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Full Online Book HomeLong StoriesSamantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 4
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Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 4 Post by :oukhanova Category :Long Stories Author :Marietta Holley Date :May 2012 Read :793

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Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 4


I knew Thomas J. wuz a-layin' out to go up to Zoar some day that week to see about a young chap to stay in his office while he wuz at the World's Fair, and it seemed that Krit had gone along for company and for the ride.

Them two young fellers love to be together. They are both as smart as whips--the very keenest, snappiest kind of whips.

Wall, I laid out to git a good dinner, that wuz my calm intention; and I sent out Josiah Allen to ketch two plump pullets, I a-layin' out to stuff 'em with the particular kind of dressin' that Thomas J. is partial to. It is a good dressin'.

And then I wuz a-layin' out to have some nice mashed-up potatoes, some early sweet peas, some lemon puddin', besides some coffee, jest as Thomas J. likes it--rich, golden coffee, with plenty of cream in it; and then besides I wuz goin' to have one or two vegetables that Josiah liked, and some jellys, etc., that Krit wuz particular fond of. Oh, I wuz goin' to have a good dinner, there hain't a doubt of that! Oh, and I wuz goin' to have some delicious soup too, to start off the dinner with! I got the receipt of Job Pressley's wife and improved on it, (though I wouldn't want her to know I said it, she is jealous dispositioned.) But I did.

Wall, if you'll believe it, jest as I wuz a-finishin' my dressin', addin' the last ingregient to it, and my mind wuz all on a strain to have it jest right--

All of a sudden Josiah Allen rushed in all out of breath, and hollered to me for a rope.

"A rope?" sez I, bein' took aback.

"Yes, a long, stout rope," sez he, a-standin' still and a-breathin' hard. Why, he looked that wild and agitated and wrought up, that the idee passed through my mind:

Is that man a-contemplatin' suicide? Does he want to hang himself?

But, as I sez, the idee only jest passed through my fore-top; it didn't find any encouragement to stay--it went through on the trot, as you may say.

No, my noble-minded pardner never would commit suicide, I knew. But his looks wuz fearful, and I sez, almost tremblin'--

"What do you want the rope for? I don't know of any rope, only the bed-cord up in the old chamber."

At these words, that agitated, skairt man rushed right upstairs, I a-follerin' him, summer-savory still in my hands, and fear and tremblin' in my mean.

And I see him dash up to the old bedstead in the attick, dash off the bedclothes and the feather-bed, and beginnin' oncordin' of it.

I then laid hands on him, and commanded him to desist.

"I won't desist," sez he, "I won't desist."

There wuz I, still a-holdin' him by the back of his frock--he had on his barn clothes.

"Then do you tell your pardner the meanin' of your actions imegetly and to once."

"I hain't got time," sez he, and oh! how he wuz onriddlin' that old bedstead of the rope; the fuzz fairly flew offen the rope as he yanked it through them holes, and twice I wuz hit by it voyalently in my face, as I strove to hold him, and elicit some information out of him.

But I could git nothin' but hard breathin' and muttered oathes till the bed-cord wuz all onloosened, and then he gathered it over his arm and started on the run for the door, I a-follerin'.

And then I see that there stood Old Bobbet, Sime Yerden, Deacon Sypher, and, in fact, most all the men in the neighborhood and some beyend it, some from the Loontown road, and some from over towards Shackville. There wuz more'n twenty of 'em.

And I sez, and I almost fainted as I sez it--

"Has another war broke loose, or is it a wild animal from a circus? Tell me, oh, tell me what it is!"

And one on 'em hollered, "It is a wild beast in human shape, but he won't be a wild beast much longer!"

And he pinted to the rope he had on his arm.

And I see then the fearful meanin' hangin' round that bed-cord. I see that others had 'em, and I see that hangin' wuz about to take place and ensue. And I besought Josiah Allen "to pause, to stay a little, to tell me what it all meant, to not take the law into his own hands."

