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Title: Our Young Folks, Volume 5, Number 1

Date of first publication: 1869

Author: J. T. Trowbridge and Lucy Larcom

Date first posted: Nov. 5, 2015

Date last updated: Nov. 5, 2015

Faded Page eBook #20151103

This ebook was produced by: Alex White & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at http://www.pgdpcanada.net













J. T. Trowbridge and Lucy Larcom.







124 Tremont Street.


Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1869, by


in the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.





University Press: Welch, Bigelow, & Co.,



About Humming-BirdsT. M. Brewer578
After PickerelGaston Fay396
Among the Glass-MakersJ. T. Trowbridge26, 77
Apostle of Lake Superior, TheJ. H. A. Bone605
Beautiful Gate, TheHelen Wall Pierson52
Canary Islands and Canary BirdsJames Parton309
Candy-MakingMrs. Jane G. Austin302, 388
CarlLily Nelson296
Carl’s Christmas CarolM. W. McLain807
Cat’s Diary, TheMrs. A. M. Diaz88
Chased by a PirateDavid A. Wasson747
Day on Carysfort Reef, AElizabeth C. Agassiz536
December Charade (Farewell)Mrs. A. M. Diaz843
Discovery of the Madeira IslandsJames Parton583
Diverting History of Little Whiskey, TheHarriet Beecher Stowe58
Doctor Isaac I. Hayes57
Dr. TrottyE. Stuart Phelps327
Doll’s Regatta, TheAunt Fanny772
Dream of the Little Boy who would not eat his CrustsMrs. A. M. Diaz628
Dunie and the IceSophie May99
Excitement at Kettleville, The: A DialogueEpes Sargent261
Few Words about the Crow, AT. M. B.412
First New England Thanksgiving, TheJ. H. A. Bone722
Gardening for GirlsAuthor of “Six Hundred Dollars a Year”235, 318, 368, 481, 554, 592
Ghosts of the Mines, TheMajor Traverse657
Glass Cutting and OrnamentingJ. T. Trowbridge147
Going up in a BalloonJunius Henri Browne521
Golden-Rod and AstersAuthor of “Seven Little Sisters”703
Great Pilgrimage, TheJ. H. A. Bone669
Hannibal at the AltarElijah Kellogg188
Hot Buckwheat CakesH. L. Palmer798
How a Ship is modelled and launchedJ. T. Trowbridge833
How Battles are foughtMajor Traverse813
How Ships are builtJ. T. Trowbridge760
How Spotty was tried for her LifeElla Williams681
How to do itEdward Everett Hale190, 253, 459, 544, 664, 790
In the Happy ValleyAuthor of “John Halifax, Gentleman”444
Kitty; A Fairy Tale of NowadaysAunt Fanny45
Last Voyage of Réné MénardJ. H. A. Bone400
Lawrence among the Coal-MinesJ. T. Trowbridge509
Lawrence among the Iron-MenJ. T. Trowbridge617
Lawrence at a Coal-ShaftJ. T. Trowbridge357
Lawrence in a Coal-MineJ. T. Trowbridge434
Lawrence’s JourneyJ. T. Trowbridge289
Le Bœuf GrasAuthor of “John Halifax, Gentleman”825
Little BarbaraGeorgiana M. Craik731
Little EstherG. Howard157
Lost at SeaGeorgiana M. Craik602
Lost Children, The: A Juvenile Play in Five ActsCaroline H. Jervey112
Navigation and Discovery before ColumbusJames Parton104, 450
Sixty-Two Little TadpolesAuthor of “Seven Little Sisters”336
Spray Sprite, TheCelia Thaxter377
Story of a Bad Boy, TheThomas Bailey Aldrich1, 65, 137, 205, 273, 345, 425, 497, 569, 641, 713, 785
Story of the Golden Christmas-Tree, TheMrs. A. M. Diaz12
Strange Dish of Fruits, AMajor Traverse529
Swan Story, TheHelen C. Weeks653
Terrible Cape Bojador, TheJames Parton739
Violets, TheAnnie Moore243
Water-LiliesAuthor of “Seven Little Sisters”479
White Giant, TheElsie Teller184
Who first used the Mariner’s CompassJames Parton176
William Henry Letters, The Mrs. A. M. Diaz167, 249, 282, 469, 687
World we live on, TheElizabeth C. Agassiz38, 162, 217, 382, 694, 751
Wrecks and WreckersMajor Traverse226


At CroquetL. G. W.583
At Queen Maude’s BanquetLucy Larcom260
Autumn DaysMarian Douglas705
Berrying SongLucy Larcom563
Bird’s Good-Night Song to the Flowers, TheMrs. A. M. Diaz98
Bobolink and CanaryMrs. A. M. Wells410
Christmas-TideA. W. Bellaw796
CinderellaMrs. A. M. Wells332
Going to SleepMary N. Prescott520
Honor’s DreamHarriet Prescott Spofford42
In the CottageLily Nelson477
Johnny TearfulGeorge Cooper832
Lady MoonLord Houghton491
Lilies of the ValleyMary B. C. Slade288
Little Culprit, TheKate Putnam Osgood183
Little NannieLucy Larcom338
Little Sweet-PeaR. S. P.615
Lost WillieC. A. Barry103
Morning-GloryH. H. 
Morning Sunbeam, AA. Q. G.197
Mud PiesGeorge Cooper750
My Heroine: A True StoryAuthor of “John Halifax, Gentleman”10
Red Riding-HoodLucy Larcom127
Rivulet, TheLucy Larcom418
Sissy’s Ride in the MoonAnnette Bishop730
Summer’s DoneLily Nelson652
Swing AwayLucy Larcom633
Taken at his WordR. S. P.759
Three in a BedGeorge Cooper146, 706
Tom TwistWilliam Allen Butler244
Under the Palm-TreesJulia C. R. Dorr367
Unsociable Colt, TheEdgar Fawcett450
UtopiaEdward Wiebé128
What will become of me?Marian Douglas224
Why?L. G. W.663


Berrying SongF. Boott563
Come with me126
Home: Trio119
Lady MoonF. Boott491
Little NannieF. Boott338
Rivulet, TheF. Boott418
Swing AwayF. Boott633
Three in a BedF. Boott706
UtopiaGerman Air128

Round the Evening Lamp61, 130, 198, 267, 340, 419, 493, 565, 635, 708, 779, 850
Our Letter Box63, 133, 201, 269, 342, 423, 495, 567, 639, 710, 782, 853








An Illustrated Magazine







Vol. V. JANUARY, 1869. No. I.



Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1868, by Fields, Osgood, & Co., in the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.


[This table of contents is added for convenience.—Transcriber.]

















This is the story of a bad boy. Well, not such a very bad, but a pretty bad boy; and I ought to know, for I am, or rather I was, that boy myself.

Lest the title should mislead the reader, I hasten to assure him here that I have no dark confessions to make. I call my story the story of a bad boy, partly to distinguish myself from those faultless young gentlemen who generally figure in narratives of this kind, and partly because I really was not a cherub. I may truthfully say I was an amiable, impulsive lad, blessed with fine digestive powers, and no hypocrite. I didn’t want to be an angel and with the angels stand; I didn’t think the missionary tracts presented to me by the Rev. Wibird Hawkins were half so nice as Robinson Crusoe; and I didn’t send my little pocket-money to the natives of the Feejee Islands, but spent it royally in peppermint-drops and taffy candy. In short, I was a real human boy, such as you may meet anywhere in New England, and no more like the impossible boy in a story-book than a sound orange is like one that has been sucked dry. But let us begin at the beginning.

Whenever a new scholar came to our school, I used to confront him at recess with the following words: “My name’s Tom Bailey; what’s your name?” If the name struck me favorably, I shook hands with the new pupil cordially; but, if it didn’t, I would turn on my heel, for I was particular on this point. Such names as Higgins, Wiggins, and Spriggins were deadly affronts to my ear; while Langdon, Wallace, Blake, and the like, were passwords to my confidence and esteem.

Ah me! some of those dear fellows are rather elderly boys by this time,—lawyers, merchants, sea-captains, soldiers, authors, what not? Phil Adams (a special good name that Adams) is consul at Shanghai, where I picture him to myself with his head closely shaved,—he never had too much hair,—and a long pigtail hanging down behind. He is married, I hear; and I hope he and she that was Miss Wang Wang are very happy together, sitting cross-legged over their diminutive cups of tea in a sky-blue tower hung with bells. It is so I think of him; to me he is henceforth a jewelled mandarin, talking nothing but broken China. Whitcomb is a judge, sedate and wise, with spectacles balanced on the bridge of that remarkable nose which, in former days, was so plentifully sprinkled with freckles that the boys christened him Pepper Whitcomb. Just to think of little Pepper Whitcomb being a judge! What would he do to me now, I wonder, if I were to sing out “Pepper!” some day in court? Fred Langdon is in California, in the native-wine business,—he used to make the best licorice-water I ever tasted! Binny Wallace sleeps in the Old South Burying-Ground; and Jack Harris, too, is dead,—Harris, who commanded us boys, of old, in the famous snow-ball battles of Slatter’s Hill. Was it yesterday I saw him at the head of his regiment on its way to join the shattered Army of the Potomac? Not yesterday, but five years ago. It was at the battle of the Seven Pines. Gallant Jack Harris, that never drew rein until he had dashed into the Rebel battery! So they found him—lying across the enemy’s guns.

How we have parted, and wandered, and married, and died! I wonder what has become of all the boys who went to the Temple Grammar School at Rivermouth when I was a youngster?

“All, all are gone, the old familiar faces!”

It is with no ungentle hand I summon them back, for a moment, from that Past which has closed upon them and upon me. How pleasantly they live again in my memory! Happy, magical Past, in whose fairy atmosphere even Conway, mine ancient foe, stands forth transfigured, with a sort of dreamy glory encircling his bright red hair!

With the old school formula I commence these sketches of my boyhood. My name is Tom Bailey; what is yours, gentle reader? I take for granted it is neither Wiggins nor Spriggins, and that we shall get on famously together in the pages of this magazine, and be capital friends forever.


I was born at Rivermouth, but, before I had a chance to become very well acquainted with that pretty New England town, my parents removed to New Orleans, where my father invested his money so securely in the banking business that he was never able to get any of it out again. But of this hereafter. I was only eighteen months old at the time of the removal, and it didn’t make much difference to me where I was, because I was so small; but several years later, when my father proposed to take me North to be educated, I had my own peculiar views on the subject. I instantly kicked over the little negro boy who happened to be standing by me at the moment, and, stamping my foot violently on the floor of the piazza, declared that I would not be taken away to live among a lot of Yankees!

You see I was what is called “a Northern man with Southern principles.” I had no recollection of New England; my earliest memories were connected with the South, with Aunt Chloe, my old negro nurse, and with the great ill-kept garden in the centre of which stood our house,—a white-washed stone house it was, with wide verandas,—shut out from the street by lines of orange and magnolia trees. I knew I was born at the North, but hoped nobody would find it out. I looked upon the misfortune as something so shrouded by time and distance that maybe nobody remembered it. I never told my schoolmates I was a Yankee, because they talked about the Yankees in such a scornful way it made me feel that it was quite a disgrace not to be born in Louisiana, or at least in one of the Border States. And this impression was strengthened by Aunt Chloe, who said, “dar wasn’t no gentl’men in de Norf no way,” and on one occasion terrified me beyond measure by declaring that, “if any of dem mean whites tried to git her away from marster, she was jes’ gwine to knock ’em on de head wid a gourd!”

The way this poor creature’s eyes flashed, and the tragic air with which she struck at an imaginary “mean white,” are among the most vivid things in my memory of those days.

To be frank, my idea of the North was about as accurate as that entertained by the well-educated Englishman of the present day concerning America. I supposed the inhabitants were divided into two classes,—Indians and white people; that the Indians occasionally dashed down on New York, and scalped any woman or child (giving the preference to children) whom they caught lingering in the outskirts after nightfall; that the white men were either hunters or schoolmasters, and that it was winter pretty much all the year round. The prevailing style of architecture I took to be log cabins.

With this delightful picture of Northern civilization in my eye, the reader will easily understand my terror at the bare thought of being transported to Rivermouth to school, and possibly will forgive me for kicking over little black Sam, and otherwise misconducting myself, when my father announced his determination to me. As for kicking little Sam,—I always did that, more or less gently, when anything went wrong with me.

My father was greatly perplexed and troubled by this unusually violent outbreak, and especially by the real consternation which he saw written in every line of my countenance. As little black Sam picked himself up, my father took my hand in his and led me thoughtfully to the library.

I can see him now as he leaned back in the bamboo chair and questioned me. He appeared strangely agitated on learning the nature of my objections to going North, and proceeded at once to knock down all my pine-log houses, and scatter all the Indian tribes with which I had populated the greater portion of the Eastern and Middle States.

“Who on earth, Tom, has filled your brain with such silly stories?” asked my father, wiping the tears from his eyes.

“Aunt Chloe, sir; she told me.”

“And you really thought your grandfather wore a blanket embroidered with beads, and ornamented his leggins with the scalps of his enemies?”

“Well, sir, I didn’t think that exactly.”

“Didn’t think that exactly? Tom, you will be the death of me.”

He hid his face in his handkerchief, and, when he looked up, he seemed to have been suffering acutely. I was deeply moved myself, though I did not clearly understand what I had said or done to cause him to feel so badly. Perhaps I had hurt his feelings by thinking it even possible that Grandfather Nutter was an Indian warrior.

My father devoted that evening and several subsequent evenings to giving me a clear and succinct account of New England; its early struggles, its progress, and its present condition,—faint and confused glimmerings of all which I had obtained at school, where history had never been a favorite pursuit of mine.

I was no longer unwilling to go North; on the contrary, the proposed journey to a new world full of wonders kept me awake nights. I promised myself all sorts of fun and adventures, though I was not entirely at rest in my mind touching the savages, and secretly resolved to go on board the ship—the journey was to be made by sea—with a certain little brass pistol in my trousers-pocket, in case of any difficulty with the tribes when we landed at Boston.

I couldn’t get the Indian out of my head. Only a short time previously the Cherokees—or was it the Camanches?—had been removed from their hunting-grounds in Arkansas; and in the wilds of the southwest the red men were still a source of terror to the border settlers. “Trouble with the Indians” was the staple news from Florida published in the New Orleans papers. We were constantly hearing of travellers being attacked and murdered in the interior of that State. If these things were done in Florida, why not in Massachusetts?

Yet long before the sailing day arrived I was eager to be off. My impatience was increased by the fact that my father had purchased for me a fine little Mustang pony, and shipped it to Rivermouth a fortnight previous to the date set for our own departure,—for both my parents were to accompany me. This pony (which nearly kicked me out of bed one night in a dream), and my father’s promise that he and my mother would come to Rivermouth every other summer, completely resigned me to the situation. The pony’s name was Gitana, which is the Spanish for gypsy; so I always called her—she was a lady pony—Gypsy.

At length the time came to leave the vine-covered mansion among the orange-trees, to say good by to little black Sam (I am convinced he was heartily glad to get rid of me), and to part with simple Aunt Chloe, who, in the confusion of her grief, kissed an eyelash into my eye, and then buried her face in the bright bandanna turban which she had mounted that morning in honor of our departure.

I fancy them standing by the open garden gate; the tears are rolling down Aunt Chloe’s cheeks; Sam’s six front teeth are glistening like pearls; I wave my hand to him manfully, then I call out “good by” in a muffled voice to Aunt Chloe; they and the old home fade away. I am never to see them again!


I do not remember much about the voyage to Boston, for after the first few hours at sea I was dreadfully unwell.

The name of our ship was the “A No. 1, fast-sailing packet Typhoon.” I learned afterwards that she sailed fast only in the newspaper advertisements. My father owned one quarter of the Typhoon, and that is why we happened to go in her. I tried to guess which quarter of the ship he owned, and finally concluded it must be the hind quarter,—the cabin, in which we had the cosiest of state-rooms, with one round window in the roof and two shelves or boxes nailed up against the wall to sleep in.

There was a good deal of confusion on deck while we were getting under way. The captain shouted orders (to which nobody seemed to pay any attention) through a battered tin trumpet, and grew so red in the face that he reminded me of a scooped-out pumpkin with a lighted candle inside. He swore right and left at the sailors without the slightest regard for their feelings. They didn’t mind it a bit, however, but went on singing,—

        “Heave ho!

        With the rum below.

And hurrah for the Spanish Main O!”

I will not be positive about “the Spanish Main,” but it was hurrah for something O. I considered them very jolly fellows, and so indeed they were. One weather-beaten tar in particular struck my fancy,—a thick-set jovial man, about fifty years of age, with twinkling blue eyes and a fringe of gray hair circling his head like a crown. As he took off his tarpaulin I observed that the top of his head was quite smooth and flat, as if somebody had sat down on him when he was very young.

There was something noticeably hearty in this man’s bronzed face, a heartiness that seemed to extend to his loosely knotted neckerchief. But what completely won my good-will was a picture of enviable loveliness painted on his left arm. It was the head of a woman with the body of a fish. Her flowing hair was of livid green, and she held a pink comb in one hand. I never saw anything so beautiful. I determined to know that man. I think I would have given my brass pistol to have had such a picture painted on my arm.

While I stood admiring this work of art, a fat, wheezy steam-tug, with the word AJAX in staring black letters on the paddle-box, came puffing up alongside the Typhoon. It was ridiculously small and conceited, compared with our stately ship. I speculated as to what it was going to do. In a few minutes we were lashed to the little monster, which gave a snort and a shriek, and commenced backing us out from the levee (wharf) with the greatest ease.

