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Title: Justice in the By-Ways, a Tale of Life
Author: Adams, F. Colburn (Francis Colburn)
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "Justice in the By-Ways, a Tale of Life" ***




"A rebellion or an invasion alarms,
And puts the people upon its defence;
But a corruption of principles
Works its ruin more slowly perhaps,
But more surely."




PREFACES, like long sermons to fashionable congregations, are
distasteful to most readers, and in no very high favor with us. A
deep interest in the welfare of South Carolina, and the high esteem
in which we held the better, and more sensible class of her
citizens, prompted us to sit down in Charleston, some four years ago
(as a few of our friends are aware), and write this history. The
malady of her chivalry had then broken out, and such was its
virulence that very serious consequences were apprehended. We had
done something, and were unwise enough to think we could do more, to
stay its spread. We say unwise, inasmuch as we see, and regret that
we do see, the malady breaking out anew, in a more virulent type-one
which threatens dire consequences to this glorious Union, and bids
fair soon to see the Insane Hospital of South Carolina crammed with
her mad-politicians.

Our purpose, the reader will not fail to discover, was a high moral
one. He must overlook the means we have called to our aid in some
instances, remember that the spirit of the work is in harmony with a
just sense of duty to a people among whom we have long resided, and
whose follies deserve our pity, perhaps, rather than our
condemnation. To remain blind to their own follies, is the sin of
weak States; and we venture nothing when we say that it would be
difficult to find a people more dragged down by their own ignorance
than are the South Carolinians. And yet, strange as it may seem, no
people are more energetic in laying claim to a high intellectual
standard. For a stranger to level his shafts against the very evils
they themselves most deprecate, is to consign himself an exile
worthy only of that domestic garment

Tar and feathers. in which all who think and write too freely, are
clothed and sent away.

And though the sentiments we have put forth in this work may not be
in fashion with our Southern friends, they will give us credit for
at least one thing-picturing in truthful colors the errors that, by
their own confessions, are sapping the very foundations of their
society. Our aim is to suggest reforms, and in carrying it out we
have consulted no popular prejudice, enlarged upon no enormities to
please the lover of tragedy, regarded neither beauty nor the art of
novel making, nor created suffering heroines to excite an outpouring
of sorrow and tears. The incidents of our story, which at best is
but a mere thread, are founded in facts; and these facts we have so
modified as to make them acceptable to the reader, while shielding
ourself from the charge of exaggeration. And, too, we are conscious
that our humble influence, heretofore exerted, has contributed to
the benefit of a certain class in Charleston, and trust that in this
instance it may have a wider field.

Three years and upwards, then, has the MS. of this work laid in the
hands of a Philadelphia publisher, who was kind enough to say more
good things of it than it deserved, and only (as he said, and what
publishers say no one ever thinks of doubting) regretted that fear
of offending his Southern customers, who were exceedingly stiff in
some places, and tender in others, prevented him publishing it.
Thankful for the very flattering but undeserved reception two works
from our pen (both written at a subsequent period) met, in England
as well as this country, we resolved a few weeks ago to drag the MS.
from the obscurity in which it had so long remained, and having
resigned it to the rude hands of our printer, let it pass to the
public. But there seemed another difficulty in the way: the time,
every one said, and every one ought to know, was a hazardous one for
works of a light character. Splash & Dash, my old publishers, (noble
fellows), had no less than three Presidents on their shoulders, and
could not be expected to take up anything "light" for several
months. Brick, of the very respectable but somewhat slow firm of
Brick & Brother, a firm that had singular scruples about publishing
a work not thickly sprinkled with the author's knowledge of French,
had one candidate by the neck, and had made a large bet that he
could carry him into the "White House" with a rush, while the junior
partner was deeply immersed in the study of Greek. Puff, of the firm
of Puff & Bluff, a house that had recently moved into the city to
teach the art of blowing books into the market, was foaming over
with his two Presidential candidates, and thought the public could
not be got to read a book without at least one candidate in it. It
was not prudent to give the reading world more than a book of
travels or so, said Munch, of the house of Munch & Muddle, until the
candidates for the White House were got nicely out of the way.
Indeed, there were good reasons for being alarmed, seeing that the
publishing world had given up literature, and, following the example
set by the New York Corporation, taken itself very generally to the
trade of President-making. Wilkins, whose publications were so
highly respectable that they invariably remained on his shelves, and
had in more than one instance become so weighty that they had
dragged the house down, thought the pretty feet of some few of the
female characters in this volume a little too much exposed to suit
the delicate sensibilities of his fair readers. Applejack, than
whose taste none could be more exquisite, and who only wanted to
feel a manuscript to tell whether it would do to publish it, made it
a point, he said, not to publish novels with characters in them that
would drink to excess. As for the very fast firm of Blowers &
Windspin, celebrated for flooding the country with cheap books of a
very tragic character, why, it had work enough on hand for the
present. Blowers was blessed with a wife of a literary turn of mind,
which was very convenient, inasmuch as all the novels with which the
house astonished the world were submitted to her, and what she could
not read she was sure to pass a favorable judgment upon. The house
had in press four highly worked up novels of Mrs. Blowers' own, Mr.
Blowers said,--all written in the very short space of six weeks. She
was a remarkable woman, and extraordinary clever at novels, Blowers
concluded with an air of magnificent self-satisfaction. These works,
having been written by steam, Mr. Windspin, the unior partner, was
expected to put into the market with a very large amount of high

Our friends in South Carolina, we knew, would be anxious to see what
we had written of them in this volume, and we have made and shall
continue to make it a point to gratify them: hence our haste in this
instance. Conscious, too, that life is the great schoolmaster, and
that public taste is neither to be regulated by a few, nor kept at
any one point, we caught up a publisher with only one candidate for
the "White House" on his shoulders, and with his assistance, now
respectfully submit this our humble effort.

NEW YORK, Sept., 1856.


CHAPTER I.--Tom Swiggs' Seventh Introduction on board of the Brig

CHAPTER II.--Madame Flamingo-Her Distinguished Patrons, and her very
respectable House,

CHAPTER III.--In which the Reader is presented with a Varied Picture,

CHAPTER IV.--A few Reflections on the Cure of Vice,

CHAPTER V.--In which Mr. Snivel, commonly called the Accommodation
Man, is introduced, and what takes place between him and Mrs.

CHAPTER VI.--Containing Sundry Matters appertaining to this History,

CHAPTER VII.--In which is seen a Commingling of Citizens,

CHAPTER VIII.--What takes place between George Mullholland and Mr.

CHAPTER IX.--In which a Gleam of Light is shed on the History of Anna

CHAPTER X.--A Continuation of George Mullholland's History,

CHAPTER XI.--In which the Reader is introduced to Mr. Absalom

CHAPTER XII.--In which are Matters the Reader may have anticipated,

CHAPTER XIII.--Mrs. Swiggs comes to the Rescue of the House of the
Foreign Missions,

CHAPTER XIV.--Mr. McArthur makes a Discovery,

CHAPTER XV.--What Madame Flamingo wants to be,

CHAPTER XVI.--In which Tom Swiggs gains his Liberty, and what befalls

CHAPTER XVII.--In which there is an Interesting Meeting,

CHAPTER XVIII.--Anna Bonard seeks an Interview with the Antiquary,

CHAPTER XIX.--A Secret Interview,

CHAPTER XX.--Lady Swiggs encounters Difficulties on her Arrival in
New York,

CHAPTER XXI.--Mr. Snivel pursues his Search for the Vote-Cribber,

CHAPTER XXII.--Mrs. Swiggs falls upon a Modern Heathen World,

CHAPTER XXIII.--In which the very best Intentions are seen to fail,

CHAPTER XXIV.--Mr. Snivel advises George Mullholland how to make
Strong Love,

CHAPTER XXV.--A Slight Change in the Picture,

CHAPTER XXVI.--In which a High Functionary is made to play a Singular

CHAPTER XXVII.--The House of the Nine Nations, and what may be seen
in it,

CHAPTER XXVIII.--In which is presented Another Picture of the House
of the Nine Nations,

CHAPTER XXIX.--In which may be seen a few of our Common Evils,

CHAPTER XXX.--Containing Various Things appertaining to this History,

CHAPTER XXXI.--The Keno Den, and what may be seen in it,

CHAPTER XXXII.--In which a State of Society is slighty Revealed,

CHAPTER XXXIII.--In which there is a Singular Revelation,

CHAPTER XXXIV.--The Two Pictures,

CHAPTER XXXV.--In which a Little Light is shed upon the Character of
our Chivalry,

CHAPTER XXXVI.--In which a Law is seen to serve Base Purposes,

CHAPTER XXXVII.--A Short Chapter of Ordinary Events,

CHAPTER XXXVIII.--A Story without which this History would be found

CHAPTER XXXIX.--A Story with many Counterparts,

CHAPTER XL.--In which the Law is seen to Conflict with our Cherished

CHAPTER XLI.--In which Justice is seen to be very accommodating,

CHAPTER XLII.--In which Some Light is thrown on the Plot of this

CHAPTER XLIII.--In which is revealed the One Error that brought so
much Suffering upon many,

CHAPTER XLIV.--In which is recorded Events the Reader may not have

CHAPTER XLV.--Another Shade of the Picture,

CHAPTER XLVI.--The Soul may gain Strength in a dreary Cell,

CHAPTER XLVII.--In which is a Happy Meeting, and something Pleasing,

CHAPTER XLVIII.--A Few Words With the Reader,




IT is in the spring of 1847 this history commences.

"Steady a bit! Here I am, boys, turned up again-a subject of this
moral reform school, of moral old Charleston. If my good old mother
thinks it'll reform a cast-off remnant of human patchwork like me,
I've nothing to say in protest. Yes, here I am, comrades (poor Tom
Swiggs, as you used to call me), with rum my victor, and modern
vengeance hastening my destruction." This is the exclamation of poor
Tom Swiggs (as his jail companions are pleased to call him), who, in
charge of two officers of the law, neither of whom are inclined to
regard him with sympathy, is being dragged back again to the
Charleston jail. The loathsome wreck of a once respectable man, he
staggers into the corridor, utters a wild shriek as the iron gate
closes upon him, and falls headlong upon the floor of the vestibule,
muttering, incoherently, "there is no hope for one like me." And the
old walls re-echo his lamentation.

"His mother, otherwise a kind sort of woman, sends him here. She
believes it will work his reform. I pity her error-for it is an
error to believe reform can come of punishment, or that virtue may
be nurtured among vice." Thus responds the brusque but kind-hearted
old jailer, who view swith an air of compassion his new comer, as he
lays, a forlorn mass, exposed to the gaze of the prisoners gathering
eagerly about him.

The dejected man gives a struggle, raises himself to his haunches,
and with his coarse, begrimed hands resting on his knees, returns
the salutation of several of his old friends. "This, boys, is the
seventh time," he pursues, as if his scorched brain were tossed on a
sea of fire, "and yet I'm my mother's friend. I love her still-yes,
I love her still!" and he shakes his head, as his bleared eyes fill
with tears. "She is my mother," he interpolates, and again gives
vent to his frenzy: "fellows! bring me brandy-whiskey-rum-anything
to quench this flame that burns me up. Bring it, and when I'm free
of this place of torment, I will stand enough for you all to swim

"Shut your whiskey-pipe. You don't appreciate the respectability of
the company you've got among. I've heard of you," ejaculates a voice
in the crowd of lookers-on.

"What of a citizen are you?" inquires Tom, his head dropping

"A vote-cribber-Milman Mingle by name; and, like yourself, in for
formal reform," retorts the voice. And the burly figure of a red,
sullen-faced man, comes forward, folds his arms, and looks for some
minutes with an air of contempt upon the poor inebriate.

"You're no better than you ought to be," incoherently continues Tom,
raising his glassy eyes as if to sight his seemingly querulous

"Better, at all events, than you," emphatically replies the man.
"I'm only in for cribbing voters; which, be it known, is commonly
called a laudable enterprise just before our elections come off, and
a henious offence when office-seekers have gained their ends. But
what use is it discussing the affairs of State with a thing like
you?" The vote-cribber, inclined to regard the new-comer as an
inferior mortal, shrugs his shoulders, and walks away,
contemplatively humming an air.

"If here ain't Tom Swiggs again!" exclaims a lean, parchment-faced
prisoner, pressing eagerly his way through the circle of bystanders,
and raising his hands as he beholds the wreck upon the floor.

"Fate, and my mother, have ordered it so," replies Tom, recognizing
the voice, and again imploring the jailer to bring him some brandy
to quench the fires of his brain. The thought of his mother floated
uppermost, and recurred brightest to the wandering imagination of
this poor outcast.

"There's no rum here, old bloat. The mother having you for a son is
to be pitied-you are to be pitied, too; but the jail is bankrupt,
without a shilling to relieve you in the liquor line," interposes
another, as one by one the prisoners begin to leave and seek their
several retreats.

"That breath of yours," interrupts the vote-cribber, who, having
returned, stands regarding the outcast man with singular interest,
"would make drunk the whole jail. A week in 'Mount Rascal'
The upper story used for the confinement of felons. will be
necessary to transmute you, as they call it, into something
Christian. On 'the Mount' you will have a chance to
philosophize-mollify the temperature of your nervous system-which is
out of fix just now."

There is an inert aristocracy, a love of distinction, among the
lowest dregs of society, as there is also a love of plush and other
insignificant tawdry among our more wealthy republicans. Few would
have thought of one inebriate affecting superiority over another,
(the vote-cribber was an inebriate, as we shall show,) but so it
was, nevertheless.

"I own up," rejoins Tom, "I own up; I love my mother, and am out of
sorts. You may call me a mass of filth-what you please!"

"Never mind; I am your friend, Tom," interrupts the brusque old
jailer, stooping down and taking him gently by the arm. "Good may
come of the worst filth of nature-evil may come of what seemeth the
best; and trees bearing sound pippins may have come of rotten cores.
Cheer up!"

The cool and unexpected admonition of the "vote-cribber" leaves a
deep impression in Tom's feelings. He attempts, heaving a sigh, to
rise, but has not strength, and falls languidly back upon the floor.
His countenance, for a few moments, becomes dark and desponding; but
the kind words that fall from the jailer's lips inspire him with
confidence; and, turning partly on his side, he thrusts his begrimed
hands into a pair of greasy pockets, whistling "Yankee Doodle," with
great composure.

The jailer glances about him for assistance, saying it will be
necessary to get him up and carry him to his cell.

"To a cell-a cell-a cell!" reiterates the inebriate. "Well, as the
legal gentry say," he continues, "I'll enter a 'non-contender.' I
only say this by way of implication, to show my love for the fellow
who gathers fees by making out writs on my account."

In reply to a question from the jailer, he says they mistake Tom
Swiggs, if they think he has no pride left.

"After all, there's something more in you than I thought, Tom. Give
us your hand," says the vote-cribber, extending cordially his hand,
as if a change for the better had come over him, and grasping firmly
that of the inebriate. Raising his besotted head, Tom gazes
distrustfully at the cribber, as if questioning his sincerity. "I am
not dead to shame," he mutters, struggling at the same time to
suppress his emotions.

"There are, Tom," continues the cribber, playfully, "two claims on
you-two patent claims! (He lets go the inebriate's hand, and begins
teasing his long, red beard.) And, are you disposed to come out on
the square, in the liquor line, you may redeem yourself--"

"Name 'em!" interposed Tom, stopping short in his tune.

"The gentleman commonly called Mister Jones, and a soap-chandler,
are contesting a claim upon you. The one wants your body, the other
your clothes. Now, as I am something of a lawyer, having had large
dealings in elections, I may say, as a friend, that it is only a
question of time, so far as you are concerned. Take my advice, then,
and cheat both, by selling out, in advance. The student and the
janitor pay good prices for such things as you. Give the last-named
worthy a respondentia bond on yourself, redeemable before death, or
resign the body after, (any lawyer will make the lien valid,) and
the advance will produce floods of whiskey. Come out, Tom, like a
hero, on the square."

An outcast, hurled deep into the gulf of despair, and surrounded by
victims of poverty and votaries of crime, the poor inebriate has yet
left him one lingering spark of pride. As if somewhat revived, he
scrambles to his feet, staggers into the room of a poor debtor, on
the left of the long, sombre aisle, and drawing from his pocket a
ten-cent piece, throws it upon the table, with an air of great

"I am not moneyless," he exclaims--"not I!" and he staggers to the
great chimney-place, rebounding to the floor, saying, "Take
that-bring her in-quench my burning thirst!"

Tom is the only surviving, and now the outcast, member of a somewhat
respectable family, that has moved in the better walks of society.
His mother, being scrupulous of her position in society, and
singularly proud withal, has reared and educated her son in
idleness, and ultimately slights and discards him, because he, as
she alleges, sought society inferior to his position and her
dignity. In his better days he had been erect of person, and even
handsome; but the thraldom of the destroyer has brought him to the
dust, a pitiable wreck.

Tom has seen thirty summers, presents a full, rounded figure, and
stands some five feet ten. He wears an old brown coat, cut after the
fashion of a surtout, that might have fitted him, he says, when he
was a man. But it has lost the right cuff, the left flap, and a part
of the collar; the nefarious moths, too, have made a sieve of its
back. His trowsers are of various colors, greasy down the sides,
ragged at the bottoms, and revealing two encrusted ancles, with feet
stuck into old shoes, turned under at the heels for convenience
sake. A remark from the cribber touches his pride, and borrowing a
few pins he commences pinning together the shattered threads of his
nether garment. A rope-yarn secured about his waist gives a
sailor-like air to his outfit. But, notwithstanding Tom affects the
trim of the craft, the skilled eye can easily detect the deception;
for the craftsman, even under a press of head sail, preserves a
becoming rig.

Indeed, Tom might have attempted without effect, during his natural
life, to transform himself into a sailor. The destroyer was his
victor; the inner man was but a reflex of the outer. He pulled an
old cloth cap over his face, which was immersed in a massive black
beard, bordering two red, swollen cheeks; and with his begrimed
hands he rubbed lustily his inflamed eyes--once brown, large, and
earnest--now glassy and sunken.

"I'm all square, ain't I?" he inquires, looking with vacant stare
into the faces of those who tease him with facetious remarks, then
scans his haberdashery. There yet remains something displeasing to
him. His sense of taste is at stake. This something proves to be a
sooty striped shirt, open in front, and disclosing the remains of a
red flannel under-garment. Every few minutes will he, as if touched
with a sense of shame, wriggle his shoulders, and pull forward the
wreck of his collarless coat, apparently much annoyed that it fails
to cover the breastwork of his distress.

Again he thrusts his hands into his pockets, and with an air of
apparent satisfaction, struts twice or thrice across the dingy room,
as if he would show how far he has gained his equilibrium. "I shall
go straight mad; yes, mad, if the whiskey be not brought in," he
pursues, stopping short in one of his sallies, and with a rhetorical
flourish, pointing at the piece of silver he so exultingly tossed
upon the table. As if his brain were again seized by the destroyer's
flame, his countenance becomes livid, his eyes glare wildly upon
each object near him; then he draws himself into a tragic attitude,
contorts hideously his more hideous face, throws his cap scornfully
to the ground, and commences tearing from his head the matted black
hair that confusedly covers it. "If my mother thinks this a fit
place for me--" He pauses in the middle of his sentence, gives an
imploring stare at his companions, shakes and hangs down his head;
then his brain reels, and his frame trembles, and like a lifeless
mass he falls to the floor.

"I'm gone now--gone--gone--gone!" he mutters, with a spasmodic effort,
covering his face with his hands.

"He'll go mad; you can only save him with a hair of the same dog,"
one of the prisoner's measuredly suggests, folding his arms, and
looking mechanically upon the wretched man.

A second agrees with the first; a third says he is past cure, though
a gallon of whiskey were wasted upon him.

Mr. Mingle, the vote-cribber--regarded good authority in such
matters--interposes. He has not the shadow of a doubt but that a
speedy cure can be effected, by his friends drinking the whiskey,
(he will join them, without an objection,) and just letting Tom
smell the glass.

A fifth says, without prejudice to the State of South Carolina, if
he knew Tom's mother, he would honestly recommend her to send him
special minister to Maine. There, drinking is rather an aristocratic
indulgence, enjoyed only on the sly.

Suddenly the poor inebriate gives vent to his frenzy. The color of
his face changes from pale livid to sickly blue; his hands seem more
shrunken and wiry; his body convulses and writhes upon the floor; he
is become more the picture of a wild beast, goaded and aggravated in
his confinement. A narcotic, administered by the hand of the jailer,
produces quiet, and with the assistance of two prisoners is he
raised to his feet, and supported into the corridor, to receive the
benefit of fresh air. Here he remains some twenty minutes, stretched
upon two benches, and eyed sharply by the vote-cribber, who paces in
a circle round him, regarding him with a half suspicious leer, and
twice or thrice pausing to fan his face with the drab felt hat he
carries under his arm.

"A curious mother that sends you here for reform," muses the
vote-cribber; "but he must be a perfect fleshhook on the feelings of
the family."

Send him up into Rogue's Hall," exclaims a deep, sonorous voice,
that echoes along the aisle. The vote-cribber, having paused over
Tom, as if to contemplate his degradation, turns inquiringly, to see
from whence comes the voice. "It is me!" again the voice resounds.
Two glaring eyes, staring anxiously through the small iron grating
of a door leading to a close cell on the left of the corridor,
betrays the speaker. "It's Tom Swiggs. I know him--he's got the
hydrophobia; its common with him! Take him in tow, old Spunyarn,
give him a good berth, and let him mellow at thirty cents a day,"
continues the voice.

The last sentence the speaker addressed to a man of comely figure
and frank countenance, who has just made his appearance, dressed in
the garb of a sailor. This man stoops over Tom, seems to recognize
in him an old acquaintance, for his face warms with kindliness, and
he straightway commences wiping the sun-scorched face of the
inebriate with his handkerchief, and with his hand smooths and
parts, with an air of tenderness, his hair; and when he has done
this, he spreads the handkerchief over the wretched man's face,
touches the querulous vote-cribber on the arm, and with a
significant wink beckons him away, saying, "Come away, now, he has
luffed into the wind. A sleep will do him good."



REGARD us forbearingly, generous and urbane reader; follow us
undaunted whither we go, nor charge us with tracing crime in a bad
cause. We will leave the old prison, the dejected inebriate, the
more curious group that surround him, and the tale of the destroyer
it develops, and escort you in our walk to the mansion of Madame
Flamingo, who is well known in Charleston, and commonly called the
Mother of Sin. It is a massive brick pile, situate in one of the
public thoroughfares, four stories high, with bold Doric windows,
set off with brown fluted freestone, and revealing faded red
curtains, overlain with mysterious lace, and from between the folds
of which, at certain hours of the day, languid and more mysterious
eyes may be seen peering cautiously. Madame Flamingo says (the city
fathers all know it) she has a scrupulous regard to taste, and
develops it in the construction of her front door, which is of black
walnut, fluted and carved in curious designs. In style it resembles
somewhat the doors of those fashionable churches that imitate so
closely the Italian, make good, paying property of fascinating pews,
and adopt the more luxurious way of getting to heaven (prayer-book
of gold in hand) reclining on velvet and satin damask.

The mansion of Madame Flamingo differs only in sumptuousness of
furniture from twenty others of similar character, dotted here and
there about the little city. Add to these the innumerable smaller
haunts of vice that line the more obscure streets-that,
rampart-like, file along the hundred and one "back lanes" that
surround the scattered town, and, reader, you may form some
estimation of the ratio of vice and wretchedness in this population
of thirty thousand, of which the enslaved form one-third.

Having escorted you to the door, generous reader, we will forget the
common-place jargon of the world, and affect a little ceremony, for
Madame Flamingo is delicately exact in matters of etiquette. Touch
gently the bell; you will find it there, a small bronze knob, in the
fluting of the frame, and scarce perceptible to the uninitiated eye.
If rudely you touch it, no notice will be taken; the broad, high
front of her house will remain, like an ill-natured panorama of
brick and freestone, closed till daylight. She admits nothing but
gentlemen; and gentlemen know how to ring a bell. Well, you have
touched it like one of delicate nerves, and like a bell with manners
polished by Madame Flamingo herself, it answers as faintly as does
the distant tinkle of an Arab's bell in the desert.

There! It was recognized as the ring of a genteel gentleman, and
Madame Flamingo's heavy foot is heard advancing up the hall. Be a
diplomatist now. Show a white glove, and a delicate hand, and a
winning smile, and you have secured your passport to the satin and
brocade of her mansion. A spring is heard to tick, a whisper of
caution to some one within follows, and a block broad enough to
admit your hat swings open, disclosing the voluptuous splendor of a
great hall, the blaze of which flashes upon your senses, and fills
you instinctively with curious emotions. Simultaneously a broad,
cheerful face, somewhat matronly in its aspect, and enlivened with
an urbane smile, darkens the space. After a few moments' pause we
see two sharp gray eyes peering curiously at us, and a soft but
quick accenting voice inquires who we are. Ah! yes, the white glove
has told who we are, for the massive doors swing open, and we find
ourselves in a long, stately hall, resplendent of Persian carpets,
lounges in tapestry, walls and ceiling frescoed in uncouth and
bright-colored designs, and curiously wrought chandeliers, shedding
over all a bewitching light. The splendor is more gaudy than regal;
it strikes our fancy, but leaves our admiration unmoved. The door is
suddenly closed, and the short, portly figure of Madame (she bows,
saying her house is most select) stands before us, somewhat nervous,
as if she were yet undecided about our position in society. She has
seen some sixty summers, made her nefarious reputation in New York;
there she keeps a joint establishment, which, she adds, has been
kindly patronized by the members of several pumpkin-headed
corporations. Indeed, her princely tabernacle there was owned by one
of these individuals, but in deference to his reputation she had the
lease of a third party. Of corporations in general has she the very
highest opinion.

Madame Flamingo's round, dapper figure, is set off with a glossy,
black satin, made high at the neck, about which a plain white collar
is arranged, corresponding nicely with the dash of snowy lace down
the stomacher, and an embroidered buff apron, under which she every
few minutes thrusts her fat, jewelled fingers. Her face is pallid,
her chin fat and dimpled, her artificial hair light brown, and lain
smoothly over a low forehead, which is curiously contrasted with a
jauntily-setting cap, the long strings of which flutter down her

"If you please, gentlemen," she says, "my house is highly
respectable-highly respectable (don't make strange of me tending my
own door!) I assure you gentlemen." And Madame Flamingo's eyes
quicken, and she steps round us, now contemplating us suspiciously,
then frisking her hands beneath her embroidered apron, which she
successively flaunts.

We have assured her of our standing in society. To which, with an
air of resumed confidence, and a quickened step, she says she has
(that is, she thinks she has) seen us before, and is glad to see us
again. She is getting well down in the role of years, has a
treacherous memory-the result of arduous business, and a life of
trouble-the poison of a war upon society-the excitement of seeking
revenge of the world. She cannot at all times trust her memory, for
it has given out in the watchfulness necessary to the respectability
of her house, which she regards as the Gibraltar from which she
turns upon society her unerring guns. "Lord, gentlemen," she says in
quick accents, "the reputation of this house-I watch it as our
senator to Congress does his-is my bank stock; and on the
respectability and behavior of my customers, who are of the first
families, depends my dividends. Madame Flamingo wouldn't-gentlemen,
I am no doubt known to you by reputation?-soil the reputation of her
house for uncounted gold." This she whispers, tripping nervously
over the soft carpet up the hall, until she reaches mid-way, where
on the right and left are two massive arched doors of black walnut,
with stained glass for fan-lights. Our guardian (she has assumed the
office) makes a significant motion with her left hand, which she
moves backward, places her right upon the porcelain knob, turns to
the right, and puts her ear inquiringly to the door. "It's a sort of
commonwealth; yes, sir, a commonwealth-but then they are all
gentlemen-some very distinguished," she continues, shaking her head
as if to caution us. Voices in loud conversation are heard in the
room to the right, while from out the left float the mellow notes of
a waltz, accompanied by the light tripping of feet.

With an urbane bow, and a familiar smile, Madame opens the door,
watches with an air of exultation the effect her
sumptuously-furnished parlors, and her more sumptuously-dressed
worshippers, have on our feelings. The great glare of Gothic
windows; the massive curtains of orange-colored satin that, veiled
with lace, pend in undulating folds over them; the cloudlike canopy
that overhangs a dias at the further end of the parlor; the
gorgeously-carved piano, with keys of pearl, that stands in dumb
show beneath the drapery; the curiously-carved eagles, in gilt, that
perch over each window, and hold daintily in their beaks the
amber-colored drapery; the chastely-designed tapestry of
sumptuously-carved lounges, and reclines, and ottomans, and
patrician chairs, and lute tabs, arranged with exact taste here and
there about the great parlor; the massive centre and side-tables,
richly inlaid with pearl and Mosaic; the antique vases interspersed
along the sides, between the windows, and contrasting curiously with
the undulating curtains, looped alternately with goddesses of
liberty, in gilt; the jetting lights from a great chandelier,
blending with prismatic reflections; and the gaudy gossamers in
which weary and blanched-faced females flaunt, more undressed than
dressed-all mingle in one blaze of barbaric splendor.

It is here your child of ignorance and neglect is fascinated and
made to drink the first cup of death; it is here your faltering
sister falls; it is here your betrayed daughter seeks revenge; it is
here your forlorn, outcast sufferer first feels the world her enemy,
has no sympathizing sister to stretch out the hand of encouragement,
and sinks hopeless in the agony of her meditations. It is here,
alas! too often necessity forces its hapless victims, and from
whence a relentless world--without hope of regaining the lost
jewel-hurls them down a short life, into a premature grave. Your
church is near by, but it never steps in here to make an inquiry;
and if it chance to cast a suspicious look in now and then, it is
only as it passes along to inquire the state of the slave market, of
so much more importance is the price of men. Your common school (a
thing unknown, and held extremely dangerous in Carolina!) may be
your much talked of guiding star to virtue; your early education is
your bulwark against which the wave of vice is powerless; but unless
you make it something more than a magnificent theory-unless you seek
practical means, and go down into the haunts of vice, there to drag
up the neglected child, to whom the word early education is a
mystery, you leave untouched the festering volcano that vomits its
deadly embers upon the community.

Your homilies preached to pew-holders of fashion, who live
sumptuously, ride sumptuously to church of a Sunday, and meekly
enjoy a sumptuous sermon for appearance sake, will, so long as you
pass unheeded the haunts of vice, fall as chaff before the wind. You
must make "early education" more than the mere motto of future
happiness; you must go undaunted into the avenues of want and
misery, seek out the fallen child, forbear with her, and kindly
teach her how much good there is in its principles, its truths.

Pardon, generous reader, this digression, and keep our arm while we
see of what metal are the votaries at the shrine of Madame Flamingo.
"I am-that is, they say I am-something of an aristocrat, you see,
gentlemen," says the old woman, flaunting her embroidered apron, and
fussily doddling round the great centre-table, every few minutes
changing backward and forward two massive decanters and four
cut-glass goblets. We bow approvingly. Then with an air of
exultation she turns on her centre, giving a scrutinizing look at
the rich decorations of her palace, and again at us, as if anxious
to draw from us one word of approval. "Gentlemen are no way
sensitive here," pursues Madame Flamingo, moving again the great
decanters, "it's a commonwealth of gentlemen, you see. In New York-I
dash out there, you know-my house is a perfect palace. I keep a
footman and coachman there, have the most exact liveries, and keep
up an establishment equal to my Fifth Avenue neighbors, whose trade
of rope and fish is now lost in their terrible love of plush. I am a
woman of taste, you see; but, my honor for it, gentlemen, I know of
no people so given to plush and great buttons as our Fifth Avenue

It is a high old house this of Madame Flamingo. We speak approvingly
of all we see, her pride is stimulated, she quickens her
conversation. "I think you said two bottles, gentlemen? Our
sparkling Moselle is pronounced a gem by connoisseurs." And again
flaunting her embroidered apron, she trips hurriedly out of the
room. While she is gone we turn to view its human furniture. Yonder,
in a cozy alcove, stands a marble-topped pier-table, at which are
seated two gentlemen of great respectability in the community,
playing whist with fair but frail partners. Near them, on a soft
lounge, is seated a man of portly person and venerable appearance
(his hair is snowy white, and he has a frank, open countenance),
holding converse with, and evidently enamoured of a modest and
beautiful girl, of some sixteen summers, who has just taken her seat
at the opposite end. Madame Flamingo addresses this man as "Judge."
His daylight duty is known to be that of presiding over a criminal
court. The girl with whom he nervously holds conversation, and whose
bright, Italian eyes, undulating black hair, Grecian face and fair
features, swelling bust and beautifully-chiseled shoulders, round
polished arms and tapering hands, erect figure, so exactly dressed
in black brocade, and so reserve in her demeanor, is the Anna Bonard
of this history. "Judge!" she says in reply to a question he has
advanced, and turning disdainfully upon him her great black eyes,
walks gracefully out of the room.

Sitting on a sofa opposite is a slender youth, somewhat flashily
dressed. His complexion is sandy, there is something restless in his
manner; and in his features, which are sharp and watchful, is that
which indicates a mind weak and vacillating. He sits alone,
seemingly thoughtful, and regarding with a jealous eye the insidious
manner in which the venerable judge addresses the beautiful Anna, in
whom you must know, reader, he has a deep and passionate interest.
As Anna passes out of the room he, like one in despair, rests his
head in his pale, bony, and freckled hand, and mutters to himself:
"I will have revenge. His gray hairs shall not save him--my name is
George Mullholland!"

Here and there, on sofas arranged between the great windows, sit
faded denizens, reclining languidly in dresses of various bright
colors, set off with gaudy trinkets, and exhibiting that passion for
cheap jewelry so much in vogue with the vulgar of our self-plumed
aristocracy--such as live at fashionable hotels, and, like Mrs.
Snivel, who has a palace on the Fifth Avenue, make a show-case for
cheap diamonds of themselves at breakfast table. Beside these
denizens are men of every shade and grade of society. With one sits
the distinguished lawyer; with a second converses the
grave-demeanored merchant, who seeks, away from the cares of his
domestic hearth, to satisfy his curiosity here; with a third, the
celebrated physician sips his wine; with a fourth, the fatherly
planter exchanges his saliant jokes; with a fifth, Doctor Handy the
politician-who, to please his fashionable wife, a northern lady of
great beauty, has just moved from the country into the city, keeps
up an unmeaning conversation. In the lefthand corner, seated on an
ottoman, and regarding the others as if a barrier were placed
between them, are two men designated gamblers. Your Southern
gentleman is, with few exceptions, a votary of the exciting vice;
but he who makes it his profession severs the thread that bound him
to society. And there sits not far from these members of the
sporting fraternity, the tall, slender figure of a man, habited in
the garb of a quaker. He regards everything about him with the eye
of a philosopher, has a flowing white beard, a mild, playful blue
eye, a short but well-lined nose, a pale oval face, an evenly-cut
mouth, and an amiable expression of countenance. He intently
watches every movement of the denizens, and should one accost him,
he will answer in soft, friendly accents. He seems known to Madame
Flamingo, whom he regards with a mysterious demeanor, and addresses
as does a father his child. The old hostess gets no profit of his
visits, for "he is only a moralist," she says, and his name is Solon
--; and better people love him more as more they know him.

Madame Flamingo has returned, followed by a colored gentleman in
bright livery, bearing on a silver tray two seductive bottles of the
sparkling nectar, and sundry rich-cut goblets. "There! there!" says
the old hostess, pointing to the centre-table, upon which the
colored man deposits them, and commences arranging some dozen
glasses, as she prepares to extract the corks. Now she fills the
glasses with the effervescing beverage, which the waiter again
places on the tray, and politely serves to the denizens, in whose
glassy eyes, sallow faces, coarse, unbared arms and shoulders, is
written the tale of their misery. The judge drinks with the
courtesan, touches glasses with the gambler, bows in compliment to
the landlady, who reiterates that she keeps the most respectable
house and the choicest wine. The moralist shakes his head, and

And while a dozen voices are pronouncing her beverage excellent, she
turns suddenly and nervously to her massive, old-fashioned
side-board, of carved walnut, and from the numerous cut glass that
range grotesquely along its top, draws forth an aldermanic decanter,
much broken. Holding it up to the view of her votaries, and looking
upon it with feelings of regret, "that," she says, "is what I got,
not many nights since, for kindly admitting one-I don't know when I
did such a thing before, mind ye!--of the common sort of people. I
never have any other luck when I take pity on one who has got down
hill. I have often thought that the more kind I am the more
ungrateful they upon whom I lavish my favors get. You must treat the
world just as it treats you-you must."

To your simple question, reader, more simply advanced, she replies
coquettishly: "Now, on my word of honor, Tom Swiggs did that. And
the poor fellow-I call him poor fellow, because, thinking of what he
used to be, I can't help it-has not a cent to pay for his pranks
with. Bless you, (here Madame Flamingo waxes warm,) why I knew Tom
Swiggs years ago, when he wasn't what he is now! He was as dashing a
young buck then as you'd meet in the city; used to come here a
perfect gentleman; and I liked him, and he liked me, and he got to
liking the house, so you couldn't, if you had wanted to, have kept
him away. And he always had no end of money, which he used to spend
so freely. Poor fellow! (she sighs and shakes her head,) I confess I
used to almost love Tom then. Then he got to courting a lady-she
(Madame corrects herself) wasn't a lady though, she was only the
daughter of a mechanic of small means--mechanic families have no
standing in society, you see-and this cut deep into his mother's
pride. And she, you see, was not quite sure where she stood in
society, you see, and wouldn't for the world have her pride
lessened; so she discarded poor Tom. And the girl has been got out
of the way, and Tom has become penniless, and such a wreck of
dissipation that no respectable house will admit him. It's a stiff
old family, that Swiggs family! His mother keeps him threading in
and out of jail, just to be rid of him. She is a curious mother; but
when I think how he looks and acts, how can I wonder she keeps him
in jail? I had to put him there twice--I had! (Madame Flamingo
becomes emphatic.) But remembering what a friend of the house he
used to be, I took pity on him, let him out, and lent him two
dollars. And there's honor--I've great faith in honor-in Tom, who, I
honestly believe, providing the devil do not get him in one of his
fits, will pay all damages, notwithstanding I placed the reputation
of my house in jeopardy with him a few nights since, was forced to
call three policemen to eject him, and resolved that he should not
again darken my door."



TOM has passed a restless night in jail. He has dreamed of bottled
snakes, with eyes wickedly glaring at him; of fiery-tailed serpents
coiling all over him; of devils in shapes he has no language to
describe; of the waltz of death, in which he danced at the mansion
of Madame Flamingo; and of his mother, (a name ever dear in his
thoughts,) who banished him to this region of vice, for what she
esteemed a moral infirmity. Further on in his dream he saw a vision,
a horrible vision, which was no less than a dispute for his person
between Madame Flamingo, a bishop, and the devil. But Madame
Flamingo and the devil, who seemed to enjoy each other's company
exceedingly, got the better of the bishop, who was scrupulous of his
dignity, and not a little anxious about being seen in such society.
And from the horrors of this dream he wakes, surprised to find
himself watched over by a kind friend-a young, comely-featured man,
in whom he recognizes the earnest theologian, as he is plumed by the
prisoners, whom he daily visits in his mission of good. There was
something so frank and gentle in this young man's demeanor-something
so manly and radiant in his countenance-something so disinterested
and holy in his mission of love--something so opposite to the
coldness of the great world without--something so serene and elevated
in his youth, that even the most inveterate criminal awaited his
coming with emotions of joy, and gave a ready ear to his kindly
advice. Indeed, the prisoners called him their child; and he seemed
not dainty of their approach, but took them each by the hand, sat at
their side, addressed them as should one brother address
another;--yea, he made them to feel that what was their interest it
was his joy to promote.

The young theologian took him a seat close by the side of the
dreaming inebriate; and as he woke convulsively, and turned towards
him his distorted face, viewing with wild stare each object that met
his sight, the young man met his recognition with a smile and a warm
grasp of the hand. "I am sorry you find me here again-yes, I am."

"Better men, perhaps, have been here--"

"I am ashamed of it, though; it isn't as it should be, you see,"
interrupts Tom.

"Never mind-(the young man checks himself)-I was going to say there
is a chance for you yet; and there is a chance; and you must
struggle; and I will help you to struggle; and your friends--"

Tom interrupts by saying, "I've no friends."

"I will help you to struggle, and to overcome the destroyer. Never
think you are friendless, for then you are a certain victim in the
hands of the ruthless enemy--"

"Well, well," pauses Tom, casting a half-suspicious look at the
young man, "I forgot. There's you, and him they call old Spunyarn,
are friends, after all. You'll excuse me, but I didn't think of
that;" and a feeling of satisfaction seemed to have come over him.
"How grateful to have friends when a body's in a place of this
kind," he mutters incoherently, as the tears gush from his distended
eyes, and child-like he grasps the hand of the young man.

"Be comforted with the knowledge that you have friends, Tom. One
all-important thing is wanted, and you are a man again."

"As to that!" interrupts Tom, doubtingly, and laying his begrimed
hand on his burning forehead, while he alternately frets and frisks
his fingers through his matted hair.

"Have no doubts, Tom-doubts are dangerous."

"Well, say what it is, and I'll try what I can do. But you won't
think I'm so bad as I seem, and 'll forgive me? I know what you
think of me, and that's what mortifies me; you think I'm an overdone
specimen of our chivalry-you do!"

"You must banish from your mind these despairing thoughts," replies
the young man, laying his right hand approvingly on Tom's head.
"First, Tom," he pursues, "be to yourself a friend; second, forget
the error of your mother, and forgive her sending you here; and
third, cut the house of Madame Flamingo, in which our chivalry are
sure to get a shattering. To be honest in temptation, Tom, is one of
the noblest attributes of our nature; and to be capable of forming
and maintaining a resolution to shake off the thraldom of vice, and
to place oneself in the serener atmosphere of good society, is
equally worthy of the highest commendation."

Tom received this in silence, and seemed hesitating between what he
conceived an imperative demand and the natural inclination of his

"Give me your hand, and with it your honor-I know you yet retain the
latent spark-and promise me you will lock up the cup--"

"You'll give a body a furlough, by the way of blowing off the fuddle
he has on hand?"

"I do not withhold from you any discretionary indulgence that may
bring relief--"

Tom interrupts by saying, "My mother, you know!"

"I will see her, and plead with her on your behalf; and if she have
a mother's feelings I can overcome her prejudice."

Tom says, despondingly, he has no home to go to. It's no use seeing
his mother; she's all dignity, and won't let it up an inch. "If I
could only persuade her--" Tom pauses here and shakes his head.

"Pledge me your honor you'll from this day form a resolution to
reform, Tom; and if I do not draw from your mother a reconciliation,
I will seek a home for you elsewhere."

"Well, there can't be much harm in an effort, at all events; and
here's my hand, in sincerity. But it won't do to shut down until I
get over this bit of a fog I'm now in." With child-like simplicity,
Tom gives his hand to the young man, who, as old Spunyarn enters the
cell to, as he says, get the latitude of his friend's nerves,
departs in search of Mrs. Swiggs.

Mrs. Swiggs is the stately old member of a crispy old family, that,
like numerous other families in the State, seem to have outlived two
chivalrous generations, fed upon aristocracy, and are dying out
contemplating their own greatness. Indeed, the Swiggs family, while
it lived and enjoyed the glory of its name, was very like the
Barnwell family of this day, who, one by one, die off with the very
pardonable and very harmless belief that the world never can get
along without the aid of South Carolina, it being the parthenon from
which the outside world gets all its greatness. Her leading and very
warlike newspapers, (the people of these United States ought to
know, if they do not already,) it was true, were editorialized, as
it was politely called in the little State-militant, by a species of
unreputationized Jew and Yankee; but this you should know-if you do
not already, gentle reader-that it is only because such employments
are regarded by the lofty-minded chivalry as of too vulgar a nature
to claim a place in their attention.

The clock of old Saint Michels, a clock so tenacious of its dignity
as to go only when it pleases, and so aristocratic in its habits as
not to go at all in rainy weather;--a clock held in great esteem by
the "very first families," has just struck eleven. The young,
pale-faced missionary inquiringly hesitates before a small,
two-story building of wood, located on the upper side of Church
street, and so crabbed in appearance that you might, without
endangering your reputation, have sworn it had incorporated in its
framework a portion of that chronic disease for which the State has
gained for itself an unenviable reputation. Jutting out of the
black, moss-vegetating roof, is an old-maidish looking window, with
a dowdy white curtain spitefully tucked up at the side. The
mischievous young negroes have pecked half the bricks out of the
foundation, and with them made curious grottoes on the pavement.
Disordered and unpainted clapboards spread over the dingy front,
which is set off with two upper and two lower windows, all blockaded
with infirm, green shutters. Then there is a snuffy door, high and
narrow (like the State's notions), and reached by six venerable
steps and a stoop, carefully guarded with a pine hand-rail,
fashionably painted in blue, and looking as dainty as the State's
white glove. This, reader, is the abode of the testy but extremely
dignified Mrs. Swiggs. If you would know how much dignity can be
crowded into the smallest space, you have only to look in here and
be told (she closely patterns after the State in all things!) that
fifty-five summers of her crispy life have been spent here, reading
Milton's Paradise Lost and contemplating the greatness of her
departed family.

The old steps creak and complain as the young man ascends them,
holding nervously on at the blue hand-rail, and reaching in due time
the stoop, the strength of which he successively tests with his
right foot, and stands contemplating the snuffy door. A knocker
painted in villanous green-a lion-headed knocker, of grave
deportment, looking as savage as lion can well do in this chivalrous
atmosphere, looks admonitiously at him. "Well!" he sighs as he
raises it, "there's no knowing what sort of a reception I may get."
He has raised the monster's head and given three gentle taps.
Suddenly a frisking and whispering, shutting of doors and tripping
of feet, is heard within; and after a lapse of several minutes the
door swings carefully open, and the dilapidated figure of an old
negro woman, lean, shrunken, and black as Egyptian darkness--with
serious face and hanging lip, the picture of piety and starvation,
gruffly asks who he is and what he wants?

Having requested an interview with her mistress, this decrepit
specimen of human infirmity half closes the door against him and
doddles back. A slight whispering, and Mrs. Swiggs is heard to
say--"show him into the best parlor." And into the best parlor, and
into the august presence of Mrs. Swiggs is he ushered. The best
parlor is a little, dingy room, low of ceiling, and skirted with a
sombre-colored surbase, above which is papering, the original color
of which it would be difficult to discover. A listen carpet, much
faded and patched, spreads over the floor, the walls are hung with
several small engravings, much valued for their age and
associations, but so crooked as to give one the idea of the house
having withstood a storm at sea; and the furniture is made up of a
few venerable mahogany chairs, a small side-table, on which stands,
much disordered, several well-worn books and papers, two
patch-covered foot-stools, a straightbacked rocking-chair, in which
the august woman rocks her straighter self, and a great tin cage,
from between the bars of which an intelligent parrot chatters--"my
lady, my lady, my lady!" There is a cavernous air about the place,
which gives out a sickly odor, exciting the suggestion that it might
at some time have served as a receptacle for those second-hand
coffins the State buries its poor in.

"Well! who are you? And what do you want? You have brought letters,
I s'pose?" a sharp, squeaking voice, speaks rapidly.

The young man, without waiting for an invitation to sit down, takes
nervously a seat at the side-table, saying he has come on a mission
of love.

"Love! love! eh? Young man-know that you have got into the wrong
house!" Mrs. Swiggs shakes her head, squeaking out with great

There she sits, Milton's "Paradise Lost" in her witch-like fingers,
herself lean enough for the leanest of witches, and seeming to have
either shrunk away from the faded black silk dress in which she is
clad, or passed through half a century of starvation merely to
bolster up her dignity. A sharp, hatchet-face, sallow and
corrugated; two wicked gray eyes, set deep in bony sockets; a long,
irregular nose, midway of which is adjusted a pair of broad,
brass-framed spectacles; a sunken, purse--drawn mouth, with two
discolored teeth protruding from her upper lip; a high, narrow
forehead, resembling somewhat crumpled parchment; a dash of dry,
brown hair relieving the ponderous border of her steeple-crowned
cap, which she seems to have thrown on her head in a hurry; a
moth-eaten, red shawl thrown spitefully over her shoulders,
disclosing a sinewy and sassafras-colored neck above, and the small
end of a gold chain in front, and, reader, you have the august Mrs.
Swiggs, looking as if she diets on chivalry and sour krout. She is
indeed a nice embodiment of several of those qualities which the
State clings tenaciously to, and calls its own, for she lives on the
labor of eleven aged negroes, five of whom are cripples.

The young man smiles, as Mrs. Swiggs increases the velocity of her
rocking, lays her right hand on the table, rests her left on her
Milton, and continues to reiterate that he has got into the wrong

"I have no letter, Madam--"

"I never receive people without letters-never!" she interrupts,

"But you see, Madam--"

"No I don't. I don't see anything about it!" again she interposes,
adjusting her spectacles, and scanning him anxiously from head to
foot. "Ah, yes (she twitches her head), I see what you are--"

"I was going to say, if you please, Madam, that my mission may serve
as a passport--"

"I'm of a good family, you must know, young man. You could have
learned that of anybody before seeking this sort of an introduction.
Any of our first families could have told you about me. You must go
your way, young man!" And she twitches her head, and pulls closer
about her lean shoulders the old red shawl.

"I (if you will permit me, Madam) am not ignorant of the very high
standing of your famous family--" Madam interposes by saying, every
muscle of her frigid face unmoved the while, she is glad he knows
something, "having read of them in a celebrated work by one of our
more celebrated genealogists--"

"But you should have brought a letter from the Bishop! and upon that
based your claims to a favorable reception. Then you have read of
Sir Sunderland Swiggs, my ancestor? Ah! he was such a Baron, and
owned such estates in the days of Elizabeth. But you should have
brought a letter, young man." Mrs. Swiggs replies rapidly,
alternately raising and lowering her squeaking voice, twitching her
head, and grasping tighter her Milton.

"Those are his arms and crest." She points with her Milton to a
singular hieroglyphic, in a wiry black frame, resting on the
marble-painted mantelpiece. "He was very distinguished in his time;
and such an excellent Christian." She shakes her head and wipes the
tears from her spectacles, as her face, which had before seemed
carved in wormwood, slightly relaxes the hardness of its muscles.

"I remember having seen favorable mention of Sir Sunderland's name
in the book I refer to--"

She again interposes. The young man watches her emotions with a
penetrating eye, conscious that he has touched a chord in which all
the milk of kindness is not dried up.

"It's a true copy of the family arms. Everybody has got to having
arms now-a-days. (She points to the indescribable scrawl over the
mantelpiece.) It was got through Herald King, of London, who they
say keeps her Majesty's slippers and the great seal of State. We
were very exact, you see. Yes, sir-we were very exact. Our vulgar
people, you see-I mean such as have got up by trade, and that sort
of thing-went to a vast expense in sending to England a man of great
learning and much aforethought, to ransack heraldry court and trace
out their families. Well, he went, lived very expensively, spent
several years abroad, and being very clever in his way, returned,
bringing them all pedigrees of the very best kind. With only two
exceptions, he traced them all down into noble blood. These two, the
cunning fellow had it, came of martyrs. And to have come of the
blood of martyrs, when all the others, as was shown, came of noble
blood, so displeased-the most ingenious (the old lady shakes her
head regrettingly) can't please everybody-the living members of
these families, that they refused to pay the poor man for his
researches, so he was forced to resort to a suit at law. And to this
day (I don't say it disparagingly of them!) both families stubbornly
refuse to accept the pedigree. They are both rich grocers, you see!
and on this account we were very particular about ours."

The young man thought it well not to interrupt the old woman's
display of weakness, inasmuch as it might produce a favorable change
in her feelings.

"And now, young man, what mission have you besides love?" she
inquires, adding an encouraging look through her spectacles.

"I am come to intercede--"

"You needn't talk of interceding with me; no you needn't! I've
nothing to intercede about"--she twitches her head spitefully.

"In behalf of your son."

"There-there! I knew there was some mischief. You're a Catholic! I
knew it. Never saw one of your black-coated flock about that there
wasn't mischief brewing-never! I can't read my Milton in peace for

"But your son is in prison, Madam, among criminals, and subject to
the influence of their habits--"

"Precisely where I put him-where he won't disgrace the family; yes,
where he ought to be, and where he shall rot, for all me. Now, go
your way, young man; and read your Bible at home, and keep out of
prisons; and don't be trying to make Jesuits of hardened scamps like
that Tom of mine."

"I am a Christian: I would like to extend a Christian's hand to your
son. I may replace him on the holy pedestal he has fallen from--"

"You are very aggravating, young man. Do you live in South

The young man says he does. He is proud of the State that can boast
so many excellent families.

"I am glad of that," she says, looking querulously over her
spectacles, as she twitches her chin, and increases the velocity of
her rocking. "I wonder how folks can live out of it."

"As to that, Madam, permit me to say, I am happy to see and
appreciate your patriotism; but if you will grant me an order of

"I won't hear a word now! You're very aggravating, young man-very!
He has disgraced the family; I have put him where he is seven times;
he shall rot were he is! He never shall disgrace the family again.
Think of Sir Sunderland Swiggs, and then think of him, and see what
a pretty level the family has come to! That's the place for him. I
have told him a dozen times how I wished him gone. The quicker he is
out of the way, the better for the name of the family."

The young man waits the end of this colloquy with a smile on his
countenance. "I have no doubt I can work your son's reform-perhaps
make him an honor to the family--"

"He honor the family!" she interrupts, twitches the shawl about her
shoulders, and permits herself to get into a state of general
excitement. "I should like to see one who has disgraced the family
as much as he has think of honoring it--"

"Through kindness and forbearance, Madam, a great deal may be done,"
the young man replies.

Now, you are very provoking, young man-very. Let other people alone;
go your way home, and study your Bible." And with this the old lady
calls Rebecca, the decrepit slave who opened the door, and directs
her to show the young man out. "There now!" she says testily,
turning to the marked page of her Milton.

The young man contemplates her for a few moments, but, having no
alternative, leaves reluctantly.

On reaching the stoop he encounters the tall, handsome figure of a
man, whose face is radiant with smiles, and his features ornamented
with neatly-combed Saxon hair and beard, and who taps the old
negress under the chin playfully, as she says, "Missus will be right
glad to see you, Mr. Snivel-that she will." And he bustles his way
laughing into the presence of the old lady, as if he had news of
great importance for her.



DISAPPOINTED, and not a little chagrined, at the failure of his
mission, the young man muses over the next best course to pursue. He
has the inebriate's welfare at heart; he knows there is no state of
degradation so low that the victim cannot, under proper care, be
reclaimed from it; and he feels duty calling loudly to him not to
stand trembling on the brink, but to enter the abode of the victim,
and struggle to make clean the polluted. Vice, he says to himself,
is not entailed in the heart; and if you would modify and correct
the feelings inclined to evil, you must first feed the body, then
stimulate the ambition; and when you have got the ambition right,
seek a knowledge of the heart, and apply to it those mild and
judicious remedies which soften its action, and give life to new
thoughts and a higher state of existence. Once create the vine of
moral rectitude, and its branches will soon get where they can take
care of themselves. But to give the vine creation in poor soil, your
watching must exhibit forbearance, and your care a delicate hand.
The stubbornly-inclined nature, when coupled with ignorance, is that
in which vice takes deepest root, as it is, when educated, that
against which vice is least effectual. To think of changing the
natural inclination of such natures with punishment, or harsh
correctives, is as useless as would be an attempt to stop the ebbing
and flowing of the tide. You must nurture the feelings, he thought,
create a susceptibility, get the heart right, by holding out the
value of a better state of things, and make the head to feel that
you are sincere in your work of love; and, above all, you must not
forget the stomach, for if that go empty crime will surely creep
into the head. You cannot correct moral infirmity by confining the
victim of it among criminals, for no greater punishment can be
inflicted on the feelings of man; and punishment destroys rather
than encourages the latent susceptibility of our better nature. In
nine cases out of ten, improper punishment makes the hardened
criminals with which your prisons are filled, destroying forever
that spark of ambition which might have been fostered into a means
to higher ends.

And as the young man thus muses, there recurs to his mind the
picture of old Absalom McArthur, a curious old man, but excessively
kind, and always ready to do "a bit of a good turn for one in need,"
as he would say when a needy friend sought his assistance. McArthur
is a dealer in curiosities, is a venerable curiosity himself, and
has always something on hand to meet the wants of a community much
given to antiquity and broken reputations.

The young theologian will seek this good old man. He feels that time
will work a favorable revolution in the feelings of Tom's mother;
and to be prepared for that happy event he will plead a shelter for
him under McArthur's roof.

And now, generous reader, we will, with your permission, permit him
to go on his errand of mercy, while we go back and see how Tom
prospers at the old prison. You, we well know, have not much love of
prisons. But unless we do now and then enter them, our conceptions
of how much misery man can inflict upon man will be small indeed.

The man of sailor-like deportment, and whom the prisoners salute
with the sobriquet of "Old Spunyarn," entered, you will please
remember, the cell, as the young theologian left in search of Mrs.
Swiggs. "I thought I'd just haul my tacks aboard, run up a bit, and
see what sort of weather you were making, Tom," says he, touching
clumsily his small-brimmed, plait hat, as he recognizes the young
man, whom he salutes in that style so frank and characteristic of
the craft. "He's a bit better, sir-isn't he?" inquires Spunyarn, his
broad, honest face, well browned and whiskered, warming with a glow
of satisfaction.

Receiving an answer in the affirmative, he replies he is right glad
of it, not liking to see a shipmate in a drift. And he gives his
quid a lurch aside, throws his hat carelessly upon the floor, shrugs
his shoulders, and as he styles it, nimbly brings himself to a
mooring, at Tom's side. "It's a hard comforter, this state. I don't
begrudge your mother the satisfaction she gets of sending you here.
In her eyes, ye see, yeer fit only to make fees out on, for them ar
lawyer chaps. They'd keep puttin' a body in an' out here during his
natural life, just for the sake of gettin' the fees. They don't care
for such things as you and I. We hain't no rights; and if we had,
why we hain't no power. This carryin' too much head sail, Tom, won't
do-'twon't!" Spunyarn shakes his head reprovingly, fusses over Tom,
turns him over on his wales, as he has it, and finally gets him on
his beam's ends, a besotted wreck unable to carry his canvas. "Lost
yeer reckonin', eh, Tom?" he continues as that bewildered individual
stares vacantly at him. The inebriate contorts painfully his face,
presses and presses his hands to his burning forehead, and says they
are firing a salute in his head, using his brains for ammunition.

"Well, now Tom, seein' as how I'm a friend of yourn--"

"Friend of mine?" interrupts Tom, shaking his head, and peering
through his fingers mistrustfully.

"And this is a hard lee shore you've beached upon; I'll lend ye a
hand to get in the head sail, and get the craft trimmed up a little.
A dash of the same brine will help keep the ballast right, then a
skysail-yard breakfast must be carefully stowed away, in order to
give a firmness to the timbers, and on the strength of these two
blocks for shoring up the hull, you must begin little by little, and
keep on brightening up until you have got the craft all right again.
And when you have got her right you must keep her right. I say,
Tom!--it won't do. You must reef down, or the devil 'll seize the
helm in one of these blows, and run you into a port too warm for
pea-jackets." For a moment, Spunyarn seems half inclined to grasp
Tom by his collarless coat and shake the hydrophobia, as he calls
it, out of him; then, as if incited by a second thought, he draws
from his shirt-bosom a large, wooden comb, and humming a tune
commences combing and fussing over Tom's hair, which stands erect
over his head like marline-spikes. At length he gets a craft-like
set upon his foretop, and turning his head first to the right, then
to the left, as a child does a doll, he views him with an air of
exultation. "I tell you what it is, Tom," he continues, relieving
him of the old coat, "the bright begins to come! There's three
points of weather made already."

"God bless you, Spunyarn," replies Tom, evidently touched by the
frankness and generosity of the old sailor. Indeed there was
something so whole-hearted about old Spunyarn, that he was held in
universal esteem by every one in jail, with the single exception of
Milman Mingle, the vote-cribber.

"Just think of yourself, Tom-don't mind me," pursues the sailor as
Tom squeezes firmly his hand. "You've had a hard enough time of it--"
Tom interrupts by saying, as he lays his hands upon his sides, he is
sore from head to foot.

"Don't wonder," returns the sailor. "It's a great State, this South
Carolina. It seems swarming with poor and powerless folks. Everybody
has power to put everybody in jail, where the State gives a body two
dog's-hair and rope-yarn blankets to lay upon, and grants the
sheriff, Mr. Hardscrable, full license to starve us, and put the
thirty cents a day it provides for our living into his breeches
pockets. Say what you will about it, old fellow, it's a brief way of
doing a little profit in the business of starvation. I don't say
this with any ill-will to the State that regards its powerless and
destitute with such criminal contempt-I don't." And he brings water,
gets Tom upon his feet, forces him into a clean shirt, and regards
him in the light of a child whose reformation he is determined on
perfecting. He sees that in the fallen man which implies a hope of
ultimate usefulness, notwithstanding the sullen silence, the gloomy
frown on his knitted brow, and the general air of despair that
pervades the external man.

"There!" he exclaims, having improved the personal of the inebriate,
and folding his arms as he steps back apace to have a better view of
his pupil--"now, don't think of being triced up in this dreary vault.
Be cheerful, brace up your resolution-never let the devil think you
know he is trying to put the last seal on your fate-never!" Having
slipped the black kerchief from his own neck, he secures it about
Tom's, adjusts the shark's bone at the throat, and mounts the braid
hat upon his head with a hearty blow on the crown. "Look at
yourself! They'd mistake you for a captain of the foretop," he
pursues, and good-naturedly he lays his broad, browned hands upon
Tom's shoulders, and forces him up to a triangular bit of glass
secured with three tacks to the wall.

Tom's hands wander down his sides as he contemplates himself in the
glass, saying: "I look a shade up, I reckon! And I feel-I have to
thank you for it, Spunyarn-something different all over me. God
bless you! I won't forget you. But I'm hungry; that's all that ails
me now.

"I may thank my mother--"

"Thank yourself, Tom," interposes the sailor.

"For all this. She has driven me to this; yes, she has made my soul
dead with despair!" And he bursts into a wild, fierce laugh. A
moment's pause, and he says, in a subdued voice, "I'm a slave, a
fool, a wanderer in search of his own distress."

The kind-hearted sailor seats his pupil upon a board bench, and
proceeds down stairs, where, with the bribe of a glass of whiskey,
he induces the negro cook to prepare for Tom a bowl of coffee and a
biscuit. In truth, we must confess, that Spunyarn was so exceedingly
liberal of his friendship that he would at times appropriate to
himself the personal effects of his neighbors. But we must do him
justice by saying that this was only when a friend in need claimed
his attention. And this generous propensity he the more frequently
exercised upon the effects-whiskey, cold ham, crackers and cheese-
of the vote-cribber, whom he regards as a sort of cold-hearted
land-lubber, whose political friends outside were not what they
should be. If the vote-cribber's aristocratic friends (and South
Carolina politicians were much given to dignity and bad whiskey)
sent him luxuries that tantalized the appetites of poverty-oppressed
debtors, and poor prisoners starving on a pound of bread a-day,
Spunyarn held this a legitimate plea for holding in utter contempt
the right to such gifts. And what was more singular of this man was,
that he always knew the latitude and longitude of the vote-cribber's
bottle, and what amount of water was necessary to keep up the gauge
he had reduced in supplying his flask.

And now that Tom's almost hopeless condition presents a warrantable
excuse, (the vote-cribber has this moment passed into the cell to
take a cursory glance at Tom,) Spunyarn slips nimbly into the
vote-cribber's cell, withdraws a brick from the old chimney, and
seizing the black neck of a blacker bottle, drags it forth, holds it
in the shadow of the doorway, squints exultingly at the contents,
shrugs his stalwart shoulders, and empties a third of the liquid,
which he replaces with water from a bucket near by, into his
tin-topped flask. This done, he ingeniously replaces the bottle,
slides the flask suspiciously into his bosom, saying, "It'll taste
just as strong to a vote-cribber," and seeks that greasy potentate,
the prison cook. This dignitary has always laid something aside for
Spunyarn; he knows Spunyarn has something laid aside for him, which
makes the condition mutual.

"A new loafer let loose on the world!" says the vote-cribber,
entering the domain of the inebriate with a look of fierce scorn.
"The State is pestered to death with such things as you. What do
they send you here for?-disturbing the quiet and respectability of
the prison! You're only fit to enrich the bone-yard-hardly that;
perhaps only for lawyers to get fees of. The State 'll starve you,
old Hardscrabble 'll make a few dollars out of your feed-but what of
that? We don't want you here." There was something so sullen and
mysterious in the coarse features of this stalwart man-something so
revolting in his profession, though it was esteemed necessary to the
elevation of men seeking political popularity-something so at
variance with common sense in the punishment meted out to him who
followed it, as to create a deep interest in his history,
notwithstanding his coldness towards the inebriate. And yet you
sought in vain for one congenial or redeeming trait in the character
of this man.

"I always find you here; you're a fixture, I take it--"

The vote-cribber interrupts the inebriate--"Better have said a

"Well," returns the inebriate, "a patriot then; have it as you like
it. I'm not over-sensitive of the distinction." The fallen man drops
his head into his hands, stabbed with remorse, while the
vote-cribber folds his brawny arms leisurely, paces to and fro
before him, and scans him with his keen, gray eyes, after the manner
of one mutely contemplating an imprisoned animal.

"You need not give yourself so much concern about me--"

"I was only thinking over in my head what a good subject to crib, a
week or two before fall election, you'd be. You've a vote?"

Tom good-naturedly says he has. He always throws it for the "old
Charleston" party, being sure of a release, as are some dozen caged
birds, just before election.

"I have declared eternal hatred against that party; never pays its
cribbers!" Mingle scornfully retorts; and having lighted his pipe,
continues his pacing. "As for this jail," he mutters to himself,
"I've no great respect for it; but there is a wide difference
between a man who they put in here for sinning against himself, and
one who only violates a law of the State, passed in opposition to
popular opinion. However, you seem brightened up a few pegs, and,
only let whiskey alone, you may be something yet. Keep up an
acquaintance with the pump, and be civil to respectable prisoners,
that's all."

This admonition of the vote-cribber had a deeper effect on the
feelings of the inebriate than was indicated by his outward manner.
He had committed no crime, and yet he found himself among criminals
of every kind; and what was worse, they affected to look down upon
him. Had he reached a stage of degradation so low that even the
felon loathed his presence? Was he an outcast, stripped of every
means of reform-of making himself a man? Oh no! The knife of the
destroyer had plunged deep-disappointment had tortured his brain-he
was drawn deeper into the pool of misery by the fatal fascinations
of the house of Madame Flamingo, where, shunned by society, he had
sought relief-but there was yet one spark of pride lingering in his
heart. That spark the vote-cribber had touched; and with that spark
Tom resolved to kindle for himself a new existence. He had pledged
his honor to the young theologian; he would not violate it.

The old sailor, with elated feelings, and bearing in his hands a
bowl of coffee and two slices of toasted bread, is accosted by
several suspicious-looking prisoners, who have assembled in the
corridor for the purpose of scenting fresh air, with sundry
questions concerning the state of his pupil's health.

"He has had a rough night," the sailor answers, "but is now a bit
calm. In truth, he only wants a bit of good steering to get him into
smooth weather again." Thus satisfying the inquirers, he hurries up
stairs as the vote-cribber hurries down, and setting his offering on
the window-sill, draws from his bosom the concealed flask. "There,
Tom!" he says, with childlike satisfaction, holding the flask before
him--"only two pulls. To-morrow reef down to one; and the day after
swear a dissolution of copartnership, for this chap (he points to
the whiskey) is too mighty for you."

Tom hesitates, as if questioning the quality of the drug he is about
to administer.

"Only two!" interrupts the sailor. "It will reduce the ground-swell
a bit." The outcast places the flask to his lips, and having drank
with contorted face passes it back with a sigh, and extends his
right hand. "My honor is nothing to the world, Spunyarn, but it is
yet something to me; and by it I swear (here he grasps tighter the
hand of the old sailor, as a tear moistens his suffused cheeks)
never to touch the poison again. It has grappled me like a fierce
animal I could not shake off; it has made me the scoffed of felons-I
will cease to be its victim; and having gained the victory, be
hereafter a friend to myself."

"God bless you-may you never want a friend, Tom-and may He give you
strength to keep the resolution. That's my wish." And the old sailor
shook Tom's hand fervently, in pledge of his sincerity.



READER! have you ever witnessed how cleverly one of our
mob-politicians can, through the all-soothing medium of a
mint-julep, transpose himself from a mass of passion and bad English
into a child of perfect equanimity? If not, perhaps you have
witnessed in our halls of Congress the sudden transition through
which some of our Carolina members pass from a state of stupidity to
a state of pugnacity? (We refer only to those members who do their
own "stumping," and as a natural consequence, get into Congress
through abuse of the North, bad whiskey, and a profusion of promises
to dissolve the Union.) And if you have, you may form some idea of
the suddenness with which Lady Swiggs, as she delights in having her
friends call her, transposes herself from the incarnation of a viper
into a creature of gentleness, on hearing announced the name of Mr.
Soloman Snivel.

What!--my old friend! I wish I had words to say how glad I am to see
you, Lady Swiggs!" exclaims a tall, well-proportioned and
handsome-limbed man, to whose figure a fashionable claret-colored
frock coat, white vest, neatly-fitting dark-brown trowsers,
highly-polished boots, a cluster of diamonds set in an avalanche of
corded shirt-bosom, and carelessly-tied green cravat, lend a
respectability better imagined than described. A certain reckless
dash about him, not common to a refined gentleman, forces us to set
him down as one of those individuals who hold an uncertain position
in society; and though they may now and then mingle with men of
refinement, have their more legitimate sphere in a fashionable world
of doubtful character.

"Why!--Mr. Snivel. Is it you?" responds the old woman, reciprocating
his warm shake of the hand, and getting her hard face into a smile.

"I am so glad-But (Mr. Snivel interrupts himself) never mind that!"

"You have some important news?" hastily inquires Mrs. Swiggs, laying
a bit of muslin carefully between the pages of her Milton, and
returning it to the table, saying she has just been grievously
provoked by one of that black-coated flock who go about the city in
search of lambs. They always remind her of light-houses pointing the
road to the dominions of the gentleman in black.

"Something very important!" parenthesises Soloman--"very." And he
shakes his head, touches her significantly on the arm with his
orange-colored glove,--he smiles insidiously.

"Pray be seated, Mr. Snivel. Rebecca!--bring Mr. Snivel the

"You see, my good Madam, there's such a rumor about town this
morning! (Soloman again taps her on the arm with his glove.) The cat
has got out of the bag-it's all up with the St. Cecilia!--"

"Do, Rebecca, make haste with the rocking-chair!" eagerly interrupts
the old woman, addressing herself to the negress, who fusses her way
into the room with a great old-fashioned rocking-chair. "I am so
sensitive of the character of that society," she continues with a
sigh, and wipes and rubs her spectacles, gets up and views herself
in the glass, frills over her cap border, and becomes very generally
anxious. Mrs. Swiggs is herself again. She nervously adjusts the
venerable red shawl about her shoulders, draws the newly-introduced
arm-chair near her own, ("I'm not so old, but am getting a little
deaf," she says), and begs her visitor will be seated.

Mr. Soloman, having paced twice or thrice up and down the little
room, contemplating himself in the glass at each turn, now touching
his neatly-trimmed Saxon mustache and whiskers, then frisking his
fingers through his candy-colored hair, brings his dignity into the

"I said it was all up with the St. Cecilia--"

"Yes!" interrupts Mrs. Swiggs, her eyes glistening like balls of
fire, her lower jaw falling with the weight of anxiety, and fretting
rapidly her bony hands.

Soloman suddenly pauses, says that was a glorious bottle of old
Madeira with which he enjoyed her hospitality on his last visit. The
flavor of it is yet fresh in his mouth.

"Thank you-thank you! Mr. Soloman. I've a few more left. But pray
lose no time in disclosing to me what hath befallen the St.

