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Title: Our Young Folks. An Illustrated Magazine for Boys and Girls. Vol 1, Issue 6

Date of first publication: 1865

Author: John Townsend Trowbridge, Gail Hamilton and Lucy Larcom (editors)

Date first posted: Mar. 5, 2017

Date last updated: Mar. 5, 2017

Faded Page eBook #20170308

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






An Illustrated Magazine





Vol. I. JUNE, 1865. No. VI.

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1865, by Ticknor and Fields, in the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.

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
















Auntie, I am as afraid of a girl as I am of a lion!”

“What is that you say, Ethel?”

“I am as afraid of a girl as I am of a lion, Auntie,” and the young speaker’s voice lost nothing of its intensity as she repeated her remark, while she straightened the gull’s wing standing upright in her jaunty hat, and placed it upon her head.

Her aunt glanced quickly at the clock, and seeing it was but half past eight, said, with a hidden smile in her voice, which Ethel was too busy to detect, “Stop a moment, darling, and, instead of calling for Alice this morning, take off your hat and come and sit by me a little while, until it is time for school.”

Poor Ethel was disappointed. She was quite ready and longed to be off, but there was no resisting Auntie’s way of asking. To be sure she never said must, but somehow her way was so kind, it was impossible not to do what she asked. So she took off her hat and sat down. Beside, she had a little feeling of fear lest she had said something kind Aunt Katy would think very naughty, therefore she was a little bit relieved at the first words. “I couldn’t let you go into the lion’s den again, darling, without your armor on. It would make me very sad to see you gobbled up by the beasts.” And Ethel could not help smiling at her aunt’s words, in spite of her disappointment.

“Now let us have a talk about these lions, and find out if they really are so dreadful, and then we will see what kind of armor we ought to have. I know some people, quite tall and old, Ethel, who are just as much afraid of lions as you are. They never have had any armor, and they are very uncomfortable persons both to themselves and everybody else.”

“O dear me, Auntie, how dreadful! I thought it was only because I was a little girl and you made me wear my merino dress to dancing-school and—”

“No indeed, darling. Older people are afraid, too, and when they don’t get over their fear it grows worse and worse, until by and by the beasts really begin to gobble them up!”

By this time Ethel’s eyes were growing large. She had only said, she was as afraid of a girl as she was of a lion,—she did not say that a girl was a lion! But here was Aunt Katy taking her up, just as if she had said that girls were wild beasts, so she was somewhat relieved when her aunt continued, after a pause: “I want to tell you a secret, Ethel. Fears are the real lions of the world. Some people put on a braggadocio manner, as much as to say, ‘Do you think I care for you?’ because they haven’t found out this secret; and some behave as if they were mice, and the rest of the world were cats all ready to pounce upon them, and some strive to move about the world as quietly as possible, lest they should attract the attention or feel the claws of a lion on their shoulder. Now Fear tears and gobbles up men and women and children, who go about in this way, and their only hope is in the armor that Daniel wore in the lion’s den.”

“Auntie,” said Ethel, who was getting to look very serious, “did you ever see anybody who was beginning to be gobbled up?”

“Yes, dear, I’m sorry to say I have. And I thought the other day, when I saw Cora Pendleton look at your mittens and laugh at your India-rubber boots, and observed it made my darling unhappy,—‘There, the lion has put his paw upon Ethel now!’ ”

“O yes, Auntie, I remember; Cora always wears kid gloves to church, and it did make me uncomfortable to have her laugh at my mittens.”

“I have seen grown-up women, Ethel, spend a long, beautiful day, altering the shape of a bonnet, which was not of the latest fashion, rather than pass their time in the open air, getting health or pleasure, or doing good to some one, and I have found that the lions had eaten more than a fair share of those poor women. And when the war broke out, and taxes on French dresses became heavy, and some of us thought it would be better for the nation if ladies would wear American dresses, a lady said to me, ‘Aren’t you afraid you may be taken for a maid, if you wear such common things?’ Then I knew that the lions had frightened this woman, and that she had lost her head, or she never could have fancied that a fine dress would make a lady.”

“Dear me, Auntie, I wish you would tell me how to get my armor.”

“I will, darling, after I have told you that there are two kinds of armor. We must beware of the false kind, Ethel! It is called, ‘Don’t Care.’ Miss Point wears that, and although she is social and pleasant and knows a great deal, people don’t love her and don’t listen to her much, because she is careless and dirty. To be sure the lions don’t touch her, although they did stick out their sharp claws once; but she was too tough. They like tidbits. But we should put on Daniel’s kind,—the very same he wore into the den. He must have been very pleasant to look at, with his sweet, holy face; and we should all make ourselves as pleasant to look at as we know how. This can only be done as Daniel did it, by desiring to give the best we have to God. And what we need, in order to keep the lions of Fear away, is to have such a love for God’s children that we shall forget ourselves in doing kindnesses. Then we shall find, whether the cloak is old or new, if it be clean and as pretty as we can make it without using His share of our precious hours, that the beasts will keep their claws to themselves.

“But, Ethel,” said Aunt Katy, suddenly glancing up at the clock, “how Time does scamper this morning. It is ten minutes of nine already. I think you’ll get to school in season, if you run fast, though.”

So Ethel put up her face to kiss her aunt, and the kind old lady watched her little niece along the street as far as she could see the jaunty hat with its gray gull’s wing.

A. F.


In the tall elm-tree sat the robin bright,

  Through the rainy April day,

And he carolled clear, with a pure delight,

  In the face of the sky so gray.


It was clothed from stem to waving crown,

  The slender, tall elm-tree,

With fringèd blossoms of red and brown,

  A delicate drapery.


And the silvery rain through the blossoms dropped,

  And fell on the robin’s coat,

And his brave red breast, but he never stopped

  Piping his cheerful note.


For O the fields were green and glad,

  And the blissful life that stirred

In the earth’s wide breast, was full and warm

  In the heart of the little bird.


The rain-cloud lifted, the sunset light

  Streamed wide over valley and hill;

As the plains of heaven, the land grew bright,

  And the warm south-wind was still.


Then loud and sweet called the happy bird,

  And rapturously he sang,

Till wood and meadow and river-side

  With jubilant echoes rang.


But the sun dropped down in the quiet west,

  And he hushed his song at last.

All nature softly sank to rest,

  And the twilight gathered fast.


A murmur there was of the waterfall,

  A faint breeze in the sedge,

That rose and swept through the birches tall,

  And up from the river’s edge


Came the sound of the frogs, now loud, now low;

  It was neither song, nor cry,

But a musical tide in its ebb and flow

  That sang, and rippled by.

C. T.


Prison life is a flat, weary sort of life. Few events occur to break its monotony, and after a time the stoutest frames and the bravest hearts sink under it. If the prisoner were a mere animal, content with eating, drinking, and sleeping, or a twenty-acre lot,—his highest ambition to be bounded by a board fence,—this would not be. But he is a man; he chafes under confinement, and, for want of better employment, his mind feeds upon itself, and gnaws the very flesh off his bones. The tiresome round of such a life none but a prisoner can know; but on this, our last day in prison, I have caught a glimpse of its dull days and profitless nights, by looking over the journal of a young man who has been confined at Camp Douglas for more than a year. There is little in it to make you laugh; but if you have nothing better to do, suppose you sit with me on the doorstep of this barrack, and trace its noiseless current, as it flows, broken here and there by a bubble of hope or a ripple of fun, on to the dark and silent sea beyond.

The church bells are sounding twelve on a dark October night, when the train in which our prisoner has journeyed all the day halts abreast of the camp on the shore of the lake, and he hears the gruff summons of the guard: “Turn out! Turn out!” All day long the rain has poured through the roof of the rickety old car, wetting him through and through; and, cold, stiff, and hungry as he is, that seems a cheerful sound, though it welcomes him to a prison. Tumbling out in the mud, and scaling a wall breast-high, he gropes his way up the steep bank, and over a couple of fences, and is at the gateway of the camp. Then the ponderous door rolls back, and for almost the first time he realizes how blessed a thing is freedom. But an extract here and there from his journal will give you a better idea of Camp Douglas life than any words of mine.

“Snow,” he writes, late in October, “came softly feathering the ground this morning. ‘Away down in Dixie’ the golden sunshine of the Indian summer is gilding the hills, and its soft hazy blue is veiling the landscape; but up here in this chilly Northern clime we are shivering in the icy grasp of old Winter; and, worse than all, it is my turn to cook!”

“Two months to-day,” again he writes, “have I been a prisoner, and a weary long time it seems. The newspapers say exchanges are suspended. If that be true, we are ‘in for the war.’ A gloomy prospect indeed.”—“Christmas has come,—Christmas in prison! How much more we feel our confinement on occasions like this. Reminiscences of many another Christmas come to our minds, and set us to thinking of home and the loved ones there. The consequence is a fit of low spirits. Nearly all of us have tried to prepare some ‘good things’ from our limited stores in honor of the day. A small ‘greenback’ has supplied our bunk with a few oysters, and I suspect we are as gay over our modest stew, eaten from a tin pan with an iron spoon, as many an ‘outsider’ is over his splendid feast of champagne and ‘chicken fixins.’ ”—“But Christmas has gone, and yet no hope of exchange! How long, O Lord! How long!”

“No prisoner at Camp Douglas will forget New-Year’s Day, 1864, if he should live a thousand years. To say it was cold does not express it at all. It was frightfully, awfully cold. When I awoke this morning, the roof and rafters were covered with frost, and in many places icicles, two or three inches long, hung down from the beams. They were our breath which had congealed during the night. The frost inside was heavier than any I ever saw outside on a winter day in ‘Dixie.’ A few of our men went down to Head-quarters, and, on returning, one had his ears, and another his ears and nose, frost-bitten. Some of the guards froze at their posts, and one sentinel fell down near our barrack, frozen—not to death, but very near to it. A few of us, seeing him fall, took him into our quarters, thus saving his life. People who have always lived here say they never experienced such weather. The mercury in the thermometer fell to forty degrees below zero.”

“The weather has moderated, and to-day we have been reminded that the earth once was green. A load of hay has invaded the camp, to fill our bunks, and stir our blood with a little frolic. A rich scene occurred in dividing it among the barracks. Before the wagon reached the head of the Square, out poured the ‘Rebels’, and, with the war-cry of ‘Hay! Hay!’ they charged upon it, and completely checked its progress. In a moment the driver was ‘nowhere.’ One fellow secured an armful, and started for his barrack, but before he reached the outside of the crowd, it was reduced to a wisp of straw. Then three or four, more enterprising than the rest, climbed to the top of the load, and soon it was covered with men. By this time the driver, armed with whip and pitchfork, fought his way back, and, mounting the cart, began to clear it. One he pushed off, another required a poke from the pitchfork, but all secured an armful of the hay before they gave up the ground. The driver then tossed the remainder off, and, as each wisp fell, a score of hands were raised to catch it. The boys ‘went in’ for fun, more than hay, and scarcely one was lucky enough to fill his bunk.”

Farther on, the prisoner writes: “Last night several men in ‘White Oak Square’ attempted to escape by scaling the fence. Some succeeded, but one was shot. To-day I hear that he will die. . . . . He is dead.”

The poor fellows who attempted to escape, and did not succeed, were punished in various ways, and some of the ways were of the most ludicrous character. There is a grim sort of humor in the keeper, which seems to take delight in inventing odd and comical modes of punishment for the refractory prisoners. They do no harm, and are a far more effectual means of restraint than the old-fashioned confinement in a dungeon, with its accompanying diet of bread and water. One of these modes is “riding on a rail,” which, ever since Saxe wrote about it, most people have thought a pleasant way to travel. Many a light-hearted “native” has laughed at it; but a half-hour’s ride has made him long for “a chance afoot,” or even a lift on a broomstick. Another mode is mounting the pork-barrel. In this the prisoner is perched upon a barrel, and left to stand, a longer or shorter time, in the centre of the prison-yard, where he is naturally “the observed of all observers.” If he has any shame about him, he soon concludes that “the post of honor is a private station.” Still another mode is drawing a ball and chain about the camp. The culprit lights his pipe, assumes a nonchalant air, and tries to make you think he is having an easy time of it; but look at him when half a day on his travels, and his face will tell you he never again will make a dray-horse of himself.

But to return to the prisoner’s journal. Winter goes, and spring comes, sunny and genial, reminding him of the pleasant May time at home; but with it comes no hope of release. Time drags more heavily than before, and every page bears some such sentences as these: “I am wearied out with this hopeless imprisonment.” “Prison life is beginning to tell upon me. Fits of low spirits come oftener than they did.” “It seems as if the entanglement in regard to exchange would never end.” “For a little while last night I was in heaven. In my dreams I was exchanged, and at home. But I awoke, and the familiar roof, and straw-stuffed bunk, told me I was still in ‘durance vile.’ O Dixie! how I long for a glimpse of your sunny hills.”

Farther on he writes: “Two years ago to-day, I was mustered into the service of the Confederate States. I wondered then what would be the condition of things when our twelve months was out. All thought the war would end before our time expired. It is saddening to look back on the changes that have occured since then. A Federal army holds my native town, and our company, its officers, and myself are all occupants of a Northern prison. When will all this end?”

At last summer comes, with its scorching days and sultry nights. Snowy winter and the rainy spring were hard to bear, but the summer is even harder, and it is made less endurable, he writes, “by a scarcity of water. The hydrants have either stopped running altogether, or run only in small driblets. Forming in line, with our buckets in our hands, we watch them, often for half a day, before we get the needful supply.”

But, hark! as we read, the bells are ringing and the cannons firing.

Let us close the book, and listen to the words they say. Clear and loud they ring out: “Richmond has fallen. The Rebellion is over!” Henceforth, over all this broad land, there shall be none but Freemen! I can write no more; and let us say good by to Camp Douglas, for its glory has departed; its work is done.

Edmund Kirke.



The story of Achilles, one of the heroes of the Iliad, is, I presume, familiar to most of my readers; but, for the benefit of those who are not acquainted with it, I will briefly repeat such portion of it as has a bearing on my subject.

This gentleman was the son of the sea-goddess Thetis, probably by her first husband: this I infer from the fact, that, although often called Peliades and Æcides, I have never heard him mentioned, either by Lempriere or other recognized authority, as Master Thetis. Mrs. Thetis, who must have been the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, foresaw that her son would meet with an early death; and, like a good, anxious mother, wishing to prevent this, dipped him in the river Styx, the waters of which had the property of rendering the human body invulnerable. Unfortunately, however, she held him by the heel, and that not touching the magic waters, he was killed by an arrow which struck him there. For further particulars respecting him, I must refer my readers to a history of his time, written by a Mr. Homer, who flourished and was famous some years ago, and is highly spoken of even at the present time, although I must confess he is far beyond the narrow limits of my comprehension; and whenever I have attempted reading his works, they have proved all Greek to me.

It is with the invulnerability of Achilles, however, that we have to do; and I propose to show how, in modern times, we effect by the aid of a single stick what in former years it took a riverful to do. This trick, if it were only known to the War Department, would prove invaluable to our army, and I hope that Secretary Stanton will at once call on Congress to make an appropriation for the purpose of furnishing every Union soldier in the land with this number of “Our Young Folks.” This is the trick; and now that the summer is fairly on us, I would advise our young magicians to practise it out of doors, as it will there show to better advantage than in a drawing-room.

A pistol is handed to the audience for examination, and, they being satisfied that there is no preparation about it, is then loaded with powder and wad, in the usual way, and finally six marked bullets are placed in it and rammed home. The performer now stands at a little distance, with a plate in his hands; the pistol is aimed at him, fired, and, behold! there are the bullets on the plate, which are given to the company for identification.

Although quite startling in its effects, this trick is very simple, and requires little practice. This is the whole secret. After the powder and wad are in, permission is requested to put in a second wad, and, whilst doing this, the performer slips into the barrel of the pistol, unperceived by the audience of course, a metal tube, which receives the bullets. When the ramrod is used, the end of it naturally slides into the tube, and both are withdrawn, together with the bullets. All that now remains to be done is to stand at a sufficient distance to avoid being struck by the wad. The moment the pistol is fired, the bullets, which are concealed in your hand, are dropped on the plate, and the audience are convinced—I was about saying, that they had just left the pistol; but it will be nearer the truth to say, that they have been effectually tricked.

A very pretty little trick, and one sure to please, because of its apparent fairness, is

The Tantalizing Tin Tube.

A simple tin tube, about eleven inches long and three and a quarter in circumference, fitted with a cover at each end, three coffee-cups, a box of rice, and an orange, are the materials used in this trick. The covers are removed from the ends of the tube, and the audience are requested to notice that it contains no division,—in fact is very simple,—and that they can see right through it, which is probably more than they can say of the trick as a whole. The box which contains the rice is merely an old cigar-box, with the cover torn off, and needs no inspection. As the cups are all alike, to examine one is to see all, and accordingly one is handed out for examination. The orange, of course, is without preparation, as you will convince them by eating it, after it has played its part in the trick. Before proceeding with the trick, however, you propose to show a piece of legerdemain, which they cannot fail to acknowledge as wonderful. You place the orange on a table, and cover it with one of the cups, and then set another cup at a distance from it. You now claim to be able to cause the orange which is under cup number one to come under cup number two, and this without raising the first cup or touching the orange. Tell the audience to watch sharply, count, “One,—Two,—Three,”—pick up cup number two and place it on cup number one, and the orange will then undoubtedly be under it. Your audience now being in good humor, and their attention diverted, proceed with your trick proper, which consists in filling the tin tube with rice from the box, and causing the rice to be found under one of the cups, whilst the orange, which was in your hands, has vanished, and is found in the tube.