I once saw an ant running away with a piece of cheese eight or ten times larger than itself. I could not help thinking of it, when I found the chubby, smoky-nosed tug-boat towing the Typhoon out into the Mississippi River.

In the middle of the stream we swung round, the current caught us, and away we flew like a great winged bird. Only it didn’t seem as if we were moving. The shore, with the countless steamboats, the tangled rigging of the ships, and the long lines of warehouses, appeared to be gliding away from us.

It was grand sport to stand on the quarter-deck and watch all this. Before long there was nothing to be seen on either side but stretches of low swampy land, covered with stunted cypress-trees, from which drooped delicate streamers of Spanish moss,—a fine place for alligators and congo snakes. Here and there we passed a yellow sand-bar, and here and there a snag lifted its nose out of the water like a shark.

“This is your last chance to see the city, Tom,” said my father, as we swept round a bend of the river.

I turned and looked. New Orleans was just a colorless mass of something in the sunset, and the dome of the St. Charles Hotel, upon which the sun shimmered for a moment, was no bigger than the top of old Aunt Chloe’s thimble.

What do I remember next? the gray sky and the fretful blue waters of the Gulf. The steam-tug had long since let slip her hawsers, and gone panting away with a derisive scream, as much as to say, “I’ve done my duty, now look out for yourself, old Typhoon!”

The ship seemed quite proud of being left to take care of itself, and, with its huge white sails bulged out, strutted off like a vain turkey. I had been standing by my father near the wheel-house all this while, observing things with that nicety of perception which belongs only to children; but now the dew began falling, and we went below to have supper.

The fresh fruit and milk, and the slices of cold chicken, looked very nice; yet somehow I had no appetite. There was a general smell of tar about everything. Then the ship gave sudden lurches that made it a matter of uncertainty whether one was going to put his fork to his mouth or into his eye. The tumblers and wineglasses, stuck in a rack over the table, kept clinking and clinking; and the cabin lamp, suspended by four gilt chains from the ceiling, swayed to and fro crazily. Now the floor seemed to rise, and now it seemed to sink under one’s feet like a feather-bed.

There were not more than a dozen passengers on board, including ourselves; and all of these, excepting a bald-headed old gentleman,—a retired sea-captain,—disappeared into their state-rooms at an early hour of the evening.

After supper was cleared away, my father and the elderly gentleman, whose name was Captain Truck, played at checkers; and I amused myself for a while by watching the trouble they had in keeping the men in the proper places. Just at the most exciting point of the game, the ship would careen, and down would go the white checkers pell-mell among the black. Then my father laughed, but Captain Truck would grow very angry, and vow that he would have won the game in a move or two more, if the confounded old chicken-coop—that’s what he called the ship—hadn’t lurched.

“I—I think I will go to bed now, please,” I said, laying my hand on my father’s knee, and feeling exceedingly queer.

It was high time, for the Typhoon was plunging about in the most alarming fashion. I was speedily tucked away in the upper berth, where I felt a trifle more easy at first. My clothes were placed on a narrow shelf at my feet, and it was a great comfort to me to know that my pistol was so handy, for I made no doubt we should fall in with Pirates before many hours. This is the last thing I remember with any distinctness. At midnight, as I was afterwards told, we were struck by a gale which never left us until we came in sight of the Massachusetts coast.

For days and days I had no sensible idea of what was going on around me. That we were being hurled somewhere upside-down, and that I didn’t like it, was about all I knew. I have, indeed, a vague impression that my father used to climb up to the berth and call me his “Ancient Mariner,” bidding me cheer up. But the Ancient Mariner was far from cheering up, if I recollect rightly; and I don’t believe that venerable navigator would have cared much if it had been announced to him, through a speaking-trumpet, that “a low, black, suspicious craft, with raking masts, was rapidly bearing down upon us!”

In fact, one morning, I thought that such was the case, for bang! went the big cannon I had noticed in the bow of the ship when we came on board, and which had suggested to me the idea about pirates. Bang! went the gun again in a few seconds. I made a feeble effort to get at my trousers-pocket! But the Typhoon was only saluting Cape Cod,—the first land sighted by vessels approaching the coast from a southerly direction.

The vessel had ceased to roll, and my sea-sickness passed away as rapidly as it came. I was all right now, “only a little shaky in my timbers and a little blue about the gills,” as Captain Truck remarked to my mother, who, like myself, had been confined to the state-room during the passage.

At Cape Cod the wind parted company with us without saying so much as “Excuse me”; so we were nearly two days in making the run which in favorable weather is usually accomplished in seven hours. That’s what the pilot said.

I was able to go about the ship now, and I lost no time in cultivating the acquaintance of the sailor with the green-haired lady on his arm. I found him in the forecastle,—a sort of cellar in the front part of the vessel. He was an agreeable sailor, as I had expected, and we became the best of friends in five minutes.

He had been all over the world two or three times, and knew no end of stories. According to his own account, he must have been shipwrecked at least twice a year ever since his birth. He had served under Decatur when that gallant officer peppered the Algerines and made them promise not to sell their prisoners of war into slavery; he had worked a gun at the bombardment of Vera Cruz in the Mexican War, and he had been on Alexander Selkirk’s island more than once. There were very few things he hadn’t done in a seafaring way.

“I suppose, sir,” I remarked, “that your name isn’t Typhoon?”

“Why, Lord love ye, lad, my name’s Benjamin Watson, of Nantucket. But I’m a true-blue Typhooner,” he added, which increased my respect for him; I don’t know why, and I didn’t know then whether Typhoon was the name of a vegetable or a profession.

Not wishing to be outdone in frankness, I disclosed to him that my name was Tom Bailey, upon which he said he was very glad to hear it.

When we got more intimate, I discovered that Sailor Ben, as he wished me to call him, was a perfect walking picture-book. He had two anchors, a star, and a frigate in full sail on his right arm; a pair of lovely blue hands clasped on his breast, and I’ve no doubt that other parts of his body were illustrated in the same agreeable manner. I imagine he was fond of drawings, and took this means of gratifying his artistic taste. It was certainly very ingenious and convenient. A portfolio might be misplaced, or dropped overboard; but Sailor Ben had his pictures wherever he went, just as that eminent person in the poem—

“With rings on her fingers and bells on her toes”—

was accompanied by music on all occasions.

The two hands on his breast, he informed me, constituted a tribute to the memory of a dead messmate from whom he had parted years ago,—and surely a more touching tribute was never engraved on a tombstone. This caused me to think of my parting with old Aunt Chloe, and I told him I should take it as a great favor indeed if he would paint a pink hand and a black hand on my chest. He said the colors were pricked into the skin with needles, and that the operation was somewhat painful. I assured him, in an off-hand manner, that I didn’t mind pain, and begged him to set to work at once.

The simple-hearted fellow, who was probably not a little vain of his skill, took me into the forecastle, and was on the point of complying with my request, when my father happened to look down the gangway,—a circumstance that rather interfered with the decorative art.

I didn’t have another opportunity of conferring alone with Sailor Ben, for the next morning, bright and early, we came in sight of the cupola of the Boston State House.

T. B. Aldrich.


I knew a little maid,—as sweet

As any seven years’ child you’ll meet

In mansion grand or village street,

    However charming they be:

She’ll never know of this my verse

When I her simple tale rehearse;—

A cottage girl, made baby-nurse

    Unto another baby.


Till then how constant she at school!

Her tiny hands of work how full!

And never careless, never dull,

    As little scholars may be.

Her absence questioned, with cheek red

And gentle lifting of the head,

“Ma’am, I could not be spared,” she said;

    “I had to mind my baby.”


Her baby; oft along the lane

She’d carry it with such sweet pain

On summer holidays,—full fain

    To let both work and play be:

But, at the school hour told to start,

She’d turn with sad divided heart

’Twixt scholar’s wish and mother’s part,

    “I cannot leave my baby!”


One day at school came rumors dire,—

“Lizzie has fallen in the fire!”

And off in haste I went to inquire,

    With anxious fear o’erflowing:

For yester-afternoon at prayer

My little Lizzie’s face did wear

The look—how comes it, whence, or where?—

    Of children who are—going.


And almost as if bound for flight

To say new prayers in angels’ sight,

Poor Lizzie lay,—so wan, so white,

    So sadly idle seeming:

Her active hands now helpless bound,

Her wild eyes wandering vaguely round,

As up she started at each sound,

    Or slept, and moaned in dreaming.


Her mother gave the piteous tale:

“How that child’s courage did not fail,

Or else poor baby—” She stopped, pale,

    And shed tears without number;

Then told how at the fireside warm,

Lizzie, with baby on her arm,

Slipped—threw him from her—safe from harm,

    Then fell—Here in her slumber


Lizzie shrieked, “Take him!” and uptossed

Her poor burnt hands, and seemed half lost,

Until a smile her features crossed

    As sweet as angels’ may be.

“Yes, ma’am,” she said in feeble tone,

“I’m ill, I know,”—she hushed a moan,—

“But”—here her look a queen might own—

    “But, ma’am, I saved my baby!”

Author of “John Halifax, Gentleman.”


“Now,” said Katie,—“now that the grown-up people are away, we children may hope for a little quiet. All sit along in a row, and I will tell you the Story of the Golden Christmas-Tree, that happened long time ago. It begins with two old folks, and they were poor, and lived in a house that had but one door. Now don’t make faces. I mean one outside door. If any of you talk or giggle, or snap knuckles, or roll up your eyes, or pull hair, or pinch, or tickle, I shall stop telling. But chewing gum is no matter.

“And they had a daughter who was a beauty. Just as white as wax-work, and had golden hair, and was quite tall, but not very tall. Her eyes were as blue as a wax doll’s, and her lips as red, and she was slim and slender, with a sweet little foot that stepped light as a feather.

“And they had one more child, but he was a boy, and his name was Valentine; but not a pretty boy,—a homely boy, and his place was always in the back corner. For they loved their daughter best, and sold all their eggs and geese feathers to buy ear-rings for her ears, and necklaces for her neck, and silver rings for her fingers, and ribbons to tie in her golden hair. But the boy had to wear very old things.

“And for the girl it was ‘O sweet angel!’ ‘O my lovely one!’ ‘O pretty darling!’ with kisses for her cheeks and for her lily-white hands. But for him it was ‘O you stupid!’ ‘You naughty one!’ ‘You never do right!’ And while she leaned against the wall, like a picture, with her pretty hands folded, and a fine dress, he scrubbed the floor, and washed the platters, with his old clothes, and the tears in his eyes.

“For he very often wept because nobody cared for him, and longed for some one to come and take him by the hand, and say something kind. And one evening, when he was lying all alone there, he dreamed that the hut was suddenly filled with a bright light, and that a beautiful lady, all in white, bent over him and said very kind words. But the dream passed away, and when he awoke the hut was dark, and he all alone in the cold,—all but his dog, his good old shaggy dog, Fido. Valentine loved Fido, and used to lay his head on the dog’s neck and tell him all his troubles; and Fido would look up so sorryful, and lick his master’s face, just as if he knew.

“There was nobody else for the boy to tell his troubles to, unless it was the one that gave him the dog, Jolly Tom; and he was no relation, not the least, but only skipper of a little sloop. And Valentine used to watch for his white sails, coming over the sea. For Jolly Tom always went whistling along, and often would call out, ‘Ha, Valentine!’ ‘How are you, Valentine?’ in a merry way, and once brought him home quite a large jews-harp, and taught him to play a tune. And the name of the tune was ‘Whistling Winds.’ And when Valentine felt very sad, he would go to his back corner, or away under a tree, and play up a tune, while Fido would sit by and wag his tail to the music.

“But one night a wicked pedler stole the dog away, which made Valentine feel so badly that it seemed as if he could not work at all, but only think of Fido and mourn for Fido all day long.

“This made the two old folks angry, and more cross to him than ever before. And one night they scolded him, and said, ‘O, if you would but keep out of our sight! Away with you!’

“Then the boy walked a long way off to the sea-shore, where the sea was moaning; and there he lay down on the sands, and listened to the moan of the sea. Darkness was coming on, and it was a very gloomy night. Clouds covered up the stars, and there was quite a chilly blast blowing. Off the shore, near by, were vessels at anchor. He could hear the flapping of the sails and the shouts of the men.

“Pretty soon some sailors, hurrying along, stumbled over him, and one said, ‘Pray, what’s this thing?’

“ ‘O, some land-lubber!’ cried another.

“Then he spoke out and said, ‘I am Valentine. Do you belong to one of the ships? Shall you soon set sail? Is the Captain among you?’

“Then a tall man stepped forward and said, ‘I am the Captain, what do you wish?’

“Valentine asked him if he would like to hire a boy, for he wished to go to seek his fortune in a strange land.

“ ‘Yes,’ said the Captain, ‘I want a good stout boy. Come with us to the boat.’

“And when it was seen that he could handle an oar, they allowed him to be one of the rowers to row to the ship.

“And the ship sailed and sailed more than a thousand miles, and anchored at last before a great city.

“Now as Valentine did not wish to be a sailor-boy any more, he said good by to the crew and the captain, and then began walking up and down the streets to find work. It was a very grand city. The buildings were so tall and stately, with many columns and towers and porticos. There were marble statues standing about in very good places, and fountains sparkling, and palm-trees waving, and flowers blooming everywhere. And the people were dressed in very bright-colored clothes.

“Now as Valentine walked up and down, he came to the Palace. And said he, ‘Since all is fine in this grand city, I may as well try my luck here as at any other place.’

“So he went through the back gate, and put his head in at the kitchen door. And as the cooks were far too busy to mind him,—for it was a feast day, and there were over forty lambs to be roasted,—he went through a back passage, and passed from room to room very softly,—walked softly because he was a little afraid, everything was so wonderful, and so bright, and so grand!

“At last he stubbed his toe against a gold nail which stuck up in the floor, and out jumped a man from behind a velvet curtain, twenty feet long!”

“The man, Katie?”

“How silly! Do you want I should stop telling?”

“O no.” “O no!” “No, no, no, no, no!”

“Keep quiet, then, and don’t interrupt. This man that jumped out had three feathers in his cap, and, as Valentine didn’t know his real name, he called him, ‘Mr. Three Feathers.’ He said, ‘Mr. Three Feathers, will you please give me some work to do?’

“Now the man was so angry at being called ‘Mr. Three Feathers,’ that he took Valentine by the collar and began running him out of the Palace.

“But a man that had four feathers called out, ‘What are you doing with that boy? What does he want?’

“ ‘Wants work to do,’ said Mr. Three Feathers.

“ ‘Well,’ said Mr. Four Feathers, ‘why turn him away? Don’t you know that we are wanting a throne boy?’

“So Valentine was hired to be the throne boy, and was arrayed in fine array, as was quite proper for one who dwelt in a palace. It was his business to take care of the ornaments which adorned the throne, and to rub the golden candlesticks, and dust the ivory steps, and beat up the purple cushions. Every morning his hands had to be dipped in perfumed water.

“He did everything as well as he could, and the King was so pleased that he patted his head very often. Every month he got a large gold piece and a new pair of shoes. And he said to the King one day, ‘The shoes I put under my bed, but where shall I put my gold pieces?’

“Then the King gave him an ivory-handled spade, and an apple-tree, in his own private garden, where he might dig a hole underneath to bury his gold pieces. And there he would sit, when work was done, and play on his jews-harp the tune of ‘Whistling Winds,’ and think of Jolly Tom, and of the dog that was stolen away. And he said to himself, that some day he would take all his money home, and build the two old folks a new house. ‘For I am still their son,’ he said, ‘and must take care of them when they are past work.’

“And when Valentine had lived in the Palace a very long time, the King said to him one day, ‘As I find that you are one to be trusted, I shall employ you to go on a long journey. You see this letter. It must be taken to the Great Governor Joriando. He is—But that you will find out for yourself.’

“The letter was very square and large, and sealed together with a great deal of red sealing-wax.

“ ‘Put this letter,’ said the King, ‘inside your inner vest, and button it tight; you see it is marked “Private.” Do you know the way?’

“ ‘I can ask,’ said Valentine.

“But after travelling a long time he came to a sandy desert, where there were no paths, and no one to point out the way. And it happened that he came out on the wrong side of the desert. There he met a soldier clad in armor, with tall, waving plumes; and he asked this soldier, ‘Can you tell me where lives the Great Governor Joriando?’

“ ‘No, I can’t tell you,’ said the soldier; ‘but I have heard of him. He is—’

“Just then a trumpet sounded, and the soldier hurried away. Then Valentine walked the country up and down, asking of all people, ‘Can you tell me where lives the Great Governor Joriando?’ Some turned away, some stroked their faces and smiled, but none could tell.

“At last he grew very weary of wandering about, and one day, as he was passing through a hay-field, he threw himself down to rest against a haycock, but was no sooner down than up jumped a man from the other side, and came round to see who was there. He was quite a pale-looking man, and seemed to be a traveller.”

“Katie, did Valentine leave his gold pieces under the apple-tree?”

“No. I forgot to tell about that. He dug them up, and put them in a leather bag, and hung it about his neck. Now, what was I telling when Dicky asked that question?”

“About the pale man.”

“O yes. He was a pale, sick-looking man, with hollow cheeks and black hair, and carried a basket with the cover tied down.

“ ‘Are you very tired?’ he asked.

“ ‘Yes, very,’ said Valentine. ‘Can you tell me where lives the Great Governor Joriando?’

“No. The traveller had never heard of such a governor. But he sat down by the side of Valentine, and there they talked together in a very friendly way. He was quite a sad man, with a low and sorrowful voice. Valentine took out his jews-harp and played up a tune, but the stranger did not seem pleased at all, but only turned his head away.

“And when they had taken quite a long rest, the traveller said, ‘What do you think? Since you know not where to go, will you go with me?’

