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Title: Harper's Round Table, December 24, 1895
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Harper's Round Table, December 24, 1895" ***

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

[Illustration: HARPER'S ROUND TABLE]

Copyright, 1895, by HARPER & BROTHERS. All Rights Reserved.

       *       *       *       *       *



       *       *       *       *       *



"It's altogether too absurd!" That was what the schoolmaster said.

"It is a wicked assumption of power!" That was what the minister said.

"It's flying in the face of Providence!" That was what old Mrs. Mehonky

"Them two boys is a couple o' fools, an' they'll git drowned!" That was
what old Captain Silas Witherbee, formerly commander of the steam
oyster-dredge _Lotus Lily_, said.

And really, when you come to think of it, that was the most sensible
remark of the lot. But what people said did not seem to trouble "them
two boys."

"We're going to do it," declared Peter Bright.

"That's what," added Randall Frank.

And so they did. What was it? Well, it was this way. Searsbridge was a
small sea-coast town situated at the head of a bay some four miles long.
There was very little commercial traffic in that bay, for Searsbridge
was a tiny place. A schooner occasionally dropped anchor in the bay when
head winds and ugly seas were raging outside; and it was said that two
or three big ships had run into the shelter of the harbor in days gone
by, and there was a legend that a great Russian ironclad had once
stopped there for a supply of fresh water. But, as a rule, only the
fishermen's boats ran in and out between Porgy Point and Mullet Head.
There was no light at the entrance to the harbor, but there were some of
the sharpest and most dangerous rocks on the coast scattered about the

"It'd be a famous place for a wreck," said a visitor one day.

"Why," exclaimed Peter Bright, who was showing him about, "there have
been three wrecks there since I was born."

"And is there no life-saving station?"

"Not nearer than Hartwell, and that's three miles away."

"Well, there ought to be a volunteer crew here, then."

"We generally manage to get a crew together when there's a wreck."

"There ought to be a regular crew, well drilled, and prepared for the

And that was what led Peter Bright and Randall Frank to talk it all
over and decide to get up a crew. But the other fellows all laughed at
them, and said that there would be a crew on hand when there was any
need for it.

"Yes," said Randall, who always spoke briefly and to the point, "and
before that crew gets afloat lives will be lost."

But the arguments of the two young men did not prevail, and they
therefore came to the determination which called forth the protests of
the schoolmaster, the minister, Mrs. Mehonky, and Captain Silas
Witherbee. But these protests had no influence with the two friends.

"We're going to brace up my boat, and in suspicious weather we're going
to cruise in her off the mouth of the bay to lend aid to vessels in
distress," said Peter, with all the dignity he could command.

And Randall proudly and emphatically added, "That's what."

Peter's boat was by no means so despicable a craft as might have been
supposed from the comments of the neighbors. She had been the dinghy of
a large sailing ship, and was stoutly built for work in lumpy water. The
ship had been wrecked on the coast, and the dinghy had been given to
Peter in payment for his services in helping to save her cargo. The
first thing that the boy did was to put a centre-board in the craft, and
to rig her with a stout mast and a mainsail, cat-boat fashion. Then he
announced that in his opinion he had a boat that would stay out when
some more pretentious vessels would have to go home. Of course she was
not very speedy, but for that Peter did not care a great deal. In light
weather most of the fishermen could put him in their wake, but when they
had to reef he could carry all sail, and drop them to leeward as if they
were so many corks. Peter and Randall now went to work to "brace up" the
_Petrel_, as she was called. They put some extra ribs in her, and built
a small deck before the mast. Then they put an extra row of reef points
in the mainsail, and set up a pair of extra heavy shrouds. Peter also
put a socket in the taffrail for a rowlock, so that in case of having to
run before a heavy sea an oar could be shipped to steer with.

"You know she'll work a good deal better with an oar in running off than
with the rudder," he said.

And Randall sagely answered, "That's what."

By the time the September gales were due the _Petrel_ was ready for
business, and whenever the weather looked threatening she was seen
pounding her way through the choppy seas near the mouth of the bay. No
wrecks occurred, however. Indeed, no vessels of any kind approached the
harbor, and the two young men were hard put to it to endure the ridicule
that greeted them on their return from each profitless cruise. But Peter
pluckily declared that their time would come, and Randall repeated his
unshaken opinion that that was what.

Men are still talking about the storm that visited that coast in October
of that year. It was the worst that had occurred within the memory of
the oldest inhabitant. Even old Tommy Ryddam, who had been around the
Horn three times, had weathered the Cape of Good Hope, and had been as
far north as Upernavik, said, "I 'ain't never seed it blow no harder."
And that was the first time that Tommy had ever made such an admission.
It began on a Wednesday night. The day had been oppressively warm for
that time of year, and as a result a light fog had set in early in the
morning. But before sundown the wind began to come in cold sharp puffs
out of the southeast, and the fog was soon cut into swirling shreds and
sent skimming and twisting away over the yellow land. Its disappearance
revealed a hard brassy-looking sky, and a gray sea running from the
horizon in great oily folds that broke upon the rocks outside of Porgy
Point and Mullet Head with a noise like the booming of distant guns, and
a smother of snowy spray.

"I reckon this'll be the gale that'll bring us a job," said Peter, as he
hoisted the mainsail on his boat.

"I shouldn't wonder," said Randall; "but it's going to be a corker."

His slangy prediction proved to be true. He and Peter cruised around
inside the mouth of the bay for an hour after sunset; but the great
breadth and weight of the swell that came brimming in between the two
headlands and the fast-increasing power of the wind sent them to shelter
for the night. In the morning they beat down under the lee of the
easterly shore, and landed on Mullet Head. Hauling up the boat, they
walked to the highest point of observation. So fierce was the wind that
they were forced to lie down. The sea was an appalling sight. It was
running in great serried ridges of gray and white that hurled themselves
against the land in mountainous breakers.

"We couldn't get out there if a dozen wrecks came," said Peter.

"So," answered Randall, "but we might pull some poor fellow out of the

"That's about all we could do."

The boys kept a constant watch all day, but not the faintest sign of a
sail hove in sight above the wavering horizon. The gale blew all day
Thursday and all day Friday. Such a sea had never been seen on the
coast, and many people went down to look at it. The boys maintained
their watch all day on Mullet Head, with the boat safe under its lee.
They knew they were helpless, yet they could not go away. People tried
to persuade or to ridicule them into doing so, but they remained. They
were pretty resolute boys, and were not easily turned from their

On Saturday morning the wind shifted, and the gale showed signs of
moderating. By Saturday night it had fallen to a brisk wind, and the sea
had gone down somewhat. On Sunday morning the two boys sailed down to
Mullet Head to have another look around the horizon. The minister saw
them start, and reproved them for not staying at home to go to church.
But they said that they might go in the afternoon. As soon as they
reached their customary landing-place, they hauled up the boat and
walked up the hill.

"Look!" exclaimed Peter; "now that the gale is over a sail is in sight."

"That's a fact," said Randall. "A sloop."

"Yes; but doesn't she look queer to you?"

"No--hold on--yes. Her hull looks too big for her rig."

"That's it. There! Did you see that when she rose on that sea? She's a
schooner, but her mainmast is gone close to the deck. I saw the stump.
Look now!"

"Yes! I see it, I see it!" cried Randall; "and what's more, she's lost
her foretop-mast."

"That's so. It's broken off above the masthead cap."

"She must have had a pretty lively time of it with the gale."

"Sure enough. I wonder where she's bound?"

They watched her in silence for half an hour, and then Peter sprang to
his feet with an exclamation:

"Guinea-pigs and dogs! She's trying to make this harbor."

"That's what!" cried Randall, slapping his knee.

They watched her now with more interest than ever. She was not more than
two miles off the entrance now, and Peter was intensely interested.
Suddenly he started down the hill toward the boat.

"What is it!" cried Randall, following him.

"She's flying the flag union down, and she's so heavy in her movements
that I believe she's sinking."

With nervous haste the boys got their boat afloat, and hoisted the
mainsail. In a few minutes they were standing out of the mouth of the
harbor with the long swells underrunning their light craft. Somehow news
of the incoming vessel had reached Searsbridge, and several of the
residents had ridden down to the Head to see what was going to happen.
Some of them caught sight of the little dinghy running out, and waved at
her to return. But the boys were in earnest now, and were not to be
turned from their course.

"I knew I was right," said Peter. "She's sinking fast, and they're
trying to run her into shallow water."

"Do you think we can get to her in time?"

"We must do our best."

The mainsail ought to have had the last reef taken in, for the mast bent
like a whip, and the dinghy plunged heavily; but it was a time for
driving, if ever there was one.

"Look! look!" screamed Randall.

"Too late!" cried Peter.

The schooner, now half a mile away from them, made a great lurch
forward, threw her stern into the air, and settled down head first. The
top of her broken foremast protruded some ten feet above the surface.

"No, we're not too late!" shouted Randall.

"Right you are!" ejaculated Peter.

They had just discovered that two men had managed to clamber up on the
foretop-mast stump as the schooner went down, and were now clinging
there, waving their arms toward the boys.

"Get the heaving line ready, Randall," said Pete.

"Ay, ay," answered the willing boy.

Peter brought the dinghy broad under the lee of the mast, and getting a
good full on her let her luff up straight at the spar, knowing that the
sea would quickly kill her way.

"Stand by to catch the line!" he shouted to the men. "Heave!"

Randall hove the line with good judgment, and one of the wrecked sailors
catching it took a couple of turns around the mast with it. Randall now
hauled the dinghy up close enough to the mast for the two seamen to
swing themselves into her. They were gaunt, hollow-eyed, and exhausted,
and at Randall's bidding they lay down in the bottom of the dinghy. In
three-quarters of an hour the two boys had sailed back to their
landing-place inside Mullet Head. There they met the people who had come
down to see the wreck, and who now received them with cheers. The two
seamen were able to state that they were the sole survivors of a crew of
six, the other four having been carried overboard when the mainmast went
over Thursday night. Old Mr. Peddie volunteered to take the men up to
the town in his carriage, and as they climbed out of the boat he
exclaimed to one of them,

"Hold on! let me look at you! Aren't you Joseph Spring?"

"Yes," said the man, hanging his head; "I am."

"Well, boys," said Mr. Peddie, "you've done a fine Sunday-morning's
work. This is Joe Spring, who quarrelled with his father and ran away to
sea four years ago. There will be a happy reunion in one house to-day."

Peter and Randall have a fine Block Island boat now, the gift of their
admiring fellow townsmen.




     Dear Mr. Editor:--Why is it that when a fellow tries to have some
     fun, he always gets into trouble? Take two years ago this
     Christmas, for instance, when I had a notion that I'd play a little
     trick on old Santa Claus. My idea was to keep awake till he came
     down, wedge up the chimney on him, and then go out and help myself
     to a pair of reindeer--he'd have had enough left. Besides, I wasn't
     going to _steal_ them, of course--just borrow them for a while and
     hitch 'em to my double ripper. Now, I call that an innocent and
     perfectly proper thing for any boy to do, but what was the result?
     A long, lank, limp, hollow stocking in the morning--and no reindeer
     stamping their feet and bleating in the wood-shed, either.

     Well, this was two years ago, and I haven't been fooling around
     much about Santa Claus since. Santa Claus can drive a procession of
     reindeer a mile long if he wants to, and I won't touch one of them.
     Santa Claus is all right in his way, but I think that Captain Kidd
     was rather more _my_ kind of a man. Captain Kidd wasn't much on
     filling anybody's stockings, but when he got alongside and grappled
     the other fellow there was fun--genuine, innocent fun.

     And I can't see that Captain Kidd always got into trouble when he
     had a little fun, like a boy does now. You see, it was this way:
     They had a Christmas tree over at the church last night. It was a
     regular old-fashioned Christmas tree, which was the minister's
     idea. Last Sunday says he: "Of late years Christmas trees have been
     too much given up to children and such things. It was not that way
     when I was a boy up at Hurricane Centre. There were presents for
     everybody, old and young. Let us have a genuine, plain, old
     Hurricane Centre tree."

     The tree was set for last night, of course, and the committees and
     folks and things were working on it all day. Fanny (she's my
     sister) and Aunt Lou were over in the afternoon stringing pop-corn,
     and falling off of step-ladders, and so forth. My brother Bob is
     home from college, and he was over too; though Fanny said he didn't
     do much but talk to the girls. That's just like Bob. The football
     season has closed, and he has got his hair cut, and kind of exposed
     his countenance again at last. Bob thinks he's going to be a
     lawyer, but if he ever tries to prosecute me when I get to be a
     pirate, he'll be sorry for it.

     Along toward night ma asked me to run over to the church, and take
     a little package of things which she wanted put on the tree.

     "What's in it, ma?" I asked.

     "A pair of Santa Claus's reindeer for you," says ma. They're always
     throwing that thing up to me.

     So I took the package and started. When I got there I found
     everybody gone home to supper except Deacon Green, who was just
     staying to keep the church. He took my package, and I says to him:

     "Mr. Green, supper is all ready over at your house."

     "How do you know?" asks he.

     "I smelt it as I came along," I says. "Apple dumplings, I _think_."

     "My, you don't say so!" says the Deacon. "I'm a good deal fond of
     dumplings. 'Specially with maple syrup on 'em--_and_ plenty o'

     "Yes, ma'am," says I. (I _always_ go and say "Yes, ma'am," to a

     "Wish I could go over and get 'em while they're hot," says he.

     "I'll stay here while you go, if you'd like," I said.

     "Sure you wouldn't snoop 'round the tree?"

     "Yes, ma'am," says I.

     So the Deacon put on his mittens and went home.

     Well, it was sort of lonesome and solemnlike waiting there in that
     big hollow church, and so I went up and began _looking_ at the
     tree. It was a big pine, all covered with beautiful things. I guess
     I jarred the thing a little, and the label off of somebody's
     present came fluttering down.

     "Oh," says I to myself, "that won't do. If I don't put that back
     somebody will be disappointed. I'll just shin up and fix it." So up
     I went.

     I looked a long time before I could find a package without a label
     on it, and then after I did find one and got it on, I saw another
     label on it; so it wasn't right after all. I looked around a little
     more and found the right one at last, but when I turned to take off
     the label I had put on, I couldn't for the life of me tell which of
     the two it was, so I just jerked off one of 'em by guess and stuck
     it on the present. Probably I got the wrong one--just my luck.

     The tree was sort of bendy and wigglesome, and I saw I'd shaken off
     several more tags, so I went down and got them. I was getting a
     little tired of roosting up there like a Christmas bird, so I stuck
     the labels around sort of promiscuouslike, and probably got most of
     them wrong. I noticed a good many of the big parcels had small
     labels, and _vice versa_, as Bob says, so I thought while I was
     about it I might as well fix things up a little. So I put the big
     labels on the big things and--_vice versa_ again. Some others I
     guess I changed without any particular rule, which, I suppose, was
     a bad thing to do, as my teacher says our actions should always be
     governed by definite and intelligent rules, but I was tired and I
     just stuck 'em about, hit or miss. I thought it would be kind of
     funny, and maybe old-fashioned and Hurricane Centre like. Besides,
     I wanted to be doing something--the teacher says idleness is a
     vice, heard her say so more'n a thousand times.

     Well, after awhile I heard scrunching in the snow outside. I got
     down and went over and sat in our pew and tried to look just about
     as much like a lamb as a boy not having any wool can look.

     It was Deacon Green. Says he; "Young man, you were a little
     mistaken about them apple dumplings. It was just a picked-up cold
     supper, 'cause Miranda said to-morrow was Christmas, and we could
     eat then."

     "Then it must have been Mr. Doolittle's supper I smelt, ma'am,"
     says I.

     "Well, no matter; run along home and get yours," answered the
     Deacon. So I did so.

