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Title: Graham's Magazine Vol. 35 No. 1 July 1849

Date of first publication: 1849

Author: George Rex Graham

Date first posted: June 29, 2017

Date last updated: June 29, 2017

Faded Page eBook #20170651

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



Vol. XXXV.      July, 1849.      No. 1.

Table of Contents

Fiction, Literature and Articles

A Biography of Major-General Stephen Watts Kearny
Jasper St. Aubyn
True Unto Death
Thoughts on the Thermometer
The Foundling
The Neglected Grave-Yard
The Widow of Nain
A Voice from the Wayside
The Dream of Mehemet
Wild-Birds of America
Cross Purposes
Uncle Tom
Editor’s Table.
Review of New Books

Poetry, Music, and Fashion

I Will Be a Miner Too
The Emigrant’s Daughters
I’m Thinking of Thee!
The Tulip-Tree
To My Wife
A Daughter’s Memory
From Amalthæus.
To ——
The Omnipresence of God
New Year Meditation
The Image
The Pilgrim’s Fast
To My Mother in Heaven
The Fortieth Sonnet of Petrarca
Lines on Burning Some Old Journals and Letters
Le Follet
What’s a Tear?

Transcriber’s Notes can be found at the end of this eBook.








Of Literature and Art,




















. . . . . .








JUNE, 1849, TO JANUARY, 1850.

A Biography of Major-General Stephen Watts Kearny, U. S. A. By Fayette Robinson,1
A Voice from the Wayside. By Caroline C⁠——,47
A Memory. By Jane Taylor Worthington,122
A Traveler’s Story. By Lydia Jane Peirson,179
A Year and a Day. By Caroline H. Butler,193, 275
A Harmless Glass of Wine. By Kate Sutherland,230
An Adventure of Jasper C——,239
A Case of Gold Fever. By John Jones,356
Cross Purposes. By Kate,59
Colored Birds. The Bullfinch. By Bechstein,177
Editor’s Table,67
Editor’s Table,127
Effie Deans,244
Editor’s Table,248
Editor’s Table,307
Editor’s Table,372
General Training. By Alfred B. Street,133
Homewood. By P. C. Shannon,286
Indian Legend. By Kah-ge-ga-gah-bowh,80
Ibad’s Vision. By Richard Penn Smith,229
Jasper St. Aubyn; Or the Course of Passion. By Henry W. Herbert,7, 82, 140, 204, 253, 322
Jessie Lincoln. By Miss M. J. B. Browne,164
Legend. By Kah-ge-ga-gah-bowh,155
Love Tests of Halloween. By T. S. Arthur,158
Mary Wilson. By D. W. Belisle,99
Minnie Clifton. By Emma C. Embury,222
Men at Home. By Mrs. C. B. Marston,266
Major Anspach. By Marc Fournier,282, 343
Mr. Merritt and His Family. By F. Summers,293
My First Love. By Mrs. E. F. Ellet,360
Olden Times. By J. R. Chandler,102
Sketches of Life in Our Village. By Giftie,93
Sketches of Life in Our Village. By Giftie,151
Self-Devotion. By Giftie,349
True Unto Death. By Caroline H. Butler,17
Thoughts on the Thermometer,25
The Foundling. By Jessie Howard,27
The Neglected Grave-Yard. By Prof. Alden,36
The Widow of Nain. By J. R. Chandler,41
The Dream of Mehemet. By R. Penn Smith,55
The Curtain Lifted. By Caroline H. Butler,73
Two Hours of Doom. By Mrs. Juliet H. L. Campbell,110
The Captive of York. By Stella Martin,113
The Two Paths. By Mrs. Mary B. Horton,185
The Engraver’s Daughter. By H. Sunderland,201
The Recreant Missionary. By Caroline C⁠——,215
The Village Schoolmaster. By C. M. Farmer,233
The Battle of Trenton. By C. J. Peterson,288
The Life Insurance. By Henry G. Lee,301
The Balize,304
The Conscript. By Joseph R. Chandler,313
Three Pictures. By Caroline C⁠——,334
The Two Cousins. By Kah-ge-ga-gah-bowh,365
Uncle Tom. By Simon,61
Unfading Flowers. By T. S. Arthur,366
Wild-Birds of America. By Professor Frost,57
Wild-Birds of America. By Professor Frost,126
Wild-Birds of America. By Professor Frost,189
Wild-Birds of America. By Professor Frost,245
Wild-Birds of America. By Professor Frost,304
Wild-Birds of America. By Professor Frost,369


A Daughter’s Memory. By Mary L. Lawson,34
Alice. By Thomas Dunn English,200
A Parting Song. By Professor Campbell,214
A Thought. By Isaac Gray Blanchard,232
Alice Vernon. By E. Curtiss Hine,342
Bunker-Hill at Midnight. By E. Curtiss Hine,303
Communion of the Sea and Sky. By E. Jones,176
Dirge. By Richard Penn Smith,371
Elim. By Virginia,91
Ermengarde’s Awakening. By F. S. Osgood,112
From Amalthæus. By Richard Penn Smith,34
Faith’s Warning. By Henry T. Tuckerman,92
Fragments of an Unfinished Story. By Mrs. Frances S. Osgood,263
Flower Fancies. By H. Marion Stephens,306
Good-Night. By Walter Herries, Esq.139
I will be a Miner too. By Mrs. Juliet H. L. Campbell,6
I’m Thinking of Thee! By A. D. Williams,16
Kubleh. By Bayard Taylor,120
Lines. By Walter Herries, Esq.60
Lament of the Gold-Digger. By E. C. Hine,92
Little Willie. By Mrs. H. Marion Stephens,98
Lily Leslie. By Gretta,156
Lines. By Forlorn Hope,281
Lines. By Sarah Helen Whitman,303
Mary. By Mrs. O. M. P. Lord,15
My Spirit. By Henry Morford,125
New Year Meditation. By Enna Duval,40
Northampton. By Henry T. Tuckerman,232
Parting. By Miss Phœbe Carey,265
Pleasant Words. By Caroline May,370
Passing Away. By Annie Grey,371
Song. By Thomas Fitzgerald,228
Speak Out. By S. D. Anderson,238
Spiritual Presence. By Mary G. Horsford,306
Summer’s Night. By Sam. C. Reid, Jr.332
Song. By Agnes,342
The Emigrant’s Daughters. By Gretta,6
The Tulip-Tree. By Bayard Taylor,16
To My Wife. By S. D. Anderson,26
To ——. By Henry B. Hirst,35
The Omnipresence of God. By R. Coe, Jr.35
The Image. By A. J. Requier,46
The Pilgrim’s Fast. By Mary G. Horsford,54
To My Mother in Heaven. By T. Fitzgerald,54
The Fortieth Sonnet of Petrarca. By F. R.58
The Improvisatrice. By Mary G. Horsford,81
The Eighteenth Sonnet of Petrarca. By F. R.81
To Mary. By Lucy Cabell,98
Translation from Sappho. By G. Hill,109
This World of Ours. By S. D. Anderson,124
To the Lily of the Valley. By Prof. Campbell,139
The Spanish Maiden. By Agnes Coleman,150
The Angel’s Visit. By Mrs. S. Anna Lewis,154
To a Portrait. By Mrs. H. Marion Stephens,157
The Odalisque. By Bayard Taylor,163
To Inez. By S. D. Anderson,175
Time and Change. By Isaac Gray Blanchard,178
The Rain. By T. A. Swan,188
The Fountain in Winter. By Bayard Taylor,213
The Light of Life. By Mrs. O. M. P. Lord,214
The Bride of Broek-in-Waterland. By C. P. Shiras,220
The Willow by the Spring. By J. Hunt, Jr.247
The Broken Household. By Alice Carey,262
The Fear of Death. By Mary L. Lawson,274
The Seminoles’ Last Look. By Fayette Robinson,291
To My Sister E. By Adaliza Cutter,300
To My Steed. By S. Anderson,321
The Death of the Year. By Henry B. Hirst,333
The Cottage. By J. Hunt, Jr.333
The Misanthrope. By A New Contributor,340
The Broken Reed. By S. S. Hornor,318
The Old Wooden Church on the Green. By Henry Morford,359
The Death of Cleopatra. By W. G. Simms,363
The Fairies’ Song. By Heinrich,364
The Undivided Heart. By Myrrha,371
Watouska. By Kate St. Clair,79
Words of Waywardness. By Prof. Campbell,100
Woman’s Heart. By Rufus Henry Bacon,178
We are Changed. By Edith Blythe,247


H. Kavanagh. A Tale. By H. W. Longfellow,71
My Uncle the Curate. By the Author of “The Bachelor of the Albany,” etc.71
The Personal History and Experience of David Copperfield the Younger. By Charles Dickens,71
Characteristics of Literature. By Henry T. Tuckerman,131
The Earth and Man. By Arnold Guyot,131
The History of the United States of America. By Richard Hildreth,191
Dante’s Divine Comedy: The Inferno. By John A. Carlyle, M. D.192
A Second Visit to the United States of North America. By Sir Charles Lyell, F. R. S.251
The Liberty of Rome. By Samuel Eliot,251
The Penance of Roland. By Henry B. Hirst,252
History of the National Constituent Assembly. By J. F. Corkran,252
Oliver Goldsmith: A Biography. By Washington Irving,311
Bulwer and Forbes on the Water Treatment,311
The Child’s First History of Rome. By E. M. Sewell,312
A Lift for the Lazy,312
Poems. By Robert Browning,378
Physician and Patient. By Worthington Hooker,379
History of England. By David Hume,379
Success in Life. By Mrs. L. C. Tuthill,379
Sketches of Life and Character. By T. S. Arthur,380
History of the French Revolution of 1848. By A. De Lamartine,380


What’s a Tear? Composed by M. W. Balfe.
Yes, Let Me Like a Soldier Fall. Written and Adapted by E. R. Johnston.
Oh, Let Thy Locks Unbraided Fall. Words by John W. Watson, Esq. Music by John A. Janke, Jr.
I Love, When the Morning Beams. By D. W. Belisle.
Wake, Lady, Wake. Music Composed and Arranged for the Piano, by B. W. Helfenstein, M. D.
My Life is Like the Summer’s Rose. Words by Hon. Richard Henry Wilde. Music by An Amateur.


Cross Purposes, engraved by J. M. Butler.
General Kearny, engraved by T. B. Welch.
Nature’s Triumph, engraved by F. Humphreys.
The Widow of Nain.
Paris Fashions, from Le Follet.
Title Page, engraved by W. E. Tucker.
The Golden Age, engraved by W. E. Tucker.
La Siesta, engraved by Geo. P. Ellis.
Paris Fashions, from Le Follet.
Olden Times.
No Rose Without a Thorn, engraved by J. M. Butler.
The Bullfinch, engraved by F. Humphreys.
Love Tests of Hallowe’en, Nos. 1 and 2.
Paris Fashions, from Le Follet.
Effie Deans, engraved by T. B. Welch.
Rose Carlton, engraved by W. H. Egleton.
The Baggage Wagon, engraved by A. L. Dick.
Paris Fashions, from Le Follet.
The Engraver’s Daughter.
Happy as a King, engraved by J. M. Butler.
Head-Quarters of Gen. Knox, engraved by W. H. Ellis.
Paris Fashions, from Le Follet.
The Balize.
The Death of the Year, engraved by Wm. E. Tucker.
Opera Extravagance.
The Conscript’s Departure and Return, engraved by John M. Butler.
A Case of Gold Fever.
Paris Fashions, from Le Follet.



Engraved by T. B. Welch expressly for Graham’s Magazine.


Vol. XXXV.     PHILADELPHIA, JULY, 1849.     No. 1.







Few men who have ever been in the service of the United States have enjoyed a more enviable reputation than Stephen Watts Kearny, or have left behind them more admiring friends. The recent death of this excellent soldier, and above all his distinguished services, covering a space of more than forty years, make his career at this time peculiarly an object of interest to the country.

Stephen Watts Kearny was born in the year 1793, in the town of Newark, New Jersey, in a mansion yet the property of his family. Though not prone to admit that the adventitious circumstances of birth add any real dignity to individuals, either in America or elsewhere, it may not be improper to state that the family connections of the deceased general were of such a character as to have entitled him to a prominent social position any where, he being a relation of the well-known Lady Mary Watts, and a connection of the gallant and noble General Alexander (Lord Stirling) of the revolutionary army. The grandson of an emigrant, who settled in New Jersey, before the revolution, the family of Gen. Kearny had always occupied a prominent position in society, and exerted much influence in his native state.

At the commencement of the war of 1811, young Kearny, then about eighteen, was a student at Princeton College. Contrary, it is said, to the advice of his friends, he obtained a commission from Mr. Madison, and reported for duty as a lieutenant in the 13th regiment of infantry, in which he was attached to the company of which the present very distinguished General John E. Wool was the captain.

With two companies of his regiment he was present at the gallant affair of Queenstown, and with Colonel, since Gen. Scott, was surrendered a prisoner of war. This was on the 13th of October, 1812. In this affair the companies of the thirteenth had been long opposed to the greatly celebrated and highly disciplined forty-ninth British infantry, a regiment which had stood the ordeal of the Peninsula War, and had won laurels from the best troops of France. The forty-ninth had occupied, with heavy reinforcements of Canadian militia, a battery on a commanding position. The cannonade and musketry from this point was so severe that every commissioned officer was in the first assault either killed or wounded, and Col. Van Rensselaer who commanded, was carried from the field unable to stand. Before he left, however, he ordered every man who could move to storm the battery. Three more gallant officers than those who carried his order into execution probably never lived. They were Captain Wool, Lieutenant Kearny, and 2nd Lieutenant T. B. Randolph, late of the Virginia regiment. By orders of Capt. Wool the two companies of the 13th, which originally had numbered but one hundred, all told, were extended and ordered to close upon the guns. This perilous manœuvre was executed with brilliant success, the enemy were driven precipitately from his guns, which were the first trophies to the United States of the war with Great Britain. This field was young Kearny’s first arms, and was a brilliant promise of what was to be his future career. The battle was important to the United States, though, as is well known, Col. Scott and his gallant command of regulars were forced to surrender. To the English it was most disastrous, Major Gen. Sir Isaac Brock, the captor of Detroit, a man thought worthy to compete with Wellington for the command of the British army in Spain, having been picked off by an American marksman. Throughout this trying engagement young Kearny sustained himself with the firmness which he maintained through life. When driven to the hill selected by the present Col. Totten as the strongest point, his perseverance was as distinguished as his impetuosity had been during the charge.

After the surrender, Kearny, with the other prisoners, was marched to the Canadian village of Niagara, where, it is said, they were scarcely treated with the consideration due such gallant soldiers. There occurred a circumstance of thrilling character often told—the attempted murder of Col. Scott by the Indian chiefs “young Brandt and Captain Jacobs,” which, had it proved successful, would have made irreconcilable the war between Great Britain and the United States. It failed through the great personal courage of Col. Scott and the gallantry of Captain Coffin, an aide of Gen. Sheafe, but the would-be murderers were never punished by the British government. The recurrence of such scenes, and the probability of long confinement, exercised a most unhappy effect on the mind of Kearny, who saw as the consequence of his captivity (at that day there were no exchanges of prisoners) the ruin of his professional prospects. After a confinement of some weeks at Niagara, Kearny was with the other prisoners sent to Quebec. For a long time he continued moody and morose, until a circumstance occurred, which the present general-in-chief relates, that restored his wonted alertness. The prisoners were taken to Quebec in a vessel, and from the carelessness incident to this mode of travel, the idea of a possible escape occurred to Col. Scott. The plan was to overpower the guard, to march at once to the nearest division of the United States troops on the frontier, and take their conductors with them as captives. Col. Scott imparted this plan to Kearny, who at once entered into it with his whole soul. His energy returned, and he became again the wild subaltern who had led the first platoon of the thirteenth at Queenstown. Circumstances prevented this plot from being carried into execution, but it had gone far enough to show that the subject of this memoir had as much prudence as valor.

The prisoners at last arrived at Quebec, and their situation at once became most painful. They were confined in the old French castle, and were subjected to many indignities. This was before Niagara and Lundy’s Lane, and countless other fields had taught the British army that the American soldiers were worthy antagonists. At that time the British army was filled with the aristocracy of the country, which could not conceive or imagine the true position of a country without a nobility. Countless trivial insults were daily given, and which galled to the last degree the forbearance of the prisoners. The following anecdote may explain what they were.

On one occasion, when the American prisoners dined at the garrison mess, an officer of the British staff arose, and with a pointed pomposity gave the toast, “Mr. Madison, dead or alive.” The faces of the American officers flushed with indignation, which was not diminished when they saw a young American lieutenant rise from his chair, and in the blandest manner, and with a most insinuating smile, give thanks for the remembrance of the Chief Magistrate of the United States. All thought him drunk or mad, as he proceeded to say, “he felt the weightiness of the burden imposed on him by the silence of his seniors, that he would not give thanks for the toast last drunken, but would give another in return. He was sure the officers of both services present would understand him when he gave ‘the health of his royal highness, the Prince of Wales, DRUNK OR SOBER.’” If a shell had exploded under the table the surprise could not have been greater, and the danger of a collision became imminent, when the senior officer of the British army present, a man of tact and taste, interfered, and sent the person who had given the first toast from the table under arrest. This anecdote is variously told in the service, and sometimes is attributed to Gen. Kearny, and sometimes to the late Mann Page Lomax, major of artillery, who was at the time a prisoner in the castle of Quebec. It is perfectly characteristic of each of these officers, and whether Gen. Kearny be the hero or not, aptly enough illustrates this portion of his career. The American victories in the West, by which hosts of prisoners were acquired, soon placed the men of Queenstown in a different position, and they were exchanged.

Kearny was with Scott at the time the latter officer resisted the attempt to place in confinement the Irishmen surrendered at Queenstown, and ably sustained him in his energetic action in relation to this high-handed measure. He sailed in the cartel to Boston, and immediately on his arrival, proceeded to rejoin his regiment. He was subsequently stationed at Sacket’s Harbor, where he acquired the reputation for discipline and soldiership which never deserted him. While at this post the British commander, Sir James Yoe, and Commodore Chauncy, were manœuvring for possession of the lake. On one occasion, when in possession of a temporary superiority, Sir James appeared in front of the harbor and challenged the commodore to a fight. This the latter refused, because he had no marines. When the reason was told Capt. Kearny, (he had in the interim been promoted) a gallant officer of New York, a captain of artillery, named Romain, offered at once to go on board and serve as marine. The offer was not, however, accepted, much to the chagrin of Kearny and Romain.

Captain Kearny served through the war, and on the reductions of 1815 and 1821, was retained in the service with his old grade and rank. In 1823 he received the usual brevet for ten years faithful service, and was assigned to the command of the beautiful post of Bellefontaine, near St. Louis, and in that year accompanied Brigadier General Atkinson in his famous expedition to the Upper Missouri. This was before the introduction of steamboats into those waters, and the expedition was one of the most tedious imaginable. The boats were necessarily to be propelled by poles and oars against the rapid current of the Missouri, and not unfrequently by the tedious process of cordelling. This is done by extending from the capstan of the boat a cable, which is made fast to the shore, and thus the vessel must carefully be wound up until the rope is exhausted. Then a new rope is stretched, and the same tedious process undergone. Often, when in the midst of rapids, the cable would break, and before the vessel could be brought up, a greater distance than had been gained in a week would be passed over. In the course of two years they reached the Yellow Stone river, twenty-two hundred miles above St. Louis, and displayed the colors of the 1st and 6th infantry where the United States flag had never been seen before. The Sioux, the Pawnee, the Mandan, and Arickra, were made acquainted with the government, of which before they had but a vague knowledge, and the vast resources of that immense country for the first time revealed to the nation.

On his return Major Kearny received a full majority in the third infantry, and was removed to a new sphere, to the southern extremity of the Indian territory. While major of this regiment he established the post of Towson, on the banks of Red River. To reach this place, easy of access as it is at present, it was necessary to pass through what was then a wilderness of prairie, but which to the soldiers inured to the incessant storms of the Upper Missouri, seemed almost an Arcadia. After crossing the northern tributaries of the Arkansas, they were in the midst of the range of the buffalo, and the countless herds of wild horses which then abounded even there. The latter, not unfrequently, amazed at the novel sight of the marching troops, would dash up, as if to charge the columns, pause with as much unanimity as if they acted by command, encircle it, and tossing their long manes and forelocks, hurry out of view. New objects continually met his gaze, and the information then amassed was among the most valuable ever collected under the auspices of the government. On this march Major Kearny was accompanied by his accomplished wife, a step-daughter of Gen. M. Clark, of St. Louis, whom, about the time of his promotion, he had married. With the third infantry Major Kearny remained until the Black Hawk war, when almost all the troops of the country were concentrated in the country of the hostile Indians.

While a major of the third, an incident occurred, which, though often told, will bear repetition. On one occasion, while stationed at Jefferson Barracks, Major Kearny was drilling a brigade on one of the open fields near the post. The manœuvre was the simple exercise of marching in line to the front. An admirable horseman, he sat with his face toward the troops, while the horse he rode, perfectly trained, was backed in the same direction, along which the command was marched. At once the animal fell, fastening the rider to the ground by his whole weight. His brigade had been drilled to such a state of insensibility, that not one of them came to his assistance; nor was it necessary. The line advanced to within about ten feet of him, when, in a loud, distinct voice, calmly as if he had been in the saddle under no unusual circumstance, Major Kearny gave the command, “Fourth company—obstacle—march.” The fourth company, which was immediately in front of him, was flanked by its captain in the rear of the other half of the grand division. The line passed on, and when he was thus left in the rear of his men, he gave the command, “Fourth company into line—march.” He was not seriously injured—extricated himself from his horse, mounted again, passed to the front of the regiment, and executed the next manœuvre in the series he had marked out for the day’s drill.

We are now, however, to see Major Kearny in a new and more important sphere of action.

During the whole of the last war with Great Britain cavalry was not once employed as a battle-piece, and in spite of the great services of the horse which had been commanded, during the revolution, by Cols. Lee and Washington, and by Count Pulaski, this great arm had become most unpopular. Consequently, on the reduction, no skeleton even of a corps had been retained—the sabres were locked up, the saddles and horses sold, and the officers and men disbanded. The policy, however, of disposing the eastern tribes along the western frontier, and the rapid strides of emigration west ward, brought the army into contact with the mounted tribes of the prairie, who evidently could never be overtaken or punished for depredations they at that time used to commit, by foot-soldiers, armed with heavy muskets, and laden down with knapsacks and camp equipage. Of this evident proof had been obtained in the expedition of Gen. Atkinson, mentioned above, and other excursions which had brought the officers and men of the 6th, 3rd and 1st infantry into contact with the nomad tribes of the Camanch. If other demonstration were required, it was furnished by the events of the Black Hawk war, when it became necessary to raise a body of mounted gunmen for special service, which was done under the auspices of the present distinguished Senator from Wisconsin, Mr. Dodge. These troops, called Rangers, did good service enough to induce Congress to authorize the levy of a strict cavalry corps called Dragoons. The whole army, with very few exceptions, was impressed with the necessity of this corps, for which the most distinguished men in their several grades of the service applied. On its organization, Major Kearny was appointed lieutenant-colonel of the regiment, and on him depended almost exclusively the discipline, the colonel, Dodge, though a brave man, not having the military education or experience requisite to make him the active head of a new corps, in the details of which not only men but officers were to be instructed. Col. Kearny, during his long seclusion in the west, had been a patient student, and had made himself master of all the theory of his profession, and in a short time made his regiment one of the best in the world. Within less than a year after the first muster of the regiment, it was sent, under its colonel, as a part of the command with which the lamented Gen. Leavenworth marched to the Spanish Peaks. This disastrous march, in the course of which so many men and officers died, was most trying to a new corps, which had no guide to direct them. Here all the experience of the old world was at fault. Cavalry had there to march but from one hamlet to another, finding forage and grain everywhere. Here eight hundred miles of wilderness were to be overcome, and more than once the jaded horses were without even water. This proved the perfectness of the regiment, and the thoroughness of the discipline which induced the gallant and veteran Gen. Gaines to speak, in an official letter, of the first dragoons as “the best troops I ever saw;” and the officer who had defended Fort Erie, beaten back a victorious enemy at Chrysler’s Field, and received the keys of St. Augustine, certainly knew what a soldier was.

In 1835, Col. Kearny visited with one wing of his regiment, the Sioux, on the Upper Missouri, and had the satisfaction at a council to reconcile the long animosity between them and the Sauks and Foxes. He also made a long march to the head-waters of the Mississippi, visiting the village of Wabisha, and effecting a cessation of the trespassing of the British subjects, from the Earl of Selkirk’s settlement at Pembina, on the territories of the United States. In July, 1836, he was made colonel of the first dragoons; and from this period a sketch of his services would be almost a history of the West, not one trouble on the frontier occurred in the settlement of which he was not instrumental; and with six companies of his regiment he was able to protect a line of frontier eight hundred miles long. Stationed at Fort Leavenworth, be made himself the idol of the West, and devoting himself to his regiment, made its discipline perfect. He had now acquired a high rank, and the qualities he had always possessed became conspicuous. Bland in his manners, but of iron firmness, kind to his juniors, his equals, or those nearly so, requiring the strictest obedience, measuring his expectations by the rank of the officer, his conduct became proverbial. To his men he was most considerate, so that they looked on him as a protector. It is believed that during the whole time he commanded the first dragoons no soldier ever received a blow, except by the sentence of a general court martial for the infamous crime of desertion. The lash disappeared, and though probably the strictest disciplinarian in the service, there was less punishment in his corps than in any other. About this time the system of drill of the dragoons was changed, and he was long engrossed in the instruction of his regiment, having the troublesome task of unlearning them all he had taught of the old system, from which the new one differed entirely in mode and principle of combination.

In the year 1839, the two Ridges, father and son, and Elias Boudinot, chiefs of the Cherokees, were murdered by a hostile clique of their own tribe, and there seemed imminent danger that a war would originate. Immediately on the receipt of the news of a possible collision, Col. Kearny determined to proceed to the scene. The officer of the quarter-master’s department on duty with him being unable to furnish the requisite funds, the colonel provided them from his own resources, and after a very rapid march appeared with six companies of his regiment at Fort Wayne. Words can not express the difference between his companies and those in garrison at that post; the beautiful condition of the men and horses of the first, and the rough-coated nags and unclean condition of the men of the second. After the difficulty had gone by, he effected an exchange of garrisons, and with the neglected and abused left wing, proceeded to Fort Leavenworth, where, in a short time these companies became equal in discipline to the others of the corps. The companies of the Fort Wayne garrison which he took with him to Leavenworth, were those which, under the command of the gallant and lamented Capt. Burgwin, and the excellent soldier, Major Grier, did such good service, and so much distinguished themselves in the campaign in New Mexico against the revolters and the Pueblo and Navajo Indians.

In 1842, he was appointed to the command of the third military department, with head-quarters at St. Louis. There he remained until 1846, with the exception of his long march to the South Pass of the Rocky Mountains in 1845. There is no doubt that this is one of the most extraordinary marches on record, both from its distance, its rapidity, and the fact that he passed among semi-hostile tribes nearly two thousand miles; crossed deep and rapid streams by swimming, gave protection to the immense army of emigrants en route to California, and returned without losing a man or horse.

In 1846, the war with Mexico began, and he was assigned to the command of the army of the West with orders to occupy New Mexico and California. To reach Santa Fe an immense march was to be undertaken across a country but sparsely furnished with wood and water, and where no supplies were to be met with or obtained until the enemy’s country should be reached, and in all probability a battle fought and won. To accomplish this, precisely such a man as Col. Kearny was required. He was familiar with the service, and possessed the unbounded confidence of the people of Missouri, from which state the volunteers who were to compose the main body of his army were to be drawn. In a most unprecedented short time the men were enrolled, and all necessaries supplied, and before Armijo, the governor of New Mexico was aware of his approach, the army was in the capital of the province. Like Cæsar, Gen. Kearny might say, “I came, I saw, I conquered.”

Immediately before the capture of Santa Fe, Col. Kearny had received his promotion to the grade of Brigadier-General, and abandoned to his successor the standard of a regiment he had borne from the Gulf of Mexico to the head-waters of the Mississippi, and which was to be the first flag of the army which waved on the shores of the Pacific. After obeying his orders, and providing for the future peace of the country, he proceeded to California, across a country where an army had never marched before, and which was considered impassable. Cold, a wilderness, absolute barrenness, were all to be overcome. Scarcely, however, had he set out on this expedition than he was met by an express, informing him that California was conquered. Relying on this, he sent back all his troops except one hundred men, and proceeded to the valley of the Gila. Of the sufferings of his men, of the almost starvation which forced them to eat the flesh of the emaciated dragoon-horses which had borne them so far we will not speak. When he emerged into the fertile country, it was not until after severe contests against immense odds, and until he had lost many favorite officers and picked men, to all of whom he had become endeared by participation in the dangers of a march across the American continent.

On the 2d of December, 1846, Gen. Kearny arrived at Warner’s Rancho, one of the extreme eastward settlements of California. He there learned certainly what he had previously heard from a party of Californians, that the population had risen against the invaders and that Andreas Pico was near San Diego with a superior party, intending to give him battle. Though exhausted by a long march, and mounted on broken-down mules, Gen. Kearny hurried to attack him. On the night of December 5, he heard that Pico was at the village of San Pascual, and on the next morning met him. At once a charge was ordered, which broke Pico’s line and forced it to retreat. After a flight of half a mile, however, it was rallied and charged the head of the American force, and lanced many of the foremost men. A desperate hand to hand fight ensued, which resulted in the discomfiture of Pico, not, however, until Captains Moore and Johnston, and Lieutenant Hammond, and sixteen men had been killed, and fourteen persons wounded, including the general himself, and all the officers except Captain Turner, who, though he greatly distinguished himself, escaped untouched. The inequality of the contest was immense, when we remember that the Californians, the most superb horsemen in the world, were mounted on excellent chargers, while the dragoons were on mules which had marched from Santa Fe. The dead were buried; this sad duty, and the necessity of making further arrangements, detained the party all day. On the next day the march was resumed, but encumbered as they were, they were able to proceed but nine miles when the enemy charged them again. The needful preparations to receive them were made, when the enemy wheeled off, and attempted to occupy an eminence which commanded the route. From this, after a sharp skirmish, they were driven with some loss, and then Gen. Kearny encamped. As Pico evidently intended to dispute every pass, the general determined to remain where he was until reinforcements, for which he had sent to the naval commander at San Diego, should arrive. Four days afterward a force of marines, under Capt. Zelin, U. S. M. C. and of sailors, commanded by Lieutenant Gray, arrived, and with this force Gen. Kearny marched without molestation to San Diego, a distance of thirty miles. A difficulty about the command here arose between Commodore Stockton and Gen. Kearny, which could not be settled in California, where the naval commander had far the superior force. It did not prevent their undertaking a joint expedition against Puebla de los Angelos, which was in possession of a strong Mexican force under Flores.

On the 8th of January the Mexicans were met six hundred strong, with four guns, in the face of whom the American force of sailors, marines, and the remnant of the dragoons, forded the river, and after a short, sharp, and decisive affair, drove them from the field. On the next day the enemy again appeared, and, as usual, were beaten, and on the 10th Puebla de los Angelos was occupied. At these affairs both the naval and army commanders were present, and the question of who was commander added somewhat to the difficulty already existing between them. At this time Lieut. Col. J. C. Fremont, then of the mounted rifles, commanded a numerous body of volunteers in California. Gen. Kearny ordered this officer to join him. This Col. Fremont did not do, but on the contrary, considered Com. Stockton as his commander. Consequently, when on the arrival of land reinforcements from the United States, Gen. Kearny assumed and maintained his command, he ordered Col. Fremont to accompany him home. Col. Fremont was subsequently arrested and tried for this dereliction of duty, found guilty of mutinous conduct, and sentenced to be dismissed the service. A portion of the court which tried him having recommended the remission of the sentence, the President acquiesced, and he was ordered to duty, but immediately resigned his commission. The prosecution of the charges against Col. Fremont detained Gen. Kearny in Washington during a portion of the winter of ’47 and ’48, and was, doubtless, most painful to him, for no man in the army had previously borne a higher character for soldiership than Col. Fremont. The court martial fully sustained Gen. Kearny in every pretension, and but one person has been found in America to cavil at the sentence.

In the spring of 1848, Gen. Kearny was ordered to Mexico, whither he proceeded at once. All hostilities were, however, then over, and though he was in the discharge of his duty, his service there was uneventful. On the conclusion of the war he returned home, and was assigned to the command of the military division of which St. Louis is the head-quarters. He there had the proud satisfaction to receive the brevet of major-general for his services in New Mexico and California. He had, however, brought with him the seeds of an insidious disease which soon overcame his strength, enfeebled as it was by privations and trials of every kind. He died at St. Louis, October 31, 1848, leaving a wife and a family of young sons to regret him.

In the eventful career of Gen. Kearny he had always been distinguished as one of the best officers of his grade in the service. From a subaltern to the highest rank he rose, every step having been won by service. He was bland in his manners, dispassionate and calm. Quick and ready in forming his opinions, he yet did not act hastily, and when once he had decided, was immutable in his course. A great student and thinker, he never talked except when he had something to say, yet possessed a fund of anecdote and universal information rarely to be met with. In the West he was a popular idol, so that the whole population acquiesced in the apparently arbitrary steps he was often called on to take in the discharge of his duty. To his subalterns he was endeared by a thousand kindnesses, and to the whole army by respect and admiration. He left in all the army list no one superior to him in personal courage, science in his profession, or the minor qualities which contribute so much to make the soldier.

Immediately on the receipt of the news of his death, the Secretary of War, Mr. Marcy, published an order containing the following high tribute to his important services.

War Department.

Washington, Nov. 6, 1848.

The President with feelings of deep regret announces to the Army the death of Brigadier-General Stephen W. Kearny, Major-General by brevet. The honorable and useful career of this gallant officer terminated on the 31st of October at St. Louis, in consequence of a disease contracted while in the discharge of his official duties in Mexico.

General Kearny entered the army in 1812 as lieutenant, and continued in it until his death—a period of more than thirty-six years. His character and bearing as an accomplished officer were unsurpassed, and challenge the admiration of his fellow citizens and the emulation of his professional brethren. His conquest of New Mexico and valuable services in California have inseparably connected his name with the future destiny of these territories, and it will be ever held in grateful remembrance by the successive generations which will inhabit these extensive regions of our confederacy.”

He was buried in St. Louis by the 7th and 8th regiments of infantry and a squadron of that regiment of dragoons which he had made so famous, commanded by one of his favorite captains, the present Col. E. V. Sumner, of the 1st dragoons. All the city of St. Louis accompanied the cortège to pay their last tribute of respect to the general and the MAN.





All around me men are delving,

  Deep within the troubled earth,

Searching for the darksome treasures

  Hidden since creation’s birth.

Wearying toil and ceaseless effort

  Bring the buried ore to view;—

Though I be but feeble woman,

  I will be a miner too!


Heart of mine! thou art a cavern,

  Sad and silent, dark and deep—

In thy fathomless recesses

  Spirit gnomes their treasures keep.

Gems of love, and hope, and joyance,

  Bury there their flashing beam—

Wilder passions fret their prison

  With the fierceness of their gleam.


Though unburnished, prized and precious,

  To the enraptured poet’s sight,

As the jewels, proudly flashing,

  On the brow of beauty bright.

True, unto the sordid worldling

  These are gems of little worth,

Yet, for thee, high-hearted poet!

  I will strive to bring them forth!


Lamp of truth, my brow adorning,

  Lighting up the weary way—

I, in pain, will probe my bosom,

  Bare its treasures to the day.

Wearying toil and ceaseless effort

  Bring the buried ore to view;—

Though I be but feeble woman,

  I will be a miner too!





I had but two; they were my only treasure,

  Two lovely daughters of the imperial isle;

They gave my quiet hearth-stone every pleasure,

  They gave my lone heart every sunny smile,

And to your land I brought them o’er the sea,

To hear the tones which tell of Liberty!


They were twin lasses; one was like the Rose,

  With deep, dark crimson on its opening breast;

The other like the Daisy, when it glows

  With evening’s pearls upon its snowy crest.

And when they nestled near me lovingly,

They were like morn and quiet eve to me.


But she, the golden haired, is with the stars!

  She, the blue-eyed, the fondest of the twain,

For her was opened heaven’s glorious bars,

  Just as the sun was sinking in the main,

And flowers less fair, each in its soft green nest,

On the far shore, had sunk like her to rest.


Upon the waves she died—the sounding waves⁠—

  The sands her pillow, and the weeds her pall;

And there the deepest, tideless water laves

  The mortal part of half my little all;

And though I know her soul is bright above,

Still earth is desolate without her love.


She drooped from day to day—within my arms

  I cradled her dear form, so slight, so fair,

And gazed with doating love upon her charms,

  While my big tears were glistening in her hair,

Till o’er her upturned eyes the fringed-lid fell,

And soft she said—I know she said—“Farewell!”


She died without a moan, without a sigh;

  A golden day had faded in the west,

And mother Night descending from on high,

  Was hushing Nature to her dreamy rest;

And ere another day broke o’er the sea,

Deep rolled the waves between my child and me.


I chanted o’er her lays of her old home⁠—

  And she, the stricken mourner by my side,

Mingled her tears with ocean’s moonlit foam,

  And sent her wail upon the shoreless tide.

Oh! it was sad to hear that heart-wrung moan

On the wild sea, so vast, so still, so lone!


On my own native Scotland’s hallowed ground,

  In a low glen, from worldly din afar,

The stars look down upon the grassy mound

  Where she is laid—my young life’s morning star⁠—

And in the trackless deep, the bud she gave

From her fond bosom, fills a briny grave.


And with this one, all that my heart has left,

  I raise my altar where your heaven glows;

Here the lone pair, of all they loved bereft,

  Would find in you, Bethesda for their woes.

They’ll think of home, with memory’s burning tear,

But turn to meet Hope’s smiling welcome here!







In the commencement of the seventeenth century, there stood among the woody hills and romantic gorges which sweep southwardly down from the bleak expanse of Dartmoor, one of those fine old English halls, which, dating from the reign of the last of the Tudors, united so much of modern comfort with so much of antique architectural beauty. Many specimens of this style of building are still to be found scattered throughout England, with their broad terraces, their quaintly sculptured porticoes, their tall projecting oriels, their many stacks of richly decorated chimneys, and their heraldic bearings adorning every salient point, grotesquely carved in the red freestone, which is their most usual, as indeed their most appropriate material. No one, however, existed, it is probable, at that day, more perfect in proportion to its size, or more admirably suited to its wild and romantic site, than the manor-house of Widecomb-Under-Moor, or, as it was more generally called in its somewhat sequestered neighborhood, the House in the Woods. Even at the present time, that is a very rural and little frequented district; its woods are more extensive, its moorlands wilder, its streams less often turned to purposes of manufacturing utility, than in any other tract of the southern counties; but at the time of which I write, when all England was comparatively speaking an agricultural country; when miles and miles of forest existed, where there now can scarcely be found acres; when the communications even between the neighboring country towns were difficult and tedious, and those between the country and metropolis almost impracticable; the region of Dartmoor and its surrounding woodlands was less known and less frequented, except by its own inhabitants, rude for the most part and uncultured as their native hills, than the prairies of the Far West, or the solitudes of the Rocky Mountains.

The few gentry, and lords of manors who owned estates, and had their castellated or Elizabethan dwellings, scattered here and there, at long intervals, among the sylvan scenery of that lonely region, were for the greater part little superior in habits, in refinement, and in mental culture, to the boors around them. Staunch hunters, and hard drinkers, up with the lark and abed before the curfew, loyal to their king, kind and liberal to their dependents, and devout before their God, they led obscure and blameless lives, careless of the great world, a rumor of which rarely wandered so far as to reach their ears, unknown to fame, yet neither useless nor unhonored within the sphere of their humble influence, marked by few faults and many unpretending virtues.

To this general rule, however, the lords of Widecomb Manor had long been an exception. Endowed with larger territorial possessions than most of their neighbors, connected with many of the noblest families of the realm, the St. Aubyns of Widecomb Manor had for several generations held themselves high above the squires of the vicinity, and the burghers of the circumjacent towns. Not confining themselves to the remote limits of their rural possessions, many of them had shone in the court and in the camp; several had held offices of trust and honor under Elizabeth and her successor; and when, in the reign of the unfortunate Charles, the troubles between the king and his Parliament broke out at length into open war, the St. Aubyn of that day, like many another gallant gentleman, emptied his patrimonial coffers to replenish the exhausted treasury; and melted his old plate and felled his older oaks, in order to support the king’s cause in the field, at the head of his own regiment of horse.

Thence, when the good cause succumbed for a time, and democratic license, hardly restrained by puritanic rigor, strode rampant over the prerogative of England’s crown, and the liberties of England’s people, fines, sequestrations, confiscations, fell heavily on the confirmed malignancy, as it was then termed, of the Lord of Widecomb; and he might well esteem himself fortunate, that he escaped beyond the seas with his head upon his shoulders, although he certainly had not where to lay it.

Returning at the restoration with the Second Charles, more fortunate than many of his friends, Sir Miles St. Aubyn recovered a considerable portion of his demesnes, which, though sequestrated, had not been sold, and with these the old mansion, now, alas! all too grand and stately for the diminished revenues of its owner, and the shrunken estates which it overlooked.

It would not perhaps have been too late, even then for prudence and economy, joined to a resolute will and energetic purpose, to retrieve the shaken fortunes of the house; but having recovered peace and a settled government, the people and the court of England appeared simultaneously to have lost their senses. The overstrained and somewhat hypocritical morality of the Protectorate was succeeded by the wildest license, the most extravagant debauchery; and in the orgies which followed their restoration to their patrimonial honors, too many of the gallant cavaliers discreditably squandered the last remnant of fortunes which had been half ruined in a cause so noble and so holy.

Such was the fate of Sir Miles St. Aubyn. The brave and generous soldier of the First Charles sank into the selfish, dissipated roysterer under his unworthy successor. He never visited again the beautiful oak-woods and sparkling waters of his native place, but frittered away a frivolous and useless life among the orgies of Alsatia and the revels of Whitehall; and died, unfriended, and almost alone, leaving an only son, who had scarce seen his father, the heir to his impoverished fortunes and little honored name.