“ ‘With all my heart,’ said Valentine.

“And the two travelled together for many days, along highways and by-ways, by the banks of little brooks, and through pleasant woods, where birds sang and the leaves rustled in the breezes.

“And one evening they seated themselves, just as the moon was rising, on the top of a steep hill. There was a very large, high, smooth rock there—a white rock—that they leaned against. This rock was called the ‘White Horse.’

“They stood by this rock and looked down. Below them there lay a large city, which looked beautiful in the moonlight. It was a very calm, still night. On their right hand were piled up the dark mountains, and on their left hand the wide sea was spread out, and many ships were sailing there.

“The traveller stood quiet, with his arms folded, a long time, saying not a word.

“But at last he turned to Valentine, and said, ‘What do you think? I have something to tell. Will you hear it?’

“ ‘Very gladly,’ said Valentine.

“Then the Traveller pointed to a spot just outside the city, and asked, ‘Do you see those turrets which point up so high among the green trees?’

“ ‘Yes,’ said Valentine, ‘I see the turrets.’

“ ‘They belong to a grand old castle,’ said the traveller. ‘And in that castle dwell a noble old couple, who have lived their lives very happily there for more than fifty years.

“ ‘And when the fiftieth year came round, they said, “Let us celebrate our Golden Wedding. And, since it falls on Christmas, we will have for our grandchildren a Golden Christmas-Tree, whereon the presents shall be of pure gold.”

“ ‘And they bought of a countryman a fine green fir-tree, of a lovely shape, and quite tall, because the walls were so high.

“ ‘Very soon came the joyful Christmas Eve, and not an old couple in the kingdom were so happy as they! For all had come to the Golden Wedding. Not even one little grandchild was missing.

“ ‘Ah, but that was a happy sight! The grandmother was dressed in a velvet gown and a feather in her turban, and her fat face was smiling all over! The grandfather had his arms full of little children, and sang, and laughed, and wiped the tears from his eyes,—happy tears. Pretty, fair girls, dressed all in white, danced from room to room, and the gallant youths and the lovely maidens kissed one another under the mistletoe-bough!

“ ‘Are you listening, Valentine?’ the traveller asked.

“ ‘Yes,’ said Valentine, ‘I am listening. Please tell the rest.’

“ ‘I will,’ said the traveller. ‘I have resolved to tell the rest, and I shall tell it.

“ ‘You must know that, in the midst of all the gay time, two of the mothers went away to a distant room, where the Tree had been placed, to light it up and arrange the presents. And O, these were a dazzling sight to behold! There were bracelets, coronets, charms, watches, lockets, clasps, rings, vases, buckles, all made of gold, and long golden chains!

“ ‘And after everything was ready, the two mothers went up to the Grand Banquet Hall, to see that for the Golden Wedding Feast nothing was lacking; and left the Tree, with all its golden fruit, in care of a servant whom they fully trusted. For he had been a long time their servant, and they had been very kind to him, and to his little girl that died.’

“The traveller stopped in this part of his story, and bowed down his head, and did not say more for quite a long while. And when he began again his voice sounded lower and sadder than before.

“ ‘That servant,’ said he,—‘that servant whom they trusted, when he was left alone there, thought to himself, “How many fine clothes all these would buy! How many bottles of wine! How many good things to eat and a coach and horses besides! If I only had them for my own, and was far away from here, then I should be happy!”

“ ‘And now, what do you think? He took all those golden things!

“ ‘And when the doors were thrown open, and the people came in haste to see the Golden Christmas-Tree in all its glory, why, those presents were miles away, among yonder mountains, and the base robber was seeking some place to bury them in!’

“ ‘The wretch! The mean villain!’ Valentine cried out. ‘If I could but get hold of him!’

Drawn by Miss Patterson.]     [See My Heroine, page 10.

“ ‘And if you could,’ then the traveller asked, ‘what would you do with him?’

“ ‘Throttle him!’ cried Valentine. ‘Bind him hand and foot! Tear him limb from limb! Hand him over to the officers! For he was trusted, and he deceived them!’

“ ‘It is a pity,’ said the traveller, ‘that you could not get hold of him!’ ”

“But Katie,” said little Dick, “we don’t get any Golden Christmas-Tree in our story, after all. For the presents were stolen away!”

“Now, Dick,” said Katie, “please be quiet. ‘After all’ hasn’t come yet. Wait till my story’s done, sir. I was going to tell that in this part of his story the traveller folded his arms, and began walking backwards and forwards, and at every turn he came a little nearer Valentine.

“At last he came close up, and stooped over, and whispered, ‘I myself am that wretch, that mean villain!’

“Then he stepped back, and said, ‘Now do as you promised. Throttle me. Bind me hand and foot. Tear me limb from limb. Hand me over to the officers. For they trusted me, and I deceived them!’

“But Valentine started back, thinking about his gold pieces, and put his hand up to where they hung. This made the traveller smile.

“ ‘Don’t be afraid,’ said he. ‘I know you have something of value there, because you raise your hand to it so often. Don’t you know that is the very way to let your secret be known? But I don’t want your gold. I’m sick of gold. I want you to hear the rest of my story, and then do me a favor.’

“He then told Valentine how he buried the golden presents in a low secret valley, and then wandered about among the mountains, and never dared to show his face. At last came a furious snow-storm, and in that he almost died. But a good shepherd carried him to his hut.

“ ‘And when next I could walk about,’ said the traveller, ‘the flowers of spring were blooming. For I was sick a very long time,—too sick to notice anything at all. Yet I did see something, or seemed to see it,—something very strange. Now what do you think? All through that long sickness I saw, or seemed to see,—a Hand! A busy, never-weary Hand, which wrote, wrote, wrote everywhere! The letters it made were the color of bright red coals, and when put together they made the word—“Thief!” Wherever I looked, on the furniture, on the walls, on the ceiling, on the floor, on the bed-clothes, there was the Hand, steadily at work, writing, writing, writing, and always fast, as if not one moment could be lost. It wrote on my flesh. And then the letters burned! O, you may believe that I suffered!

“ ‘Now when I got well, do you suppose I went to that low, secret valley, and dug up those golden things, and sold them? O no, I could not bear to see them. And I stayed there with the shepherd, and helped him watch his flocks by night.

“ ‘And it happened that one day the Queen passed over the mountains with all her train. And she wanted to find a little blue flower, but none of them knew where it grew. Now I had seen some growing far below, on the face of a steep rock, and I let myself down there, and picked a good handful. She liked me very much for doing this, and took me to her own city; and as I pleased her well she gave me first money, next rich presents, and next a fine house, where I made grand parties, and we had music and dancing, and very gay times.

“ ‘But what do you think? The Hand came back! Or seemed to come back. And wrote that same word! Wrote it on the green of the grass, wrote it on the blue of the sky and on the darkness of the night, wrote it on my forehead, and I looked in the looking-glass very often to see if the word showed there. For I thought people could read it. Even in my dreams it was just the same. For then the good Baron himself would seem to stand before me, and hold out a paper, with that word written on it; or else my little girl that died would seem to hold it out to me, and look so mournful!

“ ‘And something else came. A whispering. A low, whispering voice at my ear. Only one word, but it was that same word. I seemed to hear it everywhere. In the streets I heard it, and turned quick to see who was whispering. But no one was there. In the midst of the music and dancing, and in the still hours of the night, I heard it too, and could not sleep. But still I would not take the things and carry them back to the Baron. I shall feel better soon, I said. But I did not feel better.

“ ‘And now what do you think? Shall I tell you what is in this basket? All those golden things are here. One night when I could not sleep I said to myself, I will set off by the early morning light, and I will go to that low, secret valley, and I will dig up those golden presents, and return them to their owner. And from the very moment that I said this to myself I never saw the Hand nor heard the whispering!

“ ‘And now the castle stands before me. But I cannot, O I cannot meet the eye of that old man. Do you know why I have brought you here, and told you this story? To ask you to give these into the Baron’s own hands, and say to him that I will remain until to-morrow night at the “White Horse,” where the officers may find me.’

“Early in the next morning Valentine arrived at the castle, and began walking about the grounds to see what he could see.

“And the first thing he saw was a little spring of water bubbling up, and he dropped his basket, and stepped down to take a drink.

“And while he lay there flat on the grass, sucking in the clear cold water, there came along the stiff-looking steward of the castle, all dressed out in gold lace and ruffles. He touched the basket with his silver-pointed cane, and, when he found it was very heavy, thought he would just peep to see what there was inside.

“Just as he was doing this, Valentine lifted up his head to catch a long breath, and saw somebody meddling with his basket.

“ ‘Don’t meddle with that, sir!’ he cried out.

“ ‘Indeed I shall meddle with that, sir!’ the stiff steward said. For he had found all those golden things, marked with the names of the family. And when Valentine began to tell where he got them, and what he was going to do with them, he laughed at him, and said, ‘Hush up with your silly story! Do you think anybody will believe that?’ Then he searched him, and took away his bag of gold pieces, and the letter marked ‘Private,’ and then shut him up in a cell.

“But when the Baron came home he said, ‘Let me look him in the face! I can tell by his face whether he speaks true or false.’ And when he had looked him in the face, and heard his story, he believed every word of it, and gave back the gold pieces and the square letter.

“ ‘Then send to the “White Horse,” and catch the thief!’ cried the stiff steward.

“But the Baron said, ‘No. That man’s thoughts are the worst punishment he can have.’

“And when he saw that the lad was a smart, likely lad, he offered to employ him; but Valentine said he must go to find the ‘Great Governor Joriando.’

“Then a merchant stepped forward, who had journeyed from a far country, and said that a long time before he had passed the Great Governor Joriando with a troop of soldiers, and that they were marching in haste to the King’s Palace. And also that the King and all his armies were gone to the wars.

“ ‘But keep the letter,’ said the Baron. ‘It may be of use to you.’

“ ‘Yes, keep the letter to the Great Governor Joriando, by all means!’ said the merchant. And he went away.

“So Valentine remained with the Baron, and served him a very long time, and saved a great deal of money.

“And one day as he was sitting all alone in a shady lane, playing on his jews-harp, he looked through the trees and saw a cottage where a lovely girl sat in the doorway, weeping. And he went to find out the reason. The name of this girl was Pauline. She was weeping because the goats had gone astray. For they were her uncle’s goats, and he would be angry with her for their going astray.

“Now Valentine was always ready to do favors; so he ran quickly to find the goats, and drove them home. And the lovely young girl smiled very sweetly through her tears.

“And not long after he walked in the shady lane again, and found the lovely girl sitting in the doorway, weeping for her only brother, who had joined a band of rovers, and gone roving away.

“ ‘Do not weep,’ said Valentine. ‘He will soon come back, and will have many fine tales to tell.’ And then he related to her many things he had seen in his own travels.

“And it happened that every day after this he walked in the shady lane, and every day he saw the lovely girl, and every day she smiled upon him, and they talked pleasantly together.

“But one day Valentine stayed away, and sat down by himself to think. And he thought this: ‘What a pity that I am ill-looking! If it were not so, I would ask Pauline to be my wife. I am very sorry. Yet it must be so, for did they not always say that of me at home? Yet Pauline smiles on me, and Pauline is very lovely. I wonder how it is!’

“The truth was that Valentine had grown up quite tall and manly. His smile was very sweet; and he had a pleasant way which charmed everybody, and charmed Pauline so much, that, when at last Valentine asked, ‘Will you be my wife, and go to dwell with me in my own native country?’ she did not say ‘No,’ but said only, ‘Wait till my brother comes home.’ And then Valentine knew, that, if the brother said ‘yes,’ Pauline would not say ‘no.’ And when the brother came home, he not only said ‘yes,’ but declared that nothing would suit him better than to go too; for that was a part of the world he had never seen.

“O how happy was Valentine then!

“And when Pauline heard about the two old folks, and of the little hut where he was once so sorrowful, she said, ‘Listen, now. I have taken a fancy that our wedding shall be nowhere but in that little hut, where you were once so sad and sorrowful. And after the wedding, we will build a new house for the two old folks and take good care of them; for are you not still their son?’

“ ‘Just as you please,’ said Valentine. And the brother, who was always in haste, began that very hour to buy the wedding clothes.

“Now in the mean time, while Valentine was so far away, the beautiful daughter at home had grown up. And the two old folks said to one another, ‘Now surely some prince will come to marry our beautiful daughter, and will clothe her in royal robes, and place her upon a throne, and we shall sit at her right hand.’

“But the girl was not kind to the two old folks, and was too idle to learn anything, but thought only of her fine looks; and, besides, she was not sweet-tempered, but was quick to get angry. And to the poor beggar women, instead of giving them a kind word or a taste of her bread, she would say, ‘Out of the way with you!’

“And one day a prince came along, and saw this pretty maiden, sitting upon a green bank twining a wreath of flowers. And he said, ‘What a beautiful maiden! I will make her my Princess.’

“But first asked of the neighbors, ‘Is she wise? Is she sweet-tempered?’

“ ‘O no, not at all,’ the neighbors said.

“ ‘Then she’ll not do for me,’ said the Prince. ‘For if she cannot govern her temper she cannot govern people; and to set a dunce upon the throne would be folly. I’ll pass on.’

“The next year a great lord passed by, and saw this pretty maiden, dressed in her finery, all ready for the Ball. And he said, ‘What a beautiful maiden! I will make her my Lady.’

“But first asked of the neighbors, ‘Is she good to her mother?’

“ ‘O no, not at all,’ the neighbors said.

“ ‘Then she will not do for me,’ said the Lord. ‘A girl who is not good to her mother will be good to nobody. I’ll pass on.’

“The next year there came a baron riding by; and he saw this pretty maiden sitting under a tree, stringing beads for a necklace. And he said, ‘O, what a beautiful maiden! I will make her my Baroness.’

“But first asked of the neighbors, ‘Is she kind to the poor?’

“ ‘O no, not at all,’ the neighbors said.

“ ‘Then she will not do for me,’ said the Baron. ‘On my estates are many poor. I’ll pass on.’

“And the next year there came along a merry young farmer, with a round rosy face and wavy locks. And he saw this pretty maiden looking at herself in a clear, still fountain, and braiding her golden hair. Then he watched her through the branches of a green tree, and he said, ‘O, what a beautiful maid! I will make her my wife.’

“But first he asked of the neighbors, ‘Is she industrious?’

“ ‘No, not at all,’ the neighbors said.

“ ‘Then she’ll never do for a farmer’s wife,’ he said; and laughed his merry laugh, and shook his wavy locks, and passed on.

“Thus years slipped away, and the beautiful daughter was left to twine her flowers, and dress, and string her beads, and braid her golden hair by herself, since none cared to marry her. But the older she grew the more disagreeable she became, and caused the two old folks to weep very bitter tears. And this made them remember their long-lost son, who was so patient and so kind.

And one day Jolly Tom came to see if they had any geese feathers to send away; for he was going to a distant country with a company of merchants, to sell wool. Jolly Tom was a wool-dealer now, and lived upon the hill near by, in a fine house of his own.

“And when he came to ask about the geese feathers, there he found the two old folks, sitting in the dim twilight, weeping.

“ ‘What is the matter?’ asked Jolly Tom. ‘And why do you weep?’

“ ‘It is the conduct of our daughter which makes us weep,’ they said; ‘and we are also mourning for our son,—our long-lost son!’

“ ‘Whom we drove away,’ said the father.

“ ‘O, he would not treat us so!’ said the mother. ‘If he would only come back again! He was good to us always. Say, father, did he give us ever one unkind word?’

“ ‘No, dame, no, never. And don’t you remember how ready he was to help?’

“ ‘Ah yes! and so tender-hearted, and so patient!’ said the dame.

“ ‘But we were not kind to him,’ said the father.

“ ‘We broke his heart!’ said the mother. ‘Don’t you remember how sorrowful he looked at us, with the tears in his eyes? O, if he would only come back, how I would throw my old arms around him!’

“ ‘I would fall upon his neck, and weep tears of joy!’ said the father. ‘But O where is he now? Perhaps not alive.’

“ ‘Perhaps drowned in the deep sea,’ said the mother, ‘or buried in some distant land, where strangers walk over his grave, but none cast any flowers there. O how could we drive our child away?’

“ ‘Cheer up, cheer up!’ cried Jolly Tom; ‘I will inquire of all I meet at the Great Fair, where will come merchants from all countries. Who knows but we may get news of him?’

“Now when Jolly Tom returned from the Fair, the two old folks went to ask what news. Alas, there were no tidings of Valentine!

“ ‘But, my good friends,’ said Jolly Tom, ‘I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I’ll marry your daughter.’

“ ‘What, marry our daughter!’ cried the two old folks. ‘Don’t; she is vain, and idle, and bad-tempered!’

“ ‘O, I’ll manage all that!’ cried Jolly Tom.

“So they were married. For the pretty daughter wished much to be mistress of a house.

“And whenever Mrs. Jolly Tom got angry or cross, Mr. Jolly Tom would set up a hearty laugh, as loud as he could, and double himself up, and caper, and roll upon the floor, laughing so loud that she was obliged to laugh herself.

“And if Mrs. Jolly Tom sat idle, with folded hands, when there was plenty to do, Mr. Jolly Tom would say, ‘O what a fine wax figure! Pray cover it from the dust! And then he would throw a bit of gauze over her face, or dust her with a feather-duster, as the showmen do; and then set up his laugh, till his wife was glad to go to work.

“And every time that Mrs. Jolly Tom decked herself out in gay gauds, and stood long before the looking-glass, Mr. Jolly Tom presented her with a peacock, so that in a short time the barns and yards were so filled with them that one could scarcely stir for peacocks. But, every day that she behaved well all day, Mr. Jolly Tom allowed one peacock to be killed. And she soon grew so good that very few were left. But he saved the feathers, and hung them over the looking-glass, to make her beware of vanity. And that was the way peacock-feathers began to be hung over looking-glasses.

