest of the crowd, and walked along a wooden
sidewalk which was laid over the sands. Two or three restaurants and
saloons were to be seen in the vicinity, and about a half dozen booths.
There was a picture gallery or two, and fruit and peanut stands.

We bought some candy and peanuts to keep from getting hungry, and then
followed the crowd to the beach. We walked along the beach and then up a
hill leading to the Cliff House. The views along this road were fine. We
came to the Cliff House and saw it was nothing more nor less than a
large hotel built on a cliff. It looked pretty high-toned to us, so me
and Billy hesitated about going in.

"They'll soak us when we get in there, Windy," warned Billy.

"Nary time, Billy," retorted I. "We'll go in and if they try to hold us
up we'll skip."

"All right, then; let's try our luck," said Billy.

In we went, and saw a barroom, which we didn't enter. Further on was a
glass covered porch, along which were disposed tables and chairs, and
which invited us to sit down and have something. We were not hungry or
thirsty just then, so we kept a-walking, and through an open window
facing the sea we saw some tall rocks in the water, about a quarter of a
mile distant, upon which were a whole lot of seals that were barking to
beat the band.

"There's the seals, Billy, large as life, sure enough," remarked I.
Billy stared.

"I'll be blowed if they ain't cheeky beggars," said he, with a face full
of astonishment. "It's a wonder they'd come so near to the shore."

Some of the animals were snoozing on the rocks, others were crawling up
the rocky sides of the islet, a few were bellowing, and the whole place
seemed covered with them. A wonderful sight it was! We looked until we
grew tired, and I wanted to drag Billy away, but he didn't seem to want
to go.

"There's other things to be seen, Billy," said I; "we can't stay here
all day."

Billy tore himself away reluctantly and then we wandered over to the
Sutro Heights, which is a tall hill with fine and extensive gardens upon
it. From this hill a fine view of the ocean may be obtained. There are
fine drives in these gardens bordered with flowers, shady walks,
statues, fountains, rustic arbors and seats, cosy niches where one could
sit and view the ocean, roads built terrace-like upon the cliffs, and
other very pretty features. A lovely spot indeed, it was. It was built
by Mr. Adolph Sutro, a millionaire. It was free to all. We walked in the
gardens until we grew tired, and then sat down and contemplated the
ocean. Afterward we strolled toward Golden Gate Park and inspected it.
It was close by and we found it a very extensive one. It seemed endless,
indeed, to us, for long before we reached an entrance where we could
take a car, we were dead tired. We took another route going cityward,
for we wanted to see as much of the city as we could. The more we saw of
'Frisco, the better we liked it. It must be seen to be appreciated. We
reached Market Street all right, and then we knew where we were. We
strolled down toward the ferry-house, near which we knew our
lodging-house to be, and after having a good supper, we went to our room
to lay off until evening, when there would be more sight-seeing.

"What do you think of 'Frisco, Windy?" asked Billy.

"Suits me to a T, Billy. Believe I'll camp here for a while."

"Same here, Windy. I never struck a place I like better. I think a
fellow can get on here. I'm going to try it, anyway."

"I'm with you, Billy," said I. "Where'll we go this evening?"

"I've heard a lot about Chiney town. Suppose we go there."

"Good idea! Let's take it in."

Accordingly, about eight o'clock that evening we strolled forth, bent on
seeing 'Frisco by gaslight. The streets were well lighted, and we found
no difficulty in moving about. By making inquiries we readily found our
way to the Mongolian district. What we saw there filled us with
amazement. Street after street we saw (and long ones at that) inhabited
solely by slanty-eyed Asiatics. There were thousands of them, and it
seemed to us that we were transplanted into a Chinese city. All kinds of
Chinese establishments were located in this quarter; barber shops, drug
stores, furnishing goods stores, butcher shops, cigar manufacturing
establishments, restaurants (chop suey), temples, theaters, opium joints
in back alleys and basements, street venders who sold fruits, street
cobblers, open air fortune tellers, newspapers, bookbinderies, vegetable
stores, and not a few high-class curio establishments. Any number of
Chinese children were noisily playing in the streets, Chinese women
were walking about the streets and all over the quarter was an oriental
atmosphere. It made us feel mighty foreign-like. Billy wanted to know
whether he was in Asia or America, and I told him Asia. The Chinese
women and children interested us considerably. The women were habited in
loose flowing robes and trousers, and their lips and faces were painted
scarlet. Their hair was done up in thick folds, with long golden pins
stuck through them. They were mighty gaudy, I thought. The kids were
noisy but interesting. They played all kinds of games like white
children. Of course the games they played were Chinese, and what kind of
games they were, I don't know. The articles of food and wear displayed
were very curious. So were the books, photographs, etc.

Billy and I took in the sights, and felt mighty interested in it all. It
was better than a circus to us. At about ten o'clock we meandered

We talked late that night about what we had seen, and it was after
midnight before we fell asleep. Billy was unaccountably restless that
night and kept a-tossing and a-rolling. He kept this up so long that
finally I got huffy and asked him what the trouble was. He kept quiet
for a while but suddenly he rose up and said he'd be ---- if he didn't
think there were bugs in the bed. I felt a bite or two myself, but
didn't mind it.

"I'm going to get up and see what's in this bed," said Billy.

He got up, lit a candle, and I hopped out too, so as to give him a
chance to examine things. Billy threw back the clothes and saw three or
four good-sized fleas hopping about and trying to escape to a safe
shelter. We both went for them bodily, but they were too swift for us.
We did a pile of cussing and swearing just then, but the fleas were
probably laughing at us from some safe retreat. We couldn't catch a one
of them. We went to bed again and I slept soundly, but Billy put in a
bad night. I told Billy the next morning he oughtn't to mind such
trifling things as fleas.

"Trifles, are they?" snorted he, and showed me his bare white skin,
which was all eaten up. "Look at that; call them trifles?"

"What are you going to do about it, Billy?" inquired I.

"Do?" retorted he, with disgust, "why, grin and bear it, of course; what
else can I do; but those bites itch like blazes."

Billy had to do what all 'Frisco people do when they are bitten--grin
and bear it, or cuss and scratch. The 'Frisco fleas sure are lively, and
the best way to catch them is to wet your finger and bear down on them
suddenly. They'll wiggle away from a dry finger.

The next morning was a fine one, balmy and sunny. We arose, dressed,
breakfasted, and then felt happy.

"How are we going to put in the day, Windy?" asked Billy, after we
emerged from a restaurant and stood picking our teeth in front of the

"Blest if I know," responded I. "Suppose we put it in sight-seeing?"

"I'll go you," said Billy. "We haven't seen much of 'Frisco yet. Suppose
we take a stroll up Market Street and see what there is to see up that

Accordingly, up Market Street we leisurely strolled, taking in the
sights by the wayside.

Market Street, as I said before, is the main thoroughfare of 'Frisco,
and is a broad one. The sidewalks are wide enough for a dozen or more
people to walk abreast along them and the driveway in the middle of the
street contains two or three sets of street-car tracks, and sufficient
room on either side for vehicles. The lower portion of the street,
toward the ferry-house, is taken up with wholesale business
establishments, and the upper portion toward which we were now walking
contains retail shops, high-class saloons, restaurants, newspaper
buildings, sky-scrapers, banks, department stores, etc. We came to
Market and Third Street, and turned down Third Street. It, too, was
rather a broad thoroughfare, but not nearly so wide as Market Street. It
wasn't high-toned like Market Street, nor were the buildings on it of a
high class, for they were mostly of frame, one and two stories in
height. The ground floors of these buildings were used as stores and
the upper portions as dwellings. Fruit, fish and vegetable stores
abounded, and saloons were more than numerous. The size and varieties of
the fruit, fish and vegetables in the stores pleased the eye. Fine crabs
and clams were there, but the California oysters seemed small. We
stepped into a saloon called "The Whale," where a fine free lunch was
set out on a side table. There were huge dishes of cheese on the table,
tripe, various kinds of sausage sliced up thin, pickled tongue,
radishes, cold slaw, pickles, sliced tomatoes and big trays of bread of
various kinds. The layout was generous. Having had breakfast but a short
time before, all these dainties did not tempt us, but we sat down for
awhile and indulged in a smoke, in the meanwhile observing the ways of
the patrons of the place. Some seedy looking bums were lined up against
the bar chinning whilst others were sipping beer and paying their best
respects to the lunch counter. They were a dirty lot, and if some of
them weren't hobos, I miss my guess. We didn't remain in the place
long, but strolled into a similar establishment further on. In one
saloon we noticed a sign over the lunch counter which informed the
hungry one to--

"Please regulate your appetite according to your thirst; this is not a

Notwithstanding the gentle hint conveyed on the sign, the place did a
roaring trade, for the liquids as well as the solids were excellent.

Beginning from Market and running parallel with Market were Mission,
Howard, Folsom, Bryant, Brannan, Bluxome, Townsend, Channel and other
streets. Nearly all of them were broad, but a few were narrow, such as
Stevenson, Jessie, Minna, Natoma, Tehama, etc., being hardly more than
alleys. This was the poorer residence section, inhabited by the working
classes. Some of the alleys were tough and contained cheap
lodging-houses wherein dwelt many a hard case and criminal.

We walked down Third Street as far as the railroad depot and saw lots
of things to interest us. All the goods displayed in the store windows
seemed dirt cheap. How they did tempt us, but as we were not
overburdened with wealth just then we didn't feel like buying. Silk
pocket handkerchiefs, dandy hats, elegant trousers, mouth harmonicas,
pistols, knives, razors, accordions were there in great variety. Why
were we born poor? Had we been rich we would have blowed ourselves for
fair. The display was too tempting. We walked to Fourth Street, which is
the next one to Third, and then slowly sauntered up toward Market again.
The blocks along Third and Fourth Streets were long ones, and from
Market Street down to the railroad depot the distance is a mile or more.
But we were not tired, so on we kept. Fourth Street was about like Third
Street, and afforded many interesting sights. Billy and me liked
everything we saw. When we finally reached Market Street again we
crossed it and took in another quarter of the city. Where we had been
was called south of Market; so this must be north of Market. We didn't
like it half as well as we did south of Market. Here were pretentious
shops and restaurants, and a fine class of dwellings, but even here the
buildings were all of wood and hardly two were alike. In this quarter is
located what is called "The Tenderloin," which means gambling joints,
fast houses and the like. We, being strangers, could not locate them. It
was now nearing noon and as we had become hungry, we concluded to step
into a saloon to have a beer and a free lunch, but the free lunch
establishments in that neighborhood seemed few and far between. Some
saloons had signs on them which stated that free clam chowder, beef
stew, roasted clams, or a ham sandwich with every drink was to be had
today, but those were not the kind of a place we were after. We were
looking for some place like "The Whale," but couldn't find one. We
finally got tired of hunting for such a place, and stepped into a
ten-cent restaurant, where we had a bum meal. After dining we strolled
back to our lodging-house, where we laid off the rest of the day.

"What'll it be tonight; a ten-cent show or Chinatown once more?"

"A ten-cent show," answered Billy; "we did Chinatown last night, and can
do it again some other night, so let's take in a show."

Accordingly we went to a fine big theater that evening where the prices
ranged from ten to fifty cents, and went up to "nigger heaven" (price
ten cents), from whence we saw a pretty fair variety show. The show
consisted of singing, dancing, moving pictures, a vaudeville play, negro
act, monologue speaker and an acrobatic act. The performance lasted
about two hours. The negro act made Billy laugh until he nearly grew
sick, and we both enjoyed ourselves hugely. One singer, an Australian
gentleman, sang the "Holy City," and he sang it so well that he was
recalled many times. The little vaudeville play was good, and so were
the moving pictures. It was about ten o'clock when the play let out, and
it was after midnight when Billy and I turned in.

We continued our sightseeing tour about a week and saw about all worth
seeing of 'Frisco, and then as funds began to run low, we concluded it
was about time for us to look for work. I struck a job as helper in a
foundry the very next day, but Billy was not so fortunate. He did not
find a job for several days. Of course I went "snucks" with him when he
wasn't working, and saw to it that he had a bed to sleep in and
something to eat, for he would have done as much for me.

Billy struck a job a few days afterward and it was one that seemed to
please him mightily. It was in a swell hotel run by an Englishman and
Billy was installed as pantryman. His duties were to take good care of
and clean the glassware and silverware. The job was an easy one, with
the pay fairly good. Billy said it was like getting money from home. He
worked from seven o'clock in the morning until eight at night, and had
three hours off in the afternoon. The waiters took a shine to him, for
they, like himself, were English, and brought him all kinds of good
things to eat in the pantry, which was his headquarters.

They brought him oysters, roast fowl of various kinds, game, ice cream,
water ices, plum pudding, the choicest of wines, etc., and were sociable
enough to help Billy eat and drink these things. No one molested them so
long as they did their work, for the cast-off victuals would have gone
into the swill-barrel, anyway. Billy was in clover and had the best
opportunity in the world to grow stout on "the fat of the land." I was
glad to know that he was getting along so well for he sure was a true
and steady little pard.

One night, several weeks after this, when we were in our room chinning,
I remarked to Billy: "Say, Billy, you have told me so much about the old
country that I've a notion to go there."

Billy looked at me keenly to see if I was joking, but I wasn't. "I mean
it, Billy," said I. "I've always had a notion that I'd like to see the
old country, and if you can get along here I guess I can get along over

"You're way off, Windy," replied Billy, "the old country is different
from this, in every way."

"In what way."

"Why, you can't beat your way over there as you can here, and you
couldn't earn as much there in a week as you can here in a day. And the
ways of people are different, too. Stay where you are, Windy; that's my
advice to you."

"You say I can't beat my way in the old country, Billy; why not?" asked

"You'll get pinched the first thing, if you try it. In the first place
there are no railroad trains running across to Europe, so how are you
going to cross the little duck pond; swim across?"

"How do others cross it; can't I ride over in a boat?"

"Of course you can but it will cost you lots of money, and where are you
going to get it?"

"What's the matter with earning it or getting a job on a steamer; didn't
you do it?"

"Of course I did; but the steamship companies hire their help on the
other side of the ocean, not on this side."

"Go on, Billy; you are giving me a fairy tale."

"No, I'm not," earnestly responded Billy; "it's true as preaching."

I doubted just the same.

"You say I can't beat my way when I get across to Europe; why not?"

"Because they won't let you. The towns are close together, for the
country is small, and if you beat your way on a train you'd be spotted
before you traveled ten miles. And another thing, there are no
brake-beams on the other side, no blind baggage and no bumpers, so where
are you going to ride? And another thing, too; the railway cars over
there are totally different from those here. The coaches are different,
the engines are different, the freight cars are different; everything is
so different," said Billy with a reminiscent smile.

"Go on, Billy; you're only talking to hear yourself talk," said I,
thinking he was romancing.

"You say, Billy," continued I, "that the ways of the people are
different over there; in what way?"

"In every way. I couldn't begin to explain it all to you, if I tried six

"They talk English over there, don't they? Can't I talk English?"

"Of course you can," laughed Billy; "but their language is different
from yours and so are their ways. Their victuals are different; their
dress, their politics--"

"Cut out the politics, Billy; I ain't going over there to run for
office. They must be a queer lot on the other side of the pond to judge
from what you say."

"Not a bit queer," warmly responded Billy. "They are just different,
that is all. We will suppose you are over there, Windy. What will you

"Do the Britishers, of course; what else?"

"Better stay at home and do your own countrymen. You'll find it easier,"
gravely admonished Billy. "You are on your own ground and know the
country and the ways of the people. You'd have a hard time of it over
there; mind now, I'm giving it to you straight. I don't think you're
serious about going."

"Serious and sober as a judge, Billy. I've been thinking about this
thing for a long time. Let me tell you something else, Billy, that I
haven't told you before. I intend to keep a diary when I get on the
other side and write down everything I see worth noting."

"The hell you are," profanely responded Billy; "what are you going to do
with it after it is written down?"

"Have it printed in a book," calmly responded I.

Billy regarded me intently, as a dog does a human being whom he is
trying to understand and cannot, and then when the full force of my
revelation struck him he dropped on the bed and laughed and laughed
until I thought he'd split his sides.

"What's tickling you, Billy?" asked I, grinning, for his antics made me

"You--you--" here he went off into another fit. "_You_ write a book?
Say, Windy, I've been traveling with you a long while but I never
suspected you were touched in the upper story."

"No more touched than you are, Billy," said I indignantly. Billy rose

"So you're going to write a book, eh?" asked Billy, still laughing. "Do
you know anything about grammar, geography or composition?"

"You bet I do, Billy; I was pretty fair at composition when I was at
school, but I always hated grammar and don't know much about it."

"That settles it," said Billy. "How could you write a book if you don't
know anything about grammar?"

"That stumps me, Billy, but I guess the printer can help me out."

"The printer ain't paid for doing that sort of thing; he won't help you

"The h---- he won't," responded I, angrily; "that's what he's paid for,
isn't it?"

"I don't think," said Billy. "Say, Windy, you're clean off. Better turn
in and sleep over it."

"Sleep over nothing," quickly retorted I; "am I the first man who ever
wrote a book?"

"No, you ain't the first, nor the last damn fool who has tried it."

"Now, see here, Billy," said I, getting heated, "let me tell you
something. I've read a whole lot of books in my time, and a good many of
them weren't worth hell room. I've read detective stories that were
written by fellows that didn't know anything about the detective
business. Look at all the blood-and-thunder novels will you, that are
turned out every year by the hundred. Not a word in them is true, yet
lots of people read them. Why? Because they like them. See what kids
read, will you? All about cowboys, Indians, scalping, buffalo hunting,
the Wild West, etc. After the kids read such books they get loony and
want to go on scalping expeditions themselves, so they steal money, run
away from home, buy scalping knives, pistols and ammunition, and play
hell generally. My book ain't that kind. When I write a book it will
contain the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth."

"So help you ----," irreverently put in Billy.

"No foolishness, Billy; I'm serious."

"Oh, you are, are you?" answered Billy; "well, let's hear something
serious, then."

"Did you ever read the life of the James boys, Billy?"

"No, I never did? Who were they?"

"They were outlaws and robbers, and the book I read about them was the
most interesting one I ever read. It was all facts, solid facts, and no
nonsense about it. That's what I want to write, solid facts."

"About the James boys?"

"No, you little ignoramus; about what I see in the old country."

"There are many smarter men than you are that have written books about
the old country, Windy, and some of these writers were English and some
were American. Are you going to go in opposition to them?"

"Opposition your grandmother! Haven't I got as good a right to write a
book as anyone else?"

"Who says you haven't? After you get the book printed who's going to
sell it for you; going around peddling it?"

"No, I expect the printer to print what I write, and buy the book from

"Who gets all the money from the sale of the book?" asked Billy, with a
huge grin on his face.

"Why, I expect that the printer and me'll go snucks. He gets half for
printing it, and I get half for writing it."

"Oh, that's the game, is it? I think you'll have a sweet time of it
finding a printer on that sort of a deal."

"Don't you think that would be a fair divvy?"

"No, the printer is taking all the chances and you're taking none. He
puts up the dough and what do you put up?"

"My time and ability."

"Your _ability_!" shouted Billy as he went off into a spasm; "well,
you've got lots of time, but I never know'd you had any ability."

"Laugh away, old boy," said I, considerably nettled; "it takes ability
to write a book."

"Of course it does," said Billy, meaningly.

"Maybe you think I ain't got any?"

"Maybe you have, but you'll have to show me."

"Well, Billy," said I, "we've discussed this matter long enough; suppose
we go to bed."

Nothing more was said on the subject that night. The next morning we
went to our separate jobs as usual, and I did a good deal of thinking
during the day over some of the information Billy had given me about the
old country. It made me waver at times about going, but at other times
it did not. That night, after we came home from work, Billy and me took
a stroll as usual through Chinatown, and every time we went through it
we found something new to see. The streets were always thronged with
celestials and sightseers, the stores of the Chinese and Japanese were
all lit up, the queer goods in the windows still riveted our attention
and the ways of the orientals proved a source of never-ending interest
to us. There were several Chinese theaters in the quarter, too, in
which the beating of gongs and the "high-toned" singing could plainly be
heard by us, but as the admission fees to these theaters to the "Melican
man" was fifty cents, we didn't go in. Some of the plays lasted about
six weeks.

We were strolling along quietly enjoying ourselves, when suddenly Billy
banteringly remarked: "By the way, Windy, when are you going to take
that little flier across the duck-pond?"

"Don't know, Billy; haven't decided yet."

"What are you going to do with all the money you make out of that book
of yourn?"

"Never you mind, Billy; I'm going to write the book just the same; don't
you worry about that."

"I suppose you'll get rich some day, and cut me the first thing. Fellers
who write books make lots of money. I suppose you'll buy a mansion on
Nob Hill, have a coach and four with a coachman in livery on the box and
the regulation flunkey behind. Maybe you'll drive tandem and handle the
ribbons yourself?"

"Stop roasting me, Billy; let up!"

But Billy continued mercilessly; "Of course you'll have a box at the
opera, wear a claw hammer coat and a plug hat, put on white kids and
take your lady-love to a little supper after the play is over. Be lots
of champagne flowing about that time, eh?"

"Let up, you darned little Britisher," said I laughing. "Greater things
than that have come to pass. I'll cut you, the first thing, Billy."

"I knew it. Rich people ain't got any use for their poor friends or

"Which bank will you put your money in?"

"Haven't decided yet; ain't going to let that worry me."

"Maybe you'll fall in love with some girl and get married. When a feller
has money he'll do fool things."

"The girl I marry will have to be a pretty good looker, and will have to
have a little money of her own," responded I.

"Of course, Windy; I'm glad to see you've got some sense. After that
old country trip yarn of yours I didn't think you had any."

"No yarn about it, Billy; I'm going."

"Where to?"

"To the old country."


"Oh, you're asking me too many questions. Better go to the old country
with me, Billy."

"Not I, Windy; I've been there and know what it is. I'll never return to
it until I'm rich."

"Hope that'll be soon, Billy."

"So do I, Windy; but it don't look that way now."

"Can you blame me for trying to make a stake?" asked I.

"Blame you, no; but you'll never make a stake writing a book."

"Faint heart never won a fair lady, my boy, and I'm going to try it, if
it takes a leg off."

"I believe you are serious, Windy; I thought you were kiddin'!"

"Kiddin' nothing; I was serious from the go-off."

"Well, Windy, old pard, I wish you luck but it don't look to me as if
you'd make it. Too big a contract."

"Time will tell."

We had many another talk on the subject, Billy bantering me every time,
for he either couldn't or wouldn't believe I was serious. We had been
together so long, that he was loath to believe I would desert him.

One evening when I came home from work I informed Billy that I had made
up my mind positively to start out on my trip at the end of the week.
You should have seen him when I told him this. At first he argued, then,
seeing that did no good, he called me all kinds of a fool, and cursed
and fumed. He finally told me to go to hades if I wished, for he had no
strings on me. He didn't care a tinker's damn how soon I went, or what
became of me. He hoped I'd get drowned, or, if not that, then pinched as
soon as I set foot on British soil. The little fellow was badly wrought
up. I informed him it was my intention to beat my way to New York and
that when I got that far, I would plan the next move. I told him also
that I didn't believe in crossing a river until I got to it, and that I
would find some means of crossing the ocean. He sarcastically advised me
again to swim across, but I took no heed. We parted the next morning and
I knew Billy felt sore, but he didn't show it. He told me that he should
remain in 'Frisco, and that I would find him there when I came back,
that is, if I ever came back.

"Oh, I'll come back, my boy; never fear."

"And mind what I told you about my folks. If you go to London they live
only a short way from there, and if you see them tell them all about

"I'll do it, old pard, and write you everything," responded I.

"Good-bye, then, Windy, and don't take in any bad money while you're
gone," was Billy's parting bit of advice.