"Well then-but what I say must be in confidence. (The old woman says
it never shall get beyond her lips-never!) An Englishman of goodly
looks, fashion, and money-and, what is more in favor with our first
families, a Sir attached to his name, being of handsome person and
accomplished manners, and travelling and living after the manner of
a nobleman, (some of our first families are simple enough to
identify a Baronet with nobility!) was foully set upon by the
fairest and most marriageable belles of the St. Cecilia. If he had
possessed a dozen hearts, he could have had good markets for them
all. There was such a getting up of attentions! Our fashionable
mothers did their very best in arraying the many accomplishments of
their consignable daughters, setting forth in the most foreign but
not over-refined phraseology, their extensive travels abroad--"

"Yes!" interrupts Mrs. Swiggs, nervously--"I know how they do it.
It's a pardonable weakness." And she reaches out her hand and takes
to her lap her inseparable Milton.

"And the many marked attentions-offers, in fact-they have received
at the hands of Counts and Earls, with names so unpronounceable that
they have outlived memory--"

"Perhaps I have them in my book of autographs!" interrupts the
credulous old woman, making an effort to rise and proceed to an
antique sideboard covered with grotesque-looking papers.

Mr. Soloman urbanely touches her on the arm-begs she will keep her
seat. The names only apply to things of the past. He proceeds,
"Well-being a dashing fellow, as I have said-he played his game
charmingly. Now he flirted with this one, and then with that one,
and finally with the whole society, not excepting the very flirtable
married ladies;--that is, I mean those whose husbands were simple
enough to let him. Mothers were in a great flutter generally, and
not a day passed but there was a dispute as to which of their
daughters he would link his fortunes with and raise to that state so
desirable in the eyes of our very republican first families-the
State-Militant of nobility--"

"I think none the worse of 'em for that," says the old woman,
twitching her wizard-like head in confirmation of her assertion. "My
word for it, Mr. Soloman, to get up in the world, and to be above
the common herd, is the grand ambition of our people; and our State
has got the grand position it now holds before the world through the
influence of this ambition."

"True!--you are right there, my dear friend. You may remember, I have
always said you had the penetration of a statesman, (Mrs. Swiggs
makes a curt bow, as a great gray cat springs into her lap and curls
himself down on her Milton;) and, as I was going on to say of this
dashing Baronet, he played our damsels about in agony, as an old
sportsman does a covey of ducks, wounding more in the head than in
the heart, and finally creating no end of a demand for matrimony.
To-day, all the town was positive, he would marry the beautiful Miss
Boggs; to-morrow it was not so certain that he would not marry the
brilliant and all-accomplished Miss Noggs; and the next day he was
certain of marrying the talented and very wealthy heiress, Miss
Robbs. Mrs. Stepfast, highly esteemed in fashionable society, and
the very best gossipmonger in the city, had confidentially spread it
all over the neighborhood that Mr. Stepfast told her the young
Baronet told him (and he verily believed he was head and ears in
love with her!) Miss Robbs was the most lovely creature he had seen
since he left Belgravia. And then he went into a perfect rhapsody of
excitement while praising the poetry of her motion, the grace with
which she performed the smallest offices of the drawing-room, her
queenly figure, her round, alabaster arms, her smooth, tapering
hands, (so chastely set off with two small diamonds, and so unlike
the butchers' wives of this day, who bedazzle themselves all the day
long with cheap jewelry,)--the beautiful swell of her marble bust,
the sweet smile ever playing over her thoughtful face, the
regularity of her Grecian features, and those great, languishing
eyes, constantly flashing with the light of irresistible love. Quoth
ye! according to what Mr. Stepfast told Mrs. Stepfast, the young
Baronet would, with the ideal of a real poet, as was he, have gone
on recounting her charms until sundown, had not Mr. Stepfast invited
him to a quiet family dinner. And to confirm what Mr. Stepfast said,
Miss Robbs had been seen by Mrs. Windspin looking in at Mrs.
Stebbins', the fashionable dress-maker, while the young Baronet had
twice been at Spears', in King Street, to select a diamond necklace
of great value, which he left subject to the taste of Miss Robbs.
And putting them two and them two together there was something in

"I am truly glad it's nothing worse. There has been so much scandal
got up by vulgar people against our St. Cecilia."

"Worse, Madam?" interpolates our hero, ere she has time to conclude
her sentence, "the worst is to come yet."

"And I'm a member of the society!" Mrs. Swiggs replies with a
languishing sigh, mistaking the head of the cat for her Milton, and
apologizing for her error as that venerable animal, having got well
squeezed, sputters and springs from her grasp, shaking his head,
"elected solely on the respectability of my family."

Rather a collapsed member, by the way, Mr. Soloman thinks,
contemplating her facetiously.

"Kindly proceed-proceed," she says, twitching at her cap strings, as
if impatient to get the sequel.

"Well, as to that, being a member of the St. Cecilia myself, you
see, and always-(I go in for a man keeping up in the
world)-maintaining a high position among its most distinguished
members, who, I assure you, respect me far above my real merits,
(Mrs. Swiggs says we won't say anything about that now!) and honor
me with all its secrets, I may, even in your presence, be permitted
to say, that I never heard a member who didn't speak in high praise
of you and the family of which you are so excellent a

"Thank you-thank you. O thank you, Mr. Soloman!" she rejoins.

"Why, Madam, I feel all my veneration getting into my head at once
when I refer to the name of Sir Sunderland Swiggs."

"But pray what came of the young Baronet?"

"Oh!--as to him, why, you see, he was what we call-it isn't a polite
word, I confess-a humbug."

"A Baronet a humbug!" she exclaims, fretting her hands and
commencing to rock herself in the chair.

"Well, as to that, as I was going on to say, after he had beat the
bush all around among the young birds, leaving several of them
wounded on the ground-you understand this sort of thing-he took to
the older ones, and set them polishing up their feathers. And having
set several very respectable families by the ears, and created a
terrible flutter among a number of married dames-he was an adept in
this sort of diplomacy, you see-it was discovered that one very
distinguished Mrs. Constance, leader of fashion to the St. Cecilia,
(and on that account on no very good terms with the vulgar world,
that was forever getting up scandal to hurl at the society that
would not permit it to soil, with its common muslin, the fragrant
atmosphere of its satin and tulle), had been carrying on a villanous
intrigue-yes, Madam! villanous intrigue! I said discovered: the fact
was, this gallant Baronet, with one servant and no establishment,
was fˆted and fooled for a month, until he came to the very natural
and sensible conclusion, that we were all snobbs-yes, snobbs of the
very worst kind. But there was no one who fawned over and flattered
the vanity of this vain man more than the husband of Mrs. Constance.
This poor man idolized his wife, whom he regarded as the very
diamond light of purity, nor ever mistrusted that the Baronet's
attentions were bestowed with any other than the best of motives.
Indeed, he held it extremely condescending on the part of the
Baronet to thus honor the family with his presence.

"And the Baronet, you see, with that folly so characteristic of
Baronets, was so flushed with his success in this little intrigue
with Madame Constance-the affair was too good for him to keep!--that
he went all over town showing her letters. Such nice letters as they
were-brim full of repentance, love, and appointments. The Baronet
read them to Mr. Barrows, laughing mischievously, and saying what a
fool the woman must be. Mr. Barrows couldn't keep it from Mrs.
Barrows, Mrs. Barrows let the cat out of the bag to Mrs. Simpson,
and Mrs. Simpson would let Mr. Simpson have no peace till he got on
the soft side of the Baronet, and, what was not a difficult matter,
got two of the letters for her to have a peep into. Mrs. Simpson
having feasted her eyes on the two Mr. Simpson got of the Baronet,
and being exceedingly fond of such wares as they contained, must
needs-albeit, in strict confidence-whisper it to Mrs. Fountain, who
was a very fashionable lady, but unfortunately had a head very like
a fountain, with the exception that it ejected out double the amount
it took in. Mrs. Fountain-as anybody might have known-let it get all
over town. And then the vulgar herd took it up, as if it were
assafotida, only needing a little stirring up, and hurled it back at
the St. Cecilia, the character of which it would damage without a
pang of remorse.

"Then the thing got to Constance's ears; and getting into a terrible
passion, poor Constance swore nothing would satisfy him but the
Baronet's life. But the Baronet--"

"A sorry Baronet was he-not a bit like my dear ancestor, Sir
Sunderland," Mrs. Swiggs interposes.

"Not a bit, Madam," bows our hero. "Like a sensible gentleman, as I
was about to say, finding it getting too hot for him, packed up his
alls, and in the company of his unpaid servant, left for parts
westward of this. I had a suspicion the fellow was not what he
should be; and I made it known to my select friends of the St.
Cecilia, who generally pooh-poohed me. A nobleman, they said, should
receive every attention. And to show that he wasn't what he should
be, when he got to Augusta his servant sued him for his wages; and
having nothing but his chivalry, which the servant very sensibly
declined to accept for payment, he came out like a man, and declared
himself nothing but a poor player.

"But this neither satisfied Constance nor stayed the drifting
current of slander--"

"Oh! I am so glad it was no worse," Mrs. Swiggs interrupts again.

"True!" Mr. Soloman responds, laughing heartily, as he taps her on
the arm. "It might have been worse, though. Well, I am, as you know,
always ready to do a bit of a good turn for a friend in need, and
pitying poor Constance as I did, I suggested a committee of four
most respectable gentlemen, and myself, to investigate the matter.
The thing struck Constance favorably, you see. So we got ourselves
together, agreed to consider ourselves a Congress, talked over the
affairs of the nation, carried a vote to dissolve the Union, drank
sundry bottles of Champagne, (I longed for a taste of your old
Madeira, Mrs. Swiggs,) and brought in a verdict that pleased Mrs.
Constance wonderfully-and so it ought. We were, after the most
careful examination, satisfied that the reports prejudicial to the
character and standing of Mrs. Constance had no foundation in truth,
being the base fabrications of evil-minded persons, who sought,
while injuring an innocent lady, to damage the reputation of the St.
Cecilia Society. Mr. Constance was highly pleased with the finding;
and finally it proved the sovereign balm that healed all their
wounds. Of course, the Knight, having departed, was spared his

Here Mr. Soloman makes a pause. Mrs. Swiggs, with a sigh, says, "Is
that all?"

"Quite enough for once, my good Madam," Mr. Soloman bows in return.

"Oh! I am so glad the St. Cecilia is yet spared to us. You said, you
know, it was all up with it--"

"Up? up?-so it is! That is, it won't break it up, you know. Why-oh,
I see where the mistake is-it isn't all over, you know, seeing how
the society can live through a score of nine-months scandals. But
the thing's in every vulgar fellow's lips-that is the worst of it."

Mrs. Swiggs relishes this bit of gossip as if it were a dainty
morsel; and calling Rebecca, she commands her to forthwith proceed
into the cellar and bring a bottle of the old Madeira-she has only
five left-for Mr. Soloman. And to Mr. Soloman's great delight, the
old negress hastily obeys the summons; brings forth a mass of cobweb
and dust, from which a venerable black bottle is disinterred,
uncorked, and presented to the guest, who drinks the health of Mrs.
Swiggs in sundry well-filled glasses, which he declares choice,
adding, that it always reminds him of the age and dignity of the
family. Like the State, dignity is Mrs. Swiggs' weakness-her
besetting sin. Mr. Soloman, having found the key to this vain
woman's generosity, turns it when it suits his own convenience.

"By-the-bye," he suddenly exclaims, "you've got Tom locked up

"As safe as he ever was, I warrant ye!" Mrs. Swiggs replies,
resuming her Milton and rocking-chair.

"Upon my faith I agree with you. Never let him get out, for he is
sure to disgrace the family when he does--"

"I've said he shall rot there, and he shall rot! He never shall get
out to disgrace the family--no, not if I live to be as gray as
Methuselah, I warrant you!" And Mr. Soloman, having made his
compliments to the sixth glass, draws from his breast pocket a
legal-looking paper, which he passes to Mrs. Swiggs, as she
ejaculates, "Oh! I am glad you thought of that."

Mr. Soloman, watching intently the changes of her face, says, "You
will observe, Madam, I have mentioned the cripples. There are five
of them. We are good friends, you see; and it is always better to be
precise in those things. It preserves friendship. This is merely a
bit of a good turn I do for you." Mr. Soloman bows, makes an
approving motion with his hands, and lays at her disposal on the
table, a small roll of bills. "You will find two hundred dollars
there," he adds, modulating his voice. You will find it all right; I
got it for you of Keepum. We do a little in that way; he is very
exact, you see--"

"Honor is the best security between people of our standing," she
rejoins, taking up a pen and signing the instrument, which her guest
deposits snugly in his pocket, and takes his departure for the house
of Madame Flamingo.



IF, generous reader, you had lived in Charleston, we would take it
for granted that you need no further enlightening on any of our very
select societies, especially the St. Cecilia; but you may not have
enjoyed a residence so distinguished, rendering unnecessary a few
explanatory remarks. You must know that we not only esteem ourselves
the quintessence of refinement, as we have an undisputed right to
do, but regard the world outside as exceedingly stupid in not
knowing as much of us as we profess to know of ourselves. Abroad, we
wonder we are not at once recognized as Carolinians; at home, we let
the vulgar world know who we are. Indeed, we regard the outside
world-of these States we mean-very much in that light which the
Greeks of old were wont to view the Romans in. Did we but stop here,
the weakness might be pardonable. But we lay claim to Grecian
refinement of manners, while pluming all our mob-politicians Roman
orators. There is a profanity about this we confess not to like; not
that danger can befall it, but because it hath about it that which
reminds us of the oyster found in the shell of gold. Condescending,
then, to believe there exists outside of our State a few persons
silly enough to read books, we will take it for granted, reader,
that you are one of them, straightway proceeding with you to the St.

You have been a fashionable traveller in Europe? You say-yes!
rummaged all the feudal castles of England, sought out the resting
places of her kings, heard some one say "that is poet's corner," as
we passed into Westminster Abbey, thought they couldn't be much to
have such a corner,--"went to look" where Byron was buried, moistened
the marble with a tear ere we were conscious of it, and saw open to
us the gulf of death as we contemplated how greedy graveyard worms
were banqueting on his greatness. A world of strange fancies came
over us as we mused on England's poets. And we dined with several
Dukes and a great many more Earls, declining no end of invitations
of commoners. Very well! we reply, adding a sigh. And on your return
to your home, that you may not be behind the fashion, you compare
disparagingly everything that meets your eye. Nothing comes up to
what you saw in Europe. A servant doesn't know how to be a servant
here; and were we to see the opera at Covent Garden, we would be
sure to stare our eyes out. It is become habitual to introduce your
conversation with, "when I was in Europe." And you know you never
write a letter that you don't in some way bring in the distinguished
persons you met abroad. There is something (no matter what it is)
that forcibly reminds you of what occurred at the table of my Lady
Clarendon, with whom you twice had the pleasure and rare honor of
dining. And by implication, you always give us a sort of
lavender-water description of the very excellent persons you met
there, and what they were kind enough to say of America, and how
they complimented you, and made you the centre and all-absorbing
object of attraction-in a word, a truly wonderful person. And you
will not fail, now that it is become fashionable, to extol with
fulsome breath the greatness of every European despot it hath been
your good fortune to get a bow from. And you are just vain enough to
forever keep this before your up-country cousins. You say, too, that
you have looked in at Almacks. Almacks! alas! departed greatness.
With the rise of the Casino hath it lain its aristocratic head in
the dust.

Well!--the St. Cecilia you must know (its counterparts are to be
found in all our great cities) is a miniature Almacks-a sort of
leach-cloth, through which certain very respectable individuals must
pass ere they can become the elite of our fashionable world. To
become a member of the St. Cecilia-to enjoy its recherch
assemblies-to luxuriate in the delicate perfumes of its votaries, is
the besetting sin of a great many otherwise very sensible people.
And to avenge their disappointment at not being admitted to its
precious precincts, they are sure to be found in the front rank of
scandal-mongers when anything in their line is up with a member. And
it is seldom something is not up, for the society would seem to live
and get lusty in an atmosphere of perpetual scandal. Any amount of
duels have come of it; it hath made rich no end of milliners; it
hath made bankrupt husbands by the dozen; it hath been the theatre
of several distinguished romances; it hath witnessed the first
throbbings of sundry hearts, since made happy in wedlock; it hath
been the shibolath of sins that shall be nameless here. The reigning
belles are all members (provided they belong to our first families)
of the St. Cecilia, as is also the prettiest and most popular
unmarried parson. And the parson being excellent material for
scandal, Mother Rumor is sure to have a dash at him. Nor does this
very busy old lady seem over-delicate about which of the belles she
associates with the parson, so long as the scandal be fashionable
enough to afford her a good traffic.

There is continually coming along some unknown but very
distinguished foreigner, whom the society adopts as its own,
flutters over, and smothers with attentions, and drops only when it
is discovered he is an escaped convict. This, in deference to the
reputation of the St. Cecilia, we acknowledge has only happened
twice. It has been said with much truth that the St. Cecilia's worst
sin, like the sins of its sister societies of New York, is a passion
for smothering with the satin and Honiton of its assemblies a
certain supercilious species of snobby Englishmen, who come over
here, as they have it (gun and fishing-rod in hand), merely to get
right into the woods where they can have plenty of bear-hunting,
confidently believing New York a forest inhabited by such animals.
As for our squaws, as Mr. Tom Toddleworth would say, (we shall speak
more at length of Tom!) why! they have no very bad opinion of them,
seeing that they belong to a race of semi-barbarians, whose sayings
they delight to note down. Having no society at home, this species
of gentry the more readily find themselves in high favor with ours.
They are always Oxonians, as the sons of green grocers and
fishmongers are sure to be when they come over here (so Mr.
Toddleworth has it, and he is good authority), and we being an
exceedingly impressible people, they kindly condescend to instruct
us in all the high arts, now and then correcting our very bad
English. They are clever fellows generally, being sure to get on the
kind side of credulous mothers with very impressible-headed

There was, however, always a distinguished member of the St. Cecilia
society who let out all that took place at its assemblies. The
vulgar always knew what General danced with the lovely Miss A., and
how they looked, and what they said to each other; how many jewels
Miss A. wore, and the material her dress was made of; they knew who
polked with the accomplished Miss B., and how like a duchess she
bore herself; they had the exact name of the colonel who dashed
along so like a knight with the graceful and much-admired Mrs. D.,
whose husband was abroad serving his country; what gallant captain
of dragoons (captains of infantry were looked upon as not what they
might be) promenaded so imperiously with the vivacious Miss E.; and
what distinguished foreigner sat all night in the corner holding a
suspicious and very improper conversation with Miss F., whose skirts
never were free of scandal, and who had twice got the pretty parson
into difficulty with his church. Hence there was a perpetual
outgoing of scandal on the one side, and pelting of dirt on the

When Mr. Soloman sought the presence of Mrs. Swiggs and told her it
was all up with the St. Cecilia, and when that august member of the
society was so happily disappointed by his concluding with leaving
it an undamaged reputation, the whole story was not let out. In
truth the society was at that moment in a state of indignation, and
its reputation as well-nigh the last stage of disgrace as it were
possible to bring it without being entirely absorbed. The Baronet,
who enjoyed a good joke, and was not over-scrupulous in measuring
the latitude of our credulity, had, it seems, in addition to the
little affair with Mrs. Constance, been imprudent enough to
introduce at one of the assemblies of the St. Cecilia, a lady of
exceedingly fair but frail import: this loveliest of creatures-this
angel of fallen fame--this jewel, so much sought after in her own
casket-this child of gentleness and beauty, before whom a dozen
gallant knights were paying homage, and claiming her hand for the
next waltz, turned out to be none other than the Anna Bonard we have
described at the house of Madame Flamingo. The discovery sent the
whole assembly into a fainting fit, and caused such a fluttering in
the camp of fashion. Reader! you may rest assured back-doors and
smelling-bottles were in great demand.

The Baronet had introduced her as his cousin; just arrived, he said,
in the care of her father-the cousin whose beauty he had so often
referred to. So complete was her toilet and disguise, that none but
the most intimate associate could have detected the fraud. Do you
ask us who was the betrayer, reader? We answer,--

One whose highest ambition did seem that of getting her from her
paramour, George Mullholland. It was Judge Sleepyhorn. Reader! you
will remember him-the venerable, snowy-haired man, sitting on the
lounge at the house of Madame Flamingo, and on whom George
Mullholland swore to have revenge. The judge of a criminal court,
the admonisher of the erring, the sentencer of felons, the habitue
of the house of Madame Flamingo-no libertine in disguise could be
more scrupulous of his standing in society, or so sensitive of the
opinion held of him by the virtuous fair, than was this daylight
guardian of public morals.

The Baronet got himself nicely out of the affair, and Mr. Soloman
Snivel, commonly called Mr. Soloman, the accommodation man, is at
the house of Madame Flamingo, endeavoring to effect a reconciliation
between the Judge and George Mullholland.



NIGHT has thrown her mantle over the city. There is a great
gathering of denizens at the house of Madame Flamingo. She has a
bal-masque to-night. Her door is beset with richly-caparisoned
equipages. The town is on tip-toe to be there; we reluctantly follow
it. An hundred gaudily-decorated drinking saloon are filled with
gaudier-dressed men. In loudest accent rings the question--"Do you go
to Madame Flamingo's to-night?" Gentlemen of the genteel world, in
shining broadcloth, touch glasses and answer--"yes!" It is a
wonderful city-this of ours. Vice knows no restraint, poverty hath
no friends here. We bow before the shrine of midnight revelry; we
bring licentiousness to our homes, but we turn a deaf ear to the
cries of poverty, and we gloat over the sale of men.

The sickly gaslight throws a sicklier glare over the narrow, unpaved
streets. The city is on a frolic, a thing not uncommon with it.
Lithe and portly-figured men, bearing dominos in their hands,
saunter along the sidewalk, now dangling ponderous watch-chains,
then flaunting highly-perfumed cambrics--all puffing the fumes of
choice cigars. If accosted by a grave wayfarer--they are going to
the opera! They are dressed in the style of opera-goers. And the
road to the opera seems the same as that leading to the house of the
old hostess. A gaily-equipped carriage approaches. We hear the loud,
coarse laughing of those it so buoyantly bears, then there comes
full to view the glare of yellow silks and red satins, and doubtful
jewels-worn by denizens from whose faded brows the laurel wreath
hath fallen. How shrunken with the sorrow of their wretched lives,
and yet how sportive they seem! The pale gaslight throws a
spectre-like hue over their paler features; the artificial crimson
with which they would adorn the withered cheek refuses to lend a
charm to features wan and ghastly. The very air is sickly with the
odor of their cosmetics. And with flaunting cambrics they bend over
carriage sides, salute each and every pedestrian, and receive in
return answers unsuited to refined ears. They pass into the dim
vista, but we see with the aid of that flickering gas, the shadow of
that polluting hand which hastens life into death.

Old Mr. McArthur, who sits smoking his long pipe in the door of his
crazy-looking curiosity shop, (he has just parted company with the
young theologian, having assured him he would find a place to stow
Tom Swiggs in,) wonders where the fashionable world of Charleston
can be going? It is going to the house of the Flamingo. The St.
Cecilia were to have had a ball to-night; scandal and the greater
attractions here have closed its doors.

A long line of carriages files past the door of the old hostess. An
incessant tripping of feet, delicately encased in bright-colored
slippers; an ominous fluttering of gaudy silks and satins; an
inciting glare of borrowed jewelry, mingling with second-hand lace;
an heterogeneous gleaming of bare, brawny arms, and distended busts,
all lend a sort of barbaric splendor to that mysterious group
floating, as it were, into a hall in one blaze of light. A soft
carpet, over-lain with brown linen, is spread from the curbstone
into the hall. Two well-developed policemen guard the entrance, take
tickets of those who pass in, and then exchange smiles of
recognition with venerable looking gentlemen in masks. The hostess,
a clever "business man" in her way, has made the admission fee one
dollar. Having paid the authorities ten dollars, and honored every
Alderman with a complimentary ticket, who has a better right? No one
has a nicer regard for the Board of Aldermen than Madame Flamingo;
no one can reciprocate this regard more condescendingly than the
honorable Board of Aldermen do. Having got herself arrayed in a
dress of sky-blue satin, that ever and anon streams, cloudlike,
behind her, and a lace cap of approved fashion, with pink strings
nicely bordered in gimp, and a rich Honiton cape, jauntily thrown
over her shoulders, and secured under the chin with a great cluster
of blazing diamonds, and rows of unpolished pearls at her wrists,
which are immersed in crimped ruffles, she doddles up and down the
hall in a state of general excitement. A corpulent colored man,
dressed in the garb of a beadle,--a large staff in his right hand, a
cocked hat on his head, and broad white stripes down his flowing
coat, stands midway between the parlor doors. He is fussy enough,
and stupid enough, for a Paddington beadle. Now Madame Flamingo
looks scornfully at him, scolds him, pushes him aside; he is only a
slave she purchased for the purpose; she commands that he gracefully
touch his hat (she snatches it from his head, and having elevated it
over her own, performs the delicate motion she would have him
imitate) to every visitor. The least neglect of duty will incur (she
tells him in language he cannot mistake) the penalty of thirty-nine
well laid on in the morning. In another minute her fat, chubby face
glows with smiles, her whole soul seems lighted up with childlike
enthusiasm; she has a warm welcome for each new comer, retorts
saliently upon her old friends, and says--"you know how welcome you
all are!" Then she curtsies with such becoming grace. "The house,
you know, gentlemen, is a commonwealth to-night." Ah! she
recognizes the tall, comely figure of Mr. Soloman, the accommodation
man. He did not spring from among the bevy of coat-takers, and
hood-retainers, at the extreme end of the great hall, nor from among
the heap of promiscuous garments piled in one corner; and yet he is
here, looking as if some magic process had brought him from a
mysterious labyrinth. "Couldn't get along without me, you see. It's
an ambition with me to befriend everybody. If I can do a bit of a
good turn for a friend, so much the better!" And he grasps the old
hostess by the hand with a self-satisfaction he rather improves by
tapping her encouragingly on the shoulder. "You'll make a right good
thing of this!--a clear thousand, eh?"

"The fates have so ordained it," smiles naively the old woman.

"Of course the fates could not ordain otherwise--"

"As to that, Mr. Soloman, I sometimes think the gods are with me,
and then again I think they are against me. The witches-they have
done my fortune a dozen times or more-always predict evil (I consult
them whenever a sad fit comes over me), but witches are not to be
depended upon! I am sure I think what a fool I am for consulting
them at all." She espies, for her trade of sin hath made keen her
eye, the venerable figure of Judge Sleepyhorn advancing up the hall,
masked. "Couldn't get along without you," she lisps, tripping
towards him, and greeting him with the familiarity of an intimate
friend. "I'm rather aristocratic, you'll say!--and I confess I am,
though a democrat in principle!" And Madame Flamingo confirms what
she says with two very dignified nods. As the Judge passes silently
in she pats him encouragingly on the back, saying,--"There ain't no
one in this house what'll hurt a hair on your head." The Judge heeds
not what she says.

"My honor for it, Madame, but I think your guests highly favored,
altogether! Fine weather, and the prospect of a bal-masque of
Pompeian splendor. The old Judge, eh?"

"The gods smile-the gods smile, Mr. Soloman!" interrupts the
hostess, bowing and swaying her head in rapid succession.

"The gods have their eye on him to-night-he's a marked man! A jolly
old cove of a Judge, he is! Cares no more about rules and
precedents, on the bench, than he does for the rights and precedents
some persons profess to have in this house. A high old blade to
administer justice, eh?"

"But, you see, Mr. Soloman," the hostess interrupts, a gracious bow
keeping time with the motion of her hand, "he is such an
aristocratic prop in the character of my house."

"I rather like that, I confess, Madame. You have grown rich off the
aristocracy. Now, don't get into a state of excitement!" says Mr.
Soloman, fingering his long Saxon beard, and eyeing her
mischievously. She sees a bevy of richly-dressed persons advancing
up the hall in high glee. Indeed her house is rapidly filling to the
fourth story. And yet they come! she says. "The gods are in for a
time. I love to make the gods happy."

Mr. Soloman has lain his hand upon her arm retentively.

"It is not that the aristocracy and such good persons as the Judge
spend so much here. But they give eclat to the house, and eclat is
money. That's it, sir! Gold is the deity of our pantheon! Bless you
(the hostess evinces the enthusiasm of a politician), what better
evidence of the reputation of my house than is before you, do you
want? I've shut up the great Italian opera, with its three squalling
prima donnas, which in turn has shut up the poor, silly Empresario,
as they call him; and the St. Cecilia I have just used up. I'm a
team in my way, you see;--run all these fashionable oppositions right
into bankruptcy." Never were words spoken with more truth. Want of
patronage found all places of rational amusement closed. Societies
for intellectual improvement, one after another, died of poverty.
Fashionable lectures had attendance only when fashionable lecturers
came from the North; and the Northman was sure to regard our taste
through the standard of what he saw before him.

The house of the hostess triumphs, and is corpulent of wealth and
splendor. To-morrow she will feed with the rich crumbs that fall
from her table the starving poor. And although she holds poor virtue
in utter contempt, feeding the poor she regards a large score on the
passport to a better world. A great marble stairway winds its way
upward at the further end of the hall and near it are two small
balconies, one on each side, presenting barricades of millinery
surmounted with the picturesque faces of some two dozen denizens,
who keep up an incessant gabbling, interspersed here and there with
jeers directed at Mr. Soloman. "Who is he seeking to accommodate
to-night?" they inquire, laughing merrily.

The house is full, the hostess has not space for one friend more;
she commands the policemen to close doors. An Alderman is the only
exception to her fiat. "You see," she says, addressing herself to a
courtly individual who has just saluted her with urbane deportment,
"I must preserve the otium cum dignitate of my (did I get it right?)
standing in society. I don't always get these Latin sayings right.
Our Congressmen don't. And, you see, like them, I ain't a Latin
scholar, and may be excused for any little slips. Politics and
larnin' don't get along well together. Speaking of politics, I
confess I rather belong to the Commander and Quabblebum school-I

At this moment (a tuning of instruments is heard in the
dancing-hall) the tall figure of the accommodation man is seen, in
company of the venerable Judge, passing hurriedly into a room on the
right of the winding stairs before described. "Judge!" he exclaims,
closing the door quickly after him, "you will be discovered and
exposed. I am not surprised at your passion for her, nor the means
by which you seek to destroy the relations existing between her and
George Mullholland. It is an evidence of taste in you. But she is
proud to a fault, and, this I say in friendship, you so wounded her
feelings, when you betrayed her to the St. Cecilia, that she has
sworn to have revenge on you. George Mullholland, too, has sworn to
have your life.

"I tell you what it is, Judge, (the accommodation man assumes the
air of a bank director,) I have just conceived-you will admit I have
an inventive mind!--a plot that will carry you clean through the
whole affair. Your ambition is divided between a passion for this
charming creature and the good opinion of better society. The
resolution to retain the good opinion of society is doing noble
battle in your heart; but it is the weaker vessel, and it always
will be so with a man of your mould, inasmuch as such resolutions
are backed up by the less fierce elements of our nature. Put this
down as an established principle. Well, then, I will take upon
myself the betrayal. I will plead you ignorant of the charge,
procure her forgiveness, and reconcile the matter with this
Mullholland. It's worth an hundred or more, eh?"

The venerable man smiles, shakes his head as if heedless of the
admonition, and again covers his face with his domino.

The accommodation man, calling him by his judicial title, says he
will yet repent the refusal!

It is ten o'clock. The gentleman slightly colored, who represents a
fussy beadle, makes a flourish with his great staff. The doors of
the dancing hall are thrown open. Like the rushing of the gulf
stream there floods in a motley procession of painted females and
masked men-the former in dresses as varied in hue as the fires of
remorse burning out their unuttered thoughts. Two and two they jeer
and crowd their way along into the spacious hall, the walls of which
are frescoed in extravagant mythological designs, the roof painted
in fret work, and the cornices interspersed with seraphs in stucco
and gilt. The lights of two massive chandeliers throw a bewitching
refulgence over a scene at once picturesque and mysterious; and from
four tall mirrors secured between the windows, is reflected the
forms and movements of the masquers.

Reader! you have nothing in this democratic country with which to
successfully compare it. And to seek a comparison in the old world,
where vice, as in this city of chivalry, hath a license, serves not
our office.

Madame Flamingo, flanked right and left by twelve colored gentlemen,
who, their collars decorated with white and pink rosettes, officiate
as masters of ceremony, and form a crescent in front of the
thronging procession, steps gradually backward, curtsying and
bowing, and spreading her hands to her guests, after the manner of
my Lord Chamberlain.

Eight colored musicians, (everything is colored here,) perched on a
raised platform covered with maroon-colored plush; at the signal of
a lusty-tongued call-master, strike up a march, to which the motley
throng attempt to keep time. It is martial enough, and discordant
enough for anything but keeping time to.

The plush-covered benches filing along the sides and ends of the
hall are eagerly sought after and occupied by a strange mixture of
lookers on in Vienna. Here the hoary-headed father sits beside a
newly-initiated youth, who is receiving his first lesson of
dissipation. There the grave and chivalric planter sports with the
nice young man, who is cultivating a beard and his way into the
by-ways. A little further on the suspicious looking gambler sits
freely conversing with the man whom a degrading public opinion has
raised to the dignity of the judicial bench. Yonder is seen the man
who has eaten his way into fashionable society, (and by fashionable
society very much caressed in return,) the bosom companion of the
man whose crimes have made him an outcast.

Generous reader! contemplate this grotesque assembly; study the
object Madame Flamingo has in gathering it to her fold. Does it not
present the accessories to wrong doing? Does it not show that the
wrong-doer and the criminally inclined, too often receive
encouragement by the example of those whose duty it is to protect
society? The spread of crime, alas! for the profession, is too often
regarded by the lawyer as rather a desirable means of increasing his

Quadrille follows quadrille, the waltz succeeds the schottish, the
scene presents one bewildering maze of flaunting gossamers and
girating bodies, now floating sylph-like into the foreground, then
whirling seductively into the shadowy vista, where the joyous laugh
dies out in the din of voices. The excitement has seized upon the
head and heart of the young,--the child who stood trembling between
the first and second downward step finds her reeling brain a captive
in this snare set to seal her ruin.

Now the music ceases, the lusty-tongued call-master stands surveying
what he is pleased to call the oriental splendor of this grotesque
assembly. He doesn't know who wouldn't patronize such a house! It
suddenly forms in platoon, and marshalled by slightly-colored
masters of ceremony, promenades in an oblong figure.

Here, leaning modestly on the arm of a tall figure in military
uniform, and advancing slowly up the hall, is a girl of some sixteen
summers. Her finely-rounded form is in harmony with the ravishing
vivacity of her face, which is beautifully oval. Seen by the glaring
gaslight her complexion is singularly clear and pale. But that
freshness which had gained her many an admirer, and which gave such
a charm to the roundness of early youth, we look for in vain. And
yet there is a softness and delicacy about her well-cut and
womanly features-a child-like sweetness in her smile-a glow of
thoughtfulness in those great, flashing black eyes-an expression of
melancholy in which at short intervals we read her thoughts-an
incessant playing of those long dark eyelashes, that clothes her
charms with an irresistible, a soul-inspiring seductiveness. Her
dress, of moire antique, is chasteness itself; her bust exquisite
symmetry; it heaves as softly as if touched by some gentle zephyr.
From an Haidean brow falls and floats undulating over her
marble-like shoulders, the massive folds of her glossy black hair.
Nature had indeed been lavish of her gifts on this fair creature, to
whose charms no painter could give a touch more fascinating. This
girl, whose elastic step and erect carriage contrasts strangely with
the languid forms about her, is Anna Bonard, the neglected, the
betrayed. There passes and repasses her, now contemplating her with
a curious stare, then muttering inaudibly, a man of portly figure,
in mask and cowl. He touches with a delicate hand his watch-guard,
we see two sharp, lecherous eyes peering through the domino; he
folds his arms and pauses a few seconds, as if to survey the metal
of her companion, then crosses and recrosses her path. Presently his
singular demeanor attracts her attention, a curl of sarcasm is seen
on her lip, her brow darkens, her dark orbs flash as of fire,--all
the heart-burnings of a soul stung with shame are seen to quicken
and make ghastly those features that but a moment before shone
lambent as summer lightning. He pauses as with a look of withering
scorn she scans him from head to foot, raises covertly her left
hand, tossing carelessly her glossy hair on her shoulder, and with
lightning quickness snatches with her right the domino from his
face. "Hypocrite!" she exclaims, dashing it to the ground, and with
her foot placed defiantly upon the domino, assumes a tragic
attitude, her right arm extended, and the forefinger of her hand
pointing in his face. "Ah!" she continues, in biting accents, "it is
against the perfidy of such as you I have struggled. Your false
face, like your heart, needed a disguise. But I have dragged it
away, that you may be judged as you are. This is my satisfaction for
your betrayal. Oh that I could have deeper revenge!" She has
unmasked Judge Sleepyhorn, who stands before the anxious gaze of an
hundred night revellers, pressing eagerly to the scene of confusion.
Madame Flamingo's house, as you may judge, is much out in its
dignity, and in a general uproar. There was something
touching-something that the graver head might ponder over, in the
words of this unfortunate girl--"I have struggled!" A heedless and
gold-getting world seldom enters upon the mystery of its meaning.
But it hath a meaning deep and powerful in its appeal to society-
one that might serve the good of a commonwealth did society stoop
and take it by the hand.

So sudden was the motion with which this girl snatched the mask from
the face of the Judge, (he stood as if appalled,) that, ere he had
gained his self-possession, she drew from her girdle a pearl-hilted
stiletto, and in attempting to ward off the dreadful lunge, he
struck it from her hand, and into her own bosom. The weapon fell
gory to the floor-the blood trickled down her bodice-a cry of
"murder" resounded through the hall! The administrator of justice
rushed out of the door as the unhappy girl swooned in the arms of
her partner. A scene so confused and wild that it bewilders the
brain, now ensued. Madame Flamingo calls loudly for Mr. Soloman; and
as the reputation of her house is uppermost in her thoughts, she
atones for its imperiled condition by fainting in the arms of a
grave old gentleman, who was beating a hasty retreat, and whose
respectability she may compromise through this uncalled-for act.

A young man of slender form, and pale, sandy features, makes his way
through the crowd, clasps Anna affectionately in his arms, imprints
a kiss on her pallid brow, and bears her out of the hall.

By the aid of hartshorn and a few dashes of cold water, the old
hostess is pleased to come to, as we say, and set about putting her
house in order. Mr. Soloman, to the great joy of those who did not
deem it prudent to make their escape, steps in to negotiate for the
peace of the house and the restoration of order. "It is all the
result of a mistake," he says laughingly, and good-naturedly,
patting every one he meets on the shoulder. "A little bit of
jealousy on the part of the girl. It all had its origin in an error
that can be easily rectified. In a word, there's much ado about
nothing in the whole of it. Little affairs of this kind are incident
to fashionable society all over the world! The lady being only
scratched, is more frightened than hurt. Nobody is killed; and if
there were, why killings are become so fashionable, that if the
killed be not a gentleman, nobody thinks anything of it," he
continues. And Mr. Soloman being an excellent diplomatist, does,
with the aid of the hostess, her twelve masters of ceremony, her
beadle, and two policemen, forthwith bring the house to a more
orderly condition. But night has rolled into the page of the past,
the gray dawn of morning is peeping in at the half-closed windows,
the lights burning in the chandeliers shed a pale glow over the
wearied features of those who drag, as it were, their languid bodies
to the stifled music of unwilling slaves. And while daylight seems
modestly contending with the vulgar glare within, there appears
among the pale revellers a paler ghost, who, having stalked thrice
up and down the hall, preserving the frigidity and ghostliness of
the tomb, answering not the questions that are put to him, and
otherwise deporting himself as becometh a ghost of good metal, is
being taken for a demon of wicked import. Now he pauses at the end
of the hall, faces with spectre-like stare the alarmed group at the
opposite end, rests his left elbow on his scythe-staff, and having
set his glass on the floor, points to its running sands warningly
with his right forefinger. Not a muscle does he move. "Truly a
ghost!" exclaims one. "A ghost would have vanished before this,"
whispers another. "Speak to him," a third responds, as the musicians
are seen to pale and leave their benches. Madame Flamingo, pale and
weary, is first to rush for the door, shrieking as his ghostship
turns his grim face upon her. Shriek follows shriek, the lights are
put out, the gray dawn plays upon and makes doubly frightful the
spectre. A Pandemonium of shriekings and beseechings is succeeded by
a stillness as of the tomb. Our ghost is victor.



THE man who kissed and bore away the prostrate girl was George

"Oh! George-George!" she whispers imploringly, as her eyes meet his;
and turning upon the couch of her chamber, where he hath lain her,
awakes to consciousness, and finds him watching over her with a
lover's solicitude. "I was not cold because I loved you less-oh no!
It was to propitiate my ambition-to be free of the bondage of this
house-to purge myself of the past-to better my future!" And she lays
her pale, nervous hand gently on his arm-then grasps his hand and
presses it fervently to her lips.

Though placed beyond the pale of society-though envied by one
extreme and shunned by the other-she finds George her only true
friend. He parts and smooths gently over her polished shoulders her
dishevelled hair; he watches over her with the tenderness of a
brother; he quenches and wipes away the blood oozing from her
wounded breast; he kisses and kisses her flushed cheek, and bathes
her Ion-like brow. He forgives all. His heart would speak if his
tongue had words to represent it. He would the past were buried-the
thought of having wronged him forgotten. She recognizes in his
solicitude for her the sincerity of his heart. It touches like sweet
music the tenderest chords of her own; and like gushing fountains
her great black eyes fill with tears. She buries her face in her
hands, crying, "Never, never, George, (I swear it before the God I
have wronged, but whose forgiveness I still pray,) will I again
forget my obligation to you! I care not how high in station he who
seeks me may be. Ambitious!--I was misled. His money lured me away,
but he betrayed me in the face of his promises. Henceforth I have
nothing for this deceptive world; I receive of it nothing but

"The world wants nothing more of either of us," interrupts George.

More wounded in her feelings than in her flesh, she sobs and wrings
her hands like one in despair.

"You have ambition. I am too poor to serve your ambition!"

That word, too "poor," is more than her already distracted brain can
bear up under. It brings back the terrible picture of their past
history; it goads and agonizes her very soul. She throws her arms
frantically about his neck; presses him to her bosom; kisses him
with the fervor of a child. Having pledged his forgiveness with a
kiss, and sealed it by calling in a witness too often profaned on
such occasions, George calms her feelings as best he can; then he
smooths with a gentle hand the folds of her uplifted dress, and with
them curtains the satin slippers that so delicately encase her small
feet. This done, he spreads over her the richly-lined India morning-
gown presented to her a few days ago by the Judge, who, as she says,
so wantonly betrayed her, and on whom she sought revenge. Like a
Delian maid, surrounded with Oriental luxury, and reclining on satin
and velvet, she flings her flowing hair over her shoulders, nestles
her weary head in the embroidered cushion, and with the hand of her
only true friend firmly grasped in her own, soothes away into a calm
sleep-that sovereign but too transient balm for sorrowing hearts.

Our scene changes. The ghost hath taken himself to the grave-yard;
the morning dawns soft and sunny on what we harmlessly style the
sunny city of the sunny South. Madame Flamingo hath resolved to nail
another horse-shoe over her door. She will propitiate (so she hath
it) the god of ghosts.

George Mullholland, having neither visible means of gaining a
livelihood nor a settled home, may be seen in a solitary box at
Baker's, (a coffee-house at the corner of Meeting and Market
streets,) eating an humble breakfast. About him there is a
forlornness that the quick eye never fails to discover in the
manners of the homeless man. "Cleverly done," he says, laying down
the Mercury newspaper, in which it is set forth that "the St.
Cecilia, in consequence of an affliction in the family of one of its
principal members, postponed its assembly last night. The theatre,
in consequence of a misunderstanding between the manager and his
people, was also closed. The lecture on comparative anatomy, by
Professor Bones, which was to have been delivered at Hibernian Hall,
is, in consequence of the indisposition of the learned Professor,
put off to Tuesday evening next, when he will have, as he deserves,
an overflowing house. Tickets, as before, may be had at all the
music and bookstores." The said facetious journal was silent on the
superior attractions at the house of the old hostess; nor did it
deem it prudent to let drop a word on the misunderstanding between
the patrons of the drama and the said theatrical manager, inasmuch
as it was one of those that are sure to give rise to a very serious
misunderstanding between that functionary and his poor people.

In another column the short but potent line met his eye: "An
overflowing and exceedingly fashionable house greeted the Negro
Minstrels last night. First-rate talent never goes begging in our
city." George sips his coffee and smiles. Wonderfully clever these
editors are, he thinks. They have nice apologies for public taste
always on hand; set the country by the ears now and then; and amuse
themselves with carrying on the most prudent description of wars.

His own isolated condition, however, is uppermost in his mind.
Poverty and wretchedness stare him in the face on one side;
chivalry, on the other, has no bows for him while daylight lasts.
Instinct whispers in his ear-where one exists the other is sure to

To the end that this young man will perform a somewhat important
part in the by-ways of this history, some further description of him
may be necessary. George Mullholland stands some five feet nine, is
wiry-limbed, and slender and erect of person. Of light complexion,
his features are sharp and irregular, his face narrow and freckled,
his forehead small and retreating, his hair sandy and short-cropped.
Add to these two small, dull, gray eyes, and you have features not
easily described. Nevertheless, there are moments when his
countenance wears an expression of mildness-one in which the quick
eye may read a character more inoffensive than intrusive. A
swallow-tail blue coat, of ample skirts, and brass buttons; a
bright-colored waistcoat, opening an avalanche of shirt-bosom,
blossoming with cheap jewelry; a broad, rolling shirt-collar, tied
carelessly with a blue ribbon; a steeple-crowned hat, set on the
side of his head with a challenging air; and a pair of
broadly-striped and puckered trowsers, reaching well over a
small-toed and highly-glazed boot, constitutes his dress. For the
exact set of those two last-named articles of his wardrobe he
maintains a scrupulous regard. We are compelled to acknowledge
George an importation from New York, where he would be the more
readily recognized by that vulgar epithet, too frequently used by
the self-styled refined--"a swell."

Life with George is a mere drift of uncertainty. As for aims and
ends, why he sees the safer thing in having nothing to do with them.
Mr. Tom Toddleworth once advised this course, and Tom was esteemed
good authority in such matters. Like many others, his character is
made up of those yielding qualities which the teachings of good men
may elevate to usefulness, or bad men corrupt by their examples.
There is a stage in the early youth of such persons when we find
their minds singularly susceptible, and ready to give rapid growth
to all the vices of depraved men; while they are equally apt in
receiving good, if good men but take the trouble to care for them,
and inculcate lessons of morality.

Not having a recognized home, we may add, in resuming our story,
that George makes Baker's his accustomed haunt during the day, as do
also numerous others of his class-a class recognized and made use of
by men in the higher walks of life only at night.

"Ah! ha, ha! into a tight place this time, George," laughs out Mr.
Soloman, the accommodation man, as he hastens into the room, seats
himself in the box with George, and seizes his hand with the
earnestness of a true friend. Mr. Soloman can deport himself on all
occasions with becoming good nature. "It's got out, you see."

"What has got out?" interrupts George, maintaining a careless

"Come now! none of that, old fellow."

"If I understood you--"

"That affair last night," pursues Mr. Soloman, his delicate fingers
wandering into his more delicately-combed beard. "It'll go hard with
you. He's a stubborn old cove, that Sleepyhorn; administers the law
as C‘sar was wont to. Yesterday he sent seven to the whipping-post;
to-day he hangs two 'niggers' and a white man. There is a
consolation in getting rid of the white. I say this because no one
loses a dollar by it."

George, continuing to masticate his bread, says it has nothing to do
with him. He may hang the town.

"If I can do you a bit of a good turn, why here's your man. But you
must not talk that way--you must not, George, I assure you!" Mr.
Soloman assumes great seriousness of countenance, and again, in a
friendly way, takes George by the hand. "That poignard, George, was
yours. It was picked up by myself when it fell from your hand--"

"My hand! my hand!" George quickly interposes, his countenance
paling, and his eyes wandering in excitement.

"Now don't attempt to disguise the matter, you know! Come out on the
square-own up! Jealousy plays the devil with one now and then. I
know-I have had a touch of it; had many a little love affair in my

George again interrupts by inquiring to what he is coming.

"To the attempt (the accommodation man assumes an air of sternness)
you made last night on the life of that unhappy girl. It is
needless," he adds, "to plead ignorance. The Judge has the poignard;
and what's more, there are four witnesses ready to testify. It'll go
hard with you, my boy." He shakes his head warningly.

"I swear before God and man I am as innocent as ignorant of the
charge. The poignard I confess is mine; but I had no part in the act
of last night, save to carry the prostrate girl-the girl I dearly
love-away. This I can prove by her own lips."

Mr. Soloman, with an air of legal profundity, says: "This is all
very well in its way, George, but it won't stand in law. The law is
what you have got to get at. And when you have got at it, you must
get round it; and then you must twist it and work it every which
way-only be careful not to turn its points against yourself; that,
you know, is the way we lawyers do the thing. You'll think we're a
sharp lot; and we have to be sharp, as times are."

"It is not surprising," replies George, as if waking from a fit of
abstraction, "that she should have sought revenge of one who so
basely betrayed her at the St. Cecilia--"

"There, there!" Mr. Soloman interrupts, changing entirely the
expression of his countenance, "the whole thing is out! I said there
was an unexplained mystery somewhere. It was not the Judge, but me
who betrayed her to the assembly. Bless you, (he smiles, and
crooking his finger, beckons a servant, whom he orders to bring a
julep,) I was bound to do it, being the guardian of the Society's
dignity, which office I have held for years. But you don't mean to
have it that the girl attempted--(he suddenly corrects himself)--Ah,
that won't do, George. Present my compliments to Anna--I wouldn't for
the world do aught to hurt her feelings, you know that--and say I am
ready to get on my knees to her to confess myself a penitent for
having injured her feelings. Yes, I am ready to do anything that
will procure her forgiveness. I plead guilty. But she must in return
forgive the Judge. He is hard in law matters--that is, we of the law
consider him so--now and then; but laying that aside, he is one of
the best old fellows in the world, loves Anna to distraction; nor
has he the worst opinion in the world of you, George. Fact is, I
have several times heard him refer to you in terms of praise. As I
said before, being the man to do you a bit of a good turn, take my
advice as a friend. The Judge has got you in his grasp, according to
every established principle of law; and having four good and
competent witnesses, (you have no voice in law, and Anna's won't
stand before a jury,) will send you up for a twelve-months'
residence in Mount Rascal."

It will be almost needless here to add, that Mr. Soloman had, in an
interview with the Judge, arranged, in consideration of a goodly
fee, to assume the responsibility of the betrayal at the St.
Cecilia; and also to bring about a reconciliation between him and
the girl he so passionately sought.

"Keep out of the way a few days, and everything will blow over and
come right. I will procure you the Judge's friendship--yes, his
money, if you want. More than that, I will acknowledge my guilt to
Anna; and being as generous of heart as she is beautiful, she will,
having discovered the mistake, forgive me and make amends to the
Judge for her foolish act.

It is almost superfluous to add, that the apparent sincerity with
which the accommodation man pleaded, had its effect on the
weak-minded man. He loved dearly the girl, but poverty hung like a
leaden cloud over him. Poverty stripped him of the means of
gratifying her ambition; poverty held him fast locked in its
blighting chains; poverty forbid his rescuing her from the condition
necessity had imposed upon her; poverty was goading him into crime;
and through crime only did he see the means of securing to himself
the cherished object of his love.

"I am not dead to your friendship, but I am too sad at heart to make
any pledge that involves Anna, at this moment. We met in
wretchedness, came up in neglect and crime, sealed our love with the
hard seal of suffering. Oh! what a history of misery my heart could
unfold, if it had but a tongue!" George replies, in subdued accents,
as a tear courses down his cheek.

Extending his hand, with an air of encouragement, Mr. Soloman says
nothing in the world would so much interest him as a history of the
relations existing between George and Anna. Their tastes, aims, and
very natures, are different. To him their connection is clothed in



A BOTTLE of wine, and the mild, persuasive manner of Mr. Snivel, so
completely won over George's confidence, that, like one of that
class always too ready to give out their heart-achings at the touch
of sympathy, and too easily betrayed through misplaced confidence,
he commences relating his history. That of Anna is identified with
it. "We will together proceed to New York, for it is there, among
haunts of vice and depravity--"

"In depth of degradation they have no counterpart on our globe," Mr.
Soloman interrupts, filling his glass.

"We came up together-knew each other, but not ourselves. That was
our dark age." George pauses for a moment.

"Bless you," again interrupts Mr. Soloman, tipping his glass very
politely, "I never-that is, when I hear our people who get
themselves laced into narrow-stringed Calvinism, and long-founded
foreign missions, talk-think much could have come of the dark ages.
I speak after the manner of an attorney, when I say this. We hear a
deal of the dark ages, the crimes of the dark ages, the dark
idolatry of darker Africa. My word for it, and it's something, if
they had anything darker in Sodom; if they had in Babylon a state of
degradation more hardened of crime; if in Egypt there existed a
benightedness more stubbornly opposed to the laws of God-than is to
be found in that New York; that city of merchant princes with
princely palaces; that modern Pompeii into which a mighty commerce
teems its mightier gold, where a coarse throng revel in coarser
luxury, where a thousand gaudy churches rear heavenward their
gaudier steeples, then I have no pity for Sodom, not a tear to shed
over fallen Babylon, and very little love for Egypt." Mr. Snivel
concludes, saying--"proceed, young man."

"Of my mother I know nothing. My father (I mean the man I called
father, but who they said was not my father, though he was the only
one that cared anything for me) was Tom English, who used to live
here and there with me about the Points. He was always looking in at
Paddy Pie's, in Orange street, and Paddy Pie got all his money, and
then Paddy Pie and him quarrelled, and we were turned out of Paddy
Pie's house. So we used to lodge here and there, in the cellars
about the Points, in 'Cut Throat Alley,' or 'Cow Bay,' or
'Murderer's Alley,' or in 'The House of the Nine Nations,' or
wherever we could get a sixpenny rag to lay down upon. Nobody but
English seemed to care for me, and English cared for nobody but me.
And English got thick with Mrs. McCarty and her three daughters--they
kept the Rookery in 'Cow Bay,' which we used to get to up a long
pair of stairs outside, and which God knows I never want to think of
again,--where sometimes fourteen or fifteen of us, men and women,
used to sleep in a little room Mrs. McCarty paid eight dollars a
month for. And Mr. Crown, who always seemed a cross sort of man, and
was agent for all the houses on the Points I thought, used to say
she had it too cheap. And English got to thinking a good deal of
Mrs. McCarty, and Mrs. McCarty's daughters got to thinking a good
deal of him. And Boatswain Bill, who lived at the house of the 'Nine
Nations'-the house they said had a bottomless pit-and English used
to fight a deal about the Miss McCartys, and Bill one night threw
English over the high stoop, down upon the pavement, and broke his
arms. They said it was a wonder it hadn't a broken his neck.
Fighting Mary (Mary didn't go by that name then) came up and took
English's part, and whipped Boatswain Bill, and said she'd whip the
whole house of the 'Nine Nations' if it had spunk enough in it to
come on. But no one dare have a set-to with Mary. Mary used to drink
a deal of gin, and say-'this gin and the devil 'll get us all one of
these days. I wonder if Mr. Crown 'll sell bad gin to his highness
when he gets him?" Well, Bill was sent up for six months, so the
McCartys had peace in the house, and Mrs. McCarty got him little
things, and did for English until his arms got well. Then he got a
little money, (I don't know how he got it,) and Paddy Pie made good
friends with him, and got him from the Rookery, and then all his
money. I used to think all the money in the Points found its way
either to the house of Paddy Pie, or the Bottomless Pit at the house
of the 'Nine Nations,' and all the clothes to the sign of the 'Three
Martyrs,' which the man with the eagle face kept round the corner.

"English used to say in one of his troubled fits, 'I'd like to be a
respectable man, and get out of this, if there was a chance, and do
something for you, George. There's no chance, you see.' And when we
went into Broadway, which we did now and then, and saw what another
world it was, and how rich everything looked, English used to shake
his head and say, 'they don't know how we live, George.'

"Paddy Pie soon quarrelled with English, and being penniless again
we had to shift for ourselves. English didn't like to go back to
Mrs. McCarty, so we used to sleep at Mrs. Sullivan's cellar in 'Cut
Throat Alley.' And Mrs. Sullivan's cellar was only about twelve feet
by twenty, and high enough to stand up in, and wet enough for
anything, and so overrun with rats and vermin that we couldn't
sleep. There were nine rag-beds in the cellar, which as many as
twenty-three would sometimes sleep on, or, if they were not too
tipsy, try to sleep on. And folks used to come into the cellar at
night, and be found dead in the morning. This made such a fuss in
the neighborhood (there was always a fuss when Old Bones, the
coroner, was about), and frightened so many, that Mrs. Sullivan
couldn't get lodgers for weeks. She used to nail no end of
horse-shoes over the door to keep out the ghosts of them that died
last. But it was a long while before her lodgers got courage enough
to come back. Then we went to the house of the Blazers, in 'Cow
Bay,' and used to lodge there with Yellow Bill. They said Bill was a
thief by profession; but I wasn't old enough to be a judge. Little
Lizza Rock, the nondescript, as people called her, used to live at
the Blazers. Poor Lizza had a hard time of it, and used to sigh and
say she wished she was dead. Nobody thought of her, she said, and
she was nothing because she was deformed, and a cripple. She was
about four feet high, had a face like a bull-dog, and a swollen
chest, and a hunchback, a deformed leg, and went with a crutch. She
never combed her hair, and what few rags she had on her back hung in
filth. What few shillings she got were sure to find their way either
into Bill's pocket, or send her tipsy into the 'Bottomless Pit' of
the house of the 'Nine Nations.' There was in the Bottomless Pit a
never-ending stream of gin that sent everybody to the Tombs, and
from the Tombs to the grave. But Lizza was good to me, and used to
take care of me, and steal little things for me from old Dan
Sullivan, who begged in Broadway, and let Yellow Bill get his money,
by getting him tipsy. And I got to liking Lizza, for we both seemed
to have no one in the world who cared for us but English. And there
was always some trouble between the Blazers and the people at the
house of the 'Nine Nations.'

"Well, English was hard to do for some time, and through necessity,
which he said a deal about, we were driven out of every place we had
sought shelter in. And English did something they sent him up for a
twelve-month for, and I was left to get on as I could. I was took in
by 'Hard-Fisted Sall,' who always wore a knuckle-duster, and used to
knock everybody down she met, and threatened a dozen times to whip
Mr. Fitzgerald, the detective, and used to rob every one she took in
tow, and said if she could only knock down and rob the whole
pumpkin-headed corporation she should die easy, for then she would
know she had done a good thing for the public, whose money they were
squandering without once thinking how the condition of such wretches
as herself could be bettered.

"English died before he had been up two months. And death reconciled
the little difficulty between him and the McCartys; and old Mrs.
McCarty's liking for him came back, and she went crying to the
Bellevue and begged them, saying she was his mother, to let her take
his body away and bury it. They let her have it, and she brought it
away to the rookery, in a red coffin, and got a clean sheet of the
Blazers, and hung it up beside the coffin, and set four candles on a
table, and a little cross between them, and then borrowed a Bible
with a cross on it, and laid it upon the coffin. Then they sent for
me. I cried and kissed poor English, for poor English was the only
father I knew, and he was good to me. I never shall forget what I
saw in that little room that night. I found a dozen friends and the
McCartys there, forming a half-circle of curious and demoniacal
faces, peering over the body of English, whose face, I thought,
formed the only repose in the picture. There were two small
pictures-one of the Saviour, and the other of Kossuth-hung at the
head and feet of the corpse; and the light shed a lurid paleness
over the living and the dead. And detective Fitzgerald and another
gentleman looked in.

"'Who's here to-night?' says Fitzgerald, in a friendly sort of way.

"'God love ye, Mr. Fitzgerald, poor English is gone! Indeed, then,
it was the will of the Lord, and He's taken him from us-poor
English!' says Mrs. McCarty. And Fitzgerald, and the gentleman with
him, entered the den, and they shuddered and sat down at the sight
of the face in the coffin. 'Sit down, Mr. Fitzgerald, do!--and may
the Lord love ye! There was a deal of good in poor English. He's
gone-so he is!' said Mrs. McCarty, begging them to sit down, and
excuse the disordered state of her few rags. She had a hard struggle
to live, God knows. They took off their hats, and sat a few minutes
in solemn silence. The rags moved at the gentleman's side, which
made him move towards the door. 'What is there, my good woman?' he
inquired. 'She's a blessed child, Mr. Fitzgerald knows that same:'
says Mrs. McCarty, turning down the rags and revealing the wasted
features of her youngest girl, a child eleven years old, sinking in
death. 'God knows she'll be better in heaven, and herself won't be
long out of it,' Mrs. McCarty twice repeated, maintaining a singular
indifference to the hand of death, already upon the child. The
gentleman left some money to buy candles for poor English, and with
Mr. Fitzgerald took himself away.

"Near midnight, the tall black figure of solemn-faced Father
Flaherty stalked in. He was not pleased with the McCartys, but went
to the side of the dying child, fondled her little wasted hand in
his own, and whispered a prayer for her soul. Never shall I forget
how innocently she looked in his face while he parted the little
ringlets that curled over her brow, and told her she would soon have
a better home in a better world. Then he turned to poor English, and
the cross, and the candles, and the pictures, and the living faces
that gave such a ghastliness to the picture. Mrs. McCarty brought
him a basin of water, over which he muttered, and made it holy. Then
he again muttered some unintelligible sentences, and sprinkled the
water over the dying child, over the body of poor English, and over
the living-warning Mrs. McCarty and her daughters, as he pointed to
the coffin. Then he knelt down, and they all knelt down, and he
prayed for the soul of poor English, and left. What holy water then
was left, Mrs. McCarty placed near the door, to keep the ghosts out.

"The neighbors at the Blazers took a look in, and a few friends at
the house of the 'Nine Nations' took a look in, and 'Fighting Mary,'
of Murderer's Alley, took a look in, and before Father Flaherty had
got well out of 'Cow Bay,' it got to be thought a trifle of a wake
would console Mrs. McCarty's distracted feelings. 'Hard-fisted Sall'
came to take a last look at poor English; and she said she would
spend her last shilling over poor English, and having one, it would
get a drop, and a drop dropped into the right place would do Mrs.
McCarty a deal of good.

"And Mrs. McCarty agreed that it wouldn't be amiss, and putting with
Sall's shilling the money that was to get the candles, I was sent to
the 'Bottomless Pit' at the house of the 'Nine Nations,' where Mr.
Crown had a score with the old woman, and fetched away a quart of
his gin, which they said was getting the whole of them. The McCartys
took a drop, and the girls took a drop, and the neighbors took a
drop, and they all kept taking drops, and the drops got the better
of them all. One of the Miss McCartys got to having words with
'Fighting Mary,' about an old affair in which poor English was
concerned, and the words got to blows, when Mr. Flanegan at the
Blazers stepped in to make peace. But the whole house got into a
fight, and the lights were put out, the corpse knocked over, and the
child (it was found dead in the morning) suffocated with the weight
of bodies felled in the melee. The noise and cries of murder brought
the police rushing in, and most of them were dragged off to the
Station; and the next day being Sunday, I wandered homeless and
friendless into Sheriff street. Poor English was taken in charge by
the officers. They kept him over Monday to see if any one would come
up and claim him. No one came for him; no one knew more of him than
that he went by the name of English; no one ever heard him say where
he came from-he never said a word about my mother, or whether he had
a relation in the world. He was carted off to Potter's Field and
buried. That was the last of poor English.

"We seldom got much to eat in the Points, and I had not tasted food
for twenty-four hours. I sat down on the steps of a German grocery,
and was soon ordered away by the keeper. Then I wandered into a
place they called Nightmare's Alley, where three old wooden
buildings with broken-down verandas stood, and were inhabited
principally by butchers. I sat down on the steps of one, and thought
if I only had a mother, or some one to care for me, and give me
something to eat, how happy I should be. And I cried. And a great
red-faced man came out of the house, and took me in, and gave me
something to eat. His name was Mike Mullholland, and he was good to
me, and I liked him, and took his name. And he lived with a
repulsive looking woman, in a little room he paid ten dollars a
month for. He had two big dogs, and worked at day work, in a
slaughter-house in Staunton street. The dogs were known in the
neighborhood as Mullholland's dogs, and with them I used to sleep on
the rags of carpet spread for us in the room with Mullholland and
his wife, who I got to calling mother. This is how I took the name
of Mullholland. I was glad to leave the Points, and felt as if I had
a home. But there was a 'Bottomless Pit' in Sheriff street, and
though not so bad as the one at the house of the "Nine Nations," it
gave out a deal of gin that the Mullhollands had a liking for. I was
continually going for it, and the Mullhollands were continually
drinking it; and the whole neighborhood liked it, and in
'Nightmare's Alley' the undertaker found a profitable business.

"In the morning I went with the dogs to the slaughter-house, and
there fed them, and took care of the fighting cocks, and brought gin
for the men who worked there. In the afternoon I joined the
newsboys, as ragged and neglected as myself, gambled for cents, and
watched the policemen, whom we called the Charleys. I lived with
Mullholland two years, and saw and felt enough to make hardened any
one of my age. One morning there came a loud knocking at the door,
which was followed by the entrance of two officers. The dogs had got
out and bitten a child, and the officers, knowing who owned them,
had come to arrest Mullholland. We were all surprised, for the
officers recognized in Mullholland and the woman two old offenders.
And while they were dragged off to the Tombs, I was left to prey
upon the world as best I could. Again homeless, I wandered about
with urchins as ragged and destitute as myself. It seemed to me that
everybody viewed me as an object of suspicion, for I sought in vain
for employment that would give me bread and clothing. I wanted to be
honest, and would have lived honest; but I could not make people
believe me honest. And when I told who I was, and where I sheltered
myself, I was ordered away. Everybody judged me by the filthy shreds
on my back; nobody had anything for me to do.

"I applied at a grocer's, to sweep his store and go errands. When I
told him where I had lived, he shook his head and ordered me away.
Knowing I could fill a place not unknown to me, I applied at a
butcher's in Mott street; but he pointed his knife-which left a
wound in my feelings-and ordered me away. And I was ordered away
wherever I went. The doors of the Chatham theatre looked too fine
for me. My ragged condition rebuked me wherever I went, and for more
than a week I slept under a cart that stood in Mott street. Then Tom
Farley found me, and took me with him to his cellar, in Elizabeth
street, where we had what I thought a good bed of shavings. Tom sold
Heralds, gambled for cents, and shared with me, and we got along.
Then Tom stole a dog, and the dog got us into a deal of trouble,
which ended with getting us both into the Tombs, where Tom was
locked up. I was again adrift, as we used to call it, and thought of
poor Tom a deal. Every one I met seemed higher up in the world than
I was. But I got into Centre Market, carried baskets, and did what I
could to earn a shilling, and slept in Tom's bed, where there was
some nights fifteen and twenty like myself.

"One morning, while waiting a job, my feet and hands benumbed with
the cold, a beautiful lady slipped a shilling into my hand and
passed on. To one penniless and hungry, it seemed a deal of money.
Necessity had almost driven me to the sign of the 'Three Martyrs,'
to see what the man of the eagle face would give me on my cap, for
they said the man at the 'Three Martyrs' lent money on rags such as
I had. I followed the woman, for there was something so good in the
act that I could not resist it. She entered a fine house in Leonard

"You must now go with me into the den of Hag Zogbaum, in 'Scorpion
Cove;' and 'Scorpion Cove' is in Pell street. Necessity next drove
me there. It is early spring, we will suppose; and being in the
Bowery, we find the streets in its vicinity reeking with putrid
matter, hurling pestilence into the dark dwellings of the unknown
poor, and making thankful the coffin-maker, who in turn thanks a
nonundertaking corporation for the rich harvest. The muck is
everywhere deep enough for hogs and fat aldermen to wallow in, and
would serve well the purposes of a supper-eating corporation, whose
chief business it was to fatten turtles and make Presidents.

"We have got through the muck of the mucky Bowery. Let us turn to
the left as we ascend the hill from Chatham street, and into a
narrow, winding way, called Doyer's street. Dutch Sophy, then, as
now, sits in all the good nature of her short, fat figure, serving
her customers with ices, at three cents. Her cunning black eyes and
cheerful, ruddy face, enhance the air of pertness that has made her
a favorite with her customers. We will pass the little wooden shop,
where Mr. Saunders makes boots of the latest style, and where old
lapstone, with curious framed spectacles tied over his bleared eyes,
has for the last forty years been seen at the window trimming welts,
and mending every one's sole but his own; we will pass the four
story wooden house that the landlord never paints-that has the
little square windows, and the little square door, and the two
little iron hand rails that curl so crabbedly at the ends, and guard
four crabbeder steps that give ingress and egress to its swarm of
poor but honest tenants; we will pass the shop where a short,
stylish sign tells us Mr. Robertson makes bedsteads; and the little,
slanting house a line of yellow letters on a square of black tin
tells us is a select school for young ladies, and the bright, dainty
looking house with the green shutters, where lives Mr. Vredenburg
the carpenter, who, the neighbors say, has got up in the world, and
paints his house to show that he feels above poor folks-and find we
have reached the sooty and gin-reeking grocery of Mr. Korner, who
sells the devil's elixir to the sootier devils that swarm the
cellars of his neighbors. The faded blue letters, on a strip of wood
nailed to the bricks over his door, tell us he is a dealer in
"Imported and other liquors." Next door to Mr. Korner's tipsy
looking grocery lives Mr. Muffin, the coffin-maker, who has a large
business with the disciples who look in at Korner's. Mrs. Downey, a
decent sort of body, who lives up the alley, and takes sixpenny
lodgers by the dozen, may be seen in great tribulation with her pet
pig, who, every day, much to the annoyance of Mr. Korner, manages to
get out, and into the pool of decaying matter opposite his door,
where he is sure to get stuck, and with his natural propensity,
squeals lustily for assistance. Mrs. Downey, as is her habit, gets
distracted; and having well abused Mr. Korner for his interference
in a matter that can only concern herself and the animal, ventures
to her knees in the mire, and having seized her darling pig by the
two ears, does, with the assistance of a policeman, who kindly takes
him by the tail, extricate his porkship, to the great joy of
herself. The animal scampers, grunting, up the alley, as Mr. Korner,
in his shirt sleeves, throws his broom after him, and the policeman
surlily says he wishes it was the street commissioner.

"We have made the circle of Doyer's street, and find it fortified on
Pell street, with two decrepit wooden buildings, that the demand for
the 'devil's elixir,' has converted into Dutch groceries, their
exteriors presenting the appearance of having withstood a storm of
dilapidated clapboards, broken shutters, red herrings, and onions.
Mr. Voss looks suspiciously through the broken shutters of his
Gibraltar, at his neighbor of the opposite Gibraltar, and is heard
to say of his wares that they are none of the best, and that while
he sells sixpence a pint less, the article is a shilling a pint
better. And there the two Gibraltars stand, apparently infirm,
hurling their unerring missiles, and making wreck of everything in
the neighborhood.