The audience will generally suppose the whole thing to be a purely sleight-of-hand performance, and this idea you must favor by begging them to consider what immense practice is necessary to be able skilfully to manipulate each particular grain of rice. The secret of the thing, however, really lies in the tube, or rather in one of the covers. There are, in fact, three covers,—one which serves as a bottom, and two as tops. One of the top covers, which I will call A, is in reality nothing but a tin rim, of about an inch in width, with a partition in the centre of it, its bottom in the middle of it, if I may so speak, and with a pin, the sixteenth of an inch long, extending horizontally from about the centre of the outside. The second cover, which, to distinguish it, I will call B, is made large enough to slip over A, and has a slit in it shaped like this, ,—a T with one of its arms lopped off. The object of this slit is to receive the wire which is on the side of A. Now put on B, fitting the wire of A carefully to the slit. Push B down, and, when it will go no farther, turn it, so that the wire of A rests on the arm of the . If you now put the two covers on the end of the tube, and attempt to take B off, A will come with it, as the wire in the arm of the holds them together. If, however, you turn B, so that the wire is only in the perpendicular part of the slit, it will come off alone, leaving A still on the tube. I hope this explanation is sufficiently clear, as this should be thoroughly understood, much of the apparatus used in Magic being made on the same principle.

Supposing the tube to be in perfect working order, we will now proceed with the trick. First fill the top part of A with rice, then cover it with B, and finally put both on the tube. Next, nearly fill one of the cups with rice, and place over it a round piece of pasteboard (that known as bonnet-board is best), which must be cut a trifle larger than the inside of the cup, so as to fit in rather tightly. Everything is now ready to exhibit the experiment.

Place your three cups on a table, with their mouths down, and on another table set your box of rice. Bring out your tube, remove A and B from it together, and also the bottom piece, all of which lay on the table with the box of rice. Hand the tube to the audience to examine, and when they have satisfied themselves that it is not prepared in any way, take it back, and put on the bottom piece only. Stand the tube on the table containing the box of rice, behind the box, and at the same time take off the bottom-piece, which the audience will not perceive, as the box is between it and them. Leave the tube and pass to the other table, which holds the cups; and, in order to divert their attention from the tube, tell them you will show them a little sleight which is quite wonderful in its way. Then go through the manœuvres described at first, of bringing the orange under the cup. When that is done, inform them you will now proceed to fill your tube with rice. Pick up the tube, leaving the bottom still behind the box. Place the tube in the box, in such a way that only the upper part is visible. Take up some rice in a scoop which you must have in the box, and pour it in at the top of the tube. Of course it will run out of the other end into the box again, but you must repeat this once or twice, until enough rice has been put in to have filled the tube, had it been fillable. Now announce that there is enough in for the purpose, which is strictly true, and your audience, being at a distance, and not being able to peep in, will suppose it to be full. Put on A and B together. (I should have explained above, that, when the bottom of the tube is laid behind the box, a second orange, of the size and color of the one you first show, is laid on it.) Place the tube again behind the box, and set it down over the orange, which will guide the bottom to its place. Leave the tube, and request some one to lend you a hat for a moment. This you put on a table, rim down, and lay a handkerchief over the crown. Now take the cup which holds the rice, and set it on top of the hat. As nothing will fall from it,—the pasteboard holding the rice in,—it will be supposed that it is empty. This idea will be favored also by the fact that the other two cups, which were used in “the great orange feat,” and which you allowed to be freely handled, were unquestionably empty,—no one suspecting that they were merely used for a “blind,” and had not the remotest connection with the trick. Now bring forward the tube; and, to convince them that it is still full, take off B alone, and they will see the rice, which is in the upper part of A. Put B on again, and place the tube on the floor, where all may see and watch it.

Raise the cup that is on the hat, to show that it is still empty, and when you put it down again, do so with some force, which will dislodge the pasteboard. Leave it as it is, and take the orange, which you palm, and order to go into the tube, (or you may get rid of the orange in the manner described in last month’s article,) and finally command the rice to pass from the tube to the cup. Take off A and B together, and let the orange, which is in the tube, roll out, whilst you show that the rice is all gone. Lift up the cup, and the rice will fall down and cover the pasteboard. The trick is now finished; return the hat to its owner, bow your acknowledgments, and bear the applause which is bestowed on you with becoming modesty.

One more trick, to fill my complement, and I am done.

Borrow a number of two-cent-pieces, and count out five of them to one of the company. To another give ten, and request the person who takes these last to count them carefully. Having done this, take the five which were given to the first person, and, closing your hand on them, order them to pass into the hands of the particular person who holds the ten. Then request him or her to again count the money, and if, instead of ten, fifteen pieces are found, you will have successfully performed your trick.

Twenty pieces of money are used in the trick, which is accomplished in this way. Throw fifteen pieces on a plate, and hand it to the first person, with the request that five shall be taken away. Then give the remaining ten to another person, and desire that he will count them out on the plate, so that all will hear the number by the chink of the metal on the china. This being done, tell the one who has the plate to hold both his hands, ready to receive the money. For this purpose, take away the plate with your left hand, and pour the coins into your right hand, where you must hold five more, in the same way that a coin is held in palming. Place the fifteen in the hands of person number two, and request him to close his hands tightly on the money. This will prevent his discovering the addition you have made. Take the five which the first holds, and pretend to put them in your other hand; but, instead of doing so, palm them. Command the money to pass, and then desire the person who holds the ten (fifteen) again to count out the pieces on the plate.

This simple little trick always pleases, and the more pieces are used, the less liable it is to be discovered. A good way of finishing it is to ask the person who last counted the money if he is sure he has not made away with some of your property, and, on his answering “No,” to take hold of his coat-sleeve at the wrist, and, shaking it gently, let the remaining five pieces, which are still concealed in your hand, drop on the plate. The audience will suppose they really fell from the sleeve, and, whilst they are wondering how you got them there, you can bow and retire.

P. H. C.


When gruff winter goes, and from under his snows

    Peeps the infantine clover,

And little lambs shrink on the bleak hills of March,

And April comes smiling beneath the blue arch;

Then the forester sees from his door the wild geese

        Flying over.


Some to Winnipeg’s shore; those to cold Labrador;

    Upon dark Memphremagog,

Swift flying, loud crying, these soon shall alight,

And station their sentries to guard them by night,

Or marshal their ranks to the thick-wooded banks

        Of Umbagog.


Now high in the sky, scarcely seen as they fly,

    Like the head of an arrow

Shot free from its shaft; then a dark-wingèd chain;

Or at eventide, wearily over the plain,

Flying low, flying slow, sagging, lagging they go,

        Like a harrow.


Soon all have departed, save one regal-hearted

    Sad prisoner only;

No more shall he breast the blue ether, or rest

In the reeds with his mate, keeping guard by her nest,

Never glide by her side down the green-fringèd tide

        Fair and lonely.


With clipped pinions, fast in a farm-yard, at last

    They have caged the sky-ranger!

’Mid the bustle and clucking and cackle of flocks,

The gossip of geese, and the crowing of cocks;

But apart from the rest, with his proud-curving breast,

        Walks the stranger.


He refuses, with scorn braving hunger, the corn

    From the hands of the givers,

Like a prince in captivity pacing his path;

Little pleasure he hath in his low, stagnant bath;

In that green, standing pool does he think of his cool

        Northern rivers?


Far away, far away, to some lone lake or bay

    His lost comrades are thronging;

In fancy he follows: he hears their glad halloos

Round beautiful beaches, in bright plashy shallows:

And now his dark eye he turns up at the sky

        With wild longing.


He hears them all day, singing, winging their way,

    Over mountains and torrents,

To Canadian hills and their clear water-courses,

To the Ottawa’s springs, to the Saguenay’s sources;

And now they are going far down the broad-flowing

        Saint Lawrence.


Over grass-land and grove, searching inlet and cove,

    Speeds in dreams the wild gander!

He listens, he hastens, he screams on their track;

They hear him, they cheer him, they welcome him back,

They shout his proud name, and with loud clamors claim

        Their Commander!


Past Huron and Saginaw, far over Mackinaw,

    To lovely Itaska,

Their leader he goes; every river he knows;

They flock where the silver Saskatchawan flows,

Or sit lightly afloat upon high and remote



With his consort he leads forth their young ones, and feeds

    By the pleasant morasses;

He shows them the tender young crab, and the bug,

The small tented snail, and the slow mantled slug,

And laughs as they eat the soft seeds and the sweet



But danger is coming! Lo, strutting and drumming

    The turkey-cock charges!

The bright fancy breaks, in the farm-yard he wakes;

Never more he alights on the blue linkèd lakes

Of the North, or upsprings upon winnowing wings

        From their marges!


Here all the long summer abides the new-comer

    In chains ignominious,

Abandoned, companionless, far from his mate;

But his heart is still great though dishonored his state,

And his eyes still are dreaming of glad waters gleaming

        And sinuous.


Then the rude Equinox drives before it the flocks

    Of his comrades returning;

They sail on the gale high above the Ohio’s

Broad ribbon, descending on prairies and bayous;

And again his dark eye is turned up at the sky

        With wild yearning.


As sunward they go, far below, far below,

    Coils the pale Susquehanna!

He sees them, far off in the twilight, encamp as

An army of souls upon dim, ruddy pampas;

Or at sunrise arrayed upon green everglade

        And savanna.


So year after year, as their legions appear,

    His lost state he remembers;

Wondering and wistful he watches their flight,

Or starts at their cries in the desolate night,

Dropped down to his hearkening ear through the darkening


J. T. Trowbridge.


My dear Young Folks:—Never mind the stories and the puzzles. You have had enough of those things for the present. Now listen to a little grave talk. It will not be very interesting, but if you will listen and learn, it will last you as long as you live, and may save you from a good deal of disappointment and trouble.

Sometimes, when you have found out the answers to all the charades and enigmas, you try your own hand at making one. You succeed so well that you conclude to send it off at once for “Our Young Folks.” Or you have written a story which you think is well worth being printed. Or you like some story so heartily, or disapprove of it so strongly, that you feel impelled to write to its author about it. This is all very well. We are glad to get your stories and letters. But let me tell you how to do it.

First write your story, or charade, or whatever you wish to have printed, in a large, legible hand, with as few interlineations as possible, and write on only one side of the paper. I would advise also that you keep a copy, so that, if your story is not accepted, it need not be returned to you. But if you wish it returned, enclose with it an envelope large enough to hold it, stamped, and addressed to yourself. Then send your parcel——where?

I will tell you where you will probably send it,—to Mr. Franklin Smith of Mattapoiset.

But what in the world has Mr. Franklin Smith to do with “Our Young Folks”? I search the whole Magazine, covers and all, and I find not the faintest trace of him anywhere. Oh! but you know! J. T. Trowbridge’s name is there, and J. T. Trowbridge, somebody told you, is not a real name, but means Mr. Franklin Smith of Mattapoiset! So, on the strength of your “reliable information,” your manuscripts go whirling away,—not to the “Young Folks” for which you design them, but in a quite opposite direction, down to the shores of the many-sounding sea. Let us follow and see what befalls them.

Examining the voting-list of Mattapoiset, we find that in Mattapoiset there is no Franklin Smith. There are, however, many Smiths.

Frank Smith,Charles Frank Smith,Franklin E. Smith,
Francis Smith,Franklin H. Smith,Edward F. Smith.

Your letter, enclosing an enigma, is taken from the post-office by Mr. Frank Smith, who is an excellent man, but not given to literature, and who never heard of an enigma. He opens the letter with considerable curiosity, for he does not see one very often, and, having adjusted his glasses, reads in an audible whisper, and very deliberately,—“ ‘I—am—a—word—of—26 letters.’ Who’s he? ‘My 1, 6, 7, 10, 3 is the name of a general.’ Good land of Goshen! What’s the fellow bothering about? Why don’t he out with it right off? ‘My 2, 7, 4, 5, 11 never hurt any one.’ Well, now, this beats the Dutch! Here, Jane Mari!” he calls to his wife, who is washing dishes in the back pantry, “here’s the queerest chap ever you see in all your born days. I can’t make hide nor hair of him.” Jane Mari shakes the soap-suds from her hands and inspects the mysterious letter; but no children have ever made her familiar with puzzles. And so the letter goes into the great Bible on the front-room table, to await the coming of some young niece or nephew, or learned person, where it is speedily forgotten, and there it lies to this day.

Now, how long do you suppose it will be before you will hear from your enigma?

Another letter, expressive of the pleasure you have taken in J. T. Trowbridge’s charming stories, and the help and strength they have given you, goes straightway to Mr. Francis Smith. It is written in a pretty feminine hand, and Mr. Francis, who is a gay young clerk, naturally enough supposes it may be from the accomplished and interesting Hattie Howlie, whom he attended to singing-school in the winter, and who is out of town on a visit. So Francis, seeing it at the post-office, calls for it and opens it eagerly on his way to the shop. He reads your words of sympathy and gratitude, and wonders what it is all about. He looks at the signature, and mutters, “Never heard of that person before. Me or somebody’s in the wrong pew.” And, quite wrathful from his disappointment, crowds your pleasant letter into his waistcoat-pocket, reads it aloud, perhaps, with somewhat boisterous laughter to his fellow-clerks, and then takes it to light the fire.

You, meanwhile, are wondering why J. T. Trowbridge couldn’t just send you one line in return for that nice letter you wrote him!

Letter number three contains your beautiful story that you wrote with so much care. Mr. Charles Frank Smith takes it out along with his “Country Gentleman,” wondering who can have so much to say to him. He opens it, and begins,—“ ‘Mr. Trowbridge: Dear Sir.’ Why, here’s something out of kilter, sure,” he says to himself, and looks again at the envelope. Yes, there it is, “Mr. Franklin Smith” outside, and Mr. Trowbridge inside. Somebody’s written a letter and put it into the wrong paper, he thinks. He doesn’t know the person nor the handwriting. Perhaps it’s some of Cousin Frank’s people. So he goes with the letter and manuscript to Mr. Franklin H. Smith’s, who knows nothing about it. Then to Franklin E. Smith’s, whose boys take the “Young Folks,” and he solves the riddle at once, promising to carry the manuscript to Boston the next time he goes,—which he does, but forgets to save the accompanying letter, so that nobody knows whose story it is, and it goes down into a nameless grave.

Now, my dear children, if you think this is a pleasant and satisfactory way of doing business, why, just keep on. It will give you practice in penmanship; it will help the government; and, on the whole, it will probably rather amuse the Smiths.

But some people have a prejudice in favor of having their letters read only by those to whom they are written. And if you happen to share in this prejudice, the best thing you can do is to send your letters to the people to whom they are written. If you wish the Editors of “Our Young Folks” to read it, send it to the Editors of “Our Young Folks.” If you wish it to go to the London Quarterly, send it to the London Quarterly. If you design it for J. T. Trowbridge, not as an editor, but as an author, send it to J. T. Trowbridge. But you don’t know what their address is? The address of a magazine is always the address of its publishers. Always. Always. Do you not see on the first page of the cover of “Our Young Folks” the names of the Editors, and directly below that, in large letters, “Boston: Ticknor and Fields”? Now, why do you suppose they are there? Is it because Mr. Ticknor and Mr. Fields are so delighted with their names that they spread them out wherever they can find a bit of blank paper? Not in the least. It is for the express purpose, among other things, to tell you where you may address your letters,—to tell you where you will find the Editors. So far as your communications are concerned, you may always imagine the three Editors of “Our Young Folks” sitting in solemn conclave in the publishing-house, day and night, week after week, month after month, year after year, entirely unconscious of whatever snow-storm of letters may be falling outside their official precincts.

If you know a Mr. J. T. Trowbridge of Mattapoiset, and you wish to invite him to dinner, send a note of invitation to him in Mattapoiset. You need not send that to his editorial office unless you choose, because, as an editor, he never goes out to dinner,—he neither eats, drinks, nor sleeps. All the twenty-four hours of the day, for the three hundred and sixty-five days of the year, he does nothing but edit “Our Young Folks,” and feeds and flourishes solely on editorial communications.

The same rule that applies to editors applies to authors. A publishing-house is the head-quarters of all its authors. If a book has been published called “The Four Spies,” and if on its title-page you see “By J. T. Trowbridge,” and if you like or dislike it so much that you wish to say so to its author; and if you know a Mr. J. T. Trowbridge, or know of him in Mattapoiset, or any other town, you may send your letter to him. His name on the title-page of the book warrants you in doing so. If “The Four Spies” is published without any name on the title-page, you must send your letter “To the Author of ‘The Four Spies,’ ” care of the publishers, whose address you can always find on the title-page of the book. Never mind if common report says that J. T. Trowbridge wrote the book; never mind even if the excellent authority of a newspaper paragraph expressly affirms that he wrote it. The fact that he did not put his name on the title-page is an indication that he does not wish you to know that he wrote it, even if he did write it. Respect that wish of his, and act as if you were in entire ignorance of any rumor that violates it. If J. T. Trowbridge is the name on the title-page of the book, and you never knew or heard of any such person as J. T. Trowbridge, but have heard that it was the nom de plume of Franklin Smith of Mattapoiset aforesaid, let it make no difference in the direction of your letter. Send it to the care of the publishers, as unscrupulously as if there were no such rumor afloat. For, entirely apart from the fact that there is no Franklin Smith, and therefore the rumor must be false,—assuming, indeed, that the report is true,—what do you imagine to be the reason that Franklin Smith wrote under another name? Was it because he was dissatisfied with his own, and wished it changed? Not at all; for then he would have gone to his State Legislature and had it permanently and entirely changed. Was it because his own was not long enough, and so he added a little? No; for then he would have put on the title-page “By F. S. J. T. Trowbridge.” It must be supposed to be simply and solely because he wishes to remain personally unknown; because he wishes his existence as man, citizen, son, brother, lover, husband, father, to be entirely distinct from the author. To that name say and do everything which the publication of the book gives you a right to do and say, but behind that name suffer Mr. Franklin Smith to repose in an obscurity as profound as the night. J. T. Trowbridge is public property. Franklin Smith belongs to himself. As he would never think of going, without a lawful errand, unbidden and unknown, into your house, go you never thus into his. As he never would pry into your secrets, pry you never into his. As he would never wantonly publish your name in a newspaper, do not you ever publish his. When you send him a letter assuming him to be the author of “The Four Spies,” you break in upon his privacy. If he should grant your request, and answer your letter, he would by the act confess himself the author, which is the very fact he wishes to conceal. He is forced in self-defence to remain silent; and so not only do your kind words go unacknowledged, but your very kindness he resents as an impertinence. The vexation he feels at your attempt to wrest his secret from him overpowers his gratitude for the use to which you design to put the secret. His sense of outrage is stronger than his sense of sympathy.