“Thus it came to pass that this couple lived quite happily.

“And one cold day there came a stranger to the door, and said to Jolly Tom, ‘Sir, I wish to tell you a secret.’

“And Jolly Tom said, ‘Sir, pray be in haste with your secret; for Christmas is near, and we are busy in preparing a Christmas-Tree for our two little boys.’

“Then the stranger took him away into a lonely field, and said, ‘Don’t you know me? Jolly Tom, don’t you know me?’ Then he took out his jews-harp, and played up the tune of ‘Whistling Winds.’

“ ‘Bless me! bless me!’ cried Jolly Tom. ‘You must be our Valentine!’ Then he hugged him, and jumped about, and tumbled down, and picked himself up, laughing away all the time; and at last says he, ‘Well, now, tell me your secret.’

“Then Valentine told him that he wished to do something for the two old folks to surprise them, and begged Jolly Tom to help, and to keep it private. And very soon you shall know what it was.

“On the twenty-fourth day of December, Jolly Tom sent a stout man, with a sled, and plenty of blankets, to invite the two old folks to his house. And the stout man wrapped them up well, and seated them on the sled, and told them to hold fast by the stakes. And for the hand which held the stake was a fur mitten. In this way they were carried to their daughter’s house. She knew all about it, and the little boys knew too.

“Just after dark Jolly Tom came in, and raised the window-curtain, and cried:—

“ ‘Father! mother! look! look out! There’s a bright light in your hut! It looks all ablaze!’ Then he stood behind the door to laugh. But he had to stuff his mitten in his mouth.

“Then everybody ran, and the stout man bundled up the two old folks in their blankets; but this time no one thought of the fur mittens.

“And when they came near the hut, the old man cried out, ‘Do but see what a blaze! All will be lost!’

“ ‘And five silver dollars in the cupboard!’ cried the old dame.

“But Jolly Tom, who stood by, nearly swallowed his pocket-handkerchief to keep himself from laughing.

“Then the stout man burst open the door, and O what a sight! O what a sight! A blaze indeed! And by the light of it what do you think they saw? But first I must tell you where the light came from. In the middle of the room stood a Christmas-Tree, of an elegant shape, blazing with candles, brilliant with gold, and dazzling to behold! For from every little twig hung a bright gold piece! All for the two old folks. A real, golden Christmas-Tree!

“At one end of the room stood a tall, manly youth, with a smiling face, and a bran-new wedding suit. He held by the hand a lovely girl, dressed in pure white, with a long flowing veil. Near by stood the Priest, who was to marry them, in his long black robes. Pauline’s brother was on the other side, dressed in a gay tunic, with buckles on his knees, and a red tasselled cap.

“The two old folks stood in the doorway, and could not speak a word.

“But the tall youth came forward, leading the lovely bride. And they both knelt down before these two old folks, and began kissing their hands.

“ ‘Father, mother, give us your blessing!’ cried the youth. ‘For I am your son, and this dear girl will be your loving daughter!’

“And when they clasped him in their arms, and he felt their warm tears and their kisses, and heard them sob out, ‘Bless you! bless you! our son and our daughter!’ then Valentine bowed down his head, and wept tears of joy!

“And Pauline, when she saw him weeping, bent down, and took his hand, and said loving words to him.

“Then he remembered how one night, when he was a boy, lying there all alone, he dreamed that a bright light filled the hut, and that a beautiful lady, all in white, bent over him, and spoke kindly, and then vanished away, and left him cold and alone.

“And when he remembered this dream he caught Pauline by the hand, and cried out, ‘O, don’t vanish away! don’t vanish away!’

“Then Pauline laughed, and said, ‘My dear, I wouldn’t vanish away for all the world.’

“Then Jolly Tom clapped his hands, and laughed, and capered about, and Mrs. Jolly Tom did the same, and the little Jolly Toms, and threw up their caps. And then Pauline’s brother began, and then the happy couple, and at last the two old folks, and last of all the Priest also; and such a laughing and a clapping and a capering never was known before.

“But at last Valentine said, ‘Sir Priest, will you please to marry us?’

“Then all became quiet, and stood in a circle around the couple; and one little boy peeped out from behind his mother, and the other little boy held his father’s coat-skirts, while the Priest married Pauline and Valentine. And I can tell you that every one kissed the bride!

“And after the wedding supper was eaten, when Jolly Tom began to dance and caper about because he could not keep still, then Valentine sat down in his old back corner, and played up the tune of ‘Whistling Winds,’ while Jolly Tom danced a jig with the bride.

“And after that he went and sat near the two old folks, and told his whole story, while all the people listened. And to prove it he took out the square letter marked ‘Private,’ upon which was written, ‘To the Great Governor Joriando.’

“And years and years after he used to repeat this story to his children, and at the end they would say, ‘Now take out the square letter, father.’

“Then he would take out the letter, quite soiled and yellow, and turn it over, and sigh, and say, ‘One thing troubles me,—that I never saw the “Great Governor Joriando!”’

“But when asked to open the letter, to see what was inside, he would say, ‘Don’t you see it is marked Private?’ ”

Mrs. A. M. Diaz.



“Well, Lawrence,” said the Doctor, one day, shoving his chair back from the dinner-table, “how do you think of spending this afternoon?”

“I think I shall finish this piece of pie the first thing,” said Lawrence. “Then, as I’ve no lessons to learn, I feel as if I should like to have a good time.”

“If you could manage to have what you call a good time, and learn something too, how would that suit you?” Lawrence thought that would suit him better than anything else. “Well,” said the Doctor, “I have business down near the Glass Works; you can go with me, if you like, and perhaps we can learn something about making glass.”

“Hurrah!” said Lawrence, delighted; and his pie went the way of all pie in the hands of boys of fifteen, with more than usual rapidity.

They had just time to walk to the railroad station, and step on board the down train as it stopped. It thundered on again, and in half an hour brought them in sight of a building which the boy knew as the Glass Works, and which he had long wished to peep into. His heart beat quick with curiosity; and he began to wonder (for he had never given the subject much thought before) how such an infinite variety of useful and curious articles—window-panes, mirrors, vases, beads, goblets, lamps, lenses of telescopes and microscopes—were fashioned from so brittle a material, and how the material itself was made.

It was a wide-spreading, irregular pile, with brick walls, and two immense, tapering, tall, round chimneys soaring up into the blue sky above its roofs. The train let them off at a platform near by, and then moved on past the rear of the factory.

“Glass works always like to be near a railroad or a wharf, I find,” said the Doctor.

Lawrence said he supposed they sent off heavy freights.

“Yes, but those are a trifle compared with the freights that come to them. Look! there is a coal train switching off and backing up to the yard. They buy fuel by the cargo, as we do by the ton, and stuff it up those huge chimneys. But what is so heavy when it goes in is light enough when it goes out.” They looked up at the cloud which poured out of one of the great flues, and stretched away horizontally, in a long, black streamer, high over the adjacent city. “Some of it flies off in smoke, which we can see, but more of it in gases, which we cannot see; and the wind might blow away the ashes. Yet,” said the Doctor, as they walked on, “not an atom of the coal is really destroyed; it can’t be destroyed; it only changes form.”

Going around to the front of the factory, they entered a small door beside a large gate, passed through the office, where the Doctor seemed to be acquainted, and thence through rooms full of wonderful things, which Lawrence wished to stop at once and examine. But his uncle said, “No; we shall come around to these in due time. In visiting a place like this, if you really wish to learn much about it, the way is to begin at the beginning. Now let me see.”

They entered the spacious rear yard of the factory from one side, just as the coal train backed into it from the other.

“Ah! there is the gaffer!” said the Doctor. “Do you know what a gaffer is?”

“Laugher, one who laughs; quaffer, one who quaffs; gaffer, one who—gaffs, I guess,” said Lawrence, smiling; “though what gaffing is, I don’t know more than the man in the moon.”

“He sees us; we’ll ask him,” said the Doctor.

A short, solid-looking man, in an easy slouched hat and a loose business-coat, who was giving a gang of men directions about unloading the coal, left them, on seeing the Doctor, and came and shook hands with him very cordially. Somehow the Doctor seemed to know everybody.

“This is my nephew,”—and Lawrence had the honor of shaking hands with a gaffer. “By the way,” added the Doctor, “I have often wondered why it is you are called a gaffer. What is the meaning of the word?”

“I don’t know; it’s a name we’re called by,” said the man. “The foreman of any other factory than glass works is called a foreman or boss,—or superintendent, if you wish to be very smart. But the foreman of a glass-house is always the gaffer,—though I doubt if any one can tell you why.”

“Ah! I have it! I have it!” cried the Doctor, tapping Lawrence on the shoulder with his cane in such a way that the boy suspected he had “had it” all the while,—for he was a knowing old head, and he had a habit of testing other people’s knowledge of a subject before bringing out his own. “But I sha’n’t tell; for if it gets out I shall lose the honor of the discovery. I’ll send the word, with the etymology, to one of the big-dictionary makers. For you won’t find it in any dictionary as a name applied to the foreman of a glass-house. You’ll find ‘Gaffer; an old man,’—gaffer and gamma being ancient abbreviations of grandfather and grandmother.”

“I have it! I have it!” cried Lawrence, in his turn, having caught the bait his uncle threw out; for it was also the Doctor’s habit, in keeping back his knowledge of a question, to let fall hints which should lead his young friends to solve it for themselves, thus developing their thinking faculties, and fixing more securely in their minds what they learned.

“What, young man! have you got my secret away from me? Prove it.”

Gaffer used to mean grandfather, or old man. Now, in some shops, the boss is called old man. Just so, I suppose, he used to be called gaffer; and the name has stuck to him, even after its original meaning has been forgotten.”

“Very well! capital! But why is it that it is applied only to the glass-house foreman?”

That Lawrence could not explain. But the gaffer himself had an idea on that point, which, coming from one of the name and trade, was certainly entitled to consideration.

“I imagine,” he said, “that generally the foremen of glass-houses were older men than the bosses of other trades, for it takes a man who has spent his life in the business, and grown gray in it, to take the management of it. I believe there is no other trade that requires so much care and experience; that must have been especially the case before our modern improvements in building furnaces. Then again, even if other foremen were called gaffers, they might have lost the name, as it went out of use outside of the shop. But while the men of other trades have changed their habits and expressions to suit the times, glass-makers, until within a few years, never changed anything. That was owing to their exclusiveness. They were a class by themselves. Their art was a wonderful one; it was the most ancient of arts,—it was thought perfect, and not to be improved; they were jealous of having it become known to any that were not regularly initiated into it; and so they kept it shut up from the world, and surrounded by mystery, almost as much as if they had been members of a secret society.”

“Well,” laughed the Doctor, “three heads are better than one; and I think, together, we have sifted out the meaning of the word gaffer pretty thoroughly. And now for getting at the secrets of this mystic order. Gaffer, what have you got to show us? Lawrence, what shall we see first?”

“Let’s see where the coal goes, since we have begun with the coal,” said Lawrence.

“Then you’d like to see the cave?” said the gaffer.

Lawrence had no more distinct idea of what a glass-house cave was, than he had had of a gaffer. But cave sounded romantic. It suggested the subterranean,—something deep and dark and mysterious. So he said, boldly, that he should like very much to see the cave.

“Come with me,” said the gaffer. “We use coal for various purposes, but the bulk of it goes the way I’ll show you.”

They were going towards one of the great towering chimneys. But, just before reaching it, the gaffer, to Lawrence’s great delight, turned suddenly, and stepped down into a passage that dived (romantically speaking) deep into the earth. The lad and the Doctor followed, leaving daylight and the upper air behind them, and now saw before them a great glow of fire shining in the midst of surrounding darkness. That is to say, in the language of plain fact, they descended a flight of steps into a sort of cellar, from which, I regret to say, daylight was not wholly excluded, and found themselves—But we will let the gaffer speak.

“Here is where we get our draught. We are now under the large chimney,—cone, we call it. It is supported by these piers. Right in the centre, between them, you see that horizontal grate, with the fire from above shining through; that is in the bottom of the furnace,—what we call the eye.”

“It’s an awful, fiery-red eye!” said Lawrence. “Don’t it look like some horrible, one-eyed dragon, shut up there, and glaring down at us through those iron bars?”

“Not at all; not in the least,” said the Doctor, who could be dreadfully prosaic when he saw young people inclined to be too romantic. “It looks to me like a very hot fire. I should think your grates would burn out fast.”

“They last longer than one would suppose,” said the gaffer. “Iron bars like these will stand a couple of years. The draught of cold air rushing up through them, and the dead cinders accumulating, keep them comparatively cool.”

“How do you get rid of the clinkers?” said Lawrence, who remembered his bitter experience cleaning the stoves at home. “I suppose you let the fire go out once in a while.”

“We let this fire go down about once in five or six years,” said the gaffer. “Then it takes three weeks’ steady firing up to get a heat we can work with.”

“Three weeks!” exclaimed Lawrence, astonished. “Then it would hardly pay to let the fire go down for the clinkers!”

“As for them, we just slip the grate one side, and cut ’em off from the sides of the eye with an instrument we drive up from below. We never let the fire go down till the furnace burns out. The furnace is built inside the cone.”

“And where do you melt your glass?”

“In pots set into the furnace, just overhead here, as I will show you by and by. Our glass pots are closed in, so that no impurities from the fire can get into them. That’s the way pots have to be arranged, where flint glass is made. But in furnaces where they make common green glass, which they are not so particular about, the pots are left open at the top, for the advantage of getting the direct action of the heat on the melting materials. That lets the flux run over into the fire sometimes, and that spoils the furnace; so that green-glass furnaces have to shut down about once every year.”

Just then a being who seemed (to the imagination of the lad, at least,—the Doctor had forgotten his Arabian Nights some years since),—a being who seemed the dark genie of the place, advanced from some dismal recess in which he had lain concealed, and thrust a ponderous iron spear, or lance, through the bars, directly into the eye of Lawrence’s dragon, bringing down from it a sudden shower of fiery tears that lighted up the obscurity. In other words, nearer, perhaps, to the literal truth, a strong, curly-headed, grimy fellow came out from one of the coal chambers under the cone, and gave the fire a poke through the grate,—using an extraordinarily long and strong poker, and fetching down, well, I think we may say, without being too fanciful, a meteoric rain of live embers, like the sparks from an exploded rocket.

The being retreated into the darkness; and now Lawrence beheld a wonderful piece of magic, or optical illusion. He noticed that the opening between the piers, beneath the furnace, extended a long way beyond, forming a sort of subterranean gallery, awfully gloomy, to be sure, except that now the very counterpart of his black genie, who had just thrust the iron into the dragon’s eye, appeared, and thrust up a similar iron into a similar eye, and brought down a similar shower of flaming tears at the end of the vista. The whole thing looked so much like a reflection, in a wizard’s glass, of the scene he had just witnessed,—occurring a few moments behind the usual time when reflections in earthly mirrors take place,—that he would hardly have been surprised to see phantom images of himself, his uncle, and the gaffer suddenly make their appearance at the second genie’s elbow.

I am sorry to add that the worthy gaffer immediately dispelled the pleasing illusion by saying, “The cave extends under both cones; there is another opening at the farther end, opposite to this. You see the other fireman poking the other grate.”

“Where do you put in the coal?” asked the Doctor.

“I’ll show you. Matthew!”

It was rather disappointing to Lawrence to see his swart genie answer to a Christian name, and to observe, as he came near, facing them in the glow of the furnace fire, that he was, after all, only a harmless, good-natured fellow-creature, notwithstanding the coal-dust that blackened him.

“Open the teaze-hole,” said the gaffer.

Matthew led the way towards one of the black coal-chambers, and showed a deep, square-shaped orifice, leading up, by an inclined plane, through the thick brick ribs of the cone, into the furnace. It was closed at the farther end by a half-ignited mass of soft coal, which had been packed into it, to stop the draught in that direction.

“This is the teaze-hole,—though how it ever got that name is more than I know,” said the gaffer. “Look up in there, and you’ll see him open it.”

Matthew took a heavy, long-handled iron implement, called a rake, and shoved it clanging up into the passage, removing enough of the soft glowing mass to let the visitors look in and see the dazzling regions of fire beyond, and hear the rushing of air and roaring of flame in the freshly opened vent. Then he tossed a few shovelfuls of coal into the mouth, and shoved them up with his rake through the teaze-hole into the furnace, to show how the thing was done; then the vent was closed up again with coal, as before.

“I see you burn bituminous coal here,” said the Doctor. “How much a day?”

“This furnace takes about forty tons a week. The other one, which is not quite as large, takes less. The two average upwards of ten tons a day.”

Lawrence asked what was the use of so high a chimney.

“That’s to make the draught. The higher the chimney, the greater the draught, generally speaking.”

“Can you tell why?” the Doctor asked Lawrence.

“I know heated air expands, and so becomes lighter than the same bulk of cold air. Confine it in a chimney, and that makes a suction from below;—as the hot air rises, cold air rushes in to fill its place.”

“But why will a tall chimney make a stronger draught than a low one?”

“I suppose,” said Lawrence, “the hot air keeps drawing, until it gets out, and is free. It’s like a string of horses attached to anything; the longer the string, the more they will pull. But I should think,” he added, “that a chimney might be built too high. If the top gets very cold, I should think that would cool the column of air, and deaden the draught;—it would be like having one horse after another drop down at the end of the string.”

“That, I believe, is the fact,” said the gaffer. “A sheet-iron funnel as high as this cone, exposed to the weather, would make no draught at all to speak of. If you build high, you must build thick, so that the interior of the chimney will hold its warmth all the way up.”