I poured out words like a flood, I wuz inkoherent in the extreme, and my words wuz vain.

But Josiah Allen--oh, how that man loves me! He darted back, throwed a paper at my feet, and hollered--

"That will explain, Samantha!" And then he wuz gone; I see 'em divide into four parties, and go towards the woods, and towards the hills, and towards the creek, and towards the beaver medder, each party havin' a rope, and I sez solemn like, before I thought--

"May God have mercy on your poor soul!"

I spoze I meant the one they wuz after, and mebby I meant them that wuz after him, I don't know; I wuz too inkoherent and wrought up to know what I did mean.

But I know I sot down and read that paper as quick as I could find my specks. And I well remember that after huntin' high and low for 'em and all over the house with tremblin' knees and shaky hands cold as a frog's, I found 'em on my own fore-top, and I sot right down in my tracts and read.

Well, it wuz enough to melt the heart of a stun, a granit stun, and as I sot there and read, the tears jest run down my face in a stream; why, they fell so that they wet the front of my gingham dress wet as sop, and ontirely onbeknown to me.

But I kep a-thinkin' to myself, "Oh, that poor little creeter! Oh, them poor, poor creeters that loved her! Oh, that poor mother!" And then anon I would say to myself, "Oh, what if it wuz my Tirzah Ann! What if it wuz the Babe! Oh, that villian; may the Lord punish him!"

And that is jest the way I sot, and wept, and cried, and cried and wept.

You see, the way it wuz, there wuz a sweet little girl, only ten years old, decoyed by a lyin' excuse from her warm, cosey home at midnight by a villian, and took through the snowy, icy streets to her doom.

Her little cold body wuz found in an empty old barn, and her destroyer, her murderer, had fled. But men wuz on his tracts, the hull country wuz roused, and they wuz huntin' him down, as if he wuz a wild animal, as indeed he wuz.

But anon, as I read the paper over again, I see these words--"The man was intoxicated."

And then I begun to weep on the other end of my handkerchief (metafor).

And then, when other accounts come out, and the man wuz ketched, he swore, and swore solemn, too, that he did not remember one single solitary thing after he left that saloon where he got his drink till he sobered up and found himself by the side of that little dead body.

And other witnesses swore that they see him drunk as a fool before he sot out on his murderous and worse than murderous assault.

But from the time of the first tidings that come of the deed that had been done--though the excitement wuz more rampant that I ever knew it to be, and every single man in the community wuz out bloodthirsty for his death, and every party a-carry-in' a rope to hang him, and every woman a-lookin' out eager to see him hung, and all on 'em a-cursin' him, and a-weepin' over what he had done--

Durin' all this time, not one word did I hear uttered agin the cause of his crime, agin the man who sold him what made him a murderer, and worse, or the man that supplied the saloon with this damnable liquid.

No, not a single word did I hear from a Jonesvillian, male or female. And not one word from my pardner, though his excitement wuz so extreme that that night, jest about dusk, he rushed out thinkin' that he had got the murderer, and throwed the rope round Deacon Sypher, who had come over to borrow an auger. And once in a similer way he ketched Old Bobbet, his excitement and zeal wuz so rampant and intense.

(Illustration: He rushed out and throwed the rope around Deacon Sypher.)

Them old men wuz mad as hens, and cause enough they had, though they forgive him when they see what a state he wuz in, and they jest about as bad themselves.

But not a word from them, nor from any one did I hear durin' the hull time the excitement rained--and oh! how it did rain--about the cause of the crime.

Not one man waded in and dived down into the deep undercurrent of causes, that strange deep that underlays all human actions.

And once durin' the last day's hunt for the murderer, who wuz hidin' round somewhere--it wuz spozed in the woods--I see as I looked out of my kitchen winder, at a party headed for our swamp, one man fur more ferocious actin' than any I had seen; he wuz a-hollerin' wilder, and he carried a fur longer rope.

And I asked my companion who that man wuz that acted madder and fur more fiercer than any of the rest and more anxious to git holt of the escapin' man, so he could be hung up to once to the highest tree that could be found.