"We have turned down Pell street toward Mott, and on the north side
a light-colored sign, representing a smith in the act of shoeing a
horse, attracts the eye, and tells us the old cavern-like building
over which it swings, is where Mr. Mooney does smithwork and
shoeing. And a little further on, a dash of yellow and white paint
on a little sign-board at the entrance of an alley, guarded on one
side by a broken-down shed, and on the other, by a three-story,
narrow, brick building (from the windows of which trail long
water-stains, and from the broken panes a dozen curious black heads,
of as many curious eyed negroes protrude), tells us somewhat
indefinitely, that Mister Mills, white-washer and wall-colorer, may
be found in the neighborhood, which, judging from outward
appearances, stands much in need of this good man's services. Just
keep your eye on the sign of the white-washer and wall-colorer, and
passing up the sickly alley it tells you Mister Mills may be found
in, you will find yourself (having picked your way over putrid
matter, and placed your perfumed cambric where it will protect your
lungs from the inhalation of pestilential air,) in the cozy area of
'Scorpion Cove.' Scorpion Cove is bounded at one end by a two-story
wooden house, with two decayed and broken verandas in front, and
rickety steps leading here and there to suspicious looking passages,
into which, and out of which a never-ending platoon of the rising
generation crawl and toddle, keep up a cheap serenade, and like
rats, scamper away at the sight of a stranger; and on the other, by
the back of the brick house with the negro-headed front. At the
sides are two broken-down board fences, and forming a sort of
net-work across the cove, are an innumerable quantity of unoccupied
clothes-lines, which would seem only to serve the mischievous
propensities of young negroes and the rats. There is any quantity of
rubbish in 'Scorpion Cove,' and any amount of disease-breeding
cesspools; but the corporation never heard of 'Scorpion Cove,' and
wouldn't look into it if it had. If you ask me how it came to be
called 'Scorpion Cove,' I will tell you. The brick house at one end
was occupied by negroes; and the progeny of these negroes swarmed
over the cove, and were called scorpions. The old house of the
verandas at the other end, and which had an air of being propped up
after a shock of paralysis, was inhabited by twenty or more
families, of the Teutonic race, whose numerous progeny, called the
hedge-hogs, were more than a match for the scorpions, and with that
jealousy of each other which animates these races did the scorpions
and hedge-hogs get at war. In the morning the scorpions would crawl
up through holes in the cellar, through broken windows, through the
trap-doors, down the long stairway that wound from the second and
third stories over the broken pavilion, and from nobody could tell
where-for they came, it seems, from every rat-hole, and with rolling
white eyes, marshalled themselves for battle. The hedgehogs
mustering in similar strength, and springing up from no one could
tell where, would set upon the scorpions, and after a goodly amount
of wallowing in the mire, pulling hair and wool, scratching faces
and pommeling noses, the scorpions being alternately the victors and
vanquished, the war would end at the appearance of Hag Zogbaum, who,
with her broom, would cause the scorpions to beat a hasty retreat.
The hedge-hogs generally came off victorious, for they were the
stronger race. But the old hedge-hogs got much shattered in time by
the broadsides of the two Gibraltars, which sent them broadside on
into the Tombs. And this passion of the elder hedge-hogs for getting
into the Tombs, caused by degrees a curtailing of the younger
hedge-hogs. And this falling off in the forces of the foe,
singularly inspirited the scorpions, who mustered courage, and after
a series of savage battles, in which there was a notorious amount of
wool-pulling gained the day. And this is how 'Scorpion Cove' got its

"Hag Zogbaum lived in the cellar of the house with the verandas; and
old Dan Sullivan and the rats had possession of the garret. In the
cellar of this woman, whose trade was the fostering of crime in
children as destitute as myself, there was a bar and a back cellar,
where as many as twenty boys and girls slept on straw and were
educated in vice. She took me into her nursery, and I was glad to
get there, for I had no other place to go.

"In the morning we were sent out to pilfer, to deceive the
credulous, and to decoy others to the den. Some were instructed by
Hag Zogbaum to affect deaf and dumb, to plead the starving condition
of our parents, to, in a word, enlist the sympathies of the
credulous with an hundred different stories. We were all stimulated
by a premium being held out to the most successful. Some were sent
out to steal pieces of iron, brass, copper, and old junk; and these
Hag Zogbaum would sell or give to the man who kept the junk-shop in
Stanton street, known as the rookery at the corner. (This man lived
with Hag Zogbaum.) We returned at night with our booty, and re-
ceived our wages in gin or beer. The unsuccessful were set down as
victims of bad luck. Now and then the old woman would call us a
miserable lot of wretches she was pestered to take care of. At one
time there were in this den of wretchedness fifteen girls from seven
to eleven years old, and seven boys under eleven-all being initiated
into the by-ways of vice and crime. Among the girls were Italians,
Germans, Irish, and-shall I say it?-Americans! It was curious to see
what means the old hag would resort to for the purpose of improving
their features after they had arrived at a certain age. She had a
purpose in this; and that purpose sprang from that traffic in
depravity caused by the demands of a depraved society, a theme on
her lips continually."



"HAVING served well the offices of felons and impostors, Hag Zogbaum
would instruct her girls in the mysteries of licentiousness. When
they reached a certain age, their personal appearance was improved,
and one by one they were passed into the hands of splendidly-
dressed ladies, as we then took them to be, who paid a sum for them
to Hag Zogbaum, and took them away; and that was the last we saw of
them. They had no desire to remain in their miserable abode, and
were only too glad to get away from it. In most cases they were
homeless and neglected orphans; and knowing no better condition,
fell easy victims to the snares set for them.

"It was in this dark, cavern-like den--in this mysterious caldron of
precocious depravity, rioting unheeded in the very centre of a great
city, whose boasted wealth and civilization it might put to shame,
if indeed it were capable of shame, I first met the child of beauty,
Anna Bonard. Yes!--the Anna Bonard you now see at the house of Madame
Flamingo. At that time she was but seven years old--a child of
uncommon beauty and aptness, of delicate but well-proportioned
features, of middle stature, and a face that care might have made
charming beyond comparison. But vice hardens, corrodes, and gives a
false hue to the features. Anna said she was an orphan. How far
this was true I know not. A mystery shrouded the way in which she
fell into the hands of Hag Zogbaum. Hag Zogbaum said she got her of
an apple-woman; and the apple-woman kept a stand in West street, but
never would disclose how she came by Anna. And Mr. Tom Toddleworth,
who was the chronicle of the Points, and used to look into 'Scorpion
Cove' now and then, and inquire about Anna, as if he had a sort of
interest in her, they said knew all about her. But if he did, he
always kept it a secret between himself and Hag Zogbaum.

"She was always of a melancholy turn, used to say life was but a
burden to her-that she could see nothing in the future that did not
seem dark and tortuous. The lot into which she was cast of necessity
others might have mistaken for that which she had chosen. It was
not. The hard hand of necessity had forced her into this quicksand
of death; the indifference of a naturally generous community, robbed
her of the light of intelligence, and left her a helpless victim in
the hands of this cultivator of vice. How could she, orphan as she
was called, and unencouraged, come to be a noble and
generous-hearted woman? No one offered her the means to come up and
ornament her sex; but tyrannical society neither forgets her
misfortunes nor forgives her errors. Once seal the death-warrant of
a woman's errors, and you have none to come forward and cancel it;
the tomb only removes the seal. Anna took a liking to me, and was
kind to me, and looked to me to protect her. And I loved her, and
our love grew up, and strengthened; and being alike neglected in the
world, our condition served as the strongest means of cementing our

"Hag Zogbaum then sent Anna away to the house up the alley, in
Elizabeth street, where she sent most of her girls when they had
reached the age of eleven and twelve. Hag Zogbaum had many places
for her female pupils. The very best looking always went a while to
the house in the alley; the next best looking were sure to find
their way into the hands of Miss Brown, in Little Water street, and
Miss Brown, they said, sold them to the fairies of the South, who
dressed them in velvet and gold; and the 'scrubs,' as the old woman
used to call the rest, got, by some mysterious process, into the
hands of Paddy Pie and Tim Branahan, who kept shantees in Orange

"Anna had been away some time, and Mr. Tom Toddleworth had several
times been seen to look in and inquire for her. Mr. Toddleworth said
he had a ripping bid for her. At that time I was ignorant of its
meaning. Harry Rooney and me were sent to the house in Elizabeth
street, one morning, to bring Anna and another girl home. The house
was large, and had an air of neatness about it that contrasted
strangely with the den in 'Scorpion Cove.' We rang the bell and
inquired for the girls, who, after waiting nearly an hour, were sent
down to us, clean and neatly dressed. In Anna the change was so
great, that though I had loved her, and thought of her day and night
during her absence, I scarce recognized her. So glad did she seem to
see me that she burst into tears, flung her arms about my neck, and
kissed me with the fondness of a sister. Then she recounted with
childlike enthusiasm the kind treatment she had received at the
house of Madame Harding (for such it was called), between whom and
Hag Zogbaum there was carried on a species of business I am not
inclined to designate here. Two kind and splendidly-dressed ladies,
Anna said, called to see them nearly every day, and were going to
take them away, that they might live like fairies all the rest of
their lives.

"When we got home, two ladies were waiting at the den. It was not
the first time we had seen them at the den. Anna recognized them as
the ladies she had seen at Madame Harding's. One was the woman who
so kindly gave me the shilling in the market, when I was cold and
hungry. A lengthy whispering took place between Hag Zogbaum and the
ladies, and we were ordered into the back cellar. I knew the
whispering was about Anna; and watching through the boards I heard
the Hag say Anna was fourteen and nothing less, and saw one of the
ladies draw from her purse numerous pieces of gold, which were
slipped into her hand. In a few minutes more I saw poor little Anna
follow her up the steps that led into 'Scorpion Cove.' When we were
released Hag was serving ragged and dejected-looking men with gin
and beer. Anna, she said when I inquired, had gone to a good home in
the country. I loved her ardently, and being lonesome was not
content with the statement of the old woman. I could not read, but
had begun to think for myself, and something told me all was not
right. For weeks and months I watched at the house in Leonard
street, into which I had followed the woman who gave me the
shilling. But I neither saw her nor the woman. Elegant carriages,
and elegantly-dressed men drove to and from the door, and passed in
and out of the house, and the house seemed to have a deal of
fashionable customers, and that was all I knew of it then.

"As I watched one night, a gentleman came out of the house, took me
by the arm and shook me, said I was a loitering vagrant, that he had
seen me before, and having a suspicious look he would order the
watch to lock me up. He inquired where my home was; and when I told
him it was in 'Scorpion Cove,' he replied he didn't know where that
was. I told him it wasn't much of a home, and he said I ought to
have a better one. It was all very well to say so; but with me the
case was different. That night I met Tom Farley, who was glad to see
me, and told how he got out of the lock-up, and what he thought of
the lock-up, and the jolly old Judge who sent him to the lock-up,
and who he saw in the lock-up, and what mischief was concocted in
the lock-up, and what he got to eat in the lock-up, and how the
lock-up wasn't so bad a place after all.

"The fact was I was inclined to think the lock-up not so bad a place
to get into, seeing how they gave people something good to eat, and
clothes to wear. Tom and me went into business together. We sold
Heralds and Sunday papers, and made a good thing of it, and shared
our earnings, and got enough to eat and some clothes. I took up my
stand in Centre Market, and Tom took up his at Peck Slip. At night
we would meet, count our earnings, and give them to Mr. Crogan, who
kept the cellar in Water street, where we slept. I left Hag Zogbaum,
who we got to calling the wizard. She got all we could earn or
pilfer, and we got nothing for our backs but a few rags, and
unwholesome fish and beer for our bellies. I thought of Anna day and
night; I hoped to meet in Centre Market the woman who took her away.

"I said no one ever looked in at the den in 'Scorpion Cove,' but
there was a kind little man, with sharp black eyes, and black hair,
and an earnest olive-colored face, and an earnester manner about
him, who used to look in now and then, talk kindly to us, and tell
us he wished he had a home for us all, and was rich enough to give
us all enough to eat. He hated Hag Zogbaum, and Hag Zogbaum hated
him; but we all liked him because he was kind to us, and used to
shake his head, and say he would do something for us yet. Hag
Zogbaum said he was always meddling with other people's business. At
other times a man would come along and throw tracts in at the gate
of the alley. We were ignorant of what they were intended for, and
used to try to sell them at the Gibraltars. Nobody wanted them, and
nobody could read at the den, so Hag Zogbaum lighted the fire with
them, and that was the end of them.

"Well, I sold papers for nearly two years, and learned to read a
little by so doing, and got up in the world a little; and being what
was called smart, attracted the attention of a printer in Nassau
street, who took me into his office, and did well by me. My mind was
bent on getting a trade. I knew I could do well for myself with a
trade to lean upon. Two years I worked faithfully at the printer's,
was approaching manhood, and with the facilities it afforded me had
not failed to improve my mind and get a tolerable good knowledge of
the trade. But the image of Anna, and the singular manner in which
she disappeared, made me unhappy.

"On my return from dinner one day I met in Broadway the lady who
took Anna away. The past and its trials flashed across my brain, and
I turned and followed her-found that her home was changed to Mercer
street, and this accounted for my fruitless watching in Leonard

"The love of Anna, that had left its embers smouldering in my bosom,
quickened, and seemed to burn with redoubled ardor. It was my first
and only love; the sufferings of our childhood had made it lasting.
My very emotion rose to action as I saw the woman I knew took her
away. My anxiety to know her fate had no bounds. Dressing myself up
as respectably as it was possible with my means, I took advantage of
a dark and stormy night in the month of November to call at the
house in Mercer street, into which I had traced the lady. I rung the
bell; a sumptuously-dressed woman came to the door, which opened
into a gorgeously-decorated hall. She looked at me with an inquiring
eye and disdainful frown, inquired who I was and what I wanted. I
confess I was nervous, for the dazzling splendor of the mansion
produced in me a feeling of awe rather than admiration. I made known
my mission as best I could; the woman said no such person had ever
resided there. In that moment of disappointment I felt like casting
myself away in despair. The associations of Scorpion Cove, of the
house of the Nine Nations, of the Rookery, of Paddy Pie's-or any
other den in that desert of death that engulphs the Points, seemed
holding out a solace for the melancholy that weighed me down. But
when I got back into Broadway my resolution gained strength, and
with it I wept over the folly of my thoughts.

"Led by curiosity, and the air of comfort pervading the
well-furnished room, and the piously-disposed appearance of the
persons who passed in and out, I had several times looked in at the
house of the 'Foreign Missions,' as we used to call it. A man with a
good-natured face used to sit in the chair, and a wise-looking
little man in spectacles (the Secretary) used to sit a bit below
him, and a dozen or two well-disposed persons of both sexes, with
sharp and anxious countenances, used to sit round in a half circle,
listening. The wise-looking man in the spectacles would, on motion
of some one present, read a long report, which was generally made up
of a list of donations and expenditures for getting up a scheme to
evangelize the world, and get Mr. Singleton Spyke off to Antioch. It
seemed to me as if a deal of time and money was expended on Mr.
Singleton Spyke, and yet Mr. Spyke never got off to Antioch. When
the man of the spectacles got through reading the long paper, and
the good-natured man in the chair got through explaining that the
heavy amount of twenty-odd thousand dollars had been judiciously
expended for the salary of officers of the society, and the getting
Brothers Spurn and Witherspoon off to enlighten the heathen, Brother
Singleton Spyke's mission would come up. Every one agreed that there
ought to be no delay in getting Brother Spyke off to Antioch; but a
small deficiency always stood in the way. And Brother Spyke seemed
spiked to this deficiency; for notwithstanding Mrs. Slocum, who was
reckoned the strongest-minded woman, and best business-man of the
society, always made speeches in favor of Brother Spyke and his
mission (a special one), he never got off to Antioch.

"Feeling forlorn, smarting under disappointment, and undecided where
to go after I left the house in Mercer street, I looked in at the
house of the 'Foreign Missions.' Mrs. Slocum, as I had many times
before seen her, was warmly contesting a question concerning Brother
Spyke, with the good-natured man in the chair. It was wrong, she
said, so much money should be expended, and Brother Spyke not got
off to Antioch. So leaving them debating Mr. Spyke's mission to
Antioch, I proceeded back to the house in Mercer street, and
inquired for the landlady of the house. The landlady, the woman that
opened the door said, was engaged. The door was shut in my face, and
I turned away more wounded in my feelings than before. Day and night
I contemplated some plan by which to ascertain Anna's place of
abode, her pursuit in life, her wants. When we parted she could
neither write nor read: I had taken writing lessons, by which I
could communicate tolerably well, while my occupation afforded me
the means of improvement. A few weeks passed (I continued to watch
the house), and I recognized her one afternoon, by her black,
floating hair, sitting at a second-story window of the house in
Mercer street, her back toward me. The sight was like electricity on
my feelings; a transport of joy bore away my thoughts. I gazed, and
continued to gaze upon the object, throwing, as it were, new passion
into my soul. But it turned, and there was a changed face, a face
more lovely, looking eagerly into a book. Looking eagerly into a
book did not betray one who could not read. But there was that in my
heart that prompted me to look on the favorable side of the doubt-to
try a different expedient in gaining admittance to the house. When
night came, I assumed a dress those who look on mechanics as vulgar
people, would have said became a gentleman; and approaching the
house, gained easy admittance. As I was about entering the great
parlors, a familiar but somewhat changed voice at the top of the
circling stairs that led from the hall caught my ear. I paused,
listened, became entranced with suspense. Again it resounded-again
my heart throbbed with joy. It was Anna's voice, so soft and
musical. The woman who opened the door turned from me, and attempted
to hush it. But Anna seemed indifferent to the admonition, for she
tripped buoyantly down stairs, accompanying a gentleman to the door.
I stood before her, a changed person. Her recognition of me was
instantaneous. Her color changed, her lips quivered, her eyes filled
with tears, her very soul seemed fired with emotions she had no
power to resist. 'George Mullholland!' she exclaimed, throwing her
arms about my neck, kissing me, and burying her head in my bosom,
and giving vent to her feelings in tears and quickened sobs-'how I
have thought of you, watched for you, and hoped for the day when we
would meet again and be happy. Oh, George! George! how changed
everything seems since we parted! It seems a long age, and yet our
sufferings, and the fondness for each other that was created in that
suffering, freshens in the mind. Dear, good George-my protector!'
she continued, clinging to me convulsively. I took her in my arms
(the scene created no little excitement in the house) and bore her
away to her chamber, which was chastely furnished, displaying a
correct taste, and otherwise suited to a princess. Having gained her
presence of mind, and become calm, she commenced relating what had
occurred since we parted at Scorpion Cove. I need not relate it at
length here, for it was similar in character to what might be told
by a thousand others if they were not powerless. For months she had
been confined to the house, her love of dress indulged to the
furthest extent, her mind polluted and initiated into the mysteries
of refined licentiousness, her personal appearance scrupulously
regarded, and made to serve the object of which she was a victim in
the hands of the hostess, who made her the worse than slave to a
banker of great respectability in Wall street. This good man and
father was well down in the vale of years, had a mansion on Fifth
Avenue, and an interesting and much-beloved family. He was, in
addition, a prominent member of the commercial community; but his
example to those more ready to imitate the errors of men in high
positions, than to improve by the examples of the virtuous poor, was
not what it should be. Though a child of neglect, and schooled to
licentiousness under the very eye of a generous community, her
natural sensibility recoiled at the thought that she was a mere
object of prey to the passions of one she could not love.

"She resolved to remain in this condition no longer, and escaped to
Savannah with a young man whose acquaintance she had made at the
house in Mercer street. For a time they lived at a respectable
hotel, as husband and wife. But her antecedents got out, and they
got notice to leave. The same fate met them in Charleston, to which
city they removed. Her antecedents seemed to follow her wherever she
went, like haunting spirits seeking her betrayal. She was homeless;
and without a home there was nothing open to her but that vortex of
licentiousness the world seemed pointing her to. Back she went to
the house in Mercer street-was glad to get back; was at least free
from the finger of scorn. Henceforward she associated with various
friends, who sought her because of her transcendent charms. She had
cultivated a natural intelligence, and her manners were such as
might have become one in better society. But her heart's desire was
to leave the house. I took her from it; and for a time I was happy
to find that the contaminating weeds of vice had not overgrown the
more sensitive buds of virtue.

"I provided a small tenement in Centre street, such as my means
would afford, and we started in the world, resolved to live
respectably. But what had maintained me respectably was now found
inadequate to the support of us both. Life in a house of sumptuous
vice had rendered Anna incapable of adapting herself to the extreme
of economy now forced upon us. Anna was taken sick; I was compelled
to neglect my work, and was discharged. Discontent, embarrassment,
and poverty resulted. I struggled to live for six months; but my
prospects, my hopes of gaining an honest living, were gone. I had no
money to join the society, and the trade being dull, could get
nothing to do. Fate seemed driving us to the last stage of distress.
One by one our few pieces of furniture, our clothing, and the few
bits of jewelry Anna had presented her at the house in Mercer
street, found their way to the sign of the Three Martyrs. The man of
the eagle face would always lend something on them, and that
something relieved us for the time. I many times thought, as I
passed the house of the Foreign Missions in Centre street, where
there was such an air of comfort, that if Mrs. Abijah Slocum, and
the good-natured man who sat in the chair, and the wise little man
in the spectacles, would condescend to look in at our little place,
and instead of always talking about getting Mr. Singleton Spyke off
to Antioch, take pity on our destitution, what a relief it would be.
It would have made more hearts happy than Mr. Spyke, notwithstanding
the high end of his mission, could have softened in ten years at

"Necessity, not inclination, forced Anna back into the house in
Mercer street, when I became her friend, her transient protector.
Her hand was as ready to bestow as her heart was warm and generous.
She gave me money, and was kind to me; but the degraded character of
my position caused me to despond, to yield myself a victim to
insidious vice, to become the associate of men whose only occupation
was that of gambling and 'roping-in' unsuspecting persons. I was not
long in becoming an efficient in the arts these men practiced on the
unwary. We used to meet at the 'Subterranean,' in Church street, and
there concoct our mode of operations. And from this centre went
forth, daily, men who lived by gambling, larceny, picking pockets,
counterfeiting, and passing counterfeit money. I kept Anna ignorant
of my associations. Nevertheless I was forced to get money, for I
found her affections becoming perverted. At times her manner towards
me was cold, and I sought to change it with money.

"While thus pursuing a life so precarious and exciting, I used to
look in at the 'Empire,' in Broadway, to see whom I could 'spot,' as
we called it at the 'Subterranean.' And it was here I met poor Tom
Swiggs, distracted and giving himself up to drink, in the fruitless
search after the girl of his love, from whom he had been separated,
as he said, by his mother. He had loved the girl, and the girl
returned his love with all the sincerity and ardor of her soul. But
she was poor, and of poor parents. And as such people were reckoned
nothing in Charleston, his mother locked him up in jail, and she was
got out of the way. Tom opened his heart to me, said foul means had
been resorted to, and the girl had thrown herself away, because,
while he was held in close confinement, falsehoods had been used to
make her believe he had abandoned her. To have her an outcast on his
account, to have her leading the life of an abandoned woman, and
that with the more galling belief that he had forsaken her, was more
than he could bear, and he was sinking under the burden. Instead of
making him an object of my criminal profession, his story so touched
my feelings that I became his protector, saw him to his lodgings in
Green street, and ultimately got him on board a vessel bound to

"Not many weeks after this, I, being moneyless, was the principal of
a plot by which nearly a thousand dollars was got of the old man in
Wall street, who had been Anna's friend; and fearing it might get
out, I induced her to accompany me to Charleston, where she believed
I had a prospect of bettering my condition, quitting my uncertain
mode of living, and becoming a respectable man. Together we put up
at the Charleston Hotel. But necessity again forced me to reveal to
her my circumstances, and the real cause of my leaving New York. Her
hopes of shaking off the taint of her former life seemed blasted;
but she bore the shock with resignation, and removed with me to the
house of Madame Flamingo, where we for a time lived privately. But
the Judge sought her out, followed her with the zeal of a knight,
and promised, if she would forsake me, to be her protector; to
provide for her and maintain her like a lady during her life. What
progress he has made in carrying out his promise you have seen. The
English baronet imposed her upon the St. Cecilia, and the Judge was
the first to betray her."



You must know, reader, that King street is our Boulevard of fashion;
and though not the handsomest street in the world, nor the widest,
nor the best paved, nor the most celebrated for fine edifices, we so
cherish its age and dignity that we would not for the world change
its provincial name, or molest one of the hundred old tottering
buildings that daily threaten a dissolution upon its pavement, or
permit a wench of doubtful blood to show her head on the "north
sidewalk" during promenade hours. We are, you see, curiously nice in
matters of color, and we should be. You may not comprehend the
necessity for this scrupulous regard to caste; others do not, so you
are not to blame for your ignorance of the customs of an atmosphere
you have only breathed through novels written by steam. We don't
(and you wouldn't) like to have our wives meet our slightly-colored
mistresses. And we are sure you would not like to have your
highly-educated and much-admired daughters meet those cream-colored
material evidences of your folly-called by Northern "fanatics" their
half-sisters! You would not! And your wives, like sensible women, as
our wives and daughters are, would, if by accident they did meet
them, never let you have a bit of sleep until you sent them to old
Graspum's flesh-market, had them sold, and the money put safely
into their hands. We do these things just as you would; and our
wives being philosophers, and very fashionable withal, put the money
so got into fine dresses, and a few weeks' stay at some very select
watering-place in the North. If your wife be very accomplished, (like
ours,) and your daughters much admired for their beauty, (like
ours,) they will do as ours did-put wisely the cash got for their
detestable relatives into a journey of inspection over Europe. So,
you see, we keep our fashionable side of King street; and woe be to
the shady mortal that pollutes its bricks!

Mr. Absalom McArthur lives on the unfashionable side of this street,
in a one-story wooden building, with a cottage roof, covered with
thick, black moss, and having two great bow windows, and a very lean
door, painted black, in front. It is a rummy old house to look at,
for the great bow windows are always ornamented with old hats, which
Mr. McArthur makes supply the place of glass; and the house itself,
notwithstanding it keeps up the dignity of a circular window over
the door, reminds one of that valiant and very notorious
characteristic of the State, for it has, during the last twenty or
more years, threatened (but never done it) to tumble upon the
unfashionable pavement, just in like manner as the State has
threatened (but never done it!) to tumble itself out of our
unfashionable Union. We are a great people, you see; but having the
impediment of the Union in the way of displaying our might, always
stand ready to do what we never intended to do. We speak in that
same good-natured sense and metaphor used by our politicians, (who
are become very distinguished in the refined arts of fighting and
whiskey-drinking,) when they call for a rope to put about the neck
of every man not sufficiently stupid to acknowledge himself a
secessionist. We imagine ourselves the gigantic and sublime theatre
of chivalry, as we have a right to do; we raise up heroes of war and
statesmanship, compared with whom your Napoleons, Mirabeaus, and
Marats-yes, even your much-abused Roman orators and Athenian
philosophers, sink into mere insignificance. Nor are we bad
imitators of that art displayed by the Roman soldiers, when they
entered the Forum and drenched it with Senatorial blood! Pardon this
digression, reader.

Of a summer morning you will see McArthur, the old Provincialist, as
he is called, arranging in his great bow windows an innumerable
variety of antique relics, none but a Mrs. Toodles could conceive a
want for--such as broken pots, dog-irons, fenders, saws, toasters,
stew-pans, old muskets, boxing-gloves and foils, and sundry other
odds and ends too numerous to mention. At evening he sits in his
door, a clever picture of a by-gone age, on a venerable old sofa,
supported on legs tapering into feet of lion's paws, and carved in
mahogany, all tacked over with brass-headed nails. Here the old man
sits, and sits, and sits, reading the "Heroes of the Revolution,"
(the only book he ever reads,) and seemingly ready at all times to
serve the "good wishes" of his customers, who he will tell you are
of the very first families, and very distinguished! He holds
distinguished people in high esteem; and several distinguished
persons have no very bad opinion of him, but a much better one of
his very interesting daughter, whose acquaintance (though not a
lady, in the Southern acceptation of the term) they would not object
to making-provided!

His little shop is lumbered with boxes and barrels, all containing
relics of a by-gone age--such as broken swords, pistols of curious
make, Revolutionary hand-saws, planes, cuirasses, broken spurs,
blunderbusses, bowie, scalping, and hunting-knives; all of which he
declares our great men have a use for. Hung on a little post, and
over a pair of rather suspicious-looking buckskin breeches, is a
rusty helmet, which he sincerely believes was worn by a knight of
the days of William the Conqueror. A little counter to the left
staggers under a pile of musty old books and mustier papers, all
containing valuable matter relating to the old Continentals, who, as
he has it, were all Carolinians. (Dispute this, and he will go right
into a passion.) Resting like good-natured policemen against this
weary old counter are two sympathetic old coffins, several
second-hand crutches, and a quantity of much-neglected wooden legs.
These Mr. McArthur says are in great demand with our first families.
No one, except Mr. Soloman Snivel, knows better what the chivalry
stand in need of to prop up its declining dignity. His dirty little
shelves, too, are stuffed with those cheap uniforms the State so
grudgingly voted its unwilling volunteers during the Revolution.

See Senator Sumner's speech in Congress on Plantation manners.
Tucked in here and there, at sixes and sevens, are the scarlet and
blue of several suits of cast-off theatrical wardrobe he got of
Abbott, and now loans for a small trifle to Madame Flamingo and the
St. Cecilia Society-the first, when she gives her very seductive
bal-masques; the second, when distinguished foreigners with titles
honor its costume balls. As for Revolutionary cocked hats,
epaulettes, plumes, and holsters, he has enough to supply and send
off, feeling as proud as peacocks, every General and Colonel in
the State-and their name, as you ought to know, reader, is legion.

The stranger might, indeed, be deceived into the belief that Absalom
McArthur's curiosity shop was capable of furnishing accoutrements
for that noble little army, (standing army we call it!) on which the
State prides itself not a little, and spends no end of money. For
ourselves, (if the reader but permit us,) we have long admired this
little Spartan force, saying all the good things of it our prosy
brain could invent, and in the kindest manner recommending its
uniform good character as a model for our very respectable society
to fashion after. Indeed, we have, in the very best nature of a
modern historian, endeavored to enlighten the barbarian world
outside of South Carolina as to the terrible consequences which
might accrue to the Union did this noble little army assume any
other than a standing character. Now that General Jackson is out of
the way, and our plebeian friends over the Savannah, whom we hold in
high esteem, (the Georgians,) kindly consent to let us go our own
road out of the Union, nothing can be more grateful than to find our
wise politicians sincerely believing that when this standing army,
of which other States know so little, shall have become allied with
those mighty men of Beaufort, dire consequences to this young but
very respectable Federal compact will be the result. Having
discharged the duties of a historian, for the benefit of those
benighted beings unfortunate enough to live out of our small but
highly-civilized State, we must return to McArthur.

He is a little old-maidish about his age, which for the last twenty
years has not got a day more than fifty-four. Being as sensitive of
his veracity as the State is of its dignity, we would not, either
by implication or otherwise, lay an impeachment at his door, but
rather charge the discrepancy to that sin (a treacherous memory) the
legal gentry find so convenient for their purposes when they knock
down their own positions. McArthur stood five feet eight exactly,
when young, but age has made him lean of person, and somewhat bent.
His face is long and corrugated; his expression of countenance
singularly serious. A nose, neither aquiline nor Grecian, but large
enough, and long enough, and red enough at the end, to make both; a
sharp and curiously-projecting chin, that threatens a meeting, at no
very distant day, with his nasal organ; two small, watchful blue
eyes deep-set under narrow arches, fringed with long gray lashes; a
deeply-furrowed, but straight and contracted forehead, and a shaggy
red wig, poised upon the crown of his head, and, reader, if you
except the constant working of a heavy, drooping lower lip, and the
diagonal sight with which his eyes are favored, you have his most
prominent features. Fashion he holds in utter contempt, nor has he
the very best opinion in the world of our fashionable tailors, who
are grown so rich that they hold mortgages on the very best
plantations in the State, and offer themselves candidates for the
Governorship. Indeed, Mr. McArthur says, one of these knights of the
goose, not long since, had the pertinacity to imagine himself a
great General. And to show his tenacious adherence to the examples
set by the State, he dresses exactly as his grandfather's
great-grandfather used to, in a blue coat, with small brass buttons,
a narrow crimpy collar, and tails long enough and sharp enough for a
clipper-ship's run. The periods when he provided himself with new
suits are so far apart that they formed special episodes in his
history; nevertheless there is always an air of neatness about him,
and he will spend much time arranging a dingy ruffled shirt, a pair
of gray trowsers, a black velvet waistcoat, cut in the Elizabethan
style, and a high, square shirt collar, into which his head has the
appearance of being jammed. This collar he ties with a much-valued
red and yellow Spittlefields, the ends of which flow over his
ruffle. Although the old man would not bring much at the
man-shambles, we set a great deal of store by him, and would not
exchange him for anything in the world but a regiment or two of
heroic secessionists. Indeed we are fully aware that nothing like
him exists beyond the highly perfumed atmosphere of our State. And
to many other curious accomplishments the old man adds that of
telling fortunes. The negroes seriously believe he has a private
arrangement with the devil, of whom he gets his wisdom, and the
secret of propitiating the gods.

Two days have passed since the emeute at the house of the old
hostess. McArthur has promised the young missionary a place for Tom
Swiggs, when he gets out of prison (but no one but his mother seems
to have a right to let him out), and the tall figure of Mister
Snivel is seen entering the little curiosity shop. "I say!--my old
hero, has she been here yet?" inquires Mr. Snivel, the accommodation
man. "Nay, good friend," returns the old man, rising from his sofa,
and returning the salutation, "she has not yet darkened the door."
The old man draws the steel-bowed spectacles from his face, and
watches with a patriarchal air any change that comes over the
accommodation man's countenance. "Now, good friend, if I did but
know the plot," pursues the old man.

"The plot you are not to know! I gave you her history yesterday--
that is, as far as I know it. You must make up the rest. You know
how to tell fortunes, old boy. I need not instruct you. Mind you
flatter her beauty, though-extend on the kindness of the Judge, and
be sure you get it in that it was me who betrayed her at the St.
Cecelia. All right old boy, eh?" and shaking McArthur by the hand
warmly, he takes his departure, bowing himself into the street. The
old man says he will be all ready when she comes.

Scarcely has the accommodation man passed out of sight when a
sallow-faced stripling makes his appearance, and with that
characteristic effrontery for borrowing and never returning, of the
property-man of a country theatre, "desires" to know if Mr. McArthur
will lend him a skull.

"A skull!" ejaculates the old man, his bony fingers wandering to his
melancholy lip--"a skull!" and he fusses studiously round the little
cell-like place, looking distrustfully at the property-man, and then
turning an anxious eye towards his piles of rubbish, as if fearing
some plot is on foot to remove them to the infernal regions.

"You see," interrupts Mr. Property, "we play Hamlet to-night--expect
a crammed house--and our star, being scrupulous of his reputation,
as all small stars are, won't go on for the scene of the
grave-digger, without two skulls-he swears he won't! He raised the
very roof of the theatre this morning, because his name wasn't in
bigger type on the bill. And if we don't give him two skulls and
plenty of bones to-night, he swears-and such swearing as it
is!--he'll forfeit the manager, have the house closed, and come out
with a card to the public in the morning. We are in a fix, you see!
The janitor only has one, and he lent us that as if he didn't want

Mr. McArthur says he sees, and with an air of regained wisdom stops
suddenly, and takes from a shelf a dingy old board, on which is a
dingier paper, bearing curious inscriptions, no one but the old man
himself would have supposed to be a schedule of stock in trade. Such
it is, nevertheless. He rubs his spectacles, places them
methodically upon his face, wipes and wipes the old board with his
elbow. "It's here if it's anywhere!" says the old man, with a sigh.
"It comes into my head that among the rest of my valuables I've
Yorick's skull."

"The very skull we want!" interrupts Property. And the old man
quickens the working of his lower jaw, and continues to rub at the
board until he has brought out the written mystery. "My ancestors
were great people," he mumbles to himself, "great people!" He runs
the crusty forefinger of his right hand up and down the board,
adding, "and any customers are all of the first families, which is
some consolation in one's poverty. Ah! I have it here!" he exclaims,
with childlike exultation, frisking his fingers over the board. "One
Yorick's skull-a time-worn, tenantless, and valuable relic, in which
graveyard worms have banqueted more than once. Yes, young man,
presented to my ancestors by the elder Stuarts, and on that account
worth seven skulls, or more." "One Yorick's skull," is written on
the paper, upon which the old man presses firmly his finger. Then
turning to an old box standing in the little fire-place behind the
counter, saying, "it's in here-as my name's Absalom McArthur, it
is," he opens the lid, and draws forth several old military coats
(they have seen revolutionary days! he says, exultingly), numerous
scales of brass, such as are worn on British soldiers' hats, a
ponderous chapeau and epaulets, worn, he insists, by Lord Nelson at
the renowned battle of Trafalgar. He has not opened, he adds, this
box for more than twelve long years. Next he drags forth a military
cloak of great weight and dimensions. "Ah!" he exclaims, with
nervous joy, "here's the identical cloak worn by Lord Cornwallis-how
my ancestors used to prize it." And as he unrolls its great folds
there falls upon the floor, to his great surprise, an old
buff-colored silk dress, tied firmly with a narrow, green ribbon.
"Maria! Maria! Maria!" shouts the old man, as if suddenly seized
with a spasm. And his little gray eyes flash with excitement, as he
says--"if here hasn't come to light at last, poor Mag Munday's dress.
God forgive the poor wretch, she's dead and gone, no doubt." In
response to the name of "Maria" there protrudes from a little door
that opens into a passage leading to a back-room, the delicate
figure of a female, with a face of great paleness, overcast by a
thoughtful expression. She has a finely-developed head, intelligent
blue eyes, light auburn hair, and features more interesting than
regular. Indeed, there is more to admire in the peculiar modesty of
her demeanor than in the regularity of her features, as we shall
show. "My daughter!" says the old man, as she nervously advances,
her pale hand extended. "Poor woman! how she would mourn about this
old dress; and say it contained something that might give her a
chance in the world," she rather whispers than speaks, disclosing
two rows of small white teeth. She takes from the old man's hand the
package, and disappears. The anxiety she evinces over the charge
discloses the fact that there is something of deep interest
connected with it.

Mr. McArthur was about to relate how he came by this seemingly
worthless old package, when the property-man, becoming somewhat
restless, and not holding in over high respect the old man's
rubbish, as he called it in his thoughts, commences drawing forth,
piece after piece of the old relics. The old man will not allow
this. "There, young man!" he says, touching him on the elbow, and
resuming his labor. At length he draws forth the dust-tenanted
skull, coated on the outer surface with greasy mould. "There!" he
says, with an unrestrained exclamation of joy, holding up the
wasting bone, "this was in its time poor Yorick's skull. It was such
a skull, when Yorick lived! Beneath this filthy remnant of past
greatness (I always think of greatness when I turn to the past),
this empty tenement, once the domain of wisdom, this poor bone, what
thoughts did not come out?" And the old man shakes his head, mutters
inarticulately, and weeps with the simplicity of a child.

"The Star'll have skulls and bones enough to make up for his want of
talent now-I reckon," interposes the property-man. "But!--I say,
mister, this skull couldn't a bin old Yorick's, you know--"

"Yorick's!--why not?" interrupts the old man.

"Because Yorick-Yorick was the King's jester, you see-no nigger; and
no one would think of importing anything but a nigger's skull into

"Young man!--if this skull had consciousness; if this had a tongue it
would rebuke thee;" the old man retorts hastily, "for my ancestors
knew Yorick, and Yorick kept up an intimate acquaintance with the
ancestors of the very first families in this State, who were not
shoemakers and milliners, as hath been maliciously charged, but good
and pious Huguenots." To the end that he may convince the
unbelieving Thespian of the truth of his assertion, he commences to
rub away the black coating with the sleeve of his coat, and there,
to his infinite delight, is written, across the crown, in letters of
red that stand out as bold as the State's chivalry--"Alas! poor
Yorick." Tears of sympathy trickle down the old man's cheeks, his
eyes sparkle with excitement, and with womanly accents he mutters:
"the days of poetry and chivalry are gone. It is but a space of time
since this good man's wit made Kings and Princes laugh with joy."

This skull, and a coral pin, which he said was presented to his
ancestors by Lord Cornwallis, who they captured, now became his
hobby; and he referred to it in all his conversation, and made them
as much his idol as our politicians do secession. In this instance,
he dare not entrust his newly-discovered jewel to the vulgar hands
of Mr. Property, but pledged his honor-a ware the State deals
largely in notwithstanding it has become exceedingly cheap-it would
be forthcoming at the requisite time.



MR. SOLOMAN SNIVEL has effected a reconciliation between old Judge
Sleepyhorn and the beautiful Anna Bonard, and he has flattered the
weak-minded George Mullholland into a belief that the old Judge, as
he styles him, is his very best friend. So matters go on swimmingly
at the house of Madame Flamingo. Indeed Mr. Soloman can make himself
extremely useful in any affair requiring the exercise of nice
diplomatic skill-no matter whether it be of love or law. He gets
people into debt, and out of debt; into bankruptcy and out of
bankruptcy; into jail and out of jail; into society and out of
society. He has officiated in almost every capacity but that of a
sexton. If you want money, Mr. Soloman can always arrange the little
matter for you. If you have old negroes you want to get off your
hands at a low figure, he has a customer. If you want to mortgage
your negro property, a thing not uncommon with our very first
families, Mr. Soloman is your man. Are you worth a fee, and want
legal advice, he will give it exactly to your liking. Indeed, he
will lie you into the most hopeless suit, and with equal pertinacity
lie you out of the very best. Every judge is his friend and most
intimate acquaintance. He is always rollicking, frisking, and
insinuating himself into something, affects to be the most liberal
sort of a companion, never refuses to drink when invited, but never
invites any one unless he has a motive beyond friendship. Mr.
Keepum, the wealthy lottery broker, who lives over the way, in Broad
street, in the house with the mysterious signs, is his money-man.
This Keepum, the man with the sharp visage and guilty countenance,
has an excellent standing in society, having got it as the reward of
killing two men. Neither of these deeds of heroism, however, were
the result of a duel. Between these worthies there exists relations
mutually profitable, if not the most honorable. And notwithstanding
Mr. Soloman is forever sounding Mr. Keepum's generosity, the said
Keepum has a singular faculty for holding with a firm grasp all he
gets, the extent of his charities being a small mite now and then to
Mr. Hadger, the very pious agent for the New York Presbyterian Tract
Society. Mr. Hadger, who by trading in things called negroes, and
such like wares, has become a man of great means, twice every year
badgers the community in behalf of this society, and chuckles over
what he gets of Keepum, as if a knave's money was a sure panacea for
the cure of souls saved through the medium of those highly
respectable tracts the society publishes to suit the tastes of the
god slavery. Mr. Keepum, too, has a very high opinion of this
excellent society, as he calls it, and never fails to boast of his

It is night. The serene and bright sky is hung with brighter stars.
Our little fashionable world has got itself arrayed in its best
satin-and is in a flutter. Carriages, with servants in snobby coats,
beset the doors of the theatre. A flashing of silks, satins,
brocades, tulle and jewelry, distinguished the throng pressing
eagerly into the lobbies, and seeking with more confusion than grace
seats in the dress circle. The orchestra has played an overture, and
the house presents a lively picture of bright-colored robes. Mr.
Snivel's handsome figure is seen looming out of a private box in the
left-hand procenium, behind the curtain of which, and on the
opposite side, a mysterious hand every now and then frisks, makes a
small but prudent opening, and disappears. Again it appears, with
delicate and chastely-jeweled fingers. Cautiously the red curtain
moves aside apace, and the dark languishing eyes of a female,
scanning over the dress-circle, are revealed. She recognizes the
venerable figure of Judge Sleepyhorn, who has made a companion of
George Mullholland, and sits at his side in the parquette. Timidly
she closes the curtain.

In the right-hand procenium box sits, resplendent of jewels and
laces, and surrounded by her many admirers, the beautiful and very
fashionable Madame Montford, a woman of singularly regular features,
and more than ordinary charms. Opinion is somewhat divided on the
early history of Madame Montford. Some have it one thing, some
another. Society is sure to slander a woman of transcendent beauty
and intellect. There is nothing in the world more natural,
especially when those charms attract fashionable admirers. It is
equally true, too, that if you would wipe out any little taint that
may hang about the skirts of your character you must seek the
panacea in a distant State, where, with the application of a little
diplomacy you may become the much sought for wonder of a new
atmosphere and new friends, as is the case with Madame Montford, who
rebukes her New York neighbors of the Fifth Avenue (she has a
princely mansion there), with the fact that in Charleston she is,
whenever she visits it, the all-absorbing topic with fashionable
society. For four successive winters Madame Montford has honored the
elite of Charleston with her presence. The advent of her coming,
too, has been duly heralded in the morning papers-to the infinite
delight of the St. Cecilia Society, which never fails to distinguish
her arrival with a ball. And this ball is sure to be preceded with
no end of delicately-perfumed cards, and other missives, as full of
compliments as it is capable of cramming them. There is,
notwithstanding all these ovations in honor of her coming, a mystery
hanging over her periodical visits, for the sharp-eyed persist that
they have seen her disguised, and in suspicious places; making
singular inquiries about a woman of the name of Mag Munday. And
these suspicions have given rise to whisperings, and these
whisperings have crept into the ears of several very old and
highly-respectable "first families," which said families have
suddenly dropped her acquaintance. But what is more noticeable in
the features of Madame Montford, is the striking similarity between
them and Anna Bonard's. Her most fervent admirers have noticed it;
while strangers have not failed to discover it, and to comment upon
it. And the girl who sits in the box with Mr. Snivel, so cautiously
fortifying herself with the curtain, is none other than Anna. Mr.
Snivel has brought her here as an atonement for past injuries.

Just as the curtain is about to rise, Mr. McArthur, true to his
word, may be seen toddling to the stage door, his treasure carefully
tied up in a handkerchief. He will deliver it to no one but the
manager, and in spite of his other duties that functionary is
compelled to receive it in person. This done, the old man, to the
merriment of certain wags who delight to speculate on his childlike
credulity, takes a seat in the parquette, wipes clean his venerable
spectacles, and placing them methodically over his eyes, forms a
unique picture in the foreground of the audience. McArthur, with the
aid of his glasses, can recognize objects at a distance; and as the
Hamlet of the night is decidedly Teutonic in his appearance and
pronunciation, he has no great relish for the Star, nor a hand of
applause to bestow on his genius. Hamlet, he is sure, never
articulated with a coarse brogue. So turning from the stage, he
amuses himself with minutely scanning the faces of the audience, and
resolving in his mind that something will turn up in the
grave-digger's scene, of which he is an enthusiastic admirer. It is,
indeed, he thinks to himself, very doubtful, whether in this wide
world the much-abused William Shakspeare hath a more ardent admirer
of this curious but faithful illustration of his genius. Suddenly
his attention seems riveted on the private box, in which sits the
stately figure of Madame Montford, flanked in a half-circle by her
perfumed and white-gloved admirers. "What!" exclaims the old man, in
surprise, rubbing and replacing his glasses, "if I'm not deceived!
Well-I can't be. If there isn't the very woman, a little altered,
who has several times looked into my little place of an evening. Her
questions were so curious that I couldn't make out what she really
wanted (she never bought anything); but she always ended with
inquiring about poor Mag Munday. People think because I have all
sorts of things, that I must know about all sorts of things. I never
could tell her much that satisfied her, for Mag, report had it, was
carried off by the yellow fever, and nobody ever thought of her
afterwards. And because I couldn't tell this woman any more, she
would go away with tears in her eyes." Mr. McArthur whispers to a
friend on his right, and touches him on the arm, "Pooh! pooh!"
returns the man, with measured indifference, "that's the reigning
belle of the season-Madame Montford, the buxom widow, who has been
just turned forty for some years."

The play proceeds, and soon the old man's attention is drawn from
the Widow Montford by the near approach to the scene of the
grave-digger. And as that delineator enters the grave, and commences
his tune, the old man's anxiety increases.

A twitching and shrugging of the shoulders, discovers Mr. McArthur's
feelings. The grave-digger, to the great delight of the Star,
bespreads the stage with a multiplicity of bones. Then he follows
them with a skull, the appearance of which causes Mr. McArthur to
exclaim, "Ah! that's my poor Yorick." He rises from his seat, and
abstractedly stares at the Star, then at the audience. The audience
gives out a spontaneous burst of applause, which the Teutonic Hamlet
is inclined to regard as an indignity offered to superior talent. A
short pause and his face brightens with a smile, the grave-digger
shoulders his pick, and with the thumb of his right hand to his
nasal organ, throws himself into a comical attitude. The audience
roar with delight; the Star, ignorant of the cause of what he
esteems a continued insult, waves his plumes to the audience, and
with an air of contempt walks off the stage.



"AN excellent society-excellent, I assure you, Madame--"

"Truly, Mr. Hadger," interrupted Mrs. Swiggs, "your labors on behalf
of this Tract Society will be rewarded in heaven--"

"Dear--a--me," Mr. Hadger returns, ere Mrs. Swiggs can finish her
sentence, "don't mention such a thing. I assure you it is a labor of

"Their tracts are so carefully got up. If my poor old negro property
could only read--(Mrs. Swiggs pauses.) I was going to say-if it
wasn't for the law (again she pauses), we couldn't prejudice our
cause by letting our negroes read them--"

"Excuse the interruption," Mr. Hadger says, "but it wouldn't do,
notwithstanding (no one can be more liberal than myself on the
subject of enlightening our negro property!) the Tract Society
exhibits such an unexceptionable regard to the requirements of our
cherished institution."

This conversation passes between Mrs. Swiggs and Mr. Hadger, who, as
he says with great urbanity of manner, just dropped in to announce
joyous tidings. He has a letter from Sister Abijah Slocum, which
came to hand this morning, enclosing one delicately enveloped for
Sister Swiggs. "The Lord is our guide," says Mrs. Swiggs, hastily
reaching out her hand and receiving the letter. "Heaven will reward
her for the interest she takes in the heathen world."

"Truly, if she hath not now, she will have there a monument of
gold," Mr. Hadger piously pursues, adding a sigh.

"There! there!--my neuralgy; it's all down my left side. I'm not long
for this world, you see!" Mrs. Swiggs breaks out suddenly, then
twitches her head and oscillates her chin. And as if some electric
current had changed the train of her thoughts, she testily seizes
hold of her Milton, and says: "I have got my Tom up again-yes I
have, Mr. Hadger."

Mr. Hadger discovers the sudden flight her thoughts have taken: "I
am sure," he interposes, "that so long as Sister Slocum remains a
member of the Tract Society we may continue our patronage."

Mrs. Swiggs is pleased to remind Mr. Hadger, that although her means
have been exceedingly narrowed down, she has not, for the last ten
years, failed to give her mite, which she divides between the house
of the "Foreign Missions," and the "Tract Society."

A nice, smooth-faced man, somewhat clerically dressed, straight and
portly of person, and most unexceptionable in his morals, is Mr.
Hadger. A smile of Christian resignation and brotherly love happily
ornaments his countenance; and then, there is something venerable
about his nicely-combed gray whiskers, his white cravat, his snowy
hair, his mild brown eyes, and his pleasing voice. One is almost
constrained to receive him as the ideal of virtue absolved in
sackcloth and ashes. As an evidence of our generosity, we regard him
an excellent Christian, whose life hath been purified with an
immense traffic in human--(perhaps some good friend will crack our
skull for saying it).

In truth (though we never could find a solution in the Bible for
it), as the traffic in human property increased Mr. Hadger's riches,
so also did it in a corresponding ratio increase his piety. There
is, indeed, a singular connection existing between piety and
slavery; but to analyze it properly requires the mind of a
philosopher, so strange is the blending.

Brother Hadger takes a sup of ice-water, and commences reading
Sister Slocum's letter, which runs thus: "NEW YORK, May -, 1850.

"Justice and Mercy is the motto of the cause we have lent our hands
and hearts to promote. Only yesterday we had a gathering of kind
spirits at the Mission House in Centre street, where, thank God, all
was peace and love. We had, too, an anxious gathering at the 'Tract
Society's rooms.' There it was not so much peace and love as could
have been desired. Brother Bight seemed earnest, but said many
unwise things; and Brother Scratch let out some very unwise
indiscretions which you will find in the reports I send. There was
some excitement, and something said about what we got from the South
not being of God's chosen earnings. And there was something more let
off by our indiscreet Brothers against the getting up of the tracts.
But we had a majority, and voted down our indiscreet Brothers,
inasmuch as it was shown to be necessary not to offend our good
friends in the South. Not to give offence to a Brother is good in
the sight of the Lord, and this Brother Primrose argued in a most
Christian speech of four long hours or more, and which had the
effect of convincing every one how necessary it was to free the
tracts of everything offensive to your cherished institution. And
though we did not, Brother Hadger, break up in the continuance of
that love we were wont to when you were among us, we sustained the
principle that seemeth most acceptable to you-we gained the victory
over our disaffected Brothers. And I am desired on behalf of the
Society, to thank you for the handsome remittance, hoping you will
make it known, through peace and love, to those who kindly
contributed toward it. The Board of 'Foreign Missions,' as you will
see by the report, also passed a vote of thanks for your favor. How
grateful to think what one will do to enlighten the heathen world,
and how many will receive a tract through the medium of the other.

"We are now in want of a few thousand dollars, to get the Rev.
Singleton Spyke, a most excellent person, off to Antioch. Aid us
with a mite, Brother Hadger, for his mission is one of God's own.
The enclosed letter is an appeal to Sister Swiggs, whose yearly
mites have gone far, very far, to aid us in the good but mighty work
now to be done. Sister Swiggs will have her reward in heaven for
these her good gifts. How thankful should she be to Him who provides
all things, and thus enableth her to bestow liberally.

"And now, Brother, I must say adieu! May you continue to live in the
spirit of Christian love. And may you never feel the want of these
mites bestowed in the cause of the poor heathen. "SISTER ABIJAH

"May the good be comforted!" ejaculates Mrs. Swiggs, as Mr. Hadger
concludes. She has listened with absorbed attention to every word,
at times bowing, and adding a word of approval. Mr. Hadger hopes
something may be done in this good cause, and having interchanged
sundry compliments, takes his departure, old Rebecca opening the

"Glad he's gone!" the old lady says to herself. "I am so anxious to
hear the good tidings Sister Slocum's letter conveys." She wipes and
wipes her venerable spectacles, adjusts them piquantly over her
small, wicked eyes, gives her elaborate cap-border a twitch forward,
frets her finger nervously over the letter, and gets herself into a
general state of confritteration. "There!" she says, entirely
forgetting her Milton, which has fallen on the floor, to the great
satisfaction of the worthy old cat, who makes manifest his regard
for it by coiling himself down beside it, "God bless her. It makes
my heart leap with joy when I see her writing," she pursues, as old
Rebecca stands contemplating her, with serious and sullen
countenance. Having prilled and fussed over the letter, she
commences reading in a half whisper: "NO. -, 4TH AVENUE, NEW YORK,

"I am, as you know, always overwhelmed with business; and having
hoped the Lord in his goodness yet spares you to us, and gives you
health and bounty wherewith to do good, must be pardoned for my
brevity. The Lord prospers our missions among the heathen, and the
Tract Society continues to make its labors known throughout the
country. It, as you will see by the tracts I send here--with, still
continues that scrupulous regard to the character of your domestic
institution which has hitherto characterized it. Nothing is
permitted to creep into them that in any way relates to your
domestics, or that can give pain to the delicate sensibilities of
your very excellent and generous people. We would do good to all
without giving pain to any one. Oh! Sister, you know what a wicked
world this is, and how it becomes us to labor for the good of
others. But what is this world compared with the darkness of the
heathen world, and those poor wretches ('Sure enough!' says Mrs.
Swiggs) who eat one another, never have heard of a God, and prefer
rather to worship idols of wood and stone. When I contemplate this
dreadful darkness, which I do night and day, day and night, I invoke
the Spirit to give me renewed strength to go forward in the good
work of bringing from darkness ('Just as I feel,' thinks Mrs.
Swiggs) unto light those poor benighted wretches of the heathen
world. How often I have wished you could be here with us, to add
life and spirit to our cause-to aid us in beating down Satan, and
when we have got him down not to let him up. The heathen world never
will be what it should be until Satan is bankrupt, deprived of his
arts, and chained to the post of humiliation-never! ('I wish I had
him where my Tom is!' Mrs. Swiggs mutters to herself.) Do come on
here, Sister. We will give you an excellent reception, and make you
so happy while you sojourn among us. And now, Sister, having never
appealed to you in vain, we again extend our hand, hoping you will
favor the several very excellent projects we now have on hand.
First, we have a project-a very excellent one, on hand, for
evangelizing the world; second, in consideration of what has been
done in the reign of the Seven Churches-Pergamos Thyatira, Magnesia,
Cassaba, Demish, and Baindir, where all is darkness, we have
conceived a mission to Antioch; and third, we have been earnestly
engaged in, and have spent a few thousand dollars over a project of
the 'Tract Society,' which is the getting up of no less than one or
two million of their excellent tracts, for the Dahomy field of
missionary labor-such as the Egba mission, the Yoruba mission, and
the Ijebu missions. Oh! Sister, what a field of labor is here open
to us. And what a source of joy and thankfulness it should be to us
that we have the means to labor in those fields of darkness. We have
selected brother Singleton Spyke, a young man of great promise, for
this all-important mission to Antioch. He has been for the last four
years growing in grace and wisdom. No expense has been spared in
everything necessary to his perfection, not even in the selection of
a partner suited to his prospects and future happiness. We now want
a few thousand dollars to make up the sum requisite to his mission,
and pay the expenses of getting him off. Come to our assistance,
dear Sister-do come! Share with us your mite in this great work of
enlightening the heathen, and know that your deeds are recorded in
heaven. ('Verily!' says the old lady.) And now, hoping the Giver of
all good will continue to favor you with His blessing, and preserve
you in that strength of intellect with which you have so often
assisted us in beating down Satan, and hoping either to have the
pleasure of seeing you, or hearing from you soon, I will say adieu!
subscribing myself a servant in the cause of the heathen, and your
sincere Sister, "MRS. ABIJAH SLOCUM.

"P.S.--Remember, dear Sister, that the amount of money expended in
idol-worship--in erecting monster temples and keeping them in
repair, would provide comfortable homes and missions for hundreds of
our very excellent young men and women, who are now ready to buckle
on the armor and enter the fight against Satan. "A.S."

"Dear-a-me," she sighs, laying the letter upon the table, kicking
the cat as she resumes her rocking, and with her right hand
restoring her Milton to its accustomed place on the table.
"Rebecca," she says, "will get a pillow and place it nicely at my
back." Rebecca, the old slave, brings the pillow. "There, there!
now, not too high, nor too low, Rebecca!" her thin, sharp voice
echoes, as she works her shoulders, and permits her long fingers to
wander over her cap-border. "When 'um got just so missus like,
say-da he is!" mumbles the old negress in reply. "Well, well-a
little that side, now--" The negress moves the pillow a little to the
left. "That's too much, Rebecca-a slight touch the other way. You
are so stupid, I will have to sell you, and get Jewel to take care
of me. I would have done it before but for the noise of her crutch-I
would, Rebecca! You never think of me-you only think of how much
hominy you can eat." The old negress makes a motion to move the
pillow a little to the right, when Mrs. Swiggs settles her head and
shoulders into it, saying, "there!"

"Glad 'um suit-fo'h true!" retorts the negress, her heavy lips and
sullen face giving out the very incarnation of hatred.

"Now don't make a noise when you go out." Rebecca in reply says she
is "gwine down to da kitchen to see Isaac," and toddles out of the
room, gently closing the door after her.

Resignedly Mrs. Swiggs closes her eyes, moderates her rocking, and
commences evolving and revolving the subject over in her mind. "I
haven't much of this world's goods-no, I haven't; but I'm of a good
family, and its name for hospitality must be kept up. Don't see that
I can keep it up better than by helping Sister Slocum and the Tract
Society out," she muses. But the exact way to effect this has not
yet come clear to her mind. Times are rather hard, and, as we have
said before, she is in straightened circumstances, having, for
something more than ten years, had nothing but the earnings of
eleven old negroes, five of whom are cripples, to keep up the
dignity of the house of the Swiggs. "There's old Zeff," she says,
"has took to drinking, and Flame, his wife, ain't a bit better; and
neither one of them have been worth anything since I sold their two
children-which I had to do, or let the dignity of the family suffer.
I don't like to do it, but I must. I must send Zeff to the
workhouse-have him nicely whipped, I only charge him eighteen
dollars a month for himself, and yet he will drink, and won't pay
over his wages. Yes!--he shall have it. The extent of the law, well
laid on, will learn him a lesson. There's old Cato pays me twenty
dollars a month, and Cato's seventy-four-four years older than Zeff.
In truth, my negro property is all getting careless about paying
wages. Old Trot runs away whenever he can get a chance; Brutus has
forever got something the matter with him; and Cicero has come to be
a real skulk. He don't care for the cowhide; the more I get him
flogged the worse he gets. Curious creature! And his old woman,
since she broke her leg, and goes with a crutch, thinks she can do
just as she pleases. There is plenty of work in her-plenty; she has
no disposition to let it come out, though! And she has kept up a
grumbling ever since I sold her girls. Well, I didn't want to keep
them all the time at the whipping-post; so I sold them to save their
characters." Thus Mrs. Swiggs muses until she drops into a profound
sleep, in which she remains, dreaming that she has sold old Mumma
Molly, Cicero's wife, and with the proceeds finds herself in New
York, hob-nobbing it with Sister Slocum, and making one extensive
donation to the Tract Society, and another to the fund for getting
Brother Singleton Spyke off to Antioch. Her arrival in Gotham, she
dreams, is a great event. The Tract Society (she is its guest) is
smothering her with its attentions. Indeed, a whole column and a
half of the very conservative and highly respectable old Observer is
taken up with an elaborate and well-written history of her many

The venerable old lady dreams herself into dusky evening, and wakes
to find old Rebecca summoning her to tea. She is exceedingly sorry
the old slave disturbed her. However, having great faith in dreams,
and the one she has just enjoyed bringing the way to aid Sister
Slocum in carrying out her projects of love so clear to her mind,
she is resolved to lose no time in carrying out its principles.
Selling old Molly won't be much; old Molly is not worth much to her;
and the price of old Molly (she'll bring something!) will do so much
to enlighten the heathen, and aid the Tract Society in giving out
its excellent works. "And I have for years longed to see Sister
Slocum, face to face, before I die," she says. And with an affixed
determination to carry out this pious resolve, Mrs. Swiggs sips
her tea, and retires to her dingy little chamber for the night.

A bright and cheerful sun ushers in the following morning. The soft
rays steal in at the snuffy door, at the dilapidated windows,
through the faded curtains, and into the "best parlor," where, at an
early hour, sits the antique old lady, rummaging over some musty old
papers piled on the centre-table. The pale light plays over and
gives to her features a spectre-like hue; while the grotesque pieces
of furniture by which she is surrounded lend their aid in making
complete the picture of a wizard's abode. The paper she wants is
nowhere to be found. "I must exercise a little judgment in this
affair," she mutters, folding a bit of paper, and seizing her pen.

"I am sorry I have to trouble you so often with old Cicero. He will
not pay wages all I can do. Give him at least thirty-well laid on. I
go to New York in a few days, and what is due you from me for
punishments will be paid any time you send your bill. "SARAH PRINGLE

"Well! he deserves what he gets," she shakes her head and
ejaculates. Having summoned Rebecca, Master Cicero, a hard-featured
old negro, is ordered up, and comes tottering into the room,
half-bent with age, his hair silvered, and his face covered with a
mossy-white beard-the picture of a patriarch carved in ebony. "Good
mornin', Missus," he speaks in a feeble and husky voice, standing
hesitatingly before his august owner. "You are--well, I might as
well say it--you're a miserable old wretch!" Cicero makes a nervous
motion with his left hand, as the fingers of his right wander over
the bald crown of his head, and his eyes give out a forlorn look.
She has no pity for the poor old man-none. "You are, Cicero-you
needn't pretend you ain't," she pursues; and springing to her feet
with an incredible nimbleness, she advances to the window, tucks up
the old curtain, and says, "There; let the light reflect on your
face. Badness looks out of it. Cicero! you never was a good nigger--"

"Per'aps not, Missus; but den I'se old.

"Old! you ain't so old but you can pay wages," the testy old woman
interrupts, tossing her head. "You're a capital hand at cunning
excuses. This will get you done for, at the workhouse." She hands
him a delicately enveloped and carefully superscribed billet, and
commands him to proceed forthwith to the workhouse. A tear courses
slowly down his time-wrinkled face, he hesitates, would speak one
word in his own defence. But the word of his owner is absolute, and
in obedience to the wave of her hand he totters to the door, and
disappears. His tears are only those of a slave. How useless fall
the tears of him who has no voice, no power to assert his manhood!
And yet, in that shrunken bosom-in that figure, bent and shattered
of age, there burns a passion for liberty and hatred of the
oppressor more terrible than the hand that has made him the wretch
he is. That tear! how forcibly it tells the tale of his sorrowing
soul; how eloquently it foretells the downfall of that injustice
holding him in its fierce chains!

Cicero has been nicely got out of the way. Molly, his wife, is
summoned into the presence of her mistress, to receive her awful
doom. "To be frank with you, Molly, and I am always outspoken, you
know, I am going to sell you. We have been long enough together, and
necessity at this moment forces me to this conclusion," says our
venerable lady, addressing herself to the old slave, who stands
before her, leaning on her crutch, for she is one of the cripples.
"You will get a pious owner, I trust; and God will be merciful to

The old slave of seventy years replies only with an expression of
hate in her countenance, and a drooping of her heavy lip. "Now,"
Mrs. Swiggs pursues, "take this letter, go straight to Mr. Forcheu
with it, and he will sell you. He is very kind in selling old
people-very!" Molly inquires if Cicero may go. Mrs. Swiggs replies
that nobody will buy two old people together.

The slave of seventy years, knowing her entreaties will be in vain,
approaches her mistress with the fervency of a child, and grasping
warmly her hand, stammers out: "Da-da-dah Lord bless um, Missus.
Tan't many days fo'h we meet in t'oder world-good-bye."

"God bless you-good-bye, Molly. Remember what I have told you so
many times-long suffering and forbearance make the true Christian.
Be a Christian-seek to serve your Master faithfully; such the
Scripture teacheth. Now tie your handkerchief nicely on your head,
and get your clean apron on, and mind to look good-natured when Mr.
Forcheu sells you." This admonition, methodically addressed to the
old slave, and Mrs. Swiggs waves her hand, resumes her Milton, and
settles herself back into her chair. Reader! if you have a heart in
the right place it will be needless for us to dwell upon the
feelings of that old slave, as she drags her infirm body to the
shambles of the extremely kind vender of people.



ON his return from the theatre, Mr. McArthur finds his daughter,
Maria, waiting him in great anxiety. "Father, father!" she says, as
he enters his little back parlor, "this is what that poor woman, Mag
Munday, used to take on so about; here it is." She advances, her
countenance wearing an air of great solicitude, holds the old dress
in her left hand, and a stained letter in her right. "It fell from a
pocket in the bosom," she pursues. The old man, with an expression
of surprise, takes the letter and prepares to read it. He pauses.
"Did it come from the dress I discovered in the old chest?" he
inquires, adjusting his spectacles. Maria says it did. She has no
doubt it might have relieved her suffering, if it had been found
before she died. "But, father, was there not to you something
strange, something mysterious about the manner she pursued her
search for this old dress? You remember how she used to insist that
it contained something that might be a fortune to her in her
distress, and how there was a history connected with it that would
not reflect much credit on a lady in high life!"

The old man interrupts by saying he well remembers it; remembers how
he thought she was a maniac to set so much value on the old dress,
and make so many sighs when it could not be found. "It always
occurred to me there was something more than the dress that made her
take on so," the old man concludes, returning the letter to Maria,
with a request that she will read it. Maria resumes her seat, the
old man draws a chair to the table, and with his face supported in
his left hand listens attentively as she reads: "WASHINGTON SQUARE,
NEW YORK, May 14, 18--

"I am glad to hear from Mr. Sildon that the child does well. Poor
little thing, it gives me so many unhappy thoughts when I think of
it; but I know you are a good woman, Mrs. Munday, and will watch her
with the care of a mother. She was left at our door one night, and
as people are always too ready to give currency to scandal, my
brother and I thought that it would not be prudent to adopt it at
once, more especially as I have been ill for the last few months,
and have any quantity of enemies. I am going to close my house, now
that my deceased husband's estate is settled, and spend a few years
in Europe. Mr. Thomas Sildon is well provided with funds for the
care of the child during my absence, and will pay you a hundred
dollars every quarter. Let no one see this letter, not even your
husband. And when I return I will give you an extra remuneration,
and adopt the child as my own. Mr. Sildon will tell you where to
find me when I return. Your friend, "C. A. M."

"There, father," says Maria, "there is something more than we know
about, connected with this letter. One thing always discovers
another-don't you think it may have something to do with that lady
who has two or three times come in here, and always appeared so
nervous when she inquired about Mag Munday? and you recollect how
she would not be content until we had told her a thousand different
things concerning her. She wanted, she said, a clue to her; but she
never could get a clue to her. There is something more than we know
of connected with this letter," and she lays the old damp stained
and crumpled letter on the table, as the old servant enters bearing
on a small tray their humble supper.

"Now, sit up, my daughter," says the old man, helping her to a
sandwich while she pours out his dish of tea, "our enjoyment need be
none the less because our fare is humble. As for satisfying this
lady about Mag Munday, why, I have given that up. I told her all I
knew, and that is, that when she first came to Charleston-one never
knows what these New Yorkers are--she was a dashing sort of woman,
had no end of admirers, and lived in fine style. Then it got out
that she wasn't the wife of the man who came with her, but that she
was the wife of a poor man of the name of Munday, and had quit her
husband; as wives will when they take a notion in their heads. And
as is always the way with these sort of people, she kept gradually
getting down in the world, and as she kept getting more and more
down so she took more and more to drink, and drink brought on grief,
and grief soon wasted her into the grave. I took pity on her, for
she seemed not a bad woman at heart, and always said she was forced
by necessity into the house of Madame Flamingo-a house that hurries
many a poor creature to her ruin. And she seemed possessed of a
sense of honor not common to these people; and when Madame Flamingo
turned her into the street,--as she does every one she has succeeded
in making a wretch of,--and she could find no one to take her in, and
had nowhere to lay her poor head, as she used to say, I used to lend
her little amounts, which she always managed somehow to repay. As to
there being anything valuable in the dress, I never gave it a
thought; and when she would say if she could have restored to her
the dress, and manage to get money enough to get to New York, I
thought it was only the result of her sadness."

"You may remember, father," interrupts Maria, "she twice spoke of a
child left in her charge; and that the child was got away from her.
If she could only trace that poor child, she would say, or find out
what had become of it, she could forget her own sufferings and die
easy. But the thought of what had become of that child forever
haunted her; she knew that unless she atoned in some way the devil
would surely get her." The old man says, setting down his cup, it
all comes fresh to his mind. Mr. Soloman (he has not a doubt) could
let some light upon the subject; and, as he seems acquainted with
the lady that takes so much interest in what became of the woman
Munday, he may relieve her search. "I am sure she is dead,
nevertheless; I say this, knowing that having no home she got upon
the Neck, and then associated with the negroes; and the last I heard
of her was that the fever carried her off. This must have been true,
or else she had been back here pleading for the bundles we could not
find." Thus saying, Mr. McArthur finishes his humble supper, kisses
and fondles his daughter, whom he dotingly loves, and retires for
the night.



TOM SWIGGS has enjoyed, to the evident satisfaction of his mother, a
seven months' residence in the old prison. The very first families
continue to pay their respects to the good old lady, and she in
return daily honors them with mementoes of her remembrance. These
little civilities, exchanging between the stately old lady and our
first families, indicate the approach of the fashionable season.
Indeed, we may as well tell you the fashionable season is commencing
in right good earnest. Our elite are at home, speculations are rife
as to what the "Jockey Club" will do, we are recounting our
adventures at northern watering-places, chuckling over our heroism
in putting down those who were unwise enough to speak disrespectful
of our cherished institutions, and making very light of what we
would do to the whole north. You may know, too, that our fashionable
season is commenced by what is taking place at the house of Madame
Flamingo on the one side, and the St. Cecilia on the other. We
recognize these establishments as institutions. That they form the
great fortifications of fashionable society, flanking it at either
extreme, no one here doubts.

We are extremely sensitive of two things-fashion, and our right to
sell negroes. Without the former we should be at sea; without the
latter, our existence would indeed be humble. The St. Cecilia
Society inaugurates the fashionable season, the erudite Editor of
the Courier will tell you, with an entertainment given to the elite
of its members and a few very distinguished foreigners. Madame
Flamingo opens her forts, at the same time, with a grand supper,
which she styles a very select entertainment, and to which she
invites none but "those of the highest standing in society." If you
would like to see what sort of a supper she sets to inaugurate the
fashionable season, take our arm for a few minutes.

Having just arrived from New York, where she has been luxuriating
and selecting her wares for the coming season, (New York is the
fountain ejecting its vice over this Union,) Madame looks hale,
hearty, and exceedingly cheerful. Nor has she spared any expense to
make herself up with becoming youthfulness-as the common people have
it. She has got her a lace cap of the latest fashion, with great
broad striped blue and red strings; and her dress is of orange-
colored brocade, trimmed with tulle, and looped with white blossoms.
Down the stomacher it is set with jewels. Her figure seems more
embonpoint than when we last saw her; and as she leans on the arm of
old Judge Sleepyhorn, forms a striking contrast to the slender
figure of that singular specimen of judicial infirmity. Two great
doors are opened, and Madame leads the way into what she calls her
upper and private parlor, a hall of some fifty feet by thirty, in
the centre of which a sumptuously-decorated table is set out. Indeed
there is a chasteness and richness about the furniture and works of
art that decorate this apartment, singularly at variance with the
bright-colored furniture of the room we have described in a former
chapter. "Ladies and gentlemen!" ejaculates the old hostess,
"imagine this a palace, in which you are all welcome. As the legal
gentry say (she casts a glance at the old Judge), when you have
satisfactorily imagined that, imagine me a princess, and address

"High ho!" interrupts Mr. Soloman.