His son, who was born before the commencement of the troubles, of a lady highly-bred, and endowed as highly, who died—as the highly endowed die but too often—in the first prime of womanhood, was already a man when the restoration brought his father back to his native land, though not to his patrimonial estates or his paternal duties.

Miles St. Aubyn, the younger, had been educated during the period of the civil war, and during the protracted absence of his father, by a distant maternal relative, whose neutrality and humble position alike protected him from persecution by either of the hostile parties. He grew up, like his race, strong, active, bold and gallant; and if he had not received much of that peculiar nurture which renders men graceful and courtly-mannered, almost from their cradles, he was at least educated under the influence of those traditional principles which make them at the bottom, even if they lack something of external polish, high-souled and honorable gentlemen.

After the restoration he was sent abroad, as was the habit of the day, to push his fortunes with his sword in the Netherlands, then, as in all ages of the world, the chosen battle-ground of nations. There he served many years, if not with high distinction, at least with credit to his name; and if he did not win high fortune with his sword—and indeed the day for such winnings had already passed in Europe—he at least enjoyed the advantage of mingling, during his adventurous career, with the great, the noble, and the famous of the age; and when, on his return to his native land after his father’s death, he turned his sword into a ploughshare, and sought repose among the old staghorned oaks at Widecomb, he was no longer the enthusiastic, wild and headstrong youth of twenty years before; but a grave, polished, calm, accomplished man, with something of Spanish dignity and sternness engrafted on the frankness of his English character, and with the self-possession of one used familiarly to courts and camps showing itself in every word and motion.

He was a man moreover of worth, energy and resolution, and sitting down peacefully under the shadow of his own woods, he applied himself quietly, but with an iron steadiness of purpose that ensured success, to retrieving in some degree the fortunes of his race.

Soon after he returned he had taken unto himself a wife, not perhaps very wisely chosen from a family of descent prouder and haughtier even than his own, and of fortunes if not as much impoverished, at least so greatly diminished, as to render the lady’s dower a matter merely nominal. But it was an old affection—a long promise, hallowed by love and constancy and honor.

She was, moreover, a beautiful and charming creature, and, so long as she lived, rendered the old soldier a very proud and very happy husband, and when she died—which, most unhappily for all concerned, was but a few months after giving birth to an only son—left him so comfortless, and at the same time so wedded to the memory of the dead, that he never so much as envisaged the idea of a second marriage.

This gentleman it was, who, many long years after the death of the gentle Lady Alice, dwelt in serene and dignified seclusion in the old Hall, which he had never quitted since he became a widower; devoting his whole abilities to nursing his dilapidated estates, and educating his only son, whom he regarded with affection bordering on idolatry.

With the last Miles St. Aubyn, however, we shall have little to do henceforth, for the soldier of the Netherlands had departed so far from the traditions of his family—the eldest son of which had for generations borne the same name of Miles—as to drop that patrimonial appellation in the person of his son, whom he had caused to be christened Jasper, after a beloved friend, a brother of the lady afterward his wife, who had fallen by his side on a well-fought field in the Luxembourg.

What was the cause which induced the veteran, in other respects so severe a stickler for ancient habitudes, to swerve from this time-honored custom, it would be difficult to state; some of those who knew him best, attributing it merely to the desire of perpetuating the memory of his best friend in the person of his only child; while others ascribed it to a sort of superstitious feeling, which, attaching the continued decline of the house to the continual recurrence of the patronymic, looked forward in some degree to a revival of its honors with a new name to its lord.

Whatever might have been the cause, the consequences of this deviation from old family usage, as prognosticated by the dependents of Widecomb, and the superstitious inhabitants of the neighboring woods and wolds, were any thing but likely to better the fortunes of the lords of the manor; for not a few of them asserted, with undoubting faith, that the last St. Aubyn had seen the light of day, and that in the same generation which had seen the extinction of the old name the old race should itself pass away. Nor did they lack some sage authority to which they might refer for confirmation of their dark forebodings; for there existed, living yet in the mouths of men, one of those ancient saws, which were so common a century or two ago in the rural districts of England, as connected with the fortunes of the old houses; and which were referred to some Mother Shipton, or other equally infallible soothsayer of the county, whose dicta to the vulgar minds of the feudal tenantry were confirmations strong as proofs of Holy Writ.

The prophecy in question was certainly exceeding old; and had been handed down through many generations, by direct oral tradition, among a race of men wholly illiterate and uneducated; to whom perhaps alone, owing to the long expatriation of the late and present lords of the manor, it was now familiar; although in past times it had doubtless been accredited by the family to which it related.

It ran as follows, and, not being deficient in a sort of wild harmony and rugged solemnity, produced, by no means unnaturally, a powerful effect on the minds of hearers, when recited in awe-stricken tones and with a bended brow beside some feebly glimmering hearth, in the lulls of the tempest haply raving without, among the leafless trees, under the starless night—It ran as follows, and, universally believed by the vassals of the house, it remains for us to see how far its predictions were confirmed by events, and how far it influenced or foretold the course of passion, or the course of fate⁠—

While Miles sits master in Widecomb place,

The cradle shall rock on the oaken floor,

And St. Aubyn rule, where he ruled of yore.


But when Miles departs from the olden race,

The cradle shall rock by the hearth no more,

Nor St. Aubyn rule, where he ruled of yore.

Thus far it has been necessary for us to tread back the path of departed generations, and to retrace the fortunes of the Widecomb family, inasmuch as many of the events, which we shall have to narrate hereafter, and very much of the character of the principal personage, to whom our tale relates, have a direct relation to these precedents, and would have been to a certain degree incomprehensible but for this retrogression. If it obtain no other end, it will serve at least to explain how, amid scenes so rural and sequestered, and dwelling almost in solitude, among neighbors so rugged and uncivilized, there should have been found a family, deprived of all advantages of intercommunication with equals or superiors in intellect and demeanor, and even unassisted by the humanizing influence of familiar female society, which had yet maintained, as if traditionally, all the principles, all the ideas, and all the habitudes of the brightest schools of knightly courtesy and gentlemanly bearing, all the graces and easy dignity of courts, among the remote solitudes of the country.

At the time when our narrative commences, the soldier of the Netherlands, Sir Miles St. Aubyn—for though he cared not to bear a foreign title, he had been stricken a knight banneret on a bloody battle-field of Flanders—had fallen long into the sere, the yellow leaf; and though his cheek was still ruddy as a winter pippin, his eye bright and clear, and his foot firm as ever, his hair was as white as the drifted snow; his arm had lost its nervous power; and if his mind was still sane and his body sound, he was now more addicted to sit beside the glowing hearth in winter, or to bask in the summer sunshine, poring over some old chronicle or antique legend, than to wake the echoes of the oakwoods with his bugle-horn, or to rouse the heathcock from the heathy moorland with his blythe springers.

Not so, however, the child of his heart, Jasper. The boy on whom such anxious pains had been bestowed, on whom hopes so intense reposed, had reached his seventeenth summer. Like all his race, he was unusually tall, and admirably formed, both for agility and strength. Never, from his childhood upward, having mingled with any persons of vulgar station or unpolished demeanor, he was, as if by nature, graceful and easy. His manners although proud, and marked by something of that stern dignity which we have mentioned as a characteristic of the father, but which in one so youthful appeared strange and out of place, were ever those of a high and perfect gentleman. His features were marked with all the ancestral beauties, which may be traced in unmixed races through so many generations; and as it was a matter of notorious truth, that from the date of the conquest, no drop of Saxon or of Celtic blood had been infused into the pure Norman stream which flowed through the veins of the proud St. Aubyns, it was no marvel that after the lapse of so many ages the youthful Jasper should display, both in face and form, the characteristic lines and coloring peculiar to the noblest tribe of men that has ever issued from the great northern hive of nations. Accordingly, he had the rich dark chestnut hair, not curled, but waving in loose clusters; the clear gray eye; the aquiline nose; the keen and fiery look; the resolute mouth, and the iron jaw, which in all ages have belonged to the descendant of the Northman. While the spare yet sinewy frame, the deep, round chest, thin flanks, and limbs long and muscular and singularly agile, were not less perfect indications of his blood than the sharp, eagle-like expression of the bold countenance.

Trained in his early boyhood to all those exercises of activity and strength, which were in those days held essential to the gentleman, it needs not to say that Jasper St. Aubyn could ride, swim, fence, shoot, run, leap, pitch the bar, and go through every manœuvre of the salle d’armes, the tilt-yard, and the manège, with equal grace and power. Nor had his lighter accomplishments been neglected; for the age of his father and grandfather, if profligate and dissolute even to debauchery, was still refined and polished, and to dance gracefully, and touch the lute or sing tastefully, was as much expected from the cavalier as to have a firm foot in the stirrup, or a strong and supple wrist with the backsword and rapier.

His mind had been richly stored also, if not very sagely trained and regulated. For Sir Miles, in the course of his irregular and adventurous life, had read much more than he had meditated; had picked up much more of learning than he had of philosophy; and what philosophy he had belonged much more to the cold self-reliance of the camp than to the sounder tenets of the schools.

While filling his son’s mind, therefore, with much curious lore of all sorts; while making him a master of many tongues, and laying before him books of all kinds, the old banneret had taken little pains—perhaps he would not have succeeded had he taken more—to point the lessons which the books contained; to draw deductions from the facts which he inculcated; or to direct the course of the young man’s opinions.

Self-taught himself, or taught only in the hard school of experience, and having himself arrived at sound principles of conduct, he never seemed to recollect that the boy would run through no such ordeal, and reap no such lessons; nor did he ever reflect that the deductions which he had himself drawn from certain facts, acquired in one way, and under one set of circumstances, would probably be entirely different from those at which another would arrive, when his data were acquired in a very different manner, and under circumstances altogether diverse and dissimilar.

Thence it came that Jasper St. Aubyn, at the age of seventeen years, was in all qualities of body thoroughly trained and disciplined; and in all mental faculties perfectly educated, but entirely untrained, uncorrected and unchastened.

In manner, he was a perfect gentleman; in body, he was a perfect man; in mind, he was almost a perfect scholar. And what, our reader will perhaps inquire, what could he have been more; or what more could education have effected in his behalf?

Much—very much—good friend.

For as there is an education of the body, and an education of the brain, so is there also an education of the heart. And that is an education which men rarely have the faculty of imparting, and which few men ever have obtained, who have not enjoyed the inestimable advantage of female nurture during their youth, as well as their childhood; unless they have learned it in the course of painful years, from those severe and bitter teachers, those chasteners and purifiers of the heart—sorrow and suffering, which two are experience.

This, then, was the education in which Jasper St. Aubyn was altogether deficient; which Sir Miles had never so much as attempted to impart to him; and which, had he endeavored, he probably would have failed to bestow.

We do not mean to say that the boy was heartless—boys rarely are so, we might almost say never—nor that the impulses of his heart were toward evil rather than good; far from it. His heart, like all young and untainted hearts, was full of noble impulses—but they were impulses; full of fresh springing generous desires, of gracious sympathies and lofty aspirations—but he had not one principle—he never had been taught to question one impulse, before acting upon it—he never had learned to check one desire, to doubt the genuineness of one sympathy, to moderate the eagerness of one aspiration. He never had been brought to suspect that there were such virtues as self-control, or self-devotion; such vices as selfishness or self-abandonment—in a word, he never had so much as heard

That Right is right, and that to follow Right

  Were wisdom, in the scorn of consequence⁠—

and therefore he was, at the day of which we write, even what he was; and thereafter, what we propose to show you.

At the time when the youthful heir had attained his seventeenth year, the great object of his father’s life was accomplished; the fortunes of the family were so far at least retrieved, that if the St. Aubyns no longer aspired, as of old, to be the first or wealthiest family of the county, they were at least able to maintain the household on that footing of generous liberality and hospitable ease which has been at all times the pride and passion of the English country gentleman.

For many years Sir Miles had undergone the severest privations, and it was only by the endurance of actual poverty within doors, that he was enabled to maintain that footing abroad, without which he could scarcely have preserved his position in society.

For many years the park had been neglected, the gardens overrun with weeds and brambles, the courts grass-grown, and the house itself dilapidated, literally from the impossibility of supporting domestics sufficiently numerous to perform the necessary labors of the estate.

During much of this period it was to the beasts of the forest, the fowl of the moorland, and the fish of the streams, that the household of Widecomb had looked for their support; nor did the table of the banneret himself boast any liquor more generous than that afforded by the ale vats of March and October.

Throughout the whole of this dark and difficult time, however, the stout old soldier had never suffered one particle of that ceremonial, which he deemed essential as well to the formation as the preservation of the character of a true gentleman, to be relaxed or neglected by his diminished household.

Personally, he was at all times clad point device; nor did he ever fail in being mounted, himself and at least one attendant, as became a cavalier of honor. The hours of the early dinner, and of the more agreeable and social supper, were announced duly by the clang of trumpets, even when there were no guests to be summoned, save the old banneret and his motherless child, and perhaps the only visiter for years at Widecomb Manor, the gray-haired vicar of the village, who had served years before as chaplain of an English regiment in the Low Countries, with Sir Miles. Nor was the pewter tankard, containing at the best but toast and ale, stirred with a sprig of rosemary, handed around the board with less solemnity than had it been a golden hanap mantling with the first vintages of Burgundy or Xeres.

Thus it was that, as Jasper advanced gradually toward years of manhood, the fortunes of the house improving in proportion to his growth, seeing no alteration in the routine of the household, he scarcely was aware that any change had taken place in more essential points.

The eye and ear of the child had been taken by the banners, the trumpets, and the glittering board, and his fancy riveted by the solemnity and grave decorum which characterized the meals partaken in the great hall; and naturally enough he never knew that the pewter platters and tankards had been exchanged, since those days, for plate of silver, and the strong ale converted into claret or canary.

The consequence of this was simply that he found himself a youth of seventeen, surrounded by all the means and appliances of luxury, with servants, horses, hounds, and falcons at his command, the leading personage, beyond all comparison, of the neighborhood, highly born, handsome, well bred and accomplished. All this, by the way, was entirely uncorrected by any memory of past sufferings or sorrows, either on his own part or on that of his family, or by any knowledge of the privations and exertions on the part of Sir Miles, by which this present affluence had been purchased; and he became, naturally enough, somewhat over confident in his own qualities, somewhat over-bearing in his manner, and not a little intolerant and inconsiderate as to the opinions and feelings of others. He then presented, in a word, the not unusual picture of an arrogant, self-sufficient, proud and fiery youth, with many generous and noble points, and many high qualities, which, duly cultivated, might have rendered him a good, a happy, and perhaps even a great man; but which, untrained as they were, and suffered to run up into a rank and unpruned overgrowth, were but too likely to degenerate themselves into vices, and to render him at some future day a tormentor of himself, and an oppressor of others.

Now, however, he was a general favorite, for largely endowed with animal spirits, indulged in every wish that his fancy could form, never crossed in the least particular, it was rarely that his violent temper would display itself, or his innate selfishness rise conspicuous above the superficial face of good-nature and somewhat careless affability, which he presented to the general observer.

It was, perhaps, unfortunate for Jasper, no less than for those who were in after days connected with him, whether for good or evil, that, at this critical period of his adolescence, when the character of the man is developed from the accidents of boyhood, in proportion as his increasing years and altered habits and pursuits led him to be more abroad, and cast him in some degree into the world, the advancing years and growing infirmities of his father kept him closer to the library and the hall.

So that at the very time when his expanding mind and nascent passions most needed sage advice and moderate coercion, or at least wary guidance, he was abandoned almost entirely to his own direction. The first outbreaks, therefore, of evil principles, the germs of a masterful will, the seeds of fierce and fiery passions, and, above all, the growing recklessness with regard to the feelings and the rights of others, which could scarcely have escaped the notice of the shrewd old man had he accompanied his son abroad, and which, if noticed, would surely have been repressed, were allowed to increase hourly by self-indulgence and the want of restraint, unknown and unsuspected to the youth himself, for whom one day they were to be the cause of so many and so bitter trials.

But it is now time that, turning from this brief retrospect of previous events, and this short analysis of the early constitution of the mind of him whose singular career is to form the subject of this narrative, we should introduce our reader to the scene of action, and to the person whose adventures in after life will perhaps excuse the space which has necessarily been allotted to the antecedents of the first marked event which befel him, and from which all the rest took their rise in a train of connection, which, although difficult to trace by a casual observer, was in reality close and perfect.

The manor-house of Widecomb, such as it has been slightly sketched above, stood on a broad flat terrace, paved with slabs of red freestone, and adorned with a massive balustrade of the same material, interspersed with grotesque images at the points where it was reached from the esplanade below, by three or four flights of broad and easy steps.

The mansion itself was large, and singularly picturesque, but the beauties of the building were as nothing to those of the scenery which it overlooked.

It was built on the last and lowest slope of one of those romantic spurs which trend southerly from the wild and heathery heights of Dartmoor. And although the broad and beautifully kept lawn was embosomed in a very woody and sylvan chase, full of deep glens and tangled dingles, which was in turn framed on three sides by the deep oak-woods, which covered all the rounded hills in the rear of the estate and to the right and left hand, yet as the land continued to fall toward the south for many and many a mile, the sight could range from the oriel windows of the great hall, and of the fine old library, situated on either hand of the entrance and armory, over a wide expanse of richly cultivated country, with more than one navigable river winding among the woods and corn-fields, and many a village steeple glittering among the hedgerows, until in the far distance it was bounded by a blue hazy line, which seemed to melt into the sky, but which was in truth, though not to be distinguished as such unless by a practiced eye, the British Channel.

The Hall itself and even the southern verge of the chase, which bounded the estate in that direction, lay, however, at a very considerable distance from the cultivated country, and was divided from it by a vast broken chasm, with banks so precipitous and rocky that no road had ever been carried through it, while its great width had deterred men from the idea of bridging it. Through this strange and terrific gorge there rushed an impetuous and powerful torrent, broken by many falls and rapids, with many a deep and limpid pool between them, favorite haunts of the large salmon and sea trout which abounded in its waters. This brook, for it scarcely can be called a river, although after the rains of autumn or the melting snows of spring it sent down an immense volume of dark, rust colored water, with a roar that could be heard for miles, to the distant Tamar, swept down the hills in a series of cascades from the right hand side of the park, until it reached the brink of the chasm we have described, lying at right angles to its former course, down which it plunged in an impetuous shoot of nearly three hundred feet, and rushed thence easterly away, walled on each side by the precipitous rock, until some five miles thence it was crossed at a deep and somewhat dangerous ford, by the only great road which traversed that district, and by which alone strangers could reach the Hall and its beautiful demesnes.

To the westward or right hand side of the chase the country was entirely wild and savage, covered with thick woods, interspersed with lonely heaths, and intersected by hundreds of clear brawling rills. To the eastward, however, although much broken by forest ground, there was a wide range of rich pasture fields and meadows, divided by great overgrown hawthorn hedges, each hedge almost a thicket, and penetrated by numerous lanes and horse-roads buried between deep banks, and overcanopied by foliage, that, even at noonday, was almost impenetrable to the sunshine.

Here and there lay scattered among the fields and woods innumerable farm-houses and granges, the abodes of small freeholders, once tenants and vassals of the great St. Aubyns; and, at about six miles from the Hall, nestled in a green valley, through which ran a clear, bright trout-stream to join the turbulent torrent, stood the little market town of Widecomb-Under-Moor, from their unalienated property in which the family of St. Aubyn derived the most valuable portion of their incomes.

Over the whole of this pleasant and peaceful tract, whether it was still owned by themselves, or had passed into the hands of the free yeomanry, the Lords of Widecomb still held manorial rights, and the few feudal privileges which had survived the revolution; and, through the whole of it, Sir Miles St. Aubyn was regarded with unmixed love and veneration, while the boy Jasper was looked upon almost as a son in every family, though some old men would shake their heads doubtfully, and mutter sage but unregarded saws concerning his present disposition and future prospects; and some old grandames would prognosticate disasters, horrors, and even crimes as hanging over his career, in consequence, perhaps, of the inauspicious change in the patronymic of his race.

They were a happy and an unsophisticated race who inhabited those lonely glens. Sufficiently well provided to be above the want of necessaries, or the fear of poverty, they were not so far removed from the necessity of labor as to have incurred vicious ambitions—moderate, frugal, and industrious, they lived uncorrupted, and died happy in their unlearned innocence.

It was the boast of the district that bars and locks were appendages to doors entirely unusual and useless; that the cage of Widecomb had not held a tenant since the days of stiff old Oliver; and that no deed of violence or blood had ever tainted those calm vales with horror.

Alas! how soon was that boast to be annulled; how soon were the details of a dread domestic tragedy, full of dark horrors, and reproductive of guilt through generations, to render the very name of Widecomb a terror, and to invest the beauteous scenery with images of superstitious awe and hatred. But we must not anticipate, nor seek as yet to penetrate the secrets of that destiny, which even during the morn of promising young life, seemed to overhang the house,

And hushed in grim repose,

  Expects its evening prey.



The Peril.

                I say beware—

That way perdition lies, the very path

Of seeming safety leading to the abyss.


It was as fair a morning of July as ever dawned in the blue summer sky; the sun as yet had risen but a little way above the waves of fresh green foliage which formed the horizon of the woodland scenery surrounding Widecomb Manor; and his heat, which promised ere midday to become excessive, was tempered now by the exhalations of the copious night-dews, and by the cool breath of the western breeze, which came down through the leafy gorges, in long, soft swells from the open moorlands.

All nature was alive and joyous; the air was vocal with the piping melody of the blackbirds and thrushes, caroling in every brake and bosky dingle; the smooth, green lawn, before the windows of the old Hall was peopled with whole tribes of fat, lazy hares, limping about among the dewy herbage, fearless, as it would seem, of man’s aggression; and to complete the picture, above a score of splendid peacocks were strutting to and fro on the paved terraces, or perched upon the carved stone balustrades, displaying their gorgeous plumage to the early sunshine.

The shadowy mists of the first morning twilight had not been long dispersed from the lower regions, and were suspended still in the middle air in broad fleecy masses, though melting rapidly away in the increasing warmth and brightness of the day.

And still a faint blue line hovered over the bed of the long rocky gorge, which divided the chase from the open country, floating about it like the steam of a seething caldron, and rising here and there into tall smoke-like columns, probably where some steeper cataract of the mountain-stream sent its foam skyward.

So early, indeed, was the hour, that had my tale been recited of these degenerate days, there would have been no gentle eyes awake to look upon the loveliness of new-awakened nature.

In the good days of old, however, when daylight was still deemed to be the fitting time for labor and for pastime, and night the appointed time for natural and healthful sleep, the dawn was wont to brighten beheld by other eyes than those of clowns and milkmaids, and the gay songs of the matutinal birds were listened to by ears that could appreciate their untaught melodies.

And now, just as the stable clock was striking four, the great oaken door of the old Hall was thrown open with a vigorous swing that made it rattle on its hinges, and Jasper St. Aubyn came bounding out into the fresh morning air, with a foot as elastic as that of the mountain roe, singing a snatch of some quaint old ballad.

He was dressed simply in a close-fitting jacket and tight hose of dark-green cloth, without any lace or embroidery, light boots of untanned leather, and a broad-leafed hat, with a single eagle’s feather thrust carelessly through the band. He wore neither cloak nor sword, though it was a period at which gentlemen rarely went abroad without both these, their distinctive attributes; but in the broad black belt which girt his rounded waist he carried a stout wood-knife with a buckhorn hilt; and over his shoulder there swung from a leathern thong, a large wicker fishing-basket.

Nothing, indeed, could be simpler or less indicative of any particular rank or station in society than young St. Aubyn’s garb, yet it would have been a very dull and unobservant eye which should take him for aught less than a high-born and high-bred gentleman.

His fine intellectual face, his bearing erect before heaven, the graceful ease of his every motion, as he hurried down the flagged steps of the terrace, and planted his light foot on the dewy greensward, all betokened gentle birth and gentle associations.

But he thought nothing of himself, nor cared for his advantages, acquired or natural. The long and heavy salmon-rod which he carried in his right hand, in three pieces as yet unconnected, did not more clearly indicate his purpose than the quick marking glance which he cast toward the half-veiled sun and hazy sky, scanning the signs of the weather.

“It will do, it will do,” he said to himself, thinking as it were aloud, “for three or four hours at least; the sun will not shake off those vapors before eight o’clock at the earliest, and if he do come out then hot and strong, I do not know but the water is dark enough after the late rains to serve my turn awhile longer. It will blow up, too, I think, from the westward, and there will be a brisk curl on the pools. But come, I must be moving, if I would reach Darringford to breakfast.”

And as he spoke he strode out rapidly across the park toward the deep chasm of the stream, crushing a thousand aromatic perfumes from the dewy wild-flowers with his heedless foot, and thinking little of the beauties of nature, as he hastened to the scene of his loved exercise.

It was not long, accordingly, before he reached the brink of the steep rocky bank above the stream, which he proposed to fish that morning, and paused to select the best place for descending to the water’s edge.

It was, indeed, a striking and romantic scene as ever met the eye of painter or of poet. On the farther side of the gorge, scarcely a hundred yards distant, the dark limestone rocks rose sheer and precipitous from the very brink of the stream, rifted and broken into angular blocks and tall columnar masses, from the clefts of which, wherever they could find soil enough to support their scanty growth, a few stunted oaks shot out almost horizontally with their gnarled arms and dark-green foliage, and here and there the silvery bark and quivering tresses of the birch relieved the monotony of color by their gay brightness. Above, the cliffs were crowned with the beautiful purple heather, now in its very glow of summer bloom, about which were buzzing myriads of wild bees sipping their nectar from its cups of amethyst.

The hither side, though rough and steep and broken, was not in the place where Jasper stood precipitous; indeed it seemed as if at some distant period a sort of landslip had occurred, by which the fall of the rocky wall had been broken into massive fragments, and hurled down in an inclined plane into the bed of the stream, on which it had encroached with its shattered blocks and rounded boulders.

Time, however, had covered all this abrupt and broken slope with a beautiful growth of oak and hazel coppice, among which, only at distant intervals, could the dun weather-beaten flanks of the great stones be discovered.

At the base of this descent, a hundred and fifty feet perhaps below the stand of the young sportsman, flowed the dark arrowy stream—a wild and perilous water. As clear as crystal, yet as dark as the brown cairn-gorm, it came pouring down among the broken rocks with a rapidity and force which showed what must be its fury when swollen by a storm among the mountains, here breaking into wreaths of rippling foam where some unseen ledge chafed its current, there roaring and surging white as December’s snow among the great round-headed rocks, and there again wheeling in sullen eddies, dark and deceitful, round and round some deep rock-brimmed basin.

Here and there, indeed, it spread out into wide shallow rippling rapids, filling the whole bottom of the ravine from side to side, but more generally it did not occupy above a fourth part of the space below, leaving sometimes on this margin, sometimes on that, broad pebbly banks, or slaty ledges, affording an easy footing and a clear path to the angler in its troubled waters.

After a rapid glance over the well-known scene, Jasper plunged into the coppice, and following a faint track worn by the feet of the wild-deer in the first instance, and widened by his own bolder tread, soon reached the bottom of the chasm, though not until he had flushed from the dense oak covert two noble black cocks with their superb forked tails, and glossy purple-lustered plumage, which soared away, crowing their bold defiance, over the heathery moorlands.

Once at the water’s edge, the young man’s tackle was speedily made ready, and in a few minutes his long line went whistling through the air, as he wielded the powerful two-handed rod, as easily as if it had been a stripling’s reed, and the large gaudy peacock-fly alighted on the wheeling eddies, at the tail of a long arrowy shoot, as gently as if it had settled from too long a flight. Delicately, deftly, it was made to dance and skim the clear, brown surface, until it had crossed the pool and neared the hither bank; then again, obedient to the pliant wrist, it arose on glittering wing, circled half round the angler’s head, and was sent thirty yards aloof, straight as a wild bee’s flight, into a little mimic whirlpool, scarce larger than the hat of the skillful fisherman, which spun round and round just to leeward of a gray ledge of limestone. Scarce had it reached its mark before the water broke all around it, and the gay deceit vanished, the heavy swirl of the surface, as the break was closing, indicating the great size of the fish which had risen. Just as the swirl was subsiding, and the forked tail of the monarch of the stream was half seen as he descended, that indescribable but well-known turn of the angler’s wrist, fixed the barbed hook, and taught the scaly victim the nature of the prey he had gorged so heedlessly.

With a wild bound he threw himself three feet out of the water, showing his silver sides, with the sea-lice yet clinging to his scales, a fresh sea-run fish of fifteen, ay, eighteen pounds, and perhaps over.

On his broad back he strikes the water, but not as he meant the tightened line; for as he leaped the practiced hand had lowered the rod’s tip, that it fell in a loose bight below him. Again! again! again! and yet a fourth time he bounded into the air with desperate and vigorous soubresaults, like an unbroken steed that would dismount his rider, lashing the eddies of the dark stream into bright bubbling streaks, and making the heart of his captor beat high with anticipation of the desperate struggle that should follow, before the monster would lie panting and exhausted on the yellow sand or moist greensward.

Away! with the rush of an eagle through the air, he is gone like an arrow down the rapids—how the reel rings, and the line whistles from the swift working wheel; he is too swift, too headstrong to be checked as yet; tenfold the strength of that slender tackle might not control him in his first fiery rush.

But Jasper, although young in years, was old in the art, and skillful as the craftiest of the gentle craftsmen. He gives him the butt of his rod steadily, trying the strength of his tackle with a delicate and gentle finger, giving him line at every rush, yet firmly, cautiously, feeling his mouth all the while, and moderating his speed even while he yields to his fury.

Meanwhile, with the eye of intuition and the nerve of iron, he bounds along the difficult shore, he leaps from rock to rock, alighting on their slippery tops with the firm agility of the rope-dancer, he splashes knee deep through the slippery shallows, keeping his line ever taut, inclining his rod over his shoulder, bearing on his fish ever with a killing pull, steering him clear of every rock or stump against which he would fain smash the tackle, and landing him at length in a fine open roomy pool, at the foot of a long stretch of white and foamy rapids, down which he has just piloted him with the eye of faith, and the foot of instinct.

And now the great salmon has turned sulky; like a piece of lead he has sunk to the bottom of the deep black pool, and lies on the gravel bottom in the sullenness of despair.

Jasper stooped, gathered up in his left hand a heavy pebble, and pitched it into the pool, as nearly as he could guess to the whereabout of his game—another—and another! Aha! that last has roused him. Again he throws himself clear out of water, and again foiled in his attempt to smash the tackle, dashes away down stream impetuous.

But his strength is departing—the vigor of his rush is broken. The angler gives him the butt abundantly, strains on him with a heavier pull, yet ever yields a little as he exerts his failing powers; see, his broad, silver side has thrice turned up, even to the surface, and though each time he has recovered himself, each time it has been with a heavier and more sickly motion.

Brave fellow! his last race is run, his last spring sprung—no more shall he disport himself in the bright reaches of the Tamar; no more shall the Naiads wreathe his clear silver scales with river-greens and flowery rushes.

The cruel gaff is in his side—his cold blood stains the eddies for a moment—he flaps out his death-pang on the hard limestone.

“Who-whoop! a nineteen pounder!”

Meantime the morning had worn onward, and ere the great fish was brought to the basket the sun had soared clear above the mist-wreaths, and had risen so high into the summer heaven that his slant rays poured down into the gorge of the stream, and lighted up the clear depths with a lustre so transparent that every pebble at the bottom might have been discerned, with the large fish here and there floating mid depth, with their heads up stream, their gills working with a quick motion, and their broad tails vibrating at short intervals slowly but powerfully, as they lay motionless in opposition to the very strongest of the swift current.

The breeze had died away, there was no curl upon the water, and the heat was oppressive.

Under such circumstances to whip the stream was little better than mere loss of time, yet as he hurried with a fleet foot down the gorge, perhaps with some ulterior object, beyond the mere love of sport, Jasper at times cast his fly across the stream, and drew it neatly, and, as he thought, irresistibly right over the recusant fish; but though once or twice a large lazy salmon would sail up slowly from the depths, and almost touch the fly with his nose, he either sunk down slowly in disgust, without breaking the water, or flapped his broad tail over the shining fraud as if to mark his contempt.

It had now got to be near noon, for in the ardor of his success the angler had forgotten all about his intended breakfast; and, his first fish captured, had contented himself with a slender meal furnished from out his fishing-basket and his leathern bottle.

Jasper had traversed by this time some ten miles in length, following the sinuosities of the stream, and had reached a favorite pool at the head of a long, straight, narrow trench, cut by the waters themselves in the course of time, through the hard shistous rock which walls the torrent on each hand, not leaving the slightest ledge or margin between the rapids and the precipice.

Through this wild gorge of some fifty yards in length, the river shoots like an arrow over a steep inclined plane of limestone rock, the surface of which is polished by the action of the water, till it is as slippery as ice, and at the extremity leaps down a sheer descent of some twelve feet into a large, wide basin, surrounded by softly swelling banks of greensward, and a fair amphitheatre of woodland.

At the upper end this pool is so deep as to be vulgarly deemed unfathomable; below, however, it expands yet wider into a shallow rippling ford, where it is crossed by the high-road, down stream of which again there is another long, sharp rapid, and another fall, over the last steps of the hills; after which the nature of the stream becomes changed, and it murmurs gently onward through a green pastoral country unrippled and uninterrupted.

Just in the inner angle of the high road, on the right hand of the stream, there stood an old-fashioned, low-browed, thatch-covered, stone cottage, with a rude portico of rustic woodwork overrun with jassmine and virgin-bower, and a pretty flower-garden sloping down in successive terraces to the edge of the basin. Beside this, there was no other house in sight, unless it were part of the roof of a mill which stood in the low ground on the brink of the second fall, surrounded with a mass of willows. But the tall steeple of a country church raising itself heavenward above the brow of the hill, seemed to show that, although concealed by the undulations of the ground, a village was hard at hand.

The morning had changed a second time, a hazy film had crept up to the zenith, and the sun was now covered with a pale golden veil, and a slight current of air down the gorge ruffled the water.

It was a capital pool, famous for being the temporary haunt of the very finest fish, which were wont to lie there awhile, as if to recruit themselves after the exertions of leaping the two falls and stemming the double rapid, before attempting to ascend the stream farther.

Few, however, even of the best and boldest fishermen cared to wet a line in its waters, in consequence of the supposed impossibility of following a heavy fish through the gorge below or checking him at the brink of the fall. It is true, that throughout the length of the pass, the current was broken by bare, slippery rocks peering above the waters, at intervals, which might be cleared by an active cragsman; and it had been in fact reconnoitered by Jasper and others in cool blood, but the result of the examination was that it was deemed impassable.

Thinking, however, little of striking a large fish, and perhaps desiring to waste a little time before scaling the banks and emerging on the high road, Jasper threw a favorite fly of peacock’s back and gold tinsel lightly across the water; and, almost before he had time to think, had hooked a monstrous fish, which, at the very first leap, he set down as weighing at least thirty pounds.

Thereupon followed a splendid display of piscatory skill. Well knowing that his fish must be lost if he once should succeed in getting his head down the rapid, Jasper exerted every nerve, and exhausted every art to humor, to meet, to restrain, to check him. Four times the fish rushed for the pass, and four times Jasper met him so stoutly with the butt, trying his tackle to the very utmost, that he succeeded in forcing him from the perilous spot. Round and round the pool he had piloted him, and had taken post at length, hoping that the worst was already over, close to the opening of the rocky chasm.

And now perhaps waxing too confident he checked his fish too sharply. Stung into fury, the monster sprang five times in succession into the air, lashing the water with his angry tail, and then rushed like an arrow down the chasm.

He was gone—but Jasper’s blood was up, and thinking of nothing but his sport, he dashed forward and embarked with a fearless foot in the terrible descent.

Leap after leap he took with beautiful precision, alighting firm and erect on the centre of each slippery block, and bounding thence to the next with unerring instinct, guiding his fish the while with consummate skill through the intricacies of the pass.

There were now but three more leaps to be taken before he would reach the flat table-rock above the fall, which once attained, he would have firm foot-hold and a fair field; already he rejoiced, triumphant in the success of his bold attainment, and confident in victory, when a shrill female shriek reached his ears from the pretty flower-garden; caught by the sound he diverted his eyes, just as he leaped, toward the place whence it came; his foot slipped, and the next instant he was flat on his back in the swift stream, where it shot the most furiously over the glassy rock. He struggled manfully, but in vain. The smooth, slippery surface afforded no purchase to his gripping fingers, no hold to his laboring feet. One fearful, agonizing conflict with the wild waters, and he was swept helplessly over the edge of the fall, his head, as he glanced down foot foremost, striking the rocky brink with fearful violence.

He was plunged into the deep pool, and whirled round and round by the dark eddies long before he rose, but still, though stunned and half disabled, he strove terribly to support himself, but it was all in vain.

Again he sunk and rose once more, and as he rose that wild shriek again reached his ears, and his last glance fell upon a female form wringing her hands in despair on the bank, and a young man rushing down in wild haste from the cottage on the hill.

He felt that aid was at hand, and struck out again for life—for dear life!

But the water seemed to fail beneath him.

A slight flash sprang across his eyes, his brain reeled, and all was blackness.

He sunk to the bottom, spurned it with his feet, and rose once more, but not to the surface.

His quivering blue hands emerged alone above the relentless waters, grasped for a little moment at empty space, and then disappeared.

The circling ripples closed over him, and subsided into stillness.

He felt, knew, suffered nothing more.

His young, warm heart was cold and lifeless—his soul had lost its consciousness—the vital spark had faded into darkness—perhaps was quenched for ever.

[To be continued.





Humble Mary! thus in breaking

  Vows I never meant to keep,

Who will blame me for forsaking,

  Though a love-sick girl may weep?


Humble Mary! high born maiden

  Must my name and honors share,

With ancestral glory laden—

  Matters not less good and fair.


.     .     .     .     .     .


Angel Mary! sadly pleading,

  Sinking low on bended knee,

See remorse to scorn succeeding—

  Mary! Mary! pardon me.


Angel Mary! lost forever!

  What are name and fame to thee?

Cursed the pride that bade us sever—

  Angel Mary! pardon me.


Mary! cold the earth above thee,

  Cold and calm thy broken heart—

Canst thou not to him who loved thee

  Something of thy peace impart?





When the wild winds are howling,

  Now distant, now nigh,

And the storm-king is growling,

  And clouds veil the sky;

When the tempest is foaming,

  O’er ocean and lea,

My thoughts are not roaming—

  I’m thinking of thee!


When the mild, gentle showers

  Distil from the sky,

And the bright blooming flowers

  Delight the glad eye;

When the zephyrs are playing

  So blandly and free,

My thoughts are not straying—

  I’m thinking of thee!


When the beams of Aurora

  Are flooding the earth,

With morn’s radiant glory

  And day’s jovial mirth;

When the gay birds are singing

  In innocent glee,

As their clear tones are ringing,

  I’m thinking of thee!


When day’s fading sky-light

  Wanes slow from the west,

And the shadows of twilight

  Steal soft o’er its breast;

When Luna is shimmering

  O’er land and o’er sea—

While the bright stars are glim’ring,

  I’m thinking of thee!


Amid gay festive pleasure,

  Where mirth lends the song,

There my heart has no treasure—

  Thou’rt not in the throng.

But forgetting the present,

  Its wild merry glee,

My communings are pleasant—

  I’m thinking of thee!





Bounds my blood with long-forgotten fleetness

  To the chime of boyhood’s blithest tune,

While I drink a life of brimming sweetness

  From the glory of the breezy June.

Far above, the fields of ether brighten;

  Forest leaves are twinkling in their glee;

And the daisy’s snows around me whiten,

  Drifted down the sloping lea!


On the hills he standeth like a tower,

  Shining in the morn—the Tulip-Tree!

On his rounded turrets beats the shower,

  While his emerald flags are flapping free:

But when Summer in the fields is standing,

  And his blood is stirred with light, like wine,

O’er his branches, all at once expanding,

  How the starry blossoms shine!


Through the glossy leaves they burn, unfolded,

  Like the breast of some sweet oriole—

Filled with fragrance, as a joy new moulded

  Into being by a poet’s soul!

Violet hills, against the sunrise lying,

  See them kindle when the stars grow dim,

And the breeze that drinks their odorous sighing

  Woos the lark’s rejoicing hymn.


Then all day, in every opening chalice

  Drains their honey-drops the reveling bee,

Till the dove-winged Sleep makes thee her palace,

  Filled with song-like murmurs, Tulip-Tree!

In thine arms repose the dreams enchanted

  Which in childhood’s heart were nestled long,

And, beneath thee, still my brain is haunted

  With their tones of vanished song.


Oh, while Earth’s full heart is throbbing over

  With its wealth of light and life and joy,

Who can dream the seasons that shall cover

  With their frost the visions of the boy?

Who can paint the years that downward darken,

  While the splendid morning bids aspire,

Or the turf upon his coffin hearken,

  When his pulses leap with fire!


Wind of June, that sweep’st the rolling meadow,

  Thou shalt wail in branches rough and bare,

While the tree, o’erhung with storm and shadow,

  Writhes and creaks amid the gusty air.

All his leaves, like shields of fairies scattered,

  Then shall drop before the Northwind’s spears,

And his limbs, by hail and tempest battered,

  Feel the weight of wintry years.


Yet, why cloud the rapture and the glory

  Of the Beautiful, that still remains?

Life, alas! will soon reverse the story,

  And its sunshine gild forsaken plains.

Let thy blossoms in the morning brighten,

  Happy heart, as doth the Tulip-Tree,

While the daisy’s snows around us whiten,

  Drifted down the sloping lea!






A gentle breeze swept through the vine-latticed casement of a small apartment, filling it with all the balmy odors of a June evening, while the moonbeams stealing softly on its track, broke through the leafy screen in fitful shadows. The sighing of the wind through the long, slender branches of the willows—the plaintive cry of the whip-poor-will, and at a little distance the murmuring sound of water, as the waves of the lake broke gently upon the shore—all were in unison with the sad hearts of the two—a youth and maiden, who, in that little room bathed by the moonbeams and the breeze, were now about to be parted, perhaps forever.

Deep anguish was depicted on the countenance of the young man—calm resolve and pious resignation on that of his companion, who, with her hands clasped before her, and her deep mournful eyes fixed tenderly upon his, said,

“No, Richard, it cannot be—urge me no more to a course which seems to me both cruel and unnatural. Think you this sacrifice is not as painful to me as to you, dear Richard?” she added, taking his hand and pressing it to her lips, while a tear trickled slowly down her pale cheek; “then reproach me not—call me not heartless, unfeeling; rather encourage me to fulfill faithfully the part which duty allots me—will you not, Richard?”