     After supper we all went over to the church. I sat in the outside
     end of the pew because, of course, I didn't know what might happen.
     Well, they had singing and speaking and such stuff. Then Mr. Doty,
     the Superintendent of the Sunday-school, made a funny speech, with
     easy jokes for children, and then they began to take down the
     things and read 'em off to folks. The first few things on the lower
     branches seemed to fit all right; then Tommy Snyder's great-grandma
     got a pair of club skates. Folks looked surprised, but the next few
     things appeared to be right, and nobody said anything. Then somehow
     the minister got a red tin horn, and a yearling baby a pair of
     silver-bowed spectacles, and Mrs. Deacon Wilkie a cigar-case, right
     in succession. This made talk, but Mr. Doty went on. But things
     seemed to get worse, and two or three old gentlemen got
     rattle-boxes and such stuff, and a little girl got a gold-headed
     cane, and Tommy Snyder's poor great-grandma was called again and
     got a set of boxing gloves. There was a great uproar, and just then
     Deacon Green got a teething-ring. I saw him rise up and motion for
     silence. I put my hand on my stomach and says to ma,

     "Ma, I don't feel well at all."

     "Better run out in the vestibule and get some fresh air," says ma.

     I ran. As I went out the door I heard Deacon Green saying something
     about me. The air seemed to do me good, so I staid out. While I was
     about it I thought I might as well run home and go to bed, so I did

     The next morning at breakfast there was some talk. I didn't succeed
     in resembling a lamb so much as I had expected. But pa stood by me
     as usual. Then, when it quieted down, I happened to think of
     something, and I said,

     "Ma, wasn't there anything on that tree for me?"

     "Well," says ma, "I had understood from trustworthy sources that
     there was to be a good-sized brass steam-engine on it for you, but
     the engine was read off to a boy who lives over at Clear Brook, so
     I suppose I must have been mistaken. Anyhow, I didn't say anything,
     and he went off with it."

     There seemed to be something wrong with my buckwheat cake, and I
     didn't eat any more of it. I concluded I wasn't much hungry, and
     left the table.

     "Don't mind, Willie," said Bob, "you've got your reindeer yet."

     That's the way it goes, you see, when a boy tries to have a little
     harmless, innocent amusement. A pirate ship can't come along
     looking for recruits any too soon to suit.

  Yours truly,



Clickety-click! click! click! go the levers in the narrow brick house at
six o'clock. Rapidly yet surely five alert men, clad in blue railroad
blouses and trousers, rush about from handle to handle.

"Quick, Jim!" shouts the head man, "49, 61, and 72! There comes the
Boston express, and the Croton local only two minutes behind! Shove 'em
in there lively!"

"All right," responds Jim.

On the instant this lever is down, the others snapped up, and the
express train just out of the tunnel has a clean, clear track into its
haven at Forty-second Street. Three hundred yards before the station is
reached the flame-throated iron monster, uncoupled from its burden of
cars, darts forward on a siding like a spirited horse unharnessed from
its load, while the train glides forward with its own momentum, slowly
and more slowly as the brakes are applied, until it comes to a stop
under the depot shed. Hardly have the passengers poured forth when
another train rolls in, and then another, the pathway in each instance
cleared by those keen men at the levers in this tower-house of the yards
of the Grand Central station in New York city. For they only know the
intricacies of this interesting modern labyrinth where more iron paths
and by-paths are to be found, in all probability, than in any other
place of the same size in the world.

There is a strange fascination about this labyrinth. Business men on
their way to work and children on their way from school stop to watch
the scene. The light iron foot-bridges which span the tracks for several
blocks, saturated and blackened by the steam and smoke of the five
hundred engines which pass underneath every day, separate you by barely
two feet from the tops of the trains which run in and out of the great
union depot, and from the smoke-stacks of the engines which dart about
from siding to main track and from main track to round-house, where they
sleep and dream fire dreams at night.

And the chief heart-throb of all this incessant activity, the centre of
the iron labyrinth, in which Theseus himself, were he alive, would be
lost, is the smoke-begrimed tower-house in the middle of the yard, where
all the switching for the New York Central, the Harlem, and the New
Haven railroads in the vicinity of the tunnel is done. From every train
that comes in from or starts out for the West or the East through the
long smoky tunnel that leads into the heart of New York a pathway is
found by the clear-headed men in this house. Every rail on the many
tracks and sidings of the busy yard can be coaxed and compelled from
this house to do its part in forming a new wheel path. It is the busiest
tower-house in the world, according to the yard-master.

Suppose you enter this rectangular house with one of your railroad
friends and go up stairs. Here there is a long "key-board," as the men
call it, consisting of one hundred and four numbered iron levers. You
see the men in charge grasp lever after lever, apparently at random; you
hear the sharp click of these gunlike rods as they move backwards or
forwards, and then as you see a red light flash white or a white red two
blocks away, you are told by one of the men at the levers that a path
has been cleared for the Stamford local or the Empire State express. If
you look in the room underneath it seems like the interior of a huge
piano-board. Here are stiff-moving wires and bars, each one connected
above to its particular iron key. Beneath they spread out in every
direction, like the thread-like legs of a spider, each connected with
its special rail or switch or light, and never interfering with its
neighbor--so delicate the mechanism. As you go up stairs a second time,
to hear Mr. Anderson, the man in charge of the great key-board, talk
about the arrangements, you cannot help thinking again how like a
monster piano it is. To be sure the iron keys are pushed and pulled
instead of gently struck. But then what of that? They must be skilful
musicians at those keys, these men. Suppose a false note were struck,
what a discord would be sounded! It is a human symphony these men play,
where a wrong chord might bring death to many people.

But Mr. Anderson, the head operator in the tower-house, doesn't seem to
be thinking of these things. It is his duty and his work. He bends his
mind to it, and he never makes a mistake. For a few minutes now he gives
the direction of the work over to another man and speaks of the work.
Over five hundred "pieces of rolling stock"--as the railroad men speak
of trains and engines--have to be sent in and out of the depot and yard
in a day. These include nearly three hundred regular incoming and
outgoing passenger trains, the "stock" and baggage trains which ply
between there and Mott Haven, carrying empty cars and station freight,
and the "made-up" and "unmade" trains passing to and fro. When a through
Western or Boston express starts out of the station, the arrangement of
one or two levers by no means insures it a straight track into the
tunnel. Oftentimes a combination of ten or fifteen all over the
switch-board is necessary to give a train a straightaway track, and you
wonder, as you hear this, how the men ever learn the varying
combinations of keys. The train-despatcher in the depot notifies the men
in the tower-house on which road each arriving and departing train
is--whether New York Central, Harlem River, or New Haven--and they
instantly know the answer to the problem.


It is a noisy piano these men play, noisier and larger than in the
switch-house of the Pennsylvania Railroad yards in Jersey City. There
the electric pneumatic interlocking switch and signal system of Mr.
Westinghouse is in use. In this one man can do the work of several,
although many old railroad men believe that the operation of a switch
key-board by hand is the only one absolutely safe and reliable. This
key-board in the house at the Pennsylvania yards is a glass-topped case
about the size of a grand-piano box. The case is apparently full of
metal cylinders. About seventy handles project from the front of the
case--half of them numbered in black, the other half in red. Each is, or
seems to be, the handle of a cylinder. The train-director is in charge
of the room, and the young men under him touch the handles as easily as
piano keys when the different switch numbers are called out. Suppose he
calls out, "29, 21, 23, 20, 17, 13, 12, 7, 8!" One of the men touches
the black handles bearing these numbers, then the red. The switches
begin to waver up in the yard, though the gush of compressed air which
precedes the wavering cannot be heard. Finally, as the last of these
numbers is touched, a red signal in the yard droops from its horizontal
position to an angle of sixty degrees. Then an empty train comes out of
the shed from track 9 to 0 _viâ_ switches 29, 21, 23, 20, 17, 13, 12, 7,
and 8, as you note on the yard model--black ground, with bright brass
tracks--above the case. Although it seems so simple, it is really as
intricate as is the network of wires running down from the glass case
through the tower-base to the various switches.

It is early in the morning and late in the afternoon that there is the
greatest activity in the yards of the New York Central Railroad. Between
seven and nine in the morning so many trains come in that frequently the
switching necessary to give them clear ways in and out has meant the
moving of 1400 levers in the tower-house. Hardly an engine, as it passes
Forty-ninth Street, dragging its train on its way in, but darts away
from the cars to a siding, leaving the train to roll in by itself,
controlled by the trainmen at the brakes. You are not conscious of this
if you are on the incoming cars. But as you get out and walk along the
platform you note that yours is an engineless train. It saves time, this
swerving of the engine off to right or left, and it is immediately ready
to drag another load out. But the alertness of these tower-house men is
here called into keenest play, for but a second elapses between the
arrival of the engine and its train at the self-same switch, and each
must have a separate path.

Although you can plainly see all this rush and bustle on a winter
morning just as the sun is creeping over the top of the Grand Central
palace, can note so clearly, as you stand on the bridge, which switches
are turned for a particular train, and can count exactly the thirty-two
tracks from the round-house alongside Lexington Avenue to the "annex
sheds" on Madison Avenue, it is far more interesting to visit the yard
late in the afternoon, just after dusk. Then you can stand on one of the
bridges and see a brilliant panorama--the moving flash-lights of the
engines, the quickly shifting red and white signal-lamps, the
brilliantly lighted outgoing trains, standing out in relief against the
dark narrow bulk of an "unmade" train on a distant siding, and, a short
distance away, veiled every now and then by puffs of smoke from an
impatient engine, the dazzling arc-burners of the station.

Shut your eyes, then open them, and again almost shut them, and give
yourself up to the scene. It is fairy-land, all these moving lights,
this brilliant panorama. Close your eyes still more till you can just
peep out at the motion around you. It is no longer the iron-threaded
yard of the Grand Central station. You are in the midst of some wild,
strange region. Great dragons snorting flame and smoke move uneasily
about. Black serpents with eyes of flashing fire and long dark bodies
trail their way through the flat country past you, and disappear in that
cavern of a tunnel above. On all sides are weird noises. But in the
midst of it all you half dreamily see, not many feet away from you, the
men at the levers in the tower-house, playing their mechanical music so
well on the great key-board that every iron monster is charmed, and
keeps safely and quietly his own pathway.


A Story of the Revolution.


[1] Begun in HARPER'S ROUND TABLE No. 836.



The little camp-fire at which Colonel Hewes and some of the officers
were sitting was just outside the line of heavy fortifications which the
Americans had thrown up some weeks previously.

Colonel Hewes, as soon as he heard George's answer, welcomed the young
soldier heartily, and, searching in the saddle-bags that were lying on
the ground, he secured some bread and a slice of ham, which George
accepted, as he had not tasted food since early in the morning.

For two days nothing was done, but at last Washington's plans were
perfected, and under the cover of a heavy fog nine thousand men were
ferried across to the city of New York. As George was about to embark
with the body of discouraged stragglers in one of the small boats
impressed for the service, he heard a familiar voice beside him.

Carter Hewes! He started suddenly. There he stood. A cape was over his
shoulder, his left arm was in a sling.

"Oh, Carter, are you wounded?" he exclaimed, before the other had
noticed who it was that called to him.

"George, dear friend, you've escaped?" answered Carter, wheeling. Then
he noticed the anxious glance. "Merely a scratch," he went on. "Come
over with my company, at least what is left of them--it's been bad work.
What! a Lieutenant! Hurrah! I told you so."

The soldiers crowded into the flat-boat, and soon the two friends were
drifting across the river.

"Your father's proposal has gone to the Convention," said George.

"That relieves me," said Carter. "It is a pet scheme of his, and it was
dreadful careless of me to forget and carry it in my pocket. See; do you
remember this?" He held out the note-book.

"Why, it's mine!" cried George. "Where did you get it?"

Questions and answers followed in quick succession, and the young
officers seemed to forget that they were retreating with a defeated

As soon as they had landed they made their way past the Fly Market, near
the river.

"It looks as if a plague were in town," thought George to himself. He
had just finished relating the incidents that led to his sudden
promotion, and had listened to Carter's tale of the adventures in the
strange house.

Carter was leaning on his arm as they went up the street, and suddenly
he stopped. "Take a good look at this man, here on the right. Who is
he?" he asked.

As George turned he saw in the group of spectators a strange figure
leaning on a stick. His clothes were ragged, and his hat flopped about
his ears; a patch was over his left eye, but despite all this the young
Lieutenant recognized him in an instant.

"That's my old schoolmaster, Jabez Anderson. The Tory-hunters haven't
found him, evidently," he said, quietly, "and I certainly shall not
betray him. Though he's rabid for the crown."

"It seems to me that I have met him some place," returned Carter. "But,
come to think, he resembles a portrait I've seen and can't place for the
life of me."

What Carter was thinking of was a reflection in an old gilt-framed
mirror, although he did not know it.

"He's an odd fish," said George, as they stepped forward again, "and
used to give us long lectures on our duty to the King, and all in his
own way, for he told minutely the grievances of the colonies, and then
admonished us to be steadfast. I often even then felt like taking up
cudgels on the opposite side of the question. I owe him no ill-will."

As he spoke he looked in his companion's face. "You are suffering, dear
friend," he said. "We must find some place to rest."

"It's nothing. I shall be right in a few days," murmured Carter.

George noticed that he was pale, however, and that during the last
half-hour or so he leaned heavily on his arm.

"Courage; I know of just the place," he said.

"We won't be left quietly here very long," responded Carter. "Howe has
us on the hip, I fear me. Let me sit down on this step a minute."

"Mr. Frothingham! Mr. Frothingham!" called a voice just at this

George looked around. There stood Mrs. Mack.

"Thank Dame Fortune," said George to his companion, "here's my old
landlady; she will look after us, I'll warrant."

He stepped over to where the honest woman stood. She spoke before he had
time to say a word.

"I hev somethin' fer ye to the house, sir," she said; "and shure you
lift a foine suit of clothes."

George's heart bounded. He needed clothes badly enough, but had no
recollection of having left anything but an old worn coat.

"Won't yez be after comin' ter the house!" continued the woman. "I ken
git you a bite to ate, and you kin stay there. Shure ye look that

George easily got permission from his Captain, and dropped out of the
ranks. With the help of the widow he succeeded in getting Carter at last
tucked away in a great soft bed, where he immediately went to sleep. The
last thing he said was, "George, this is the house they took me to, only
I had the little room upstairs." George stole away, intending to ask an
explanation from the good Irish woman, and solve the mystery.

"Whisper," said Mrs. Mack, taking her old boarder by the arm before he
could begin his questioning. "I was on the look fer ye. Here!"

What was George's surprise, and even consternation, when Mrs. Mack
handed him an envelope. He opened it. It was heavy with gold
coin--English guineas, bright and clinking.

"Where did they come from? Where? Where?" he exclaimed.

"Shure I don't know, sir," said Mrs. Mack. "They wus lift here by a
little old man who wus deaf and dumb."

George was puzzled.

"They are shure fer you, sir," she said, "bekase he described you."

"And if he was deaf and dumb, how could he describe me?"

The good woman appeared confused. "And shure, sir, wid signs," she
answered. "Oh, I will git the suit of clothes."

She disappeared, but came back immediately. Again was the young soldier
almost frightened. He never owned a coat like that, and surely never
possessed such a fine pair of buckskin breeches; but there they were.

"Some mistake," said George, looking at the yellow facings, the large
brass buttons, and the Lieutenant's shoulder-knots. "I won't take them
until I know where they came from," said he, decidedly.

Now may the Recording Angel forgive the good washer-woman, for he must
have put down against her name that day a fib of the straightest,
whitest kind.

"I made thim fer ye," she said, unblushingly. "If all the army was
dressed as foine as that the Ridcoats would take off their hats to ye."

The fact was Mrs. Mack may have referred to the lace trimmings when she
said that she had made them, for that was all that she had contributed.

Aunt Clarissa must have relented! At last it dawned on the young
soldier. Why had he not written to her? He resolved to do so at once. If
he could find some way of sending her the letter.

In a few days Carter was able to move, and Colonel Hewes--who had been
ordered to New Jersey to help his cousin mould cannon-balls--took him
with him out to the estate. Mrs. Mack had acknowledged the fact that the
wounded lad had been her guest before, under certain mysterious
circumstances. But she could not or would not explain the method or
means of his previous arrival, insisting that he was brought to her by
two "dark men" whose language she could not understand.