Now, then, to recapitulate:

When you have anything to say to the Editors of “Our Young Folks,” send your letter to them, care of the publishers, according to the statute for such case made and provided. If you desire a reply, enclose a stamped envelope addressed to yourself.

When you desire to communicate with an author whose name or address you do not or ought not to know, send your letter, stamped, ready for mailing, in an envelope, to the publishers of his book. If you desire a reply, enclose in the inner envelope an envelope stamped and directed to yourself.

All which is respectfully submitted, and all which, if you carefully read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest,

I am your very obedient, humble servant,

Gail Hamilton.


One morning in June, little Birdie sat on the grass outside of his mother’s door. It was very early; great Mr. Sun had not long been out of bed, and the birds and flowers were not yet quite awake. But little Birdie was so busy all day long, trotting about the garden, and looking at all the wonders it held, that he was always ready for his nest long before the birds and flowers had thought of theirs; and so it came to pass, that, when Mr. Sun raised up his great head, and smiled his “Good morning” to the earth, our little friend was the first to see him, and to smile back at him, all the while rubbing his eyes open with his dimpled fists, until, between smiling and rubbing, he was wide awake.

And what did Birdie do then? Why, the little rogue rolled into his mamma’s bed, and kissed her shut eyelids, and her cheeks and mouth, until she began to dream it was raining kisses, and had to wake up to see what it all meant. She loved her little boy, and when he begged her, “Please to dress little Birdie, and let him go out to play,” she did as he asked; and it was not long before he went down stairs in his cool linen dress, with his face shining from its fresh bath, and ran out on the gravel-walk to play.

He stood still a minute, to look around him, and consider what would be the best thing to amuse himself with; but soon he clapped his hands, and, with a cry of joy, ran up to the rose-bushes that grew around the house, for they were covered with beautiful buds, deep red, and pure white, and pink, set thick among the green leaves, all shining with dew. It was no wonder that Birdie stood there with his blue eyes dancing with delight, and his hands clasped tightly together; for rose-buds are so beautiful! He looked at them for a long time without speaking; but at last he began to think they must be asleep, because the leaves were folded one over another, as eyelids are folded over sleeping eyes; and Birdie was so glad to be awake that pleasant morning, that he wanted the roses to share his joy. So he took hold of a long spray, covered with buds, that was bending over him, and, giving it a little shake, said, “Pretty flowers, open your eyes,—it is time to get up”; but only the dew rolled off in a shower, and the buds seemed still asleep. Then Birdie remembered how he had wakened his mamma with kisses, and, drawing up his red lips until they looked like a rose-bud too, he chose a lovely pink bud, that seemed half inclined to open its eyes, and kissed it very gently two or three times.

And what do you think happened then? Something very wonderful, as you shall hear. As Birdie let go of the branch, it flew back to its place, the rose-bud that had been kissed opened wide its leaves, and there, in the midst of it, stood the prettiest little fairy you ever saw! It was no longer than your little finger; but it was dressed in a beautiful pink dress, with a wreath of tiny, tiny pink roses on its head; and there it stood, bowing and nodding and smiling at Birdie, as much as to say, “Thank you, sweet child, for your gentle kisses!”

Birdie could scarcely believe his eyes; but guess his surprise, when, on looking at the rest of the rose-buds, he saw that each one was opening, and that in each stood a fairy, some dressed in deep red, and some in pure white, with wreaths on their hair to match. Was not this a wonderful sight for a little boy to see? Birdie thought it was, and he drew back, half frightened, until he stumbled on the edge of the grass-plat, and sat plump down in the soft, thick grass. There he sat, with his hands in his lap, and his blue eyes opened very wide, watching the dainty rose-fairies, as they danced up and down on the bending sprays of the bushes, looking so light and airy that it seemed every moment as if they would float away.

Birdie never once thought of breakfast, until he heard his mamma calling him, and saw her coming down the path to look for him; and then he held up his finger, and said, very low, “Hush, mamma! don’t come here, you will frighten them away.” But his mamma did not hear him; and as she came on he ran to her, with his eyes full of tears, and sobbed out, “O, they are all gone, all gone! They are afraid of big people. O dear!” And two or three great tears slipped out of his eyes, and went rolling over his round cheeks; but his mamma felt sorry for his trouble, and kissed his tears away, as she carried him in her kind arms to the house.

When Birdie had eaten a nice bowlful of bread and milk, he felt happier; and then his mamma said, “What was it my pet saw in the roses to please him so much?” Birdie told about the fairies as well as he could, and how they all flew away when they saw her coming. “And I’m afraid they will never come back,” said he with a sigh, the tears very nearly running over again. But his mamma told him she knew fairies were afraid of “big people,” but she was almost sure they would not go away from her garden, where there were so many roses to sleep in at night, and such a dear little boy to play with them. “Perhaps, Birdie,” said she, “your fairies have changed themselves into the shape of moths and butterflies, so that they can fly about from flower to flower, without being seen by grown persons or rude boys. Run out in the garden, and see if you can’t find them.” Birdie was pleased with this thought, and kissed his dear mamma good by, as she tied on his broad straw hat, and then ran joyfully into the garden to look for his fairy friends.

And do you think he found them? I think so, for I know when he came to the rose-bushes he found them full of moths, pure white and pink, and, besides that, beautiful butterflies, with bright-spotted wings; and they all seemed happy, and fluttered about, and danced in and out among the roses, very much as the fairies had done; so Birdie was sure his mamma was right, and I think she was too.

The little boy spent a happy day, watching the pretty little things as they rested on the flowers, or running after them as they floated in the air; but he did not try to catch them, for he would not have hurt them for the world. They seemed to know that he was gentle and loving, for they came close to him sometimes, and one little moth even lit on his cheek for a second, thinking it must be a rose, it was so red; indeed, they stayed in the garden all day, playing with Birdie, and leading him such a merry chase, that at last he was tired out, and fell fast asleep on the grass, and his mamma carried him to his little bed. And so ended Birdie’s day with the Rose-Fairies.

M. T. Canby.



After Prince Giglio deserted us and proved so faithless, we were for a while determined not to have another pet. They were all good for nothing,—all alike ungrateful; we forswore the whole race of dogs. But the next winter we went to live in the beautiful city of Florence, in Italy, and there, in spite of all our protestations, our hearts were again ensnared.

You must know that in the neighborhood of Florence is a celebrated villa, owned by a Russian nobleman, Prince Demidoff, and that among other fine things that are to be found there are a very nice breed of King Charles spaniels, which are called Demidoffs, after the place. One of these, a pretty little creature, was presented to us by a kind lady, and our resolution against having any more pets all melted away in view of the soft, beseeching eyes, the fine silky ears, the glossy, wavy hair, and bright chestnut paws of the new favorite. She was exactly such a pretty creature as one sees painted in some of the splendid old Italian pictures, and which Mr. Ruskin describes as belonging to the race of “fringy paws.” The little creature was warmly received among us; an ottoman was set apart for her to lie on; and a bright bow of green, red, and white ribbon, the Italian colors, was prepared for her neck; and she was christened Florence, after her native city.

Florence was a perfect little fine lady, and a perfect Italian,—sensitive, intelligent, nervous, passionate, and constant in her attachments, but with a hundred little whims and fancies that required petting and tending hourly. She was perfectly miserable if she was not allowed to attend us in our daily drives, yet in the carriage she was so excitable and restless, so interested to take part in everything she saw and heard in the street, that it was all we could do to hold her in and make her behave herself decently. She was nothing but a little bundle of nerves, apparently all the while in a tremble of excitement about one thing or another; she was so disconsolate if left at home, that she went everywhere with us. She visited the picture-galleries, the museums, and all the approved sights of Florence, and improved her mind as much as many other young ladies who do the same.

Then we removed from Florence to Rome, and poor Flo was direfully seasick on board the steamboat, in company with all her young mistresses, but recovered herself at Civita Vecchia, and entered Rome in high feather. There she settled herself complacently in our new lodgings, which were far more spacious and elegant than those we had left in Florence, and began to claim her little rights in all the sight-seeing of the Eternal City.

She went with us to palaces and to ruins, scrambling up and down, hither and thither, with the utmost show of interest. She went up all the stairs to the top of the Capitol, except the very highest and last, where she put on airs, whimpered, and professed such little frights, that her mistress was forced to carry her; but once on top, she barked from right to left,—now at the snowy top of old Soracte, now at the great, wide, desolate plains of the Campagna, and now at the old ruins of the Roman Forum down under our feet. Upon all she had her own opinion, and was not backward to express herself. At other times she used to ride with us to a beautiful country villa outside of the walls of Rome, called the Pamfili Doria. How beautiful and lovely this place was I can scarcely tell my little friends. There were long alleys and walks of the most beautiful trees; there were winding paths leading to all manner of beautiful grottos, and charming fountains, and the wide lawns used to be covered with the most lovely flowers. There were anemones that looked like little tulips, growing about an inch and a half high, and of all colors,—blue, purple, lilac, pink, crimson, and white,—and there were great beds of fragrant blue and white violets. As to the charming grace and beauty of the fountains that were to be found here and there all through the grounds, I could not describe them to you. They were made of marble, carved in all sorts of fanciful devices, and grown over with green mosses and maidenhair, something like this.

What spirits little Miss Flo had, when once set down in these enchanting fields! While all her mistresses were gathering lapfuls of many-colored anemones, violets, and all sorts of beautiful things, Flo would snuff the air, and run and race hither and thither, with her silky ears flying and her whole little body quivering with excitement. Now she would race round the grand basin of a fountain, and bark with all her might at the great white swans that were swelling and ruffling their silver-white plumage, and took her noisy attentions with all possible composure. Then she would run off down some long side-alley after a knot of French soldiers, whose gay red legs and blue coats seemed to please her mightily; and many a fine chase she gave her mistresses, who were obliged to run up and down, here, there, and everywhere, to find her when they wanted to go home again.

One time my lady’s friskiness brought her into quite a serious trouble, as you shall hear. We were all going to St. Peter’s Church, and just as we came to the bridge of St. Angelo, that crosses the Tiber, we met quite a concourse of carriages. Up jumped my lady Florence, all alive and busy,—for she always reckoned everything that was going on a part of her business,—and gave such a spring that over she went, sheer out of the carriage, into the mixed medley of carriages, horses, and people below. We were all frightened enough, but not half so frightened as she was, as she ran blindly down a street, followed by a perfect train of ragged little black-eyed, black-haired boys, all shouting and screaming after her. As soon as he could, our courier got down and ran after her, but he might as well have chased a streak of summer lightning. She was down the street, round the corner, and lost to view, with all the ragamuffin tribe, men, boys, and women, after her; and so we thought we had lost her, and came home to our lodgings very desolate in heart, when lo! our old porter told us that a little dog that looked like ours had come begging and whining at our street-door, but before he could open it the poor little wanderer had been chased away again and gone down the street. After a while some very polite French soldiers picked her up in the Piazza di Spagna,—a great public square near our dwelling, to get into which we were obliged to go down some one or two hundred steps. We could fancy our poor Flo, frightened and panting, flying like a meteor down these steps, till she was brought up by the arms of a soldier below.

Glad enough were we when the polite soldier brought her back to our doors;—and one must say one good thing for French soldiers all the world over, that they are the pleasantest-tempered and politest people possible, so very tender-hearted towards all sorts of little defenceless pets, so that our poor runaway could not have fallen into better hands.

After this, we were careful to hold her more firmly when she had her little nervous starts and struggles in riding about Rome.

One day we had been riding outside of the walls of the city, and just as we were returning home we saw coming towards us quite a number of splendid carriages with prancing black horses. It was the Pope and several of his cardinals coming out for an afternoon airing. The carriages stopped, and the Pope and cardinals all got out to take a little exercise on foot, and immediately all carriages that were in the way drew to one side, and those of the people in them who were Roman Catholics got out and knelt down to wait for the Pope’s blessing as he went by. As for us, we were contented to wait sitting in the carriage.

On came the Pope, looking like a fat, mild, kind-hearted old gentleman, smiling and blessing the people as he went on, and the cardinals scuffing along in the dust behind him. He walked very near to our carriage, and Miss Florence, notwithstanding all our attempts to keep her decent, would give a smart little bow-wow right in his face just as he was passing. He smiled benignly, and put out his hand in sign of blessing toward our carriage, and Florence doubtless got what she had been asking for.

From Rome we travelled to Naples, and Miss Flo went with us through our various adventures there,—up Mount Vesuvius, where she half choked herself with sulphurous smoke. There is a place near Naples called the Solfatara, which is thought to be the crater of an extinct volcano, where there is a cave that hisses, and roars, and puffs out scalding steam like a perpetual locomotive, and all the ground around shakes and quivers as if it were only a crust over some terrible abyss. The pools of water are all white with sulphur; the ground is made of sulphur and arsenic and all such sort of uncanny matters; and we were in a fine fright lest Miss Florence, being in one of her wildest and most indiscreet moods, should tumble into some burning hole, or strangle herself with sulphur; and in fact she rolled over and over in a sulphur puddle, and then, scampering off, rolled in ashes by way of cleaning herself. We could not, however, leave her at home during any of our excursions, and so had to make the best of these imprudences.

When at last the time came for us to leave Italy, we were warned that Florence would not be allowed to travel in the railroad cars in the French territories. All dogs, of all sizes and kinds, whose owners wish to have travel with them, are shut up in a sort of closet by themselves, called the dog-car; and we thought our nervous, excitable little pet would be frightened into fits, to be separated from all her friends, and made to travel with all sorts of strange dogs. So we determined to smuggle her along in a basket. At Turin we bought a little black basket, just big enough to contain her, and into it we made her go,—very sorely against her will, as we could not explain to her the reason why. Very guilty indeed we felt, with this travelling conveyance hung on one arm, sitting in the waiting-room, and dreading every minute lest somebody should see the great bright eyes peeping through the holes of the basket, or hear the subdued little whines and howls which every now and then came from its depths.

Florence had been a petted lady, used to having her own way, and a great deal of it; and this being put up in a little black basket, where she could neither make her remarks on the scenery, nor join in the conversation of her young mistresses, seemed to her a piece of caprice without rhyme or reason. So every once in a while she would express her mind on the subject by a sudden dismal little whine; and what was specially trying, she would take the occasion to do this when the cars stopped and all was quiet, so that everybody could hear her. Where’s that dog?—somebody’s got a dog in here,—was the inquiry very plain to be seen in the suspicious looks which the guard cast upon us as he put his head into our compartment, and gazed about inquiringly. Finally, to our great terror, a railway director, a tall, gentlemanly man, took his seat in our very compartment, where Miss Florence’s basket garnished the pocket above our heads, and she was in one of her most querulous moods. At every stopping-place she gave her little sniffs and howls, and rattled her basket so as to draw all eyes. We all tried to look innocent and unconscious, but the polite railroad director very easily perceived what was the matter. He looked from one anxious, half-laughing face to the others, with a kindly twinkle in his eye, but said nothing. All the guards and employés bowed down to him, and came cap in hand at every stopping-place to take his orders. What a relief it was to hear him say, in a low voice, to them: “These young ladies have a little dog which they are carrying. Take no notice of it, and do not disturb them!” Of course, after that, though Florence barked and howled and rattled her basket, and sometimes showed her great eyes, like two coal-black diamonds, through its lattice-work, nobody saw and nobody heard, and we came unmolested with her to Paris.

After a while she grew accustomed to her little travelling carriage, and resigned herself quietly to go to sleep in it; and so we got her from Paris to Kent, where we stopped a few days to visit some friends in a lovely country place called Swaylands.

Here we had presented to us another pet, that was ever after the chosen companion and fast friend of Florence. He was a little Skye terrier, of the color of a Maltese cat, covered all over with fine, long silky hair, which hung down so evenly, that it was difficult at the first glance to say which was his head and which his tail. But at the head end there gleamed out a pair of great, soft, speaking eyes, that formed the only beauty of the creature; and very beautiful they were, in their soft, beseeching lovingness.

Poor Rag had the tenderest heart that ever was hid in a bundle of hair; he was fidelity and devotion itself, and used to lie at our feet in the railroad carriages as still as a gray sheep-skin, only too happy to be there on any terms. It would be too long to tell our travelling adventures in England; suffice it to say, that at last we went on board the Africa to come home, with our two pets, which had to be handed over to the butcher, and slept on quarters of mutton and sides of beef, till they smelt of tallow and grew fat in a most vulgar way.

At last both of them were safely installed in the brown stone cottage in Andover, and Rag was presented to a young lady to whom he had been sent as a gift from England, and to whom he attached himself with the most faithful devotion.

Both dogs insisted on having their part of the daily walks and drives of their young mistresses; and, when they observed them putting on their hats, would run, and bark, and leap, and make as much noise as a family of children clamoring for a ride.

