Part 3 out of 6
And holds to reason's steady light
The secret records of her scroll.
Back, back she sails, down time's dark stream,
To childhood's bright and sunny hours;
And paints again her fairy dream,
Her sports, her fancies, and her flowers.
Touched by her wand, the sleeping dead
Spring up to active life again:
And in the busy pathway tread,
Mingling in our joy and pain.
She points where many a hope sprang bright,
And plum'd a while her pinions gay:
Then sank in disappointment's night,
And each fair promise died away.
And as I scan her records of the past,
And in succession all their deeds appear,
There's none o'er which so deep a shade is cast
As thine, thou just expiring year.
Thy spring was green, and bright, and gay,
And bloom'd as fair as Eden's bow'rs.
But mil-dew in her sunbeams lay,
And scorpions lurk'd among the flowers.
For when all perfumed seemed thy breath,
And all thy aspect sweet and mild,
It brought contagion, blight and death,
And from us bore a lovely child,
Then Summer came, with ardent glow,--
With burning guns and sultry skies,
Her mantle over Spring to throw,--
Of richer tints and deeper dyes.
Then often, with her fairy train,
Came gnawing Grief and wasting Care,
Sickness, Anxiety and Pain,
Mingling in sad confusion there,
Then Autumn came, with sober mien,
For summer days are always brief;--
And in her pathway soon were seen
The wither'd flow'r, the yellow leaf.
But ere her hollow, chilly breeze,
Scarce spake of nature's sad decay,
Or ting'd the foliage pa the trees,
A gentle brother pass'd away.
Sweet was his passage to the tomb,
Reclining on a Saviour's breast;
He heard the welcome--"Child, come home,"
And enter'd on the promis'd rest.
Then Winter came, with icy breath,
His hoarse winds whistling shrill and loud,
And quickly o'er the frozen earth,
He lightly spread his snowy shroud.
And sorrow, like that snowy pall,
Seemed spread o'er all my prospects bright,
And Health, and Hope, and Joy, and Peace,
Seem verging all to death's dark night.
But hark! I hear a cheering voice,--
And see--those pale, cold lips still move.
Mortal, shrink not; in God rejoice!
He is Wisdom, Power and Love.
'Tis he ordains the rolling year;--
Seasons and changes are his own;
Then, mortal, live in God's own fear;--
One struggle, and the year was gone,
But Peace had stolen o'er my breast;
And as I gazed I shed a tear,--
And grateful for the last behest,
I bless'd the just departed year.
The whirlwind in its fury depopulates a district, or a small tract of
land over which it passes perhaps once in a century--the earthquake
rumbles through the hidden recesses of the earth, and here and there
the yawning cavern swallows the ill-fated inhabitants that dwell upon
its surface; the lightning's stroke blasts in a moment, and cuts the
threads of life without any warning; and the steam engine destroy
their thousands in a year; and the winds and the waves conspire to
people the dark caves of ocean with the dead. These, and a thousand
other avenues, lead to death, bearing terror in their course, and
heralding their approach by terrific sounds.
But there is an insiduous foe, silent in its progress, sapping first
the secret springs of life, but yet diffusing hopefulness, ever
whispering in syren voice, of coming health and happiness, often
adding a deeper crimson to the cheek and a brighter lustre to the eye.
It feeds alike on all; the infant in its innocence; childhood in its
playfulness; youth in its beauty; manhood in his usefulness, and old
age in its decrepitude. All, all fall alike before the withering
breath of consumption.
Glancing back through the long avenue of past years, many a green
mound rises by the pathway over the wasted victims of this fearful
First upon memory's list, comes up a smiling infant, of rare beauty
and patient mien, that won our love by those little winning ways that
are the prerogatives of that tender age. A slight cough and extreme
weakness, were the only indications of the fearful work that was
progressing within. A bright flush rested upon the lily cheek, and
none who looked upon the unwonted brilliancy of those eyes ever could
forget their lustre. The pure spirit seemed to look forth from their
azure depths. A moan seldom escaped her lips, but she would lay quiet
in her little cradle, looking out unmoved upon the business and stir
of that life, upon which she had so briefly entered, but where she was
to bear so small a part in its fluctuations and concerns.
Anxiously did the fond mother watch over her precious one, and
endeavor by a thousand attentions, to strengthen the feeble tenure
that held her to life. She was the darling, the youngest one of a
numerous family, and all the purest affections of many fond hearts
were offered at her shrine.
But could this bribe death? O no, the destroyer stayed not in his
course, but drew stealthily along, and aimed his dart secretly but
surely, at his victim.
It was a chilly day in early spring; vegetation was just arousing from
winter's sleep, and the spring blossoms were just beginning to peep
from their casing of green, when this little bud of beauty perished
from earth. She lay in the cradle usually, because it wearied her to
be held in the lap.
It was noon, when the mother bent over her to administer some
nourishment, and thought she perceived a change upon her countenance.
The same glad smile rested upon her features, but it was more heavenly
in its expression. She seated herself by the cradle, and raised her
affectionately in her arms, saying as she did so,
"My dear child, I shall not lay you down again till you look better."
She looked at her a few moments, her blue orbs were turned to heaven,
and by their earnest gaze seemed penetrating the glories of the upper
There was soon an effort to vomit, succeeded by the fearful death
rattle that comes but once in human life. It was the struggle that
must come to all, sooner or later. The angel of death was leading this
feeble infant through the valley of the shadow of death, by a gentle
hand; one little struggle, one gentle sigh, one little quiver of the
lip, and the sinless spirit had departed ere the father and brothers,
who had been hastily summoned, reached her side.
Beautiful beyond description was the touch of death as it lingered
upon that marble brow, and rested upon the beautifully chiselled
features of the dear babe.
She was arrayed in a simple white robe, and laid into her cradle,
while a sorrowing angel hovered over the household. An absent son
returned who had been teaching several miles distant, and among other
gifts were some for the little one, but those little eyes were closed,
and those little hands that used to be raised with so much fondness,
were now stiff and cold in death; but how lovely! Her grave was made
in the headland of the garden; a tall lilac stood upon one side of
it, and a fragrant rose bush stood upon the other No stone marked the
spot, but will she be forgotten on the morning of the resurrection?
Years passed on, many silent years, for we heard no sounds to tell us
that time was threading the mazy thoroughfares of human life, stealing
noiselessly through our dwellings, and pressing his way with us to the
ocean of eternity, hastening on to the period when he shall come to an
end, and the great angel shall swear there shall be time no longer.
But so it was; years had been borne away by his rapid flight, and laid
side by side with those that passed before the flood, and change had
Many voices that lisped their matin and their vesper hymns by one
hearth stone, were now scattered far and wide, and other homes had
sprung up, and the children had become parents, and new duties
devolved upon them. Some had passed the meridian of life, the sun of
some had reached their noon, while others were climbing up the eastern
summit. But as yet death had spared that numerous, household; but now
he was watching for his prey. A son who had reached the meridian of
life, with fair prospects and an unblemished reputation, was selected.
He had consecrated himself to God, had put on Christ by baptism, and
well did he adorn his profession, living a consistent Christian life.
But death marked him for his victim.
It were needless now to tell of all the secret underminings of life's
hidden springs. He was cheerfully, hopefully looking forward to a long
life of usefulness, and striving to attain to greater proficiency in
his profession, for he was a physician. But the strength of manhood,
integrity of principle, nor Christian virtue could shield him from the
stealthy foe that was infusing its poison through the secret avenues
Strength declined, the cough increased, night sweats came on, and
one occupation after another had to be relinquished, till he was a
confirmed invalid, and when he became next convinced that he must die,
the business of his remaining time upon earth was to make preparation
for that event.
His countenance ever wore a smile, and he conversed cheerfully with
He sold his place, which was one he had desired for many years,
and which he had recently purchased, anticipating a long life of
usefulness in the bosom of his family, which consisted of his wife and
one son. But he cheerfully resigned it, and settled all his business
as far as was in his power, made the best possible provision for his
wife and son, and retired with them to her paternal home to prepare
the inner man for the great change that was before him.
His mind was relieved from earthly cares, every thing being arranged
as he desired, and he used to say,
"I have 'set my house in order,' and have nothing to do but die."
The things of eternity occupied his entire thoughts; he seldom spoke
of his sufferings as being great, but expressed thankfulness that he
was passing so easily away. But it appeared different to his friends
that looked upon him. He could lay only upon one side for several
months before he died, and he had painful ulcers upon several parts of
the body, and a constant cough, with laborious breathing and profuse
night sweats, accompanied by great emaciation. These were the most
prominent features in the fearful disease.
But he would allow no one to remain with him during the night,
affirming it was unnecessary for any one to be disturbed, thus
spending his restless, weary nights in communion with his Saviour and
He made all the arrangements for his funeral, telling his friends not
to weep for him. He hoped as his usefulness on earth was so soon to
end, his death might be sanctified so as to be the means of inducing
his unconverted friends to seek that preparation of heart that is
necessary for entrance into a better life.
He told his wife the manner in which he should probably die, and
endeavored to prepare her mind for it. He had distressing turns of
suffocation, so that they were obliged to open all the windows and
doors for the benefit of the air, and he long expected every turn
would be the last.
A few days before his death, his aged mother and a sister visited
him. He conversed with them cheerfully upon the arrangements of his
funeral; told them he was ready to be offered, and should meet the
appointment as cheerfully as ever he met any in his life. He consulted
them about the propriety of the hour of the funeral, and some other
things in connection with the coming event, as he would were he making
preparations for a journey. When the aged mother pressed the hand of
her son for the last time on earth, she said with a smile,
"I can only wish the presence of your Saviour, to go with you, and
lighten the 'dark valley of the shadow of death.'"