I hearn him say that right out of my own kitchen winder--I hearn him say--

"We won't wait for no law; if we only ketch him we will hang him up so high that the buzzards can't git him."

And then he yelled out savage and fierce and started off on a run for the swamp, the rest of the men applaudin' him up high, and follerin' on after him.

And Josiah told me that wuz the saloon-keeper up to Zoar.

Sez I, "The very man that sold that poor sinner the licker on that night?"

"Yes," sez Josiah.

"Wall," sez I, "the rope ort to be used on his own neck."

And Josiah Allen acted awfully horrified at my idee, and asked me "if I wuz as crazy as a loon?"

And sez he, "He has been one of the fiercest ones to head him off that has been out."

And I sez dryly--dry as a chip, "He wuzn't so fierce to head him off the night he sold him the whiskey and hard cider." Sez I, "That headin' off would have amounted to sunthin'."

And agin I sez, "The rope ort to be used on his own neck, if it is on anybody's, his and Uncle Sam's."

And agin Josiah Allen asked me, "If I wuz as crazy as a dumb loon and a losin' my faculties--what few of 'em you ever had," sez he.

And I sez, "The two wuz in partnership together, and they got the man to do the murder." Sez I, "Most all the murders that are done in this country are done by that firm--the Goverment and the Saloon-keeper. And when their poor tools, that they have whetted up for bloodshed, swing out through their open doors and cut and slash and mow down their ghastly furrows of crime and horrer, who is to blame?"

And Josiah turned over the almanac to the yeller cover and perused it, so's to show his perfect and utter indifference and contempt for my words.

Wall, they ketched the man a day or two after, about sundown. He had been a little ahead of his pursuers, a-dodgin' 'em this way and that way, jest like a fox a-dodgin' a pack of hounds.

His old rubber boots wuz all wore offen him, his clothes hangin' in rags and tatters where he had rushed through the woods and swamps, his feet and hands all froze. Half starved, and almost idiotic with fear and remorse and the effects of the poisoned licker and doctored cider he had drinked, he wuz the most pitiful and wretched-lookin' object I ever see in my hull life.

And it happened he wux took a little over a mile from us, and he wuz brung right by our door.

There wuz some officers in the party, so they interfered and kep the mob from hangin' him right up by the neck.

They said they had to hold that saloon-keeper to keep his hands offen him, and they said that in spite of all he did git the rope round him.

But the officers interfered, and after that they had to hold the saloon-keeper to keep him from the prisoner.

And I sez, when Josiah was a-praisin' up the saloon-keeper's zeal, and how the officers had to hold him--

I sez, "It is a pity the officers didn't hold him in the first place, and then all the horrer and tragedy might have been saved."

But my pardner wouldn't even notice a thing I said. He felt, I could see, that my remarks wuz indeed beneath his notice.

Wall, I stood and see this poor, weak, despairin' victim of rum dragged off to a felon's doom, dragged off to the scaffold, and one of his chief draggers wuz the one that caused his crime--caused it accordin' to law. And the rest of his draggers wuz the ones who had voted to have the trade of murderer makin' and child killin' and villian breedin' perpetuated and kep up.

And the Goverment of the United States hung him, the same Goverment that wuz in partnership with that saloon up in Zoar, and took part of the pay for makin' this man murder that innocent little girl.

Wall, Josiah and me, we went to that funeral. I felt that I must go, and so did he; it wuz only about five milds from here, in the Methodist Episcopal Meetin'-House up to Zoar.

Her father and mother wuz members in good standin'. Lots of Jonesvillians went to the funeral; there hadn't been such a excitement in Zoar and Jonesville sence Seth Widrik murdered his wife's mother with a broad axe (and that wuz done through whiskey, so they say; it wuz done before my time).

The Meetin'-House in Zoar wuz crowded to its utmost capacity and the ceilin'. And seats wuz sot in all the aisles, and the pulpit stairs wuz full of folks, and the door-steps, and the front yard wuz packed full. We went early, and got a seat.