After a few months, Florence had three or four little puppies. Very puny little things they were; and a fierce, nervous little mother she made. Her eyes looked blue as burnished steel, and if anybody only set foot in the room where her basket was, her hair would bristle, and she would bark so fiercely as to be quite alarming. For all that, her little ones proved quite a failure, for they were all stone-blind. In vain we waited and hoped and watched for nine days, and long after; the eyes were glazed and dim, and one by one they died. The last two seemed to promise to survive, and were familiarly known in the family circle by the names of Milton and Beethoven.

But the fatigues of nursing exhausted the delicate constitution of poor Florence, and she lay all one day in spasms. It became evident that a tranquil passage must be secured for Milton and Beethoven to the land of shades, or their little mother would go there herself; and accordingly they vanished from this life.

As to poor Flo, the young medical student in the family took her into a water-cure course of treatment, wrapping her in a wet napkin first, and then in his scarlet flannel dressing-gown, and keeping a cloth wet with iced water round her head. She looked out of her wrappings, patient and pitiful, like a very small old African female, in a very serious state of mind. To the glory of the water-cure, however, this course in one day so cured her, that she was frisking about the next, happy as if nothing had happened.

She had, however, a slight attack of the spasms, which caused her to run frantically and cry to have the hall-door opened; and when it was opened, she scampered up in all haste into the chamber of her medical friend, and, not finding him there, jumped upon his bed, and began with her teeth and paws to get around her the scarlet dressing-gown in which she had found relief before. So she was again packed in wet napkins, and after that never had another attack.

After this, Florence was begged from us by a lady who fell in love with her beautiful eyes, and she went to reside in a most lovely cottage in H——, where she received the devoted attentions of a whole family. The family physician, however, fell violently in love with her, and, by dint of caring for her in certain little ailments, awakened such a sentiment in return, that at last she was given to him, and used to ride about in state with him in his carriage, visiting his patients, and giving her opinion on their symptoms.

At last her health grew delicate, and her appetite failed. In vain chicken, and chops, and all the delicacies that could tempt the most fastidious, were offered to her, cooked expressly for her table; the end of all things fair must come, and poor Florence breathed her last, and was put into a little rosewood casket, lined with white, and studded with silver nails, and so buried under a fine group of chestnuts in the grounds of her former friends. A marble tablet was to be affixed to one of these, commemorating her charms; but, like other spoiled beauties, her memory soon faded, and the tablet has been forgotten.

The mistress of Rag, who is devoted to his memory, insists that not enough space has been given in this memoir to his virtues. But the virtues of honest Rag were of that kind which can be told in a few sentences,—a warm, loving heart, a boundless desire to be loved, and a devotion that made him regard with superstitious veneration all the movements of his mistress. The only shrewd trick he possessed was a habit of drawing on her sympathy by feigning a lame leg whenever she scolded or corrected him. In his English days he had had an injury from the kick of a horse, which, however, had long since been healed; but he remembered the petting he got for this infirmity, and so recalled it whenever he found that his mistress’s stock of affection was running low. A blow or a harsh word would cause him to limp in an alarming manner; but a few caresses would set matters all straight again.

Rag had been a frantic ratter, and often roused the whole family by his savage yells after rats that he heard gambolling quite out of his reach behind the partitions in the china closet. He would crouch his head on his fore paws, and lie watching at rat-holes, in hopes of intercepting some transient loafer; and one day he actually broke the back and bones of a gray old thief whom he caught marauding in the china closet.

Proud and happy was he of this feat; but, poor fellow! he had to repose on the laurels thus gained, for his teeth were old and poor, and more than one old rebel slipped away from him, leaving him screaming with disappointed ambition.

At last poor Rag became aged and toothless, and a shake which he one day received from a big dog, which took him for a bundle of wick-yarn, hastened the breaking up of his constitution. He was attacked with acute rheumatism, and, notwithstanding the most assiduous cares of his mistress, died at last in her arms.

Funeral honors were decreed him; white chrysanthemums and myrtle leaves decked his bier. And so Rag was gathered to the dogs which had gone before him.

Harriet Beecher Stowe.



A kind word, a look, a smile, a warm grasp of the hand by a friend in time of trouble,—how they remain in memory! Sometimes they are like ropes thrown to drowning men. The meeting between Paul and Azalia upon the bridge was a turning point in his life. He felt, when he saw her approaching, that, if she passed him by, looking upon him as a vile outcast from society, he might as well give up a contest where everything was against him. He loved truth and honor for their own sake. He remembered the words of his grandfather, that truth and honor are better than anything else in the world. Many a night he had heard the winds repeating those words as they whistled through the cracks and crevices of his chamber, rattling the shingles upon the roof, saying over and over and over again, Truth and honor, truth and honor. He had tried to be true, honest, and manly, not only to make himself better, but to help everybody else who had a hard time in life; but if Rev. Mr. Surplice, Judge Adams, Colonel Dare, and all the good folks, looked upon him as a thief, what was the use of trying to rise? There was one who was still his friend. Her sweet, sad smile followed him. He saw it all the time, by day and by night, while awake and while asleep. He felt the warm, soft touch of her hand, and heard her words. He remembered that God was always on the side of truth, and so he resolved to go right on as if nothing had happened, and live down the accusation.

But he couldn’t go on. “After what has happened, it is expedient that you should leave the choir till your innocence is established,” said Deacon Hardhack, who was chairman of the singing committee,—a good, well-meaning man, who was very zealous for maintaining what he considered to be the faith once delivered to the saints. He carried on an iron foundery, and people sometimes called him a cast-iron man. He believed that it was the duty of everybody to do exactly right; if they did wrong, or if they were suspected of doing wrong, they must take the consequences. Miss Dobb told him that Paul ought to be pitched out of the choir. “I think so too, Miss Dobb,” said the Deacon, and it was done.

It required a great bracing of Paul’s nerves, on Sunday morning, to go to church, and take a seat in the pew down stairs, with every eye upon him; but he did it manfully.

The bell ceased its tolling. It was time for services to commence, but there was no choir. The singers’ seats were empty. Azalia, Daphne, Hans, and all, were down stairs. Mr. Surplice waited awhile, then read the hymn; but there was a dead silence,—no turning of leaves, no blending of sweet voices, no soul-thrilling strains, such as had reformed Farmer Harrow, and given rest to his horses one day in seven. People looked at the singers’ seats, then at Paul, then at each other. The silence became awkward. Deacon Hardhack was much exercised in mind. He had been very zealous in committee meeting for having Paul sent down stairs, but he had not looked forward to see what effect it would have upon the choir. Mr. Cannel, who owned a coal mine, sat in front of Paul. He was not on good terms with Deacon Hardhack, for they had had a falling out on business matters, and so whatever the Deacon attempted to do in society affairs was opposed by Mr. Cannel. They were both members of the singing committee, and had a stormy time on Saturday evening. Mr. Cannel did what he could to keep Paul in the choir, but the Deacon had carried the day.

“I’ll triumph yet,” was the thought which flashed through Mr. Cannel’s mind, when he saw how matters stood. He turned and nodded to Paul to strike up a tune, but Paul took no notice of him. Mr. Cannel half rose from his seat, and whispered hoarsely, “Strike up a tune, Paul.” All the congregation saw him. Paul made no movement, but sat perfectly still, not even looking towards Mr. Cannel. Deacon Hardhack saw what Mr. Cannel was up to, and resolved to head him off. He rose from his seat, and said aloud, “Brother Quaver, will you pitch a tune?”

Again, as in other days, Mr. Quaver rubbed his great red nose, as trumpeters in a band wipe their instruments before giving a blast. Then, after a loud Ahem! which made the church ring, he began to sing. It was so strange a sound, so queer, so unlike the sweet music which had charmed the congregation through the summer, that there was smiling all over the church. His voice trembled and rattled, and sounded so funny that a little boy laughed aloud, which disconcerted him, and he came near breaking down. Miss Gamut sat in one corner of the church, many pews from Mr. Quaver. She attempted to join, but was so far away that she felt, as she afterwards remarked, like a cat in a strange garret. Paul did not sing. He thought that, if it was an offence for him to sing in the choir, it would be equally offensive to sing in the congregation. Azalia, Daphne, Hans, and all the members of the choir, who were sitting in the pews with their parents, were silent. They had talked the matter over before church.

“Paul is innocent; he has only been accused. It isn’t right to condemn him, or turn from him, till we know he is not worthy of our confidence. I met him on the bridge last night, and he looked as if he hadn’t a friend in the world. I shall stand by him,” said Azalia.

“Deacon Hardhack and Miss Dobb mean to break down the choir. It is a conspiracy,” said Hans, who felt that Paul’s case was his own.

Daphne began to look at the matter in a new light, and felt ashamed of herself for having passed by Paul without noticing him.

After service there was a great deal of pretty loud talking.

“If that is the kind of singing you are going to have, I’ll stay at home,” said Farmer Harrow.

“It would be a desecration of the sanctuary, and we should be the aiders and abettors of sin and iniquity, if we allowed a fellow who has been accused of stealing to lead the singing,” said Deacon Hardhack to Mr. Cannel.

“Let him that is without sin among you cast the first stone,” was Mr. Cannel’s reply, and he felt that he had given the Deacon a good hit.

“Paul hasn’t had his deserts by a long chalk,” said Miss Dobb.

“He has been treated shamefully,” said Azalia, indignantly.

All took sides, some for Paul, and some against him. Old things, which had no connection with the matter, were raked up. Mr. Cannel twitted Deacon Hardhack of cheating him, while on the other hand the Deacon accused Mr. Cannel of giving false weight in selling coal. The peace and harmony of the church and society were disturbed.

Mr. Quaver felt very sore over that laugh which the little boy had started. He knew his voice was cracked, and his singing days were over. “I am not going to make a fool of myself, to be laughed at,” he said, and made up his mind that he wouldn’t sing another note to please the Deacon or anybody else.

In the afternoon Mr. Quaver’s seat was empty. Mr. Surplice read a hymn and waited for some one to begin. Mr. Cannel once more nodded to Paul, but Paul took no notice of it, and so there was no singing. A very dull service it was. After the benediction, Mr. Cannel, Colonel Dare, and Judge Adams said to Paul, “We hope you will lead the singing next Sunday.”

“Gentlemen, I have been requested by the chairman of the committee to leave the choir. When he invites me to return I will take the matter into consideration; till then I shall take no part in the singing,”—he replied, calmly and decidedly.

Through the week Paul went on with his business, working and studying, bringing all his will and energy into action; for he resolved that he would not let what had taken place break him down.

Mr. Noggin believed him guilty. “He will steal your grapes, Mr. Leatherby, if you don’t look out,” he said to the shoemaker, who had a luxuriant vine in his garden, which was so full of ripe clusters that people’s mouths watered when they saw them purpling in the October sun.

Mr. Leatherby concluded to keep his eyes open,—also to set a trap. He waited till evening, that no one might see what he was about. His garden was a warm, sunny spot, upon a hillside. A large butternut-tree, with wide-spreading branches, gave support to the vine. Mr. Leatherby filled a hogshead with stones, headed it up, rolled it to the spot, and tilted it so nicely that a slight jar would send it rolling down the hill. Then fastening one end of a rope to the bung, he threw the other end over a branch of the tree, brought it down to the ground, and made a noose. Then, taking a board, he put one end upon the hogshead and rested the other end on the ground, where he had placed the noose. He expected that whoever came after the grapes would walk up the board to reach the great clusters which hung overhead, that the hogshead would begin to roll, the board would drop, the noose draw, and the thief would find himself dangling by the heels. It was admirably contrived. About midnight Mr. Leatherby heard the board drop. “I’ve got him!” he shouted, springing out of bed, alarming Mrs. Leatherby, who thought he was crazy. He had not told her of the trap.

“Got whom? Got what?” she exclaimed, wondering what he meant.

“Paul Parker, who has come to steal the grapes,” he said, as he put on his clothes.

He went out, and found that it was not Paul, but Bob Swift, who was dangling, head downwards. The noose had caught him by one leg. A very laughable appearance he made, as he kicked and swung his arms, and swayed to and fro, vainly struggling to get away.

“So you are the thief, are you? How do you like being hung up by the heels? Are the grapes sweet or sour?” Mr. Leatherby asked, not offering to relieve him.

“Please let me go, sir. I won’t do so again,” said Bob, whining.

“It won’t hurt you to hang awhile, I reckon,” Mr. Leatherby replied, going into the house and telling Mrs. Leatherby what had happened, then calling up Mr. Shelbarke, who lived near by, and also Mr. Noggin.

“I reckon that this isn’t your first trick, Bob,” said Mr. Leatherby, when he returned with his neighbors. He liked Paul, and had been loath to believe that he was guilty of stealing. “It is you who have been playing tricks all along. Come now, own up,” he added.

“It ain’t me, it is Philip,—he told me to come,” said Bob, who was thoroughly cowed by the appearance of Mr. Noggin and the others, and who feared that he would be harshly dealt with.

“O ho! Philip Funk is at the bottom, is he?” Mr. Leatherby exclaimed, remembering how Philip suggested that it was Paul who had stuffed his chimney with old paper.

“If you will let me down, I will tell you all,” said Bob, groaning with pain from the cord cutting into his ankle.

“We will hear your confession before we let you down,” said Mr. Leatherby.

Bob begged, and whined, but to no purpose, till he told them all about the Night-Hawks,—that Philip set them on, and that Paul did not take Mr. Noggin’s honey, nor smoke out Mr. Leatherby. It was Philip who sheared Miss Dobb’s puppy, who took Mr. Shelbarke’s watermelons, and robbed Deacon Hardhack’s hen-roost. When Bob had told all, they let him go. He went off limping, but very glad that he was free.

In the morning Mr. Leatherby and Mr. Noggin reported what had happened; but Philip put on a bold face, and said that Bob was a liar, and that there wasn’t a word of truth in what he had said. The fact that he was caught stealing Mr. Leatherby’s grapes showed that he was a fellow not to be believed; for if he was mean enough to steal, he would not hesitate to lie.

Deacon Hardhack called upon Paul. “I have been requested by the committee to call and see you. They wish you to take charge of the singing again,” he said, with some confusion of manner; and added, “Perhaps we were hasty in the matter when we asked you to sit down stairs, but we are willing to let bygones be bygones.”

“Am I to understand that there is no suspicion against me?” Paul asked.

“Yes—sir—I suppose so,” said the Deacon, slowly and hesitatingly.

“Then you may say to the committee that I will do what I can to make the singing acceptable as a part of the service,” Paul replied.

There was a hearty shaking of hands with Paul, by all the choir, at the rehearsal on Saturday night. They were glad to meet him once more, and when they looked upon his frank, open countenance, those who for a moment had distrusted him felt that they had done him a great wrong. And on Sunday morning how sweet the music! It thrilled the hearts of the people, and they too were ashamed when they reflected that they had condemned Paul without cause. They were glad he was in his place once more. Mr. Surplice in his prayer gave thanks that the peace and harmony of the congregation was restored, and that the wicked one had not been permitted to rule. When he said that, Mr. Cannel wondered if he had reference to Deacon Hardhack. Everybody rejoiced that the matter was settled,—even Miss Dobb, who did not care to have all the old things brought up.

When the service was over, when Paul sat once more by his mother’s side in their humble home, before the old fireplace, when he listened to her words, reminding him of all God’s goodness,—how He had carried him through the trial,—Paul could not keep back his tears, and he resolved that he would always put his trust in God.


The teacher of the New Hope school, engaged for the winter, proved to be a poor stick. He allowed the scholars to throw spit-balls, snap apple-seeds, eat molasses candy, pull each other’s hair, and have fine frolics. Paul wished very much to attend school, to study Latin, and fit himself for College; but when he saw how forceless a fellow Mr. Supple was, he concluded that it would be lost time to attend such a school. He knew that knowledge is power, and he longed to obtain a thorough education. Sometimes, when he thought how much Judge Adams knew, and when he read books written by learned men, he felt that he knew next to nothing. But when he felt like giving up the contest with adverse circumstances, a walk in the fresh, cool, bracing air, or a night’s sleep, revived his flagging spirit. The thought often came, “What would Daphne or Azalia say if they knew how chicken-hearted I am?” So his pride gave him strength. Though he did not attend school, he made rapid progress studying at home.

Matters came to a crisis in the school, for one day the big boys—Bob Swift among others—carried Mr. Supple out of the school-house, dug a hole in a snow-drift, and stuck him into it with his head down and his heels up. Then they took possession of the school-house and played tag over the benches for the rest of the day. Mr. Supple did not attempt to enter the school-house again, but picked up his hat, went to his boarding-house, packed his trunk, and left town.

After a week’s vacation, Mr. Cannel, who was the school-agent, obtained another teacher,—a thin, pale-faced, quick-tempered young man,—Mr. Thrasher. “I’ll bring them to their trumps,” he said, when engaged.

“I intend to have order in this school. I shall lick the first boy who throws a spit-ball, or who does anything contrary to the rules of the school,” said Mr. Thrasher, flourishing a raw hide, on the first morning. He read a long list of rules, numbered from one up to eighteen. Before he finished his rules, a little boy laughed, and caught a whipping. Before noon half a dozen were hauled up. There was a council of war at noon among the big boys, who, having had their own way, were determined to keep it. They agreed to give Mr. Thrasher a pitched battle. They had it in the afternoon; a half-dozen pounced upon the master at once, and after a short struggle put him out doors. They gave a grand hurrah, and pelted him with snow-balls, and drove him up the street.

There was great commotion in the town. Those who loved law and order were alarmed for the welfare of their children.

“We must have a master who can rule them, or they will grow up to be lawless citizens,” said Judge Adams.

Mr. Cannel could find no one who was willing to teach the school.

“I don’t see why anybody who is competent to teach should be afraid to undertake the task,” said Paul to Mr. Chrome, one day, as they talked the matter over.