“And thus destroy my own happiness and yours, Margaret! It is, indeed, a cruel task you would impose on me. No—I cannot make our future life so desolate as to sanction your cruel decision. Believe me, dearest, your resolution is but the delirium of a moment—grief for the loss of your beloved mother, and sympathy with your afflicted father renders you morbidly sensitive on that point alone. I entreat you, then, dearest, beloved Margaret—I entreat you by all our hopes of happiness, revoke your cruel words, and reflect longer ere you consign us both to misery.”

“I have well deliberated, Richard, and my decision is unalterable. Call it not delirium, or the shadow of a grief which a moment’s sunshine may dispel; every hour, on the contrary, will but strengthen my resolution, and convince me I have acted rightly. My poor father—can I leave him in his sad bereavement! who else has he now to love but me—and shall I selfishly turn from him in his loneliness! Ah, Richard, ask me not—for never, never will I leave him or forsake him.”

“And have you, then, no care for my wretchedness?” exclaimed her lover with bitterness, as he rapidly paced the floor; “no sympathy for my disappointment! Think, Margaret, how long I have waited to call you mine—how many years I have cheerfully toiled, looking to this dear hand as my reward. O, Margaret, Margaret!—and now, even now, when that joyful hour was so near—when but a few days more would have made you mine forever—it is you who speak those bitter words—it is you who place a barrier between our loves!—cruel, cruel girl!”

“It is the hand of Death, not mine, which has placed the barrier between us, Richard—she who would have blessed our union is no more! ‘Forsake not your father, my child!’ were her dying words—and so long as God gives me breath, I never will! Come here, Richard, listen to me, and pity me—for not a pang rends your bosom but finds an answering pang in mine; nor do I hesitate to confess it to you in this sad moment—there shall be no concealment from you—I will not wrap my heart in maidenly reserve, but confess alike my tenderness and my grief. No longer, then, dearest Richard, accuse me of coldly sacrificing your love to filial duty—for God knows the agony with which I have decided.”

“Forgive me, my beloved.” said Richard, “I have been too selfish. I should have known that pure heart better. However my own feelings may dictate, Margaret, I will no longer oppose the course to which the most devoted filial piety leads you, in thus unselfishly renouncing love and happiness that you may devote your days to a beloved parent. God bless and reward you, dearest.”

“Richard, how much your words comfort me,” replied Margaret; “you no longer oppose but encourage me. Thank you, dear Richard; yet one thing more, when you leave me, you must be free from all engagement—nay, do not interrupt me—many long years may intervene ere I shall be free to give you my hand; nor would I have its disposal linked with such a dreadful alternative as my father’s death. The few charms I may possess will ere long have faded, and I would not bind you to me when the light of youth has passed from cheek and eye. No, Richard—go forth into the world, it claims your talents and your usefulness, and in time some other will be to you all that I would have been.”

“Margaret, you do not know me,” he replied. “Think you another can ever come between me and your image. I go, but the memory of our love shall go with me—your name shall be my star, and for your dear sake I will devote all my energies henceforth to the happiness of my fellow-beings; your noble example shall not pass without its lesson. But promise me one thing, Margaret—let there be one solace for my wretchedness—one hope, though faint, to cheer my lonely path—promise me that should any thing hereafter occur, no matter how long the flight of years, which may induce you to wave your present decision, you will write to me—will you—will you promise me this, my best beloved?”

Margaret placed her hand in his: “Yes, Richard, I promise you—should that time come you shall be informed; and I ask in return this, if your feelings have meanwhile changed, if through time and absence I may have become indifferent to you, Richard, then make no reply to my communication—let there be forever silence—or joy—between us.”

And thus parted two fond devoted hearts—a noble sacrifice to filial love.

Never, perhaps, was there a more striking illustration of the frail basis on which all human hopes are placed, than was presented by those sudden events overwhelming the inmates of Willow Bank Cottage with affliction. Thus our most ardent expectations are frequently met by disappointment, and our most promising joys blighted. Even when happiness and peace irradiate our hearts, and on the buoyant wing of hope our fancy soars into a future of unclouded bliss, even then desolation and wo may be at our very threshold.

Thus it proved with those whose history I will briefly relate.

Willow Bank, for many years the residence of the Gardner family, was delightfully situated near the borders of a lovely little lake, whose circling waters rippled gently to the shore beneath the deep shadows of the maple and sycamore—occasionally weeping willows swept with their long golden pendants the bright water, or the branches of some stately pine in green old age, rose proudly above the lowly alder and silvery birch here and there skirting the bank. Thus rocked in its cradle of green, lay this beautiful little lake, as blue as the blue sky above it were its waters, now dimpled by the passing breeze, now breaking in tiny wavelets, each with its cap of pearly foam, sportively chasing each other like a band of merry children to lose themselves at the feet of the brave old trees. From the windows of the cottage the lake was seen spreading itself out like some broad and beautiful mirror, and then gently diverging into a narrow rivulet, winding through meadow and woodland, until it sprang joyously into the bosom of the Ohio. Nature had done much to beautify the spot Mr. Gardner had selected for his residence—taste and art had also united their skill; the three combined had created almost a Paradise.

But it is to those who dwelt therein, not to its local beauties, my pen must confine itself.

Early in life Mr. Gardner had married a lovely and amiable woman, and removed from Virginia, his native state, to the beautiful residence I have described, a few miles from the town of S⁠—⁠—, Ohio. Blending his profession of the law with that of agriculture, a few years saw him one of the most influential men in the country; and had he offered himself as a candidate for office, he would have been almost certain of success, such was his popularity; but his ambition took not that course. Domestic happiness was to him worth more than all the perishable honors of public life—to Willow Bank and its beloved inmates were all his wishes centred; and uninterrupted and continued for many years were the smiles of Providence. It seemed, indeed, as if this favored spot was exempt from all the ordinary ills of life—sickness came not to fright the roses from the cheek of health, neither did strife, envy, or sullen discontent intrude upon this earthly paradise.

Mr. and Mrs. Gardner had but one child—it was Margaret. When about seventeen, chance led to an acquaintance with Richard Lelland, employed by an eminent firm at the South upon business connected with the sale of lands in Ohio. Among other letters of introduction he brought one to Mr. Gardner, who, favorably impressed with his appearance, invited him to pass a few days at Willow Bank.

Upon what slight chances does our happiness or misery rest. A few days—how simple their signification; and yet from their brief circle how many hours of bitter anguish may take their rise. Little did Lelland or Margaret dream of the untold future, whose all of earthly weal or wo these few days decided.

To know Margaret was to love her—yet she was not strictly beautiful; there may be features more regular, complexions more dazzling, and forms of more perfect symmetry than she possessed. She was one of those whose gentle and winning manners stole into your heart, and then only you saw her loveliness, or acknowledged the light of love and tenderness which beamed from her large, dark hazel eyes. Her beauty was not that which attracts the eye of every careless observer—it was the beauty of the mind and heart.

Richard Lelland was at that time twenty-one, rather above the ordinary height, and of graceful, polished manners, with a frank and open countenance, at once a passport to your favor and respect. His complexion was almost as delicate as a girl’s, a large, full, dark-blue eye, and hair of rich wavy brown.

Business detaining young Lelland in the vicinity of Willow Bank for some weeks longer than he had first anticipated, he took frequent opportunities of improving his acquaintance with Miss Gardner, and the interest she had first awakened in his heart soon ripened into a deep and fervent attachment. But he possessed a firmness and decision of character seldom met with in one so young; and he resolved to bury his love for Margaret in his own breast, until he could produce such testimonials as to family, etc., as should warrant his openly paying her his addresses. He therefore returned to the South leaving his love unspoken; but there is a language more eloquent even than words, and this had already made known to Margaret the sentiments of the young stranger; this, too, had whispered in the lover’s ear, thrilling his soul with ecstasy, that when he should ask the love of the pure and gentle girl, it would be his.

Within the year the lovers were betrothed, with the full sanction of Margaret’s parents, with the proviso that their marriage should not be consummated until Lelland, who had now nothing but his salary to depend upon, should be in a situation better calculated for the maintenance of a family. This was as much his wish as theirs, for he loved Margaret too well to take her from all the comforts and luxuries of the paternal roof, only to offer in exchange the embarrassments and privations attendant upon a narrow and straitened income. For three years, therefore, early and late did he cheerfully give all his energies to his business, and at the end of that time became a partner in the mercantile house in whose employ he had so faithfully exerted himself. There was no longer, as it would seem, any impediment to his union with his adored Margaret. The wedding-day was appointed, and the happy Lelland, with all the rapture of a bridegroom, flew to claim his bride.

Had the hand of misfortune been so long withheld but to crush with one fell blow so much of love and happiness?

The very evening of his arrival at Willow Bank, Mrs. Gardner was seized with a sudden and violent illness, which, alas! baffled all medical skill, and in less than twenty-four hours the beloved and idolized wife and mother was no more. To depict the anguish of the bereaved husband and daughter were a vain attempt. To those in whose dwellings the destroyer has never come, who have never read that fatal sentence, “Thou art mine!” imprinted by his icy fingers on the brow of the loved and cherished, or followed to the dark and silent chambers the lifeless forms of earth’s treasured ones, to them death is, indeed, a fearful thing. To them—yes, to all; and did not our Heavenly Father graciously extend to us the hand of mercy, and bid us, with smiles of ineffable love, turn to him for consolation in this hour of despair, how could we sustain the anguish of separation, as one after another the loved ones go home.

To Margaret the death of her mother at once opened a new path of duty, and however painful the sacrifice to herself, she hesitated not a moment as to the course she should pursue. But when she thought of Lelland—of the anguish her decision would cause him—of the bitter disappointment—of fond hopes all blasted—then, indeed, she faltered, and her heart shrunk from inflicting a blow so terrible. And again as she thought of her unhappy father, her resolution strengthened. Could she leave him; no! better sacrifice love, happiness, and with them perhaps life itself, than forsake him in his desolateness.

Stupefied as it were with amazement and grief, Lelland listened at first in silence to the cruel words of his beloved Margaret—then remonstrated—entreated—all in vain. Reproaches were alike unavailing to alter her decision, until touched at length by her grief, and filled with admiration of her self-sacrificing devotion to her parent, with an almost breaking heart he yielded to her persuasions.

A new character must now be introduced. Henry Wingate was an orphan nephew of Mr. Gardner, and since the death of his parents, which took place when he was quite young, Willow Bank had been his home. As a boy he was artful and selfish, passionate and cruel. As he grew up to manhood he still retained the same foibles, with the double art of veiling them under the most specious and insinuating address. If he loved any one when a child, it was his Cousin Margaret—she only had power to quell his wild storms of passion. With years this love (if it be not profanation to call it so) increased, until it took possession of his whole being—yet, characteristic of himself, it was purely selfish; so that he could make her his, it little mattered to him whether his love was returned.

That he should hate Lelland followed of course, and that his soul should be filled with jealousy and rage, as he saw the time so rapidly drawing near when another should snatch from him the charms he so much coveted. The sudden death of her who had ever been as a kind and tender mother to him, gave him therefore but a momentary pang. Her grave only opened to him new hopes, new machinations, and with such joy as filled the Tempter at the destruction of Eden, did his heart leap at the wretchedness of his hated rival, thus doomed to see his long cherished hopes all blasted, and to part, perhaps forever, with her he so devotedly loved. And now all his sophistry and cunning were brought to bear. Carefully concealing his own fiendish joy under the mask of deep sympathy and sorrow, he breathed only to Margaret words of tender pity—stabbing his own ears by dwelling upon the virtues of Lelland, and assuring her that his own life would be a cheerful sacrifice if thereby he might advance her happiness. Thus artfully did he begin his course, trusting in time to supplant his rival in her affections. But he little understood the heart of a faithful woman, or he would not have undertaken a task so hopeless. Margaret was grateful for his kindness, and it was a relief to unburthen her heart to one who seemed so truly to sympathize with her; nor did she hesitate to speak of Lelland, or conceal from her cousin the sorrows which sometimes oppressed her when reflecting upon their reparation. Like hot molten lead did her every word seethe and scorch his jealous soul, yet resolved to win her, he persevered in the artful course he had marked out.

Thus passed two long weary years to Margaret, sustained by the consciousness that she was administering to the happiness of her father, and by that Higher Power to whose never-failing support affliction had taught her to look. But now another trial even more severe awaited her.

Ah, poor return for such filial love and piety. A thankless boon, young Margaret, did you offer, when for a father’s happiness you so devotedly sacrificed your own! A sacrifice, however, not the less to be admired—for where is the heart that does not reverence such a beautiful trait of filial love.

Mr. Gardner suddenly announced to Margaret his intention of marriage with a young, thoughtless girl of rather doubtful reputation, who had been occasionally employed to assist in the work of the family. A cruel stroke was this, to which all that had gone before seemed light in comparison. What though it released her from all obligation of duty; what though she was now free to accept the hand of Lelland, the thought gave her no satisfaction—not a ray of happiness gleamed from out the darkness of her despair. To have retained her dear father her own; to feel that in her all his happiness was still treasured, she would have deemed almost any sacrifice too poor; or had he been about to unite himself with one more worthy to fill the place of her sainted mother, she would have schooled herself to resignation. But that her father should have selected for a wife one so unsuited by birth and education, and of a character so vain and frivolous, filled her with dread for the future.

It was a strange hallucination of Mr. Gardner. There is no way of accounting for a procedure so at variance with the whole tenor of his former life, and it can only be regarded in the light of insanity.

Margaret shrunk not from the task to which duty impelled her, namely, to remonstrate and warn her father against the step he was taking. The winds which hurled the dead leaves of autumn in fitful showers against the window, as she thus tearfully besought his consideration and forbearance, would have yielded to her voice as soon.

Passing over the further grief of Margaret, I will only say that in a few weeks this ill-assorted marriage took place, and a system of petty tyranny and malice commenced on the part of the new Mrs. Gardner as almost broke her heart. Captive to the arts of an intriguing woman, her father heeded neither her tears or her complaints, until at length Margaret finding all remonstrance vain, passively yielded herself to the cruel yoke.

Thus repulsed as it were from the affections of her father, all her domestic happiness destroyed, and subjected more and more to the insults of a low, vulgar-minded woman, it would seem the time had come when Margaret might redeem the promise made to Lelland, that should any thing occur which might induce her to waive her decision, she would write to him. A doubt of his constancy had never darkened her mind; she judged of him by her own true heart, which never could know change. If at first she hesitated, it was from maidenly timidity, not distrust; but when she reflected what happiness those few brief lines would cause him, she hesitated no longer. The letter was written. To her cousin, the specious Wingate, she frankly confided her resolution, and asked his assistance in forwarding her letter safely and surely to the hands of Lelland. Skillfully as he wore the mask, he was almost betrayed as he listened to the artless details of Margaret, who faithfully related to him the promise each had made at their last sad parting. Recovering himself, however, he promised to secure the safety of her letter, even if it should include the necessity of journeying himself to place it in his hands.

With thanks warm and sincere for his kindness and sympathy, the deceived, trusting girl gave her letter to his charge—that precious letter, which thus, like the dove, went forth to seek rest for her weary soul.

“Ah! think you, my pretty cousin, I value my own purposes so lightly as to risk the work of years within the delicate folds of this envelope!” exclaimed Wingate, as he entered his own apartment, and crushing the letter of Margaret in his hand as he spoke. “I should be a fool, indeed—no, no, fair lady, content you that my eye alone may read this pretty sentimental effusion. Now, thanks to my lucky stars, this letter proves almost a sure passport to my desires—ha! ha! pretty little fool, how she will wait for an answer! And what then? Did she not entreat silence if he no longer loved—‘let there be forever silence or joy between us’—were her words—silence—ay, of that I will take care, and then she is mine—mine as surely as yonder setting sun will rise again! With your leave, Mr. Richard Lelland—” and thus violating every honorable principle, Wingate tore asunder the seal of affection, and ran his eye over the sacred contents: “D—n him!” he exclaimed, hurling the letter across the table with a look almost demoniacal: “I could tear his very heart out—his heart!—why here it is—yes, fond fool, why here is his very life—his soul!”—once more snatching the letter—“and thus I hold him in my power!—if more were needed to spur on my revenge of a hated, detested rival, I have it here in these tender, trustful lines. By heavens it turns my very blood to gall to find with what fidelity that man has been loved—while I—but no matter—your letter goes no further, fair cousin, and thus do I annihilate your fond hopes and devote you mine!” thrusting as he spoke poor Margaret’s epistle into the flames, and watching it with a fiendish smile until of those tender, confiding lines, nothing but a blackened scroll remained.

At the expiration of a week he informed her that he had heard from the friend to whose care he had enclosed her letter, stating that he had delivered it into Lelland’s own hand.

Poor deceived girl! O the wretchedness of hope deferred, as day after day flew by, and still no answer came! It was only by her more pallid cheek, her drooping eyelids, and the wan smile by which she strove to hide her dejection, that Wingate saw his hellish scheme was succeeding, and his victim sinking under the belief of her lover’s inconstancy—for she never again mentioned to him the name of Lelland. Nothing could be kinder, or better calculated to touch the heart of Margaret than the demeanor which her cousin now assumed. His countenance wore a look of such subdued pity—such heavy sighs would now and then burst from his heart—and then meeting her inquiring glance, he would turn from her, or perhaps rush from the room, as if to conceal the tears her sorrows called forth.

Thus another six months passed—bringing no change for the better in the alienated affections of Mr. Gardner for his child—they were all engrossed by the artful woman he had so unhappily married. He did not, it is true, treat her with visible unkindness, but with a coldness and jealousy which stung the heart of Margaret perhaps more deeply.

Wingate now resolved to delay no longer the avowal of his love! And accordingly most adroitly opened the subject to Margaret—he told her for how many years he had loved her—of the silent grief which he had so long endured under the conviction that her affections were given to another—and how by many bitter struggles he had schooled his heart to relinquish her at last to a happy rival. He did not ask her love in return, but the privilege to protect her! Her pity and kindness were all he dared to hope for now—but perhaps at a future time his long-tried devotion might be rewarded with her affection—and for that he was willing to wait—too happy if he might look for such a priceless recompense.

Not doubting for a moment his sincerity, and touched by his kindness, Margaret yielded to the tempter’s wiles and became his wife.

And here we must leave her, allowing for the lapse of some sixteen years ere we again take up the story.



In the summer of 1840, a gentleman embarked at Albany, on board one of those magnificent steamers which ply between that city and New York. The morning was one of unrivaled loveliness. A soft haze curtained the landscape, veiling the shores and the silvery outline of the river in one dim, undefined perspective of beauty, through which the sun like a huge ball of fire floated on the verge of the eastern sky. As the morning wore on, a gentle breeze was seen curling the smooth surface of the river, and then fold after fold of the beautiful curtain was lifted from the landscape. The silvery vapors circling, dividing, re-uniting, and wreathing themselves into a thousand fantastic shapes, floated lightly away, leaving the charming scenery of the Hudson unveiled to the admiring eye of the traveler.

The gentleman to whom allusion has been made, was apparently near or over forty years of age, of a most prepossessing exterior. He was tall, finely built, and his countenance denoting benevolence and peace with all men. A shade of sadness, however, evidently of no recent origin, was stamped upon his fine features, involuntarily claiming your sympathy and respect. Such was the person who now slowly paced the deck—now stopping to admire some beautiful point of scenery, now communing with his own thoughts.

The boat was crowded with passengers, presenting the usual variety composing the “world” of a steamboat. But with these the stranger held no communion—not a familiar face met his in all that motley assemblage. It was already near the dinner hour, and many of the passengers had descended to the dining-saloon, or gathered around the companion-way waiting the deafening stroke of the gong, when his attention was suddenly drawn to a little group seated under the awning aft of the ladies’ cabin. Reclining on cushions spread over one of the settees was a lady whose hollow, racking cough betokened the last stages of consumption. A large shawl carefully enveloped her figure, and one pale, attenuated hand rested heavily upon her bosom, as if to stay the rapid pulsation of her heart caused by those violent paroxysms of coughing. A thin veil was thrown lightly over her head, screening her marble paleness. Two young girls, almost children, sat by the couch—the eldest, whose profile only could be seen as she sat with her back nearly turned to the passengers, was gently fanning her mother, and now and then moistening her fevered lips with the grateful juice of an orange, or when seized with coughing, tenderly supporting her head, and wiping the perspiration from her throbbing temples. The younger, a sweet little child of perhaps ten years, had thrown off her bonnet, and thick masses of rich brown ringlets fell over her neck and shoulders. She was seated on a low ottoman by the side of the settee, reading from a small Bible which she held in her hand—pausing whenever the terrible cough racked the poor invalid, and then stooping over her would kiss her pale lips, and the little white hand, and again in sweet low tones resume her book.

The stranger found himself deeply interested in this little group—it was in harmony with his own melancholy thoughts, and stirred the deep waters of kindness in his soul. Mechanically he stopped in his walk, and leaning over the rail continued to muse upon the sick lady and the affectionate little girls, occasionally resting his eyes upon the unconscious objects of his meditation. When the deck was nearly deserted for the dinner-table, the youngest of the two girls finding her mother slept, softly rose and without putting on her bonnet drew near the spot where the stranger was still standing, and bent down her beautiful head over the railing as if to peer into the depths of old Hudson. At that moment one of the river gods (possibly) in the shape of a large sturgeon, his scaly armor all flashing in the bright sunbeams, leaped up some twelve or fifteen feet above the surface. An exclamation of surprise burst from the little girl.

“O, sir, what was that?” she asked, turning her large black eyes upon the stranger.

At that sweet face, and those deep, earnest eyes, sudden emotion thrilled his heart, and sent the blood coursing rapidly through his veins. That face—it was so like—so very like one with whose memory both happiness and misery held divided sway! Scarcely could he command himself to answer her artless question; and after having done so, in an agitated voice he asked⁠—

“Will you tell me your name, my dear?”

The child hesitated a moment, as if doubting the propriety of giving her name to a stranger, but there was something so kind and benevolent in his looks that compelled her irresistibly to reply.

“My name is Margaret—Margaret Wingate.”

Richard Lelland took her small slender hand, put back the beautiful curls from her forehead, and gazed long and mournfully into her face, then turning away walked slowly to the opposite side of the deck and soon disappeared. And the little girl, wondering at his strange behaviour, returned to her seat by the side of her mother.

It was more than an hour ere Lelland again made his appearance. He was pale, and it seemed as if an age of sorrow had in that brief hour swept over his soul. Again he took his station near the little group.

In the mean time the sick lady had remained quiet, and the sisters still retained their position by her side. Margaret soon raising her eyes met those of the stranger, who smilingly beckoned her to approach. Rising very softly, the child glided to his side, and placed her little hand confidingly in his.

“Will you ask your sister to come to me, my dear, I would speak with her a moment?” said Lelland, laying his hand tenderly on her head.

Margaret returned to her sister, who, in a few moments, timid and blushing, drew near. She seemed about fourteen, of a slight, graceful figure, and with the same expression of countenance, only more thoughtful, as her younger sister.

“You will excuse the presumption of a stranger, young lady,” said Lelland, “but unless I greatly err, I see before me the daughter of a much loved friend. Tell me, was not your mother’s maiden name Margaret Gardner?”

“Yes, sir, that was her name,” she replied in evident surprise.

“I knew I could not be mistaken,” continued Lelland, sighing deeply—then after a pause—“and your—your father—is he with you?”

“He is not—but will meet us on our arrival in New York.”

“Has your mother been long ill?” inquired Lelland, his voice faltering as he spoke.

“She has been declining for several years,” replied the young girl, “but for the last six months her strength has rapidly failed. O, my dear sir,” she added, bursting into tears, “if she should die!”

Lelland could not answer—at length he resumed.

“And are you then traveling alone, my dear young lady?”

“We came as far as Albany under the protection of a neighbor, and the captain of the boat has promised to take charge of us to the city.”

“Can I do any thing to aid you? Is there not something you would like to have for your mother? if so, consider me in the light of an old acquaintance, and frankly tell me. My name is Lelland, Richard Lelland—I knew your dear mother when she was but a few years older than yourself;” he paused, and overcome with emotion turned away.

Mary took his hand. “I have often heard her mention you. O let me tell her at once that such an old and valued friend is near—she will be so glad to see you!”

“No, my dear girl, not now—the surprise might prove too much for her in her present weak state—but allow me to be near you, and call upon me if need require.”

Mary thanked him, and then resumed her faithful care of her mother, who was now apparently in an easy slumber; and walking lightly around the settee, Lelland took a seat near the head of the invalid.

Who can describe the anguish of his soul as he thus watched over the dying form of his first and only love. And yet, with its bitterness was mingled a strange feeling of happiness, and his heart rose in thankfulness to be near her—even in death!

The day was now nearly spent, and the boat shooting rapidly past the beautiful Palisades, when Mrs. Wingate awoke, and complaining of a slight chilliness proposed retiring to the cabin. With difficulty she arose and leaning on the arm of Mary attempted to walk, but she was so feeble she could scarcely stand, and the slender strength of Mary seemed all too frail a support. Lelland immediately advanced, and, averting his face, proffered his assistance. Thanking him for his kindness, Mrs. Wingate placed her arm in his, and carefully supporting her to the cabin, and placing her in an easy commodious seat, he left her to the care of her children.

Ah, little did the poor invalid dream whose arm had so tenderly sustained her feeble steps!

When the boat was nearing the wharf, Mary came out of the cabin and joined Lelland, who was standing close by the door, and taking his arm crossed over to the side, that she might recognize, and be recognized at once by her father, whom she was expecting every moment to appear among the crowd collected on the wharf. Once or twice she thought she saw him, but it proved not. The boat stopped at length, and the passengers group after group dispersed, until scarcely any one was left on board save the officers of the boat. Still Mr. Wingate did not appear, and overcome by disappointment and their lonely situation, poor Mary burst into tears. Lelland strove to comfort her, and having ascertained from her the hotel where her father lodged, he offered to go himself in search of him. Bidding her return to her mother, and calm any uneasiness she might feel at the nonappearance of her husband, he left the boat and proceeded to the hotel. Mr. Wingate was not there. He had been gone some days, nor could they give any information respecting him.

What was to be done?—something must be decided upon at once. It was getting late—already the street lamps were lighted—and hastily retracing his steps to the steamboat, Lelland sent for Mary. She turned pale when she saw he was alone.

“My father—where is my father?” she cried.

“No doubt, my dear, your father has been called away unexpectedly—you will see him I am sure to-morrow. In the mean time don’t be uneasy—you are with one who will not desert you for a moment—but lest your mother may hesitate to entrust herself to the protection of an apparent stranger, I think it will be necessary for me to reveal myself to her.” Taking a card from his pocket he wrote a few lines upon it, and handed them to Mary, who quickly glided back into the cabin.

Lelland now strove to calm his agitation, that he might meet his still beloved Margaret with firmness—without betraying more than the pleasure one naturally feels at meeting with an old friend.

It was half an hour ere Mary again appeared, and informed him her mother would be pleased to see him.

He entered the cabin. The light of an argand lamp fell gently upon the pale countenance of Mrs. Wingate, who was partially reclining upon one of the settees, with her head resting against the crimson silken panels. She had thrown off her little cap, on account of the heat, and her jet-black hair was swept back from her brow by the slender little hand which pressed her temples. Little Margaret was kneeling at her feet, and looking up into her face with an expression of childish pity.

The step of Lelland faltered as he drew near—as his eye fell upon that countenance so changed from its youthful loveliness,—so pallid, so wan, and on which it seemed Death had already stamped his seal—scarcely could he command himself to speak.

“Margaret, you will trust yourself with me?” he said at length, forcing a smile and extending his hand.

A slight color for an instant suffused her pale cheek, and her still beautiful eyes were lifted to his—she attempted to speak, but could not, and placing her thin, feverish hand in his, she burst into tears. For a few moments no word was spoken. Mrs. Wingate was the first to recover herself.

“My nerves are very weak, as you see,” she said, with a sad smile, pressing his hand, “and the sight of an old friend quite overpowers me—but I am very glad to see you, and thank you for your kindness. Mr. Wingate must have been unexpectedly detained from us, or—” she hesitated.

“And you will allow me, I trust, the pleasure of attending upon you, and of procuring lodgings for you until the arrival of your husband,” said Lelland. “You must be very much fatigued—a carriage is in waiting, and if you will allow me, I will soon place you in a more comfortable situation—if you will point out to me your trunks, Miss Mary, I will take care of them.” And Lelland gladly left the cabin, that he might school himself to more fortitude ere meeting the poor invalid again.

When all was ready, he tenderly lifted the frail form of Mrs. Wingate and placed her in the carriage, Mary and little Margaret sprang after, and then giving the driver the necessary directions Lelland himself took a seat therein. The carriage in a short time stopped before one of the large private hotels in the upper part of the city, where he was certain both quiet and comforts of every kind might be obtained for the invalid. They were conducted at once to a pleasant, retired little parlor, opening into a commodious sleeping-room, and after attending to all their immediate requirements Lelland left them for the purpose of again seeking Mr. Wingate; resolving to leave a note for him at the hotel where he had boarded, and also to drop another into the post-office. Meeting the maid-servant in the hall, he put some money in her hand, and charged her to be very attentive to the sick lady, promising her she should be well rewarded for her kindness.

Upon returning to the hotel early in the morning, he was inexpressibly grieved to find that Mrs. Wingate had passed a wretched night, and was now so ill that it had been thought advisable to send for a physician. Doctor M. soon arrived, and after visiting his patient, returned to the saloon where Lelland was anxiously awaiting him. His opinion was but a sad confirmation of his worst fears—he pronounced Mrs. Wingate in the last stage of decline, and that in all probability a few days or weeks at furthest must close her life. “Was there nothing could be done to save her?” Lelland asked—nothing—she was past all human aid; and now all there was left to do, was to smooth her passage to the grave by kind and tender care. The doctor promised to see her every day, and expressing much sympathy for the little girls took his leave. That day Lelland did not see Mrs. Wingate, yet he heard her low stifled moans, and occasionally the faint tones of her voice, for he had taken an apartment adjoining hers, that he might be near in case his services were required. Once or twice during the day and evening he passed out the hotel, and jumping into a cab, sought the former lodgings of Wingate, in the faint hope of meeting him, and then returned to his sad and lonely watch.

For some days Mrs. Wingate remained nearly the same, during which time nothing was heard of her husband. No doubt the agitation of mind this caused her had a most injurious effect upon her, and probably hastened her death. Finding herself growing weaker, Lelland was at length admitted to her room; and from that time until her death a portion of every day was spent by him at her bedside. He calmed her apprehensions when speaking of the strange absence of her husband, and strove to remove those delicate scruples which she entertained that herself and children were so entirely dependent upon him, assuring her he thanked God it was in his power to be of service to her. He read to her from the sacred Scriptures, and as much as her feeble strength would admit conversed with her of that unrevealed future into which her soul must so soon take its flight. Of her husband she never spoke but in terms of kindness, nor by her words gave him reason to suppose he was not the best of husbands and fathers.

Days passed on. Mr. Wingate did not come.

And now the last sad hour was at hand. Upon going into her room one morning, Lelland was shocked at the alteration a few hours had made in her appearance. Death was there. Not as a tyrant—not armed with terrors to seize the shrinking soul—but as some gentle messenger, clad in robes of peace and joy, sent to bear her to the arms of her Father. Lelland was at first too much overcome to speak, and walked to the window to recover composure. In a faint voice she called him to her.

“Richard,” she said, pressing his hand, “there is but one pang in death—it is that I must leave my poor children unprotected.”

“Dearest friend, do not suffer that thought to disturb your peace of mind,” he replied tenderly; “they shall be mine; until their father’s return I will be a parent to them, and if he come not, Margaret—still they will be mine. I have wealth, and how freely it shall be used for their advantage and happiness you surely cannot doubt. My life has been a lonely one—they will cheer its decline”—he paused as if irresolute whether to proceed—“I waited long and in vain for that letter, Margaret—it came not!”

It was the first allusion made to their former love.

She feebly pressed the hand which held hers: “It was written, Richard—there came no answer.”

“It was written then—thank God for that!” he exclaimed.

A cold shudder crept over the frame of Margaret.

“Ah! I see it all,” she said. “Richard, we were betrayed! but may God forgive him, as I do!”

There was no reply; but stooping down Lelland imprinted a kiss upon her cold brow, and turning away, the strong man wept as a little child!

Once more he approached the bed.

“Give your children to me, Margaret; I swear to you I will faithfully protect and cherish them. I shall never marry, and my whole life shall be devoted to them.”

A sweet smile illumined her features. “Yes, Richard, they are yours. For my sake forgive their father, and should he return, O, I beseech you, lend him your counsel, and say to him all that I would say—” she paused—“perhaps he will tear the children from you; if so, at a distance watch over them, and protect them when they require it. Now, my friend, call them to me; I would say a few words to them, and I feel my strength rapidly failing.”

Mary and Margaret remained with their mother near an hour, and then Lelland was hastily summoned to the chamber of the dying. She was already speechless, but with a look of ineffable sweetness, she turned her eyes first upon her children, then upon Lelland; with her little strength she placed their hands within his, her lips moved as if in prayer, celestial beauty overspread her countenance, and the weary soul of Margaret was at rest in the bosom of her God.

Soon after the last melancholy rites Lelland placed the girls at school, under the care of a most excellent woman whom he engaged to accompany them. Not a day passed that he did not see them, and on Saturdays he took them on pleasant excursions into the country, as much as possible striving to divert their minds from dwelling upon their recent loss. In the meanwhile he took every measure he could possibly devise to discover Mr. Wingate—but for many months in vain, his disappearance was veiled in impenetrable mystery.

It was nearly a year after the death of Margaret, that one day business took Mr. Lelland to one of the slips on the North river. As he passed along, his attention was suddenly drawn to a man who stood leaning against one of the piers. He was very shabbily dressed, and held in his hand a small faded well-worn carpetbag. Giving no heed to the moving crowd around him, buried in thought, he stood with his eyes fixed vacantly on the river. There was something in his features which seemed familiar. Turning, Mr. Lelland again passed him, fixing his eyes intently upon him as he did so, and more and more confirmed that his suspicions were correct, he stepped up to him, and touching him lightly on the shoulder, said,

“Excuse me—but is not your name Wingate?”

“Suppose it is—what the d——l is yours?” replied the man sullenly, without turning his head.

“My name is Lelland, Mr. Wingate—for such you are, or I greatly err.”

With an expression of malignant hate, the man suddenly turned, and shook his fist almost in the very teeth of Lelland.

“So we have met again, Mr. Richard Lelland, have we! Well, we shall see who will be the better for the meeting, that’s all—d——n you!”

“Your words are idle,” replied Lelland, calmly. “Answer me one question—do you know aught of your wife and children!”

At the mention of his family, Wingate grew suddenly pale, and seemed much agitated.

“And you—what—what do you know of them?” he demanded, but in more subdued tones.

“If you will go with me into the hotel yonder, I may perhaps give you some information respecting them,” he replied.

Without a word Wingate mechanically followed Lelland, who, ordering a private room, sat down to the melancholy duty before him.

“You spoke of my wife and children,” exclaimed Wingate, the moment they entered the room, “if you know any thing of them, for God’s sake tell me, for it is many months since I heard from them.”

“Prepare yourself for the most melancholy tidings,” said Lelland, in a sympathizing voice and manner. “You have no longer a wife—it is now ten months since her death.”

The wretched man buried his face in his hands.

“Dead—dead—dead! and without forgiving me—dead!” he exclaimed.

“With her latest breath she forgave and blessed you,” said Lelland, taking his hand kindly.

“But my children—where are they—are they dead, too!”

“Your children are here—here, in the city; you may see them in an hour if you will,” replied Lelland.

Here! here in the city—here, with you!” cried Wingate, starting up, every feature distorted by passion; “with you, do you say! how came you near her death-bed—ha! did you dare—” seizing Lelland by the breast as he spoke. But shaking him off, Lelland placed his hand on his arm, saying,

“First listen to me, Mr. Wingate, and you will see how little provocation you have for such anger.”

He then briefly related his unexpected and providential meeting with Margaret and her children, and the painful scene which so soon followed it. He spoke of Mary and Margaret—of their loveliness, their sweet dispositions, and of the consolation and happiness Wingate might yet receive from their affection.

When he had done speaking, the unhappy man seized the hand of Lelland, and pressing it fervently, said,

“Wretch—wretch that I am! how little have I merited such goodness. It is, indeed, more than my guilty soul can bear. I had rather you would stab me to the heart than thus pierce my soul with deeds of kindness—for I deserve it not. It was I, Lelland, who robbed you of one of God’s choicest treasures. When driven almost to despair by the unjust treatment of her father, who should have been to her more than father ever was, poor Margaret wrote you that letter which would have confirmed your happiness and hers. It was I, who, goaded on by hate for you, and a determination to make her mine—it was I who destroyed it! I watched the struggle of her pure heart; I saw her cheek pale day by day, and yet I repented not—nay, I gloried in my revenge. At length she became my wife—and an angel she ever was to me, always so kind, so patient with my follies; but I knew she loved you—I knew her heart was silently breaking, her strength wasting, and instead of moving my pity, it only drove me to madness. I was jealous even of my sweet babes, that they were loved more than me. For years I ran a wild career of riot and debauchery, and only came to my senses to see my poor injured wife was truly dying; then came remorse—but it was too late. My business had been neglected—my affairs were in ruin, and I saw myself on the brink of poverty. The doctor had said that change of air would do much toward her restoration; and now, as anxious to restore as I had been to destroy, I resolved to come to New York and find some employment which should warrant my removing my family here. I did so, and was so fortunate as to obtain a situation as book-keeper, with a handsome salary. In a few months I wrote my wife and children to join me. I received for answer that she was now too feeble to journey. This made me angry, though why, God only knows, except that I would not let her die among scenes your love had hallowed—and I immediately wrote a peremptory command for her to come, naming the day I should expect her. In this wicked frame of mind I went out into the streets, and, unfortunately meeting a gay companion, was induced to enter a gambling-house, and ere I left, every dollar I possessed in the world was swept from me. In the vain hope of winning back my money, I again sought that den of destruction; need I say, so far from retrieving, I left it hundreds in debt. Then, then, Richard Lelland, I became a forger—yes, forged the name of my worthy employer—was detected, and fled with my ill-got gains. The day I had appointed my poor Margaret to arrive in the city I was on the way to the West Indies. From thence I went to Paris, where, as long as my money lasted I led a mad career; that expended, I was forced to the most menial offices to obtain my daily food. At last driven by remorse, I determined to return to my native country, see Margaret and my children once more, and then give myself up to the laws I had outraged. I flattered myself that my wife still lived, and that not finding me in the city on her arrival, had gone back to Ohio. I arrived last night, and was even now about to take passage in a sloop for Albany, thinking I should be less likely to meet any acquaintance, when you so unexpectedly appeared before me.”

To this dreadful recital Lelland had listened in silence. When it was ended, he took the hand of Wingate,

“Wretched man,” said he, “I forgive you for the misery of a lifetime, as did that suffering angel, now in heaven; and may God extend to you his peace and mercy!”

Then calling for pen, ink and paper, he drew a check for the amount Wingate had forged, and placed it in his hand.

“There, Mr. Wingate, take that; in the morning see your late employer, and restore him the money of which you defrauded him; in the meantime I will see what can be done for you—rely upon me as your friend. But remain here for the night, and on no account leave the room; have patience, for to-morrow you shall see your children.” So saying, Lelland took leave, promising to call for him in a carriage at an early hour in the morning.

Immediately after breakfast, therefore, he proceeded to the hotel. But Wingate had already left—had been gone some hours. On the table was a letter directed to Lelland. Hastily breaking the seal, he read:

“Burthened with grief, and overwhelmed with remorse, life is insupportable. I can no longer endure the torments of self-reproach, and I fly to end alike my wretchedness and my life. Heaven is dark—but earth is hell! Protect my innocent children!”

The next day the body of Henry Wingate was exposed in the Dead-House. Lelland recognized and claimed it for burial.

Mary and Margaret were told their father was no more—but of the manner of his wretched death they never knew.

Facts have often the appearance of fiction—such is the story I have given. If it has called forth any interest in the minds of my readers, the assurance that its principal incidents were gathered from real life, will not, I trust, lessen that interest. Names and scene are, of course, fictitious.

In a splendid mansion on the banks of the Potomac, Mr. Lelland still resides with the two fair daughters of his adoption. They are beautiful and accomplished, beloved by all who know them, and most tenderly protected and cherished by their more than father; while those gems of early piety implanted in their minds by their mother, have, under the careful culture of Mr. Lelland, put forth the most lovely and Christian graces.

Thus in the happiness and the virtues of her children, has God rewarded the filial piety of poor Margaret.


Climate is said to have much influence on the physical, moral, mental, political and social condition of mankind. Experience and observation certainly give force to such an opinion. The difference in manners, customs and character of the Russ and the Italian is as much owing to latitude as lineality. One’s happiness, and even one’s destiny in life, depend alike on Seasons and on Self.

The iron constitution, the sharp wit, the keen sense, the peculiar individuality, the guessing and bartering of the man of Maine, contrasts with the singing, siesta-seeking, music-loving, rich intellectuality of the Mexican of the hacienda. Even in religious sentiment the difference is striking. Look upon the cold, austere meeting-house worship of the Puritan, and side by side behold the rich, voluptuous cathedral service of the Catholic. These at least indicate the extremes of the influence of the climate. The whole physical, mental and moral constitution of man is operated upon by the temperature of his location, and thus affecting not only his individual existence but the ultimate condition of his race.

What would have been the fate of “The Colonists” of the “May-Flower” had they landed at San Francisco or St. Domingo? If instead of the stern, bracing, labor-requiring, excess-denying latitude of Plymouth, the Pilgrims had rested in the land of the palmetto and the pomegranate? Or who would have ventured on an unknown ocean, in search for a new world, if the hope, the imagination, the enthusiasm, the poetry, the mental excitement, the superstition even of Columbus, the child of the South, had sunk in despair, or yielded to first disappointment? Where would the close calculation of the North, founded on a philosophical hypothesis, have sought for continued animation, after error has resulted from experiment?