He looked fondly in her face, while a smile of ineffable sweetness
beamed upon his countenance. "You could not wish me a better wish,
"I shall soon follow you, my son; I do not think I shall live the winter
out," said the mother, as she unclasped her hand from the son's, that
she had taken, for the last time.
That mother's hand had been extended, to guide him through the wayward
paths of childhood and youth, to strengthen and comfort him, and
smooth many rough places in the pathway of manhood; but now it was
withdrawn upon the brink of the grave--it could not assist, could not
support him; but she committed him to that arm that is mighty to save.
It was a mild day in early autumn, when the pale messenger came to
beckon him away. He had tasted of the early autumnal fruits, had drank
the delicious juice from her purple grape, and watched the early
symptoms of decay that were visible in some withering flower or fading
leaf, and felt that "passing away" was legibly written on all earthly
things. Once, and once only, he had prayed, "O, my Father, if it be
possible, let this cup pass from me, but thy will be done."
He failed fast the last few hours of his life, losing all appetite
for nourishment, and having more frequent turns of suffocation, and a
sister was sent for. Scarcely had she arrived, when he remarked to his
wife that he felt very easy; but as it was time, he would take his
medicine. He took out the quantity upon the point of his knife, and
after taking it, lay back upon his pillow, apparently asleep. He
started suddenly, looked wildly up, and told them he was choking
to death. They raised his head, and used their accustomed means to
relieve him, but all to no avail. The death dew stood in large drops
upon his forehead, and the film gathered over the sparkling eye and
shut out the light of earth forever. He stretched out one hand and
placed it upon the head of his son, who came hurriedly to his bedside,
crying out, in piteous accents,
"O, father, father," and stood sobbing beside him.
This was his only recognition of any one. But the struggle was soon
over, and the spirit had burst the barriers that held it to its clay
tenement and passed away to a brighter world.
His sun set at noon; but his memory has left a sweet fragrance behind
it, grateful to the surviving friends, who are called upon to follow
his pious example.
He was borne to the Cemetery, and buried in a spot, which he had
selected a few weeks before, in company with his aged mother, by a
long train of weeping friends, for he had been very dear to us, and
nature would have her tribute, and it filled our hearts with sadness,
when we realized that we should see that loved form on earth no more.
Yet we rejoiced that he had died in the glorious hope of a blessed
immortality, and that we could say, in the impressive language of
the text that was chosen for his funeral sermon, "Our friend Lazarus
sleepeth." Sweet be thy sleep, dear brother, during the night of
death; but the morning will come--the glorious morning of the
resurrection--and unlock the portals of the tomb, and the dead shall
come forth, the righteous clothed in eternal youth, shall never die,
the wicked sinking into the second death that has no end.
Sober autumn perfected his work of decay, and dreary winter spread his
snowy shroud over the barren globe, when the aged mother laid down
upon the bed of death. Her infant had passed away, in the very dawn
of its existence. Her son had sunk down, while his meridian sun was
shining in its noonday splendor; but she had lived till the winter of
life had scattered its snows upon her head, and was now falling, like
a shock of corn, fully ripe. She was ready to be bidden suddenly
away, for she was ever watching for the coming of the bridegroom.
Consumption had long been preying upon her form, and paving her way to
the tomb; but she could look calmly upon the prospect, and contemplate
the struggle of death without shrinking from it.
She had long been an humble follower of the meek and lowly Jesus,
and his religion diffused its divine light over the most trifling
incidents of her life. She ever looked upon the fashions of this world
as passing away, and never conformed to them, or the manners of the
world; but taking the holy word of God for her example, endeavored to
imbibe its precepts, and practice its requirements. In profession of
her faith, she united with the Congregational Church, at the early age
of nineteen, and at the age of seventy-six years, could look back upon
a life spent to the honor and glory of him who had redeemed her with
his precious blood. She offered up her children upon the altar of her
heart's purest affections, consecrating them to God, by having them
publicly dedicated, thus performing what she felt to be an important
duty of a Christian mother.
Many an adverse wind had she encountered--that weary voyager on life's
troubled sea; but Christ had long been her pilot, and now he was about
to moor her frail bark into the haven of peace, and the tumultuous
waves were hushed, while the loving Saviour whispered, "Peace, be
She could converse but little, and was with difficulty understood; but
every word breathed of faith and hope. On the afternoon before her
death, she repeated these beautiful lines, and, apparently, felt their
"Jesus can make a dying bed
Feel soft as downy pillows are,
While on his breast I lean my head,
And breathe my life out sweetly there."
She wished to have her robe and cap prepared so that she might see
them before her death. She expressed anxiety for her aged companion,
to whom she had been united fifty-five years, and who was dangerously
sick at the time, and thought he would never recover; but would soon
drop into a deep stupor, occasioned by ossification of the brain.
During the night her feet and hands grew cold, and the worn spirit
seemed struggling to depart.
She would frequently arouse from her stupor, and speak a word or two
to her attendants, saying to one,
"You did not expect me to be found alone now, did you?"
She repeated, "In my Father's house are many mansions; if it were not
so I would have told you; I go to prepare a place for you."
She lingered till about ten o'clock in the fore-noon, then calling for
the absent members of the family, she desired to be raised up. Her son
supported her in his arms, the feeble lamp of life flickered a moment
in its socket, there was a little struggle, and that pure breast lay
free from the care or burden of life. Those loving eyes had looked
their last upon her dear children, that stood weeping by her bedside,
and the toil worn hands were laid cold and pulseless upon her peaceful
bosom, and she was now at rest with her Saviour, "in the house of many
mansions." Those dear hands that had been so active, administering to
the necessities of her family, had now ceased their labor, and lay
inactive, in their marble whiteness.
How many thoughts come surging up, from the wellspring of memory, as
we looked upon her in her last repose, and glanced retrospectively
upon her useful and exemplary life. Again we heard the rich
instruction that had fallen from those pale lips, and a new-purpose
sprung up in the heart--a new desire to be more entirely consecrated
to God, that our path might be the path of the just, that "grows
brighter and brighter to the perfect day."
Her coffin was carried to the bedside of her husband, who was unable
to rise, and too sick to realize the extent of his sorrow, and so he
looked for the last time upon the countenance of that dear wife, who
had been the partaker in his joys and sorrows, through their long
journey together. It was fifty-five years since their union, and now
the bond was broken. One was an angel of light, the other was left to
drift awhile upon the ocean of life, ere his frail bark sails over
death's sluggish stream.
She, too, was conveyed to the Cemetery, and laid beside her dear son,
who had been deposited there a few month's previous. And they followed
her, slowly and sadly, along the same road she had passed over half a
century before, when she was borne into the neighborhood, a young
and joyous bride, and passed the house that was then built for the
reception of the young mistress.
Here she commenced her first experience in the trials and duties of
house-keeping; and here were opened the deep fountains of a mother's
love. This had been for many years the theatre of her life, where she
had acted a conspicuous part in its changeful drama, and where still
linger many footprints time will never efface, for true it is,
the influence still lives, and will be transmitted to succeeding
generations. The scenes that were so familiar to her eyes, were now
hid from her sight, and she rested in the Cemetery, within a few feet
of the land that was once contained in their own farm.
One son, the eldest of the family, after being absent from home many
years, died in a land of strangers, and little was ever known of his
death or burial. The dear babe was left, far away, and the mother and
son slept side by side, in the Cemetery, waiting the time when other
dear friends shall come and, lay down by their sides in that quiet
The tall trees stand waving in the wind, and seem beckoning the weary
ones of earth, to lay down beneath their cooling shades.
The silvery stream dances on, making sweet music in its winding
course, ever murmuring a sweet requiem to the dead. Birds warble their
matin songs in the branches, and the night dew water the graves with
their tears, while the winds sigh over the grassy mounds; and all on
earth must make their bed with them, and every step we take in the
journey of life, is a step towards the tomb, whatever other duty may
be performed. Solemn is the reflection that there is an open grave
before every one that lives, and were we so situated that we could
define our progress, and notice each day's approach to its confines,
we should feel sensibly that we were hastening on to join the pale
nations of the dead, and fill our respective places in the land of
darkness and shadow of death.
But we will leave the dear infant, the brother, and the mother, to
that rest that remains for the people of God; they have fallen victims
to consumption, with the vast multitudes that have fallen a prey to
the ruthless destroyer.
Memory brings up, upon her retentive tablet, the recollection of a
family that fell before its withering blight, ere the elasticity of
youth had passed away.
The first that died was a young wife and mother. She faded like the
early spring flowers, and soon her brothers and sisters younger than
she were laid by her side in the silent chambers of death, all in the
vigor and beauty of youth. The rose faded suddenly upon their cheeks,
and they fell before thee, thou ruthless destroyer of the generations
The infant of a few days laid down its young life, and joined the
multitude in the place of graves.
One young man just verging upon manhood, was cut suddenly down with
but little warning. He apparently had a slow fever, and had been
confined a few days at the house of a friend, but had so far recovered
as to anticipate a visit to his family on horseback, as the distance
was short, and the doctor had recommended that exercise. But on the
appointed day, while his horse stood saddled at the door, he came in
from a short walk, and asked a niece to help him off with his coat,
as he wished to lay down. As she did so she perceived the blood was
settled under his nails. He flung himself on the bed; concealing his
hands under his back; his breathing became difficult, and death soon
claimed him for his own.
Sorrow filled the afflicted household when the intelligence reached
them. The father saw the messenger approaching, and informed the
family the son was coming.
A younger sister and brother were lingering in the last stages of
consumption. They were now filled with eager expectancy. The father
soon discovered the horse, but not the rider they were expecting, and
waited the issue with fearful forebodings.