Mr. Chrome met Mr. Cannel that evening on the street. “If there is anybody who is competent to keep the school, it is Paul Parker,” said Mr. Chrome, who had exalted ideas of Paul’s ability to overcome difficulties.

“I believe you,” Mr. Cannel replied, and started at once to see Paul.

“I will think of it, and let you know in the morning whether I will teach or not,” was Paul’s reply, after hearing what Mr. Cannel had to say.

He talked the matter over with his mother.

“It is a great undertaking, Paul, I cannot advise you,” she said.

When he offered his evening prayer, he asked that God would direct him. He thought upon the subject during the night. Could he carry it through? The scholars all knew him,—had been to school with him,—were his old friends and playmates. Bob Swift was a ringleader; and outside, not in the school, was Philip, who would make all the trouble he could. There was Miss Dobb, who would like to have picked him to pieces. There were others who would rejoice to see him fail. But would it not be glorious to succeed,—to triumph over Miss Dobb? But that was an unworthy motive, and he put the thought out of his mind. He resolved to undertake the task, and try to do good,—to guide and mould the minds of the scholars,—those who were to be men and women, who were to act an important part in life, and who were to live not only here, but in another world,—who, he hoped, would be companions of the angels. Would it not be worth while to aid in overcoming evil, in establishing law and order,—to inculcate a love of virtue, truth, and honor?

It would require nerve, energy, patience, and wisdom. “I’ll try it,” he said to himself, after looking at all sides.

When it was known that Paul was going to try his hand at school-keeping the big boys chuckled. “We’ll sweeten him,” said Bob, rubbing his hands, and anticipating the glorious fun they would have.

Conscious that he had a task before him which would try him severely, Paul yet went bravely to his work, locking the door as he entered the school-room, and putting the key in his pocket. The big boys looked at each other, somewhat amazed, each anxious to see what the others thought of it. He walked deliberately to his desk. “It is always best to begin an undertaking rightly,” said Paul, standing erect and looking calmly round the room. “There is no better way than to ask our Heavenly Father to direct us, and so we will all repeat the Lord’s Prayer,” he said, and waited till the room was so still that the scholars could almost hear the beating of their hearts. The stillness filled them with awe. After prayer he addressed them,—not alluding to anything which had taken place, but simply saying that he had been employed to teach them, and should do what he could to make the school-room a pleasant place to all. He expected that they would obey whatever rules were necessary for the good of the school, but did not threaten them with punishment.

It was so unlike what they had expected that the big boys did not know what to make of it, or how to take it. Bob could not decide whether it was best to begin a war, or wait till something happened, and then have a grand battle. So the forenoon passed without any disturbance.

Philip saw Bob at noon. “You are a coward, Bob, or you would have pitched Paul heels over head out of the door. I would if I were there, and so would you if you had as much gumption as an old setting hen. I thought you were going to ‘sweeten him,’ ” he said, with a sneer.

“So I am,” said Bob, nettled at the taunt, and resolving to drive Paul out in the afternoon.

When Paul entered the school-room after dinner, he saw at a glance that there was mischief ahead. The whole school was on tiptoe. He locked the door, and again put the key in his pocket. Bob was standing in the middle of the floor with his hat on.

“Take off your hat, Master Swift, and go to your seat,” said Paul.

“I sha’n’t do it,” said Bob,—who the next instant went spinning round the room, tumbling over a chair, falling upon the floor, finding himself picked up and thrown against a desk, then having his heels tripped up, and then set to whirling so fast that the room seemed all windows. He was cuffed backward and forward, to the right and the left, pitched headlong, and jerked back again so suddenly, that he lost his breath. He was like a little child in the hands of a giant. He was utterly powerless. One of the other boys sprang to help him, but was met by a blow between his eyes which knocked him to the floor. A second started, but when he saw what had happened he sat down. Bob’s brain was in a whirl. His ears were tingling. He saw stars, and it seemed as if all his hair had been torn out by the roots. He heard Paul say, once more, calmly, as at first, “Take your seat, Master Swift.” He hesitated a moment, but when, through the blinking stars, he saw how cool and decided Paul was, standing there as if nothing had happened,—when he saw the boy who had started to aid him sprawling on the floor, and the others who had promised to help put Paul out of doors sitting in their seats,—he knew that it was of no use to resist. He took his seat and sat all the afternoon wondering at Paul’s strength. Paul was surprised to find himself so powerful and athletic; but then he remembered that he had right on his side, which always helps a man.

The victory was won. The school felt that he was their master. He had a pleasant smile. When they were tired of study he said, “I see that you are getting dull and need stirring up.” Then he told them a story which set them all laughing, and so made them forget that they were tired and sleepy.

At night he had a talk with Bob all alone, telling him that he ought to be a good boy for his poor old mother’s sake. That touched Bob in a tender place, for he loved his mother, and was a good-hearted fellow, but had allowed Philip to twist him round his little finger.

“For her sake, Bob, I want you to be good; I will help you all I can,” said Paul. It was spoken so kindly and frankly that Bob knew Paul meant it. “Cut loose from those who advise you to do wrong, and tell them that you are going to do right,” said Paul, as they parted for the night.

“I will,” said Bob, who, as he thought it all over that night, and recalled the kind words, felt that Paul would be his best friend if he did right.

“I must get Azalia and Daphne to help me make a man of Bob,” said Paul to himself,—“they can do what I can’t.”

He called upon Azalia. There was a bright fire on the hearth in the sitting-room, but the smile on her face, he thought, was more pleasant to see.

“I am glad you have conquered,” she said.

“I don’t know that I have done so, yet; when I can feel that they all love me, then I may begin to feel that it is a victory. I have had a talk with Bob. He is a good fellow, but under bad influences. I want you to help me. If we can make him respect himself, we shall make a man of him.”

“I will do what I can,” said Azalia.

When Paul went away she sat down by the window and watched him till he was out of sight. “How thoughtful he is for the welfare of others!” was the thought which passed through her mind. Then she gazed upon the red and purple clouds with gold and silver linings, and upon the clear sunset sky beyond, till the twilight faded away, and the stars came out in the heavens. Paul’s words were ringing in her ears,—“I want you to help me.” Yes, she would help him, for he was trying to make the world better.




No law of our physical nature is more imperative than that we must exert ourselves,—we must have something to do. If it everywhere applies to men, it acts even more energetically upon boys. Activity, mental as well as bodily, is a necessity of boyhood. Nothing is more irksome for a lad than to be required to sit still for an hour, because that implies the doing of nothing. Yet give him hook and line, add a worm or a grasshopper, and anchor him within reach of a ditch with probably only a single fish in it, and he will wait hours in excited expectation of a nibble. It passes for fishing, and is therefore enough of action, for the time, to satisfy the desire for activity which gives life and animation to boyhood. This longing after action, innocent in its direction, is to be encouraged, not repressed. The rollicking fellow who runs, and leaps, and halloos, is as worthy of having his taste for amusement cultivated, as the quieter student whose life is in his books, or the more calculating youth whose mind begins thus early to run on the profits of trade. The general trait develops itself differently in each, and in all it should be promoted and encouraged. If checked by violence, or deadened by neglect or want of opportunity for indulgence, discontent succeeds. An urgent necessity of the boyish nature thus remaining ungratified, relief is sought in distant scenes or objects which promise to afford it.

These boys on Spangler’s farm were therefore all anxious to be doing something for themselves. It was not mere work they were coveting, as of that they had sufficient, but some little venture that they would prize as being exclusively their own. Uncle Benny comprehended the case so fully, that he took the first opportunity to lay the matter before Mr. Spangler, and to urge upon him the necessity of giving the boys a chance. He said it would be a very small thing to let Tony keep a pig, while Joe could have a flock of pigeons, and Bill might have a brood of chickens. Spangler couldn’t see the necessity for it, didn’t know what the boys wanted with all these, said that every one of them would eat corn, and inquired where that was to come from; besides, where were they to get pigs, and pigeons, and chickens to begin with? The idea of cheering them on by a little aid did not enter his mind. He had never yet put himself out of the way to gratify his boys.

As to the corn which the new pets were to eat, the old man said, if he would permit them, they could raise it for themselves. They could easily plant and cultivate a couple of acres at odd times,—before breakfast or after quitting farm work; and if they used any of his while theirs was growing, they would replace it when their crop came in. Uncle Benny pledged himself that he would see to all this, that he would make the boys keep accounts of what they used, and indeed of all their other expenses, and that Mr. Spangler should lose nothing by it. As to the land they were to have, he told Spangler that he could spare it well enough; that he had now at least three times as much as he knew how to farm properly; that he had good boys about him who deserved to have grace shown them; and wound up by warning him that there was great danger of all three becoming discontented, and disposed to leave him as soon as they could, unless their wishes were in some way gratified.

It was a very great struggle for Spangler to yield to proposals of a kind so new to him. But even his wife had less influence over him than Uncle Benny. If any other person had made a similar proposition, he would have silenced him by a flat refusal. Even as it was, it went very hard with him to consent to any part of it. He clung to the two acres the boys wanted, as if it was all the land he had; as, like many other men with large farms, he had never imagined that he had too much. But he objected strenously to the boys being permitted to keep pigeons, as he said they would attack his wheat-fields, and eat more grain than their heads were worth. Besides, they would fly away for miles round, and the neighbors would complain of the damage they would be sure to do, the blame of which would all rest on him.

But the old man reminded him that, as to his wheat crop, he starved it so effectually that no flock of pigeons could make it much poorer. Besides, he said, it was a great mistake to suppose that pigeons on a farm, even when kept in large numbers, were in the habit of injuring the grain crops. He knew that farmers generally considered them as thieves and depredators, and so shot them when they came upon their grounds; but they condemned them ignorantly, and shot them unwisely, just as they did king-birds because they were believed to eat up their bees, or crows for pulling up their corn. The king-birds that are frequently seen darting at the bees about a hive, eat up the drones only, as anybody could ascertain who would kill one and open his crop. So, where the crows pulled up one hill of corn, they devoured a hundred grubs. In short, he made use of the occasion to give Spangler a lesson on the history and habits of our common pigeons, that enlarged his knowledge of the subject very considerably. He told him that in England pigeons were protected by law from being killed, by a penalty of ten dollars in our money, and that in foreign countries they had been raised for centuries as a source of profit. They are all fond of the seeds of weeds and of many wild plants, they are most industrious workers in devouring them. It is in search of such seeds that they are seen alighting in the fields at all seasons of the year, as well when no winter grain is ripening, as when it is. They thus do the farmer a great service in keeping his fields clean, by preventing an increase of weeds.

No matter at what time of year a pigeon’s crop may be opened, it will be found to contain at least eight times as much of the seeds of weeds as of wheat, or rye, or corn, or other grains. It is also very remarkable, that the grains thus taken from the fields are defective ones. They take only the worthless seeds. For these reasons these birds should be regarded as the best weeders that a farmer can employ; for while he merely chops up a weed, often when it is so well grown that it ripens its seeds on the ground where he may have left it, the pigeons come along and make clean work by eating them. The farmer removes merely the weeds, but the pigeons remove the cause of them.

Any one who has kept these birds on his premises must have noticed how fond they are of pecking among the rubbish which is thrown out from a barn-floor after threshing wheat or other grain. They will search there, for many days together, hunting out the shrivelled grains, the poppy-seeds and cockle, and other pests of the farm, thus getting many a good meal from seeds that barn-yard fowls never condescend to pick up. When the latter get into a garden, they scratch and tear up everything, as though they were scratching for a wager; but a pigeon is better bred by nature,—he never scratches; hence he disturbs no seeds the gardener may have planted. When he gets into the garden, it is either to get a nibble at the pea-vines or the beans, as he is extravagantly fond of both, or to search for weeds.

This fondness of the pigeon tribe for seeds of plants injurious to the farm is much better known in Europe than with us. At one time, in certain districts of France, where large numbers of pigeons had been kept, they were nearly all killed off. These districts had been famous for the fine, clean, and excellent quality of the wheat raised within them. But very soon after the number of pigeons had been reduced, the land became overgrown with weeds that choked the crops. The straw, in consequence, grew thin and weak, while the grain was so deficient in plumpness and weight as to render it unfit for seed. Every farmer remarked the difference when the districts had plenty of pigeons and when they had only a few. The people therefore returned to pigeon-keeping. Every landlord, in renting his farm, required his tenants to build a pigeon-house or dove-cot, in order to insure crops. Many of these were very expensive structures. It has been further observed in other districts in France, that where pigeons are most abundant, there the wheat-fields are most productive, and that they never touch seed which has been rolled in lime.

The defence of this beautiful domestic bird which Uncle Benny thus made in reply to Mr. Spangler’s objections, quite disarmed him; for he had great respect for the old man’s superior knowledge; and as it appeared the pigeons would not only do no harm, but would really be likely to do much good, he consented to all that was required,—the boys should have pigs, fowls, and pigeons, and two acres of ground on which to raise their food.

This extraordinary concession was made just before Christmas. It took the boys so by surprise, and they were so excited by the prospect before them, that, after going to bed, they talked it over during half the night. They had not been much used to receiving Christmas presents, but if they had, and had now been overlooked, they would not have missed them. Tony’s gratification was so lively that it gave a different turn to his thoughts. He forgot all about wanting to try his luck in the city, and a new ambition sprung up to remain on the farm. A motive had been created, a stimulant had been set before him; there was a prospect of his doing something he had long desired,—make a beginning.

Farmers do not understand the value to themselves, or the importance to their boys, of little concessions like these. They are the surest agencies for developing the self-reliance of a boy. When working for himself, labor becomes pastime,—it is sweetened by the hope of reward. Lessons set before the mind under such circumstances, become indelibly impressed upon it, for personal experience is the best teacher of all. The farm, instead of being an object of aversion, becomes one of preference. The boy’s treasure being there, there also will his heart be found. Yet this simple process for imbuing him with a fondness for rural life, and of weaning him from his undefined longings after the trials, the hazards, and the disappointments inseparable from venturing on a life in the city, is so generally neglected as to become the fruitful cause of numberless desertions of the country homestead.

As Christmas is everywhere a holiday, so it was on the Spangler farm. The boys, exuberant and gleeful, were in ecstasies when Uncle Benny told them he intended they should go with him to Trenton, see the sights, and look after pigs and pigeons. That city was but a few miles away. They put the horses to the wagon and drove off over a frozen highway which much travel had beaten perfectly smooth. Of course their whole conversation was about what they were to see in Trenton, of their prospective pets, what they would do, and how much money they would make another year. Uncle Benny underwent a crossfire of questions, and listened to hopes and fears, most incessant and diversified. But what else could such hopeful boys be expected to indulge in? It was the first real jubilee of their lives, and the ride was memorable for them all.

As they neared the city, they heard the beating of drums and the firing of distant musketry. Coming still nearer, the firing continued, and then Uncle Benny informed them that that day was the anniversary of the great battle of Trenton, when Washington surprised and captured the Hessians, and that the military companies of New Jersey and Pennsylvania were then holding their annual celebration of that memorable event, by repeating, in the streets and suburbs of Trenton, the same movements, the same attacks, retreats, and surrender, as in the battle itself. The boys begged him to whip up and get in so that they might witness the whole affair, as they had been so shut up at home as never to have seen such a company of soldiers together.

When they arrived, the boys saw a body of troops marching down State Street. These represented a party of the Hessians who had been suddenly routed out of their quarters by the Continentals. As they came down, they occasionally faced about and discharged their muskets at an imaginary body of the Continentals coming in from the country. Then another division of Americans came down, by a different street, upon a second party of the Hessians, exactly as it had been when the real battle was fought. These also fired, as did the Hessians, and for some minutes the cracking of guns rattled briskly through the city. Then came bayonet charges and countercharges, followed by the retreat and complete surrounding of the Hessians. Presently the boys saw them lay down their arms and surrender to the Americans on the very spot where the enemy had surrendered in 1776. It was an unexpected treat for the boys to witness this exciting exhibition, and for a time they thought nothing of the errand on which they came to Trenton.

As might be supposed, the streets were thronged with citizens, while the doors and windows of the adjoining houses were occupied by spectators of the scene. The ladies waved their handkerchiefs, and the crowd threw up their hats and shouted as they perceived the victory to be complete. When the Hessians surrendered, they were treated with quite as much attention as rebel prisoners of the present day have undeservedly experienced. Instead of having their arms taken from them, their pockets searched, and being marched off to prison, the Continentals escorted them to the neighboring taverns, where they got the best kind of a dinner. The boys were surprised, when the battle was over, to find that nobody had been hurt, and thought the sham fight a very grand incident.

Beside the citizens, there was a large crowd of people from the country, who had come in to be spectators of the celebration. Though it had been regularly kept up, yet they did not seem to tire of it, and flocked in just as regularly as the anniversary came around. Getting out of this dense crowd, Uncle Benny took his party down Greene Street to the narrow old stone bridge that crosses the Assanpink Creek. As the boys were greatly interested in all they saw, and as the old man had recently been reading to them this part of the history of the Revolution, no doubt in his own mind intending to take them to see these very things, he pointed out the bridge as being the same old one where the British had several times attempted to cross and get at Washington on the heights upon the other side of the creek, and that here it was they had each time been driven back with terrible slaughter. Here too it was that the young girls, dressed in white, had scattered flowers in the road in front of the great hero, and sung their beautiful welcome, when he was passing over the bridge after the war had closed.

From this spot they wandered over the outskirts of the city, looking into the pig-pens that abound there, in search of an eligible porker with which to make a beginning. They went about leisurely, and of course saw a great variety, some in nice clean pens, and some in pens so foul that it was evident the dirty pigs were not doing nearly so well as the clean ones. All this was carefully pointed out to the boys, and they did not fail to remark the difference. At last they came to a man who had a number of what he called the Chester County Whites,—fine round fellows with short legs, short ears, short faces, and long bodies.