“How did people ever manage without chimneys?” said Lawrence; “for I read the other day that they were unknown in ancient times, and that they were considered a luxury, which only the rich could indulge in, even in the age of Queen Elizabeth.”

“They made a fire in the middle of the room, wigwam fashion, and let the smoke get out through a hole in the roof the best way it could,” said the Doctor.

“Glass-makers must have labored under an inconvenience,” said the gaffer. “I have a little book called ‘Reminiscences of Glass-Making,’ which has drawings in it of the old-fashioned Italian and French glass furnaces. They have no high chimneys; but the smoke is shown coming out of short flues into the room where the blowers are at work. Their draught must have been very uncertain. A fire must have air.”

“It is estimated,” remarked the Doctor, “that for every pound of bituminous coal near two hundred cubic feet of common air are required to make an economical fire,—that is, to mix with and burn all the gases; and that, in a fire like this, the weight of the air consumed is greater than that of all the other materials that go into the furnace,—coal, ore, everything.”

Lawrence looked astonished. “In that case,” said he, “when people get in their winter’s supply of fuel, and grumble at the cost, they might console themselves by thinking that the biggest part of what they burn they get for nothing; it don’t have to come in carts, and they don’t have to settle the bill for it.”

“And boys of your age don’t get the back-ache shovelling it in at the cellar window,” said the Doctor. “It comes, as a great many of our blessings do, so bountifully and so invisibly, that we don’t appreciate it. It is well to stop and think of such things sometimes.”

“Now,” said the gaffer, “I’ll show you where the melting-pots are made.”

Emerging from the cave, they crossed a corner of the yard, and entered a long brick building, in the first room of which they found a man at work, on a low bench, in the midst of piles of rubbish.

“Here is where the clay of the pots that have been used up in the furnaces is broken up and cleaned. This man, as you see, takes up a piece at a time, and knocks off the glazed side, and the side that has been in contact with the fire. Then it is ready to be pounded up, and used over again.”

They passed on to a second room, which was long and low and gloomy, and contained several bins, in one of which a man appeared, balancing himself on a bar laid across it, like a gymnast.

“It takes the very best quality of clay for melting-pots,” said the gaffer. “This comes from Stourbridge, in England. It is first ground in that hopper, and mixed with the burnt clay, then the whole is shovelled into one of these bins, and worked.”

They turned to the gymnast, who, Lawrence now saw, was treading a mass of moist clay with his naked feet. Before him was an empty space, extending across the bin, into which he presently got down, and shovelled back, upon the heap he had been treading, more clay from a dense mass at the opposite end. Then he got up again, with his bare feet, steadying his movements by means of the bar, and recommenced treading.

“That don’t seem to be very lively work,” said Lawrence.

“It’s better than a treadmill,” replied the man. “There’s variety about it. For variety I go to shovelling; and then for variety I go to treading.”

“But you don’t keep at this all the while,—do you?”

“When I begin a batch, I never leave it, except to eat and sleep, till it’s finished. I can’t give it any peace.”

“How long do you work it?”

Drawn by W. J. Hennessy.]      [See page 42.

“About seven weeks.” The man looked up at a chalk-mark on the wall. “I have been five weeks on this.”

“Is it possible,” said the Doctor, “that clay requires so much manual, or I may say pedal, labor in its preparation?”

“Nothing else will do,” said the gaffer. “Machinery has been tried, but there is nothing like the naked foot.”

“Could you make equally durable pots without putting in the burnt clay?”

“Pots made of raw clay alone wouldn’t stand at all; they would crack. We must put in the old burnt clay to temper them. You come up stairs.”

As the gaffer threw open the door of an upper room, Lawrence fancied that he was taking them to visit a small menagerie. The loft appeared filled with monsters. They resembled exceedingly chubby young elephant calves, as much as anything. But, what was most extraordinary, they were standing about the room, a herd of fifty or more, holding up short round necks, all with their heads cut off! At a second glance he discovered that they were never designed to have heads, or legs either; and that the great hole he found in each pitifully uplifted headless neck was nothing more nor less than the usual opening into the—melting-pot.

These were the finished pots. Others were unfinished. There were two workmen in the room, one of whom was engaged in cutting off slices of a thick clay loaf, and making them over into rolls. He cut the slices by means of a wire furnished with a wooden handle at each end; and he shaped the rolls with his hands. The rolls—which looked like short, moist sausages, laid side by side on the table—were taken by the second workman, and used in building up the pots.

Lawrence noticed that he worked but a few minutes on one, then went to another, and he inquired the reason.

“If I should build a pot right up from the bottom, with soft clay,” replied the man, “it would all sink down to the floor with its own weight. We must leave each pot to dry a little, before we add much to it.”

Lawrence noticed how skilfully he applied one end of a roll to the mass, and pressed it in, working it towards him, around the edge of the pot; leaving no chance for an air-bubble to hide away in it, and expand and crack the clay when afterwards subjected to heat; shaping and smoothing all with his hand, and rounding the top into a dome. The boy watched and admired, and said at length he thought it “quite an art.”

The man had just pressed the end of a roll upon the back of one of his monsters, and he left it sticking out ludicrously like a tail, while he answered, “It’s no art; it’s only a notion. It takes a little gumption, and a deal of patience,—that’s all.”

“I’d rather be you up here than that man treading down stairs; you have some exercise for your mind,” said Lawrence.

“I’d sooner be the man down stairs,” replied the artist. “He has no care on his mind but to hear the bell, and go to dinner. But I’m all the while in trouble,—fearing my pots won’t come out right, dreading they may crack, or something, and I’ll be shown the gate.” And, seizing hold of the tail, he proceeded to work it around towards the side until it had disappeared in the mass.

“How long will such a pot as this last?”

“There’s no telling anything about it. It may crack in a week, or it may run four or five months. Two made just alike, of the same batch of clay, will act that way. There’s no help for it, but just to break ’em up and work ’em over again.”

“They are like some people I know,” said the Doctor, “who are always in the furnace of affliction, or being broken and trodden underfoot, and made ready for another turn at the fire. Stourbridge clay is much like human clay, after all.”

“But this clay gets a little rest in here,” said the gaffer. “We like to have a pot a year old before we use it. When one is wanted, we lower it on a truck through this trap door, and run it into a pot arch, which is nothing but a great oven, or kiln, where it is heated by degrees, and left about a week, and then taken out red-hot, and run into its place in an arch of one of the great furnaces.”

Lawrence said he should think that must be an operation worth seeing;—a heavy pot like that, red-hot! “How much does it weigh?”

“About two thousand pounds.”

“And how much does it hold?” asked the Doctor.

“Something like twenty-three hundred-weight of material,” said the gaffer, “which we will now go and see.”

In the yard below they found a man knocking the head out of a hogshead turned down on its side, which proved to be full of broken glass.

“This we buy to melt over again. Good flint glass is worth to us about two cents a pound. This cask came from New Orleans; some of it was perhaps picked up by the rag-pickers. Did you ever watch them turning over piles of rubbish, or raking the gutters with their hooks? You’ll see them carefully fish out bits of flint glass, and put them into their bags, along with old rags, old bones, and pieces of old coal. The old rags go to the paper-makers, or shoddy-makers; and the old glass, and perhaps some of the old bones, come to us.”

“What do you do with old bones?” asked Lawrence, seeing a large pile of them in a corner of the yard.

“We use many different substances in making different kinds of glass. We use bones—or phosphate of lime, which is what bones are mostly composed of—in making opaque white glass. Now come into the cullet-room.”

“Cullet?—what is cullet?”

The gaffer showed two old women sorting over heaps of broken glass, and said, “That is cullet.”

“Where did you ever get such a name?”

The gaffer could not tell. But the Doctor said it was probably the French cueillette (from the same root as our word cull), meaning a gathering, a picked-up lot, a collection (also from the same root), and said he thought it applied very aptly to such a curious heap.

“A vast quantity accumulates about a glass-factory,” said the gaffer. “Sometimes you would think more than half goes into the waste-pans, when we are blowing. But nothing is wasted. As the old, burnt-out pots are good to mix with fresh clay in making new ones, so cullet, melted over again with the other materials, improves the quality of the product. Now for the other materials.”

“What! do you use sugar?” said Lawrence, as they came to a number of upright open barrels.

“Taste it,” said the gaffer.

“Sand!” exclaimed Lawrence, the moment his fingers touched it. “But don’t it look like pulverized white sugar? Where do you get it?”

“From Berkshire County. It is washed there, and put up wet, to prevent it from sifting out of the barrels. Here we are drying it in this sand-oven,”—and the gaffer showed a heap spread out on a large, pan-shaped table, heated from beneath. “Sand,” he added, “is the principal article in the manufacture of flint glass.”

“Why do you call it flint?”

“In the English factories,” said the gaffer, “it used to be made of flint stone, broken up and ground. But in this country glass-makers found sand much easier to be obtained. They got it at first from Demerara, in South America; homeward-bound ships brought it as ballast. But the War of 1812 interfered with commerce, and compelled them to look at home for their sand, as for many other things. At first they used the sand of Plymouth Beach, until better was found at Morris River, in New Jersey. But a few years ago sand of the first quality turned up in Berkshire County. This is almost pure silica. Silica is the article required, whether it occurs in flint or sand.”

“And what do you put with it to make glass?”

“You can make glass of two materials,—silica and an alkali. But it is good for nothing. It has no solidity. It will dissolve in hot water. To give it density and hardness, we add either lime, or—this material.”

“Red sand?” said Lawrence. “No, this isn’t sand!”—putting his hand into the barrel. “What is it?”

“Red-lead,” said the Doctor.

“Ground and sifted, ready for use,” added the gaffer. “It is not ground fine, like the red-lead painters use. This or litharge—which is another form of almost the same substance, and answers the same purpose—is used in making flint glass.”

“But what is red-lead? What is it made of?”

“It is made of common lead, such as you run bullets out of. You’ve noticed, in melting it, that a thin skin always forms on the lead, which you call dross, and throw away? That is a result of the mixture of the oxygen of the air with the lead it comes in contact with; that is, so much of the lead is oxidized. It is on its way to become litharge, or red-lead, which is lead oxidized to the highest degree. To make the oxide, they melt lead on the floor of a large oven. It becomes a bright lake of melted metal, at first; it is stirred, and kept burning, until the last appearance of anything like liquid lead is worked out of it. Some glass-factories make their own red-lead; but ours comes from Galena, in just this shape, as you see it.”

“In what proportion do you mix your materials for flint glass?”

“Three parts of sand, two of red-lead, and one of alkali, is about as simple a statement as I can make of it. That will make you good strong glass. But there will be a tinge of green in it, such as you see in a pane of common window-glass if you look across the edge of it. That comes from a minute quantity of iron which is contained even in the purest silica. A little arsenic, and oxide of manganese take it out, or, as we say, decolorize it. Too much lead gives a yellowish cast to the glass. The oxides of other metals are used to give different colors. In making different kinds of glass, the materials may be varied indefinitely. Boracic acid may take the place of silica. Oxide of zinc may take the place of red-lead; in window and plate glass, lime takes its place. A variety of other substances are used to produce certain effects. But the common transparent glass-ware used in every house is the kind we call flint, and it is composed of the materials I have named,—silica, oxide of lead, and the alkalies, with arsenic and oxide of manganese to decolorize it.”

“What do you use for alkalies?” asked the Doctor.

“Pearlash and saltpetre, or pearlash and soda. Here is where we purify the saltpetre.”

The gaffer showed a tank, the bottom and sides of which were thickly incrusted with beautiful large crystals. “The saltpetre,” he explained, “is dissolved in hot water. The liquid is skimmed, and allowed to cool. As the crystals form, they exclude all impurities, which are drained off with the remaining liquid. The pearlash is purified in a different way. It is dissolved, like the saltpetre; but the impurities, except what are skimmed off, settle to the bottom, in what we call slurry, which we sell to chemical works. The liquid is then evaporated in these large caldrons, until only the dry, clear pearlash remains.”

The gaffer then showed where the several materials were all thrown together into a tank, and mixed. “They are then ready to be loaded upon this carriage, and taken to the blowing-house,—which we will now go and see.”

This was delightful news to Lawrence, who was getting tired of these preliminaries, and eager to witness the wonders of blowing and working the melted material. What he saw we shall endeavor to describe in our next number.

J. T. Trowbridge.


To the young folks,—to all the young folks,—to my especial friends among them, and to those whom I shall never know except as a distant crowd of bright and happy boys and girls whom I like to imagine reading this Magazine, I dedicate the following pages. Sometimes, perhaps, when they have finished the stories, they will enjoy turning to my more serious chapters.

There are few among you, I fancy, who have not grown up under the impression that the world we live upon has been always, so far as its general features are concerned, much what it is now. You know that forests have been cleared, that countries have been marked out according to certain boundaries, that cities have been built, and that countless changes have taken place upon the earth’s surface; but these changes are all connected with the history of man. Your school-books tell you little or nothing of the extraordinary events which preceded by ages the very existence of mankind, and prepared the world to be our home. Your map shows you the United States as they exist to-day, and your lesson in geography gives you the name and boundaries, the rivers, mountains, and lakes, the cities and towns, of every State; but while it teaches you so many facts about the State of New York, for instance, it tells you nothing of an ancient sea-shore running through its centre from east to west, the record of a time when America itself was but a long, narrow island, around which the ocean washed.

You go, perhaps, to Trenton Falls, and gather there the curious animal remains of which the rocks are full; but as you pick up the fossil shells, or look at the curious old crustacea called trilobites, I doubt whether it occurs to you that you are doing just what you might do at Newport, or Long Branch, or Nahant, namely, walking on a beach, and picking up the animals which lived upon it.

In the very spot from which I write, Ithaca, in the State of New York, lying on a line parallel with the old sea-shore of Trenton, the young people are all familiar with the broken bits of clay, slate, or limestone, to be found at every roadside, filled with shells and remains of marine animals; but I doubt whether they ask themselves how it happens that here, so far from the ocean, sea-shells are so common that the very rocks are crowded with them. Perhaps they wonder how they came there; but, as their school-books tell them nothing about it, they are contented to let it remain a mystery.

Indeed, it is not very long since the wisest scientific men asked themselves the same question, and could find no answer. Only by very slow degrees have they learned, that, in the process of building the world, sand and mud, sea-shores, lake and river bottoms, have been consolidated, have hardened into rock, petrifying within them the animals living upon their surface, and the plants growing upon their soil. It is not very difficult, when one has the clew to it, to understand how this may happen. An animal, dying, sinks into the sand or mud, as the case may be; his solid parts—such as the hard envelopes we call shells, or the skeleton of a fish—do not decay; if more and more sand or mud is piled above him, and hardens into rock, in the course of time, by the pressure of its own weight, the animal is embalmed there for ages, till for some purpose or other the rock is split, and he is found in his strange tomb.

Of these things I will tell you more in detail hereafter, if you care to listen. Just now I only want to show that our world has assumed its present outline and general character very gradually, and that creation has been a process of growth, not a single complete act.

Let us return to our geography lesson. Go a little farther west, and we come to the bank of the Mississippi, and our map shows us the great river flowing from north to south, from Minnesota to Louisiana, till it empties into the Gulf of Mexico, but our geography tells us nothing of a great gulf once occupying almost the whole of what is called the Mississippi Valley, when the States now forming the boundaries of the river had no existence, and all that part of our continent lay open to the ocean. Nor does it say anything of a time when there were neither Rocky Mountains nor Alleghanies, when immense marshes, on which grew forests wholly unlike our forests, filled the central part of the United States. No doubt it speaks of the coal beds in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and explains how coal is formed by the decomposition of plants; but these coal beds have a story of their own to tell, which would interest the dullest mind. They were built up by the slow decay of vast forests, in which the largest trees were of a kind known to us now almost entirely as ferns, rushes, reeds, and the like. It is true that some large representatives of them still exist, but they grow in very different climates from ours,—in the tropical parts of South America, where there are tall and stately tree-ferns, and where some of the palms also resemble the trees of the coal forests.

You may ask how we know all this, if nothing remains of these forests except the coal. We know it because the coal beds are full of stems, leaves, fragments of trunks, fruits, seed-vessels, in all of which the structure is perfectly preserved. The coal, you must remember, was once only mud, the trees falling in swampy ground, soaked with rain, slowly decomposing, and forming a rich loamy soil, as trees do now, if they are left to decay where they lie. My young readers must not suppose, however, that one or twenty such forests would make a coal deposit of much thickness; on the contrary, countless generations of trees must have grown up and perished, before the beds of coal were formed which feed all our fires to-day. As the layers of vegetable soil formed by the decomposition of such successive forests were heaped one upon another, the pressure of the upper ones consolidated those below, and gradually transformed the whole mass from a soft to a hard substance. Here and there, however, a branch, a fallen leaf, a fruit or seed, has been buried in this soil without decaying; and by such remains we are enabled to decipher the character of these old woods.

Then came another process; this mass had to be baked, to give it the character of coal. For reasons which, so far as I understand them myself, I shall try to explain hereafter, the interior of the earth is hotter than its surface. Here and there this internal heat finds an outlet,—comes in contact with what geologists call the crust of our globe, that is, with the solid envelope which forms its surface. This envelope is composed of a great number of materials,—sand, mud, lime, &c.; and these materials are changed into a variety of substances by the action of heat. The effect of this heating process upon the deposits left by the dying forests of which we have been talking was to change them into coal. We shall see hereafter, if you care to know more about it, how the petroleum of which we hear so much nowadays is connected with this same internal furnace, and with the coal beds themselves.