Where would the literature of the Past have found admirers, and even devotees, if the mythology of the East had not been nursed in the soft lap of a congenial temperature?

Why is it that the Latin classics yet hold a place as familiar as household words, if a Southern sky had not invited to the rich developments of the highest mental creations?

Where could the painter and sculptor have sought models and studies, if the winter of the Mediterranean had been as relentless and as rigid as that of Moscow?

Can it be maintained that Solon and Lycurgus would have alike given their fame in trust to immortality, if the genial influences of the land of their nativity had not been the same “at Rome as it was at Attica”?

Who will venture to assert that a similar fate would have followed the siege of Troy in a land of snows, or that Marathon would have been a northern Moscow?

Science, too, has felt the force of the benefit of its more northern home. With a temperature unshocked by extremes, the highest mental industry yields more, or rather different, fruit than the richest intellectual soil. The wheat and the corn of the necessaries to progress, are gathered only where the wine and the oil of luxury do not grow.

That Tyre and Sidon were marts for the cosmopolite, and now are but the refuge for the wanderer, while Boston, New York, New Orleans were the seaboards of the savage, and are now the emporiums of a hemisphere, is as true as that the causes are to be found in some degree dependent upon the influences of climate.

That Rome was the mother of nations, the terror of thrones, and the great entrance into eternity, and now is the dismantled wreck of her illustrious past—while the hunting-grounds of the “Six Nations” are transformed into a mighty empire, is but the melancholy picture of the past, gorgeous in its dilapidation, under the luxurious warmth of an Italian sky, while the other is the picture of the present, more magnificent and vigorous, tinted by the rays of a western sun.

Climate was not alone in producing these changes, yet its influence was potent.

The Religion of Nazareth took its metaphors from the land of Aristotle, its enthusiasm from the nations on the “seacoast,” its energy from the Northmen, but its divinity from God!

The songs of labor are heard loudest and sweetest where the valley and forest yield an annual tribute over the grave of all that is beautiful, born of the spring; while the songs of the sentiments take their melodies from the land of soft sunlight, scented with perennial perfumes.

In considering the Future let us look at the Past, and among the most remarkable of physical causes which have marked their existence on the history of nations and of men, climate will be found to have exercised by no means an inconsiderable influence.





Gladly to thee, amid the wreck of years,

  Will memory’s pinions wing their eager way;

To thee, who ever through this life of tears

  Has lit its darkness with thy sunny ray;

Thou wast my empress in the morning hours,

  The star amid my dreams of poesy;

The single rose amid the dewy bowers,

  That lured my soul to thoughts of purity.


As rivers glancing in the glorious sun,

  Voice out their gladness to the perfumed air,

So ’neath the presence of that treasured one

  My hopes were mirrored in a world more fair;

A magic world, within whose blesséd light

  All things the richest and the best did come,

Bringing unto the weary dreams as bright

  As those that flit around our quiet home.


And I did love thee, not a transient flame,

  Burned on the altar of an early dream;

No, I have dwelt upon that cherished name

  Till it became the priestess and the beam,

And softly came around our household hearth,

  The angel wings of woman’s ministry,

Rich hopes, as wild and joyous in their birth

  As were the early dreams of loving thee.


And ever thus has been the full, deep tide,

  Upheaving from this ocean love of mine;

A memory forever by my side,

  To lead me onward to a nobler shrine;

The calm, hushed voice still sounding in my sleep,

  Like to a strain of distant melody,

The holy light from out those eyes so deep,

  That shines on all so clear and tranquilly.


Amid my dreams of human faith and love⁠—

  Of love, that stems the tempest and the blast⁠—

Of faith, that in its tenderness shall prove

  Its holy office even to the last,

Thou hast been present with thy watchful care,

  Guarding a heart too prone to dream at best,

Too much forgetting one whose sinless prayer

  Has lingered round his home a heavenly guest.


But brightly now the sun of promise shines,

  The dark and stormy waves of time along,

With all some token of thy virtue twines,

  Sweet as the cadence of the evening song;

And truly now, when youth’s wild day is o’er,

  And every fancied passion’s hushed to rest,

I give this song to thee from memory’s shore,

  The echo of the tide within my breast.






The March winds blew chillingly over a wide and barren moor in the Highlands of Scotland, and howled fiercely around the isolated dwelling in the middle of it, from whence gleamed a faint light like a beacon in the midst of that desolate waste. Black majestic clouds gathered darker over head, and the wild whistle of the coming tempest grew every moment more shrill; but little were the boding sounds noted within the cottage of Donald McLane, for sterner and fiercer was the storm of sorrow gathering in the human heart of the one lonely watcher, bending over the low pallet where lay, in a still dreamless slumber, the forerunner of one more dreamless yet, the form of her only child. Long silken curls fell on the white pillow, from the still whiter brow of the little sufferer, and pearly lids, with long, dark fringes, drooped over the fair cheek. The coverlet had been cast aside, as by some restless motion, and the snow-white drapery fell in careless folds, half-covering, half-revealing those round and dimpled limbs.

The light from a solitary candle flickered over the child’s face, so marble-like in its quiet beauty; oh! there is a touching loveliness that waking life never bestows in that death-like slumber which precedes the parting hour of a young, sinless spirit! Angels waited to bear it upward, and the shining light from their own immortal faces, was reflected upon the form of clay it was so soon to leave. Close beside the couch, with clasped hands and a fixed gaze, motionless as the object of her solicitude, knelt the young mother—so very young and so fair; surely it was early for such sorrow to weigh down her happy heart.

The dull moments wore away, and still those two pale faces gleamed in the half-darkness, silent and still. The embers on the hearth burned low, louder howled the tempest without, and the white snow-flakes dashed against the window with a startling sound—but the mother heard it not, until the door softly opened, and a light touch upon her arm roused her to consciousness.

“Oh, Donald, Donald, I’m glad ye’re come,” was her tremulous salutation.

“And yet, Maggie,” he said, “I’m not so sure o’ that when you see what I’ve brought you. I would not add to your cares if I could help it, but I could not leave a babe to perish in the cold snow to-night,” and unfolding his plaid, he displayed to her astonished eyes, a fair and beautiful infant, richly dressed, who, as she took it tenderly in her arms, opened its large dark-blue eyes, and smiled in her face.

“Oh, Donald, how lovely!” she exclaimed, almost forgetting for the moment her sorrow; but a glance toward the couch again brought the tears to her eyes, and again she sunk beside it, with the little stranger in her arms.

By the exertions of Donald, a brisk fire was soon burning on the hearth, and the bright blaze disclosed the table, with its neat white cloth, on which his frugal repast was spread; but he seemed to think little of his supper that night, for drawing near to the bedside, he bent over his child with an earnest, anxious expression on his manly features.

“How long has she been so, Maggie?” he asked, in a low tone.

“Since noon,” was the reply, and her breath came more quickly as Donald bent closer and closer to the quiet face, placing his hand softly on the still breast, and his lips to the dimpled mouth whence no breath seemed issuing, then, with a stifled sigh as he gazed lingeringly on those beautiful features, he turned to his wife, who was looking up in his face with that gaze of mute terror which says so much more than words,

“Maggie, God has taken our Ally to be an angel in Heaven.”

No loud exclamation of grief followed his words. Tearless she stood with her eyes fixed upon her husband’s face, as if unable to comprehend his meaning, but, sinking on his knees beside her, and enfolding her in his arms, he prayed from a full heart that God would be with them in this their first trial. The low, soothing tones of his voice unlocked the fountains of the mother’s heart, and blessed tears came to her relief. Long might she have indulged in this luxury, but a faint cry awoke her maternal sympathies. She had forgotten the babe so strangely thrown upon her care, but now her gentle nature could not think of self, while another was suffering and in preparations for the comfort of her charge, the first wild burst of anguish was passed through.

“We will call her Ally, after our own lost one, Donald. Surely God has sent her to soften this sore trial to us, and we will love her as our own. May He help us to submit. Oh, my Ally! my darling, my precious one—can any one ever fill thy place? God help us!”



The simple funeral was over; the last look had been taken, and little Alice McLane was hidden from the weeping eyes that still turned toward her lowly resting-place, as if yet unwilling to leave her alone beneath that cold, cold sod.

Donald and Margaret McLane had been very happy until now—too happy perhaps. They had loved each other in early years, and when Donald had earned enough by his own honest labor to purchase the cottage on Burnside Moor, they were married without a shadow on their young, hopeful hearts.

Margaret was a careful housewife, and Donald had ever a warm welcome and comfortable home when, wearied with his daily toil, he came back to her whom he had promised to love and cherish; and when little Alice came to gladden the young mother’s lonely hours while he was away, sunshine reigned in the household. In all their happiness they never forgot who gave them all their blessings, and daily was their morning and evening sacrifice of praise sent up to their Heavenly Father in confiding and child-like simplicity.

A cherished flower was Ally McLane, with her bright blue eyes sparkling with joy and affection, her round, dimpled, rosy cheeks, and baby tones, so sweet to a parent’s ear; her mother’s sunny spirit seemed hers from her very birth until the heavy hand of sickness came down to hush those happy notes, and dim the light of health and joyousness that ever danced around her.

Perhaps she was too fondly loved; perhaps their hearts clung with too much of idolatry to their only one; and a watchful Father saw that the ties must be loosened. While yet her lisping tones seemed ringing in their ears; while yet the flush of health lingered on her cheek, the dart of the spoiler came, and with scarce a pang of suffering to rend the mother’s heart with deeper anguish, little Ally was taken away from the ill to come.

Overwhelming as was the blow, a mitigation was sent with it. The stranger babe thus thrown upon Margaret’s tenderness, proved a solace which nothing else could have afforded, and in the cares attendant upon her new charge, the dreary sense of loneliness, following the loss of a loved one, was robbed of half its power.

Many were the wondering surmises of Donald and his wife, in reference to the manner in which the babe had been thus given to them. The dark mantle in which it had been closely enfolded, had first attracted Donald’s attention amid the snow-drifts, for the little forsaken one was already wrapped in that fatal slumber which, if not soon broken, knows no waking—and the young man’s heart was melted with kindly sympathy as he thought of his own darling, so he raised the light burden from its soft but dangerous resting-place, bore it to gentle and tender hands—and as days, and weeks, and months wore away, no one appearing to claim the lost one, closer and closer their hearts were wound about her, till their love seemed even as that they had borne their own angel Ally—as they called her.

Sometimes Margaret would almost forget that her second Ally was not, indeed, the very same as that one they had laid with such heart-yearnings beneath the snow-clad turf; and yet the two were very unlike. The face of the stranger was full of earnest thought. Her large, dark, liquid eyes, so full of dreamy tenderness, beamed with almost spiritual beauty; and a hasty word would bring the tears to her eyes, the warm blush to her cheek, and a strange imploring expression over her whole countenance; whereas her elder namesake was ever a joyous child, light and graceful, full of the heedlessness so natural to her tender age—and few things there were that had power to dim her sunny spirit.

Year after year sped on unmarked, save by the introduction of one little stranger after another into the once lonely household of Donald McLane. Alice, their eldest and loveliest, had ripened gradually from the beautiful child, their pet and plaything, to the gentle, thoughtful girl of sixteen, watching with unwearied care the slightest wish of her parents, (for she knew not that they were otherwise,) and striving by every means in her power to lighten their burdens. The secret of her history had been carefully kept from her as well as the fair-haired, happy flock around them; for why should they sadden a life so unshadowed as hers, with thoughts that must bring suffering to her loving nature?

The promise of rare beauty which her infancy had held out was more than realized. There was a spirituality about those dark-blue eyes, in every graceful movement—a native ease and sweetness of manner so unusual among the classes in which she moved—so unlike the frank, noisy ways and ruddy countenances of her younger brothers and sisters, that Margaret often gazed upon her with a wondering sigh and a trembling of heart, she could not tell why. Alice had been reared with more than maternal tenderness—a fond yearning over her deserted helplessness—a sympathy for those who must have mourned the loss of such a child, together with her own irresistible winningness, had led Margaret unconsciously to indulge the child of her adoption even more than the members of her own little flock; but Ally was one of those rare natures in whom indulgence only brings forth warmer, purer feelings of love and gratitude, and even from babyhood, as Margaret would often say, she seemed like an angel sent down to them from Heaven.

Sweet Alice McLane had not arrived at the age of sixteen without admirers. Lonely as was the situation of the cottage, many had been attracted thither by the fame of such a jewel. But there was a quiet dignity and purity about the gentle girl that repulsed the most presuming; and Ally was still, child-like, happy in her home, without a wish to leave it, at least so far as was known to her own heart.

There was, indeed, one, who had been a play-fellow from childhood, being the son of their only neighbor within many miles, who was ever a welcome guest at the cottage, beneath whose glance her own never drooped, nor the painful blush rose to her transparent cheek—and why was it? Because Dugald Lindsay had never spoken of the trembling hopes that lay nestling at his heart, though they had wandered together for hours over the hills, or sat side by side before the bright fire, in the winter evenings, while he entertained them with merry tales; and though Ally loved him dearly, yet it was with the pure, happy love of a sister. So they lived from day to day, unconscious of the cloud that was gathering over the future happiness of one, and the brightest hopes of the other.



Donald McLane was a hard-working man, and seldom was any recreation beyond the quiet enjoyment of his fire-side and home-circle indulged in. It was therefore an occasion of no little joy among the little folks, and perhaps not less so with the older heads who showed less boisterous happiness, when, on the return of the annual fair, a whole holyday was promised with a visit to the village where it was held.

On the evening preceding the day so long and anxiously looked for, a handsome traveling-carriage, with servants and outriders, drove up to the inn door of the village, creating an excitement among the good people unheard of before. A tall, majestic, and beautiful lady was assisted from it by a youth whose noble and elegant appearance spoke of rank and wealth.

The poor landlord, confused, and almost paralyzed by the unexpected honor conferred upon him, with difficulty recalled his scattered senses in time to receive his guests, and provide them with the best his poor house could afford; but they, smiling at his consternation, retired immediately to their apartments, where, at their own request, a simple repast was served, and they appeared no more that evening. The servants were surrounded and eagerly questioned, but nothing could be elicited from them, except that the strangers were the Countess of Weldon and her son, who were traveling for the benefit of their health, impaired by the close air and dissipation of London.

The next morning, just as the party from Burnside Moor had reached the village, after a weary walk of many miles, the coach drove up once more to receive its noble inmates. Donald and Margaret were foremost, and had already passed by, the younger children following them; but Ally had lingered somewhat in the rear, for Dugald was beside her, and in earnest conversation they had unconsciously slackened their pace, thus arriving opposite the inn door just in time to see the carriage drive up and the noble pair preparing to enter it. Surprised out of her usual quiet demeanor, Ally gazed eagerly at the novel sight. Her hood had fallen back, and her soft brown curls came clustering around her face, generally so pale, but now with the warm blood tingeing its snowy surface, and her dark, dreamy eyes turned wonderingly toward the strangers, she was lovely beyond description. At this moment the countess turned her eyes in the direction where Ally stood leaning on the arm of her companion, and with a thrilling cry, stretched out her arms toward her, then fell back insensible. In an instant all was confusion.

The lady was borne into the house, and all intruders waved off; but Ally had never yet seen suffering without endeavoring to relieve it, and springing impulsively forward, she entered the inn, followed by Dugald.

When the countess again opened her eyes, a sweet, loving face looked into hers, and an arm, soft and white as her own, supported her head. Another wild exclamation burst from her quivering lips, and again she sunk back, murmuring, “Adela, my sister—have you come back from the spirit-world to bless me!”

“What ails you, dear lady,” said Ally, tenderly—“can I do any thing for you?”

For the first time those who stood around the couch, anxiously waiting the solution of this mystery, observed a striking resemblance between the noble stranger and the lovely peasant girl, who stood pale and bewildered by her manner, yet unwilling to leave her while yet she seemed to need assistance.

“Tell me, child,” said the countess, suddenly rising from her recumbent position, “tell me, who are you?”

The question was hasty, the tone almost harsh, and Ally’s face flushed again, as she replied timidly, “My name is Alice McLane, lady—my father lives on Burnside Moor.”

“Where is your father?—I must see him instantly.”

Dugald turned in search of him, but Donald, having quickly missed his daughter, had come back in search of her, leaving the rest of his charge in a booth near by, and was even now at the inn door.

As soon as his eye fell on the pale, agitated countenance of the stranger, and from her to his idolized daughter, every trace of color left both cheeks and lips, and unable to support himself, he sunk into a chair, covering his face with his hands.

In that brief moment he comprehended it all. Sometimes, in past years, the unwelcome thought would painfully force itself upon him, that his precious Ally was not, indeed, his own. Hearts that must have mourned her loss, might again rejoice over their recovered treasure, but as year after year went by undisturbed, Donald grew strong in hope, and had almost banished every fear of the kind, when this terrible realization of the worst came so suddenly upon him.

No wonder that his strong frame was bowed, and his stout heart wrung with anguish, as he felt that even resistance would be vain. No wonder that Ally stood by him terrified at the sight of grief such as never in her whole peaceful life had met her eyes before. Her arms were thrown around him, her warm kisses fell upon his cold brow, as she implored him to unfold this mystery. The countess watched him silently, yet a wild gleam of triumph flashed from her dark eyes, as she exchanged glances with her son, who stood looking on with no less appearance of interest than herself. Dugald, fearing he knew not what, only showed by his varying color, the thoughts that thronged rapidly upon him.

The story was soon told, and none present could doubt that Alice, the poor cottage-girl, was the orphan niece of the proud countess, and through her, heiress to untold wealth. And how did Ally receive the news of her sudden elevation? With agony that moved the little circle of auditors to tears, as she clung wildly to the only father she had ever known, and implored him not to send her away from him.

Donald looked up with a sorrow-stricken expression on his manly face, saying, “See you not the child’s distress, lady. Say no more now. Let her go home with us once more. Time will reconcile her to it, perhaps, but do not torture her now. God help us! for He only knows how great is the love we bear each other.”

He motioned to Dugald, whose countenance, like his own, was ashy pale, but who, summoning the strength that in these few brief moments of anguish seemed to have deserted him, raised the almost insensible form of the weeping girl, and bore her away without resistance.



“Forget you, Dugald! and do you think Ally so changeful as to be carried away by the high-sounding titles and useless baubles of this wicked world? Could I be happier anywhere than I have been in my own dear mountain home. My aunt has promised that I shall return if I am not satisfied, and in one twelvemonth we will meet again. Nothing shall keep me from you if life is mine.”

“Ally, dear Ally, you do not know the world you are about entering. The rich and the great will be there to court you, and the splendors that will glitter around you, have dazzled many a stronger head, though not a purer heart, Ally. But I ought not to murmur, since this parting has brought me joy as well as sorrow—since it has told me that you love me, darling. God keep you in temptation, and bring you back to us unchanged.”

And so they parted. When did they meet again?

Let us now turn back in the page of by-gone years, and trace the history of our little foundling so suddenly raided to a station that the proudest might envy.

Clara and Adela Dundas were the daughters of an English nobleman; their mother dying before they had emerged from the school-room, they were left without that guiding hand so necessary to the maiden ignorant of the world, and heedless of warning from less beloved lips.

Clara, the eldest, married, at an early age, a wealthy earl, the choice of her father, and departed to her princely home, with a father’s blessing, leaving her young, gentle sister more lonely than ever. Adela had ever been of a clinging, dependent spirit, loving with her whole heart the few objects she had as yet found in life worthy or unworthy; and was it, then, to be wondered at, when in the solitary hours after her sister’s departure, her affectionate nature should pine for some new companion on whom to pour out the rich treasures of a heart that could not be satisfied in selfish ends. Unhappily, the one on whom her choice fell, was a poor, untitled gentleman, holding an honorable office in her father’s household, but on whom Lord Dundas looked as so far inferior to his beautiful daughter in every respect, as never to dream of danger in allowing the occasional intercourse which passed between them.

Knowing as they both did the proud and immoveable spirit of Lord Dundas, and hopeless of gaining his consent to what in their own young hearts, full of the romance of first love, seemed necessary to their very existence, they fled—and the lovely Lady Adela Dundas, who had never known one hour’s privation from luxury, became, in a poor Highland cottage, the wife of him for whom she had forsaken all—father, friends and home. A letter was written more from the warm feelings of affection and respect than from any hope of moving the stern parent whom, as Adela felt, they had offended past forgiveness—and so it proved—an answer came, only to announce her disinheritance, and exile for life from her father’s home and heart. Then was it that Adela for the first time felt the fearful consequences of her rash step, and it needed all the persuasions and soothing caresses of a husband whom she loved tenderly, to bring her to any degree of composure.

After many months of suffering and privation, during which time her sister had privately sent her aid whenever she could do so with impunity, Mr. Moreton obtained employment which again raised them to comfort if not affluence. A lovely infant now brought new hopes and new feelings into poor Adela’s sorrowful heart, and to her husband’s delight she became once more cheerful. Sorely had they suffered for their sin, yet kind and gentle and loving to each other they had ever been. Poverty had not had power to dampen the pure affection of earlier days, and its calm light shone upon their paths with a hopeful radiance even in the darkest hours of their probation.

The little Adela was but a few months old when a letter arrived from the steward of Lord Dundas, with a hasty summons to the death-bed of the now relenting parent. Sorrow and joy struggled for pre-eminence in Lady Adela’s bosom, as she hastily prepared to obey; but a new difficulty now arose. The winter had just set in with great severity—the journey was a long and fatiguing one; Adela spurned all objections on her own part, but her babe, how could she expose it to the inclemency of the weather, and the dangers that must attend them. Brief and bitter was the conflict—but the child was left in the care of a faithful nurse, who promised to watch over it as her own.

They arrived only in time to receive the parting blessing of their beloved father, and after the requisite arrangements of the estate, which was equally divided between the two sisters; it was settled that Adela should now remain at the castle, at least until some further disposal of the property should be made, and that Mr. Moreton should return for the child, as the spring would soon open with sunshine and air, balmy enough even for the little traveler.

Days and weeks dragged slowly their way along to the young wife, now, for the first time since her hasty marriage, separated from her husband. He came at last—but he came alone! Short and terrible was the tale his pale lips had to utter.

The woman in whose care the babe had been left, faithfully watched over it, never resigning her charge to another, save when necessity required.

One cold but bright, sunshiny day, having occasion to go to the neighboring village, she wrapped the child carefully in a heavy mantle, and set out with it in her arms on her errand.

From that time neither nurse nor babe had been heard of. A violent snow-storm came on toward night, and it was feared that both had perished, yet singular to tell, no trace of their bodies had been discovered on the road wherein their way led.

Silently the young mother listened to these crushing words. Hope itself was extinct, and from that day, though every endearing care that love could devise was lavished upon her, sweet Lady Adela drooped like a frail lily, growing paler and weaker, yet ever gentle, patient and loving to the last—for ere the spring flowers had faded, a husband and sister wept bitter tears over her early grave. So young and so lovely, thus Ally’s fair mother died.

Comparing this sorrowful tale with Donald’s account, it was inferred that the woman, returning from the village, became bewildered by the snowstorm, and turned in the direction of Donald’s cottage instead of that leading to her own, which was directly opposite, and losing her way, had wandered on until wearied with her heavy burden, and hopeless of saving both lives, had deserted her charge, and proceeded, unencumbered, to find shelter for her own exhausted frame. In this, perhaps, she succeeded; but with the consciousness of safety came the harrowing reflections of her faithlessness, and unable to meet those she had so wronged, she had most probably left the country, for no trace of her was ever discovered.

Mr. Moreton did not long survive his idolised wife; and now, when our gentle Ally awoke to the proud consciousness of rank, wealth, a new name and new relations, the tidings brought only sorrow and suffering to one so loving and happy as she had been—for was she not an orphan? Bitter tears flowed at the recital of her mother’s history, but turning from all the allurements and persuasions that were lavished upon her by her new aunt and cousin, she flung herself on Margaret’s bosom, saying, “I have one mother still! oh, let me stay—let me stay!”

Yet as we have seen, Ally did go at last, pale and sorrowful, but with a kind word for all, and bidding them not to weep, for she would soon return—“She knew she would not love the great world of London. Oh, no! she would soon be back, never, never to leave them again!”



Twelve months had passed by, lingeringly to the little lonely band on Burnside Moor, and sunshine seemed to spring up afresh in every heart when the first tiny green leaves and blue-eyed violets peeped through the snow. “The spring is coming,” shouted the children, gleefully, “the spring is coming, and Ally will soon be here.” The shadow passed off from the mother’s thoughtful brow, and Donald looked happier than he had yet since the parting, but Dugald grew more and more silent—as each budding tree put forth its tiny sprouts and the verdure became brighter and fresher on the hill-side, the flush paled on his cheek and his dark eyes grew heavy with thought. Week after week glided on, and the children wearied with watching turned with eager questions to their elders, but mournfully, eyes dim with tears, met theirs—still Ally came not.

The warm harvest days stole on—the grain was all gathered in—the cool autumn winds blew chillingly—the snow flakes again robed the earth in their pure mantle, and still Ally came not.

Bitter as was the disappointment, it fell not on unsubmissive hearts. The children alone were clamorous in their expressions of regret, but like the summer cloud, the sorrow passed from their memories and they found in present amusements that forgetfulness which others sought in vain.

“Sick with hope deferred,” they mourned unceasingly their lost one—yet upheld by that faith in a Heavenly Guardian, to whose care they had given her, and who would be faithful to the trust though all earth should conspire against them.

And where was the object of this fond solicitude? What fate had been hers since she tore herself away weeping, yet strong in hope and confidence, fearless of the temptations, whose power she had yet to learn? Was she indeed changed? Could not the shield of love and innocence, so close about her, guard every avenue of that guileless heart? Alas! no; Ally had been too trustful in her own strength, and so insidious was the approach of the evil-spirit that she was unconscious of danger until bitterly awakened to self-reproach, to feel that it was too late!

As the Lady Adela Moreton, co-heiress with her cousin of their grandfather’s broad lands, she was courted, caressed and flattered by the noblest and most wealthy—her own rare loveliness adding new attractions to her proud triumph, and though at first pained—then disgusted—sad to tell—she at length learned to love the adulation that followed her steps. Her cheek would flush and her eye brighten with conscious pride—yet beautiful as she then was in the eyes of a gazing world, Dugald would almost have failed to recognize in her his own pure-hearted love.

Her aunt had been steadily pursuing a scheme which had been busy in her brain since the first unlooked for recognition of her sister’s long lost child, which was the union of her eldest son, Sir Frederic, to his beautiful cousin, and thus preserve undivided the family estate. Poor Ally little dreamed of the snares that were laid for her. The kindness of her aunt won her gentle, affectionate heart to implicit obedience, and her handsome cousin, possessed of every art of pleasing—beauty, rank, wealth, grace, (few could resist their united influence,) moved her by every loving device.

Was Ally happy? Those who saw her in the festive halls, brilliant and animated, the centre to which all eyes, all hearts turned, might have deemed her happy—but in the solitude of her chamber, when lights and flattering tones had fled, pale, sorrowful faces would rise up, as if upbraiding her; memories of the past would so flit before her, searing her brain as it were fire, and remorseful tears would flow through the long sleepless nights, stealing away the freshness from her fair cheek, the brightness from her eyes. Was this happiness?

Yet the golden chains were close around her, and Ally asked not to break their glittering links.

Donald—Margaret—Dugald—a fearful snare is weaving around your darling one—a little longer and she may be lost to you forever—save her if yet you may—God speed your efforts, for man is powerless now.



Another spring had come. Calmly and gently as on the heart-sick watchers fell the last rays of the setting sun on Ally’s weary brow as she sat by the window of her boudoir listlessly gazing into the street. Gay dresses were strewed around her—jewels flashed from their velvet cushions upon the dressing-table beside her, and ornaments of rich and varied style lay beside them—yet Ally’s thoughts seemed far away. Her sweet face was paler and thinner, and on her dimpled mouth lay that peculiar expression of suffering which the lips only can show forth—her dark-blue eyes seemed larger, and a wild look had taken the place of the soft dove-like glances which had won Dugald’s heart. Oh! Ally was fearfully changed.

Suddenly, as though an ice-bolt had stricken her, the young girl started from her dreamy posture. The color faded from her parted lips and she clung to the window sill as she gazed at some object below.

A young Highlander, in the garb of his native hills, had just passed by, and even now paused before the arched gate-way of that princely mansion. Ally looked no longer, but sinking upon her knees, she wept.

A few moments afterward, her slight form might have been seen gliding down the wide staircase and entering a small library adjoining the drawing-room, with which a glass door communicated—softly the curtain was lifted, while with clasped hands and a frame shivering with the intensity of her agitation she saw and heard all that passed within.

Dugald, her own wronged Dugald was there—she had not been deceived then in that hasty glimpse of his figure from the window. A chill crept over Ally’s heart as she saw his pale face and sorrowful look—but this was as nothing to the agony that thrilled through her ere long. Dugald sat in one of the richly embroidered chairs, with the graceful ease so natural to him in any society, while directly opposite, in a large arm-chair with a cushion beneath her feet, sat the countess. An air of haughty indifference was meant, perhaps, to check the young man’s hopes, for well did the proud lady know the object of his long journey, and sorely did she tremble lest her plans should yet be defeated. Leaning carelessly on a massive table close by, with an air that affected to be contemptuously easy, while the working of his fine features betrayed an inward conflict, stood Sir Frederic.

“I assure you, sir, Lady Adela is too much indisposed to see any one this evening,” were the first words that the trembling girl heard.

“Oh, if she is ill, lady, do not refuse to let me see her. Surely, surely, news from home would do her good—oh, never was she too ill yet to see Dugald!

“Only let me see her for a moment—let me hear from her own lips that she has forgotten us.” And the young man grew eloquent as he pictured in the simple language of exquisite pathos, the more touching as it came every word from a full heart, the distress of those who loved and watched for their absent one till their hearts grew faint within them. He told of their bitter disappointments—their home now over-shadowed because the sunbeam that once lighted it was gone. He spoke not of his own feelings for they were too sacred to be displayed before the cold natures that listened unmoved even now—and Dugald ceased with a sinking heart as he watched their haughty brows grow darker with suppressed anger.

The countess rose and with a frigid salutation left the room, and her son, with an expression of withering scorn, demanded how he dared to expect that his cousin remembered or wished to know aught of such low associations—then followed his mother, leaving Dugald stunned and motionless.

In those few brief moments the evil spirit had departed from Ally’s misguided soul and the good regained its influence over her.

With the last echoing sound of the departing footsteps, she opened the door against which she had been leaning, with that temporary strength excitement ever gives—she beckoned to the startled youth, who, half-dreaming, obeyed the signal, and found himself face to face with her whom he had just deemed lost to him forever.

“Ally, dear Ally, what have they done to change you thus,” he exclaimed as he stretched out his arms toward her. She threw herself weeping upon his bosom, clinging to him as if fearful of being again torn away. “Take me home, Dugald, take me home. Thank God I am not quite heartless yet.”

Tenderly as a mother soothes her restless child, did Dugald caress and whisper sweet words of comfort to the trembling one he folded to his heart—and at last she looked up through her tears with her old familiar smile, so that she seemed almost herself again.

By a side-door Dugald reached the street, unobserved by those who deemed him long since gone—a light was in his eye, his step was free and elastic, and his whole face beamed with the inward delight that caused his heart to throb wildly as he traversed the streets toward his temporary residence.

A few hours passed and he came forth again—when he returned he was no longer alone. Like her gentle mother, Adela Moreton fled from wealth and rank to share the lowlier lot of him who had won her heart. But unlike that mother our sweet mountain flower fled from the evil to the stern yet blessed path of duty, and the blessing of Heaven followed upon her steps.

Great was the amazement of the countess and her too sanguine heir when on the following morning they discovered that their dove had escaped from the net laid for her. Bitter were the curses that descended on Dugald’s now unconscious head, but the affectionate little note left on the table of the vacant boudoir, showed too plainly by its gentle but decided tenor that further hope was vain.

The sunshine came back into Donald’s cottage—laughter and mirth were no longer strangers there, for Ally, their “lost and found,” had returned to them, paler and thinner it is true, and with a deeper shadow on her fair brow, but with her loving heart and gentle voice unchanged.

Ally well knew the sacrifice she made, but it was made willingly. Her wealth was all in the power of her aunt, and she hoped for no concession from the disappointed schemers—but Dugald had not been idle during the years of his probation, and he was no longer a poor man.

One bright summer’s day when all nature seemed rejoicing and human hearts were filled with thankfulness, in her own simple cottage-dress, and under her old name of Alice McLane which she had again adopted, Ally, now blooming and happy, stood before the altar in their own dear kirk, and promised to be the wife of him who had loved her so long and so faithfully. Joy beamed from every countenance, as they now felt that no power on earth might rend these ties, and Ally, their own beautiful Ally, was theirs till death should part them.

Only once did the proud countess seek to recall her flown bird to her glittering but uneasy nest, and the day on which she arrived with Sir Frederic, eager and hopeful, was Ally’s wedding-day, and so they became unwittingly sharers in that beautiful scene—the only angry spirits in all that peaceful band of worshipers. Baffled again, they left without even seeking an interview with the object of their long journey, and Ally never heard of them again until the arrival of a strange-looking epistle many years after, announcing the death of her aunt, and her own accession by right of birth to the half of Lord Dundas’ princely fortune.

Sweet Ally McLane! would that more angels like thee in the likeness of sinful flesh might dwell among us—raising our hearts to higher, holier purposes, and fitting us while here for a better home above, where envy, malice, pride, or sorrow never may be known or felt.





My father, by the simple stone

That marks thy grave I stand alone;

The birds with joyous love-notes sing

A welcome to the early spring;

The cloudless skies, the balmy air,

And soft young flowers, proclaim it fair;

But now their gladness can impart

No sense of beauty to thy heart.


Yet first I learnt from thee to trace

Each varying hue on Nature’s face,

Its teachings bade thy spirit move

My heart to deeper truth and love;

For varied lore, arranged, defined,

Was graven in thine active mind,

And every path thy footstep trod

Seemed written with the name of God.


And well remembrance wakes for me

My ne’er forgotten walks with thee;

How oft we paused with thoughtful eye

To mark the changes of the sky,

Or idly lingered, to inhale

The breathings of the summer gale,

On bird and tree and flower to look—

As pages in Creation’s book.


Then questions of thy boyhood’s day

Would lead thy musing soul away,

And borne along by memory’s tide

Came visions of thy native Clyde,

The ripple of the mountain rills,

The heather scent from breezy hills,

Until thy glance would brightly beam

With interest in thy chosen theme.


I listened then with eager ear

The tales of other days to hear,

For oft thy voice would lead me back,

From life’s insipid daily track,

To wild romance and warfare rude,

That mingle in old Scotland’s mood,

For thou didst know and paint them well,

And wandering fancy warmed the spell.


My father, how the tear-drop swells

As o’er the past my vision dwells,

When I have stood beside thy chair

And smoothed and kissed thy silvery hair,

Whose silken threads are dearer now

Than hope’s gay dream or lover’s vow,

For life can hold no joy for me

More cherished than my thoughts of thee.


And thou hast left a name behind

That Art must prize and Science find;

Thy talents to the world are known,

But dearer memories are my own.

Though all approve the stainless worth

That sleeps beneath this spot of earth,

The kindness that awakens love

Thy children’s hearts alone can prove.


No gorgeous tomb in words proclaim

Thine honest truth and well earned fame,

Nor sculptured urn, nor heartless praise,

The stranger’s studied care betrays;

But thou wert fondly laid to rest

Where tender tears thy grave has blest,

Embalmed in feelings pure and high

That soar from earth beyond the sky.





There were three distinguished Latin poets of Italy of this name, whose compositions were printed at Amsterdam in 1685. The following epigram was occasioned by the affliction of two children of remarkable beauty, though each had lost an eye:


Lumine Acon dextro, capta est Leonilla sinistro;

  Et poterat forma vincere uterque deos,

Parve puer, lumen quod habes concede sorori,

  Sic tu cæcus amor, sic erit illa Venus.


Of his right eye young Acon was bereft;

His sister Leonilla lost the left;

Still each in form can rival with the gods,

And, though both Cyclops, beat them by all odds.

Spare her, my boy, your blinker, be not stupid,

She then will be a Venus, you a Cupid.

TO ——.




I have had my days of sadness: youth, which we review in age,

Spelling once again its syllables, was a blurred and blotted page.


Drifting down the tide of Time my tiny barque, unguided, passed

Toward the Mäelstrom of Manhood, puppet both of wave and blast.


But an all-protecting Providence watched the craft, when tempest-tost

On the Atlantic of Adversity; and the vessel was not lost.


Through the distance, when the clouds were lifted by the eddying breeze,

Sunny sapphire skies shone on me, with, beneath, Pacific seas.


But the gloom came down around me, and the billows rolled and moaned,

And the little laboring ark with more than human agony groaned.


Shoals and sunken rocks around it,—like a frenzied steed that flies,

Terror burning, like a beacon, in his wide-distended eyes,⁠—


Through this Archipelago of danger such as no one knows,

Save the wanderer in a wilderness, filled with savage hungry foes⁠—


Rode the Argo of my Destiny; for what storm could overwhelm

When God’s holy hand, or else His angel’s, held the fragile helm?


Suddenly from the desperate darkness stole the tender, trembling light

Of a luminous, blushing planet, gleaming gently on my sight.


And the gloom fell down before it, and the billows knew surcease,

And the horrid howling winds reclined in slumber, breathing peace.


Night by night the sun descended, and I saw the moon arise,

With that luminous planet near it, like a deity, in the skies.


Then said I unto my spirit—“Reigning in those realms above,

O, my soul, behold at last the unassuming star of love.


“Like a queen she walks the infinite, saying softly, ‘Peace; be still!’

And the lion winds and waters crouch, submissive to her will.”


Now in safety rides my vessel, for that luminous, blushing star

Sits forever in my “House of Life,” a ruling Guardian Lar;


And the haven it has entered lies encircled by a shore

Green as Eden was, calm as Heaven is; and the storm is known no more.


There with one whose type is Beauty, Adam-like, I dwell in dreams,

Whose realities were delirium, sleeping by love’s silver streams.


Eve, my angel, always with me, leads my spirit by the hand

Tenderly from its painful memories toward the Better—Happier Land.


And like ghosts, when, clarion-tongued, proud Chanticleer salutes the dawn,

All my ghastly recollections flit, like shadows, and are gone.





    Come! Come! Come!

Nature, teacher sweet, will tell

Where the Lord of all doth dwell,

He who doeth all things well,

    And in glory reigns!


In the mountain—in the stream—

  In the hushed and charmed air—

In the working of a dream—

  God is everywhere!


In the star that decks the sky,

  Shining through the silent air;

In the cloud that saileth by—

  God is everywhere!


In the lily of the field—

  Or in floweret more rare—

In the perfume roses yield—

  God is everywhere!


In the sunbeam clear and bright—

  In the rainbow wondrous fair—

In the darkness of the night—

  God is everywhere!


In the gentle summer breeze—

  In the rushing winter air—

In the rustling of the trees—

  God is everywhere!


In the organ’s solemn sound—

  Or in music’s lighter air—

All above—beneath—around—

  God is everywhere!





“Uncle, have you a fowling-piece to lend me?” said Henry Deforest, on the morning after his arrival at Beech Grove, whither he had come to enjoy a brief interval of rest from his professional studies.

“Yes,” replied Mr. Woolcott, “as fine a one as you ever handled.”

“What do you want to do with it, pray?” said Aunt Martha, Mr. Woolcott’s maiden sister and housekeeper, who, like a sensible woman, believed that guns and gunpowder were infernal inventions, and dangerous in every possible shape and shade of combination.

“I have some thoughts of taking a gunning excursion,” said Henry.

“Are you a good shot?” said Mr. Woolcott.

“About equal to Mr. Winkle.”

“I don’t know him—where does he live?”

Henry was happily relieved from the necessity of replying to the question of his matter-of-fact uncle, by Aunt Martha, who declared her somewhat exulting belief that the gun was lent.

“No, it is at home—it came home last night. Here it is,” said Mr. W., bringing it forth from a secure hiding-place constructed under Aunt Martha’s sole direction and authority.

“Is it loaded?” said Henry.

“No, I guess not,” said his uncle.

“I’ll warrant it is,” said Aunt Martha.

“What is there to shoot in these parts?” said Henry.

“Boys,” replied Aunt M., rather sharply. “Mr. Johns shot one last week.”

“Boys are not good to eat, my dear aunt, and I cannot in conscience shoot any thing not good to eat.”

Aunt Martha uttered an inarticulate aspiration which signified that she should lose her temper if she said any thing more.

Mr. Woolcott, who had been quite a rustic sportsman in his younger days, furnished his nephew with a liberal allowance of powder, shot and wadding, and the said nephew sallied forth with murderous intentions toward all feathered bipeds possessing the attribute of being good to eat.

It was early in June. The sweet breath of the morning spoke so lovingly of peace and gentleness, that he began to question the propriety of his savage purposes. His conscience, or his good sense, or his humanity, or something else, suggested, that to pollute the flower-laden breeze with sulphurous vapors, and to hush the sweet music of God’s innocent creatures, was not the most fitting employment for one proud of his immortality. He had not a very definite idea of the pleasures of bird-murder—in fact, that it might be a source of pleasure to him at all, it would be necessary for him to “make believe” with as much intensity as did “the small servant,” when she used orange-peel water for wine.

He soon reached a beautiful meadow. In consequence of his admiration of the lilies and daisies which adorned it, he failed to observe the meadow-larks that frequently rose before him, and uttered their notes of gladness to the mounting sun. At length one rose from his very feet. In an instant his finger was upon the trigger; but the sweet note of his intended victim charmed him. While he listened, the bird passed beyond the range of his weapon. Perhaps he mentally compared the pleasure of listening to its song with that of witnessing its dying gaspings.

The murmuring of a streamlet fell upon his ear. In a moment he was bending over its pure, bright waters. A large, smooth stone, shaded by a clump of willows, invited him to a seat. He laid aside his weapon, and sat down, baring his forehead to the breeze, and fixing his eyes upon the tiny inhabitants of the rivulet, his thoughts took the peaceful hue of the objects around him. It was not till the changing shadows of the willows exposed him to the rays of the sun, that he became conscious of the flight of time. He then rose and went to a small grove which clothed the summit of a gentle elevation in the vicinity. The grove was composed of saplings, about twenty feet in height. As he entered it, a false step led him to cast his eye downward. He had planted his foot in the hollow of a sunken grave. On looking around him, he found he was in the midst of an ancient grave-yard. The headstones which marked the resting places of the sleepers, had apparently been taken from a neighboring ledge. Only one bore an inscription, or had received the impress of the chisel. He looked in vain for a new-made grave. It was long since the funeral-train had entered that grave-yard—long since the mourner had come thither to weep.