"I confess," continues the old woman, her little, light-brown curls
dangling across her brow, and her face crimsoning, "I would like to
be a princess."

"You can," rejoins the former speaker, his fingers wandering to his

"Well! I have my beadle-beadles, I take, are inseparable from royal
blood-and my servants in liveries. After all (she tosses her head)
what can there be in beadles and liveries? Why! the commonest and
vulgarest people of New York have taken to liveries. If you chance
to take an elegant drive up the 'Fifth Avenue,' and meet a dashing
equipage-say with horses terribly caparisoned, a purloined crest on
the carriage-door, a sallow-faced footman covered up in a green
coat, all over big brass buttons, stuck up behind, and a
whiskey-faced coachman half-asleep in a great hammercloth, be sure
it belongs to some snob who has not a sentence of good English in
his head. Yes! perhaps a soap-chandler, an oil-dealer, or a
candy-maker. Brainless people always creep into plush-always! People
of taste and learning, like me, only are entitled to liveries and
crests." This Madame says, inviting her guests to take seats at her
banquet-table, at the head of which she stands, the Judge on her
right, Mr. Soloman on her left. Her china is of the most elaborate
description, embossed and gilt; her plate is of pure silver, and
massive; she has vases and candelabras of the same metal; and her
cutlery is of the most costly description. No house in the country
can boast a more exact taste in their selection. At each plate a
silver holder stands, bearing a bouquet of delicately-arranged
flowers. A trellise of choice flowers, interspersed here and there
with gorgeous bouquets in porcelain vases, range along the centre of
the table; which presents the appearance of a bed of fresh flowers
variegated with delicious fruits. Her guests are to her choicer than
her fruits; her fruits are choicer than her female wares. No
entertainment of this kind would be complete without Judge
Sleepyhorn and Mr. Soloman. They countenance vice in its most
insidious form-they foster crime; without crime their trade would be
damaged. The one cultivates, that the other may reap the harvest and
maintain his office.

"I see," says Mr. Soloman, in reply to the old hostess, "not the
slightest objection to your being a princess-not the slightest! And,
to be frank about the matter, I know of no one who would better
ornament the position."

"Your compliments are too liberally bestowed, Mr. Soloman."

"Not at all! 'Pon my honor, now, there is a chance for you to bring
that thing about in a very short time. There is Grouski, the Polish
exile, a prince of pure blood. Grouski is poor, wants to get back to
Europe. He wants a wife, too. Grouski is a high old fellow-a most
celebrated man, fought like a hero for the freedom of his country;
and though an exile here, would be received with all the honors due
to a prince in either Italy, France or England.

"A very respectable gentleman, no doubt; but a prince of pure blood,
Mr. Soloman, is rather a scarce article these days."

"Not a bit of it-why there is lots of exiled Princes all over this
country. They are modest men, you know, like me; and having got it
into their heads that we don't like royal blood, rather keep the
fact of their birth to themselves. As for Grouski! why his history
is as familiar to every American who takes any interest in these
things, as is the history of poor Kossuth. I only say this, Madame
Flamingo, to prove to you that Grouski is none of your mock
articles. And what is more, I have several times heard him speak
most enthusiastically of you."

"Of me!" interrupts the old hostess, blushing. "I respect Grouski,
and the more so for his being a poor prince in exile." Madame orders
her servants, who are screwed into bright liveries, to bring on some
sparkling Moselle. This done, and the glasses filled with the
sparkling beverage, Mr. Soloman rises to propose a toast; although,
as he says, it is somewhat out of place, two rounds having only
succeeded the soup: "I propose the health of our generous host, to
whom we owe so much for the superb manner in which she has catered
for our amusement. Here's that we may speedily have the pleasure of
paying our respects to her as the Princess Grouski." Madame Flamingo
bows, the toast is drunk with cheers, and she begins to think there
is something in it after all.

"Make as light of it as you please, ladies and gentlemen-many
stranger things have come to pass. As for the exile, Grouski, I
always esteemed him a very excellent gentleman."

"Exactly!" interposes the Judge, tipping his glass, and preparing
his appetite for the course of game-broiled partridges, rice-birds,
and grouse-which is being served by the waiters. "No one more
worthy," he pursues, wiping his sleepy face with his napkin, "of
being a princess. Education, wealth, and taste, you have; and with
Grouski, there is nothing to prevent the happy consummation-nothing!
I beg to assure you." Madame Flamingo makes a most courteous bow,
and with an air of great dignity condescends to say she hopes
gentlemen of the highest standing in Charleston have for ten years
or more had the strongest proofs of her ability to administer the
offices of a lady of station. "But you know," she pursues, hoping
ladies and gentlemen will be kind enough to keep their glasses full,
"people are become so pious now-a-days that they are foolish enough
to attach a stigma to our business."

"Pooh, pooh!" interrupts the accommodation man, having raised his
glass in compliment to a painted harlot. "Once in Europe, and under
the shadow of the wife of Prince Grouski, the past would be wiped
out; your money would win admirers, while your being a princess
would make fashionable society your tool. The very atmosphere of
princesses is full of taint; but it is sunk in the rank, and rather
increases courtiers. In France your untainted princess would
prognosticate the second coming of--, well, I will not profane."

"Do not, I beg of you," says Madame, blushing. "I am scrupulously
opposed to profanity." And then there breaks upon the ear music that
seems floating from an enchanted chamber, so soft and dulcet does it
mingle with the coarse laughing and coarser wit of the banqueters.
At this feast of flowers may be seen the man high in office, the
grave merchant, the man entrusted with the most important affairs of
the commonwealth-the sage and the charlatan. Sallow-faced and
painted women, more undressed than dressed, sit beside them, hale
companions. Respectable society regards the Judge a fine old
gentleman; respectable society embraces Mr. Soloman, notwithstanding
he carries on a business, as we shall show, that brings misery upon
hundreds. Twice has he received a large vote as candidate for the
General Assembly.

A little removed from the old Judge (excellent man) sits Anna
Bonard, like a jewel among stones less brilliant, George Mullholland
on her left. Her countenance wears an expression of gentleness,
sweet and touching. Her silky black hair rolls in wavy folds down
her voluptuous shoulders, a fresh carnatic flush suffuses her
cheeks, her great black eyes, so beautifully arched with heavy
lashes, flash incessantly, and to her bewitching charms is added a
pensive smile that now lights up her features, then subsides into

"What think you of my statuary?" inquired the old hostess, "and my
antiques? Have I not taste enough for a princess?" How soft the
carpet, how rich its colors! Those marble mantel-pieces, sculptured
in female figures, how massive! How elegantly they set off each end
of the hall, as we shall call this room; and how sturdily they bear
up statuettes, delicately executed in alabaster and Parian, of
Byron, Goethe, Napoleon, and Charlemagne-two on each. And there,
standing between two Gothic windows on the front of the hall, is an
antique side-table, of curious design. The windows are draped with
curtains of rich purple satin, with embroidered cornice skirts and
heavy tassels. On this antique table, and between the undulating
curtains, is a marble statue of a female in a reclining posture, her
right hand supporting her head, her dishevelled hair flowing down
her shoulder. The features are soft, calm, and almost grand. It is
simplicity sleeping, Madame Flamingo says. On the opposite side of
the hall are pedestals of black walnut, with mouldings in gilt, on
which stand busts of Washington and Lafayette, as if they were
unwilling spectators of the revelry. A venerable recline, that may
have had a place in the propyl‘a, or served to decorate the halls of
Versailles in the days of Napoleon, has here a place beneath the
portrait of Jefferson. This humble tribute the old hostess says she
pays to democracy. And at each end of the hall are double alcoves,
over the arches of which are great spread eagles, holding in their
beaks the points of massive maroon-colored drapery that falls over
the sides, forming brilliant depressions. In these alcoves are
groups of figures and statuettes, and parts of statuettes, legless
and armless, and all presenting a rude and mutilated condition. What
some of them represented it would have puzzled the ancient Greeks to
decypher. Madame, nevertheless, assures her guests she got them from
among the relics of Italian and Grecian antiquity. You may do
justice to her taste on living statuary; but her rude and decrepit
wares, like those owned and so much valued by our New York patrons
of the arts, you may set down as belonging to a less antique age of
art. And there are chairs inlaid with mosaic and pearl, and
upholstered with the richest and brightest satin damask,--revealing,
however, that uncouthness of taste so characteristic of your Fifth
Avenue aristocrat.

Now cast your eye upward to the ceiling. It is frescoed with themes
of a barbaric age. The finely-outlined figure of a female adorns the
centre. Her loins are enveloped in what seems a mist; and in her
right hand, looking as if it were raised from the groundwork, she
holds gracefully the bulb of a massive chandelier, from the jets of
which a refulgent light is reflected upon the flowery banquet table.
Madame smilingly says it is the Goddess of Love, an exact copy of
the one in the temple of Jupiter Olympus. Another just opposite,
less voluptuous in its outlines, she adds, is intended for a copy of
the fabled goddess, supposed by the ancients to have thrown off her
wings to illustrate the uncertainty of fortune.

Course follows course, of viands the most delicious, and sumptuously
served. The wine cup now flows freely, the walls reecho the coarse
jokes and coarser laughs of the banqueters, and leaden eyelids,
languid faces, and reeling brains, mark the closing scene. Such is
the gorgeous vice we worship, such the revelries we sanction, such
the insidious debaucheries we shield with the mantle of our
laws-laws made for the accommodation of the rich, for the punishment
only of the poor. And a thousand poor in our midst suffer for bread
while justice sleeps.

Midnight is upon the banqueters, the music strikes up a last march,
the staggering company retire to the stifled air of resplendent
chambers. The old hostess contemplates herself as a princess, and
seriously believes an alliance with Grouski would not be the
strangest thing in the world. There is, however, one among the
banqueters who seems to have something deeper at heart than the
transitory offerings on the table-one whose countenance at times
assumes a thoughtfulness singularly at variance with those around
her. It is Anna Bonard.

Only to-day did George Mullholland reveal to her the almost hopeless
condition of poor Tom Swiggs, still confined in the prison, with
criminals for associates, and starving. She had met Tom when fortune
was less ruthless; he had twice befriended her while in New York.
Moved by that sympathy for the suffering which is ever the purest
offspring of woman's heart, no matter how low her condition, she
resolved not to rest until she had devised the means of his release.
Her influence over the subtle-minded old Judge she well knew, nor
was she ignorant of the relations existing between him and the
accommodation man.

On the conclusion of the feast she invites them to her chamber. They
are not slow to accept the invitation. "Be seated, gentlemen, be
seated," she says, preserving a calmness of manner not congenial to
the feelings of either of her guests. She places chairs for them at
the round table, upon the marble top of which an inlaid portfolio
lies open.

"Rather conventional," stammers Mr. Snivel, touching the Judge
significantly on the arm, as they take seats. Mr. Snivel is fond of
good wine, and good wine has so mellowed his constitution that he is
obliged to seek support for his head in his hands.

"I'd like a little light on this 'ere plot. Peers thar's somethin' a
foot," responds the Judge.

Anna interposes by saying they shall know quick enough. Placing a
pen and inkstand on the table, she takes her seat opposite them, and
commences watching their declining consciousness. "Thar," ejaculates
the old Judge, his moody face becoming dark and sullen, "let us have
the wish."

"You owe me an atonement, and you can discharge it by gratifying my

"Women," interposes the old Judge, dreamily, "always have wishes to
gratify. W-o-l, if its teu sign a warrant, hang a nigger, tar and
feather an abolitionist, ride the British Consul out a town, or send
a dozen vagrants to the whipping-post-I'm thar. Anything my hand's
in at!" incoherently mumbles this judicial dignitary.

Mr. Snivel having reminded the Judge that ten o'clock to-morrow
morning is the time appointed for meeting Splitwood, the "nigger
broker," who furnishes capital with which they start a new paper for
the new party, drops away into a refreshing sleep, his head on the

"Grant me, as a favor, an order for the release of poor Tom Swiggs.
You cannot deny me this, Judge," says Anna, with an arch smile, and
pausing for a reply.

"Wol, as to that," responds this high functionary, "if I'd power,
'twouldn't be long afore I'd dew it, though his mother'd turn the
town upside down; but I hain't no power in the premises. I make it a
rule, on and off the bench, never to refuse the request of a pretty
woman. Chivalry, you know."

"For your compliment, Judge, I thank you. The granting my request,
however, would be more grateful to my feelings."

"It speaks well of your heart, my dear girl; but, you see, I'm only
a Judge. Mr. Snivel, here, probably committed him ('Snivel! here,
wake up!' he says, shaking him violently), he commits everybody.
Being a Justice of the Peace, you see, and justices of the peace
being everything here, I may prevail on him to grant your request!"
pursues the Judge, brightening up at the earnest manner in which
Anna makes her appeal. "Snivel! Snivel!--Justice Snivel, come, wake
up. Thar is a call for your sarvices." The Judge continues to shake
the higher functionary violently. Mr. Snivel with a modest snore
rouses from his nap, says he is always ready to do a bit of a good
turn. "If you are, then," interposes the fair girl, "let it be made
known now. Grant me an order of release for Tom Swiggs. Remember
what will be the consequence of a refusal!"

"Tom Swiggs! Tom Swiggs!--why I've made a deal of fees of that
fellow. But, viewing it in either a judicial or philosophical light,
he's quite as well where he is. They don't give them much to eat in
jail I admit, but it is a great place for straightening the morals
of a rum-head like Tom. And he has got down so low that all the
justices in the city couldn't make him fit for respectable society."
Mr. Snivel yawns and stretches his arms athwart.

"But you can grant me the order independent of what respectable
society will do."

Mr. Snivel replies, bowing, a pretty woman is more than a match for
the whole judiciary. He will make a good amount of fees out of Tom
yet; and what his testy old mother declines to pay, he will charge
to the State, as the law gives him a right to do.

"Then I am to understand!" quickly retorts Anna, rising from her
chair, with an expression of contempt on her countenance, and a
satirical curl on her lip, "you have no true regard for me then;
your friendship is that of the knave, who has nothing to give after
his ends are served. I will leave you!" The Judge takes her gently
by the arm; indignantly she pushes him from her, as her great black
eyes flash with passion, and she seeks for the door. Mr. Snivel has
placed himself against it, begs she will be calm. "Why," he says,
"get into a passion at that which was but a joke." The Judge touches
him on the arm significantly, and whispers in his ear, "grant her
the order-grant it, for peace sake, Justice Snivel."

"Now, if you will tell me why you take so deep an interest in
getting them fellows out of prison, I will grant the order of
release," Mr. Snivel says, and with an air of great gallantry leads
her back to her chair.

"None but friendship for one who served me when he had it in his

"I see! I see!" interrupts our gallant justice; "the renewal of an
old acquaintance; you are to play the part of Don Quixote,--he, the
mistress. It's well enough there should be a change in the knights,
and that the stripling who goes about in the garb of the clergy, and
has been puzzling his wits how to get Tom out of prison for the last
six months--"

"Your trades never agree;" parenthesises Anna.

"Should yield the lance to you."

"Who better able to wield it in this chivalrous atmosphere? It only
pains my own feelings to confess myself an abandoned woman; but I
have a consolation in knowing how powerful an abandoned woman may be
in Charleston."

An admonition from the old Judge, and Mr. Snivel draws his chair to
the table, upon which he places his left elbow, rests his head on
his hand. "This fellow will get out; his mother-I have pledged my
honor to keep him fast locked up-will find it out, and there'll be a
fuss among our first families," he whispers. Anna pledges him her
honor, a thing she never betrays, that the secret of Tom's release
shall be a matter of strict confidence. And having shook hands over
it, Mr. Snivel seizes the pen and writes an order of release,
commanding the jailer to set at liberty one Tom Swiggs, committed as
a vagrant upon a justice's warrant, &c., &c., &c. "There," says
Justice Snivel, "the thing is done-now for a kiss;" and the fair
girl permits him to kiss her brow. "Me too; the bench and the bar!"
rejoins the Judge, following the example of his junior. And with an
air of triumph the victorious girl bears away what at this moment
she values a prize.



ANNA gives George Mullholland the letter of release, and on the
succeeding morning he is seen entering at the iron gate of the wall
that encloses the old prison. "Bread! give me bread," greets his ear
as soon as he enters the sombre old pile. He walks through the
debtors' floor, startles as he hears the stifled cry for bread, and
contemplates with pained feelings the wasting forms and sickly faces
that everywhere meet his eye. The same piercing cry grates upon his
senses as he sallies along the damp, narrow aisle of the second
floor, lined on both sides with small, filthy cells, in which are
incarcerated men whose crime is that of having committed "assault
and battery," and British seamen innocent of all crime except that
of having a colored skin. If anything less than a gentleman commit
assault and battery, we punish him with imprisonment; we have no law
to punish gentlemen who commit such offences.

Along the felon's aisle-in the malarious cells where "poor"
murderers and burglars are chained to die of the poisonous
atmosphere, the same cry tells its mournful tale. Look into the dark
vista of this little passage, and you will see the gleaming of
flabby arms and shrunken hands. Glance into the apertures out of
which they protrude so appealingly, you will hear the dull clank
of chains, see the glare of vacant eyes, and shudder at the pale,
cadaverous faces of beings tortured with starvation. A low, hoarse
whisper, asks you for bread; a listless countenance quickens at your
footfall. Oh! could you but feel the emotion that has touched that
shrunken form which so despondingly waits the coming of a messenger
of mercy. That system of cruelty to prisoners which so disgraced
England during the last century, and which for her name she would
were erased from her history, we preserve here in all its
hideousness. The Governor knows nothing, and cares nothing about the
prison; the Attorney-General never darkens its doors; the public
scarce give a thought for those within its walls-and to one man, Mr.
Hardscrabble, is the fate of these wretched beings entrusted. And so
prone has become the appetite of man to speculate on the misfortunes
of his fellow-man, that this good man, as we shall call him,
tortures thus the miserable beings entrusted to his keeping, and
makes it a means of getting rich. Pardon, reader, this digression.

George, elated with the idea of setting Tom at liberty, found the
young theologian at the prison, and revealed to him the fact that he
had got the much-desired order. To the latter this seemed
strange-not that such a person as George could have succeeded in
what he had tried in vain to effect, but that there was a mystery
about it. It is but justice to say that the young theologian had for
six months used every exertion in his power, without avail, to
procure an order of release. He had appealed to the
Attorney-General, who declared himself powerless, but referred him
to the Governor. The Governor could take no action in the premises,
and referred him to the Judge of the Sessions. The Judge of the
Sessions doubted his capacity to interfere, and advised a petition
to the Clerk of the Court. The Clerk of the Court, who invariably
took it upon himself to correct the judge's dictum, decided that the
judge could not interfere, the case being a committal by a Justice
of the Peace, and not having been before the sessions. And against
these high functionaries-the Governor, Attorney-General, Judge of
the Sessions, and Clerk of the Court, was Mr. Soloman and Mrs.
Swiggs all-powerful. There was, however, another power superior to
all, and that we have described in the previous chapter.

Accompanied by the brusque old jailer, George and the young
theologian make their way to the cell in which Tom is confined.

"Hallo! Tom," exclaims George, as he enters the cell, "boarding at
the expense of the State yet, eh?" Tom lay stretched on a blanket in
one corner of the cell, his faithful old friend, the sailor,
watching over him with the solicitude of a brother. "I don't know
how he'd got on if it hadn't bin for the old sailor, yonder," says
the jailer, pointing to Spunyarn, who is crouched down at the great
black fire-place, blowing the coals under a small pan. "He took to
Tom when he first came in, and hasn't left him for a day. He'll
steal to supply Tom's hunger, and fight if a prisoner attempts to
impose upon his charge. He has rigged him out, you see, with his
pea-coat and overalls," continues the man, folding his arms.

"I am sorry, Tom--"

"Yes," says Tom, interrupting the young theologian, "I know you are.
You don't find me to have kept my word; and because I haven't you
don't find me improved much. I can't get out; and if I can't get
out, what's the use of my trying to improve? I don't say this
because I don't want to improve. I have no one living who ought to
care for me, but my mother. And she has shown what she cares for

"Everything is well. (The young theologian takes Tom by the hand.)
We have got your release. You are a free man, now."

"My release!" exclaims the poor outcast, starting to his feet, "my

"Yes," kindly interposes the jailer, "you may go, Tom. Stone walls,
bolts and chains have no further use for you." The announcement
brings tears to his eyes; he cannot find words to give utterance to
his emotions. He drops the young theologian's hand, grasps warmly
that of George Mullholland, and says, the tears falling fast down
his cheeks, "now I will be a new man."

"God bless Tom," rejoins the old sailor, who has left the fire-place
and joined in the excitement of the moment. "I alwas sed there war
better weather ahead, Tom." He pats him encouragingly on the
shoulder, and turns to the bystanders, continuing with a childlike
frankness: "he's alwas complained with himself about breaking his
word and honor with you, sir--"

The young theologian says the temptation was more than he could

"Yes sir!--that was it. He, poor fellow, wasn't to blame. One brought
him in a drop, and challenged him; then another brought him in a
drop, and challenged him; and the vote-cribber would get generous
now and then, and bring him a drop, saying how he would like to crib
him if he was only out, on the general election coming on, and make
him take a drop of what he called election whiskey. And you know,
sir, it's hard for a body to stand up against all these things,
specially when a body's bin disappointed in love. It's bin a hard up
and down with him. To-day he would make a bit of good weather, and
to-morrow he'd be all up in a hurricane." And the old sailor takes a
fresh quid of tobacco, wipes Tom's face, gets the brush and fusses
over him, and tells him to cheer up, now that he has got his

"Tom would know if his mother ordered it."

"No! she must not know that you are at large," rejoins George.

"Not that I am at large?"

"I have," interposes the young theologian, "provided a place for
you. We have a home for you, a snug little place at the house of old

"Old McArthur," interpolates Tom, smiling, "I'm not a curiosity."

George Mullholland says he may make love to Maria, that she will
once more be a sister. Touched by the kindly act on his behalf, Tom
replies saying she was always kind to him, watched over him when no
one else would, and sought with tender counsels to effect his
reform, to make him forget his troubles.

"Thank you!--my heart thanks you more forcibly than my tongue can. I
feel a man. I won't touch drink again: no I won't. You won't find me
breaking my honor this time. A sick at heart man, like me, has no
power to buffet disappointment. I was a wretch, and like a wretch
without a mother's sympathy, found relief only in drinks--"

"And such drinks!" interposes the old sailor, shrugging his
shoulders. "Good weather, and a cheer up, now and then, from a
friend, would have saved him."

Now there appears in the doorway, the stalwarth figure of the
vote-cribber, who, with sullen face, advances mechanically toward
Tom, pauses and regards him with an air of suspicion. "You are not
what you ought to be, Tom," he says, doggedly, and turns to the
young Missionary. "Parson," he continues, "this 'ere pupil of
yourn's a hard un. He isn't fit for respectable society. Like a
sponge, he soaks up all the whiskey in jail." The young man turns
upon him a look more of pity than scorn, while the jailer shakes his
head admonishingly. The vote-cribber continues insensible to the
admonition. He, be it known, is a character of no small importance
in the political world. Having a sort of sympathy for the old jail
he views his transient residences therein rather necessary than
otherwise. As a leading character is necessary to every grade of
society, so also does he plume himself the aristocrat of the prison.
Persons committed for any other than offences against the election
laws, he holds in utter contempt. Indeed, he says with a good deal
of truth, that as fighting is become the all necessary qualification
of our Senators and Representatives to Congress, he thinks of
offering himself for the next vacancy. The only rival he fears is
"handsome Charley."

An election bully, the ugliest man in Charleston, and the deadly foe
of Mingle. The accommodations are not what they might be, but, being
exempt from rent and other items necessary to a prominent
politician, he accepts them as a matter of economy.

The vote-cribber is sure of being set free on the approach of an
election. We may as well confess it before the world-he is an
indispensable adjunct to the creating of Legislators, Mayors,
Congressmen, and Governors. Whiskey is not more necessary to the
reputation of our mob-politicians than are the physical powers of
Milman Mingle to the success of the party he honors with his
services. Nor do his friends scruple at consulting him on matters of
great importance to the State while in his prison sanctuary.

"I'm out to-morrow, parson," he resumes; the massive fingers of his
right hand wandering into his crispy, red beard, and again over his
scarred face. "Mayor's election comes off two weeks from
Friday-couldn't do without me-can knock down any quantity of men-you
throw a plumper, I take it?" The young Missionary answers in the
negative by shaking his head, while the kind old sailor continues to
fuss over and prepare Tom for his departure. "Tom is about to leave
us," says the old sailor, by way of diverting the vote-cribber's
attention. That dignitary, so much esteemed by our fine old
statesmen, turns to Tom, and inquires if he has a vote.

Tom has a vote, but declares he will not give it to the
vote-cribber's party. The politician says "p'raps," and draws from
his bosom a small flask. "Whiskey, Tom," he says,--"no use offering
it to parsons, eh? (he casts an insinuating look at the parson.)
First-chop election whiskey-a sup and we're friends until I get you
safe under the lock of my crib. Our Senators to Congress patronize
this largely." The forlorn freeman, with a look of contempt for the
man who thus upbraids him, dashes the drug upon the floor, to the
evident chagrin of the politician, who, to conceal his feelings,
turns to George Mulholland, and mechanically inquires if he has a
vote. Being answered in the negative, he picks up his flask and
walks away, saying: "what rubbish!"

Accompanied by his friends and the old sailor, Tom sallies forth
into the atmosphere of sweet freedom. As the old jailer swings back
the outer gate, Spunyarn grasps his friend and companion in sorrow
warmly by the hand, his bronzed face brightens with an air of
satisfaction, and like pure water gushing from the rude rock his
eyes fill with tears. How honest, how touching, how pure the
friendly lisp-good bye! "Keep up a strong heart, Tom,--never mind me.
I don't know by what right I'm kept here, and starved; but I expect
to get out one of these days; and when I do you may reckon on me as
your friend. Keep the craft in good trim till then; don't let the
devil get master. Come and see us now and then, and above all, never
give up the ship during a storm." Tom's emotions are too deeply
touched. He has no reply to make, but presses in silence the hand of
the old sailor, takes his departure, and turns to wave him an adieu.



OUR very chivalric dealers in human merchandise, like philosophers
and philanthropists, are composed merely of flesh and blood, while
their theories are alike influenced by circumstances. Those of the
first, we (the South) are, at times, too apt to regard as sublimated
and refined, while we hold the practices of the latter such as
divest human nature of everything congenial. Nevertheless we can
assure our readers that there does not exist a class of men who so
much pride themselves on their chivalry as some of our opulent
slave-dealers. Did we want proof to sustain what we have said we
could not do better than refer to Mr. Forsheu, that very excellent
gentleman. Mrs. Swiggs held him in high esteem, and so far regarded
his character for piety and chivalry unblemished, that she consigned
to him her old slave of seventy years-old Molly. Molly must be sold,
the New York Tract Society must have a mite, and Sister Abijah
Slocum's very laudable enterprise of getting Brother Singleton Spyke
off to Antioch must be encouraged. And Mr. Forsheu is very kind to
the old people he sells. It would, indeed, be difficult for the
distant reader to conceive a more striking instance of a man, grown
rich in a commerce that blunts all the finer qualities of our
nature, preserving a gentleness, excelled only by his real goodness
of heart.

When the old slave, leaning on her crutch, stood before Mr. Forsheu,
her face the very picture of age and starvation, his heart recoiled
at the thought of selling her in her present condition. He read the
letter she bore, contemplated her with an air of pity, and turning
to Mr. Benbow, his methodical book-keeper of twenty years, who had
added and subtracted through a wilderness of bodies and souls,
ordered him to send the shrunken old woman into the pen, on feed.
Mr. Forsheu prided himself on the quality of people sold at his
shambles, and would not for the world hazard his reputation on old
Molly, till she was got in better condition. Molly rather liked
this, inasmuch as she had been fed on corn and prayers exclusively,
and more prayers than corn, which is become the fashion with our
much-reduced first families. For nearly four months she enjoyed,
much to the discomfiture of her august owner, the comforts of Mr.
Forsheu's pen. Daily did the anxious old lady study her Milton, and
dispatch a slave to inquire if her piece of aged property had found
a purchaser. The polite vender preserved, with uncommon philosophy,
his temper. He enjoined patience. The condition and age of the
property were, he said, much in the way of sale. Then Mrs. Swiggs
began questioning his ability as a merchant. Aspersions of this
kind, the polite vender of people could not bear with. He was a man
of enormous wealth, the result of his skill in the sale of people.
He was the president of an insurance company, a bank director, a
commissioner of the orphan asylum, and a steward of the jockey club.
To his great relief, for he began to have serious misgivings about
his outlay on old Molly, there came along one day an excellent
customer. This was no less a person than Madame Flamingo. What was
singular of this very distinguished lady was, that she always had a
use for old slaves no one else ever thought of. Her yard was full of
aged and tottering humanity. One cleaned knives, another fetched ice
from the ice-house, a third blacked boots, a fourth split wood, a
fifth carried groceries, and a sixth did the marketing. She had a
decayed negro for the smallest service; and, to her credit be it
said, they were as contented and well fed a body of tottering age as
could be found in old Carolina.

Her knife-cleaning machine having taken it into his head to die one
day, she would purchase another. Mr. Forsheu, with that urbanity we
so well understand how to appreciate, informed the distinguished
lady that he had an article exactly suited to her wants. Forthwith,
Molly was summoned into her presence. Madame Flamingo, moved almost
to tears at the old slave's appearance, purchased her out of pure
sympathy, as we call it, and to the great relief of Mr. Forsheu,
lost no time in paying one hundred and forty dollars down in gold
for her. In deference to Mr. Hadger, the House of The Foreign
Missions, and the very excellent Tract Society, of New York, we will
not here extend on how the money was got. The transaction was purely
commercial: why should humanity interpose? We hold it strictly legal
that institutions created for the purpose of enlightening the
heathen have no right to ask by what means the money constituting
their donations is got.

The comforts of Mr. Forsheu's pen,--the hominy, grits, and rest, made
the old slave quite as reluctant about leaving him as she had before
been in parting with Lady Swiggs. Albeit, she shook his hand with
equal earnestness, and lisped "God bless Massa," with a tenderness
and simplicity so touching, that had not Madame Flamingo been an
excellent diplomat, reconciling the matter by assuring her that she
would get enough to eat, and clothes to wear, no few tears would
have been shed. Madame, in addition to this incentive, intimated
that she might attend a prayer meeting now and then-perhaps see
Cicero. However, Molly could easily have forgotten Cicero, inasmuch
as she had enjoyed the rare felicity of thirteen husbands, all of
whom Lady Swiggs had sold when it suited her own convenience.

Having made her purchase, Madame very elegantly bid the gallant
merchant good morning, hoping he would not forget her address, and
call round when it suited his convenience. Mr. Forsheu, his hat
doffed, escorted her to her carriage, into the amber-colored lining
of which she gracefully settled her majestic self, as a
slightly-browned gentleman in livery closed the bright door, took
her order with servile bows, and having motioned to the coachman,
the carriage rolled away, and was soon out of sight. Monsieur
Grouski, it may be well to add here, was discovered curled up in one
corner; he smiled, and extended his hand very graciously to Madame
as she entered the carriage.

Like a pilgrim in search of some promised land, Molly adjusted her
crutch, and over the sandy road trudged, with truculent face, to her
new home, humming to herself "dah-is-a-time-a-comin, den da Lor' he
be good!!"

On the following morning, Lady Swiggs received her account current,
Mr. Forsheu being exceedingly prompt in business. There was one
hundred and twenty-nine days' feed, commissions, advertising, and
sundry smaller charges, which reduced the net balance to one hundred
and three dollars. Mrs. Swiggs, with an infatuation kindred to that
which finds the State blind to its own poverty, stubbornly refused
to believe her slaves had declined in value. Hence she received the
vender's account with surprise and dissatisfaction. However, the
sale being binding, she gradually accommodated her mind to the
result, and began evolving the question of how to make the amount
meet the emergency. She must visit the great city of New York; she
must see Sister Slocum face to face; Brother Spyke's mission must
have fifty dollars; how much could she give the Tract Society? Here
was a dilemma-one which might have excited the sympathy of the House
of the "Foreign Missions." The dignity of the family, too, was at
stake. Many sleepless nights did this difficult matter cause the
august old lady. She thought of selling another cripple! Oh! that
would not do. Mr. Keepum had a lien on them; Mr. Keepum was a man of
iron-heart. Suddenly it flashed upon her mind that she had already
been guilty of a legal wrong in selling old Molly. Mr. Soloman had
doubtless described her with legal minuteness in the bond of
security for the two hundred dollars. Her decrepid form; her
corrugated face; her heavy lip; her crutch, and her
piety-everything, in a word, but her starvation, had been set down.
Well! Mr. Soloman might, she thought, overlook in the multiplicity
of business so small a discrepancy. She, too, had a large circle of
distinguished friends. If the worst came to the worst she would
appeal to them. There, too, was Sir Sunderland Swiggs' portrait,
very valuable for its age; she might sell the family arms, such
things being in great demand with the chivalry; her antique
furniture, too, was highly prized by our first families. Thus Lady
Swiggs contemplated these mighty relics of past greatness. Our
celtic Butlers and Brookses never recurred to the blood of their
querulous ancestors with more awe than did this memorable lady to
her decayed relics. Mr. Israel Moses, she cherished a hope, would
give a large sum for the portrait; the family arms he would value at
a high figure; the old furniture he would esteem a prize. But to Mr.
Moses and common sense, neither the blood of the Butlers, nor Lady
Swiggs' rubbish, were safe to loan money upon. The Hebrew gentleman
was not so easily beguiled.

The time came when it was necessary to appeal to Mr. Hadger. That
gentleman held the dignity of the Swiggs family in high esteem, but
shook his head when he found the respectability of the house the
only security offered in exchange for a loan. Ah! a thought flashed
to her relief, the family watch and chain would beguile the Hebrew
gentleman. With these cherished mementoes of the high old family,
(she would under no other circumstance have parted with for
uncounted gold,) she in time seduced Mr. Israel Moses to make a
small advance. Duty, stern and demanding, called her to New York.
Forced to reduce her generosity, she, not without a sigh, made up
her mind to give only thirty dollars to each of the institutions she
had made so many sacrifices to serve. And thus, with a reduced
platform, as our politicians have it, she set about preparing for
the grand journey. Regards the most distinguished were sent to all
the first families; the St. Cecilia had notice of her intended
absence; no end of tea parties were given in honor of the event.
Apparently happy with herself, with every one but poor Tom, our
august lady left in the Steamer one day. With a little of that
vanity the State deals so largely in, Mrs. Swiggs thought every
passenger on board wondering and staring at her.

While then she voyages and dreams of the grand reception waiting her
in New York,--of Sister Slocum's smiles, of the good of the heathen
world, and of those nice evening gatherings she will enjoy with the
pious, let us, gentle reader, look in at the house of Absalom

To-day Tom Swiggs feels himself free, and it is high noon. Downcast
of countenance he wends his way along the fashionable side of
King-street. The young theologian is at his side. George Mullholland
has gone to the house of Madame Flamingo. He will announce the glad
news to Anna. The old antiquarian dusts his little counter with a
stubby broom, places various curiosities in the windows, and about
the doors, stands contemplating them with an air of satisfaction,
then proceeds to drive a swarm of flies that hover upon the ceiling,
into a curiously-arranged trap that he has set.

"What!--my young friend, Tom Swiggs!" exclaims the old man, toddling
toward Tom, and grasping firmly his hand, as he enters the door.
"You are welcome to my little place, which shall be a home." Tom
hangs down his head, receives the old man's greeting with shyness.
"Your poor father and me, Tom, used to sit here many a time. (The
old man points to an old sofa.) We were friends. He thought much of
me, and I had a high opinion of him; and so we used to sit for
hours, and talk over the deeds of the old continentals. Your mother
and him didn't get along over-well together; she had more dignity
than he could well digest: but that is neither here nor there."

"I hope, in time," interrupts Tom, "to repay your kindness. I am
willing to ply myself to work, though it degrades one in the eyes of
our society."

"As to that," returns the old man, "why, don't mention it. Maria,
you know, will be a friend to you. Come away now and see her." And
taking Tom by the hand, (the theologian has withdrawn,) he becomes
enthusiastic, leads him through the dark, narrow passage into the
back parlor, where he is met by Maria, and cordially welcomed. "Why,
Tom, what a change has come over you," she ejaculates, holding his
hand, and viewing him with the solicitude of a sister, who hastens
to embrace a brother returned after a long absence. Letting fall his
begrimed hand, she draws up the old-fashioned rocking chair, and
bids him be seated. He shakes his head moodily, says he is not so
bad as he seems, and hopes yet to make himself worthy of her
kindness. He has been the associate of criminals; he has suffered
punishment; he feels himself loathed by society; he cannot divest
himself of the odium clinging to his garments. Fain would he go to
some distant clime, and there seek a refuge from the odium of

"Let no such thoughts enter your mind, Tom," says the affectionate
girl; "divest yourself at once of feelings that can only do you
injury. You have engaged my thoughts during your troubles. Twice I
begged your mother to honor me with an interview. We were humble
people; she condescended at last. But she turned a deaf ear to me
when I appealed to her for your release, merely inquiring if-like
that other jade-I had become enamored of--" Maria pauses, blushing.

"I would like to see my mother," interposes Tom.

"Had I belonged to our grand society, the case had been different,"
resumes Maria.

"Truly, Maria," stammers Tom, "had I supposed there was one in the
world who cared for me, I had been a better man."

"As to that, why we were brought up together, Tom. We knew each
other as children, and what else but respect could I have for you?
One never knows how much others think of them, for the--" Maria
blushes, checks herself, and watches the changes playing over Tom's
countenance. She was about to say the tongue of love was too often

It must be acknowledged that Maria had, for years, cherished a
passion for Tom. He, however, like many others of his class, was too
stupid to discover it. The girl, too, had been overawed by the
dignity of his mother. Thus, with feelings of pain did she watch the
downward course of one in whose welfare she took a deep interest.

"Very often those for whom we cherish the fondest affections, are
coldest in their demeanor towards us," pursues Maria.

"Can she have thought of me so much as to love me?" Tom questions
within himself; and Maria put an end to the conversation by ringing
the bell, commanding the old servant to hasten dinner. A plate must
be placed at the table for Tom.

The antiquarian, having, as he says, left the young people to
themselves, stands at his counter furbishing up sundry old
engravings, horse-pistols, pieces of coat-of-mail, and two large
scimitars, all of which he has piled together in a heap, and beside
which lay several chapeaus said to have belonged to distinguished
Britishers. Mr. Soloman suddenly makes his appearance in the little
shop, much to Mr. McArthur's surprise. "Say-old man! centurion!" he
exclaims, in a maudlin laugh, "Keepum's in the straps-is, I do
declare; Gadsden and he bought a lot of niggers-a monster drove of
'em, on shares. He wants that trifle of borrowed money-must have it.
Can have it back in a few days."

"Bless me," interrupts the old man, confusedly, "but off my little
things it will be hard to raise it. Times is hard, our people go,
like geese, to the North. They get rid of all their money there, and
their fancy-you know that, Mr. Snivel-is abroad, while they have,
for home, only a love to keep up slavery."

"I thought it would come to that," says Mr. Snivel, facetiously. The
antiquarian seems bewildered, commences offering excuses that rather
involve himself deeper, and finally concludes by pleading for a
delay. Scarce any one would have thought a person of Mr. McArthur's
position, indebted to Mr. Keepum; but so it was. It is very
difficult to tell whose negroes are not mortgaged to Mr. Keepum, how
many mortgages of plantation he has foreclosed, how many high old
families he has reduced to abject poverty, or how many poor but
respectable families he has disgraced. He has a reputation for
loaning money to parents, that he may rob their daughters of that
jewel the world refuses to give them back. And yet our best society
honor him, fawn over him, and bow to him. We so worship the god of
slavery, that our minds are become debased, and yet we seem
unconscious of it. Mr. Keepum did not lend money to the old
antiquarian without a purpose. That purpose, that justice which
accommodates itself to the popular voice, will aid him in gaining.

Mr. Snivel affects a tone of moderation, whispers in the old man's
ear, and says: "Mind you tell the fortune of this girl, Bonard, as I
have directed. Study what I have told you. If she be not the child
of Madame Montford, then no faith can be put in likenesses. I have
got in my possession what goes far to strengthen the suspicions now
rife concerning the fashionable New Yorker."

"There surely is a mystery about this woman, Mr. Snivel, as you say.
She has so many times looked in here to inquire about Mag Munday, a
woman in a curious line of life who came here, got down in the
world, as they all do, and used now and then to get the loan of a
trifle from me to keep her from starvation." (Mr. Snivel says, in
parentheses, he knows all about her.)

"Ha! ha! my old boy," says Mr. Snivel, frisking his fingers through
his light Saxon beard, "I have had this case in hand for some time.
It is strictly a private matter, nevertheless. They are a bad
lot-them New Yorkers, who come here to avoid their little delicate
affairs. I may yet make a good thing out of this, though. As for
that fellow, Mullholland, I intend getting him the whipping post. He
is come to be the associate of gentlemen; men high in office shower
upon him their favors. It is all to propitiate the friendship of
Bonard-I know it." Mr. Snivel concludes hurriedly, and departs into
the street, as our scene changes.



IT is night. King street seems in a melancholy mood, the blue arch
of heaven is bespangled with twinkling stars, the moon has mounted
her high throne, and her beams, like messengers of love, dance
joyously over the calm waters of the bay, so serenely skirted with
dark woodland. The dull tramp of the guardman's horse now breaks the
stillness; then the measured tread of the heavily-armed patrol, with
which the city swarms at night, echoes and reoches along the narrow
streets. A theatre reeking with the fumes of whiskey and tobacco; a
sombre-looking guard-house, bristling with armed men, who usher
forth to guard the fears of tyranny, or drag in some wretched slave;
a dilapidated "Court House," at the corner, at which lazy-looking
men lounge; a castellated "Work House," so grand without, and so
full of bleeding hearts within; a "Poor House" on crutches, and in
which infirm age and poverty die of treatment that makes the heart
sicken-these are all the public buildings we can boast. Like ominous
mounds, they seem sleeping in the calm and serene night. Ah! we had
almost forgotten the sympathetic old hospital, with its verandas;
the crabbed looking "City Hall," with its port holes; and the
"Citadel," in which, when our youths have learned to fight duels, we
learn them how to fight their way out of the Union. Duelling is our
high art; getting out of the Union is our low. And, too, we have,
and make no small boast that we have, two or three buildings called
"Halls." In these our own supper-eating men riot, our soldiers drill
(soldiering is our presiding genius), and our mob-politicians waste
their spleen against the North. Unlike Boston, towering all bright
and vigorous in the atmosphere of freedom, we have no galleries of
statuary; no conservatories of paintings; no massive edifices of
marble, dedicated to art and science; no princely school-houses,
radiating their light of learning over a peace and justice-loving
community; no majestic exchange, of granite and polished marble, so
emblematic of a thrifty commerce;--we have no regal "State House" on
the lofty hill, no glittering colleges everywhere striking the eye.
The god of slavery-the god we worship, has no use for such temples;
public libraries are his prison; his civilization is like a dull
dead march; he is the enemy of his own heart, vitiating and making
drear whatever he touches. He wages war on art, science,
civilization! he trembles at the sight of temples reared for the
enlightening of the masses. Tyranny is his law, a cotton-bag his
judgment-seat. But we pride ourselves that we are a respectable
people-what more would you have us?

The night is chilly without, in the fire-place of the antiquary's
back parlor there burns a scanty wood fire. Tor has eaten his supper
and retired to a little closet-like room overhead, where, in bed, he
muses over what fell from Maria's lips, in their interview. Did she
really cherish a passion for him? had her solicitude in years past
something more than friendship in it? what did she mean? He was not
one of those whose place in a woman's heart could never be supplied.
How would an alliance with Maria affect his mother's dignity? All
these things Tom evolves over and over in his mind. In point of
position, a mechanic's daughter was not far removed from the slave;
a mechanic's daughter was viewed only as a good object of seduction
for some nice young gentleman. Antiquarians might get a few bows of
planter's sons, the legal gentry, and cotton brokers (these make up
our aristocracy), but practically no one would think of admitting
them into decent society. They, of right, belong to that vulgar herd
that live by labor at which the slave can be employed. To be
anything in the eyes of good society, you must only live upon the
earnings of slaves.

"Why," says Tom, "should I consult the dignity of a mother who
discards me? The love of this lone daughter of the antiquary, this
girl who strives to know my wants, and to promote my welfare, rises
superior to all. I will away with such thoughts! I will be a man!
Maria, with eager eye and thoughtful countenance, sits at the little
antique centre-table, reading Longfellow's Evangeline, by the pale
light of a candle. A lurid glare is shed over the cavern-like place.
The reflection plays curiously upon the corrugated features of the
old man, who, his favorite cat at his side, reclines on a stubby
little sofa, drawn well up to the fire. The poet would not select
Maria as his ideal of female loveliness; and yet there is a touching
modesty in her demeanor, a sweet smile ever playing over her
countenance, an artlessness in her conversation that more than makes
up for the want of those charms novel writers are pleased to call
transcendent. "Father!" she says, pausing, "some one knocks at the
outer door." The old man starts and listens, then hastens to open
it. There stands before him the figure of a strange female, veiled.
"I am glad to find you, old man. Be not suspicious of my coming at
this hour, for my mission is a strange one." The old man's crooked
eyes flash, his deep curling lip quivers, his hand vibrates the
candle he holds before him. "If on a mission to do nobody harm," he
responds, "then you are welcome." "You will pardon me; I have seen
you before. You have wished me well," she whispers in a musical
voice. Gracefully she raises her veil over her Spanish hood, and
advances cautiously, as the old man closes the door behind her. Then
she uncovers her head, nervously. The white, jewelled fingers of her
right hand, so delicate and tapering, wander over and smooth her
silky black hair, that falls in waves over her Ion-like brow. How
exquisite those features just revealed; how full of soul those
flashing black eyes; her dress, how chaste! "They call me Anna
Bonard," she speaks, timorously, "you may know me?--"

"Oh, I know you well," interrupts the old man, "your beauty has made
you known. What more would you have?"

"Something that will make me happy. Old man, I am unhappy. Tell me,
if you have the power, who I am. Am I an orphan, as has been told
me; or have I parents yet living, affluent, and high in society? Do
they seek me and cannot find me? Oh! let the fates speak, old man,
for this world has given me nothing but pain and shame. Am I--" she
pauses, her eyes wander to the floor, her cheeks crimson, she seizes
the old man by the hand, and her bosom heaves as if a fierce passion
had just been kindled within it.

The old man preserves his equanimity, says he has a fortune to tell
her. Fortunes are best told at midnight. The stars, too, let out
their secrets more willingly when the night-king rules. He bids her
follow him, and totters back to the little parlor. With a wise air,
he bids her be seated on the sofa, saying he never mistakes maidens
when they call at this hour.

Maria, who rose from the table at the entrance of the stranger,
bows, shuts her book mechanically, and retires. Can there be another
face so lovely? she questions within herself, as she pauses to
contemplate the stranger ere she disappears. The antiquary draws a
chair and seats himself beside Anna. "Thy life and destiny," he
says, fretting his bony fingers over the crown of his wig. "Blessed
is the will of providence that permits us to know the secrets of
destiny. Give me your hand, fair lady." Like a philosopher in deep
study, he wipes and adjusts his spectacles, then takes her right
hand and commences reading its lines. "Your history is an uncommon

"Yes," interrupts the girl, "mine has been a chequered life."

"You have seen sorrow enough, but will see more. You come of good
parents; but, ah!--there is a mystery shrouding your birth." ("And
that mystery," interposes the girl, "I want to have explained.")
"There will come a woman to reclaim you-a woman in high life; but
she will come too late--" (The girl pales and trembles.) "Yes,"
pursues the old man, looking more studiously at her hand, "she will
come too late." You will have admirers, and even suitors; but they
will only betray you, and in the end you will die of trouble. Ah!
there is a line that had escaped me. You may avert this dark
destiny-yes, you may escape the end that fate has ordained for you.
In neglect you came up, the companion of a man you think true to
you. But he is not true to you. Watch him, follow him-you will yet
find him out. Ha! ha! ha! these men are not to be trusted, my dear.
There is but one man who really loves you. He is an old man, a man
of station. He is your only true friend. I here see it marked." He
crosses her hand, and says there can be no mistaking it. "With that
man, fair girl, you may escape the dark destiny. But, above all
things, do not treat him coldly. And here I see by the sign that
Anna Bonard is not your name. The name was given you by a wizard."

"You are right, old man," speaks Anna, raising thoughtfully her
great black eyes, as the antiquary pauses and watches each change of
her countenance; "that name was given me by Hag Zogbaum, when I was
a child in her den, in New York, and when no one cared for me. What
my right name was has now slipped my memory. I was indeed a wretched
child, and know little of myself."

"Was it Munday?" inquires the old man. Scarce has he lisped the name
before she catches it up and repeats it, incoherently, "Munday!
Monday! Munday!" her eyes flash with anxiety. "Ah, I remember now. I
was called Anna Munday by Mother Bridges. I lived with her before I
got to the den of Hag Zogbaum. And Mother Bridges sold apples at a
stand at the corner of a street, on West street. It seems like a
dream to me now. I do not want to recall those dark days of my
childhood. Have you not some revelation to make respecting my
parents?" The old man says the signs will not aid him further. "On
my arm," she pursues, baring her white, polished arm, "there is a
mark. I know not who imprinted it there. See, old man." The old man
sees high up on her right arm two hearts and a broken anchor,
impressed with India ink blue and red. "Yes," repeats the antiquary,
viewing it studiously, "but it gives out no history. If you could
remember who put it there." Of that she has no recollection. The old
man cannot relieve her anxiety, and arranging her hood she bids him
good night, forces a piece of gold into his hand, and seeks her
home, disappointed.

The antiquary's predictions were founded on what Mr. Soloman Snivel
had told him, and that gentleman got what he knew of Anna's history
from George Mullholland. To this, however, he added what suggestions
his suspicions gave rise to. The similarity of likeness between Anna
and Madame Montford was striking; Madame Montford's mysterious
searches and inquiries for the woman Monday had something of deep
import in them. Mag Munday's strange disappearance from Charleston,
and her previous importuning for the old dress left in pawn with
McArthur, were not to be overlooked. These things taken together,
and Mr. Snivel saw a case there could be no mistaking. That case
became stronger when his fashionable friend engaged his services to
trace out what had become of the woman Mag Munday, and to further
ascertain what the girl Anna Bonard knew of her own history.



WHILE the scene we have related in the foregoing chapter was being
enacted, there might be seen pacing the great colonnade of the
Charleston hotel, the tall figure of a man wrapped in a massive
talma. Heedless of the throng of drinkers gathered in the spacious
bar-room, making the very air echo with their revelry, he pauses
every few moments, watches intently up and then down Meeting street,
now apparently contemplating the twinkling stars, then turning as if
disappointed, and resuming his sallies. "He will not come to night,"
he mutters, as he pauses at the "Ladies' door," then turns and rings
the bell. The well dressed and highly-perfumed servant who guards
the door, admits him with a scrutinizing eye. "Beg pardon," he says,
with a mechanical bow. He recognizes the stranger, bows, and motions
his hands. "Twice," continues the servant, "she has sent a messenger
to inquire of your coming." The figure in the talma answers with a
bow, slips something into the hand of the servant, passes softly up
the great stairs, and is soon lost to sight. In another minute he
enters, without knocking, a spacious parlor, decorated and furnished
most sumptuously. "How impatiently I have waited your coming,"
whispers, cautiously, a richly-dressed lady, as she rises from a
velvet covered lounge, on which she had reclined, and extends her
hand to welcome him. "Madame, your most obedient," returns the man,
bowing and holding her delicate hand in his. "You have something of
importance,--something to relieve my mind?" she inquires, watching
his lips, trembling, and in anxiety. "Nothing definite," he replies,
touching her gently on the arm, as she begs him to be seated in the
great arm-chair. He lays aside his talma, places his gloves on the
centre-table, which is heaped with an infinite variety of
delicately-enveloped missives and cards, all indicative of her
position in fashionable society. "I may say, Madame, that I
sympathize with you in your anxiety; but as yet I have discovered
nothing to relieve it." Madame sighs, and draws her chair near him,
in silence. "That she is the woman you seek I cannot doubt. While on
the Neck, I penetrated the shanty of one Thompson, a poor
mechanic-our white mechanics, you see, are very poor, and not much
thought of-who had known her, given her a shelter, and several times
saved her from starvation. Then she left the neighborhood and took
to living with a poor wretch of a shoemaker."

"Poor creature," interrupts Madame Montford, for it is she whom Mr.
Snivel addresses. "If she be dead-oh, dear! That will be the end. I
never shall know what became of that child. And to die ignorant of
its fate will--" Madame pauses, her color changes, she seems seized
with some violent emotion. Mr. Snivel perceives her agitation, and
begs she will remain calm. "If that child had been my own," she
resumes, "the responsibility had not weighed heavier on my
conscience. Wealth, position, the pleasures of society-all sink into
insignificance when compared with my anxiety for the fate of that
child. It is like an arrow piercing my heart, like a phantom
haunting me in my dreams, like an evil spirit waking me at night to
tell me I shall die an unhappy woman for having neglected one I was
bound by the commands of God to protect-to save, perhaps, from a
life of shame." She lets fall the satin folds of her dress, buries
her face in her hands, and gives vent to her tears in loud sobs. Mr.
Snivel contemplates her agitation with unmoved muscle. To him it is
a true index to the sequel. "If you will pardon me, Madame," he
continues, "as I was about to say of this miserable shoemaker, he
took to drink, as all our white mechanics do, and then used to abuse
her. We don't think anything of these people, you see, who after
giving themselves up to whiskey, die in the poor house, a terrible
death. This shoemaker, of whom I speak, died, and she was turned
into the streets by her landlord, and that sent her to living with a
'yellow fellow,' as we call them. Soon after this she died-so report
has it. We never know much, you see, about these common people. They
are a sort of trash we can make nothing of, and they get terribly
low now and then." Madame Montford's swelling breast heaves, her
countenance wears an air of melancholy; again she nervously lays
aside the cloud-like skirts of her brocade dress. "Have you not,"
she inquires, fretting her jewelled fingers and displaying the
massive gold bracelets that clasp her wrists, "some stronger
evidence of her death?" Mr. Snivel says he has none but what he
gathered from the negroes and poor mechanics, who live in the
by-lanes of the city. There is little dependence, however, to be
placed in such reports. Madame, with an air of composure, rises from
her chair, and paces twice or thrice across the room, seemingly in
deep study. "Something," she speaks, stopping suddenly in one of
her sallies--"something (I do not know what it is) tells me she yet
lives: that this is the child we see, living an abandoned life."

"As I was going on to say, Madame," pursues Mr. Snivel, with great
blandness of manner, "when our white trash get to living with our
negroes they are as well as dead. One never knows what comes of them
after that. Being always ready to do a bit of a good turn, as you
know, I looked in at Sam Wiley's cabin. Sam Wiley is a negro of some
respectability, and generally has an eye to what becomes of these
white wretches. I don't-I assure you I don't, Madame-look into these
places except on professional business. Sam, after making inquiry
among his neighbors-our colored population view these people with no
very good opinion, when they get down in the world-said he thought
she had found her way through the gates of the poor man's

"Poor man's graveyard!" repeats Madame Montford, again resuming her

"Exactly! We have to distinguish between people of position and
those white mechanics who come here from the North, get down in the
world, and then die. We can't sell this sort of people, you see. No
keeping their morals straight without you can. However, this is not
to the point. (Mr. Solomon Snivel keeps his eyes intently fixed upon
the lady.)

"I sought out the old Sexton, a stupid old cove enough. He had
neither names on his record nor graves that answered the purpose. In
a legal sense, Madame, this would not be valid testimony, for this
old cove being only too glad to get rid of our poor, and the fees
into his pocket, is not very particular about names. If it were one
of our 'first families,' the old fellow would be so obsequious about
having the name down square--"

Mr. Snivel frets his fingers through his beard, and bows with an
easy grace.

"Our first families!" repeats Madame Montford.

"Yes, indeed! He is extremely correct over their funerals. They are
of a fashionable sort, you see. Well, while I was musing over the
decaying dead, and the distinction between poor dead and rich dead,
there came along one Graves, a sort of wayward, half simpleton, who
goes about among churchyards, makes graves a study, knows where
every one who has died for the last century is tucked away, and is
worth six sextons at pointing out graves. He never knows anything
about the living, for the living, he says, won't let him live; and
that being the case, he only wants to keep up his acquaintance with
the dead. He never has a hat to his head, nor a shoe to his foot;
and where, and how he lives, no one can tell. He has been at the
whipping-post a dozen times or more, but I'm not so sure that the
poor wretch ever did anything to merit such punishment. Just as the
crabbed old sexton was going to drive him out of the gate with a big
stick, I says, more in the way of a joke than anything else:
'Graves, come here!--I want a word or two with you.' He came up,
looking shy and suspicious, and saying he wasn't going to harm
anybody, but there was some fresh graves he was thinking over."

"Some fresh graves!" repeats Madame Montford, nervously.

"Bless you!--a very common thing," rejoins Mr. Snivel, with a bow.
"Well, this lean simpleton said they (the graves) were made while he
was sick. That being the case, he was deprived-and he lamented it
bitterly-of being present at the funerals, and getting the names of
the deceased. He is a great favorite with the grave-digger, lends
him a willing hand on all occasions, and is extremely useful when
the yellow fever rages. But to the sexton he is a perfect pest, for
if a grave be made during his absence he will importune until he get
the name of the departed. 'Graves,' says I, 'where do they bury
these unfortunate women who die off so, here in Charleston?' 'Bless
you, my friend,' says Graves, accompanying his words with an idiotic
laugh, 'why, there's three stacks of them, yonder. They ship them
from New York in lots, poor things; they dies here in droves, poor
things; and we buries them yonder in piles, poor things. They
go-yes, sir, I have thought a deal of this thing-fast through life;
but they dies, and nobody cares for them-you see how they are
buried.' I inquired if he knew all their names. He said of course he
did. If he didn't, nobody else would. In order to try him, I desired
he would show me the grave of Mag Munday. He shook his head, smiled,
muttered the name incoherently, and said he thought it sounded like
a dead name. 'I'll get my thinking right,' he pursued, and
brightening up all at once, his vacant eyes flashed, then he touched
me cunningly on the arm, and with a wink and nod of the head there
was no mistaking, led the way to a great mound located in an obscure
part of the graveyard--"

"A great mound! I thought it would come to that," sighs Madame
Montford, impatiently.

"We bury these wretched creatures in an obscure place. Indeed,
Madame, I hold it unnecessary to have anything to distinguish them
when once they are dead. Well, this poor forlorn simpleton then sat
down on a grave, and bid me sit beside him. I did as he bid me, and
soon he went into a deep study, muttering the name of Mag Munday the
while, until I thought he never would stop. So wild and wandering
did the poor fellow seem, that I began to think it a pity we had not
a place, an insane hospital, or some sort of benevolent institution,
where such poor creatures could be placed and cared for. It would be
much better than sending them to the whipping-post--"

"I am indeed of your opinion-of your way of thinking, most
certainly," interpolates Madame Montford, a shadow of melancholy
darkening her countenance.

"At length, he went at it, and repeated over an infinite quantity of
names. It was wonderful to see how he could keep them all in his
head. 'Well, now,' says he, turning to me with an inoffensive laugh,
'she ben't dead. You may bet on that. There now!' he spoke, as if
suddenly becoming conscious of a recently-made discovery. 'Why, she
runned wild about here, as I does, for a time; was abused and
knocked about by everybody. Oh, she had a hard time enough, God
knows that.' 'But that is not disclosing to me what became of her,'
says I; 'come, be serious, Graves.' (We call him this, you see,
Madame, for the reason that he is always among graveyards.) Then he
went into a singing mood, sang two plaintive songs, and had sung a
third and fourth, if I had not stopped him. 'Well,' he says, 'that
woman ain't dead, for I've called up in my mind the whole graveyard
of names, and her's is not among them. Why not, good gentleman, (he
seized me by the arm as he said this,) inquire of Milman Mingle, the
vote-cribber? He is a great politician, never thinks of poor
Graves, and wouldn't look into a graveyard for the world. The
vote-cribber used to live with her, and several times he threatened
to hang her, and would a hanged her-yes, he would, sir-if it hadn't
a been for the neighbors. I don't take much interest in the living,
you know. But I pitied her, poor thing, for she was to be pitied,
and there was nobody but me to do it. Just inquire of the
vote-cribber.' I knew the simpleton never told an untruth, being in
no way connected with our political parties."

"Never told an untruth, being in no way connected with our political
parties!" repeats Madame Montford, who has become more calm.

"I gave him a few shillings, he followed me to the gate, and left me
muttering, 'Go, inquire of the vote-cribber.'"

"And have you found this man?" inquires the anxious lady.

"I forthwith set about it," replies Mr. Snivel, "but as yet, am
unsuccessful. Nine months during the year his residence is the

"The jail!"

"Yes, Madame, the jail. His profession, although essential to the
elevation of our politicians and statesmen, is nevertheless
unlawful. And he being obliged to practice it in opposition to the
law, quietly submits to the penalty, which is a residence in the old
prison for a short time. It's a nominal thing, you see, and he has
become so habituated to it that I am inclined to the belief that he
prefers it. I proceeded to the prison and found he had been
released. One of our elections comes off in a few days. The approach
of such an event is sure to find him at large. I sought him in all
the drinking saloons, in the gambling dens, in the haunts of
prostitution-in all the low places where our great politicians most
do assemble and debauch themselves. He was not to be found. Being of
the opposite party, I despatched a spy to the haunt of the committee
of the party to which he belongs, and for which he cribs. I have
paced the colonnade for more than an hour, waiting the coming of
this spy. He did not return, and knowing your anxiety in the matter
I returned to you. To-morrow I will seek him out; to-morrow I will
get from him what he knows of this woman you seek.

"And now, Madame, here is something I would have you examine." (Mr.
Snivel methodically says he got it of McArthur, the antiquary.) "She
made a great ado about a dress that contained this letter. I have no
doubt it will tell a tale." Mr. Snivel draws from his breast-pocket
the letter found concealed in the old dress, and passes it to Madame
Montford, who receives it with a nervous hand. Her eyes become fixed
upon it, she glances over its defaced page with an air of
bewilderment, her face crimsons, then suddenly pales, her lips
quiver-her every nerve seems unbending to the shock. "Heavens! has
it come to this?" she mutters, confusedly. Her strength fails her;
the familiar letter falls from her fingers. For a few moments she
seems struggling to suppress her emotions, but her reeling brain
yields, her features become like marble, she shrieks and swoons ere
Mr. Snivel has time to clasp her in his arms.



A PLEASANT passage of sixty hours, a good shaking up at the hands of
that old tyrant, sea-sickness, and Lady Swiggs finds the steamer on
which she took passage gliding majestically up New York Bay. There
she sits, in all her dignity, an embodiment of our decayed chivalry,
a fair representative of our first families. She has taken up her
position on the upper deck, in front of the wheel house. As one
after another the objects of beauty that make grand the environs of
that noble Bay, open to her astonished eyes, she contrasts them
favorably or unfavorably with some familiar object in Charleston
harbor. There is indeed a similarity in the conformation. And though
ours, she says, may not be so extensive, nor so grand in its
outlines, nor so calm and soft in its perspective, there is a more
aristocratic air about it. Smaller bodies are always more select and
respectable. The captain, to whom she has put an hundred and one
questions which he answers in monosyllables, is not, she thinks, so
much of a gentleman as he might have been had he been educated in
Charleston. He makes no distinction in favor of people of rank.

Lady Swiggs wears that same faded silk dress; her black crape
bonnet, with two saucy red artificial flowers tucked in at the side,
sits so jauntily; that dash of brown hair is smoothed so exactly
over her yellow, shrivelled forehead; her lower jaw oscillates with
increased motion; and her sharp, gray eyes, as before, peer
anxiously through her great-eyed spectacles. And, generous reader,
that you may not mistake her, she has brought her inseparable
Milton, which she holds firmly grasped in her right hand. "You have
had a tedious time of it, Madam," says a corpulent lady, who is
extensively dressed and jewelled, and accosts her with a familiar
air. Lady Swiggs says not so tedious as it might have been, and
gives her head two or three very fashionable twitches.

"Your name, if you please?"

"The Princess Grouski. My husband, the Prince Grouski," replies the
corpulent lady, turning and introducing a fair-haired gentleman,
tall and straight of person, somewhat military in his movements, and
extremely fond of fingering his long, Saxon moustache. Lady Swiggs,
on the announcement of a princess, rises suddenly to her feet, and
commences an unlimited number of courtesies. She is, indeed, most
happy to meet, and have the honor of being fellow-voyager with their
Royal Highnesses-will remember it as being one of the happiest
events of her life,--and begs to assure them of her high esteem. The
corpulent lady gives her a delicate card, on which is described the
crown of Poland, and beneath, in exact letters, "The Prince and
Princess Grouski." The Prince affects not to understand English,
which Lady Swiggs regrets exceedingly, inasmuch as it deprives her
of an interesting conversation with a person of royal blood. The
card she places carefully between the leaves of her Milton, having
first contemplated it with an air of exultation. Again begging to
thank the Prince and Princess for this mark of their distinguished
consideration, Lady Swiggs inquires if they ever met or heard of Sir
Sunderland Swiggs. The rotund lady, for herself and the prince,
replies in the negative. "He was," she pursues, with a sigh of
disappointment, "he was very distinguished, in his day. Yes, and I
am his lineal descendant. Your highnesses visited Charleston, of

"O dear," replies the rotund lady, somewhat laconically, "the
happiest days of my life were spent among the chivalry of South
Carolina. Indeed, Madam, I have received the attention and honors of
the very first families in that State."

This exclamation sets the venerable lady to thinking how it could be
possible that their highnesses received the attentions of the first
families and she not know it. No great persons ever visited the
United States without honoring Charleston with their presence, it
was true; but how in the world did it happen that she was kept in
ignorance of such an event as that of the Prince and Princess paying
it a visit. She began to doubt the friendship of her distinguished
acquaintances, and the St. Cecilia Society. She hopes that should
they condescend to pay the United States a second visit, they will
remember her address. This the rotund lady, who is no less a person
than the distinguished Madame Flamingo, begs to assure her she will.

Let not this happy union between Grouski and the old hostess,
surprise you, gentle reader. It was brought about by Mr. Snivel, the
accommodation man, who, as you have before seen, is always ready to
do a bit of a good turn. Being a skilful diplomatist in such
matters, he organized the convention, superintended the wooing, and
for a lusty share of the spoils, secured to him by Grouski, brought
matters to an issue "highly acceptable" to all parties. A sale of
her palace of licentiousness, works of art, costly furniture, and
female wares, together with the good will of all concerned, (her
friends of the "bench and bar" not excepted,) was made for the nice
little sum of sixty-seven thousand dollars, to Madame Grace Ashley,
whose inauguration was one of the most gorgeous fˆtes the history of
Charleston can boast. The new occupant was a novice. She had not
sufficient funds to pay ready money for the purchase, hence Mr.
Doorwood, a chivalric and very excellent gentleman, according to
report, supplies the necessary, taking a mortgage on the
institution, which proves to be quite as good property as the Bank,
of which he is president. It is not, however, just that sort of
business upon which an already seared conscience can repose in
quiet, hence he applies that antidote too frequently used by
knaves-he never lets a Sunday pass without piously attending church.

The money thus got, through this long life of iniquity, was by
Madame Flamingo handed over to the Prince, in exchange for his heart
and the title she had been deluded to believe him capable of
conferring. Her reverence for Princes and exiled heroes, (who are
generally exiled humbugs,) was not one jot less than that so
pitiably exhibited by our self-dubbed fashionable society all over
this Union. It may be well to add, that this distinguished couple,
all smiling and loving, are on their way to Europe, where they are
sure of receiving the attentions of any quantity of "crowned heads."
Mr. Snivel, in order not to let the affair lack that eclat which is
the crowning point in matters of high life, got smuggled into the
columns of the highly respectable and very authentic old "Courier,"
a line or two, in which the fashionable world was thrown into a
flutter by the announcement that Prince Grouski and his wealthy
bride left yesterday, en route for Europe. This bit of gossip the
"New York Herald" caught up and duly itemised, for the benefit of
its upper-ten readers, who, as may be easily imagined, were all on
tip-toe to know the address of visitors so distinguished, and leave

Mrs. Swiggs has (we must return to her mission) scarcely set foot on
shore, when, thanks to a little-headed corporation, she is fairly
set upon by a dozen or more villanous hack-drivers, each dangling
his whip in her face, to the no small danger of her bonnet and
spectacles. They jostle her, utter vile imprecations, dispute for
the right of carrying her, each in his turn offering to do it a
shilling less. Lady Swiggs is indeed an important individual in the
hands of the hack-drivers, and by them, in a fair way of being torn
to pieces. She wonders they do not recognize her as a distinguished
person, from the chivalric State of South Carolina. The captain is
engaged with his ship, passengers are hurrying ashore, too anxious
to escape the confinement of the cabin; every one seems in haste to
leave her, no one offers to protect her from the clutches of those
who threaten to tear her into precious pieces. She sighs for Sister
Slocum, for Mr. Hadger, for any one kind enough to raise a friendly
voice in her behalf. Now one has got her black box, another her
corpulent carpet-bag-a third exults in a victory over her band-box.
Fain would she give up her mission in disgust, return to the more
aristocratic atmosphere of Charleston, and leave the heathen to his
fate. All this might have been avoided had Sister Slocum sent her
carriage. She will stick by her black box, nevertheless. So into the
carriage with it she gets, much discomfited. The driver says he
would drive to the Mayor's office "and 'ave them ar two coves what's
got the corpulent carpet-bag and the band-box, seed after, if it
wern't that His Honor never knows anything he ought to know, and is
sure to do nothing. They'll turn up, Mam, I don't doubt," says the
man, "but it's next to los'in' on 'em, to go to the Mayor's office.
Our whole corporation, Mam, don't do nothin' but eats oysters,
drinks whiskey, and makes presidents;--them's what they do, Marm."
Lady Swiggs says what a pity so great a city was not blessed with a
bigger-headed corporation.

"That it is, Marm," returns the methodical hack-driver, "he an't got
a very big head, our corporation." And Lady Swiggs, deprived of her
carpet-bag and band-box, and considerably out of patience, is rolled
away to the mansion of Sister Slocum, on Fourth Avenue. Instead of
falling immediately into the arms and affections of that worthy and
very enterprising lady, the door is opened by a slatternly maid of
all work-her greasy dress, and hard, ruddy face and hands-her short,
flabby figure, and her coarse, uncombed hair, giving out strong
evidence of being overtaxed with labor. "Is it Mrs. Slocum hersel'
ye'd be seein'?" inquires the maid, wiping her soapy hands with her
apron, and looking querulously in the face of the old lady, who,
with the air of a Scotch metaphysician, says she is come to spend a
week in friendly communion with her, to talk over the cause of the
poor, benighted heathen. "Troth an' I'm not as sure ye'll do that
same, onyhow; sure she'd not spend a week at home in the blessed
year; and the divil another help in the house but mysel' and
himsel', Mr. Slocum. A decent man is that same Slocum, too," pursues
the maid, with a laconic indifference to the wants of the guest. A
dusty hat-stand ornaments one side of the hall, a patched and
somewhat deformed sofa the other. The walls wear a dingy air; the
fumes of soapsuds and stewed onions offend the senses. Mrs. Swiggs
hesitates in the doorway. Shall I advance, or retreat to more
congenial quarters? she asks herself. The wily hack-driver (he
agreed for four and charged her twelve shillings) leaves her black
box on the step and drives away. She may be thankful he did not
charge her twenty. They make no allowance for distinguished people;
Lady Swiggs learns this fact, to her great annoyance. To the much-
confused maid of all work she commences relating the loss of her
luggage. With one hand swinging the door and the other tucked under
her dowdy apron, she says, "Troth, Mam, and ye ought to be thankful,
for the like of that's done every day."