This was the kind Uncle Benny had been seeking for. The boys themselves acknowledged that they looked nicer and fatter than any others they had seen. As all were now deeply interested in pork, the boys bristled up and entered into these matters with zeal; and their opinion being asked by the old man which pig, of all they had seen, they would prefer, they agreed upon the Chester Counties. So a young sow was purchased, which would drop a litter of the pure breed in about two months. For this purchase Uncle Benny advanced the sum of fifteen dollars out of his own pocket, the money to be refunded to him by sale of the pigs that were to come, the seller agreeing to deliver the sow at Mr. Spangler’s farm the following week, so as to allow time for putting up a suitable pen.

This purchase made, they set out to inspect the hen-roosts and pigeon-houses. It was concluded not to buy any chickens just then, as Mrs. Spangler had quite a number already on the farm, and Uncle Benny thought there would be danger of disputes arising with her about eggs and other matters, and he did not choose to run the risk of ruffling her feathers. But he advanced four dollars to pay for six pairs of pigeons, which he was to receive back from the increase of the flock. He thought it better to lend the money to the boys than to make them a present of it, as it would rest on their minds as a sort of weight or obligation, teaching them the necessity of care and economy to clear it off. The pigeon-dealer put the birds into a roomy box with a covering of slats, and the party started for home.

The boys were at work early next morning, under Uncle Benny’s direction, fitting up a pigeon-house. There was a large loft over the wagon-shed, where they resolved it should be. It had a good, tight floor, to which they could ascend through a trap by means of a step-ladder. The front was open, but this they soon made all right by nailing up laths sufficiently close to keep the pigeons in, but so far apart that they could put out their heads and survey the premises, so as to become perfectly familiar with them before being allowed their liberty. Part of this lattice-work projected two or three feet beyond the front, thus affording to the birds a view, from two sides and the front, of all that was going on out of doors. They then provided nests by making rough boxes about fifteen inches square and four inches deep, which they pushed back under one of the eaves, giving the pigeons a chance at the seclusion which they invariably covet when ready to lay and hatch out their young. These fixtures were made of odd stuff they found lying about. But the great help toward doing even this was found in the old man’s toolchest. They could have done very little without him and his tools.

When these hasty but sufficient preparations had been made, he required them to put into the loft a low earthen pan, of large size, filled with water, for the pigeons to bathe in, as well as to drink from; for pigeons are thirsty beings, and delight in water. No creatures enjoy drinking more heartily. They plunge the head in nearly up to the eyes, and take a full draught at once, not slowly and deliberately, like chickens. He also fitted up for them a feeding-trough about two inches deep, which he covered with a wire network, so as to keep the pigeons from getting into it, but with the meshes large enough for them to put in their bills and take out the food. This would keep the latter free from dirt, as well as prevent waste. Then over one corner of the loft he caused to be spread at least a bushel of fine gravel, broken lime, and pounded bricks, to assist digestion and furnish material for the formation of egg-shells. Beside this there was a supply of common salt, an article which is indispensable to the health of pigeons.

The making of all these preparations was of course a great affair for the boys, but it was surprising how heartily they carried them through. The simple fact was, their sympathies had been enlisted in a cause exclusively their own. They therefore kept to their work as energetically as if sure to get rich by it. Indeed, while thus engaged, there were a great many conjectures indulged in as to when the pigeons would begin to lay, how many eggs would be hatched in the course of a year, and whether they should take the squabs to Trenton market and sell them, or whether it would not be better to let them grow up, and thus increase the flock to a large size, before they began to sell any. There was a general impatience among them to hurry up the laying, and have it begin immediately. If that important operation could have been performed by the boys themselves, there is no doubt but they would have cheerfully undertaken it. It is probable that, if it had been in their line to do the hatching, they would have undertaken that branch of the business also.

Everything being thus made ready to receive the pigeons, they were let loose in their new quarters, there to become reconciled to the strange scenes around them. The food that had been taken from the corn-crib was carefully measured, and entered down in an account-book that Uncle Benny had provided, so that all should know what was the cost of keeping pigeons, and that the boys should be taught account-keeping, as well as the importance of having a written record of their doings. Besides these advantages, it was necessary for the satisfaction of Mr. Spangler. He had thought pretty well of their keeping a pig, but he had a very poor opinion of the pigeons, notwithstanding the luminous disquisition of Uncle Benny as to their being an advantage on a farm. He said from the first that they would eat their heads off, and that he knew he should have to foot the bill. It was therefore highly desirable to know exactly the cost of feeding them, if it were only to satisfy him. As the responsibility of the whole enterprise rested on Uncle Benny, he was determined to see that no part of it was neglected.

The pigeons very soon became reconciled to their new lodgings, as pigeons always will be when they have roomy quarters, with plenty to eat and drink. The greater the number, the sooner they accept a new place as their home; and, as a general rule, the larger the flock the better it thrives, as pigeons are eminently social in their natures. A solitary pair, put into a new house, will be very likely to leave it and unite with a large flock established elsewhere. To do this they will travel many miles. But as in this case the boys had procured a dozen, there was sufficient companionship to make any home agreeable that was as well attended as this was. They were constantly seen in the projecting lattice-work in front of their quarters, enjoying the sun, stretching their wings, and looking all over the premises, as if wanting to make acquaintance with them.

Author ofTen Acres Enough.”


“Now that the war is over,” said William, “I should like to know, for my part, what has been gained by all the fighting.”

“Why,” replied Susie, his sister, who liked to say witty things even on the most serious subjects, “Cousin Primly has got a commission, and Mr. Shoddy has got rich, and Tom Noddy has got a wooden leg, which they say he can skate and dance with, and the Rebels have got whipped! But, really,” said she, “I should like to understand a great deal better than I do what the fighting was for, what brought it about, and all that; and I wish Uncle Rodman would tell us.”

Thus appealed to, Uncle Rodman laid his newspaper on the table, placed his old silver-bowed spectacles upon it, crossed his legs, put his fingers together, looked contemplative, as if putting his thoughts together at the same time, and finally addressed the young folks of the household in this manner.

“I am very glad to hear you express a wish to know more about the conflict that is now closing. It has been the great event of this century, and you ought to have a clear general idea of its origin and results. You were quite young when it began, for that was four years ago; and it was not to be expected that you should then understand what so many grown people failed to appreciate. But you are older now, and the terrible meaning of the war is clearer to us all than it was then.

“In a word, children, slavery was the cause of the war; and God permitted the war in order that slavery might be destroyed.”

“That’s it, in a nutshell!” cried Susie.

“Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad,” quoted William, from some book he had been studying.

“That is true,” said Uncle Rodman; “and it would really seem that slavery had been made insane in order that it might rush to its own destruction. The rebellion was a stupendous piece of folly, as well as stupendous wickedness.

“Mr. Lincoln, and the people who elected him, had no wish to interfere with the ‘peculiar institution,’ as it was called, in the States where it existed four years ago. Unjust and unwise as it was to keep human beings in bondage, they did not feel that the law gave them any right to take the slaves away from their masters by force. Many of us would have been glad to convince the South that it would have been better for both slaves and masters—far better for the Slave States themselves, and for the whole country—that all men, women, and children should be free. But that was a truth which the South would not tolerate, and those who attempted to teach it there—even those who were suspected of believing it—met with the worst treatment; for even hanging was considered too good for an Abolitionist. Indeed, slaveholders and slave-hunters became so violent, unreasonable, and wicked in their opposition to all who thought slavery wrong, in their hatred of free institutions, and in their attempts to carry slavery into new States, and to catch their slaves wherever they could be found in the old Free States, that a few believed, with John Brown, that it was right to resist force with force, and go with arms to rescue the negroes from the hands of their masters.

“But the most the Northern people expected to do, when they made Abraham Lincoln President, was to keep slavery out of the new States that were coming into the Union. That the Southern leaders knew. But they could not submit to any such decrease of their power. Accustomed to ruling their slaves,—accustomed, too, for many years, to ruling the nation,—they had grown arrogant, conceited, overbearing; they would not abide by the decision of the ballot-box, which had made Mr. Lincoln President; so they determined to destroy the government they could not control. They seceded,—declared their States independent of the old Union, and formed a new ‘Confederacy,’ with slavery as its ‘corner-stone.’

“Even then we had no thought of making war upon them. The North would never have made war upon the South. We did not believe in war; but thought that all our troubles should be settled peaceably by the ballot-box, and according to the Constitution. But the rebel leaders, proud, ambitious, confident that they could override Northern freemen as they had so long overridden their black slaves, recklessly, and most foolishly indeed, made war against us. They seized forts, arsenals, and navy-yards, which belonged solely to the United States. Fort Sumter, in Charleston harbor, did not belong to South Carolina, but was the property of the United States government; this the rebels opened fire upon, on the 12th of April, 1861, and compelled its surrender. Major Anderson hauled down the stars and stripes, and marched out with his little garrison. The whole South was jubilant. They thought they had done a wonderful thing. They were going to have Washington then, and call the roll of their slaves in a very little while on Bunker Hill. Of course, the North could not resist them! Of course, we were too cowardly to fight Southern gentlemen! For they had come to believe that the slave-owning classes were the only chivalrous and courageous people on this continent.

“I said, ‘the whole South.’ But, besides the leading rebels, and the ignorant masses, deceived and misled by them, there was a large class of loyal Unionists in the South, who loved the old government, and opposed secession. How many of these noble men and women suffered and died, or became fugitives from their homes, rather than join the rebel cause! If only for their sakes, it was our duty to preserve the dear old Union they loved, and not permit them to be made citizens of a new confederacy against their will. To this class belonged Andrew Johnson, our new President,—a Southern man, who stood up manfully for the nation in his own State of Tennessee; who knows all the perfidy, cruelty, and craft of the traitors, and will, I trust, know equally well how to deal with them.

“Well, the Rebels took up arms and attacked us; and there was nothing left for us to do, if we would preserve our rights, our self-respect, and the respect of the world, but to fight in self-defence. Everything was at stake,—our existence as a nation, freedom, and the brightest blessings of civilization; for the slave power that would have subjugated us belongs to the dark ages. Children, there are two principles at work in the world: one is that of liberty and love to all men; the other is that of force, and the tyranny of the strong over the weak. We have been struggling here in America to develop the first principle; and if now we had tamely surrendered to the slave-power, which represents the other principle, how terrible, how disgraceful it would have been!”

“For my part,” cried William, “I am glad we didn’t do anything so mean as to submit to the old traitors! Why, Susie, only think of it! the Rebels hated free schools,—they wanted every man that works for a living kept ignorant, just like their slaves! They called us mud-sills, greasy mechanics, and all that, and said one Southern gentleman could whip five of us.”

“I am so glad we didn’t give up to them!” said Susie. “I feel just as I do when I have been reading a long, sad story, where there are bad men and women, and they have everything their own way at first, and you think nothing can stop them, and you are so angry with them, and so sorry for the good people they treat so; but by and by something happens, and it’s so nice to have them finally caught in their own trap and punished! It makes me feel glad clear through!”

“Well, it has turned out so with the Rebels. They have been caught in their own trap, most miserably. And slavery, for which they made the war, has been ground to dust between the two millstones. They have tried every means, and failed. They tried treason, they tried war, and at last they tried assassination, which is as much worse than open war as that is worse than peaceful measures in a bad cause. They failed in everything. Freedom has triumphed. The great evil of slavery has been swept away, and we have shown that a republican government, based upon the equal rights of all, is the best, the noblest, the strongest government in the world.”

“O, it seems to me that killing President Lincoln was the worst thing I ever heard or read of in any history!” exclaimed Susie.

“My dear, you are right,” said Uncle Rodman. “Even the assassination of a bad ruler is bad enough; but he was perhaps the most humane and forbearing ruler, as well as one of the kindest-hearted men, that ever lived.”

“What fools the Rebels were!” said William; “for everybody says he was their best friend.”

“I believe that, children; for it was not in his nature to hate anybody, or to be actuated by feelings of vengeance. But the rebellion has stood on its two legs of folly and crime from the first. It was a great folly and a great crime to make war upon the government, to begin with. It was a great folly and a great crime to attempt to cut off the head of the nation by murder, to end with. And what horrors of folly and crime have walked between!

“But the slave-power, that brought on the war, and shed the blood of our brothers, and starved them in loathsome prisons, and inspired the last unparalleled atrocity,—that power has been destroyed by its own mad ambition. Now we turn over a new leaf of history. Now we shall have peace founded on justice. So much we have gained; and is it not worth the cost? When I look at the future of America, I am dazzled by the glorious prospect. No more war; no more human bondage; liberty and love for all, a realty then; a great and powerful nation—the greatest and most powerful the world has ever known—setting aside forever the old barbarous rule of force, and living up to the golden rule of doing to others as we would be done by!

“A new page in human history indeed, that will be, children; and let us now begin and live worthy of that future. You, especially, who are young, belong to the new era of justice and human brotherhood; and O let the fact inspire you now and henceforth with high aspirations, noble motives, and all generous thoughts and hopes!”

So saying, Uncle Rodman put on his spectacles, and took up his newspaper again, while the children sat seriously pondering what he had said.

J. T. Trowbridge.



Munday led off, towing little Rosa after him by a sipo, one end fastened to his girdle, and the other around her waist. Trevannion followed close behind, Ralph a little farther off, with Richard keeping abreast of his cousin and helping him along. Mozey swam next; Tipperary Tom, who was last to leave the tree, brought up the rear. The ouistiti had found a berth on the shoulders of young Ralph, who, buoyed up by a good supply of air-vessels, swam with his back above water. As for the macaw and coaita, the desperate circumstances in which our adventurers were placed rendered it not only inconvenient, but out of the question, to trouble themselves with such pets; and it had been agreed that they must be abandoned. Both, therefore, were left upon the tree. With the macaw it was a matter of choice whether it should stay there. By simply spreading out its great hyacinthine wings it could keep pace with its ci-devant protectors; and they had hardly left the tree, when the bird, giving a loud scream, sprang from its perch, hovered a moment in the air, and then, flying down, alighted on Mozey’s wool-covered cranium, making him hide his astonished head quickly under water. The arara, affrighted at having wetted its feet, instantly essayed to soar up again; but its curving talons, that had clutched too eagerly in the descent, had become fixed, and all its attempts to detach them were in vain. The more it struggled, the tighter became the tangle; while its screams, united with the cries of the negro, pealed over the water, awaking far echoes in the forest. It was some time before Mozey succeeded in untwisting the snarl that the arara had spun around its legs, and not until he had sacrificed several of his curls was the bird free to trust once more to its wings.

We have said, that by some mystic influence the big monkey had become attached to Tipperary Tom, and the attachment was mutual. Tom had not taken his departure from the tree without casting more than one look of regret back among the branches, and under any other circumstances he would not have left the coaita behind him. It was only in obedience to the inexorable law of self-preservation that he had consented to the sacrifice. The monkey had shown equal reluctance at parting, in looks, cries, and gestures. It had followed its friend down to the fork, and after he had slipped into the water it appeared as if it would follow him, regardless of both instinct and experience, for it could not swim. These, however, proved strong enough to restrain its imprudence, and after its protector had gone it stood trembling and chattering in accents that proclaimed the agony of that unexpected separation. Any one listening attentively to its cries might have detected in the piteous tones the slightest commingling of reproach. How could it be otherwise to be thus deserted? Left to perish, in fact; for although the coaita was perfectly at home upon the sapucaya, and could live there as long as the nuts lasted, there was not the slightest chance of its getting away from the tree. It must stay there till the vasante, till the flood fell, and that would not be for months. Long before that it must undoubtedly perish, either by drowning or starvation.

Whether or not these unpleasant forebodings passed through the monkey’s wits, and whether they nerved it, may never be known. Certainly something seemed to stimulate the creature to determination; for instead of standing any longer shivering in the fork of the tree, it turned suddenly, and, darting up the trunk, ran out upon one of the horizontal branches. To go directly from the sapucaya to the forest, it was necessary to pass under this limb; and Tipperary Tom, following in the wake of the others, had taken this track. He was already far out from the stem of the tree, almost clear of the overhanging branches, and half oblivious of the painful parting, when a heavy body, pouncing upon his shoulders, caused both him and his empty shells to sink some feet under the water; for just like old Munday on the alligator had the monkey come down upon Tipperary Tom. The affrighted Irishman, on rising to the surface, sputtered forth a series of cries, at the same time endeavoring to rid himself of the unexpected rider on his back. It was just at this crisis, too, that the macaw had managed to make good its footing in the fleece of the negro. Mozey, however, was the first to get clear of his incubus; and then all eyes were directed towards Tipperary Tom and the clinging coaita, while peals of laughter resounded from every lip.

Mozey had enfranchised himself by sacrificing a few tufts of his woolly hair, but the task was not so easy for Tom. In fact, it proved altogether impracticable; for the coaita had curled its prehensile tail around his neck in a knot that would have made a hangman envious. The more he tugged at it, the more it tightened; and had the Irishman been left to himself, it would have no doubt ended in his being strangled outright, a fate he began to dread. At this crisis he heard the Mundurucú shout to him across the water to leave the coaita alone, as then it would relax its hold. Fortunately for himself, Tom had the prudence to obey this well-timed counsel; and although still half suffocated by the too cordial embrace of his pet, he permitted it to have its own way, until, having approached the forest, the monkey relaxed its hold, and sprang up among the branches.