Deforest had visited cemeteries in which wealth had lavished its treasures, and art exhausted its resources in order to disrobe death of his gloom. No splendid mausoleum, no carefully penned epitaph, so disposed him to reflection, as did the leaf-filled hollows and rude stones of that neglected grave-yard. He spent an hour in serious thought, and was about to leave the place, when the sound of approaching footsteps arrested his attention. He turned and saw an aged man entering the grove. The stranger approached the grave near which Deforest was standing. He appeared slightly embarrassed when he perceived that he was not alone. He returned the courteous salutation of Deforest, and seemed disposed to converse with him.

“You do not live in these parts?” said he.

“I am on a visit to my uncle, Mr. Woolcott. I reside in the city,” said Deforest.

“Your uncle came into the place after I left it. I was born here, in a house that stood on the knoll yonder. That cluster of bushes stands where the hearth-stone used to lie.”

“I noticed, as I passed the spot this morning, that a building once stood there. It must have been a long time ago.”

“Sixty-nine years ago, last March, I was born in that house, or rather in the house which stood there then. This country then was a wilderness. There was one log-house where the village now stands, and one between this and the river. I have not lived here for more than forty years. Latterly I go through the place once a year, as I go for my pension, and I always come to this spot. My father lies here, and—another friend. I always come and look upon the place of their rest. They do not know it. It does not do them any good, but it does me good. This is the grave of my father,” laying his hand on the stone noticed above as being the only one which bore an inscription. The inscription was as follows: “James Hampton, died July 16, 1777, aged forty-five years.”

The old man uncovered his head as he laid his hand upon the stone, and gazed in silence upon the earth which lay above the remains of his parent. Deforest felt that he was an intruder, and was about to retire.

“Do not go,” said the stranger. “I never met any one here before. It seems like meeting with a friend. That is a feeling which persons as old as I am seldom experience.”

Deforest, whose warm heart was strongly interested in the aged stranger, gladly accepted his invitation to remain.

“You were young when your father died,” said he, looking again at the inscription.

“I was in my fourteenth year. He was killed by a rifle-ball, in an attack made upon the house by a party of Indians. I have no doubt they were led by a tory who lived in a house which stood behind the ridge yonder, to the east. My friends wished to have it put on the tombstone that he was shot by the Indians. I believed that the shot which killed him was fired by a neighbor. I would not have the stone tell an untruth; so nothing is said about the manner of his death.”

“I should be greatly interested in hearing an account of the matter, if it be not painful to you to relate it.”

“Come and sit down on this rock and I will tell you all about it. It happened more than fifty years ago, yet it is as fresh in my mind as if it had happened yesterday.”

He led the way to a large moss-covered rock, which afforded them a comfortable seat under the shade of a thicket of young chestnuts. Near it was a grave on which the old man’s eyes were fastened. He did not seem disposed to resume the conversation. A tear ran down his furrowed cheek. Deforest sympathized with him in silence.

“You must ask me questions, my young friend,” said he, somewhat abruptly, “or my mind will wander away from the things you wish me to speak of.”

“Did your father build the house in which you were born?” said Deforest.

“Yes, he came here about ten years before the war, when, as I said before, there was only one house between this and the river. I was born the year after the house was built. I was but a little over ten years old when the troubles with England came on. My father and mother had many consultations upon the question, whether it was best for them to return to the east or not. There were no Indians near, and there was nothing to call them—for nearly all the people along the river were friends to the king. My father was from Massachusetts, and of course, liberty was natural to him; but he had said little or nothing about matters in dispute, for the very good reason that there were but very few persons to converge with. So he concluded to remain here. I could see that my mother did not feel easy. She grew thin and pale, and seemed unwilling to have us out of her sight.

“Once in a while, a rumor of what was going on reached us, though the accounts were always in favor of the king’s troops.

“In June of the year ’77, one day, as my father was in the cornfield, he saw an Indian skulking behind a large tree in the woods, that then stood where those oats are now growing. He continued at his hoeing for an hour or two, and was careful not to indicate by his appearance that he had seen any thing unusual.”

“Was he not afraid that the Indian’s bullet might put an end to his work?” said Deforest.

“No, he reasoned in this way. If the object of the Indian had been to kill him on the spot, he would have done so before he was seen. When my father came to the house, he was not disposed to say any thing about what had occurred, for he was not willing to give unnecessary alarm to his family. His anxious countenance led to inquiries which revealed the true state of the case. He began at once to make preparation to resist an attack, which he anticipated would be made in the night. I was employed in casting bullets, while he was busy in barricading the windows, and in making openings between the logs to serve as port-holes. Night at length drew near, and we sat down to supper, sad and silent, feeling that in all probability it was the last meat we should ever take together. The night passed slowly on. None of us were disposed to sleep. About midnight my father persuaded my mother to lie down, with my sister, who was sleeping unconscious of danger. Very soon there was a gentle knocking at the door. We had no light burning. My father had his rifle in his hand, while I held a musket, ready to exchange with him as soon as he had fired. He crept silently to the port-hole that commanded the door. He saw an Indian, with a rifle, standing before the door. The moonbeams fell full on his face, the expression of which left no doubt on my father’s mind respecting the object of the visit. The knocking was repeated. The answer was the discharge of the rifle from the port-hole. The Indian bounded high in the air, and fell to the earth a corpse. A yell from about half a dozen voices in the vicinity revealed the probable number of our foes. We were greatly encouraged, for it seemed well-nigh certain that their numbers would be so far diminished ere they could effect an entrance, as to render the result of the conflict by no means doubtful. The opening from which the shot was fired did not command the approach to the door. This was probably observed by our enemies, and after some time, apparently spent in consultation, two of them took a long, heavy pole from the fence, and drew near with the evident purpose of using it as a battering-ram to force the door. My father placed himself before an opening which he had made for the purpose of commanding the approach to the door, and when they were near enough to make the aim sure, he fired, and the hindmost man fell, never to rise again. I instantly gave my father the musket, and he fired at the other man, who had made a brief halt before he commenced his retreat. Either because the smoke prevented a good aim, or the musket carried ball less accurately than the rifle, the Indian did not fall, but from the blood that marked his retreat, it appeared that he was severely wounded.

“We could see a group of four or five persons in the distance. They were not quite near enough to make a sure shot, and my father thought it of the utmost importance that every ball should tell. While our attention was fixed upon them, a light shone in from a crevice on the side of the house opposite to the door. On that side there was neither door nor window. The enemy had sent one of their number, who had procured a bundle of straw from the barn, and placed it against the side of the logs, and set fire to it. It was their object to burn us alive, or to shoot us down when attempting to extinguish the flames. From the crevice which revealed the fire, my father saw an Indian grinning like a demon as he watched the progress of the flames. The good rifle soon put him out of the way of doing any more mischief. He then seized a pail of water, and ran to the chamber, and removed a board from the roof, and poured the water upon the fire. He had loosened the board in the course of his preparations for defense, thinking it possible that the opening might afford a means of escape. Fortunately the opening was immediately over the spot where the fire was kindled. Three of our foes had now been killed, and one of them wounded, (though we did not know it till the next day,) and we hoped they would become discouraged and retire. We heard nor saw nothing of them for an hour or more, though we kept watch in every direction.

“A new danger revealed itself. The fire had not been wholly extinguished; it had caught in the logs, and now began to blaze. My father took a bucket of water and went to the roof as before, but the moment his head appeared, three or four rifles were discharged from the grove near by. One of the balls slightly grazed his cheek. He had the presence of mind to make immediate application of the water before they had time to reload, but he did not succeed in applying it to the spot where it was most needed. Before another pailfull could be procured, they had loaded their pieces. He raised his hat above the opening in the roof, in hopes that they would all fire, that he might then extinguish the flames before they could reload. Only one shot, however, was fired. It pierced the hat, which fell. A savage yell of triumph caused our blood to curdle. The hat was raised again, and another shot fired, and another, both of which missed it. The water was then poured on the fire; but just as he was descending the stairs, a ball, apparently fired at random, passed through the clay between the logs, and entered his neck. He told us that he should bleed to death in a few minutes, but encouraged us to hope that the enemy would retire without any further efforts. He told me to keep a vigilant watch, and to shoot down those that came near the house. ‘Take care of your mother and sister,’ said he, ‘take them to the east if—’ he never finished the sentence. He bled to death in spite of all we could do.”

The old man paused in his narrative, and again fixed his eyes upon the grave noticed above.

“Was the attack renewed?”

“No, they went off before daylight, leaving their dead unburied. I dug a grave in the cellar, and buried my father. We then took our horses, and were on the other side of the river before night.”

“Were you not afraid of being waylaid and murdered?”

“We were, chiefly from the fact that so many of the Indians had been killed. We felt safe when we had crossed the river. We went to my mother’s native place, and remained there till the war was over, when we returned here. I was in the army during the last year of the war.”

“I should hardly have thought that your mother would have been willing to return here.”

“We had a good farm here, and several families from her native place concluded to come with us and settle here. By cultivating the farm I could fulfill my father’s command to take care of my mother and sister, and I did not see how I could do it in any other way. The first thing I did was to bury my father in this place. Several years afterward this stone, which marks his grave, was brought on from the east.”

“You told me you thought the shot which killed your father was fired by a neighbor.”

“We had no suspicion of any such thing at the time. As was natural, I kept the ball that caused the death-wound. It was of a peculiar size, and had a singular mark upon it. After my return, I happened one day to be present where there were a number of persons shooting at a mark. Alter they had finished their sport, the boys began to cut the balls out of the tree on which the mark had been placed. I was standing near and happened to hear one say, ‘that was Sawyer’s ball. I can always tell his ball by this mark.’ I looked at the ball, and saw that it bore the same mark as the one that was taken from my father’s neck. I put it into my pocket, and went home and compared it with the ball I had preserved. The size and marks corresponded perfectly. I then went to the boy and found that all Sawyer’s balls had the same mark. There was something in the bore of the rifle that made a peculiar crease in the ball as it was forced out. I then got a neighbor to inquire of Sawyer how long he had owned his rifle, and I found that it was in his possession before the war came on. My suspicions were then strongly excited. It was not probable that there were two rifles that would make the same impression upon the ball discharged from them. I remembered, too, that Sawyer had expressed great surprise at our return, and had appeared somewhat embarrassed when he met me. I met him in the street one day, and took the ball out of my pocket and held it before him, and fixing my eye fully upon his, asked him if he had ever seen it? He turned very red, and then came near fainting. I laid my hand upon him. He trembled like a leaf. I repeated the question in a louder tone, for I was sure that the murderer of my father was before me. His lips moved, but he could not speak. ‘Do you think,’ said I, ‘that it is safe for you to stay in this country?’ I flung him from me, and went on my way. The next day he left for the west, and some time afterward sent for his family.”

“How long did you live here after your return?”

“Nearly ten years; I lived here till my mother died.”

“Is she buried here?”

“No, she died while we were on a visit to the east. She was buried among her kindred. After her death, I returned here and remained till I helped fill up that grave,” pointing to the one which he had gazed at so earnestly when he took his seat upon the rock. “Then I felt there was nothing more to keep me here—in fact, I felt that I could not live here. My sister was married at the East; so I sold the farm and became a wanderer. I did not visit the place for nearly twenty years. When the pension-law was passed, I had occasion to come here, for one who was in the same company with me lived here. Since then, I have commonly passed through the place once a year, and I always visit this spot. This is the first time I ever met any one here. I once thought of having the bushes cut down; but on the whole, I concluded to let it grow up to wood. It will shield the graves from the gaze of the careless passer-by; and I like, too, the idea of having the birds sing over her grave. Farewell,” said he, rising and extending his hand. Henry returned the warm pressure of his hand, and was retiring, that he might be left alone by the sepulchre of his parent. The stranger, however, kept by his side till he reached the stone wall which separated the grove from the meadow. He seemed unwilling to part with his new acquaintance. Henry laid his hand upon his shoulder, and said, “Will you not tell me about her?”

After a moment’s silence the stranger replied, “Young man, I will, though it is many a year since I have pronounced her name aloud, unless I have done so in my dreams. They say I often talk in my sleep. I often dream of her, and sometimes it seems so much like reality, that I cannot help weeping when I awake, and find it nothing but a dream. She lived in a house which stood beyond the hill yonder. I have never seen it since the day she was carried out of it, and I shall never see it again.”

“Her name?” whispered Henry.

“Mary Everson lies in that stoneless grave—I wanted no stone to keep her in my memory, and I wanted nothing to call strangers to her resting-place. The world never contained a purer and warmer heart. She came here with her uncle about a year before my mother’s death. Her father had been wealthy, and had taken great pains with her education. He lost his property in time of the war, and died soon afterward. His wife soon followed him, and Mary became dependent upon her uncle, who removed here, as I said, about a year before my mother died. I saw her, for the first time, at a meeting in a log school-house. She was seated opposite me, and I thought I never set eyes on so fair an object. I have seen countenances which would form better subjects for description, but I never saw one which spoke to the soul like hers. It was transparent. It seemed as though you could see the flow of her pure thoughts and the beatings of her warm heart.

“It so happened that on the next day I had occasion to see her uncle on business. As I drew near the house, I heard the loud and angry voice of a female. I soon saw Mary coming down the foot-path. She was sobbing. ‘O, mother,’ said she, ‘I am glad that you do not know what your poor child has to suffer.’ She looked up and saw me with tears in my eyes—the words she had spoken brought them there—and felt, as she afterward told me, that I sympathized with her. I passed her without speaking, transacted my business with her uncle, and took my leave as speedily as possible, hoping to meet with her on my return. But I was disappointed. She had gone into a retired thicket to unburthen her grief by prayer. The truth was, her aunt treated her with great cruelty. Her uncle had little power to protect her. I made an errand there the next day, and found Mary alone. We sped rapidly in our acquaintance, and our parting was like that of old familiar friends. I became a frequent visiter at Mr. E.’s house. He received me cordially, but his wife, I could see plainly, disapproved my visits, and the more as it became evident that Mary and I were attached to each other. When it was known to her that we were engaged to be married, she became outrageous in her treatment of the poor orphan. She caused her many days of bitterness, and many nights of weeping.

“We were to be married on my return from a visit with my mother to the east. My mother never returned. As soon as she was buried I hastened here, and found Mary ill of an inflammation of the lungs. The disease was brought on by exposure occasioned by the cruelty of Mrs. E.

“I watched by her bedside till she died. When she was laid in the grave, I felt that there was a void in my heart that could never be filled. Nearly half a century has passed—the shadow of no earthly attachment has ever fallen for a moment on the place in my heart which belongs to her. The grave, as you see, is no longer a hillock—the coffin has fallen in—the heart that loved me so truly has mouldered, but her memory is as fresh as when I felt the last feeble pressure of her hand, or when I passed the whole night on her grave before I left the place. Men have called me indolent, irresolute, weak; but they knew not of the shadow which rested upon my path.

“Of late, I trust, I have known something of the higher life which her dying lips entreated me to live. I am waiting for my appointed time, when I shall meet her in a world where affection is never blighted, and separation is unknown.

“I have never said as much as I have now to any mortal; you seem to be capable of sympathizing with one. May your young heart find one whom it may love as entirely as I loved her; and may she be spared to you, that your life may not, like mine, be wasted. Farewell!”

He turned and walked into the grove. Henry set out on his return to his uncle’s house. On his way, he thought of his gun with which he was to do such execution. He returned to the place where he had left it. It had fallen into the water, and was apparently an object of great curiosity to the shiners who surrounded the lock in great numbers. A frog sat resting on his elbows on the opposite bank, surveying the examination. When the gun was lifted from the water, he disappeared with a sound rather indicative of contempt either for the gun or its possessor.

Aunt Martha received Henry with smiles, when she was assured that he had not silenced any innocent songsters, and her complacency was positive when she learned the manner in which the gun had been disposed of during the morning. She suggested that it would be an improvement if it were kept under water all the time.





’Tis midnight.

              Lo! the Old Year stands upon

The threshold of the Past. To God it speeds

Its way, but bears a burden, for I see

Its form bend drooping with the weary weight

Of evil deeds, and feelings harsh and cold.

Farewell, Old Year! With light heart full of joy

I greeted thee, before thou mad’st thy sad

And bitter revelations to my soul.

Temptations, grievous trials thou didst bring,

And sorrow’s blinding, overwhelming tide.

And yet I leave thee with a grateful heart,

Thou stern but blest Instructor! Lessons harsh

Of thee I’ve learned, but strength’ning have they been:

And though thou bearest with thee record sad

Of my poor deeds, and goodness left undone,

That fills my heart with sorrow for the past,

Bright blessed hopes like angels hover round

This coming year.


                  Hail, then, thou unknown one!

I see proceeding from thee spirit forms;

They are my future hours, good or bad.

Mysterious shapes are they. Their mantles hang

Around them dark and heavy—hooded, veiled,

They give no sign of sorrow, nor of joy.

Slowly each form advances; and to me

Alone is given the right to raise those veils;

But as I lift each hood, upon the face

Beneath, my spirit traces there a mute

But yet unchanging record of my thoughts⁠—

A faithful impress of my inner self⁠—

Then past recall the hour floats away!


A gift these hours have in charge for me.

My weal or wo they hold—my light—my shade.

Dark sorrow they may bring me—bitter tears⁠—

Or sunny joys—bright Laughter’s merry crew

May playful lurk behind those gloomy folds

But if to me the right were given to lift

Those veils, before the ordered time, and know

The gifts they bring—I’d pause. I do not seek

To know my future. This I humbly ask,

In joy or wo, that God may give to me

A firm, strong faith, and purity of heart.

With gifts divine like these, my future years

Might come unfeared, and pass without regret

Or sad remorse.


               And now, my soul, regard

This new-born year, just launching on the sea

Of life. Twelve moons will roll around, and thou

May’st stand as now, with sad and heavy thoughts,

Upon its brink, and see with hopeless tears

This year float from thee. Dark and mist-like shapes,

Dim spirit forms may hover o’er the past.

Forms that were once, like youth’s sweet visions, bright

And filled with glory—resolutions, hopes,

And thoughts of what thou purposed to have been;

But unfulfilled and fading there may float⁠—

These are the forms that spectre-like may haunt

And darken then thy past.


                        Think well of this,

My soul, and ere within the portal dark

Of this unknown and silent future thou

Dost float, remember that within thyself

No power lies. Thou may’st have brilliant dreams,

And aspirations grand and holy thou

May’st cherish—aimless, futile all, without

The aid and strength which God alone can give;

Pray then to Him for faith, confiding, true,

And strength to make thy resolutions firm⁠—

For all the good that in thy future thou

Wouldst purpose to perform ask aid of Him.

Then with this help divine thou need’st not dread

Dark Sorrow’s form, nor Pleasure’s tempting smiles,

And when the future years which God may give,

Have each their changing cycles rolled around,

Then floated off unto the solemn Past⁠—

When life’s last hour comes, with drooping wing,

And thou art borne unto the judgment seat

Of God! Eternity’s dread bar! o’er thee

No shadows dark will hang, but Faith’s bright form,

And heav’nly Love, will clasp thee round, and bear

Thee up unto thy Father, God!







How little can we of this latitude, or rather of this country, for latitude seems not to rule in all cases with regard to temperature; on one side of a continent, that parallel which gives agreeable winters and dry, healthful summers, is marked on the other side with cold, snowy winters and most unhealthful summers; what the variant circumstances are which produce this difference it is not easy to tell; the difference does exist, and ingenious theories have been constructed to suit those results; we say then again, how little can we of this latitude, or this country, judge of the enjoyments which others at a distance from us, but with the same shadows, have in the dry coolness of their evenings, or lassitude to which they are subject by the peculiar warmth which prevails during most of their summer days. The habits and customs among us are soon made conformable to the circumstances of our climate; though it must be confessed that people will always pertinaciously insist on a warm day on the first of May, and a stinging cold one on the 25th of December, while actual experience has shown that the thin floral garb adopted for the first has often led to consumption, and the winter furs and the great Yule-log that have distinguished the latter, have been considered rather seasonable than pleasant. So much for a poetical conformity, but in the every-day business of life things are better disposed of; people do not think in this country of sitting under their own vine till mid-summer, and then they look out for spiders; and as to their fig-trees, nobody gets under them unless it be the house-cat for a summer siesta. While eastward of the shores of the Mediterranean, people stretch themselves out upon the house-top for a comfortable night’s sleep, and spend a warm summer’s day beneath the cording shadow of the fig or the olive, and make life itself a blessing, not the means of enjoyment, but enjoyment itself; life and its accidents, the gratification of simple appetites—eating, drinking, and sleeping. Leaving to others the profitless toils that accumulate heaps of gold, only a portion of which can ever be used, and that portion will buy little more than what may be had and enjoyed without it. In this country we retreat away from an oppressive heat or a stinging cold, and make the absence of either an excuse for our merriment. In that other land to which we have referred, positive enjoyment is had in the uses of the evening air, and the contemplation of the heavenly hosts. Stars and planets twinkling in the clear blue ether above, not larger than seen from this continent, but far, far more intensely brilliant in the atmosphere, which allows of little refraction, and whose purity makes an upward gaze like the contemplation of some sanctified enclosure.

Sitting on a bank that faced westward were observable two human figures in the closing twilight of an autumn day. They were gazing out upon the gorgeous west, and marking the successful struggles of the starry host to obtain visibility above. In all the rich flush that marked the pathway of the sun, and hung a glory around his place of exit, only one light had strength enough to be visible; and so pure was the atmosphere, that when the flush in the heavens retired, the splendid planet Venus seemed a delicate crescent—a diminutive moon, sinking downward to the western waters.

“How beautiful, dear Reuben,” said the young female, as she pressed closely the hand of her companion; “how beautiful the heavens above us are to-night. It seems as if a peculiar brilliancy were observable; and I hope it is not sinful for me to say that the glorious array of stars seems to have communicated to my bosom something of their own transparent light; an unusual serenity seems to descend from them to me, and I feel now as if I owed to them sensations of inexpressible delight—quiet, gentle, but full. Whence is this, Reuben?”

“May you not, my dear Miriam, have mistaken a cause for an effect? Is it not the quiet, peaceful delight of your heart that makes all outward objects more lovely to you? And, as the stars are the most brilliant and the most distant objects at the present moment, your feelings have connected themselves with those ministers of Him, and allowed that deep, mysterious connection of the planetary world with ours to work upon your imagination, as if the stars had a direct influence upon your condition.”

“Perhaps so; but I alluded to my feelings and not my condition. How beautifully did our Prophet King refer his own elevated sensations to the planetary world, ‘The moon and the stars which Thou hast ordained.’”

“True, true, my dearest Miriam; but you will recollect that while he made himself, and man generally, small in his contemplation of the heavens, it was not in comparison with them, it was comparing or contrasting man with Him who garnished the heavens, and wrote ‘all our members in a book.’ But are not your feelings, like mine, elevated with a hope, nay, with almost a certainty, that the elders will persuade my mother that the rights of our family can be retained, even though I marry you, or rather that the argument against our union was as unsustained by our laws as the attempt to give you to Salathiel was a violation of your affection and my rights.”

“I know not but that may be the case. I feel it, Reuben, warmly at my heart. Let me say it without violating the delicacy of a maiden’s feelings, that such was my love for you, that even the alternative to which I consented, though of no moment, gave me a severe pang.”

“What was that alternative?” asked the young man, with importunity.

“Simply, that if you should not live to marry me, then Salathiel might take me to wife.”

“I would haunt him with terrible bodings,” said Reuben, “even as Samuel frightened the falling Saul.”

“And I, dear Reuben,” said the maiden, with a smile, “should, I suppose, be the Witch of Endor to call up your wandering and jealous spirit.”

“And it is settled, then,” said Reuben, “and you are to be mine with the consent of our families. And the next new moon shall see us one.”

“It shall be thus if your mother consents. I have none to consent or refuse, save my aunt. But let it not wound your feeling or excite suspicion in your mind, Reuben, that I ask you not to cherish feelings of unkindness against Salathiel. He is my kinsman and my early friend.”

“Has he not sought to supplant me in your possession?”

“Have you not supplanted him in my heart? Is it so much, my dear Reuben, for you to fear to lose me, and is it nothing for him to see me given to another?”

“He tried for your possessions, Miriam, for your wealth only.”

“Does not my wealth, little as it is, go with my hand—and why may not he have designs honorable as well as others?”

“Because he would not leave it to your decision, to the arbitration of your affections. He could not love you and be willing to do violence to your love.”

“May he not, dear Reuben, say the same of you?”

“Of me! Miriam, you plead the cause of Salathiel. You wish the alternative—you would be free.”

“Reuben, you may wound my pride by your injustice, but you cannot make me cease to love you. You may hereafter learn that woman may esteem a man for his virtues without loving him as a husband; and that for me to wish that you were less unkind to Salathiel, is no evidence that I love you less. I have heard within a few weeks such lessons of forgiveness, such preaching of high virtues—high, though always practical—that I desire to conform in some measure to them, and to have him whom I love and respect, augment my affection, not by any new love on his part, but by a new exhibition of greatness of mind. Reuben, though protracted maidenhood is a reproach in Israel, be assured that my love is stronger than death—as I feel that your jealousy is more cruel than the grave.”

“I will not be jealous. I will forget what I have deemed the wrongs of Salathiel. I will learn of you to respect myself. But, Miriam, what teaching is that to which you allude—what lessons of forgiveness have you received, and from whom? Is not the law of Moses sufficient for the daughters of Israel?”

“I suppose the laws of Moses are not sufficient, else why have kings and prophets written and preached? But you know that several times within a year the teacher from Nazareth hath been in the synagogues of Nain, and has, indeed, spoken in the houses of our relatives, whither he hath come and broken bread.”

“I have heard of his visits, and that his teaching had been eminently attractive—how instructive,” continued Reuben, with a sneer, “how instructive may be inferred from the proportion of women among his immediate followers.”

“There were more women than men, undoubtedly, at his household instruction, because more women had leisure to listen. But let me tell the truth, Reuben. There are many women among his followers, for he speaks to the heart of woman. He recognizes woman as the equal of man in the necessity for salvation, and he appeals to her affections, her experience, her wrongs and her neglect. What other prophet has come among us, that has thought it needful to recognize even his descent from woman, while He of Nazareth soothes our sorrows, elevates our hopes, and sanctifies our human relations? As I listened of late to him when he reproved but encouraged our sex, my heart said ‘this teacher’s doctrines may save man,’ but how they elevate and purify woman. And then the lessons of love, of forbearance, of forgiveness, that he inculcates, belong to what I have deemed woman’s nature and man’s necessity.”

“You have followed the teacher, then, Miriam?”

“He is a prophet, Reuben, and he attests his divine mission by miracles. He has healed the sick, he has cured the lame, and made the blind see and the deaf hear.”

“Has he raised the dead, as did the bones of Elisha?”

“I have heard that he has wrought that miracle, but do not know it, though I have such faith in his mission as to believe he might.”

If he would raise me from the dead when I come to die, I would have faith too!

“I should think, Reuben, that this act would be the consequence rather than the cause of faith. Though many others believed, in Jerusalem, as my Cousin Jacob says, in consequence of the restoration of blind Bartemus to his sight, yet the Master said, ‘Thy faith hath made thee whole!’”

“I have, nevertheless, no faith in this teacher as a prophet—why, whose son is he, Miriam?”

“He is of the house of David, Reuben, and even though his parents are poor, are they much poorer than David’s parents? May there not be something in the great truths which he teaches, that is not dependent upon the parentage of the teacher?”

“These things are important, Miriam, I confess, and we will confer of them together, but not now. We are about to part, let us mark the separation by a recurrence to a subject on which we both agree. The next new moon sees us united, and my joy at the anticipation is doubled by the belief that you share with me in the pleasure.”

Miriam pressed the hand of her lover as they rose to descend the hill; and as they entered the gate of Nain, the rising moon poured its strong light through the gorges of the mountain, the pair wended their way through the broken streets of the city to the residence of Miriam, blessed in their mutual affection, and refreshed by the dry, cool breeze of evening, which had fanned them on the elevated seat which they had just left.

Reuben turned toward home with a resolution to discuss the doctrine which he had heard imputed to the new teacher. Miriam, with woman’s humility, “kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.”

Miriam and Reuben met daily as espoused people; and frequent allusions were made to the doctrines of the teacher; and the pride of a Hebrew man was a little touched at the evidences of the elevating effect of a doctrine upon women, which Miriam’s language and conduct presented. Yet Reuben loved her too well to regret any circumstance which pleased and benefited Miriam. The customs of the country were too well fixed to lead him to fear the assumption of any inappropriate position by his future wife; indeed, it is believed that men do not begin to grow jealous of the authority of women until after marriage.

“I do not find in the teaching of the new master,” said Reuben, one day as they were conversing on the subject now so important to her, and so generally interesting to him, “I do not discover any denunciations of our creed or our system and form of worship—why may not his doctrines prevail without danger to the Hierarchy?”

“I cannot guess of that, Reuben; but certainly the teacher, while he refers to particular virtues and special sins, seems to desire a purification of the motives. He has conformed to all the requirements of our religion, but seems at times to be above it. I wish I understood him better. And yet how simple, how comprehensible are all his teachings. Why should I seek to know more? Why should I desire aught but that which shall make me better—happier—more hopeful? How the poor, the afflicted in body and in mind seek him out, and sit in joy at his teaching.”

“Miriam, I will hear him—I will hear him soon,” said Reuben.

It was only a few days before the new moon that Miriam had from the widow mother of Reuben an intimation that her only son and heir was prostrated by sudden and very severe sickness. The young woman hastened across the town to be in attendance upon Reuben, and to cheer him into health by her presence. But when she reached the house, she learned rather by the appearance than the words of the widow, that the sickness of Reuben was not of a kind to yield to such remedies as she had to offer.

The attention of Miriam to Reuben was all that her feelings would permit her to give. She sat by his side and bathed his temples, and moistened his feverish hands, and listened with painful satisfaction to his unconscious utterance of her name.

On the seventh day of Reuben’s sickness all awaited the crisis, and a few hours before sunset he awakened from a protracted sleep, and turned his eyes on the hopeful countenance of Miriam. The members of the family present saw with inexpressible pleasure that his consciousness had returned, and they hoped.

But the physician pronounced against them. It was but a restoration of mental light before the darkness of death should set in.

“Miriam,” said Reuben, “let me speak to thee alone one moment”—and the family retired.

“I am dying, and the truths which you announced to me as we sat upon the hill-side some nights since—truths which the new teacher uttered, come home with strange distinctness to my heart. But is he, as his disciples would have us believe—is he the Messiah?”

“Do you believe it, dear Reuben?”

“I do not know, but I forgive all who have injured me, and I ask pardon of all whom I have injured.”

“Surely that is the spirit of the Master’s teaching, Reuben, and what can you more.”

“But, oh, Miriam, where are the blessings which I had promised myself in thy love? Where the years of happiness in thy possession—when thou shouldst have been only mine?”

“Are these regrets, my beloved, suited to one who leans upon the verge of the grave? Oh, look forward, Reuben, and look upward. In heaven we can meet again—meet without fear of separation, without doubt of love.”

“But in heaven, where, oh, where shalt thou be, Miriam?”

“Reuben, dear Reuben?”

“Nay, my beloved, let me show my affection for you and my sense of duty to God at this last moment. I know, my Miriam, that by the customs of our people you should have been the wife of Salathiel, and I feel that next to me, (I do your love no injustice, my betrothed,) next to me, Salathiel has your affection. Hear me out. When I am gone, it must be your duty. Oh, then, let it be your pleasure to receive him. Who better than he can be your protector? He is your nearest kinsman, and the laws and customs of our people are in his favor—promise me.”

“Reuben, shall I call in your mother?”

Reuben turned his eyes again toward the west, and the sun was sinking with all his evening glory into the great sea. A gentle breeze swept into the window, and blew the hair of the kneeling maid upon the pale face of her lover.

“Turn my face, Miriam, to the east, let me pray thitherward. Let me hold you thus, ‘though the sorrows of death compass me about⁠—’”

When the widowed mother entered the room the dead form of her son was resting in the arms of the unconscious Miriam.

Stricken with grief, and with a sense of her utter loneliness, the widow lifted up her voice and wept.

Miriam was conveyed away—to be purified from the legal uncleanness that results from contact with the dead.

It was the morning of the third day from the death of Reuben, and Miriam was sitting lonely in her chamber.

“And this,” said she, as she looked forth from her darkened room, “this was the day appointed for our marriage; and to-day they will take my beloved and carry him forth from the city, and lay him in the earth with his fathers; and his beautiful form shall moulder into the dust, and the worms shall feed sweetly on him. Yes, he shall return to the dust again, and his spirit to God who gave it.”

“Oh, Father,” said the anguished maiden, as she kneeled with folded hands and upturned, streaming eyes, “oh, Father, receive his spirit!” And she poured out her soul in prayer for the dead, “after the custom that is among the Jews, even unto this day.”

Shortly afterward the relatives of Miriam came in to comfort her before they went to assist in the funeral of Reuben. They respected her grief too much to make open allusion to a subject which was occupying their minds.

One of the elders of the family, before going out, took aside the afflicted girl and attempted to console her with those cold arguments that interest suggests, and a want of respect for woman’s position warrants.

“Still, Miriam,” continued the old man, after disregarding her requests to be left alone, “still the possessions of your father’s family remain with you; and these may now, as they ought to have been before, be, with you, the property of our Cousin Salathiel.”

“Nay, my Uncle Achan, you trouble me, indeed; spare me that, let the possessions of our house go whither you list, to yourself or to Salathiel, but let me remain as I am. Give me peace—give me peace and time for my tears, and I will endure the reproach of maiden-widowhood, and let my name be lost from the family of our fathers.”

Achan and his friends departed to meet at the house of the widow, and to be of the company of those who should assist in the funeral of her son.

Miriam sat in her chamber, looking forth from the closed lattice to mark the first approach of the funeral-train which would pass her aunt’s dwelling on its way to the burying-place that lay beyond the walls of the city.

The solemn train at length approached, and the cold, insensible form of her lover lay upon a bier, wrapped round with grave-clothes, and borne forth by men.

As she gazed down upon the appalling sight, her heart seemed ready to burst with the grief that had no utterance, and she fell insensible to the floor.

When Miriam opened her eyes, they rested upon the forms of her aunt and of Salathiel bending over her.

“Was this well, Salathiel? Could you not have spared me one day for grief, must my affections for another be outraged, even in the presence of his passing remains?”

“Miriam, my cousin,” said Salathiel, “I came in hither only to assist your aunt. No selfish feeling brought me into your presence. I know where your affections are, I know how deep-seated is your grief. Let me rather, my Miriam, be to you a means of consolation, than an occasion of offence, since my love to your person is less than my sympathy in your grief.”

Miriam placed her hand in that of Salathiel, and a gentle pressure signified her appreciation of his feelings—and such a sign, at such a moment, too, told him how hopeless would be his love. He obeyed the sign.

“The funeral has passed on,” said she.

“It is now near the gate of the city,” said Salathiel.

“We shall see it once more,” said Miriam, “as it ascends the hill that overlooks the valley of tombs.”

“What is that faith, Miriam,” asked her aunt, “of which you spoke to me yesterday?”

“It is but confidence in the promises and power of the teacher.”

“Confidence that he will grant your wishes?”

“Yes, if they be right, or that if he grant them not, then confidence that the refusal is best.”

“Have you that confidence, Miriam?”

“Oh aunt, oh my mother, do not tempt me. I would believe; my heart tells me that miracles such as his, could only be performed to attest a momentous truth. But do not tempt me, the body of Reuben is scarcely passed, in him my heart, my affections, my hope were centered—and he is taken from me. Why? is it good for me to be afflicted?”

“Could the Master have saved his life, my child?”

“Did he not yesterday save the life of the Centurion’s servant at Capernaum,” answered Salathiel, struck with the coincidence of the woman’s question with the recent fact.

“Did you ask him, Miriam?”

“I saw him not, and if I had seen him, what am I to him?”

“If you had asked him, might he not have done it?”

“I believe, aunt; I believe, Salathiel, that he could have saved the life of Reuben.”

“Would he not, then, raise him now?”

“I do believe he could—I have faith in his power. But I would not be presumptuous. Yet, yet—oh, that Reuben might be restored to me?”

“Amen!” said Salathiel, “Amen!” and the deep tone of voice, and the upward turn of his eyes, told how truly his heart responded to the prayer of his cousin.

Two hearts were then united in solemn petition. There was faith, but none thought of hope.

After a few minutes of solemn silence, the eyes of Miriam were turned mournfully, and yet eagerly, toward the hill beyond the city’s wall.

“They are passing upward,” said Deborah to her; “the procession moves toward the brow of the hill, but, alas! the dust of the road conceals the train.”

They all looked forth to follow with their eyes as long as possible the mournful procession.

“But what is there?” exclaimed Deborah, pointing to a column of dust which denoted a crowd of people descending the hill toward the funeral.

“The procession has passed,” said Miriam.

“Both parties have stopped,” exclaimed Deborah.

Salathiel looked earnestly out and said, in a low voice, but with much feeling, “Do the Romans come to insult us even when we bury our dead? We are a conquered people, but we are not slaves.”

“Hush!” said Miriam, “hush, my brother! let us not at this moment forget the teaching of the Master.”

Salathiel leaned forward and kissed the brow of Miriam.

“I thank you, I thank you, Miriam, for the monition, and I bless you for the term, brother; henceforth, my sister, know me for such. But let me go forth to learn what hath turned our people from their sepulchral rites.”

Salathiel went forth, and Miriam, kneeling, buried her face in the lap of her aunt, and poured out her soul in prayer—deep, anguished, heart-engendered, heart-and-heaven-moving prayer.

It was some time before the low voice of Miriam ceased. But her feelings had been overwrought, and at length she lay silent yet suffering, with her head still on Deborah’s knees.

The quiet of the street and even of the chamber was at length disturbed by the confused footfall of a multitude who seemed to press onward with few words, and those uttered in a subdued tone. The multitude at length paused in front of the dwelling of Miriam, and the opening of the front door intimated that the procession of the people had some connection with the inmates of the house.

The door of Miriam’s chamber at length opened, and Salathiel stood before the two women pale and agitated.

“My sister, praise the Lord! A miracle has been wrought.”

The agitated maiden shrunk into the arms of her aunt as she gazed toward Salathiel.

“What,” exclaimed the aunt, “what is it, Salathiel? Speak?”


“Reuben!” exclaimed Miriam.

“Reuben lives!”

“Where—where is he?”

“He has been borne back to the house of his mother.”

“How has this been wrought?” asked Deborah.

“There is our Cousin Asher, who was a witness of the whole. Shall he come in and tell you all?”

Asher was admitted with one or two others of the family, and briefly stated the facts.

“The rear of the very long procession that followed the corpse of Reuben had scarcely left the gate of the city, when I, who was assisting to bear the bier upon which rested the beloved remains, discovered a vast crowd of people coming down the hill. I soon, however, perceived that there was no intention on the part of the approaching mass to offer any offence or discourtesy to the funeral party; and, indeed, the expressions of grief by our widowed and bereaved kinswoman were so loud, that it was difficult to hear whether any word was uttered by the descending party. I have never seen a Hebrew woman so distressed; and though few have had such cause for grief, few have been more deeply wounded, yet I had hoped that she would have been able to repress her feelings. But as we grew nearer the grave, her lamentations were increased, and it was heart-rending to hear her exclamations. The whole procession seemed to have lost their own sense of bereavement in the presence of one the utterance of whose anguish was so impressive. To me it seemed almost an arraignment of Providence by our kinswoman. I cannot tell you how every one was affected; each seemed to wish silently but heartily that some event might occur to soothe the sorrows of the widow.

“At length the descending party, which was very large, met our procession; and almost every member of that company manifested deep sympathy for the suffering of the chief mourner. In a moment the principal of the company stepped forward and took our kinswoman by the hand, and whispered to her words of comfort. What they were I could not hear, but the effect was instantaneous—the clamor of grief was hushed—and our kinswoman walked quietly on, gazing with a sort of rapt awe upon the comforter, whose countenance though marked with sympathy for her suffering was yet majestic and dignified.

“The mother’s eyes for a moment wandered from the face of the visiter, and fell upon the form of her son stretched out before her, and again her agony found vent—again the mother was heard, again the mountain seemed to echo with her lamentation.

“He who was walking at her side did not rebuke the mourner, but a new and more intent feeling of compassion was evident in his look and manner, and taking the hand of the afflicted one, he said in a tone of deep consolation, ‘Weep not.’

“Almost immediately afterward he left the widow standing where she was, and approaching us ‘came and touched the bier,’ and we who were carrying it stopped; for there was a sort of authority in the air and movement of this person, or let me say the effect rather than the assumption of authority. When the eyes of all were turned toward the dead body, and toward him that stood by it, the person with a mild tone, with no ceremony, with a simple utterance of the words, said,

“‘Young man, I say unto thee, Arise!’”

“And Reuben, dear Asher, Reuben!” exclaimed Miriam.

“And Reuben sat up on the bier, and began to speak of the sensations which crowded upon him.

“But He who had restored him to life, seemed to comprehend that the mother’s feelings should be first consulted, her rights first respected, and so ‘He delivered him to his mother.’”

“And he lives now?”

“Yes now, and with his mother. But what an awe came upon those who witnessed that august scene. There was no shouting at the success of the effort, no cheering that human life had been restored. But with an overpowering sense of divine visitation, the people, in devout fear, kneeled, and ‘glorified God,’ saying ‘a prophet has risen up among us.’”

It was not deemed safe to the convalescent Reuben that Miriam should visit him immediately. His life not his health had been restored. And the effect of a too early interview, might be too much for both. A few days afterward Salathiel conducted Miriam to the house of Reuben, and as they proceeded thither he cautioned her against the indulgence of too much feeling, lest her own frame should yield. Leading her to the door of the chamber, the young man felt that his presence would be too much of a restraint, so knocking lightly he heard a voice from within bidding them enter, and he turned and went to the mother in another part of the house.