Two days after Carter's departure George was leaning against the side of
a little brick guard-house--he was officer of the guard--his thoughts
far away, busy with the good old times, when he saw down the street some
one crossing from a path that led along the common. His heart beat
quickly. He would know that shuffling gait, that was yet so strong,
amongst a thousand. In half a minute his long young legs were striding
in the direction of the retreating figure, and in another he had grasped
the man by both shoulders and swung him sharply against a tall board

"Cato, you old rascal!" he exclaimed, shaking his shoulders back and
forth roughly, though the tears of joy had gathered in his eyes.

"Why, Mas'r George," came the answer with a jerky emphasis. "How
y-y-youse growed, and I done guess you pritty strong too, but you
needn't try for to p-prove it no more."

It was not until this that George remembered that he must have changed
somewhat, and that he did not know really how strong he had become, for
it only seemed yesterday that the old man had been able to lay him
across his knee, or carry him by the slack of his little homespun coat.

"Cato," he said, "how are you all at home?"

"Dat's what I's come to tell you, young mas'r," said the old darky.
"Dere's a peck of trubble over yander, and I's got a letter fer you from
Mistis Grace."

George took the crumpled paper and read it hastily. How she must have
changed--his little sister--to write and think such thoughts as these!
For the letter told how she prayed every night that he would come back
safe and sound, and that the great General Washington would whip the
British and drive them from the country. "Aunt Clarissa would not let me
write to you," concluded the letter, "and does not know that Cato has
gone to look for you. Good-by, dear, dear George.

  "From your little Rebel Sister,

"God bless her sweet heart!" said Lieutenant Frothingham, and he paused
for a minute. Oh, it seemed so long ago, and William, his dear brother,
was in England, and could not understand.

"Cato," he said, suddenly, breaking away from his train of thought, for
the old darky had not spoken, "did you bring any money for me some time
ago and leave it with Mrs. Mack?"

"No, sah, 'fo' de Lawd, I didn', Mas'r George, but I's got some now," he
said, hurriedly, diving into the capacious pockets of his flapping
waistcoat. He brought out a worn leather wallet. It contained two gold
pieces and a half-handful of silver. "It's yours, sah," he said.

George looked at him earnestly. "Did Mistress Frothingham send it to
me?" he asked.

The old darky shifted uneasily. "Yes, sah," he said, faintly.

"Cato, you're telling me a lie," said George, once more laying his hand
on the colored man's shoulder. "I don't need the money, and you know
that it is yours. I am rich now, Cato." He jingled the gold coins in his
own pocket.

The old darky had not replied, but a huge tear rolled down his face.

"T'ank God for dat, honey," he said. "Old Cato didn't know." Then, as if
to change the subject, he went on more cheerfully. "Cunel Hewes's cousin
is runnin' de big works, sah. Dey is moulding a big chain over
dere--biggest you ever seed. Dey done goin' to tro it 'cross de Hudson
Ribber to keep dem Redcoat boats from goin' up. He's makin'
cannon-balls. I reckon he'd like to use yo' foundry."

"Well, what's to prevent him?" said George.

"'Deed ol' miss' won't let 'im," responded Cato, seriously. "She'd fight
'em toof and nail."

George smiled. "Have you heard her speak of me?" he asked.

"No, Mas'r George," said the old negro, shaking his head. "I heered her
tell Mistis Grace dat--dat--"

"Well?" said George.

"Dat you wus dead to her, you 'n' massa."

A drum rolled down the street, and some ragged soldiers were seen
leading some thin, unkempt horses from the stable across the way. Two
non-commissioned officers came out of the little house before which Cato
and his young master had been standing. One was buckling on his heavy
leather belt.

"Orders to march, I reckon," he said to his companion. George
acknowledged the salute they gave him, and the old darky removed his hat
and bowed.

"Wus dat Gineral Washington?" he asked, in an awed whisper, looking at
the burly figure of the first speaker, who had a great lump of cheese in
his hand, which he was endeavoring to slip into the pocket of his coat.

"No, Cato," said George; "that was a sergeant of artillery."

He was scribbling a few lines, addressed to his sister, on a bit of
rough paper. He thrust it into Cato's hands. "Good-by, old friend," he
said, and placed his arm about the faithful darky's shoulder and gave
him a squeeze, as he had often done in the good old days.

"I's not goin' back," said Cato, shaking his head. "I's goin' wid you as
yo' body-sarvant."

"You can't," said George. "Prithee do you think that a Lieutenant is
allowed a servant?"

"I don't know," said the old darky. "I spec you'll be a gineral 'fore
very long."

"No, no, Cato, you must go back," said his young master.

He turned quickly and ran off toward the guard-house. Where could the
gold have come from? It was puzzling.

Cato looked after him, and placing the note in the crown of his big hat,
walked slowly away.

An orderly met the young Lieutenant at the door. "Your presence is
requested at headquarters, sir," he said, and hurried off.

The city was going to be abandoned, and to George Frothingham was given
the important charge of conducting the precious powder train through the
lanes and by-ways of Manhattan Island to the new position Washington had
taken at Harlem Heights.


At noon the caravan was ready to start. Besides the lumbering vans, two
brass field-pieces trundled and jolted along with the rear-guard. George
knew well the best route to take, and gave the orders to push ahead up
the old "King's Highway"--the post-road to Boston.

At a street corner as they passed were standing some soldiers of one of
the commands that had not received marching orders. Running out into the
street, one of the men touched a tall private on the elbow. It was
Thomas, the former porter in Mr. Wyeth's office. He held in his hand a
buckskin bag of bullets.

"Brother Ralston," he said, "here are some leaden pills. Shoot straight
with them." Then he noticed George, and saluted. Pouring something out
in his hand, he came up close. "Slip them into your pocket for a
keepsake, Mr. Frothingham," he said. "They are some of those that were
moulded out of the statue of King George himself."

George took them, and remembered the time when he and his brother had
looked at this same statue when they had that first unhappy parting with
Carter Hewes three years before. How differently had things terminated.
He smiled sadly to himself as he slipped the new shining bullets into
the pocket of his coat.

As they trudged along through the hot sun and the dust, a young officer,
scarcely nineteen, galloped up and down the line, hurrying on those in
the rear, and keeping the column well together to prevent straggling. He
did not shout his orders, but talked in a low, intense voice; his
movements were quick and nervous, but his graceful figure sat erect on
his horse, and he seemed to take in everything with a rapid glance of
his handsome deep-set eyes. George saw at once that it was his friend
who had lent him his first Lieutenant's uniform, and whose name he had
forgotten to ask. Chagrined, he thought that he could only explain that
the wet had ruined everything, and the gay coat had been discarded.

"Who is he, that he should assume such airs?" said one of the slouching
rear-guard that had been swelled by stragglers from various commands in
advance, for the young officer had hastened him on by giving him a sharp
dig in the shoulder with his foot as he rode up the line.

"'Tis young Aaron Burr," was the response.

"Humph! the young coxcomb!" had exclaimed the first soldier.

"Coxcomb, perhaps, but a game one, I'll warrant you," had come the

The last time the proud young officer had ridden down the line, his
tired horse dotted and blotched with foam, he had caught sight of the
young Lieutenant, and had ridden up to him.

"Well met, comrade Frothingham!" he said, with a fascinating smile.
"Take charge of these lazybones. Stop their mouths, and make them use
their legs."

He cut with apparent playfulness at the shoulder of one of the belated
ones nearest to him.

The blow stung, nevertheless, but the man only cringed, and hastened on
like a jaded horse, frightened to further exertion. George looked at his
face carefully. It was the pale youth with the fishy eyes who had been a
clerk in Mr. Wyeth's employ with him. They had cordially disliked each

It was good that the rear-guard had hastened, for scarcely had they
crossed to the heights at Harlem, where Washington was waiting, when the
British appeared from east and west. A battery of Yankee artillery--the
two brass pieces--had taken possession of a little knoll, and they
roared alternately and held the victors in check. George placed his
force along the slope, and took command of the battery. At the sound of
the guns and the smell of the white sulphurous smoke our young hero's
heart once more began to beat with that strange unaccountable
excitement. As he faced his men about, he noticed private Ralston kneel
down behind a stump, and soon the bullets made from King George's statue
were singing across the meadow. The pursuit stopped at the bottom of the

That night George and his weary companions rested in the hay of a small
barn on the hill-side that overlooked the beautiful village of

He was too tired to sleep, and his thoughts ran rampant. What must
William think of him? What was his brother doing? Why could not he see
the right side? Oh, the bitterness of it! When would it end? Perhaps one
of those bullets whose sound he now knew so well would settle things for
good and all. If only William were here by him!

"Look back at the city!--look!" said a voice from the hay.

Far to the southward great red tongues of flame were leaping against the
sky; billows of smoke swept up and caught the reflection of the flames,
and sparks filled the air and danced out over the river. The city was on

As George watched the conflagration from the window of the hay-mow,
which was now crowded with excited soldiers, some men on horseback
passed by beneath him.

"There's a warm reception for them," said a short thick-set man with a
round chubby face. His voice had a cheery sound.

"I don't think that it was fired by our directions, General Putnam,"
came the answer.

"Probably it was done by the British themselves. They're not above it.
Gadzooks, it is a grand sight!" said the short man, "and many a Tory
heart is thumping with fear against its Tory ribs, I'll warrant ye."
There came a pause, and then the speaker added, "What was the name of
the lad who saved the powder train?"

"Aaron Burr," was the answer.

"No, not he--the young Lieutenant, I mean--the one who brought the news
from Staten Island?"

"His name has slipped me," replied the second officer, "but I heard the
General himself speak well of him."

George's heart gave a great leap, and then he murmured a prayer that he
might never fail to deserve such commendation. For well-earned praise is
balm to wounds and strengthening to the soul and spirit of the soldier,
be he young or old, great general or humble private in the ranks.




(_In Two Parts._)


It had begun to look as if no one would go to Viola Pitkin's birthday
party; it had been snowing for two days, and the drifts in some places
were as high as a man's head. Patty Perley had tried to take an interest
in the new lace pattern that she was crocheting, and in the paper
lamp-shade she was making, for which Ruby Nutting had taught her to make
roses that almost smelled sweet, they were so natural, and it was all in
vain; and she quite envied Anson, who was trying to draw the buff kitten
stuck into the leg of Uncle Reuben's boot. The kitten's squirming and
the old cat's frantic remonstrances were preventing the picture from
being a success, but Anson was highly entertained, and didn't seem to
care whether he went to the party or not. It was just when Patty was
feeling irritated by this indifference that Uncle Reuben came in, and
she heard him stamping and shaking his clothes in the entry, and saying,
"Whew, this is a night!" Then her spirits went down to zero. But the
very first thing that Uncle Reuben said when he opened the door was:

"I've told Pelatiah to get out the big sled and hitch up the black mare,
and you'll get to your party if the snow is deep. And the sled is large;
you'd better pick up all the youngsters you can along the way."

Now that was like Uncle Reuben as he used to be, not as he had been
since Dave, his only son, ran away; since then he had not seemed to
think there was anything but gloom and sadness in the world. Indeed,
Dave's going had taken the heart out of the good times all over
Butternut Corner. He was only sixteen, and a good boy--his mother had
meant that he should be a minister--but he got into the company of some
wild fellows down at Bymport, and of Alf Coombs, a wild fellow nearer
home, and then he had run away from home under circumstances almost too
dreadful to tell. Burton's jewelry-store at Bymport had been broken into
and robbed of watches and jewelry, and the next morning Dave and Alf
Coombs had disappeared. They had been seen around the store that night;
Dave had not come home until almost morning. The boys had been gone
almost two months now, and the suspicion against them had become almost
a certainty in most people's minds, and it was reported that the sheriff
had a warrant for their arrest, but as yet had not been able to find

With such trouble weighing upon them, Patty had felt as if it were
almost wicked to wish to go to Viola Pitkin's party, but Aunt Eunice had
said, with the quiver about her patient mouth that always came there
when she referred to Dave, that the innocent must not suffer for the
guilty; and she had told Barbara, the "hired girl," to roast a pair of
chickens and make some of her famous cream-cakes also, for it was to be
a surprise party, and each guest was to carry a basket of goodies for
the supper.

And now Uncle Reuben had planned for them to go, in spite of the
snow-drifts; so Patty began to feel that it was not wrong to be
light-hearted under the circumstances.

"Take all the youngsters you can pack on," repeated Uncle Reuben, as
Patty and Anson settled themselves on the great sled, and Pelatiah
cracked his whip over the old horse; "only I wouldn't stop at the foot
of the hill"--Uncle Reuben's face darkened suddenly as he said
this--"we've had about enough of Coombses."

Patty's heart sank a little, for she liked Tilly Coombs. They were rough
and poor people, the Coombs family--"back folks," who had moved to the
Corner only the summer before; the father drank, and the mother was an
invalid, and it was the son Alf who was supposed to have had an evil
influence over Dave. Patty thought it probable that Tilly had been
invited to the surprise party, because Ruby Nutting, the doctor's
daughter, who had planned the party, would be sure to ask her. Poor
people who would be likely to be slighted, and stray animals that no one
wanted, those were the ones that Ruby Nutting thought of first.

Along slid the great sled with its jingling bells, and out of her gate
at the foot of the hill ran Tilly Coombs--the very first passenger.
Patty couldn't help it. She didn't disobey Uncle Reuben's injunction not
to stop; Tilly ran and jumped on.

[Illustration: "YOU'LL LET ME GO WITH YOU, WON'T YOU?"]

"You'll let me go with you, won't you?" she panted. "I couldn't bear to
miss it when she asked me! Some folks wouldn't, but _she_ did. And I
never went to a party in all my life! I couldn't bring anything but some
doughnuts." Tilly opened her small basket, and by the light of
Pelatiah's great lantern Patty saw that eager face darken suddenly. "I
made 'em myself, and I'm afraid they're only middling. Doughnuts will
soak fat, though, won't they?" she added, anxiously, as Patty gazed
doubtfully at the soggy lumps laid carefully in the folds of a ragged
napkin. "I never made any before."

It was altogether an affair of first times with Tilly--a happier thing
in the way of party-going than of doughnut-making!

"They're very nicely flavored," said Patty, tasting critically, "and
where there are so many things nobody will notice if they're not--not so
very light."

Tilly's sharp anxious face brightened a little, but she heaved a sigh
and covered her doughnuts quickly as the sled stopped to take on Rilly
Parkhurst and her cousins, the Stillman boys, and Kathie Loomis, who was
visiting Rilly. The Sage boys came next, and Delia Sage, who was sixteen
and had taught school, but was just as full of fun as if she were young.
It was a merry company; the jingling of the bells was almost drowned in
chatter and laughter, and when Ruby Nutting joined it, she was greeted
with a cheering that, as Pelatiah said, "must 'a' cracked the

The crowd increased; the baskets were all huddled together upon the seat
with Pelatiah, and under the seat, and in the middle of the sled; no one
could keep hold of his own, but there was no fear but that they would
all know their own when they reached Viola's house.

Ruby Nutting was missed suddenly. She hadn't been as gay as usual;
generally Ruby could be depended upon to stir up every one's wits and
make the dullest party merry, but to-night she had been sitting in a
corner talking in a low tone with Alvan Sage. Now she had disappeared,
and Alvan Sage, looking very much surprised and bewildered himself, said
that she had slipped off when they were going a little slowly up the
hill, just as Pelatiah had held the lantern down to see if there was
anything the matter with the horse's foot; she had said she would wait
until Horace Barker's sleigh came along; either she thought the sled was
too crowded, or she wanted to see some one who was coming with the
Barkers. The latter explanation was probable enough, for Chrissy Barker
was on the "committee of arrangements," and had helped Ruby about the

So no one thought much more about it, although it didn't seem like Ruby
to go off without saying anything. The sled party was the first to reach
Viola's, and it was great fun to see her perfect surprise and delight
when they trooped in. They all thought that Ruby Nutting should have
been there then.

Patty had a surprise that was not pleasant. When her basket was carried
in the cover was open, the cream-cakes all jammed and half spoiled, and
the two fine roast chickens were gone!