Leaving the Middle States, and going farther south, we read there the same story of change and gradual growth. In the days when the coal forests existed, there was no Florida at all. It has been built on to our continent by coral animals,—strange little workmen, the busiest and most patient architects the world has ever seen, whose history we will study together.

In short, all the countries with the present aspect of which your geography makes you familiar have grown slowly, through innumerable ages, to be what we find them. Europe was once an archipelago of islands in the wide ocean,—a bit of France here, a fraction of Germany there, Russia just showing herself above the waters, neither Alps nor Apennines nor Pyrenees to be seen. There are regions of Central Europe, now far removed from the sea-shores, the soil of which is so filled with remains of marine animals, that you cannot take up a handful of roadside dust without gathering a variety of shells. The mountains of the Jura, in Switzerland, are full of such localities. There is a very romantic gorge running from the base of the Jura, near Montagny, to the village of St. Croix, about half-way up the slope of the range. I well remember wandering through it one summer afternoon with a party of friends, and our amusing ourselves, as we walked along, by breaking off bits from the brittle rocks forming the walls of the precipitous chasm, and examining the shells which fell from them as they crumbled under our touch. Resting afterwards on the mountain terrace above, while we ate our lunch of bread and cheese, and looking across the plain of Switzerland to the Alps, it was difficult to believe that the ocean had ever washed over that fertile land, and had broken against the base of the very range on which we sat.

In the series of chapters I propose to write for “Our Young Folks,” I shall attempt to explain, as far as modern geology teaches it to us, how these changes were brought about; what agents have been at work fashioning this earth on which we live, building it up or wearing it away, heating it in the great furnace of nature, cooling it gradually till a crust was formed upon its surface. We shall see that vapors condensed, and oceans slowly gathered about this world of ours, that gradually land was lifted above the face of the waters, that after a while life stirred on those newly baptized shores, and that at last the earth, so carefully prepared for this end, became inhabited, but not by beings of exactly the same kind as those which live upon it now.

True, there were corals and strange old star-fishes mounted on stems, and spreading their fringed cups like flowers in the water; there were shells endless in number, infinite in variety; there were crustacea, that is, animals resembling our shrimps, crabs, and lobsters; and there were fishes also,—but neither fish nor shrimp nor shell nor star-fish was our familiar acquaintance of to-day. In their general structure they were the same, so that the naturalist recognizes them at once; but that structure was presented under singular, old-fashioned forms, very unlike their representatives now.

All the earliest animals were marine, for the very good reason that in those days the world was wholly ocean and low sea-shore. There was neither forest nor field; no very wide expanses of surface were raised above the water, and the dry land was not yet prepared to receive its myriads of inhabitants. But the beaches were ready; their sands and shallows swarmed with a busy, crowded life; and let me remind you again that, when we split some bit of inland rock, and find it full of shells, broken fragments of crustacea, or star-fish, we do but break in upon one of the little colonies which had their homes upon those primitive shores, lived and died upon them as our animals of the same kind live and die upon our sea-shores to-day.

Nor is it strange that we find small fragments of rock thronged with these remains, while large masses in their immediate neighborhood do not contain any. We see the same thing on our beaches now; many of these animals are naturally gregarious; others are brought together by the fact that in certain very limited localities they find exactly what they need to sustain existence. How often, in looking for sea-anemones, or star-fishes, or crabs, we find them crowded into some little corner they have chosen for their home, while we may hunt for them in vain over all the neighboring space.

Gradually I hope to make you acquainted with some of these early animals, and to show you that not only the earth, but the beings living upon its surface, have been different at successive periods. We must, however, always remember that there has been a connection between the past and present; that the period to which we ourselves belong, and all those preceding it, are chapters of one and the same story, intelligently linked from first to last. We know it but in part; many of the pages are so torn and defaced that it seems impossible to decipher them, and some are wholly missing. And yet, bit by bit, the students of nature are putting the broken record together, and puzzling it out for us.

We will not, however, go back at once to the ancient world and its inhabitants, in our talks about Natural History. What is near and familiar is more readily understood than what is strange and distant; a special fact is more easily explained than a wide, comprehensive view. So I will begin, not with the great features of the world’s history, but with a very small portion of its present surface.

In my next chapter I will tell you something of the peninsula of Florida. We shall see with what silent, quiet patience the ages have added this single outlying State to our continent, and we shall then be better prepared to understand the more general phenomena affecting the outline and character of the whole earth.

E. C. Agassiz.


In the glorious Christmas weather

All the stars came flocking together,—

Flocking into the frosty sky,

Jostling and sparkling, brightening and darkling,

Winking and blinking, far and nigh.


Proud Orion, high and large,

Looked, as he leaned on his silver targe,

At Cassiopeia’s jewelled chair,

While his heart-beats played with belt and blade,

Bickering and flickering everywhere.


He heeded not the rabble of stars,

Nor the balanced and blood-red spear of Mars,

Nor the angry torch of Sirius, nay,

Nor the light like dawn, where the splendid swan

With wide-stretched wings swept the Milky Way.


And just as little they heeded him,—

The lovesick giant with glittering limb,—

For they were noting the bells in the spires,

The cheer and mirth on the dark round earth,

And the lighting of happy Christmas fires.


The wind was blowing aloft that night,—

Blowing the thin clouds high and light

To airy ribbons, till one hung down,

Gleaming and glimmering, shining and shimmering,

A gauzy veil from the Northern Crown.


And under the folds of the vaporous veil

There grew the semblance of features pale,

Of floating hair, and of shadowy eyes

Gazing and growing, glooming and glowing

In the face of the Queen of the Winter Skies,—


The darkly radiant Queen, who knew

The nook of each frozen drop of dew,

The fortunes of all beneath her reign,

The brooks that bubble in icy trouble,

The frost-flowers stealing across the pane.


And she counted the little children, too,

And sent them such dreams, the long night through,

Of cousins and chums and sleds and drums,

Of gay disguises and glad surprises,

Of stockings and tarts, and wonderful plums!


Out of the cold and tingling dark

Lit by so many a diamond spark,

Till, close on the breaking edge of day,

Through casements stooping the Dreams came trooping,

Rollicking, frolicking, ready for play.


Darling Bessie, so white and so fair,

The pillow all rich with her yellow hair,

Was clasping a doll with angel-wings,

While a queer dream rocked her, and told her the Doctor

And Santa Claus were the self-same things.


And who was so gay at the dawn of day

As Bessie and Marian, Maud and May,

When joyful Harry came bursting through,

And grinned like a gaby, and said a new baby—

A sister! he’d kissed her!—had brought the dream true?


But long ere the Christmas sunrise came,

Wrapping the white world with rosy flame,

The kind Queen questioned if all were done;

For, with so many children, ’twas fairly bewildering

To choose the fit dream for every one.


And she shivered when, searching far and wide,

She saw on the lonely common’s side,

Where the winds from their four wild quarters blow,

There lay little Honor with nothing upon her

Save the careless coverlet of the snow.


For Honor no stocking hung over the hearth,

No hand prepared the morrow’s mirth,

Only around her the loose drift whirled

Where the child had dropped when her tired feet stopped,—

For no one loved her in all the world.


Though the Queen of its jewels stripped her crown,

She could make no snowdrift as warm as down,

She could give the smile on no mother’s face,—

The flying gleam of some happy dream

Was all she could cast across the place.


“Since to-morrow the child must beg her way,

To-night,” cried the Queen, “let her heart be gay.

Deck her, O Dreams, a Christmas-tree

With branches that even reach into heaven!”

“And we,” sang the stars, “will the candles be!”


Straight from the pitiful Queen’s far realm,

Into the boughs of a bending elm,

Darted a bevy of flashing Dreams,

While each icy spray caught an azure ray,

And tossed it back in a mist of beams.


Then from every stem a smiling sprite

Scattered glory upon the night,

And from bough to bough a rainbow flew;

The icicles tinkled, the gay stars twinkled,

And cherub faces came peering through.


And grander and greater, as Honor dreamed,

The height of the glittering elm-tree seemed,

Till over Orion its branches were creeping,

And their mystical dances of banners and lances

Beneath it the Northern Lights were keeping.


What smiles on the cherub faces bloomed!

What shining shadows around her loomed!

What pillowing arms bore her high and higher!

How this seraph’s pinions cleft the blue dominions,

As the white flame fans from some sacred fire!


Forgotten the frozen sleep below,

Where the wild winds tossed the careless snow,

The constellations that over her wheeled,—

Such warmth and lustre about her cluster

In faces like flowers of some fadeless field!


For such music breathes over happy Honor,

Such beautiful angels are crowding upon her,

Such a tender hand has its blessing given!

Ah, waken who may at the dawn of day,

But Honor already has waked in Heaven!

Harriet Prescott Spofford.


Kitty sat by the fireside one winter evening, her bright eyes flashing back the firelight, and a joyful smile on her rosy lips.

She was as happy as a queen. In her hand she held tight three five-dollar gold pieces, which was something quite astonishing in these days, when all the money we use is made of oblong bits of dirty green paper.

A dear little old Quaker uncle had given Kitty the gold for a birthday present, and had said to her, “Kitty, thee is twelve years old to-day; thee may choose thy present for theeself.”

The little old Quaker uncle did not speak grammatically when he said “thee is” and “theeself”; but that was his way and his affair,—not mine.

“Let—me—see,” said Kitty, with great deliberation. “Yes—I must have lots of candies—of course. Then there’s dolls! but I have Clementine and Puss, and the Major and the baby,—I guess that’s dolls enough. Well—books! but I have Aunt Fanny’s ‘Nightcaps,’ ‘Mittens,’ ‘Socks,’ and ‘Pop-guns,’—and those lovely ‘Young Folks’ every month. That makes a good many books. A gold watch would be nice; or a diamond ring, with three big diamonds in it, like mamma’s; or some beautiful coral ear-rings, only my ears have no holes in them,—what a bother! I wish they had! Dear me! if only some one would tell me what to get with my gold pieces!”

I will,” said a pleasant voice.

Kitty looked round, and immediately became so frightened that she shut her eyes tight, and gave a little squeal; then, hearing nothing more, she peeped with the tip of one end of one eye, and saw standing before her the oddest, queerest-looking little old soul you can imagine. Her nose came out so far, and her mouth went in so deep, and her chin stuck up so high, that she looked for all the world like those wooden nut-crackers the Swiss people make.

I cannot tell you the color of her eyes; I only know that there was a kind, tender expression in them, which almost took away the ugly look of the rest of her face,—like some people you and I love. They are plain enough, that is a fact; but a good and beautiful spirit dwells in their hearts, and looks out at their eyes, and all little children (who know more than you dream of) love them at once.

“So you think I’m quite a fright,” said the fairy,—for, sure enough, she was one.

Kitty blushed till her ears were perfectly crimson.

“Well, so I am. It’s enough to make one ugly to see all the selfishness, and quarrelling, and wicked conduct that I have to see in my travels round the world. I am the Birthday Fairy; and I have come, as you desire, to advise you how to spend your money. Will you go with me?”

By this time Kitty had not only recovered from her alarm, but she was looking lovingly at the fairy, and thinking that she was not so very ugly after all. In great glee she put on her curly white Astrachan coat—which made her look behind like a little white bear—and her white fur hat, beneath which her wavy golden hair floated out over her shoulders as if the little bear had been buying a wig, to be in the fashion; then she drew on a pair of red mittens,—so red that putting them on was almost as good as warming your hands at a blazing fire; then she “put on” her white muff, by passing over her head the cord to which it was fastened; then she dropped the precious gold pieces into a funny little pocket outside of her muff,—it was hidden by a darling little ermine’s head with sharp black eyes. Then she popped her red mittens, with her hands inside of them, into her muff; and then she said, with a brisk little jump, “I’m all ready! don’t you see?”

It was enchanting to go out at night; and doubly so to travel with a fairy. The stars twinkled kindly at them; the man in the moon grinned ridiculously; and the gas-lights made little wavering bows as they passed. Kitty danced every step of the way, and everybody agreed that this was a very extra occasion indeed.

The very first place they stopped at was the second story of a fashionable house in Fifth Avenue,—for all this took place in the city of New York, you must know.

A birthday party had been celebrated in this house the evening before with great grandeur, on which occasion all the children invited (about a hundred) and the children in the house (nine) had crammed themselves full with candies; and the nine in the house, the next morning, had eaten up every scrap they could find that had been left over.

O the doleful dumps! what a rueful set they were now! Nine little beds, each containing a young human, doubled up with the stomach-ache, groaning with a headache, and all making the most horrible faces. The doctor was there, with nine mustard plasters, nine emetics, nine doses of castor-oil, and goodness only knows what else! And he plastered all of them on their nine little stomachs with a mustard plaster, though eighteen little kicking legs tried to hinder him, and poured down each of their nine screaming throats a dose of castor-oil, and an emetic, and goodness only knows what else, until they all choked, and got nine of the most dreadful red noses with screaming and crying; and poor little Kitty’s ears tingled with the noise and hubbub, and the very thought of candy was so sickening, that she said to herself, “One thing is certain! not one cent of my birthday money shall go for candy!”—which was a very good resolution, don’t you think so, my dear little reader?

“So you’ve concluded not to spend your money in candy,” said the fairy.

Kitty started, and the words, “She knows all my thoughts,” passed through her brain.

“Of course I do,” said the fairy. “You can’t hide anything from me, but I can hide as much as I please from others. No one knows we are here; we are invisible. I thought that you might like to judge for yourself whether eating ‘lots of candy’ would make you happy, or buying it would be the most sensible way of spending your birthday money.”

“O no, no!” cried Kitty, with a shudder; and, taking a last pitying look at the doubled-up and groaning children, they seemed to float out of the room, and were in the gas-lighted streets again.

The stars twinkled more kindly than before; the man in the moon grinned like a hippogriff,—whatever that is; and the people in the streets were laughing to make themselves fat, and chattering and walking fast to keep themselves warm; and Kitty went skipping along as if she had twenty pairs of feet, and was dancing with the whole of them.

Presently they came near a magnificent toy-shop, the blazing light from which created quite an illumination. A crowd of people were staring in at the windows, and among them was one thin little girl with a basket of matches on her arm.

It really seemed to be impossible to stretch two eyes any wider open than that little girl’s eyes were stretched. They were nearly popping out of her head with admiration and longing for a pretty little doll in the right-hand corner of the window. Between patching and fading, her poor frock was of half a dozen colors; but her shivering hands were of only one: they were purple with the freezing, biting cold.

Kitty’s blue eyes fell upon the child, who was still looking and longing. The blue eyes followed the direction of the longing ones, and, strange to relate, the pretty little doll in the right-hand corner smiled sweetly at Kitty; and then, all at once, a thought seemed to float out of heaven, and rest like a dove on Kitty’s heart.

“Come, dear birthday fairy,—come quick!” she said. With a hop, skip, and jump she was in the shop. The next moment she had bought the little doll in the right-hand corner. It cost half of one of her gold pieces,—but, hardly waiting for the change, she ran out and placed it tenderly in the match-girl’s arms, her face radiant with love and happiness.

“ ’Tis for you, little girl,” she whispered; “I bought it for you with some of my birthday money.”

I wish I could describe to you the wonderful, beautiful joy which spread like a sudden glory all over that poor child’s face, but I cannot. You must do as Kitty did. I can only tell you what the poor little thing said; it was nothing but “Oh, O-h, O—h,” each time softer, and breathed out longer, as she gently smoothed the elegant blue tarlatan dress, and touched with her trembling fingers the flaxen curls of the doll. But these little words were quite enough to show her intense delight, and they filled Kitty’s heart with joy as she skipped away with the fairy.

The beautiful stars seemed actually to smile this time. As to that queer old chap,—the man in the moon,—he was winking now, as well as grinning with approbation, at Kitty’s kind thought and deed. And she would have stood on her head with happiness, only girls don’t do such things; so she took it out by hopping on one foot for quite a distance.

Somehow or other, the fairy and Kitty were now in a wretched street, narrow and dirty, where all the houses were lop-sided, and nearly tumbling down.

A moment after, they found themselves in a low room, in the top story of one of these houses.

“Look, Kitty,” said the fairy.

The little girl saw a miserable bed on the floor in one corner, on which lay a soldier with one arm. A deep red scar, as from an awful sword-cut, stretched across his forehead. He was tossing with fever; his wounds, carelessly healed, were inflamed and very painful. He had been lying there two weeks.

Three children were in the room,—the youngest asleep in another corner, with big tears still trembling on his little pinched face. He had fallen asleep crying for a piece of bread. The next one was crying now, sobbing out, “Oh, give me a little, little piece! only one piece of bread! oh, I am hungry, hungry! Give me just one piece. I’ll promise not to ask for any more, if you’ll only give me one piece.” The eldest, a girl ten years of age, was begging her to hush, her own lips quivering, her poor little heart almost breaking with grief.

They had no mother. She was dead, and this oldest girl did all she could, by begging, to keep the family from starving. There was no fire in the room, and they were shivering with the biting cold,—starving and freezing!

O, wonderful magic of a kind thought in a pitying, generous heart! One look, and Kitty had rushed down the stairs into the street. The next moment she was in the grocery store at the corner. “Quick, quick!” she cried, “give me some bundles of wood, some coal, some candles, some tea, some sugar, some milk, some bread, some—some”—she looked around and saw oranges—“yes, some oranges, and—and—butter,—a pound of butter,—and—O, do hurry, please, and come with me.”