Guided by the Mundurucú, the swimmers entered the water arcade before described, and proceeded on to the tree that had furnished the caoutchouc for their swimming-belts. The siphonia, so late the scene of strife and querulous complainings, was now silent as the tomb; not a living arara was in sight or within hearing. The few old birds that had survived the club conflict had forsaken the spot, betaking themselves to some distant part of the forest, perhaps out of the Gapo altogether, to mourn over nests laid desolate, over chicks seized and instantly destroyed by ruthless hands. Only the young were there, suspended in a bunch from the branches. The Mundurucú mounted first, taking his charge along with him; and then all the others climbed up into the tree, where the macaw and the monkey—one upon wing, the other by a passage through the tree-tops in speed almost equalling the flight of a bird—had already arrived.

Farther progress for that night was no part of their purpose. It would have been as idle as imprudent. The sun was already level with their gaze, and to have forsaken their perch at that hour would have been like leaving a good inn for the doubtful chances of the road. The seringa, with its thickly trellised limbs, offered snug quarters. Upon its network of parasites it was possible to repose; there were hammocks woven by the hand of Nature, and, rude as they might be, they were a pleasant improvement on their couches of the preceding night.

The tree contained other proofs of its hospitality. The fat fledglings suspended upon it promised a supper not to be despised; for none of the party was a stranger to macaw flesh, and, as these were young and tender, eyes sparkled and mouths watered on beholding them. No one expected that they were to be eaten raw, though there was more than one in the party whose appetite had become sharp enough for this. The Mundurucú would have shown but slight squeamishness at swallowing one of the squabs as it was, while to Mozey it would have signified less. Even Tipperary Tom declared his readiness to set about supping without further preparation.

The semi-cannibal appetites of his companions were controlled by Trevannion, who commenced talking of a fire. How was it to be made? How could the chicks be cooked? His questions did not remain long unanswered. The Indian, eager to meet the wishes of his employer, promised that they should be gratified.

“Wait a bit, patron,” said he. “In ten minutes’ time you shall have what you want, a fire; in twenty, roast arara.”

“But how?” asked the patron. “We have no flint nor steel, any of us; and if we had, where find the tinder?”

“Yonder!” rejoined the Mundurucú. “You see yonder tree on the other side of the igarápe?”

“That standing out by itself, with smooth, shining bark, and hoary, hand-like leaves? Yes, I see it. What of it?”

“It is the embaüba, patron; the tree that feeds the lazy sloth, the Aï.”

“O, then it is that known as the Cecropia peltata. True, its crown of peltate leaves declare the species. But we were talking of fire, Munday. Can you obtain it from the cecropia?”

“In ten minutes, patron, the Mundurucú will draw sparks from that tree, and make a fire too, if he can only obtain from it a dry branch, one without sap, decayed, dead. You shall see.”

So saying, he swam out towards the cecropia. On reaching this, he scaled it like a squirrel, and was soon among its silvery fronds, that spread palm-like over the water. Soon the snapping of a breaking branch was heard, and shortly after the Indian came gliding down the tree, and, holding the piece of cecropia above his head, swam with one hand towards the caoutchouc, which he once more ascended. On rejoining his companions, they saw that the stick he had secured was a bit of dry, dead wood, light, and of porous texture, just such as might be easily ignited. Not caring to make any secret of his design, he confirmed his companions in their conjecture by informing them that the embaüba was the wood always employed by his people, as well as the other tribes in Amazonia, when they wished to make a fire; and saying this, he proceeded without further delay to make them acquainted with the proper way. Strange to say, it proved to be the friction process, often described as practised in remote corners of the world, and by savage tribes who could never have held the slightest communication with one another. Who taught them this curious mode of creating fire? Who inducted the Indian of the Amazon, and the aboriginal of Borneo, into the identical ideas of the sumpitan and gradatána,—both blow-guns alike? Who first instructed mankind in the use of the bow? Was it instinct? Was it wisdom from on high?

While Trevannion was reflecting on this strange theme, the Mundurucú had shaped a long spindle from a slender branch which he had cut from some hard wood growing near; and, whirling it between the palms of his hands, in less than ten minutes, as he had promised, sparks appeared in the hollowed stick of the cecropia. Dry leaves, twigs, and bark had been already collected, and with these a flame was produced, ending in a fire, that soon burned brightly in one of the forks of the seringa. Over this the young macaws, supported on spits, were soon done brown; and a supper of roast arara, with parched sapucaya nuts, proved anything but a despicable meal to the party who partook of it.


Our adventurers passed a tolerable night among the sipos of the seringa. They might have slept more soundly but for apprehensions about the future, that intruded even into their dreams. Morning brought no relief, for then reality itself appeared ruder than the visions of fancy in their slumbers. They had cold macaw for breakfast,—remains of the preceding night’s roast, which had been kept up as long as the fire was alight, and carefully preserved, to serve for a future occasion. It was just sunrise, and as soon as the meal was over, they consulted seriously how to extricate themselves from their unpleasant and perilous position,—how to work a deliverance from the jaws of the Gapo. Whereabouts in this strange region were they? How far had they entered it? They could not even frame a guess of the distance traversed by the galatea before she had come to grief in the fork of the sapucaya. It might be twenty miles, it might be fifty; who could tell? They only knew that the ill-fated vessel had been drifting away from the Solimoës, and deep into the solitudes of the Gapo. They knew they must be many miles from the banks of the Solimoës, and, from his hydrographic knowledge, already tested, the old tapuyo could tell its direction. But it was no longer a question of getting back to the channel of the great river. On the contrary, the object now was to reach solid land. It would be worse than idle to seek the Solimoës without the means of navigating it; for, even should the stream be reached, it would be one chance in a thousand to get within hail of a passing vessel. Almost as well might such be looked for in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. They were now bent on discovering the shortest route to the mainland that bordered this inundated region. This should be found in the direction opposite to that in which the river lay. It might not, but the probabilities were in favor of that hypothesis. They had but little difficulty in determining the way to take. The index already pointed out by the Indian was still to be depended upon.

The echente was still going on. The current was from the river, if not with absolute directness, yet with enough to point out the bearing of the Solimoës. The land might be many miles distant,—farther than the river itself,—but there was no alternative but to reach it or die. But how reach it? That was the question. They could hardly hope to swim the whole distance, for it must be great. A raft? This too was talked of. But how was a raft to be constructed? Among the tops of those water-loving trees there could scarce be found a stick light enough to have floated itself, let alone the carrying of a ponderous cargo. Out of such heavy timber there would be but little chance of their constructing a raft, and the idea was abandoned almost as soon as broached. But Munday’s proposal met the approbation of all. The water-arcade chanced to continue in the direction they should take. Why not once more make use of the swimming-belts, that had already done such good service, and effect a further exploration of the flooded forest? The proposition was too reasonable to be rejected. It was unanimously accepted; and, without more ado, our adventurers descended from the siphonia, and began to traverse the strait. The macaw and monkey kept their company as before, but no longer needed to make themselves a burden to their protectors, since both could travel through the tree-tops as the swimmers passed below.


They needed no pilot to point out their course. There could be no danger of straying from it. The strait they were following was of that kind known as an igarápe, which, in the language of the Amazonian Indian, means literally “the path of the canoe,”—igarité being the name of the craft most used in the navigation of the Gapo. The strait itself might have been likened to a canal, running through a thicket, which formed on both sides a colossal hedge, laced together by an impenetrable network of parasitical plants. Unlike a canal, however, it was not of uniform breadth, here and there widening into little openings that resembled lakes, and again narrowing until the tree-tops stretching from each side touched one another, forming underneath a cool, shadowy arcade.

Up this singular water-way our adventurers advanced, under the guidance of the bordering line of verdure. Their progress was necessarily slow, as the two who could swim well were compelled to assist the others; but all were aided by a circumstance that chanced to be in their favor,—the current of the Gapo, which was going in the same direction with themselves. Herein they were greatly favored, for the flow of the flood corresponded very nearly with the course of the igarápe; and, as they advanced, they might have fancied themselves drifting down the channel of some gently flowing stream. The current, however, was just perceptible; and though it carried them along, it could not be counted on for any great speed. With it and their own exertions they were enabled to make about a mile an hour; and although this rate might seem intolerably slow, they were not discontented, since they believed themselves to be going in the right direction. Had they been castaways in mid-ocean, the case would have been different. Such tardy travelling would have been hopeless; but it was otherwise in the forest sea that surrounded them. On one side or the other they could not be more than fifty miles from real dry land, and perhaps much less. By going right, they might reasonably hope to reach it, though detained upon the way. It was of the utmost importance, however, that the direction should be known and followed. A route transverse to it might take them a thousand miles, either way, through a flooded forest,—westward almost to the foot of the Andes,—eastward to the mouth of the Amazon! The experienced tapuyo, knowing all this, was extremely cautious in choosing the course they were now pursuing. He did not exactly keep in the line indicated by the flow of the flood. Although the echente was still going on, he knew that its current could not be at right angles to that of the river, but rather obliqued to it; and in swimming onward he made allowance for this oblique, the igarápe fortunately trending at a similar inclination.

Several hours were spent in slowly wending along their watery way, the swimmers occasionally taking a rest, stretched along the surface of the water, supported by hanging llianas or the drooping branches of the trees. At noon, however, a longer halt was proposed by the guide, to which his followers gladly gave consent. All were influenced by a double desire,—to refresh themselves not only by a good rest, but by making a meal on the cold roast macaws, several of which were strapped upon the shoulders of the tapuyo. A tree with broad, spreading branches offered a convenient place, and, climbing into it, they took their seats to await the distribution of the dinner, which was committed to the care of the ex-steward, Mozey.


Previous to ascending their dining-tree, the swimmers had been more than six hours in the water, and, as nearly as they could guess, had made about that number of miles. They congratulated themselves on having met with no hostile inhabitants of the Gapo, for the jararáca and jacaré, with the perils encountered while in the presence of these two dangerous reptiles, were fresh enough in their remembrance to inspire them with continual fear. All along the way, the Indian had been constantly upon the alert. Nothing had occurred to cause them alarm, though many strange sounds had been heard, and strange creatures had been seen. Most of these, however, were of a character to cheer rather than affright them. The sounds were mostly musical,—the voices of birds,—while the creatures seen were the birds themselves, many of beautiful forms and bright plumage, perched upon the tree-tops, or winging their way overhead. Conspicuous among them were the tiny winged creatures called humming-birds, with which the Gapo abounded. During their swim they had seen several distinct species of these lovely little sprites, flashing like meteors over the surface of the water, or darting about through the tree-tops like sparks of glistening light. They appeared to be the gnomes and elves of the place.

While eating dinner, our adventurers were favored with an excellent opportunity of observing the habits of these graceful and almost microscopic creatures. A tree stood near, whose top was surmounted by a parasite,—a species of bignonia,—in full blossom, that with its array of sweet-scented flowers completely covered the tree, almost concealing the green foliage underneath. Over this flowery spot hundreds of humming-birds were hovering, now darting from point to point, anon poised upon swiftly whirring wings in front of an open flower, their tiny beak inserted into the corolla, therefrom to extract the savory honey. There were several species of them, though none of them of large size, and all looking more like insects than birds. But for the swiftness of their motions, they might have passed for a swarm of wild bees (meliponæ) disporting themselves among the flowers. Ralph and Rosa were delighted with the spectacle, though it was not new to them, for the warmer valleys of the Andes, through which they had passed in approaching the head-waters of the Amazon, were the favorite habitat of the humming-birds, and there a greater number of species exist than in Amazonia itself. What was new to them, however, and to the rest of the party as well, was some information imparted by the tapuyo while they sat conversing after dinner. He said that there were two kinds of these birds, which, although alike in size, beauty, bright plumage, and many other respects, were altogether distinct in their habits and ways of life. By two kinds he did not mean two species, for there were many, but two sets of species, or groups, as the Indian would have called them, had he been a student of ornithology. One set, he said,—and the several species then before their eyes belonged to it,—lived upon the juice of the flowers, and this was their only food. These frequented such open campos as those on the southern side of the Solimoës, and along the rivers running into it from that direction. They were also common in plantations, and other places where clearings had been made, or where the forest was thin and scattering, because there only could they find a sufficiency of flowers. It was only at times that they made excursions into the great water-forest, when some of the sipo plants were in blossom, just as the one before them was at that time. The species they saw did not belong to the Gapo. They had only strayed there upon a roving excursion, and would soon return to the mainland,—the treeless regions. The kinds that frequented the great forest never went out of it, and cared nothing about flowers. If seen hovering around a tree in blossom, it was only because they were in pursuit of insects, which had been attracted thither in search of the sweet juices. Upon these the forest humming-birds regularly preyed, making their exclusive diet upon flies, which they caught as much among the foliage as the flowers, darting upon the insects whenever they perched upon the leaves, and snapping them up either from the upper or under side. They built their nests upon the tips of the palm-leaves, choosing the side that was inward towards the tree, from which they suspended them. They were purse-shaped, and composed of fibres closely woven together with a thick lining of a fine, soft silk-cotton, taken from the fruit of a tree called samaüma. They did not come much into the sun, like the other kinds, but kept more in the shade, and might be often met whirring about in the aisles of the forest. Sometimes they would poise themselves in the air, right in front of a person passing through among the tree trunks, and, after remaining till the intruder’s face would be within a few feet of them, would fly on in advance of him, and again come to a pause in the same way, repeating the manœuvre several times in succession. All these things, averred the observant Indian, made the humming-birds that kept constantly to the forest very different from those that only visited it upon occasions, and therefore, in his opinion, they were of two distinct kinds. And his opinion was the correct one, founded on observations already made by the ornithologist, and which have resulted in the classification of the humming-birds into two great groups, the Trochilinæ and Phæthorninæ.


Notwithstanding the pleasant theme that formed the subject of their after-dinner discourse, it was not long continued. Both those who took part in it and those who listened were too anxious about their situation to enjoy even the most interesting conversation. As soon, therefore, as they felt sufficiently recruited by the rest, they resumed their aquatic journey. For several hours they continued to advance at the same slow rate, without encountering any incident worthy of record. The igarápe still trended in a straight line, with only here and there a slight turning to one side or the other, preserving, however, the same general direction, which was northward. This they had discovered on the night before, not by observing the polar star, which is at no time visible at the equator, nor until you have travelled several degrees to the north of it. Even when this well-known star should be seen from the low latitudes of the torrid zone, it is usually obscured by the hazy film extending along the horizon. Sirius and other northern constellations had guided them. As the sun had been shining throughout the whole of that day, as well as the preceding one, you may suppose there could be no difficulty in discovering the quarter, within a point or two of the compass, at any hour of the day. This might be true to any one travelling in a high latitude, northern or southern, or at certain seasons of the year, anywhere outside the tropics. Even within the tropics it might be done by skilful observation, if the observer knew the exact time of the year. Trevannion knew the time. He knew, moreover, that it was close upon the vernal equinox, when the sun was crossing the equatorial line, near to which they were wandering. For this reason, in the meridian hours the great orb was right over their heads, and no one—not even a skilled astronomer—could have told north from south, or east from west.

Supposing that the igarápe should not be trending in the same direction, but imperceptibly departing from it? In that case, during the mid-hours of the day they could have had no guidance from the sky, and must have suspended their journey till the sun should begin to sink towards the west, and once more make known the points of the compass. Fortunately they needed not to make this delay. As already observed, the flow of the flood was the pilot to which they looked for keeping them in their course; and, as this still ran with a slight obliquity in the same direction as the igarápe, the latter could not have departed from the right line upon which they had been advancing. The current had been compared with the points of the compass that morning before setting out. It was a little to the east of north. Northward, then, was the course of the swimmers.

They had drawn further inference from the direction in which the flood was setting. It proved that they had strayed from the Solimoës by its left or northern bank, and must now be somewhere among the mouths of the great river Japura. It was no consolation to discover this, but the contrary. The old tapuyo only looked graver on arriving at the conviction that such was the case. He knew that in that direction, in the vast delta formed by the unnumbered branches of the Japura, the Gapo was of great width, extending far back from the banks of this remarkable river, and dry land in that direction might be at the greatest distance. There was no alternative but to keep on, and, by deviating from the course as little as possible, they might in due time reach the limits of the flood. Actuated by this impulse and its attendant hopes, they continued their toilsome journey along “the path of the canoe.”

We have said that for several hours they encountered no incident worthy of note. It was not destined, however, for that day’s sun to set before one should arise, whose record is not a matter of choice, but necessity, since it exerted such an influence on the proceedings of the travellers as to cause a complete change in their mode of progression. What they encountered was not exactly an incident, but an obstruction. In other words, their swim was suddenly brought to an end by the ending of the igarápe!

They had arrived at the termination of this curious canal, which all at once came to a cul-de-sac, the trees closing in on both sides, and presenting an impenetrable front, that forbade farther progress. The way was equally obstructed in every other direction; for on neither side of the igarápe, throughout its whole length, had any opening been observed. At first they fancied that the water might open again beyond the obstruction, but Munday, after penetrating a short distance among the tree trunks, returned to declare his conviction that the igarápe was at an end. Nor did it terminate by any gradual convergence of the two lines of trees. On the contrary, they came together in an abrupt circular sweep,—one of colossal size, that rose high above its fellows and spread far out, standing in the centre, like some Titanic guardian of the forest, and seeming to say to the igarápe, “Hitherto shalt thou come, but no farther!”

It was of no use remaining longer in the water for that day. Even had the obstruction not arisen, it was time to have suspended their exertions. The sun was sinking towards the tree-tops, and by the time they could get themselves snugly stowed away, and something ready for supper, it would be night. Leaving other cares for the morrow, and the morrow to take care of itself, they at once proceeded to select their sleeping-place for the night. The colossal tree that had come so unpleasantly across their track seemed to offer the very quarters they were in search of; and, without more ado, they accepted the hospitality of its wide-spreading branches.