"See here, you can catch the thief by his mitten!" cried one of the
boys. The rim of the basket was broken, probably by the thief in his
haste, and to one sharply jagged end was attached a long, long string of
red worsted. "Who has a ravelled mitten?"

The color came and went in Tilly Coombs's sharp, elfish little face;
then she thrust her hand into her pocket as if she was thrusting her
mittens deep into it. Patty Perley happened to be standing close beside
her, and saw her.

Patty was mortified to have come to the surprise party with only a few
half-spoiled cream-cakes, but she was kind-hearted, and her first
thought was a pitying one.

"They must be so very poor! Tilly wanted them for her sick mother," she
said to herself.

How Tilly could have taken the chickens from the basket and where she
could have concealed them was a mystery. But Uncle Reuben believed that
all the Coombs family were thievish and sly; perhaps he was right, and
Tilly was used to doing such things. But even Uncle Reuben would not be
very hard upon a girl who had stolen delicate food for her sick mother.

"'Sh!--'sh! don't say anything about it! It is of no consequence," she
whispered to some girls and boys who were loudly wondering and guessing
about the mysterious theft.

Then they all went into the sitting-room, and the Virginia reel, the
old-fashioned dance with which Butternut Corner festivities almost
always began, was danced, and no one thought any more of the stolen

Ruby Nutting had come by this time, and she led the dance, as usual the
life of the good time. She had come in Horace Barker's sleigh, and she
gayly evaded the wonderings and reproaches of the party she had left. As
the dance ended, Berta Treadwell beckoned slyly to Patty. Berta was
Viola Pitkin's cousin, who had come all the way from California to visit
her; she and Patty had "taken to" each other at once.

"I want you to see such a funny thing!" whispered Berta, drawing Patty
out into the back entry. "That queer-looking girl they call Tilly, with
the wispy black hair and the faded cotton dress, asked me to lend her a
pair of knitting-needles! I got grandma's for her, and she snatched them
out of my hands, she was so eager. 'You needn't tell anybody that I
asked you for 'em, either,' she said, in that sharp way of hers. I had
such a curiosity to know what she was going to do with them that I
watched her. After a while, when the reel was begun and she thought no
one was looking, she slipped out through the wood-shed into the barn.
Come and peep through the crack!"

Patty followed Berta softly through the wood-shed, and looked through a
chink in the rough board partition into the barn.

On an inverted bucket, with a lantern hung upon a nail over her head,
sat Tilly Coombs diligently knitting. The barn was cold; the cattle's
breaths made vapors, and there was a glitter of frost around the beams.
Tilly was muffled in a shawl, but her face looked pinched and blue.

"What is she knitting? It looks like a red mitten," whispered Berta. "Is
she so industrious? To think of leaving a party on a winter night to go
out to the barn and knit! Do you think we ought to leave her there in
the cold? I should think she must be crazy!"

Patty was drawing Berta back through the wood-shed eagerly, in silence.
Berta had not heard about the ravelled mitten; she did not know that
Tilly was trying to knit it into shape again so it would never be known
that it was her mitten that was ravelled.

"I know why she is doing it," said Patty, "though I don't see why she
couldn't have waited until she got home; but I suppose she is awfully
anxious. Berta, don't say that we saw her, or anything about the
needles, to anybody. That will be kind to her, and she is so poor.
Whatever you hear, don't say anything."

"I'm sure I don't want to say anything to hurt her," answered Berta, a
little resentfully, for she did think Patty might have told her all
about it. "But I must say I think society in Butternut Corner is a
little mixed."

"Ruby asked her," explained Patty. "I think it was right; Tilly never
went to a party before."

"Her way of enjoying herself at a party is a little queer," said Berta,

And Patty thought she did not feel quite so sorry as she had done that
Berta was going back to California the next day.

She thought she would tell Ruby Nutting; Ruby would understand, and pity
Tilly; but before she had a chance, while Horace Barker was singing a
college song and Ruby was playing the accompaniment on the piano, a
sudden recollection struck her that sent the color from her face. Aunt
Eunice's spoons!

Aunt Eunice had said that there were never spoons enough to go round at
a surprise party, and Viola Pitkin's mother was her intimate friend, so
she wished to help her all she could, and she put a dozen spoons into
the basket--the solid silver ones that had been Grandmother
Oliver's--and charged Patty to take care of them. And it was not until
she overheard Mrs. Pitkin whisper to Viola that she wasn't _sure_ that
there were sauce-plates enough that Patty remembered the spoons.

She had a struggle to repress a cry of dismay, those spoons were so
precious! Uncle Reuben had demurred when they were put into the basket,
but Aunt Eunice was proud, and always liked to give and lend of her
best. Patty felt as if she must cry out and denounce Tilly when she
crept slyly in behind broad-backed Uncle Nathan Pitkin and slyly warmed
her benumbed hands at the fire. But Patty held her peace; when she had
reflected for a few minutes she knew that this was too grave a matter
for fourteen-year-old wits to grapple with, and she must tell Uncle
Reuben and Aunt Eunice.

Tilly Coombs was drawn into a merry game--Ruby Nutting took care of
that--and before long her queer little sharp face was actually dimpling
with fun, and her laugh rang out with the gayest! Patty Perley looked at
her, and decided that it was a very queer world indeed; for her the joy
of Viola Pitkin's party was done.

When they were all dressing to depart, Patty looked involuntarily at
Tilly Coombs's mittens; in fact, many furtive glances were cast around
at the red mittens by those who remembered the theft of the roast
chickens. There were many of them, red being the fashionable color for
mittens at Butternut Corner, but apparently they were all sound and
whole. Tommy Barker had one mitten with a white thumb, which his blind
grandmother had knitted on in place of a torn thumb, and little Seba
Sage had but one mitten; but that one was very dark red, not the vivid
scarlet of the ravelling.

Rilly Parkhurst whispered to Patty, as she sat down beside her on the
sled: "Tilly Coombs has the ravelled mitten! She is trying to cover it
with her shawl; it is only a little more than half a mitten!"

Patty smothered an exclamation of doubt, and then she gazed curiously at
Tilly's hands; but they were tightly, carefully covered by her shawl.

Could it be that after spending all that time in the cold barn she had
failed to knit up her ravelled mitten? Tilly looked as if she had been
having a good time. Under the light of Pelatiah's lantern her eyes were
shining, her face rippling with smiles. Patty thought with wonder that
she had not seen her look so happy--well, certainly not since her
brother Alf ran away.

"I must have grown plump at the party!" laughed Ruby Nutting. "One of my
mittens is too tight around the wrist." And Patty saw Tilly Coombs
nervously fold her shawl more closely about her mittens.

Just before her own door was reached, Tilly Coombs leaned towards Patty
and whispered, so that even Anson or Pelatiah should not hear.

"I didn't know there were such good times in the world!" she said, with
her face aglow. "And Viola Pitkin's uncle Nathan ate one of my
doughnuts!" But Patty shrank away from her.



The Eve of Epiphany or Twelfth-Night brings to the Roman children very
much the same experience which Christmas brings to young Americans. It
is the time and opportunity for presents, and sometimes for
disappointments and even punishments. Upon this occasion, however, it is
a benefactress instead of a benefactor who confers the coveted favor. It
is not Santa Claus, who, round, red, and good-natured, comes down the
chimney with a gift for every child, but a hideous old woman, lean,
dark, and sour-visaged, who descends the chimney with a bell in one hand
and a long cane in the other. The bell announces her coming, and the
cane is especially for the children who have rebelled against parents
and teachers, or have been otherwise forgetful of duty. The name of this
old crone is Befana, and she brings plenty of good things, in spite of
her forbidding countenance and manner, and the good, obedient child may
confidently expect a stocking full of dainties. She fills the stocking
of the disobedient too, but with ashes! The Festival of the Befana is
one of the most fascinating to the children of Rome. Crowds gather upon
the thoroughfares and fill up the streets and piazzas, and the beating
drums, squeaking whistles, jingling tambourines, and sonorous trumpets
show that Roman children can be quite as noisy in honor of the Befana as
American children are when they wish to welcome Christmas or celebrate
the glorious Fourth. This festival occurs, of course, on the eve of
Twelfth-Night, and in addition to the various noises which assail your
ears, your eyes are feasted with the most startling and curious
spectacles. Very odd and, we can say, very picturesque toys are
exhibited on all sides, and the brilliant display of fireworks gives a
fascination to things which are in themselves ridiculous and grotesque.
Noise, unceasing noise, is the order of the night, and he who can
surprise you with the loudest is greeted with peals of laughter and
shouts of applause. A whistle or horn is always at your ears.

Nor is the custom of receiving presents on this happy occasion confined
to children. The Pope and the Cardinals take part in the rejoicing.
Formerly a chalice of gold containing a hundred ducats was presented to
the Pope with a Latin address and great ceremony, and the Pope, in
accepting it, made his reply in Latin, and graciously allowed the bearer
to kiss his foot. This offering was called the Befana Tribute. The
ceremony was discontinued in the year 1802; but the Befana Tribute is
still offered and accepted. Of course, there are many traditions
concerning the Befana, and it is in honor of a tradition that a burning
broom is always carried in the processions which celebrate her festival.
According to this tradition she is said to have been an old woman, who
was engaged in cleaning the house when the three Kings passed carrying
presents to the infant Christ; she was called to the window to see them,
but she declined to leave her household duties, and said, "I will see
them as they return." But the old woman was denied the blessed sight,
for they did not return that way, and hence she is represented as
waiting and watching for them continually--always standing in the
attitude of expectation, with her broom in her hand.

To disguise themselves as this old woman is one of the pranks of the
Roman boys during the Befana Festival. With blackened faces and
fantastic caps on their heads they stand in the doors with a broom in
one hand and a lantern in the other. Around their necks and suspended to
their waists are rows of stockings filled with sweet-meats, and also
with the reward of evil-doing--the famous ashes! And what do the Roman
children say when they see these representations of the Befana?

Well, very much what the American children say when they see the images
of their dearly loved Santa Claus!



  Come, draw around the fire,
    And watch the sparks that go
  All singing like a fairy choir
    Into the realms of snow.

  Above us evergreen,
    With mistletoe in sprays,
  And tenderly the leaves between
    The holly-berries blaze.

  And while the logs burn bright,
    Before the day takes wing,
  The happy children, gowned in white,
    Their merry carols sing.

  Then high the stockings lift,
    Like hungry beggars dumb.
  _Good Santa Claus, bring every gift,_
    _And fill them when you come!_




The most illustrious name connected with London Tower--high over king,
priest, or prince--is the name of Raleigh. There at four different times
he was sent, not so much prisoner of England as of Spain. He never lay
in the lonesome cell in the crypt called his. His longest term was in
the grim fortress Bloody Tower, where his undaunted spirit taught the

  "Stone walls do not a prison make,
  Nor iron bars a cage."


He was allowed the freedom of the garden, with a little lodge for a
study--a hen-house of lath and plaster, where he experimented with drugs
and chemicals, studied medicine and ship-building, kept his crucibles
and apparatus, and the near terrace he paced up and down through weary
years is to this day called Raleigh's Walk.

It was in the reign of King James the First--the cruel and cowardly--and
never in his peerless prime was Raleigh greater than in the fourteen
years that sentence of death hung over his head. His prison was a court
to which men crowded with delight. Queen Anne sent gracious messages to
him, and Prince Henry rode down from Whitehall to hear the old sailor
tell of green isles with waving palms like beckoning hands, hints of
wonderful plumage, hissing serpents in tropic jungles, barbarian cities
built of precious stones, and of rivers running over sands of gold, all
waiting for the English conqueror to come and make them his own.

After a morning of high converse the Prince cried out, "No man but my
father would keep such a bird in such a cage," and when the young
listener fell ill the Queen would have him take nothing but Raleigh's
cordial, which, she said, had saved her life.

His best biographer writes: "Raleigh was a sight to see; not only for
his fame and name, but for his picturesque and dazzling figure.
Fifty-one years old, tall, tawny, splendid, with the bronze of tropical
suns on his leonine cheek, a bushy beard, a round mustache, and a ripple
of curling hair which his man Peter took an hour to dress. Apparelled as
became such a figure, in scarf and band of richest color and costliest
stuff, in cap and plume worth a ransom, in jacket powdered with gems,
his whole attire from cap to shoe-strings blazing with rubies, emeralds,
and pearls, he was allowed to be one of the handsomest men alive."

In the eleventh year of his bondage he finished the first part of the
_History of the World_. He wrote what men will not let die, invented the
modern war-ship, and from the turrets of Bloody Tower looked across the
vast blue plain of ocean and directed operations in Virginia and Guiana.
He was a guiding light to his beloved England; proud and brilliant
heroes deferred to him, sought his advice; charming women were charmed
by the most courtly of courtiers, and all felt him to be a man whom the
government could not afford to spare. He knew more than any other person
living about the New World offering endless riches to the Old, and his
services were at the King's command. While prisoner to the crown he
sailed with five ships under royal orders for the region of the Orinoco,
the land of promise unfulfilled. The golden city lighted by jewels was a
vanishing illusion ending in bitter disappointment.

Years before, in 1609, he had written to Shakespeare, whom he called,
"My dearest Will":

     "Great were our hopes, both of glory and of gold, in the kingdom of
     Powhatan. But it grieves me much to say that all hath resulted in
     infelicity, misfortune, and an unhappy end.... As I was blameworthy
     for thy risk, I send by the messenger your £50, which you shall not
     lose by my overhopeful vision. For its usance I send a package of a
     new herb from the Chesapeake, called by the natives tobacco. Make
     it not into tea, as did one of my kinsmen, but kindle and smoke it
     in the little tube the messenger will bestow ... it is a balm for
     all sorrows and griefs, and as a dream of Paradise.... Thou knowest
     that from my youth up I have adventured for the welfare and glory
     of our Queen, Elizabeth. On sea and on land and in many climes have
     I fought the accursed Spaniard, and am honored by our sovereign and
     among men ... but all this would I give, and more, for a tithe of
     the honor which in the coming time shall assuredly be thine. Thy
     kingdom is of the imagination, and hath no limit or end."

The dreams of the Admiral far outran any possibility, and the mines of
Guiana proved a cheat equal to the yellow clay of the Roanoke. Peril of
life, fortune, and the varied resources of genius and valor were not
enough to insure success, and a failure in the paradise of the world
probably hastened the sentence for which Philip III. of Spain clamored.

The charges of treason against Raleigh were pure invention; but on his
return from South America he was arrested, committed to the Tower, and
the warrant for execution was signed without a new trial, while men from
the streets and ships came crowding to the wharf, whence they could see
him walking on the wall. He was advised to kill himself to escape the
shameful sentence of James I., but he solemnly spoke of self-murder, and
declared he would die in the light of day and before the face of his
countrymen. In the field of battle, on land and on sea, he had looked at
death too often to tremble now.

His farewell letter to his wife is one of the sweetest. I wish I had
space for it all. It concludes:

     "The everlasting God, Infinite, Powerful, Inscrutable; the Almighty
     God, which is Goodness itself, Mercy itself; the true light and
     life--keep thee and thine, have mercy on me, and teach me to
     forgive my persecutors and false witnesses, and send us to meet
     again in His Glorious Kingdom. My own true wife, farewell. Bless my
     poor boy. Pray for me, and let the good God fold you both in His
     arms. Written with the dying hand of sometime thy husband, but now,
     alas! overthrown.

     "Yours that was, but not now my own,


In his final imprisonment Lady Raleigh was not allowed a share. When she
caught his youthful fancy it was as Elizabeth Throckmorton, maid of
honor to Queen Elizabeth.

"Sweet Bess" was a favorite there among ladies of gentle blood. The
flatterers of the dazzling court fluttered round the lovely young girl,
conspicuous for beauty and grace; slender, fair, golden-haired. Her
sighs were only for the sea-captain who expected to crown her with glory
won by his sword, and riches, the spoil to be fought for in many lands.
She was his loyal wife to the end, always pleading for pardon, defiant
before King and court, where she appeared daily in her husband's cause,
"holding little Wat by the hand." When her petition was refused, she was
not afraid to call down curses on the head of the tyrant, who heeded not
her wrath or her grief.