(Illustration: Wall, Josiah and me, we went to that funeral.)

All the ministers of Zoar, and Jonesville, and Loontown, and Shackville wuz there, and of all the sermons that wuz preached--wall, it wuz a sight. The tears jest run down most everybody's face, and when the mourners wuz addressed, why, big, hefty men all round me jest boohooed right out. Why, it wuz enough to melt a stun.

Then the preacher depictered that little golden head that had made sunshine in her home through the darkest days, as bein' brung low by an asassin. Then he spoke of that sweet little silvery voice a-ringin' through the home and the hearts of her father and mother, of how it wuz lifted up in vain appeal to her slayer that dretful night.

Then he spoke of the tender white arms that clung so lovingly round her parent's neck, how they wuz lifted up in frantic appeal and vain to her destroyer that bleak night, and wuz now folded up to be lifted no more till she met that man at the bar of God. And then the little arm would be raised and point him out "murderer." The sweet eyes, full of God's avenging wrath, would smite him as accursed from God's presence forever.

And then he depictered it all how she would be taken to His own heart by Him "who said that He would carry the lambs in His bosom." And this poor wounded lamb, He would hold more tenderly than any other, while the murderer! the villian! the asassin! would be hurled downward into everlasting burning, where he would dwell forever and forever in the midst of unquenchable flames, in partial payment of that deed of hisen.

Why, when he said them last words about the prisoner, folks looked so relieved and pleased that their tears almost dried.

And the saloon-keeper, who sot right in front of me, hollered out--"Amen, amen, so mote it be!"

He wuz a Methodist, he had a right to holler. And folks looked approvin' at him for it.

But I didn't--no, fur from it. I kep up a-thinkin' what I read--

"That the prisoner wuz a good-hearted man, only drink made a fiend and a fool of him." And that he said solemn "that he did not remember one thing that had taken place after he had taken his three first drinks up in that saloon, till he sobered up and found himself in that deserted old barn, with the little dead body by his side, little delicate creeter, dead and frozen, with all of the black future of desperate remorse and agony for him a-lookin' at him in the stare of her open blue eyes."

Sweet little forget-me-not eyes, like two spring violets frozen in a drift of snow. What strange things I read in 'em, with my tears a-fallin' fast onto 'em!

They seemed full of mute questionin'. They seemed to be lookin' up through the blue sky clear up to God's throne. They seemed to almost compel a answer from divine justice as to what wuz the cause of her murder. To appeal dumbly to the God of Justice and Mercy to wipe out this curse from our land--the curse that wuz causin' jest such murders, and jest such agonies, all over our land--sendin' out to the gallows and down to perdition jest such criminals.

The little coffin had to be put out in the yard, as I say, so the crowd could walk past it.

And there the little golden head and white face lay for 'em all to see. But nobody seemed to see in 'em what I see. For amongst the many curses of the murderer that I heard, not one word did I hear about the man that caused the murder, about the voters and upholders of that man, about the Goverment that wuz in partnership with that man and went shares with him, and for the sake of a few cents had dealt out that agony, that shame, and that criminality.

(Illustration: Not one word did I hear about the Goverment that wuz in partnership with that man.)

Wall, the little coffin wuz closed at last, the mother wuz carried faintin', and lookin' like a dead woman, back to her empty, darkened home. The father, with a face like white marble, curbin' down his own agonized grief so's to take care of her, and try to bring her back to the world agin, so they could together face its blackness and emptiness.

And the crowd dispersed, lookin' forward to the excitement of the hangin'.

And the saloon-keeper went home and mebby counted over the few cents that accrued to him out of the hull enterprise.

And the wise male voters returned, a-calculatin' (mebby) on votin' for license so's to improve the condition of their towns.

And Uncle Sam, poor, childish old creeter, mebby wrote down aginst this hull job--"three cents revenue." And mebby he rattled them cents round in his old pockets. I don't know what he did; I hain't no idee what he won't take it into his old head to do.