What was said by the young lovers, separated as they had been by death, and thus restored this side the grave, we shall not now repeat. It was a sublime colloquy, for it included the experience of a heart in which hope had contended against hope—and the awful experience of a soul that had been freed from the trammels of flesh. But it was still Reuben and Miriam. Death had not destroyed the identity, for the same love that had animated them in his former life was felt and reciprocated now.

“I did fear, Reuben; indeed, for a moment I feared, when I heard of your restoration, that the love which had been a part of our lives, would have been quenched in you by death, or sublimated beyond the uses and comprehension of earth.”

“Oh, Miriam love is the immortal part of our affections—it is the soul of the mind—it is stronger than death—and that which is pure and rightly placed on earth is indestructible, and thousands of years, my beloved, passed in separation would work no change. We should at our renewed communion find the same love that had existed in past centuries in full and satisfactory operation. You know that the seeds which our travelers bring from the mummies of Egypt are as fruitful as those which are sown from the last year’s harvest, so, my beloved one, is the love that is worthy the soul’s cherishing.”

“But, Reuben, has it struck you that you have received the testimony which you almost impiously challenged as a ground of faith?”

“It has, it has, and while I have been struck with shame at the impiety of such a thought, I have yielded the faith which I promised, and am henceforth a follower of the teachings of Him of Nazareth.”

“Oh, my prayers, dear Reuben⁠—”

“They were pure, and effective to your good, Miriam, undoubtedly, but it was from compassion for my widowed, childless mother that the miracle was wrought.”

“Who shall tell the motives of Him that can work miracles? What we call ends, dear Reuben, may be means with him, and the babe that is sent in answer to the Hebrew mother’s prayer, may be the saviour or the destroyer of his people.”

Salathiel then knocked for admittance. He entered and kissing both of his cousins he wept with joy—“And this, this is the consummation of my highest earthly wish,” said he.

“Is it indeed? Can you rejoice, Salathiel, that I am come to take Miriam from you; is it indeed thus, my cousin?”

“I have loved Miriam as dearly as you could love her, Reuben. I will yield in that to none. I will not affect to conceal that. But the miracle that has raised you to life has shown me that I have a higher duty to perform, a more glorious mission to fulfill. Be yours, my cousin, the enjoyment of domestic love and peace and happiness, which virtue ensures; and let your home and your lives illustrate the power of the Master’s doctrine to purify and multiply home affections. Henceforth, if permitted, I will sit at the feet of the teacher and learn; and when sent I will go, and offer his doctrines and my life for the good of our people.”

The new moon had again come, and the house of the aunt of Miriam was filled with her kinspeople, who had come to the marriage; and when the feast was over, and parties had formed in different rooms, and some, with the bride and bridegroom, were on the housetop enjoying the delightful air of evening, as it swept down the hills loaded with the scents of roses and acacia, some drew the attention of the party to the brilliancy of the slender moon in the west, and the stars that were scattered through the heavens.

“It is a good omen,” said Asher, “when the planet that is so near the moon assumes with her the crescent shape at a marriage, or when at this season the Pleiads and Orion are peculiarly brilliant.”

The newly married ones looked up smilingly toward the heavens, as if they recognized the doctrine of stellar influences.

Salathiel, who had been looking upon the pair with deep interest, then stepped forward, and taking a hand of each, he said, “My cousins, I am called away—not again to mingle in this delightful scene—called to a higher duty; pray that it may be as delightful—it cannot be more dangerous. Keep the faith—mark the signs of the times in the conduct of man and in the instigations of your passions, but look not to the stars for your instruction. Oh, my beloved one,” and he stooped and kissed the lips of Miriam, “oh, my dear brother,” and he pressed his lips to the forehead of her husband; “oh, Reuben and Miriam, ‘seek Him that maketh the Seven Stars and Orion, and turneth the shadow of death into morning, and maketh the day dark with night,’—the Lord is his name.”





    Thou dwellest in my thoughts

As shines a jewel in some ocean cave,

Which the eye marks not and the waters lave;

A ray of light imprisoned! which none save

The soul that shrines it knows—its temple and its grave.


    Thou bathest in my dreams;

A form of dainty Beauty—something seen

At cloudy intervals, through a gauze-like screen⁠—

A voice of gentle memories—a mien

Too tender for an angel’s, yet as fair, I ween.


    Thou sparklest through my fears;

A hope which bloometh as an early flower,

Shines in the sun nor droops beneath the shower;

A holy star that glides at vesper hour

Into the dusk-hung sky—and, saintly, seems to lower!


    In daylight and in dreams,

’Mid hopes that beckon and ’mid fears that frown,

Thou art the juice that every care can drown;

A rose amongst the thorns—the azure down

Of the meek-brooding dove—the halo and the crown!






’Tis as easy for the heart to be true

As for grass to be green, or skies to be blue⁠—

’Tis the natural way of living!

Vision of Sir Launfal.

The school was dismissed, and a multitude of boys and girls came rushing out from the old frame building, and tore pell-mell down the streets of a country village, just like merry, care-naught mad-caps as they were. Of all ages and sizes were these little folks—they were the life and the care of a great many homes; some heirs of poverty, and some, but these were few, heirs of wealth—but each and all had brought with them into the world enough of love to secure for themselves a welcome place at the board, and by the hearth. They resembled very much any other congregation of children in the world—some of them remarkable for their stupidity, and presenting always to their teachers the same thick skulls, which it appeared nothing could penetrate—others again, quick at learning, to whom it was a relief for the weary Mentors to turn, and to whose mental wants they attended with a glad alacrity.

But I am not going to generalize any more at this time; and shall only add to the foregoing remarks, that this school was a marvel in its way—the teachers prodigies in learning, and all the parents thought their young children’s acquirements actually verging on to the miraculous—which state of things, I will add as a P. S., is remarkably pleasant for all parties concerned. Is it not teachers, and parents, and you poor little scholars?

Several girls, from nine to twelve years of age, were walking homeward leisurely, and talking loudly and earnestly on some important topic, as school-girls sometimes will, when a young boy, also one of the scholars, passed by them. With singular boldness he turned his handsome face full toward the little party as he passed, and one of the girls, whose name was Grace Germain, must have seen something remarkably expressive of somewhat in the boy’s black eyes, for very suddenly she seemed to have lost all interest in the conversation, in which, by the way, she had been one of the chief participators the moment before—and the little girl’s step grew slower and slower. Finally, taking one of her school-books from under her arm, Grace seemed all at once to be seized with a decidedly studious fit, (for the first time that week,) and then her shoe-strings must needs unloosen, and she must stop to fasten them, till at last, as might be expected, her companions were far beyond her in the homeward way, and she was left quite alone. When the child passed by a little lane her face became quite suddenly and unaccountably flushed, and Grace grew decidedly nervous in her movements, and she turned away her head, as though it were forbidden, and a sin for her to look down that narrow by-way where Dame Corkins and the little lame child lived.

But these mysterious movements were all explained when, a moment after, some one came marching, to a tune of double-quick time, up the lane, and when he appeared on the main-street again, lo and behold! it was that same black-eyed urchin Hugh Willson, who had a few moments previous passed by her, and he called out,

“Grace, Grace Germain, wait a moment; I want to tell you something!”

Grace of course blushed, and looked sideways, and down, and finally at the boy, but for the life of her she could not summon up a look of astonishment at his appearance, finally she said,

“Well, what do you want, Hugh?”

“I’m going home, Grace, to-morrow, and—and—I wanted to see you just to give you this; perhaps you’ll think I’m a fool for my pains. I wish though it was worth its weight in gold!”

Oh! you would have certainly thought that the poor girl’s face was on the point of blazing instantly, could you have seen it, and Hugh thought there were really tears in her eyes too, as she put out her hand for the little package he had brought her. For some distance they walked on together, and neither spoke.

At length, as she drew near home, Grace found courage to look up and say, “Hugh, what are you going home for?”

“Father has sent for me, I am to go to an academy, but—” Hugh did not finish the sentence, and after waiting an unconscionable time, and speaking at last as though a “drag” were fastened to every word, Grace said,

“You will come to see us again sometime, wont you, Hugh?”

“Yes, if I ever can. I can’t bear to go away now, Grace, but, as father says, I am getting old. I’m almost fifteen, and it’s a fact I ought to know more than I do. Perhaps I’ve staid in the country too long already; but I hate a city, and I shall come back here just as often as I can, for I love this place better than all the world.”

And that, reader, was rather a strange confession to be made by a spirit so active and stirring as was Hugh Willson’s, for of all country villages on the face of the earth, “Romulus” was certainly the dullest, and least attractive.

“I’m coming down by here to-night, Grace,” said the lad, as he opened the gate for the child, “if you would like to see me, come out here—I cannot bid you good-bye now—will you be here?”

“Yes, Hugh,” was the reply given sadly—and this time it was a great deal more than she could do to keep back or hide her tears—for Grace Germain thought Hugh Willson the handsomest and kindest boy she ever knew, and she could not bear to think of his going away. So she left him with little ceremony, and went into the house. And the boy saw her grief, and he could have wept also—he loved Grace Germain!

Well, what do you think made up that unpretending package—the parting gift? First and foremost, there was a little box, and it contained—not a gem, not a book, but—a fresh, beautiful rose-bud; and Grace did not laugh when she saw it, neither did she smile as she unwound the strip of paper from the stem, and read thereon,

                    “Give me but

Something whereunto I may bind my heart⁠—

Something to love, to rest upon, to clasp

Affection’s tendrils round!”

She did not laugh, I say, for sorrow was in her heart, the first deep sorrow she had ever known. Hugh was going away—and how much better she liked him than all other boys she had ever known in her life! But the rose-bud was not all the contents of the box; there was beside it a magnificent sheet of blue paper, gilt edged, and “superfine,” and on it Hugh had copied the “Parting Song,” by Mrs. Hemans; and perhaps, good reader, though you be not fresh from Yankee land, you may guess how the child’s heart beat faster than ever it had before, as she read the words—

When will you think of me, dear Grace?

    When will you think of me?

When the last red light, the farewell of day,

From the rock and the river is passing away,

When the air with a deep’ning hush is fraught,

And the heart goes burdened with tender thought?

        Then let it be!

When will you think of me, sweet Grace?

    When will you think of me?

When the rose of the rich midsummer time

Is filled with the hues of its glorious prime,

When ye gather its bloom, as in bright hours fled,

From the walks where my footsteps no more may tread;

        Then let it be!

Thus let my memory be with you, Grace⁠—

    Thus ever think of me!

Kindly, and gently, but as of one

For whom ’tis well to be fled and gone;

As of a bird from a chain unbound,

As of a wanderer whose home is found;

        So let it be!

And what had Grace to give to Hugh? What had she among her few treasured possessions a boy would care for? The dolls maimed for life—the broken china—the picture-books—the bits of lace and ribbons, what were they to him? Grace never realized her poverty before that day—and then the very thought was humiliating. If she could only buy a knife, or a pocket-book, or a pencil-case; but the child had no purse, and, unfortunately, no money either, so that thought was speedily abandoned. It grew quite dark while she stood in her little room, still before the opened drawer which held all her keepsakes and treasures, but no good fairy was nigh at hand to lay before her the thing she wished, and at last, quite in despair, she went and stood by the parlor window, and lo, there was Hugh already passing by, whistling, and looking for all the world as though the inmates of that particular house were nothing in the least to him.

In a few moments, side by side, the boy and girl were walking in the garden.

“I have read your note, Hugh,” said Grace, for the “shades of evening” creeping over them, gave her a wonderful and unnatural boldness to speak, “but what shall I give you for a keepsake? I haven’t a book in the world you would give a fig for.”

“Don’t talk about books,” replied he, hastily, “there is something that wouldn’t cost you much, I’d give more for than for all the books in Christendom!”

“What is it, Hugh, tell me quick?”

“Just that curl on your forehead! Give me that, Grace, and I never will part with it.”

In a moment it was separated from the thick curls that adorned her head, and stooping down, Grace laid a forget-me-not in it, and gave it to Hugh. He—what? kissed it, and kissed Grace, and then put the curls safely in his vest-pocket, and told the child she was the prettiest and best girl he ever knew, and that he should miss her more than all the boys and girls of the village together.

But while the lad was in the very midst of his ardent protestations, a voice from the house called to Grace, and the children parted—to meet again, how and when you shall not be so long learning as they were.

Hugh went to his city home, Grace to her school. He dreaming of Grace Germain as a woman, and wondering if she would not then be his wife—she to resume her studies with no great interest, to wish day after day that Hugh would only come back again, and to wonder if he would be so handsome when he was a man as he was then.

Years passed, Grace was no longer a child but a beautiful girl—a bride; and yet Hugh Willson was not her bridegroom.

A rich young merchant of a neighboring town, captivated by her loveliness and charming manners, had “wooed an won,” and a nine days’ wonder in the village of Romulus, was the wonderful good fortune of the orphan—for of late years Grace had been dependent on her relatives, her parents having died while she was yet very young.

Grace had never seen or heard of the boy of rose-bud memory since their first parting, but her thoughts of him had always been those we have for a pleasant unforgotten dream. And she kept the little gift that Hugh had given her most religiously. The very night before her bridal, though she had wept happy tears over the noble, tender note that Clarence Lovering sent her with a splendid ornament—a wedding-gift—still she had it in her heart even then, to look with no ordinary interest on the little pasteboard box that held the withered flower, and to read, not carelessly, the verses Hugh had written her in a large, boyish hand so long ago.

Yet it was not faithlessness to later vows that prompted her to kiss the rose-bud, and to preserve still longer the blue note and the little box, for Grace with all her heart respected Clarence Lovering, and she loved him well, too. She was a lofty, true-spirited girl, and when she married the young merchant, for better or for worse, as it might prove, she did it with a true and loyal heart; and it was in all respects a union in which might well be asked, and without doubt or fear, the blessing of Heaven.

But there were bitterer tears to be shed, and deeper griefs to be borne than Grace Lovering had yet known; six months after her marriage she followed her young husband to the grave, and there was none on earth that could sustain or uphold her in that day of terrible visitation. Voices and forms with which she was scarcely familiar came to comfort her, but the friend whose companionship would have made any place in the wide world a pleasant home for her, was dead; and the bereaved woman longed to return once again to her early home—the village where all her early life was passed—to bury her husband and lover beside her parents, under the willow-tree in the old burial-ground, and then to mourn in quietness, and alone, away from the scenes of the bustling, noisy town.

And all her desires were speedily complied with—her old guardian and uncle from the little village came to her to assist, and conduct her back to Romulus; and before the year was passed, Grace was again at home in the old house where she was born, and in the grave-yard near by, on which she could daily, hourly look, her husband slept.

Kindly and tenderly the old neighbors welcomed back the mourner to their midst; and there, where in her childish heart love had first awakened, there, where in later years she had watched in agony the dear ones of the household “passing away” silently into the “silent land;” there, in the old dwelling, which, during the few past years had stood tenantless, and looking so broken-hearted; there, in her early womanhood, Grace Lovering, the desolate and stricken, came back to make it her abiding-place, her lonely home. She felt that to her a cold twilight of existence only was remaining, that the sunshine which rests so richly and revivingly on the young and the beloved, would be henceforth faint and weak as her own heart. But it was not wholly so, time the great soother, as well as destroyer and chastener, took the sting and the poignancy from her grief, and, like the dove with its olive branch, there spread through her soul that trust in Heaven’s infinite goodness, that makes the wilderness even to blossom.

Placed far above the reach of poverty, the miseries and cares of want did not mingle their bitterness with her heart-sorrow. And in all, save those few natural but dread experiences, Grace bade fair to be a “babe at seventy,” in that unwelcome wisdom which continued misfortunes only can impart.

It was her thirtieth birth-day, and the anniversary of her marriage. The widow sat alone in the pleasant parlor of her cottage; she had remained alone that day, and with tears dedicated it to her heart’s sacred memories. Every thing about the room and the house, was pleasantly indicative of a refined and peaceful way of living, and of cheerfulness, too, save and except the sorrowing woman, who, at nightfall paced the room, and looked so sadly into the past. The curtains of the windows were drawn and the door closed; Grace had been looking again over the treasures of her casket. It was in that very room, twenty years before, she had laid down on that night of their parting, to dream about Hugh Willson, and to pray for his happiness; and now she stood there a widow, sad and desolate, in her prime of life, thinking of the love of her later life—and weeping as she thought—for Clarence Lovering was worthy to be so remembered and loved.

In the beautiful casket, his gift, were laid the bridal ornaments which he had given; she had never worn them since his death, but kept them where no eye but her own could gaze upon them, and think of his loving kindness, but with them was preserved still a withered flower whose fragrance had fled quite away, and never with a heart quite calm, had Grace been able to look upon it; neither had she ever been able to think with indifference, or a mere idle curiosity of thought, on the probable worth of Hugh Willson’s manhood.

At length, as the night came on, the letters, and the jewels, and the rose, were laid away, but the miniature of her lost husband was lying next her heart then—for the love of the woman was vaster and deeper than that of the child; and Grace had dried her tears, for the hope that consoles the Christian mourner had conquered the agony of spirit that for a time overwhelmed her.

The evening proved dark and stormy, the pattering of the rain upon the window-sill, and the still softer and more dream-like sound with which it falls upon the grass, which is so pleasant to hear when all within the house is bright and cheerful, was a melancholy sound to the lonely woman, for it fell upon the graves in the burial-ground, where the damp earth was the only shelter of her beloved ones, and its echo fell upon that grave in her heart where lay buried the hopes of her youth—she might have, and I know not but she did, draw from it a hope and a promise of resurrection and of life both for her lamented dead, and for her vanished joy in life.

The quiet of the chamber was for a moment broken, a servant entered, a letter laid upon the table, and then the door was closed, the post-boy gone, and all was still again.

Mechanically the widow tore off the envelope, and opened the epistle. Let us read it with her, for Grace Lovering is born to a new life when those contents are made known to her—she dwells no longer in the so lonely present, or the sad past. For her also the future is alive again. She did not look for a resurrection so sudden and so strange—did you?

“Grace, dear Grace Germain, from the sands of the desert my voice, perhaps long, long forgotten, comes to you again. It is night, ‘night in Arabia,’ and I am for a moment alone; my traveling companions are gone to their rest, but I—I cannot sleep, and so have come from out my tent to write by the light of the burning stars once again to her who was the little girl I knew and loved in childhood. You may think my man’s estate has been reached unworthily, because I still love to think of boyish hours, and long so to recall them—yes, that is it, long to recall them. Are you yourself unable to think of them as the very blessedest days you ever knew? If it is so, Grace, how idly will my words fall on your ear.

“I know nothing of what has been the fate of the child I loved so well. I know not if you are the bride of another, or, perchance, I may be addressing myself to one who no longer has a name on the earth; but even if the idol of my boyish years is living for, and to another, I can pray for and bless her. Yes, I pray God to bless you, Grace Germain. I cannot and will not believe that the woman to whom I address myself, is no more. There is something whispering to my spirit now, it is not so. I feel to-night a strong conviction, an irresistible presentiment that you and I will meet again. I dare not think how, but this I know, if it is not in this world, we shall know one another hereafter.

“If you remember me at all, I know it is only as the wild and trifling boy who loved you better than his books, better than all children he ever knew. You know me not at all as the stern, time-tried, care-worn man, who has fought fierce battles with fortune and life, who finds himself wasting the powers of his manhood, far severed from all domestic, humanizing ties, treasuring in his heart only one name that makes the joyful recollection of his youth—careless, cold, and selfish perhaps, but never losing hold of that one, dear link to the affection, the lasting, undying affection that was born of you in my youthful soul, and still, still preserves its strength through you.

“Perhaps, indeed, you do not in the faintest degree remember me. You may have to recall with an effort the time of childhood, or at least that time when I was your school-companion; nay, it may be an effort for you to recall my name. Oh, if that is the truth, how very different is it to the memory I have treasured of you, dear Grace. My home has been upon the oceans and in the deserts, and mid the wilds of nature every where. Many years have passed since I left my father’s house, and my feet have never from that time touched upon my native shores. During these years of absence I have had opportunities to try my heart. I have learned who are the friends most dear to me, and over the vast sea of the desert sand, across the great ocean, let my voice come and whisper in your ear, Grace, there are none, none whose memory is so treasured now as is your own! The longing which is so often felt by the wanderer for the scenes and familiar faces of his native land, has never before pressed so heavily on me as this night; and now I wish, oh, how eagerly, to revisit, if it be only for an hour, that quiet place where a portion of my school-life was passed; and yet it is only because it is, or may be still your home; and were I there again, I might tread with you along the race-course, and over the old bridge to —— Grove, and through all the haunts now treasured in my memory. Do you remember the gifts we gave at parting? and did you fling away the bud as a worthless, trifling thing, even before it was faded? Or—what madness, you will think, prompted such an idea—do you keep it still? Perhaps you had not then so fully awakened to the life of the heart, you may not have dreamed that with that simple memento I gave to you the dreams of my boyhood, the hopes of my youth. Grace, I gave you MY HEART with the flower. I have never since recalled it. And now, if memories are returning again to you, if you are looking half tremblingly into the past, you will think of the little curl and the frail forget-me-not. Oh, you will not need that I should tell now how in danger and in suffering, and through all the most varied experiences I have preserved them—and how I have not forgotten.

“Last night I dreamed that you kept the rose-bud yet, and, will you believe it, when I awakened, and recalled to mind the proverb about the truthfulness of dreams, and their contrariness, it troubled me. Thousands of miles lie between us, and we may never meet again, all recollections of my native land save those relating to you only, are hateful to me; but, could I only hear your voice assuring me this night, or could I believe that you would welcome me back, and say to me with your own sweet voice that you were glad to see me, oh, I should run and could not weary nor grow faint, and neither day nor night should look upon my lagging feet until I stood once more beside you. Thou, beautiful joy of my childhood, say, wouldst thou welcome me?

“Perhaps you will think I have taken an unwarrantable liberty in so addressing you, for the friendships and loves of children are, I know, usually evanescent as dreams, yet I cannot, will not, think that whatever may be your position in life now, or whatever may be the relations you sustain in life, I do not believe that you will scorn me for the words I have written, or that you will read carelessly this record of my thoughts.

“Time has dealt with no light hand to me, he may have given you, perhaps, with every passing year, a blessing. He has laid no caressing arm on me; possibly he has guided you thus far tenderly as a mother would lead her child. I have bowed beneath his frown, and you, you may have grown to glorious perfectness in the light of his smile. I have known deep sorrows—it may be, oh, I pray it may not be—that you also have not escaped the universal heritage. It might be far beyond your possibility to recognize in me the bright boy filled with glad expectations that you once knew; but I cannot but believe that I should know you, and recognize you amid a multitude—the mild and beautiful blue eyes—the meek, gentle, and so expressive countenance—the smile, so sweet and winning, that rested so often on the face of the dear child; oh, they are not yet forgotten. I am convinced the woman whom I love has a face whose expression is heavenly! Do not censure me, I pray, for daring to tell my love. The hope of being with you once again, and of speaking with and looking upon you, is like the hope of heaven to the pilgrim, weary and out-worn with earth-striving.

“Months will pass away before these words, uttered from the fullness of my heart, reach you—the heart from which they come may have ere then ceased its beating, may be cold and dead; but will it be nothing for you to know that its beatings were ever true to you, even though you never have, and do not now need my homage? Will you care to think that when I wrote these words it was my highest hope that I might one day follow them to the home of Grace Germain, to beseech at least her friendliness, to hear the tones of her dear voice again, and then perhaps to lie down to rest in the grave-yard near her home, where it would be no wrong for her to come sometimes, even from a circle of beloved ones, to think of days gone by, the days of merry childhood.

“I have written too much—too much; the day is dawning, we shall journey far through the desert before to-morrow morning, but to-night, with every word I have written, thoughts and great hopes have awakened which will never be stilled again—they will be with me till I stand once more before you; and if there be a dearer one on whom your eyes will rest as you lift them from this page, to whom you will confide this folly of an old man, as you perhaps will call it, yet still remember me, and let him think of me with forgiving kindness.

“May the rich blessing of heaven be with you now and ever.

Hugh Willson.

And had Hugh Willson, indeed, committed an unpardonable trespass in writing thus, after the lapse of so many years, to his old schoolmate? No, no! bear witness the sudden flashings of color, and the as sudden paleness which swept over the lady’s face as she read on; bear witness the occasional smiles, and the long and passionate weeping in which the lonely woman indulged, when her eyes rested so tenderly and sadly on the name affixed to the strange epistle. They were not tears of anger that she shed; it was not a smile of derision and mockery, at the sudden betrayal of affection the man had given, after a silence of years; they were not words of scorn which escaped her lips when she laid down to rest that night; ah, no! he had powerfully touched a chord in her soul, that from her childhood had ever vibrated even at the mention of his name.

There were eyes that were not closed in sleep during the hours of that night—but it was not grief that caused the widow’s wakefulness. There was one who listened till the morning to the heavy falling rain—but not in sadness; there was a lady who arose when the sunlight streamed once more through her chamber, who looked out on the blue heavens whence all the clouds had vanished, and hailed then a new era in her life-history.

From that day there was a marked change in the existence of Grace Lovering. That message of love which had come to her from the desert, at a time when life pressed heavily upon her, and death seemed the only hope of relief; that message aroused and cheered her, and made her to look more thankfully on the life yet vouchsafed to her, and the blessings which had been given along with the sorrows. Though the hope, and the thought even, seemed a wild one, that Hugh Willson would ever again return, the idea that he even remembered her, and thought still with interest on their childish years was grateful to her heart, and made her feel that neither for her nor for any one in the wide world is life utterly lonely and worthless.

True, the widowed and orphaned woman never forgot that she had buried her dead, that all her nearest of kin slept the long and quiet death-sleep; but a serenity and cheerfulness quite usurped the past frequent melancholy, and smiles were oftener seen upon her lovely face than tears. And not only in herself was the change visible; her household, and the little cottage seemed to share in the awakened happiness; and then, too, the poor and the needy had oftener cause to bless the widowed woman. The sick and suffering shared her loving care; and they blessed her—well might they—when she stood so often like a ministering angel beside them. The old and the weary mingled her name in their thanksgiving, for she failed not to make their downward path easy, and her voice was the voice of a comforter to them.

And this, as it were, instantaneous rousing up to active life, was a blessed thing for Grace. Time, after that great change, sped on no leaden wing; the clouds began to break, and stars came out, even when she had thought nothing but midnight darkness was forever her portion. The heart of the widow grew strong then, for she knew that when those stars were set, or hid again as they had been from her eyes, that the great sun itself would arise, and the never-ending daylight would break for her.

Ten years thus passed away. The shadows of forty winters had crept over the wife of Clarence Lovering; and still she wore the garments of mourning, in remembrance of the husband of her youth; but it was not a repining, murmuring spirit that dwelt beneath those doleful robes.

“Her faith had strengthened in Him whose love

      No change or time can ever shock;”

and she dwelt on the earth blessing and blest.

Many times her hand had been sought in marriage; strong-willed men had bowed themselves, and sued humbly for her love—but she had none to give, and no prospect of increased worldly prosperity could influence her to utter with less of truthfulness and honesty of soul than she had once spoken them, the marriage vows!

Grace had her treasures still, and there was an unfinished romance connected with her life, of which I would not say she did not at times long to know the conclusion—for she felt it was not concluded.

There were gray hairs—only a very few, my gentle reader—visible among the beautiful brown locks, and the clustering curls Hugh Willson treasured the memory of so well, were all vanished; there was no bloom upon the pleasant face—the blue eyes were less bright—but the “features of the soul” remained unchanged, or if at all changed, only in their nearer approach to perfection. And amid her kindly charities, and the thousand love-inspired duties had Grace forgotten the letter ten years old, and its author! Very far from that; and it had been a source of happiness deeper than she cared to acknowledge even to herself, to look once again on Hugh Willson, and to hear his voice. But none save that one letter had ever reached her from him; he might have forgotten, though that to her seemed a thing impossible. The depths of feeling revealed in that letter might have existed no longer, or at least might have ceased to bear her reflection and image, when he had fully exposed it to the light. He might be dead!

Once or twice she harbored the wild idea of answering his letter, to bid him come back—to assure him that there was at least one who would most heartily welcome him; and at such times Grace could but smile at her own folly—for the wanderer had no settled home, and there was no possibility of knowing where, even for a moment, his abiding place was; and so her natural good sense dispatched that fancy with a multitude of others to the land of shadows and dreams.

There came round in the natural order of things a sacrament Sabbath.

It was one of those heavenly days in the month of all months, that is, the “month of roses,” when,

      ——“If ever come perfect days;

Then Heaven tries the earth if it be in tune,

  And over it softly her warm ear lays;

Whether we look or whether we listen,

We hear life murmur, and see it glisten!

  Every clod feels a stir of might,

An instinct within that reaches and towers,

  And grasping above it blindly for light,

Climbs to a soul in grass and flowers.”

Thus describes Lowell one of those “perfect days” I am speaking of. (And, by the way, have you yet read that, the most exquisite poem produced in these latter days? If you have not, I prithee leave my romance unfinished, and inflict whatever other penance on yourself you may deem proper for neglecting so long that “gem of the first water,” whether regarded as a luxuriously printed book, or as a poem beyond all praise or—criticism!)

Well, it was on a Sabbath in June, as I began to tell you when the remembrance of “Sir Launfal” startled me from my story-telling proprieties; the windows of the little church were opened wide, and doubtless troops of invisible angels had entered in, to see how the congregation would commemorate His death—and probably the assembly had a faint idea of this, for solemn was the expression of every face, and reverent and humble every voice, that joined in the so beautiful and appropriate responses of the liturgy of “dear mother church!”

In one of the slips nearest the door, a stranger had seated himself shortly after the opening of the service; though his voice joined with those of the congregation in the supplications and thanksgivings, he seemed at times to be lost in other thoughts than those which should fill the minds of them who gather themselves together to worship Jehovah.

He was a man of middle age, and his hair was slightly tinged with gray—exposure, or hardship, or sorrow had made him prematurely old—his form was slightly bent, and his face was brown, as though the burning sunlight of the East had rested long upon it.

When the priest turned to the people at the conclusion of the service of the day, and said⁠—

“Ye who do truly and earnestly repent you of your sins, and are in love and charity with your neighbors, and intend to lead a new life, following the commandments of God, and walking from henceforth in his holy ways, draw near with faith, and take this holy Sacrament to your comfort; and make your humble confession to Almighty God, devoutly kneeling”; the stranger arose, but seemed as he did so, overcome with strong emotion; but in a moment more he had mastered it, and followed a portion of the congregation to the altar. And he knelt there beside Grace Lovering, and partook with her the consecrated elements; his hands trembled when they grasped the cup filled with the Saviour’s blood, but I do not think that was because of the emotion arising from the thought that he might be partaking unworthily, so much as from the fact that he was once more standing and kneeling in the village church, where since his boyhood he had not trod; it was because he was kneeling beside a woman who as a child had been his embodied dream of all perfection.

He had sought her amid the many faces totally strange around him; and when his eyes had turned from one to another, and he knew that thus far they had sought in vain, when they had fallen on her face at last, he knew that it was she—the little girl—the woman middle-aged—whom he sought, and a thrill, and a thought of thanksgiving swept through his soul, as he looked on her still so lovely face. He felt that he had come home—he dared to hope that he should never be a wanderer again—and even in that sacred place his wild thoughts finished the romance which had been so long in its narration.

When the congregation went from the little church, and Grace turned alone toward her pleasant cottage home, the eyes of the stranger followed her—and—his feet, as of necessity, followed too. There was very little in the quiet village that seemed familiar and dear to Hugh Willson, as he walked down the almost noiseless street. Prosperity had not come with its years to Romulus, and the little town had, I confess, a decided broken-down appearance; but it was not for love of the village Hugh had sought it; it was not because of its beauty he thought it a very Paradise! He was dreaming still a dream that had haunted him, or rather that he had been dreaming for a score of years, and how, what if this day he must awaken from it forever?

When he had reached the house he had seen the lady enter, he paused a moment, hesitatingly, for the heart of the stern man beat wildly. If it should not prove to be her after all—though he knew that was an idle fear—but, would she care to remember him—must he look upon her, and see her at last slowly and coldly recognize him? Must he listen to her, and then depart again to laugh at his own folly, and to curse at the madness and stupidity of his day-dreaming? He might find her bound by ties lasting as life to another. But if was never decisive, and Hugh Willson must speak with Grace Germain.

He knocked at the door of the cottage, and the widow, who had preceded him by a few moments, answered his call immediately.

“Does a lady called Miss Germain live here?” asked the stranger.

“That was once my name,” replied Grace.

Once, thought Hugh, and he had but little heart to proceed when he heard that answer.

“May I come in and ask of her father and mother? It is many years since I left this place, and I do not find many of my old friends here.”

There was a momentary light illumining the face of the lady as she heard these words, but it passed, and she did not speak; but leading the way into the parlor, she motioned the gentleman to a seat, then she said⁠—

“My father and mother have been dead these many years. I do not wonder that the village seems altered to one who has been long a stranger here, for the little life it once had is now quite gone, and there are but few of the old settlers left here now.”

There was a pause, and the stranger seemed to have forgotten the inquiries he had intended making. While she was speaking he seemed lost; but he was only living so intensely in the present, and the rush and confusion of thought was so great he knew not what to say. The chief thing that he longed to know, was not who had grown rich, and who poor, who was dead, and who married, and who had moved away, but—did Grace Germain remember an old playmate who had given her a rose-bud ever so many years ago?

The longer he thought, only the more embarrassing grew the stranger’s situation. Would she not laugh to hear that he had come, when the summer-time of life was well nigh passed, weary, and worn out with worldly trials and sorrows and doubts, to simply ask a woman if she remembered him?

“I do not know that you remember,” he said at last—but having proceeded thus far he stopped. “Have you ever heard—” he began again, and then he broke off suddenly, seemingly forgetful of the question he had meant to ask. But this hesitation would not do—and the man knew it would not—and so he started up, and, as though the time was short, and they the last words he ever intended uttering, he approached the lady, exclaiming,

“Grace Germain, don’t you remember a boy who went to school here long ago, in the old frame school-house, whose name was Hugh Willson?”

“Yes—yes—I do indeed! How could I have been so stupid! Hugh, I welcome you back with all my heart,” was the frank and generous answer, and Grace and the boy-lover shook hands heartily.

The Rubicon was fairly passed; he was remembered, he was welcome! and in his gratitude Hugh forgot to wonder if Grace had a husband living still, and if he had gone off on a journey! He forgot all, save that the child had grown to be a woman he could both love and honor—and for a moment so complete was his happiness, that the words would not have been an empty sound from his lips, “Lord, now let thy servant depart in peace!”

And what thought Grace as she looked upon the face of which but one feature, the dark and thoughtful eyes, seemed familiar? She thought, “Does he remember the letter he wrote me from Arabia—and was it truth he wrote?”

The Sabbath bell rung vainly in the ears of the long parted boy and girl that afternoon, but at night-fall the wife of Clarence Lovering led the way to the old burial-ground, and showed Hugh Willson the graves of her parents and of her husband. And he on whose arm she leaned then, felt no pang of jealousy when her lip faltered and her eyes wet, as she spoke of the bridegroom of her youth—for Grace had not listened coldly or carelessly to her companion as he had spoken to her such words as these⁠—

“Grace, we are neither of us young any longer. I have grown gray in my hard struggle with life—but there is nothing gray or dead about our hearts. I know that by the strong and joyous beating of my own, I know it by the heavenly peace that marks your life, surrounding you as it were with a very halo of glory. But the passionate glow of feeling is, I am equally confident, with neither of us any more. The noise of the bounding brooks has gone—like the quiet, deep flow of the river is the course of our existence now. The waves leap not so brightly in the sunlight, but still the broad beams of the sun fall down as warmly and as cheerily upon us. And is it too late, because I am old, for me to find a realization of that dream which has haunted me so long? I have been wild and fickle in the eyes of men; perhaps my way of life, could you know it all, has not been such as you would look approvingly upon; but, in the midst of all worldly excitements, I have always borne a talisman in my heart that has preserved me honorable and true—the thought of you, Grace! I have come here, not expecting to find the little girl I left, neither altogether a woman who has known nothing of sorrow and care; I have come to pray that I may, even at this late hour, become your husband, your life-companion. My prayer is fraught with no ordinary hope—it is not the bewildering dream of youth I am now indulging—it is the highest, strongest, noblest desire of my manhood! Have I sought in vain, or must I go forth once more a wanderer, and friendless, with another and dearer image than has heretofore been impressed on my life, the image of the matchless woman I have lost—or rather cannot win?”

And Grace had listened to his words with tears of gratitude; she had given him her hand, and nobly said,

“You have not sought in vain, dear Hugh. I thank God that you are here, and if you again become a wanderer, a pilgrim, ready to give up all but you in this life, will tread beside you! Henceforth, there are no mountains, nor deserts, nor oceans that can divide us—the lengthening shades of years falling around us are grateful and pleasant—the quiet paths of life we will pursue together. Thank God that you are here!”

Grace Lovering was not, it is true, a very youthful bride when she was made Hugh Willson’s wife, but had she been more beautiful than “Grace Greenwood’s” most exquisite dream of womanly loveliness, she had not proved more lovable to the wanderer, who, when the shadows of years were folding round him, found in her a friend, and a wife, and a worshiped ideal!

There were some who laughed, to be sure—there are always some that laugh and poh! at romances in real life—and some there were who said it was all fal de ral, the idea of a man and woman of such an age marrying for love. I only wish in its marvelous “progress” the world had not journeyed up to that icy peak whence all human love, and love matches among humans, is to be regarded as the folly of fools, and the madness of delusion!

Let the miserable woman now reading this page, who in her girlhood wedded wealth—or the wretched man who in his youth was led captive by the deceitful smiles of beauty—let these, if there be any such—and I know very well there are multitudes—look for once within the peaceful cottage where our hero and the dear heroine live, and if they do not speedily begin to think with amaze on their own paltry lives, and wonder when their romance is to begin, then—why then—I will not strive any more to teach the people!

Look you, reader, and more especially if you be young and beautiful, do not sell your birthright for a tasteless mess of pottage—ah, in that case you may as well begin to look for a tragedy, and a fearful kind of denouement, instead of a romance and a pleasant closing of the scene!

And furthermore the Wayside Voice saith not.





’Twas early morn, the low night-wind

  Had fled the sun’s fierce ray,

And sluggishly the leaden waves

  Rolled over Plymouth bay.


No mist was on the mountain-top,

  No dew-drop in the vale,

The thirsting summer-flowers had died,

  Unknelled by autumn’s wale.


The giant woods with yellow leaves

  The blighted turf had paved,

And o’er the brown and arid fields

  No golden harvest waved.


And calm and blue the cloudless sky

  Arched over earth and sea,

As in their humble house of prayer

  The Pilgrims bowed the knee.


The gray-haired ministers of God

  In supplication bent,

And artless words from childhood’s lips

  Sought the Omnipotent.


And many a brave and manly heart,

  And woman’s gentle eye,

Inured by discipline to wo,

  Were raised in suppliance high.


No wild bird’s joyous song was heard,

  No sound from shore or height,

With mute but mighty eloquence

  Had Nature joined that rite:


The drooping corn and withering grass

  Upon the hot earth lay:

The lofty forest-trees had stooped

  Their aged heads to pray.


The sultry noontide came and went

  With steady, fervid glare;

“Oh! God, our God, be merciful,”

  Was still the Pilgrims’ prayer.


They prayed, as erst Elijah prayed

  Before the sons of Baal,

When on the waiting sacrifice

  He called the fiery hail.


They prayed, as prayed the prophet seer

  On Carmel’s summit high,

When the little cloud rose from the sea

  And blackened all the sky.


And when around the spireless church

  Night’s length’ning shadows fell,

The customary song went up

  With clear and rapturous swell:


And as each heart was thrilling to

  That simple chant sublime,

The rude, brown rafters of the roof

  Woke to a joyous chime.


The rain! the rain! the blessed rain!

  It came like Hemnon’s dew,

And watered every field and wood,

  And kissed the surges blue.


Oh! when that Pilgrim band came forth

  And pressed the humid sod,

Shone not each face as Moses’ shone

  When “face to face” with God?

For the narrative of the historical fact related in this poem, the reader is referred to “Cheever’s Journal of the Pilgrims.”





Dear mother, in the silent hours of night,

When stars around me shed their chastened light,

I think of thee, and mourn thou art not here,

With smile to bless, and kindly word to cheer.


Ah, mother, life is but a thorny way;

When longest, ’tis at best a little day;

A gleam of sunshine, and anon a cloud,

The bridal robe, soon followed by the shroud.


Dear mother, sadness fills my sleepless eye,

And tears fast follow the unconscious sigh,

But still the heart, o’erwhelmed with heavy grief,

In thought of thee, dear mother, finds relief.


Dear mother, be thou still the watchful guide,

In honor’s path, of him who was thy pride;

So shall my feet, from snares of error free,

Tread only paths of truth, toward Heaven and thee.






Thus spoke the gray-haired dervise. Selim was left to my care; his dying parents bequeathed him an ample fortune, and their example of virtue and affection. Such was his inheritance.

He was a dreamy boy, in whose soul the opposite passions reveled. Gentle as the dove, yet, under aggression, fierce as the tiger. He loved as angels love; hated as fiends hate. Framed as delicately as the gazelle, yet every sinew was endowed with the tenacity of steel. At the age of manhood, I, his old preceptor, bowed to the superior endowments of my pupil, but knew not the fountain of his knowledge.

I have said he was a dreamy boy, yet he had made the broad pages of nature his book of knowledge, even while dreaming. The fertile earth presented her abundant lap overflowing with fruit to delight his palate; the flowers peered in his face with their variegated eyes, and sent forth their incense, even while he trod upon them. The cadence of the waterfall, the low twittering of the wearied bird as it flitted to its fledglings in the nest, and the murmuring of the passing breeze as it struggled through the grove, were to him a lullaby that charmed to sleep as the angels sleep. Nature was his mother, and she nursed him with play-things as her child.

I have seen him by the small streams composing songs to the music that the dimpled waters babbled, until his rosy cheeks dimpled and laughed in concert with the rippling brook, as if it were a thing of life, rejoicing in its existence, as his own pure heart rejoiced. They laughed and babbled together.