The water-way from the Thames is a dark passage under whose arch a pale
procession of ghosts of the murdered may easily be fancied as coming up
out of the past. Beneath it went Raleigh from prison to hear his
sentence in Westminster Hall; from the King's Bench he was sent to
Westminster Abbey. Crowds thronged to watch him pass, and from the
carriage window he noticed his old friend Burton, and invited him to
Palace Yard next day to see him die.

[Illustration: THE TRAITORS' GATE.]

The warrant came on a dark October morning, 1618. Raleigh was in bed,
but on hearing the Lieutenant's voice he sprang lightly to his feet,
threw on hose and doublet, and left his room. At the door he met Peter,
his barber, coming in. "Sir," said Peter, "we have not curled your head
this morning." His master answered with a smile, "Let them comb it that
shall have it." The faithful servant followed him to the gate insisting
on the service. "Peter," he asked, "canst thou give me any plaster to
set on a man's head when it is off?"

John Eliot wrote: "There is no parallel to the fortitude of Raleigh.
Nothing petty disturbed his calm soul in ending a career of constant
toil for the greatness and honor of his country. The hero who created a
New England for Old England was fearless of death, the most resolute and
confident of men, yet with reverence and conscience."

The executioner was deeply moved by the matchless spirit of the martyr.
He knelt and prayed forgiveness--the usual formula at the block or
scaffold. Raleigh placed both hands on the man's shoulders and said, "I
forgive you with all my heart. Now show me the axe." He carefully
touched the edge of the blade to feel its keenness, and kissed it. "This
gives me no fear. It is a sharp and fair medicine to cure all my ills."
Being asked which way he would lie on the block, he answered, "It is no
matter which way the head lies, so that the heart be right." Presently
he added, "When I stretch forth my hands, despatch me." There were
omissions in his last speech, but we may be sure they were noble
utterances. He prayed in an unbroken voice, and begged his friends to
stand near him on the scaffold so they might better hear his dying
words. Which being done, he concluded, "And now I entreat you all to
join with me in prayer that the great God of Heaven, whom I have
grievously offended--being a man full of vanity, and having lived a
sinful life in all sinful callings, having been a soldier, a captain,
and a sea-captain, and a courtier, which are all places of wickedness
and vice--that God, I say, would forgive me and cast away my sins from
me, and that He would receive me into everlasting life. So I take my
leave of you making my peace with God.

"Give me heartily of your prayers," he repeated, turning right and left.
The headsman cast down his own cloak that the victim might kneel on it
after laying off his velvet robe. An act which reminds us of the happy
chance for like courtesy that made Raleigh's fortune when he was a
boyish adventurer in the train of Sussex; a beautiful youth watching the
state barge of Queen Elizabeth.

The supreme moment came; the great captain, never greater than in death,
stretched out his palsied hands. The deathman hesitated. "What dost thou
fear, man? Strike, strike." One blow--a true one--and the murder was
done. There were those standing near who saw his face as it had been the
face of an angel. Courtier, historian, poet, seaman, soldier, his was
"the noblest head that ever rolled into English dust."

[Illustration: SIR WALTER RALEIGH.]

The wasted body was laid under the altar of St. Margaret's, the church
of the House of Commons, across the way from Westminster, with only a
small tablet to mark his resting-place.

Sweet Bess, who shared his glory and his prison-house, and with little
Wat had walked the terrace with him, does not lie beside him. I do not
know where that fond and faithful heart went to dust, but I do believe
that in the final day, for which all other days are made, true love will
find its own, and they will be reunited for evermore.

I saw no monument to Raleigh in Westminster Abbey. The fame of the
colonizer of Virginia belongs to us of the New World, and in 1880 a
memorial window was placed there at the expense of Americans in London.
Canon Farrar's address at the unveiling was a brilliant review of
Raleigh's life and varied fortunes in the most glorious portion of the
Elizabethan era. It concluded with an earnest appeal to the England of
Queen Victoria and the America of Lincoln and of Garfield to stand
shoulder to shoulder under the banner of the cross.



(_In Two Papers._)



The usual method for a boy to obtain a commission in the army is to pass
through the four years' course of study, and graduate at the United
States Military Academy at West Point, New York.

Receiving a diploma upon completing this course, he is by law appointed
by the President a Second Lieutenant in some branch of the four military
divisions of service--Engineers, Artillery, Cavalry, or Infantry. Cadets
are annually admitted to the Military Academy by appointment. Each
Congressman has the right to request one for a resident of his district,
the Secretary of War giving the appointment. Ten are also appointed by
the President, selecting at large from anywhere in the United States.
Besides these, each Territory and the District of Columbia are entitled
to one. This would allow about 400 cadets, but the course is so severe
that the number becomes very much reduced. Last June the corps numbered
285; but including the entering class of 103 the present number is only
336 cadets. Application to Washington can be made at any time. It will
be placed on file in the office of the Secretary of War, and notice sent
to the representative of that district whenever a vacancy occurs. The
application must give the full name of the young man, date of birth, and
permanent residence. Appointments are required to be made one year in
advance of date of admission, except that, in case of death or other
cause, vacancies may occur; then they may be filled in time for the next
annual examination. At present candidates appear for mental and physical
examination before a board of officers convened at the military post
nearest their respective places of residence on the first day of March
annually. The successful candidates will be admitted to the Academy
without further examination upon reporting in person to the
superintendent at West Point before 12 M. on the 15th day of June.
Candidates selected to fill the vacancies unprovided for by the March
boards, and those which may occur afterwards, will be instructed to
report at West Point for examination early in June. After admission at
West Point, cadets must sign an engagement to serve the United States
eight years, and take and subscribe the Oath of Allegiance. They agree
to obey all legal orders of their superior officers.

Cadets admitted must be between seventeen and twenty-two years of age,
and five feet or more in height, and unmarried. They must be well versed
in reading, writing, and spelling, so as to spell correctly from
dictation a considerable number of test words; in arithmetic enough to
be able to take up at once the higher branches without further study of
arithmetic; and have a thorough knowledge of the elements of English
grammar; of descriptive geography, particularly that of the United
States, and of the history of the United States.

We thus see that it is in the common branches that the boy desiring to
go to West Point must especially perfect himself to be able to enter;
but a student of higher mathematics and other collegiate studies has a
better chance for class standing, when the different subjects are taken
up, after entering, and rapidly pushed to completion. The first year
algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and surveying are completed; analytical
geometry, use of logarithms, rhetoric, and English language studied,
with French commenced; besides, the practical instruction in military
drill and discipline is demanded. There are marchings to every exercise,
to mess-hall, chapel, and recitations. Fencing, bayonet, and gymnastic
drills come the first year.

The second year analytical and descriptive geometry and calculus, with
method of "least squares," are completed. French is finished, and also
several weeks of Spanish, drawing, and practical military training and

The third year philosophy is substituted for mathematics, analytical
mechanics, astronomy, and wave-motion being finished. The cadets take
chemistry, electricity, mineralogy, and geology; also military drawing,
drill regulations, and practical engineering, with signalling.

The fourth year has military engineering, fortifications, and art of
war; also constitutional, international, and military law, history,
practical instruction in astronomy, and the study of ordnance and
gunnery. All this time the cadet is constantly subject to the life and
duties of a soldier, just as far as his studies will permit. Infantry
drill in squad, company, and battalion, cavalry and artillery drill,
guard duty, parades, reviews, and other ceremonies are incessant. The
cadet's life is more than a busy one. So hard is it, that out of one
hundred candidates who enter seldom more than fifty graduate.

But a boy of sound body and good constitution, with suitable preparation
and good natural capacity, and aptitude for study, industrious,
persevering, and of an obedient and orderly disposition, with a correct
moral deportment, will not fail to receive the reward of his four years'
labor in a commission in the United States army.


The third way a commission is sometimes obtained is by direct
appointment to a Second Lieutenancy by the President, who has the power,
and exercises it when vacancies occur over and above those filled by
cadet graduates of West Point, and by candidate non-commissioned
officers from the ranks. In the case of the President having appointed a
civilian to fill a vacancy, the appointee is called upon to pass an
examination, mentally and physically. The subjects of examination are
the common English branches, also history, geometry, surveying,
international and constitutional law. If accepted, after a critical and
extensive trial he is passed by the examining board, he will receive a
commission from the President, either in the cavalry or infantry; and
after serving some little time with his regiment he will usually be sent
to the Infantry and Cavalry School at Fort Leavenworth for a
post-graduate course. Surgeons, undergoing a most thorough examination,
are appointed First Lieutenants directly into the service, as are often
Paymasters and Judge-Advocates with the rank of Major.


We have brought our young man through the three different doorways to
the position of a commissioned officer of the lowest grade, _viz._, a
Second Lieutenant. His subsequent success as an officer will depend upon
himself. The usual promotion is, as a rule, according to seniority, _i.
e_., the ranking man of one grade goes to the next higher, except in
case of war, when the best man is selected to fill a position of higher
rank according as he is believed to be fit therefor. Though regular
promotion may be slow, an officer has many other channels of success.

The highest cadets in class rank, perhaps four or five, go into the
Engineer Corps, where their work is mainly among civilians, and their
promotion rapid. The Ordnance Corps is filled by special competitive
examination of Second Lieutenants of the army; the successful receive
the rank of First Lieutenant on entering the corps. The departments of
the Quartermaster, Commissary, Paymaster, Judge-Advocate, and
Adjutant-General are filled from the lines of officers, giving to the
appointed increased rank and pay. There are many special details open to
industrious officers; between thirty and forty being selected for
colleges; some for military attaches at foreign courts; also others for
aides-de-camp to generals; and for places of importance in Washington.

Officers are required to study extensively, and pass examinations for
every promotion. The diploma from the Infantry and Cavalry School will
entitle the holder to promotion for five years without further
examination. The profession of an army officer may not be so
remunerative pecuniarily as one of like study and preparation in civil
life; but perhaps, with the one exception of the ever-impending danger
or prospect of active service, his is as comfortable and satisfying as
that of the average professional or business man.

The pay of a Second Lieutenant, whose age varies from twenty-one to
twenty-eight, is, in infantry, $116.67 per month, and in cavalry $125
per month, together with advantages of groceries at cost price, coal at
about one-half the usual cost, and quarters free.

Thus we cannot help feeling that the young man who strives for success
in the army, from the ranks of a private soldier up, will feel amply
repaid, particularly if he receives a commission, and then continues to
make a good soldierly reputation.

Usually where a son is desirous of entering the army through any open
door, his parents immediately inquire concerning his surroundings. Are
they favorable to good morals? Are they conducive to a religious life?
The answer is that good morals are required at the outset; but of course
in barrack life as it is a young man would be likely to be influenced by
the example of his comrades. In some companies there could be no fault
to find. In others he would encounter much roughness of speech--perhaps
as much as in the forecastle of a ship. As to religion there is nothing
necessarily hindering, no more than in railroading, in working in large
out-door gangs, in manufactories, or elsewhere in the world.

The young man as a Christian is always called upon to resist temptation,
and I do not think it harder in the army than elsewhere; for everywhere
temptations must be met and overcome. There are many decided Christian
officers and soldiers--perhaps as large a proportion as are to be found
in other business careers.



Here is a new idea for a fair in costume for the Fresh Air Fund or some
other charity, and one not too hard to get up. Did you ever hear of an
evening with Mother Goose and her friends? Well, the idea is to have the
attendants of the booths and tables appear in characters taken from
Mother Goose's immortal jingles, with the dear kindly old face of Mother
Goose welcoming all. To give such a fair the air of a social gathering,
it is a good plan to have Mother Goose, the old woman with rings on her
fingers and bells on her toes, the old man clad all in leather, and poor
old Robinson Crusoe receive the guests, being introduced by little Tommy
Trot, after Solomon Grundy has taken the tickets as each one enters.

This reception committee should be impersonated by some of your mothers
and fathers, who would be willing to lend themselves for the interest
they naturally take in the object of your efforts. Or else the older
young people might enjoy the ceremony. The costumes would not be hard to
make. Mother Goose should wear a short dark red, blue, or brown plain
gown, a black apron, a white or gay-colored kerchief, and a white cap
with a wide frill. The costume of the musical old woman should be
similar, except her cap should be a high conical colored one trimmed
with tiny bells. Bells should border her dress and be sewed to her
shoe-tops, and her hair should be powdered. A cape, also bell-trimmed,
might be substituted for the kerchief. The leather man should wear a
coat and hat covered with the heavy paper which imitates alligator-skin,
wear high-topped boots, and carry an umbrella in one hand and a cane in
the other.

The next question to settle is about the booths. These should be rather
small, so that there can be quite a number of them, and so that the
articles for sale could in a measure be also in character. The slight
wooden frame of the booths and their counters or tables should be hidden
under drapings of cheese-cloth, cotton crépon, silkolene, or
tissue-paper, each one being of single or harmonizing colors, pale lemon
color and heliotrope, pink and blue, orange and black, being especially
showy by electric or gas light. For the special decoration there should
be placed high on the front of each booth a placard, being a
characteristic quotation descriptive of the booth and its contents. This
is an excellent chance for a handy boy or girl to do some fancy
lettering. Supposing the central booth should have this rhyme:

  "There was an old woman tossed up in a basket
    Ninety times as high as the moon;
  And where she was going I couldn't but ask her,
    For in her hand she carried a broom.

  "'Old woman, old woman, old woman,' quoth I,
  'Whither, O whither, O whither so high?'
  'To sweep the cobwebs off the sky!'
  'Shall I go with you?' 'Aye, buy-and-buy.'"

I am sure your friends will excuse the pun in the last line, and, what's
more to the purpose, will take the hint. Trimming the booth and
displayed on its counter you must have brooms of all sizes.

You see there is a multitude of simple things you can make yourselves
that will be appropriate for this booth, and much that will be
contributed easily and willingly, and, best of all, they will be
articles that every one will be glad to buy. I think the secret of
success in such a fair is not to have too costly articles for sale. It
is astonishing how quickly dollars grow from dimes, quarters, and
halves, and how easily these small coins slip out of friendly purses.
The chief young lady in charge of this broom booth should be dressed to
represent the famous old woman, and each of her helpers should wear
miniature brooms made of a few broom-splints and a toothpick for badges.

Another booth should be decorated with pictures of our tabby friends,
corresponding to the jingle, "I love little pussy, her coat is so warm,"
while its contents should entice buyers with a display of animal toys of
every kind--cotton flannel elephants dear to childish hearts, dogs,
pussies, a whole flock of Mary's lambs, horses, and mechanical bears, if
you should be so fortunate as to have the latter donated.

A third booth should be devoted to dolls dressed in every style and
paper dolls, both of which are always saleable. Who ever found a little
girl's heart so full that it would not admit one more doll-child to the
play-house family? This booth could be draped with butterflies and
festoons of the stars and stripes, and have for its motto,

  "Hush, baby, my doll, I pray you don't cry."

The merry jingle of "Humpty Dumpty" is fitting for a table devoted to
Easter eggs and cards, Easter bonbons, and other timely trifles, and
could be easily allowed to include stationery, _menu_ cards, pen-wipers,
and all the pretty conceits agreeable to use when writing one's thanks
for an Easter gift.

"Needles and pins, needles and pins," is the motto for a table where
should be shown dainty doilies, tea-cloths, bits of drawn-work, and all
the pretty pieces of needle-work it is possible for your skilful fingers
to make, or kind friends to give you. Do not fail to try and get enough
toy watches, tiny pins, beads, and ornamental trifles--things that make
a _good_ time, you can say, because "Hickory, dickory, dock," etc., is
such a pretty legend for a booth, especially with an old-fashioned tall
clock to add to the decorations.

  "Daffo-down-dilly has come to town
  In a fine petticoat and a green gown,"

is a charming verse for a flower, which the smiling faces of girls in
costumes representing flowers will yet further decorate.