And the prisoner sot in his dark, cold cell, and didn't appreciate, mebby, the wisdom of the wise law-makers increasin' our revenues by such means.

No; he had all he could do to set and look at the bare stun walls, and figger out this sum--on one side the three cents profit; and substract from it--a bright young life ended, lifelong agony to the hearts that loved her.

His own old mother's and sister's heads and hearts bowed down in shame and sorrow.

His own hopeful life cut short at the edge of the scaffold, and for the future--what?

He couldn't quite work that out, for this text kep comin' into his sum--"No drunkard shall inherit eternal life."

And then another text kep a-comin' up--

"Cursed is he that putteth the cup to his neighbor's lips."

No, he didn't feel the triumphant wisdom of the licker traffic. He wouldn't feel like rattlin' the three cents round in his pockets if he had 'em, but he didn't have 'em. His sum, no matter how many times he figgered it out, stood nothin' but orts, nothin' but clear loss to him, here and hereafter.

Wall, I have rode off considerable of a ways with my wagon hitched on in front of my horse, and to go back to the horse's head agin.

I had a good dinner by the time the boys got back from Zoar--a excellent one.

And in order to go on with my story, and keep right by that horse's head I spoke of, I will pass over Josiah's excitement when he come in jest before dinner, and throwed his rope down in the corner of the kitchen; but suffice it to say, his excitement wuz nearly rampant.

I will pass over the two boys' indignant anger, which wuz jest the same as mine, only stronger, as much stronger as man's strength is stronger than a woman's.

Thomas J. had been successful in gittin' the young chap; he wuz a-comin' when he wuz wanted. Thomas J. wuzn't goin' to wait till the last minute before he engaged him; our son is a wonderful good business man--wonderful.

And everything seemed to bid fair that we should git off with no hendrances to the World's Fair, to pay our honor and our respects to Christopher Columbus.

And oh, how I did honor that man! I sot there in my peaceful kitchen that afternoon, after the boys had gone away, perfectly satisfied with the dinner I had gin 'em.

And when I had got my mind a little offen that poor little girl and her poor drunken destroyer, I begun to think agin of Christopher Columbus, and what he had done, and what he hadn't done, till I declare for't I got fairly lost in thoughts.

I thought of how he had been scorfed at and jerred at for not thinkin' as other folks did. And how he kep workin', and hopin', and believin', and persistin' in thinkin' that he wuz in the right on't, and kep on a lookin' over the wide waste of waters for the New Land.

And I thought to myself how I would enjoy a good visit with Christopher, and how he would sympathize with us, who, though we may be scorfed at by our pardners, and the world.

Yet can't help a-lookin' off over the troubled waves of unjust laws, and cruel old customs, a-tryin' to catch a glimpse of the New and Freer Land, that our hopes and our divine intuitions tell us is there beyend the shadows, a-waitin' for free men and free wimmen.

Yes, I did feel at that time how conjenial Christopher Columbus would have been to me.

As I have said more formally, Christopher wuz sot up in my mind to a almost tottlin' hite, on account of several things he did, and several things he didn't do.

Yes; Christopher wuz sot up in my mind to a almost tottlin' hite, on account of several things he did, and several things he didn't do.

Now, if anybody to-day branches out into any new and beautiful belief and practice--anything that is beyend the vision of more carnal-minded people--

Why they raise the cry to once, "Let us cling to common sense. Let us be guided by what we see and know. Don't let us float out on any new theory. Don't less go out of sight of the Shore of old Practice, and Custom."

And lots of times them rare souls to whom the secrets of God are revealed--them who see the High White Ideal lightnin' the Darkness--the glowin' form of a New Truth shinin' out amidst the thick clouds overhead--lots of times they git bewildered and skairt by the mockin' voices about them. They drop their eyes before the insultin', oncomprehendin' sneers of the multitude, and fall into commonplace ways, and walks, to please the commonplace people about them. Jest dragged down by them Mockers and Scoffers.