Loud was the burst of grief that rung the air when the stricken family
heard of the death of the absent one in so unexpected a moment; thus
crushing out forever the hope that had sprung up in so many hearts of
returning health and usefulness.
Upon a post mortem examination, it was discovered that the rupture of
a blood vessel was the cause of his death. His lungs were found to
be in a bad condition, betraying that the foe of the family had been
holding secret revel there.
A day or two later, and the sable plumed angel returned again, and
hovered over the gentle sister, casting his shadow upon her brow, and
chilling her with his icy breath. His snowy fingers rested upon her
fluttering pulses; she cast one fond gaze upon the dear brother that
was soon to follow her, bade farewell to her earthly friends, and went
with the angel to the spirit land.
The brother lingered till the remains of his sister were laid in
the grave, then he followed her, to add another to the long row of
headstones that marked the resting place of that stricken family. They
sleep together, side by side, ten in number, the oldest one scarce
twenty-two years old. As we stand by the spot and read the melancholy
tale, we can but exclaim with Ossian, "The flower lifts its green head
to the sun. Why dost thou awake me, O gale," it seems to say, "I am
wet with the dews of heaven." "The time of my fading is near, and the
blast that shall scatter my leaves." "To-morrow shall the traveler
come; he that saw me in my glory shall come; his eye shall search the
field for me but shall not find me."
A youth of great promise next presents; his mother had many years
since fallen a prey to the fatal disease, and although he inherited
from her the fearful malady, "the young disease that must subdue
at length," had not as yet developed itself. Buoyant with hope and
expectation, he was preparing to enter the gospel ministry, having
consecrated himself to God and his service. He had entered the
institution at North Yarmouth, and by his assiduous attention, almost
finished his education. He was expecting soon to launch out upon the
broad ocean of public usefulness, but his heavenly Father bid him
"come up higher," and he passed on into the more expansive ocean of
eternity. The seeds of an inherent disease sprung up and bore early
fruit, and deposited this young man in his grave, far from the home
and the friends of his childhood. The eye of the stranger rests upon
it, the foot of the stranger visits it.
A younger sister too, fell by the same powerful agent far from home,
and is buried in a land of strangers. A brother sleeps by his mother's
side in the family burial ground.
In another family the mother was called first from a family of little
children. She wept in the agonies of death, as she contemplated their
bereavement. She pressed to her heart the infant of a few days, and
prayed fervently to that God that heareth prayer, to be the God of her
dear children, to protect them in their tender age, and lead them in
the narrow way that leads to eternal life. After the sands of life had
ebbed out, and her loving heart had ceased to feel, the tear-drops
that had fallen for her children still lingered upon her cheeks.
A lovely daughter followed her at the early age of sixteen, another
ere she reached the meridian of life, leaving seven children. Another
daughter passed away just as her sun was verging toward the western
hemisphere, leaving a son and daughter. The son soon followed her and
was laid by the side of his mother and grandmother.
The crimson spot upon the daughter's cheek, accompanied by the hacking
cough, seem to denote that the tardy messenger will soon bear another
victim to the mansions of death. Another daughter too is lingering
upon the confines of the grave, while the fatal seeds are taking
deep root in the constitutions of two of the sons, and heralding by
unmistakable evidence the approach of death.
But why particularize? Many, very many who have walked with us side
by side, in the sweet associations of life, are mingled with the long
train that are buried beneath the "clods of the valley," while there
is a long train of living victims marching before the fearful blight
to the open tomb.
No monarch sways his despotic sceptre over so numerous a population as
this fell destroyer, in his unseen lurking places, "drinking up the
very fountains of human life." But when will the sons of men learn to
think? with all the blight of death around, cutting one down upon the
right hand and another upon the left, the thoughtless crowd pass on,
little seeming to heed their own mortality. They look into the open
grave, or watch the passing funeral perhaps with a momentary sadness,
and turns lightly again to the active concerns of life, mingling in
its gaities and dissipation, dancing on to the very whirlpool that is
soon to engulf their frail bark, and bear it away where hope can never
Happy they who receive instruction from the revelations of God's holy
word, and imbibe its precepts into their heart; who, cleansed in a
Saviour's blood, are made recipients of his rich grace, and are thus
prepared to enter that "land where death comes not."
To Mrs. A---- B----,
On the Death of Her Child.
"Are they not all ministering spirits?"
"Mother, do not weep for me,
Shining angels guide my way;
And oft they lead me back to thee,
Through realms of everlasting day.
I may not burst the spirit's tie,
Or lift the dim, mysterious screen,
That hides me from thy mortal eye;
But I may visit thee unseen.
Night comes not here; no evening shade
Ere gathers round the throne of God;
And when your setting sunbeams fade,
I visit then your lone abode.
The twilight hour was dear to me,
With murmur'd tone of evening prayer;
When with hands clasp'd upon your knee,
And learned to lisp "Our Father" there.
There I first caught the notes of praise,
Flowing from a mother's tongue.
Which through eternity shall raise
A holy, high, angelic song.
And then your thoughts are all of me,
So softly nestling by your side;
I wait to hear those trembling tones,
In which you sang the day I died.
Your patient watch beside my couch,
You fain my ev'ry woe beguil'd;
For anxiously, and tenderly,
You ever watch'd your dying child.
But all your efforts were in vain,--
Friends or physicians could not save;
For ghastly death his mandate gave,
To lay me in the silent grave.
And scarce had rosy finger'd morn
Unrolled her earliest tints of gray,
To usher in the peaceful dawn
Of that delightful Sabbath day,--
When, silently, the angel came,
With upraised eye, and beck'ning hand,
And gently folding in his arms,
Bore me to the spirit land.
Where sweet transporting voices stole
On my enraptur'd eye and ear,
That spoke the Sabbath of the soul.
Ceaseless as the eternal year.
Here angel and arch-angel bow
In worship round the great white throne;
And ceaseless hallelujahs rise,
To the Almighty, Three and One.
Each has a mission to perform,
As swift through ambient air they fly;
'Tis mine to minister to thee,
And gently woo thee to the sky.
Mother, there are jewels bright
Graven on your deathless soul,
And brighter shall their radiance glow,
While everlasting ages roll.
Mother, they are pure thoughts of heaven,
Murmur'd oft upon your ear,
Which God to me had kindly given,
Your solitary way to cheer.
Mother, these are memories sweet,
Deeply treasur'd in your heart,
Which time, with his restless change,
May never dare to bid depart.
Sometimes across your lap I lie,
And breathe that evening prayer again,
And looking in your tearful eye,
Again repeat that sweet amen.
Then mother, leave your child of earth
To moulder back to kindred dust,
And trace my new and heav'nly birth,
A ransom'd spirit with the just.
And weep not o'er the casket laid
Beneath this little heaped up mound.
The deathless jewel cannot fade,--
A diamond in a Saviour's crown.
An Evening in Our Village.
Why should we wander in the fields of fiction, to cull fancy's flowers
to feast a morbid imagination, when there are so many thrilling
incidents in the pathway of human life, calculated to awaken the most
refined emotions, and stir the deepest currents of the human soul?
Would the painter, as he raised his brush to give the last finishing
touch to his picture, draw his colors from fancy? Would he not rather
imitate the color of the natural rose, copy the forest green, the
azure of the sky, or the brilliant hues of the rainbow, as it spans
the heavens with its bow of promise?
Fiction may weave her intricate labyrinths and enchain the fancy by
wandering in mazy circuits, and weaving her mystic web; but truth will
stand in all its primitive lustre, when the foundations of this earth
have passed away. Then let me record the truth in preference to
The clouds hung in heavy dense masses, during the day, while a damp
chilly wind from the north-east betokened an uncomfortable winter
rain. It was winter, although the bridge of ice that had been formed
over the Blackstone was broken up, and floated on its surface in huge
masses, as it hurried rapidly along, to empty them into the waters of
the Narragansett Bay, reminding the thoughtful observer of the stream
of time, bearing away its vast multitudes to the ocean of eternity.
Here, where now stands our beautiful village, a few short years since
stood the dense forest--the growth of centuries. Here the rude Indian
roamed, in native wildness, hunted his prey, built his council fire,
or smoked his pipe of peace. Here, where now stands the temple of the
living God, with its heaven directed spire, perchance smoked the
blood of some poor victim, as it was offered upon the altar of savage
brutality; or the rude wigwam stood.
But all these things have passed, as a tale that is told. They have
floated down the current of time, even like the broken masses of ice
that are borne so rapidly down our river, and have passed into the
broad ocean of eternity.
On the banks of that stream, where the pale face first crossed to hold
a council with his red brethren, stands a flourishing village, reared
by the hand of civilization, and offering many facilities to the
industry of its virtuous and well disposed inhabitants. It would be
pleasant to tell a tale of the times of old, of the deeds of the days
of other years, of the Indian that paddled his light canoe upon our
river; but this is not the purport of the story.
It is to scan the different scenes as they lay spread out before
us, upon the map of busy life. The day had closed, dark, dreary and
cheerless. The rain and sleet were driven furiously before the wind,
and the child of want shrank from the biting blast, as stern necessity
drove him forth to meet the peltings of the winter storm.
There was a social gathering at a large, elegantly finished and
furnished hall, splendidly illuminated with its brilliant gas lights,
diffusing a lustre upon gorgeous trappings with which they were
The streets resounded with the rattling wheels of omnibusses, cabs and
various vehicles, as they bore the gay and fashionable part of the
village to the splendid hall.
Soft music charmed the ear, and floated in sweet melody through the
apartment. Beauty was there, with rosy cheek and brilliant eye.