Mrs. Swiggs would like a room for the night at least, but is told,
in a somewhat confused style, that not a room in the house is in
order. That a person having the whole heathen world on her shoulders
should not have her house in order somewhat surprises the
indomitable lady. In answer to a question as to what time Mr. Slocum
will be home, the maid of all work says: "Och! God love the poor
man, there's no tellin'. Sure there's not much left of the poor man.
An' the divil a one more inoffensive than poor Slocum. It's himsel'
works all day in the Shurance office beyant. He comes home dragged
out, does a dale of writing for Mrs. Slocum hersel', and goes to bed
sayin' nothin' to nobody." Lady Swiggs says: "God bless me. He no
doubt labors in a good cause-an excellent cause-he will have his
reward hereafter."

It must here be confessed that Sister Slocum, having on hand a
newly-married couple, nicely suited to the duties of a mission to
some foreign land, has conceived the very laudable project of
sending them to Aleppo, and is now spending a few weeks among the
Dutch of Albany, who are expected to contribute the necessary funds.
A few thousand dollars expended, a few years' residence in the East,
a few reports as to what might have been done if something had not
interposed to prevent it, and there is not a doubt that this happy
couple will return home crowned with the laurels of having very
nearly Christianized one Turk and two Tartars.

The maid of all work suddenly remembers that Mrs. Slocum left word
that if a distinguished lady arrived from South Carolina she could
be comfortably accommodated at Sister Scudder's, on Fourth Street.
Not a little disappointed, the venerable old lady calls a passing
carriage, gets herself and black box into it, and orders the driver
to forthwith proceed to the house of Sister Scudder. Here she is-and
she sheds tears that she is-cooped up in a cold, closet-like room,
on the third story, where, with the ends of her red shawl, she may
blow and warm her fingers. Sister Scudder is a crispy little body,
in spectacles. Her features are extremely sharp, and her countenance
continually wears a wise expression. As for her knowledge of
scripture, it is truly wonderful, and a decided improvement when
contrasted with the meagre set-out of her table. Tea time having
arrived, Lady Swiggs is invited down to a cup by a pert Irish
servant, who accosts her with an independence she by no means
approves. Entering the room with an air of stateliness she deems
necessary to the position she desires to maintain, Sister Scudder
takes her by the hand and introduces her to a bevy of nicely-
conditioned, and sleek-looking gentlemen, whose exactly-combed
mutton chop whiskers, smoothly-oiled hair, perfectly-tied white
cravats, cloth so modest and fashionable, and mild, studious
countenances, discover their profession. Sister Scudder, motioning
Lady Swiggs aside, whispers in her ear: "They are all very excellent
young men. They will improve on acquaintance. They are come up for
the clergy." They, in turn, receive the distinguished stranger in a
manner that is rather abrupt than cold, and ere she has dispensed
her stately courtesy, say: "how do you do marm," and turn to resume
with one another their conversation on the wicked world. It is
somewhat curious to see how much more interested these gentry become
in the wicked world when it is afar off.

Tea very weak, butter very strong, toast very thin, and religious
conversation extremely thick, make up the repast. There is no want
of appetite. Indeed one might, under different circumstances, have
imagined Sister Scudder's clerical boarders contesting a race for an
extra slice of her very thin toast. Not the least prominent among
Sister Scudder's boarders is Brother Singleton Spyke, whom Mrs.
Swiggs recognizes by the many compliments he lavishes upon Sister
Slocum, whose absence is a source of great regret with him. She is
always elbow deep in some laudable pursuit. Her presence sheds a
radiant light over everything around; everybody mourns her when
absent. Nevertheless, there is some satisfaction in knowing that her
absence is caused by her anxiety to promote some mission of good:
Brother Spyke thus muses. Seeing that there is come among them a
distinguished stranger, he gives out that to-morrow evening there
will be a gathering of the brethren at the "House of the Foreign
Missions," when the very important subject of funds necessary to his
mission to Antioch, will be discussed. Brother Spyke, having levelled
this battery at the susceptibility of Mrs. Swiggs, is delighted to
find some fourteen voices chiming in-all complimenting his peculiar
fitness for, and the worthy object of the mission. Mrs. Swiggs sets
her cup in her saucer, and in a becoming manner, to the great joy of
all present, commences an eulogium on Mr. Spyke. Sister Slocum, in
her letters, held him before her in strong colors; spoke in such
high praise of his talent, and gave so many guarantees as to what he
would do if he only got among the heathen, that her sympathies were
enlisted-she resolved to lose no time in getting to New York, and,
when there, put her shoulder right manfully to the wheel. This
declaration finds her, as if by some mysterious transport, an object
of no end of praise. Sister Scudder adjusts her spectacles, and, in
mildest accents, says, "The Lord will indeed reward such
disinterestedness." Brother Mansfield says motives so pure will
ensure a passport to heaven, he is sure. Brother Sharp, an
exceedingly lean and tall youth, with a narrow head and sharp nose
(Mr. Sharp's father declared he made him a preacher because he could
make him nothing else), pronounces, with great emphasis, that such
self-sacrifice should be written in letters of gold. A unanimous
sounding of her praises convinces Mrs. Swiggs that she is indeed a
person of great importance. There is, however, a certain roughness
of manner about her new friends, which does not harmonize with her
notions of aristocracy. She questions within herself whether they
represent the "first families" of New York. If the "first families"
could only get their heads together, the heathen world would be sure
to knock under. No doubt, it can be effected in time by common
people. If Sister Slocum, too, would evangelize the world-if she
would give the light of heaven to the benighted, she must employ
willing hearts and strong hands. Satan, she says, may be chained,
subdued, and made to abjure his wickedness. These cheering
contemplations more than atone for the cold reception she met at the
house of Sister Slocum. Her only regret now is that she did not sell
old Cicero. The money so got would have enabled her to bestow a more
substantial token of her soul's sincerity.

Tea over, thanks returned, a prayer offered up, and Brother Spyke,
having taken a seat on the sofa beside Mrs. Swiggs, opens his
batteries in a spiritual conversation, which he now and then spices
with a few items of his own history. At the age of fifteen he found
himself in love with a beautiful young lady, who, unfortunately, had
made up her mind to accept only the hand of a clergyman: hence, she
rejected his. This so disturbed his thoughts, that he resolved on
studying theology. In this he was aided by the singular discovery,
that he had a talent, and a "call to preach." He would forget his
amour, he thought, become a member of the clergy, and go preach to
the heathen. He spent his days in reading, his nights in the study
of divine truths. Then he got on the kind side of a committee of
very excellent ladies, who, having duly considered his qualities,
pronounced him exactly suited to the study of theology. Ladies were
generally good judges of such matters, and Brother Spyke felt he
could not do better than act up to their opinions. To all these
things Mrs. Swiggs listens with delight.

Spyke, too, is in every way a well made-up man, being extremely tall
and lean of figure, with nice Saxon hair and whiskers, mild but
thoughtful blue eyes, an anxious expression of countenance, a thin,
squeaking voice, and features sufficiently delicate and regular for
his calling. His dress, too, is always exactly clerical. If he be
cold and pedantic in his manner, the fault must be set down to the
errors of the profession, rather than to any natural inclination of
his own. But what is singular of Brother Spyke is, that,
notwithstanding his passion for delving the heathen world, and
dragging into Christian light and love the benighted wretches there
found, he has never in his life given a thought for that heathen
world at his own door-a heathen world sinking in the blackest pool
of misery and death, in the very heart of an opulent city, over
which it hurls its seething pestilence, and scoffs at the commands
of high heaven. No, he never thought of that Babylon of vice and
crime-that heathen world pleading with open jaws at his own door. He
had no thought for how much money might be saved, and how much more
good done, did he but turn his eyes, go into this dark world (the
Points) pleading at his feet, nerve himself to action, and lend a
strong hand to help drag off the film of its degradation. In
addition to this, Brother Spyke was sharp enough to discover the
fact that a country parson does not enjoy the most enviable
situation. A country parson must put up with the smallest salary; he
must preach the very best of sermons; he must flatter and flirt with
all the marriageable ladies of his church; he must consult the
tastes, but offend none of the old ladies; he must submit to have
the sermon he strained his brain to make perfect, torn to pieces by
a dozen wise old women, who claim the right of carrying the church
on their shoulders; he must have dictated to him what sort of dame
he may take for wife;--in a word, he must bear meekly a deal of
pestering and starvation, or be in bad odor with the senior members
of the sewing circle. Duly appreciating all these difficulties,
Brother Spyke chose a mission to Antioch, where the field of his
labors would be wide, and the gates not open to restraints. And
though he could not define the exact character of his mission to
Antioch, he so worked upon the sympathies of the credulous old lady,
as to well-nigh create in her mind a resolve to give the amount she
had struggled to get and set apart for the benefit of those two
institutions ("the Tract Society," and "The Home of the Foreign
Missions"), all to the getting himself off to Antioch.



WHILE Mrs. Swiggs is being entertained by Sister Scudder and her
clerical friends in New York, Mr. Snivel is making good his demand
on her property in Charleston. As the agent of Keepum, he has
attached her old slaves, and what few pieces of furniture he could
find; they will in a few days be sold for the satisfaction of her
debts. Mrs. Swiggs, it must be said, never had any very nice
appreciation of debt-paying, holding it much more legitimate that
her creditors accept her dignity in satisfaction of any demand they
chanced to have against her. As for her little old house, the last
abode of the last of the great Swiggs family,--that, like numerous
other houses of our "very first families," is mortgaged for more
than it is worth, to Mr. Staple the grocer. We must, however, turn
to Mr. Snivel.

Mr. Snivel is seen, on the night after the secret interview at the
Charleston Hotel, in a happy mood, passing down King street. A
little, ill-featured man, with a small, but florid face, a keen,
lecherous eye, leans on his arm. They are in earnest conversation.

"I think the mystery is nearly cleared up, Keepum" says Snivel.

"There seems no getting a clue to the early history of this Madame
Montford, 'tis true. Even those who introduced her to Charleston
society know nothing of her beyond a certain period. All anterior to
that is wrapped in suspicion," returns Keepum, fingering his massive
gold chain and seals, that pend from his vest, then releasing his
hold of Mr. Snivel's arm, and commencing to button closely his blue
dress coat, which is profusely decorated with large gilt buttons.
"She's the mother of the dashing harlot, or I'm no prophet,
nevertheless," he concludes, shaking his head significantly.

"You may almost swear it-a bad conscience is a horrid bore; d-n me,
if I can't see through the thing. (Mr. Snivel laughs.) Better put
our female friends on their guard, eh?"

"They had better drop her as quietly as possible," rejoins Mr.
Keepum, drawing his white glove from off his right hand, and
extending his cigar case.

Mr. Snivel having helped himself to a cigar, says: "D-n me, if she
didn't faint in my arms last night. I made a discovery that brought
something of deep interest back to her mind, and gave her timbers
such a shock! I watched, and read the whole story in her emotions.
One accustomed to the sharps of the legal profession can do this
sort of thing. She is afraid of approaching this beautiful creature,
Anna Bonard, seeing the life she lives, and the suspicions it might
create in fashionable society, did she pursue such a course to the
end of finding out whether she be really the lost child of the
relative she refers to so often. Her object is to find one Mag
Munday, who used to knock about here, and with whom the child was
left. But enough of this for the present." Thus saying, they enter
the house of the old antiquary, and finding no one but Maria at
home, Mr. Snivel takes the liberty of throwing his arms about her
waist. This done, he attempts to drag her across the room and upon
the sofa. "Neither your father nor you ever had a better friend," he
says, as the girl struggles from his grasp, shrinks at his feet,
and, with a look of disdain, upbraids him for his attempt to take
advantage of a lone female.

"High, ho!" interposes Keepum, "what airs these sort of people put
on, eh? Don't amount to much, no how; they soon get over them, you
know. A blasted deal of assumption, as you say. Ha, ha, ha! I rather
like this sort of modesty. 'Tis n't every one can put it on
cleverly." Mr. Snivel winks to Keepum, who makes an ineffectual
attempt to extinguish the light, which Maria seizes in her hand, and
summoning her courage, stands before them in a defiant attitude, an
expression of hate and scorn on her countenance. "Ah, fiend! you
take this liberty-you seek to destroy me because I am poor-because
you think me humble-an easy object to prey upon. I am neither a
stranger to the world nor your cowardly designs; and so long as I
have life you shall not gloat over the destruction of my virtue.
Approach me at your peril-knaves! You have compromised my father;
you have got him in your grasp, that you may the more easily destroy
me. But you will be disappointed, your perfidy will recoil on
yourselves: though stripped of all else, I will die protecting that
virtue you would not dare to offend but for my poverty." This
unexpected display of resolution has the effect of making the
position of the intruders somewhat uncomfortable. Mr. Keepum, whose
designs Snivel would put in execution, sinks, cowardly, upon the
sofa, while his compatriot (both are celebrated for their chivalry)
stands off apace endeavoring to palliate the insult with facetious
remarks. (This chivalry of ours is a mockery, a convenient word in
the foul mouths of fouler ruffians.) Mr. Snivel makes a second
attempt to overcome the unprotected girl. With every expression of
hate and scorn rising to her face, she bids him defiance. Seeing
himself thus firmly repulsed, he begs to assure her, on the word of
a gentleman-a commodity always on hand, and exceedingly cheap with
us-he was far from intending an insult. He meant it for a bit of a
good turn-nothing more. "Always fractious at first-these sort of
people are," pursues Keepum, relighting his cigar as he sits on the
sofa, squinting his right eye. "Take bravely to gentlemen after a
little display of modesty-always! Try her again, Squire." Mr. Snivel
dashes the candle from her hand, and in the darkness grasps her
wrists. The enraged girl shrieks, and calls aloud for assistance.
Simultaneously a blow fells Mr. Snivel to the floor. The voice of
Tom Swiggs is heard, crying: "Wretch! villain!--what brings you here?
(Mr. Keepum, like the coward, who fears the vengeance he has
merited, makes good his escape.) Will you never cease polluting the
habitations of the poor? Would to God there was justice for the
poor, as well as law for the rich; then I would make thee bite the
dust, like a dying viper. You should no longer banquet on poor
virtue. Wretch!--I would teach thee that virtue has its value with
the poor as well as the rich;--that with the true gentleman it is
equally sacred." Tom stands a few moments over the trembling
miscreant, Maria sinks into a chair, and with her elbows resting on
the table, buries her face in her hands and gives vent to her tears.

"Never did criminal so merit punishment; but I will prove thee not
worth my hand. Go, wretch, go! and know that he who proves himself
worthy of entering the habitations of the humble is more to be
prized than kings and princes." Tom relights the candle in time to
see Mr. Snivel rushing into the street.

The moon sheds a pale light over the city as the two chivalric
gentlemen, having rejoined and sworn to have revenge, are seen
entering a little gate that opens to a dilapidated old building,
fronted by a neglected garden, situate on the north side of Queen
street, and in days gone by called "Rogues' Retreat." "Rogues'
Retreat" has seared vines creeping over its black, clap-boarded
front, which viewed from the street appears in a squatting mood,
while its broken door, closed shutters-the neglected branches of
grape vines that depend upon decayed trellice and arbors, invest it
with a forlorn air: indeed, one might without prejudicing his
faculties imagine it a fit receptacle for our deceased politicians
and our whiskey-drinking congressmen-the last resting-place of our
departed chivalry. Nevertheless, generous reader, we will show you
that "Rogues' Retreat" serves a very different purpose. Our
mob-politicians, who make their lungs and fists supply the want of
brains, use it as their favorite haunt, and may be seen on the eve
of an election passing in and out of a door in the rear. Hogsheads
of bad whiskey have been drunk in "Rogues' Retreat;" it reeks with
the fumes of uncounted cigars; it has been the scene of untold
villanies. Follow us; we will forego politeness, and peep in through
a little, suspicious-looking window, in the rear of the building.
This window looks into a cavern-like room, some sixteen feet by
thirty, the ceiling of which is low, and blotched here and there
with lamp-smoke and water-stains, the plastering hanging in festoons
from the walls, and lighted by the faint blaze of a small globular
lamp, depending from the centre, and shedding a lurid glare over
fourteen grotesque faces, formed round a broad deal-table. Here, at
one side of the table sits Judge Sleepyhorn, Milman Mingle, the
vote-cribber, on his right; there, on the other, sits Mr. Snivel and
Mr. Keepum. More conspicuous than anything else, stands, in the
centre of the table, bottles and decanters of whiskey, of which each
man is armed with a stout glass. "I am as well aware of the law as
my friend who has just taken his seat can be. But we all know that
the law can be made subordinate; and it must be made subordinate to
party ends. We must not (understand me, I do not say this in my
judicial capacity) be too scrupulous when momentous issues are upon
us. The man who has not nerve enough to make citizens by the
dozen-to stuff double-drawered ballot-boxes, is not equal to the
times we live in;--this is a great moral fact." This is said by the
Judge, who, having risen with an easy air, sits down and resumes his
glass and cigar.

"Them's my sentiments-exactly," interposes the vote-cribber, his
burly, scarred face, and crispy red hair and beard, forming a
striking picture in the pale light. "I have given up the trade of
making Presidents, what I used to foller when, you see, I lived in
North Caroliner; but I tell you on the faith of my experience, that
to carry the day we must let the law slide, and crib with a free
chain: there's no gettin' over this."

"It is due," interrupts the Judge, again rising to his feet and
bowing to the cribber, "to this worthy man, whose patriotism has
been tried so often within prison-walls, that we give weight to his
advice. Hie bears the brunt of the battle like a hero-he is a hero!"
(The vote-cribber acknowledges the compliment by filling his glass
and drinking to the Judge.)

"Of this worthy gentleman I have, as a member of the learned
profession, an exalted opinion. His services are as necessary to our
success as steam to the speed of a locomotive. I am in favor of
leaving the law entirely out of the question. What society sanctions
as a means to party ends, the law in most cases fails to reach,"
rejoins a tall, sandy-complexioned man, of the name of Booper, very
distinguished among lawyers and ladies. Never was truth spoken with
stronger testimony at hand. Mr. Keepum could boast of killing two
poor men; Mr. Snivel could testify to the fallacy of the law by
gaining him an honorable acquittal. There were numerous indictments
against Mr. Keepum for his dealings in lottery tickets, but they
found their way into the Attorney-General's pocket, and it was
whispered he meant to keep them there. It was indeed pretty well
known he could not get them out in consequence of the gold Keepum
poured in. Not a week passes but men kill each other in the open
streets. We call these little affairs, "rencontres;" the fact is, we
are become so accustomed to them that we rather like them, and
regard them as evidences of our advanced civilization. We are
infested with slave-hunters, and slave-killers, who daily disgrace
us with their barbarities; yet the law is weak when the victor is
strong. So we continue to live in the harmless belief that we are
the most chivalrous people in the world.

"Mr. Booper!" ejaculates Mr. Snivel, knocking the ashes from his
cigar and rising to his feet, "you have paid no more than a merited
compliment to the masterly completeness of this excellent man's
cribbing. (He points to the cribber, and bows.) Now, permit me to
say here, I have at my disposal a set of fellows, (he smiles,) who
can fight their way into Congress, duplicate any system of sharps,
and stand in fear of nothing. Oh! gentlemen, (Mr. Snivel becomes
enthusiastic,) I was-as I have said, I believe-enjoying a bottle of
champagne with my friend Keepum here, when we overheard two
Dutchmen-the Dutch always go with the wrong party-discoursing about
a villanous caucus held to-night in King street. There is villany up
with these Dutch! But, you see, we-that is, I mean I-made some forty
or more citizens last year. We have the patent process; we can make
as many this year."

Mr. Sharp, an exceedingly clever politician, who has meekly born any
number of cudgellings at the polls, and hopes ere long to get the
appointment of Minister to Paris, interrupts by begging that Mr.
Soloman will fill his glass, and resume his seat. Mr. Snivel having
taking his seat, Mr. Sharp proceeds: "I tell you all what it is,
says I, the other day to a friend-these ponderous Dutch ain't to be
depended on. Then, says I, you must separate the Irish into three
classes, and to each class you must hold out a different inducement,
says I. There's the Rev. Father Flaherty, says I, and he is a trump
card at electioneering. He can form a breach between his people and
the Dutch, and, says I, by the means of this breach we will gain the
whole tribe of Emeralds over to our party. I confess I hate these
vagabonds right soundly; but necessity demands that we butter and
sugar the mover until we carry our ends. You must not look at the
means, says I, when the ends are momentous."

"The staunch Irish," pursues the Judge, rising as Mr. Sharp sits
down, "are noble fellows, and with us. To the middle class-the
grocers and shopkeepers-we must, however, hold out flattering
inducements; such as the reduction of taxes, the repeal of our
oppressive license laws, taking the power out of the hands of our
aristocracy-they are very tender here-and giving equal rights to
emigrants. These points we must put as Paul did his sermons-with
force and ingenuity. As for the low Irish, all we have to do is to
crib them, feed and pickle them in whiskey for a week. To gain an
Irishman's generosity, you cannot use a better instrument than meat,
drink, and blarney. I often contemplate these fellows when I am
passing sentence upon them for crime."

"True! I have the same dislike to them personally; but politically,
the matter assumes quite a different form of attraction. The
laboring Irish-the dull-headed-are what we have to do with. We must
work them over, and over, and over, until we get them just right.
Then we must turn them all into legal voting citizens--"

"That depends on how long they have been in the country," interrupts
a brisk little man, rising quickly to his feet, and assuming a legal

"Mr. Sprig! you are entirely behind the age. It matters not how long
these gentlemen from Ireland have been in the country. They take to
politics like rats to good cheese. A few months' residence, and a
little working over you know, and they become trump voters. The
Dutch are a different sort of animal; the fellows are thinkers,"
resumes the Judge.

Mr. Snivel, who has been sipping his whiskey, and listening very
attentively to the Judge, rises to what he calls the most important
order. He has got the papers all ready, and proposes the gentlemen
he thinks best qualified for the naturalization committee. This
done, Mr. Snivel draws from his pocket a copy of the forged papers,
which are examined, and approved by every one present. This
instrument is surmounted with the eagle and arms of the United
States, and reads thus: "STATE OF NEW YORK.

"In the Court of Common Pleas for the city and county of New York:

"I--do declare on oath, that it is bona fide my intention to
become a citizen of the United States, and to renounce forever all
allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, State or
sovereignty whatever, and particularly to the Queen of the United
Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, of whom I am a subject.

"Signed this --day of --184-.

Clerk's office, Court of Common Pleas for the city and county
of New York."

"I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true copy of an original
declaration of intention remaining on record in my office, &c., &c.,

"There! it required skill and practice to imitate like that" Mr.
Snivel exultingly exclaims. "We require to make thirty-seven
citizens, and have prepared the exact number of papers. If the
cribbers do their duty, the day is ours." Thus is revealed one of
the scenes common to "Rogues' Retreat." We shrink at the
multiplicity of crime in our midst; we too seldom trace the source
from whence it flows. If we did but turn our eyes in the right
direction we would find the very men we have elected our guardians,
protecting the vicious, whose power they covet-sacrificing their
high trust to a low political ambition. You cannot serve a political
end by committing a wrong without inflicting a moral degradation on
some one. Political intrigue begets laxity of habits; it dispels
that integrity without which the unfixed mind becomes vicious; it
acts as a festering sore in the body politic.

Having concluded their arrangements for the Mayor's election, the
party drinks itself into a noisy mood, each outshouting the other
for the right to speak, each refilling and emptying his glass, each
asserting with vile imprecations, his dignity as a gentleman.
Midnight finds the reeling party adjourning in the midst of

Mr. Snivel winks the vote-cribber into a corner, and commences
interrogating him concerning Mag Munday. The implacable face of the
vote-cribber reddens, he contorts his brows, frets his jagged beard
with the fingers of his left hand, runs his right over the crown of
his head, and stammers: "I know'd her, lived with her-she used to
run sort of wild, and was twice flogged. She got crazed at last!" He
shrugs his stalworth shoulders and pauses. "Being a politician, you
see, a body can't divest their minds of State affairs sufficiently
to keep up on women matters," he pursues: "She got into the
poor-house, that I knows--"

"She is dead then?" interposes Mr. Snivel.

"As like as not. The poor relatives of our 'first families' rot and
die there without much being said about it. Just look in at that
institution-it's a terrible place to kill folks off!--and if she be
not there then come to me. Don't let the keepers put you off. Pass
through the outer gate, into and through the main building, then
turn sharp to the left, and advance some twenty feet up a filthy
passage, then enter a passage on the right, (have a light with you,)
that leads to a dozen or fourteen steps, wet and slippery. Then you
must descend into a sort of grotto, or sickly vault, which you will
cross and find yourself in a spacious passage, crawling with beetles
and lizards. Don't be frightened, sir; keep on till you hear
moanings and clankings of chains. Then you will come upon a row of
horrid cells, only suited for dog kennels. In these cells our crazy
folks are chained and left to die. Give Glentworthy few shillings
for liquor, sir, and he, having these poor devils in charge, will
put you through. It's a terrible place, sir, but our authorities
never look into it, and few of our people know of its existence."

Mr. Snivel thanks the vote-cribber, who pledges his honor he would
accompany him, but for the reason that he opens crib to-morrow, and
has in his eye a dozen voters he intends to look up. He has also a
few recently-arrived sons of the Emerald Isle he purposes turning
into citizens.



PURGED of all the ill-humors of her mind, Mrs. Swiggs finds herself,
on the morning following the excellent little gathering at Sister
Scudder's, restored to the happiest of tempers. The flattery
administered by Brother Spyke, and so charmingly sprinkled with his
pious designs on the heathen world, has had the desired effect. This
sort of drug has, indeed, a wonderful efficacy in setting disordered
constitutions to rights. It would not become us to question the
innocence, or the right to indulge in such correctives; it is enough
that our venerable friend finds herself in a happy vein, and is
resolved to spend the day for the benefit of that heathen world, the
darkness of which Brother Spyke pictured in colors so terrible.

Breakfast is scarcely over when Sister Slocum, in great agitation,
comes bustling into the parlor, offers the most acceptable apologies
for her absence, and pours forth such a vast profusion of solicitude
for Mrs. Swiggs' welfare, that that lady is scarce able to withstand
the kindness. She recounts the numerous duties that absorb her
attention, the missions she has on hand, the means she uses to keep
up an interest in them, the amount of funds necessary to their
maintenance. A large portion of these funds she raises with her own
energy. She will drag up the heathen world; she will drag down
Satan. Furnishing Mrs. Swiggs with the address of the House of the
Foreign Missions, in Centre street, she excuses herself. How
superlatively happy she would be to accompany Mrs. Swiggs. A report
to present to the committee on finance, she regrets, will prevent
this. However, she will join her precisely at twelve o'clock, at the
House. She must receive the congratulations of the Board. She must
have a reception that will show how much the North respects her
co-laborers of the South. And with this, Sister Slocum takes leave
of her guest, assuring her that all she has to do is to get into the
cars in the Bowery. They will set her down at the door.

Ten o'clock finds our indomitable lady, having preferred the less
expensive mode of walking, entering a strange world. Sauntering
along the Bowery she turns down Bayard street. Bayard street she
finds lined with filthy looking houses, swarming with sickly,
ragged, and besotted poor; the street is knee-deep with corrupting
mire; carts are tilted here and there at intervals; the very air
seems hurling its pestilence into your blood. Ghastly-eyed and
squallid children, like ants in quest of food, creep and swarm over
the pavement, begging for bread or uttering profane oaths at one
another. Mothers who never heard the Word of God, nor can be
expected to teach it to their children, protrude their vicious faces
from out reeking gin shops, and with bare breasts and uncombed hair,
sweep wildly along the muddy pavement, disappear into some
cavern-like cellar, and seek on some filthy straw a resting place
for their wasting bodies. A whiskey-drinking Corporation might feast
its peculative eyes upon hogs wallowing in mud; and cellars where
swarming beggars, for six cents a night, cover with rags their
hideous heads--where vice and crime are fostered, and into which
your sensitive policeman prefers not to go, are giving out their
seething miasma. The very neighborhood seems vegetating in mire. In
the streets, in the cellars, in the filthy lanes, in the dwellings
of the honest poor, as well as the vicious, muck and mire is the
predominating order. The besotted remnants of depraved men, covered
with rags and bedaubed with mire, sit, half sleeping in disease and
hunger on decayed door-stoops. Men with bruised faces, men with
bleared eyes; men in whose every feature crime and dissipation is
stamped, now drag their waning bodies from out filthy alleys, as if
to gasp some breath of air, then drag themselves back, as if to die
in a desolate hiding-place. Engines of pestilence and death the
corporation might see and remove, if it would, are left here to
fester--to serve a church-yard as gluttonous as its own belly. The
corporation keeps its eyes in its belly, its little sense in its big
boots, and its dull action in the whiskey-jug. Like Mrs. Swiggs, it
cannot afford to do anything for this heathen world in the heart of
home. No, sir! The corporation has the most delicate sense of its
duties. It is well paid to nurture the nucleus of a pestilence that
may some day break out and sweep over the city like an avenging
enemy. It thanks kind Providence, eating oysters and making
Presidents the while, for averting the dire scourge it encourages
with its apathy. Like our humane and very fashionable preachers, it
contents itself with looking into the Points from Broadway. What
more would you ask of it?

Mrs. Swiggs is seized with fear and trembling. Surely she is in a
world of darkness. Can it be that so graphically described by
Brother Syngleton Spyke? she questions within herself. It might,
indeed, put Antioch to shame: but the benighted denizens with which
it swarms speak her own tongue. "It is a deal worse in Orange

"Now called Baxter street Marm-a deal, I assure you!" speaks a low,
muttering voice. Lady Swiggs is startled. She only paused a moment
to view this sea of vice and wretchedness she finds herself
surrounded with. Turning quickly round she sees before her a man, or
what there is left of a man. His tattered garments, his lean,
shrunken figure, his glassy eyes, and pale, haggard face, cause her
to shrink back in fright. He bows, touches his shattered hat, and
says, "Be not afraid, good Madam. May I ask if you have not mistaken
your way?" Mrs. Swiggs looks querulously through her spectacles and
says, "Do tell me where I am?" "In the Points, good Madam. You seem
confused, and I don't wonder. It's a dreadful place. I know it,
madam, to my sorrow." There is a certain politeness in the manner of
this man-an absence of rudeness she is surprised to find in one so
dejected. The red, distended nose, the wild expression of his
countenance, his jagged hair, hanging in tufts over his ragged coat
collar, give him a repulsiveness not easily described. In answer to
an inquiry he says, "They call me, Madam, and I'm contented with the
name,--they call me Tom Toddleworth, the Chronicle. I am well
down-not in years, but sorrow. Being sick of the world I came here,
have lived, or rather drifted about, in this sea of hopeless misery,
homeless and at times foodless, for ten years or more. Oh! I have
seen better days, Madam. You are a stranger here. May God always
keep you a stranger to the sufferings of those who dwell with us. I
never expect to be anything again, owe nothing to the world, and
never go into Broadway."

"Never go into Broadway," repeats Mrs. Swiggs, her fingers wandering
to her spectacles. Turning into Orange street, Mr. Toddleworth
tenders his services in piloting Mrs. Swiggs into Centre street,
which, as he adds, will place her beyond harm. As they advance the
scene becomes darker and darker. Orange street seems that centre
from which radiates the avenues of every vice known to a great city.
One might fancy the world's outcasts hurled by some mysterious hand
into this pool of crime and misery, and left to feast their wanton
appetites and die. "And you have no home, my man?" says Mrs. Swiggs,
mechanically. "As to that, Madam," returns the man, with a bow, "I
can't exactly say I have no home. I kind of preside over and am
looked up to by these people. One says, 'come spend a night with me,
Mr. Toddleworth;' another says, 'come spend a night with me, Mr. Tom
Toddleworth.' I am a sort of respectable man with them, have a place
to lay down free, in any of their houses. They all esteem me, and
say, come spend a night with me, Mr. Toddleworth. It's very kind of
them. And whenever they get a drop of gin I'm sure of a taste.
Surmising what I was once, they look up to me, you see. This gives
me heart." And as he says this he smiles, and draws about him the
ragged remnants of his coat, as if touched by shame. Arrived at the
corner of Orange street, Mr. Toddleworth pauses and begs his charge
to survey the prospect. Look whither she will nothing but a scene of
desolation-a Babylon of hideous, wasting forms, mucky streets, and
reeking dens, meet her eye. The Jews have arranged themselves on one
side of Orange street, to speculate on the wasted harlotry of the
other. "Look you, Madam!" says Mr. Toddleworth, leaning on his stick
and pointing towards Chatham street. "A desert, truly," replies the
august old lady, nervously twitching her head. She sees to the right
("it is wantonness warring upon misery," says Mr. Toddleworth) a
long line of irregular, wooden buildings, black and besmeared with
mud. Little houses with decrepid door-steps; little houses with
decayed platforms in front; little dens that seem crammed with
rubbish; little houses with black-eyed, curly-haired, and
crooked-nosed children looking shyly about the doors; little houses
with lusty and lecherous-eyed Jewesses sitting saucily in the open
door; little houses with open doors, broken windows, and shattered
shutters, where the devil's elixir is being served to ragged and
besotted denizens; little houses into which women with blotched
faces slip suspiciously, deposit their almost worthless rags, and
pass out to seek the gin-shop; little houses with eagle-faced men
peering curiously out at broken windows, or beckoning some wayfarer
to enter and buy from their door; little houses piled inside with
the cast-off garments of the poor and dissolute, and hung outside
with smashed bonnets, old gowns, tattered shawls; flaunting-red,
blue, and yellow, in the wind, emblematic of those poor wretches, on
the opposite side, who have pledged here their last offerings, and
blazed down into that stage of human degradation, which finds the
next step the grave-all range along, forming a picturesque but sad
panorama. Mr. Moses, the man of the eagle face, who keeps the record
of death, as the neighbors call it, sits opulently in his door, and
smokes his cigar; while his sharp-eyed daughters estimate exactly
how much it is safe to advance on the last rag some lean wretch
would pledge. He will tell you just how long that brawny harlot,
passing on the opposite side, will last, and what the few rags on
her back will be worth when she is "shoved into Potters' Field." At
the sign of the "Three Martyrs" Mr. Levy is seen, in his fashionable
coat, and a massive chain falling over his tight waistcoat,
registering the names of his grotesque customers, ticketing their
little packages, and advancing each a shilling or two, which they
will soon spend at the opposite druggery. Thus bravely wages the
war. London has nothing so besotted, Paris nothing so vicious,
Naples nothing so dark and despairing, as this heathen world we pass
by so heedlessly. Beside it even the purlieus of Rome sink into
insignificance. Now run your eye along the East side of Orange
street. A sidewalk sinking in mire; a long line of one-story wooden
shanties, ready to cave-in with decay; dismal looking groceries, in
which the god, gin, is sending his victims by hundreds to the greedy
grave-yard; suspicious looking dens with dingy fronts, open doors,
and windows stuffed with filthy rags-in which crimes are nightly
perpetrated, and where broken-hearted victims of seduction and
neglect, seeking here a last refuge, are held in a slavery delicacy
forbids our describing; dens where negro dancers nightly revel, and
make the very air re-echo their profaning voices; filthy lanes
leading to haunts up alleys and in narrow passages, where thieves
and burglars hide their vicious heads; mysterious looking steps
leading to cavern-like cellars, where swarm and lay prostrate
wretched beings made drunk by the "devil's elixir"--all these beset
the East side of Orange street. Wasted nature, blanched and
despairing, ferments here into one terrible pool. Women in
gaudy-colored dresses, their bared breasts and brawny arms
contrasting curiously with their wicked faces, hang lasciviously
over "half-doors," taunt the dreamy policeman on his round, and
beckon the unwary stranger into their dens. Piles of filth one might
imagine had been thrown up by the devil or the street commissioners
and in which you might bury a dozen fat aldermen without missing
one; little shops where unwholesome food is sold; corner shops where
idlers of every color, and sharpers of all grades, sit dreaming out
the day over their gin-are here to be found. Young Ireland would,
indeed, seem to have made this the citadel from which to vomit his
vice over the city.

"They're perfectly wild, Madam-these children are," says Mr.
Toddleworth, in reply to a question Mrs. Swiggs put respecting the
immense number of ragged and profaning urchins that swarm the
streets. "They never heard of the Bible, nor God, nor that sort of
thing. How could they hear of it? No one ever comes in here-that is,
they come in now and then, and throw a bit of a tract in here and
there, and are glad to get out with a whole coat. The tracts are all
Greek to the dwellers here. Besides that, you see, something must be
done for the belly, before you can patch up the head. I say this
with a fruitful experience. A good, kind little man, who seems
earnest in the welfare of these wild little children that you see
running about here-not the half of them know their parents-looks in
now and then, acts as if he wasn't afraid of us, (that is a good
deal, Madam,) and the boys are beginning to take to him. But, with
nothing but his kind heart and earnest resolution, he'll find a
rugged mountain to move. If he move it, he will deserve a monument
of fairest marble erected to his memory, and letters of gold to
emblazon his deeds thereon. He seems to understand the key to some
of their affections. It's no use mending the sails without making
safe the hull."

"At this moment Mrs. Swiggs' attention is attracted by a crowd of
ragged urchins and grotesque-looking men, gathered about a heap of
filth at that corner of Orange street that opens into the Points.

"They are disinterring his Honor, the Mayor," says Mr. Toddleworth.
"Do this sort of thing every day, Madam; they mean no harm, you

Mrs. Swiggs, curious to witness the process of disinterring so
distinguished a person, forgets entirely her appointment at the
House of the Foreign Missions, crowds her way into the filthy
throng, and watches with intense anxiety a vacant-looking idiot, who
has seen some sixteen sumers, lean and half clad, and who has dug
with his staff a hole deep in the mud, which he is busy piling up at
the edges.

"Deeper, deeper!" cries out a dozen voices, of as many mischievous
urchins, who are gathered round in a ring, making him the victim of
their sport. Having cast his glassy eyes upward, and scanned
vacantly his audience, he sets to work again, and continues throwing
out dead cats by the dozen, all of which he exults over, and pauses
now and then for the approbation of the bystanders, who declare they
bear no resemblance to his Honor, or any one of the Board of
Aldermen. One chubby urchin, with a bundle of Tribunes under his
arm, looks mischievously into the pit, and says, "His 'Onor 'ill
want the Tribune." Another, of a more taciturn disposition, shrugs
his shoulders, gives his cap a pull over his eyes, and says, spicing
his declaration with an oath, "He'll buy two Heralds!--he will." The
taciturn urchin draws them from his bundle with an air of
independence, flaunts them in the face of his rival, and exults over
their merits. A splashing of mud, followed by a deafening shout,
announces that the persevering idiot has come upon the object he
seeks. One proclaims to his motley neighbors that the whole
corporation is come to light; another swears it is only his Honor
and a dead Alderman. A third, more astute than the rest, says it is
only the head and body of the Corporation-a dead pig and a decaying
pumpkin! Shout after shout goes up as the idiot, exultingly, drags
out the prostrate pig, following it with the pumpkin. Mr.
Toddleworth beckons Lady Swiggs away. The wicked-faced harlots are
gathering about her in scores. One has just been seen fingering her
dress, and hurrying away, disappearing suspiciously into an Alley.

"You see, Madam," says Mr. Toddleworth, as they gain the vicinity of
Cow Bay, "it is currently reported, and believed by the dwellers
here, that our Corporation ate itself out of the world not long
since; and seeing how much they suffer by the loss of such--to have a
dead Corporation in a great city, is an evil, I assure you--an
institution, they adopt this method of finding it. It affords them
no little amusement. These swarming urchins will have the filthy
things laid out in state, holding with due ceremony an inquest over
them, and mischievously proposing to the first policeman who chances
along, that he officiate as coroner. Lady Swiggs has not a doubt
that light might be valuably reflected over this heathen world. Like
many other very excellent ladies, however, she has no candles for a
heathen world outside of Antioch."

Mr. Toddleworth escorts her safely into Centre street, and directs
her to the House of the Foreign Missions.

"Thank you! thank you!--may God never let you want a shilling," he
says, bowing and touching his hat as Mrs. Swiggs puts four shillings
into his left hand.

"One shilling, Madam," he pursues, with a smile, "will get me a new
collar. A clean collar now and then, it must be said, gives a body a
look of respectability."

Mr. Toddleworth has a passion for new collars, regards them as a
means of sustaining his respectability. Indeed, he considers himself
in full dress with one mounted, no matter how ragged the rest of his
wardrobe. And when he walks out of a morning, thus conditioned, his
friends greet him with: "Hi! ho!--Mister Toddleworth is uppish this
morning." He has bid his charge good morning, and hurries back to
his wonted haunts. There is a mysterious and melancholy interest in
this man's history, which many have attempted but failed to fathom.
He was once heard to say his name was not Toddleworth-that he had
sunk his right name in his sorrows. He was sentimental at times,
always used good language, and spoke like one who had seen better
days and enjoyed a superior education. He wanted, he would say, when
in one of his melancholy moods, to forget the world, and have the
world forget him. Thus he shut himself up in the Points, and only
once or twice had he been seen in the Bowery, and never in Broadway
during his sojourn among the denizens who swarm that vortex of
death. How he managed to obtain funds, for he was never without a
shilling, was equally involved in mystery. He had no very bad
habits, seemed inoffensive to all he approached, spoke familiarly on
past events, and national affairs, and discovered a general
knowledge of the history of the world. And while he was always ready
to share his shilling with his more destitute associates, he ever
maintained a degree of politeness and civility toward those he was
cast among not common to the place. He was ready to serve every one,
would seek out the sick and watch over them with a kindness almost
paternal, discovering a singular familiarity with the duties of a
physician. He had, however, an inveterate hatred of fashionable
wives; and whenever the subject was brought up, which it frequently
was by the denizens of the Points, he would walk away, with a sigh.
"Fashionable wives," he would mutter, his eyes filling with tears,
"are never constant. Ah! they have deluged the world with sorrow,
and sent me here to seek a hiding place."



THE city clock strikes one as Mrs. Swiggs, nervous and weary, enters
the House of the Foreign Missions. Into a comfortably-furnished room
on the right, she is ushered by a man meekly dressed, and whose
countenance wears an expression of melancholy. Maps and drawings of
Palestine, Hindostan, and sundry other fields of missionary labor,
hang here and there upon the walls. These are alternated with
nicely-framed engravings and lithographs of Mission establishments
in the East, all located in some pretty grove, and invested with a
warmth and cheerfulness that cannot fail to make a few years'
residence in them rather desirable than otherwise. These in turn are
relieved with portraits of distinguished missionaries. Earnest-faced
busts, in plaster, stand prominently about the room, periodicals and
papers are piled on little shelves, and bright bookcases are filled
with reports and various documents concerning the society, all bound
so exactly. The good-natured man of the kind face sits in refreshing
ease behind a little desk; the wise-looking lean man, in the
spectacles, is just in front of him, buried in ponderous folios of
reports. In the centre of the room stands a highly-polished mahogany
table, at which Brother Spyke is seated, his elbow rested, and his
head leaning thoughtfully in his hand. The rotund figure and
energetic face of Sister Slocum is seen, whisking about
conspicuously among a bevy of sleek but rather lean gentlemen,
studious of countenance, and in modest cloth. For each she has
something cheerful to impart; each in his turn has some compliment
to bestow upon her. Several nicely-dressed, but rather meek-looking
ladies, two or three accompanied by their knitting work, have
arranged themselves on a settee in front of the wise man in the

Scarcely has the representative of our chivalry entered the room
when Sister Slocum, with all the ardor of a lover of seventeen, runs
to her with open arms, embraces her, and kisses her with an
affection truly grateful. Choking to relate her curious adventure,
she is suddenly heaped with adulations, told how the time of her
coming was looked to, as an event of no common occurrence-how
Brothers Sharp, Spyke, and Phills, expressed apprehensions for her
safety this morning, each in turn offering in the kindest manner to
get a carriage and go in pursuit. The good-natured fat man gets down
from his high seat, and receives her with pious congratulations; the
man in the spectacles looks askant, and advances with extended hand.
To use a convenient phrase, she is received with open arms; and so
meek and good is the aspect, that she finds her thoughts transported
to an higher, a region where only is bliss. Provided with a seat in
a conspicuous place, she is told to consider herself the guest of
the society. Sundry ovations, Sister Slocum gives her to understand,
will be made in her honor, ere long. The fact must here be disclosed
that Sister Slocum had prepared the minds of those present for the
reception of an embodiment of perfect generosity.

No sooner has Lady Swiggs time to breathe freely, than she changes
the wondrous kind aspect of the assembly, and sends it into a
paroxysm of fright, by relating her curious adventure among the
denizens of the Points. Brother Spyke nearly makes up his mind to
faint; the good-natured fat man turns pale; the wise man in the
spectacles is seen to tremble; the neatly-attired females, so
pious-demeanored, express their horror of such a place; and Sister
Slocum stands aghast. "Oh! dear, Sister Swiggs," she says, "your
escape from such a vile place is truly marvellous! Thank God you are
with us once more." The good-natured fat man says, "A horrible
world, truly!" and sighs. Brother Spyke shrugs his shoulders,
adding, "No respectable person here ever thinks of going into such a
place; the people there are so corrupt." Brother Sharp says he
shudders at the very thought of such a place. He has heard much said
of the dark deeds nightly committed in it-of the stubborn vileness
of the dwellers therein. God knows he never wants to descend into
it. "Truly," Brother Phills interposes, "I walked through it once,
and beheld with mine eyes such sights, such human deformity! O, God!
Since then, I am content to go to my home through Broadway. I never
forget to shudder when I look into the vile place from a distance,
nevertheless." Brother Phills says this after the manner of a
philosopher, fretting his fingers, and contorting his comely face
the while. Sister Slocum, having recovered somewhat from the shock
(the shock had no permanent effect on any of them), hopes Sister
Swiggs did not lend an ear to their false pleadings, nor distribute
charity among the vile wretches. "Such would be like scattering
chaff to the winds," a dozen voices chime in. "Indeed!" Lady Swiggs
ejaculates, giving her head a toss, in token of her satisfaction,
"not a shilling, except to the miserable wretch who showed me the
way out. And he seemed harmless enough. I never met a more
melancholy object, never!" Brother Spyke raises his eyes
imploringly, and says he harbors no ill-will against these vile
people, but melancholy is an art with them-they make it a study.
They affect it while picking one's pocket.

The body now resolves itself into working order. Brother Spyke
offers up a prayer. He thanks kind Providence for the happy escape
of Sister Swiggs-this generous woman whose kindness of heart has
brought her here-from among the hardened wretches who inhabit that
slough of despair, so terrible in all its aspects, and so
disgraceful to a great and prosperous city. He thanks Him who
blessed him with the light of learning-who endowed him with vigor
and resolution-and told him to go forth in armor, beating down
Satan, and raising up the heathen world. A mustering of spectacles
follows. Sister Slocum draws from her bosom a copy of the report the
wise man in the spectacles rises to read. A fashionable gold chain
and gold-framed eye-glass is called to her aid; and with a massive
pencil of gold, she dots and points certain items of dollars and
cents her keen eye rests upon every now and then.

The wise man in the spectacles rises, having exchanged glances with
Sister Slocum, and commences reading a very long, and in nowise lean
report. The anxious gentlemen draw up their chairs, and turn
attentive ears. For nearly an hour, he buzzes and bores the contents
of this report into their ears, takes sundry sips of water, and
informs those present, and the world in general, that nearly forty
thousand dollars have recently been consumed for missionary labor.
The school at Corsica, the missions at Canton, Ningpo, Pu-kong,
Cassaba, Abheokuta, and sundry other places, the names of which
could not, by any possibility, aid the reader in discovering their
location-all, were doing as well as could be expected, under the
circumstances. After many years labor, and a considerable
expenditure of money, they were encouraged to go forward, inasmuch
as the children of the school at Corsica were beginning to learn to
read. At Casaba, Droneyo, the native scholar, had, after many years'
teaching, been made conscious of the sin of idol-worship, and had
given his solemn promise to relinquish it as soon as he could
propitiate two favorite gods bequeathed to him by his great uncle.
The furnace of "Satanic cruelty" had been broken down at Dahomey.
Brother Smash had, after several years' labor, and much
expense-after having broken down his health, and the health of many
others-penetrated the dark regions of Arabia, and there found the
very seat of Satanic power. It was firmly pegged to Paganism and
Mahomedan darkness! This news the world was expected to hail with
consternation. Not one word is lisped about that terrible devil
holding his court of beggary and crime in the Points. He had all his
furnaces in full blast there; his victims were legion! No Brother
Spyke is found to venture in and drag him down. The region of the
Seven Churches offers inducements more congenial. Round about them
all is shady groves, gentle breezes, and rural habitations; in the
Points the very air is thick with pestilence!

A pause follows the reading. The wise man in the spectacles-his
voice soft and persuasive, and his aspect meekness itself-would like
to know if any one present be inclined to offer a remark. General
satisfaction prevails. Brother Sharp moves, and Brother Phills
seconds, that the report be accepted. The report is accepted without
a dissenting voice. A second paper is handed him by Sister Slocum,
whose countenance is seen to flash bright with smiles. Then there
follows the proclaiming of the fact of funds, to the amount of three
thousand six hundred dollars, having been subscribed, and now ready
to be appropriated to getting Brother Syngleton Spyke off to
Antioch. A din of satisfaction follows; every face is radiant with
joy. Sister Swiggs twitches her head, begins to finger her pocket,
and finally readjusts her spectacles. Having worked her countenance
into a good staring condition, she sets her eyes fixedly upon
Brother Spyke, who rises, saying he has a few words to offer.

The object of his mission to Antioch, so important at this moment,
he would not have misunderstood. Turks, Greeks, Jews, Arabs,
Armenians, and Kurds, and Yesedees-yes, brethren, Yesedees! inhabit
this part of Assyria, which opens up an extensive field of
missionary labor, even yet. Much had been done by the ancient Greeks
for the people who roamed in these Eastern wilds-much remained for
us to do; for it was yet a dark spot on the missionary map.
Thousands of these poor souls were without the saving knowledge of
the Gospel. He could not shrink from a duty so demanding-wringing
his very heart with its pleadings! Giving the light of the Gospel to
these vicious Arabs and Kurds was the end and aim of his mission. (A
motion of satisfaction was here perceptible.) And while there, he
would teach the Jews a just sense of their Lord's design-which was
the subjugation of the heathen world. Inward light was very good,
old prophecies were very grand; but Judaism was made of stubborn
metal, had no missionary element in it, and could only be forced to
accept light through strong and energetic movement. He had read with
throbbing heart how Rome, while in her greatness, protected those
Christian pilgrims who went forth into the East, to do battle with
the enemy. Would not America imitate Rome, that mighty mother of
Republics? A deeper responsibility rested on her at this moment.
Rome, then, was semi-barbarous; America, now, was Christianized and
civilized. Hence she would be held more accountable for the
dissemination of light.

In those days the wandering Christian Jews undertook to instruct the
polished Greeks-why could not Americans at this day inculcate the
doctrines of Jesus to these educated heathen? It was a bold and
daring experiment, but he was willing to try it. The All-wise worked
his wonders in a mysterious way. In this irrelevant and somewhat
mystical style, Brother Spyke continues nearly an hour, sending his
audience into a highly-edified state. We have said mystical, for,
indeed, none but those in the secret could have divined, from
Brother Spyke's logic, what was the precise nature of his mission.
His speech was very like a country parson's model sermon; one text
was selected, and a dozen or more (all different) preached from;
while fifty things were said no one could understand.

Brother Spyke sits down-Sister Slocum rises. "Our dear and very
generous guest now present," she says, addressing the good-natured
fat man in the chair, as Lady Swiggs bows, "moved by the goodness
that is in her, and conscious of the terrible condition of the
heathen world, has come nobly to our aid. Like a true Christian she
has crossed the sea, and is here. Not only is she here, but ready to
give her mite toward getting Brother Spyke off to Antioch. Another
donation she proposes giving the 'Tract Society,' an excellent
institution, in high favor at the South. Indeed I may add, that it
never has offended against its social--"

Sister Slocum hesitates. Social slavery will not sound just right,
she says to her herself. She must have a term more musical, and less
grating to the ear. A smile flashes across her countenance, her
gold-framed eye-glasses vibrate in her fingers: "Well! I was going
to say, their social arrangements," she pursues.

The assembly is suddenly thrown into a fit of excitement. Lady
Swiggs is seen trembling from head to foot, her yellow complexion
changing to pale white, her features contorting as with pain, and
her hand clutching at her pocket. "O heavens!" she sighs, "all is
gone, gone, gone: how vain and uncertain are the things here below."
She drops, fainting, into the arms of Sister Slocum, who has overset
the wise man in the spectacles, in her haste to catch the prostrate
form. On a bench the august body is laid. Fans, water, camphor,
hartshorn, and numerous other restoratives are brought into use.
Persons get in each other's way, run every way but the right way,
causing, as is common in such cases, very unnecessary alarm. The
stately representative of the great Swiggs family lies motionless.
Like the last of our chivalry, she has nothing left her but a name.

A dash or two of cold water, and the application of a little
hartshorn, and that sympathy so necessary to the fainting of
distinguished people-proves all-efficient. A slight heaving of the
bosom is detected, the hands-they have been well chaffed-quiver and
move slowly, her face resumes its color. She opens her eyes, lays
her hand solicitously on Sister Slocum's arm: "It must be the will
of Heaven," she lisps, motioning her head, regretfully; "it cannot
now be undone--"

"Sister! sister! sister!" interrupts Sister Slocum, grasping her
hand, and looking inquiringly in the face of the recovering woman,
"is it an affection of the heart?-where is the pain?-what has
befallen you? We are all so sorry!"

"It was there, there, there! But it is gone now." Regaining her
consciousness, she lays her hand nervously upon her pocket, and
pursues: "Oh! yes, sister, it was there when I entered that vile
place, as you call it. What am I to do? The loss of the money does
not so much trouble my mind. Oh! dear, no. It is the thought of
going home deprived of the means of aiding these noble

Had Lady Swiggs inquired into the character of the purchaser of old
Dolly she might now have become conscious of the fact, that whatever
comes of evil seldom does good. The money she had so struggled to
get together to aid her in maintaining her hypocrisy, was the result
of crime. Perhaps it were better the wretch purloined it, than that
the fair name of a noble institution be stained with its acceptance.
Atonement is too often sought to be purchased with the gold got of

The cause of this fainting being traced to Lady Swiggs' pocket book
instead of her heart, the whole scene changes, Sister Slocum becomes
as one dumb, the good fat man is seized with a nervous fit, the man
in the spectacles hangs his head, and runs his fingers through his
crispy hair, as Brother Spyke elongates his lean body, and is seen
going into a melancholy mood, the others gathering round with
serious faces. Lady Swiggs commences describing with great
minuteness the appearance of Mr. Tom Toddleworth. That he is the
person who carried off the money, every one is certain. "He is the
man!" responds a dozen voices. And as many more volunteer to go in
search of Mr. Detective Fitzgerald. Brother Spyke pricks up his
courage, and proceeds to initiate his missionary labors by
consulting Mr. Detective Fitzgerald, with whom he starts off in
pursuit of Mr. Tom Toddleworth.



LET us leave for a time the pursuit with which we concluded the
foregoing chapter, and return to Charleston. It is the still hour of
midnight. There has been a ball at the fashionable house of the
Flamingo, which still retains its name. In the great parlour we have
before described, standing here and there upon massive tables with
Egyptian marble-tops, are half-empty bottles of wine, decanters,
tumblers, and viands of various descriptions. Bits of artificial
flowers are strewn about the carpet, a shawl is seen thrown over one
chair, a mantle over another; the light is half shut off-everything
bears evidence of the gaieties of luxurious life, the sumptuous
revel and the debauch. The gilded mirrors reflect but two faces,
both hectic and moody of dissipation. George Mullholland and Mr.
Snivel face each other, at a pier-table. Before them are several
half filled bottles, from one of which Mr. Snivel fills George's

"There is something in this champaign (one only gets rubbish in
these houses) that compounds and elevates one's ideas," says Mr.
Snivel, holding his glass in the light, and squinting his
blood-shotten eyes, the lids of which he has scarce power to keep
open. "Drink, George-drink! You have had your day-why let such
nonsense trouble you? The whole city is in love with the girl. Her
beauty makes her capricious; if the old Judge has got her, let him
keep her. Indeed, I'm not so sure that she doesn't love him, and
(well, I always laugh when I think of it), it is a well laid down
principle among us lawyers, that no law stands good against love."
Mr. Snivel's leaden eyelids close, and his head drops upon his
bosom. "She never can love him-never! His wealth, and some false
tale, has beguiled her. He is a hoary-headed lecher, with wealth and
position to aid him in his hellish pursuits; I am poor, and an
outcast! He has flattered me and showered his favors upon me, only
to affect my ruin. I will have--"

"Pshaw! George," interrupts Mr. Snivel, brightening up, "be a
philosopher. Chivalry, you know-chivalry! A dashing fellow like you
should doff the kid to a knight of his metal: challenge him." Mr.
Snivel reaches over the table and pats his opponent on the arm.
"These women, George! Funny things, eh? Make any kind of love-have a
sample for every sort of gallant, and can make the quantity to suit
the purchaser. 'Pon my soul this is my opinion. I'm a lawyer, know
pretty well how the sex lay their points. As for these unfortunate
devils, as we of the profession call them (he pauses and empties his
glass, saying, not bad for a house of this kind), there are so many
shades of them, life is such a struggle with them; they dream of
broken hopes, and they die sighing to think how good a thing is
virtue. You only love this girl because she is beautiful, and
beautiful women, at best, are the most capricious things in the
world. D-n it, you have gone through enough of this kind of life to
be accustomed to it. We think nothing of these things, in
Charleston-bless you, nothing! Keep the Judge your friend-his
position may give him a means to serve you. A man of the world ought
at all times to have the private friendship of as many judges as he

"Never! poor as I am-outcast as I feel myself! I want no such
friendship. Society may shun me, the community may fear me,
necessity may crush me-yea! you may regard me as a villain if you
will, but, were I a judge, I would scorn to use my office to serve
base ends." As he says this he draws a pistol from his pocket, and
throwing it defiantly upon the table, continues as his lip curls
with scorn, "poor men's lives are cheap in Charleston-let us see
what rich men's are worth!"

"His age, George!--you should respect that!" says Mr. Snivel,

"His age ought to be my protection."

"Ah!--you forget that the follies of our nature too often go with us
to the grave."

"And am I to suffer because public opinion honors him, and gives him
power to disgrace me? Can he rob me of the one I love-of the one in
whose welfare my whole soul is staked, and do it with impunity?"

"D--d inconvenient, I know, George. Sympathize with you, I do. But,
you see, we are governed here by the laws of chivalry. Don't let
your (I am a piece of a philosopher, you see) temper get up, keep on
a stiff upper lip. You may catch him napping. I respect your
feelings, my dear fellow; ready to do you a bit of a good turn-you
understand! Now let me tell you, my boy, he has made her his
adopted, and to-morrow she moves with him to his quiet little villa
near the Magnolia."

"I am a poor, forlorn wretch," interrupts George, with a sigh.
"Those of whom I had a right to expect good counsel, and a helping
hand, have been first to encourage me in the ways of evil--"

"Get money, Mullholland-get money. It takes money to make love
strong. Say what you will, a woman's heart is sure to be sound on
the gold question. Mark ye, Mullholland!--there is an easy way to get
money. Do you take? (His fingers wander over his forehead, as he
watches intently in George's face.) You can make names? Such things
are done by men in higher walks, you know. Quite a common affair in
these parts. The Judge has carried off your property; make a fair
exchange-you can use his name, get money with it, and make it hold
fast the woman you love. There are three things, George, you may set
down as facts that will be of service to you through life, and they
are these: when a man eternally rings in your ears the immoralities
of the age, watch him closely; when a man makes what he has done for
others a boast, set him down a knave; and when a woman dwells upon
the excellent qualities of her many admirers, set her down as
wanting. But, get money, and when you have got it, charm back this
beautiful creature."

Such is the advice of Mr. Soloman Snivel, the paid intriguer of the
venerable Judge.



THE two lone revellers remain at the pier-table; moody and hectic.
Mr. Snivel drops into a sound sleep, his head resting on the marble.
Weak-minded, jealous, contentious-with all the attendants natural to
one who leads an unsettled life, sits George Mullholland, his elbow
resting on the table, and his head poised thoughtfully in his hand.
"I will have revenge-sweet revenge; yes, I will have revenge
to-night!" he mutters, and sets his teeth firmly.

In Anna's chamber all is hushed into stillness. The silvery
moonbeams play softly through the half-closed windows, lighting up
and giving an air of enchantment to the scene. Curtains hang,
mist-like, from massive cornices in gilt. Satin drapery,
mysteriously underlaid with lace, and floating in bewitching
chasteness over a fairy-like bed, makes more voluptuous that
ravishing form calmly sleeping-half revealed among the snowy sheets,
and forming a picture before which fancy soars, passion unbends
itself, and sentiment is led away captive. With such exquisite forms
strange nature excites our love;--that love that like a little stream
meanders capriciously through our feelings, refreshing life,
purifying our thoughts, exciting our ambition, and modulating our
actions. That love, too, like a quick-sand, too often proves a
destroyer to the weak-minded.

Costly chairs, of various styles, carved in black walnut, stand
around the chamber: lounges covered with chastely-designed tapestry
are seen half concealed by the gorgeous window curtains. The foot
falls upon a soft, Turkey carpet; the ceiling-in French white, and
gilt mouldings-is set off with two Cupids in a circle, frescoed by a
skilled hand. On a lounge, concealed in an alcove masked by curtains
pending from the hands of a fairy in bronze, and nearly opposite
Anna's bed, the old Judge sleeps in his judicial dignity. To-day he
sentenced three rogues to the whipping-post, and two wretched
negroes-one for raising his hand to a white man-to the gallows.

Calmly Anna continues to sleep, the lights in the girandoles
shedding a mysterious paleness over the scene. To the eye that scans
only the exterior of life, how dazzling! Like a refulgent cloud
swelling golden in the evening sky, how soon it passes away into
darkness and disappointment! Suddenly there appears, like a vision
in the chamber, the stately figure of a female. Advancing slowly to
the bed-side, for a minute she stands contemplating the sleeping
beauty before her. A dark, languishing eye, an aquiline nose,
beautifully-cut mouth, and a finely-oval face, is revealed by the
shadow in which she stands. "How willingly," she mutters, raising
the jewelled fingers of her right hand to her lips, as her eyes
become liquid with emotion, and her every action betokens one whose
very soul is goaded with remorse, "would I exchange all these
worldly pleasures for one single day in peace of mind." She lays
aside her mantle, and keeps her eyes fixed upon the object before
her. A finely-rounded shoulder and exactly-developed bust is set
off with a light satin boddice or corsage, cut low, opening
shawl-fashion at the breast, and relieved with a stomacher of fine
Brussels lace. Down the edges are rows of small, unpolished pearls,
running into points. A skirt of orange-colored brocade, trimmed with
tulle, and surrounded with three flounces, falls, cloud-like, from
her girdle, which is set with cameos and unpolished pearls. With her
left hand she raises slightly her skirts, revealing the embroidered
gimps of a white taffeta underskirt, flashing in the moonlight.
Small, unpolished pearls ornament the bands of her short sleeves; on
her fingers are rings, set with diamonds and costly emeralds; and
her wrists are clasped with bracelets of diamonds, shedding a modest
lustre over her marble-like arms.

"Can this be my child? Has this crime that so like a demon haunts
me-that curses me even in my dreams, driven her, perhaps against her
will, to seek this life of shame?" She takes the sleeper's hand
gently in her own, as the tears gush down her cheeks.

The sleeper startles, half raises herself from her pillow, parts her
black, silky hair, that lays upon her gently-swelling bosom, and
throws it carelessly down her shoulders, wildly setting her great
black orbs on the strange figure before her. "Hush, hush!" says the
speaker, "I am a friend. One who seeks you for a good purpose. Give
me your confidence-do not betray me! I need not tell you by what
means I gained access to you."

A glow of sadness flashes across Anna's countenance. With a look of
suspicion she scans the mysterious figure from head to foot. "It is
the Judge's wife!" she says within herself. "Some one has betrayed
me to her; and, as is too often the case, she seeks revenge of the
less guilty party." But the figure before her is in full dress, and
one seeking revenge would have disguised herself. "Why, and who is
it, that seeks me in this mysterious manner?" whispers Anna, holding
her delicate hand in the shadow, over her eyes. "I seek you in the
hope of finding something to relieve my troubled spirit. I am a
mother who has wronged her child-I have no peace of mind-my heart is

"Are you, then, my mother?" inerrupts Anna, with a look of scorn.

"That I would answer if I could. You have occupied my thoughts day
and night. I have traced your history up to a certain period. ("What
I know of my own, I would fain not contemplate," interrupts Anna.)
Beyond that, all is darkness. And yet there are circumstances that
go far to prove you the child I seek. Last night I dreamed I saw a
gate leading to a dungeon, that into the dungeon I was impelled
against my will. While there I was haunted with the figure of a
woman of the name of Mag Munday-a maniac, and in chains! My heart
bled at the sight, for she, I thought, was the woman in whose charge
I left the child I seek. I spoke-I asked her what had become of the
child! She pointed with her finger, told me to go seek you here, and
vanished as I awoke. I spent the day in unrest, went to the ball
to-night, but found no pleasure in its gay circle. Goaded in my
conscience, I left the ball-room, and with the aid of a confidant am

"I recognize-yes, my lady, I recognize you! You think me your
abandoned child, and yet you are too much the slave of society to
seek me as a mother ought to do. I am the supposed victim of your
crime; you are the favored and flattered ornament of society. Our
likenesses have been compared many times:-I am glad we have met. Go,
woman, go! I would not, outcast as I am, deign to acknowledge the
mother who could enjoy the luxuries of life and see her child a

"Woman! do not upbraid me. Spare, oh! spare my troubled heart this
last pang," (she grasps convulsively at Anna's hand, then shrinks
back in fright.) "Tell me! oh, tell me!" she pursues, the tears
coursing down her cheeks--

Anna Bonard interrupts by saying, peremptorily, she has nothing to
tell one so guilty. To be thus rebuked by an abandoned woman,
notwithstanding she might be her own child, wounded her feelings
deeply. It was like poison drying up her very blood. Tormented with
the thought of her error, (for she evidently labored under the smart
of an error in early life,) her very existence now seemed a burden
to her. Gloomy and motionless she stood, as if hesitating how best
to make her escape.

"Woman! I will not betray your coming here. But you cannot give me
back my virtue; you cannot restore me untainted to the world-the
world never forgives a fallen woman. Her own sex will be first to
lacerate her heart with her shame." These words were spoken with
such biting sarcasm, that the Judge, whose nap the loudness of
Anna's voice had disturbed, protruded his flushed face and snowy
locks from out the curtains of the alcove. "The gay Madame Montford,
as I am a Christian," he exclaims in the eagerness of the moment,
and the strange figure vanishes out of the door.

"A fashionable, but very mysterious sort of person," pursues the
Judge, confusedly. "Ah! ha,--her case, like many others, is the want
of a clear conscience. Snivel has it in hand. A great knave, but a
capital lawyer, that Snivel--"

The Judge is interrupted in his remarks by the entrance of Mr.
Snivel, who, with hectic face, and flushed eyes, comes rushing into
the chamber. "Hollo!--old boy, there's a high bid on your head
to-night. Ready to do you a bit of a good turn, you see." Mr. Snivel
runs his fingers through his hair, and works his shoulders with an
air of exultation. "If," he continues, "that weak-minded
fellow-that Mullholland we have shown some respect to, hasn't got a
pistol! He's been furbishing it up while in the parlor, and swears
he will seriously damage you with it. Blasted assurance, those
Northerners have. Won't fight, can't make 'em gentlemen; and if you
knock 'em down they don't understand enough of chivalry to resent
it. They shout to satisfy their fear and not to maintain their
honor. Keep an eye out!"

The Judge, in a tone of cool indifference, says he has no fears of
the renegade, and will one of these days have the pleasure of
sending him to the whipping-post.

"As to that, Judge," interposes Mr. Snivel, "I have already prepared
the preliminaries. I gave him the trifle you desired-to-morrow I
will nail him at the Keno crib." With this the Judge and the Justice
each take an affectionate leave of the frail girl, and, as it is now
past one o'clock in the morning, an hour much profaned in
Charleston, take their departure.

Armed with a revolver Mullholland has taken up his position in the
street, where he awaits the coming of his adversaries. In doubt and
anxiety, he reflects and re-reflects, recurs to the associations of
his past life, and hesitates. Such reflections only bring more
vividly to his mind the wrong he feels himself the victim of, and
has no power to resent except with violence. His contemplations only
nerve him to revenge.

A click, and the door cautiously opens, as if some votary of crime
was about to issue forth in quest of booty. The hostess' heed
protrudes suddenly from the door, she scans first up and then down
the street, then withdraws it. The Judge and Mr. Snivel, each in
turn, shake the landlady by the hand, and emerge into the street.
They have scarce stepped upon the sidepath when the report of a
pistol resounds through the air. The ball struck a lamp-post,
glanced, passed through the collar of Judge Sleepyhorn's coat, and
brushed Mr. Snivel's fashionable whiskers. Madame Ashley, successor
to Madame Flamingo, shrieks and alarms the house, which is suddenly
thrown into a state of confusion. Acting upon the maxim of
discretion being the better part of valor, the Judge and the Justice
beat a hasty retreat into the house, and secrete themselves in a
closet at the further end of the back-parlor.

As if suddenly moved by some strange impulse, Madame Ashley runs
from room to room, screaming at the very top of her voice, and
declaring that she saw the assassin enter her house. Females rush
from their rooms and into the great parlor, where they form groups
of living statuary, strange and grotesque. Anxious faces-faces half
painted, faces hectic of dissipation, faces waning and sallow, eyes
glassy and lascivious, dishevelled hair floating over naked
shoulders;--the flashing of bewitching drapery, the waving and
flitting of embroidered underskirts, the tripping of pretty feet and
prettier ankles, the gesticulating and swaying of half-draped
bodies-such is the scene occasioned by the bench and the bar.

Madame Ashley, having inherited of Madame Flamingo the value of a
scrupulous regard for the good reputation of her house, must needs
call in the watch to eject the assassin, whom she swears is
concealed somewhere on the premises. Mr. Sergeant Stubbs, a much
respected detective, and reputed one of the very best officers of
the guard, inasmuch as he never troubles his head about other
people's business, and is quite content to let every one fight their
own battles,--provided they give him a "nip" of whiskey when they are
through, lights his lantern and goes bobbing into every room in the
house. We must here inform the reader that the cause of the emeute
was kept a profound secret between the judicial gentry. Madame
Ashley, at the same time, is fully convinced the ball was intended
for her, while Anna lays in a terrible fright in her chamber.

"Ho," says Mr. Stubbs, starting back suddenly as he opened the door
of the closet in which the two gentlemen had concealed themselves.
"I see! I see!--beg your pardon, gentlemen!" Mr. Stubbs whispers, and
bows, and shuts the door quickly.

"An infernal affair this, Judge! D-n me if I wouldn't as soon be in
the dock. It will all get out tomorrow," interposes Mr. Snivel,

"Blast these improper associations!" the high functionary exclaims,
fussily shrugging his shoulders, and wiping the sweat from his
forehead. "I love the girl, though, I confess it!"

"Nothing more natural. A man without gallantry is like a pilgrim in
the South-West Pass. You can't resist this charming creature. In
truth it's a sort of longing weakness, which even the scales of
justice fail to bring to a balance."

Mr. Stubbs fails to find the assassin, and enters Madame Ashley's
chamber, the door of which leads into the hall. Here Mr. Stubbs's
quick eye suddenly discerns a slight motion of the curtains that
enclose the great, square bed, standing in one corner. "I ax your
pardon, Mam, but may I look in this 'ere bed?" Mr. Stubbs points to
the bed, as Madame, having thrown herself into a great rocking
chair, proceeds to sway her dignity backward and forward, and give
out signs of making up her mind to faint.