On the wood-clad mountains, at midnight, when the elements battled, I have seen him straining his feeble voice to sound the master-key that attunes to universal harmony; and having caught it, he would spring like the antelope to a lofty waterfall to discover the same note there; and then turn up his bright face to the stars that smiled upon him, and laugh, expecting to hear them respond to his note as they revolved on their eternal axes. His dark eyes smiled, and the conscious stars smiled back in the heaven of his dark eyes, which danced with delight in the diamond rays of the stars.

Flowers were books to him, and from every leaf he read wisdom fragrant with truth. He cultivated them as a father would his last child. The little birds were his companions, and every morning he joined their concert until the tiny minstrels seemed to imagine that he was the leader of their orchestra. All nature was to him one mighty minister, bestowing all, while he asked from nature no more than the blessed privilege of imitating her, by bestowing on his fellow man all in return. He had a dog, whose former owner had thrown into a stream to drown as worthless. Selim swam and saved the ill-looking cur, who followed him ever after until it appeared that instinct trod close upon the heel of reason. Selim in his turn, while bathing, became exhausted, and sinking beneath the stream, the dog plunged in and saved his dying master. Was this instinct or reason? It matters not, but Selim perceived that the Prophet had made his humanity toward a friendless dog the means of prolonging his own existence here. Despise not little things, cried Mehemet, for the smallest is of magnitude in the sight of the Prophet. A straw may break the back of the overburthened; one word may consign a man to poverty or prosperity, one deed to hell or heaven.

Selim’s wants were few, his fortune ample, which he bestowed upon the deserving with as liberal a hand as it had been bestowed upon himself. Still he labored in the pursuit he had adopted, not for self-aggrandizement, but to assist others; and he knew not why man should be a sluggard while all nature is incessantly at work. The bee and ant work in their season—and even the spider too.

His garden blossomed as Eden, and the flowers offered up their grateful incense even as they faded and died upon the universal altar of Nature’s God. His aviary from morn until night was vocal, and when the flaming chariot of the bright eye of day was whirled by fiery-footed steeds over the eastern hills, I have seen him with his flute, surrounded by nature’s tiny choristers pouring forth their matins until some note in the universal harmony touched the heart of his poor shaggy cur who sported around and tried to bark in unison. Then Selim laughed outright, and the birds stopped their hymns, and seemed to laugh with Selim, and the poor dog slunk away abashed, and slyly laughed at his miserable failure.

He married the dark-eyed Biribi. Selim was a poet; his soul reveled alike in tempest or sunshine, and his voice was as musical as the wings of the bee when he distills honey. He possessed the sweets of the bee, and his sting also. Biribi was abjectly poor, but in Selim’s eyes as full of truth and as beautiful as the houries. He exclaimed, I will raise poverty above oppression, and place virtue where all her handmaids may minister to her enjoyment. Alas! it was but a young poet’s dream—and such dreams are too frequently disturbed by palpable agony. Thus spoke Mehemet.

He had a friend who was his fellow-student while under my charge. Selim loved him as a brother, and when he married he requested Zadak to dwell with him. Neither house, garden, nor fields could be more beautiful, while his flocks and herds were nature’s ornaments. Such was Selim’s Eden.

Zadak borrowed a portion of his fortune, which he squandered; but the poor boy simply replied, “no matter, we require but little, and enough still remains to make us happy. Thank the Prophet for that which we still possess, and repine not for that which we have lost. We can labor with our fellow-men.”

Biribi became estranged from the pure being who fancied he had made in her bosom a nest for his dove-like heart to sing in. He awoke from a dream of repose to battle with the tempest. Zadak had betrayed him, and the gentle spirit of my boy was crushed between the sledge and the anvil; but the eternal fire that burnt within him, burst forth in one mighty blaze as the sledge fell; and even the sledge and the anvil rejoiced at the fire they had elicited from his heart’s blood.

What was to be done? The question was soon settled. The dove had winged its way to heaven, but left the tiger on earth to punish the injuries done to the dove. Selim slew Zadak, and then walked to the tribunal to receive his sentence, knowing that an act that was approved by the immutable principle of eternal justice in heaven, would be pronounced a damning crime by drones who are fed to dole out punishment for breaking the conventional rules by which fools and knaves are linked together on earth. He confessed all before man as he had already confessed before God. Ignominious death was his sentence in the eye of his fellow-creature; but God changed his sentence to that of eternal life; he died of a broken-heart, and escaped man’s justice, tempered with degradation, and flew to the limpid and overflowing fountain—the bosom of his Creator for justice—knowing it to be a principle of eternity, and not of time.

I buried him beneath a cluster of trees, where he had pursued his studies. He had no mourners except myself and his dog. The grave of the rich man is seldom bedewed by the tears of his heirs; while the poor hard-working man may have many sincere mourners, provided they depended upon his daily labor for their bread. It was spring-time; I planted flowers from his garden over his grave, and placed his aviary among the trees. The birds sang and the flowers smiled as if he were still with them. One morning I missed his dog, and searched for him until the impulse of nature guided my footsteps to the boy’s grave. The dog was there, pillowed on a cluster of fragrant flowers—dying; big tears stood in his leadened eyes, while the little birds from the blooming trees, warbled his requiem. They knew the dog, and he knew the birds even while dying. The flowers were bedewed with his tears, and I buried him beside his master, beneath the flowers.

Autumn came; the little birds had taken wing; the grove was no longer vocal; the flowers had faded, and their fragrance had passed away. Well, I exclaimed, the rosy-fingered spring will return, leading the birds back to warble as usual, and the flowers will revive with their former fragrance and beauty? “And is my boy dead?” my soul shrieked. “No!” replied a voice, kindly, and it seemed to me as if the lips were smiling as the judgment passed the lips, “the boy is not dead, but sleepeth, awaiting his spring-time, when the birds will sing, and the flowers bloom for him again, and bloom for eternity.” Thus spoke the dervise, and his old frame chuckled with delight, for he was confident of the fulfillment of the promise.

I reposed by his grave, said Mehemet, and had a vision, which was this. His grave opened, and he arose more beautiful than when in the bloom of manhood. There was a bright star just over his heart, and methought it was composed of the tears his dying dog had shed upon his grave, and I smiled in my sleep at the fantastic thought. The flowers sent forth their incense, and myriads of birds, as he ascended from his tomb, fluttered about him, leading the way, warbling their anthems; the gay flowers smiled at heaven, as if they were the eyes of the teeming earth, laughing their gratitude. The features of Selim became more benign as he ascended; the songs of the birds more seraphic, and the fragrance of the flowers more refreshing.

Suddenly a cloud of inky darkness covered the face of the earth. Two ghastly figures emerged from it, with uplifted eyes, that were rayless, and supplicating hands that trembled with terror. Oh! what must that man be, exclaimed Mehemet, who trembles before the All-merciful, even while supplicating mercy! Selim cast a look of compassion upon the guilty pair, and tried to tear the star from his bosom to throw to them, but the more he strove, the brighter the star became—it illuminated his ascending spirit—and finding his efforts fruitless, he raised his radiant face toward the boundless blue canopy, cheered onward by the hymns of his little choristers through regions of light, and the teeming earth smiled as she poured forth her grateful incense, as if jealous that the disembodied spirit might forget the fragrance of this world while reveling in the atmosphere of heaven.

I heard a shriek of despair, and turning to the sea of darkness which was fearfully troubled, I beheld the guilty pair, desperately struggling in their agony against the angry billows. They struggled in vain. With a fiendlike shriek they disappeared, and sunk through a rayless abyss of doom, without even the tear of a dog to bewail their destiny. Selim soared upward, and still more effulgent became the heavens as he ascended. There was one mighty strain of seraphic music that filled the universe; the blue arch opened, from which issued a stream of light strong enough to restore vision to the rayless eyes of the ancient dead; then I awoke as I beheld Selim enter the eternal portals.

This, continued the old man, may be but a dream at present, but the time will come when it must be verified. He then slowly tottered to his cell to dream out the remnant of his existence.






The Blue-Bird is a great favorite with the farmer. Its principal food being beetles, spiders, grasshoppers, caterpillars, and other insects, he affords great assistance to the fruit-trees, and vegetables of all kinds. He is one of the earliest spring visiters, appearing in Pennsylvania in the latter end of February, and trilling forth his feeble though pleasing song more than a week before the other early visiters. The species ranges over a large extent of latitude, being found in the forty-eighth parallel, and southward to the tropics. They probably also migrate to the Bermudas and West Indies, and certainly pass the winter in our Southern States and Mexico. The common belief that this bird remains dormant during the winter in Pennsylvania, appears to be ill-founded; since the few who do not migrate, no doubt seek out some warmer shelter near man than is afforded by the bleakness of nature.

The early song of the Blue-Bird announces to the farmer the approach of spring. So gladdening is this to the rustic villager, that he generally takes every method to accommodate his familiar little companion, building boxes for him, exposing materials, and imitating his plaintive whistle as he hops along the furrow of the plough. The affection of the male bird for his mate is remarkable. “When he first begins his amours,” says an accurate observer, “it is pleasing to behold his courtship; his solicitude to please and to secure the favor of his beloved female. He uses the tenderest expressions, sits close by her, caresses, and sings to her his most endearing warblings. When seated together, if he espies an insect delicious to her taste he takes it up, flies with it to her, spreads his wings over her and puts it in her mouth.” On such occasions, should a rival stray within the hallowed limits he is treated without mercy, and the victor returns to warble out his strain of exultation.

The nest of the Blue-Bird is generally made in the hollow of an old tree, or in the free quarters provided by man. The female lays five or six eggs, of a pale blue color, and raises two broods in a season. Their affection for their young is fully equal to that of the male for his mate, and when the hen is sitting the second time, the former brood is cherished and reared by the other parent. In the fall, when insect food becomes scarce, they eat berries, seeds, persimmons and other fruit. Their song is a soft and agreeable warble, uttered with open quivering wings. “In his motions and general character,” says Wilson, “he has great resemblance to the Robin Redbreast of Britain; and had he the brown olive of that bird, instead of his own blue, could scarcely be distinguished from him. Like him he is known to almost every child; and shows as much confidence in man, by associating with him in summer, as the other by his familiarity in winter. He is also of a mild and peaceful disposition, seldom fighting or quarreling with other birds. His society is courted by the inhabitants of the country, and few farmers neglect to provide for him in some suitable place a snug little summer-house, ready fitted and rent free. For this he more than sufficiently repays them by the cheerfulness of his song, and the multitude of injurious insects which he daily destroys. Toward fall, that is in the month of October, his song changes to a single plaintive note, as he passes over the yellow many-colored woods; and its melancholy air recalls to our minds the approaching decay of the face of nature. Even after the trees are stripped of their leaves, he still lingers over his native fields, as if loath to leave them.”

The Blue-Bird is nearly seven inches in length, with the wings remarkably full and broad. The upper part of the body, neck and head are sky-blue, inclining to purple. The under parts are chestnut, the bill and legs black, with portions of the same color about the wings, tail and sides. In the female the colors are less bright. The young are hardy, strong, and highly teachable. The Blue-Bird is not often subjected to the confinement of the cage.


This bird is also known as the Towee-finch, the Tshe-wink and Pee-wink, names derived from its favorite notes. It is found in great numbers in woods and overgrown meadows, and sometimes along the banks of streams, and is both familiar and playful. A pair will sometimes roam for a great distance along a water-course, scratching for insects, worms or seeds, and encouraging each other by their simple cry of tow-wee, tow-wee. They sometimes forage along gardens or pea-patches. On such occasions, they behold the approach of man with but little concern, and fly off only when in danger of being taken. The species is found in Canada, and probably farther north among the Rocky Mountains, and southward throughout the United States. They are, however, more abundant east of the Alleghanies than to the west. Sometimes, but not often, they pass the winter in Pennsylvania, but are constantly in the milder States during that season.

Their manner of building is rather peculiar; the nest being fixed on the ground, below the surface, and covered with leaves, or the shelter of an adjoining bush. It is rarely raised above the ground. The materials are fine bark, leaves, moss, dried grass and down. Sometimes part of the adjoining herbage is employed. The eggs are four or five in number, white, with a flesh color tint, and spotted with brown. In New England they raise but one brood, but in warm States two, the first in June, and the second during the following month. During this period they artfully draw the intruder from their charge, by pretending lameness, and feebly retreating as he pursues.

The Ground-Robin is about eight inches long, and eleven across the wings. The throat, neck, and whole upper part of the body is black, with feathers of the same color, interspersed with white, in the wings and tail. The belly is white, with bay thighs. In the female and young the black of the male is changed for olive brown, and there is less pure white in the tail and wings.


If honest love e’er merited reward,

  If worship win the meed of yore it won,

  I should be blest, since purer than the sun

The love my sighs and poesy record;

Yet ’tis not so: unwillingly are heard

  My vows, and all regardlessly are flung

  Her eyes o’er burning lines wherein is sung

Her matchless beauty, and my grief is bared.

But yet I hope that some day she may deign

  To hearken to the tribute I have brought

    And smile at least return for all my tears.

Still it may be I’ll languish here in vain

  Until that dread catastrophe is wrought,

    When time shall harvest all its sheaf of years.







It is rather a dangerous experiment, this sporting with the feelings of a sweetheart, as many a loving swain has found; as Andy Bell and Harry Lee found, when they indulged in a walk home from church with Lilly James and Aggy Moore, to the neglect of two sweet sisters, Jane and Florence May.

Jane and Florence were the real sweethearts. Of the moonlight rambles they had enjoyed together; of the loving words whispered in the maidens’ ears; of the kisses beneath the shadows of old trees, stolen from half shrinking lips, we will say nothing. But such things had been. And even more. Mutual pledges of love had passed. Harry had vowed to Jane that, as she was the sweetest maiden in all the village, so she was to him the dearest; and Jane had drooped her eyes, and leaned closer to him, thus silently responding to the declaration of love; and when he took her hand, she let it linger in his warm clasp as if he had a right to its possession. And the same thing, slightly varied according to temperament, had happened with Andy and Florence. For months, the two young men were untiring in their attention to the sisters. Invariably, when the little congregation that worshiped in the village church on Sundays was dismissed, Andy and Harry were at the door, waiting for the expectant maidens, whom they as invariably attended home, lingering always by the way, to make the distance longer. And when the evening shadows fell in the winter, or the sun sunk low toward the western hills in the spring and summer time, at the waning of the Sabbath, the young men were sure to make their appearance at the quiet cottage home of the happy sisters.

Thus it had been for months, and all the village knew that they were sweethearts; and it was even said—how the intelligence was gained we know not—that, at the next Christmas, there would be a double wedding in Heathdale. Thus it was, when, one bright Sunday morning, as Andy Bell and Harry Lee were on their way to church, the former, who was in a gayer humor than usual, said, laughing as he spoke⁠—

“Suppose we plague the girls a little after meeting?”

“How?” asked Harry.

“If you’ll walk home with Aggy Moore, I’ll play the gallant to Lilly James.”

“Agreed,” was the thoughtless reply.

“And yet,” said Andy, “I wouldn’t give the little finger of Florence for Lilly’s whole body.”

“Nor would I give Jane’s little finger for a dozen Aggy Moores.”

Even at this early stage of the affair, both parties half repented; but neither felt like proposing to give up the little frolick agreed upon.

During the service the young lovers found their eyes meeting those of their sweethearts with accustomed frequency. But neither Andy nor Harry felt as comfortable as usual. Besides being about to deprive themselves of a long enjoyed pleasure, both felt misgivings as to the effect of their temporary desertion and disappointment of the expectant maidens.

At last the benediction was said, and the congregation began moving toward the door. Andy and Harry were out before the girls.

“Shall we do it?” asked the former.

“Oh, certainly,” replied Harry. And yet this was not said with the best grace in the world.

“There’s Aggy,” whispered Andy.

“I see,” returned Harry, moving forward, as Aggy stepped from the church-door. Just behind her was Jane, with her bright, dancing eyes, and lips just parting in a smile, as she caught sight of her lover. She moved forward more quickly, but stopped suddenly. Harry had spoken to Aggy, and was now walking away by her side. Just then Lilly James came forth, and Andy, crossing before Florence, who appeared at the same time, bowed to the maiden, and seeming not to see Florence, moved away from the church-door, smiling and chatting with a free and careless air. Neither of the young men looked behind to see the effect of all this upon the two young girls. But, to some extent, they imagined their feelings, and the picture fancy presented was not the most agreeable to contemplate.

It required an effort on the part of both Andy and Harry to continue to play the agreeable to the two young ladies they had substituted thus temporarily, and in sport, for their sweethearts, long enough to see them fairly home. They did not meet again until toward evening, and then each was on his way to seek the cottage-home of the one loved most dearly of any thing in the wide world.

“I wonder what they will say?” was uttered by Andy, in a doubting tone, as they moved along.

“Goodness knows! I’m afraid Jane took it hard,” remarked Harry. “I saw her countenance change as I turned to walk with Aggy.”

“It was a foolish prank, to make the best of it. But we must laugh it off with them.”

“I rather think we shall be paid back in our own coin,” said Harry. “Jane, I know, has a little spice about her.”

And Harry was not far wrong. When the two young men arrived at the cottage, and entered in their usual familiar way, the room where the maidens sat, they were received in a manner not in the least agreeable to their feelings. Both Jane and Florence had been deeply hurt by the conduct of their lovers; and both had indulged freely during the afternoon in the luxury of tears. The meaning of what had happened, they couldn’t tell. Had all this appearance of affection been a mere counterfeit? Were they the victims of a heartless coquetry? Or had Lilly and Aggy, through some strange influence, won the hearts of their lovers?

Great was the relief experienced by the troubled sisters when, on the waning of the Sabbath, they saw their truant swains approaching as usual. But, with this sense of relief, came a maidenly indignation, and a determination to resent the wanton slight that had been put upon them. Clouds were on the faces once so smiling and happy, when the young men entered, and their presence, so far from dispersing these clouds, only caused them to grow darker. It was in vain that every effort was made to remove them; not a sun-ray came to dispel their gloomy shadows. Explanations were made. The apparent slight was acknowledged as only a merry jest. However this relieved the oppressed hearts of the maidens, it did not lighten up their sober faces. Forgiveness and smiles were not to come so easily.

Andy affected to treat the whole matter lightly, and rather jested with Florence; but Harry’s sweetheart seemed so deeply grieved and wounded, that he had little to say after the first few efforts at reconciliation. Finally, the young men went away, apparently unforgiven; and all parties, for the next week, were unhappy enough. Sunday came again; and now the doubt in the minds of the young men was, whether, if they offered to go home as usual with Jane and Florence, they would be permitted by the offended maidens to do so. This doubt was, in a measure, dispelled during the morning service, for more than a dozen times did Andy catch a stealthy glance from Florence, in which was a beam of forgiveness; and the same thing happened to Harry as he turned his eyes frequently upon Jane. At last the service ended; and, as the young girls passed from the door, their lovers were beside them as usual. There was no repulse. The maidens were too glad to have them there once more. But, the feelings of each were sobered. Evening came, and they met as before. Their intercourse was tender but not joyous as it had been. And thus it was for weeks ere their hearts lost a sense of oppression. The reader may be sure that there were no more games at cross purposes after this. The lovers were cured of all inclination to indulge further in that species of pastime.






Ay, let them perish—why recall

  Dreams of a by-gone day?

Why lift Oblivion’s funeral pall

  Only to find decay?

The heart of youth lies buried there,

  With all its hopes and fears,

Its burning joys, its wild despair,

  Its agonies and tears.


A light has vanished from the earth,

  A glory left the sky,

Since first within my soul had birth

  Those visions pure and high;

Or is it that mine eye, grown dim,

  Hath lost the power to trace

The glory of the Seraphim

  Within life’s holy place?


Methinks I stand midway between

  The future and the past,

The onward path is dimly seen,

  Behind me clouds are cast;

Why should I seek to pierce that gloom

  And call the buried host

Of haunting memories from the tomb⁠—

  Each one a tortured ghost?


I could not look upon the page,

  With eloquence o’erfraught,

Where, ere my head had grown so sage,

  My heart its wild will wrought;

I could not—would not—ponder now

  O’er my youth’s wayward madness,

Which left no stain on soul or brow,

  Yet shrouded life in sadness.


Ay, let them perish!—from the dream

  Of Passion’s wasted hour

There comes no retrospective gleam,

  No spectre of the flower:

The treasured wealth of Eastern kings

  Enriched their burial fire,

And thus my heart’s most precious things

  Shall build its funeral pyre.






A strange old man was my Uncle Tom. He was my father’s only and elder brother, and more than all, he was a bachelor; not one of those sour specimens of humanity who are continually railing at everybody and every thing—more especially “the sex”—but a hearty, hale, good-natured gentleman of the old school, straight as a poplar, and his heart had as many green leaves withal. He was still a boy in feeling, though winter had begun to spread its snows over his head. He was far from hating women, though when he talked of them, or thought of them, a look of sadness would sometimes overspread his countenance; and when he saw some fairy phantom that had not yet escaped her “teens,” in the full flush of maiden grace and beauty, old recollections seemed to come over him with a deep and maddening influence.

No one ever told me the cause of this temporary dejection, and Uncle Tom seemed unwilling to be questioned concerning it. There needed no questioning. From our cottage, a smooth-worn path led across the fields to the village church-yard, which lay at about a quarter of a mile distant. Passing through a gap in the wall, it wound among the grass-grown hillocks, and stopped abruptly before a small, gray stone, which stood in the corner nearest the church, and on which this simple epitaph was engraved: Mary, æt. 18. This told his whole story; for the small, gray stone was overgrown with lichens and mosses, and I remember the solitary pathway when but a child.

Uncle Tom was not rich, but he had enough to satisfy all his wants. He had always lived with us since my remembrance, and we all had a mysterious love and veneration for him, which we could but half explain. His little room on the south-west corner of the house we never entered without a special invitation; not because we stood in any fear of him, but because we respected his quiet, half-eccentric manner, and were not willing to disturb his solitary studies and meditations. We were often invited there of an evening, for Uncle Tom liked to have young, happy people around him. He used to say it made him young again, and caused his silver hairs to hide themselves; and he thought a man should always have the heart of a child, no matter how much experience and life-labor had whitened his head.

During our visits to his study, we were at liberty to handle every thing which came within our reach, and the room was generally in a sweet confusion when we left it. Yet this did not trouble him, it rather pleased him the more. In truth he was so good-natured that nothing could vex him; and I remember one evening when he pulled sister Ruth’s doll out of his great horn inkstand, where it stood, heels upward, like a pearl-diver, his only exclamation was, “Just as I used to be—children all over!”

Directly opposite the great arm-chair, where he usually sat during the day, hung a picture; yet it was not for us to see. A plain blue curtain was always drawn over it, which hung as silently, and always in the same folds, as if it had not been withdrawn for many years. I knew it was the portrait of a young girl, and very beautiful; for one evening, when, according to invitation, we were in the study playing the mischief with every thing that came under our hands, a slight breeze from the west window fluttered and raised the curtain, and revealed the picture to me by the dim light of the study-lamp. I, of course, did not know who it was intended to represent, but it was always connected in my mind with the solitary path to the church-yard; and I always thought of her as the Mary of the little gray stone; yet I never spoke of it to any one, not even sister Ruth. It seemed something sacred, something which I ought not to know, and that the knowledge thus accidentally acquired ought not to be divulged by me.

But the pleasantest thing of all was, when Uncle Tom came down into the kitchen of a winter’s evening, and told one of the beautiful stories which he could relate so well. Ah! no one could tell stories like Uncle Tom. He would enter into the subject so earnestly, that we took every thing for truth, and laughed or cried, as the nature of the case demanded; and many a time in the midst of a sad passage, my father has let the fire go out of his pipe before it was half smoked, and I have seen the tears stream down sister Ruth’s cheek, and heard her sob as if some great misfortune were hanging over some one of us; and I have known Uncle Tom’s voice to grow tremulous; and his lip quiver, as if something in the narrative lay near his heart, but by a powerful effort he would always master his feelings and go calmly on with his story.

I shall try to report some of these stories at second hand, narrating carefully as my memory serves, always in Uncle Tom’s words; but they will be nothing so good as when he, with his low musical voice and earnest manner, related them to our little family, who, in likening silence formed a half circle around the huge walnut logs that blazed and simmered on the kitchen hearth.

It was the last night of December, and the north wind howled around the chimney, and the icicles clattered on the eaves and dropped against the casement with a tip-tap, like wayfarers asking admittance. A great fire of logs was blazing on the hearth, and the half circle was almost formed. On one side of the fire-place sat father, double-shotting his black tobacco-pipe. Next him was mother, just turning the heel of a stocking. Sister Ruth occupied the next chair, and she was very busy working a wash-woman’s register on the top of a bachelor’s pincushion; beside her sat the bachelor for whom this piece of domestic goods was working. He was a cousin, and bore the family name—Charley, we called him. He and Ruth seemed to enjoy each other’s society very much, and passed the greater part of their leisure time together. My place was next to Cousin Charley, and on my left hand the vacant arm-chair was waiting for Uncle Tom—to complete the family circle.

At length the door opened, and the pleasant old man appeared. He entered rubbing his hands and smiling most benignantly. Every chair moved about an inch, as if to make room for him, though each one knew there was room enough already. Father lighted his pipe, and mother turned the heel; sister Ruth left off her embroidery in the middle of “shirts,” and Cousin Charley gave his chair a hitch nearer to her, while I sat quite still. Even the blazing logs on the fire gave an extra hiss and flare, as if they, too, were making preparations to listen attentively. Uncle Tom, with a few pleasant words, and a great many pleasant smiles, took his accustomed seat and commenced the evening entertainment in these words:

About five miles from Boston, on one of the great thoroughfares leading to the city, there used to stand an old-fashioned country-seat. It was placed somewhat back from the road, and screened from the dust by a thick-set hawthorn-hedge, which grew as straight and regular as brick-work. The walks within were laid out with the same regularity and neatness, and lead with many a labyrinthine turn through the whole premises. Now it took you by an oval pond, where the bright scales of gold fish glanced in the sun; now among flower-beds formed into Catharine-wheels and gothic crosses; then away among groves and trellises almost impervious to the sun. There were a great many beautiful things that I shall not attempt to tell you of. Every thing was beautiful, and proclaimed a wealthy proprietor, even to the silver plate on the front door, bearing in bold writing-hand, the name, “John Maynard.” He was rich—John Maynard was a retired merchant. In the full flush of commercial prosperity, his beloved wife had fallen into the quiet sleep of death. After that, business grew irksome to him; he could not bear the busy hum of the city; the home where he had been happy, was so no more to him; and taking with him his oldest and most trusty clerk, he, with his only child, Alice, removed to this quiet spot. The care of his property was left almost entirely to his tried and honest clerk, David Deans; his own time was occupied either in his study or in the society of his daughter, who, being an only child, was, of course, indulged in all her little whims and fancies, until she had assumed the reins of government, and was nearly spoiled.

One evening Mr. Maynard, or Old John, as he was familiarly called, sat on the western piazza as the sun was setting. He looked the hale and hearty old gentleman, one before whom care and trouble would vanish like the thin spiral clouds of cigar smoke, which ever and anon he puffed from between his lips. Yet withal he had a look of determination, something which said he would have things his own way when he desired it; and yet he had a way of gaining his ends so pleasantly and adroitly, that no one knew his intentions until they were accomplished.

Puff, puff, there he sat smoking away and thinking of something very pleasant, no doubt, for a smile would occasionally play round the corners of his mouth, and he would rub his hands together with infinite satisfaction.

Soon a light step was heard in the hall, and his daughter, Alice, appeared.

Everybody said Alice was a beauty; and so far everybody told the truth. Her dark hair and dark eyes, and delicate complexion would win many a heart that had sworn eternal hostility to her sex. And then she was as full of life as of beauty, and had such winning ways, that nothing could resist her. She inherited from her father a slight vein of willfulness, and it was really a pleasure to see them contending together, Old John in his humorous, quiet way, bringing up irresistible arguments, and she, dashing them all to pieces by the most illogical processes imaginable; and he would generally laugh and let her have her own way.

“Papa,” said she, “why did you send David Deans away? I’m sure it was very cruel of you. He has lived with us so long, and is so quiet and industrious! I’m sure it will break his heart. And then, besides, his poor sister will have to go into service again. It is too bad, I declare⁠—”

“Now don’t, Ally,” said Old John, passing his arm quietly around his daughter’s waist, and talking in the best humor imaginable, “don’t trouble yourself about David. What do you know about business? You take care of the women-servants, and see that we have tea on the table by seven o’clock exactly, for I expect the new clerk every minute. I’ll take care of David⁠—”

“I know I shan’t like the new clerk,” said she, pouting.

“Well, who wants you to like him, little minx?” said Old John, at the same time drawing her closer to him, and giving her a hearty kiss.

“But I shall hate him,” continued she, determined to be obstinate.

“Well, hate him if you will,” replied her father, not in the least angry; “but I can tell you he is a very lively fellow, and not accustomed to be hated by the ladies. However, you had better hate him. You must reserve all your love for Harry Wilson, you know.”

“Oh, that dreadful Harry Wilson,” exclaimed Alice, struggling to throw off her father’s arm, by which he still held her in close confinement. “Pray don’t talk of him again.”

“And why not?” said Old John; “he is to be your husband, you know.” And a smile, half merry, half serious, played over his features as he said this. “His father and I were old schoolmates, and he would die of grief if he thought we were not to be brothers after all.”

“His son and I were never old schoolmates, at all events,” exclaimed Alice, still struggling, but in vain. Old John held her fast, and his merry face settled into a serious, earnest expression as he added,

“Besides, he once saved my life.”

Alice answered nothing. There was something in the manner in which he said these words, as well as in the meaning of the words themselves, which completely subdued her. The tears beamed in her beautiful dark eyes; she threw her arms round his neck and rested her head on his shoulder; her long, black locks streamed over his bosom—yet she said nothing.

Old John drew her closer to him and kissed her tenderly.

“There, Ally, dear,” he said, “we wont talk any more about it now. I know you will do all you can to make your old father happy.”

Still she said nothing, but clung very close to him.

She was a good girl, was Alice, only a little willful.

A servant entered, announcing Mr. Davis. This was the new clerk.

“Conduct him this way,” said Mr. Maynard. “Come, Ally, don’t let him surprise us in a family quarrel. We must make his first impressions good ones.”

Things were put to rights in less time than it takes to tell of it, and the new clerk approached them.

“Glad to see you, Walter,” exclaimed Old John, grasping the new comer’s hand, and looking a cordial welcome. “Ally, this is Walter Davis, the new clerk.”

Notwithstanding her determination to hate him, she smiled very pleasantly as he took her hand, and her welcome word was said with a very good grace.

The new clerk was apparently about twenty-two years of age, rather tall, but well formed; he was dressed in a very plain suit—becoming his situation; and yet there was something noble about him for all that. You could see it in the firmly compressed lips, the deep, thoughtful eye, and the easy, manly bearing. He certainly was not the person one would choose to hate.

Alice was much surprised at his general personal appearance and demeanor. Her ideas of a clerk were all formed from the quiet, unpretending David Deans, who had almost grown old in their service. She forgot that the new comer was at present a visiter, not yet having entered upon his clerkship. At the tea-table, too, she observed how perfectly easy and composed he seemed. He could answer questions without blushing, and ask others without stammering. There was a straightforwardness about him, which seemed to win upon her father wonderfully, and he never seemed in a more pleasant mood than then. There was something in his manner so dignified and gentlemanly that she, too, could not help reacting him, although in her good-night to her father, she added, “I’m sure I shall hate him for taking poor David’s place.”

“Wait a bit, Brother Tom,” interrupted father—“pipe’s out.”

“Well,” said Uncle Tom, “while Brother Bill is lighting his pipe, we will glide over two months and make ready for a new chapter.”



Two months had passed away, and affairs went on swimmingly at the country-seat. Old John seemed to find his new clerk a remarkably pleasant companion, and passed much of his time in the little counting-room. He was fast growing into the good graces of Miss Alice too; for true manliness will always find its way into every heart. She began to like him very much, and seemed pleased to have him near her; and indeed would sometimes meet his advances more than half way. Perhaps, like a dutiful daughter, she followed her father’s example, and liked the clerk because he did, or perhaps she thought he must be very lonely, and took compassion on him: How this may be I cannot tell; but I do know that she liked him, and liked him very well too, as might be seen by any one who observed her. She often walked in the direction of the counting-room, which stood at some little distance from the house, and frequently sat with her embroidery in the trellised arbor that overlooked it. The flowers, too, which always ornamented her parlor-mantle, were generally gathered from the beds in this part of the garden, although they were not half so fragrant or pretty as those which grew nearer the house. Indeed, she had found it necessary once or twice to open the counting-room, and actually go in when no one but the young clerk was there; and at such times he received her with such a frank, cordial greeting, and talked so pleasantly to her, that she would gladly have changed her arbor boudoir for this little room, crowded with business and ponderous ledgers as it was. And once, when the clerk left her for a moment, she actually climbed upon the long-legged desk-stool, to see if it were really as uncomfortable as it looked to be; at least so she said, when he, returning suddenly, surprised her on that high perch. But he helped her down so gently, and gallantly, that she would have been willing to try the experiment often, even if it were as uncomfortable as it looked.

She was always delighted whenever Walter requested the pleasure of her company through the grounds. She would take his arm without any unnecessary coquetry, and full of life and love they would thread every walk of the labyrinth, not excepting the Catharine-wheels and the gothic arches. In the grove they would listen to the songs of the birds, and together wonder what they were saying to each other, and invent many strange translations, interesting to none but themselves. They would stand long on the edge of the pond, and Alice leaned heavily on the clerk’s arm, you may be sure, as they watched the gold-fish darting across the little basin so rapidly that the whole surface of the water seemed marked with red lines. He gathered flowers for her, too, as they walked leisurely along, and each bouquet thus formed was, to her, a whole book of love, each flower telling its own particular tale. As the sun touched the horizon they would climb up to the arbor, while the birds sung their “good-night,” and watch the bright colors grow and fade upon the western sky, and build landscapes and cathedrals and cottages of the ever-changing clouds.

Yet in his conversations with her, Walter was never sickly sentimental or flattering. He always spoke just what he felt; and sometimes a plump, downright honest thought would find itself clothed in words, which many would call coarse and ill-bred; but from him they came so frankly that she never thought of such a thing, but liked him the more for them. He never flattered her, never told her how beautiful she was, but his whole manner was a tacit acknowledgment of her beauty, truer and plainer than words could express it. And Alice was as simple, and talked as plainly to him as if he had been a brother.

O, those evening walks were beautiful to both, but they were laying a foundation for something deeper and more lasting than common friendship, notwithstanding Harry Wilson and the two good fathers. Their natures were gradually blending into each other like two neighboring colors of the rainbow, and the line between them would soon become extinct, and a separation must be the destruction of both. It was very strange that Old John, with his brotherly intentions toward Harry Wilson’s father, didn’t observe this, for he often surprised them earnestly conversing in the sunset arbor, long after the dews had begun to fall and the birds had ceased their evening song.

He must indeed have been very dull and stupid, not to observe that something was going on between the two young people, that would play the deuce with his darling project. But no, he didn’t seem to; for he was never in better spirits than then, never half so talkative or playful. He evidently did not think his cherished scheme was about to miscarry.

One evening he and the clerk sat on the piazza together. The parlor windows were open, and Alice sat at the piano and played to them. Old John began to talk about the business transactions of the day, and seemed particularly delighted at certain good news which he had heard, and which he had just finished relating to the clerk.

“Remarkable, isn’t it?” he exclaimed.

But he might as well have talked to the plaster statue of Neptune which stood on the green before him, as to the young clerk. He was either listening attentively to the music, or else his thoughts were far away, for he took no notice of what Old John said to him, but sat silent, his head leaning upon his hand and his eyes fixed upon vacancy.

“Hey! what’s all this?” exclaimed Old John, starting up and shaking the clerk’s arm. “What! dreaming by moonlight! A bad sign—very bad sign—too romantic by half! Here, Ally—Ally! come here directly,” he continued, shouting to his daughter.

Walter started up and would have prevented him, but he continued to call, and soon the piano ceased to sound, and Alice made her appearance.

“What do you want, papa?” she asked.

“Here is this fellow,” he answered, “falling asleep in the midst of our conversation; dreaming by moonlight! I want you to keep him awake.”

“I beg pardon, sir,” said the clerk, attempting an excuse, “but I was thinking⁠—”

“O, but that wont do,” said Old John, “I was talking. However, I will tell you how we will make it up. You shall sing that duet with Alice; the one you sung last night, and mind you don’t go to sleep before it is finished, or—” and he finished the sentence with a shake of the finger.

“I will undertake it willingly,” said the clerk.

Walter moved his chair closer by the side of Alice, and took his seat. But there was still a difficulty; neither of them could determine on the right pitch. Alice ran and struck a note on the piano, and returned sounding it all the way. She sat down, and her hand involuntarily fell upon Walter’s; he pressed it in his own, and the duet commenced.

Both the words and the music were very simple; they were the expression of love, pure and holy; and never did they sing better. Walter’s whole soul was thrown into the words, and his heart beat to the sounds his lips uttered. A slight pressure of her hand expressed to Alice how truly, how deeply he felt the beauty of love, and her voice trembled as she sung, adding still more to the music.

There was silence for a short time after the sound of their voices had ceased. It seemed Old John’s turn to dream now. The beautiful music had called up old, happy scenes to his mind; perhaps the thoughts of his youth and first-love were leading him far away; for he sat silently, with his hand drawn across his eyes, as if to shade them from the moonlight.

Alice approached him, and drew her arm around his neck. He started as if from a trance, and said—“That was well, very well. I like that music. There, now, Ally, you and Walter take a walk through the grounds. I’ll light a cigar, and sit here by myself, and—And dream! hey, Walter!”

Alice left him with a kiss, and taking Walter’s arm they disappeared round an angle of the building, and walked onward toward their favorite arbor. Every thing was silent around them; the glowing leaves hanging motionless upon the trees, and the many-colored flowers, all seemed listening, as if to some revelation of the night. The fish-pond was one entire sheet of silver; not a ripple disturbed its peaceful surface; and the soft moonlight streamed through the chinks of the vines and gothic trees, and checkered the pathway and the floor of the arbor, as the sunbeams shining through stained cathedral windows rest on the pavement. The arbor was their chancel, and there the two lovers stood side by side as if before an altar; and there Walter told Alice how deeply, how truly he loved her; how often he had sat alone since they had known each other, and yet not been lonely, for her image had always been present to comfort and to counsel him; how he had longed for the time to come when he could make this confession to her, when he could press her to his bosom as the dearly beloved one.

Alice did not speak. She was always silent when she felt most deeply; but her silence was singularly eloquent. She did not attempt to withdraw the little hand which he held so tightly. She did not try to remove the arm that encircled her waist. Her head lay upon his bosom, and she wept for very joy.

Now what had become of Old John’s brotherly scheme? The rainbow hues were now completely blended.

Soon after the two lovers had turned toward the house, Old John came stealing cautiously through a neighboring path, where he had been an accidental, though perhaps not an unwilling listener.

“Good!” he exclaimed in a half whisper, rubbing his hands and smiling most merrily. “I shall hate him, I am sure,” he added, mimicking Alice. “Good!” And again he rubbed his hands and smiled with infinite satisfaction.



The summer had passed away, and autumn was spreading its rich mantle of yellow leaves over the trees and shrubs of the old country-seat. The birds were collecting together in troops, for their journey to warmer lands, and their songs above the arbor were sadder than when we last listened to them. The golden fruit hung temptingly upon the trees, and on the smooth surface of the fish-pond floated many a withered leaf. The year was growing old, and its rich covering of foliage was becoming gray and falling off, yet in the hearts of Walter and Alice love was as green and as warm as on the bright summer evening when they made their mutual confessions.

They had not yet made Old John their confidant; they were waiting for a convenient season. And he, though he must have known something of their intercourse, never asked any questions, or seemed at all curious about the matter, but conducted himself in his usual quiet way. Indeed, he did occasionally speak of their close communion, but always in a merry, jesting way, and no one could suspect him of knowing how affairs really stood with them. At least his knowledge did not make him unhappy, for the merry twinkle was still in his eye, and the smiles still played round his mouth. In the little walks and excursions which they took together, Alice was always assigned to the clerk. Old John said he preferred to walk alone; then he could swing his cane in any direction without being scolded, and could climb over a fence, instead of going half a mile to find a place to crawl through, or a stile, for the convenience of a lady companion. Walter, as may be supposed, was very willing to free him from this incumbrance, and did not mind the half mile walks in search of a stile, as long as Alice was hanging on his arm. They had a great many things to talk about, which was of no consequence to any but themselves, and were glad of the opportunity to remove out of earshot, which this stile hunting afforded.

One morning the clerk appeared equipped for traveling. Business of some kind or other called him, for a short time, to another part of the country.

He and Alice were alone in the breakfast-room. He explained to her the necessity of his departure, and consoled her with the assurance that his absence would not continue more than a week at the most. He had just time to place a plain ring on her finger, and steal one tender, silent kiss from her rosy lips, when Old John entered, announcing the coach at the door.

In a few minutes he was seated in the vehicle. Good-byes were repealed, and soon he was rolling away on the dusty road toward the city.

Alice stood at the window and watched until the top of the coach had disappeared behind an angle of the road, and the last sound of the rumbling wheels had died away. Then the thought and feelings that had followed him as far as the senses could guide them, seemed to fall back upon herself, and she felt oppressed by the silence and utter solitude that reigned around.

That was a weary day to Alice. This was her first love, and their first separation. Her father was busy with his affairs and could not attend to her; so she was thrown entirely upon her own resources, and heavily the hours dragged along in mournful procession.

Often days had passed and she had not seen Walter but for a few moments, yet then she knew he was near. And now she sat down and tried to fancy him sitting quietly at his desk; but it wouldn’t do—she knew better. She walked down by the counting-room and gathered the flowers as she had often done before, but they had lost their fragrance, and their colors seemed faded. The gold-fish stood still in the pond, and she mistook them at times for the leaves that lay in the water; they too had faded. She sat in the pleasant arbor, and looked westward over the beautiful landscape, but a veil seemed drawn before it, and the rich and variegated hues which, dolphin-like, the forest had assumed while dying, to her eyes, seemed blended into a dead, cold brown. So true it is that the sense takes its tone from the soul.

So the day passed and the belated evening came slowly on.

“Do, pray, Ally, put off that sad face,” said Old John to her, as they sat at the tea-table. “Why you look ten times more woful than the Italian beggars fresh from an eruption of Vesuvius. Do try to smile a little.”