I felt bad, too, but didn't show it. I was leaving the true-heartedest
little fellow that ever lived, but the best of friends must part



The distance from 'Frisco to New York overland, is over three thousand
miles, and by water it is much more than that, but such little trips are
a trifle to me, as they are to every well-conditioned wayfarer. I
started out happily enough one fine day at dawn to make the long journey
and though I did feel a qualm or two the first few days after leaving
Billy, the feeling soon wore off. I chose the central route, which is
the shortest via Sacramento, Reno, Ogden, Omaha, Chicago, Niagara Falls
and New York, and I anticipated having lots of fun along the way. I was
out for sight-seeing and adventure and believed I would have a good
time. I didn't have any money to speak of, for, though I had worked
several months I had saved nothing. Anyway, it wasn't safe to travel
hobo style with money, for if anyone suspects you have any, it may be
possible that you'll get knocked on the head or murdered outright for
it. Such things are a common occurrence.

I got as far as Sacramento in good shape and when the freight train I
was riding on got to Newcastle, which is a town in the foothills of the
Sierra mountains, a long halt was made to attach a number of
refrigerator cars to it. These cars were laden with fruit. Had I wished
I could have crawled into one of them and made the journey east in ten
days, or less, for they are laden with perishable goods and travel as
fast, almost, as a passenger train, but I didn't care to travel that
way, for the reason that I didn't like it. These refrigerator cars have
heavy air-tight doors at the sides which are hermetically sealed when
the cars are loaded, making the cars as dark as a pocket. When in them
one can't see anything and can hardly turn around. There are no
conveniences whatever. One must take a sufficiency of supplies with him
to last during the trip in the shape of food and water, and one must go
unwashed and unkempt during the journey. Lots of hobos travel that way,
and think nothing of it, but I didn't care to do so. It is almost as
bad, if not worse, than being in jail, for one can take little or no
exercise, and the only light and ventilation afforded is from the roof,
where there is an aperture about two feet wide, over which there is a
sliding door. This can be shoved up or down, but it is usually locked
when the train is en route. The cars must be kept at an even temperature
always, and must not be too hot or too cold. A certain number of tons of
ice is put into a compartment at either end of the car, which keeps the
temperature even. The side doors, as I said, are hermetically closed and
sealed. Thus the fruits, meats, vegetables or whatever the car may
contain, are kept fresh and sweet. I slipped into one of these loaded
cars and had a look around, but one survey was enough for me. I didn't
like the prospect at all. Ten days of imprisonment was too much.

Any hobo may ride over the Sierra Nevada Mountains as far as Reno
without being molested, for it is a rule of the Southern Pacific
Railroad Company not to incur their ill-will. Some hobos have been
known to set fire to the snow sheds in revenge for being put off a train
in the lonely mountains. Fires occur in the snow-sheds every year, but
of course it is hard to tell who or what starts a fire. The sheds are of
wood and have always had to be rebuilt, for without them the road would
be blocked every winter and traffic stopped. There are miles of them and
wonderful creations they are. They are roofed over and very strongly

I held down the freight train until we reached Reno, where I was glad to
hop off for rest and refreshment. Refreshments of all kinds are
plentiful in Reno. The railroad runs through the main street of the town
and the town is a wide open one. Across the track along the main street
are restaurants, saloons and gambling houses. The gambling is not done
secretly for it is licensed and anyone may play who wishes. One may step
into, at least, one of these places from the street, for the gambling
room is on the ground floor. It is a handsomely appointed apartment. The
floors are of marble, the drinking bar is elaborate, the fittings
superb. In front, as you enter, is the bar and behind it a back bar with
the finest of glassware. The liquors are of excellent quality. Opposite
the bar, near the wall, are faro and crap tables. At the rear of the
long apartment is a horseshoe shaped lunch counter, where the best the
market affords can be had at reasonable rates. The bar and restaurant
are patronized by gamblers and by outsiders who never gamble. Anyone
over the age of twenty-one may step inside and play, and no questions
are asked. The crap game is interesting. It is played with dice and
anyone may throw the dice. The way some fellows throw them would make a
horse laugh. Some throw them with a running fire of conversation, their
eyes blazing with excitement. Others, like the coons, keep a saying as
they throw the dice, "Come seben, come eleben!" "What you doin' dar?"
"Roll right dis time for me you son of--" etc., etc. It is interesting
to watch the players. Many refined men visit these places and sometimes
take a little flyer. These men are quiet, open-handed fellows, who seem
to regard their little indulgence in the play as a joke, whether they
win or lose. They seem to have plenty of money and don't care--at least
one would judge so from their manner. While observing them I thought it
must be a fine thing to have plenty of money, so as not to care whether
you win or lose.

Westerners, as a rule, are free and generous, and seem to be just as
ready to spend their money as they are to earn it.

Bootblacks, waiters, cooks, newsboys and all sorts of men are always
ready and willing to take a chance in the games. Sometimes they win and
sometimes they lose, but win or lose they are always ready to try their
luck again.

Another gaming place I went into was situated on the first floor above
the street in a building facing the railroad, and it, too, was palatial.
On the ground floor was the saloon and above were the gambling rooms. A
pretty tough crowd was in them at the time of my visit and the crowd was
so dense it was rather difficult to move about. I was jostled
considerably and found it difficult to get near the gaming tables. Craps
and roulette were the main games here, too.

Fights and shooting scrapes are common in the gambling places, but the
Reno officers are alert and fearless, and soon put obstreperous people
where the dogs won't bite them.

Notwithstanding its gambling and recklessness, Reno is a good business
town, and full of orderly, respectable people. There are many wholesale
and retail establishments in the town; ice plants, machine shops,
breweries, ore reduction works and lumber yards. Besides, it is a great
cattle shipping center.

Many of the streets are broad and well-shaded, and the Truckee River, in
which are any number of speckled beauties in the shape of mountain
trout, flows through the town. Surrounding Reno are tall mountains which
form a part of the Sierra Nevada range, but they seem bare and lonely.

I landed in Reno during the afternoon and steered straight for the
Truckee River, as I needed a bath. I quickly espied a sequestered nook
under a wagon-bridge on the outskirts of the town, and from the looks of
things in the vicinity could tell that it was a hobo camping place. Old
tin cans were strewn about, and down the bank near the water was a
fireplace made of stones. One lone Wandering Willie was in camp and he
greeted me as effusively as if I were a long-lost brother. A hobo can
tell another hobo at a glance.

"Hello, pardner; how's tricks?" was the greeting of my fellow wayfarer.

"Fair to middlin'," responded I.

"Where you bound for?"

"Just got to Reno; and I am going to hold the town down for a while,"
said I. I was cautious and didn't want this chance acquaintance to know
too much about my affairs.

"Where'd you come from?" inquired I.

"Me? Oh, I've been hittin' the line all the way from Bloomington,
Illinoi', and I'm going to take a flier to the Coast."

"You are, hey? I just came from there."

"The hell you did; how's things out that way?"

"Fine and dandy; ever been there?"

"No," laconically answered the chap and began to question me about the

I gave him all the information I could and then told him I was going to
take a wash-down. He had just done the same and as he seemed anxious to
go to town he soon left me. I stripped and had a glorious bath in the
cool, swift-flowing river. The river was neither broad nor very deep but
so clear that I could see every stone at the bottom of it. Not a fish
could I see but doubtless they were plentiful. After the clean-up I
leisurely strolled along the railroad track into town and steered for a
restaurant, where I had a good supper for twenty-five cents. I then lit
my pipe and strolled about taking in the sights.

I remained in Reno a day or two, and did not find time hanging heavy on
my hands. There are extensive cattle corrals about half a mile from the
town where I put in a whole afternoon watching the loading of cattle
into cars.

It was better than seeing a circus. A chute ran from the corral to the
car to be loaded and the animals were made to walk the plank in great
shape. No harm was done them unless they grew obstreperous, in which
case there was a great deal of tail twisting done, punching in the ribs
with long poles, yelling and shouting, which soon brought a refractory
animal to terms.

The railroad depot in Reno is a lively spot, too.

The S. P. R. R. trains and the Virginia & Truckee Railroad use the same
depot, and at train times there is always a sizeable crowd on hand. The
Virginia & Truckee road, which goes from Reno to Virginia City, a
distance of about sixty miles, is said to be the crookedest road in the
country. It winds around bare mountain sides to a great height and is
continually going upward. It was built in the early Bonanza mining days
when times were flush and is said to have cost a lot of money. It has
paid for itself many times over and was a great help to Gold Hill,
Carson and Virginia City. Although it has been in existence over a
quarter of a century and though it winds over almost inaccessible
mountain peaks, not a human life up to the writing of this book (1907)
has ever been lost on this road.

Indians may ride on the road free, and as they are aware of the fact,
hardly a day passes but they may be seen in the smoking car or on the
platform of a car taking a little flier to Carson, Virginia City,
Washoe, Steamboat Springs or any other place along the line they care to
go to. There is a State law in Nevada which permits any Indian to ride
free on any railroad. What the object of this law is, I don't know.

I noticed that the passenger trains going eastward over the S. P. R. R.
leave Reno between eight and nine o'clock at night, so I concluded to
beat my way out of town on one of them. I noticed that others did it and
that it was easy. All a fellow had to do was to let the train get a good
move on, then swing underneath to the rods, or jump the blind baggage.

"The blind baggage is good enough for you, Windy," says I to myself.
Accordingly, one very fine evening I permitted a passenger train to get
a good move on, and then boarded her a little way out, before she began
to go too fast. I was onto my job pretty well. I made it all right, but
as soon as I swung onto the steps of the blind baggage I found I wasn't
the only pebble on the beach for a number of other non-paying passengers
were there who must have got on before the train pulled out. There were
just seven deadheads on the car, excluding myself, and they were not a
bit glad to see me. Seven on the platform of a car is a good many, but
eight is one too many; so my fellow voyagers assured me by black looks.
They were greasers, every one of them, and cow punchers at that, most
likely. I was an American. There was no welcome for me. The greasers
jabbered among themselves about me, but what they said I could not
understand, for I don't understand Spanish.

Finally one of them said to me in fairly good English: "It's too much
crowded here; you better jump off."

"Jump off while the train is going like this; not much! Jump off
yourself and see how you like it," said I angrily.

Not only was I angry but apprehensive, for I felt there was going to be
trouble. I was not armed and had only a pocket knife with me. Even had I
been armed what could I have done against seven men in close quarters?
Nothing was said to me for quite a while after that and the train
clattered along at a great rate.

The cold, swift-rushing night wind blew keenly against us, making the
teeth of some of the greasers chatter. They could stand any amount of
heat but a little cold made them feel like hunting their holes. After
riding along for an hour or so through the bare, cheerless plains of
Nevada, the engine whistle blew for the town. The cow-puncher who had
addressed me before spoke up and said: "It is more better you get off at
the next station."

"No, I won't; get off yourself," said I.

Before I knew what had happened two of the greasers grabbed me around
the throat so I couldn't holler, and two others pulled off my coat,
which they threw from the train. The fellow who had spoken to me told me
that if I didn't jump off the train as soon as she slacked up they'd
throw me off. I knew they would do so when opportunity offered, so off I
hopped, mad as blazes. As I didn't want to lose my coat I walked back to
get it and I had to walk a mile or so to do so. Luckily, I found my coat
not far from the track and after putting it on, I faced eastward again
toward the station. It is no joke to hike through an unfamiliar
wilderness at night with no habitation or human being in sight or
anyways near.

The night was a fine one, clear, cold and star-lit, so I managed to walk
along the ties without serious mishap. In the sage brush, as I walked
along, I could hear the sudden whirr of birds as they flew off startled,
and the suddenness of the noise startled me at first for I didn't know
what made the noise. But I quickly caught on.

In the distance I could hear the melancholy yelp of a coyote which was
quickly answered from all points by other animals of the same species.
One or two coyotes can make more noise than a pack of wolves or dogs.
They are animals of the wolf species and are death to poultry, sheep,
little pigs and small animals generally.

I got to the little town safe and sound but it must have been after
midnight when I reached it, for there wasn't a soul to be seen in the
streets and all was quiet. The town was Wadsworth.

I walked to the pump-house of the railroad, which was situated along the
tracks and where I could hear the pump throbbing, and talked to the
engineer, who didn't seem averse to a chat. His vigil was a lonely one,
and anything to him was agreeable to vary the monotony. During the
course of the conversation I learned that an eastbound freight would be
along in a few hours.

I made the freight all right by riding the brakes. The train was made up
of closed box-cars and there was no other way to ride except on the
bumpers. I preferred the brakes.

It was pretty cold riding during the early morning hours, but luckily I
had my overcoat with me once more, which helped to keep me warm.

Beating one's way is a picnic sometimes, but not always. During the
summer time there is dust and heat to contend with, according to how one
rides, and in winter time there are cold winds, snow and frost.

I rode the brakes all night and was glad when day broke. I was quite

The scenery was still the same--plains and alkali. At Lovelock I had
time to get a bite of breakfast and a cup of hot coffee, and then the
train was off for Humboldt. The distances between towns were great,
about a hundred miles or so.

Finally the train stopped at Winnemucca, a town which, for short and
sweet, is called "Winnemuck" by the knowing ones. At this place I
concluded to hop off for a rest. Winnemucca is quite a sizeable town,
and is the county seat of some county. It contains about two thousand
inhabitants, and used to be as wild and woolly a place as any in the
West, but it has tamed down some since. Saloons are plentiful and all
drinks are ten cents straight, with no discount for quantity. A pretty
good meal can be had for two bits, but short orders and such things as
life preservers, sinkers, or a bit of "mystery" with coffee, are all the
same price--two bits. I found no place where I could get anything for

There was a river or creek at the further end of town wherein I wished
to bathe, but the water was so intolerably filthy that I deemed it wise
to wait until I found a more suitable place along the route.

I noticed a bank in Winnemucca and was informed that it had been robbed
recently of many thousands of dollars by bandits. Soon after the robbery
a trellis-work of structural iron was put up from the money-counters
clear to the ceiling with mere slots for the receiving and paying out of
money, so that the next set of bandits who call there will have to crawl
through mighty small holes to make a raise.

The next town along the line which amounted to anything was Elko and I
made it that same day on a freight. I found it a pretty little town with
good people in it, who treated me well. I learned there were some
wonderful natural hot springs about a mile or so from town, so that
afternoon I hiked out to see them. I shall never regret having seen them
for they are one of nature's wonders.

Out in the wilderness, near where they were situated, I came upon an
amphitheater of hills, at the base of which was a little lake about 100
yards in diameter. The hills were bare and lonely and near them was no
house or habitation. All was wild, lone, still.

I climbed down one of these hills to the lake and had a good survey of
it. The water was clear and pure as crystal but near the banks were
sulphur springs which bubbled up now and then. The water was so hot it
was impossible to put a finger in it.

I walked around the banks and at one end of the lake there was a hole so
deep I couldn't see bottom. This is a crater-hole so deep that bottom
has never been found, although it has been sounded to a depth of several
thousand feet. The entire place looks like the crater of an extinct
volcano. A single glance would lead anyone to suppose so.

Indian men, women, boys and girls go to the lake during the warm seasons
to bathe, and many a daring buck who has swum across the crater was
drowned in it and his body has never been recovered. I needed a bath
myself so I disrobed and plunged in. The water was neither too hot nor
too cold but half way between the two. It was just right. Where I swam
was not in the crater but near it. The water there was part crater water
and part sulphur water from the springs. The bath was delicious.

The ride eastward from Elko was uneventful. There was nothing to see but
bare plains and mountains and a few border towns. The towns were very
small, and hardly more than railroad stations. They were composed of a
general store or two, several saloons, a blacksmith shop, drug store,
bakery, butchershop, barbershop, and that is all.

I boarded a freight train at Wells and rode the brakes through the
Lucin Cutoff to Ogden. The trains used to run around Salt Lake, but now
a trestle has been built through it, which saves many miles. The trestle
is forty or fifty miles long, I should judge, and as I clung tightly to
my perch on the brakebeam and looked down into the clear blue water
through the ties I got kind of dizzy, but met with no disaster.

After a long and tedious ride of several hours I reached Ogden, the end
of the S. P. line. As funds were low I remained in Ogden several days
and went to work.

Ogden is in Utah and full of Mormons. It is a beautiful city, surrounded
by lofty mountains, the Wasatch range, and contains about 50,000 people.
It has a Mormon tabernacle, tithe-house, broad streets, fine stores,
elegant public buildings and is quite a railroad center.

I happened to discover a Mormon lady who had a wood-pile in her back
yard and she was needing a man to chop the wood, so we struck a bargain.
I was to receive a dollar and a half per day and my board for my work
and was given a room in an outhouse to bunk in. The terms suited me. The
board was plentiful and good, and the sleeping quarters comfortable. I
never saw a man about the place and wondered whether the lady was
married or not. She was old enough to be. I knew she was a Mormon
because she told me so, and possibly she was the plural wife of some
rich old Mormon. I didn't like to ask too many questions for I might
have got fired for being too nosy. The lady was sociable and
kind-hearted and treated me well.

The Mormons like apples, cider and ladies, and they are an industrious
people. The Bible says they can have all the wives they want, but the
United States law says they can't have 'em, so what are the poor fellows
to do? Sh! They have 'em on the sly. Don't give me away. Can you blame a
rich old Mormon for having a big bunch of wives if he can support them?
If I had the price I'd have two, at least, one for week days and one for
Sundays, but if the mother-in-law is thrown in, I pass. One good
healthy mother-in-law of the right sort can make it mighty interesting
for a fellow, but a bunch of them; whew! Excuse me! During my stay in
Ogden I didn't see any funny business going on, and wouldn't have
suspected there was any, but from what I could learn on the outside,
there was something doing. I saw lots of rosy-cheeked Mormon girls in
the tabernacle one day when I was there, but they behaved just like
other girls. The tabernacle is a church and it ain't. It is an immense
egg-shaped building arranged very peculiarly, yet it is snug and cosy
inside. It can hold thousands of people. It must be seen to be
appreciated. I liked Ogden very much and would like to linger there
longer but I deemed it best to keep a moving.

After leaving Ogden the scenery became interesting. The country is
mountainous going eastward, and we struck a place called Weber Canyon,
which is a narrow pass between high mountains through which the railroad
winds. The mountains were pretty well wooded. In one spot I saw a place
called the Devil's Slide, which was made by nature and consists of two
long narrow ledges of rocks that begin high up on a mountain side and
run down almost to the bottom of the mountain where the car tracks are.
These rocks form two continuous lines that run down side by side with a
space of several feet between them, and they are rough and raggedy on
top. Imagine two rails with about four or five feet of space between
them running down a mountain side several hundred feet and then you will
have some idea of the formation of the slide. How in the devil the devil
rode it, gets me. He must have been pretty broad in the beam, and I
would like to have seen him when he performed the act. He must have come
down a-flying, for the slide is nearly perpendicular.

This kind of scenery, though wild, was a relief from the bare and lonely
plains of Nevada, and I appreciated it. A little variety is the spice of
life, they say, and after seeing dullness it is nice to see beauty.

I was now on the Union Pacific Railroad and was in an empty cattle car,
through the slats of which I could see the scenery on both sides of me.
During the daytime it was nice, but at night the weather grew cold and
the long watches of the night were dreary. A companion then would have
been agreeable. I missed little Billy. At a small station in Wyoming
called Rock Creek, I was put off the train one afternoon and as I hadn't
a dime left, I felt it was incumbent on me to go to work. I saw a bunch
of cattle in a corral near the railroad station that had probably been
unloaded from a train, and as there were some bull-whackers with them I
struck them for a job.

"Kin you ride?" asked a chap who looked like the boss.

"Ride anything with hair on," replied I.

"Ever herd cattle?" asked the boss.

"I'm an old hand at the business," answered I.

"Where'd you do your herding?"

"In California."

I never herded cattle in my life, but I could ride all right, and as I
didn't consider bull-whacking much of a job, I thought I could hold it
down easily. The boss hired me then and there at twenty dollars per
month and chuck, and while on the range my bedroom was to be a large
one--all Wyoming. It didn't take the cowboys long to get on to the fact
that I was a tenderfoot, but as I was a good rider they said nothing.
They were a whole-souled, rollicking, devil-may-care set of fellows, and
the best they had was none too good for me. They treated me like a lord.

They knew, and the boss soon found out that I didn't know any more about
roping a steer than a baby did, but as they were not branding cattle
just then, that didn't matter so much. I got on to their way of herding
quickly enough, and that was all that was necessary just then. I didn't
ask where the outfit was bound for, nor did I care much, for all I was
after was to earn a few dollars.

There were a good many hundred head of cattle in the bunch and many of
the them were steers, but there were also many dried-up cows among them
and some yearlings. They had all to be herded carefully so they
wouldn't stray away, and to accomplish this we had to keep riding around
them all day long. At night after feeding, the cattle rested. On dark
nights they generally squatted down contentedly and chewed the cud, but
on a moonlit night they would keep on their feet and feed. The very
first moonlit night I was put on watch I got into trouble. The cattle
arose to feed, and do what I would, I could not keep them together. When
riding along on one side of the herd to keep them in, a few ignorant
brutes on the other side would wander away and at such times some hard
riding had to be done to keep them in. I could do it, but I couldn't
ride everywhere at once.

I did some pretty fast riding and kept yelling and hallooing at the
cattle, but one of the brutes got so far away from me that when he saw
me coming he raised his tail and bolted outright. By the time I got him
in others were scattered far and wide. I now saw that I was helpless, so
I went to camp and aroused the sleeping cowboys. They knew instinctively
what the trouble was and got out of their warm blankets cussing to beat
the band. They mounted their ponies and off we all rode to gather the
scattered herd. It was no picnic. There were four of us, and as the
cattle had strayed off in all directions, it is easy to imagine what our
task was. One of the boys and myself traveled together in one direction
and made for an ornery brute that shook his head when we gently told him
to "git in there." Off he shot like a rocket with a bellow of defiance,
and his tail in the air.

"I'll fix the ugly son of--!" yelled my comrade, as he uncoiled his rope
from his saddle and got it ready for a throw. His pony was after the
steer like a shot, for it knew its business, and got in range in a
jiffy. Out flew the rope and settled around the steer's neck. Quick as a
flash the steer flew in the air, turned a complete somersault and landed
on the turf with a jar that shook the earth.

"You will run away, you ----!" exclaimed the irate cowboy. "I guess you
won't do it in a hurry again, gol darn your ugly hide."

The animal got up meek as a lamb, trembled in every limb, shook his head
in a dazed way, and probably wondered what had struck him. We had no
trouble with him after that, and made off after the rest. It was long
after midnight before all the cattle were rounded up. The boss was mad
clear through. The next day he politely told me that I didn't understand
my business; that I didn't know any more about herding cattle than a
kid; that I had lied to him about being a cowboy and that I had better
skip. He cursed me up and down and kept up his abuse so long that I
finally got tired of it and fired back. That made matters worse. We soon
were at it, tooth and nail. He struck me with his fist and it was a hard
blow. I was taller and longer in the reach than he and kept him off from
me. The first blow was the only one he struck me, but it was a good one
and dazed me for a moment. "I knowed you was a Greaser," yelled he as he
danced around me, "and I'm going to put you out of business."

"Come on, you--," yelled I.

He wasn't in the mix-up at all. I was younger, stronger and longer in
the reach than he, and one of the blows I put in was a tremendous one,
for it knocked him down and he lay still for awhile. When he got up I
knocked him down again. I saw he was my meat.

"Now, pay me off, you--, and I'll get out of here pretty darn quick; if
you don't, I'll beat the life out of you," yelled I. The cowboys stood
by and said nothing. It wasn't their funeral.

The boss paid me off and I got out.