Mr. Stubbs draws back the curtains, when, behold! but tell it not in
the by-ways, there is revealed the stalworth figure of Simon
Patterson, the plantation parson. Our plantation parsons, be it
known, are a singular species of depraved humanity, a sort of
itinerant sermon-makers, holding forth here and there to the negroes
of the rich planters, receiving a paltry pittance in return, and
having in lieu of morals an excellent taste for whiskey, an article
they invariably call to their aid when discoursing to the ignorant
slave-telling him how content with his lot he ought to be, seeing
that God intended him only for ignorance and servitude. The parson
did, indeed, cut a sorry figure before the gaze of this
indescribable group, as it rushed into the room and commenced
heaping upon his head epithets delicacy forbids our inserting
here-calling him a clerical old lecher, an assassin, and a disturber
of the peace and respectability of the house. Indeed, Madame Ashley
quite forgot to faint, and with a display of courage amounting
almost to heroism, rushed at the poor parson, and had left him in
the state he was born but for the timely precautions of Mr. Stubbs,
who, finding a revolver in his possession, and wanting no better
proof of his guilt, straightway took him off to the guardhouse.
Parson Patterson would have entered the most solemn and pious
protestations of his innocence but the evidence was so strong
against him, and the zeal of Mr. Sargeant Stubbs so apparent, that
he held it the better policy to quietly submit to the rough fare of
his new lodgings.

"I have a terror of these brawls!" says Mr. Snivel, emerging from
his hiding-place, and entering the chamber, followed by the high
legal functionary.

"A pretty how-do-ye-do, this is;" returns Madame Ashley, cooling her
passion in the rocking-chair, "I never had much respect for

"Parsons?" interrupts Mr. Snivel, inquiringly, "you don't mean to
say it was all the doings of a parson?"

"As I'm a lady it was no one else. He was discovered behind the
curtain there, a terrible pistol in his pocket-the wretch!"

Mr. Snivel exchanges a wink with the Judge, points his thumb over
his left shoulder, and says, captiously: "I always had an implacable
hatred of that old thief. A bad lot! these plantation parsons."

Mr. Stubbs having discovered and removed the assassin, the terrified
damsels return to their chambers, and Madame Ashley proceeds to
close her house, as the two legal gentlemen take their departure.
Perhaps it would be well to inform the reader that a principal cause
of Anna's preference for the Judge, so recently manifested, was the
deep impression made on her already suspicious mind by Mr. McArthur,
the antiquary, who revealed to her sincerely, as she thought, her
future dark destiny.



THE morning following the events detailed in the foregoing chapter,
finds the august Sleepyhorn seated on his judgment-seat. The clock
strikes ten as he casts his heavy eyes over the grotesque group
gathered into his little, dingy court-room; and he bows to his
clerk, of whom he gets his law knowledge, and with his right hand
makes a sign that he is ready to admonish the erring, or pass
sentence on any amount of criminals. History affords no record of a
judge so unrelenting of his judgments.

A few dilapidated gentlemen of the "learned profession," with sharp
features and anxious faces, fuss about among the crowd, reeking of
whiskey and tobacco. Now they whisper suspiciously in the ears of
forlorn prisoners, now they struggle to get a market for their legal
nostrums. A few, more respectably clothed and less vicious of
aspect, sit writing at a table inside the bar, while a dozen or more
punch-faced policemen, affecting an air of superiority, drag
themselves lazily through the crowd of seedy humanity, looking
querulously over the railing encircling the dock, or exchanging
recognitions with friends.

Some twenty "negro cases" having been disposed of without much
respect to law, and being sent up for punishment (the Judge finds it
more convenient to forego testimony in these cases), a daughter of
the Emerald Isle, standing nearly six feet in her bare soles, and
much shattered about the dress, is, against her inclination,
arraigned before his Honor. "I think I have seen you before, Mrs.
Donahue?" says the Judge, inquiringly.

"Arrah, good-morning, yer 'onher! Shure, it's only the sixth time
these three weeks. Doesn't meself like to see yer smiling face,
onyhow!" Here Mrs. Donahue commences complimenting the Judge in one
breath, and laying no end of charges at the door of the very
diminutive and harmless Mister Donahue in the next.

"This being the sixth time," returns his Honor, somewhat seriously,
"I would advise you to compromise the matter with Donahue, and not
be seen here again. The state of South Carolina cannot pay your fees
so often--"

"Och, bad luck to Donahue! Troth, an' if yer onher'd put the fees
down to Donahue, our acquaintance 'ouldn't be so fraquent." Mrs.
Donahue says this with great unction, throwing her uncombed hair
back, then daintily raising her dress apace, and inquiring of Mr.
Sheriff Hardscrabble, who sits on his Honor's left, peering sharply
through his spectacles, how he likes the spread of her broad, flat
foot; "the charging the fees to Donahue, yer onher, 'd do it!" There
was more truth in this remark than his Honor seemed to comprehend,
for having heard the charge against her (Mr. Donahue having been
caught in the act of taking a drop of her gin, she had well-nigh
broken his head with the bottle), and having listened attentively
while poor Donahue related his wrongs, and exhibited two very well
blacked eyes and a broken nose, he came to the very just conclusion
that it were well to save the blood of the Donahues. And to this end
did he grant Mrs. Donahue board and lodging for one month in the old
prison. Mrs. Donahue is led away, heaping curses on the head of
Donahue, and compliments on that of his Honor.

A pale, sickly looking boy, some eleven years old, is next placed
upon the stand. Mr. Sergeant Stubbs, who leans his corpulent figure
against the clerk's desk, every few minutes bowing his sleepy head
to some friend in the crowd, says: "A hard 'un-don't do no good
about here. A vagrant; found him sleeping in the market."

His Honor looks at the poor boy for some minutes, a smile of
kindliness seems lighting up his face; he says he would there were
some place of refuge-a place where reformation rather than
punishment might be the aim and end, where such poor creatures could
be sent to, instead of confining them in cells occupied by depraved

Mr. Sheriff Hardscrabble, always eager to get every one into jail he
can, inasmuch as it pays him twenty-two cents a day clear profit on
each and every person confined, says: "A hard customer. Found
sleeping in the market, eh? Well, we must merge him in a tub of
water, and scrub him up a little." Mr. Hardscrabble views him with
an air of satisfaction, touches him with a small cane he holds in
his hand, as if he were something very common. Indeed, Mr.
Hardscrabble seems quite at a loss to know what species of animal he
is, or whether he be really intended for any other use than filling
up his cells and returning him twenty-two cents a day clear profit.
"Probably an incendiary," mutters the sagacious sheriff. The
helpless boy would explain how he came to sleep in the market-how
he, a poor cabin-boy, walked, foot-sore and hungry, from Wilmington,
in the hope of getting a ship; and being moneyless and friendless he
laid down in the market to sleep. Mr. Hardscrabble, however,
suggests that such stories are extremely common. His Honor thinks it
not worth while to differ from this opinion, but to the end that no
great legal wisdom may be thrown away, he orders the accused to be
sent to the common jail for three months. This, in the opinion of
Judge Sleepyhorn, is an extremely mild penalty for being found
sleeping in the market.

Next there comes forward a lean, up-country Cracker, (an
half-civilized native,) who commences telling his story with
commendable simplicity, the Judge in the meanwhile endeavoring to
suppress a smile, which the quaintness of his remarks excite. Making
a tenement of his cart, as is usual with these people when they
visit the city, which they do now and then for the purpose of
replenishing their stock of whiskey, he had, about eleven o'clock on
the previous night, been set upon by three intoxicated students,
who, having driven off his mule, overturned his cart, landing him
and his wife prostrate in the ditch. A great noise was the result,
and the guard, with their accustomed zeal for seizing upon the
innocent party, dragged up the weaker (the Cracker and his wife) and
let the guilty go free. He had brought the good wife, he added, as a
living evidence of the truth of what he said, and would bring the
mule if his honor was not satisfied. The good wife commences a
volley of what she is pleased to call voluntary testimony, praising
and defending all the good qualities of her much-abused husband,
without permitting any one else an opposing word. No sufficient
charge being brought against the Cracker (he wisely slipped a five
dollar bill into the hands of Stubbs), he joins his good wife and
goes on his way rejoicing.

During this little episode between the court and the Cracker's wife,
Madame Grace Ashley, arrayed in her most fashionable toilet, comes
blazing into Court, bows to the Judge and a few of her most select
friends of the Bar. A seat for Madame is provided near his Honor's
desk. His Honor's blushes seem somewhat overtaxed; Madame, on the
other hand, is not at all disconcerted; indeed, she claims an
extensive acquaintance with the most distinguished of the Bar.

The Judge suggests to Mr. Stubbs that it would be as well to waive
the charge against the clergyman. Somewhat the worse for his night
in the guard-house, Parson Patterson comes forward and commences in
the most unintelligible manner to explain the whole affair, when the
Judge very blandly interrupts by inquiring if he is a member of the
clergy at this moment. "Welle," returns the parson, with
characteristic drawl, "can't zactly say I am." The natural seediness
of the parson excites suspicion, nevertheless he is scrupulous of
his white cravat, and preserves withal a strictly clerical aspect.
Having paused a few moments and exchanged glances with the Judge, he
continues: "I do nigger preaching on Sunday-that is (Parson
Patterson corrects himself), I hold forth, here and there-we are all
flesh and blood-on plantations when I have a demand for my services.
Our large planters hold it good policy to encourage the piety of
their property."

"You make a good thing of it?" inquires the Judge, jocosely. The
parson replies, with much meekness of manner, that business is not
so good as it was, planters having got it into their heads that
sermons can be got at a very low figure. Here he commences to
explain his singular position. He happened to meet an old and
much-esteemed friend, whom he accompanied home, and while spending
the evening conversing on spiritual matters-it was best not to
lie-he took a little too much. On his way to the hotel he selected
Beresford street as a short cut, and being near the house where he
was unfortunately found when the shooting took place, he ran into it
to escape the police--"

"Don't believe a word he says," interrupts Madame Ashley, springing
suddenly to her feet, and commencing to pour out her phials of wrath
on the head of the poor parson, whom she accuses of being a
suspicious and extremely unprofitable frequenter of her house, which
she describes as exceedingly respectable. "Your Honor can bear me
out in what I say!" pursues Madame, bowing with an air of
exultation, as the sheriff demands order.

"A sorry lot, these plantation preachers! Punish him right soundly,
your honor. It is not the first time he has damaged the
respectability of my house!" again interrupts Madame Ashley. His
Honor replies only with a blush. Mr. Snivel, who watches with
quisical countenance, over the bar, enjoys the joke wonderfully.

Order being restored, the Judge turns to address the parson.

"I see, my friend-I always address my prisoners familiarly-you place
but little value on the fact of your being a clergyman, on the
ground that you only preach to slaves. This charge brought against
you is a grave one-I assure you! And I cannot incline to the view
you take of your profession. I may not be as erudite as some;
however, I hold it that the ignorant and not the learned have most
need of good example."

"Aye! I always told the old reprobate so," interposes Madam Ashley,
with great fervor.

"A charge," resumes the Judge, "quite sufficient to warrant me in
committing you to durance vile, might be preferred. You may thank my
generosity that it is not. These houses, as you know, Mr. Patterson,
are not only dangerous, but damaging to men of potent morality like

"But, your Honor knows they are much frequented," meekly drawls the

"It affords no palliation," sharply responds the Judge, his face
crimsoning with blushes. "Mark ye, my friend of the clergy, these
places make sad destruction of our young men. Indeed I may say with
becoming sincerity and truth, that they spread a poison over the
community, and act as the great enemy of our social system."

"Heigh ho!" ejaculates Madame Ashley, to the great delight of the
throng assembled, "Satan has come to rebuke sin." Madame bids his
Honor a very polite good morning, and takes her departure, looking
disdainfully over her shoulder as she disappears out of the door.

Not a little disturbed in his equanimity, the Judge pursues his
charge. "The clergy ought to keep their garments clear of such
places, for being the source of all evil, the effect on the
community is not good-I mean when such things are brought to light!
I would address you frankly and admonish you to go no more into such
places. Let your ways merit the approbation of those to whom you
preach the Gospel. You can go. Henceforth, live after the ways of
the virtuous."

Parson Patterson thanks his Honor, begs to assure him of his
innocence, and seems only too anxious to get away. His Honor bows to
Mr. Patterson, Mr. Patterson returns it, and adds another for the
audience, whereupon the court adjourns, and so ends the episode. His
Honor takes Mr. Snivel's arm, and together they proceed to the "most
convenient" saloon, where, over a well-compounded punch, "the bench
and the bar" compliment each other on the happy disposal of such
vexatious cases.



ON the corner of Anthony street and the Points,

Now Worth street and Mission Place. in New York, there stands, like
a grim savage, the house of the Nine Nations, a dingy wooden
tenement, that for twenty years has threatened to tumble away from
its more upright neighbor, and before which the stranger wayfarer is
seen to stop and contemplate. In a neighborhood redolent of crime,
there it stands, its vices thick upon its head, exciting in the mind
of the observer its association with some dark and terrible deed. On
the one side, opens that area of misery, mud and sombre walls,
called "Cow Bay;" on the other a triangular plot, reeking with the
garbage of the miserable cellars that flank it, and in which swarms
of wasting beings seek a hiding-place, inhale pestilential air, and
die. Gutters running with seething matter; homeless outcasts
sitting, besotted, on crazy door-steps; the vicious, with savage
visage, and keen, watchful eye, loitering at the doors of filthy
"groceries;" the sickly and neglected child crawling upon the
side-pave, or seeking a crust to appease its hunger-all are found
here, gasping, in rags, a breath of air by day, or seeking a
shelter, at night, in dens so abject that the world can furnish no
counterpart. And this forlorn picture of dilapidated houses,
half-clad, squabbish women, blistered-faced men, and sickly
children, the house of the Nine Nations overlooks. And yet this
house, to the disgrace of an opulent people be it said, is but the
sample of an hundred others standing in the same neighborhood.

With its basement-doors opening into its bottomless pit; with its
continual outgoing and ingoing of sooty and cruel-visaged denizens;
with its rickety old steps leading to the second story; with its
battered windows, begrimed walls, demolished shutters, clapboards
hanging at sixes and sevens-with its suspicious aspect;--there it
stands, with its distained sign over the doors of its bottomless
pit. You may read on this sign, that a gentleman from Ireland, who
for convenience' sake we will call Mr. Krone, is licensed to sell
imported and other liquors.

Indeed the house of the Nine Nations would seem to say within
itself: "I am mother of this banquet of death you behold with your
eyes." There it stands, its stream of poison hurrying its victims to
the grave; its little dark passages leading to curious
hiding-places; its caving roof, and its ominous-looking back
platform, overlooking the dead walls of Murderers' Yard. How it
mocks your philanthropy, your regal edifices, your boasted
charities-your gorgeous churches! Everybody but the corporation
knows the house of the Nine Nations, a haunt for wasted prostitutes,
assassins, burglars, thieves-every grade of criminals known to
depraved nature. The corporation would seem either to have a
charming sympathy for it, or to look upon it with that good-natured
indifference so happily illustrated while eating its oysters and
drinking its whiskey. An empty-headed corporation is sure always to
have its hands very full, which is the case with yours at this
moment. Having the people's money to waste, its own ambition to
serve, and its hat to fill with political waste paper-what more
would you ask of it?

The man of the house of the Nine Nations, you ought to know, makes
criminals by the hundred, deluges your alms houses with paupers, and
makes your Potters' field reek with his victims: for this he is
become rich. Mr. Krone is an intimate friend of more than one
Councilman, and a man of much measure in the political world-that
is, Mr. Krone is a politician-maker. When you say there exists too
close an intimacy between the pugilist and the politician, Mr. Krone
will bet twenty drinks with any one of his customers that he can
prove such doctrines at fault. He can secure the election of his
favorite candidate with the same facility that he can make an
hundred paupers per week. You may well believe him a choice flower
in the bouquet of the corporation; we mean the corporation that
banquets and becomes jubilant while assassins stab their victims in
the broad street-that becomes befogged while bands of ruffians
disgrace the city with their fiendish outrages-that makes presidents
and drinks whiskey when the city would seem given over to the
swell-mobsman-when no security is offered to life, and wholesale
harlotry, flaunting with naked arms and bared bosoms, passes along
in possession of Broadway by night.

It is the night succeeding the day Lady Swiggs discovered, at the
house of the Foreign Missions, the loss of her cherished donations.
As this is a world of disappointments, Lady Swiggs resigns herself
to this most galling of all, and with her Milton firmly grasped in
her hand, may be seen in a little room at Sister Scudder's, rocking
herself in the arm-chair, and wondering if Brother Spyke has
captured the robber-wretch. A chilly wind howls, and a drizzling
rain falls thick over the dingy dwellings of the Points, which,
sullen and dark, seem in a dripping mood. A glimmering light, here
and there, throws curious shadows over the liquid streets. Now the
drenched form of some half-naked and homeless being is reflected,
standing shivering in the entrance to some dark and narrow alley;
then the half-crazed inebriate hurries into the open door of a
dismal cellar, or seeks eagerly a shelter for his bewildered head,
in some suspicious den. Flashing through the shadow of the police
lamp, in "Cow Bay," a forlorn female is seen, a bottle held tightly
under her shawl. Sailing as it were into the bottomless pit of the
house of the Nine Nations, then suddenly returning with the drug,
seeking the cheerless garret of her dissolute partner, and there
striving to blunt her feelings against the horrors of starvation.

Two men stand, an umbrella over their heads, at the corner, in the
glare of the bottomless pit, which is in a blaze of light, and
crowded with savage-faced figures, of various ages and colors,--all
habited in the poison-seller's uniform of rags. "I don't think
you'll find him here, sir," says one, addressing the other, who is
tall and slender of person, and singularly timid. "God knows I am a
stranger here. To-morrow I leave for Antioch," is the reply,
delivered in nervous accents. The one is Brother Syngleton Spyke,
the other Mr. Detective Fitzgerald, a man of more than middle
stature, with compact figure, firmly-knit limbs, and an expression
of countenance rather pleasant.

"You see, sir, this Toddleworth is a harmless creature, always aims
to be obliging and civil. I don't, sir-I really don't think he'll
steal. But one can't tell what a man will do who is driven to such
straits as the poor devils here are. We rather like Toddleworth at
the station, look upon him as rather wanting in the head, and for
that reason rather incline to favor him. I may say we now and then
let him 'tie up' all night in the station. And for this he seems
very thankful. I may say," continues Mr. Fitzgerald, touching the
visor of his cap, "that he always repays with kindness any little
attention we may extend to him at the station, and at times seems
too anxious to make it his home. We give him a shirt and a few
shillings now and then; and when we want to be rid of him we begin
to talk about fashionable wives. He is sure to go then. Can't stand
such a topic, I assure you, sir, and is sure togo off in a huff when
Sergeant Pottle starts it."

They enter the great door of the bottomless pit; the young
missionary hesitates. His countenance changes, his eyes scan
steadily over the scene. A room some sixty feet by twenty opens to
his astonished eyes. Its black, boarded walls, and bare beams, are
enlivened here and there with extravagant pictures of notorious
pugilists, show-bills, and illustrated advertisements of lascivious
books, in which the murder of an unfortunate woman is the principal
feature. Slippery mud covers the floor. Mr. Krone sits on an empty
whiskey-barrel, his stunted features betraying the hardened avarice
of his character. He smokes his black pipe, folds his arms
deliberately, discoursing of the affairs of the nation to two
stupefied negroes and one blear-eyed son of the Emerald Isle. Three
uncouth females, with hair hanging matted over their faces, and
their features hidden in distortion, stand cooling their bared limbs
at a running faucet just inside the door, to the left. A group of
half-naked negroes lie insensible on the floor, to the right. A
little further on two prostrate females, shivering, and reeking of
gin, sleep undisturbed by the profanity that is making the very air
resound. "The gin gets a-many of us," is the mournful cry of many a
wasting inebriate. Mr. Krone, however, will tell you he has no
sympathy with such cries. You arraign, and perhaps punish, the
apothecary who sells by mistake his deadly drug. With a
philosophical air, Mr. Krone will tell you he deals out his poison
without scruple, fills alms-houses without a pang of remorse, and
proves that a politician-maker may do much to degrade society and
remain in high favor with his friends of the bench of justice. On
one side of the dungeon-like place stands a rickety old counter,
behind which three savage-faced men stand, filling and serving
incessant potions of deleterious liquor to the miserable beings,
haggard and ragged, crowding to be first served. Behind the bar, or
counter, rises a pyramid of dingy shelves, on which are arranged
little painted kegs, labelled, and made bright by the glaring gas-
light reflected upon them. On the opposite side, on rows of slab
benches, sit a group of motley beings,--the young girl and the old
man, the negro and the frail white,--half sleeping, half conscious;
all imbibing the stifling draught.

Like revelling witches in rags, and seen through the bedimmed
atmosphere at the further end of the den, are half-frantic men,
women, and girls, now sitting at deal tables, playing for drinks,
now jostling, jeering, and profaning in wild disorder. A girl of
sixteen, wasted and deformed with dissipation, approaches Brother
Spyke, extends her blanched hand, and importunes him for gin. He
shudders, and shrinks from her touch, as from a reptile. A look of
scorn, and she turns from him, and is lost among the grotesque crowd
in the distance.

"This gin," says Mr. Fitzgerald, turning methodically to Brother
Spyke, "they make do for food and clothing. We used to call this the
devil's paradise. As to Krone, we used to call him the devil's
bar-tender. These ragged revellers, you see, beg and steal during
the day, and get gin with it at night. Krone thinks nothing of it!
Lord bless your soul, sir! why, this man is reckoned a tip-top
politician; on an emergency he can turn up such a lot of votes!" Mr.
Fitzgerald, approaching Mr. Krone, says "you're a pretty fellow.
Keeping such a place as this!" The detective playfully strikes the
hat of the other, crowding it over his eyes, and inquiring if he has
seen Tom Toddleworth during the day. Mr. Toddleworth was not seen
during the day. No one in the bottomless pit knows where he may be
found. A dozen husky voices are heard to say, he has no home-stores
himself away anywhere, and may be found everywhere.

Brother Spyke bows, and sighs. Mr. Fitzgerald says: "he is always
harmless-this Toddleworth." As the two searchers are about to
withdraw, the shrunken figure of a woman rushes wildly into the pit.
"Devils! devils!--hideous devils of darkness! here you are-still
hover-hover-hovering; turning midnight into revelling, day into
horrid dreaming!" she shrieks at the top of her voice. Now she
pauses suddenly, and with a demoniacal laugh sets her dull, glassy
eyes on Mr. Krone, then walks round him with clenched fists and
threatening gestures. The politician-maker sits unmoved. Now she
throws her hair about her bare breasts, turns her eyes upward,
imploringly, and approaches Brother Spyke, with hand extended. Her
tale of sorrow and suffering is written in her very look. "She won't
hurt you-never harms anybody;" says Mr. Fitzgerald, methodically,
observing Brother Spyke's timidity.

"No, no, no," she mutters incoherently, "you are not of this
place-you know, like the rich world up-town, little of these
revelling devils. Cling! yes, cling to the wise one-tell him to keep
you from this, and forever be your teacher. Tell him! tell him! oh!
tell him!" She wrings her hands, and having sailed as it were into
the further end of the pit, vaults back, and commences a series of
wild gyrations round Mr. Krone.

"Poor wretch!" says Brother Spyke, complacently, "the gin has dried
up her senses-made her what she is."

"Maniac Munday! Maniac Munday!" suddenly echoes and re-echoes through
the pit. She turns her ear, and with a listless countenance listens
attentively, then breaks out into an hysterical laugh. "Yes! ye
loathsome denizens. Like me, no one seeks you, no one cares for you.
I am poor, poor maniac Munday. The maniac that one fell error
brought to this awful end." Again she lowers her voice, flings her
hair back over her shoulders, and gives vent to her tears. Like one
burdened with sorrow she commences humming an air, that even in this
dark den floats sweetly through the polluted atmosphere. "Well, I am
what I am," she sighs, having paused in her tune. "That one fatal
step-that plighted faith! How bitter to look back." Her bony fingers
wander to her lips, which she commences biting and fretting, as her
countenance becomes pale and corpse-like. Again her reason takes its
flight. She staggers to the drenched counter, holds forth her
bottle, lays her last sixpence tauntingly upon the board, and
watches with glassy eyes the drawing of the poisonous drug.
Meanwhile Mr. Krone, with an imprecation, declares he has power to
elect his candidate to the Senate. The man behind the counter-the
man of savage face, has filled the maniac's bottle, which he pushes
toward her with one hand, as with the other he sweeps her coin into
a drawer. "Oh! save poor maniac Munday-save poor maniac Munday!" the
woman cries, like one in despair, clutching the bottle, and reels
out of the pit.



PALE and hesitating, Brother Spyke says: "I have no passion for
delving into such places; and having seen enough for one night, am
content to leave the search for this vile old man to you." The
valiant missionary addresses Mr. Fitzgerald, who stands with one
foot upon the rickety old steps that lead to the second story of the
House of the Nine Nations.

This morning, Brother Spyke was ready to do battle with the whole
heathen world, to drag it up into light, to evangelize it. Now he
quails before this heathen world, so terribly dark, at his own door.

"You have, sir," says the detective, "seen nuthin' as yet. The
sights are in these 'ere upper dens; but, I may say it, a body wants
nerve. Some of our Aldermen say ye can't see such sights nowhere

The missionary replies, holding tenaciously to his umbrella, "That
may be true; but I fear they will be waiting me at home." Again he
scans inquiringly into the drenched area of the Points; then bidding
the officer good-night, is soon out of sight, on his way into Centre
Street. Reaching the old stoop, the detective touches a spring, and
the shattered door opens into a narrow, gloomy passage, along which
he gropes his way, over a floor cobbled with filth, and against an
atmosphere thick of disease. Now a faint light flashes through a
crevice in the left wall, plays fantastically upon the black surface
of the opposite, then dies away. The detective lights his lantern,
stands a moment with his ear turned, as if listening to the revelry
in the bottomless pit. A door opens to his touch, he enters a
cave-like room-it is the one from out which the light stole so
curiously, and in which all is misery and sadness. A few embers
still burn in a great brick fire-place, shedding a lurid glow over
the damp, filthy walls, the discolored ceiling, and the grotesque
group upon the floor. "You needn't come at this time of night-we are
all honest people;" speaks a massive negro, of savage visage, who
(he is clothed in rags) sits at the left side of the fireplace. He
coaxes the remnant of his fire to cook some coarse food he has
placed in a small, black stew-pan, he watches with steady gaze.
Three white females (we blush to say it), their bare, brawny arms
resting on their knees, and their disfigured faces drooped into
their hands, form an half circle on the opposite side.

"The world don't think nothin' of us down here-we haven't had a bite
to eat to-night," gruffly resumes the negro.

"May them that have riches enjoy them, for to be supperless is no
uncommon thing wid us," interrupts one of the women, gathering about
her the shreds of her tattered garment, parting the matted hair over
her face, and revealing her ghastly features. The detective turns
his light full upon her. "If we live we live, if we die we
die-nobody cares! Look you yonder, Mr. Fitzgerald," continues the
negro, with a sarcastic leer. Turning his light to where the negro
points, the detective casts a glance into the shadow, and there
discovers the rags move. A dozen pair of glassy eyes are seen
peering from out the filthy coverings, over which lean arms and
blanched hands keep up an incessant motion. Here an emaciated and
heart-sick Welsh girl, of thirteen (enciente) lays shivering on the
broken floor; there an half-famished Scotch woman, two moaning
children nestling at her heart, suffers uncovered upon a pallet of
straw. The busy world without would seem not to have a care for her;
the clergy have got the heathen world upon their shoulders. Hunger,
like a grim tyrant, has driven her to seek shelter in this wretched
abode. Despair has made her but too anxious that the grave or prison
walls should close the record of her sorrows. How tightly she with
her right hand presses her babe to her bosom; how appealingly with
her left she asks a pittance of the detective! Will he not save from
death her starving child? He has nothing to give her, turns his
head, answers only with a look of pity, and moves slowly towards the

"You have not been long off the Island, Washington?" inquires the
detective, with an air of familiarity.

"I wish," replies the negro, sullenly, "I was back. An honest man as
I is, can't get on in this world. Necessity makes rascals of better
men than me, Mr. Fitzgerald. Mr. Krone (he's a white man, though)
makes all the politicians for the district, and charges me eight
dollars a month for this hole. Just measure them two things
together, Mr. Fitzgerald: then see if takin' in sixpenny lodgers
pays." Mr. Fitzgerald commences counting them. "You needn't count,"
pursues the negro, uncovering his stew-pan, "there's only eighteen
in to-night. Have twenty, sometimes! Don't get nothin' for that poor
Scotch woman an' her children. Can't get it when they haint got
it-you know that, Mr. Fitzgerald."

The detective inquires if any of them have seen Mr. Toddleworth
to-day. Washington has not seen him, and makes no scruple of saying
he thinks very little of him.

"Faith an' it's hard times with poor Tom," speaks up one of the
women, in a deep brogue. "It was only last night-the same I'm
tellin' is true, God knows-Mrs. McCarty took him to the Rookery-the
divil a mouthful he'd ate durin' the day-and says, bein' a ginerous
sort of body, come, take a drop, an' a bite to ate. Mister
Toddleworth did that same, and thin lay the night on the floor.
To-night-it's the truth, God knows-Tom Downey took him above. An'
it's Tom who woundn't be the frind of the man who hadn't a shillin'
in his pocket."

The detective shrugs his shoulders, and having thanked the woman,
withdraws into the passage, to the end of which he cautiously picks
his way, and knocks at a distained door that fronts him. A voice
deep and husky bids him enter, which he does, as the lurid glare of
his lantern reveals a room some twelve by sixteen feet, the plaster
hanging in festoons from the black walls, and so low of ceiling that
he scarce can stand upright. Four bunk-beds, a little bureau, a
broken chair or two, and a few cheap pictures, hung here and there
on the sombre walls, give it an air of comfort in grateful contrast
with the room just left. "Who lives here?" inquires the detective,
turning his light full upon each object that attracts his attention.
"Shure it's only me-Mrs. Terence Murphy-and my three sisters (the
youngest is scarce fourteen), and the two English sisters: all
honest people, God knows," replies Mrs. Murphy, with a rapid tongue.
"It's not right of you to live this way," returns the detective,
continuing to survey the prostrate forms of Mrs. Murphy, her three
sisters, and the two fair-haired English girls, and the besotted
beings they claim as husbands. Alarm is pictured in every
countenance. A browned face withdraws under a dingy coverlid, an
anxious face peers from out a pallet on the floor, a prostrate
figure in the corner inquires the object of Mr. Detective
Fitzgerald's visit-and Mrs. Murphy, holding it more becoming of
respectable society, leaves the bed in which she had accommodated
five others, and gets into one she calls her own. A second thought,
and she makes up her mind not to get into bed, but to ask Mr.
Fitzgerald if he will be good enough, when next he meets his Onher,
the Mayor, just to say to him how Mr. Krone is bringing disgrace
upon the house and every one in it, by letting rooms to negroes.
Here she commences pouring out her pent-up wrath upon the head of
Mr. Krone, and the colored gentleman, whom she declares has a dozen
white females in his room every night. The detective encourages her
by saying it is not right of Mr. Krone, who looks more at the color
of his money than the skin of his tenants. "To come of a dacint
family-and be brought to this!" says Mrs. Murphy, allowing her
passion to rise, and swearing to have revenge of the negro in the
next room.

"You drink this gin, yet-I have warned you against it," interposes
the detective, pointing to some bottles on the bureau. "Faith, an'
it's the gin gets a many of us," returns the woman, curtly, as she
gathers about her the skirts of her garments. "Onyhow, yerself
wouldn't deprive us of a drop now and then, jist to keep up the
spirits." The detective shakes his head, then discloses to them the
object of his search, adding, in parenthesis, that he does not think
Mr. Toddleworth is the thief. A dozen tongues are ready to confirm
the detective's belief. "Not a shillin' of it did the poor crature
take-indeed he didn't, now, Mr. Fitzgerald. 'Onor's 'onor, all over
the wurld!" says Mrs. Murphy, grasping the detective by the hand.
"Stay till I tell ye all about it. Mary Maguire-indeed an' ye knows
her, Mr. Fitzgerald-this same afternoon looked in to say--'how do ye
do, Mrs. Murphy. See this! Mrs. Murphy,' says she, 'an' the divil a
sich a pocket of money I'd see before, as she held in her right
hand, jist. 'Long life to ye, Mary,' says I. 'We'll have a pint,
Mrs. Murphy,' says she. 'May ye niver want the worth of it,' says I.
And the pint was not long in, when Mary got a little the worse of
it, and let all out about the money. 'You won't whisper it, Mrs.
Murphy,' says she, 'if I'd tell ye in confidence by what manes I got
the lift?'"

"'Not in the wide world, Mary,' says I; 'ye may trust me for that
same.' 'Shure didn't I raise it from the pocket of an auld woman in
spectacles, that watched the fool beyant dig up the corporation.'
'An' it'll not do yerself much good,' says I, liftin' the same, and
cuttin' away to the house. 'You won't whisper it?' says she."

"I can confirm the truth of that same," rejoins a brusque-figured
man, rising from his pallet, and speaking with regained confidence.
"Mary looked in at the Blazers, and being the worse of liquor,
showed a dale of ready money, and trated everybody, and gave the
money to everybody, and was wilcome wid everybody. Then Mrs. McCarty
got aboard of her ginerosity, and got her into the Rookery, where
the Miss McCartys thought it would not be amiss to have a quart. The
same was brought in, and Mary hersel' was soon like a dead woman oh
the floor, jist--"

"And they got the money all away?" interrupts the detective.

"Faith, an' she'll not have a blessed dollar come daylight,"
continues the man, resuming his pallet.

The detective bids Mrs. Murphy good night, and is soon groping his
way over a rickety old floor, along a dark, narrow passage, scarce
high enough to admit him, and running at right angles with the
first. A door on the left opens into a grotto-like place, the sickly
atmosphere of which seems hurling its poison into the very blood.
"Who's here?" inquires the detective, and a voice, feeble and
hollow, responds: "Lodgers!"

The damp, greasy walls; the broken ceilings; the sooty fireplace,
with its shattered bricks; the decayed wainscoating-its dark,
forlorn aspect, all bespeak it the fit abode of rats. And yet Mr.
Krone thinks it comfortable enough (the authorities think Mr. Krone
the best judge) for the accommodation of thirteen remnants of human
misery, all of whom are here huddled together on the wet, broken
floor, borrowing warmth of one another. The detective's light falls
curiously upon the dread picture, which he stands contemplating. A
pale, sickly girl, of some eleven summers, her hair falling wildly
over her wan features, lays upon some rags near the fireplace,
clinging to an inebriated mother. Here a father, heartsick and
prostrate with disease, seeks to keep warm his three ragged
children, nestling about him. An homeless outcast, necessity forces
him to send them out to prey upon the community by day, and to seek
in this wretched hovel a shelter at night. Yonder the rags are
thrown back, a moving mass is disclosed, and there protrudes a
disfigured face, made ghostly by the shadow of the detective's
lantern. At the detective's feet a prostrate girl, insensible of
gin, is seized with convulsions, clutches with wasted hands at the
few rags about her poor, flabby body, then with fingers grasping,
and teeth firmly set, her whole frame writhes in agony. Your
missionary never whispered a kind, encouraging word in her ear; his
hand never pressed that blanched bone with which she now saddens
your heart! Different might it have been with her had some gentle-
tongued Brother Spyke sought her out, bore patiently with her
waywardness, snatched her from this life of shame, and placed her
high in an atmosphere of light and love.

It is here, gentle shepherds, the benighted stand most in need of
your labors. Seek not to evangelize the Mahomedan world until you
have worked a reform here; and when you have done it, a monument in
heaven will be your reward.

"Mr. Toddleworth is not here," says the detective, withdrawing into
the passage, then ascending a broken and steep stairs that lead into
the third story. Nine shivering forms crouched in one dismal room;
four squabbish women, and three besotted men in another; and in a
third, nine ragged boys and two small girls-such are the scenes of
squalid misery presented here. In a little front room, Mr. Tom
Downey, his wife, and eight children, lay together upon the floor,
half covered with rags. Mr. Downey startles at the appearance of the
detective, rises nervously from his pallet, and after the pause of a
moment, says: "Indeed, yer welcome, Mr. Fitzgerald. Indeed, I have
not-an' God knows it's the truth I tell-seen Mr. Toddleworth the
week;" he replies, in answer to a question from the detective.

"You took a drop with him this afternoon?" continues the detective,
observing his nervousness.

"God knows it's a mistake, Mr. Fitzgerald." Mr. Downey changes the
subject, by saying the foreigners in the garret are a great
nuisance, and disturb him of his rest at night.

A small, crooked stair leads into "Organ-grinders' Roost," in the
garret. To "Organ-grinders' Roost" the detective ascends. If,
reader, you have ever pictured in your mind the cave of despair,
peopled by beings human only in shape, you may form a faint idea of
the wretchedness presented in "Organ-grinders' Roost," at the top of
the house of the Nine Nations. Seven stalworth men shoot out from
among a mass of rags on the floor, and with dark, wandering eyes,
and massive, uncombed beards, commence in their native Italian a
series of interrogatories, not one of which the detective can
understand. They would inquire for whom he seeks at this strange
hour. He (the detective) stands unmoved, as with savage gesture-he
has discovered his star-they tell him they are famishing of hunger.
A pretty black-eyed girl, to whose pale, but beautifully oval face
an expression of sorrow lends a touching softness, lays on the bare
floor, beside a mother of patriarchal aspect. Now she is seized with
a sharp cough that brings blood at every paroxysm. As if forgetting
herself, she lays her hand gently upon the cheek of her mother,
anxious to comfort her. Ah! the hard hand of poverty has been upon
her through life, and stubbornly refuses to relax its grip, even in
her old age. An organ forms here and there a division between the
sleepers; two grave-visaged monkeys sit chattering in the fireplace,
then crouch down on the few charred sticks. A picture of the
crucifix is seen conspicuous over the dingy fireplace, while from
the slanting roof hang several leathern girdles. Oh, what a struggle
for life is their's! Mothers, fathers, daughters, and little
children, thus promiscuously grouped, and coming up in neglect and
shame. There an old man, whom remorseless death is just calling into
eternity, with dull, glassy eyes, white, flowing beard, bald head,
sunken mouth, begrimed and deeply-wrinkled face, rises,
spectre-like, from his pallet. Now he draws from his breast a small
crucifix, and commences muttering to it in a guttural voice. "Peace,
peace, good old man-the holy father will come soon-the holy virgin
will come soon: he will receive the good spirit to his bosom," says
a black-eyed daughter, patting him gently upon the head, then
looking in his face solicitously, as he turns his eyes upward, and
for a few moments seems invoking the mercy of the Allwise. "Yes,
father," she resumes, lightening up the mat of straw upon which he
lays, "the world has been unkind to you, but you are passing from it
to a better-you will be at peace soon."

"Soon, soon, soon," mumbles the old man, in a whisper; and having
carefully returned the crucifix to his bosom, grasps fervently the
hand of the girl and kisses it, as her eyes swim in tears.

Such, to the shame of those who live in princely palaces, and revel
in luxury, are but faintly-drawn pictures of what may be seen in
the house of the Nine Nations.

The detective is about to give up the search, and turns to descend
the stairs, when suddenly he discerns a passage leading to the north
end of the garret. Here, in a little closet-like room, on the right,
the rats his only companions, lies the prostrate form of poor

"Well, I persevered till I found you," says the detective, turning
his light full upon the body. Another minute, and his features
become as marble; he stands aghast, and his whole frame seems
struggling under the effect of some violent shock. "What, what,
what!" he shouts, in nervous accents, "Murder! murder! murder! some
one has murdered him." Motionless the form lies, the shadow of the
light revealing the ghastly spectacle. The head lies in a pool of
blood, the bedimmed eyes, having taken their last look, remain
fixedly set on the black roof. "He has died of a blow-of a broken
skull!" says the frightened official, feeling, and feeling, and
pressing the arms and hands that are fast becoming rigid. Life is
gone out; a pauper's grave will soon close over what remains of this
wretched outcast. The detective hastens down stairs, spreads the
alarm over the neighborhood, and soon the House of the Nine Nations
is the scene of great excitement.



LEAVING for a time the scenes in the House of the Nine Nations, let
us return to Charleston, that we may see how matters appertaining to
this history are progressing. Mr. Snivel is a popular candidate for
the Senate of South Carolina; and having shot his man down in the
street, the question of his fighting abilities we regard as
honorably settled. Madame Montford, too, has by him been kept in a
state of nervous anxiety, for he has not yet found time to search in
the "Poor-house for the woman Munday." All our very first, and
best-known families, have dropped Madame, who is become a wet sheet
on the fashionable world. A select committee of the St. Cecilia has
twice considered her expulsion, while numerous very respectable and
equally active old ladies have been shaking their scandal-bags at
her head. Sins have been laid at her door that would indeed damage a
reputation with a fairer endorsement than New York can give.

Our city at this moment is warmed into a singular state of
excitement. A Georgia editor (we regard editors as belonging to a
very windy class of men), not having the mightiness of our chivalry
before him, said the Union would have peace if South Carolina were
shut up in a penitentiary. And for this we have invited the
indiscreet gentleman to step over the border, that we may hang him,
being extremely fond of such common-place amusements. What the
facetious fellow meant was, that our own State would enjoy peace and
prosperity were our mob-politicians all in the penitentiary. And
with this sensible opinion we heartily agree.

We regard our state of civilization as extremely enviable. To-day we
made a lion of the notorious Hines, the forger. Hines, fashioning
after our hapless chivalry, boasts that South Carolina is his
State-his political mother. He has, nevertheless, graced with his
presence no few penitentiaries. We feasted him in that same prison
where we degrade and starve the honest poor; we knew him guilty of
an henious crime-yet we carried him jubilantly to the "halls of
justice." And while distinguished lawyers tendered their services to
the "clever villain," you might have witnessed in sorrow a mock
trial, and heard a mob sanction with its acclamations his release.

Oh, truth and justice! how feeble is thy existence where the god
slavery reigns. And while men are heard sounding the praises of this
highwayman at the street corners, extolling men who have shot down
their fellow-men in the streets, and calling those "Hon. gentlemen,"
who have in the most cowardly manner assassinated their opponents,
let us turn to a different picture. Two genteely-dressed men are
seen entering the old jail. "I have twice promised them a happy
surprise," says one, whose pale, studious features, wear an
expression of gentleness. The face of the other is somewhat florid,
but beaming with warmth of heart. They enter, having passed up one
of the long halls, a room looking into the prison-yard. Several
weary-faced prisoners are seated round a deal table, playing cards;
among them is the old sailor described in the early part of this
history. "You don't know my friend, here?" says the young man of the
studious face, addressing the prisoners, and pointing to his
companion. The prisoners look inquiringly at the stranger, then
shake their heads in response.

"No, you don't know me: you never knew me when I was a man," speaks
the stranger, raising his hat, as a smile lights up his features.
"You don't know Tom Swiggs, the miserable inebriate--"

A spontaneaus shout of recognition, echoing and re-echoing through
the old halls, interrupts this declaration. One by one the
imprisoned men grasp him by the hand, and shower upon him the
warmest, the heartiest congratulations. A once fallen brother has
risen to a knowledge of his own happiness. Hands that raised him
from that mat of straw, when the mental man seemed lost, now welcome
him restored, a purer being.

"Ah, Spunyarn," says Tom, greeting the old sailor with child-like
fondness, as the tears are seen gushing into the eyes, and coursing
down the browned face of the old mariner, "I owe you a debt I fear I
never can pay. I have thought of you in my absence, and had hoped on
my return to see you released. I am sorry you are not--"

"Well, as to that," interrupts the old sailor, his face resuming its
wonted calm, "I can't-you know I can't, Tom,--sail without a
clearance. I sometimes think I'm never going to get one. Two years,
as you know, I've been here, now backing and then filling, in and
out, just as it suits that chap with the face like a snatch-block.
They call him a justice. 'Pon my soul, Tom, I begin to think justice
for us poor folks is got aground. Well, give us your hand agin' (he
seizes Tom by the hand); its all well wi' you, anyhows.'

"Yes, thank God," says Tom, returning his friendly shake, "I have
conquered the enemy, and my thanks for it are due to those who
reached my heart with kind words, and gave me a brother's hand. I
was not dead to my own degradation; but imprisonment left me no
hope. The sting of disappointment may pain your feelings; hope
deferred may torture you here in a prison; the persecutions of
enemies may madden your very soul; but when a mother turns coldly
from you--No, I will not say it, for I love her still--" he
hesitates, as the old sailor says, with touching simplicity, he
never knew what it was to have a mother or father. Having spread
before the old man and his companions sundry refreshments he had
ordered brought in, and received in return their thanks, he inquires
of Spunyarn how it happened that he got into prison, and how it is
that he remains here a fixture.

"I'll tell you, Tom," says the old sailor, commencing his story.
"We'd just come ashore-had a rough passage-and, says I to myself,
here's lay up ashore awhile. So I gets a crimp, who takes me to a
crib. 'It's all right here-you'll have snug quarters, Jack,' says
he, introducing me to the chap who kept it. I gives him twenty
dollars on stack, and gets up my chest and hammock, thinking it was
all fair and square. Then I meets an old shipmate, who I took in
tow, he being hard ashore for cash. 'Let us top the meetin' with a
glass,' says I. 'Agreed,' says Bill, and I calls her on, the very
best. 'Ten cents a glass,' says the fellow behind the counter,
giving us stuff that burnt as it went. 'Mister,' says I, 'do ye want
to poison a sailor?' 'If you no like him,' says he, 'go get better
somewhere else.' I told him to give me back the twenty, and me

"'You don't get him-clear out of mine 'ouse,' says he,

"'Under the peak,' says I, fetching him a but under the lug that
beached him among his beer-barrels. He picked himself up, and began
talking about a magistrate. And knowing what sort of navigation a
fellow'd have in the hands of that sort of land-craft, I began to
think about laying my course for another port. 'Hold on here,' says
a big-sided land-lubber, seizing me by the fore-sheets. 'Cast off
there,' says I, 'or I'll put ye on yer beam-ends.'

"'I'm a constable,' says he, pulling out a pair of irons he said
must go on my hands."

"I hope he did not put them on," interrupts the young theologian,
for it is he who accompanies Tom.

"Avast! I'll come to that. He said he'd only charge me five dollars
for going to jail without 'em, so rather than have me calling
damaged, I giv him it. It was only a trifle. 'Now, Jack,' says the
fellow, as we went along, in a friendly sort of way, 'just let us
pop in and see the justice. I think a ten 'll get ye a clearance.'
'No objection to that,' says I, and in we went, and there sat the
justice, face as long and sharp as a marlinspike, in a dirty old
hole, that looked like our forecastle. 'Bad affair this, Jack,' says
he, looking up over his spectacles. 'You must be locked up for a
year and a day, Jack.'

"'You'll give a sailor a hearin', won't ye?' says I. 'As to
that,--well, I don't know, Jack; you musn't break the laws of South
Carolina when you get ashore. You seem like a desirable sailor, and
can no doubt get a ship and good wages-this is a bad affair.
However, as I'm not inclined to be hard, if you are disposed to pay
twenty dollars, you can go.' 'Law and justice,' says I, shaking my
fist at him-'do ye take this salt-water citizen for a fool?'

"'Take him away, Mr. Stubble-lock him up!--lock him up!' says the
justice, and here I am, locked up, hard up, hoping. I'd been tied up
about three weeks when the justice looked in one day, and after
inquiring for me, and saying, 'good morning, Jack,' and seeming a
little by the head: 'about this affair of yourn, Jack,' says he,
'now, if you'll mind your eye when you get out--my trouble's worth
ten dollars-and pay me, I'll discharge you, and charge the costs to
the State.'

"'Charge the cost to the State!' says I. 'Do you take Spunyarn for a
marine?' At this he hauled his wind, and stood out."

"You have had a hearing before the Grand Jury, have you not?"
inquires Tom, evincing a deep interest in the story of his old

"Not I. This South Carolina justice is a hard old craft to sail in.
The Grand Jury only looks in once every six months, and then looks
out again, without inquiring who's here. And just before the time it
comes round, I'm shuffled out, and just after it has left, I'm
shuffled in again-fees charged to the State! That's it. So here I
am, a fee-making machine, bobbing in and out of jail to suit the
conveniences of Mister Justice. I don't say this with any ill will-I
don't." Having concluded his story, the old sailor follows his
visitors to the prison gate, takes an affectionate leave of Tom
Swiggs, and returns to join his companions. On the following day,
Tom intercedes with Mr. Snivel, for it is he who thus harvests fees
of the State by retaining the old sailor in prison, and procures his
release. And here, in Mr. Snivel, you have an instrument of that
debased magistracy which triumphs over the weak, that sits in
ignorance and indolence, that invests the hypocritical designer with
a power almost absolute, that keeps justice muzzled on her
throne-the natural offspring of that demon-making institution that
scruples not to brunt the intellect of millions, while dragging a
pall of sloth over the land.



MARIA MCARTHUR having, by her womanly sympathy, awakened the
generous impulses of Tom Swiggs, he is resolved they shall have a
new channel for their action. Her kindness touched his heart; her
solicitude for his welfare gained his affections, and a recognition
of that love she so long and silently cherished for him, is the
natural result. The heart that does not move to woman's kindness,
must indeed be hard. But there were other things which strengthened
Tom's affections for Maria. The poverty of her aged father; the
insults offered her by Keepum and Snivel; the manner in which they
sought her ruin while harassing her father; the artlessness and lone
condition of the pure-minded girl; and the almost holy affection
evinced for the old man on whom she doated-all tended to bring him
nearer and nearer to her, until he irresistibly found himself at her
feet, pledging that faith lovers call eternal. Maria is not of that
species of being the world calls beautiful; but there is about her
something pure, thoughtful, even noble; and this her lone condition
heightens. Love does not always bow before beauty. The singularities
of human nature are most strikingly blended in woman. She can
overcome physical defects; she can cultivate attractions most ap-
preciated by those who study her worth deepest. Have you not seen
those whose charms at first-sight found no place in your thoughts,
but as you were drawn nearer and nearer to them, so also did your
esteem quicken, and that esteem, almost unconsciously, you found
ripening into affection, until in turn you were seized with an
ardent passion? You have. And you have found yourself enamored of
the very one against whom you had endeavored most to restrain your
generous impulses. Like the fine lines upon a picture with a
repulsive design, you trace them, and recur to them until your
admiration is carried away captive. So it is with woman's charms.
Tom Swiggs, then, the restored man, bows before the simple goodness
of the daughter of the old Antiquary.

Mr. Trueman, the shipowner, gave Tom employment, and has proved a
friend to him. Tom, in turn, has so far gained his confidence and
respect that Mr. Trueman contemplates sending him to London, on
board one of his ships. Nor has Tom forgotten to repay the old
Antiquary, who gave him a shelter when he was homeless; this home is
still under the roof of the old man, toward whose comfort he
contributes weekly a portion of his earnings. If you could but look
into that little back-parlor, you would see a picture of humble
cheerfulness presented in the old man, his daughter, and Tom Swiggs,
seated round the tea-table. Let us, however, turn and look into one
of our gaudy saloons, that we may see how different a picture is
presented there.

It is the night previous to an election for Mayor. Leaden clouds
hang threatening over the city; the gaslight throws out its shadows
at an early hour; and loud-talking men throng our street-corners and
public resorts. Our politicians tell us that the destiny of the rich
and the poor is to forever guard that institution which employs all
our passions, and absorbs all our energies.

In a curtained box, at the St. Charles, sits Mr. Snivel and George
Mullholland-the latter careworn and downcast of countenance. "Let us
finish this champaign, my good fellow," says the politician,
emptying his glass. "A man-I mean one who wants to get up in the
world-must, like me, have two distinct natures. He must have a
grave, moral nature-that is necessary to the affairs of State. And
he must, to accommodate himself to the world (law and society, I
mean), have a terribly loose nature-a perfect quicksand, into which
he can drag everything that serves himself. You have seen how I can
develop both these, eh?" The downcast man shakes his head, as the
politician watches him with a steady gaze. "Take the advice of a
friend, now, let the Judge alone-don't threaten again to shoot that
girl. Threats are sometimes dragged in as testimony against a man
(Mr. Snivel taps George admonishingly on the arm); and should
anything of a serious nature befall her-the law is curious-why, what
you have said might implicate you, though you were innocent."

"You," interrupts George, "have shot your man down in the street."

"A very different affair, George. My position in society protects
me. I am a member of the Jockey-Club, a candidate for the State
Senate--a Justice of the Peace--yes, a politician! You are--Well, I
was going to say-nothing! We regard northerners as enemies;
socially, they are nothing. Come, George, come with me. I am your
best friend. You shall see the power in my hands." The two men
saunter out together, pass up a narrow lane leading from King
Street, and are soon groping their way up the dark stairway of an
old, neglected-looking wooden building, that for several years has
remained deserted by everything but rats and politicians,--one
seeming to gnaw away at the bowels of the nation, the other at the
bowels of the old building. Having ascended to the second floor, Mr.
Snivel touches a spring, a suspicious little trap opens, and two
bright eyes peer out, as a low, whispering voice inquires, "Who's
there?" Mr. Snivel has exchanged the countersign, and with his
companion is admitted into a dark vestibule, in which sits a brawny

"Cribs are necessary, sir-I suppose you never looked into one

George, in a voice discovering timidity, says he never has.

"You must have cribs, and crib-voters; they are necessary to get
into high office-indeed, I may say, to keep up with the political
spirit of the age." Mr. Snivel is interrupted by the deep, coarse
voice of Milman Mingle, the vote-cribber, whose broad, savage face
looks out at a small guard trap. "All right," he says, recognizing
Mr. Snivel. Another minute, and a door opens into a long,
sombre-looking room, redolent of the fumes of whiskey and tobacco.
"The day is ours. We'll elect our candidate, and then my election is
certain; naturalized thirteen rather green ones to-day-to-morrow
they will be trump cards. Stubbs has attended to the little matter
of the ballot-boxes." Mr. Snivel gives the vote-cribber's hand a
warm shake, and turns to introduce his friend. The vote-cribber has
seen him before. "There are thirteen in," he says, and two more he
has in his eye, and will have in to-night, having sent trappers out
for them.

Cold meats, bread, cheese, and crackers, and a bountiful supply of
bad whiskey, are spread over a table in the centre of the room;
while the pale light of two small lamps, suspended from the ceiling,
throws a curious shadow over the repulsive features of thirteen
forlorn, ragged, and half-drunken men, sitting here and there round
the room, on wooden benches. You see ignorance and cruelty written
in their very countenances. For nearly three weeks they have not
scented the air of heaven, but have been held here in a despicable
bondage. Ragged and filthy, like Falstaff's invincibles, they will
be marched to the polls to-morrow, and cast their votes at the bid
of the cribber. "A happy lot of fellows," says Mr. Snivel,
exultingly. "I have a passion for this sort of business-am general
supervisor of all these cribs, you understand. We have several of
them. Some of these 'drifts' we kidnap, and some come and be locked
up of their own accord-merely for the feed and drink. We use them,
and then snuff them out until we want them again." Having turned
from George, and complimented the vote-cribber for his skill, he
bids him good-night. Together George and the politician wend their
way to an obscure part of the city, and having passed up two flight
of winding stairs, into a large, old-fashioned house on the Neck,
are in a sort of barrack-room, fitted up with bunks and benches, and
filled with a grotesque assembly, making night jubilant-eating,
drinking, smoking, and singing. "A jolly set of fellows," says Mr.
Snivel, with an expression of satisfaction. "This is a decoy
crib-the vagabonds all belong to the party of our opponents, but
don't know it. We work in this way: we catch them-they are mostly
foreigners-lock them up, give them good food and drink, and make
them-not the half can speak our language-believe we belong to the
same party. They yield, as submissive as curs. To morrow, we-this is
in confidence-drug them all, send them into a fast sleep, in which
we keep them till the polls are closed, then, not wanting them
longer, we kick them out for a set of drunkards. Dangerous sort of
cribbing, this. I let you into the secret out of pure friendship."
Mr. Snivel pauses. George has at heart something of deeper interest
to him than votes and vote-cribbers. But why, he says to himself,
does Mr. Snivel evince this anxiety to befriend me? This question is
answered by Mr. Snivel inviting him to take a look into the Keno



THE clock has just struck twelve. Mr. Snivel and George, passing
from the scenes of our last chapter, enter a Keno den,

A gambling den. situated on Meeting street. "You must get money,
George. Here you are nothing without money. Take this, try your
hand, make your genius serve you." Mr. Snivel puts twenty dollars
into George's hand. They are in a room some twenty by thirty feet in
dimensions, dimly-lighted. Standing here and there are gambling
tables, around which are seated numerous mechanics, losing, and
being defrauded of that for which they have labored hard during the
week. Hope, anxiety, and even desperation is pictured on the
countenances of the players. Maddened and disappointed, one young
man rises from a table, at which sits a craven-faced man sweeping
the winnings into his pile, and with profane tongue, says he has
lost his all. Another, with flushed face and bloodshot eyes,
declares it the sixth time he has lost his earnings here. A third
reels confusedly about the room, says a mechanic is but a dog in
South Carolina; and the sooner he comes to a dog's end the better.

Mr. Snivel points George to a table, at which he is soon seated.
"Blank-blank-blank!" he reiterates, as the numbers turn up, and one
by one the moody bank-keeper sweeps the money into his
fast-increasing heap. "Cursed fate!--it is against me," mutters the
forlorn man. "Another gone, and yet another! How this deluding, this
fascinating money tortures me." With hectic face and agitated nerve,
he puts down his last dollar. "Luck's mysterious!" exclaims Mr.
Snivel, looking on unmoved, as the man of the moody face declares a
blank, and again sweeps the money into his heap. "Gone!" says
George, "all's gone now." He rises from his seat, in despair.

"Don't get frantic, George-be a philosopher-try again-here's a ten.
Luck 'll turn," says Mr. Snivel, patting the deluded man familiarly
on the shoulder, as he resumes his seat. "Will poverty never cease
torturing me? I have tried to be a man, an honest man, a respectable
man. And yet, here I am, again cast upon a gambler's sea, struggling
with its fearful tempests. How cold, how stone-like the faces around
me!" he muses, watching with death-like gaze each number as it turns
up. Again he has staked his last dollar; again fortune frowns upon
him. Like a furnace of livid flame, the excitement seems burning up
his brain. "I am a fool again," he says, throwing the blank number
contemptuously upon the table. "Take it-take it, speechless,
imperturbable man! Rake it into your pile, for my eyes are dim, and
my fortune I must seek elsewhere."

A noise at the door, as of some one in distress, is heard, and there
rushes frantically into the den a pale, dejected-looking woman,
bearing in her arms a sick and emaciated babe. "Oh, William!
William!--has it come to this?" she shrieks, casting a wild glance
round the den, until, with a dark, sad expression, her eye falls
upon the object of her search. It is her husband, once a happy
mechanic. Enticed by degrees into this den of ruin, becoming
fascinated with its games of chance, he is now an habitue. To-night
he left his suffering family, lost his all here, and now, having
drank to relieve his feelings, lies insensible on the floor. "Come
home!--come home! for God's sake come home to your suffering family,"
cries the woman, vaulting to him and taking him by the hand, her
hair floating dishevelled down her shoulders. "I sent Tommy into the
street to beg-I am ashamed-and he is picked up by the watch for a
thief, a vagrant!" The prostrate man remains insensible to her
appeal. Two policemen, who have been quietly neglecting their duties
while taking a few chances, sit unmoved. Mr. Snivel thinks the woman
better be removed. "Our half-starved mechanics," he says, "are a
depraved set; and these wives they bring with them from the North
are a sort of cross between a lean stage-driver and a wildcat. She
seems a poor, destitute creature-just what they all come to, out
here." Mr. Snivel shrugs his shoulders, bids George good night, and
takes his departure. "Take care of yourself, George," he says
admonitiously, as the destitute man watches him take his leave. The
woman, frantic at the coldness and apathy manifested for her
distress, lays her babe hurriedly upon the floor, and with passion
and despair darting from her very eyes, makes a lunge across the
keno table at the man who sits stoically at the bank. In an instant
everything is turned into uproar and confusion. Glasses, chairs, and
tables, are hurled about the floor; shriek follows shriek--"help!
pity me! murder!" rises above the confusion, the watch without sound
the alarm, and the watch within suddenly become conscious of their
duty. In the midst of all the confusion, a voice cries out: "My
pocket book-my pocket book!--I have been robbed." A light flashes
from a guardsman's lantern, and George Mullholland is discovered
with the forlorn woman in his arms-she clings tenaciously to her
babe-rushing into the street.



A WEEK has rolled into the past since the event at the Keno den.

Madame Montford, pale, thoughtful, and abstracted, sits musing in
her parlor. "Between this hope and fear-this remorse of conscience,
this struggle to overcome the suspicions of society, I have no
peace. I am weary of this slandering-this unforgiving world. And yet
it is my own conscience that refuses to forgive me. Go where I will
I see the cold finger of scorn pointed at me: I read in every
countenance, 'Madame Montford, you have wronged some one-your guilty
conscience betrays you!' I have sought to atone for my error-to
render justice to one my heart tells me I have wronged, yet I cannot
shake off the dread burden; and there seems rest for me only in the
grave. Ah! there it is. The one error of my life, and the means used
to conceal it, may have brought misery upon more heads than one."
She lays her hand upon her heart, and shakes her head sorrowfully.
"Yes! something like a death-knell rings in my ears-'more than one
have you sent, unhappy, to the grave.' Rejected by the one I fancy
my own; my very touch scorned; my motives misconstrued-all, perhaps,
by-a doubt yet hangs between us-an abandoned stranger. Duty to my
conscience has driven me to acts that have betrayed me to society. I
cannot shake my guilt from me even for a day; and now society coldly
cancels all my claims to its attentions. If I could believe her
dead; if I but knew this girl was not the object of all my heart's
unrest, then the wearying doubt would be buried, and my heart might
find peace in some remote corner of the earth. Well, well-perhaps I
am wasting all this torture on an unworthy object. I should have
thought of this sooner, for now foul slander is upon every tongue,
and my misery is made thrice painful by my old flatterers. I will
make one more effort, then if I fail of getting a certain clue to
her, I will remove to some foreign country, shake off these haunting
dreams, and be no longer a victim to my own thoughts." Somewhat
relieved, Madame is roused from her reverie by a gentle tap at the
door. "I have waited your coming, and am glad to see you;" she says,
extending her hand, as a servant, in response to her command, ushers
into her presence no less a person than Tom Swiggs. "I have sent for
you," she resumes, motioning him gracefully to a chair, in which she
begs he will be seated, "because I feel I can confide in you--"

"Anything in my power is at your service, Madame," modestly
interposes Tom, regaining confidence.

"I entrusted something of much importance to me, to Mr. Snivel--"

"We call him the Hon. Mr. Snivel now, since he has got to be a great
politician," interrupts Tom.

"And he not only betrayed my confidence," pursues Madame Montford,
"but retains the amount I paid him, and forgets to render the
promised service. You, I am told, can render me a service--"

"As for Mr. Snivel," pursues Tom, hastily, "he has of late had his
hands full, getting a poor but good-natured fellow, by the name of
George Mullholland, into trouble. His friend, Judge Sleepyhorn, and
he, have for some time had a plot on hand to crush this poor fellow.
A few nights ago Snivel drove him mad at a gambling den, and in his
desperation he robbed a man of his pocket-book. He shared the money
with a poor woman he rescued at the den, and that is the way it was
discovered that he was the criminal. He is a poor, thoughtless man,
and he has been goaded on from one thing to another, until he was
driven to commit this act. First, his wife was got away from him--"
Tom pauses and blushes, as Madame Montford says: "His wife was got
away from him?"

"Yes, Madame," returns Tom, with an expression of sincerity. "The
Judge got her away from him; and this morning he was arraigned
before that same Judge for examination, and Mr. Snivel was a
principal witness, and there was enough found against him to commit
him for trial at the Sessions." Discovering that this information is
exciting her emotions, Tom pauses, and contemplates her with steady
gaze. She desires he will be her guide to the Poor-House, and there
assist her in searching for Mag Munday, whom, report says, is
confined in a cell. Tom having expressed his readiness to serve her,
they are soon on their way to that establishment.

A low, squatty building, with a red, moss-covered roof, two lean
chimneys peeping out, the windows blockaded with dirt, and situated
in one of the by-lanes of the city, is our Poor-House, standing half
hid behind a crabbed old wall, and looking very like a
much-neglected Quaker church in vegetation. We boast much of our
institutions, and this being a sample of them, we hold it in great
reverence. You may say that nothing so forcibly illustrates a state
of society as the character of its institutions for the care of
those unfortunate beings whom a capricious nature has deprived of
their reason. We agree with you. We see our Poor-House crumbling to
the ground with decay, yet imagine it, or affect to imagine it, a
very grand edifice, in every way suited to the wants of such rough
ends of humanity as are found in it. Like Satan, we are brilliant
believers in ourselves, not bad sophists, and singularly clever in
finding apologies for all great crimes.

At the door of the Poor-House stands a dilapidated hearse, to which
an old gray horse is attached. A number of buzzards have gathered
about him, turn their heads suspiciously now and then, and seem
meditating a descent upon his bones at no very distant day. Madame
casts a glance at the hearse, and the poor old horse, and the cawing
buzzards, then follows Tom, timidly, to the door. He has rung the
bell, and soon there stands before them, in the damp doorway, a
fussy old man, with a very broad, red face, and a very blunt nose,
and two very dull, gray eyes, which he fortifies with a pair of
massive-framed spectacles, that have a passion for getting upon the
tip-end of his broad blunt nose.

"There, you want to see somebody! Always somebody wanted to be seen,
when we have dead folks to get rid of," mutters the old man,
querulously, then looking inquiringly at the visitors. Tom says they
would like to go over the premises. "Yes-know you would. Ain't so
dull but I can see what folks want when they look in here." The old
man, his countenance wearing an expression of stupidity, runs his
dingy fingers over the crown of his bald head, and seems questioning
within himself whether to admit them. "I'm not in a very good humor
to-day," he rather growls than speaks, "but you can come in--I'm of
a good family-and I'll call Glentworthy. I'm old-I can't get about
much. We'll all get old." The building seems in a very bad temper

Mr. Glentworthy is called. Mr. Glentworthy, with a profane
expletive, pops his head out at the top of the stairs, and inquires
who wants him. The visitors have advanced into a little, narrow
passage, lumbered with all sorts of rubbish, and swarming with
flies. Mr. Saddlerock (for this is the old man's name) seems in a
declining mood, the building seems in a declining mood, Mr.
Glentworthy seems in a declining mood-everything you look at seems
in a declining mood. "As if I hadn't enough to do, gettin' off this
dead cribber!" interpolates Mr. Glentworthy, withdrawing his wicked
face, and taking himself back into a room on the left.

"He's not so bad a man, only it doesn't come out at first;" pursues
Mr. Saddlerock, continuing to rub his head, and to fuss round on his
toes. His mind, Madame Montford verily believes stuck in a fog. "We
must wait a bit," says the old man, his face seeming to elongate.
"You can look about-there's not much to be seen, and what there
is-well, it's not the finest." Mr. Saddlerock shuffles his feet, and
then shuffles himself into a small side room. Through the building
there breathes a warm, sickly atmosphere; the effect has left its
marks upon the sad, waning countenances of its unfortunate inmates.

Tom and Madame Montford set out to explore the establishment. They
enter room after room, find them small, dark, and filthy beyond
description. Some are crowded with half-naked, flabby females, whose
careworn faces, and well-starved aspect, tells a sorrowful tale of
the chivalry. An abundant supply of profane works, in yellow and red
covers, would indeed seem to have been substituted for food, which,
to the shame of our commissioners, be it said, is a scarce article
here. Cooped up in another little room, after the fashion of wild
beasts in a cage, are seven poor idiots, whose forlorn condition,
sad, dull countenances, as they sit round a table, staring vacantly
at one another, like mummies in contemplation, form a wild but
singularly touching picture. Each countenance pales before the
seeming study of its opponent, until, enraptured and amazed, they
break out into a wild, hysterical laugh. And thus, poisoned,
starved, and left to die, does time with these poor mortals fleet

The visitors ascend to the second story. A shuffling of feet in a
room at the top of the stairs excites their curiosity. Mr.
Glentworthy's voice grates harshly on the ear, in language we cannot
insert in this history. "Our high families never look into low
places-chance if the commissioner has looked in here for years,"
says Tom, observing Madame Montford protect her inhaling organs with
her perfumed cambric. "There is a principle of economy carried
out-and a very nice principle, too, in getting these poor out of the
world as quick as possible." Tom pushes open a door, and, heavens!
what a sight is here. He stands aghast in the doorway-Madam, on
tip-toe, peers anxiously in over his shoulders. Mr. Glentworthy and
two negroes-the former slightly inebriated, the latter trembling of
fright-are preparing to box up a lifeless mass, lying carelessly
upon the floor. The distorted features, the profusion of long, red
hair, curling over a scared face, and the stalworth figure, shed
some light upon the identity of the deceased. "Who is it?"
ejaculates Mr. Glentworthy, in response to an inquiry from Tom. Mr.
Glentworthy shrugs his shoulders, and commences whistling a tune.
"That cove!" he resumes, having stopped short in his tune, "a man
what don't know that cove, never had much to do with politics.
Stuffed more ballot boxes, cribbed more voters, and knocked down
more slip-shod citizens-that cove has, than, put 'em all together,
would make a South Carolina regiment. A mighty man among
politicians, he was! Now the devil has cribbed him-he'll know how
good it is!" Mr. Glentworthy says this with an air of superlative
satisfaction, resuming his tune. The dead man is Milman Mingle, the
vote-cribber, who died of a wound he received at the hands of an
antagonist, whom he was endeavoring to "block out" while going to
the polls to cast his vote. "Big politician, but had no home!" says
Madame, with a sigh.

Mr. Glentworthy soon had what remained of the vote-cribber-the man
to whom so many were indebted for their high offices-into a deal
box, and the deal box into the old hearse, and the old hearse,
driven by a mischievous negro, hastening to that great crib to which
we must all go. "Visitors," Mr. Glentworthy smiles, "must not
question the way we do business here, I get no pay, and there's only
old Saddlerock and me to do all the work. Old Saddlerock, you see,
is a bit of a miser, and having a large family of small Saddlerocks
to provide for, scrapes what he can into his own pocket. No one is
the wiser. They can't be-they never come in." Mr. Glentworthy, in
reply to a question from Madame Montford, says Mag Munday (he has
some faint recollection of her) was twice in the house, which he
dignifies with the title of "Institution." She never was in the "mad
cells"--to his recollection. "Them what get there, mostly die there."
A gift of two dollars secures Mr. Glentworthy's services, and
restores him to perfect good nature. "You will remember," says Tom,
"that this woman ran neglected about the streets, was much abused,
and ended in becoming a maniac." Mr. Glentworthy remembers very
well, but adds: "We have so many maniacs on our hands, that we can't
distinctly remember them all. The clergymen take good care never to
look in here. They couldn't do any good if they did, for nobody
cares for the rubbish sent here; and if you tried to Christianize
them, you would only get laughed at. I don't like to be laughed at.
Munday's not here now, that's settled-but I'll-for curiosity's
sake-show you into the 'mad cells.'" Mr. Glentworthy leads the way,
down the rickety old stairs, through the lumbered passage, into an
open square, and from thence into a small out-building, at the
extreme end of which some dozen wet, slippery steps, led into a dark
subterranean passage, on each side of which are small, dungeon-like
cells. "Heavens!" exclaims Madame Montford, picking her way down the
steep, slippery steps. "How chilling! how tomb-like! Can it be that
mortals are confined here, and live?" she mutters, incoherently. The
stifling atmosphere is redolent of disease.

"It straightens 'em down, sublimely-to put 'em in here," says Mr.
Glentworthy, laconically, lighting his lamp. "I hope to get old
Saddlerock in here. Give him such a mellowing!" He turns his light,
and the shadows play, spectre-like, along a low, wet aisle, hung on
each side with rusty bolts and locks, revealing the doors of cells.
An ominous stillness is broken by the dull clank of chains, the
muttering of voices, the shuffling of limbs; then a low wail breaks
upon the ear, and rises higher and higher, shriller and shriller,
until in piercing shrieks it chills the very heart. Now it ceases,
and the echoes, like the murmuring winds, die faintly away. "Look in
here, now," says Mr. Glentworthy--"a likely wench-once she was!"