Some of 'em mebby united to 'em by links of earth-made metal, Sons of God married to the Daughters of men, mebby, and castin' their kingly crowns at the feet of a Human Love.

Did Columbus do so? No, indeed. I dare presume to say that the more Miss Columbus nagged at him the more sotter he grew in his own views.

(I have used this simely on this occasion on the side of males, but it is jest as true on the side of females. For Inspiration and Genius when it falls from Heaven is jest as apt to descend and settle down onto a female's fore-top as a male's, and the blind and naggin' pardner is jest as apt to be a male--jest exactly.)

But as I wuz a-sayin', the more Columbus wuz mocked at--the more they jeered and sneered at him, the more stiddy and constant he pursued after the Land that appeared only to his prophetic eyes.

Day after day, when he wuz tired out, beat completely out by the incomprehension, and weary doubts, and empty denials of the multitude--then, like a breath of balm, came to his weary forward the soft gale from the land he sought; he saw in his own mind the tall pines reach up into the blue skies, the rich bloom and greenness of its Savannas; he inhaled the odor of rare blossoms that the Old World never saw, and then he riz up agin, refreshed, as it were, and ready to press forwards.

(Illustration: He saw in his own mind the tall pines reach up into the blue skies.)

Yes, in every country, through all time, there has always been some Columbus, walkin' with his feet on the ground amongst mortals, and his head in the Heavens amongst Gods.

He has oftenest been poor, and always misunderstood, and undervalued, by the grosser souls about him.

The discoverers, the inventors, whom God loves best, it must be, sence He confides in 'em, and tells 'em things He keeps hid from the World. Them who apprehend while yet they cannot comprehend.

And that is what we have got to do lots of times if we git along any in this World, if we calculate to git out of its Swamps and Morasses onto any considerable rise of ground.

You can't foller a ground-mice or a snail, if you lay out to elevate yourself; no, you must foller a Star.

You have got to keep your eyes up above the ground, or your feet will never take you up any mountain side.

And how them mariners tried to make Columbus turn back after he had at last, through all his tribulations, sot sail on the broad, treacherous Ocean--jest think of his tribulations before he started!

Troubles with poverty, and ignorance, and unbelief, and perils by foes, and perils by false friends, and perils by long delay.

How for years and years he carried round them strong beliefs of hisen, ofttimes in a hungry and faint body, and couldn't git nobody to believe in 'em--couldn't git nobody to even hear about 'em.

Year after year did he toil and endeavor to git somebody to listen to his plans, and glowin' hopes.

Year after year, while the lines deepened on his patient face, and the hopes that wuz glowin' and eager became deep and fervent, and a part of him.

How strange, how strange and sort o' pitiful, this one man out of a world full of men and wimmen, this one man with his tired feet on the dust and worn sand of the Old World, and his head and heart in the New World.

No one else of the world full of men and wimmen to believe as he did--no one else to be even willin' to hear him talk about his dreams, his hopes, and impassioned beliefs.

No; and I don't know but Columbus would have dropped right down in his tracts, and we wouldn't have been discovered to this day, if a woman hadn't stepped in, and gin the seal of her earnest trust to the ideal of the ambitious man.

He a-willin' to plough the new path into the ontried fields, she a-bein' willin' to hold the plough, as you may say, or, at all events, to help him in every way in her power--with all her womanly faith, and all her ear-rings, and breast-pins, etc., etc.

(Illustration: With all her womanly faith, and all her ear-rings and breast-pins, etc., etc.)

She, a female woman, out of all that world full of folks, she it wuz alone that stood out boldly the friend of Columbus and Discovery.

"Male and female created He them." Another deep instance of that great truth in life and in nature, and in all matters relatin' to the good of the world. "Male and female created He them."

The world will find it out after awhile, and so will Dr. Buckley.

Ferdinand wuz a good creeter--or that is, middlin' good; but his eye-sight wuzn't such as would see down clear through the truth of Columbuses theory.