The tree upon which they had made their roost was one of a species of which they had observed many during the day. It was the true Brazil-nut (Bertholletia excelsa), own cousin to the sapucaya; for both are of the same family,—the Lecythis,—of which there are many distinct members. Like the sapucaya, it is a denizen of the low lands and flooded forests, growing to a stupendous height. It produces large, showy flowers, which are succeeded by huge capsule-like pericarps, each enclosing a score or more of Brazil-nuts. But though the flowers are followed by the fruits, these do not all come together; and, like the orange and other tropical trees, bud, blossom, and fruit may all be observed upon the same branch, in various stages of development.

It need not be said that the nuts of the Bertholletia form one of the commercial staples of Amazonia. They are too well known to need further description; for there are few dwelling-houses in either Europe or America where they have not been submitted to the squeeze of the nut-crackers. In the forest, where they are no man’s property, they are collected by whoever chooses to take the trouble, but chiefly by the Indians and half-breeds who dwell on the borders of the Gapo. The time to gather the Brazil-nuts is the vasante, or dry season, though there are certain tribes of savages that go nutting in their canoes during the season of the echente. But the real nut harvest is after the floods have subsided, and the trees once more stand upon dry land. Then the whole malocca of Indians, or the inhabitants of a village, proceed in a body to the places where the fruits are to be found, scattered around the stems of the tall trees that have produced them.

In gathering their crop the gleaners require to observe certain precautions, those who go under the trees covering their heads with a thick wooden cap, resembling a helmet, lest the dropping of the heavy capsules—big as a cannon-ball, and almost as heavy—might crack a skull! For this reason the monkeys of the Amazon forest, though crazy for sapucaya and Brazil-nuts, always give the Bertholletia a wide berth, never going under, but around it, in a circle whose circumference lies outside the tips of the branches. Strange to say, these creatures have no fear of the sapucaya, although its pericarps are as large and heavy as those of the Brazil-nuts. But the former do not fall to the ground, or when they do, it is only after the lid has sprung open, and the huge cup has scattered its contents, leaving it a light and empty shell. It is for this reason, as much as anything else, that the nuts of the sapucaya are scarce in the market, and command a higher price. Having escaped spontaneously from their shell, they are at the mercy of all comers, birds, quadrupeds, and monkeys; whereas the Brazil-nuts, protected by their thick woody pericarps, are not so easily accessible. Even the monkeys cannot get at them, until some animal with teeth better adapted for chiselling performs for them the service of laying open the box, and giving them a chance at the treasures contained within. This is done by several species of rodents, among which the cutia and paca are conspicuous; and one of the most comical spectacles to be seen in a South American forest is that of a group of monkeys, watching from a distance the proceedings of a paca thus employed, and then springing forward to take forcible possession of the pericarp after it has been sufficiently opened.

It was a bit of good fortune that our adventurers found lodgings upon the Bertholletia. Though more hospitality may usually be met with in an inn, it provided them with at least a portion of their supper,—the bread-stuff. They had still left a brace of the macaw squabs that had not been roasted; but Munday, as before, soon produced sufficient fire to give them a scorching, and keen appetites supplied salt, pepper, and sauce.


Supper over, our adventurers only awaited the sunset to signal them to their repose. They had already selected their beds, or what was to serve for such,—the spaces of horizontal network formed by the intertwining of luxuriant llianas. At the best, it was no better than sleeping upon a naked hurdle; but they had been already somewhat inured to an uneasy couch on the galatea, and they were every day becoming less sensitive to necessities and hardships. They were all tired with the severe exertions they had made; for although their journey had been but about six miles, it was enough to equal sixty made upon land. They felt as if they could go to sleep astride of a limb, or suspended from a branch.

It was not decreed by fate that they should find rest before being made the witnesses of a spectacle so curious, that, had they been ever so much inclined for sleep, would have kept them awake against their will.

A noise heard afar off in the forest attracted their attention. There was nothing in it to alarm them, though had they not heard it before, or something similar to it, their fears might have been excited to the utmost pitch of terror. What they heard was the lugubrious chant of a band of howling monkeys. Of all the voices of Nature that awake the echoes of the Amazonian forest, there is perhaps none so awe-inspiring as this. It is a combination of sounds, that embrace the various tones of shrieking, screaming, chattering, growling, and howling, mingled with an occasional crash, and a rattle, such as might proceed from the throat of a dying maniac. And yet all this is often the product of a single mycetes, or howling monkey, whose hollow hyoidal bone enables him to send forth every species of sound, from the rolling of a bass drum to the sharp squeak of a penny-whistle.

Guaribas!” quietly remarked the Mundurucú, as the distant noise was first heard.

“Howling monkeys you mean?” interrogatively rejoined Trevannion.

“Yes, patron, and the loudest howlers of the whole tribe. You’ll hear them presently. They are coming this way.”

“They’re not far off now, I should say, if one may judge by the loudness of their cries.”

“All of a mile yet, patron. It proves that the forest stretches more than a mile in that direction, else the guaribas could not be there. If there be open water between us and them, they won’t come this way. If not, we’ll have them here in ten minutes’ time. I wish we could only travel among the tree-tops as they can. We shouldn’t stay long in the Gapo.”

“Just as the Mundurucú expected,” continued the tapuyo, after a pause. “The guaribas are coming towards us. I can hear the swishing of the leaves as they pass among them. We’ll soon see them.”

The howling of the guaribas had for some time ceased, but the rustling of leaves, with the occasional snapping of a twig, to which the Indian had directed the attention of his companions, told that the troop was travelling through the tree-tops, otherwise observing a profound silence.

Soon they appeared in sight, suddenly presenting themselves upon a tall tree that stood by the side of the igarápe, about a cable’s length from that occupied by our adventurers. For some minutes the branches of the tree were seen oscillating up and down, as each black guariba sprang into it; and this continued until not less than a hundred had found lodgement upon the limbs. As the leader of the band, who was evidently chief of the tribe, caught sight of the igarápe, he was seen to pause in an abrupt and ambiguous manner, at the same moment giving utterance to a cry, easily intelligible as a word of command. It had the effect of causing those immediately behind him to come to a halt, as also the others, as they sprang successively into the tree. There could be no question as to what had caused the halt. It was the igarápe crossing the track which the guaribas were going. With them the only question was, how they were to get over it?

At the point where the howlers had clustered together, the strait was narrower than elsewhere within sight. Between the branches, extending horizontally from the opposite sides of the igarápe, there was a clear space of about twenty feet; and to the spectators it appeared improbable that any animal without wings could leap from tree to tree. The monkeys, however, did not seem to be of this opinion, but were plainly contemplating the leap; and it was evident that some of them were only restrained from taking it by an authoritative command from their chief, which held them in check. For several minutes there was a profound silence among them, undisturbed until the stragglers had all arrived in the tree, and squatted on the branches.

It was now observed that among these last were several mothers, each carrying a child upon her back, or embraced between her bare arms; the youngster with face upturned, clinging, not with teeth and toe-nail, but with hands and tail, to the neck of its maternal parent. To these the attention of the whole tribe appeared to be directed; and it was evident that they were the sole cause of the difficulty,—the impedimenta that had interrupted the onward march of the troop.

There had been confusion, accompanied by some chattering, after first coming up; but a sign from the leader had put an end to all noise, and then succeeded the silence already mentioned. During its continuance the guariba chief slowly ascended the tree, until he had attained a position elevated above all his followers. Then squatting down, with his hams firmly planted upon a branch, his long tail carefully coiled around another, he commenced his harangue with as much ceremony as if he had been chairman of a Guild-Hall dinner. Perhaps there was quite as much sense and eloquence in his speech; at all events, there was more noise: for during the ten minutes taken up by it—it had the advantage of brevity—no other sound could have been heard over the Gapo within the circuit of a mile.

His address being ended, the chief, by a series of detached speeches, seemed to invite a reply from his followers, coaxing their assent, or daring them to contradiction. There appeared to be no dissent, not one voice. The chattering that responded to the speech was delivered in a tone that spoke unanimous compliance with the proposal—whatever it was—which their chief had offered to their consideration.

Then ensued another interval of silence, much shorter than before, and again interrupted by the leader of the troop. This time, however, his words were few and to the purpose. They were pronounced in a tone of command, that called for prompt obedience, which was yielded instantaneously and without protest.

One of the strongest of the guaribas ran out upon the limb overhanging the igarápe, and, stopping at its extremity, braced himself for the leap. In another instant it was made, and the monkey was seen rushing up into the tree on the other side of the igarápe. A comrade followed, placing his four hands in the same spot, his body in a similar attitude, and making the leap so exactly like the guariba that had preceded him, that it seemed the same monkey repeating the performance. Then went another, and another, so close following, that the creatures appeared more like the links of some colossal but quick-moving chain, pulled by supernatural power across the igarápe, than a series of individual and animated beings.

Mayne Reid.


There is no reader of this magazine too small or too young to have heard and to understand that Abraham Lincoln, sixteenth President of the United States of America, has been removed from this life by an act as awful and wicked as any that history records, and that his loss has given the whole country cause for mourning deep and long,—mourning in which all right-minded persons have joined with as honest a feeling as if by his departure from earthly life they had been deprived of a personal friend. And the Editors cannot let this solemn occasion pass without a few words of comment, which shall both express their sense of the shame and suffering inflicted upon our land by that appallingly bad young man, John Wilkes Booth, the murderer, and shall also hint to the youth whom they address, through all this broad continent, the true lesson to be derived from the career of him who has passed from this world in the very moment of his highest honor and his greatest influence.

Many a boy—and many a girl, too, doubtless—has wondered or asked how Mr. Lincoln came to be so great, and why he was so esteemed. This is the question to which these brief paragraphs will suggest the solution. A little magazine like this is not able to give a biography of the man, nor is it the place for a review of his traits of character or a eulogy upon his virtues,—such themes are reserved for the pages of historians and the writings of wise men; we can only draw one simple inference, and urge one plain reflection.

The inference of this grave event is this,—that Abraham Lincoln was great because he was good. From his boyhood he tried to be faithful to the duty of every hour as it came; he tried to discover what was really right, and to hold fast to it; he was eager to learn what was the truth of any matter, and what in justice should be done concerning it; in any doubtful question he became the advocate of that cause which his conscience and his principles told him ought to prevail; he was humble in spirit, willing to profit by the advice of other men, ready to acknowledge and to atone for a fault if he had committed one; above all, he was pious enough and brave enough to own his dependence upon the good and mighty God, who sitteth in the heavens ruling wisely,—whom men are too apt to forget when they become powerful and prosperous,—and in all his dealings, even with wicked and rebellious people, he endeavored to be lenient, as the Lord himself is lenient toward all the earth, remembering ever the gracious sentiment Shakespeare has expressed in these beautiful lines, wherein he is speaking of mercy:—

“It is an attribute to God himself;

 And earthly power doth then show likest God’s,

 When mercy seasons justice.”

Therefore others respected, admired, and trusted him, good men sympathized with him, and bad men feared lest his clear, searching gaze should find out their evil, although cunningly concealed; and therefore, now that he is gone from us, a nation with great grief has followed his body to the tomb, believes with loving confidence that his true spirit has been welcomed above with the glorious words, “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord,” and will perpetuate his memory with grateful enthusiasm to remotest years.

The reflection, young readers and friends, is not that you are to imitate this pure and noble exemplar because reward and honor flowed in upon him, but that you are to seek to do right because it is right in the eyes of your Heavenly Father, whose kindness gives you all that you have, whose watchful providence is about you ever, and to whom you are responsible for all that you think and say and do. There is no real merit in an action which is inspired by the certainty or the hope of a recompense; in such an action there is only self-love, because the doer of it expects that, although he may make some sacrifice at the time, he will yet receive a return greater than that, and so have a profit after all. No boy should think that the lives of great men who have risen from lowliness teach him to follow in their footsteps for the sake of winning their eminence,—to be patient, hard-working, studious, self-denying, and honest, in order to become a general, a cabinet-officer, an admiral, a rich merchant, or a President; such lives teach him to cultivate these qualities because they are necessary to complete manhood, and to the development of his human soul. Abraham Lincoln never permitted himself to dwell upon high and shining station as the future result of his steady, persevering labors, whether as farmer, lawyer, Congressman, or as head of the government of our vast United States. He earnestly gave his efforts to improving all the goodness and strength of his nature, in order to be as perfect a man as he could; he upheld with all his might what he became convinced he ought, as a patriotic, Christian man, to uphold, without regard to the worldly consequences that might affect him on account of such support; and he always put aside all personal considerations and selfish desires, and, in prayerful reliance upon the Almighty and All-wise Ruler, sought the real good of those whom he had been appointed to govern,—meeting his death, at last, in a great public assembly whither he had gone, not for his own pleasure, but because his presence had been promised, and his generous heart feared lest disappointment should follow his absence. Henceforward his name and his deeds will be recounted with those of Washington, and his consistent uprightness will be a teacher and a model.

So let us leave him now, remembering that he is at peace where no turmoil or trial of men in labor and passion can reach and afflict him, and never forgetting that the grand and holy moral of his pure and simple life—which we reverently believe his silent lips would relate to you all, dear young Americans, if they could once more speak—is this: Do good, and love to do it, not for pleasure or reward, but because it is right before the eternal God; avoid all evil, and love to avoid it, not for fear or on account of punishment, but because it is sinful before the Lord, and fit only for the Devil and his angels.



No. 9.

Obedient to a mute command,

  My first flies, far and fleet,

Frantic across the listening land,

  Unhelped by wings or feet,

And often bears from Love’s fond hand

  My second, dear and sweet;—


My second, which in every place

  Fond hearts will clasp and prize;

But yet my second loses grace,

  When, as I own with sighs,

It sometimes clouds the kindest face

  And fires the fairest eyes.


My whole, with brightest bloom replete,

  Yields to a doom unjust,

A grievous fate condemned to meet,

  Wherever it is thrust,

Swept roughly under servile feet

  And trampled in the dust.

Florence Percy.

No. 10.

My first in snowy folds may lie,

Or glow with shades of every dye,

Assist our toilet, deck our board,

And gleam from Eastern garb and sword.


My second yields its balmy breath

Most sweetly when ’tis doomed to death;

And names a maiden pure and fair,

With tender eyes and clustering hair.


A curious casket is my third,

Locked in a short and simple word,

Whose richest treasures shun the light,

Or coyly open to our sight.


My whole is just the loveliest thing

In summer’s crown, bequeathed by spring;

Cupid proclaims his message by it,

When bashful lips would fain deny it.



7.Our great leader,—Largeness, try us angels,—after putting his veto on the Cry on de face, has accomplished more for the good of our country than any man who has been accustomed to say of himself, “I bias not toil.”
8.My cook, preparing for dinner, asked what she should do with the chops; said I, “Melt rib oh!” She said then, “How about the beef?” “Troll, I sweat” replied I. “What pudding?” asked she; “A pi o’ cat,” said I. “A nice dessert?” she inquired; “A cheep,” said I, “with no greas.”


L. W.


No. 10.

I am composed of 20 letters.

My 8, 7, 16, is a wild animal.

My 2, 9, 11, 17, is very annoying in dry weather.

My 1, 6, 20, is a melody.

My 2, 10, 7, is a loud sound.

My 12, 16, 4, 18, is an exclamation that commands quiet.

My 3, 19, 5, 15, is a very small quantity.

My 14, 16, 13, 5, is a song in two parts.

My whole is a distinguished author.

Katie F. B.

No. 11.

I am composed of 17 letters.

My 9, 16, 5, 5, 4, 11, is a girl’s name.

My 2, 6, 10, 8, is where we put bread.

My 15, 7, 17, is the front of an army.

My 6, 7, 1, 11, 8, 12, 4, 17, 16, is a kind of tender epistle.

My 13, 7, 1, 12, is a military command.

My 17, 14, 12, is a negative.

My 9, 1, 3, 16, is a color.

My whole is one of the greatest musical composers.

D. L., Jr.


No. 13.

A man with five weights can weigh any number of pounds from one to one hundred and twenty-one. What are they?

S. F. T.

No. 14.

I know a man whose name is 9 more than his title, and if from his name and title you subtract twice the difference between the Christian and Mohammedan eras, you will have the present year of our Lord. Can you work out his name?

A. O. W.

No. 15.

I sent 20 cents for 20 pencils. The prices being 4 cents each, 2 for a cent, and 4 for a cent, how many of each kind will the shopman send me?

E. D. J.


C. F. B.



8.Shay-raid (Charade).

Arithmetical Puzzles.

11.Love me little, love me long. (By Charles Reade.)
12.18 feet.




7.General Tom Thumb.
8.Mother Goose.
9.Robinson Crusoe.

Illustrated Rebuses.

10.In the cause of Independence our fore-fathers sacrificed their lives and fortunes. Let us aim to hand down to latest posterity the priceless heritage of the Union, cemented by their richest blood. [(Inn) T (he) caws of (in D pen den ce) (hour) (four fathers) (sacrifice) ed T (hair) live (sand) (four tunes). (Lettuce) (aim) 2 (hand down) (too late) est (poster) I (tea) the pr(ice) less (her) (eye) t (age) of the Union (seamen) ted (bee) y (thei) r (rich) est (blood).]
11.Stern tide of human time, that knowest not rest,
But sweeping from the cradle to the tomb
Successive generations to their doom.
[St (urn) (tie) de of u m (ant) (eye) me t (hat) know (west) (knot) (rest), (butt) (sweep in G) from the (cradle) (tooth)E (tomb) success (hive) gene (rat) (eye on Stot) (hair) doom.]


There was an old party named Fudge,

Who played till they hoped he would budge;

  When they cried, “Will you stop?”

  He said, “Not till I drop!”—

That persistent old party named Fudge.



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. An Illustrated Magazine for Boys and Girls. Vol 1, Issue 6 edited by John Townsend Trowbridge, Gail Hamilton and Lucy Larcom]