  "Handy Spandy Jack-a-Dandy
  Loves plum-cake and sugar-candy,"

should be the jingle for the candy table, and the boys and girls can
exercise their ingenuity in appearing in character--one a chocolate
cream, another a striped stick, another a pink peppermint, and so on.
But whatever you do, do not forget the little kindergarteners in your
households. They are so proud of their bits of work, and would be so
glad to give something for the poor sick babies. Take the mats and
sewing-cards, and make them into sachet-bags, pin-trays, blotters,
cornucopias, needle-books, "scratch-my-backs," with ribbons and fringed
papers. Let the verse over these childish offerings be,

  "I saw a ship a-sailing,
    A-sailing on the sea;
  And, O, it was all laden
    With pretty things for thee,"

and trim the booth with the paper chains, stars, and the like; also the
work of the little ones.


In order that such a fair as this shall be a success and not wear every
one out, you must divide yourselves into groups, with an older lady or
ladies to direct your work. If you belong to the broom booth, do not
change your mind and try to be a flower-girl at the last moment. If you
are lucky enough to have given you, or to make something suitable for
the needle-work table, turn it over to that group, and do not dictate
how it shall be placed. Give your attention to making your own booth a
success. It is wise to ask some one who is older to take charge of the
fitting up of the booths. He can manage better than you, especially if a
carpenter is employed, and you can pour forth your soul on the
decorations. There are plenty of characters in Mother Goose's jingles
for every one to have one appear in, but it is no harm if there are
several of a kind. "Betsy Brooks and Tommy Snooks," "The butcher, the
baker, the candle-stick-maker," "Three wise men of Gotham," "Father
Graybeard," "Tommy Grace with the pain in his face," are groups which
can appear together, and by acting in character and repeating often the
jingles that belong to them, add to the fun.

Thus far it would be possible to have the fair in a private house, if
any one is so generous as to offer hers. But if you can have a hall or
chapel you can offer yet greater variety. Arrange to keep seats in the
centre of the hall, and have tableaux and songs for an hour. If it is
possible, drill those of you who can sing, or perhaps some singer would
volunteer to accompany the tableaux. Otherwise ask some one who reads
nicely to recite the words appropriate to each tableau. "Little Bo-peep"
appears as the curtain rises, looking for her sheep, while "Polly
Flinder" will make two tableaux, one for each two lines of the rhyme.
"Georgie Porgie" should appear kissing a tiny girl, and, in the second,
running away when a group of school-girls come in sight. "Seesaw,
Margery Daw," is another pretty tableau. "Bobby Shaftoe" should show his
faithful little maid waiting for him, while the second one shows Bobby's
return. When this is done by two yellow-haired children it is effective.
"Old King Cole and his fiddlers three," "Little Jack Horner," "Simple
Simon," "Ba-ba, Black Sheep," "Little Miss Muffett," "Tom, Tom, the
piper's son," and "When I was a bachelor," are all capable of being
arranged in tableaux. There are two editions of "Mother Goose"
published, with the words set to music, and with pictures that would
give suggestions for costumes.

Of course a fair without refreshments is a good deal like plum-pudding
without currants and raisins, and even here Mother Goose comes to our
aid. What do you say to "Jack and Jill" drawing the lemonade at the well
in small pails, and then pouring it into glasses? Would it not add to
the fun if part of the evening Jack's head should be mended with brown
paper? "Little Tommy Tucker" must not be forgotten, and should have a
stand to himself, where he can sing for your supper, and offer
sandwiches of every sort neatly wrapped in waxed paper and fancy
crackers. Close at hand "Mary Morey" should give you a chance to tell
her story while you drink your chocolate and eat your sandwich.

A pretty booth should have for sale fancy cakes, loaves, and buns, while
its attendants should ring a bell, and sing, "Hot cross buns," etc.
"Little maid, pretty maid, wilt thou be mine," etc., is an appropriate
legend for the ice-cream corner, while "Sing a song of sixpence," with
as many waiters as may be in black dresses and red sleeves for
blackbirds, would add a finishing touch to the evening with Mother
Goose, if it is thought best to undertake a hot supper to coax the
nimble sixpences for the poor children's holiday.


The New York Interscholastic Athletic Association publishes a monthly
paper, which is called the _Interscholastic Record_, and is edited by a
board composed of one member from each of the schools represented in the
Association. It is fair for the general public to assume that the
opinions expressed by the _Record_ are official and endorsed by the rank
and file of the members of the Association, and, consequently, of the
New York schools. But in justice to the true and straightforward
sportsmen of New York, of which there are many in the schools, I want to
say to the readers of the _Record_ in other cities that the opinions
expressed by the paper are by no means those of the better element among
the scholastic athletes of this city.

The Editor-in-Chief of the _Record_ is Mr. William J. Ehrich, of the
Harvard School. Mr. Ehrich attended the College of the City of New York
for a term in 1894, but for some reason did not continue his course, and
returned to the Harvard School. He caught upon their baseball nine last
spring, and was protested by the De La Salle Institute because Section I
of Article X. of the N.Y.I.S.A.A. constitution states that no member of
any school is eligible to compete in any athletic contest who has been
enrolled as a member of any college. Mr. Ehrich was fully cognizant of
this law when he played. Mr. Freeland, the principal of the Harvard
School, must have been fully cognizant of this law. Nevertheless, Ehrich
played. The result of this has been that at a recent meeting of the
Arbitration Committee of the N.Y.I.S.A.A., the Harvard School was found
guilty of fraud, the penalty for which is expulsion from the

In commenting upon this action of the Committee the _Record_ says: "Now
that the football season is practically over, the delegates to the
I.S.A.A. have found it necessary to 'keep the pot boiling' by rehashing
old protests and concocting new ones. For example, the time-honored
protest against Harvard School for playing Ehrich on her baseball team
last spring is being resurrected. This protest was, we are certain,
finally decided and buried last June immediately after the baseball
season closed. Being a party directly interested in the failure of the
protest, we do not care to discuss the question of its validity. Suffice
it to say, that after riding in the bicycle-races of eight scholastic
and interscholastic athletic meetings, and receiving his medals for
these races; after playing on the Harvard baseball team in every game
but the last without having his well-known attendance at C.C.N.Y.
brought up against him--after all this, we ask, is there any right or
reason in protesting Ehrich for playing in the championship games
between De La Salle and Harvard?"

It is possible that Mr. Ehrich did not write this himself, but whether
he did or not, the statement is certainly not published without his
knowledge and consent, and he is consequently severely censurable for
such an expression of opinion. It is contrary to the spirit of
amateurism, it is harmful to the best interests of honesty in school
sport, and it is insidious in that it may lead younger boys to believe
that such statements are just and correct. And another thing: Mr. Ehrich
has no business to criticise the action of the N.Y.I.S.A.A. in the paper
which claims to be the official organ of that Association.

But this is not the worst offence committed by the _Record_ against
amateur and school sport. Farther along in the editorial column we read:
"If we had our choice all those technical rules governing athletics in
the schools would be stricken out of the constitution; and any _bona
fide_ member of a school who is under age would have a right to compete
in the games. We have frequently heard intelligent fellows say that this
would not do, as the college athletes would come back to school to
compete. It evidently never occurred to them that an athlete would much
prefer competing in college, and that an athlete whom it would pay a
school to support would be able to do very well at a college." Among the
"technical rules" that Mr. Ehrich and the _Record_ do not like is the
one which caused the conviction of the Harvard School for fraud. This
easily accounts for the opinion expressed. But the rule is not a
"technical" one. It is a very practical rule, a very good rule, and a
necessary rule, and the Association was perfectly right in enforcing it.

And now, parents and guardians, and principals of the New York
schools--Dr. White, Mr. Lyon, Messrs. Wilson and Kellogg, Mr. Freeland,
Dr. Cutler--all of you, is not it time that you should look into this?
What does the editor of the _Record_ mean when he says that "an athlete
whom it would _pay a school to support_ would be able to _do very well_
at a college"? I beg of you to consider this! Does any New York school
"support" any athlete? If so, do you know of it? And is there any doubt
as to what sporting men understand by the term "to do very well"? Is it
possible that the _Record_ suggests to the lurking professional spirit
in certain school athletes that there is money "in it" for the boy who
will go to college and try to enter sport for money? Does the _Record_
believe this of the colleges? Does the experience of the editor of the
_Record_ at his own school lead him to believe that there is money to be
had for playing baseball at college?

My own opinion about this editorial is that the young man who wrote it
did not realize what he was saying. I don't think he meant to convey the
idea which his words clearly state. But even if he did not, he has done
a great wrong to the schools of this city, and the Association under
whose name these dreadful fallacies are published should interfere at






The four pictures in this number represent teams from widely separated
districts of this broad country of ours. The St. John's Military Academy
eleven, of Delafield, Wisconsin, is one of the prominent school teams of
the West. The Cheltenham team is a member of the Philadelphia
Interscholastic League, and although this season has not been successful
from the point of view of victories, it has served to develop excellent
material that ought to be heard from next year. The St. Mark's eleven is
a champion team, having defeated its old-time rivals from Groton 6-0 on
November 9th. The victory was earned through superior team-work and
generalship. The Groton players averaged heavier, but were not the
equals of the Southboro' men in scientific work. The Friends' School
football team, of Wilmington, closed the season with a victory over its
especial rival, the Swarthmore Grammar School, November 8th. The score
was 4-0, and the game was as exciting as the figures show. The best
playing was done by Brownfield, S. G. S., and by Pyle, Neary, and
Warner, F.S.

The season that has just ended in Boston has been the best in almost
every respect that the League has had. More good individual players and
better team-work have been developed than ever before. The teams have
been much more evenly matched, and the spirit shown by each school, by
the Captains and players alike, has made the season very interesting and
satisfactory. The reason for this is that this year every team in the
League was out for the championship. Heretofore it has generally
happened that one or two teams have developed good football early in the
season, and the others, contented with winning one or two games, have
allowed the championship to go, almost by default, to one of the better

But this year a different feeling crept into the League. Every team
played every game to win. The consequence was that the usual one-sided
games, with scores of thirty or forty to nothing, have been missing.
Instead, every game has been hard played and interesting, and the
attendance at two of the games, at least, has reached up into the
thousands. The heavier teams, which used to go into a game relying upon
their mere weight to win, have been forced to learn how to play
scientific football, and the lighter teams, instead of going on the
field beaten before the game began, have discovered that science and
sand are worth more than bluff and brawn.

The scores of this year's games show very justly how close the season
has been. Twenty-four points are the most that have been scored in a
championship game, and in this game the points were divided 16 to 6. The
worst defeat was that of Cambridge High by Brookline High, 18 to 0. One
game resulted in a tie, neither side scoring, and four games have been
won by the score of 4 to 0. The champions, instead of a record of 100 or
more points won and none lost, managed this year to get through with 56
won and 14 lost. Boston Latin, who are tied for second place, won 14
points and lost 14.

The one feature of the year that is to be regretted was brought into
conspicuous prominence by this very closeness of the games. That feature
was the poor umpiring that occurred in some of the games. One or two of
the schools resorted to the trick of securing officials who could be
relied upon to give them an advantage of decisions. Cambridge Manual was
the worst offender in this line, and Hopkinson the most successful.
Hopkinson owes one of its victories to an exceedingly unjust decision
made by a referee whom they had appointed. All the other teams, however,
seemed very anxious that impartial and competent men be secured; and
that honesty is still the best policy is exemplified in the case of
English High, the champions, who were more in earnest about good judges
than any other school.

One of the unpleasant features of many of last year's games--the
darkness that interfered in the second half--was done away with this
season. That was because the Captains were sensible enough to see that
short halves of twenty minutes were much better than the full thirty
minutes, and because all the teams were willing to make an effort to
begin the games early enough so that they could be finished about
sunset. The result has been most satisfactory. No disputes have arisen
from this cause, and the spectators have not crowded on to the fields to
add to the delay of the game. Another of last year's unpleasant
features--the bitterness between some of the teams--was lacking. While
the rivalry was much more intense, the feeling was much more friendly.
The disputes that have arisen have been settled most amicably, and the
meetings of the Executive Committee have been free from the
recriminations that have heretofore characterized them. Everybody seemed
to be working for this "era of good feeling," Captains, managers,
players, and graduates all lending a hand to smooth over any petty
troubles. One bit of courtesy will bear mentioning. When two teams were
playing, the players of the other teams were always furnished tickets to
the game free of charge.

All the teams have been managed in a very business-like manner. The
schedule was made out carefully, and was very just. The arrangements
about securing grounds, providing police, advertising, and the other
details necessary to a successful game were promptly and well attended
to. Altogether, the season must please the Harvard football management
and the Boston Athletic Association, under whose joint patronage the
League is conducted. Harvard must see in the League a great and reliable
feeder for her Freshman and 'varsity teams, and after a few seasons like
this one the university will be able to place more reliance than ever on
the preparatory schools.

English High must feel an immense amount of satisfaction in winning the
championship after such a hard struggle. The fast gait that they struck
early in the season they kept up to the last game. They played the game
as never before. Quick starts, hard interfering, sure tackling, a spirit
of "do or die," and just the right amount of confidence in themselves;
their Captain and their coach carried them through the season, and
earned, as a reward, the custody of the silver bowl. The team was
excellently managed, nothing being left undone that could help the team
to victory, and the support the boys received from the school and the
graduates was very flattering.

Boston Latin, who came so near defeating the winners, deserve the
greatest amount of praise for the season's work. They started out in
September by beating Andover--a feat never dreamt of before by a Boston
school--and tying St. Mark's. That gave them an idea that they could win
the championship. It was the first time the school had ever had that
idea; as usually they have been contented with finishing near the foot
of the list. They put in some hard practice, and succeeded in making
third place. This is a remarkable feat, considering that they went
through the season without a coach. The only instruction they had was
from their Captain, who devoted an immense amount of labor to his team,
and was rewarded by gaining the admiration of every boy in the League,
and seeing Boston Latin finish better than it had ever finished before.

Hopkinson's team this year was remarkable more for its even, steady,
plucky playing than for its stars or brilliancy. They pulled out more
than one game by displaying their sand at the critical moments. They
played excellent team-work, and, thanks to a very competent coach, were
up to all the latest tricks of the game. They had more luck than any
other team, and that accounts for their standing second.

Brookline won the junior championship last year, and, by defeating
Newton, earned the privilege of playing in the senior league. They were
counted as winners by a great many wiseacres; and indeed started in with
good football. But they were really outclassed. They were the lightest
team in the league, and averaged the youngest in years. They found the
season too hard for them. This, together with their losing the services
of a valuable coach, caused a marked falling off in their play. Their
backs and ends were, taken together, the best set in the League, and
they had at one time the best interference; but their defence was not
always reliable, and they were sadly in need of a quarter-back who could
do something besides pass the ball.

Cambridge High and Latin, with the best team they have had for years,
are tied for last place. They were very much hampered by restrictions
imposed by their school committee, and by unnecessary interference on
the part of the masters. To this they attribute their poor showing. They
undoubtedly had material for a fine team, and it was being handled in a
most careful and vigorous way. Their Captain was the sort of fellow who
gets an immense amount of work out of his men, and puts all kinds of
ginger into them. After beating Hopkinson and Boston Latin, they were
looked upon as the only team that could possibly beat English High. But
before that decisive game the school committee got in its work, and the
little nerve left to the players was lost when the Executive Committee
of the League deprived them of their two victories, on protest.

The first steps toward the formation of a National I.S.A.A. will be
taken next Saturday at a convention to be held at the De La Salle
Institute. I hope every association that can possibly afford to do so
will send one or more representatives to this convention. The interest
all over the country is growing greater every day, and I feel that the
association, when formed, is bound to be a success. I am informed by the
president of the Iowa State H.-S.A.A. that in view of the formation of a
National Association the schools of Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, and
Minnesota have abandoned the plan of forming a large Western league,
which I spoke of last spring. In speaking of this my correspondent says:

     "The matter was brought up, but as soon as they found out that a
     National Association was to be formed they dropped it. They would
     rather have their State meet, and then send a team to the National
     meet. They will do nothing towards the formation of such an
     association till they find out whether they can join the National
     Association or not. It will cost but little more to go East, and
     they are all willing to go. The Clinton Association will, if they
     can become members, send one of the best teams that any Iowa
     High-School can produce. They have already engaged Mr. Moulton, the
     veteran trainer, who has handled Crum so well in his running-work
     this year. The school means business; they have the entire support
     of the business men of the city, and have a course of entertainment
     laid out which will bring them in ample means to pay all expenses."