And if folks set out to blame Ferdinand too much, let 'em pause and think what the World would say and do if a man should appear in our streets to-day, and say that he believed that he had proof that there wuz a vast, beautiful country a-layin' in the skies to the west of us beyend the clouds of the sunset, and he wanted to git money to build a air-ship to sail out to it.

How much money would he git? How much stock would he sell in that enterprise? How many men would he git to sail out with him on that voyage of Discovery? What would Vanderbilt and Russell Sage say to it?

(Illustration: What would Russell Sage say?)

Why, they would say that the man wuz a fool, and that the only way to travel wuz on iron rails or steamships. They would say that there wuzn't any such land as he depictered. That it existed only in his crazy brain.

Wall, it wuz jest about as wild a idee that Ferdinand had to listen to; I d'no that he wuz any more to blame than they would be for not hearin' to it.

But Isabelle, she wuz built different. There wuz some divine atmosphere of Truth and Reality about this idee that reached her heart and mind. Her soul and mind bein' made in jest the right way to be touched by it.

She, too, wuz built on jest the right plan so she could apprehend what she could not yet comprehend. So she gin him her cordial sympathy, and also, as I said, her ear-rings, etc.

But after the years and years that he toiled and labored for the means to carry out his idees--after these long years of effort and hardship, and disappointments and delays--after his first vain efforts--after he did at last git launched out on the Ocean a-sailin' out on the broad, empty waste in search of sunthin' that he see only in his mind's eye--

How the storms beat on him--how the winds and waves buffeted him, and tried to drive him back--but--"No, no, he wuz bound for the New Land! he wuz bound for the West!"

How the sailors riz up and plead with him and begged him to turn back--but "No," sez he, "I go to the New Land!"

Then they would tell him that there wuzn't any such Land, and stick to it right up and down, and jeer at him.

Did it turn him round--"No! I sail onward," sez he, "I go to the West!"

Then the principalities and powers of the onseen World seemed to take it in hand and tried to drive him back. There wuz signs and omens seen that wuz reckoned disastrous, and threatened destruction.

Mebby the souls of them who had passed over from the New Land, mebby them disembodied faithful shades wuz a-tryin' to save their free sunny huntin' grounds from the hands of the invader, and their race from the fate that threatened 'em--mebby they hurled onseen tommyhawks, and shrieked down at 'em, tryin' to turn 'em back--

Mebby they did, and then agin mebby they didn't.

But anyway, there wuz lurid lightin' flashes that looked like flights of fiery arrows aimed at the heads of the Spanish seamen, and shriekin's of the tempest amidst the sails overhead that sounded like cries of anger, and distress, and warnin'.

Did Columbus heed them fearful warnin's and turn back? No; dauntless and brave, a-facin' dangers onseen, as well as seen, he sez--

"I sail onward!"

And so he did, and he sailed, and he sailed--and mebby his own brave heart grew sick and faint with lookin' on the trackless waste of waters round him, and no shore in sight for days, and for days, and for days.

But if it did, he give no signs of it--"I sail onward!" he sez.

And finally the lookout way up on the dizzy mast see a light way off on the horizon, and then the night came down dark, and when the sun wuz riz up--lo! right before 'em lay the shores of the New World. And the Man's and the Woman's belief wuz proved true--and the gainsayin' World wuz proved wrong. Success had come to 'em.

And after the doubt, and the danger, and the despair, and the discouragement had all been endured--after the ideal had been made real, why then it wuz considered quite easy to discover a New World.

It wuzn't considered very hard. Why, all you had to do wuz to sail on till you come to it.

After a thing is done it is easy enough.

Nowadays we are sot down before as great conundrums as Columbus wuz. The Old World groans under old abuses, and wrongs, and injustices. The old paths are dusty and worn with the feet of them who have marked its rocks and chokin' sands with their bleedin' feet, as they toiled on over 'em bearin' their crosses.