She did try to look cheerful, but at first it tasked all her powers, yet her father’s raillery and merry laugh were not to be resisted, and in a little while the cloud seemed to have passed entirely away, and she was as cheerful as ever. Sometimes she would fall back into the silent, thoughtful mood, yet it was only for a moment, and the evening passed pleasantly. Then came the affectionate kiss, and the kind good-night.

To Alice it was a good-night, indeed. Good angels watched by her pillow, and her dreams were beautiful. One time she was walking along the garden paths, and heard the birds singing sweetly above her head, and saw the flowers in their most beautiful dress. She drew near the pond, and it was all alive with gold fish; and the whole surface seemed drawn with red lines; sometimes they formed charming pictures—trees, gardens and villages seemed to pass over the water like a moving diorama. All the people she had ever seen seemed to be moving about there, some doing one thing, and some another, but all happy. As she looked attentively, the surface seemed to grow mysteriously calm, and the red lines to disappear. Then as mysteriously it began to grow troubled, circular waves forming at the centre, and rolling toward the shore in every direction. Then suddenly from the middle of the pond, a most beautiful fairy figure arose and beckoned her near. The fairy gave her a plain, gold ring, and told her never to part with it; for she said it was the gift of happiness, and while she wore that upon her finger, heavy misfortunes should never visit her. Then a loud voice under water seemed to call the fairy a “little minx,” and bid her come down immediately, for breakfast was waiting. Then she disappeared, the water became calm, and Alice awoke.

“Was that a dream?” she asked herself, in amazement. There was the ring on her finger—the fairy’s gift of happiness; and the voice was still calling some one to breakfast.

It was a long time before she could collect her scattered senses enough to realize that she had just waked from a strange dream, and the voice was that of her father calling her. When the truth did dawn upon her, she laughed immoderately, and could not help saying repeatedly, that “it was very funny.”

It was much past her usual hour of rising, when in her simple morning-dress she appeared at the breakfast-table.

“Why, Ally, dear, I thought you never would come down,” said her father. “I have been waiting this—I don’t know how long, and called you—I don’t know how many times. The omelet and coffee are both as cold as Greenland, I’ll be bound.”

“It isn’t so very late, papa, is it?” inquired Alice; “besides, I have had such a funny dream—O, it was perfectly delightful.”

“Well, never mind, dear, pour out the coffee before it gets later.”

She poured out the coffee, still thinking of her strange dream. It was so funny that she could not help thinking of it; but her lips would never have wreathed that happy smile if she could have known the trial that awaited her.

“Ally, do you know what day to-morrow will be?” he asked, while his face wore a very doubtful, half merry, half serious expression. It was something like the sun trying to break through a fog, for he tried to look cheerful.

Alice paused a moment as if in thought, then suddenly exclaimed, “I declare, it is my birthday, and I had almost forgotten it. It was very good of my dear papa to remind me of such good news, after I had kept him waiting so long for his breakfast,” she added, playfully.

“But do you know who I expect to-morrow?” he continued.

It was her turn now to look doubtful and perplexed.

“Yes, Ally,” he said, “this afternoon Harry Wilson and my old schoolmate, his father, will be here. You must save all your good looks for Harry, for I expect you will fall in love with him at first sight.”

It was really with much pain that Old John made this announcement, though he spoke it in as cheerful a manner as possible, for he knew the effect it would have on his daughter. He seemed to make it more from a sense of duty than pleasure, as it were something which must be told sooner or later; and more clouds gathered about his honest face than had been seen there since the death of his wife, when he saw the effect it had upon Alice. The cheerful smiles vanished from her face; the color came and went, and came and went, and at length left her deadly pale. Her hand trembled and her voice quivered, as she attempted in vain to make some cheerful remark.

“At least you will try to like him, for my sake, wont you, Ally, dear?” said her father.

She uttered a faint “yes”—so faint that it might have been “no,” for all Old John heard; and pleading some excuse, left the room.

“Bad business, this,” said her father, after he was left alone, and talking as if to some invisible friend. “Bad business!” and whistling a doleful strain of a doleful tune, he also left the room.

And Alice, poor Alice, she felt lonely enough as she sat alone in her little room. Thoughts of the dream that had made her so cheerful but a short time before, now pressed like an incubus upon her breast. She knew how much her father was attached to his old schoolmate, Mr. Wilson, and how much he desired the union of their two families. It had long been talked of, but always as something which was about to happen at some distant, indefinite time; and though many years had passed since they first began to talk of it, it still seemed as indefinite and far from accomplishment as ever; and she never thought to trouble herself about it; but now the event seemed to spring up like a phantom directly before her; and so sudden had been the announcement that she knew not what to do.

And now the hours seemed to glide by as if they were double-winged. The old entry clock seemed to her as she sat in her silent chamber, to tick faster and faster until at last it broke into an actual gallop. If he were only here, she thought, as her eye fell upon the ring which the clerk had placed on her finger. And more than once she determined to go down to her father and confess all; then she thought of the old schoolmate that had saved his life, and her courage failed her.

She started as the clock told eleven.

It was past noon, and Old John was waiting anxiously for her appearance in the drawing-room; and his heart beat with strange emotions as he heard her light footfall on the stairs.

She was very pale when she entered the room, and the traces of recent tears were in her eyes. Yet she had never looked more beautiful, never more lovely. She was dressed in simple white, and a single white rose was braided in her dark hair. Old John could not see her thus dejected without being moved, and the dark cloud spread over his countenance. She saw it, and assuming a cheerfulness which she did not feel, drew her arm around his neck, and kissed him affectionately.

“There, Ally, dear,” he said, “don’t be cast down. It will all come right in the end. I say it shall. Do sit down to the piano and sing a cheerful song. Yes, sing the one that Walter liked so well.”

It was like asking the Israelites to sing songs of their home, while captives in Babylon; yet she did sing, though her voice trembled so much that it was with difficulty she finished the song.

“Don’t take it so much to heart, dear,” said Old John. “I say, if you don’t like him, he shan’t have you.”

They were interrupted by the sound of wheels rolling up the avenue. How her little heart beat and fluttered then. A carriage stopped before the door. Old John’s eye glistened with delight, as if relief had come at length. A step was heard in the passage. The door opened, and there stood—Walter.

Alice started to her feet, and stood gazing vacantly at him, uncertain what to do.

“Wont you speak to Harry Wilson?” shouted Old John, at the top of his voice, and giving a hysterical kind of laugh.

Then the truth flashed upon her. With a cry of joy she rushed into his arms, and nestling her head in his bosom, wept like a child—but they were tears of joy. Her overstrained feelings found a happy relief. The dark cloud of sorrow passed away and the sun shone in all its glory.

Old John capered round the room like a madman, and declared he had never seen any thing half so pleasant in all his life.

“But it was very cruel of you, dear papa,” said Alice, kissing him tenderly, after the first effusions of joy were over.

“I know it was, Ally, dear,” exclaimed Old John, willing to be blamed for any thing now. “I know it was. But you are such a willful little thing that I was afraid you wouldn’t like him, and I had set my heart upon it. I have been tempted more than twenty times to confess the whole and ask your forgiveness, when I saw you look so miserable. Yes, Ally, I came very near spoiling the whole this morning at breakfast. But never mind, it’s all right now; confess, isn’t it?”

Yes, indeed, it was all right! And Alice, in her silent, eloquent way, soon convinced him that she thought so.

Again the door opened, and Harry Wilson senior entered. He knew the whole affair, and had only waited on the outside until the first scene should be over.

Cordial was the greeting between the old schoolmates. Smiles, congratulations, and merry words passed freely; every eye glistened with joy, and all went merry as a marriage bell.

“Shall I enter that note at five or six per cents.?” asked some one at the side-door. There stood David Deans, with a pen behind his ear and another in his hand—his usual way of ornamenting himself—and looking as blank and cool as if nothing had happened.

“Don’t enter it with any per cent., you old miser!” said Old John, patting him familiarly on the back. “We don’t charge interest this year.”

David walked off with a broad grin operating powerfully upon his countenance.

He understood the trick, did David.

There was a sweet dream under each pillow that night; and the birth-day on which Alice thought to be miserable, was the happiest of her life.

“Bless me, Brother Bill!” exclaimed Uncle Tom, “if you aint smoking nothing but dust and ashes.”

“I declare, I believe you are right,” answered my father, somewhat confused, and making a careful examination of his pipe.

“Good-nights!” were passed, and we all went to bed with happy hearts.

Painted by Brockdon              Engraved by F. Humphreys


Engraved Expressly for Graham’s Magazine




Great men were they of olden time; men with far-reaching and strong, grasping minds—men, too, of discrimination in what they gathered—“teach them selection, not collection,” was the word—and they prepared for us of this distant age monuments to excite admiration and insure awe; monuments which, while they exhibit what man is capable of doing, seem, by the perfection of their form and the adaptation of their parts, to check all spirit of imitation; monuments which denote all variety of mental exercise and all the adaptation of physical powers. It is not alone the chisel of Phidias working out the marble in a thousand forms, more beautiful than the human pattern—it is not alone the pencil of Zeuxis that fixed on canvas the flitting beauties of the field and grove—it is not alone the vast machinery that piled stone upon stone to finish the pyramids. Mind speaking to mind has uttered its powers, and has claimed of the present, wonder for the past; History and Poetry have embalmed the actions of the great, or expressed the devotion of the good, and assured us of the lofty resolves and great deeds of men of other years. The beauty of the ancient mind, however, is to be detected by the uses and adaptation of ordinary incidents—bending them to moral instruction by making them illustrative of some principle—patriotism, religion, social duty and domestic relations, or some deeply hidden power, which sudden emotion, strong impulse, or unexpected dilemma, is to call into action.

Take the following, which is some where extant. We give only the statement of the asserted fact. We have no copy of the narrative.

Leucippe was gathering the small delicate flowers which blossomed over the dampness of a rock that beetled far into the sea, and held its cold brow high above the waves breaking eternally at its base. It was a lovely spot, cool, fragrant, health-giving, and she took with her her little child, the only blessing which had been spared. For one moment the love of the beautiful of nature, the interest of collecting, triumphed over maternal vigilance. She turned, however, from the little harvest of sweets, and saw her boy bending over the edge of the rock, regardless of all danger, hopeful of only a single beautiful flower that blossomed on the very edge of the steep. One word of fear from the mother, one sudden movement toward the child would have disturbed his balance, and he must have toppled down beyond all hope of recovery even of the lifeless form. No time was left for calculation, no good could result from active efforts. With unspeakable anguish the mother saw the danger, with the promptness of woman’s judgment she rejected the ordinary means of safety; with the instincts of a mother’s heart she threw herself gently forward, and bared her bosom to the child, and lured him gently back to nestle on his own home of comfort, and draw life from the sympathetic founts that gushed to his honeyed lips. It was the triumph of nature, and the story seems to have inspired the artist for this month. A beautiful illustration, while the picture itself has suggested a title happily expressive of the idea conveyed in the anecdote, “Nature’s Triumph.”

But such a story, so full of instruction, so pregnant with moral hints, should not be allowed to pass without an improvement, that may make it more and more beneficial. The experiment and the result may be properly styled the triumph of nature, for the deep solicitude of the mother, and especially her prompt expedient, are as much the movement of nature as is the affection in which they originated; and the attraction of the exposed bosom for the exposed child, was as much the gift of nature as was the hidden food which that bosom secreted and stored.

But we love to consider the success of Leucippe as the “Triumph of Affection,” not less than the “Triumph of Nature.” It is both, as it is differently considered; it is either, in many ways regarded.

Would the child, amused as it was with the flowers that jutted out from the rock’s impending edge, and pleased with the species of independence which its movements and new position signified, would the child have been lured by the exhibition of any other bosom than that of its mother? Had a stranger discovered the little adventurer, and being like Leucippe, conscious of the danger of calling aloud, of startling the child by any approach, had she bared her bosom, would not the infant have turned away without interest from the exhibition, and pursued its new occupation of flower gathering? Undoubtedly the unknown, who had from prudence done what affection suggested to Leucippe, would have seen at once that she lacked the attractive power, that there was no sympathy between her and the child. She might have felt all that a woman can feel for the lovely infant of another—thus dangerously situated—but the infant itself would not have been influenced by a corresponding sympathy; it would have lacked that affection necessary to a proper response to the exhibition.

The triumph, then, is one of affection sympathizing with affection; corresponding love answering with miraculous organ, and instructing the great and good of all subsequent times by the promptings of a mother’s instincts, and the sympathies of an infant’s feelings. “Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings.”

I was struck a few months since with the distress that was bearing down an intimate friend, and he made me the confidant of his sorrows, and of their cause. The young offender had forgotten the respect due to his parents; he had forgotten or disregarded the respect which he owed to the beautiful fame which had come down to him unsullied through several generations; family pride, instead of exhibiting itself in supporting the long-descended credit, was visible in a sort of obstinate adherence to some misconceived ideas of self-importance; he was ruining his own health, and was fast approaching the precipice over which his passions, or rather let me say, his passion, would soon hurry him. His father had, at times, severely chid the wayward youth, and the mother had, day by day, warned him of his danger, so that he had by his false estimate of filial duties and parental care, rather been accelerated in his progress toward the line of destruction. A change was suggested in the mode of dealing—his own danger was not pointed out, but his attention was attracted back upon those whom he had loved—and had left; he saw whence he had derived all that delight to childhood, and he turned back to the fountain of affection which had gushed anew; and the birds of prey that had been hovering round the precipice where he hung were disappointed of their quarry. Those, who had wheeled around him with pliant wing and open beak, hopeful of spoil, screamed their disappointment in their filthy eyrie, and confessed their defeat in the triumph of nature and affection.

I know well that the voice of kindness, uttered to the erring, is often disregarded or despised, but less owing to the want of power in the instrument, than in the want of preparation in the object. So much of anger is manifested toward the vicious, that they grow suspicious of every exhibition of feeling in their behalf. You who would lure them back to virtue, must not pause at a single token of kind feeling; repeat the words of consolation; remember that the very fault which you would correct may have brought a part of the obstinacy which you deplore—remove the obstinacy by kindness, and thus open a channel to the source of the fault. He who would reclaim the vicious must lay his account to find the moral system reached in almost all its parts by those faults which by their prominency seem to be the only ones that appeal for remedy; and the failure of one measure must invite to another; if one experiment lacks effect, strengthen it by another; do not work with single means—it is false economy. Leucippe bared both breasts to her wandering infant.

Conjugal affection disturbed by some occurrences which are unbecoming, and yet seem unavoidable, is not to be lessened by argument to prove either party right or wrong. These will, much more readily, create acerbity by wounding pride, than restore the lapsed passion. Affection has little to do with the logic of an argument—little to derive from the temper of discussion. When the evil is evident; when the disturbance is most oppressive, let not the parties imagine that any thing like cool reflection is to be had, or is to be made available; let the woman look back beyond the season of disquietude; let her bare her affections as they were when all was sunshine in the domestic circle; let her appeal to the undisturbed peace of such a scene, and by her conduct show her erring husband that it is possible to make the recollection of early delight stronger than the memory of present bitterness. Men learn this lesson easily, and practice it willingly. They need a teacher—they need precept and example; but they are willing to follow the leadings, and exhibit and rejoice in the triumph of affection. It is so, apparently in the great things of religion. Awful as are the dangers of neglect, it would seem that the terrors of the law are less operative than the persuasions of love. Notwithstanding the momentous question propounded, and the alternative made manifest, it would seem to an ordinary thinker, that the best mode of preventing a course that would incur the terrible penalty, would be to present the consequences of neglect, and to drive by terrible denunciations the erring one from the path that leads down to death. But not so argues the inspired Apostle. “Knowing therefore the terrors of the law,” (how appalling that thought,) “we persuade men,” (how gentle, how enticing, how successful in such a cause becomes “the triumph of affection.”)

Whenever a triumph is to be achieved over evil passions or vicious habits, then the appeal to the affections by the affections must be the means employed. We may check action or delay execution by fear, but we produce no change in the sentiment, no correction of the motive. We may prevent the offending one from injuring others, but we do not by such means lessen his power or his chance of injuring himself.

Oh, how much of destruction, how much of the waste of human feelings, human pride, and glorious self-respect are due to the want of care in attempts to draw offenders from the place of moral danger. Go to the home of wretchedness and vice, and see how promptly the heart responds to the voice of kindness, how one touch of nature awakens the memory of early love, and recalls the hour of peace and virtue, until the heart aches to contemplate the chasm that vice has placed between the future and the terrible present.

Sneer at her who, unable yet to appreciate the consequences of error, treads the path of danger or dallies on the borders to gather flowers that blossom near destruction. Sneer at her and she falls; call her back by the remembrance of home and home joys, by the love of father and friend; recall to her mind the unfailing affection of a mother, and she will turn willingly from her false position, be saved the crime, and only know what the consequences might have been, by marking the fate of those who had none to lure them back.

Our picture it is believed will be suggestive beyond our remarks. It deserves a careful examination; may we not hope that hundreds who gaze at the work of art will take up the moral lesson which it conveys, and resolve that vice shall owe no triumph to their unkindness, and that virtue shall not lose its followers for a want of the evidences of affection in their lives and conduct. It is lessons such as these that make art useful. It is lessons such as these that make the pagans respected—it is the “triumph of nature” over art, and the prevalence of affection over error, that make Christianity beloved. We are happy to make this Magazine the vehicle of moral truth, that takes the best of ancient sentiment and of modern art for its means, and has for its end the cultivation and triumph of purest affection.




Odd as it may seem, the condition of the atmosphere has a powerful influence on the animal spirits. It is the mercury in the thermometer of mind, indicating its buoyancy or depression. Who that is an observer of human nature under its various peculiarities, has not been forcibly struck with the vast difference in any one intimate friend, both as to mental activity and sprightliness, on a beautiful, bright, balmy May morning, and on a cold, cheerless, comfortless, cloudy, rainy day in the same “moon”? The whole man is changed—disposition, manner, mind and temperament have undergone some radical metamorphosis. The very mode of thought, the sentiments, the opinions even, are inverted. He who was amiable, instructive, communicative, and lively, is suddenly, by the veering of the wind, changed into a sullen, sombre, morose cynic, restless, moody and taciturn. Conversation is abandoned for long sighs, deep respiration, involuntary growls and lugubrious interjections. The agreeable companion of a clear atmosphere is the thus altered being on a Rainy Day, and the influence that has wrought a change so inimical to individual and domestic economy, is that of the atmosphere. To account for the cause is more the province of a scientific pen. Whether electricity be most positive or negative in certain conditions of the barometer, is a subject for professors of the various “’isms” and “’icities” of the day. The effect is too apparent to doubt the existence of a cause, and the cause too involved in mystery, to invite discovery by one unlearned in the theories of Royal “Societies” or Republican “Schools.” “The Atmosphere: Its Ingredients and Influences,” by John Smith, Fellow of the Royal Society: London 8vo. “Electricity: Its Cause, Combinations and Effects,” by Charles Jones, M. D., Professor of Natural Science in the Kainbridge University—New York: Harper & Brothers. “Animal Magnetism Investigated,” by Edward Brown, Member of the United States Philosophical Society, Late Professor in the Philadelphia Flight School—Philadelphia: Carey & Hart. “The Analogy between Mind and Matter, considered in relation to the Doctrine of Transubstantiation and Revealed Religion,” by the Right Rev. Bishop Berdott—Universal Christian Publication Association, Boston: Complete in One Volume—Second Edition. These, and the like publications, issuing almost daily, lasting monuments of the power of the steam-press, are far too repulsive food for the uninitiated in the art of philosophical digestion. We leave them to the student, who, with fortitude sufficient for the effort, will undertake the study of them on a Rainy Day.

But cause undoubtedly there is, existing somewhere; for so powerful an agent, revolutionizing our very nature, must surely have “a local habitation and a name.” Do not let us suppose that because the various Sir John Rosses and Sir John Franklins have failed in their researches after this primum mobile, that it is hidden from the eyes of science. One of these seasons we shall be delighted by an advertisement in all the daily papers announcing thus: “Wonderful Discovery! Astounding Developments!! Thousands unable to obtain Admission!!! The Reverend Neophyte Frisky will deliver a Lecture at the Great Saloon of the Chinese Museum. Subject—Atmospheric Influence on Human-Natureology, showing its Cause and Effects. Experiments will be made after the Lecture. The Secret will be communicated to classes composed of Gentlemen and Ladies, at Ten Dollars a ticket. For notice of the hours of each class see small bills. Admission (so as to bring it within the reach of all) Five Cents—Children half price—Unbelievers admitted Free.” Thus faith in the hidden things of science will be made clear to the eyes of the million, and the singular phenomenon, exhibiting itself in its manifest effects from a hitherto undiscovered cause, will become as familiar to men as the horrors of a Rainy Day.

We fear that some will naturally regard these remarks as intended to cast reproach on scientific investigation, and research into the wide fields of pathological—naturo-philosophical—moral-philosophical love. Far from it. We beg to invite volunteers to unite in an overland expedition after the philosopher’s stone. Let a company be formed on shares, armed and equipped with revolvers and rifles of the latest theory, to shoot opposition on the way for food for the Association—with India Rubber life-boats to cross the streams, and Gutta Percha tents to repose in on the march—secure a flying-machine on the last model, to transport the enthusiasts over mountains, and stock enough at $5 a share to start the enterprise, if not the expedition. We would not only invite the formation of such Associations in all the Atlantic cities, but suggest to rural scientificators to leave the plough of successful homebred labor, sell out their little all, and invest at once. Why drudge longer, alone and single-handed, when these combinations and associations insure the journey to be made in six weeks from the “Independence” of the first start. But, reader, let us advise you, if you are seriously impressed with the propriety of the undertaking and its certain success, don’t dwell on the results to be attained on a Rainy Day.

Suggestions of unbelief in any novelty are more common than should be. A course of opposition to the march of mind, camping in its progress at startling or astounding discoveries, is detrimental to the developments of science, applied to every day use. We do not desire to be regarded as cynical or infidel, and therefore avow an attachment to these novelties ex limine. The utter incomprehensibility of any scheme is no objection to its feasibility. Far from it. On the contrary, the less it is understood the more it is applauded. Once announced for the investigation of the masses, a public meeting is called, as follows: “TOWN MEETING. The citizens of the village of Love-Your-Enemies will assemble in the Hall where ‘justice is judicially administered,’ on Saturday evening next, at 6 o’clock, to consider the propriety of memorializing Congress to grant 100,000 acres of the public domain, for the purpose of raising a fund to be invested in the capital stock of a company about to be formed, to construct an Electro-Magnetic Wire Suspension Bridge from the Narrows, at New York, to Tusca Light-House, on the English coast. Mr. Amasa Foresight Marblehead, the discoverer of this wonderful invention for the benefit of mankind, and patent pacification of nations, will be present and explain its principal features.” Signed by Hon. Col. Maj. M.D. Rev. Esq. The meeting convenes at the appointed time. Speeches are made. Diagrams, models, drawings, lithographs, sections are exhibited. The audience are delighted, mystified, gratified, magnified, humbuggified, and somnambulified. Resolutions are offered. A disciple of Roger Sherman objects, and sonorously desires the Cui Bono in facts and figures. Question! Question! is shouted by the Esquire who signed the call, the brother of the chairman, and the gentleman who organized the meeting. These vocular demonstrations become public opinion, and under its supreme potent influence the resolutions are adopted, and the assembly adjourns. All is wonder, amazement and vacuity. One doubts. He is beleaguered by the President, Vice-President and Secretaries of the meeting, and silenced with “specific gravity,” “conic sections,” “capillary attraction,” “latent pressure,” “malleability of metals,” “attraction of cohesion,” “sinuosity of fluxions,” and the superior capacity of the arch over the horizontal, to bear weight. The object is accomplished—the probability assumes the shape of certainty—the unsophisticated are converted—the community is alive to the absolute necessity of the project—the most flattering prospects are in the future. The bridge is built on paper, and on this mid-air viaduct is represented flour and corn pouring into England, and emigrants and their progeny pouring out. How delightful! Well, “probably the humbug of the thing” would never have been made known, had it not been for the morbid disposition of some skeptic, exaggerated by the atmospheric influence of a Rainy Day.

The atmospheric influence, then, is savagely detrimental to the mature development of extraordinary discoveries. In this it is auti-practico-scientific, and will, ere long, be driven from scholastic favoritism. Unwelcome as we have shown it to be in individual and scientific economy, we trust our researches into the economy of politics will prove more favorable.

The State is a comprehensive word, meaning a conglomeration of voters. Voters are men presumed to be aged one-and-twenty each—that is, every voter must be, by law, in a majority before an election at which he votes, but it is not unlawful for him to be in a minority after he has voted. At this maturity they are infected with the frailties of humanity, consequently they agree and disagree with each other. Thus parties are formed on the basis of “principles, not men,” for the one, and “men, not principles,” for the other. On the supremacy of one of these combinations the safety of the State depends—so each conscientiously believes. To test the question, elections have been established—a modern republican invention, instead of the old “wager of battle.” The note of preparation is sounded. Martial music echoes in city, village, town and valley, in token of the peaceful nature of the coming contest. The voters of each party are gathered under banners inscribed with the poetry of politics Speeches are made by the humble aspirant after public fame in the shape of “spoils,” a figurative designation for the reward of patriotism. The taverns are filled; disquisitions on political principles, qualifications for public servants, the past history of nominees, and the future prospects of the faithful, are discussed with the blandness and courtesy which mark all polemic controversies. In order to purify the political atmosphere of such assemblies in those party craniums called “Head Quarters,” the fumes of tobacco, flavored with the insensible distillations of “old rye” or “Monongahela,” are used ad libitum. This, by the aid of music, speeches, rum and tobacco, “the great principles of the party” are preserved from decay, and made palatable to “generations yet unborn.” As the contest progresses, it is more and more marked by enthusiasm, sincerity, patriotism, self-devotedness to those abstractions born in “’98,” and destined to a green old age, or their immemorial antagonistic dogmas of a more northern extraction. Music, meetings, speeches and speculations, banners and bantering, polemics and pyrotechnics, rum and rows, fights and fabrications, placards and publications, advocates and anathemas, multiply in proportion to the chances of success. Committees of vigilance are active—window-committees impatient—voters are volatile and vicarious—candidates are cajoling, cabaling, convivial, cautious, curious and concerned. Thus progresses the campaign. The day arrives—Election Day—big with the fate of patronage and place. “To the Polls, Freemen, to the Polls!” is conspicuous at every turn, reminding those who have just awoke to the objects of the day, after weeks spent in fruitless attempts to convince them of the importance of the “Second Tuesday” in the political Almanac. Voting is this absorbing business. “Vote early,” is announced as of the utmost consequence. “Vote for John Smith,” is pronounced the only miracle by which liberty can be guaranteed to the nation. Workingmen are informed that John Brown is alone advised of the most salutary remedy for all their evils. Business men are warned that prosperity will abound under a Tariff, with the cabalistic addition of “’42,” and that ruin belongs to that of “’46.” The timid are startled by the announcement that the “country is ruined,” and the “constitution has been violated,” while anon is proclaimed that “the dearest rights of freemen are in jeopardy.” So passes the “Second Tuesday”—voting, voting, voting, “on age,” “on papers,” “on tax receipts,” and “on principle.” There must be an end to all things. So with Election Day. The polls are closed. The counting begins. Majorities and victories are cheered as published. One party claims success from figures, the other from numbers. One calculates success, the other votes it. It is decided, at last, by the indisputable returns. The victors attribute their triumph to the people; the defeated find consolation in the fact that they would have been triumphant, had it not been—a Rainy Day.

Atmospheric influences are suicidal, it seems, in politics. And as it may seem, the character of the atmosphere has a powerful influence on other things beside animal spirits. Reader, pause—our task is done. Of a highly mercurial temperament, affected with despondency or hilarity, as the sky is cloudy or clear, we were forced to get rid of ourself on one of those pluvious phenomena in the temperate zone, and hence we wasted our own time and yours by dedicating our reflections to The Rainy Day.

Our New Volume.—We do not think our patrons can fail to be pleased with this the first number of a new volume of “Graham’s Magazine.” We confess to feeling proud of it ourselves, and think we fully redeem the promise we made to increase the claims of our periodical upon popular favor. No similar publication, it may be confidently asserted, ever presented an equal array of merits and attractions, whether the artistic embellishments or literary contents be considered, and we know that our good friends, the public, will award to us the meed of superiority over all others, nem. con. But excellent as the opening number of the volume is, the rest shall fully equal if not surpass it in beauty. We have always held our position in advance of all competition, and the ground shall be maintained. Let others do as they may, the subscribers to “Graham’s Magazine” may rest assured that their favorite publication will never degenerate or forfeit the proud distinction long ago conferred upon it of being “The Gem of the Monthlies, and the Leading Periodical in America.”

Our subscription list is rapidly increasing; new friends sending in their names every day. This is an appropriate season to commence taking the Magazine, and the novelties and new beauties we have in preparation will render the current volume one well worthy of careful preservation.


H. Kavanagh. A Tale. By H. W. Longfellow. Boston: Wm. D. Ticknor & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

This volume has been very extensively read, has delighted almost every reader, and yet has left on the minds of many a feeling of disappointment. Considered as a novel, it must be admitted that the story is but slight, the characters hinted rather than developed, and the whole frame-work fragile; but it would perhaps be more fair to judge it according to the purpose the author had in view in writing it, and this purpose was evidently not the production of a consistent novel, but the illustration of an idea through the forms of a tale. Mr. Churchill, who is always meditating a romance and never producing one, and while musing over the idea is unconscious of the romance developing under his very eyes, is a good illustration of the motto of the work⁠—

“The flighty purpose never is o’ertook,

 Unless the deed go with it.”

The romance present to Mr. Churchill’s vision, but which he does not perceive, is, to be sure, a common one, but none the less affecting because it is common. It is a simple but quietly intense representation of love in its two great expressions in life—the love which imparadises and the love which breaks hearts; and it has no reference at all to time, but is the universal fact of all ages.

In addition to his lovers, Mr. Longfellow has sketched with much beautiful humor, the characters and characteristics of a country town. His mirth is the very poetry of mirth, sly, genial, fanciful, reminding the reader of Dickens without suggesting the thought of imitation. All the incidents and emotions of the book are enveloped in an atmosphere of poetry. It is this magical charm of the poet, investing the commonest materials with a drapery of imagination, and sending a rich and golden flush through the whole expression, which constitutes the merit of the volume. An ideal sweetness, sometimes felt in the music of the words, sometimes in the fine felicity of the imagery, and sometimes in the “soft, Ausonion air,” breathed upon the characters, pervades equally the author’s humor, pathos, sentiment, passion and reflection. The effect of the whole is not to thrill or exalt the reader, not to inspire terror or awaken thoughts “beyond the reaches of his soul,” but to fill him with the highest possible degree of intellectual and moral comfort. There are no stings in the author’s mind, and he plants none in the minds of others. He is a mortal enemy to unrest, to all haggard and unhandsome thoughts and sensibilities, and fuses matter and spirit into a sensuous compound, calculated to give poetic pleasure rather than to inspire poetic action.

There is one fault to the book more serious, perhaps, than any other, and that is its shortness. The characters are well conceived, but imperfectly developed. The premises of Kavanagh’s character are excellent, but no conclusion is drawn from them except his marriage, and that is something of a non-sequitur. The ground is fairly broken for a long work, for a sort of American Wilhelm Meister, and though the author’s plan hardly demands its cultivation to the extent of its capacity, we feel rather provoked that he did not make his plan commensurate with the elements of his characters. In Kavanagh we have a reformer who blends cultivated and sensitive tastes with great aspirations, and to have fully developed such a person, by representing the modifications of his mind through its contact with the reformers and conservatives of New England, would have enabled Mr. Longfellow to produce the most original and striking novel of the day, and one which would have been a mirror of New England life in its present manifestations. The ideas and purposes of Kavanagh alone are given, and he, rather than Mr. Churchill spreads a gulf between intentions and deeds. To have made the woman he loved non-sympathetic with him as a reformer, and the woman he did not love his adherent in that capacity, would have finely complicated the matter, and resulted in many original agonies, ecstasies, mental struggles, and thrilling situations. Such a novel, even if, like Goethe’s, it had cost ten years’ labor, would, as treated by Mr. Longfellow, have obtained an instantaneous and enduring popularity.

My Uncle the Curate. A Novel. By the Author of “The Bachelor of the Albany” etc. New York: Harper & Brothers.

The mere announcement of any thing from the sparkling brain of the Bachelor of the Albany, is sufficient to raise anticipations of brisk and business-like satire, of felicitous expression, and of good-natured representation of the follies of conventional life. The present work evinces more of the novelist, and less of the wit-snapper, than any thing the author has previously written. The story and the characters, though plentifully bespangled with epigrams, are still not immersed and lost in them; and there is not that incessant effort after smartness and point which at one period seemed to be the law of the writer’s mind. Mr. Woodward, the Curate, has some capital traits of character felicitously developed, and his wife, belonging to that kind of women known as everybody’s mother, is drawn to the life. In Mrs. Spenser we have one of those plagues of mankind, who cause more misery than pestilence and war—a nervous, fretful, peevish, unsatisfied, vinegar-souled wife, engaged in slaughtering her husband with pins, and making up for the weakness of her instruments by the continuity of her attacks. Lucy McCracken appears to have been suggested by Thackeray’s Becky Sharp, and she is in every way inferior to the latter in the logic of her artfulness. Dawson, Sidney Spenser, Markham and Vivyan, are all well discriminated delineations of young men, though the lover is the least interesting. The author is something of a bungler in handling the passions and affections, and considered as a man of wit, is singularly blind to the ludicrous effect which his serious scenes often produce. He is a capital laugher at the sentimentalities and agonies of other novelists, but when he ventures into their region he is as far from common sense and natural feeling as any of the dabblers in broken hearts and crushed affections whom he ridicules.

The Personal History and Experience of David Copperfield the Younger. By Charles Dickens. Illustrated by H. K Browne. New York: John Wiley. Part I.

The announcement of a new work by the most popular novelist of the day, is quite an event to the famished lovers of his genius. It is difficult to judge from the first number whether it will be worthy of the author’s fame, but it promises well both in respect to originality and interest. With the characteristic traits of Dickens’s style and mode of delineating characters and narrating events, it starts a new society of individuals, who may rival the old familiar names in popularity. The peculiar humor, fancy, sweetness, and verbal felicity, which have already delighted so many thousands, appear in this work with their old power, and give no signs of decay. For knowledge of the heart we would allude to the scene in which Mrs. Copperfield questions Davy as to the exact words the gentleman at Lowestoft used in speaking of her beauty, as pre-eminently excellent. For quaint humor, bordering continually on pathos, the life which Davy led in the queer house on Yarmouth beach, with Peggotty’s relations, might be triumphantly quoted to silence all doubts of Dickens’s continued fertility. The knowledge evinced throughout of the interior workings and external expression of a child’s mind, is quite remarkable. Indeed, if the author proceeds as he has commenced, there can be little fear of his success. It remains, however, to be seen, whether or not his characters will please through twenty numbers.

Holydays Abroad; or Europe from the West. By Mrs. Kirkland. New York: Baker & Scribner. 2 vols. 12mo.

The accomplished authoress of these elegant volumes has established so good a reputation by her previous writings, that we opened her present book with some reluctance, fearing that the subject would be too threadbare even for her powers to make interesting. Indeed records of tours in Europe have become so common, so natural an employment of aspiring mediocrity, that to read them is an exercise in yawning, and to criticise them an assumption of the office of executioner. We prefer dullness in almost any other form. It is due to Mrs. Kirkland, however, to acknowledge that she has triumphed over the disadvantages of her subject, and produced a really interesting work, avoiding all the wearisome topographical inanities and stereotyped opinions of most tourists, and giving a new and vivid glimpse of foreign life. She appears to understand the wants of her readers, and she tells them the very things they most desire to know. Her passage on St. Peter’s is one instance among many which the book affords, of her knowledge of the ignorance of her readers, and her felicity in suggesting a view of a whole subject by fixing on a few important details. She generally succeeds in conveying so warm an impression of the objects she describes, as to make her readers the companions in the journey.

The Adirondack; or Life in the Woods. By J. T. Headley, Author of Washington and his Generals, etc. New York: Baker & Scribner. 1 vol. 12mo.

In this volume the dashing and brilliant author of Napoleon and his Marshals has occupied a new ground. The northern section of the state of New York, comprising nearly eight counties, is still an unsubdued forest, “crossed by no road, enlivened by no cultivation, not a keel disturbing its waters, while bears, panthers, wolves, moose and deer, are the only lords of the soil.” Into this region Mr. Headley conducts his readers, and certainly few subjects could be better fitted for his picturesque pen. The magnificent scenery of the region he has described with great force, freshness and pictorial effect, and the various adventures incident to a life in the woods, are narrated with the author’s accustomed vigor and raciness. The work being in the form of familiar letters, admits of every style of verbal expression which truly reflects the feeling of the moment, and the reader is therefore not troubled by the presence of those occasional audacities of diction which, in Mr. Headley’s more elaborate works, sometimes offend a pure taste.

Analogy of the Ancient Craft, Masonry, to Revealed Religion. Gregg & Elliott.

This is the title of a beautifully printed octavo volume, from the pen, and evidently from the heart, of Charles Scott, A. M., Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the State of Mississippi. The literature of the Order of Masonry is not extensive, for reasons that the members of the Order probably fully comprehend. It is confined to a few volumes of addresses, and to some liturgies and handbooks; all, of course, useful to the craft, but not all interesting to the world. The volume before us is the result of much deep feeling, which manifested and employed itself in careful research, close reading, sustained reflection, and an able exposition of the results of all those processes.

The Analogy is ably made, and though the uninitiated may not feel the same interest as do the “craftsmen” in the Analogy, yet many readers will find on its pages much to admire, much that will instruct, much that will lead him to reflect and inquire.

The initiated who sits down to the book with a love of the institution, will find that love augmented, his respect increased, and his views greatly enlarged by the developments of the able author of the volume. We commend the work to the attention of general readers, but especially to those who share membership with Mr. Scott.

Last Leaves of American History: Comprising Histories of the Mexican War and California. By Emma Willard. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

Commencing with the inauguration of General Harrison, Mrs. Willard presents us with a clear and condensed account of the events which followed to the close of the Mexican war. Although most of them are familiar to the readers of the newspapers, we suppose that few minds possess them in their order and connection, stripped of all exaggeration and telegraphic inaccuracies. Mrs. Willard writes in a bold, decisive style, without any apparent partisan object, and with no other purpose to serve than to glorify the country as far as it can be done without any sacrifice of truth. We have found the volume interesting and accurate.

The Genius of Italy: being Sketches of Italian Life, Literature and Religion. By Rev. Robert Turnbull, Author of Genius of Scotland, etc. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

This is an exceedingly interesting and well-written volume, full at once of discernment and enthusiasm, exhibiting considerable knowledge of Italian literature, scenery, manners and character, and showing a true Anglo-Saxon sagacity in its views of the present state of Italy. The work is both descriptive and critical, and many passages have a pictorial distinctness which prove that the objects described were visibly mirrored on the writer’s imagination as he wrote. The sketches of Dante, Tasso, Ariosto, Petrarch, contain many correct opinions, and are well calculated to convey information as well as to inspire enthusiasm for the genius of Italy.

History of King Charles the Second of England. By Jacob Abbott. With Engravings. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 16mo.

This is a most useful and entertaining biography of a regal roué, whose reign is the scoff and jeer of history. Charles was a good-natured rascal, whose destitution of principle and indifference to shame, approached the marvelous. The record of his reign is full of matter for reflection, and Mr. Abbott has presented it with more than his accustomed felicity in the selection of events, and graceful simplicity of style.


Anaïs Toudouze


PARIS, Boulevart St. Martin, 61

Robes de Camille

Dentelles de Violard, r. Choiseul, 2bis—Fleurs de Chagot ainé, r. Richelieu, 81;

Eventail de Vagneur Dupré, r. de la Paix, 19.

Graham’s Magazine






Presented By GEORGE WILLIG, No. 171 Chestnut St., Philadelphia.

What’s a tear? Mother dear!

  Look not thou in sorrow!

As at dawn, from the thorn,

  Falls the dew my Mother,

Let this grief find relief,

  I’ll not weep tomorrow!

His I’ll be, none shall see

  How I love another,

How I love,—love another!




As the rose, while it blows,

  Hidden canker weareth;

Sigh shall ne’er whisper here,

  How this heart despaireth:

What’s a tear? Mother dear!

  His I’ll be, Oh Mother!

Though I die, since on high

  I may love another.

          How I love another.

Transcriber’s Notes:

Archaic spellings and hyphenation have been retained as well as some spellings peculiar to Graham’s. Punctuation has been corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below. For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to condition of the originals used for preparation of the ebook.


page iii, Story. Lydia Jane ==> Story. By Lydia Jane

page 1, Rensellaer who commanded, ==> Rensselaer who commanded,

page 2, Coffin, an aid of ==> Coffin, an aide of

page 2, escape occured to ==> escape occurred to

page 2, promoted) and a gallant ==> promoted) a gallant

page 2, serve as marines. ==> serve as marine.

page 4, proceeded to Fort Levenworth ==> proceeded to Fort Leavenworth

page 6, accompanied the cortegé ==> accompanied the cortège

page 15, his griping fingers, ==> his gripping fingers,

page 24, them pleasant excursions ==> them on pleasant excursions

page 29, blood tinging its ==> blood tingeing its

page 35, my tiny bark, unguided ==> my tiny barque, unguided

page 41, varient circumstances ==> variant circumstances

page 43, desire ought but that ==> desire aught but that

page 45, sort of wrapt awe ==> sort of rapt awe

page 51, wordly prosperity could ==> worldly prosperity could

page 60, heartless coquetery? Or ==> heartless coquetry? Or

page 61, concering it. There ==> concerning it. There

page 65, John their confident ==> John their confidant

page 65, irruption of Vesuvius ==> eruption of Vesuvius

page 66, kissed him affectionatly ==> kissed him affectionately

page 68, confident of his sorrows ==> confidant of his sorrows

page 68, by some occurences ==> by some occurrences

page 68, (how appaling that ==> (how appalling that

page 70, “mallability of metals,” ==> “malleability of metals,”

page 70, propotion to the chances ==> proportion to the chances


[The end of Graham's Magazine Vol. 35 No. 1 July 1849 edited by George Rex Graham]