Fashion displayed her most tasteful arrangements, and each one seemed
vieing with the other in elegance of costume. All looked like the
enchanting scenes pictured in fairy tales, and one might almost
suppose Alladin's wonderful lamp was still extant, performing its
mysterious spells, and casting a supernatural lustre over the gay
group that assembled, to dissipate the cheerless gloom that reigned
without, by mirth and hilarity. And they joined in the mazy dance, and
spent the hours of night in joyous revelry. A sumptuous entertainment
was prepared, and everything provided to satisfy the votaries of
But as the lively music sounded from that splendid hall, it stole upon
"Cold, dull ear of death,"
for, but a few rods distant, lay a female, little passed the meridian
of life (who had lived in the same village, and trod in the pathway of
life with them many years), wrapped in the shroud of death, and next
day to be borne away to the tomb, and shut out forever from all the
scenes where she had once been an actress. But now she would look out
upon the world no more. Her eyes were closed in death, and her ear
heard not the wild music that was stealing through her otherwise
All of earth had passed from her vision. Life, with its stern, cold
realities, or its light toned revelry, could awaken no response in her
A brother had been summoned from a distant village to attend her
funeral. He had travelled, notwithstanding the inclemency of the
weather, and when the shades of twilight fell over the earth, he stood
by that dearly loved form. Memory brought back the past. That cold,
pulseless one was a child again, sporting by his side, prattling upon
his knee, and winning attention by the ten thousand witcheries of
Then, with the rapidity of thought, blooming youth succeeded this age,
and she stood, blushing in maiden modesty, the gay young sister of
other days; and his heart was filled with sadness as he gazed upon her
stiff in the icy arms of death, and felt that she could no more return
his affection. He was an aged man, and knew much of the sorrow and
the trials of life; he turned, with a tear in his eye, from his loved
sister and passed into the street.
The storm was increasing, but he heeded not the peltings of the wintry
wind, or the wild music that mingled with its mournful wail, as he
passed the luxurious hall, where
"Fashion's gay tapers were lighted."
Other thoughts occupied his mind.
He soon stood by the bedside of a dear daughter, who was passing away
from earth, while yet in the bloom and the beauty of youth. She was a
wife, and a mother of two sweet children, whose tender age required a
mother's watchfulness--a mother's care. But with childlike trust, she
had given them back to that God, who had given them to her. Her trust
was in him, and now she was ready to follow her dear Saviour into the
cold dark grave, with the assurance that she should have a part in the
first resurrection. Melancholy sounded the music from that distant
ball room, as it stole upon the wings of the winter wind, into the
chamber of the dying one. Her ear was listening to catch the notes
of angel harps before the throne of God, and her passing spirit was
attuned to their melodies. The beauties of the upper world transfixed
her rapt vision, and no earthly object stood between her soul and God.
And so she passed away, and left to her earthly friends but the frail
casket, while the priceless jewel had soared to brighter regions, to
glitter in a Saviour's crown.
The father had come just in time to take the last look of his living
child, to hear her last words, to witness her last struggle, as the
pure spirit departed from earth, to join her sainted mother in the
spirit land. He was taking another portion from the cup of affliction,
which however bitter to the taste, often sweetens the journey of human
life, preparing the recipient better to perform its duties, and bear
As the stricken father retired to bed, the sound of revelry fell
heavily upon an almost bursting heart.
And the dear children, could they listen to its glad strain? O, no;
they had seen death cast his marble paleness upon their mother's face;
had felt the icy coldness of her pulseness limbs; had called her by
the endearing name of mother, and her pale lips answered not, and they
had retired with eyes red with weeping; they as yet knew nothing
of the extent of their bereavement. The husband, too, had lost the
companion of his youth, the mother of his children, and although he
possessed like precious faith with her, and kissed the rod with pious
resignation; still they were a grief-stricken household, and presented
a striking contrast to the gay group that were dancing thoughtlessly
away the hours of that solemn night, while the recording angel was
taking note of all that was passing beneath his all-seeing eye, in
that book that shall be opened when we shall all stand before God, to
be judged according to the deeds done in the body.
The music floated on and reached the ear of a poor maniac as he sat by
his comfortable fire, listening to the monotonous roar of the distant
water fall, and the howling of the wintry winds, as it came surging
on, waving the leafless tree and pelting the falling rain against the
"Hark!" said he, springing up, "the bees are swarming; I shall be
stung to death," and out he rushed, with a brighter fire in his eye
and a more intense one in his brain. Descending the hill, he watched
the sylph like forms as they floated on in the mazy dance, declaring
the bees were in terrible commotion, and he should be stung to death.
With difficulty he was prevailed upon to return to his house, and ever
and anon, as the sound of the music reached his ear, he would start
and affirm that the bees surely were swarming.
Such is man, the noblest work of God, when bereft of reason to guide
and direct him.
Still farther on were young parents keeping anxious watch over a sick
infant, whose feeble thread of life seemed trembling upon a very hair.
The doctor had said there was no hope; kind, sympathizing friends, as
they looked on the sufferings of the dear babe with tearful eyes, had
said, there is no hope; and the agonized hearts of the parents echoed
back, no hope. But still they did hope. The breath came heavily from
the heaving chest, and the blue orbs looked dimly from their half
closed lids, while the little sufferer, with burning hand and parched
lip, seemed struggling for that life that it had enjoyed but for so
brief a space. The parents were young in years and unacquainted with
sorrow, and very dear to their loving hearts was the sick infant. They
felt they could not part with the dear one. Carefully they nursed the
flickering lamp of life: through that dreary winter night, lest some
ruder blast should extinguish it forever. Wished they to join the
thoughtless throng in the tinselled hall of fashion? O, no, they had
rather count the fluttering pulses of their dear boy, cool his fevered
brow, and administer the reviving cordial through the weary hours of
the night, than to listen to sweetest strains of Orpheus' harp, or
thread the winding mazes of the giddy dance.
And so with them the night wore away, the long dark night of suffering
to the babe, and watchful anxiety to the parents. But the angel of
death that had hovered so long over the darling babe, unfurled his
sable pinions and flew away in search of another victim, and he is
spared yet a little longer.
Pursuing the way a little farther in another direction, you find
another weary watcher by the midnight lamp. An aged woman, who has
lived her three score years and ten, sits bolstered up in her chair,
toiling for her little remaining sum of existence, which nature seems
unwilling to relinquish, although subsisting now upon borrowed time.
From an adjoining room comes a frequent hollow cough, and the sunken
eye and emaciated frame of the poor girl betray the secret foe,
lurking in the hidden springs of life.
Death is no stranger beneath this roof. He has borne away one after
another from this numerous household, and laid them down side by side
in the silent grave. And now his darts seem aimed at the two only ones
of that household, the mother and her daughter. The sons are married
and have families of their own, but the mother and this daughter live
alone in the home of her youth, the very place, perchance, where she
was brought a gay and expecting bride by that husband she is expecting
now to follow so soon to the spirit world. Could the pleasures or the
gaities of the world cast one cheering beam upon their lonely home? O,
no, the religion of Jesus alone can illuminate their benighted hearts,
and in "this light they see light," and feel prepared to go when the
Following the street, you pass the door of a daughter who is weeping
for the recent loss of a mother, who passes suddenly away without
a moment's warning, and a widow who mourns a husband, cut off by
A few steps and we reach a cottage, where other parents were watching
over a little son of five years, who is wasting away with consumption.
His attenuated limbs bear his little frame but feebly, and he often
talks of death, for he has recently seen a little sister younger than
himself fall a prey to the fearful malady. A burning fever is raging
in his veins, and lights up his eye with unwonted brilliancy, as he
tossed restlessly from side to side upon his pillow. His silken hair
of beautiful brown is brushed smoothly back from his high, marble
forehead, while gentle hands apply the cooling bath, to still if
possible, its tumultuous throbbings, and he murmurs of sweet sister
and of heaven. Soft words of love are whispered in his ear, and he is
told of the Lamb of God that bids little children to come unto him.
And thought not these weary watchers of that lonely night, of the
revellers in that distant hall? Methinks their hearts went up in
fervent prayer to God that he would spare them yet a little longer,
for there were immortal souls there, for whom he labored and prayed,
who entered the sanctuary and heard the word of God as it fell from
his lips, Sabbath after Sabbath, and he felt sensibly that the
midnight revel would not prepare the heart to seek God, or make the
necessary preparation for death. Towards morning the eyes of the
little sufferer closed in uneasy slumber, and the parents too, were
refreshed by a short interval of sleep.
Passing yet in another direction was a tall youth, with a subdued
expression of countenance, hurrying on, in spite of wind and rain, to
the doctor's office, to procure assistance for a sick mother, who was
tossing in all the agony of brain fever. The doctor had been called
away to visit a little child that had a sudden attack of the croup,
that fearful disease that bears so many children to the tomb. He
returned again with a sorrowing heart. Heeded he the sweet tones of
music that fell upon his youthful ear? wished he to join the gay group
as they flitted before the brilliantly lighted, window, and the fairy
forms of the fashionable, and the pleasure-seeking met his eye? O,
no; there was sorrow in his young heart, and sorrow brooded over the
household. Towards midnight the doctor came, and a young daughter,
younger than many who graced the festive ball, following his
directions, alleviated the sufferings of a sick mother, and wore the
weary night away in anxious watchings.
Not till another day dawned, did the rumbling of the carriages cease,
that were conveying home the sons and daughters of dissipation. And
thus passed the night, leaving no trace upon earth, for the waves of
time have obliterated all its footprints. But its record is on
high, and it will never be forgotten by the Eternal One, whose eye
Such is human life, and such is the race of man. Although we are all
bound together by one common brotherhood, the song of the gay is ever
the funeral dirge to the sorrowing.