Dark clouds hang heavy over their paths--the atmosphere is chokin' and stiflin'.

Fur off, fresh and fair, lays the New Land of our ideal. The realm of peace, and justice to all, of temperance, and sanity, and love and joy.

Fur off, fur off, we hear the melodious swash of its waves on its green banks--we see fur off the gleam of its white, glory-lit mountain-tops.

Men have gin their strength and their lives for this ideal, this vision of glory and freedom.

Wimmen have took their jewels from their bosom, and gin 'em to this cause of Human Right. Gin 'em with breakin' hearts, and white lips that tried to smile, as the last kiss of lover and son, husband and brother, rested on 'em.

Yes, men and wimmen both have seen that Ideal Land, that New Land of Liberty and Love. They have apprehended it with finer senses than comprehension--have seen it with the clearer light of the soul's eyes.

Some green boughs from its high palms have been washed out on the swellin' waves that lay between us and that Land, and floated to our feet. Sometimes, when the air wuz very still and hushed, and a Presence seemed broodin' on the rapt listnin' earth, we have looked fur, fur up into the clear depths of blue above us, and we have ketched the distant glimpse of birds of strange plumage onknown to this Old World. Fur off, fur off their silvery wings have floated, a-comin' from the West, from the land that lays beyend the sunset's golden glory.

Some of the light of that New Country has shone on us in inspired eyes, some of its strange language has been hearn by us from inspired lips.

But oh! the wide, pathless sea that lays between us and that land of full Fruition and Glory and Freedom.

Shall we set down on the shores of our Old World, and give up the hope and glory of the New? Shall we listen to the jeers and sneers of them that tell us that there hain't any such country as that we look for--that it is impossible, that it is aginst all the laws of Nater--that it don't exist, and never can, only in our crazed brains?

No, we will man the boat, though the waves dash high, and the skies are dark--we will man and woman the life-boat--side by side will the two great forces stand, the Motherhood and the Fatherhood, Love and Justice, the hope and strength of Humanity shall stand at the hellum. The wind is a-comin' up; it is only a light breeze now, but it shall rise to a strong power that shall waft us on to the New Land of Justice and Purity and Liberty--for all that our souls long for.

But we have got to shet our eyes to the outward world that presses round us closter than the streets of Genoa did round Columbus. We have got to see things invisible, trust in things to come--sail onwards through the doubts, and the darkness, and the dangers round us, not heeding the jeers and sneers of a gainsayin' world.

Will we be discouraged and drove back by the powers of darkness? by the things seen and the things onseen?

No, the man and the woman side by side will sail on through them rough waves. The wind is a-comin' up fresh and free that shall spread the sails and waft the life-boat into the Land of Promise.

For the word is sure, and He says--

"I will bring you out into a great place."

But I am a-eppisodin', and a-eppisodin' to a length and depth almost onpresidented and onheard on--and to resoom, and go on.

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Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 5 Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 5

Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 5
CHAPTER VHain't it curious how tellin' over a thing will bring back all of the circumstances a-surroundin' of it round--bring 'em all up fresh to you. I wuz a-tellin' Krit about that Equinomical Counsel that wuz held to Washington, D.C. And though I hain't no hand and never wuz to find one word of fault with my dear companion to outsiders, still, as he wuz all in the family, I did say that his Uncle wuz at one time very anxious to go to it. And after Krit went away--he had come over from Tirzah Ann's that day, and staid to

Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 3 Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 3

Samantha At The World's Fair - Chapter 3
CHAPTER IIIMy beloved pardner is very easy lifted up or cast down by his emotions, and his excitement wuz intense durin' the hull of the long time that the warfare lasted as to where the World's Fair wuz to be held Columbus wuz goin' to be celebrated. I thought at the time, Josiah wuz so fearful riz up in his mind, that it wuz doubtful if he ever would be settled down agin, and act in a way becomin' to a grandfather and a Deacon in the M.E. meetin'-house. And it wuz a excitin' time, very, and the fightin' and