At Cheyenne, Wyoming, I ran across a gassy little red-headed Hebrew who
put me on to a good, money-making scheme. He had a lot of paste-board
signs with him on which were neatly printed such things as: "Our
trusting department is on the roof; take the elevator"; "Every time you
take a drink things look different"; "In God we trust; all others must
pay cash"; "We lead; others follow"; "Razors put in order good as new,"
etc., etc. The young fellow told me that he was beating his way to the
Coast and that he sold enough of these signs to pay expenses. He told me
also that the signs by the quantity cost him only five cents each, and
that he sold them readily for twenty-five cents each.

I thought the little chap was lying for I didn't think anyone would pay
twenty-five cents for such a sign, but he solemnly assured me on his
word of honor that he had no trouble selling them at the price. He
further told me that he would sell me a hundred of the signs at cost
price, adding that if I bought a hundred of them, he would give me the
address of the wholesaler in Omaha where I could obtain all the signs I
wanted. The little scheme looked good to me but unfortunately I had only
two dollars in my possession. This I offered him for forty signs with
the name of the wholesaler thrown in. He accepted. I soon found that the
little Israelite had told me the truth, for the signs sold readily for
two bits each, though in some places I had to do a deal of talking to
sell a sign, and in other places they laughed at me, when I told them
the price was twenty-five cents, and offered me ten cents. As I wasn't
sure whether I could purchase any more signs at the price I paid for
them, I was loath to sell them for ten cents each.

When I reached Omaha I found the address of the sign man, and learned
that I could buy all the signs I wanted in hundred lots at three cents
each. The little cuss had done me after all.

I bought a hundred signs and now felt that I had struck a good thing,
for I would have to do no more hard work. I sold many of the signs in
small towns and cities, and found little difficulty in doing so. No more
handouts for yours truly, no more wood-chopping, no more cow-punching. I
was a full-fledged merchant and able to hold my own with any of them. It
was easier sailing now.

The trip from Omaha to Chicago was interesting, but uneventful. At Omaha
I crossed the muddy-looking Missouri River on a bridge while riding the
bumpers of a freight, but was detected and put off on the other side of
the river.

That night I did rather a daring thing. Along toward nine o'clock there
came along a passenger train and as I had made up my mind to get on to
Chicago as fast as I could, I stepped upon the platform of one of the
passenger coaches and climbed upon the roof of the car, where I rode
along for many a mile. Bye-and-bye, however, the wind became so keen,
cold and cutting, and the rush of air so strong, that I became numbed
and was obliged to climb down for warmth. I walked boldly into the
passenger coach and sat down in a vacant seat near the door. I knew the
conductor would not be round again for some time, for he had made his
round, so for the present I felt safe.

When taking up tickets the conductor of a train usually starts at the
front end and moves along to the rear. After his work is ended he will
rarely sit down in any of the middle coaches, especially if every seat
has an occupant, but he and the brakeman usually go to the smoker and
sit down there. I was in the coach next to the smoker, and later on, I
saw the conductor coming around again for tickets, I leisurely strolled
to the rear platform of the car I was in and climbed on top again. I
watched the conductor and waited until he had made his rounds, and then
I returned to my seat in the coach.

In this way I traveled a long distance. I kept up these tactics for
hours, but bye-and-bye I noticed a young woman who was traveling with
her husband (a young fellow of about twenty-five), watch me
suspiciously. She put her husband on to my little racket, and he, most
likely, told the conductor, who laid a cute little trap to catch me.
After he had been through all the coaches on his next round he went to
the smoker, as usual, but when he came to the rear coach I was in he
locked the rear door behind him. It was through this door I had been
making my exit. He then passed slowly through the train again from the
front looking at the hat checks. When I saw him coming and the brakeman
following in the rear I tried the usual tactics but found the door
locked. I was trapped. The conductor came up to me and seeing no
hat-check asked me for my ticket. I pretended to look for it, but
couldn't find it. The conductor eyed me coldly and told me to follow him
to the baggage car. The brakeman acted as a rear guard. When we stepped
into the baggage car the conductor asked me a few questions which to him
did not seem satisfactory, whereupon he sternly warned me to get off at
the next station. "If I catch you on here again, I'll throw you off,"
threatened he.

I knew he dared not legally throw me off a train while it was in motion,
and that he was bluffing, but I got off at the next station just the
same. I concluded I had ridden far enough that night, anyway. My journey
to Chicago was soon completed.

I remained in Chicago several days selling the signs for a living but
found it difficult work. The sign that seemed to sell best in Chicago
was the one reading: "Every Time You Take a Drink, Things Look
Different," and it made quite a hit in the saloons, but I could only
get ten cents for it. The Chicago saloon keepers wanted all the money to
come their way. In the smaller towns this sign sold readily for
twenty-five cents, and no questions asked. I concluded to shake the dust
of Chicago off my feet in a hurry, for the grafting was too hard for me.
I had got onto it that there were easier places.

It was the Michigan Central that had the honor to yank me out of Chicago
and a hard old road she was to beat. Spotters were everywhere--fly cops
and bulls--and they gave me a run for my money. I gave some of them a
cock-and-bull story about trying to get to a sick relative in New York
City, and showed them the signs I was selling to help pay expenses. Some
laughed, and told me to "git," but one or two sternly told me they had a
mind to run me in. They didn't, though. I got along all right as far as
Detroit, where I crossed over to Windsor, Canada, on a boat which
ferried the whole train over at once. I was now in a foreign country,
but everything there looked pretty much as it did in the United States.
The Michigan Central took me clear through Canada to Niagara Falls,
where I concluded to remain a few days, for much as I had heard of the
Falls, I had never seen them.

I found that there is a big city of about 25,000 people at the Falls
called "Niagara Falls," and it is a beautiful place.

On the Canadian side there is a little city, too, the name of which I
forget. It is not nearly so large as the city on the American side, but
it is a quaint and pretty little place.

Niagara Falls City is something like Coney Island, only it is on an
all-the-year-round scale. Ordinary electric cars run through the place,
electric tourist cars that will take one over the Gorge Route for a
dollar are there, and so are hotels, boarding and rooming houses, plenty
of stores, an extensive government reservation called Prospect Park, a
Ferris Wheel, Shoot-the-Chutes, candy and ice cream booths, a hot
frankfurter booth, picture galleries, beer gardens, etc. The place is
lively and pretty, but full of grafters. Why wouldn't it be, when
suckers by the million flock there every year from all over the world?

I got to like the place so well that I remained there nearly a week and
learned a whole lot of things.

I wasn't a sucker and didn't get catched for I wasn't worth catching.
Small fry ain't wanted. Did I see the Falls? Did I? Well, you can bet
your sweet life I did. I saw them early, late and often, and every time
I saw them they made my hair rise higher and higher. They are
stupendous, tremendous--well, I can't say all I feel. They will awe
anyone and fill him chock full of all kinds of thoughts. I'll try to
give you an idea of them.

Niagara River is a stream about half a mile wide and about a hundred
miles long. It connects Lake Erie with Lake Ontario, and as the waters
of these great lakes form the river, the volume of its waters is great.
About twenty-five miles from Buffalo the Niagara River enters rocky
canyons, which are formed by Goat Island, and which divide the river.
The rushing, roaring and leaping of the waters on either side of the
island is tremendous. These rushing, roaring waters are called the Upper
Rapids. The waters rush along at cannon-ball speed almost until they
reach a hill about 165 feet in height. Down this they tumble. That
constitutes the Falls.

The river, as I said, is divided by Goat Island, so that one part of the
stream shoots along the American shore and the other part along the

By far the greater part of the river rushes along the Canadian side,
hence the falls on that side are much greater than on the American. In
fact, the American falls ain't a marker to the Canadian. I saw the falls
from both sides, and when viewed from the Canadian side they are
indescribably grand. No words of mine can describe them. You can hear
the thunder of the rushing, roaring, falling waters a mile off, and the
spray that arises from the depths below after the fallen waters have
struck the rocks can be seen at a great distance.

While the great lakes flow and the Niagara River runs, this scene of
rushing, roaring, tumbling waters will never cease. After the waters
take their tumble they flow on placidly enough until they strike another
narrow gorge or canyon, about a mile below the falls, which is called
the Lower Rapids. In them may be seen a wicked whirlpool, the Devil's
Hole, and other uncanny things.

Niagara is great, but the grafters who are there are greater. They will
fool the stranger who goes there so slick that he won't know he has been
fooled. The majority of visitors don't care, for they go there to spend
their money, anyway. Some do care, however, for their means are limited.
The grafters, who are not only hackmen, but storekeepers and others, lie
awake nights studying how to "do" you. It is their business to make
money, but how they make it don't worry them. If you go to the Falls,
beware of them.

People from every nation under the sun flock to the Falls every year, as
I said, and a million visitors a year is a low estimate, I am sure.

There are some people who believe that this great work of nature ought
to be preserved intact, but there are others who do not think so. The
latter think the Falls were created for their benefit, so they can make
money. I am not now speaking of the grafters, but the manufacturers who
have established factories along the banks of the Niagara River and
utilize its waters for running their machinery, etc. These people would
drain the river dry were they permitted to do so, and were doing so
until stopped by the Government. I make no comments on this but simply
state the facts and let others do the commenting.

After I had done the Falls pretty thoroughly I concluded to go to
Buffalo, the beautiful city by the lake (Erie). It can be reached in
several ways from Niagara Falls by trolley and by several lines of
railroads. It cannot be reached by water, however, for the reason that
the Upper Rapids in the river extend a mile or so from the Falls toward
Buffalo, rendering navigation impracticable. The trolley line running
from Buffalo to the Falls is one of the best patronized roads in the
country, and is crowded every day and overcrowded on holidays and
Sundays. The fare is fifty cents the round trip and the scenery, through
which a part of the road passes, is very fine. The road runs pretty
close to the Niagara River for quite a distance, and along the banks of
the river may be seen manufacturing establishments, such as cyanide
plants, paper mills, chemical works, etc., nearly all of which empty
their refuse into the stream, polluting its waters considerably. All of
these establishments can easily be seen near the river as you ride along
in the trolley.

In the town of Niagara Falls itself are quite a number of very large
manufacturing plants, which use the waters of the river for their

Buffalo is one of the handsomest cities in the United States, to my
notion. Its water front along the business section of the town is pretty
punky, for there is a vile-smelling canal in the vicinity, and
malodorous streets and alleys, but otherwise the town is away up in G.
She's a beaut, and no mistake. Delaware Avenue is a corker. Imagine a
thoroughfare about 150 to 200 feet wide, with driveways in the center
shaded by fine old trees, and ample sidewalks also shaded by fine trees.
Along the sidewalks, but set far back, are roomy mansions that are set
in ample gardens, and then you will have a faint idea of the beauty of
Delaware Avenue. And there are many other streets in the vicinity of
Delaware Avenue that are just as beautiful. Boulevards and fine streets
abound in this fair city.

The people of Buffalo are quite like the Westerners in disposition, for
they are sociable and free, and not too busy or too proud to talk to
you. They are like their city, lovely, and I speak of them as I found
them. There are many Canadians in the city (for Canada is only across
the Niagara River and can be reached by ferry-boat) and I think they are
a very desirable class of citizens. There are all sorts among them, of
course, as is the case with Americans.

My signs went well in Buffalo, especially the one reading, "Every Time
You Take a Drink, etc." It went well in the saloons along the water
front and on Main Street, the leading thoroughfare. Lots of people
laughed when they read it and said it was a good one. There is nothing
like a laugh to put people in good humor.

I liked some of the Canadians very well and loved to listen to their
queer accent. It is nothing like the American, but peculiarly their own.
I thought some of the Canadian ladies were very nice.

I liked Buffalo so well that I concluded to remain there until I grew
tired of it. After I had been there a day or so I became acquainted with
a young girl whose front name was Rose. She was of an auburn type and
very artless. She had a decided penchant for milk chocolates.

She was as pretty as a rose and it was awful hard for me to resist her.
She was a poor, but good, honest, hardworking girl. She had been hurt
in a street car collision and was just recovering from its effects. She
craved chocolates but was too poor to buy them herself. I pitied her.
She told me in her frank and artless way that she had thought a great
deal of a certain young fellow, but he was in another city at present,
working, and that she hadn't seen him for a long time. She didn't know
whether she ever would see him again, but she hoped to, for he was a
very sweet fellow, she said.

"If he thinks anything of me don't you think he'll come back to me?" she
asked, turning up her soulful blue eyes at me.

"He would be a brute if he didn't, Rose," responded I, with considerable
warmth. The girl surely loved him.

"Why don't he write to me?"

"Maybe he hasn't got the time or ain't much of a writer," said I. "Some
people don't like to write."

"I guess that's true," said she, sadly.

Though she had a sneaking regard for the young fellow, she didn't object
to me buying milk chocolates for her, nor to going to a show with me,
nor to taking a ride to Crescent Beach on a cosy little lake steamer. In
fact, Rosie was out for a good time, and evidently wasn't particular who
furnished the funds. As I fancied the poor girl I was not averse to
giving her a good time. We went to Delaware Park and spent several whole
afternoons rowing on the little lake. We fed the ducks, walked in shady
groves, and the time flew swiftly by in her company. During the morning
I sold signs and in the afternoon I went with Rosie. I put in a whole
lot of time in Buffalo with her, more than I should have done. One day I
told her that I would have to go and then there was a kick. She wouldn't
have it. She could not and she would not let me go, she said. I argued
the case with her, but she wasn't open to argument. She was one of these
kind of girls who are apt to forget the absent one when the present
charmer is nigh. It was the hardest job in the world for me to leave
her, but I finally did so. Rosie, farewell; and if forever, then
forever, fare thee well.



I have heard it stated that "a great city is a great solitude" and so it
is if you are a stranger. New York seemed a big solitude to me, for I
didn't know anyone and no one knew me. I landed in the Grand Central
Depot in a swell quarter of the city one day, and felt utterly lost, for
I didn't know which way to turn. As I was poor, that swell neighborhood
was no place for me, but where was I to find a poorer locality? I
concluded to walk and find one. I kept a walking and a walking and a
walking, but the more I walked the more high-toned did the streets seem.
Nothing but fine houses and well-paved streets met my view and they made
me tired.

I did not like to address any of the people walking along these streets
for they seemed hurried, cold and distant.

Says I to myself: "Windy, you've struck a cold place. Chicago was bad,
but this place is worse. If you are going to Europe, this will have to
be your headquarters for awhile, though."

Bye-and-bye I struck a street called Eighth Avenue, which was a long and
wide one. It was full of people and stores. The sidewalks were so
crowded that locomotion was difficult, and I saw more coons there than I
had ever seen in my life before. They were dressed up to kill and
considered they owned the town. From their manner one would suppose they
had no use for white trash.

I had walked so much that I was pretty well tired out, and I also was
hungry and thirsty. I concluded I would seek some saloon where I could
obtain a rest, a drink and a free lunch, all for a nickel. There are
such places everywhere in the cities, plenty of them, and all you have
to do is to find them. I walked along and kept my eyes peeled for one. I
saw lots of stylishly fitted-up stores along the avenue, and as there
was so much style I thought there ought to be lots of money. Everyone I
met was dressed to kill, and it seemed to me that no one was poor.
Finally I came to a saloon which was bejeweled and be-cut-glassed
outside, and swell inside, having marble floors and fancy fixtures. Into
this saloon I stepped and strode up to the bar, where I ordered a
schooner of beer. I laid down a nickel on the bar and then leisurely
strolled over to the lunch counter, which contained a pretty good spread
of free lunch. I tackled a fistful of bread and cheese, and then wound
up with bologna, pickles, crackers and pickled tripe. I ordered another
schooner and hit the free lunch again real hard. No one said anything to
me. After a good long rest I hit the "Avenue" again to see the sights.
There was plenty to be seen for the avenue was jammed with people,
trolley cars and trucks. The buildings were of brick, as a rule, and
old-fashioned in appearance. On the ground floor were stores and over
head dwellings.

Everyone was a hustling and a bustling and didn't seem to have much time
for anything except to sell you something. No one knew me or seemed to
care a cuss for me. I felt lonely. The din was so great and the crowd so
dense that I couldn't hear myself think. I was swept along with the
crowd and kept my eyes and ears open. The stores were very fine, and the
signs upon them handsome. Though Eighth Avenue is by no means in a rich
section of the city, it seemed to me that there was a whole lot of
wealth and style there. I felt quite out of place for I wasn't well

Some of the free lunch I had eaten--I believe it was the bologna--had
given me a thirst, so I stepped into an ice cream saloon and had a
"schooner" of ice cream soda, which quenched my thirst admirably. Things
were cheap and good in New York, I quickly learned, and if one only had
the price, one could live well there. One could have all kinds of fun,
too, for there are so many people. The city is like an overgrown
bee-hive--it more than swarms with people. I believe that New York City
today has over four millions of people, with more a coming every
year--thousands of them.

I had heard a great deal about the Bowery in New York, so I concluded
to see it. I knew the song about it, the chorus of which was:

       The Bowery, the Bowery,
     They say such things, and they do such things,
       On the Bowery, the Bowery--
     Oh! I'll never go there any more.

And I was wondering what kind of things they said there and what they

Well, they didn't say much when I struck it and there was nothing doing
to speak of, except people rushing along minding their own business. It
may have been wicked, but it isn't now. It is a business street and that
is all. There is an "Elevated" over the street, which makes noise enough
to raise the dead, and a lot of cheap-looking stores and restaurants.
There is any number of "hat-blocking" establishments run by Hebrews, and
the whole street in fact, seems like a section of Jerusalem. Jews till
you can't rest. There may be some knock-down-and-drag-out places, but
these are not confined to the Bowery. There are other streets far worse.

No, the Bowery today is a peaceful, quiet street, and there isn't
"anything doing" worth speaking about.

New York has some fine streets, such as Broadway, Fifth Avenue, Madison
Square, Twenty-third Street, Fourteenth Street, etc. Broadway is the
main business street and begins at Bowling Green and runs up to Central
Park and thence beyond. It is several miles long, its lower portion from
Bowling Green to Fourteenth Street being lined on either side by many
sky-scrapers and massive wholesale business establishments, and from
Fourteenth Street up, by retail stores. Rents are high on this street
and the buildings fine. Fifth Avenue is not so long as Broadway and
contains the residences of many millionaires and less rich people. There
is lots of style and wealth on that street.

The Central Park is a beautiful spot. It runs from Fifty-ninth Street to
One Hundred and Tenth Street, and from Fifth to Eighth Avenue. It is two
and a half miles long by about two miles wide, and isn't big enough
sometimes to contain the crowds of people that flock into it. It
contains shady walks and trees, lawns, baseball grounds, lakes, casinos,
stately malls (avenues), a large zoological collection, a great art
gallery, an immense natural history building, extensive drives, secluded
nooks for love-making, and lots of other nice things. Around its grand
entrance at Fifth Avenue are some of the largest and swellest hotels in
New York.

As everyone knows, of course, New York is the largest city in the
country and the most cosmopolitan. It is the center of art, trade and
finance, and its population is composed of all sorts. There are as many
Irish as in the largest city in Ireland, as many Germans, almost, as in
Hamburg, as many Jews as in Jerusalem, and a big crowd of almost every
nationality under the sun. The main part of the city is situated on
Manhattan Island, and it is overcrowded, compelling the overplus to seek
the suburbs and other near-by localities. Even these are becoming too
well populated. Jersey City, Newark, Brooklyn, Paterson, Kearney,
Harrison, Staten Island, Coney Island, etc., are increasing in
population all too rapidly. New York is one of the "step lively" towns,
and you are expected to hustle there, whether you want to or not. It is
all your life is worth sometimes to cross a street, and a car won't stop
long enough to enable you to get on or off. The tenement sections are
studies in human life, and malodorous ones at that. The throngs are
wonderful to behold.

If you have plenty of money New York is an interesting place to live in.
You will never feel dull there. You can live in some pretty suburb and
go back and forth every morning and evening, as thousands do; or you can
live in the city and ride out into the country every day by carriage,
train or boat. In the good old summer time, if you live in the city, you
can go to Manhattan or Brighton Beach, Coney Island, North Beach, South
Beach, Rockaway, Fire Island, Long Branch, the Highlands, Shrewsbury
River and a thousand and one other resorts in the vicinity. There is no
lack of amusement or pleasure places.

Even the very poor can find lots of pleasant places to go, around New
York, for the fares are low. For ten cents one can ride from New York to
Coney Island, a distance of over twenty miles; to Fort George for five
cents, fifteen miles or more; to Manhattan Beach, South Beach, Staten
Island, Newark, up the Hudson, and lots of other places. In the city
itself, and free for all, are the Aquarium, Art Galleries, Public
Squares, Parks, Roof Gardens along the two rivers (the Hudson and East
Rivers), the animals in Bronx and Central Parks, the museums and other
things. There is always something to hear and see in New York City at
all hours of the day and night.

New York surely is quite a sizeable village, and to judge from the way
it has been growing, ten years from now it will extend a hundred miles
or more up the Hudson, to Albany, maybe.



Before I say much more about New York I want to say a word about the
book publishers of that city, for I got to know a little something about
them. I will relate my experiences among them, which will enable others
to judge what they are like. I wanted to find a publisher for this book,
and was told that New York is the proper place to do business of that

The first publisher I attempted to do business with has a large
establishment on Vandewater Street, which is not far from the Brooklyn
Bridge. I asked an elevator man who stood in the hallway of this
building where I could find the boss.

"Which boss?" asked he, with a huge grin, for he probably deemed me some
country jay looking for a job. My appearance was not very
respect-inspiring, to say the truth; not for New York, anyway.

"The head of this establishment," answered I, placidly.

"What do you want to see him about? Are you looking for a job?"

"No, I'm not; I want to have some printing done."

"Oh, that's the ticket, is it? The superintendent is the man _you_ want
to see. He's on the top-floor. Come with me and I'll take you up to

I stepped into the elevator and up we shot. We never stopped until we
struck the top landing, where a door confronted us which opened into a
huge apartment that was full of type-stands, presses, paper-cutters and
printing machinery of all sorts. At the furthest end of this huge
apartment were some offices.

Upon my entrance into the large apartment a man stepped up to me and
wanted to know what I wanted.

"I'd like to see the superintendent."

"Looking for a job, cully?" asked this gentleman.

"Well, hardly," responded I. "I want to have some printing done."

"Oh, you do, eh? You'll find the super in the rear office; away in the
back," and he waved his hand toward the rear.

I walked toward the rear and was met by a small boy, who came out of an
office and wanted to know my business.

"I want to see the superintendent, sonny," said I.

"What do you want to see him about?" asked the kid.

"Never you mind; I want to see him."

"Will you please let me have your card?"

"My card? What do you want my card for?"

"So as to let the boss know who you are."

"He don't know me; anyway, I haven't got a card."

"Will you please write your name and the nature of your business on this
tablet? and I'll take it to him," said the boy, handing me a writing
tablet and pencil.

I didn't understand this method of doing business but I did as
requested. The boy took the card in and presently the superintendent
appeared. His name was Axtell.

"What can I do for you?" promptly asked Mr. Axtell, without any
preliminaries. Probably he was a busy man.

"I have written a book, sir, and I want to have it printed."

The gent looked at me contemplatively. What his thoughts were I don't

"What kind of a book is it you've written? History, travel, poetry,
novel or what?"

I told him it was a novel.

"How many pages will the book contain?" asked the superintendent.

"There will be four or five hundred pages, I guess, as near as I can
figure it," responded I.

"How many copies will you want?"

"I'll leave that to you, sir, for you know best. This is my first book,
and though I don't think it is going to set the world on fire," said I
modestly, "I think a first edition of about ten thousand copies would be
the thing. Don't you think that would do for a starter?"

"It might," said he contemplatively. "Excuse me," continued he as he
sat down at his desk and began to do some figuring. When he got through
he turned to me and said: "Ten thousand copies of the book in paper
cover will cost you in the neighborhood of $1000."