Perchance that night might have disclosed still darker pictures in
the hidden recesses of our village, for, oh, there are dens of foul
pollution, that send their infectious taint over the pure air of
our community, calling the blush of shame to the cheek of conscious
virtue, and creating an ardent desire in the breast of the
philanthropist, to go forth and labor in the vineyard of the Lord,
that these foul spots may be washed in his precious blood, and made
O, could all the misery that was extant in the village have been
presented to the thoughtless revellers, could they have danced on?
Would not the tear of sympathy have moistened the cheek, and the still
small voice whispered of a solemn time that must come to them? O, it
is wise to receive the admonition, "Be ye also ready, for in such an
hour as ye think not, the Son of Man cometh."
Faint, indeed, are the delineations from Memory's tablet, upon this
little map, but enough, perchance, to lead the contemplative mind to
reflect upon the vicissitudes and changes of its little day, and teach
us to prepare for a better world, "where change comes not."
Contemplations in a Grave Yard.
'Twas on one pensive even tide,
When restless toil and day had fled;
I laid all airy scenes aside,
To wander o'er the silent dead.
The rising moon from eastern sky,
O'er the lone heath shed languid light,
And boding owls with fearful cry
Heightened the solemn gloom of night.
With pensive steps I reach'd the pile,
Where well wrought limbs return to clay;
And tow'ring marble's pompous style
Points out the great, the rich, the gay.
But where's ambition's piercing eye,
His restless look, his haughty air?
They're vanish'd all, and near him lie
Frames that once fed on black despair.
What though the marble's rais'd o'er one,
To tell his former wealth or worth,
While a green turf, or mossy stone,
Denote the man of humbler birth.
Yet all in silence mould'ring lie
In the cold grave where vapors glide,
The beggar here's as fair as he
Who rolled in wealth, or swam in pride.
'Neath a green mound there slept a youth,
Whose form in life in beauty bloom'd:
His manner sweet, his speech was truth,
But nought could save him from the tomb.
At little distance from his side,
A wild rose shed a pearly tear
O'er her who would have been his bride,
Had not dread death been thus severe.
I mus'd in silence on their fate,
And watch'd the graves where low they lie,
Reflecting on their altered state.
From nuptial bliss to mould'ring clay,
And such, methinks, the lot of all;
We picture joys with eager eye,
'Till death's damp curtains round us fall,
And silent in his arms we lie.
Beneath a verdant, grassy mound,
Where gemmed with dew the daisy weeps;
In death's cold slumber wrapped profound,
A gentle mother peaceful sleeps.
No storied urn bespeaks her worth.
No epitaph or stone is near;
But the wild flow'rs that strew the earth,
Are watered oft by many a tear.
And oh, such tribute is more dear--
Warm gushing from affection's eye,
Than the cold marble's senseless praise,
That sheds no tear--that heaves no sigh.
A little path is closely worn,
Where prattling children often stray,
And o'er their sainted mother mourn,
To shield her memory from decay.
And hoary age has sunk to rest,
Deep buried 'neath the crumbling sod;
No anxious cares disturb his breast,--
His ransom'd soul has flown to God.
Weary and sad, he struggled on
Life's rugged pathway, till its close;
And then, in death, lay calmly down,
To slumber in its deep repose.
I turn'd to view a little grave,
Where infant sweetness silent slept;
There the tall myrtle mournful way'd,--
The willow there in sorrow slept.
"Sleep on," I cried, "thy little breast
Ne'er knew the heartfelt woes of men;
No pain or care disturb thy rest,
Or jarring scenes obstruct thy ken.
"Happy, like thee, might I resign
This life in Virtue's purest ray,
And spring to life and joy divine,
Free from this cumbrous load of clay.
But hark! I hear the boding owl,
With fearful screams at distance cry;
The evening breezes mournful howl,
And bats their nightly circles ply.
Thick, sombre clouds obscur'd the sky,
And hid the moon's refulgent light--
No sparkling star shed cheerful ray.
To light the lonely shades of night.
I grop'd my way with careful tread,
To shun the cold, unconscious urn,
And left the mansions of the dead,
Where soon or late I must return.
For I must sleep with ages past,
And ages yet to come,
Till the last trump of God shall wake
Each tenant of the tomb.
A Scene on the Kennebec River.
It was a beautiful morning in early June, and nature was dressed in
her beautiful robes of pale green, as the leaves had not yet assumed
that deeper hue that the mature rays of a summer sun impart to them.
No cloud floated over the blue vault of heaven. The golden sun
diffused a radiant light, and shed a sparkling lustre upon the deep,
black water of the mighty river, that rolled on in gentle undulating
waves, as it was tossed lightly by the sighing breeze that floated
over its surface.
Far as the eye could scan were seen the snowy sails, as the mariners
pursued their way over the black bosom of the waters to enter the
briny Atlantic, that received the waters of the rolling river and
mingled them with its own foaming wave. The smaller sail boats were
flying before the wind, while innumerable ships lay at rest in the
harbor, with snowy sails unfurled, while the rough cry of the sailors
broke boisterously upon the morning air.
At the wharf, before the flourishing village that lay reposing on the
banks of the river, lay a ferry-boat, impatient to launch away upon
the restless waters.
There was hurry and bustle as the time for the boat's departure had
arrive, and many wished to be borne to the opposite shore.
Among the rest came a gay group of laughing school girls. Their joyous
faces were lit up with bright smiles, and they were chatting gaily of
the afternoon's party, and the anticipated evening's walk, heedless
of the care worn man of business that shuffled in by their side, or
prudent ladies who looked upon the gay party as pert or presuming.
They were, many of them, the children of wealth, and waved in their
hands rich boquets of beautiful and rare exotics, while others were
equally satisfied with more simple flowers. They advanced to the head
of the boat, and stood with their hands placed upon its edge, looking
over into the deep waters. One beautiful form attracted the attention
of all who looked upon her. Her form was slight and delicate. Her
complexion was transparent, but a slight tinge of pink rested upon
her cheek. Her azure eyes beamed with a sweet expression from their
soul-lit depths, while her dark brown hair floated in heavy masses of
glossy curls over her ivory neck and shoulders, waving gently in the
morning breeze, as it floated lightly around her. She was dressed in a
simple white robe, and in her hand held the richest boquet. Her snowy
arms were bare almost to the shoulder, and as she stood looking
out upon the far off sail, or watching the entrance of her fellow
passengers, as they took their respective places in the boat; no eye
that looked upon her but lingered in its gaze to admire her beauty.
Then came a rich man and his lady, and there must be room in the boat
for their splendid equipage, and so his gay horse stood champing his
bitts and curbing his proud head, as his fiery eyes glanced over the
glassy surface of the restless waters.
All was ready, the signal was given, and the boat ploughed her way
like a thing of life, leaving a long path of white foam in her wake.
Men talked of business, of the prospect of the advancing season, the
pressure in the money market, or the perfidy of the opposing political
Women talked about their cross children, unfaithful servants, and
various domestic trials.
The young girls talked of their school, their boquets, and the many
little events in which they were interested, while a group of school
boys, who had entered last, and were obliged to stand in the rear of
the boat, declared they had never seen the fair queen of that party
looking so lovely.
But suddenly there was a jar, a scream, a plunge, and that fairy form
was precipitated into the foaming waters beneath, and the boat was
gliding on with such rapidity that no arm could reach her. She sank
slowly from sight, as her spreading robe buoyed her up for a moment on
the waves. Her long curls lay spread out, tossing upon the surface
by the motion of the waves, then as they sank slowly from sight,
one snowy hand was raised, clutching the boquet with a tenacity so
proverbial to the drowning. She then sank to sleep beneath the surging
waves that danced lightly on over her death cold bosom.
None could tell exactly how the accident happened. The horse, unused
to that mode of conveyance, became restive, and in his plungings to
liberate himself precipitated the unfortunate girl, with all her gay
dreams of life and pleasure, into a watery grave.
The tide was going out, and she fell into the rapid current, and when
her body was recovered no traces of beauty rested upon her marble
features, and none who looked upon the black, bloated face and lips
of the poor girl could recognize the bright beauty of that joyous
morning. The withered boquet was covered with green slime, and like
the hand that held it, bore no resemblance to its former self. "Surely
in the midst of life we are in death."
To Miss H---- B----,
These Lines Are Affectionately Dedicated By ----.
Maiden, for thee I'd tune the lyre;
Might minstrelsy my song inspire;
Could I a gifted offering bring,
I'd boldly sweep each silken string,
And wake a sweet and thrilling strain,
Thy heart would echo back again.
But though so feebly sings my muse,
I trust her song thou'lt not refuse;
But all unaided by the Nine,
Accept the boon from friendship's shrine.
Youth round thee her garland weaves,
Of varied flow'rs and verdant leaves,
And leads thee forth in gardens fair,
To cull exotics rich and rare.
And knowledge bids thy youthful mind,
Wisdom, in her choice fruits to find.
But sober age holds stern control
O'er the deep currents of my soul;
I may not pause to cull the flow'rs,
That bloom in fancy's fairy bow'rs,
But onward press, from day to day,
In duty's stern and rugged way;
Yet ever upward may I rise,
To yon bright world beyond the skies.
Your cheek is ting'd with youthful bloom,
While mine is faded for the tomb,
And blended time with anxious care,
Have left their deep impressions there.
In graceful curls your ringlets stray,
While mingle mine with mournful gray.
Hope spreads gay roses in your way,
And points to many a future day,--
And flinging wild her scented flow'rs,
Beckons to her rosy bow'rs;
But I have seen such hopes decay,
And each fair promise fade away;
Have seen the syren beckon on:--
And spread new charms when one had flown,
Till ev'ry blooming flow'ret died,
And wither'd leaves hung by my side.
Then, maiden, do not cling to earth,
Whose hopes are of so little worth,
But now in youth thy heart be given,
In childlike confidence, to heav'n;
Then hope within your breast shall rise,
Ever to bloom in paradise;
And you, an angel bright, shall stand,
To sing and shine at God's right hand.