Unless something unforeseen prevents, the All-New York Interscholastic
Football eleven will be announced next week.



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[Illustration: Royal Baking Powder]


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Franklin Square Collection.

It would be difficult, if not impossible, to gather more features of
interest into a work of this kind. Not only are many of the best songs
and hymns in the English language here given--both old and new--but
there are also songs and hymns for children and the schools. There are
songs of home and of country, of love and fame, of heart and soul, of
devotion and praise, with their sad and sweet or lively melodies, and
with grand old chorals that stir the heart and lift it in worship.
Besides the words and music, explanatory and historic notes are given to
indicate their origin and significance. These books cannot fail to
become immensely popular.--_Lutheran Observer_.

Sold Everywhere. Price, 50 cents: Cloth, $1.00. Full contents of the
Several Numbers, with Specimen Pages of favorite Songs and Hymns, sent
by Harper & Brothers, New York, to any address.


[Illustration: BICYCLING]

     The Editor will be pleased to answer any question on the subject.
     Our maps and tours contain much valuable data, kindly supplied from
     the official maps and road-books of the League of American
     Wheelmen. Recognizing the value of the work being done by the
     L. A. W., the Editor will be pleased to furnish subscribers with
     membership blanks and information so far as possible.


[Illustration: Copyright, 1895, by Harper & Brothers.]

Starting from the Ericson monument on Commonwealth Avenue, go westward,
joining Beacon Boulevard, which follow direct by the electric-car tracks
to Chestnut Hill Reservoir. After passing car station at end of route,
keep to left around the reservoir, and a short distance on Beacon Street
beyond reservoir; then turn to left on to Hammond Street, following it
southward, and turn to right at Brookline Street. Turn to right at
Dedham Street, and bear to the left out Nahanton Street, going over the
Charles River and up the hill by direct road to Highlandville. Turn to
left on to Highland Street, following straight road south to Needham.
Thence the course is down hill on Dedham Street, leading over the
Charles River, after crossing which you bear southeast by direct road
into Dedham; go under the bridge beyond the station, and from there take
direct road to Paul's Bridge. Turn to right at fountain, and go, _viâ_
Brush Hill Avenue, to the base of Blue Hill. There turn to the left, and
take the direct road for Mattapan, _viâ_ Canton Avenue, and turn to left
at Mattapan Street into Mattapan. From here follow Blue Hill Avenue
direct to Franklin Park. Enter, and make circuit of park, keeping to
right and then to left, or keep to left on Morton Street direct to
Forest Hill Station. At the drinking-fountain turn to the left after
passing tracks, and go through the Arnold Arboretum; pass out of the
Arboretum by the Centre Street entrance, and, turning to the right, take
Centre Street, and then go through the Arborway and Park system to
Jamaica Pond. There is a good roadway around this pond both to the right
and left, and the distance is about the same either way. After passing
the pond keep direct road, _viâ_ Park system, to the Fenway Parks, in
passing through which keep to the left, and it will bring you across the
bridge, over the railroad tracks, and on to Commonwealth Avenue; there
turn to right, and ride direct to Ericson statue near Massachusetts
Avenue. Distance covered, about thirty miles.

By taking this circuit ride one gets a fair idea of the new boulevards
and public parklands of the Metropolitan system, which is making rapid
strides of development, and promises to be in the near future one of the
finest in America, if not in the world. The roads are good throughout
the entire distance, and it is a fine country ride from Chestnut Hill
Reservoir through Highlandville, Dedham, Blue Hill, to Franklin Park.

[Illustration: THE PUDDING STICK]

     This Department is conducted in the interest of Girls and Young
     Women, and the Editor will be pleased to answer any question on the
     subject so far as possible. Correspondents should address Editor.

One of my correspondents asks, in a general way, what I think about old
school-books. Should a girl sell them, if she can, when passing on to a
higher class in which she does not need the books used in the former
term? Ought they be taken care of with as much pains as one bestows on
the books in the library or the pretty illustrated editions which come
to one as gifts at birthdays and holidays?

To the first question I answer, without hesitation, keep all your
school-books if you possibly can. Never sell them or dispose of them in
any way unless it is very plainly your duty to somebody else to do so.
For instance, in a family an older sister may let the younger children
have her books when she is done with them. This may save her parents the
expense of buying new ones, and having the same books duplicated in the
household collection. Or there may be in your acquaintance a girl too
poor to buy new books, who will be very glad and thankful to have yours
as a gift. In this case it will be your pleasure, I am sure, to make
this friend happy, and to relieve her of anxiety, and help her in
procuring her education. But, as a rule, I would advise you to keep your
books for yourself. Even when you have finished studying in a particular
book you may want it to refer to, and after your school-days are over
your books will be reminders of the delightful times you had when you
used them. School-books are valuable because they are written in a
clear, plain, straightforward style which it is quite easy to
comprehend. They do not wander away from the point, and they give a
great deal of information packed up in a small compass. A good
school-book on any subject is a real treasure.

All books should be treated with respect. No nice person leaves books
lying around heedlessly, with the bindings opened widely so that they
become loosened, and the pages curling up at the corners. If a girl is
neat about her room and her dress, she will surely be so in the care of
her books. Never let books gather dust. They are as ornamental as
pictures or flowers or vases, and a house in which there are a number of
books is already half furnished.

I speak with the more emphasis about the folly of selling school-books
because I have a confession to make. Once, a long while ago, I was
moving from my home to a distant State, to stay for some years, and I
owned a book-case, a pretty affair with five shelves, to which a friend
took a fancy. "Sell me the book-case," she pleaded; "you will not need
it for ages, and I would like it so much for my own library." Well, I
did not sell the book-case; I gave it away, and that part of the
transaction I have never regretted in the very least. But, alas! the
little case was full of grammars, and geographies, and logics, and
rhetorics, and spellers, and arithmetics, and lexicons, the dear books
that had kept me company all the way from childhood on, and in an evil
moment I was persuaded to sell those to a dealer in second-hand books. I
was sorry the next time I needed to look at one of the dear things, and,
if you will believe me, girls, I am still sorry. I changed something
precious for a little bit of money when I disposed of my books. And I
wish I had not done it.

If by any chance books have been used by a patient in illness, such as
scarlet-fever or any other contagious disease, they must immediately be
burned up. This is the only safe way. A child recovering from such an
attack may ask for his or her books to play with. Let the books be
given, if the mother is willing, but they must be destroyed afterwards.
Even if they have remained on shelves in the room and the patient has
not so much as touched them they must be burned, for books have a way of
preserving germs of disease, and must be used only by people who are not
ill with anything infectious or who are perfectly well.

Do I think books should be covered? To save the bindings, you mean? It
depends on how very clean and dainty are the hands which hold them.
Smooth white paper makes a good covering, and is easily renewed, and
most publishers in these days provide attractive covers for the
beautiful books they sell.

As December finishes the period for their subscriptions, will the
friends who accepted the Baby boxes a twelvemonth ago kindly send their
boxes as soon as possible to Mrs. Sangster, care of HARPER'S ROUND
TABLE, Franklin Square, New York?

[Illustration: Signature]

[Illustration: THE CAMERA CLUB]

     Any questions in regard to photograph matters will be willingly
     answered by the Editor of this column, and we should be glad to
     hear from any of our club who can make helpful suggestions.


Summer has gone, with all its delightful outings, but the amateur
photographer, if he has been wise, has not only many photographic
souvenirs as reminders of his vacation, but has also abundant material
for making his friends glad at holiday-time.

A dozen, or even six or seven, finely finished prints, mounted in an
attractive way, make a most acceptable gift, and one which the recipient
is sure not to have duplicated.

Blue prints, which are the cheapest and easiest form of photographic
printing, are just the thing for waterscapes. If one's outing has been
by the lake or seashore, select six or eight of the prettiest
waterscapes, something which would make a sort of series. Do not print
them all the same uniform size, but select different-shaped mats for
each one. One picture may look better vigneted, another would not be
pretty printed except in a circle, and still another would need to be
printed in a long narrow oblong to make an attractive picture. Choose
the mat which best fits the picture. All styles and sizes may be bought
at the dealer in photographic goods, or one may make the mats himself. A
pretty mat is made by taking a piece of post-office paper and marking an
irregular opening large enough to take in the picture; tear the paper on
the pencilled lines, peeling it so as to leave it thinner at the edges.
Any-shaped opening may be made, and a picture which has a spot or
scratch which would mar it if shown in the print may be blocked out in
this way. Pictures printed in this way are very pretty, and something
out of the ordinary way of printing.

Having the pictures printed, the selection of the card mount is the next
consideration. The mount should show at least an inch or more margin all
round, and one may buy the plain mounts and punch eyelet-holes in the
edges to fasten them with, or else the regular album leaves, which have
holes for fastening together. The album leaves are really better than
the cards, as the edges having the eyelet-holes are finished with cloth,
which prevents the card from breaking.

Under each picture letter a title or an appropriate quotation, using
either ultramarine or cobalt blue water-color. Either corresponds with
the color of the finished print.

The cover may be of rough water-color paper, and decorated with the
brush in blue, or an opening may be cut in the cover, and a tiny blue
print set back of it like a picture in a frame. In such a case there
would need to be two pieces for the front cover, glued at the edges. Tie
the whole together with a heavy blue silk cord the color of the blue
prints, or with two-inch-wide blue ribbon with a butterfly bow.


and don't worry the baby; avoid both unpleasant conditions by giving the
child pure, digestible food. Don't use solid preparations. _Infant
Health_ is a valuable pamphlet for mothers. Send your address to the New
York Condensed Milk Company, N. Y.--[_Adv._]


Postage Stamps, &c.

50 Distinct Countries

135 Different Varieties

53c. by letter, post-paid.

If on sheets, $2.00. Two packets for a dollar bill. Holiday Offer: 211
Presents valued at $100.00 distributed among purchasers. Particulars and
a rare stamp sent for 3c.; 100 mixed stamps, 10c.

A. L. Lewis, 2 Maltland Place, Toronto, Canada.


100 all dif. Venezuela, Bolivia, etc., only 10c.; 200 all dif. Hayti,
Hawaii, etc., only 50c. Ag'ts w't'd at 50% com. List FREE! =C. A.
Stegmann=, 5941 Cote Brilliante Ave., St. Louis, Mo

500 Mixed Australian, etc., 10c.; =105 varieties=, and nice album, 10c.;
15 unused, 10c.; 10 Africa, 10c.; 15 Asia, 10c. F. P. Vincent, Chatham,

FINE PACKETS in large variety. Stamps at 50% com. Col's bought.
Northwestern Stamp Co., Freeport, Ill.

FINE APPROVAL SHEETS. Agents wanted at 50% com. =P. S. Chapman, Box 151,
Bridgeport, Ct.=

STAMPS! 100 all dif. Barbados, etc. Only 10c. Ag'ts w't'd at 50% com.
List free. L. DOVER & CO., 1469 Hodiamont, St. Louis, Mo.

An important trifle--The DELONG Patent Hook and Eye and trifles make

See that



Richardson & DeLong Bros., Philadelphia.


Highest Award




BARNEY & BERRY, Springfield, Mass.








Roche's Herbal Embrocation.

The celebrated and effectual English Cure without internal medicine.
Proprietors, W. Edward & Son.

London, England.

E. Fougera & Co., 30 North William St., N.Y.



Sets any name in one minute; prints 500 cards an hour. YOU can make
money with it. A font of pretty type, also Indelible Ink, Type, Holder,
Pads and Tweezers. Best Linen Marker; worth $1.00. Sample mailed FREE
for 10c. stamps for postage on outfit and large catalogue of 1000
Bargains. Same outfit with figures 15c. Larger outfit for printing two
lines 25c. post-paid.

Ingersoll & Bro., 65 Cortlandt St., N. Y. City


by my INVISIBLE Tubular Cushions. Have helped more to good HEARing than
all other devices combined. Whispers HEARd. Help ears as glasses do
eyes. =F. Hilcox=, 853 B'dway, N.Y. Book of proofs =FREE=




An Appeal for a School-house.

Come, dear readers of the Table--Ladies, Knights, Patrons, and their
friends--let us make possible the laying of the corner-stone of Good
Will School next spring. The task is not a difficult one. It can be
accomplished in this way:

Get one subscriber to HARPER'S ROUND TABLE. Remit the $2 for it for one
year. Attach the accompanying Coupon. Say in your letter that you wish
the 50 cents turned into the Fund. And the thing is done. The Fund is
complete. The corner-stone will be laid. The boys will have an
Industrial school-house. The Order will have performed a grand, a
chivalrous deed.

At this holiday-time every person who reads these lines has it within
his or her power to build this school-house. Because, if _you_ get the
one subscriber, the house will be built. If you do not, it will not--not
now. All depends on you.

Go out and ask your friends about it. Ask them to help you get the
subscriber. Your parents and teachers will help you. Ask them to do so.
Set your heart on getting this one subscriber. Go to a Sunday-school or
church committee, a day school, some well-to-do man or woman who has
young persons in the household. Ask the well-to-do neighbor. Relate the
merits of the paper, and show a sample copy and Prospectus. We furnish
them free. Ask us to do so.

But do more than this. Relate the story of Good Will. Tell the person
whom you are asking to subscribe why you want the subscription, and why
you want it now. Tell him or her that Good Will Farm, while in Maine,
takes boys from any part of the country, and is therefore not a local,
but a national enterprise. Say that it is a house for an Industrial
school that the Order is to build. The Farm is in good hands, and the
school itself will be well conducted. Our task is only to put up the
building, not to conduct the school. Say that during the last few
years--two or three--more than 700 poor boys have applied for admission
to Good Will, and had to be refused it for lack of room. These boys were
deserving. Say further that if you get the subscription the school will
be built, and, by turning a house now used for the school into a
dwelling, more boys can be taken--boys of five, six, and seven years of
age, who are now homeless, may be given homes, school advantages, and a
chance to become useful Christian men.

During the next two weeks will _you_ get this subscription? Talk it
up--and get it. The appeal is not made to the Order. It is made to
_you_. If you do not wish to cut out the coupon, make a pen one nearly
like it, ask us for duplicates, or send on the subscription without a
coupon, simply saying that you got it to help the school, and that you
want 50 cents of the $2 given to the Fund. Be sure to give the
subscription address, and your own name for the Honor Roll.

Come on, dear friends, let us build this school-house.


Will be received by the publishers of HARPER'S ROUND TABLE as


when accompanied by an order For a NEW subscription to HARPER'S ROUND
TABLE and One Dollar and Fifty Cents. The intent of this Coupon is to
pay you for inducing another person, not now a _subscriber_, to
subscribe for HARPER'S ROUND TABLE for one year. This Coupon has nothing
whatever to do with your own subscription; that is, with the copy you
expect to read next year, it matters not in whose name it be ordered,
and will not be accepted as payment for any part of it. It is good for
its face in the hands of any person who performs the work indicated,
whether said person is a subscriber or not. HARPER & BROTHERS.

       *       *       *       *       *

A Drive in Switzerland.

     We have been passing three weeks of our summer vacation at
     Mühlenen, a tiny village in the Bernese Oberland, where there are
     so many interesting things to write about that the only trouble is
     to know with what to begin. One beautiful drive we took would, I
     think, interest our Table, so I shall do my best to describe it.