The grocery man—especially when he saw the gold piece which Kitty offered in payment—skipped about at such a rate, to oblige her, that he trod on the cat’s tail, bumped his own head, tumbled down in a heap of cabbages, and made pow-wow enough for forty Indians. But never mind! out came a little hand-cart with a roll and a rattle, and in it were tumbled all the things before you could count ten; and then the grocery man ran at a red-faced boy who was asleep on a pile of potatoes, and cried “Boo!” at which the boy jumped—not half a mile high, O dear, no!—and sneezed, and took hold of the hand-cart, and dragged it after Kitty, who ran all the way back to the wretched room.

“Well done!” cried the fairy, who had stayed behind, as the eager little girl whisked around, and pushed the red-faced boy into the room, his arms full of parcels; then sent him down to get the rest; then pulled his cap off, and asked him to “please to make the fire.” Something in Kitty’s voice, so sweet and clear, and her smile so tender, seemed to turn that gruff, red-faced boy all at once into a kind little chap; and to his own astonishment he tore off his coat, and went down on his knees at the old broken stove, and never stopped puffing and blowing until a fine fire was blazing away; and, in five minutes after, an old tin shaving-pot full of water was singing, on the top of it, like a teakettle’s first cousin. Then Kitty thanked the red-faced boy, and gave him ten cents for himself, and a smile worth a dollar, and sent him away as pleased as Punch.

The sick soldier and the two children who were awake had watched all these doings in amazement, never speaking a word. They only saw Kitty, for the fairy kept herself invisible to them; but the little girl knew, by the light growing bright and brighter in the deep, calm, beautiful eyes of the fairy, how much she approved of all that had been done.

And now Kitty peeled an orange, and fed the poor soldier with its cool, grateful juice, while his eldest child gave her poor little starving sister, not “a little, little piece,” but a big, big slice of the nice white bread, and woke up the youngest, so that his little empty stomach might also be filled. O, you should have seen the happiness then! You should have seen him toddle up to Kitty and his father, and generously offer them a bite, it was so good! You should have heard the teakettle’s first cousin boiling away like a good fellow, telling them in a little squeaky voice to “hurry-up-and-make-the-tea! hurry-up-and-make-the-tea-I’m-all-right!”

So Kitty and the little girl and the fairy hurried up and made the tea. It had to be put right into the shaving-pot,—and oh, oh! nobody knows how good it was! so good, with milk and sugar! for let me tell you what I am pretty sure you don’t know,—poor people seldom, if ever, have milk and sugar with their tea. They are thankful to get the tea alone; and as to butter on their bread, they have that about once in a blue moon. When next you see a blue moon shining in the sky, you may make up your mind that all the miserably poor people are sitting in their parlors, eating bread and butter; but pray don’t forget that they can also get these comforting things when good little girls run around hunting them up, with their birthday fairies.

After tea, strange to say, the sick soldier and his children all fell into a sweet, comfortable sleep. You must not think this impolite in them, when they had such fine company. They could not help it. They were worn out with grief and fatigue and pain; and the good fairy, who—as I told you—was invisible to them, had pressed their eyelids down with her soft, kind hands.

So Kitty placed on the rickety table all the money left of her two gold pieces, which would buy food for many days; then, gently shutting the door, the two went away.

O how the beautiful stars twinkled this time, and the man in the moon actually blew Kitty a kiss! It slid swiftly down on one of his brightest beams, and softly pressed her cheek like a zephyr. By this you see that the man in the moon can kiss as well as the rest of us; and, if you wish him to kiss you, you must go into the houses of the sick and poor, and help and comfort them, when his dear old round face is looking down upon you.

But don’t tell, if he should; for it would certainly get into the almanac, and then all the dirty people that snuff up snuff and chew tobacco will be wanting him to kiss them, and that would be very disagreeable.

Kitty’s cheeks glowed like twin pink roses, and she danced along, every pulse beating with happiness.

Presently they came to a church. Lights gleamed from the painted windows, red, purple, and gold, and the grand notes of an organ thrilled the air. Voices sweet and tender blended with deep, vibrating ones, which floated through the aisles, and then died softly away.

“Let us go in,” said the fairy. Kitty’s sweet face grew grave and reverent as they entered and took a seat near the door, just as the minister was repeating this verse from the Bible: “Give alms of thy goods, and never turn thy face from any poor man; and the face of the Lord shall not be turned away from thee.”

Then he told of the privations and terrible sufferings of our own missionaries in the far West, the frontiers of our great country: how they had to ride or walk miles and miles in storm and sunshine, in heat and cold, to teach the great love and mercy of our Heavenly Father to the widely scattered people. He told of the poverty of most of these people,—so poor, that they could pay but very little towards the support of a minister and his family, who often suffered for the want of clothes, and sometimes had not sufficient food to eat,—the poor wife working early and late, and the children—the little children—cutting wood and drawing water. “And yet,” he continued, “the souls of the people hunger and thirst for the word of God.”

By this time the big tears stood in Kitty’s eyes, and blinded her; but she heard the good minister cry out, as if from his very soul, “O, will you not help our missionaries in their work? Will you not help them now? for without speedy help they cannot do their Master’s work, and”—here his voice grew low and solemn—“you will have your reward; for our Lord has said that ‘inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.’ ‘To do good and to distribute forget not; for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.’ ”

He was silent. Then four grave, dignified-looking men went up to the minister with quiet steps, and took from his hands each a silver plate, and went from pew to pew, receiving the offerings of the congregation.

The tender breast of the little listening girl had swelled high and higher with loving pity. A solemn awe crept into her heart, and a tender longing to help those poor, hard-working missionaries, whose little children had to cut wood and draw water; their poor bare feet wounded, perhaps, by the flinty paths.

Her last gold piece was in her hand. A tiny rosy flame seemed to rise from its centre, exhaling a delicious fragrance. She bent down to breathe its sweetness. Its golden light illumined her lovely face; and her very heart glowed, and seemed to be singing a song of gladness.

When the silver plate was presented to her, she placed her gold piece softly in it, and said, in a sweet, gentle whisper, “It is for the missionary’s poor little children.”

Strange to say, the same bright glow flashed into the good man’s face as he bowed and passed on.

When the service was ended, they went out, and high, high above the smiling stars and good old moon, an angel looked down with love upon the child, and guarded her safely on her way.

And she was so happy! so happy! She seemed to float along by the side of her beloved birthday fairy, who by her gentle magic had taught Kitty how much more blessed it was to give than to receive; for this, and nothing else, was the secret of her happiness.

Then the fairy gently drew her to her pleasant home, and, placing her in her pretty white bed, she closed in sleep her blue and gleaming eyes.

Aunt Fanny.


“My eye!” said Cud, looking admiringly over the fence. “What ef they was gold, sure enough! wouldn’t I run an’ git one changed, mighty quick?”

Vegetable gold they were indeed, lying in great yellow nuggets here and there over the pumpkin-vines, basking in the still warm beams of an October sun.

“ ’Pears like dey’d took all de sunshine to derselves,” said Cud, again. And so they had; for the suns of a whole summer had burnished them into gold.

Perhaps my young readers are wondering who could own so queer a name as Cud. Well, the boy that owned it owned nothing else in the world, not even himself; for he was black and a slave. His real name was too large for his size. It was quite aristocratic,—Cuthbert Carter; or, as he would tell you with Virginia accent, “Kudbut Ke-arter, sah! I ’longs to de Ke-ar-ters, one ob de berry fust families.” You see they are all first families in Virginia; that is the reason why, when the war began, everybody wanted to be an officer. Poor Cud had little reason to pride himself on his owners,—“de fust blood in Virginy.” It may be that “fust blood” flows hotter and quicker than second-rate blood. It is certain that his young master, Peyton Harrison Carter,—called Marse Pate for short,—possessed a fiery temper. Two years before the day that Cud was standing thinking slowly out his own theory on pumpkins, Marse Pate, in a moment of passion, had given him a stunning blow that sent him reeling down a high flight of stone steps. One crash of pain went through him as though every bone were ground to atoms, then a great dark came whirling down, and he was picked up—lame for life. Poor little Cud! crippled in mind as well as body by a great wrong; for you can easily understand, my little readers, that slavery had given as great a blow to his inner life as his fiery master had given to his poor dark body.

Yet he was sharp in his way, too. He could not play like other children, or work as hard, either, so he had more time to think. He waited on table, and heard talk about the war, and he had his own ideas about it. Marse Pate had gone to fight, and Miss Rose, his young wife, grew pale and sad and silent. The old Missis, though,—Marse Pate’s mother,—was full of fight and fury about the “nigger-stealers,” as she called the Federal Army.

Cud sometimes wished they would steal him.

“But Massa Linkum couldn’t make nothin’ at all out er me,” he said, with a sudden thrill of pain, looking down at his shrunken limb; and a look of intense hate came into his face, that made it hideous. No mask could have changed his expression more than did the thought of Marse Pate.

But now a young lady comes out of the house, and Cud is too shy to stand staring there any longer. She walks slowly through the garden path, singing something softly to herself. Cud has heard it before, and, as she approaches the gate, he catches two lines,—

“And every prospect pleases,

  And only man is vile.

“Reckon dey is vile, sure enough,” says Cud, “specially Marse Pate, when he’s riled.”

The last of the crimson chrysanthemums had burned themselves out on the garden border, where a few fiery flakes still flashed on the grass. Some of tawny red or pale yellow bloomed on sturdily still, but the young lady did not pause to gather them. She only stood a moment, and looked at the—pumpkins, and a very sad face she had the while.

“Reckon she’s a thinkin’ of her mar’s pies,” said Cud, as he cast a reflective glance back at her. And he longed to question her about that wonderful land,—so wonderful that to breathe the very air made one free,—where her home had been before she came South to teach. But he felt too awkward and shy to dare to speak to the fair Miss Alice, and he only slunk away on his homeward road, rather frightened to see how far the sun was sliding towards the west. He had taken a long time to walk that short mile from Wheeling.

But he limped as fast as he could, looking neither at the white and feathery clouds, nor at the pale and waning light, only at the dusty beaten road that stretched out before him,—looking at last, as he neared his home, at something else,—something that made him stop and drop back in a frightened way. What was it that the men were carrying so tenderly through the gate? A wounded man, white and faint, with his life dripping steadily away in a precious crimson tide, a ghost-like likeness of his old enemy, a shadow of his young master,—could that be Marse Pate?

It was indeed. The fiery heart would not beat much longer; the fever of life was going out; the ashes of death whitened cheek and lip.

Cud had no time to think,—time only for a slow horror to break over him like a cold rain, when a rough voice cried: “Here, young un, run for a doctor!—any one, only be quick!”

Marse Pate’s fast-dulling eye had caught sight of the shrinking figure. Something more than pain contracted the white brow.

“He can’t go, he’s lame,” he murmured. “Where’s David?”

“Can you ask?” said the Virginian mother, sternly. “Where is the Yankee camp? One of these men must go, and at once.”

So Cud saw his young master carried in. He wondered if he should have to wait at tea to-night,—if everything would go on as usual, while the life of the master was ebbing away. He stole forlornly into the kitchen, where old Dinah had just finished baking some fragrant corn-bread, and asked her about it. “Go ’long, chile,” she said, not unkindly, giving him a huge bit of the smoking pone; “reckon folks thinks mighty little of their vittles when death’s in a house!” and then she sat down and threw her apron over her head, and cried behind that shield; for she had nursed Marse Pate when he was a dear little baby, fair as a lily, with shiny golden hair.

Cud stole out silently. It was not half so lonely out of doors as in that great house, where the shadow of a terrible dread had fallen. A friendly red light still warmed the western sky, and as Cud looked towards it he suddenly remembered that there was to be a meeting this very night for enlistment. There were plenty of Union men in Wheeling, and a Yankee captain and a stump speaker were coming to drum them up. It was pleasant to Cud to-night to think about a crowd; and he hurried along, shaking off, as he went, the chill and deathly thoughts which had troubled him, and singing to himself, for company, a negro hymn.

He soon reached the first straggling house of the town. The door stood open, and a light was burning on the table. Some one was reading in a low but clear voice, “Silver and gold have I none, but such as I have give I thee.” “Lors!” said Cud, with bated breath, “I wonder what he guv! A hunk of hot gingerbread, now, would be what I’d like.”

Cud peered anxiously in. Some sick person seemed to be lying there on a bed, gasping for breath; and Miss Alice was reading solemnly the next words, “In the name of Jesus of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”

Cud forgot the political meeting and listened on. “I wish I could find that gate,” he thought sadly,—“that Beautiful; but reckon it’s way up Norf somewhar,” and he walked with a lagging step, and sang no more.

“What ef I did meet Jesus or one o’ them thar ’postles?” he said drearily, “reckon he wouldn’t speak to a pore little nig like me; spect dat ar man dat was cured so as he could caper about so spry like was white, for sure!”

Thinking such thoughts, no wonder Cud stumbled into the wrong place, and found himself among a crowd of gray coats, where a smothered “hurrah” for Jeff Davis woke him up. It was a miserable old barn, lit by a few flaring tallow candles, and looking just ready to fall in on the whole concern. There was a good deal of confusion and eager talking; then two or three of Cud’s own color, who stood at the door, were put out. Cud was so small, and the room so badly lighted, that he shrank into the shadows and stayed. What if he should hear some great secret that the Yankees would be glad to know! He would go through fire and water to tell it to them; and then—his poor little heart beat quick with pride—then surely Massa Linkum would take him into his service, and give him some good place.

So he listened with his sharp little ears, and when the meeting broke up he was sure he knew something that the Yankees would be glad to know. Their camp was two miles away in a gap of the mountains,—two long miles for him to limp up hill, that he might reach them in time. A rebel attack was to surprise them before morning, so he started at once.

He knew the way, for one summer—the time before he was hurt—he had bounded along by Marse Pate’s side on a hunting expedition. He thought bitterly of that time now, as he limped painfully over the steep road, each moment feeling a sharp sting of pain stabbing the injured limb. He was no hero, poor little Cud! and the tears rolled down his thin cheeks; but he never thought of turning back, not even when a white rabbit made a great whir in the leaves, and ran like a flash of light over his path.

The stars came out now, silently, one by one, like little sparks of fire, in the ashen gray sky. But when the first silver bar of moonlight was laid on the road, Cud shrank back as though he had seen a ghost. How the trees shivered together in the wind, and seemed full of strange whispering! What queer dark shadows ran over the ground, or danced about him like mocking imps! He began to sing again, trembling at the sound of his own voice.

“Muss we, muss we,

  Muss we go down to sin?

My Jesus opens de golden gate,

  And ax you for walk in.”

When he stood on the bridge, he gave a quick look back at the road that stretched out white in the moonlight, as if he half expected to see the tips of shining bayonets sparkling through the night. What if the Secesh caught him, and shot him for a spy. “Wonder if folks would year ’bout it,” he thought, “and know I done died for my country,” and the slow blood quickened in his heart at the thought.

But the next moment he said, disconsolately, “Reckon I ain’t got no country; spect dis yer country wasn’t made for nigger.” But then the beautiful North!—would he ever see that?—and the Beautiful Gate, that must surely be there. And Jesus, what if he walked there as he did of old in Judea? He reached the high ridge beyond the bridge, when a sudden strange hoot startled him. His foot slipped, the loose clay and stones slid from under him, and he fell crashing down at the feet of a Union picket, who had just emitted a hideous yawn over his weary work. He stooped tenderly enough over the boy, for he had children at home, and he forgot the color of this one.

Poor little Cud! Fiery thrills of pain were burning out his life, but he made a mighty effort to speak.

“You’re the despatch post, I reckon,” said the man, “for you come quicker’n a streak o’ lightnin’.”

Cud knew at once this man was a Northerner by his accent. He felt a great whirling in his head, as though a hundred wheels were turning there, and grinding out new pains. “Would it never stop?” he thought. Ah, yes, poor little Cud, soon! But he must fulfil his mission. He raised his head a little, and said, “Don’t stay here, Yank. I was gwine to warn de boys; you’ll do it a heap better. Tell ’em—tell ’em de Rebels are comin’ mighty quick; git ’em ready for ’em,—go—” Then the myriads of wheels stopped grinding, the pain slipped silently away, and Cud fainted.

When he opened his eyes again he was in a pleasant room. He was lying on a little white bed, and the first thing he saw was a picture of Christ blessing the children. The next was the sweet face of Miss Alice, bending kindly over him. He never looked at her without thinking of the white pond-lilies he had waded after many a time. Was this heaven, he wondered, and Miss Alice a lovely angel? But the old pain came thrilling back through every limb, and even ignorant little Cud knew that there is no pain in heaven. He looked at Miss Alice wistfully. “I yered you a readin’ last night,” he said.

“Did you, and what did I read?”

“I liked it a heap; ’bout a lame man gittin’ cured at the Beautiful Gate.”

“Shall I read it to you now?” she asked.

Cud eagerly assented, but seemed very sad when she came to an end. “I thort,” he said, slowly, “ ’twas gwine to tell us how to git thar. I’m lame, yer see, an’ I reckon ef I could once git to that gate, Jesus might feel right sorry for me, and ef he could cure me jes’ by stretchin’ out his han’, ’pears like he’d do it mighty quick!”

Miss Alice did not smile. A tear, instead, came into her violet-like eyes.

“Jesus can come to you here,” she said; “just pray to him. He died for you, you know; and do you think he will not come when you call him?”

“And will he cure me?” said Cud, eagerly. “I would be his slave, and work for him all my life, ef he would.”

Poor little Cud could hardly take things in a spiritual sense. The great wheels were turning in his brain, and his breath came quickly; but he prayed, “O Lord Jesus, I can never find de Beautiful Gate. Come now, and make me well.”

“Perhaps he will take you up to him,” said Miss Alice, tenderly. “Would you give yourself to him, to serve him there as well as here?”

“Do ye think Jesus, wid de angels shinin’ roun’ him, wants me?” said the child, with some wonder, yet more of joy, in his tone.