"Cost _me_ $1000," almost shrieked I. "I wanted to know what you'll give
me for the manuscript and print it yourself."

A cold glare froze in the gent's eye. "We only print 'reprint' here; we
do not buy manuscripts." I did not understand, and the gent judged so
from my demeanor, for he added: "You want to see a publisher. Go up to
Twenty-third Street; you'll find lots of them up that way."

I did not know the difference between a printer and a publisher at that
time, so that is how I came to make the mistake.

Up Twenty-third Street way I went. Twenty-third Street was a pretty
swell one, far too swell for rather a seedy-looking chap like me.

I came upon the establishment of Messrs. Graham & Sons, which was one
of the swellest on the street. It was contained in a six-story marble
building, all ornaments and furbelows in front, and it was so swell that
it made me feel small. The store must have been at least 200 feet long
and nearly as wide as it was long. A small part of this vast space was
divided off into offices, but by far the greater portion was devoted to
the exposure of books. Books were piled around till you couldn't
rest--on counters, shelves, in elaborate glass cases, and on the floor,
even. All were handsomely bound and good to look at. When I saw the
conglomeration my heart sank.

"Look at all this array, Windy," said I to myself; "where are you going
to get off at? You want to add another book to this little pile, do you?
You are all kinds of a fool."

For a few moments I was discouraged, but the feeling did not last long.
I am an optimist, a fellow who never gets discouraged. Instantly I
mustered courage and walked up to a white-haired old gentleman whom I
told that I would like to see the proprietor. The old gentleman told me
that he was in his office on the top floor of the building. Up I went to
see him. When I reached the top floor, which was a sort of literary
symposium and printing office combined, a small boy came forward and
asked me my business. I told him, whereupon he asked me for my card. As
I hadn't any, I wrote my name and the nature of my business on a tablet,
and the boy took it into an office. A well-groomed and handsome young
gentleman came forward and asked me to be seated. It was in an outer,
not walled-in office, but even the furniture in it was swell.

After exchanging airy compliments and discussing the weather a bit, the
gentleman remarked _en passant_, "You have written a book?"

That broke the ice. I told him I had and then we proceeded to business.
He wanted to know the nature of the book and such other things as were
well for him to know. I then asked a few questions myself.

"What do you pay authors for their books, Mr. Graham?"

"That depends," replied he. "We usually pay a royalty of $500 down and
ten per cent on every book sold, after that."

I thought that was a pretty fair rattle out of the box. I concluded to
leave my writings with Mr. Graham on those terms and he consented to
receive them. I knew he had but to read to accept. I always was
optimistic, as I said before. Mr. Graham requested me to leave my
address, so he could communicate with me. He informed me I would hear
from him in a few days. I did. In a few days I got a note from him in a
high-toned, crested envelope, which stated that "the first reader" of
the house had read the book and found good points in it, but that "the
second reader" was dubious. To make sure he, Mr. Graham, had read the
book himself and wasn't certain whether there was any money in it. Under
these circumstances he was constrained to forego the pleasure of
publication, etc., etc., etc. These were not his exact words, but their
substance. After reading the kind note I concluded to jump off the
Brooklyn Bridge, but thought better of it. Messrs. Graham & Sons were
not the only pebbles on the beach, so why not see what I could do
elsewhere. That's what I did--tried my luck elsewhere. There were other
publishers on Twenty-third Street and if Graham & Sons did not know a
good thing when they saw it, others might.

On the same block, only a few doors distant, was another large firm. To
them I went. A small little man with a Scotch accent sat in the
ante-room and asked me what I was after. He wanted my card, too, but
didn't get it. He went in to see Mr. Phillips, the editor of the
publishing house, and this gentleman turned me down in short order. He
told me that there are too many books published nowadays, and that books
of travel were a drug on the market. The cuss told me everything in the
world to discourage me, but he couldn't do it. I just went around to see
some of the other publishers, but none of them would "touch" the story
at any price and each one had a different reason for refusing. I was
unknown, poor and obscure, and that settled it. There was no show there
for me. To get along one must be rich or have "a pull."



I put in the winter in New York working at Berry's, one of the swellest
catering houses in the city. It is situated on Fifth Avenue and is a
rival of the great Delmonico establishments. The nobs of New York, when
they want to give a little dinner or supper at home, see Berry, who
furnishes all the fine grub, cooks, waiters, dishes, plates, etc., or if
they want to eat at his place they can do so, for he has private
dining-rooms, ball-rooms, etc., where they can have anything they want,
providing they have the price to pay for it. He employs a lot of people
in his establishment, in the shape of a housekeeper, chambermaids, male
chefs and assistants, waiters, omnibuses, porters, head-waiters,
superintendents and a window-cleaner. I was the window-cleaner. It was
the softest snap I had ever struck. I worked from 8 in the morning until
about dusk, and all I had to do was to keep every window in the house as
bright and shiny as a new dollar. The building is a large one and the
windows are many, but it was no trick at all to keep them clean. I
cleaned a few windows every day and put in a whole lot of unnecessary
time at it.

I got twenty-five dollars a month for the job with board thrown in. The
board was extra fine. Roast goose and chicken for dinner every day (left
over victuals, of course), crab, shrimp and potato salads, oysters in
any style, rich puddings, pies and cakes, wines of all vintages--say,
sonny, we lived there and no mistake. I had struck a home. I held the
job down all winter and saved a little money.

I told some of my fellow-workers, both male and female, that I intended
to take a little flyer to the old country in the spring, and they
laughed at me and guyed me unmercifully.

One fine spring day "when fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love" as I
once saw it stated in a novel, I strolled down Bowling Green where the
steamship offices are located and got pointers for my little trip. I
learned that I could go to London direct, to Amsterdam, Rotterdam and
several other dams; to Hamburg, Southampton, Liverpool, Havre, Glasgow
and to so many other places that I grew bewildered.

As I stood in front of the Cunard line office a young fellow stepped up
to me and asked:

"Say, mister, are you thinking of going to Yurrup?"

I didn't think it was any of his business, so I said:

"What do you want to know for?"

"Who, me?" replied he, taking time to gather his wits. "I'm connected
with a ticket agency around on Greenwich Street, and if you want a
ticket cheap, come with me and I'll get you one."

"How cheap?" asked I.

"That'll depend on where you want to go to. We sell tickets to all
places mighty cheap. Where do you want to go?"

"Don't know yet; haven't decided."

"Let me sell you a ticket to Glasgow on the Anchor line. That line will
take you to Ireland and Scotland and is the finest trip in the world."

"What's the fare?" inquired I.

"Only thirty dollars," answered he, "and you will get your money's

I didn't think I'd see much of Ireland or Scotland if I bought a ticket
from him, so I told him I'd see him later.

I wandered into the Anchor Line office and asked the ticket agent what
the price of a ticket to Glasgow would be.

"Cabin or steerage?" inquired he.

"Steerage, of course; I'm no Vanderbilt."

The agent looked at me quizzingly and then remarked: "From twenty-seven
dollars upward, according to accommodation."

I didn't know what he meant by "accommodation" but I thought
twenty-seven dollars was enough for me.

"Do you want a ticket?" asked the agent, as if he were in a hurry.

"I haven't the price with me now," said I.

"What did you come here for then," snapped he.

"For information," snapped I.

He saw that I was getting huffy so he pulled in his horns and said: "We
can take you to Scotland in pretty good shape for twenty-seven dollars.
You will have a good berth and the best of food, and we'll land you in
Glasgow in less than ten days from the time you leave here. What do you
say; shall I give you a ticket?"

I cogitated. The prospect looked good to me.

"Yes," said I impulsively, "give me a ticket!"

I gave him my name, as he requested, answered all the questions he put
to me, and in a jiffy he had the ticket made out for me.

"What's the name of the ship I'm going to sail on?" asked I.

"The Furnessia," answered he, adding, "she will leave from the foot of
West Twenty-fourth Street on Saturday morning at nine o'clock sharp. Be
on hand at that time, or you'll get left."

"Don't you worry about me getting left," retorted I; "I'll be there all

Was I happy after I bought the ticket? I can't say that I was, for I
wasn't at all positive whether I had better go. I didn't know what the
old country would be like, so that visions of all kinds of trouble
floated through my noddle, but faint heart never won a fair lady. I
might as well be found dead in Europe as in any other place. What's the

This was Thursday and the ship was to sail on Saturday. It seemed to me
a long time to wait for when I go anywhere I like to go in a hurry.

Saturday morning came and I arose bright and early. I slept very little
that night, for I was thinking, thinking, thinking. After arising and
having a cup of coffee I took my time strolling down toward the
steamship pier. After I arrived there I was about to enter the long
covered shed, when an official strode up to me and asked me where I was
going. I carried no baggage of any sort and didn't think I needed any.
I am too old a traveler to encumber myself with baggage. All I carried
was on my person. I told the official I was bound for Europe on the
Furnessia and showed him my ticket. He looked at it and let me pass. I
went on board.

When I reached the deck a young man dressed in a white jacket and peaked
cap asked me if I were a married man.

I didn't think it was any of his business, so I asked him what he wanted
to know for.

The young fellow frowned and exclaimed: "Don't give me no language,
young feller; I want to know if yer married or single." I told him I was
a single man, whereupon he said: "You go forward to the quarters for
single men!"

"Where's that?" queried I.

"For'ard of the main hatch," responded he. I didn't know the difference
between a main hatch and a chicken hatch, but I went up to the front
part of the vessel where I saw several sailors slinging trunks down a
hole by means of a rope. I walked up to them and asked one of them who
wasn't too busy to answer a question, where the main hatch was.

"It's in the fo'-castle," says Jack, with a wink at his mates; "do you
want it?"

"No," said I. "I don't; where's the quarters for the single men."

"Oh, that's what you're after, is it? You follows your nose till you
gets to the bows, and then you'll see a companionway down which you

"All right," says I; "thank you." The directions weren't clear, but I
guessed I could find my way. I went forward through rows of boxes,
trunks, valises, ropes and other impediments, and finally came to a
stairway over which was a hood or sliding cover. This stairway was
almost straight up and down, with rough brass plates on each step to
prevent one from slipping. At either side of it was a rope in lieu of a

That stairway did not look good to me.



As soon as I tried to go down the stairway there was trouble, trouble of
the worst kind. I could get down all right, but when I got down a few
steps an odor came up that made me pause. The odor was not of stale
onions, a rotting steer or anything like that, but an indefinable one. I
never smelt anything like it before and it conquered me at once. It
caught me right in the throat and though I tried to swallow I couldn't
do so to save my life. I began to chew as if I were chewing tobacco, and
the lump rose in my throat and wouldn't go up nor down. I hadn't drunk a
drop that morning excepting a cup of coffee, so it couldn't have been
liquor that upset me. It must have been the smell and nothing else. I
stood on a step holding to the side rope to steady myself and hesitated
about going down. I grew dizzy and thought I was going to fall but held
on like grim death.

"Come Windy," says I to myself, "your bunk is below, and you'll have to
go down to it or someone else will get it. This won't do."

I went down slowly and the further down I got the stronger the smell
became. Suddenly I got very sick. I felt like giving up the enterprise
right then and there but as my friends would have had the laugh on me if
I did so, I concluded to see the thing out.

I had to go down the stairway, though, there was no getting around that;
I had to select a berth, and to do that I had to go below. I kind of
fooled around and hesitated to make the plunge but finally I mustered
courage and made the attempt once more. I went down very slowly, holding
my hand over my nose and mouth. I got down a few steps and then I
stopped again. I just couldn't. I just laid down where I was and fired
away like a good fellow. I was more than willing to die.

As I lay there a jacky suddenly came down, airy-fairy fashion, as if he
were dancing on eggs, and in his hands he carried a long, black tin pan
in which was his mate's breakfast, consisting of meat, gravy and

I caught a whiff of the mess and oh mercy! When jacky got down to the
bottom and saw me sitting there and the muss I had made he became very
indignant and wanted to know what I meant by mussing up the ship like

"Why don't you go on deck if you want to be sick?" said he.

Had I been well I would have swiped the heartless cuss one just for
luck, but I was too weak to speak, even. I fired away again and seeing
this, Jacky flew away as if the devil was after him.

After a good long time I got down in the steerage and saw the steerage
steward who was a Scotchman with a broad accent, and he gave me a berth.
He noticed that I had been sick and advised me to go upstairs and get
all the fresh air I could.

I acted on his advice and made my way up the stairway again as quickly
as I could, but that wasn't very quick.

When I got on deck the fresh air revived me somewhat, but it seemed to
me as if my stomach were all gone. There was an "all gone" feeling
there, sure enough.

The ship was getting ready to start by this time. An officer mounted a
raised deck over the forecastle and gave orders to heave the hawsers
off. The captain, who stood on the bridge, signalled to the engineer
below to let her go, and off we were.

Slowly we moved out from the pier, to the farewells of the multitudes on
shore and on deck. Some blubbered, but ne'er a blubber from me. I wasn't
caring whether school kept or not.

The vessel's prow after she got out of her dock was turned down the
Hudson toward the Battery, and she went well out into the middle of the

This afforded us a good view of the river. On one side was the New York
shore, and on the other, the Jersey. Panoramas of houses and docks on
either side swept by us as we moved along, and sky-scrapers loomed up

We passed pretty close to the Goddess of Liberty, and saw plainly
Governor's Island, Ellis Island, Fort Hamilton, Fort Wordsworth, Bath
Beach, Staten Island and Coney Island. Quickly enough we were abreast of
Sandy Hook, which was the last point of land we would see until we
reached Europe. Straight ahead of us was nothing but sky and water.

It was now nearly noon. I had eaten nothing that morning and what I had
eaten yesterday was mostly downstairs in the hallway. The fresh
sea-breeze had revived me a little and now I felt that I could eat
something. None of the passengers had eaten anything since they came on
board, and probably they, too, must have been hungry, for when the
dinner bell rang there was a mighty stampede. Some of them didn't take
time to rush downstairs, they just dropped down.

The dinner was good. There was plenty of nourishing soup on hand, a
liberal allowance of meat, vegetables, bread, butter and coffee. No one
need have gone hungry. All the other meals were satisfactory, though an
occasional one was punky. Of course there were kickers, but those kind
of people will be found everywhere.

The second day out was Sunday, and it was a fine spring day, but on
Monday morning clouds began to gather and tried to work up a storm. They
succeeded all too speedily. The sky became black, the wind roared up
aloft, the masts hummed, timbers creaked, the ship rolled from side to
side and then rose and fell; the cordage whipped against the masts and
everything looked lovely for a first-class storm. I got scared. I hated
to die so young, but what's the odds? The waves were high as mountains
and to me seemed about as mean looking as anything I ever saw. They were
white on top and made straight for us. We could not run away from them.
I was on deck waiting to see the storm out, for what was the use going
below and being drowned there? If I was to die I would die game and at
the front. It didn't seem to me that anything built by human hands could
withstand the buffeting of those waves. The force of the sky-scraping
billows was awful. They kind of made me wilt when I looked at them.

I survived that storm or I wouldn't be writing this. If you catch me on
the sea again though, you'll have to be a fast runner.

I was told that we would see land again by the following Sunday and I
was sort of pining to see it. It was a wait of several long days, but I
didn't have much else to do than wait. There was nothing to do on board
except to eat, sleep and wait. I got pretty badly drenched during the
storm. A huge comber made a leap for me and broke right over me,
spilling a few tons of water on top of me. It was a soaker, sure enough,
and I didn't dry out until several days afterward. I had only one suit
of clothes with me and they were on my back so they had no chance to
dry. I slept in them to keep them warm.

A life on the ocean wave is a gay thing. It is awful nice to be spun
around like a cork and then see-sawed up and down with a possibility of
touching bottom. The heel over from side to side is also very funny,
for there is a good chance of being shot overboard when the ship jams
suddenly away over. You hold on wondering whether the ship is going to
right herself or not. If she does, you're in luck, and if she don't it's
good-bye Lisa Jane. How many ships do tip over? Several thousand of them
every year. Luckily, the Furnessia wasn't one of the unlucky ones this
trip. The worst that happened to me was a bad scare and a shower-bath.
Maybe the water wasn't cold when that wave struck me! Ugh! It knocked
the wind out of me for a moment and I didn't know where I was at. I
dripped like a drowned rat and when my fellow passengers saw me they

On Tuesday morning of the second week we saw the shores of Europe. We
had now been out about ten days. I have read that Columbus and his crew
felt pretty good when they saw land again after their eventful voyage
but I'll bet a dollar to a doughnut they didn't feel half as good as I
felt when I saw land again. I was more than pining to see it. Ten days
of sloppiness was a whole lot for me. If there is any fun wandering
around with one's clothing sticking to one's back I fail to see it. I
was feeling all right and my general health was good, but the lack of
sleep and the fetid odors down below helped to daze me. I was in a sort
of pipe dream and hardly knew whether I was afoot or on horseback.

There was land ahead, though, and I felt like shouting.

The land ahead of us was the coast of Ireland and it looked good to me.
The name of Ireland was familiar to me since my boyhood days, and I had
seen Irishmen on the stage and off it, had heard songs sung about it and
had heard it spoken of a million times. Here was the real thing right
before me. I became mightily interested in it as did almost everyone
else. The Irish passengers aboard, and there were plenty of them, became
frantic with joy. Ireland surely is a beautiful country. Rocky headlands
we saw, capes, bays, towering mountains in the background, green trees
and farms. An air of romance seemed to hang over the place and the blue
skies of the spring above looked down on it kindly. We steered straight
in for the shore and then sailed northward along the coast. We kept off
shore only a few miles. When we got to Tory Island we steamed between it
and the mainland, and had a close view of this little islet. It was only
a mile or two long with a quaint looking light-house at one end of it
and a vegetable garden in bloom near by. Those green things growing, how
they did entrance me!

At the other end of the isle were rocks that towered up higher than the
masts of our ship, and they were scarred, seamed and causewayed by the
elements. They had taken the strangest shapes imaginable.

We steamed through the strait between the island and the mainland
swiftly, for though the strait was narrow the channel was deep; then we
skirted southward along the east coast of Ireland until we came to a
broad bay, where we anchored. This bay was shallow close in to the
shore, so we anchored far out. On the shore was the town of Moville,
where the Irish passengers were to disembark for points in Ireland. A
little tender came steaming up and when she was loaded with baggage and
passengers, there was hardly room enough to swing a cat in but as the
Irish passengers were happy, we had no kick coming. The warm-hearted
Irish bade us farewell with many a thrown kiss and handkerchief flutter.
They were off.

So we were soon, for Scotland. The scenes along the east coast of
Ireland were no whit inferior to those on the west coast.

It did not take us long to reach Scotland, where the scenery was
enchanting. Words are entirely inadequate to give one a proper idea of
it. To be appreciated it must be seen and _felt_, for reading about it
don't do much good.

Here, right before us, were the Highlands of Scotland and many a place
famous in song and story.

In due course of time we reached the Firth of Clyde and anchored off
Greenock. This was the disembarking point for all the passengers. A
little steamer shot out from Greenock and landed us, bag and baggage, at
the Princess Pier, which reminded me somewhat of a Mississippi levee,
for it was stone paved and sloping. On the pier cabbies stood about,
touching their hats respectfully, but saying never a word. They were
seeking "fares," and giving us the tip noiselessly. Newsboys were there,
too, yelling in strange accents, "Morning Nip!" "Daily Bladder," etc.,
and some of them when they got on to my presence and saw that I was a
greenhorn, made loud uncomplimentary remarks about me in language that I
couldn't understand. This rather embarrassed me, for I didn't like to be
made a show of. Them kids ought to have got a kick in the pants for
their freshness but the more you fool with some kids the worse they get,
so I just walked on minding my business and said nothing.

All we third-raters were steered into the custom house where the baggage
was to be examined. It didn't take the authorities long to examine mine.
A quiet, lynx-eyed official asked me where my baggage was and when I
told him I hadn't any, he jerked his head upward and backward, giving me
a quiet hint to skip. I waited a few moments and then followed some of
the other passengers to the railroad station, which was close by. Our
destination was Glasgow, and Greenock was twenty-five miles distant, so
we were compelled to make the rest of the journey by rail.

When I entered the railroad station I stood stock still for a moment and
stared. On one side of the station was a blank wall and on the other a
"buffet," waiting-room, ticket office, "luggage" room and telegraph
office. What stumped me was the cars and locomotive. The cars were
stage-coaches strung on wheels with no bumpers to speak of; no blind
baggage, no brake-beams, no nothing. Where was a fellow to ride when he
was beating his way? One couldn't beat it in any shape, form or manner.
To say that I was disappointed won't express my feelings. I was totally
discouraged. I felt like going back home again on the return trip of the
Furnessia but I didn't have the price. I had less than fifteen dollars
in my possession and was up against it. I had no idea how big a country
Scotland was or how the walking would be, so I did some pretty lively
thinking. I now remembered what Little Billy had told me and found out
that he had told me the truth. No, there was no way of "beating it" on
those kind of cars.

I mixed in with the push on the platform and began looking for a
comfortable seat in a car. There were only two seats in a car, facing
each other, and each seat was capable of holding four persons. Thus when
there were eight persons in a coach it was full. I made a rush for a
seat where I could view the scenery comfortably, and after the coaches
were all filled and "all set," the doors were slammed shut, somebody
outside blew a tin-horn and with a ratlike squeak from the engine we
were off. The engine had seemed like a toy to me but she was speedy and
powerful and could go like a streak. Away we clattered through tunnels,
past fields and meadows, villages and towns. The scenery looked mighty
foreign-looking to me and I was uneasy. I sure felt that I wasn't at
home. On our right hand side as we sped up to Glasgow were the fields
and meadows I just spoke of, and on the other side was a bare prairie
through which wound the river Clyde. Along the banks of the Clyde were
shipyards which are famous the world over. I believe these shipyards are
so famous because ships can be built cheaper and better there than
anywhere else. To be a Clyde-built ship is usually a recommendation. The
scenery was interesting and would have been more so had I been happier.
I was still half-dazed from the want of sleep during ten nights on board
ship, my clothes didn't feel right on me from the soaking they had got
and then the disappointment of not being able to "beat it," affected me,
too. But it was all in the game, so I had no kick coming. After
journeying about an hour we came upon the town of Paisley, which has
been famous for centuries for the manufacture of "Paisley shawls." Large
spool-cotton factories we could see in the place too, and it seemed to
be a city of some size and consequence.

In a little while after that we rushed into St. Enoch's station,
Glasgow. This was our jumping-off place. The station was a very large
and fine one, almost as much so as the Grand Central Station in New
York. To judge from the station, Glasgow must be a sizeable place, for
it was first-class in every respect and right up to date.



"All out for Glasgow," was the cry, so out we tumbled.

I made my way out of the station and soon found myself upon the street,
where I stood perplexed and bewildered. It seemed to me I had landed in
some other world. Everything was so different--the houses, the stores,
the streets, the sidewalks, the driveways, the people, the vehicles, the
dogs, the horses, the skies, the clouds, everything. How or where will
I begin to describe these things? I have a pretty big contract on my
hands, one that I am unequal to. I had never seen so many Scotch people
in a bunch before and had no idea there were so many alive. There were
thousands of them, tens of thousands of them. If Glasgow hasn't got a
million of people then I miss my guess sadly. Scotchmen till you can't
rest, anywhere and everywhere. Even the names on all the stores were
Scotch. There was MacPherson and Blair, MacTevish, MacDonald, Brown,
Alexander, MacFeely. Shetland ponies came trotting by that were about
knee-high to a grasshopper and though so small they dragged after them
carriages in which were seated grown persons. Why, a grown man could
have picked up pony, rig and all, and carried them. I felt like telling
the people in those rigs to get out and walk, and not disgrace
themselves by making such a little creature in the shape of a horse drag
them about. Oh, my! Oh, my! What queer things a fellow can see.