Maiden, this is my prayer for thee--
Far reaching to eternity;
And when, like mine, your setting sun
Proclaims life's journey almost run,
O, may his last--his sinking ray,
Beam on a brighter, happier day.
Forgive, dear maid, my truthful strain--
Say not, such reas'ning is in vain;
Say not that age is ever blind,
And disappointment sours the mind;
But, oh! the voice of warning heed--
And quickly to the Saviour speed;
For Jesus tells you "there is room,"
And to the weary soul says, "Come;"
Then lean your head upon his breast.
And you shall have the promised rest.
When you shall touch your gifted lyre,
Glowing with sweet, seraphic fire,
O then, remember me again,
And wake for me one pleasing strain.
Lines, Written in an Album.
"Then Jesus said unto her, Mary."
"Mary," the ris'n Saviour said,
In accents sweet and low;
"Mary:" she rais'd her drooping head,
The form she sought to know.
Mary had lingered by the cross,
To see her Saviour die;
Had seen him wrapp'd in linen fine,
In Joseph's tomb to lie.
Now she had come at early dawn,
Laden with rich perfume,
To shed her tears beside his form--
Her fragrance round his tomb.
But, lo! he lives; O, glad surprise!
Has ris'n from the grave;
And now, before her ravish'd eyes,
Proclaims his power to save.
May you, who bear that gentle name,
This Saviour's call obey;
And he will lead you by his grace,
To realms of endless day.
Mary had followed to the cross--
Had sought him at the tomb;
So may you follow, seek and find;
He calls--"there still is room."
A Long Night in the Eighteenth Century.
The hardy and enterprising inhabitants, who first penetrated the
eastern forests, to fell their hardy oaks, and build up settlements,
in the then remote east, had many difficulties to encounter, which
later generations know nothing of. In the latter part of the
eighteenth century, two families lived in their log cabins, in the
interior of the forest. They had each a small cleared spot of land,
that amply repaid their labor, by its rich productions. The morning
sun, as he shed his rising beams over the long range of forest trees,
glanced smilingly upon their little cultivated spot,
"That bloomed like Eden, in the world's first spring;"
and they were contented and happy. The dense forest trees, waving
in the blast, or gently bowing their lofty heads before the milder
breeze, made music not unlike the dash of Ocean on his winding shore.
They were far from the abodes of men. The fashions, the vanities and
the pleasures of life, held no despotic sway in their breasts. They
pursued "the even tenor of their ways," rising before the sun, and
retiring almost with his sinking beams.
The cows and sheep went forth to crop the green herbage and luxurious
grass, heralding their approach by tinkling bells.
No roads were made, and the citizens pursued their way by trees,
stripped of little pieces of bark, by friendly Indians, who went
as guides to the pale faces, that had come into their territories,
purchased their lands, and distributed the deadly fire-water among
them, thus adding fury to their already ferocious natures.
The men were both house carpenters, and one of them a wheelwright; so
they were frequently called upon to leave their homes, and go to some
distant part, where a new settlement was springing up, to fill the
place of the forest trees, that had fallen before the woodman's axe.
In the spring of 1773, the settlement upon the banks of the Kennebec
river, now called Gardiner (but then bearing the Indian name of
Cobbessy), was progressing rapidly. A saw mill was to be erected upon
this rapid stream, that had rolled on for centuries, through the
towering forest, only bearing the Indian's light canoe, as it floated
over its glassy surface, and the dipping of the paddle, in the dark
rolling stream, awoke an answering echo in her wild forest haunts.
And so these men, Mr. Fuller and Capt. Somers, shouldered their tools,
and pursued their way by the spotted trees, to the far off settlement,
leaving their families in the bosom of the forest, unprotected and
alone. Not infrequently did the crackling brush denote the near
approach of the sulky bear, or some other wild beast that had
heretofore roamed the woods at large, undisturbed, save by the
swift-winged arrow of the Indian, as he pursued his prey over the
dense forest, but little tamer than the hunted beast. A discharge
of the rifle, which they were ever obliged to carry with them, soon
caused the enemy to retreat, and leave them to pursue their solitary
Often would the Indians come along in droves, their small dogs
indicating their approach. The chief of one tribe was called Sousup.
His wife was a woman of pleasant countenance, and was usually very
neatly dressed, having her blanket of snowy whiteness, while her
moccasins were of the nicest material. She was covered with wampum,
and wore large jewels in her ears and nose, and large silver brooches
on different parts of her dress. She never drank the fire-water, and
used to trade with the pale faces, as she was so gentle in her manners
that she easily won her way into their houses and hearts.
It was sunset, when Mrs. Fuller had milked her cows, and performed the
domestic duties that devolved upon her during her husband's absence.
She had laid her sleeping infant from her arms, and her other children
were placed snugly in bed, when she was startled by seeing an Indian's
dog emerging from a clump of bushes that stood a few yards from the
house, and come bounding towards the door.
Her heart palpitated violently, for frequent reports reached their
ears, of whole families falling a fearful prey to savage brutality.
Soon she heard the Indian dialect vociferated in loud voices, while
occasionally a loud savage yell rang fearfully through the air,
blending a wild chorus with the strains of the warbling birds, as they
carolled their vesper hymns upon the neighboring branches, before
retiring to their nests. Hastily she closed her doors, and skulked
away in a secret corner, hoping they would pass on, and not disturb
her. She soon became aware, by their fierce words, that there were
many of them in a state of intoxication.
The heart of the lonely woman almost died within her, as she heard
their heavy tramp before the door. She had taken the precaution to
draw in the leather string that was attached to the wooden latch, to
raise it, thus betraying her own secret. After pounding upon the door
for some time, and threatening to break it down if it was not opened,
the storm subsided, and she hoped, by the sound of retreating
footsteps, they were pursuing their journey.
She was soon undeceived, by hearing her own name called, by the gentle
voice of Sousup's wife, or "squaw," as he called her.
She stepped forward and opened the door, and discovered a large horde
of red men, wrapped in dirty blankets, reeling under the influence of
the fire-water. The squaws were in a squalid condition, and equally
drunk with the men, while the papooses, that were placed in sacks upon
their backs, peeping up, with their bare heads and dirty faces, added
to the wretchedness of the scene, and the sight of them blanched the
cheek of the poor woman, as she tremblingly looked upon them.
Dove Eye marked her fear, and informed her, in broken English, that
the Penobscot tribe had joined with them, and they were going towards
the rising sun, to hunt moose and deer, and make mats and baskets, to
carry to Boston.
"But," added she, "Sousup drink fire-water and git much drunk; me feel
bad, but Dove Eye no help it."
She told her they were going to have a pow-wow, and wished to go into
a little cleared spot, in the edge of the forest, near her dwelling.
Mrs. Fuller dared not refuse, and so she tremblingly consented.
She told her tribe the result of their confab, and they came forward,
to a man, and laid down their rifles, tomahawks and scalping knives at
her feet, saying,
"Me no hurt white squaw."
They collected a large pile of brush, kindled their fire, lit their
pipes, and prepared their evening meal, after which they commenced
their savage revelry.
They daubed their faces with red paint, while their greasy black hair
hung in dishevelled masses down their backs, and waved to and fro as
they jumped or ran, and performed the various evolutions of their mazy
Mrs. Fuller lit no candle during that fearful night. She watched their
dusky forms, as they flitted by, dimly seen through the trees, by the
glaring blaze of the fire, that crackled up, throwing a flickering
light upon the majestic forest trees that waved in solemn grandeur
above their heads, and sighed mournfully as the night winds floated
among their branches. The Indians formed a circle round the fire, by
joining hands, and their frantic gestures were teriffic to behold, and
their wild shrieks rent the air. Twice, and twice only, the fearful
war-whoop resounded, filling the heart of that lonely watcher with
It was past midnight; the moon had passed her zenith in the sky,
and the swarthy band seemed frantic with their wild orgies and
Many had fallen, beastly drunk, while others swayed like the forest
trees, rocked by the wintry whirlwind.
Dove Eye sat on a mossy rock looking upon the scene with a melancholy
expression of countenance. Near her lay stretched upon the bare
ground, Eagle Eye, the wife of the swarthy chief, who had joined their
tribe in their hunting excursions.
Suddenly a furious din arose, and it was evident that anger was added
to the other debasing passions that were holding control over their
benighted souls. Furious was the strife of words, and fearful menaces
and threats fell from brutal, savage lips.
Suddenly the stranger chief seized a burning torch, and accompanied by
a fierce looking companion, strode hastily toward the house. Dove Eye
saw their movements and sprang hurriedly to their side, endeavoring
to stop their progress; but they pushed her aside and proceeded. Mrs.
Fuller, too, saw them through the small pane of glass that was placed
in her board window, and hope almost forsook her. They passed on: the
light gleamed through the pane and flickered upon the face of her
sleeping infant. She heard distinctly their voices in low, guttural
tones, and their heavy tread fell painfully upon her ear. They passed
round the corner of the house, and she lost sight and sound of them.
She opened the door into an adjoining apartment, and the light burst
upon her with such intense brightness that she thought at first they
had fired the house. Upon approaching the window, she again discovered
them by the wood pile searching for the axe, which they soon raised,
and cutting several sticks of wood, bore it away to replenish their
In a short time their dusky forms wrapped in their dirty blankets,
were stretched upon the damp ground, with their greasy heads turned
towards the fire, and sleep descended upon their weary lids, and
silence once more reigned round that forest home.
Dove Eye still reclined upon the rock, watching the moon as it hid
its silver beams behind a dark mountain, whose eternal summit lay
stretched along the western horizon.