     Mühlenen lies in a lovely and fertile valley called the Frutigthal,
     through which winds a rushing river, the Kander. A great deal
     higher up than Mühlenen, about nineteen kilometres away, is the
     village of Kandersteg, 1156 metres above the level of the sea, and
     just at the entrance of the celebrated Gemmi Pass. To this little
     village, one cloudless summer day, we--my aunt, a dear friend, my
     sister, and myself--decided to drive, and, what is more, we
     determined to be unconventional, and go without a coachman. In
     Switzerland a lady never drives herself, and it is even seldom that
     a gentleman does so, but we knew that people would shrug their
     shoulders and say: "Ah, well! they are only Americans," in a tone
     that implies, "they know no better, and are up to anything wild and
     dangerous," so we have gone alone from time to time during the past

     At half past seven we were safely installed in the "Einspenner," as
     they call the one-horse vehicles there, and Lenore, being driver,
     tried her best to crack the whip in a professional way, ejaculated
     "hui! hui!" and wound up the brake. In German Switzerland one must
     say "hui hui" to make a horse go, while in the French cantons
     "allez houp" is the usual way. Our Table probably knows that every
     carriage has a brake, which is put on at every slight decline with
     the greatest care. As we came into the main road to Frutigen all
     eyes were turned towards the beautiful Blümlisalp, which rose in
     its grandeur before us, and no wonder, for it is a sight one never
     tires of. Before us lay the peaceful green valley, the picturesque
     old peasant houses dotted about, and to the left the quaint little
     village of Reichenbach, with its old church-tower bearing the date
     1546. On the right, rising about 300 feet away, the dark Niesen
     towered up towards the sky, at its base the Kander, whose music
     lulls us to sleep every night, and straight before us the
     Blümlisalp, Gerihorn, Wildstrubel, and many other mountains.

     We drove on to Frutigen, passing many sheep, cows, and goats, being
     driven by peasant owners to the cattle market which was to be held
     next day. Most of these peasants laughed at our driver, making some
     good-natured remark, others passed nodding "Gott grüss Ihnen" (God
     greet you), as is the custom. Frutigen is the most important
     village in the valley, and is also quite modern looking. A large
     fire there some time ago burnt up a great many houses, which have
     been replaced by stone buildings which look very stiff and ugly in
     comparison to the wooden chalets. Just on the other side of
     Frutigen is a hill on which the ruins of the old castle of
     Tellenburg are to be seen. Fellen was the old German word meaning
     tax or tribute, and the people of the valley had to pay tribute to
     the barons who lived in the castle. The last baron, Anton von
     Thurm, was deeply in debt and sold the whole valley to Bern for
     6200 Gulden.

     About an hour from Frutigen is the "Blauseeli," or little blue
     lake, which I once described in a letter to the "Post-office,"
     before our Order existed. A little further on is another ruin,
     exceedingly picturesque, and situated just as I imagined a castle
     should be, on a high, almost inaccessible rock. The owner was also
     Anton von Thurm, a wild, cruel tyrant. He and his followers were
     greatly feared throughout the valley, and yet the people had to pay
     him tribute. Once he had the fine idea to exact a herd of young
     cattle from them as that year's payment, and when the peasants
     begged and implored him not to, he simply laughed them to scorn.

     The people held a counsel and decided to kill the wicked baron.
     They decorated the asked-for cattle, dressed themselves in their
     Sunday best, and started off to the castle apparently peaceful,
     happy, and resigned, but in reality each with a hidden weapon. The
     baron heard in some way that there was a plot against him, and at
     the last minute fled over the border, back to his castle in the
     canton of Valais. The people arrived only to find the Felsenburg
     deserted and the doors closed against them. Filled with rage at
     being robbed of their prey they beat in the doors and destroyed the
     castle completely, leaving it the ruin we now can see. I think they
     served the Baron Anton right.

     After passing the Felsenburg the road goes up in zigzags to the
     Kander Valley. All the way we had a most beautiful view of the
     whole Frutigen Valley with mountain chain of the Viesen in the
     background. The houses began to be very interesting now, for almost
     all have texts or inscriptions burned on the outside, as well as
     dates. We stopped to read some of them, and I copied this one for
     the Table.

     Gebauen durch Johannes Brosser und sein Ehgemahl Maria Ogi. 1m 1556
     Jahre. David Würner Zimmermeister war.

  Gott bewahre dieses Haus,
  Und die da geben ein und aus.

     This last is evidently original poetry, meaning, "God protect this
     house, and those who go in and out of it." Some of them are texts
     from the Bible, and I think the idea very beautiful. Others have no
     texts nor verses, but tell who built the house, who owned it, and
     some give a long list of the people who lived in it, what their
     profession was, etc. One house evidently was the first work of some
     proud young carpenter, for he wrote, "Johann Hari was carpenter and
     twenty-two years old."

     I said we stopped the horse to read these texts. How most of the
     Knights and Ladies would have laughed could they have seen _how_ we
     stopped him. If I saw an interesting looking house, I had to say
     that I wanted to read what was on it quite a while before we came
     to it. Then Lenore would brace herself and pull up the horse, but
     instead of stopping like a well-bred animal he would walk on and on
     till finally, when Lenore had no "pull" left in her, he would stop.
     Not that he was a fiery, spirited horse. Alas! no. It was just as
     hard to make him start after he had once been persuaded to stand
     still, and as for trotting-- We all combined our voices in a loud
     "hui, hui," at the same time flecking him continually with the
     whip, to make him go out of a creeping walk.

     At Kandersteg we went to the Hotel Gemmi for dinner, and while
     waiting till it was ready amused ourselves by reading the queer
     verses written all over the dining-room walls. At another table
     were some travellers, two of them unmistakably American, and it
     sounded very homelike to hear "all right," instead of "quite so." I
     was buying photographs for my collection later, and an English lady
     came up and spoke to me. During the conversation I said something
     about America. "Are _you_ American?" she said, incredulously. Upon
     my replying in the affirmative she went on, "Why, r_ee_ly you have
     no accent at all." We arrived in Mühlenen at seven o'clock in high
     spirits, and much delighted with the beautiful day.


       *       *       *       *       *

Getting Behind the Scenes.

     Could you inform me if there ever was such a boy as Diego Pinzon,
     and if so, was he in the crew of the _Pinta_? Was Martin Alonzo
     Pinzon the proprietor of the _Pinta_, as stated by Mr. Coryell, or
     Gomez Rascona and Christopher Quintero, as stated by Justin Winsor
     in his _Christopher Columbus_?


     I did not say or mean to convey the impression, in _Diego Pinzon_,
     that Martin Alonzo Pinzon was the proprietor of the _Pinta_. I use
     the words, "* * * the _Pinta_, as the vessel of Martin Alonzo was
     named." I meant the vessel of which he was captain. The phrase is
     not definite, but is usual. The _Pinta_ belonged to Gomez Rascon
     and Christoval Quintero, and had been pressed into the service of
     the expedition.

     I have no knowledge that a boy by the name of Diego Pinzon was one
     of the crew of the _Pinta_; but I took the liberty of shipping him
     for the voyage, because there were several boys of his age who went
     on the expedition, and because there were several Pinzons in the
     crews of the three vessels. I have no doubt that there was more
     than one Diego on the expedition. I am certain there were several
     Pinzons; and so I make my combination of Diego Pinzon.


[Illustration: STAMPS]

     This Department is conducted in the interest of stamp and coin
     collectors, and the Editor will be pleased to answer any question
     on these subjects so far as possible. Correspondent should address
     Editor Stamp Department.

There seems to be no end of changes in the printing of the current
United States postage stamps. It has just been discovered that all the
plates of the 2-cents, from No. 171 upward, have had the guidelines for
cutting the complete sheet of 400 stamps into four sheets of 100 each
changed, so that now on each sheet of 100 stamps the inside corner
stamps have an extra red line parallel with two of the sides (see
diagram in ROUND TABLE No. 830). This makes four distinct varieties of
the red stamp, which every collector can easily find. The same principle
will probably be applied to all the other stamps now current.

And still another variety, or curiosity, has just been noticed. The
left-hand sheet of the present 15-cent stamp (Plate No. 52) is marked on
the margin W. F. G., W. L. C. These initials appear on the upper margin
of the sheet, immediately above the first stamp. To the left, on the
margin, appear the initials C. S. This is another variety easily
obtainable by almost every collector. Of course the stamp must have the
entire margin of the sheet, or, still better, keep the entire strip of
the top row of ten stamps.

This interesting variety was first seen by a gentleman who is not a
collector, but, having unusually sharp eyes, called the attention of a
veteran collector to the same.

Speaking of plate-numbers, which are the fashion at present, reminds me
that the finest collection of these ever made up was exhibited to the
members of the New York Philatelic Society at its last meeting. At the
same meeting another member exhibited his West-Indian, and still another
his Australasian. Each collection was simply superb. Thousands of
dollars were spent in making up the West-Indian and the Australasian
collections to where a hundred had been spent on the plate-number
collection, and yet each collector had something the others had not, and
every one present was greatly pleased by an inspection of all three.

     FRED. L. HAWTHORNE, Kingston, Jamaica, wants to exchange stamps,
     seeds, etc., with collectors in the U.S.

     A. M. J.--Similar questions to yours as to values of coins have
     been answered several times. When a coin is so worn that the date
     cannot be read it is usually worthless.

     J. HALL.--A pair of 20-cent St. Louis stamps was sold for $5000 to
     a collector in the East about a month ago.

     F. H. CHURCH, Boonville, N. Y., wishes to exchange stamps, birds'
     eggs, etc.

     F. KELLER.--The 30-cent Ceylon is worth 12c., the 25-cent Straits
     Settlements 15c., the 1-cent Shanghai 5c.

     S. THOMPSON.--The Department has discontinued all U. S. envelopes
     except the 1, 2, 4, and 5c.

     J. W. STEVENS.--The 1859 cent does not command any premium.

     W. F. SCOTT.--I have sent you a copy of the statutes of the
     Philatelic Society, New York, the leading society in this country.
     Monaco issues a regular series of stamps.

     W. COMFORT.--We do not buy coins. The 1798 cent is catalogued at
     20c. The other cent is worth 5c.

     J. F. RODGERS.--The 15-cent Columbian, unused, is sold by dealers
     at 20c. Used is worth 5c.


[Illustration: Ivory Soap]

Have you noticed when discussing household affairs with other ladies
that each one has found some special use for Ivory Soap, usually the
cleansing of some article that it was supposed could not be safely
cleaned at home.




The FINEST SAMPLE BOOK of Gold Beveled Edge, Hidden Name, Silk Fringe,
Envelope and Calling Cards ever offered for a 2 cent stamp. These are



       *       *       *       *       *


Volume XVI. With 1096 Pages, and about 750 Illustrations. 4to, Cloth,
Ornamental, $3.50.

     A literal mine of instruction and entertainment.... The young
     person who receives this beautiful book as a Christmas gift is an
     enviable person indeed.--_Examiner_, N. Y.

     There is nothing, we imagine, that the young reader would be likely
     to prize more.--_N. Y. Sun_.

     A truly royal volume for the youthful reading appetite--_Boston

       *       *       *       *       *


In Questions and Answers. By MARY HASTINGS FOOTE. With Map. Post 8vo,
Cloth, Ornamental, $1.25.

     The Rev. Dr. DAVID H. GREER writes:

     "I believe it to be one of the most satisfactory manuals of that
     character which I have ever seen. It meets a need both in the
     family and the Sunday-school, and I am sure that its merits will be
     very quickly and widely appreciated. It is not often that I can
     give an indorsement so cordially and unreservedly as in this case."

       *       *       *       *       *


A Story for Girls. By ELLEN DOUGLAS DELAND. Illustrated. Post 8vo,
Cloth, Ornamental, $1.25.

     The story is told in a simple and direct manner that enlists the
     sympathy and attention of the reader.--_Saturday Evening Gazette_,

     A story for girls, charmingly written, and illustrated throughout
     with pictures dainty enough to please the most fastidious
     damsel.... The incidents are full of life, the characters are very
     natural, and the conversations well sustained, so that the story is
     full of intense interest from beginning to end.--_Chicago

       *       *       *       *       *


=Snow-Shoes and Sledges=, a Sequel to "The Fur-Seal's Tooth." Illustrated.
Post 8vo, Cloth, Ornamental, $1.25.

     Will hold the interest of its readers from beginning to end.--_N. Y.
     Evening Post_.

     The young folks will take delight in it.... We confess to have read
     every word of the journal with as much interest as we once read
     "Robinson Crusoe" or the "Swiss Family Robinson."--_Christian
     Intelligencer_, N.Y.


Each one volume. Illustrated. Post 8vo, Cloth, $1.25.

CO., and DELTA BIXEY. Illustrated. Square 16mo, Cloth, $1.00 each.

       *       *       *       *       *


=Little Knights and Ladies.= Verses for Young People. By MARGARET E.
SANGSTER, Author of "On the Road Home," etc. Illustrated. 16mo, Cloth,
Ornamental, $1.25.

     These verses for young people are brimful of sweetness and
     tenderness; they will find generous welcome.... All through the
     little volume runs a graceful current of personal influence, sunny
     and gentle and sympathetic.--_Independent_, N. Y.

       *       *       *       *       *


=Afloat With the Flag.= By W. J. HENDERSON, Author of "Sea Yarns for
Boys," etc. Illustrated. Post 8vo, Cloth, Ornamental, $1.25.

     Mr. W. J. Henderson's latest sea-story for boys is one of the best
     we have seen.... The story has been read with eager interest by
     thousands of ROUND TABLE readers, and it will have an additional
     charm to them and others in its present book form.--_Boston

       *       *       *       *       *

HARPER & BROTHERS, Publishers, New York





The cat is a small animal with four legs and a long tail. The cat is
covered with cat fur. In the night cats love to roost on the back fence.
They roost lengthways of it, instead of cross ways like a bird or a hen.

When the cat wants to say anything it utters a yowl. No other animal
yowls, except a baby, and its yowl is different. Mostly cats make their
remarks in the night. The baby is not different from the cat in this

Cats have nine lives, but after a cat has lost one of them she isn't
good for much except a cat-skin. If I was a cat I wouldn't be afraid of

Cats' eyes shine in the dark. Once I was up in our garret, and saw a
cat's eyes shining. I came down and went to talking to Ma about things.
She said she thought I went up into the garret to stay awhile. I said,
"No, I staid as long as I intended to."

The cat has an Ann Tipathy for rats. Cats eat rats. Tastes differ. The
Chinese make porcelain cats with yellow glass eyes, and put a candle
inside. When the rats see it they go away on the dead run. Of course
there is no danger. I forget what I went up into the garret for that

The middle of cats' eyes gets big in the dark and small in the light.
Girls like cats. A cat goes up a tree frontwards and comes down
backwards. They go up because they see a dog, and come down when the dog
isn't looking. The more dogs a cat sees the bigger her tail gets. The
cats in the Isle of Man don't have any tails, so they are not afraid of

Once we had a cat whose eyes got so big in the dark that you'd have been
afraid if you hadn't known what it was. This was the same cat I saw in
the garret. But, pshaw! I knew what it was right away soon as I got

That's all anybody knows about cats.

       *       *       *       *       *


UNCLE BOB. "What's the matter, Tommy? What makes you look so gloomy?"

TOMMY. "I don't think Santa Claus is a very sensible man. I'd think any
one with as much sperience wouldn't give little boys pumps when their
mammas wouldn't let 'em put any water in 'em."

       *       *       *       *       *


  A haughty cow unto a horse
    Remarked, "Why cannot we,
  And only we two, practise for
    A dual jubilee?
  My bass profound is faultless,
    While your tenor tremulo
  Is heavenly; and our duet
    Would please our master so."
  With pleading moo she urged her case,
    Then sadly turned away,
  For the horse looked up disdainfully,
    And only answered "Neigh!"

       *       *       *       *       *

"Oh, mamma!" exclaimed Bobby, "I've thought of the awfulest, dreadfulest
thing. Suppose our chimney should catch fire Christmas eve?"

       *       *       *       *       *

BOBBY. "Mamma, I don't want any fire in my room to-night."

MAMMA. "Why, you'll freeze."

BOBBY. "I don't mind being cold, but if you leave the fire burn, Santa
Claus won't be able to come down the chimney."

       *       *       *       *       *

JACK (_to friend on bicycle_). "What's your hurry; are you racing for a

JOE. "No; I'm training for a race."

       *       *       *       *       *


BOBBY. "I don't see why they talk about the 'Forty Thieves' in the
_Arabian Nights_."

MAMMA. "Why not?"

BOBBY. "'Cos they acted like sixty."

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A CHRISTMAS STOC-KING.]

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