He swings open a door, and there issues from a cell about four feet
six inches wide, and nine long, the hideous countenance of a poor,
mulatto girl, whose shrunken body, skeleton-like arms, distended and
glassy eyes, tell but too forcibly her tale of sorrow. How vivid the
picture of wild idiocy is pictured in her sad, sorrowing face. No
painter's touch could have added a line more perfect. Now she rushes
forward, with a suddenness that makes Madame Montford shrink back,
appalled-now she fixes her eyes, hangs down her head, and gives vent
to her tears. "My soul is white-yes, yes, yes! I know it is white;
God tells me it is white-he knows-he never tortures. He doesn't keep
me here to die-no, I can't die here in the dark. I won't get to
heaven if I do. Oh! yes, yes, yes, I have a white soul, but my skin
is not," she rather murmurs than speaks, continuing to hold down her
head, while parting her long, clustering hair over her shoulders.
Notwithstanding the spectacle of horror presented in this living
skeleton, there is something in her look and action which bespeaks
more the abuse of long confinement than the result of natural
aberration of mind. "She gets fierce now and then, and yells," says
the unmoved Glentworthy, "but she won't hurt ye--"

Can it be possible that such things as are here pictured have an
existence among a people laying any claim to a state of
civilization? the reader may ask. The author would here say that to
the end of fortifying himself against the charge of exaggeration, he
submitted the MS. of this chapter to a gentleman of the highest
respectability in Charleston, whose unqualified approval it
received, as well as enlisting his sympathies in behalf of the
unfortunate lunatics found in the cells described. Four years have
passed since that time. He subsequently sent the author the
following, from the "Charleston Courier," which speaks for itself.


"January 4th, 1843.

"The following communication was received from William M. Lawton,
Esq., Chairman of the Commissioners of the Poor-house.

"'Charleston, Dec. 17th, 1852. "'To the Honorable, the City Council
of Charleston:

"'By a resolution of the Board of Commissioners of this City, I have
been instructed to communicate with your honorable body in relation
to the insane paupers now in Poor-house', (the insane in a
poorhouse!) 'and to request that you will adopt the necessary
provision for sending them to the Lunatic Asylum at Columbia.

* * * *

There are twelve on the list, many of whom, it is feared, have
already remained too long in an institution quite unsuited to their
unfortunate situation.

"'With great respect, your very obedient servant,

"'(Signed) WM. M. LAWTON, "'Chairman of the Board of Commissioners.'"

"How long," inquires Madame Montford, who has been questioning
within herself whether any act of her life could have brought a
human being into such a place, "has she been confined here?" Mr.
Glentworthy says she tells her own tale.

"Five years,--five years,--five long, long years, I have waited for
him in the dark, but he won't come," she lisps in a faltering voice,
as her emotions overwhelm her. Then crouching back upon the floor,
she supports her head pensively in her left hand, her elbow resting
on her knee, and her right hand poised against the brick wall.
"Pencele!" says Mr. Glentworthy, for such is the wretched woman's
name, "cannot you sing a song for your friends?" Turning aside to
Madame Montford, he adds, "she sings nicely. We shall soon get her
out of the way-can't last much longer." Mr. Glentworthy, drawing a
small bottle from his pocket, places it to his lips, saying he stole
it from old Saddlerock, and gulps down a portion of the contents.
His breath is already redolent of whiskey. "Oh, yes, yes, yes! I can
sing for them, I can smother them with kisses. Good faces seldom
look in here, seldom look in here," she rises to her feet, and
extends her bony hand, as the tears steal down Madame Montford's
cheeks. Tom stands speechless. He wishes he had power to redress the
wrongs of this suffering maniac-his very soul fires up against the
coldness and apathy of a people who permit such outrages against
humanity. "There!--he comes! he comes! he comes!" the maniac speaks,
with faltering voice, then strikes up a plaintive air, which she
sings with a voice of much sweetness, to these words: When you find
him, speed him to me, And this heart will cease its bleeding, &c.

The history of all this poor maniac's sufferings is told in a few
simple words that fall incautiously from Mr. Glentworthy's lips:
"Poor fool, she had only been married a couple of weeks, when they
sold her husband down South. She thinks if she keeps mad, he'll come

There was something touching, something melancholy in the music of
her song, as its strains verberated and reverberated through the
dread vault, then, like the echo of a lover's lute on some Alpine
hill, died softly away.



MADAME MONTFORD returns, unsuccessful, to her parlor. It is
conscience that unlocks the guilty heart, that forces mortals to
seek relief where there is no chance of finding it. It was this
irresistible emotion that found her counciling Tom Swiggs, making of
him a confidant in her search for the woman she felt could remove
the doubt, in respect to Anna's identity, that hung so painfully in
her mind. And yet, such was her position, hesitating as it were
between her ambition to move in fashionable society, and her anxiety
to atone for a past error, that she dare not disclose the secret of
all her troubles even to him. She sought him, not that he could
soften her anxiety, but that being an humble person, she could
pursue her object through him, unobserved to society-in a word, that
he would be a protection against the apprehensions of
scandal-mongers. Such are the shifts to which the ambitious guilty
have recourse. What she has beheld in the poorhouse, too, only
serves to quicken her thoughts of the misery she may have inflicted
upon others, and to stimulate her resolution to persevere in her
search for the woman. Conscious that wealth and luxury does not
always bring happiness, and that without a spotless character, woman
is but a feeble creature in this world, she would now sacrifice
everything else for that one ennobling charm.

It may be proper here to add, that although Tom Swiggs could not
enter into the repentant woman's designs, having arranged with his
employer to sail for London in a few days, she learned of him
something that reflected a little more light in her path. And that
was, that the woman Anna Bonard, repined of her act in leaving
George Mullholland, to whom she was anxious to return-that she was
now held against her will; that she detested Judge Sleepyhorn,
although he had provided lavishly for her comfort. Anna knew George
loved her, and that love, even to an abandoned woman (if she could
know it sincere), was dearer to her than all else. She learned, too,
that high up on Anna's right arm, there was imprinted in blue and
red ink, two hearts and a broken anchor. And this tended further to
increase her anxiety. And while evolving all these things in her
mind, and contemplating the next best course to pursue, her parlor
is invaded by Mr. Snivel. He is no longer Mr. Soloman, nor Mr.
Snivel. He is the Hon. Mr. Snivel. It is curious to contemplate the
character of the men to whose name we attach this mark of
distinction. "I know you will pardon my seeming neglect, Madame," he
says, grasping her hand warmly, as a smile of exultation lights up
his countenance. "The fact is, we public men are so absorbed in the
affairs of the nation, that we have scarce a thought to give to
affairs of a private nature. We have elected our ticket. I was
determined it should be so, if Jericho fell. And, more than all, I
am made an honorable, by the popular sentiment of the people--"

"To be popular with the people, is truly an honor," interrupts the
lady, facetiously.

"Thank you-O, thank you, for the compliment," pursues our hero.
"Now, as to this unfortunate person you seek, knowing it was of
little use to search for her in our institutions of charity-one
never can find out anything about the wretches who get into them-I
put the matter into the hands of one of our day-police-a plaguey
sharp fellow-and he set about scenting her out. I gave him a large
sum, and promised him more if successful. Here, then, after a long
and tedious search-I have no doubt the fellow earned his money-is
what he got from New York, this morning." The Hon. Mr. Snivel,
fixing his eye steadily upon her, hands her a letter which reads

"NEW YORK, Dec. 14th, 18-.

"Last night, while making search after a habitant of the Points, a
odd old chip what has wandered about here for some years, some think
he has bin a better sort of man once, I struck across the woman you
want. She is somewhere tucked away in a Cow Bay garret, and is awful
crazy; I'll keep me eye out till somethin' further. If her friends
wants to give her a lift out of this place, they'd better come and
see me at once.

"Yours, as ever,


Mr. Snivel ogles Madame Montford over the page of a book he affects
to read. "Guilt! deep and strong," he says within himself, as
Madame, with flushed countenance and trembling hand, ponders and
ponders over the paper. Then her emotions quicken, her eyes exchange
glances with Mr. Snivel, and she whispers, with a sigh, "found-at
last! And yet how foolish of me to give way to my feelings? The
affair, at best, is none of mine." Mr. Snivel bows, and curls his
Saxon mustache. "To do good for others is the natural quality of a
generous nature."

Madame, somewhat relieved by this condescension of the Hon.
gentleman, says, in reply, "I am curious at solving family affairs."

"And I!" says our hero, with refreshing coolness--"always ready to do
a bit of a good turn."

Madame pauses, as if in doubt whether to proceed or qualify what she
has already said. "A relative, whose happiness I make my own," she
resumes, and again pauses, while the words tremble upon her lips.
She hears the words knelling in her ears: "A guilty conscience needs
no betrayer."

"You have," pursues our hero, "a certain clue; and of that I may
congratulate you."

Madame says she will prepare at once to return to her home in New
York, and-and here again the words hang upon her lips. She was going
to say, her future proceedings would be governed by the paper she
holds so nervously in her fingers.

Snivel here receives a nostrum from the lady's purse.
"Truly,!--Madame," he says, in taking leave of her, "the St. Cecilia
will regret you-we shall all regret you; you honored and graced our
assemblies so. Our first families will part with you reluctantly. It
may, however, be some satisfaction to know how many kind things will
be said of you in your absence." Mr. Snivel makes his last bow, a
sarcastic smile playing over his face, and passes into the street.

On the following day she encloses a present of fifty dollars to Tom
Swiggs, enjoins the necessity of his keeping her visit to the
poor-house a secret, and takes leave of Charleston.

And here our scene changes, and we must transport the reader to New
York. It is the day following the night Mr. Detective Fitzgerald
discovered what remained of poor Toddleworth, in the garret of the
House of the Nine Nations. The City Hall clock strikes twelve. The
goodly are gathered into the House of the Foreign Missions, in which
peace and respectability would seem to preside. The good-natured fat
man is in his seat, pondering over letters lately received from the
"dark regions" of Arabia; the somewhat lean, but very
respectable-looking Secretary, is got nicely into his spectacles,
and sits pondering over lusty folios of reports from Hindostan, and
various other fields of missionary labor, all setting forth the
various large amounts of money expended, how much more could be
expended, and what a blessing it is to be enabled to announce the
fact that there is now a hope of something being done. The same
anxious-faced bevy of females we described in a previous chapter,
are here, seated at a table, deeply interested in certain
periodicals and papers; while here and there about the room, are
several contemplative gentlemen in black. Brother Spyke, having
deeply interested Brothers Phills and Prim with an account of his
visit to the Bottomless Pit, paces up and down the room, thinking of
Antioch, and the evangelization of the heathen world. "Truly,
brother," speaks the good-natured fat man, "his coming seemeth
long." "Eleven was the hour; but why he tarryeth I know not,"
returns Brother Spyke, with calm demeanor. "There is something more
alarming in Sister Slocum's absence," interposes one of the ladies.
The house seems in a waiting mood, when suddenly Mr. Detective
Fitzgerald enters, and changes it to one of anxiety. Several voices
inquire if he was successful. He shakes his head, and having
recounted his adventures, the discovery of where the money went to,
and the utter hopelessness of an effort to recover it; "as for the
man, Toddleworth," he says, methodically, "he was found with a
broken skull. The Coroner has had an inquest over him; but murders
are so common. The verdict was, that he died of a broken skull, by
the hands of some one to the jury unknown. Suspicions were strong
against one Tom Downey, who is very like a heathen, and is
mistrusted of several murders. The affair disturbed the neighborhood
a little, and the Coroner tried to get something out concerning the
man's history; but it all went to the wind, for the people were all
so ignorant. They all knew everything about him, which turned out to
be just nothing, which they were ready to swear to. One believed
Father Flaherty made the Bible, another believed the Devil still
chained in Columbia College-a third believed the stars were lanterns
to guide priests-the only angels they know-on their way to heaven."

"Truly!" exclaims the man of the spectacles, in a moment of

Brother Spyke says: "the Lord be merciful."

"On the body of the poor man we found this document. It was rolled
carefully up in a rag, and is supposed to throw some light on his
history." Mr. Fitzgerald draws leisurely from his pocket a distained
and much-crumpled paper, written over in a bold, business-like hand,
and passes it to the man in the spectacles, as a dozen or more
anxious faces gather round, eager to explore the contents.

"He went out of the Points as mysteriously as he came in. We buried
him a bit ago, and have got Downey in the Tombs: he'll be hanged, no
doubt," concludes the detective, laying aside his cap, and setting
himself, uninvited, into a chair. The man in the spectacles
commences reading the paper, which runs as follows:

"I have been to you an unknown, and had died such an unknown, but
that my conscience tells me I have a duty to perform. I have wronged
no one, owe no one a penny, harbor no malice against any one; I am a
victim of a broken heart, and my own melancholy. Many years ago I
pursued an honorable business in this city, and was respected and
esteemed. Many knew me, and fortune seemed to shed upon me her
smiles. I married a lady of wealth and affluence, one I loved and
doted on. Our affections seemed formed for our bond; we lived for
one another; our happiness seemed complete. But alas! an evil hour
came. Ambitious of admiration, she gradually became a slave to
fashionable society, and then gave herself up to those flatterers
who hang about it, and whose chief occupation it is to make
weak-minded women vain of their own charms. Coldness, and
indifference to home, soon followed. My house was invaded, my
home-that home I regarded so sacredly-became the resort of men in
whose society I found no pleasure, with whom I had no feeling in
common. I could not remonstrate, for that would have betrayed in me
a want of confidence in the fidelity of one I loved too blindly. I
was not one of those who make life miserable in seeing a little and
suspecting much. No! I forgave many things that wounded my feelings;
and my love for her would not permit a thought to invade the
sanctity of her fidelity. Business called me into a foreign country,
where I remained several months, then returned-not, alas! to a home
made happy by the purity of one I esteemed an angel;--not to the arms
of a pure, fond wife, but to find my confidence betrayed, my home
invaded-she, in whom I had treasured up my love, polluted; and
slander, like a desert wind, pouring its desolating breath into my
very heart. In my blindness I would have forgiven her, taken her
back to my distracted bosom, and fled with her to some distant land,
there still to have lived and loved her. But she sought rather to
conceal her guilt than ask forgiveness. My reason fled me, my
passion rose above my judgment, I sank under the burden of my
sorrow, attempted to put an end to her life, and to my own misery.
Failing in this, for my hand was stayed by a voice I heard calling
to me, I fled the country and sought relief for my feelings in the
wilds of Chili. I left nearly all to my wife, took but little with
me, for my object was to bury myself from the world that had known
me, and respected me. Destitution followed me; whither I went there
seemed no rest, no peace of mind for me. The past floated uppermost
in my mind. I was ever recurring to home, to those with whom I had
associated, to an hundred things that had endeared me to my own
country. Years passed-years of suffering and sorrow, and I found
myself a lone wanderer, without friend or money. During this time it
was reported at home, as well as chronicled in the newspapers, that
I was dead. The inventor of this report had ends, I will not name
them here, to serve. I was indeed dead to all who had known me happy
in this world. Disguised, a mere shadow of what I was once, I
wandered back to New York, heart-sick and discouraged, and buried
myself among those whose destitution, worse, perhaps, than my own,
afforded me a means of consolation. My life has long been a burden
to me; I have many times prayed God, in his mercy, to take me away,
to close the account of my misery. Do you ask my name? Ah! that is
what pains me most. To live unknown, a wretched outcast, in a city
where I once enjoyed a name that was respected, is what has haunted
my thoughts, and tortured my feelings. But I cannot withhold it,
even though it has gone down, tainted and dishonored. It is Henry
Montford. And with this short record I close my history, leaving the
rest for those to search out who find this paper, at my death, which
cannot be long hence. "HENRY MONTFORD. "New York, Nov. -, 184-."

A few sighs follow the reading of the paper, but no very deep
interest, no very tender emotion, is awakened in the hearts of the
goodly. Nevertheless, it throws a flood of light upon the morals of
a class of society vulgarly termed fashionable. The meek females
hold their tears and shake their heads. Brother Spyke elongates his
lean figure, draws near, and says the whole thing is very
unsatisfactory. Not one word is let drop about the lost money.

Brother Phills will say this-that the romance is very cleverly got
up, as the theatre people say.

The good-natured fat man, breathing somewhat freer, says: "Truly!
these people have a pleasant way of passing out of the world. They
die of their artful practices-seeking to devour the good and the

"There's more suffers than imposes-an' there's more than's written
meant in that same bit of paper. Toddleworth was as inoffensive a
creature as you'd meet in a day. May God forgive him all his
faults;" interposes Mr. Detective Fitzgerald, gathering up his cap
and passing slowly out of the room.

And this colloquy is put an end to by the sudden appearance of
Sister Slocum. A rustling silk dress, of quiet color, and set off
with three modest flounces; an India shawl, loosely thrown over her
shoulders; a dainty little collar, of honiton, drawn neatly about
her neck, and a bonnet of buff-colored silk, tastefully set off with
tart-pie work without, and lined with virtuous white satin within,
so saucily poised on her head, suggests the idea that she has an eye
to fashion as well as the heathen world. Her face, too, always so
broad, bright, and benevolent in its changes-is chastely framed in a
crape border, so nicely crimped, so nicely tucked under her
benevolent chin at one end, and so nicely pinned under the virtuous
white lining at the other. Goodness itself radiates from those
large, earnest blue eyes, those soft, white cheeks, that large
forehead, with those dashes of silvery hair crossing it so smoothly
and so exactly-that well-developed, but rather broad nose, and that
mouth so expressive of gentleness.

Sister Slocum, it requires no very acute observer to discover, has
got something more than the heathen world at heart, for all those
soft, congenial features are shadowed with sadness. Silently she
takes her seat, sits abstracted for a few minutes-the house is
thrown into a wondering mood-then looks wisely through her
spectacles, and having folded her hands with an air of great
resignation, shakes, and shakes, and shakes her head. Her eyes sud-
denly fill with tears, her thoughts wander, or seem to wander, she
attempts to speak, her voice choaks, and the words hang upon her
lips. All is consternation and excitement. Anxious faces gather
round, and whispering voices inquire the cause. The lean man in the
spectacles having applied his hartshorn bottle, Sister Slocum, to
the great joy of all present, is so far restored as to be able to
announce the singular, but no less melancholy fact, that our dear
guest, Sister Swiggs, has passed from this world to a better. She
retired full of sorrow, but came not in the morning. And this so
troubled Sister Scudder that there was no peace until she entered
her room. But she found the angel had been there before her,
smoothed the pillow of the stranger, and left her to sleep in death.
On earth her work was well done, and in the arms of the angel, her
pure spirit now beareth witness in heaven. Sister Slocum's emotions
forbid her saying more. She concludes, and buries her face in her
cambric. Then an outpouring of consoling words follow. "He cometh
like a thief in the night: His works are full of mystery; truly, He
chasteneth; He giveth and taketh away." Such are a few of the
sentiments lisped, regrettingly, for the departed.

How vain are the hopes with which we build castles in the air; how
strange the motives that impel us to ill-advised acts. We leave
untouched the things that call loudest for our energies, and
treasure up our little that we may serve that which least concerns
us. In this instance it is seen how that which came of evil went in
evil; how disapointment stepped in and blew the castle down at a

There could not be a doubt that the disease of which Sister Smiggs
died, and which it is feared the State to which she belongs will one
day die, was little dignity. Leaving her then in the arms of the
House of the Foreign Mission, and her burial to the Secretary of the
very excellent "Tract Society" she struggled so faithfully to serve,
we close this chapter of events, the reader having, no doubt,
discovered the husband of Madame Montford in the wretched man, Mr.



WE come now to another stage of this history. Six months have glided
into the past since the events recorded in the foregoing chapter.
The political world of Charleston is resolved to remain in the Union
a few months longer. It is a pleasant evening in early May. The
western sky is golden with the setting sun, and the heavens are
filled with battlements of refulgent clouds, now softening away into
night. Yonder to the East, reposes a dark grove. A gentle breeze
fans through its foliage, the leaves laugh and whisper, the perfumes
of flowers are diffusing through the air birds make melodious with
their songs, the trilling stream mingles its murmurs, and nature
would seem gathering her beauties into one enchanting harmony. In
the foreground of the grove, and looking as if it borrowed solitude
of the deep foliage, in which it is half buried, rises a pretty
villa, wherein may be seen, surrounded by luxuries the common herd
might well envy, the fair, the beautiful siren, Anna Bonard. In the
dingy little back parlor of the old antiquary, grim poverty looking
in through every crevasse, sits the artless and pure-minded Maria
McArthur. How different are the thoughts, the hopes, the emotions of
these two women. Comfort would seem smiling on the one, while
destitution threatens the other. To the eye that looks only upon the
surface, how deceptive is the picture. The one with every wish
gratified, an expression of sorrow shadowing her countenance, and
that freshness and sweetness for which she was distinguished passing
away, contemplates herself a submissive captive, at the mercy of one
for whom she has no love, whose gold she cannot inherit, and whose
roof she must some day leave for the street. The other feels poverty
grasping at her, but is proud in the possession of her virtue; and
though trouble would seem tracing its lines upon her features, her
heart remains untouched by remorse;--she is strong in the
consciousness that when all else is gone, her virtue will remain her
beacon light to happiness. Anna, in the loss of that virtue, sees
herself shut out from that very world that points her to the yawning
chasm of her future; she feels how like a slave in the hands of one
whose heart is as cold as his smiles are false, she is. Maria owes
the world no hate, nor are her thougnts disturbed by such
contemplations. Anna, with embittered and remorseful feelings-with
dark and terrible passions agitating her bosom, looks back over her
eventful life, to a period when even her own history is shut to her,
only to find the tortures of her soul heightened. Maria looks back
upon a life of fond attachment to her father, to her humble efforts
to serve others, and to know that she has borne with Christian
fortitude those ills which are incident to humble life. With her, an
emotion of joy repays the contemplation. To Anna, the future is hung
in dark forebodings. She recalls to mind the interview with Madame
Montford, but that only tends to deepen the storm of anguish the
contemplation of her parentage naturally gives rise to. With Maria,
the present hangs dark and the future brightens. She thinks of the
absent one she loves-of how she can best serve her aged father, and
how she can make their little home cheerful until the return of Tom
Swiggs, who is gone abroad. It must be here disclosed that the old
man had joined their hands, and invoked a blessing on their heads,
ere Tom took his departure. Maria looks forward to the day of his
return with joyous emotions. That return is the day dream of her
heart; in it she sees her future brightening. Such are the cherished
thoughts of a pure mind. Poverty may gnaw away at the hearthstone,
cares and sorrow may fall thick in your path, the rich may frown
upon you, and the vicious sport with your misfortunes, but virtue
gives you power to overcome them all. In Maria's ear something
whispers: Woman! hold fast to thy virtue, for if once it go neither
gold nor false tongues can buy it back.

Anna sees the companion of her early life, and the sharer of her
sufferings, shut up in a prison, a robber, doomed to the lash. "He
was sincere to me, and my only true friend--am I the cause of this?"
she muses. Her heart answers, and her bosom fills with dark and
stormy emotions. One small boon is now all she asks. She could bow
down and worship before the throne of virgin innocence, for now its
worth towers, majestic, before her. It discovers to her the falsity
of her day-dream; it tells her what an empty vessel is this life of
ours without it. She knows George Mullholland loves her
passionately; she knows how deep will be his grief, how revengeful
his feelings. It is poverty that fastens the poison in the heart of
the rejected lover. The thought of this flashes through her mind.
His hopeless condition, crushed out as it were to gratify him in
whose company her pleasures are but transitory, and may any day
end, darkens as she contemplates it. How can she acquit her
conscience of having deliberately and faithlessly renounced one who
was so true to her? She repines, her womanly nature revolts at the
thought-the destiny her superstition pictured so dark and terrible,
stares her in the face. She resolves a plan for his release, and,
relieved with a hope that she can accomplish it while propitiating
the friendship of the Judge, the next day seeks him in his prison
cell, and with all that vehemence woman, in the outpouring of her
generous impulses, can call to her aid, implores his forgiveness.
But the rust of disappointment has dried up his better nature; his
heart is wrung with the shafts of ingratitude--all the fierce
passions of his nature, hate, scorn and revenge, rise up in the one
stormy outburst of his soul. He casts upon her a look of withering
scorn, the past of that life so chequered flashes vividly through
his thoughts, his hate deepens, he hurls her from him, invokes a
curse upon her head, and shuts her from his sight. "Mine will be the
retribution!" he says, knitting his dark brow.

How is it with the Judge-that high functionary who provides thus
sumptuously for his mistress? His morals, like his judgments, are
excused, in the cheap quality of our social morality.

Such is gilded vice; such is humble virtue.

A few days more and the term of the Sessions commences. George is
arraigned, and the honorable Mr. Snivel, who laid the plot, and
furthered the crime, now appears as a principal witness. He procures
the man's conviction, and listens with guilty heart to the sentence,
for he is rearrainged on sentence day, and Mr. Snivel is present.
And while the culprit is sentenced to two years imprisonment, and to
receive eighty lashes, laid on his bare back, while at the public
whipping-post, at four stated times, the man who stimulated the hand
of the criminal, is honored and flattered by society. Such is the
majesty of the law.



MR. MCARTHUR has jogged on, in the good old way but his worldly
store seems not to increase. The time, nevertheless, is arrived when
he is expected to return the little amount borrowed of Keepum,
through the agency of Mr. Snivel. Again and again has he been
notified that he must pay or go to that place in which we lock up
all our very estimable "first families," whose money has taken wings
and flown away. Not content with this, the two worthy gentlemen have
more than once invaded the Antiquary's back parlor, and offered, as
we have described in a former chapter, improper advances to his

Mr. Keepum, dressed in a flashy coat, his sharp, mercenary face,
hectic of night revels, and his small but wicked eyes wandering over
Mr. McArthur's stock in trade, is seen in pursuit of his darling
object. "I don't mind so much about the pay, old man! I'm up well in
the world. The fact is, I am esteemed-and I am!--a public benefactor.
I never forget how much we owe to the chivalric spirit of our
ancestors, and in dealing with the poor-money matters and politics
are different from anything else-I am too generous. I don't mind my
own interests enough. There it is!" Mr. Keepum says this with an
evident relief to himself. Indeed it must here be acknowledged that
this very excellent member of the St. Cecilia Society, and profound
dealer in lottery tickets, like our fine gentlemen who are so
scrupulous of their chivalry while stabbing men behind their backs,
fancies himself one of the most disinterested beings known to
generous nature.

Bent and tottering, the old man recounts the value of his
curiosities; which, like our chivalry, is much talked of but hard to
get at. He offers in apology for the nonpayment of the debt his
knowledge of the old continentals, just as we offer our chivalry in
excuse for every disgraceful act-every savage law. In fine, he
follows the maxims of our politicians, recapitulating a dozen or
more things (wiping the sweat from his brow the while) that have no
earthly connection with the subject. "They are all very well," Mr.
Keepum rejoins, with an air of self-importance, dusting the ashes
from his cigar. He only wishes to impress the old man with the fact
that he is his very best friend.

And having somewhat relieved the Antiquary's mind of its
apprehensions, for McArthur stood in great fear of duns, Mr. Keepum
pops, uninvited, into the "back parlor," where he has not long been
when Maria's screams for assistance break forth.

"Ah! I am old-there is not much left me now. Yes, I am old, my
infirmities are upon me. Pray, good man, spare me my daughter. Nay,
you must not break the peace of my house;" mutters the old man,
advancing into the room, with infirm step, and looking wistfully at
his daughter, as if eager to clasp her in his arms. Maria stands in
a defiant attitude, her left hand poised on a chair, and her right
pointing scornfully in the face of Keepum, who recoils under the
look of withering scorn that darkens her countenance. "A gentleman!
begone, knave! for your looks betray you. You cannot buy my ruin
with your gold; you cannot deceive me with your false tongue. If
hate were a noble passion, I would not vent that which now agitates
my bosom on you. Nay, I would reserve it for a better purpose--"

"Indeed, indeed-now I say honestly, your daughter mistakes me. I was
only being a little friendly to her," interrupts the chopfallen man.
He did not think her capable of summoning so much passion to her

Maria, it must be said, was one of those seemingly calm natures in
which resentment takes deepest root, in which the passions are most
violent when roused. Solitude does, indeed, tend to invest the
passionate nature with a calm surface. A less penetrating observer
than the chivalrous Keepum, might have discovered in Maria a spirit
he could not so easily humble to his uses. It is the modest,
thoughtful woman, you cannot make lick the dust in sorrow and tears.
"Coward! you laid ruffian hands on me!" says Maria, again towering
to her height, and giving vent to her feelings.

"Madam, Madam," pursues Keepum, trembling and crouching, "you
asperse my honor,--my sacred honor, Madam. You see-let me say a
word, now-you are leting your temper get the better of you. I never,
and the public know I never did-I never did a dishonorable thing in
my life." Turning to the bewildered old man, he continues: "to be
called a knave, and upbraided in this manner by your daughter, when
I have befriended you all these days!" His wicked eyes fall guilty
to the floor.

"Out man!--out! Let your sense of right, if you have it, teach you
what is friendship. Know that, like mercy, it is not poured out with
hands reeking of female dishonor."

Mr. Keepum, like many more of our very fine gentlemen, had so
trained his thoughts to look upon the poor as slaves created for a
base use, that he neither could bring his mind to believe in the
existence of such things as noble spirits under humble roofs, nor to
imagine himself-even while committing the grossest outrages-doing
aught to sully the high chivalric spirit he fancied he possessed.
The old Antiquary, on the other hand, was not a little surprised to
find his daughter displaying such extraordinary means of repulsing
an enemy.

Trembling, and child-like he stands, conscious of being in the grasp
of a knave, whose object was more the ruin of his daughter than the
recovery of a small amount of money, the tears glistening in his
eyes, and the finger of old age marked on his furrowed brow.

"Father, father!" says Maria, and the words hang upon her quivering
lips, her face becomes pale as marble, her strength deserts her,--she
trembles from head to foot, and sinks upon the old man's bosom,
struggling to smother her sobs. Her passion has left her; her calmer
nature has risen up to rebuke it. The old man leads her tenderly to
the sofa, and there seeks to sooth her troubled spirit.

"As if this hub bub was always to last!" a voice speaks suddenly. It
is the Hon. Mr. Snivel, who looks in at the eleventh hour, as he
says, to find affairs always in a fuss. "Being a man of legal
knowledge-always ready to do a bit of a good turn-especially in
putting a disordered house to rights-I thought it well to look in,
having a leisure minute or two (we have had a convention for
dissolving the Union, and passed a vote to that end!) to give to my
old friends," Mr. Snivel says, in a voice at once conciliating and
insinuating. "I always think of a border feud when I come
here-things that find no favor with me." Mr. Snivel, having first
patted the old man on the shoulder, exchanges a significant wink
with his friend Keepum, and then bestows upon him what he is pleased
to call a little wholesome advice. "People misunderstand Mr.
Keepum," he says, "who is one of the most generous of men, but lacks
discretion, and in trying to be polite to everybody, lets his
feelings have too much latitude now and then." Maria buries her face
in her handkerchief, as if indifferent to the reconciliation

"Now let this all be forgotten-let friendship reign among friends:
that's my motto. But! I say,--this is a bad piece of news we have
this morning. Clipped this from an English paper," resumes the Hon.
gentleman, drawing coolly from his pocket a bit of paper, having the
appearance of an extract.

"You are never without some kind of news-mostly bad!" says Keepum,
flinging himself into a chair, with an air of restored confidence.
Mr. Snivel bows, thanks the gentleman for the compliment, and
commences to read. "This news," he adds, "may be relied upon, having
come from Lloyd's List: 'Intelligence was received here (this is,
you must remember, from a London paper, he says, in parentheses)
this morning, of the total loss of the American ship--, bound from
this port for Charleston, U.S., near the Needles. Every soul on
board, except the Captain and second mate, perished. The gale was
one of the worst ever known on this coast-'"

"The worst ever known on this coast!" ejaculates Mr. Keepum, his
wicked eyes steadily fixed upon Maria. "One of Trueman's ships," Mr.
Snivel adds. "Unlucky fellow, that Trueman--second ship he has

"By-the-bye," rejoins Keepum, as if a thought has just flashed upon
him, "your old friend, Tom Swiggs, was supercargo, clerk, or
whatever you may call it, aboard that ship, eh?"

It is the knave who can most naturally affect surprise and regret
when it suits his purposes, and Mr. Snivel is well learned in the
art. "True!" he says, "as I'm a Christian. Well, I had made a man of
him-I don't regret it, for I always liked him-and this is the end of
the poor fellow, eh?" Turning to McArthur, he adds, rather
unconcernedly: "You know somewhat of him?" The old man sits
motionless beside his daughter, the changes of whose countenance
discover the inward emotions that agitate her bosom. Her eyes fill
with tears; she exchanges inquiring glances, first with Keepum, then
with Snivel; then a thought strikes her that she received a letter
from Tom, setting forth his prospects, and his intention to return
in the ship above named. It was very natural that news thus artfully
manufactured, and revealed with such apparent truthfulness, should
produce a deep impression in the mind of an unsuspecting girl.
Indeed, it was with some effort that she bore up under it.
Expressions of grief she would fain suppress before the enemy gain a
mastery over her-and ere they are gone the cup flows over, and she
sinks exhausted upon the sofa.

"There! good as far as it goes. You have now another mode of gaining
the victory," Mr. Snivel whispers in the ear of his friend, Keepum;
and the two gentlemen pass into the street.



MARIA has passed a night of unhappiness. Hopes and fears are
knelling in the morning, which brings nothing to relieve her anxiety
for the absent one; and Mr. Snivel has taken the precaution to have
the news of the lost ship find its way into the papers.

And while our city seems in a state of very general excitement;
while great placards on every street corner inform the wondering
stranger that a mighty Convention (presided over by the Hon. S.
Snivel) for dissolving the Union, is shortly to be holden; while our
political world has got the Union on its shoulders, and threatens to
throw it into the nearest ditch; while our streets swarm with long,
lean, and very hairy-faced delegates (all lusty of war and
secession), who have dragged themselves into the city to drink no
end of whiskey, and say all sorts of foolish things their savage and
half-civilized constituents are expected to applaud; while our more
material and conservative citizens are thinking what asses we make
of ourselves; while the ship-of-war we built to fight the rest of
the Union, lies an ugly lump in the harbor, and "won't go over the
bar;" while the "shoe-factory" we established to supply niggerdom
with soles, is snuffed out for want of energy and capacity to manage
it; while some of our non-slaveholding, but most active secession
merchants, are moving seriously in the great project of establishing
a "SOUTHERN CANDLE-FACTORY"--a thing much needed in the
"up-country;" while our graver statesmen (who don't get the State
out of the Union fast enough for the ignorant rabble, who have
nothing but their folly at stake) are pondering over the policy of
spending five hundred thousand dollars for the building of another
war-ship-one that "will go over the bar;" and while
curiously-written letters from Generals Commander and Quattlebum,
offering to bring their allied forces into the field-to blow this
confederation down at a breath whenever called upon, are being
published, to the great joy of all secessiondom; while saltpetre,
broadswords, and the muskets made for us by Yankees to fight
Yankees, and which were found to have wood instead of flint in their
hammers, (and which trick of the Yankees we said was just like the
Yankees,) are in great demand-and a few of our mob-politicians, who
are all "Kern'ls" of regiments that never muster, prove conclusively
our necessity for keeping a fighting-man in Congress; while, we
assert, many of our first and best known families have sunk the
assemblies of the St. Cecilia in the more important question of what
order of government will best suit-in the event of our getting
happily out of the Union!--our refined and very exacting state of
society;--whether an Empire or a Monarchy, and whether we ought to
set up a Quattlebum or Commander dynasty?-whether the Bungle family
or the Jungle family (both fighting families) will have a place
nearest the throne; what sort of orders will be bestowed, who will
get them, and what colored liveries will best become us (all of
which grave questions threaten us with a very extensive war of
families)?--while all these great matters find us in a sea of
trouble, there enters the curiosity-shop of the old Antiquary a
suspicious-looking individual in green spectacles.

"Mr. Hardscrabble!" says the man, bowing and taking a seat,
leisurely, upon the decrepid sofa. Mr. McArthur returns his
salutation, contemplates him doubtingly for a minute, then resumes
his fussing and brushing.

The small, lean figure; the somewhat seedy broadcloth in which it is
enveloped; the well-browned and very sharp features; the straight,
dark-gray hair, and the absent manner of Mr. Hardscrabble, might,
with the uninitiated, cause him to be mistaken for an "up-country"
clergyman of the Methodist denomination.

"Mr. Hardscrabble? Mr. Hardscrabble? Mr. Hardscrabble?" muses the
Antiquary, canting his head wisely, "the Sheriff, as I'm a man of

Mr. Hardscrabble comforts his eyes with his spectacles, and having
glanced vacantly over the little shop, as if to take an inventory of
its contents, draws from his breast-pocket a paper containing very
ominous seals and scrawls.

"I'm reluctant about doing these things with an old man like you,"
Mr. Hardscrabble condescends to say, in a sharp, grating voice; "but
I have to obey the demands of my office." Here he commences reading
the paper to the trembling old man, who, having adjusted his
broad-bowed spectacles, and arrayed them against the spectacles of
Mr. Hardscrabble, says he thinks it contains a great many useless

Mr. Hardscrabble, his eyes peering eagerly through his glasses, and
his lower jaw falling and exposing the inner domain of his mouth,
replies with an--"Umph." The old Antiquary was never before called
upon to examine a document so confusing to his mind. Not content
with a surrender of his property, it demands his body into the
bargain-all at the suit of one Keepum. He makes several motions to
go show it to his daughter; but that, Mr. Hardscrabble thinks, is
scarce worth while. "I sympathize with you-knowing how frugal you
have been through life. A list of your effects-if you have one-will
save a deal of trouble. I fear (Mr. Hardscrabble works his quid) my
costs will hardly come out of them."

"There's a fortune in them-if the love of things of yore--" The old
man hesitates, and shakes his head dolefully.

"Yore!--a thing that would starve out our profession."

"A little time to turn, you know. There's my stock of uniforms."

"Well-I-know," Mr. Hardscrabble rejoins, with a drawl; "but I must
lock up the traps. Yes, I must lock you up, and sell you out-unless
you redeem before sale day; that you can't do, I suppose?"

And while the old man totters into the little back parlor, and,
giving way to his emotions, throws himself upon the bosom of his
fond daughter, to whom he discloses his troubles, Mr. Hardscrabble
puts locks and bolts upon his curiosity-shop. This important
business done, he leads the old man away, and gives him a lodging in
the old jail.



TO bear up against the malice of inexorable enemies is at once the
gift and the shield of a noble nature. And here it will be enough to
say, that Maria bore the burden of her ills with fortitude and
resignation, trusting in Him who rights the wronged, to be her
deliverer. What took place when she saw her aged father led away, a
prisoner; what thoughts invaded that father's mind when the prison
bolt grated on his ear, and he found himself shut from all that had
been dear to him through life, regard for the feelings of the reader
forbids us recounting here.

Naturally intelligent, Maria had, by close application to books,
acquired some knowledge of the world. Nor was she entirely ignorant
of those arts designing men call to their aid when seeking to effect
the ruin of the unwary female. Thus fortified, she fancied she saw
in the story of the lost ship a plot against herself, while the
persecution of her father was only a means to effect the object.
Launched between hope and fear, then-hope that her lover still
lived, and that with his return her day would brighten-fear lest the
report might be founded in truth, she nerves herself for the
struggle. She knew full well that to give up in despair-to cast
herself upon the cold charities of a busy world, would only be to
hasten her downfall. Indeed, she had already felt how cold, and how
far apart were the lines that separated our rich from our poor.

The little back parlor is yet spared to Maria, and in it she may now
be seen plying at her needle, early and late. It is the only means
left her of succoring the parent from whom she has been so
ruthlessly separated. Hoping, fearing, bright to-day and dark
to-morrow, willing to work and wait-here she sits. A few days pass,
and the odds and ends of the Antiquary's little shop, like the
"shirts" of the gallant Fremont, whom we oppressed while poor, and
essayed to flatter when a hero, are gazetted under the head of
"sheriff's sale." Hope, alas! brings no comfort to Maria. Time rolls
on, the month's rent falls due, her father pines and sinks in
confinement, and her needle is found inadequate to the task
undertaken. Necessity demands, and one by one she parts with her few
cherished mementos of the past, that she may save an aged father
from starvation.

The "prisoner" has given notice that he will take the benefit of the
act-commonly called "an act for the relief of poor debtors." But
before he can reach this boon, ten days must elapse. Generous-minded
legislators, no doubt, intended well when they constructed this act,
but so complex are its provisions that any legal gentleman may make
it a very convenient means of oppression. And in a community where
laws not only have their origin in the passions of men, but are made
to serve popular prejudices-where the quality of justice obtained
depends upon the position and sentiments of him who seeks it,--the
weak have no chance against the powerful.

The multiplicity of notices, citations, and schedules, necessary to
the setting free of this "poor debtor" (for these fussy officials
must be paid), Maria finds making a heavy drain on her lean purse.

The Court is in session, and the ten days having glided away, the
old man is brought into "open Court" by two officials with long
tipstaffs, and faces looking as if they had been carefully pickled
in strong drinks. "Surely, now, they'll set me free-I can give them
no more-I am old and infirm-they have got all-and my daughter!" he
muses within himself. Ah! he little knows how uncertain a thing is
the law.

The Judge is engaged over a case in which two very fine old families
are disputing for the blood and bones of a little "nigger" girl. The
possession of this helpless slave, the Judge (he sits in easy
dignity) very naturally regards of superior importance when compared
with the freedom of a "poor debtor." He cannot listen to the story
of destitution-precisely what was sought by Keepum-to-day, and
to-morrow the Court adjourns for six months.

The Antiquary is remanded back to his cell. No one in Court cares
for him; no one has a thought for the achings of that heart his
release would unburden; the sorrows of that lone girl are known only
to herself and the One in whom she puts her trust. She,
nevertheless, seeks the old man in his prison, and there comforts
him as best she can.

Five days more, and the "prisoner" is brought before the
Commissioner for Special Bail, who is no less a personage than the
rosy-faced Clerk of the Court, just adjourned. And here we cannot
forbear to say, that however despicable the object sought, however
barren of right the plea, however adverse to common humanity the
spirit of the action, there is always to be found some legal
gentleman, true to the lower instincts of the profession, ready to
lend himself to his client's motives. And in this instance, the
cunning Keepum finds an excellent instrument of furthering his ends,
in one Peter Crimpton, a somewhat faded and rather disreputable
member of the learned profession. It is said of Crimpton, that he is
clever at managing cases where oppression rather than justice is
sought, and that his present client furnishes the larger half of his

And while Maria, too sensitive to face the gaze of the coarse crowd,
pauses without, silent and anxious, listening one moment and hoping
the next will see her old father restored to her, the adroit
Crimpton rises to object to "the Schedule." To the end that he may
substantiate his objections, he proposes to examine the prisoner.
Having no alternative, the Commissioner grants the request.

The old Antiquary made out his schedule with the aid of the
good-hearted jailer, who inserted as his effects, "Necessary wearing
apparel." It was all he had. Like the gallant Fremont, when he
offered to resign his shirts to his chivalric creditor, he could
give them no more. A few questions are put; the old man answers them
with childlike simplicity, then sits down, his trembling fingers
wandering into his beard. Mr. Crimpton produces his paper, sets
forth his objections, and asks permission to file them, that the
case may come before a jury of "Special Bail."

Permission is granted. The reader will not fail to discover the
object of this procedure. Keepum hopes to continue the old man in
prison, that he may succeed in breaking down the proud spirit of his

The Commissioner listens attentively to the reading of the
objections. The first sets forth that Mr. McArthur has a gold watch;

Our Charleston readers will recognize the case here described,
without any further key. the second, that he has a valuable
breast-pin, said to have been worn by Lord Cornwallis; and the
third, that he has one Yorick's skull. All of these, Mr. Crimpton
regrets to say, are withheld from the schedule, which virtually
constitutes fraud. The facile Commissioner bows; the assembled crowd
look on unmoved; but the old man shakes his head and listens. He is
surprised to find himself accused of fraud; but the law gives him no
power to show his own innocence. The Judge of the Sessions was
competent to decide the question now raised, and to have prevented
this reverting to a "special jury"--this giving the vindictive
plaintiff a means of torturing his infirm victim. Had he but
listened to the old man's tale of poverty, he might have saved the
heart of that forlorn girl many a bitter pang.

The motion granted, a day is appointed-ten days must elapse-for a
hearing before the Commissioner of "Special Bail," and his special
jury. The rosy-faced functionary, being a jolly and somewhat
flexible sort of man, must needs give his health an airing in the
country. What is the liberty of a poor white with us? Our Governor,
whom we esteem singularly sagacious, said it were better all our
poor were enslaved, and this opinion finds high favor with our first
families. The worthy Commissioner, in addition to taking care of his
health, is expected to make any number of speeches, full of wind and
war, to several recently called Secession Conventions. He will find
time (being a General by courtesy) to review the up-country
militia, and the right and left divisions of the South Carolina
army. He will be feted by some few of our most distinguished
Generals, and lecture before the people of Beaufort (a very noisy
town of forty-two inhabitants, all heroes), to whom he will prove
the necessity of our State providing itself with an independent
steam navy.

The old Antiquary is remanded back to jail-to wait the coming day.
Maria, almost breathless with anxiety, runs to him as he comes
tottering out of Court in advance of the official, lays her
trembling hand upon his arm, and looks inquiringly in his face. "Oh!
my father, my father!--released? released?" she inquires, with
quivering lips and throbbing heart. A forced smile plays over his
time-worn face, he looks upward, shakes his head in sorrow, and
having patted her affectionately on the shoulder, throws his arms
about her neck and kisses her. That mute appeal, that melancholy
voucher of his sorrows, knells the painful answer in her ears, "Then
you are not free to come with me? Oh, father, father!" and she
wrings her hands and gives vent to her tears.

"The time will come, my daughter, when my Judge will hear me-will
judge me right. My time will come soon--" And here the old man
pauses, and chokes with his emotions. Maria returns the old man's
kiss, and being satisfied that he is yet in the hands of his
oppressors, sets about cheering up his drooping spirits. "Don't
think of me, father," she says--"don't think of me! Let us put our
trust in Him who can shorten the days of our tribulation." She takes
the old man's arm, and like one who would forget her own troubles in
her anxiety to relieve another, supports him on his way back to

It is high noon. She stands before the prison gate, now glancing at
the serene sky, then at the cold, frowning walls, and again at the
old pile, as if contemplating the wearying hours he must pass within
it. "Don't repine-nerve yourself with resolution, and all will be
well!" Having said this with an air of confidence in herself, she
throws her arms about the old man's neck, presses him to her bosom,
kisses and kisses his wrinkled cheek, then grasps his hand warmly in
her own. "Forget those who persecute you, for it is good. Look
above, father-to Him who tempers the winds, who watches over the
weak, and gives the victory to the right!" She pauses, as the old
man holds her hand in silence. "This life is but a transient sojourn
at best; full of hopes and fears, that, like a soldier's dream, pass
away when the battle is ended." Again she fondly shakes his hand,
lisps a sorrowing "good-bye," watches him, in silence, out of sight,
then turns away in tears, and seeks her home. There is something so
pure, so earnest in her solicitude for the old man, that it seems
more of heaven than earth.



ON taking leave of her father, Maria, her heart overburdened with
grief, and her mind abstracted, turned towards the Battery, and
continued, slowly and sadly, until she found herself seated beneath
a tree, looking out upon the calm bay. Here, scarce conscious of
those who were observing her in their sallies, she mused until dusky
evening, when the air seemed hushed, and the busy hum of day was
dying away in the distance. The dark woodland on the opposite bank
gave a bold border to the soft picture; the ships rode sluggishly
upon the polished waters; the negro's touching song echoed and
re-echoed along the shore; and the boatman's chorus broke upon the
stilly air in strains so dulcet. And as the mellow shadows of night
stole over the scene-as the heavens looked down in all their
sereneness, and the stars shone out, and twinkled, and laughed, and
danced upon the blue waters, and coquetted with the moonbeams--for
the moon was up, and shedding a halo of mystic light over the
scene-making night merry, nature seemed speaking to Maria in words
of condolence. Her heart was touched, her spirits gained strength,
her soul seemed in a loftier and purer atmosphere.

"Poor, but virtuous-virtue ennobles the poor. Once gone, the world
never gives it back!" she muses, and is awakened from her reverie by
a sweet, sympathizing voice, whispering in her ear. "Woman! you are
in trouble,--linger no longer here, or you will fall into the hands
of your enemies." She looks up, and there stands at her side a young
female, whose beauty the angels might envy. The figure came upon her
so suddenly that she hesitates for a reply to the admonition.

"Take this, it will do something toward relieving your wants (do not
open it now), and with this (she places a stiletto in her hand) you
can strike down the one who attempts your virtue. Nay, remember that
while you cling to that, you are safe-lose it, and you are gone
forever. Your troubles will soon end; mine are for a life-time.
Yours find a relaxation in your innocence; mine is seared into my
heart with my own shame. It is guilt-shame! that infuses into the
heart that poison, for which years of rectitude afford no antidote.
Go quickly-get from this lone place! You are richer than me." She
slips something into Maria's hand, and suddenly disappears.

Maria rises from her seat, intending to follow the stranger, but she
is out of sight. Who can this mysterious messenger, this beautiful
stranger be? Maria muses. A thought flashes across her mind; it is
she who sought our house at midnight, when my father revealed her
dark future! "Yes," she says to herself, "it is the same lovely
face; how oft it has flitted in my fancy!"

She reaches her home only to find its doors closed against her. A
ruthless landlord has taken her all, and forced her into the street.

You may shut out the sterner sex without involving character or
inviting insult; but with woman the case is very different. However
pure her character, to turn her into the street, is to subject her
to a stigma, if not to fasten upon her a disgrace. You may paint, in
your imagination, the picture of a woman in distress, but you can
know little of the heart-achings of the sufferer. The surface only
reflects the faint gleams, standing out here and there like the
lesser objects upon a dark canvas.

Maria turns reluctantly from that home of so many happy
associations, to wander about the streets and by-ways of the city.
The houses of the rich seem frowning upon her; her timid nature
tells her they have no doors open to her. The haunts of the poor, at
this moment, infuse a sanguine joyousness into her soul. How glad
would she be, if they did but open to her. Is not the Allwise,
through the beauties of His works, holding her up, while man only is
struggling to pull her down?

And while Maria wanders homeless about the streets of Charleston, we
must beg you, gentle reader, to accompany us into one of the great
thoroughfares of London, where is being enacted a scene appertaining
to this history.

It is well-nigh midnight, the hour when young London is most astir
in his favorite haunts; when ragged and well-starved flower-girls,
issuing from no one knows where, beset your path through Trafalgar
and Liecester squares, and pierce your heart with their pleadings;
when the Casinoes of the Haymarket and Picadilly are vomiting into
the streets their frail but richly-dressed women; when gaudy
supper-rooms, reeking of lobster and bad liquor, are made noisy with
the demands of their flauntily-dressed customers; when little girls
of thirteen are dodging in and out of mysterious courts and passages
leading to and from Liecester square; when wily cabmen, ranged
around the "great globe," importune you for a last fare; and when
the aristocratic swell, with hectic face and maudlin laugh,
saunters from his club-room to seek excitement in the revels at

A brown mist hangs over the dull area of Trafalgar square. The bells
of old St. Martin's church have chimed merrily out their last night
peal; the sharp voice of the omnibus conductor no longer offends the
ear; the tiny little fountains have ceased to give out their green
water, and the lights of the Union Club on one side, and Morley's
hotel on the other, throw pale shadows into the open square.

The solitary figure of a man, dressed in the garb of a gentleman, is
seen sauntering past Northumberland house, then up the east side of
the square. Now he halts at the corner of old St. Martin's church,
turns and contemplates the scene before him. On his right is that
squatty mass of freestone and smoke, Englishmen exultingly call the
Royal Academy, but which Frenchmen affect contempt for, and
uninitiated Americans mistake for a tomb. An equestrian statue of
one of the Georges rises at the east corner; Morley's Hotel, where
Americans get poor fare and enormous charges, with the privilege of
fancying themselves quite as good as the queen, on the left; the
dead walls of Northumberland House, with their prisonlike aspect,
and the mounted lion, his tail high in air, and quite as rigid as
the Duke's dignity, in front; the opening that terminates the
Strand, and gives place to Parliament street, at the head of which
an equestrian statue of Charles the First, much admired by
Englishmen, stands, his back, on Westminster; the dingy shops of
Spring Garden, and the Union Club to the right; and, towering high
over all, Nelson's Column, the statue looking as if it had turned
its back in pity on the little fountains, to look with contempt,
first upon the bronze face of the unfortunate Charles, then upon
Parliament, whose parsimony in withholding justice from his
daughter, he would rebuke-and the picture is complete.

The stranger turns, walks slowly past the steps of St. Martin's
church, crosses to the opposite side of the street, and enters a
narrow, wet, and dimly-lighted court, on the left. Having passed up
a few paces, he finds himself hemmed in between the dead walls of
St. Martin's "Work-house" on one side, and the Royal Academy on the
other. He hesitates between fear and curiosity. The dull, sombre
aspect of the court is indeed enough to excite the fears of the
timid; but curiosity being the stronger impulse, he proceeds,
resolved to explore it-to see whence it leads.

A short turn to the right, and he has reached the front wall of the
Queen's Barracks, on his left, and the entrance to the "Work-house,"
on his right; the one overlooking the other, and separated by a
narrow street. Leave men are seen reluctantly returning in at the
night-gate; the dull tramp of the sentinel within sounds ominously
on the still air; and the chilly atmosphere steals into the system.
Again the stranger pauses, as if questioning the safety of his
position. Suddenly a low moan grates upon his ear, he starts back,
then listens. Again it rises, in a sad wail, and pierces his very
heart. His first thought is, that some tortured mortal is bemoaning
his bruises in a cell of the "Work-house," which he mistakes for a
prison. But his eyes fall to the ground, and his apprehensions are

The doors of the "Work-house" are fast closed; but there, huddled
along the cold pavement, and lying crouched upon its doorsteps, in
heaps that resemble the gatherings of a rag-seller, are four-and-
thirty shivering, famishing, and homeless human beings--

An institution for the relief of the destitute. (mostly young girls
and aged women), who have sought at this "institutution of charity"
shelter for the night, and bread to appease their hunger.

This sight may be seen at any time. Alas! its ruthless keepers have
refused them bread, shut them into the street, and left them in rags
scarce sufficient to cover their nakedness, to sleep upon the cold
stones, a mute but terrible rebuke to those hearts that bleed over
the sorrows of Africa, but have no blood to give out when the object
of pity is a poor, heart-sick girl, forced to make the cold pavement
her bed. The stranger shudders. "Are these heaps of human beings?"
he questions within himself, doubting the reality before him. As if
counting and hesitating what course to pursue for their relief, he
paces up and down the grotesque mass, touching one, and gazing upon
the haggard features of another, who looks up to see what it is that
disturbs her. Again the low moan breaks on his ear, as the sentinel
cries the first hour of morning. The figure of a female, her head
resting on one of the steps, moves, a trembling hand steals from
under her shawl, makes an effort to reach her head, and falls numb
at her side. "Her hand is cold-her breathing like one in death--oh!
God!--how terrible-what, what am I to do?" he says, taking the
sufferer's hand in his own. Now he rubs it, now raises her head,
makes an effort to wake a few of the miserable sleepers, and calls
aloud for help. "Help! help! help!" he shouts, and the shout
re-echoes through the air and along the hollow court. "A woman is
dying,--dying here on the cold stones-with no one to raise a hand
for her!" He seizes the exhausted woman in his arms, and with
herculean strength rushes up the narrow street, in the hope of
finding relief at the Gin Palace he sees at its head, in a blaze of
light. But the body is seized with spasms, an hollow, hysteric wail
follows, his strength gives way under the burden, and he sets the
sufferer down in the shadow of a gas light. Her dress, although worn
threadbare, still bears evidence of having belonged to one who has
enjoyed comfort, and, perhaps, luxury. Indeed, there is something
about the woman which bespeaks her not of the class generally found
sleeping on the steps of St. Martin's Work-house.

"What's here to do?" gruffly inquires a policeman, coming up with an
air of indifference. The stranger says the woman is dying. The
policeman stoops down, lays his hand upon her temples, then
mechanically feels her arms and hands.

"And I-must die-die-die in the street," whispers the woman, her head
falling carelessly from the policeman's hand, in which it had

"Got her a bit below, at the Work'ouse door, among them wot sleeps
there, eh?"

The stranger says he did.

"A common enough thing," pursues the policeman; "this a bad lot.
Anyhow, we must give her a tow to the station." He rubs his hands,
and prepares to raise her from the ground.

"Hold! hold," interrupts the other, "she will die ere you get her

"Die,--ah! yes, yes," whispers the woman. The mention of death seems
to have wrung like poison into her very soul. "Don't-don't move
me-the spell is almost broken. Oh! how can I die here, a wretch.
Yes, I am going now-let me rest, rest, rest," the moaning supplicant
mutters in a guttural voice, grasps spasmodically at the policeman's
hand, heaves a deep sigh, and sets her eyes fixedly upon the
stranger. She seems recognizing in his features something that gives
her strength.

"There-there-there!" she continues, incoherently, as a fit of
hysterics seize upon her; "you, you, you, have-yes, you have come at
the last hour, when my sufferings close. I see devils all about
me-haunting me-torturing my very soul-burning me up! See them! see
them!--here they come-tearing, worrying me-in a cloud of flame!" She
clutches with her hands, her countenance fills with despair, and her
body writhes in agony.

"Bring brandy! warm,--stimulant! anything to give her strength!
Quick! quick!--go fetch it, or she is gone!" stammers out the

In another minute she calms away, and sinks exhausted upon the
pavement. Policeman shakes his head, and says, "It 'ont do no
good-she's done for."

The light of the "Trumpeter's Arms" still blazes into the street,
while a few greasy ale-bibbers sit moody about the tap room.

The two men raise the exhausted woman from the ground and carry her
to the door. Mine host of the Trumpeter's Arms shrugs his shoulders
and says, "She can't come in here." He fears she will damage the
respectability of his house. "The Work-house is the place for her,"
he continues, gruffly.

A sight at the stranger's well-filled purse, however, and a few
shillings slipped into the host's hand, secures his generosity and
the woman's admittance. "Indeed," says the host, bowing most
servilely, "gentlemen, the whole Trumpeter's Arms is at your
service." The woman is carried into a lonely, little back room, and
laid upon a cot, which, with two wooden chairs, constitutes its
furniture. And while the policeman goes in search of medical aid,
the host of the Trumpeter's bestirs himself right manfully in the
forthcoming of a stimulant. The stranger, meanwhile, lends himself
to the care of the forlorn sufferer with the gentleness of a woman.
He smoothes her pillow, arranges her dress tenderly, and administers
the stimulant with a hand accustomed to the sick.

A few minutes pass, and the woman seems to revive and brighten up.
Mine host has set a light on the chair, at the side of the cot, and
left her alone with the stranger. Slowly she opens her eyes, and
with increasing anxiety sets them full upon him. Their recognition
is mutual. "Madame Flamingo!" ejaculates the man, grasping her hand.

"Tom Swiggs!" exclaims the woman, burying her face for a second,
then pressing his hand to her lips, and kissing it with the fondness
of a child, as her eyes swim in tears. "How strange to find you
thus--" continues Tom, for truly it is he who sits by the forlorn

"More strange," mutters the woman, shaking her head sorrowfully,
"that I should be brought to this terrible end. I am dying-I cannot
last long-the fever has left me only to die a neglected wretch. Hear
me-hear me, while I tell you the tale of my troubles, that others
may take warning. And may God give me strength. And you,--if I have
wronged you, forgive me-it is all I can ask in this world." Here Tom
administers another draught of warm brandy and water, the influence
of which is soon perceptible in the regaining strength of the



A VERY common story is this of Madame Flamingo's troubles. It has
counterparts enough, and though they may be traced to a class of
society less notorious than that with which she moved, are generally
kept in the dark chamber of hidden thoughts. We are indeed fast
gaining an unenviable fame for snobbery, for affecting to be what we
never can be, and for our sad imitation of foreign flunkydom, which,
finding us rivals in the realm of its tinsil, begins to button up
its coat and look contemptuously at us over the left shoulder. If,
albeit, the result of that passion for titles and plush (things
which the empty-headed of the old world would seem to have consigned
to the empty-headed of the new), which has of late so singularly
discovered itself among our "best-known families," could be told, it
would unfold many a tale of misery and betrayal. Pardon this
digression, generous reader, and proceed with us to the story of
Madame Flamingo.

"And now," says the forlorn woman, in a faint, hollow voice, "when
my ambition seemed served-I was ambitious, perhaps vain-I found
myself the victim of an intrigue. I ask forgiveness of Him who only
can forgive the wicked; but how can I expect to gain it?" She
presses Tom's hand, and pauses for a second. "Yes, I was ambitious,"
she continues, "and there was something I wanted. I had money enough
to live in comfort, but the thought that it was got of vice and the
ruin of others, weighed me down. I wanted the respect of the world.
To die a forgotten wretch; to have the grave close over me, and if
remembered at all, only with execration, caused me many a dark
thought." Here she struggles to suppress her emotions. "I sought to
change my condition; that, you see, has brought me here. I married
one to whom I intrusted my all, in whose rank, as represented to me
by Mr. Snivel, and confirmed by his friend, the Judge, I confided. I
hoped to move with him to a foreign country, where the past would
all be wiped out, and where the associations of respectable society
would be the reward of future virtue.

"In London, where I now reap the fruits of my vanity, we enjoyed
good society for a time, were sought after, and heaped with
attentions. But I met those who had known me; it got out who I was;
I was represented much worse than I was, and even those who had
flattered me in one sphere, did not know me. In Paris it was the
same. And there my husband said it would not do to be known by his
titles, for, being an exile, it might be the means of his being
recognized and kidnapped, and carried back a prisoner to his own
dear Poland. In this I acquiesced, as I did in everything else that
lightened his cares. Gradually he grew cold and morose towards me,
left me for days at a time, and returned only to abuse and treat me
cruelly. He had possession of all my money, which I soon found he
was gambling away, without gaining an entr‚e for me into society.

"From Paris we travelled, as if without any settled purpose, into
Italy, and from thence to Vienna, where I discovered that instead of
being a prince, my husband was an impostor, and I his dupe. He had
formerly been a crafty shoemaker; was known to the police as a
notorious character, who, instead of having been engaged in the
political struggles of his countrymen, had fled the country to
escape the penalty of being the confederate of a desperate gang of
coiners and counterfeiters. We had only been two days in Vienna when
I found he had disappeared, and left me destitute of money or
friends. My connection with him only rendered my condition more
deplorable, for the police would not credit my story; and while he
eluded its vigilance, I was suspected of being a spy in the
confidence of a felon, and ruthlessly ordered to leave the country."

"Did not your passport protect you?" interrupts Tom, with evident

"No one paid it the least regard," resumes Madame Flamingo, becoming
weaker and weaker. "No one at our legations evinced sympathy for me.
Indeed, they all refused to believe my story. I wandered back from
city to city, selling my wardrobe and the few jewels I had left, and
confidently expecting to find in each place I entered, some one I
had known, who would listen to my story, and supply me with means to
reach my home. I could soon have repaid it, but my friends had gone
with my money; no one dare venture to trust me-no one had confidence
in me-every one to whom I appealed had an excuse that betrayed their
suspicion of me. Almost destitute, I found myself back in London-how
I got here, I scarce know-where I could make myself understood. My
hopes now brightened, I felt that some generous-hearted captain
would give me a passage to New York, and once home, my troubles
would end. But being worn down with fatigue, and my strength
prostrated, a fever set in, and I was forced to seek refuge in a
miserable garret in Drury-Lane, and where I parted with all but what
now remains on my back, to procure nourishment. I had begun to
recover somewhat, but the malady left me broken down, and when all
was gone, I was turned into the street. Yes, yes, yes, (she
whispers,) they gave me to the streets; for twenty-four hours I have
wandered without nourishment, or a place to lay my head. I sought
shelter in a dark court, and there laid down to die; and when my
eyes were dim, and all before me seemed mysterious and dark with
curious visions, a hand touched me, and I felt myself borne away."
Here her voice chokes, she sinks back upon the pillow, and closes
her eyes as her hands fall careless at her side. "She breathes! she
breathes yet!" says Tom, advancing his ear to the pale, quivering
lips of the wretched woman. Now he bathes her temples with the
vinegar from a bottle in the hand of the host, who is just entered,
and stands looking on, his countenance full of alarm.

"If she deys in my 'ouse, good sir, w'oat then?"

"You mean the expense?"

"Just so-it 'll be nae trifle, ye kno'!" The host shakes his head,
doubtingly. Tom begs he will not be troubled about that, and gives
another assurance from his purse that quite relieves the host's
apprehensions. A low, heavy breathing, followed by a return of
spasms, bespeaks the sinking condition of the sufferer. The
policeman returns, preceded by a physician-the only one to be got
at, he says-in very dilapidated broadcloth, and whose breath is
rather strong of gin. "An' whereabutes did ye pick the woman up,--an,
an, wha's teu stond the bill?" he inquires, in a deep Scotch brogue,
then ordering the little window opened, feels clumsily the almost
pulseless hand. Encouraged on the matter of his bill, he turns first
to the host, then to Tom, and says, "the wuman's nae much, for she's
amast dede wi' exhaustion." And while he is ordering a nostrum he
knows can do no good, the woman makes a violent struggle, opens her
eyes, and seems casting a last glance round the dark room. Now she
sets them fixedly upon the ceiling, her lips pale, and her
countenance becomes spectre-like-a low, gurgling sound is heard, the
messenger of retribution is come-Madame Flamingo is dead!



"WHAT could the woman mean, when on taking leave of me she said,
'you are far richer than me?'" questions Maria McArthur to herself,
when, finding she is alone and homeless in the street, she opens the
packet the woman Anna slipped so mysteriously into her hand, and
finds it contains two twenty-dollar gold pieces. And while evolving
in her mind whether she shall appropriate them to the relief of her
destitute condition, her conscience smites her. It is the gold got
of vice. Her heart shares the impulse that prompted the act, but her
pure spirit recoils from the acceptance of such charity. "You are
far richer than me!" knells in her ears, and reveals to her the
heart-burnings of the woman who lives in licentious splendor. "I
have no home, no friend near me, and nowhere to lay my head; and yet
I am richer than her;" she says, gazing at the moon, and the stars,
and the serene heavens. And the contemplation brings to her
consolation and strength. She wanders back to the gate of the old
prison, resolved to return the gold in the morning, and, was the
night not so far spent, ask admittance into the cell her father
occupies. But she reflects, and turns away; well knowing how much
more painful will be the smart of his troubles does she disclose to
him what has befallen her.

She continues sauntering up a narrow by-lane in the outskirts of the
city. A light suddenly flashes across her path, glimmers from the
window of a little cabin, and inspires her with new hopes. She
quickens her steps, reaches the door, meets a welcome reception, and
is made comfortable for the night by the mulatto woman who is its
solitary tenant. The woman, having given Maria of her humble cheer,
seems only too anxious to disclose the fact that she is the slave
and cast-off mistress of Judge Sleepyhorn, on whose head she invokes
no few curses. It does not touch her pride so much that he has
abandoned her, as that he has taken to himself one of another color.
She is tall and straight of figure, with prominent features, long,
silky black hair, and a rich olive complexion; and though somewhat
faded of age, it is clear that she possessed in youth charms of
great value in the flesh market.

Maria discloses to her how she came in possession of the money, as
also her resolve to return it in the morning. Undine (for such is
her name) applauds this with great gusto. "Now, thar!" she says,
"that's the spirit I likes." And straightway she volunteers to be
the medium of returning the money, adding that she will show the
hussy her contempt of her by throwing it at her feet, and "letting
her see a slave knows all about it."

Maria fully appreciates the kindness, as well as sympathizes with
the wounded pride of this slave daughter; nevertheless, there is an
humiliation in being driven to seek shelter in a negro cabin that
touches her feelings. For a white female to seek shelter under the
roof of a negro's cabin, is a deep disgrace in the eyes of our very
refined society; and having subjected herself to the humiliation,
she knows full well that it may be used against her-in fine, made a
means to defame her character.

Night passes away, and the morning ushers in soft and sunny, but
brings with it nothing to relieve her situation. She, however,
returns the gold to Anna through a channel less objectionable than
that Undine would have supplied, and sallies out to seek lodgings.
In a house occupied by a poor German family, she seeks and obtains a
little room, wherein she continues plying at her needle.

The day set apart for the trial before a jury of "special bail"
arrives. The rosy-faced commissioner is in his seat, a very
good-natured jury is impanelled, and the feeble old man is again
brought into court. Maria saunters, thoughtful, and anxious for the
result, at the outer door. Peter Crimpton rises, addresses the jury
at great length, sets forth the evident intention of fraud on the
part of the applicant, and the enormity of the crime. He will now
prove his objections by competent witnesses. The proceedings being
in accordance with what Mr. Snivel facetiously terms the strict
rules of special pleading, the old man's lips are closed. Several
very respectable witnesses are called, and aver they saw the old
Antiquary with a gold watch mounted, at a recent date; witnesses
quite as dependable aver they have known him for many years, but
never mounted with anything so extravagant as a gold watch. So much
for the validity of testimony! It is very clear that the very
respectable witnesses have confounded some one else with the

The Antiquary openly confesses to the possession of a pin, and the
curious skull (neither of which are valuable beyond their
associations), but declares it more an over-sight than an intention
that they were left out of the schedule. For the virtue of the
schedule, Mr. Crimpton is singularly scrupulous; nor does it soften
his aspersions that the old man offers to resign them for the
benefit of the State. Mr. Crimpton gives his case to the jury,
expressing his belief that a verdict will be rendered in his favor.
A verdict of guilty (for so it is rendered in our courts) will
indeed give the prisoner to him for an indefinite period. In truth,
the only drawback is that the plaintiff will be required to pay
thirty cents a day to Mr. Hardscrabble, who will starve him rightly

The jury, very much to Mr. Crimpton's chagrin, remain seated, and
declare the prisoner not guilty. Was this sufficient-all the law
demanded? No. Although justice might have been satisfied, the law
had other ends to serve, and in the hands of an instrument like
Crimpton, could be turned to uses delicacy forbids our transcribing
here. The old man's persecutors were not satisfied; the verdict of
the jury was with him, but the law gave his enemies power to retain
him six months longer. Mr. Crimpton demands a writ of appeal to the
sessions. The Commissioner has no alternative, notwithstanding the
character of the pretext upon which it is demanded is patent on its
face. Such is but a feeble description of one of the many laws South
Carolina retains on her statute book to oppress the poor and give
power to the rich. If we would but purge ourselves of this distemper
of chivalry and secession, that so blinds our eyes to the sufferings
of the poor, while driving our politicians mad over the country (we
verily believe them all coming to the gallows or insane hospital),
how much higher and nobler would be our claim to the respect of the

Again the old man is separated from his daughter, placed in the
hands of a bailiff, and remanded back to prison, there to hope,
fear, and while away the time, waiting six, perhaps eight months,
for the sitting of the Court of Appeals. The "Appeal Court," you
must know, would seem to have inherited the aristocracy of our
ancestors, for, having a great aversion to business pursuits, it
sits at very long intervals, and gets through very little business.

When the news of her father's remand reaches Maria, it overwhelms
her with grief. Varied are her thoughts of how she shall provide for
the future; dark and sad are the pictures of trouble that rise up
before her. Look whichever way she will, her ruin seems sealed. The
health of her aged father is fast breaking-her own is gradually
declining under the pressure of her troubles. Rapidly forced from
one extreme to another, she appeals to a few acquaintances who have
expressed friendship for her father; but their friendship took wings
when grim poverty looked in. Southern hospitality, though
bountifully bestowed upon the rich, rarely condescends to shed its
bright rays over the needy poor.