Mrs. Fuller, too, kept anxious watch. She knew from many of them she
had nothing to fear; they had often warmed themselves by her fire,
had eaten of her bread, and in many ways been partakers of her
hospitality, and she knew the Indian never forgets a kindness.
She gently hushed the feeble wailings of her infant, lest it should
awaken them to savage rage. She almost resolved to take her children
and leave the house while that savage band were weighed down by sleep
and intoxication. But she feared it might exasperate them if they
found her gone, and so she waited the event, lifting her heart to God
in prayer, for he was the refuge of that christian woman, in every
hour of trial.
The sun came up at length, and shed his glorious beams over the face
of rejoicing nature. The birds sang their matin hymns of praise. The
dew drops glittered upon the green grass and tender herbage, and the
restless cows lowed, impatient to wander forth at their accustomed
hour. The children arose, refreshed by their slumber, and as they
looked out upon the dusky sons of the forest, their hearts quaked
within them, and stealing silently into a corner, they awaited their
fate with pale faces.
Dove Eye stole quietly from the rock, and kindling the almost
extinguished fire, hastily prepared their simple morning meal. She
took from a deer skin knapsack, which she carried upon her back, a
neat white cloth, and repaired to the house of Mrs. Fuller, wishing
to exchange some nice dried moose meat for some new milk. Mrs. Fuller
hastily milked, and filling a large pail, Dove Eye bore it to their
place of rendezvous, and the cows went forth to crop the dewy grass.
She then awoke her husband, and soon the dusky group were partaking of
their morning repast, with evident satisfaction, after which they made
preparations to depart. They came, one after another, to get their
hunting utensils and their implements of war, from Mrs. Fuller,
"Me no forget white squaw--me bring moose meat for white squaw."
Soon they marched away, in Indian file, and as their dusky forms
disappeared, one after another, behind the forest trees, her heart
rose in thanksgiving to God, for her preservation. Dove Eye lingered
till the rest of her tribe vanished from sight; there was sadness in
her countenance, and sadness in her voice, as she said,
"Dove Eye see white squaw no more. Dove Eye go toward the rising sun,
but Dove Eye come no more."
Mrs. Fuller pressed her hand affectionately, and commending her to the
Great Spirit, she departed to overtake her companions. The children
emerged from their hiding places, a cheerful fire burned upon the
hearth, and the weary mother prepared the morning meal for herself and
her children, with a grateful heart.
When the wandering tribe returned again towards the setting sun, Dove
Eye was not with them--she had "gone to the land where her fathers had
Years passed on--years of trial, of anxiety, and of change. The tall
forest trees gave place to cultivated fields and blooming orchards.
Roads traversed the vast country in every direction. Numerous villages
rose up, on the flourishing banks of the winding Kennebec, and its
proud waters bore many a whitened sail upon its surface.
The red men of the forest have passed away, like the withered leaves
before the autumnal gale, and the wild bear and deer are now strangers
in their secluded haunts.
The young wife and mother passed from the sober matron to mature age,
and there were deep furrows upon her cheek, and the frosts of many
winters whitened her hair; but when she related the events of that
night to her grand-children, or great-grand-children, she ever spoke
with trembling voice, and called it the "long fearful night."
On Hearing a Bird Sing,
Cease, little warbler, cease thy lay,
For summer, with her sunny day,
Far to the south has fled away;
And autumn's chilly finger
Has touch'd the leaf on ev'ry tree,--
And blighted everything we see;
Then, warbler, do not linger.
Fly where groves of citron bloom,
And orange orchards shed perfume,
And birds of ev'ry varied plume
With music charm thee:
Fly, little warbler, quickly fly,
Far, far away to southern sky,
Where nought can harm thee.
For, oh, it is no careless voice--
That bids thee fly and seek for joys,
And shun the rushing whirlwind's noise,
That soon will pass before thee.
But one, whose bosom knows full well,
The heartless scene, the winter spell,
That soon will hover o'er thee.
Variety is sweet to me
As many blossoms to the bee;
And I will roam from flower to flower,
Sipping honey ev'ry hour;
I will wander with the bee,
And drink thy sweets, variety.
But if I idly flit away,
All my sunny summer day,
Dancing round from flow'r to flow'r;
What shall grace my winter bow'r?
No, I'll not wander with the bee,
So tempt me not, variety.
But I will prune my myrtle tree,
That in winter green will be,
When other flow'rs are pale and dead:
Their color gone, their beauty fled,
No, I'll not wander with the bee;
So away, variety.
My myrtle then shall be my care,
That's green and fragrant all the year;
I will not spend the fleeting hours
Flitting round more fragrant flow'rs.
I'll not wander with the bee,
So begone, variety.
This in youth should be our care,
To improve for future years;
For if we flit from toy to toy,
Chasing the painted bubble, joy,
No real substance shall we find
To nourish or improve the mind.
Then I'll not wander with the bee
Since it leads to misery.
And youth's fair morn will vanish soon,
And the bright sun grow dim at noon;
Trials will rise along the way,
To cloud the dreary winter day;
Then I'll not wander with the bee,
So farewell, variety.
Reverses of Fortune.
At the foot of the Alleghany Mountains stands the flourishing village
of Hollidaysburg. On the banks of the blue Juniata, that winds on till
it buries its waters in the rolling Susquehannah, stood the elegant
mansion of Esquire Clinton, the village lawyer. He had lost his young
wife many years since, and Henriette, his only child, shared largely
in the affection of her father. Her every wish was gratified, and she
was educated in the fashionable etiquette of the place. She was the
guiding star in the fashionable circle in which she moved, and a
But there came a change. The father was seized with sudden illness,
and in a few short hours was no more. The grief-stricken Henriette
had watched with an agonized heart the progress of the disease, had
attended to his wants, and supplied his necessities with her own
hands. A skillful physician had done all that medical aid could do,
but nothing could avail. The grim messenger lingered not, and the
beautiful Henriette was left sole mistress of the splendid mansion.
But Frederic Clinton had made preparation for that event, and his lamp
was trimmed and burning when the Master came.
Henriette, too, had given her heart to God, while the freshness of
youth was yet upon it, and now he supported her in her hour of trial.
Her father was borne to the grave, with all the splendor of wealth, a
long train of sympathizing friends following in the procession, and
showing every attention to the bereaved orphan, who was the only
Henriette returned with an aching heart, to the home of her childhood,
and seated herself in her father's library, overwhelmed with grief.
It was a cheerless autumn day, and nature seemed sympathizing in her
sorrow. The fitful gusts of wind came sighing down the mountains, and
sweeping over the usually placid waters of the Juniata, tossed its
waves into tumultuous motion, and drove it more rapidly on in its
serpentine course. The beautiful magnolia that stood before the
window, was filled with its second crop of yellow flowers, that were
faded and ready to pass away, and the surging blasts swept them
unceremoniously from the branches, as it came sighing down the
mountains, and sweeping along the valley. The sun had long since hid
himself behind the summit of the eternal hills, that she had loved to
watch with her father, from that window, while learning lessons
from his lips, of the grandeur and sublimity of God, who spake that
stupendous chain of mountains into existence. And her thought was
turned to that God, who has promised to be "the father of the
fatherless." To him she knelt--to him she prayed. Soothed and
comforted, she arose and entered the parlor. Sympathizing domestics
awaited her pleasure, and obeyed her commands.
Proper measures were taken for an investigation of Mr. Clinton's
affairs, and the estate was pronounced insolvent, and all was offered
for sale. At first Henriette could scarcely believe the assertion, but
when she became convinced of its truth, she nerved her mind to meet
the trial, relying upon that God "who tempers the wind to the shorn
She immediately dismissed her domestics, who had been faithful so
long to the family, watching over their young mistress, during her
childhood and early youth, and now they felt grieved to leave her. She
gave each one a present from her own treasures, procured good places
for them, retaining only the dear old nurse in her service, for a few
days, till the auction had taken place.
Henriette had never been accustomed to labor, and old Mary was
surprised upon seeing her enter the dining room, with her glossy brown
hair parted neatly over her high marble forehead, clad in a simple
gingham, which she had prepared for a morning dress, with a brown
linen apron, to assist her in making the necessary arrangements for
her removal and the coming sale.
The rooms were put in the best possible order, and the luxurious
furniture arranged with great care, that everything might show to the
best advantage. She selected a few choice volumes from the library,
and placed them in a large trunk, which was to contain her own
wardrobe, and which she had decided upon keeping, if circumstances
This had been her favorite room; one window looked out upon the
mountains, that lifted their heads in majestic grandeur, and seemed
supporting the very clouds upon their lofty summits, while their
jagged sides looked as though they would drop upon the valley below.
But they had stood for ages the same, braving the fury of the wintry
storm as its surging blasts swept over them, or parched by the burning
rays of the noonday sun, as he poured his fierce scorching beams upon
them. She had looked upon them too in the twilight hour, when the
coming darkness would present strange, mysterious shadows, and the
craggy rocks would assume the forms of men, and fancy would conjure up
a lawless band of midnight plunderers emerging from their dark caves,
upon the mountain side.