Miss Alice nodded, and then saw him close his eyes wearily. She went to the window and opened it. The chill gray sky was warming in the east with soft pink blushes, the morning air came in little fluttering sighs; then rifts of gold broke through the pearl, and waves of violet and crimson rose over the distant mountains like a kingly crown. Airy cloud-pinnacles melted into golden mist before the sun; while nearer rose the trees, with foliage stricken by a sudden frost into wondrous wealth of scarlet and orange.

A strain of triumphal music swept by on the fresh morning air, a sound of shouts, a snatch of the old air, “Hail, Columbia!” startled the dying child.

“What—where is it?” he murmured.

“There has been a skirmish,” said Miss Alice, “and the Union has won.”

Cud raised himself, and a strange fire flickered in his eye. “That’s all along o’ me, Miss Alice,” he said, with sudden fervor; “I done it.”

Miss Alice thought he was wandering. She still stood at the window, watching for the doctor, for whom she had sent.

Now the sun, breaking forth from inner depths of rose, issued from the gateway of the day. Cud looked at it with clouding eyes. “I see it now,” he said,—“de Beautiful Gate.” So he entered in.

Helen Wall Pierson.


Dr. Hayes is a native of Pennsylvania, and was born in the year 1832. After graduating at the University of Pennsylvania in 1853, in his twenty-first year, he immediately joined the expedition of Dr. Kane, and sailed for the arctic seas in search of Sir John Franklin.

Of this expedition he was surgeon and naturalist, and he took a principal share in the explorations which distinguished that memorable voyage,—his chief exploits being a journey into the interior of Greenland, a journey made with dog-sledges across the frozen sea to the most northern land of the globe (which he discovered), and a boat expedition towards the Danish settlements of Greenland. An account of this last expedition he gave in a narrative entitled “An Arctic Boat Journey.” Returning in 1855, after an absence of two and a half years, Dr. Hayes at once proposed to conduct an expedition himself towards the North Pole. It was four years before he was able, with the aid of his scientific friends, to equip a small schooner for the voyage. He finally set sail from Boston in the spring of 1860. The incidents of this remarkable voyage are recounted in his volume entitled “The Open Polar Sea.”

It was this open polar sea which Dr. Hayes went to seek; and he reached it at a point only five hundred miles from the North Pole, travelling to that point over the ice with dog-sledges. During this journey he went much farther north than on his former one, and he planted the American flag nearer to the North Pole than any flag had ever before been planted.

Prior to this, his schooner, the “United States,” had been nearly wrecked among the ice-fields, and the hardy voyagers, being frozen up by the arctic winter, which gave them four months of absolute darkness, remained in their perilous situation during ten months. They did not see the sun for one hundred and twenty-six days,—a gloomy period of darkness and inaction.

The portrait we have given shows Dr. Hayes at this time seated in his cabin, engaged in projecting the chart of his discoveries. The moment selected by the artist is when the Esquimau chief Kalutinah (as described in Dr. Hayes’s narrative) has opened the door to enter the cabin of the “great chief,” as they called the white captain. The portrait of this Kalutinah is painted after a photograph, as is also that of the dog in the foreground, which is a picture of the Doctor’s favorite and leading sledge-dog.

The interior of the cabin is from a sketch by Dr. Hayes himself, who, besides being a successful navigator, traveller, and author, is a skilful artist. It was in this cabin that the popular story, “Cast Away in the Cold,” which was published last year in “Our Young Folks,” was first sketched by Dr. Hayes, to while away the tedium of the long arctic winter.


My little folks have perhaps wondered at not hearing from me for a month or two past, but the fact is, I have been diligently looking around for something to write, and have at last found it in the ways and doings of one of the queer little people, whom I shall call Whiskey.

On the next page is his picture. But you cannot imagine from this how pretty he is. His back has the most beautiful smooth shining stripes of reddish brown and black, his eyes shine like bright glass beads, and he sits up jauntily on his hind quarters, with his little tail thrown over his back like a ruffle!

And where does he live? Well, “that is telling,” as we children say. It was somewhere up in the mountains of Berkshire, in a queer, quaint, old-fashioned garden, that I made Mr. Whiskey’s acquaintance.

Here there lives a young parson, who preaches every Sunday in a little brown church, and during week-days goes through all these hills and valleys, visiting the poor, and gathering children into Sunday schools.

His wife is a very small-sized lady,—not much bigger than you, my little Mary,—but very fond of all sorts of dumb animals; and, by constantly watching their actions and ways, she has come to have quite a strange power over them, as I shall relate.

The little lady fixed her mind on Whiskey, and gave him his name without consulting him upon the subject. She admired his bright eyes, and resolved to cultivate his acquaintance.

By constant watching, she discovered that he had a small hole of his own in the grass-plot a few paces from her back door. So she used to fill her pocket with hazelnuts, and go out and sit in the back porch, and make a little noise, such as squirrels make to each other, to attract his attention.

In a minute or two up would pop the little head with the bright eyes, in the grass-plot, and Master Whiskey would sit on his haunches and listen, with one small ear cocked towards her. Then she would throw him a hazelnut, and he would slip instantly down into his hole again. In a minute or two, however, his curiosity would get the better of his prudence; and she, sitting quiet, would see the little brown-striped head slowly, slowly coming up again, over the tiny green spikes of the grass-plot. Quick as a flash he would dart at the nut, whisk it into a little bag on one side of his jaws, which Madame Nature has furnished him with for his provision-pouch, and down into his hole again! An ungrateful, suspicious little brute he was too; for though in this way he bagged and carried off nut after nut, until the patient little woman had used up a pound of hazelnuts, still he seemed to have the same wild fright at sight of her, and would whisk off and hide himself in his hole the moment she appeared. In vain she called “Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey,” in the most flattering tones; in vain she coaxed and cajoled. No, no; he was not to be caught napping. He had no objection to accepting her nuts, as many as she chose to throw to him; but as to her taking any personal liberty with him, you see, it was not to be thought of!

But at last patience and perseverance began to have their reward. Little Master Whiskey said to himself, “Surely this is a nice, kind lady, to take so much pains to give me nuts; she is certainly very considerate;” and with that he edged a little nearer and nearer every day, until, quite to the delight of the small lady, he would come and climb into her lap and seize the nuts, when she rattled them there, and after that he seemed to make exploring voyages all over her person. He would climb up and sit on her shoulder; he would mount and perch himself on her head; and, when she held a nut for him between her teeth, would take it out of her mouth.

After a while he began to make tours of discovery in the house. He would suddenly appear on the minister’s writing-table, when he was composing his Sunday sermon, and sit cocking his little pert head at him, seeming to wonder what he was about. But in all his explorations he proved himself a true Yankee squirrel, having always a shrewd eye on the main chance. If the parson dropped a nut on the floor, down went Whiskey after it, and into his provision-bag it went, and then he would look up as if he expected another; for he had a wallet on each side of his jaws, and he always wanted both sides handsomely filled before he made for his hole. So busy and active, and always intent on this one object, was he, that before long the little lady found he had made way with six pounds of hazelnuts. His general rule was to carry off four nuts at a time,—three being stuffed into the side-pockets of his jaws, and the fourth held in his teeth. When he had furnished himself in this way, he would dart like lightning for his hole, and disappear in a moment; but in a short time up he would come, brisk and wide-awake, and ready for the next supply.

Once a person who had the curiosity to dig open a chipping squirrel’s hole found in it two quarts of buckwheat, a quantity of grass-seed, nearly a peck of acorns, some Indian corn, and a quart of walnuts; a pretty handsome supply for a squirrel’s winter store-room,—don’t you think so?

Whiskey learned in time to work for his living in many artful ways that his young mistress devised. Sometimes she would tie his nuts up in a paper package, which he would attack with great energy, gnawing the strings, and rustling the nuts out of the paper in wonderfully quick time. Sometimes she would tie a nut to the end of a bit of twine, and swing it backward and forward over his head; and, after a succession of spry jumps, he would pounce upon it, and hang swinging on the twine, till he had gnawed the nut away.

Another squirrel—doubtless hearing of Whiskey’s good luck—began to haunt the same yard; but Whiskey would by no means allow him to cultivate his young mistress’s acquaintance. No indeed! he evidently considered that the institution would not support two. Sometimes he would appear to be conversing with the stranger on the most familiar and amicable terms in the back yard: but if his mistress called his name, he would immediately start and chase his companion quite out of sight, before he came back to her.

So you see that self-seeking is not confined to men alone, and that Whiskey’s fine little fur coat covers a very selfish heart.

As winter comes on, Whiskey will go down into his hole, which has many long galleries and winding passages, and a snug little bedroom well lined with leaves. Here he will doze and dream away his long winter months, and nibble out the inside of his store of nuts.

If I hear any more of his cunning tricks, I will tell you of them.

Harriet Beecher Stowe.

No. 1.

“Wicked paynims full fifty or more

  Before my lance have gone down on the sand;

Dragons a dozen and giants a score

  All have fallen beneath my hand;

Enchanters a few and kings one or two

  I have conquered at your command.”


Thus a young knight made his suit

  To a lady coquettish and fickle and gay,

But she was either provokingly mute

  Or else would say him nay,

For she was my whole, and vexed his soul

  By the pranks she made him play.


He went to his castle my last to keep,

  And he travelled along in sore distress,

For my first was long and rough and steep.

  And how could he ever guess—

Who knew less by far of wooing than war—

  That “no” could ever mean “yes”?




Willy Wisp.

No. 4.

A sweet little girl with golden hair

Sat in the great old rocking-chair,

And while the kitten she fondled and nursed

She heard my gentle and murmuring first.

She sat and sang to herself in glee,

And the kitten slumbered on her knee;

A mouse from his hole in the wall peeped in,

And at once there was a terrible din;

And in quicker time than you could have reckoned

The kitten had given and gained my second.


A lady clad in gorgeous array,

With silk, and satin, and feathers gay,

Through every street went up and down,

And looked over all the dry goods in town;

Tumbled and tossed them all about

Till clerk after clerk was quite worn out.

When their patience was gone, and they were half dead,

She made my whole—of a spool of thread.

W. W. T.

No. 5.

My first is in crumb, though you hardly would know it.

My second is also, for the letters will show it.

My third is in puzzle, and also in pun.

My fourth’s in amusement, but is not in fun.

My fifth is in music, but not in the dancers.

My sixth’s not in waltz, but is in the Lancers.

My seventh is in “Young Folks” and “Atlantic” as well.

My eighth is there also, as quick you can tell.

My whole you surely must guess if you can,

He was long ago a most fashionable man.

Patsie & Winnie.


Willy Wisp.


81.Deciphering rebuses is a pleasant pastime.
[(D ciphering) (re) (’buses) (eye) (sap) (lease) (ant) (pea) (ass) (time).]
82.’Tis now the very witching time of night, when churchyards yawn.
[(Tie) (snow) (thief) E R Y (witch in G) (time) of (night) W (hen) (church) (yards) (yawn).]
83.Regardez et aimez toujours vos maîtres.
84.Soft eyes looked love to eyes which spake again,
And all went merry as a marriage bell.

“A head that is not ahead,”—that is the answer to the last picture proverb.

In wishing the readers of Our Young Folks a Happy New Year,—which we do most heartily,—we invite them to sit down and listen to a little chat about our plans for the present volume,—the beginning of a series of chats which may continue through the year, if we find them mutually agreeable.

Our Letter Box is still to be kept open, and whatever is dropped into it will receive due attention. New letters will be none the less welcome on account of the large number remaining yet unanswered,—which, by the way, will be examined as rapidly as possible. Of course, every letter cannot be directly noticed, and the best may sometimes have to wait. Business letters, which need a prompt reply, will always receive it, provided they contain the necessary stamps.

We intend to have an occasional talk with our readers about the best books to read, and how to read them; about pictures, whenever it seems worth while to do so; about fancy-work, or any pleasant and useful occupation for the fingers of boys and girls in those idle hours when they are so apt to slip into mischief; about games, too,—for, although we have left our childhood a long way behind us, the memory of its play-days is fresher with us than that of yesterday’s toil, and we believe that there is no healthy childhood without frolic and fun. In these last matters, we shall want the help of our little friends. Send us a description of any game you like, or of any pretty or curious kind of work you know how to do, that we may let the rest of our young folks know about it,—using always our own judgment as to whether it is suitable.

If any one of these subjects should grow upon our hands so as to make it desirable, we will set apart for it some special corner.

As we are in season for the holidays, we take this opportunity to mention a few children’s books,—some new, and some which have already been tested and found worthy.

For boys who like stories of hardship and adventure, there is “Lion Ben,” of which it is sufficient praise to say that it is by the author of “Good Old Times.” Like that, it is the history of a boy’s rough experience on the wild shores of Maine, and is the first of a series announced by Lee and Shepard as the “Elm Island Stories.”

“Cast away in the Cold” is also to be had in book form; and it is, as the boys well know, a sort of Arctic Robinson Crusoe, very suitable to read in overcoat and mittens,—or, rather, when they are laid aside, of a winter’s evening, for the comfort of a blazing wood-fire.

For the girls, Jean Ingelow’s stories are deservedly popular. There are three series of them, published by Roberts Brothers: “Studies for Stories,” “Stories told to a Child,” and “A Sister’s Bye-Hours.”

The “Little Prudy” and “Dotty Dimple” books are great favorites. Of the last series there are two new volumes just issued: “Dotty Dimple at Home,” and “Dotty Dimple out West.” In all child-literature, there are no creations more real and natural and charming than these two little New England girls, Dotty and Prudy. Everybody who knows anything about them wants to become better acquainted with them.

Our older girl-readers, who were not subscribers to this Magazine in 1866, may not have read that delightful story, “A Summer in Leslie Goldthwaite’s Life.” It is to be had in a handsome volume now, and is one of the very best books for girls. And, by the way, Mrs. Whitney ought to know of the numerous requests we receive, that she should tell us the story of a “Winter in Leslie Goldthwaite’s Life.”

“Tom Brown’s School-Days at Rugby” is a standard for boys,—one of the books they must be better for reading. And Hawthorne’s “Tanglewood Tales,” and Grimm’s “Household Stories,” and Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tales, are among the children’s classics. And, for poetry, there are “Willie Winkie” and “Lilliput Levee,”—fresh, charming, and wide-awake, just such verses as children like.

Many other volumes crowd into mind, but we must take no more room to notice them.


Wishing to obtain the very best puzzles, the Editors offer for them the following prizes:—

For the Two Best Illustrated Rebuses, a Prize of Fifteen Dollars each.

For the Two Best Charades or Riddles, a Prize of Ten Dollars each.

For the Two Best Puzzles of any other kind, a Prize of Ten Dollars each.

The prizes will be paid in money or in books, as the authors may choose.

This offer will remain open until the publication of the April number. All the puzzles sent in will, of course, be retained.

Some familiar quotation (not from the Bible) is the most suitable subject for a Rebus. And those are the best rebuses which read in the same way to the ear and to the eye, and in which one word does not run into another. In charades, also, the syllable-words should be pronounced exactly as in the whole word they compose. And do not forget that every answer of an enigma, partial and entire, should be numbered and written out in full;—also that letters which are most plainly and neatly written, and on one side of the sheet only, are those which an editor is likely to read first.

From our Prospectus it will be seen that the Magazine will this year be instructive, as well as entertaining.

No pains will be spared to secure for our great family of readers valuable information on all important subjects, and to make Our Young Folks companionable for them, in school and out of school, at work or at play.

And as in large families there are children of all ages, we shall consider the wants of all;—of the babies who have not outgrown the lullabies of dear old Mother Goose, as well as of the boys who are putting on their seven-league boots for grown-up adventures, and the girls who are dreaming what the world will look like when they are young ladies; not forgetting the real, live, healthy children, who do not think about themselves at all, and so are easily entertained; nor the little invalids, who look up with gratitude so touching when any cheerful visitor helps them to forget their pain. To them, especially, we hope to make Our Young Folks welcome. And just here we want to give an extract from a letter which has brought us real pleasure and encouragement:—

My dear ‘Young Folks’: I hope you will not think me very bold in writing to you, but I would like so much to compose some enigmas, charades, &c. for your interesting Magazine, that I thought I would write and ask you if I might try.

“I spend nearly all my time in reading, as I am a cripple, and never leave my room at all except on very warm, mild days, when I go out to ride with Auntie; but even that tires me very much, so that reading is my chief amusement,—especially reading Our Young Folks, and working out the puzzles. I enjoy the mythological enigmas very much indeed, as I have just finished studying ‘Dwight’s Mythology’; though it hardly seemed a study to me, it was so interesting with Aunt Mary,—but she makes every lesson interesting.

“I hope when I grow up I can be just as clever and good as Auntie is, everybody loves her so much! But then I may not live to grow up, for, as I have already told you, I am a cripple, and so very weak! I get tired very easily, so that I don’t suppose I could do much good to any one, even if I did live; do you think I could?”

Dear little Alice! It is the heart to do good that the world most needs, and that Heaven accepts. You have already helped us by your kind words, and we will gladly examine anything you send us, and give it a fair chance for a place.

And you may—God grant you may!—grow up to be a comfort to many; for it is not the crippled in body that encumber the earth, but the crippled in soul.

Thanks, little Alice, for all the other kind things you say of us, that seem too flattering to quote here. And for you, and for all our friends, and for the wide world, we repeat the Christmas benediction of Tiny Tim,—

God bless us, every one!


Mis-spelled words and printer errors have been fixed.

Illustrations have been relocated due to using a non-page layout.

Some photographs have been enhanced to be more legible.

[The end of Our Young Folks, Volume 5, Number 1 by edited by J. T. Trowbridge and Lucy Larcom]