Here came a two-wheeled cart clattering along which was hauled by a
melancholy-looking little donkey and it was called a "sweet-milk cart."
I kept my eyes peeled to see if a "sour-milk" cart would come along, but
I didn't see any.

They designate their stores in a curious way. A butcher shop is called a
"flesher's," a furnishing goods store is called a "haberdashery," a dry
goods store a "draper's," etc., etc.

Say, pardner, pinch me, will you? I wonder whether I am alive.

By this time I had stopped gazing standing still, and walked along, for
the people were getting on to the fact that I was a greenhorn. My dress
and appearance, and the way I stared gave me away. As I walked along
unsteadily, still feeling that the ship was under me, I saw things. The
houses were of gray stone several stories in height, with tall chimney
tiles on top all in a cluster; stores on the ground floor and dwellings
overhead. Nearly all of them had mansard roofs. They were nearly all
alike and their exterior seemed plain and dull to me. But the stores
riveted and held my attention. They were rather dingy, but the show
windows were fitted up fine. Here was a fish store in the window of
which were displayed salmon, grilse, lemons, plaice, megrins, haddock,
cod, herrings; labels upon the platters designating what they were. In a
candy store I saw toffie balls, chocolate bouncers, pomfret cakes, voice
pastiles, and frosty nailrods. I laughed and wondered if they had any
railroad spikes and rails. Frosty nailrods and bouncers, hey! Well, I
was getting a pretty good show for my money. I looked into a tobacco
store and there I saw a vast array of cigars, tobacco and smokers'
articles. The brands of tobacco had curious names, such as Baillie Nicol
Jarvey, Starboard Navy, Tam O'Shanter, Aromatic Mixture, English
Birdseye and many others. The tobacco and cigars were dear, tobacco
being eight cents an ounce, and funny-looking cigars four cents each. In
the clothing store windows I noticed clothes made of excellent cloth in
all varieties, that sold for eight and ten dollars the suit. They were
fine and made me feel sad, for I hadn't the price to buy one, though I
needed a suit badly. Shoes, too, were cheap and good. The windows of all
the stores were heaped to profusion with goods, and it seemed to me
there was more stock in the windows than there was in the stores. The
wares were displayed very temptingly with a price tag on everything. The
jewelry displayed was more than tasteful, I thought; I wanted a few
diamonds awful bad.

I wandered along Argyle street, which seemed a broad and busy
thoroughfare. The sidewalks were jammed and so was the roadway. I
sauntered along slowly, taking in the circus, for it was better than a
circus to me. It was a continuous performance. Lots of people gazed at
me, nudged each other and made remarks, but I couldn't catch what they
said. Probably they took me for some animal that had escaped from a
menagerie. I wasn't caring, though, what they thought. I was having as
much fun out of them as they were having out of me. I saw so many queer
sights that I couldn't describe a tithe of them. Many fine people drove
by in fine rigs, and some of these wealthy ones were probably out on
shopping expeditions. There were grand ladies and gentlemen in
multitudes, and I figured it out that wealth and nobility must be pretty
prevalent in Scotland. Many of the ladies were beauties of the blond
type and the gentlemen were well-dressed and elegant in appearance. They
carried themselves nobly and proudly and seemed stern yet manly. The
ladies surely were engaging and I noticed several of them alight from
moving street cars gracefully. They didn't wait for the car to stop, but
swung off, alighting in the right direction every time. Had they been
American ladies it is more than likely they would have landed on top of
their heads. The Glasgow ladies have mastered the trick, all right, and
mastered it well, for you can't down them, nohow.

As I sauntered along slowly, two young girls came along with plaid
shawls thrown over their shoulders and when they got near me one of the
girls collapsed and fell on the sidewalk. None of the crowd stopped,
whereat I wondered, but I stopped to see what the trouble was. If the
girl wasn't as full as a goat you may smother me. She must have been
imbibing too much hot Scotch. The girl was in her teens, and quite
pretty, and so was her companion. I felt sorry that so young and pretty
a girl would make a spectacle of herself, so I strode up and asked if I
could be of any assistance. The fallen one glared at me and the one
standing on her feet trying to help her companion stared at me. My
American accent may have been too much for her for she made no reply. I
remained standing there, whereupon the sober one got angry and turned on
me with the remark: "Did yer never see ah lassie fou?"

From her indignant tones and manner I saw that she was huffy, so I made
tracks in a hurry, for I wasn't looking for trouble.

After seeing as much as I wanted to of Argyle Street, I walked toward
the embankment of the Clyde River, which I could see not far away, and
had a look at the shipping. The ships were as curious to me as
everything else I saw in Glasgow, for they were distinctly
foreign-looking and odd. Glasgow seemed a great port, for there were
ships of all nations there. The banks along the water front were high
and walled up with stone, forming fine promenades. Quite a number of
very fine bridges spanned the stream and they must have cost a lot of
money. They were of stone, iron and wood, and were equal to structures
of their kind anywhere. I noticed that the water was of a dark chocolate
color, which means--mud. The stream isn't very broad, but it is deep. I
was speaking of the vessels! Well, they took my time. I had read of low,
black-hulled, rakish crafts in pirate stories and these looked like
them. Wonder if they were pirates? I didn't go aboard any of them to

Along the water front street opposite the embankment were hotels,
stores, lodging-houses, ship-outfitting establishments, taverns, inns,
and all manner of places catering to seafaring men. All of them seemed
curiosity shops to me. My little pen isn't able to describe them.
What's the use of trying?

I came upon a spot called for short and sweet "The Broomielaw," which
was a section of the water front given up to the landing of "up-country"
steamboats, which came down the various lochs, rivers, bays, "the
Minch," and other waters of northern Scotland, and it was more than
interesting to observe the little steamers when they came in. They were
laden with cattle and people from the Highlands and elsewhere, and with
produce and merchandise. Many of the people were dressed in togs that I
never saw outside of a comic opera show and when cattle were unloaded
from these long, narrow piratical-looking craft I had more fun watching
them than I ever had in my life before. The cattle were mostly black
like the ships, and a whole lot of tail-twisting and Scotch language had
to be used before they would take the hint and go ashore. They didn't
like the looks of things and bucked. The sights of the city bewildered
them, no doubt, for they were used to quieter scenes. The cowboys had
on Tam O'Shanter caps and wore not describable togs. They punched the
cattle, twisted their tails and shouted words that the cattle maybe
could understand, but I couldn't. Highland Scotch was too high for my

Excursion boats came to the Broomielaw and dumped their passengers on
the landing from the Harris, Skye, Stormaway, Fladda, the Dutchman and
all the other places so renowned in Scottish stories. After dumping one
lot of passengers and freight they took another load back to the same
places. Had I had the price I would have gone up country sure, for there
are a whole lot of things to be seen up that way. But by this time it
was nearing noon and I was getting hungry, so I concluded that a good,
square meal would do me good. The Broomielaw and the other places
weren't going to run away, and I would have plenty of opportunities of
seeing them.



I drifted along Salt Market Street and then came upon a street which,
for want of a better name, was called Sauchiehall Street, in the
neighborhood of which I saw a restaurant called the "Workingman's
Restaurant," on the side-wall of which was painted in large letters the
following bill of fare:

     Tea, 2 cents.
     Coffee, 2 cents.
     Porridge and milk, 2 cents.
     Sandwiches, 2 and 4 cents.
     Eggs, 2 cents.
     Ham and eggs, 16 cents.
     Broth, 2 cents.
     Pea soup, 2 cents.
     Potato soup, 2 cents.
     Beefsteak pudding, 4 cents.
     Sausage, 2 cents.
     Collops, 4 and 6 cents.
     Dessert puddings, 2 cents.
     Fish suppers, 8 and 12 cents.
     Tripe suppers, 8 and 12 cents.

The bill of fare and the prices looked good to me and I concluded that
this would be my dining place.

In front of the restaurant were two large show windows in one of which
was displayed all kinds of bakery goods, such as large flapjacks, big as
elephant ears, labeled "scones." They looked like flapjacks to me, but
were bigger and thicker, and could be had for two cents each. One of
them was enough for a square meal. I wanted something better than that,
though, just then. There were big biscuits in the window, too, cakes of
various kinds, tarts, etc. In the other window were huge joints of beef
and mutton, meat pies, hog-meat in various shapes and styles, and other
dainties. My teeth began to water as I eyed the display and a drop
trickled down my chin.

"Lemme see, now; what'll I tackle?" says I to myself.

Some of the hog meat looked good to me and so did the beef and mutton. I
was willing to spend two bits or so for a good square meal. While I
stood gazing and deliberating a young girl with a shawl around her
shoulders came up to me and addressed me:

"Hoo air ye?" asked she.

I thought she had made a mistake and had taken me for someone she knew,
so I asked her if she wasn't mistaken in the person. Either she did not
understand pure English or else she did not want to, for she kept up the
conversation. It didn't take me long to catch on to the fact that she
was bent on making a mash. She didn't know me from Adam, nor I her. She
was light haired and pretty, and had a slight, graceful figure, which
was not well hidden by a shawl, which she kept opening and closing in
front of her. I concluded that I was in for joy the first thing. To tell
the real, honest truth, I wasn't hankering for fun just then, for I was
too hungry, but of course it wouldn't do to be discourteous to a
stranger, and a pretty one at that. To her inquiry how I was, I told her
"Tiptop," which she didn't seem to understand. She did catch on to it,
though, that I was a stranger.

"Where'd ye come from, the noo?"

"The noo, the noo," thinks I. "What does she mean by that?" I caught on
suddenly. "Oh, I just landed this morning from New York."

"Ho, yer a Yankee, then?" says she.

"No, I'm not," answered I. "I'm a Westerner."

"Ooh eye, ooh eye," repeated she twice, as if she didn't understand.

"What air ye going to do in Glesgie?" asked she in clear, bell-like
accents. She came up pretty close to me and now I could detect from her
breath that she had been indulging in Scotch bug-juice. This displeased
me. I gave her a hint that I had had no dinner and that I was pretty
hungry, but it was evident that something stronger than a hint would be
needed to cut me loose from her. She began to coax and then suddenly she
called me a bully. That got me off. I told her in pretty plain language
that she was a trifle fresh and that I hadn't said or done anything to
warrant her in calling me names. She didn't understand what I said, but
I guess she could tell from my manner that I was angry, so her soft eyes
gazed down to the ground sadly. I excused myself, left her and went
into the restaurant. The unexpected interview had agitated me somewhat,
but I soon got over it.

The front part of the restaurant was a sort of store, where edibles were
displayed on counters and which could be bought and carried away, or
eaten on the premises, as one chose. The rest of the apartment was
divided off into cabinets having sliding doors to them. In each cabinet
was a rough wooden table with backless, wooden benches, close up to it,
and on either side of it. The cabinet wasn't big enough to turn around
in, but it served the purpose for which it was built.

A young waitress came to the cabinet I had chosen as my retreat and
asked me what I would have. When she heard my foreign accent it was all
she could do to keep from sniggering. I asked for pea soup for the first
course. It was brought to me and it was nice. While eating it, the door
slid back quietly, and who do you think entered it? Guess! I'll bet you
never could guess. Why, it was no one else than the young girl who had
addressed me outside the restaurant. She had probably watched from the
outside and seen in which cabinet I had gone and there she was, large as
life. Tell _me_ Scotch girls aren't cute. For a moment I was so
flabbergasted you could have knocked me down with a feather, but I soon
recovered my equanimity.

The girl asked me if she might sit down beside me. What could I say? Of
course, I said yes. I kept on eating my soup and cogitated. If this was
the custom of the country I didn't like it. Where I came from strangers
were not in the habit of inviting themselves to dinner. The lassie
(that's what girls are called in Scotland) chinned away to me, but I
didn't understand her, nor did I care to very much just then. After the
pea soup had disappeared I asked the lassie if she was hungry and she
gave me to understand that she was not. Probably she had only come in
for a social chat.

The waitress soon came in again and sniffed scornfully when she saw my
companion there. She probably took me for a naughty man. All this goes
to show how a poor, innocent fellow can get into trouble when he isn't
looking for it.

I next ordered some roast mutton, potatoes and bread and butter. To the
waitress's inquiry what I would drink I said "Water." The lassie looked
at me reproachfully. I divined that _she_ wouldn't have ordered water.
While I ate the lassie chinned and seemed to stick to me as faithfully
as a Dutch uncle to a rich relative. I don't think that she was fully
aware of what she was doing or saying.

After I had finished the second course, the waitress made her appearance
again and wanted to know what further would be wanted. I told her,
nothing, whereupon she began to gather up the dishes and her manner
proclaimed that the cabinet might be wanted for the next customer. I
took the hint and withdrew and the lassie followed me out. Outside of
the restaurant the lassie gave me a gentle hint that she knew of a snug
place where we could have "a little smile" together, but I wasn't
drinking just then and told her so. I was leery of her, in fact. How did
I know who she was or what her little game was. I didn't know the
language of the country, the laws, the customs or anything, so I
proposed to proceed carefully. I shook the lassie firmly but politely as
soon as I could and went my way.


GLASGOW GREEN (or Common.)

I concluded to go down toward the Clyde again but had some difficulty
finding my way, for the streets were tortuous and winding, though quaint
and old-fashioned. I had seen pictures of such streets on the stage and
in plays. After much walking I came upon a thoroughfare called Stockwell
Street which led direct to the quays. I walked to the Albert Bridge and
contemplated its strength and solidity, and then walked in the direction
of a park which I saw not far distant. I was informed by someone whom I
asked that this was the Glasgow Common, or Green. The park, I should
judge, is about two miles long by about half a mile wide, and is almost
destitute of trees or plants. It is, in fact, nothing more than a bare
public playground fitted up with tennis courts, cricket grounds,
apparatus for gymnastic exercises, swings, a music-stand, etc. It surely
is an interesting spot. The walks are long and numerous, resting-places
are plentiful and near the river is a building used by the Humane
Society--a hospital, most likely. A little way in from the entrance is a
fountain that is worth describing. The "Glesgie" people seem to have a
grudge against it for some reason or other, but it is a nice and
elaborate work of art for all that. It is a large structure with a broad
basin and many other basins that diminish in diameter as they near the
top. The top basin is quite small. Around the largest basin are groups
of life-sized figures representing the various races of man, such as
Africans, Asiatics, Europeans, Australians and Americans. The figures
are exceedingly well done. On the topmost pinnacle of the fountain is a
heroic image of Lord Nelson, the great English Admiral. I thought the
whole work was a most elaborate and fine one.

Being tired, I sat down on a bench to rest. There were not very many
people in the park just then and I had a good view of everything.

Clear over on the other side of the park there wasn't a single person to
be seen except a couple that sat on a bench making love in strenuous
fashion. It was a workingman and a lassie. Did you ever watch a calf
when it sucks its mother, how it makes a grab for a teat, rest awhile,
then make another grab? That is the way that man made love. Suddenly he
would throw his arm around the girl's waist, press her to him, then let
go and take a breathing spell. The lassie sat quiet taking it all in and
saying never a word. In a few minutes the man would make another grab,
take a fresh hold and then let go again. It was a queer way of making
love, I thought. The couple wasn't bashful a bit and evidently didn't
care who saw them. I thought to myself that I would have to find some
lassie to give me a few lessons in the art of making love in Scotch
fashion, for I wasn't on to the game at all.

After a good long rest I strolled through the city to see some more of
it. It was quiet in the park just then and nothing doing.

I came upon the old Glasgow Cathedral which is by far the oldest
structure in the city and the most thought of by Glasgowites, but I was
not much impressed by it. It is a thousand years old or more, is great
in extent, is surrounded by ample grounds and is made of stone. It
contains flying buttresses and some other gim-crackery but the whole
thing is rather plain, black and dull. Sir Walter Scott in one of his
novels describes it faithfully, and if any one wants to know more about
it I politely request them to look up Sir Walter Scott. I ain't equal to
the task of describing architecture in detail and such things.

Not far from the Cathedral is the Necropolis, a very ancient burial
ground right in the heart of the city, almost. It is as ancient as the
Cathedral, maybe. It is a pretty spot and I went all through it. It is
built around a hillside and is of considerable extent. Along the street
level are walks bordered by trees, shrubs and flowers, and as you ascend
the hillside you will see elaborate tombs, monuments, shady nooks and
bosky bowers. On the highest portion of the rather steep and lofty hill
a fine view of Glasgow may be had, and here lies buried, beneath a fine
monument, John Knox, the Reformer. The Scotch think a heap about Mr.
Knox, but as I don't know much about him I can't say much. He must have
been a wonderful man and he surely lies buried in a grand spot. As a
rule I don't like to wander about in bone-yards, but as this one was so
pretty I was impelled to do so.

Let me say a few words about Glasgow in a general way before I continue
my story.

Glasgow is the commercial metropolis of Scotland. It contains about
800,000 people, and in most respects is a modern city. It is the center
of art, finance and trade, and what New York is to the United States,
Glasgow is to Scotland. There is much wealth, style and fashion there,
the people are workers and full of business. Wholesale and retail
establishments abound, ship-building yards are numerous, as are
foundries and manufacturing shops of many kinds. Chief of all the great
industries in Glasgow is the ship-building. The business of the port of
Glasgow is great and the volume of the shipping immense. These few
pointers will reveal to you that Glasgow is not a jay town by any means.



As I said before, when I landed in Glasgow I had only a few dollars in
my possession, therefore I deemed it wise to make them go as far as
possible, for I didn't know what I was up against or how I would get
along. The country was strange and new to me, I didn't know a soul this
side the water, I knew nothing of the ways of the country or the people,
and hadn't the faintest idea as yet how I was going to get through the
country. That I could not beat my way I had already learned, and as I am
not very partial to hiking it over long distances, I cogitated. But what
was the use of thinking or worrying? Didn't I have some money in my
inside pocket? Of course I had, and it was time enough to worry when I
was broke. "Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof," has always
been my motto, and I had been on the turf long enough to know that there
is always some way out of a scrape when one gets into it.

What was the next event on the program? I had dined and seen
considerable of the city and it was "more better" that I go and look up
a furnished room. I had to have some place to sleep and the cheapest and
most comfortable way, I thought, was to rent a room in a private family.
I have slept in lodging houses time without number but they are too
public and sometimes too noisy. For a good, honest sleep give me a
private dwelling. I knew that I was looking shabby but good clean money
looks good to a whole lot of people.

I wandered through Buchanan and Argyle Streets, the Trongate and
Gallowgate Street, but couldn't find a "To Let" sign anywhere. This kind
of stumped me. I asked some one if there were no furnished rooms to let
in Glasgow and he informed me that there were lots of them but that I
would have to look in the upper stories of the houses for the signs. I
did so but saw very few of them. I tackled the first place where I saw
one. It was in a three-story building along the Trongate and the
structure didn't look good to me. There was a narrow, stone-paved
hallway leading through the building and at the rear of it was a
cork-screw-like stairway that wound upward. The hallway was as dim and
dark as a dungeon and made me feel funny. But I was there for a purpose
so there was no use getting scared of bugaboos. Up the stairway I went,
slowly and cautiously, keeping my eyes peeled for obstructions. I came
to the first landing, where there was a single strongly made wooden
door. I saw a knocker on the door and rapped at it rather faintly for
admittance. An elderly woman came to the door and demanded to know what
I wanted. I told her I was looking for a furnished room. From my accent
she gathered that I was a foreigner for she asked at once:

"Yer a furriner, ain't ye?"

I can't describe the Scotch accent just right for it ain't my language,
but I will try to set down what the lady said to me as well as I can.

"Yes, ma'am," said I; "I arrived from New York today."

"Yer a Yankee, I believe."

"No, ma'am," responded I, "I'm a Westerner."

This evidently puzzled the lady for she murmured "Ooh eye! ooh eye!" in
the same tone somewhat as the boozy lassie at the Workingman's
Restaurant had done.

"What will ye be doin' in Glasgie?" asked the lady.

I was stumped for a moment. I assured her I was going to look for a

"What's yer trade?"

"Oh, I work at anything," I answered.

"Ah, then yer jack of all trades and maister of none."

I assured the lady that was about the size of it and she then asked me
how much I wanted to pay for a room. I told her about a dollar a week.
As things were cheaper on this side of the water than on the other side,
I figured it out that I ought to get things at about half price.
Evidently the lady didn't think so, for she scanned me scornfully and
wanted to know if I took her place for a tramp's lodging house. That was
putting it rather plain which caused me to kind of wilt. I assured the
landlady I had no such idea. I asked her what she charged for a room and
she said two dollars and a half per week. Too much for yours truly, I
thought, and told her so. We couldn't make a deal so I groped my way
down stairs and tried my luck elsewhere. Rents probably were high in
that part of the city so I crossed the Clyde and wandered into the
Gorbals district. This is a section of the city inhabited by the poorer
classes of working people and I had my eye on it while wandering along
the Broomielaw. I saw warehouses along the waterfront over there and
stone-paved streets full of houses. The houses were ancient-looking and
grimy but I would probably find what I sought there.

The first house I entered in that district had the same kind of a
hallway with a spiral stairway at the end of it as the house I had been
in on the other side of the river, and when I rapped at the door on the
first floor a lady answered the summons. When I told her that I wanted a
furnished room she wanted to know how much I was willing to pay. She did
not tell me her price but wanted to size up my pile. Her little racket
wouldn't work. I told her that if she had a room that suited me and if
the price was right we could make a deal, otherwise not. Whereupon she
opened her hall door, let me in and led me to a fair-sized room and
asked me how I liked it. It contained a table, sofa and two chairs, but
nothing else. I told her I wanted a bed-room, not a sitting-room.

"This is a bed-room," said she, opening a closet in the room in which
was a bunk.

Holy Jerusalem! What did the lady take me for; a Chinaman, to put me in
a china closet? Nay, nay, Pauline! I'm no Chinaman. Here was another
case where the deal fell through. I like plenty of fresh air and light
where I sleep when I can get it, and enough room to kick in. Here there
was none of these things.

I kept a-moving. I came to a house opposite a theater where I met two
young ladies who occupied a flat and had a spare room. I believe they
were actresses. They told me that their vacant room was rented by an
actor who was now making a tour of the cities and that they didn't know
just when he would be home. In the meanwhile I could occupy his room if
I wished and when the actor returned I could share the room with him. I
did not feel as if I would like to sleep with an actor, for he might
have been a snorer or a high kicker, and I didn't know when he would be
back anyway. That sort of an arrangement did not suit me. No deal was
made here, either.

The next place I went to and where I finally located, was a flat
occupied by an old man and his daughter. The father was over seventy
years of age and the daughter about thirty. They rented me a neat room
for one dollar a week which contained an ample bed, chairs, rocker, a
wash-stand, soap, towel, a window, lace curtains and a shade. My
patience and perseverance had been rewarded at last. As soon as my
landlady left me I stripped and took a wash from head to foot, the first
good clean-up I had since I left New York. It was great. I rented the
room for a week and concluded to hike out of town when the week was up.
During the week that I remained in this house I became quite well
acquainted with the old man and his daughter and learned that he was
from the north of Ireland and that his wife who was dead had been
Scotch. The daughter, therefore, was half-and-half. She was an amiable,
good-tempered young woman, though far from pretty, and the devotion she
showed to her father astonished me. He wasn't in the best of health and
often was crabbed and cross, but no matter how crusty he was the
daughter petted and humored him, and crowed and goo-ed and gaa-ed to him
and never got out of patience. She treated him as a mother does her
child and never wearied of soothing him. The old man didn't seem to
appreciate these attentions for his daughter got no thanks from him and
not even a kind word. One day when the daughter had gone out on an
errand the father suspected that she was in my room, so he rushed into
my room, looked under the bed and into the corners to see if she were
there. The old man had not the slightest reason or cause to suspect his
daughter and I watched his maneuvers with anger but said nothing. He
deserved a good tongue-lashing and I felt like giving it to him but his
great age held me back. Had he been a younger man I would have told him
what I thought of him in short order.