But now she was looking out of that window perhaps for the last time,
and the unbidden tear would spring to her eye. The books were nicely
dusted, the comfortable stuffed rocking chair stood in its usual place
where her father used to love to sit so well, and a splendid ottoman
stood before it, which was usually her seat. Her elegant little chair
covered with crimson velvet, stood by the window, where she ever loved
to linger to look out upon the mountains, always finding some new
trace of beauty, as she gazed upon their cloud capped summits. But now
she must linger no longer; the rich covering was placed exactly square
upon the elegant little table, and every particle of dust was banished
from the room, and there were duties elsewhere that demanded her
attention. As she turned to leave the room, she raised her eyes to the
portraits of her parents that hung suspended on the wall opposite her,
in heavy gilt frames. The likenesses were very natural, and now seemed
smiling upon her with life-like affection. At this time the man
entered with whom she had procured board, and who had kindly offered
to assist in removing any articles she might wish to convey to his
house. The dear resemblances of her idolized parents were removed
from the spot they had occupied so many years, to be carried to a
stranger's home. Henriette felt less regret at parting from the place
now those loved faces were removed. There were many little treasures
associated with dear memories she would gladly have taken, but a
strict sense of honor forbade her. She turned away, locking the door,
but leaving the key in it, to be turned next by a stranger's hand. She
drew up her music stool, and seating herself upon it touched the keys
of her piano with a skillful hand, and sang with a trembling voice,
"Farewell, farewell, is a lonely sound."
She closed the instrument as she finished the pieced saying,
"It is the last time."
There was one hour before the auction, and already were curious eyes
peering round the premises. Every thing being arranged to their minds,
Henriette dismissed the dear old nurse with many tears and a generous
reward. She would live near by and would see her every day, and this
was a source of great comfort to both.
Henriette now ran down the beautiful terraced walk, through her
father's garden, till she reached a beautiful arbor on the brink of
the river, where she had spent so many happy hours. Here was her
guitar, her father's flute, and the book they had last read together.
She seated herself upon the richly cushioned seat, and looked upon
the winding waters that seemed mocking her sad heart as they danced
sparkling on beneath the mellow rays of the autumnal sun, its bosom
ruffled by the autumnal breeze. At the foot of the terrace her fairy
skiff lay moored, which used to dance upon the wave by moonlight,
while she and her father made the air resound with the melody of their
music; but there was little time to linger here.
She put the little arbor in order, and repaired next to her
conservatory, filled with rich and rare exotics, took a hasty glance,
moving the choice plants into the position that best suited her good
taste, and wiping the dust from its polished shelves. Her father's
chair occupied its place by his favorite window that looked out upon
the Juniata that was indistinctly seen, peeping its little spots of
blue through the thick leaves of the plants that almost hid it from
view. She took a last look, passing on to the aviary, where a choice
collection of birds filled the ear with their melody. Old nurse had
attended to this department, and she caressed her pets, and smoothed
their feathers, and breathing a sad adieu, turned to take a last look
at her favorite Sullensifadda, as she had named her noble steed. She
patted his neck, told him coaxingly he would never again climb the
mountain pass with her upon his back; took a last look of her father's
splendid saddle horse of dapple grey, and his jet black span of
carriage horses, and passed round through the richly cultivated
grounds, and gardens where every thing that wealth could procure lay
spread out before the eye. She took a hasty look, a hasty leave of all
and felt that sense of desolation known to almost every human heart,
when called upon to part from dear familiar objects. She looked at her
elegant gold watch, and finding her time had expired, returned to
the house. Already there had many arrived who wished to attend the
auction. Henriette entered a small apartment, seated herself upon a
low stool, and wept as she heard the unfeeling remarks and low jests,
as the vulgar crowd pulled about the furniture, turning it from side
to side, declaring they had no idea Esq. Clinton's mansion was so
meanly furnished. But we will not dwell upon this painful scene.
Mr. Charles Norcross purchased the house with all its appurtenances.
The furniture was distributed about here and there among the
wealthy citizens, who wished to add some article of luxury to their
establishment. And all was gone. Sold for less than half its value,
and poor Henriette had the mortification of hearing that the debts
were not cancelled. So she disposed of her gold watch and pencil, her
father's watch, a box of rich jewelry, and every available article in
her possession to contribute her mite to keep dishonor from resting
upon her father's name. She then went forth penniless upon the world.
But there was a light in her eye and firmness in her step that told of
a "will to do, a soul to dare." She had been educated in the customs
of the village, and had been an aristocrat. Now she had another lesson
to learn, a sad lesson speaking of the depravity of the human heart,
and now she must learn all the cold heartlessness of that world that
had heretofore shone so brightly upon her pathway. She did not once
think in her grief that her change in fortune would make any change in
friendship's tone, but alas! the society in which she had moved was
very, very exclusive, and to labor with the hands was to bar the door
of that society forever against one.
Henriette at first did not realize this, and when she met her former
gay companions, was surprised when they passed her with an averted
eye, or a slight nod of recognition. Frequently was she called upon to
meet that sudden death chill that falls so often upon the human heart,
when the fond affections of many years gush warmly up to the eye and
lip, as we meet some long cherished friend who passes us by with a
cold, scornful glance. O this is poverty's bitterest curse, and this
too must be met. Those who might have removed many a sharp thorn from
the pathway of the lonely Henriette, but added sharpness to their
point, and made her feel and deeply feel,
"Man's inhumanity to man,
Makes countless thousands mourn."
The poor girl felt there was no time to sit still, for she was a
destitute orphan, and she must try to help herself, and so she
repaired to Mrs. Cobb, the most fashionable dress maker in the
village, to see if she could learn her trade.
Matters were satisfactorily arranged, and she commenced immediately.
A willing hand and active mind made the task easier than she had
anticipated. It was soon a matter of conversation through all the
village, when it became known that the haughty Henriette Clinton was
going to be a dress maker, and many were the remarks that were made
upon her everlasting gingham dress, for her nice sense of propriety
prevented her from wearing the rich articles of apparel contained in
her wardrobe; and at present she could procure no other. She formed
the resolution sometimes of disposing of some of her costly garments
to relieve her present necessity, but they had been selected by her
dear father, and were all that remained to her as a link of her past
intercourse with him, and so she clung to them as dear remembrances of
the past, the happy past.
She sat through the long weary hours with her eyes bent upon her work,
and made rapid proficiency in the art she was acquiring.
Mr. Norcross, who purchased the Clinton estate, was a man of a low
sordid mind not at all calculated to appreciate the elegance of his
domicile. He was a merchant, and had rapidly come into possession of
great wealth, and wishing to climb a little higher upon the ladder
of aristocracy, he thought a purchase of the lawyer's splendid
establishment would forward his progress. Therefore, selling his own
place at a very high price, and purchasing that at an equally low one,
did not much diminish his hoarded gold. But after all they were not
the Clintons. It was only Mr. Norcross the store-keeper, and they had
many steps to climb before they could reach that position in society
they were so desirous of attaining. They bowed to one, scraped to
another, parties were made, and many means devised, all of which were
accompanied with disappointment, as the least desired would come, and
those for whom the party was made would just as surely stay away.
Mrs. Norcross was a large coarse woman, with red hair, light blue
eyes, and freckled face, but with a good humored expression of
countenance. Her two daughters, Araminta and Clarinda, were not very
refined in their manners, owing to a deficiency in their education,
but were good hearted, cheerful girls. Araminta was much pleased with
Henriette's horse, but did not appreciate the name, and declared he
should be called Selim, for she knew she had read of some great
man who had a horse by that name, and who ever heard of one named
Sullensifadda, ugly name. She mounted him one day, gaily caparisoned,
but he being equally unaccostomed to his new name and rider, soon
convinced her he had a light pair of heels.
Henriette sat busily at work by the window, when the clatter of the
well known hoofs sounded upon her ear, and she raised her eyes just in
time to see her well remembered steed flying toward the mountain
pass with the speed of lightning, while the frightened Araminta was
clinging to his mane to prevent falling to the ground, her long riding
dress and veil were streaming behind her their full length in the
wind, which was blowing pretty briskly, and her small riding-cap was
drawn a little farther upon one side than the rules of gentility
seemed to require. Henriette pitied the poor girl, but she could not
help smiling at her ludicrous appearance. She turned pale when she
saw the horse turn suddenly down a narrow path that led to the river,
plunge into its dashing waves, and swimming round a circuitous route,
spring back upon the shore, and setting his face towards home, bore
back the mortified girl all wet and dripping through the streets at
too rapid a rate for any one to interfere with his arrangements,
arriving at home apparently well satisfied with his performance.
Months passed away, such months as Henriette had never known before.
She could have borne her toil, her simple fare, and the ten thousand
deprivations she was subjected to, had this been all; but the averted
looks of her friends were more than all these. She used to sit a
little while in the twilight hour upon her parents' graves, and recall
their loved forms and tender words, and people her imagination with
by-gone scenes, and then, as she contrasted the present, her cherished
text would come to illuminate her mind and calm her troubled spirit,
"all things work together for good to them that fear God," and she was
comforted and strengthened to go on her weary way, for this took in
life with all its little incidents, its every day trials, and she
returned to the active duties of life, realizing that "this is not our
Ere the spring returned she had accomplished her wish, and entered
into many families as dress maker where she used to be admitted as an
equal, if not superior. She maintained her dignity of deportment, for
now she well knew poverty did not deteriorate from worth, a
lesson perhaps she too might have been slow to learn under some
circumstances, but which now had been taught her by stern necessity,
and her rigid lessons are never soon forgotten.
She had taken the rich trimming from some of her plainest dresses, and
wore them when she could not possibly avoid it. She did her work with
great neatness and dispatch, and was supplied with all she could
possibly do, so that she remunerated the kind hearted woman who had
boarded her through her apprenticeship, and been very attentive to her
in many ways, for she truly pitied the poor orphan.
In the spring Mr. Clinton's vacant office was again occupied by a
young lawyer, who came into the village, from New York, named Henry
Lorton, and half the young ladies' heads were turned, by the beauty
and elegance of the young northerner. Parties were formed, walks
projected up the mountains, moonlight sails upon the silvery bosom of
the Juniata, and every means devised to draw the young lawyer into
company, and love with the southern beauties; but they declared his
heart was as cold as the region he came from.
All these things Henriette heard, as she sat plying her needle, or