Maria advertises for a situation, in some of our first families, as
private seamstress. Our first families having slaves for such
offices, have no need of "poor white trash." She applies personally
to several ladies of "eminent standing," and who busy themselves in
getting up donations for northern Tract Societies. They have no
sympathy to waste upon her. Her appeal only enlists coldness and
indifference. The "Church Home" had lent an ear to her story, but
that her address is very unsatisfactory, and it is got out that she
is living a very suspicious life. The "Church Home," so virtuous and
pious, can do nothing for her until she improves her mode of living.
Necessity pinches Maria at every turn. "To be poor in a slave
atmosphere, is truly a crime," she says to herself, musing over her
hard lot, while sitting in her chamber one evening. "But I am the
richer! I will rise above all!" She has just prepared to carry some
nourishment to her father, when Keepum enters, his face flushed, and
his features darkened with a savage scowl. "I have said you were a
fool-all women are fools!--and now I know I was not mistaken!" This
Mr. Keepum says while throwing his hat sullenly upon the floor.
"Well," he pursues, having seated himself in a chair, looked
designingly at the candle, then contorted his narrow face, and
frisked his fingers through his bright red hair, "as to this here
wincing and mincing-its all humbuggery of a woman like you.
Affecting such morals! Don't go down here; tell you that, my spunky
girl. Loose morals is what takes in poor folks."

Maria answers him only with a look of scorn. She advances to the
door to find it locked.

"It was me-I locked it. Best to be private about the matter," says
Keepum, a forced smile playing over his countenance.

Unresolved whether to give vent to her passion, or make an effort to
inspire his better nature, she stands a few moments, as if immersed
in deep thought, then suddenly falls upon her knees at his feet, and
implores him to save her this last step to her ruin. "Hear me, oh,
hear me, and let your heart give out its pity for one who has only
her virtue left her in this world;" she appeals to him with earnest
voice, and eyes swimming in tears. "Save my father, for you have
power. Give him his liberty, that I, his child, his only comfort in
his old age, may make him happy. Yes! yes!--he will die where he is.
Will you, can you-you have a heart-see me struggle against the rude
buffets of an unthinking world! Will you not save me from the
Poor-house-from the shame that awaits me with greedy clutches, and
receive in return the blessing of a friendless woman! Oh!--you will,
you will-release my father!--give him back to me and make me happy.
Ah, ha!--I see, I see, you have feelings, better feelings--feelings
that are not seared. You will have pity on me; you will forgive,
relent-you cannot see a wretch suffer and not be moved to lighten
her pain!" The calm, pensive expression that lights up her
countenance is indeed enough to inspire the tender impulses of a
heart in which every sense of generosity is not dried up.

Her appeal, nevertheless, falls ineffectual. Mr. Keepum has no
generous impulses to bestow upon beings so sensitive of their
virtue. With him, it is a ware of very little value, inasmuch as the
moral standard fixed by a better class of people is quite loose. He
rises from his chair with an air of self-confidence, seizes her by
the hand, and attempts to drag her upon his knee, saying, "you know
I can and will make you a lady. Upon the honor of a gentleman, I
love you-always have loved you; but what stands in the way, and is
just enough to make any gentleman of my standing mad, is this here

"No! no! go from me. Attempt not again to lay your cruel hands upon
me!" The goaded woman struggles from his grasp, and shrieks for help
at the very top of her voice. And as the neighbors come rushing up
stairs, Mr. Keepum valorously betakes himself into the street. Mad-
dened with disappointment, and swearing to have revenge, he seeks
his home, and there muses over the "curious woman's" unswerving
resolution. "Cruelty!" he says to himself--"she charges me with
cruelty! Well," (here he sighs) "it's only because she lacks a
bringing up that can appreciate a gentleman." (Keepum could never
condescend to believe himself less than a very fine gentleman.) "As
sure as the world the creature is somewhat out in the head. She
fancies all sorts of things-shame, disgrace, and ruin!--only because
she don't understand the quality of our morality-that's all! There's
no harm, after all, in these little enjoyments-if the girl would
only understand them so. Our society is free from pedantry; and
there-no damage can result where no one's the wiser. It's like
stealing a blush from the cheek of beauty-nobody misses it, and the
cheek continues as beautiful as ever." Thus philosophizes the
chivalric gentleman, until he falls into a fast sleep.



A FEW days have elapsed, Maria has just paid a visit to her father,
still in prison, and may be seen looking in at Mr. Keepum's office,
in Broad street. "I come not to ask a favor, sir; but, at my
father's request, to say to you that, having given up all he has in
the world, it can do no good to any one to continue him in durance,
and to ask of you-in whom the sole power rests-that you will grant
him his release ere he dies?" She addresses Mr. Keepum, who seems
not in a very good temper this morning, inasmuch as several of his
best negroes, without regard to their value to him, got a passion
for freedom into their heads, and have taken themselves away. In
addition to this, he is much put out, as he says, at being compelled
to forego the pleasure held out on the previous night, of tarring
and feathering two northerners suspected of entertaining sentiments
not exactly straight on the "peculiar question." A glorious time was
expected, and a great deal of very strong patriotism wasted; but the
two unfortunate individuals, by some means not yet discovered, got
the vigilance committee, to whose care they were entrusted, very
much intoxicated, and were not to be found when called for. Free
knives, and not free speech, is our motto. And this Mr. Keepum is
one of the most zealous in carrying out.

Mr. Keepum sits, his hair fretted back over his lean forehead,
before a table covered with papers, all indicating an immense
business in lottery and other speculations. Now he deposits his feet
upon it; leans back in his chair, puffs his cigar, and says, with an
air of indifference to the speaker: "I shall not be able to attend
to any business of yours to-day, Madam!" His clerk, a man of sturdy
figure, with a broad, red face, and dressed in rather dilapidated
broadcloth, is passing in and out of the front office, bearing in
his fingers documents that require a signature or mark of approval.

"I only come, sir, to tell you that we are destitute--" Maria pauses,
and stands trembling in the doorway.

"That's a very common cry," interrupts Keepum, relieving his mouth
of the cigar. "The affair is entirely out of my hands. Go to my
attorney, Peter Crimpton, Esq.,--what he does for you will receive my
sanction. I must not be interrupted to-day. I might express a
thousand regrets; yes, pass an opinion on your foolish pride, but
what good would it do."

And while Maria stands silent and hesitating, there enters the
office abrubtly a man in the garb of a mechanic. "I have come,"
speaks the man, in a tone of no very good humor, "for the last time.
I asks of you-you professes to be a gentleman-my honest rights. If
the law don't give it to me, I mean to take it with this erehand."
(He shakes his hand at Keepum.) "I am a poor man who ain't thought
much of because I works for a living; you have got what I had worked
hard for, and lain up to make my little family comfortable. I ask a
settlement and my own-what is due from one honest man to another!"
He now approaches the table, strikes his hand upon it, and pauses
for a reply.

Mr. Keepum coolly looks up, and with an insidious leer, says,
"There, take yourself into the street. When next you enter a
gentleman's office, learn to deport yourself with good manners."

"Pshaw! pshaw!" interrupts the man. "What mockery! When men like
you-yes, I say men like you-that has brought ruin on so many poor
families, can claim to be gentlemen, rogues may get a patent for
their order." The man turns to take his departure, when the
infuriated Keepum, who, as we have before described, gets
exceedingly put out if any one doubts his honor, seizes an iron bar,
and stealing up behind, fetches him a blow over the head that fells
him lifeless to the floor.

Maria shrieks, and vaults into the street. The mass upon the floor
fetches a last agonizing shrug, and a low moan, and is dead. The
murderer stands over him, exultant, as the blood streams from the
deep fracture. In fine, the blood of his victim would seem rather to
increase his satisfaction at the deed, than excite a regret.

Call you this murder? Truly, the man has outraged God's law. And the
lover of law and order, of social good, and moral honesty, would
find reasons for designating the perpetrator an assassin. For has he
not first distressed a family, and then left it bereft of its
protector? You may think of it and designate it as you please.
Nevertheless we, in our fancied mightiness, cannot condescend to
such vulgar considerations. We esteem it extremely courageous of Mr.
Keepum, to defend himself "to the death" against the insults of one
of the common herd. Our first families applaud the act, our
sensitive press say it was "an unfortunate affair," and by way of
admonition, add that it were better working people be more careful
how they approach gentlemen. Mr. Snivel will call this, the sublime
quality of our chivalry. What say the jury of inquest?

Duly weighing the high position of Mr. Keepum, and the very low
condition of the deceased, the good-natured jury return a verdict
that the man met his death in consequence of an accidental blow,
administered with an iron instrument, in the hands of one Keepum.
From the testimony-Keepum's clerk-it is believed the act was
committed in self-defence.

Mr. Keepum, as is customary with our fine gentlemen, and like a hero
(we will not content ourselves with making him one jot less),
magnanimously surrenders himself to the authorities. The majesty of
our laws is not easily offended by gentlemen of standing. Only the
poor and the helpless slave can call forth the terrible majesty of
the law, and quicken to action its sensitive quality. The city is
shocked that Mr. Keepum is subjected to a night in jail,
notwithstanding he has the jailer's best parlor, and a barricade of
champaign bottles are strewn at his feet by flattering friends, who
make night jubilant with their carousal.

Southern society asks no repentance of him whose hands reek with the
blood of his poor victim; southern society has no pittance for that
family Keepum has made lick the dust in tears and sorrow. Even while
we write-while the corpse of the murdered man, followed by a few
brother craftsmen, is being borne to its last resting-place, the
perpetrator, released on a paltry bail, is being regaled at a
festive board. Such is our civilization! How had the case stood with
a poor man! Could he have stood up against the chivalry of South
Carolina, scoffed at the law, or bid good-natured justice close her
eyes? No. He had been dragged to a close cell, and long months had
passed ere the tardy movements of the law reached his case. Even
then, popular opinion would have turned upon him, pre-judged him,
and held him up as dangerous to the peace of the people. Yes, pliant
justice would have affected great virtue, and getting on her high
throne, never ceased her demands until he had expiated his crime at
the gallows.

A few weeks pass: Keepum's reputation for courage is fully endorsed,
the Attorney-General finds nothing in the act to justify him in
bringing it before a Grand Jury, the law is satisfied (or ought to
be satisfied), and the rich murderer sleeps without a pang of



JUNE, July, and August are past away, and September, with all its
autumnal beauties, ushers in, without bringing anything to lighten
the cares of that girl whose father yet pines in prison. She looks
forward, hoping against hope, to the return of her lover (something
tells her he still lives), only to feel more keenly the pangs of
hope deferred.

And now, once more, New York, we are in thy busy streets. It is a
pleasant evening in early September. The soft rays of an autumn sun
are tinging the western sky, and night is fast drawing her sable
mantle over the scene. In Washington Square, near where the tiny
fountain jets its stream into a round, grassy-bordered basin, there
sits a man of middle stature, apparently in deep study. His dress is
plain, and might be taken for that of either a working man, or a
somewhat faded inspector of customs. Heedless of those passing to
and fro, he sits until night fairly sets in, then rises, and faces
towards the East. Through the trunks of trees he sees, and seems
contemplating the gray walls of the University, and the bold, sombre
front of the very aristocratic church of the Reformed Dutch.

"Well!" he mutters to himself, resuming his seat, and again facing
to the west, "this ere business of ourn is a great book of life-'tis
that! Finds us in queer places; now and then mixed up curiously." He
rises a second time, advances to a gas-light, draws a letter from
his pocket, and scans, with an air of evident satisfaction, over the
contents. "Umph!" he resumes, and shrugs his shoulders, "I was right
on the address-ought to have known it without looking." Having
resumed his seat, he returns the letter to his pocket, sits with his
elbow upon his knee, and his head rested thoughtfully in his right
hand. The picture before him, so calm and soft, has no attractions
for him. The dusky hues of night, for slowly the scene darkens, seem
lending a softness and calmness to the foliage. The weeping branches
of the willow, interspersed here and there, as if to invest the
picture with a touching melancholy, sway gently to and fro; the
leaves of the silvery poplar tremble and reflect their shadows on
the fresh waters; and the flitting gas-lights mingle their gleams,
play and sport over the rippled surface, coquet with the tripping
star-beams, then throw fantastic lights over the swaying foliage;
and from beneath the massive branches of trees, there shines out, in
bold relief, the marble porticoes and lintels of stately--looking
mansions. Such is the calm grandeur of the scene, that one could
imagine some Thalia investing it with a poetic charm the gods might
muse over.

"It is not quite time yet," says the man, starting suddenly to his
feet. He again approaches a gas-light, looks attentively at his
watch, then saunters to the corner of Fourth and Thompson streets.
An old, dilapidated wooden building, which some friend has
whitewashed into respectability, and looking as if it had a strong
inclination to tumble either upon the sidewalk, or against the great
trunk of a hoary-headed tree at the corner, arrests his attention.
"Well," he says, having paused before it, and scanned its crooked
front, "this surely is the house where the woman lived when she was
given the child. Practice, and putting two things together to find
what one means, is the great thing in our profession. Like its old
tenant, the house has got down a deal. It's on its last legs." Again
he consults his watch, and with a quickened step recrosses the
Square, and enters -- Avenue. Now he halts before a spacious
mansion, the front of which is high and bold, and deep, and of brown
freestone. The fluted columns; the elegantly-chiselled lintels; the
broad, scrolled window-frames; the exactly-moulded arches; the
massive steps leading to the deep, vaulted entrance, with its doors
of sombre and highly-polished walnut; and its bold style of
architecture, so grand in its outlines,--all invest it with a regal
air. The man casts a glance along the broad avenue, then into the
sombre entrance of the mansion. Now he seems questioning within
himself whether to enter or retrace his steps. One-half of the outer
door, which is in the Italian style, with heavy fluted mouldings,
stands ajar; while from out the lace curtains of the inner, there
steals a faint light. The man rests his elbow on the great stone
scroll of the guard-rail, and here we leave him for a few moments.

The mansion, it may be well to add here, remains closed the greater
part of the year; and when opened seems visited by few persons, and
those not of the very highest standing in society. A broken-down
politician, a seedy hanger-on of some "literary club," presided over
by a rich, but very stupid tailor, and now and then a lady about
whose skirts something not exactly straight hangs, and who has been
elbowed out of fashionable society for her too ardent love of
opera-singers, and handsome actors, may be seen dodging in now and
then. Otherwise, the mansion would seem very generally deserted by
the neighborhood.

Everybody will tell you, and everybody is an individual so extremely
busy in other people's affairs, that he ought to know, that there is
something that hangs so like a rain-cloud about the magnificent
skirts of those who live so secluded "in that fine old pile,"
(mansion,) that the virtuous satin of the Avenue never can be got to
"mix in." Indeed, the Avenue generally seems to have set its face
against those who reside in it. They enjoy none of those very grand
assemblies, balls, and receptions, for which the Avenue is become
celebrated, and yet they luxuriate in wealth and splendor.

Though the head of the house seems banished by society, society
makes her the subject of many evil reports and mysterious
whisperings. The lady of the mansion, however, as if to retort upon
her traducers, makes it known that she is very popular abroad, every
now and then during her absence honoring them with mysterious
clippings from foreign journals-all setting forth the admiration her
appearance called forth at a grand reception given by the Earl and
Countess of --.

Society is made of inexorable metal, she thinks, for the prejudices
of the neighborhood have not relaxed one iota with time. That she
has been presented to kings, queens, and emperors; that she has
enjoyed the hospitalities of foreign embassies; that she has (and
she makes no little ado that she has) shone in the assemblies of
prime ministers; that she has been invited to court concerts, and
been the flattered of no end of fashionable coteries, serves her
nothing at home. They are events, it must be admitted, much
discussed, much wondered at, much regretted by those who wind
themselves up in a robe of stern morality. In a few instances they
are lamented, lest the morals and manners of those who make it a
point to represent us abroad should reflect only the brown side of
our society.

As if with regained confidence, the man, whom we left at the door
scroll, is seen slowly ascending the broad steps. He enters the
vaulted vestibule, and having touched the great, silver bell-knob of
the inner door, stands listening to the tinkling chimes within. A
pause of several minutes, and the door swings cautiously open. There
stands before him the broad figure of a fussy servant man, wedged
into a livery quite like that worn by the servants of an English
tallow-chandler, but which, it must be said, and said to be
regretted, is much in fashion with our aristocracy, who, in
consequence of its brightness, belive it the exact style of some
celebrated lord. The servant receives a card from the visitor, and
with a bow, inquires if he will wait an answer.

"I will wait the lady's pleasure-I came by appointment," returns the
man. And as the servant disappears up the hall, he takes a seat,
uninvited, upon a large settee, in carved walnut. "Something
mysterious about this whole affair!" he muses, scanning along the
spacious hall, into the conservatory of statuary and rare plants,
seen opening away at the extreme end. The high, vaulted roof; the
bright, tesselated floor; the taste with which the frescoes
decorating the walls are designed; the great winding stairs, so
richly carpeted-all enhanced in beauty by the soft light reflected
upon them from a massive chandelier of stained glass, inspire him
with a feeling of awe. The stillness, and the air of grandeur
pervading each object that meets his eye, reminds him of the halls
of those medi‘val castles he has read of in his youth. The servant
returns, and makes his bow. "My leady," he says, in a strong
Lincolnshire brogue, "as weated ye an 'our or more."

The visitor, evincing some nervousness, rises quickly to his feet,
follows the servant up the hall, and is ushered into a parlor of
regal dimensions, on the right. His eye falls upon one solitary
occupant, who rises from a lounge of oriental richness, and advances
towards him with an air of familiarity their conditions seem not to
warrant. Having greeted the visitor, and bid him be seated (he takes
his seat, shyly, beside the door), the lady resumes her seat in a
magnificent chair. For a moment the visitor scans over the great
parlor, as if moved by the taste and elegance of everything that
meets his eye. The hand of art has indeed been lavishly laid on the
decorations of this chamber, which presents a scene of luxury
princes might revel in. And though the soft wind of whispering silks
seemed lending its aid to make complete the enjoyment of the
occupant, it might be said, in the words of Crabbe:

"But oh, what storm was in that mind!"

The person of the lady is in harmony with the splendor of the
apartment. Rather tall and graceful of figure, her complexion pale,
yet soft and delicate, her features as fine and regular as ever
sculptor chiselled, her manner gentle and womanly. In her face,
nevertheless, there is an expression of thoughtfulness, perhaps
melancholy, to which her large, earnest black eyes, and
finely-arched brows, fringed with dark lashes, lend a peculiar
charm. While over all there plays a shadow of languor, increased
perhaps by the tinge of age, or a mind and heart overtaxed with

"I received your note, which I hastened to answer. Of course you
received my answer. I rejoice that you have persevered, and
succeeded in finding the object I have so long sought. Not hearing
from you for so many weeks, I had begun to fear she had gone
forever," says the lady, in a soft, musical voice, raising her
white, delicate hand to her cheek, which is suffused with blushes.

"I had myself almost given her over, for she disappeared from the
Points, and no clue could be got of her," returns the man, pausing
for a moment, then resuming his story. "A week ago yesterday she
turned up again, and I got wind that she was in a place we call
'Black-beetle Hole'--"

"Black-beetle Hole!" ejaculates the lady, whom the reader will have
discovered is no less a person than Madame Montford. Mr. Detective
Fitzgerald is the visitor.

"Yes, there's where she's got, and it isn't much of a place, to say
the best. But when a poor creature has no other place to get a
stretch down, she stretches down there--"

"Proceed to how you found her, and what you have got from her
concerning the child," the lady interrupts, with a deep sigh.

"Well," proceeds the detective, "I meets-havin' an eye out all the
while-Sergeant Dobbs one morning-Dobbs knows every roost in the
Points better than me!--and says he, 'Fitzgerald, that are woman,
that crazy woman, you've been in tow of so long, has turned up.
There was a row in Black-beetle Hole last night. I got a force and
descended into the place, found it crammed with them half-dead kind
of women and men, and three thieves, what wanted to have a fuss with
the hag that keeps it. One on 'em was thrashing the poor crazy
woman. They had torn all the rags off her back. Howsever, if you
wants to fish her out, you'd better be spry about it-'"

The lady interrupts by saying she will disguise, and with his
assistance, go bring her from the place-save her! Mr. Fitzgerald
begs she will take the matter practically. She could not breathe the
air of the place, he says.

"'Thank you Dobbs,' says I," he resumes, "and when it got a bit dark
I went incog. to Black-beetle's Hole--"

"And where is this curious place?" she questions, with an air of

"As to that, Madame-well, you wouldn't know it was lived in, because
its underground, and one not up to the entrance never would think it
led to a place where human beings crawled in at night. I don't
wonder so many of 'em does things what get 'em into the Station, and
after that treated to a short luxury on the Island. As I was goin'
on to say, I got myself fortified, started out into the Points, and
walked-we take these things practically-down and up the east
sidewalk, then stopped in front of the old rotten house that
Black-beetle Hole is under. Then I looks down the wet little stone
steps, that ain't wide enough for a big man to get down, and what
lead into the cellar. Some call it Black-beetle Hole, and then again
some call it the Hole of the Black-beetles. 'Yer after no good, Mr.
Fitzgerald,' says Mrs. McQuade, whose husband keeps the junk-shop
over the Hole, putting her malicious face out of the window.

"'You're the woman I want, Mrs. McQuade,' says I. 'Don't be puttin'
your foot in the house,' says she. And when I got her temper a
little down by telling her I only wanted to know who lived in the
Hole, she swore by all the saints it had niver a soul in it, and was
hard closed up. Being well up to the dodges of the Points folks, I
descended the steps, and gettin' underground, knocked at the Hole
door, and then sent it smash in. 'Well! who's here?' says I. 'It's
me,' says Mrs. Lynch, a knot of an old woman, who has kept the Hole
for many years, and says she has no fear of the devil."

Madame Montford listens with increasing anxiety; Mr. Detective
Fitzgerald proceeds: "'Get a light here, then;' says I. You couldn't
see nothing, it was so dark, but you could hear 'em move, and
breathe. And then the place was so hot and sickly. Had to stand it
best way I could. There was no standing straight in the dismal
place, which was wet and nasty under foot, and not more nor twelve
by fourteen. The old woman said she had only a dozen lodgers in;
when she made out to get a light for me I found she had
twenty-three, tucked away here and there, under straw and stuff.
Well, it was curious to see 'em (here the detective wipes his
forehead with his handkerchief) rise up, one after another, all
round you, you know, like fiends that had been buried for a time,
then come to life merely to get something to eat."

"And did you find the woman-and was she one of them?"

"That's what I'm comin' at. Well, I caught a sight at the woman;
knew her at the glance. I got a sight at her one night in the Pit at
the House of the Nine Nations. 'Here! I wants you,' says I, takin'
what there was left of her by the arm. She shrieked, and crouched
down, and begged me not to hurt her, and looked wilder than a tiger
at me. And then the whole den got into a fright, and young women,
and boys, and men-they were all huddled together-set up such a
screaming. 'Munday!' says I, 'you don't go to the Tombs-here! I've
got good news for you.' This quieted her some, and then I picked her
up-she was nearly naked-and seeing she wanted scrubbing up, carried
her out of the Hole, and made her follow me to my house, where we
got her into some clothes, and seeing that she was got right in her
mind, I thought it would be a good time to question her."

"If you will hasten the result of your search, it will, my good sir,
relieve my feelings much!" again interposes the lady, drawing her
chair nearer the detective.

"'You've had,' I says to her, 'a hard enough time in this world, and
now here's the man what's going to be a friend to ye-understand
that!' says I, and she looked at me bewildered. We gave her
something to eat, and a pledge that no one would harm her, and she
tamed down, and began to look up a bit. 'Your name wasn't always
Munday?' says I, in a way that she couldn't tell what I was after.
She said she had taken several names, but Munday was her right name.
Then she corrected herself-she was weak and hoarse-and said it was
her husband's name. 'You've a good memory, Mrs. Munday,' says I;
'now, just think as far back as you can, and tell us where you lived
as long back as you can think.' She shook her head, and began to
bury her face in her hands. I tried for several minutes, but could
get nothing more out of her. Then she quickened up, shrieked out
that she had just got out of the devil's regions, and made a rush
for the door."



MR. FITZGERALD sees that his last remark is having no very good
effect on Madame Montford, and hastens to qualify, ere it overcome
her. "That, I may say, Madame, was not the last of her. My wife and
me, seeing how her mind was going wrong again, got her in bed for
the night, and took what care of her we could. Well, you see, she
got rational in the morning, and, thinking it a chance, I 'plied a
heap of kindness to her, and got her to tell all she knew of
herself. She went on to tell where she lived-I followed your
directions in questioning her-at the time you noted down. She
described the house exactly. I have been to it to-night; knew it at
a sight, from her description. Some few practical questions I put to
her about the child you wanted to get at, I found frightened her so
that she kept shut-for fear, I take it, that it was a crime she may
be punished for at some time. I says, 'You was trusted with a child
once, wasn't you?' 'The Lord forgive me,' she says, 'I know I'm
guilty-but I've been punished enough in this world haven't I?' And
she burst out into tears, and hung down her head, and got into the
corner, as if wantin' nobody to see her. She only wanted a little
good care, and a little kindness, to bring her to. This we did as
well as we could, and made her understand that no one thought of
punishing her, but wanted to be her friends. Well, the poor wretch
began to pick up, as I said before, and in three days was such
another woman that nobody could have told that she was the poor
crazy thing that ran about the lanes and alleys of the Points. And
now, Madame, doing as you bid me, I thought it more practical to
come to you, knowing you could get of her all you wanted. She is
made comfortable. Perhaps you wouldn't like to have her brought
here-I may say I don't think it would be good policy. If you would
condescend to come to our house, you can see her alone. I hope you
are satisfied with my services." The detective pauses, and again
wipes his face.

"My gratitude for your perseverance I can never fully express to
you. I owe you a debt I never can repay. To-morrow, at ten o'clock,
I will meet you at your house; and then, if you can leave me alone
with her--"

"Certainly, certainly, everything will be at your service, Madame,"
returns the detective, rising from his seat and thanking the lady,
who rewards him bountifully from her purse, and bids him good night.
The servant escorts him to the door, while Madame Montford buries
her face in her hands, and gives vent to her emotions.

On the morning following, a neatly-caparisoned carriage is seen
driving to the door of a little brick house in Crosby street. From
it Madame Montford alights, and passes in at the front door, while
in another minute it rolls away up the street and is lost to sight.
A few moments' consultation, and the detective, who has ushered the
lady into his humbly-furnished little parlor, withdraws to give
place to the pale and emaciated figure of the woman Munday, who
advances with faltering step and downcast countenance. "Oh! forgive
me, forgive me! have mercy upon me! forgive me this crime!" she
shrieks. Suddenly she raises her eyes, and rushing forward throws
herself at Madame Montford's feet, in an imploring attitude. Dark
and varied fancies crowd confusedly on Madame Montfort's mind at
this moment.

"Nay, nay, my poor sufferer, rather I might ask forgiveness of you."
She takes the woman by the hand, and, with an air of regained
calmness, raises her from the floor. With her, the outer life seems
preparing the inner for what is to come. "But I have long sought
you-sought you in obedience to the demands of my conscience, which I
would the world gave me power to purify; and now I have found you,
and with you some rest for my aching heart. Come, sit down; forget
what you have suffered; tell me what befell you, and what has become
of the child; tell me all, and remember that I will provide for you
a comfortable home for the rest of your life." Madame motions her to
a chair, struggling the while to suppress her own feelings.

"I loved the child you intrusted to my care; yes, God knows I loved
it, and watched over it for two years, as carefully as a mother. But
I was poor, and the brother, in whose hands you intrusted the amount
for its support (this, the reader must here know, was not a brother,
but the paramour of Madame Montford), failed, and gave me nothing
after the first six months. I never saw him, and when I found you
had gone abroad--" The woman hesitates, and, with weeping eyes and
trembling voice, again implores forgiveness. "My husband gave
himself up to drink, lost his situation, and then he got to hating
the child, and abusing me for taking it, and embarrassing our scanty
means of living. Night and day, I was harassed and abused, despised
and neglected. I was discouraged, and gave up in despair. I clung to
the child as long as I could. I struggled, and struggled, and
struggled--" Here the woman pauses, and with a submissive look, again
hangs down her head and sobs.

"Be calm, be calm," says Madame Montford, drawing nearer to her, and
making an effort to inspirit her. "Throw off all your fears, forget
what you have suffered, for I, too, have suffered. And you parted
with the child?"

"Necessity forced me," pursues the woman, shaking her head. "I saw
only the street before me on one side, and felt only the cold
pinchings of poverty on the other. You had gone abroad--"

"It was my intention to have adopted the child as my own when I
returned," interrupts Madame Montford, still clinging to that
flattering hope in which the criminal sees a chance of escape.

"And I," resumes the woman, "left the husband who neglected me, and
who treated me cruelly, and gave myself,--perhaps I was to blame for
it,--up to one who befriended me. He was the only one who seemed to
care for me, or to have any sympathy for me. But he, like myself,
was poor; and, being compelled to flee from our home, and to live in
obscurity, where my husband could not find me out, the child was an
incumbrance I had no means of supporting. I parted with her-yes,
yes, I parted with her to Mother Bridges, who kept a stand at a
corner in West street--"

"And then what became of her?" again interposes Madame Montford. The
woman assumes a sullenness, and it is some time before she can be
got to proceed.

"My conscience rebuked me," she resumes, as if indifferent about
answering the question, "for I loved the child as my own; and the
friend I lived with, and who followed the sea, printed on its right
arm two hearts and a broken anchor, which remain there now. My
husband died of the cholera, and the friend I had taken to, and who
treated me kindly, also died, and I soon found myself an abandoned
woman, an outcast-yes, ruined forever, and in the streets, leading a
life that my own feelings revolted at, but from which starvation
only seemed the alternative. My conscience rebuked me again and
again, and something--I cannot tell what it was--impelled me with an
irresistible force to watch over the fortunes of the child I knew
must come to the same degraded life necessity-perhaps it was my own
false step-had forced upon me. I watched her a child running
neglected about the streets, then I saw her sold to Hag Zogbaum, who
lived in Pell street; I never lost sight of her-no, I never lost
sight of her, but fear of criminating myself kept me from making
myself known to her. When I had got old in vice, and years had gone
past, and she was on the first step to the vice she had been
educated to, we shared the same roof. Then she was known as Anna

"Anna Bonard!" exclaims Madame Montford. "Then truly it is she who
now lives in Charleston! There is no longer a doubt. I may seek and
claim her, and return her to at least a life of comfort."

"There you will find her. Ah, many times have I looked upon her, and
thought if I could only save her, how happy I could die. I shared
the same roof with her in Charleston, and when I got sick she was
kind to me, and watched over me, and was full of gentleness, and
wept over her condition. She has sighed many a time, and said how
she wished she knew how she came into the world, to be forced to
live despised by the world. But I got down, down, down, from one
step to another, one step to another, as I had gone up from one step
to another in the splendor of vice, until I found myself, tortured
in mind and body, a poor neglected wretch in the Charleston
Poor-house. In it I was treated worse than a slave, left, sick and
heart-broken, and uncared-for, to the preying of a fever that
destroyed my mind. And as if that were not enough, I was carried
into the dungeons-the 'mad cells,'-and chained. And this struck such
a feeling of terror into my soul that my reason, as they said, was
gone forever. But I got word to Anna, and she came to me, and gave
me clothes and many little things to comfort me, and got me out, and
gave me money to get back to New York, where I have been ever since,
haunted from place to place, with scarce a place to lay my head.
Surely I have suffered. Shall I be forgiven?" Her voice here
falters, she becomes weak, and seems sinking under the burden of her
emotions. "If,--if-if," she mutters, incoherently, "you can save me,
and forgive me, you will have the prayers of one who has drank deep
of the bitter cup." She looks up with a sad, melancholy countenance,
again implores forgiveness, and bursts into loud sobs.

"Mine is the guilty part-it is me who needs forgiveness!" speaks
Madame Montford, pressing the hand of the forlorn woman, as the
tears stream down her cheeks. She has unburdened her emotions, but
such is the irresistible power of a guilty conscience that she finds
her crushed heart and smitten frame sinking under the shock-that she
feels the very fever of remorse mounting to her brain.

"Be calm, be calm-for you have suffered, wandered through the dark
abyss; truly you have been chastened enough in this world. But while
your heart is only bruised and sore, mine is stung deep and
lacerated. The image of that child now rises up before me. I see her
looking back over her chequered life, and pining to know her
birthright. Mine is the task of seeking her out, reconciling her,
saving her from this life of shame. I must sacrifice the secrets of
my own heart, go boldly in pursuit of her--" She pauses a moment.
There is yet a thin veil between her and society. Society only
founds its suspicions upon the mystery involved in the separation
from her husband, and the doubtful character of her long residence
in Europe. Society knows nothing of the birth of the child. The
scandal leveled at her in Charleston, was only the result of her own
indiscretion. "Yes," she whispers, attempting at the same time to
soothe the feelings of the poor disconsolate woman, "I must go, and
go quickly-I must drag her from the terrible life she is
leading;--but, ah! I must do it so as to shield myself. Yes, I must
shield myself!" And she puts into the woman's hand several pieces of
gold, saying: "take this!--to-morrow you will be better provided for.
Be silent. Speak to no one of what has passed between us, nor make
the acquaintance of any one outside the home I shall provide for
you." Thus saying, she recalls Mr. Detective Fitzgerald, rewards him
with a nostrum from her purse, and charges him to make the woman
comfortable at her expense.

"Her mind, now I do believe," says the detective, with an approving
toss of the head, "her faculties 'll come right again,--they only
wants a little care and kindness, mum." The detective thanks her
again and again, then puts the money methodically into his pocket.

The carriage having returned, Madame Montford vaults into it as
quickly as she alighted, and is rolled away to her mansion.



WHILE the events we have recorded in the foregoing chapter,
confused, hurried, and curious, are being enacted in New York, let
us once more turn to Charleston.

You must know that, notwithstanding our high state of civilization,
we yet maintain in practice two of the most loathsome relics of
barbarism-we lash helpless women, and we scourge, at the public
whipping-post, the bare backs of men.

George Mullholland has twice been dragged to the whipping-post,
twice stripped before a crowd in the market-place, twice lashed,
maddened to desperation, and twice degraded in the eyes of the very
negroes we teach to yield entire submission to the white man,
however humble his grade. Hate, scorn, remorse-every dark passion
his nature can summon-rises up in one torturing tempest, and fills
his bosom with a mad longing for revenge. "Death!" he says, while
looking out from his cell upon the bright landscape without, "what
is death to me? The burnings of an outraged soul subdue the thought
of death."

The woman through whom this dread finale was brought upon him, and
who now repines, unable to shake off the smarts old associations
crowd upon her heart, has a second and third time crept noiselessly
to his cell, and sought in vain his forgiveness. Yea, she has opened
the door gently, but drew back in terror before his dark frown, his
sardonic scorn, his frenzied rush at her. Had he not loved her
fondly, his hate had not taken such deep root in his bosom.

Two or three days pass, he has armed himself "to the death," and is
resolved to make his escape, and seek revenge of his enemies. It is
evening. Dark festoons of clouds hang over the city, lambent
lightning plays along the heavens in the south. Now it flashes
across the city, the dull panorama lights up, the tall, gaunt
steeples gleam out, and the surface of the Bay flashes out in a
phosphoric blaze. Patiently and diligently has he filed, and filed,
and filed, until he has removed the bar that will give egress to his
body. The window of his cell overlooks the ditch, beyond which is
the prison wall. Noiselessly he arranges the rope, for he is in the
third story, then paces his cell, silent and thoughtful. "Must it
be?" he questions within himself, "must I stain these hands with the
blood of the woman I love? Revenge, revenge-I will have revenge. I
will destroy both of them, for to-morrow I am to be dragged a third
time to the whipping-post." Now he casts a glance round the dark
cell, now he pauses at the window, now the lightning courses along
the high wall, then reflects back the deep ditch. Another moment,
and he has commenced his descent. Down, down, down, he lowers
himself. Now he holds on tenaciously, the lightning reflects his
dangling figure, a prisoner in a lower cell gives the alarm, he
hears the watchword of his discovery pass from cell to cell, the
clashing of the keeper's door grates upon his ear like thunder-he
has reached the end of his rope, and yet hangs suspended in the air.
A heavy fall is heard, he has reached the ditch, bounds up its side
to the wall, seizes a pole, and places against it, and, with one
vault, is over into the open street. Not a moment is to be lost.
Uproar and confusion reigns throughout the prison, his keepers have
taken the alarm, and will soon be on his track, pursuing him with
ferocious hounds. Burning for revenge, and yet bewildered, he sets
off at full speed, through back lanes, over fields, passing in his
course the astonished guardmen. He looks neither to the right nor
the left, but speeds on toward the grove. Now he reaches the bridge
that crosses the millpond, pauses for breath, then proceeds on.
Suddenly a light from the villa Anna occupies flashes out. He has
crossed the bridge, bounds over the little hedge-grown avenue,
through the garden, and in another minute stands before her, a
pistol pointed at her breast, and all the terrible passions of an
enraged fiend darkening his countenance. Her implorings for mercy
bring an old servant rushing into the room, the report of a pistol
rings out upon the still air, shriek after shriek follows, mingled
with piercing moans, and death-struggles. "Ha, ha!" says the
avenger, looking on with a sardonic smile upon his face, and a curl
of hate upon his lip, "I have taken the life to which I gave my
own-yes, I have taken it-I have taken it!" And she writhes her body,
and sets her eyes fixedly upon him, as he hastens out of the room.

"Quick! quick!" he says to himself. "There, then! I am pursued!" He
recrosses the millpond over another bridge, and in his confusion
turns a short angle into a lane leading to the city. The yelping of
dogs, the deep, dull tramp of hoofs, the echoing of voices, the
ominous baying and scenting of blood-hounds-all break upon his ear
in one terrible chaos. Not a moment is to be lost. The sight at the
villa will attract the attention of his pursuers, and give him time
to make a distance! The thought of what he has done, and the
terrible death that awaits him, crowds upon his mind, and rises up
before him like a fierce monster of retribution. He rushes at full
speed down the lane, vaults across a field into the main road, only
to find his pursuers close upon him. The patrol along the streets
have caught the alarm, which he finds spreading with
lightning-speed. The clank of side-arms, the scenting and baying of
the hounds, coming louder and louder, nearer and nearer, warns him
of the approaching danger. A gate at the head of a wharf stands
open, the hounds are fast gaining upon him, a few jumps more and
they will have him fast in their ferocious grasp. He rushes through
the gate, down the wharf, the tumultuous cry of his pursuers
striking terror into his very heart. Another instant and the hounds
are at his feet, he stands on the capsill at the end, gives one
wild, despairing look into the abyss beneath--"I die revenged," he
shouts, discharges a pistol into his breast, and with one wild
plunge, is buried forever in the water beneath. The dark stream of
an unhappy life has run out. Upon whom does the responsibility of
this terrible closing rest? In the words of Thomson, the avenger
left behind him only "Gaunt Beggary, and Scorn, with many
hell-hounds more."

When the gray dawn of morning streamed in through the windows of the
little villa, and upon the parlor table, that had so often been
adorned with caskets and fresh-plucked flowers, there, in their
stead, lay the lifeless form of the unhappy Anna, her features pale
as marble, but beautiful even in death. There, rolled in a mystic
shroud, calm as a sleeper in repose, she lay, watched over by two
faithful slaves.

The Judge and Mr. Snivel have found it convenient to make a trip of
pleasure into the country. And though the affair creates some little
comment in fashionable society, it would be exceedingly unpopular to
pry too deeply into the private affairs of men high in office. We
are not encumbered with scrutinizing morality. Being an "unfortunate
woman," the law cannot condescend to deal with her case. Indeed,
were it brought before a judge, and the judge to find himself
sitting in judgment upon a judge, his feelings would find some means
of defrauding his judgment, while society would carefully close the
shutter of its sanctity.

At high noon there comes a man of the name of Moon, commonly called
Mr. Moon, the good-natured Coroner. In truth, a better-humored man
than Mr. Moon cannot be found; and what is more, he has the happiest
way in the world of disposing of such cases, and getting verdicts of
his jury exactly suited to circumstances. Mr. Moon never proceeds to
business without regaling his jury with good brandy and
high-flavored cigars. In this instance he has bustled about and got
together six very solemn and seriously-disposed gentlemen, who
proceed to deliberate. "A mystery hangs over the case," says one. A
second shakes his head, and views the body as if anxious to get
away. A third says, reprovingly, that "such cases are coming too
frequent." Mr. Moon explains the attendant circumstances, and puts a
changed face on the whole affair. One juryman chalks, and another
juryman chalks, and Mr. Moon says, by way of bringing the matter to
a settled point, "It is a bad ending to a wretched life." A solemn
stillness ensues, and then follows the verdict. The body being
identified as that of one Anna Bonard, a woman celebrated for her
beauty, but of notorious reputation, the jury are of opinion (having
duly weighed the circumstances) that she came to her melancholy
death by the hands of one George Mullholland, who was prompted to
commit the act for some cause to the jury unknown. And the jury, in
passing the case over to the authorities, recommend that the said
Mullholland be brought to justice. This done, Mr. Moon orders her
burial, and the jury hasten home, fully confident of having
performed their duty unswerved.

When night came, when all was hushed without, and the silence within
was broken only by the cricket's chirp, when the lone watcher, the
faithful old slave, sat beside the cold, shrouded figure, when the
dim light of the chamber of death seemed mingling with the shadows
of departed souls, there appeared in the room, like a vision, the
tall figure of a female, wrapped in a dark mantle. Slowly and
noiselessly she stole to the side of the deceased, stood motionless
and statue-like for several minutes, her eyes fixed in mute
contemplation on the face of the corpse. The watcher looked and
started back, still the figure remained motionless. Raising her
right hand to her chin, pensively, she lifted her eyes heavenward,
and in that silent appeal, in those dewy tears that glistened in her
great orbs, in those words that seemed freezing to her quivering
lips, the fierce struggle waging in that bosom was told. She heard
the words, "You cannot redeem me now!" knelling in her ears, her
thoughts flashed back over years of remorse, to the day of her
error, and she saw rising up as it were before her, like a spectre
from the tomb, seeking retribution, the image of the child she had
sacrificed to her vanity. She pressed and pressed the cold hand, so
delicate, so like her own; she unbared the round, snowy arm, and
there beheld the imprinted hearts, and the broken anchor! Her
pent-up grief then burst its bounds, the tears rolled down her
cheeks, her lips quivered, her hand trembled, and her very blood
seemed as ice in her veins. She cast a hurried glance round the
room, a calm and serene smile seemed lighting up the features of the
lifeless woman, and she bent over her, and kissed and kissed her
cold, marble-like brow, and bathed it with her burning tears. It was
a last sad offering; and having bestowed it, she turned slowly away,
and disappeared. It was Madame Montford, who came a day too late to
save the storm-tossed girl, but returned to think of the hereafter
of her own soul.



WHILE the earth of Potter's Field is closing over all that remains
of Anna Bonard, Maria McArthur may be seen, snatching a moment of
rest, as it were, seated under the shade of a tree on the Battery,
musing, as is her wont. The ships sail by cheerily, there is a
touching beauty about the landscape before her, all nature seems
glad. Even the heavens smile serenely; and a genial warmth breathes
through the soft air. "Truly the Allwise," she says within herself,
"will be my protector, and is chastising me while consecrating
something to my good. Mr. Keepum has made my father's release the
condition of my ruin. But he is but flesh and blood, and I--no, I am
not yet a slave! The virtue of the poor, truly, doth hang by tender
threads; but I am resolved to die struggling to preserve it." And a
light, as of some future joy, rises up in her fancy, and gives her
new strength.

The German family have removed from the house in which she occupies
a room, and in its place are come two women of doubtful character.
Still, necessity compels her to remain in it; for though it is a
means resorted to by Keepum to effect his purpose, she cannot remove
without being followed, and harassed by him. Strong in the
consciousness of her own purity, and doubly incensed at the proof of
what extremes the designer will condescend to, she nerves herself
for the struggle she sees before her. True, she was under the same
roof with them; she was subjected to many inconveniencies by their
presence; but not all their flattering inducements could change her
resolution. Nevertheless, the resolution of a helpless female does
not protect her from the insults of heartless men. She returns home
to find that Mother Rumor, with her thousand tongues, is circulating
all kinds of evil reports about her. It is even asserted that she
has become an abandoned woman, and is the occupant of a house of
doubtful repute. And this, instead of enlisting the sympathies of
some kind heart, rather increases the prejudice and coldness of
those upon whom she has depended for work. It is seldom the story of
suffering innocence finds listeners. The sufferer is too frequently
required to qualify in crime, before she becomes an object of

She returns, one day, some work just finished for one of our high
old families, the lady of which makes it a boast that she is always
engaged in "laudable pursuits of a humane kind." The lady sends her
servant to the door with the pittance due, and begs to say she is
sorry to hear of the life Miss McArthur is leading, and requests she
will not show herself at the house again. Mortified in her feelings,
Maria begs an interview; but the servant soon returns an answer that
her Missus cannot descend to anything of the kind. Our high old
families despise working people, and wall themselves up against the
poor, whose virtue they regard as an exceedingly cheap commodity.
Our high old families choose rather to charge guilt, and deny the
right to prove innocence.

With the four shillings, Maria, weeping, turns from the door,
procures some bread and coffee, and wends her way to the old prison.
But the chords of her resolution are shaken, the cold repulse has
gone like poison to her heart. The ray of joy that was lighting up
her future, seems passing away; whilst fainter and fainter comes the
hope of once more greeting her lover. She sees vice pampered by the
rich, and poor virtue begging at their doors. She sees a price set
upon her own ruin; she sees men in high places waiting with eager
passion the moment when the thread of her resolution will give out.
The cloud of her night does, indeed, seem darkening again.

But she gains the prison, and falters as she enters the cell where
the old Antiquary, his brow furrowed deep of age, sleeps calmly upon
his cot. Near his hand, which he has raised over his head, lays a
letter, with the envelope broken. Maria's quick eye flashes over the
superscription, and recognizes in it the hand of Tom Swiggs. A
transport of joy fills her bosom with emotions she has no power to
constrain. She trembles from head to foot; fancies mingled with joys
and fears crowd rapidly upon her thoughts. She grasps it with
feelings frantic of joy, and holds it in her shaking hand; the shock
has nigh overcome her. The hope in which she has so long found
comfort and strength-that has so long buoyed her up, and carried her
safely through trials, has truly been her beacon light. "Truly," she
says within herself, "the dawn of my morning is brightening now."
She opens the envelope, and finds a letter enclosed to her. "Oh!
yes, yes, yes! it is him-it is from him!" she stammers, in the
exuberance of her wild joy. And now the words, "You are richer than
me," flash through her thoughts with revealed significance.

Maria grasps the old man's hand. He starts and wakes, as if
unconscious of his situation, then fixes his eyes upon her with a
steady, vacant gaze. Then, with childlike fervor, he presses her
hand to his lips, and kisses it. "It was a pleasant dream--ah! yes, I
was dreaming all things went so well!" Again a change comes over his
countenance, and he glances round the room, with a wild and confused
look. "Am I yet in prison?-well, it was only a dream. If death were
like dreaming, I would crave it to take me to its peace, that my
mind might no longer be harassed with the troubles of this life. Ah!
there, there!"--(the old man starts suddenly, as if a thought has
flashed upon him)--" there is the letter, and from poor Tom, too! I
only broke the envelope. I have not opened it."

"It is safe, father; I have it," resumes Maria, holding it before
him, unopened, as the words tremble upon her lips. One moment she
fears it may convey bad news, and in the next she is overjoyed with
the hope that it brings tidings of the safety and return of him for
whose welfare she breathed many a prayer. Pale and agitated, she
hesitates a moment, then proceeds to open it.

"Father, father! heaven has shielded me-heaven has shielded me! Ha!
ha! ha! yes, yes, yes! He is safe! he is safe!" And she breaks out
into one wild exclamation of joy, presses the letter to her lips,
and kisses it, and moistens it with her tears. "It was all a plot-a
dark plot set for my ruin!" she mutters, and sinks back, overcome
with her emotions. The old man fondles her to his bosom, his white
beard flowing over her suffused cheeks, and his tears mingling with
hers. And here she remains, until the anguish of her joy runs out,
and her mind resumes its wonted calm.

Having broken the spell, she reads the letter to the enraptured old
man. Tom has arrived in New York; explains the cause of his long
absence; speaks of several letters he has transmitted by post,
(which she never received;) and his readiness to proceed to
Charleston, by steamer, in a few days. His letter is warm with love
and constancy; he recurs to old associations; he recounts his
remembrance of the many kindnesses he received at the hands of her
father, when homeless; of the care, to which he owes his reform,
bestowed upon him by herself, and his burning anxiety to clasp her
to his bosom.

A second thought flashes upon her fevered brain. Am I not the
subject of slander! Am I not contaminated by associations? Has not
society sought to clothe me with shame? Truth bends before
falsehood, and virtue withers under the rust of slandering tongues.
Again a storm rises up before her, and she feels the poisoned arrow
piercing deep into her heart. Am I not living under the very roof
that will confirm the slanders of mine enemies? she asks herself.
And the answer rings back in confirmation upon her too sensitive
ears, and fastens itself in her feelings like a reptile with deadly
fangs. No; she is not yet free from her enemies. They have the power
of falsifying her to her lover. The thought fills her bosom with sad
emotions. Strong in the consciousness of her virtue, she feels how
weak she is in the walks of the worldly. Her persecutors are guilty,
but being all-powerful may seek in still further damaging her
character, a means of shielding themselves from merited retribution.
It is the natural expedient of bad men in power to fasten crime upon
the weak they have injured.

Only a few days have to elapse, then, and Maria will be face to face
with him in whom her fondest hopes have found refuge; but even in
those few days it will be our duty to show how much injury may be
inflicted upon the weak by the powerful.

The old Antiquary observes the change that has come so suddenly over
Maria's feelings, but his entreaties fail to elicit the cause. Shall
she return to the house made doubtful by its frail occupants; or
shall she crave the jailer's permission to let her remain and share
her father's cell? Ah! solicitude for her father settles the
question. The alternative may increase his apprehensions, and with
them his sufferings. Night comes on; she kisses him, bids him a fond
adieu, and with an aching heart returns to the house that has
brought so much scandal upon her.

On reaching the door she finds the house turned into a bivouac of
revelry; her own chamber is invaded, and young men and women are
making night jubilant over Champagne and cigars. Mr. Keepum and the
Hon. Mr. Snivel are prominent among the carousers; and both are
hectic of dissipation. Shall she flee back to the prison? Shall she
go cast herself at the mercy of the keeper? As she is about
following the thought with the act, she is seized rudely by the
arms, dragged into the scene of carousal, and made the object of
coarse jokes. One insists that she must come forward and drink;
another holds an effervescing glass to her lips; a third says he
regards her modesty out of place, and demands that she drown it with
mellowing drinks. The almost helpless girl shrieks, and struggles to
free herself from the grasp of her enemies. Mr. Snivel, thinking it
highly improper that such cries go free, catches her in his arms,
and places his hand over her mouth. "Caught among queer birds at
last," he says, throwing an insidious wink at Keepum. "Will flock
together, eh?"

As if suddenly invested with herculean strength, Maria hurls the
ruffian from her, and lays him prostrate on the floor. In his fall
the table is overset, and bottles, decanters and sundry cut glass
accompaniments, are spread in a confused mass on the floor. Suddenly
Mr. Keepum extinguishes the lights. This is the signal for a scene
of uproar and confusion we leave the reader to picture in his
imagination. The cry of "murder" is followed quickly by the cry of
"watch, watch!" and when the guardmen appear, which they are not
long in doing, it is seen that the very chivalric gentlemen have
taken themselves off-left, as a prey for the guard, only Maria and
three frail females.

Cries, entreaties, and explanations, are all useless with such men
as our guard is composed of. Her clothes are torn, and she is found
rioting in disreputable company. The sergeant of the guard says,
"Being thus disagreeably caught, she must abide the penalty. It may
teach you how to model your morals," he adds; and straightway, at
midnight, she is dragged to the guard-house, and in spite of her
entreaties, locked up in a cell with the outcast women. "Will you
not hear me? will you not allow an innocent woman to speak in her
own behalf? Do, I beg, I beseech, I implore you-listen but for a
minute-render me justice, and save me from this last step of shame
and disgrace," she appeals to the sergeant, as the cell door closes
upon her.

Mr. Sergeant Stubble, for such is his name, shakes his head in
doubt. "Always just so," he says, with a shrug of the shoulders:
"every one's innocent what comes here 'specially women of your sort.
The worst rioters 'come the greatest sentimentalists, and repents
most when they gets locked up-does! You'll find it a righteous place
for reflection, in there." Mr. Sergeant Stubble shuts the door, and
smothers her cries.



IT is Bulwer, the prince of modern novelists, who says: "There is in
calumny a rank poison that, even when the character throws off the
slander, the heart remains diseased beneath the effect." And this is
the exact condition in which Maria finds herself. The knaves who
have sought her ruin would seem to have triumphed; the ears of the
charitable are closed to her; her judgment seems sealed. And yet
when all is dark and still; when her companions sleep in undisturbed
tranquillity; when her agitated feelings become calmed; when there
seems speaking to her, through the hushed air of midnight, the voice
of a merciful providence-her soul quickens, and she counsels her
self-command, which has not yet deserted her. Woman's nature is
indeed strung in delicate threads, but her power of endurance not
unfrequently puts the sterner sex to the blush. "Slander has truly
left my heart diseased, but I am innocent, and to-morrow, perhaps,
my star will brighten. These dark struggles cannot last forever!"
she muses, as her self-command strengthens, and gives her new
hopes. Her betrothed may return to-morrow, and his generous nature
will not refuse her an opportunity to assert her innocence.

And while she thus muses in the cell of the guard-house, the steamer
in which Tom proceeds to Charleston is dashing through the waves,
speeding on, like a thing of life, leaving a long train of
phosphoric brine behind her. As might naturally have been expected,
Tom learns from a fellow-passenger all that has befallen the old
Antiquary. This filled his mind with gloomy forebodings concerning
the fate of Maria. There was, too, something evasive in the manner
of the man who conveyed to him this intelligence, and this excited
his apprehensions, and prompted him to make further inquiries. His
confidence in her faith animated and encouraged his heart. But when
he remembered that the old man was, even when he left, in the
clutches of Snivel and Keepum (men whose wealth and influence gave
them power to crush the poor into the dust), an abyss, terrible and
dark, opened to him, his whole nature seemed changed, and his
emotions became turbulent. He again sought the passenger, and
begging him to throw off all restraint, assured him that it would
relieve his feelings to know what had become of Maria. The man
hesitated for a few moments, then, with reluctant lips, disclosed to
him that she had fallen a victim of necessity-more, that she was
leading the life of an outcast. Tom listened attentively to the
story, which lost nothing in the recital; then, with passions
excited to frenzy, sought his state-room. At first it seemed like a
sentence of eternal separation ringing through his burning brain.
All the dark struggles of his life rose up before him, and seemed
hastening him back into that stream of dissipation in which his mind
had found relief when his mother forsook him. But no! something-he
knew not what-whispered in his ear, "Do not reject her. Faith and
hope remains to you; let truth be the judge." He stretched himself
in his berth, but not to sleep.

On the following morning Maria, with the frail companions of her
cell, is brought into court, and arraigned before His Honor, Judge
Sleepyhorn, who, be it said to his credit, though terrible in his
dealings with the harder sex, and whose love of hanging negroes is
not to be outdone, is exceedingly lenient with female cases, as he
is pleased to style them. Though her virtue is as chaste as the
falling snow, Maria is compelled to suffer, for nearly an hour, the
jeers and ribald insinuations of a coarse crowd, while the fact of
her being in the guard-house is winged over the city by exultant
scandal-mongers. Nevertheless, she remains calm and resolute. She
sees the last struggle of an eventful life before her, and is
resolved to meet it with womanly fortitude.

The Judge smiles, casts a glance over his assembly, and takes his
seat, as Mr. Sergeant Stubble commences to read over the charges
against the accused. "Business," says the Judge, "will proceed."

"Now, Judge!" speaks up one of the frail women, coming forward in a
bold, off-hand manner to speak for her companions, "I don't exactly
see what we have done so much out of the way. No ladies of our
standing have been up here before. The law's comin' very nice all at
once. There's a heap, as you know, Judge--"

"No, no, no! I know nothing about such places!" quickly interrupts
the Judge, his face full of virtuous indignation, and his hands
raised in horror.

"Then I may be pardoned for not wearing spectacles," resumes the
woman, with a curtsy. Finding the judgment-seat becoming a little
too warm for his nerves, the Judge very prudently dismisses the
damsels, with an admonition to go and do better-in fine, to tighten
their tongues as well as their morality.

With the aid of Mr. Sergeant Stubble, Maria is brought forward, pale
and trembling, and struggling with the war of grief waging in her
heart. Calmly she looks up at the Judge for a moment, then hangs
down her head in silence. "There is a Judge above who knows the
circumstances, gives me now His hand, and will judge me in the
balance of truth and mercy, when my enemies are at my feet," flashes
through her thoughts, and strengthens the inner nature. But her
tongue has lost its power; her feelings unbend to the thought that
she is in a criminal court, arraigned before a Judge. She has no
answer to make to the Judge's questions, but gives way to her
emotions, and breaks out into loud sobs. Several minutes, during
which a sympathizing silence is manifest, pass, when she raises
slowly her head, and makes an attempt to mutter a few words in her
defence. But her voice chokes, and the words hang, inarticulate,
upon her lips. She buries her face in her hands, and shakes her
head, as if saying, "I have said all."

His Honor seems moved to mercy by the touching spectacle before him.
He whispers in the ear of Mr. Sergeant Stubble, and that functionary
brightens up, and with an attempt to be kind, says: "Pray, Miss
McArthur--it's a duty we have to perform, you see--where is your
father? the Judge says."

Ah! That question has touched the fountain-spring of all her
troubles, and the waters come gushing forth, as if to engulph the
last faint shadow of hope in darkness. Almost simultaneously she
falls to the floor in a fit of violent hysterics. The Judge orders
the court-room cleared of its spectators, and if the reader has
ever witnessed the painful sight of a female suffering such
paroxysms, he may picture more forcibly in his imagination than we
can describe, the scene that follows. For some fifteen minutes the
sufferer struggles, and when her mind resumes its calm, she casts a
wild, despairing look round the room, then fixes her eyes upon those
who are gathered about her.

There was a kind impulse yet left in the Judge. He discovers a
sympathy for her condition, holds her weak, trembling hand in his
own, and bathes her temples with cologne. "You are free to go
home-there is no charge against you," he whispers in her ear. "I
have ordered a carriage, and will send you to your home-where is
it?" This is, indeed, cruel kindness.

"If I had a home," responds Maria, in a low voice, as she rises, and
rests herself on her elbow, "it would shelter me from this distress.
Yes, I would then be happy once more."

A carriage soon arrives, she is put into it, and with a few
consoling words from the Judge, is driven back, as hastily as
possible, to the house from which she was dragged only last night.
She has nowhere else to go to-day, but resolves to-morrow to seek a
shelter elsewhere. Through the whisperings of that unaccountable
human telegraph, the news of her shame, made great and terrible with
a thousand additions, is flown into the family secrets of the city.
How strange and yet how true of human nature is it, that we stand
ever ready to point the finger of scorn at those we fancy in the
downward path, while refusing ourselves to receive the moralist's



IT is night-Mr. Keepum is seen seated before a table in his
drawing-room, finishing a sumptuous supper, and asking himself: "Who
dares to question me, the opulent Keepum?" Mr. Snivel enters, joins
him over a glass of wine, and says, "this little matter must be
settled tonight, Keepum, old fellow-been minced long enough." And
the two chivalric gentlemen, after a short conversation, sally into
the street. Yonder, in the harbor, just rounding the frowning walls
of Fort Sumpter, blazes out the great red light of the steamer, on
which the impatient lover fast approaches Charleston city.

"She can do nothing at law--against our influence she is powerless!"
ejaculates Keepum, as the two emerge from the house and stroll along
up Broad street.

Maria, pale and exhausted with the fatigues and excitements of the
day, sits in her solitary chamber, fearing lest each footstep she
hears advancing, may be that of her enemies, or hoping that it may
announce the coming of her lover and rescuer.

"You are richer than me!" still tinkles its silvery music in her
ear, and brings comfort to her agitated heart. The clock strikes
ten, and suddenly her room is entered by Keepum and Snivel. The
former, with an insinuating leer, draws a chair near her, while the
latter, doffing his coat, flings himself upon the cot. Neither speak
for some minutes; but Maria reads in their looks and actions the
studied villany they have at heart.

"Inconsistency adorned!" exclaims Keepum, drawing his chair a little
nearer. "Now, I say, you have stuck stubbornly to this ere folly."
Mr. Keepum's sharp, red face, comes redder, and his small, wicked
eyes flash like orbs of fire. "Better come down off that high
horse-live like a lady. The devil's got Tom, long ago."

"So you have said before, Mr. Keepum," rejoins Maria, turning upon
him a look of disdain. "You may persecute me to the death; you may
continue to trample me into the dust; but only with my death shall
your lust be gratified on me!" This declaration is made with an air
of firmness Mr. Keepum seems to understand. "D-n it," rejoins Mr.
Snivel, with a sardonic laugh, "these folks are affecting to be

Maria raises her right hand, and motions Mr. Keepum away. It does
indeed seem to her that the moment when nature in her last struggle
unbends before the destroyer-when the treasure of a life passes away
to give place to dark regrets and future remorse, is come. Let us
pause here for a moment, and turn to another part of the city.

The steamer has scarce reached her berth at the wharf, when the
impatient lover springs ashore, dashes through the throng of
spectators, and, bewildered as it were, and scarce knowing which way
he is proceeding, hurries on, meeting no one he knows, and at length
reaching Meeting street. Here he pauses, and to his great joy meets
an old negro, who kindly offers to escort him to the distant quarter
of the city where Maria resides. Again he sets out, his mind hung in
suspense, and his emotions agitated to the highest degree. He
hurries on into King street, pauses for a moment before the house of
the old Antiquary, now fast closed, and as if the eventful past were
crowding upon his fancy, he turns away with dizzy eyes, and follows
the old negro, step by step-faint, nervous, and sinking with
excitement-until they reach the cabin of Undine, the mulatto woman,
under whose roof Maria once sought refuge for the night. Ready to
exclaim, "Maria, I am here!" his heart is once more doomed to
disappointment. The question hangs upon his lips, as his wondering
eyes glance round the room of the cabin. Undine tells him she is not
here; but points him to a light, nearly half a mile distant, and
tells him she is there! there! The faithful old negro sets off
again, and at full speed they proceed up the lane in the direction
of the light. And while they vault as it were o'er the ground, let
us again turn to the chamber of Maria.

With a sudden spring, Keepum, who had been for several minutes
keeping his eyes fixedly set upon Maria, and endeavoring to divert
her attention, seized her arms, and was about to drag her down, when
Snivel put out the light and ran to his assistance. "Never! never!"
she shrieks, at the very top of her voice. "Only with my life!" A
last struggle, a stifled cry of "never! never!" mingled with the
altercation of voices, rang out upon the air, and grated upon the
impatient lover's ear like death-knells. "Up stairs, up stairs!"
shouts the old negro, and in an instant he has burst the outer door
in, mounts the stairs with the nimbleness of a catamount, and is
thundering at the door, which gives way before his herculean
strength. "I am here! I am here! Maria, I am here!" he shouts, at
the top of his voice, and with an air of triumph stands in the door,
as the flashing light from without reveals his dilating figure.
"Foul villains! fiends in human form! A light! a light! Merciful
heavens-a light!" He dashes his hat from his brow, turns a
revengeful glance round the room, and grasps Maria in his arms, as
the old negro strikes a light and reveals the back of Mr. Snivel
escaping out of a window. Keepum, esteeming discretion the better
part of valor, has preceded him.

Tightly Tom clasps Maria to his bosom, and with a look of triumph
says: "Maria! speak, speak! They have not robbed you?"

She shakes her head, returns a look of sweet innocence, and mutters:
"It was the moment of life or death. Thank heaven-merciful heaven, I
am yet guiltless. They have not robbed me of my virtue-no, no, no. I
am faint, I am weak-set me down-set me down. The dawn of my morning
has brightened."

And she seems swooning in his arms. Gently he bears her to the cot,
lays her upon it, and with the solicitude of one whose heart she has
touched with a recital of her troubles, smooths her pillow and
watches over her until her emotions come subdued.

"And will you believe me innocent? Will you hear my story, and
reject the calumny of those who have sought my ruin?" speaks Maria,
impressing a kiss upon the fevered lips of her deliverer, and,
having regained her self-command, commences to recount some of the
ills she has suffered.

"Maria!" rejoins Tom, returning her embrace, "you, whom I have loved
so sincerely, so quietly but passionately, have no need of declaring
your innocence. I have loved you-no one but you. My faith in your
innocence has never been shaken. I hastened to you, and am here,
your protector, as you have been mine. Had I not myself suffered by
those who have sought your ruin, my pride might be touched at the
evil reports that have already been rung in my ears. Grateful am I
to Him who protects the weak, that I have spared you from the dread
guilt they would have forced upon you."

Again and again he declares his eternal love, and seals it with a
kiss. His, nature is too generous to doubt her innocence. He already
knows the condition of her father, hence keeps silent on that point,
lest it might overcome her. He raises her gently from the cot and
seats her in a chair; and as he does so, Mr. Snivel's coat falls
upon the floor, and from the pocket there protrudes four of his
(Tom's) letters, addressed to Maria.

"Here! here!" says Tom, confusedly, "here is the proof of their
guilt and your innocence." And he picks up the letters and holds
them before her. "I was not silent, though our enemies would have
had it so."

And she looks up again, and with a sweet smile says: "There truly
seems a divine light watching over me and lightening the burdens of
a sorrowing heart."

The excitement of the meeting over, Maria rapidly recounts a few of
the trials she has been subjected to.

Tom's first impulse is, that he will seek redress at law. Certainly
the law will give an injured woman her rights. But a second thought
tells him how calmly justice sits on her throne when the rights of
the poor are at stake. Again, Mr. Keepum has proceeded strictly
according to law in prosecuting her father, and there is no witness
of his attempts upon her virtue. The law, too, has nothing to do
with the motives. No! he is in an atmosphere where justice is made
of curious metal.

"And now, Maria," says Tom, pressing her hand in his own, "I, whom
you rescued when homeless-I, who was loathed when a wretched
inebriate, am now a man. My manhood I owe to you. I acknowledge it
with a grateful heart. You were my friend then-I am your friend now.
May I, nay! am I worthy of retaining this hand for life?"

"Rather, I might ask," she responds, in a faltering voice, "am I
worthy of this forgiveness, this confidence, this pledge of eternal

It is now the image of a large and noble heart reflects itself in
the emotions of the lovers, whose joys heaven seems to smile upon.

"Let us forget the past, and live only for the future-for each
other's happiness; and heaven will reward the pure and the good!"
concludes Tom, again sealing his faith with an ardent embrace. "You
are richer than me!" now, for the last time, rings its gladdening
music into her very soul.

Tom recompenses the faithful old negro, who has been a silent looker
on, and though the night is far spent, he leads Maria from the place
that has been a house of torment to her, provides her a comfortable
residence for the night, and, as it is our object not to detain the
reader longer with any lengthened description of what follows, may
say that, ere a few days have passed, leads Maria to the altar and
makes her his happy Bride.



THE abruptness with which we were compelled to conclude this
history, may render it necessary to make a few explanations. Indeed,
we fancy we hear the reader demanding them.

By some mysterious process, known only to Keepum and Snivel, the old
Antiquary was found at large on the day following Tom Swiggs'
return, notwithstanding the Appeal Court did not sit for some six
weeks. It is some months since Tom returned, and although he has
provided a comfortable home for the Antiquary, the queer old man
still retains a longing for the old business, and may be seen of a
fine morning, his staff in his right hand, his great-bowed
spectacles mounted, and his infirm step, casting many an anxious
look up at his old shop, and thinking how much more happy he would
be if he were installed in business, selling curiosities to his
aristocratic customers, and serving the chivalry in general.

As for Keepum, why he lost no time in assuring Tom of his high
regard for him, and has several times since offered to lend him a
trifle, knowing full well that he stands in no need of it.

Snivel is a type of our low, intriguing politician and justice, a
sort of cross between fashionable society and rogues, who,
notwithstanding they are a great nuisance to the community, manage
to get a sort of windy popularity, which is sure to carry them into
high office. He is well thought of by our ignorant crackers,
wire-grassmen, and sand-pitters, who imagine him the great medium by
which the Union is to be dissolved, and South Carolina set free to
start a species of government best suited to her notions of liberty,
which are extremely contracted. It may here be as well to add, that
he is come rich, but has not yet succeeded in his darling project of
dissolving the Union.

Judge Sleepyhorn thinks of withdrawing into private life, of which
he regards himself an exquisite ornament. This, some say, is the
result of the tragic death of Anna Bonard, as well as his love of
hanging negroes having somewhat subsided.

Madame Montford takes her journeys abroad, where she finds herself
much more popular than at home. Nevertheless, she suffers the
punishment of a guilty heart, and this leaves her no peace in body
or mind. It is, however, some relief to her that she has provided a
good, comfortable home for the woman Munday. Tenacious of her
character, she still finds a refuge for her pride in the hope that
the public is ignorant on the score of the child.

Brother Spyke is in Antioch, and writes home that he finds the Jews
the most intractable beings he ever had to deal with. He, however,
has strong hopes of doing much good. The field is wide, and with a
few thousand dollars more-well, a great deal of light may be
reflected over Antioch.

Sister Slocum is actively employed in the good cause of dragging up
and evangelizing the heathen world generally. She has now on hand
fourteen nice couples, young, earnest, and full of the best
intentions. She hopes to get them all off to various dark fields of
missionary labor as soon as the requisite amount of funds is scraped

There came very near being a little misunderstanding between the
House of the Foreign Missions and the House of the Tract Society, in
reference to the matter of burying Mrs. Swiggs. The Secretary of the
Tract Society, notwithstanding he had strong leanings to the South,
and would not for the world do aught to offend the dignity of the
"peculiar institution," did not see his way so clearly in the matter
of contributing to the burial expenses of the sister who had so long
labored in the cause of their tracts. However, the case was a
peculiar one, and called for peculiar generosity; hence, after
consulting "The Board," the matter was compromised by the "Tract
Society" paying a third of the amount.

If you would have strong arguments in favor of reform in the Points
just look in at the House of the Nine Nations. There you will find
Mr. Krone and his satellites making politicians, and deluging your
alms-houses and graveyards with his victims, while he himself is one
of the happiest fellows in the world. And after you have feasted
your eyes on his den, then come out and pay your homage to the man
who, like a fearless Hercules, has sacrificed his own comfort, and
gone nobly to work to drag up this terrible heathen world at your
own door. Give him of your good gifts, whisper an encouraging word
in his ear (he has multiplied the joys of the saved inebriate), and
bid him God-speed in his labor of love.

A word in reference to the young theologian. He continues his visits
to the old jail, and has rendered solace to many a drooping heart.
But he is come a serious obstacle to Mr. Sheriff Hardscrabble, who,
having an eye to profit, regards a "slim goal" in anything but a
favorable light.

Old Spunyarn has made a voyage to the Mediterranean, and returned
with a bag full of oranges for Tom Swiggs; but now that he sees him
in possession of such a fine craft as Maria, he proposes that she
have the oranges, while his hearty good wishes can just as well be
expressed over a bumper of wine. He hopes Tom may always have
sunshine, a gentle breeze, and a smooth sea. Farther, he pledges
that he will hereafter keep clear of the "land-sharks," nor ever
again give the fellow with the face like a snatch-block a chance to
run him aboard the "Brig Standfast."

As for Mr. Detective Fitzgerald, he still pursues his profession,
and is one of the kindest and most efficient officers of his corps.

And now, ere we close our remarks, and let the curtain fall, we must
say a word of Tom and Maria. Tom, then, is one of the happiest
fellows of the lot. He occupies a nice little villa on the banks of
the "mill-dam." And here his friends, who having found wings and
returned with his fortunes, look in now and then, rather envy the
air of comfort that reigns in his domicil, and are surprised to find
Maria really so beautiful. Tom so far gained the confidence of his
employer, that he is now a partner in the concern; and, we venture
to say, will never forfeit his trust. About Maria there is an air of
self-command-a calmness and intelligence of manner, and a
truthfulness in her devotion to Tom, that we can only designate with
the word "nobleness." And, too, there is a sweetness and earnestness
in her face that seems to bespeak the true woman, while leaving
nothing that can add to the happiness of him she now looks up to and
calls her deliverer.


*** End of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "Justice in the By-Ways, a Tale of Life" ***

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