I slept well that night, better than I had slept since I left New York,
for there was nothing to disturb me. A good rub down and a good night's
rest had done me a world of good. Those who have traveled know what my
feelings were. After a cheap breakfast in a Municipal Restaurant, where
I had two big, thick slices of bread with excellent butter and a cup of
good coffee for two cents, I bummed around the Clyde again, taking in
the sights. I liked Glasgow first rate. The people were as friendly and
sociable as they were out West, and their accent and ways were a
never-ending source of interest to me. Everything that I saw interested
me, for it was all so new and strange. No one can have the faintest idea
what there is to be seen abroad unless he or she goes there and hears
and sees for himself. Word-pictures are inadequate to give one a proper
idea, for there is something even in a foreign _atmosphere_ that must
be felt before it can be appreciated.

I bought a morning paper and sat down on a bench along the embankment to
read it. It was interesting from start to finish with nothing "yellow"
about it. The articles were written in an able, scholarly way, and
besides giving the news there were columns devoted to giving useful
hints, such as "Master and Man," "Husbands and Wives," and such like
things, that were well to know. They were in the shape of "Answers and
Queries," somewhat. Even the advertisements were interesting to me but
"The Want" ads were mostly incomprehensible, for there were too many
Scotch colloquialisms in them. I saw an announcement in the paper
stating that there would be dancing in the Green that afternoon, and I
concluded instantly that I would take it in. It was to be a free show
and when there is anything of that sort going on you may count me in,
every time.

In the meanwhile I just loafed around the banks of the Clyde, watching
them load and unload vessels, taking in the foreigners' ways of doing
things, peering into the shop-windows along the water-front, etc. The
time passed quickly enough. I wasn't homesick a bit but felt right at
home. There was something about the people and the place that made me
feel quite at home.

After dinner, at about two o'clock, I strolled into the Green. People
were slowly sauntering into it in groups, and walking up toward the
music stand where the dancing was to be done. The music stand was about
half a mile from the park entrance. It was early, so I sat down on a
bench and made myself comfortable. Little boys came along handing out
programs and I secured one of them. Here is what it said:

     _Glasgow Green._

     No. 1--March; Glendaurel Highlanders.

     No. 2--Strathspey; Marquis of Huntley.

     No. 3--Reel; The Auld Wife Ayont the Fire.

     No. 4--March; Brian Boru.

     No. 5--Strathspey; Sandy King.

     No. 6--Reel; Abercairney Highlanders.

     No. 7--Dance; Reel o' Tullock.

     No. 8--Waltz; The Pride of Scotland.

     No. 9--Highland Fling.

     No. 10--March; Loch Katrine Highlanders.

     No. 11--Strathspey; When You Go to the Hill.

     No. 12--Reel; Over the Isles to America.

     No. 13--Dance; Sword Dance.

     No. 14--March; 93d's Farewell to Edinburgh.

     No. 15--Strathspey; Kessock Ferry.

     No. 16--Reel; Mrs. McLeod's.

     No. 17--Slow March; Lord Leven.


     No. 1--Glee; Hail, Smiling Morn.

     No. 2--Part Song; Rhine Raft Song.

     No. 3--Part Song; Maggie Lauder.

     No. 4--Part Song; Let the Hills Resound.

     No. 5--Scottish Medley, introducing favorite airs.

     No. 6--We'll Hae Nane But Hielan Bonnets Here.

     No. 7--Part Song; Hail to the Chief.

     No. 8--Part Song; The Auld Man.

     No. 9--Part Song; Awake Aeolian Lyre.

     No. 10--Part Song; Night, Lovely Night.

     No. 11--God Save the King.

The program was a good long one and sure looked good to me. I imagined
there would be something doing.

At about half past two there was a big crowd congregated about the music
stand but as there were few seats near it most of the people had to

As I wanted to see all I could I mingled with the throng and patiently
waited for the performance to begin. The band hadn't made its appearance
yet and there was no one on the band stand. To relieve the tedium some
of the young fellows who were in the crowd began to chaff some of the
lassies in a flirty way. Three pretty girls in a group were the especial
target of the laddies. If I could only get off the Scotch right I would
jot down some of their badinage for it was very amusing, to me, at
least, but I couldn't do the theme justice.

After what to me seemed an interminable long wait we heard some yelling
and snarling away down toward the entrance of the park I took to be
dog-fighting. Too bad it was so far away, for anything would have been
agreeable just then to relieve the monotony, even a dog-fight. I noticed
the people near the entrance scattering to either side of the walk and
forming a lane through which to give the dogs a show. The yelping and
snarling came nearer and finally I perceived that it was a band of men
approaching dressed in Highland costume and playing the bagpipes. I had
heard the bagpipes played many a time and knew what they were but I had
never heard a whole lot of them played at once. I now knew that it
wasn't a dog-fight that had caused the noise. The bag-pipers came along
quickly with long strides, their heads erect, stern of visage with
petticoats flying from side to side like those of a canteen-girl when
she marches with her regiment. The men were husky fellows,
broad-shouldered, lithe and active, but they wore no pants. The whole
lot of them were bare-legged and upon their heads was perched a little
plaid cap with a feather in it, and over their shoulders was thrown a
plaid shawl. Stockings came up to their knees, but their legs a little
way further up beyond the stockings were entirely bare. Although there
were lots of the girls present I didn't notice any of them blush at this
exposure of the person. Maybe they were used to such spectacles. What
tune do you think these Highlanders were playing as they marched along?
Nothing more nor less than--

     "Where, oh where has my little dog gone,
     Where, oh where can he be?
     With his hair cut short and his tail cut long,
       Where, oh where can he be?"

This was a mighty nice little tune and I had heard it before, but I had
never heard it played by such instruments. The people liked the tune and
seemed to like the Highlanders too, for when they went by, the people
closed in after them in a solid body, and marched behind them, a
pushing, elbowing, struggling mass.

When the music stand was reached the band did not go upon it but marched
around it playing that same little old tune. I wondered why they didn't
change it and play something else but as the crowd didn't kick there was
no use of me kicking. They kept a marching and a marching around the
stand for quite a little while but the tune never changed. The musicians
took a good fresh hold on the air every minute or two, some note rising
a little shriller than the others but that is all the variation there
was. Do you want to know the honest truth? Well I wasn't stuck on the
tune or the bagpipes either. The noise they made would have made a dog
howl. It was nothing but a shrieking, yelling, and squeaking. Call that
music? From the pleased faces of the people you would have judged it was

After what seemed a coon's age the band quit playing and marching, and
mounted the platform, upon which they had been preceded by a lot of
boys and girls who formed the choir.

Number one on the program was a march, the Glendaurel Highlanders. I
couldn't see anything in it except more marching to a different tune.
The crowd seemed to like it and applauded frantically. There was a whole
lot of pushing and shoving by the crowd in my neighborhood and I wasn't
comfortable at all. A sturdy dame behind me made herself especially
obnoxious by wanting to get right up front and she didn't seem to care
how she got there or who she shoved out of the way to accomplish her

She dug her elbow into my side in no gentle fashion, and was bent on
getting in front of me, whether I was agreeable or not. Well, she didn't
make the riffle. I planted my elbow in her rib to see how she liked it.
She scuttled away from me then quickly enough.

Number two on the program was Marquis of Huntley. I didn't know who the
Marquis of Huntley was but evidently the crowd did for they went wild
over the tune and dancing. The dancing was fine, tip-top, but I can't
say as much for the tune. The way them Highlanders could dance was a
caution, for they were graceful and supple as eels. No flies on them.

Number three was a corker, a reel called "The Auld Wife Ayont the Fire."
There was something doing this time. The Highlanders turned themselves
loose and they hopped, skipped, jumped and yelled like a tribe of Sioux
Indians on the war path. How they did carry on and how the crowd whooped
it up in sympathy! The whole push was frantic, Highlanders and all. My
hair riz but I don't know why. If any one tells me that those
bare-legged Highlanders can't dance I will surely tell them they are
mistaken. They were artists and no mistake, every one of them.

Brian Boru was the next event on the program, a march. I was getting
tired of marches but the mob wasn't. They applauded the Brian Boru
wildly and saw a whole lot in it that I couldn't see.

Number five was another strathspey, Sandy King. I was wondering who
Sandy was and if he were a king, but I didn't like to ask questions. No
use letting the "hoi-polloi" get on to it that I was a greenhorn. There
might have been something doing had they known it, for it takes but a
little thing to set a mob a-going.

Next came a reel, Abercairney Highlanders. I wondered how many different
clans of Highlanders there were in Scotland. The woods seemed full of
them. This was another wild Indian affair, worse than the first reel.
Them chaps were good yellers and jumpers, and I think could hold their
own with any wild Indian, no matter what tribe he belonged to. Their
lungs were leathery, their limbs tireless, and their wind excellent.

The Reel of Tullock came next and then a waltz, "The Pride of Scotland."
Both were excellent.

Number nine was a Highland Fling. That was a great number. It aroused
everyone to enthusiasm. I could not help but admire the grace of the
dancers. So quick they were, so unerring. Their wind was so good that I
felt I would have hated to tackle any one of them in a scrap.

Number thirteen was a sword-dance, danced by one man only. Crossed
swords were laid on the platform and the highlander danced between them
slowly, rapidly, any old way, and never touched. He never looked down
while dancing, and how he managed to avoid these swords was a marvel to
me. The sword blades were placed close together and the dance was kept
up a long time. That chap was an artist of a high class, and could have
made a whole lot of money on the stage had he chosen to do so. Maybe he
was a celebrity in Glasgow and Scotland. He never touched a sword. His
dancing was marvelous. It was evident these Highlanders could do
something besides squeezing wind out of a bag and playing "where, oh
where." Yes, they were all right. Their performance was a good one and
worth anyone's while to see. When I returned to my lodgings that evening
I told my landlady that I had attended the dance in the Green and she
wanted to know how I liked it. I told her truly that it was the best I
had ever seen. And it was, by long odds.



The evening of my second day's stay in Glasgow I put in by taking in a
show at the theater. It was the Gayety Theater I intended to go to,
where vaudeville plays were given, but as the theater was a long
distance from the Gorbals District, I had some trouble finding it. The
theatrical performances in Glasgow begin early, some at half-past five
and some at six o'clock, and let out at about nine o'clock, which gives
those so inclined a chance to go to bed early. The days were long at
that season of the year, so that I arrived in front of the theater while
the evening sun was still high in the heavens. The theater building was
an immense one of stone and very lofty. In front of it was a long line
of people waiting to make a rush for good seats in the gallery, and I
joined the throng. There was a good deal of rough horse-play among some
of the fellows waiting there and a whole lot of chaffing. A chap behind
me gave me a kick in the rump and tipped my hat over my eyes, which he
deemed a very good joke. I didn't think it was and told him not to get
too gay, whereupon he roared with laughter. He told his neighbors that
they had a greenhorn among them, whereupon many in the crowd made life a
burden for me for a while. They made all kinds of chaffing remarks, they
jeered me, they hooted me and groaned. They were having a whole lot of
fun at my expense but I never said another word, for what was the use? I
was mad clear through, though. Had I only had a gang with me there might
have been a different tale to tell. I was alone and friendless. A fellow
thinks all kinds of things when a crowd gets after him.

The line was growing longer rapidly, and before the doors were opened a
couple of hundred people must have been on the street waiting. As soon
as the doors were opened there was a grand rush and scramble to secure
tickets. I held my own in the push, though I was nearly suffocated and
squeezed flat, but managed to secure a ticket after a little while, for
which I paid twelve cents--six pence. Cheap enough if the show is any
good. I rushed up the spiral stairway after the crowd, but before I got
half way up I was obliged to stop and blow off steam. The steps were
many and winding. I did not notice anyone else stopping for a breather
which led me to conclude that the Scots are a long-winded race. Two or
three times did I have to stop before I reached nigger-heaven, my
destination. The gallery was so high up and so close to the ceiling that
I could have touched the ceiling with my hand when standing up. Below,
clear to the orchestra seats, or "pit," as it is called, was gallery
after gallery. Some of these were divided off into queer contrivances
called "stalls." To me the stalls seemed like huge dry-goods boxes, with
the part facing outward, toward the stage, open, from the middle to the
top. The lower part was boarded in. They were queer-looking
contrivances, and the people in them looked as if they were caged. The
stalls were supposed to be private and exclusive--in a word, private

Some little boys in livery were wandering about on the various floors
crying out "Program" with the accent on the first syllable, and as I
wanted one, I hailed a boy who gave me one and charged me a penny for it
(two cents). Printing must be dear in Glasgow, I thought, to charge a
fellow two cents for a printed piece of paper. I said nothing but
scanned the program. Here is what it said:

     No. 1--La Puits d'Amour, Balfe; Band.

     No. 2--Mr. John Robertson, Baritone Vocalist.

     No. 3--Drew and Richards in their specialty act, Old Fashioned

     No. 4--Mr. Billy Ford, Negro Comedian.

     No. 5--The Alaskas--Ben and Frank--Comic Horizontal Bar Experts.

     No. 6--Mr. Edward Harris, London Comedian.

     No. 7--Miss Josie Trimmer, Child Actress, and the Forget-me-nots,
     Vocalists and Dancers.

     No. 8--Selection, Yeoman of the Guard.

     No. 9--Sallie Adams, American Serpentine Dancer.

     No. 10--The Gees, in their Musical Oddity, Invention.

     No. 11--Collins and Dickens, in their Refined Specialty act.

     No. 12--Mr. Charles Russell, Comedian and descriptive Vocalist.

     No. 13--National Anthem.

Quite a lengthy program this and it looked to me as if it might be good,
especially the Serpentine Dancer, who was a countrywoman of mine, and
the darkies, who were probably countrymen.

After a moderate wait the lights were turned up, the orchestra tuned up
and soon the band gave us a selection by Balfe called "La Puits
d'Amour." I didn't know what "La Puits d'Amour" was but it didn't make
any difference to me. It was some kind of music. The selection was a
long one and the band sawed away at it as if they were never going to
stop. It was so long drawn out in fact that my wits went a wool
gathering and I nearly fell asleep, for tedious music is apt to make me
snooze. When the music stopped I woke up and was ready for business.

The first event on the program was Mr. John Robertson, Baritone

The band played a preliminary flourish when out walked Mr. Robertson
dressed in a spike-tail coat, black vest and biled shirt. Hanging in
front of his vest was a long, thick watch-chain which must have been a
valuable one, for it looked like gold. Mr. Robertson sang a song and
kept a hold on his watch chain. The song was hum-drum and so was Mr.
Robertson's voice. Mr. Robertson made no great hit and when he left us
he took his chain with him.

Number two was Drew and Richards in their specialty act, "Old Fashioned

A lady and gent came upon the stage dressed in very old-fashioned garb,
and sang. Just as soon as the lady opened her mouth to sing I knew she
was a gentleman and she couldn't sing any more like a lady than I could.
I have seen female impersonators on the stage many a time and they
carried out the illusion perfectly, but this chap wasn't in it at all.
He gave me a pain. I wasn't sorry when this couple made their exit.

Mr. Billy Ford, the Negro Comedian, next came to the front. Now there'll
be a little something doing, anyway, thought I.

Mr. Billy Ford was not a negro at all but a Britisher with a cockney
accent. Maybe I wasn't astonished! Holy Smoke! He sang out bold as you
please just as if he were singing like a darkey and the gallery gods
went into ecstacies over him. They laughed, roared, and chirruped. They
seemed to think a heap of Mr. Ford, but I felt like going somewhere to
lay off and die. A nigger with a cockney accent! Oh my! Oh my! Will
wonders never cease?

The comic horizontal bar experts, the Alaskas, were very tame turners,
and to my view, anything but funny. I had seen better stunts than they
performed in free shows on the Bowery at Coney Island.

The sixth number on the program was Mr. Edward Harris, London Comedian.
Here at last was someone who could sing and act. Mr. Harris was from the
London Music Halls and was evidently a favorite, for he was given a
great reception. He was greeted with roars of welcome and shouts and
calls from the gallery gods that seemed unfamiliar and queer to me. Even
the people in the pit and stalls applauded loudly. Mr. Harris turned
himself loose and impersonated London characters in a way that brought
forth the wildest enthusiasm. Some of the gods nearly died laughing at
his comicalities and a man away down in the pit laughed out loud in such
a way that it made me think of a dream I once had when I saw ghosts
playing leap-frog over a graveyard fence and having an elegant time of
it. The noise this man made was a high sepulchral shriek, like theirs.
It was wild and weird.

The comedian was first class and the audience was loath to let him go.
They recalled him several times and he responded.

Number seven was Miss Josie Trimmer, child actress, and the two
Forget-Me-Nots, vocalists and dancers. This was another tame affair for
the two Forget-Me-Nots were Scottish lassies who got off coon songs with
a Scotch accent and had acquired an improper idea of coon dancing. Their
act was a caricature and a-- well, never mind. It isn't right to be too
critical. They were doing the best they could and were appreciated by
the audience, so it may be well for me not to say too much.

The next number was a selection by the band, "Yeoman of the Guard,"
which was played after a long intermission. I was getting rather weary
by this time and had half a mind to go home, but I wanted to see the
serpentine dancer, Sallie Adams, who was a countrywoman of mine. It
seemed to me I hadn't seen a countryman or countrywoman for a coon's
age, and I felt as if I just couldn't go until I saw Sallie.

When the time came for Miss Adams to appear on the stage, all the lights
in the theater were turned out and a strong calcium light was thrown
upon the stage. Sallie hopped into view chipper as you please, never
caring a whoop who saw her, countryman or foreigner, and she began to
throw diaphanous folds of cheese-cloth all over herself and around
herself. Different colored lights were thrown upon her draperies as she
danced, and the effect was thrilling and made my hair stand up. Sallie
was all right. She was onto her job in good shape. Maybe I didn't
applaud? I roared, I stamped and whistled, and my neighbors must have
thought I was clean off. The gorgeous spectacle reminded me of the
Fourth of July at home, when sky-rockets go up with a hiss and a roar,
Roman candles color the black skies, sissers chase through the air like
snakes, bombs explode and fall in stars of all colors. Siss! Boom! Ah!

When Sallie made her exit I made mine, for I had got my money's worth
and was satisfied.



One thing that struck me very forcibly before I had been in Glasgow any
length of time was the fact that the people thought a great deal of Mr.
Burns, the poet. Streets and lanes were named after him, inns and
taverns, shoes, hats, caps, clothing, tobacco, bum-looking cigars, bad
whiskey, in fact his name was attached to all kinds of articles to make
them sell, and in some cases merely as a mark of respect or affection.

It was plain to the most casual observer that Mr. Burns was thought a
great deal of. He had been dead a hundred years or more, yet his
personality pervaded the place, and his picture was to be seen on signs,
posters, in the stores and elsewhere. For Mr. Burns most Scotchmen will
die, Scotch ladies sigh, Scotch babies cry, Scotch dogs ki-yi. He was a
good-looking chap, and highly gifted, but the poor fellow died before he
had reached his thirty-eighth year, which was a national calamity. Had
he lived there is no telling what he might have accomplished, for during
the short span of his life he did wonderful things. He took the old
Scotch songs that had been written before his day and gave them a twist
of his own which improved them vastly, and made them immortal; he
portrayed Scottish life in a way that no poet has ever imitated or will
imitate maybe, and he loved his country deeply and fervently. His father
was a rancher, and a poverty-stricken one at that, and the poet was born
in a shack on the farm. The house was a little old one of stone, and a
rich man of the day would have used it for a chicken house. In this
house and in a china closet in the kitchen was born the greatest poet
Scotland ever produced. When Bobbie grew up the old man set him
a-plowing, and while at this work the boy composed rhymes which were so
good that some of his friends induced him to print them. Old man Burns
didn't see any good in the verses, for he knew more about poultry than
he did about poetry, and told his son to cut it out. Bobbie couldn't,
for it just came natural.

Before he was twenty-one the boy had written lots of good poetry and it
was put in book form and printed at Kilmarnock, a town not far from his
birthplace. The birthplace of the poet was on the farm near the town of
Ayr, in Ayrshire, and that whole county (or shire) is now called "The
Burns Country," because it was the poet's stamping-ground. The poet knew
lots of people throughout the county and his writings have immortalized
many a place in it. After his book had been printed he sprang into fame
at once and was made much of by man, woman and child. Being a
good-looking chap, the girls began to run after him, and poor Burnsie
had the time of his life. He wanted to steer clear of 'em, but he
couldn't, for the girls liked and admired him too much. The result was
that a few of them got into trouble, and soon some wild-eyed fathers and
brothers went gunning for him. The fault was not the poet's wholly, for
he couldn't have kept these girls away from him with a cannon. To avoid
such troubles in the future he finally married a blond, buxom young
lassie called Jean Armour, by whom he had twins, the first rattle out of
the box. Not long after that he had two at a throw again. Bobbie could
do something besides write poetry, evidently. He was a thoroughbred any
way you took him, though the people at that time did not know it and did
not fully appreciate his great qualities. It was only after he had been
dead a long time that the world fully realized his worth. At the present
day they estimate him properly and their affection and reverence for him
are boundless. Some of his countrymen call him simply Burns, others call
him Rabbie, and still others, "puir Rabbie," puir meaning poor.

The country that he lived in, Ayrshire, is visited by a million
strangers or more every year, who visit the shack he was born in and the
places he made immortal by his writings. The shack has been fixed up and
improved somewhat since he lived in it, and is now a sort of museum
where are displayed various editions of the books, manuscripts and
other things, that once were his. Among the things is a walking-cane
that a New York lawyer named Kennedy somehow got hold of. How Kennedy
got the cane I don't know, but he returned it to the Burns collection in
the cottage. Mr. Kennedy is a rare exception to New York lawyers in
general, for they rarely return anything that they once get their hands
on. Mr. Kennedy must have had a whole lot of regard for the great poet.

Lots of people have never read any of Burns' poems. I wonder would they
appreciate it if I showed them a few samples? I will not print the long
ones, but only the shorter ones, for even they will show, I am sure, the
greatness of "Puir Rabbie."

As I said in a previous chapter, when I first set foot in Scotland it
was at Greenock, about 25 miles from Glasgow, where a tender took us
ashore from the Furnessia. Greenock is quite a city, for it contains a
good many factories and other establishments, but the city has become
famous the world over just because of one little circumstance connected
with the great poet, namely: A young girl named Highland Mary lived
there who loved, and was beloved by the poet, and they were engaged to
be married. Sad to relate, the young girl died while she was engaged to
the poet, which saddened him considerably. Years afterward he married
Jean Armour. The poet wrote some lines to the memory of Highland Mary
which almost any Scotchman or Scotch lady can recite by heart. Here they


     Ye banks and braes and streams around
     The Castle o' Montgomery,
     Green be your woods, and fair your flowers,
     Your waters never drumlie;
     There Summer first unfauld her robes,
     And there the langest tarry;
     For there I took the last farewell
     O' my sweet Highland Mary.

     How sweetly bloomed the gay green birk
     How rich the hawthorn's blossom!
     As, underneath their fragrant shade
     I clasped her to my bosom!
     The golden hours, on angels' wings
     Flew o'er me and my dearie;
     For dear to me as light and life
     Was my sweet Highland Mary.

     Wi' mony a vow and locked embrace
     Our parting was fu' tender;
     And pledging oft to meet again
     We tore oursels asunder;
     But, O! fell Death's untimely frost,
     That nipt my flower sae early!
     Now green's the sod and cauld's the clay
     That wraps my Highland Mary.

     O pale, pale now those rosy lips
     I oft ha'e kissed sae fondly!
     And closed for aye the sparkling glance,
     That dwelt on me sae kindly!
     And mouldering now in silent dust
     That heart that lo'ed me dearly!
     But still within my bosom's core
     Shall live my Highland Mary.

Was there anything ever written more sad, pathetic and sweet?

Following is a little poem written in a different vein which may serve
as a sort of temperance lesson to some husbands who stay out late at
night having a good time. The recreant husband's name in the poem is Mr.
Jo, and Mrs. Jo sends it in to him good and hard. Says Mr. Jo:

     O let me in this ae night,
     This ae, ae, ae night;
     For pity's sake this ae night,
     O rise and let me in, Jo!

     Thou hear'st the winter wind and weet;
     Nae star blinks thro' the driving sleet.
     Tak' pity on my weary feet,
     And shield me frae the rain, Jo.

     The bitter blast that 'round me blaws
     Unheeded howls, unheeded fa's;
     The cauldness o' thine heart's the cause
     Of a' my grief and pain, Jo.

     O let me in this ae, ae night,
     This ae, ae, ae night;
     For pity's sake this ae night
     O rise and let me in, Jo.

Mr. Jo's pleadings were in vain, to judge from Mrs. Jo's answer, which
is as follows:

     O tell na me o' wind and rain!
     Upbraid na me wi' cauld disdain!
     Gae back the gate ye came again--
     I winna let you in, Jo.

I haven't the least idea where Jo spent the night, but it surely wasn't
with Mrs. Jo. There are lots of husbands who get full and don't know
when to go home. Let them paste this poem in their hats. It may do them

Here is an old song revised by Puir Rabbie, whose magic touch has made
it better and more famous than it ever was before. It is entitled: "Will
ye go to the Highlands, Leezie Lindsay?"

       Will ye go to the Hielands, Leezie Lindsay,
     Will ye go to the Hielands wi' me?
       Will ye go to the Hielands, Leezie Lindsay,
     My pride and my darling to be?

       To gang to the Hielands wi' you, sir,
     I dinna ken how that may be;
       For I ken na the land that ye live in,
     Nor ken I the lad I'm gaun wi'.

       O Leezie, lass, ye maun ken little,
     If sae that ye dinna ken me;
       My name is Lord Ronald McDonald,
     A chieftain o' high degree.

       She has kilted her coats o' green satin,
     She has kilted them up to the knee;
       And she's off wi' Lord Ronald McDonald
     His bride and his darling to be.

A whole lot of human nature about this little poem and a fine swing to
it. Burns had a touch that no one has ever imitated or ever can imitate.
It is a twist, which for want of a better name, I would call "a French
Twist." Imitate it, ye who can!

Everyone knows "Auld Lang Syne." It is an old song that didn't amount to
much until Burns got a hold of it and put his twist to it. Here it is:


     Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
       And never brought to min'?
     Should auld acquaintance be forgot
       And days o' auld lang syne?
     For auld lang syne, my dear,
       For auld lang syne,
     Well tak' a cup o' kindness yet
       For auld lang syne.

     We twa ha'e run about the braes
       And pu'd the gowans fine;
     But we've wandered many a weary foot
       Sin' auld lang syne;
     We two ha'e paid'lt i' the burn
       Frae mornin' sun till dine;
     But seas between us braid ha'e roar'd
       Sin auld lang syne.


     And here's a hand, my trusty fren,
       And gie us a hand o' thine;
     And we'll take a right good wallie-waught
       For auld lang syne.


     And surely ye'll be your pint stoup,
       And surely I'll be mine;
     And we'll take a cup o' kindness yet
       For auld lang syne.

Following is a composition that is famous the world over and is used as
a recitation, not only in this country but in every other
English-speaking country. It is entitled: "Bruce at Bannockburn":


     Scots, wha ha'e wi' Wallace bled;
     Scots, whom Bruce has often led;
     Welcome to your gory bed,
         Or to glorious victorie!

     Now's the day, and now's the hour;
     See the front o' battle lower;
     See approach proud Edward's power--
         Edward! chains and slaverie!

     Wha will be a traitor knave?
     Wha can fill a coward's grave?
     Wha sae base as be a slave?
         Traitor! Coward! turn and flee.

     Wha for Scotland's king and law
     Freedom's sword will strongly draw,
     Freemen stand or freemen fa',
         Caledonian! on wi' me!

     By oppression's woes and pains!
     By your sons in servile chains!
     We will drain our dearest veins,
         But they shall--they shall be free!

     Lay the proud usurper low!
     Tyrants fall in every foe!
     Liberty's in every blow!
         Forward! Let us do or die.

Here is a love song to Jennie, entitled, "Come, Let Me Take Thee!"


     Come, let me take thee to my breast
       And pledge we ne'er shall sunder;
     And I shall spurn as vilest dust
       The world's wealth and grandeur;
     And do I hear my Jennie own
       That equal transports move her?
     I ask for dearest life alone
       That I may live to love her.

     Thus in my arms, wi' a' thy charms,
       I clasp my countless treasure;
     I'll seek nae mair o' heaven to share
       Than sic a moment's pleasure;
     And by thy een sae bonnie blue
       I swear I'm thine forever!
     And on thy lips I seal my vow,
       And break it I shall never.

One day Burns was called upon for a toast during a dinner which was
given by the Dumfries Volunteers, in honor of their anniversary. The
poet got up and spoke the following lines extempore:

     Instead of a song, boys, I'll give you a toast--
     Here is the memory of those on the 12th that we lost!
     That we lost, did I say; nay, by heaven, that we found;
     For their fame it shall last while the world goes around.
     The next in succession I'll give you--the King!
     Whoe'er would betray him, on high may he swing!
     And here's the grand fabric, our Free Constitution,
     As built on the base of the great Revolution.
     And longer with politics not to be crammed,
     Be anarchy cursed and be tyranny damned;
     And who would to Liberty e'er be disloyal,
     May his son be a hangman and he his first trial.


     Some ha'e meat and canna eat it,
     And some wad eat that want it;
     But we ha'e meat and we can eat,
     And sae the Lord be thankit.


     As father Adam first was fooled,
     A case that's still too common,
     Here lies a man a woman ruled--
     The devil ruled the woman.

The poet's father, William Burness, lies buried in a graveyard at
Alloway. The following lines were written by his son to his memory:


     O ye whose cheek the tear of pity stains,
     Draw near with pious reverence and attend.
     Here lie the loving husband's dear remains,
     The tender father and the generous friend.

     The pitying heart that felt for human woe;
     The dauntless heart that feared no human pride;
     The friend of man, to vice alone a foe;
     "For e'en his failings leaned to virtue's side."

I believe there are some husbands who grow tired of the married state
after they have been in it a while. They came to find out that it isn't
all "beer and skittles," as they first imagined it would be. Even "Puir
Rabbie" had troubles of his own, as the following will show, for it is
written about himself:

     "Oh, that I had n'er been married!
     I would never had nae care;
     Now I've gotten wife and bairns,
     And they cry crowdie ev'ry mair;

     Ance crowdie, twice crowdie,
     Three times crowdie in a day;
     Gin ye crowdie ony mair,
     Ye'll crowdie a' my meal away.

     Waefu' want and hunger fley me,
     Glowrin' by the hallan en';
     Sair I fecht them at the door,
     But aye I'm eerie the come ben."

The poet had lots of cronies and friends, and he was as loyal to some of
them as they were to him. He was a good boon companion and liked "a wee
drappie" (nip) himself as well as anyone. Many an alehouse proudly
proclaims that he visited it and preserves the chair or bench that he
sat on, the glass he drank out of or the table he sat at, to this day,
and any and every thing that is familiar with his presence is sacred and
treasured. William Muir of Tarbolton is the friend to whom the
following lines were written:


     An honest man here lies at rest,
     As e'er God with his image blest;
     The friend of man, the friend of truth;
     The friend of age, the guide of youth;
     Few hearts like his with virtue warmed,
     Few heads with knowledge so informed;
     If there's another world, he lives in bliss;
     If there is none he made the best of this.

Mr. John Dove kept an inn at Mauchline called the "Whiteford Arms," and
the poet pays his respects to him in the following fashion:


     Here lies Johnny Pidgeon;
     What was his religion?
         Whae'er desires to ken,
     To some other warl'
     Maun follow the carl,
         For here Johnny Pidgeon had nane.

     Strong ale was ablution--
     Small beer persecution--
         A dram was momento mori;
     But a full flowing bowl
     Was the saving his soul,
         And port was celestial glory.

To judge from the following, the poet did not have a great respect for
all ruling elders of the church. Souter Hood was a miserly one.


     Here Souter Hood in death doth sleep;
     To hell, if he's gone thither;
     Satan, gie him thy gear to keep,
     He'll hand it weel thegither.


     O Death, hadst thou but spared his life
       Whom we this day lament,
     We freely wad exchanged the wife
       An' a' been weel content.

The poet was hospitably entertained at a place one day called for short
and sweet Dahna Cardoch. In appreciation he got off the following:

     When death's dark stream I ferry o'er,
       A time that surely shall come--
     In heaven itself I'll ask no more
       Than just a Highland Welcome.

One Sunday while in the northern part of Scotland with Nicol, a friend
of his, he visited the Carron Works which they had traveled some
distance to see. There was a sign on the gate: "No Admittance to
Strangers," which barred the poet and his friend. Here is an apostrophe
by Burns in regard to the matter:


     We cam' na here to view your warks
       In hopes to be mair wise,
     But only, lest we gang to hell,
       It may be nae surprise;

     But when we tirled at your door,
       Your porter dought na hear us;
     Sae may, should we to hell's yetts come,
       Your billy Satan serve us.


     O, mirk, mirk is this midnight hour,
       And loud the tempest roar;
     A waeful wanderer seeks thy tower--
       Lord Gregory, ope the door.

     An exile frae her father's ha',
       And a' for loving thee;
     At least some pity on me show,
       If love it may na be.

     Lord Gregory, mind'st thou not the grove
       By bonnie Irwine side,
     Where first I owned that virgin love
       I lang, lang had denied!

     How often didst thou pledge and vow
       Thou wad for aye be mine;
     And my fond heart, itself sae true,
       It ne'er mistrusted thine.

     Hard is thy heart, Lord Gregory,
       And flinty is thy breast--
     Thou dart of heaven that flashed by,
       O, wilt thou give me rest!

     Ye mustering thunders from above,
       Your willing victim see!
     But spare and pardon my fause love
       His wrangs to Heaven and me!


     O, Mary, at thy window be,
       It is the wished, the trysted hour!
     Those smiles and glances let me see
       That makes the miser's treasure poor.
     How blithely wad I bide the stoure
       A weary slave frae sun to sun,
     Could I the rich reward secure--
       The lovely Mary Morison.

     Jestreen, when to the trembling string
       The dance gaed through the lighted ha',
     To thee my fancy took its wing--
       I sat, but neither heard nor saw;
     Though this was fair, and that was braw,
       And you the toast of a' the town,
     I sighed and said amang them a'
       "Ye are na Mary Morison."

     O Mary, canst thou wreck his peace,
       Wha for thy sake wad gladly die;
     Or canst thou break that heart of his
       Whose only faut is loving thee?
     If love for love thou wilt na gi'e
       At least be pity to me shown,
     A thought ungentle canna be
       The thought o' Mary Morison.


     When ---- deceased to the devil went down
     'Twas nothing would serve him but Satan's own crown;
     Thy fool's head, quoth Satan, that crown shall wear never,
     Grant thou'rt wicked but not quite so clever.


     O, open the door some pity to show,
       O, open the door to me, O!
     Though thou has been fause, I'll ever prove true,
       O, open the door to me, O!
     Cauld is the blast upon my pale cheek,
       But caulder thy love for me, O!
     The frost that freezes the life at my heart
       Is naught to my pains frae thee, O!
     The wan moon is setting behind the white wave,
       And time is setting with me, O!
     False friends, false love, farewell! for mair
       I'll ne'er trouble them nor thee, O!
     She has opened the door, she has opened it wide;
       She sees his pale corse on the plain, O!
     My true love! she cried, and sank down by his side
       Never to rise again, O!


     Bless the Redeemer, Cardoness,
     With grateful lifted eyes;
     Who said that not the soul alone
     But body, too, must rise.

     For had he said, "The soul alone
     From death I shall deliver,"
     Alas! alas! O Cardoness,
     Then thou hadst slept forever.


     True hearted was he, the said swain o' the Yarrow,
       And fair are the maids on the banks o' the Ayr,
     But by the sweet side of the Nith's winding river
       Are lovers as faithful and maidens as fair;
     To equal young Jessie seek Scotland all over,
       To equal young Jessie you seek it in vain;
     Grace, beauty and elegance fetter her lover,
       And maidenly modesty fixes the chain.
     O, fresh is the rose in the gay dewy morning,
       And sweet is the lily at evening close;
     But in the fair presence o' lovely young Jessie
       Unseen is the lily, unheeded the rose.
     Love sits in her smile, a wizard ensnaring,
       Enthroned in her een, he delivers his law;
     And still to her charms she alone is a stranger,
       Her modest demeanor's the jewel of a'.


     As down the burn they took their way
       And thro' the flowery dale,
     His cheek to hers he aft did lay,
       And love was aye the tale.
     "O, Mary, when shall we return
       Sic pleasure to renew?"
     Quoth Mary, "Love, I like the burn,
       And aye shall follow you."


     Deluded swain, the pleasure
       The fickle Fair can give thee
     Is but a fairy treasure--
       Thy hopes will soon deceive thee.
     The billows on the ocean,
       The breezes idly roaming,
     The clouds' uncertain motion--
       They are bu t types of women.
     O! art thou not ashamed
       To doat upon a feature?
     If man thou wouldst be named,
       Despise the silly creature.
     Go, find an honest fellow--
       Good claret set before thee--
     Hold on till thou'rt mellow--
       And then to bed in glory.


     Husband, husband, cease your strife,
       No longer idly rave, sir;
     Though I am your wedded wife,
       Yet I am not your slave, sir.
     "One of two must still obey,
       Nancy, Nancy;
     Is it man or woman, say?
       My spouse Nancy!"
     "If it is still the lordly word,
       Service and obedience;
     I'll desert my sovereign lord--
       And so, good by, allegiance!"
     "Sad will I be, so bereft;
       Nancy, Nancy!
     Yet I'll try to make a shift,
       My spouse Nancy!"
     "My poor heart, then break it must,
       My last hour I am near it;
     When you lay me in the dust,
       Think, think how you will bear it."


     O, can ye sew cushions and can ye sew sheets,
       And can ye sing bal-lu-loo when the bairn greets?
     And hee and baw birdie, and hee and baw lamb!
     And hee and baw birdie, my bonnie wee lamb!
       Hee, O, wee! O, what would I do wi' you;
       Black is the life that I lead wi' you!
     Money o' you--little for to gie you!
     Hee, O, wee! O, what would I do wi' you?


     Let not woman e'er complain
       Of inconstancy in love;
     Let not woman e'er complain
       Fickle man is apt to rove.

     Look abroad through Nature's range--
       Nature's mighty law is change;
     Ladies, would it not be strange,
       Man should then a monster prove?

     Mark the winds and mark the skies,
       Ocean's ebb and ocean's flow;
     Sun and moon but set to rise--
       Round and round the seasons go.

       Why, then, ask of silly man
       To oppose great Nature's plan?
     We'll be constant while we can--
       You can be no more, you know.


The following was written to Jean Jeffrey, daughter of a minister, who
afterward became Mrs. Renwick, and emigrated to New York with her

     When first I saw fair Jennie's face
       I couldna tell what ailed me;
     My heart went fluttering pit-a-pat--
       My een, they almost failed me.
     She's aye sae neat, sae trim, sae tight
       All grace does 'round her hover,
     Ae look deprived me o' my heart
       And I became a lover.

     Had I Dundas' whole estate
       Or Hopetown's wealth to shine in--
     Did warlike laurels crown my brow
       Or humbler bays entwining--
     I'd lay them a' at Jennie's feet,
       Could I but hope to move her
     And prouder than a belted knight,
       I'd be my Jennie's lover.

     But sair I fear some happier swain
       Has gained sweet Jennie's favor;
     If so, may every bliss be hers,
       Tho' I maun never have her.
     But gang she east or gang she west,
       'Twixt Forth and Tweed all over,
     While men have eyes, or ears, or taste
       She'll always find a lover.

The poet one day was taking a ride through the country on horseback and
when he got to the town of Carlisle became thirsty and stopped at a
tavern for a drink. He tethered his horse outside in the village green
where it was espied by the poundmaster, who took it to the pound. When
Burnsie came out he was mad clear through and this is what he wrote:

     Was e'er puir poet sae befitted?
     The maister drunk--the horse committed,
     Puir harmless beast, tak thee nae care,
     Thou'lt be a horse when he's nae mair (mare).

Andrew Turner was not highly appreciated by the poet, if we may judge
from the following:

     In seventeen hundred and forty-nine
     Satan took stuff to make a swine
       And cuist it in a corner;
     But wilely he changed his plan
     And shaped it something like a man
       And called it Andrew Turner.


     My blessing upon thy sweet wee lippie,
       My blessing upon thy bonnie e'e brie!
     Thy smiles are sae like my blithe sodger laddie
       Thou's aye the dearer and dearer to me.


     Ye hypocrites! are these your pranks,
     To murder men and gi'e God thanks?
     For shame gi'e o'er! proceed no further--
     God won't accept your thanks for murther.


     The graybeard, Old Wisdom, may boast of his treasures--
     Give me with gay Folly to live;
     Grant him calm-blooded, time-settled pleasures
     But Folly has raptures to give.


     What dost thou in that mansion fair?
       Flit, Galloway, and find
     Some narrow, dirty dungeon cave,
       The picture of thy mind!

     No Stewart art thou, Galloway--
       The Stewarts all were brave;
     Besides, the Stewarts were but fools,
       Not one of them a knave.

     Bright ran thy line, O Galloway!
       Through many a far-famed sire;
     So ran the far-famed Roman way--
       So ended--in a mire!

     Spare me thy vengeance, Galloway--
       In quiet let me live;
     I ask no kindness at thy hand,
       For thou hast none to give.

The poet subscribed for a paper which he didn't receive regularly, so he
told the editor about it in this fashion:

     Dear Peter, dear Peter,
       We poor sons of meter
     Are aften negleckit, ye ken;
     For instance, your sheet, man,
       Tho' glad I'm to see it, man,
     I get no ae day in ten.


     Is there for honest poverty,
       That hangs its head and a' that;
     The coward slave, we pass him by,
       We dare be poor for a' that;
     For a' that and a' that!
       Our toil's obscure and a' that,
     The rank is but the guinea's stamp
       The man's the gowd for a' that.

     What though on hamely fare we dine
       Wear hoddin grey and a' that;
     Give fools their silks and knaves their wine
       A man's a man for a' that!
     For a' that and a' that,
       Their tinsel show and a' that;
     The honest man, though e'er sae poor,
       Is king o' men for a' that!

     Ye see yon birkie, ca'd a lord,
       Wha' struts and stares and a' that?
     Though hundreds worship at his word,
       He's but a coof for a' that;
     For a' that and a' that;
       His riband, star and a' that,
     The man of independent mind
       He looks and laughs at a' that!

     A prince can mak' a belted knight,
       A marquis, duke and a' that;
     But an honest man's aboon his might--
       Guid faith he maunna fa' that;
     For a' that and a' that,
       Their dignities and a' that.
     The pith o' sense, and pride o' worth,
       Are higher ranks than a' that.

     Then let us pray that come it may,
       As come it will for a' that,
     That sense and worth, o'er a' the earth
       May bear the gree, and a' that!
     For a' that and a' that
       It's coming yet for a' that,
     That man to man, the warld o'er,
       Shall brothers be for a' that.

Here are a few facts concerning the personal and family history of the

His father's name was William Burness, and was born November 11, 1721,
at Clockenhill, Scotland. I suppose that Burness was the old-fashioned
way of spelling Burns, hence the difference in the names of the son and
father. The poet's name was Robert Burns and the father's William
Burness, or Burns.

His mother's name was Agnes Brown and she was born in the Carrick
district, Scotland, March 17, 1732.

Robert Burns, the great poet, was born January 25, 1759, and died July
21, 1796, being therefore not thirty-eight years of age at the time of
his death. He was the eldest of seven children who were named
consecutively Robert, Gilbert, Agnes, Arabella, William, John and

The wife of the poet, as I have previously stated in this volume, was
Jean Armour, and she was born at Mauchline in 1763 and died at Dumfries
in 1834. She survived the poet many years and died at the ripe old age
of 71. She was a national character and was made much of, as was
everyone else intimately or even remotely connected with the National
Bard. This is the reward of greatness, and thus any man or woman who
achieves honorable greatness, leaves distinction behind them and throws
a halo of glory over those with whom they have been connected or

The following children were born to the great poet and his wife:

Twins in 1786. The boy, Robert, lived, but the girl died in infancy.

Twins in 1788. Both died in infancy.

Francis Wallace died at the age of 14.

William Nicol, born in 1791.

Elizabeth Riddell, born in 1792. Died at the age of two years.

James Glencairne, born in 1794, died in 1865.

Maxwell, born in 1796, died at the age of two.

It will be seen that the poet was the father of quite a number of
children, some of whom lived to a ripe old age. Whether he was the
father of any more children I am sure I don't know. If he was, almost
any Scot will know it and can tell you more about it than I can. Bobbie
was a very handsome man and was greatly admired by almost everyone,
including the ladies. Some of his poems would lead one to believe that,
like Byron,

     He was unskilled to cozen,
     And shared his love among a dozen.

but that may be mere poetic license. Poets, you know, have an eye for
the _beautiful_, whether it be in landscape scenery, flowers,
architecture, painting, statuary, the human form or what not. At any
rate "Puir Rabbie" was the daddy of the children whose names I have
given, for that is a matter of history. To show that the poet loved a
joke himself, no matter on what subject, I here quote a little rhyme of
his gotten off on a friend named James Smith who lived at Mauchline:

     Lament him, Mauchline husbands a'
       He aften did assist ye;
     For had ye stayed whole weeks awa'
       Your wives they n'er had missed ye.

In my short career I have run up against lots of folks who cannot take a
joke or see the point of one and these poor people I pity, but do not
blame, for they were born that way. I have always been poor but never
proud and could take a joke--that is, when I could see the point of it.
When I couldn't see the point of it I did not get angry.

Burnsie was a farmer and lived on ranches the most of his life. He was a
hayseed from way back but as soon as he got celebrated high society
began to run after him and the poor fellow couldn't keep away from it if
he tried. It didn't take him long to learn how to make a bow without
upsetting the table, but he was out of his element among the grand
folks. Did he need polish to make him shine? I trow not. Wasn't his
genius just as great before he struck society? Sure! But just to please
folks he hobnobbed with them though he was as much out of his element as
a fish when out of water. No doubt he wore a biled shirt and black
claw-hammer coat and made his coat tails fly around pretty lively as he
skipped around in a dance, but as society wanted him it got him. Had he
lived long enough he might have been a baron, marquis, duke or count.
Who can tell? While a plowman he scorned titles, but I wonder whether he
would have rejected a patent of nobility had it been tendered him.

Genius is a complex quality. Samuel Smiles in his great work, "Self
Help," says that genius is nothing more nor less than a capacity for
taking infinite pains, and the world in general seems to have accepted
his definition or explanation, but I, Windy Bill, an untutored savage
from the Wild West, beg to differ wholly from Sam and I will "show you"
why, and permit you to judge for yourself. Had Samuel defined _art_
instead of genius as "an infinite capacity for taking pains" he might
have been nearer the truth. Let us take the case of Burns. While
plowing he wrote rhymes, but as he knew little or nothing of the art of
versification he set his thoughts in mellifluous language of his own.
Was it his thoughts or their setting that captivated people? His
thoughts, of course, though the jingle made them more harmonious. Genius
is the thought; art the setting. Tell me then that genius is a capacity
for taking pains. Nary time. It comes forth spontaneous, natural, can't
help itself. It is a God-given quality which lots of people possess to a
greater or less degree. Musicians have it, as have painters, architects,
writers, sculptors and people in all walks of life. Lots of poets in
Scotland had genius long before our great friend Rabbie was born, and
lots since them have had more or less of a share of the "divine
afflatus," as some writers call it, but were any of them gifted as
highly as Puir Rabbie? Not a one. Will another like him arise? Search
me! There hasn't yet.

Notwithstanding that Rabbie was so highly gifted, he didn't know it.
Don't you believe me? If you don't you needn't take my word for it, for
I have evidence here that will prove it. I quote the preface that he
wrote to the first book of his that ever was printed. Here it is:

     "The following trifles are not the production of the poet, who,
     with all the advantages of learned art and perhaps amid the
     elegancies and idleness of upper life looks down for a rural theme
     with an eye to Theocritus or Virgil. Unacquainted with the
     necessary requisites for commencing poetry by rule, he sings the
     sentiments and manners he felt and saw in himself and his rustic
     compeers around him, in his and their native language. Though a
     rhymer from his earlier years it was not till very lately that the
     applause (perhaps the partiality) of friendship awakened his vanity
     so as to make him think anything of his worth showing, for none of
     the poems were composed with a view to the press. To amuse himself
     with the little creations of his own fancy amid the toil and
     fatigue of a laborious life, these were his motives for courting
     the muses. Now that he appears in the public character of an
     author, he does it with fear and trembling. So dear is fame to the
     rhyming tribe that even he, an obscure, nameless bard, shrinks
     aghast at the thought of being branded as an impertinent blockhead,
     obtruding his nonsense on the world; and because he can make shift
     to jingle a few doggerel Scottish rhymes together, looking upon
     himself as a poet of no small consequence, forsooth! If any critic
     catches at the word Genius, the author tells him, once for all,
     that he certainly looks upon himself as possessed of some poetic
     abilities, otherwise the publishing, in the manner he has done,
     would be a maneuver below the worst character his worst enemy will
     ever give him. But to the genius of an Allan Ramsay or a Robert
     Ferguson he has not the least pretension, nor ever had, even in his
     highest pulse of vanity. These two justly admired Scottish poets he
     has often had in his eye but rather to kindle in their flame than
     for servile imitation.

     "To his subscribers the author returns his most sincere thanks--not
     the mercenary bow over a counter, but the heart-throbbing gratitude
     of the bard, conscious how much he owes to benevolence and
     friendship for gratifying him, if he deserves it, in that dearest
     wish of every poetic bosom--to be distinguished. He begs his
     readers, particularly the learned and the polite who may honor him
     with a perusal, that they will make every allowance for education
     and circumstances of life; but if, after a fair, candid and
     impartial criticism he shall stand convicted of dullness and
     nonsense let him be done by as he would in that case do by
     others--let him be condemned without mercy, to contempt and

It is a queer fact that those mortals who possessed the greatest genius
were always the most simple and diffident, and dubious about their own
powers. They had a feeling in them that they were born to soar but they
were hesitating, doubtful and did not know their very simplicity was a
part of their greatness. They didn't appreciate their own capacities at
first any more than are their capabilities appreciated by less gifted
mortals. Before Burns' time Allan Ramsay and Robert Ferguson were looked
upon as the greatest poets Scotland had ever produced, and so great
were they that even Burns looked upon them with awe; and yet, unknown to
himself, he was far greater than they. His generation may not have known
it, but this generation does. Was Shakespeare appreciated in his
generation? He was not. Was any truly great man? Hardly.

The earliest book of Burns that ever was put in print consisted of his
minor poems which were written while he was in the fields plowing.

Of course he wasn't plowing always, so some were written while he was
outdoors, here, there and everywhere in the vicinity of his country
home. They were put into book-form by the advice of his friends and John
Wilson at Kilmarnock, was the man who volunteered to do the printing.
The book was a thin one, about half as thick as the ordinary novel of
to-day, and it was agreed that only 612 books be struck off as a first
edition. Mr. John Wilson was a long-headed printer and would not agree
to print a single volume until at least 300 of the books had been
subscribed for beforehand. He figured it out this way: "Suppose the book
fails, where do I get off at? I set it up in type, do the binding,
furnish the paper, pay the devil and the compositors, do the press work,
make-up and all, so can I afford to take all the chances of getting any
money out of this blooming poetry?" Mr. Wilson was a canny Scot and
didn't propose to take any chances. He surely didn't lose anything in
this venture, but whether he made anything I am unable to say.

Now, all of this is a very imperfect sketch of my old pard Burnsie, and
if you care to know more about him I can refer you to quite a few
biographies that have been written about him and are still being
written about him by the score to this day. No less a personage than Sir
Walter Scott has written a life history of him and so has the poet's own
brother, Gilbert. Here is a list you can choose from:


     1. Robert Heron (Life of Burns)                        1797
     2. Dr. James Currie (Life and Works, 4 vols            1800
     Works and Sketch of Life)
     3. James Stover and John Grieg (Illustrated)           1804
     4. Robert Hartley Cromek (Reliques of Burns)           1808
     5. Lord Francis Jeffrey (Edinburgh Review)             1808
     6. Sir Walter Scott (Quarterly Review)                 1808
     7. Dr. David Irving (Life of Burns)                    1810
     8. Prof. Josiah Walker (Life and Poems, 2 vols)        1811
     9. Rev. Hamilton Paul (Life and Poems)                 1819
     10. Gilbert Burns                                      1820
     11. Hugh Ainslie (Pilgrimage to the Land of Burns)     1822
     12. Archibald Constable (Life and Works, 3 vols)       1823
     13. Alex. Peterkin (Life and Works, 4 vols)            1824
     14. John G. Lockhart (Life of Burns)                   1828
     15. Thomas Carlyle (Edinburgh Review)                  1828
     16. Allan Cunningham (Life and Works, 8 vols)          1834
     17. James Hogg and William Motherwell
     (Memoirs and Works, 5 vols.)                           1854
     18. Prof. John Wilson (Essay on Genius)                1840
     19. W. C. McLehose (Correspondence)                    1843
     20. Samuel Tyler (Burns as a Poet and Man)             1849
     21. Robert Chambers (Life and Works)                   1851
     22. George Gilfillan (Memoirs and Works, 2 vols)       1856
     23. Rev. James White (Burns and Scott)                 1858
     24. Rev. P. H. Waddell (Life and Works)                1859
     25. William Michael (Life and Works)                   1871



Although Robert Burns is the idol of the Scotch people nowadays, it must
not be supposed that he is the only one worshipped, for there is another
man who is greatly revered, honored and loved. This man is Sir Walter
Scott. The Scotch people affectionately call him Sir Walter and he did
as much for his country as did Puir Rabbie. Both were Scotch to the
backbone and loved their country as fondly and devotedly as any patriot
can, but in their work they were totally dissimilar. Sir Walter started
out as a writer of ballads, and chose for his themes historical
subjects, mainly those connected with the ancient and modern history of
his country. Burns, as I said before, remodeled and improved the old
Scotch folk songs and in his democratic way described life around him in
tuneful periods. Had he not been cut off in the flower of his prime he,
too, might have been a great novelist for his great genius was capable
of anything. He sprang from the masses and his heart was with the
masses, but Sir Walter, who came from the classes had a heart for all,
and described the lowly and humble as well as the great. Sir Walter's
delineations of human character stand unrivalled today. He surely was
proud of the fact that he was of gentle birth, which well he might have
been, for that was no disgrace to him, any more than it is disgraceful
to be of lowly birth, although in the old country blood counts for
something. To show what Sir Walter thought of himself I here quote an
extract from one of his works which he wrote himself:

     "My birth was neither distinguished nor sordid. According to the
     prejudices of my country, it was esteemed gentle, as I am
     connected, though remotely, with ancient families both by my
     father's and mother's side. My father's grandfather was Walter
     Scott, well known by the name of Beardie. He was the second son of
     Walter Scott, first lord of Raeburn, who was the third son of Sir
     Walter Scott and the grandson of Walter Scott, commonly called in
     tradition Auld Watt of Harden. I am therefore lineally descended
     from that chieftain, whose name I have made to ring in many a
     ditty, and from his fair dame, the Flower of Yarrow, no bad
     genealogy for a Border Minstrel."

Well, my poor friend Rabbie didn't spring from any border minstrel, but
he was a born minstrel himself and could concoct a tune with the best of
them. Mind you, I am not decrying Sir Walter, for that would be
sacrilege, but Burnsie had nothing to brag of in the way of ancestry.
Would Sir Walter have been less great had he sprung from common stock or
would Robbie have been greater had he been blue-blooded? I am an
American, an ex-member of Coxey's unwashed army, so I don't want to say
yes or nay to this question. Let others decide.

Sir Walter's earliest success as a writer was won by discarding the
conventionalities of art and creating a style of art his own. It takes
a genius to do that. His style was simple, plain, and direct and won
followers very quickly because it gained favor. This goes to show that
if one has anything to say it is not necessary to say it in involved
language, but just simply. Sir Walter's good common sense told him this
was the fact and he acted accordingly. To say the honest truth some of
Sir Walter's novels here and there are a little prolix, but there was a
reason for it. Sir Walter was getting paid for space-writing. You don't
believe me? I'll prove it. He went broke and to pay his debts--or rather
those of the publishing house he unfortunately was connected with--he
ground out "copy" as fast as he could, for every word of his was worth
money. He begged his financial friends not to treat him like "a milch
cow" but like a man, but as he was a money-maker they staid with him
until all his money and property were gone and all he could earn until
he died was swallowed up, too. His was another case like General Ulysses
Simpson Grant.

Sir Walter was the ninth child in a very large family. His father was a
methodical and industrious lawyer, and his mother a woman of much
culture, refinement and imagination.

Of delicate health and lame from his second year, Sir Walter spent much
of his childhood in the country with his relatives. At the fireside of
neighbors he listened to the old ballads and stories of border warfare,
which caused him at a very early age to acquire a taste for reading
ancient history and to become imbued with a love for antiquarian
research. When seven years of age he entered the High School of
Edinburgh and attended it until twelve. When thirteen he entered the
University of Edinburgh and decided on the profession of law. At the age
of 21 he was admitted to the bar. He didn't like his profession,
however, and spent much of his time in antiquarian research. When about
26 years of age he married Charlotte Margaret Carpenter, the daughter of
a French Royalist, whose family after the death of the father had
removed to England. Sir Walter and his wife lived first at Edinburgh and
three years later rented a cottage at Lasswade. They remained at
Lasswade six years and then took up their abode at Ashestiel. In 1799,
when about 28 years of age, Sir Walter was made Deputy Sheriff of
Selkirkshire to which was attached a salary of $1,500 per annum, and
seven years afterward he was appointed a Clerk of Session with a salary
of $3,500. He held down both jobs for 25 years, which proved he was a
stayer. As his income was $5000 for 25 years it can be figured out about
how much he earned. But Sir Walter wasn't a money-saver; he was a
spender and a good provider. He kept open house and anyone who called
received an old-fashioned Scotch welcome, and I know from my sojourn in
Scotland what that means. It means you're welcome to stay or welcome to
go, but while you do stay the best is none too good for you. Sir
Walter's hospitality was of that sort and while holding down both jobs
he was doing a little literary work on the side. First came ballads,
then poems of romance and later novels. He was getting along first rate
financially so he concluded to take up his residence at Abbottsford, a
palatial mansion. By this time he had already gained fame and much lucre
and was run after by the "hoi-polloi," the "would-be could-be's" and the
Great. The doors of Abbottsford opened wide for all. Even the poor were
given "a hand-out" of some kind. Too bad Billy and me wasn't alive then.
But this was before our time, about a hundred years or so. Oh what a
place for grafters Abbottsford must have been! Sir Walter was easy. So
easy was he, in fact, that the publishing house of Ballantyne & Co.,
which roped him in as a side partner, went flewy and left Sir Walter to
foot all the bills. Sir Walter was an honorable man and prized honor
above wealth, so he turned over everything he had, including
Abbottsford, to the alleged creditors, but there was not enough to
satisfy claims. The debt amounted to several hundred thousand dollars.
Thereupon he continued writing novels and wrote as he never wrote
before. He ground out ten novels in six years and had paid up about
$200,000, when his health began to fail. The pace was too swift for a
man sixty years of age, which he was then. The creditors were insatiable
and were greedy for the last farthing. Business is business, said they.

When a little over sixty years of age Sir Walter had a stroke of
paralysis caused by overwork and worry, and was recommended by his
physicians to take a sea voyage. He embarked for Italy in a frigate
which was placed at his disposal by the English government, but sad to
relate, the trip benefited him but little. He visited Rome, Venice and
other places, but came home a few months afterward to die. "Man's
inhumanity to man" killed Sir Walter before his time.

Sir Walter's manner was that of a gentleman and he was amiable,
unaffected and polished. He was simple and kindly and approachable by
all. Much of his literary work was done at Ashestiel, but more at
Abbottsford. He kept open house everywhere. He arose at five o'clock in
the morning and wrote until eight o'clock. He then breakfasted with his
family and after putting in an hour or so with them returned to his
writings. He worked until noon and then was his own man, to do as he
liked. During the afternoon he put in some time with his guests, gave
reporters interviews, was snap-shotted by cameras, saw that the dogs got
enough to eat, gave orders to the servants that if too many 'bos came
around to sick the dogs on them and then he went a horseback or a
carriage riding. In the evening there was some social chat, after which
Sir Walter retired early. That was the routine.

This master in the art of novel writing was fully six feet in height,
well proportioned and well built with the exception of a slight
deformity in the ankle, which I have alluded to before. His face was of
a Scotch cast, heavy and full; the forehead was high and broad, the head
lofty, the nose short, the upper lip long, and the expression of his
features kindly. I have seen dead loads of pictures, images and statues
of Sir Walter, yet hardly two of them were alike. I consider Sir Walter
a handsome man and to me there seems to be something grand and noble in
the cast of his countenance. I _know_ the light of genius was there, and
maybe that is why he so impresses me, but with it all his features have
a noble cast. He is goodly to look upon, surely.

To tell the truth, I don't read much poetry, but some competent critic
who has read Sir Walter's has this to say of it:

     "The distinctive features of the poetry of Scott are ease, rapidity
     of movement, a spirited flow of narrative that holds our attention,
     an out-of-door atmosphere and power of natural description, an
     occasional intrusion of a gentle personal sadness and but little
     more. The subtle and mystic element so characteristic of the poetry
     of Wordsworth and Coleridge is not to be found in that of Scott,
     while in lyrical power he does not approach Shelley. We find
     instead an intense sense of reality in all his natural
     descriptions; it surrounds them with an indefinable atmosphere,
     because they are so transparently true. Scott's first impulse in
     the direction of poetry was given to him from the study of the
     German ballads, especially Burger's Lenore, of which he made a
     translation. As his ideas widened, he wished to do for Scottish
     Border life what Goethe had done for the ancient feudalism of the
     Rhine. He was at first undecided whether to choose prose or verse
     as the medium; but a legend was sent him by the Countess of
     Dalkeith with a request that he would put it in ballad form.
     Having thus the framework for his purpose, he went to work, and
     "The Lay of the Last Minstrel" was the result. The battle scene in
     Marmion has been called the most Homeric passage in modern
     literature, and his description of the Battle of Beal au Duine from
     "The Lady of the Lake" is an exquisite piece of narration from the
     gleam of the spears in the thicket to the death of Roderick Dhu at
     its close. In the deepest sense Scott is one with the spirit of his
     time in his grasp of fact, in that steadily looking at the object
     which Wordsworth had fought for in poetry, which Carlyle had
     advocated in philosophy. He is allied, too, to that broad sympathy
     for man which lay closest to the heart of the age's literary
     expression. Wordsworth's part is to inspire an interest in the
     lives of men and women about us; Scott's to enlarge the bounds of
     our sympathy beyond the present, and to people the silent
     centuries. Shelley's inspiration is hope for the future; Scott's is
     reverence for the past."

I have read a few of Sir Walter's novels, and some of them several
times, and every time I read them it is with renewed interest. His
delineation of human character is so true to nature and so graphic that
I feel the living, speaking person before me as I read. If that ain't
writing I would like to know what is. Whether it be peasant, servant,
knight, esquire, king, lord, lady or girl, all are shown up on the
screen so plainly that I take it all as a matter of course and say
nothing. It is all so plain and simple that there is nothing to say.
That is art and the highest form of it. It is next to nature.

Art and genius are closely allied. It is not everyone who loves the
"altogether" or the "realistic," which may be well. Were it not so, many
poets, painters, sculptors, musicians and other handicraftsmen would be
left out in the cold, with none to do him reverence. All tastes happily
are catered to, so everyone is happy.

As I am neither a critic nor a biographer I shall endeavor to give my
readers an idea what Sir Walter was thought of by others and will quote
the language they used.

George Tichnor, the author, says that Scott repeated to him the English
translations of two long Spanish ballads which he had never seen, but
which had been read to him twice.

Scott's college friend, John Irving, in writing of himself and Scott,
says: "The number of books we thus devoured was very great. I forgot a
great part of what I read; but my friend, notwithstanding he read with
such rapidity, remained, to my surprise, master of it all, and could
even, weeks and months afterwards, repeat a whole page in which anything
had particularly struck him at the moment."

Washington Irving remarked: "During the time of my visit he inclined to
the comic rather than to the grave in his anecdotes and stories; and
such, I was told, was his general inclination. He relished a joke or a
trait of humor in social intercourse, and laughed with right good
will.... His humor in conversation, as in his works, was genial and free
from causticity. He had a quick perception of faults and foibles, but he
looked upon human nature with an indulgent eye, relishing what was good
and pleasant, tolerating what was frail and pitying what was evil.... I
do not recollect a sneer throughout his conversation, any more than
there is throughout his works."

Lord Byron said: "I think that Scott is the only very successful genius
that could be cited as being as generally beloved as a man as he is
admired as an author; and I must add, he deserves it, for he is so
thoroughly good-natured, sincere and honest, that he disarms the envy
and jealousy his extraordinary genius must excite."

Leslie Stephen remarked: "Scott could never see an old tower, or a bank,
or a rush of a stream without instantly recalling a boundless collection
of appropriate anecdotes. He might be quoted as a case in point by those
who would explain all poetical imagination by the power of associating
ideas. He is the _poet of association_."

Lockhart, who married the daughter of Sir Walter and who was therefore
his son-in-law, wrote a biography of his father-in-law wherein he says
that: "The love of his country became indeed a passion; no knight ever
tilted for his mistress more willingly than he would have bled and died
to preserve even the airiest surviving nothing of her antique
pretensions for Scotland. But the Scotland of his affections had the
clan _Scott_ for her kernel."

I believe the son-in-law is inclined to be facetious, but is he _just_
to his immortal father-in-law? I don't believe he is--therefore his
criticisms are not worth a whoop.

Thomas Carlyle, the cynical philosopher and mugwump, condescended to
give Sir Walter a sort of recommendation of character, which it renders
me extremely happy to quote. Here it is. Read it carefully and ponder:

"The surliest critic must allow that Scott was a genuine man, which
itself is a great matter. No affectation, fantasticality or distortion
dwelt in him; no shadow of cant. Nay, withal, was he not a right brave
and strong man according to his kind? What a load of toil, what a
measure of felicity he quietly bore along with him! With what quiet
strength he both worked on this earth and enjoyed in it, invincible to
evil fortune and to good!"

This cynic, this philosopher, this mugwump says Sir Walter was a
_genuine man_. Good for Mr. Carlyle.

Everyone was proud to call Sir Walter "friend," and he was just great
enough to be happy to call those who were worthy, his friend. Among his
great friends were the following:

John Irving, who was an intimate college friend. I have quoted him in
regard to the number of books read by Sir Walter.

Robert Burns came to Edinburgh when Sir Walter was fifteen years of age,
and Sir Walter's boyish admiration for the National Bard was great. In
after life, when Sir Walter became great, he wrote a great deal
concerning Puir Rabbie. And it is worth reading.

James Ballantyne, Sir Walter's partner in the publishing business, was
a good friend.

So was James Hogg, the poet peasant, sometimes called "The Ettrick

And so was Thomas Campbell, the poet, author of "The Pleasures of Hope."

The poet William Wordsworth was a lifelong friend.

Robert Southey, the poet, visited Sir Walter at Ashestiel and was
admired by him greatly.

Joanna Baillie, the poetess, was a warm friend.

So was Lord Byron.

Sir Humphry Davy, the philosopher, visited Sir Walter and was well liked
by him.

Goethe, the German poet, was a warm admirer and friend of Sir Walter.

So was Henry Hallam, the historian; Crabbe, the poet; Maria Edgeworth,
the novelist; George Ticknor, the author; Dugald Stewart, Archibald
Alison, Sydney Smith, Lord Brougham, Lord Jeffrey, Thomas Erskine,
William Clerk, Sir William Hamilton, etc., etc.

Last but not least among those who regarded Sir Walter as a friend and
who were so regarded by him was our own countryman, Washington Irving.
Our own "Washy" was an author, too, and one not to be sneezed at. Sir
Walter regarded him highly and Washy dropped in on him, casual like, at
Abbottsford. Washy had written some good things himself, but had found
it difficult to win recognition. Sir Walter stood sponsor for him and
told the world it ought to be ashamed of itself not to recognize merit
of so high an order. Thereupon the world promptly did recognize our
Washy. Did our Washy need a sponsor? Well, hardly. No American ever
lived who was an abler or more polished writer than he. Will you please
show me a man who can beat our Washy. You can't do it. Smile at me if
you will, but I doubt if even Sir Walter himself was so much superior to
him. Have you read Irving's Astoria, a true and lifelike history of the
Northwest? or his Rip Van Winkle, or his sketches, the Alhambra, etc.?
Irving's is another case where a great man failed of appreciation at

Well, my countrymen, our Washy is dead, but we appreciate him now just
the same. The United States never produced a writer more polished and
able than he, and it is rather humiliating to think that a great
foreigner had to apprise us of his merits.

To wind up this chapter on Sir Walter Scott I will give you a list of
his writings, arranged in chronological order:


     Glenfinlas, 1799.
     Eve of St. John, 1799.
     The Grey Brothers, 1799.
     Border Minstrelsy, 1802-1803.
     Cadyow Castle, 1810.
     English Minstrelsy, 1810.
     The Battle of Sempach, 1818.
     The Noble Moringer, 1819.
     The Lay of the Last Minstrel, 1805.
     Marmion, 1808.
     The Lady of the Lake, 1810.
     Vision of Don Roderick, 1811.
     Rokeby, 1812.
     The Bridal of Triermain, 1813.
     The Lord of the Isles, 1815.


     Waverley, 1814.
     Guy Mannering, 1815.
     The Antiquary, 1816.
     The Black Dwarf, 1816.
     Old Mortality, 1816.
     Rob Roy, 1818.
     The Heart of Mid-Lothian, 1818.
     The Bride of Lammermoor, 1819.
     The Legend of Montrose, 1819.
     Ivanhoe, 1820.
     The Monastery, 1820.
     The Abbott, 1820.
     Kenilworth, 1821.
     The Pirate, 1822.
     The Fortunes of Nigel, 1822.
     Peveril of the Peak, 1823.
     Quentin Durward, 1823.
     St. Ronan's Well, 1824.
     Red Gauntlet, 1824.
     The Betrothed, 1825.
     The Talisman, 1825.
     Woodstock, 1826.
     The Two Drovers, 1827.
     The Highland Widow, 1827.
     The Surgeon's Daughter, 1827.
     The Fair Maid of Perth, 1828.
     Anne of Geierstein, 1829.
     Count Robert of Paris, 1831.
     Castle Dangerous, 1831.

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