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Newspaper Page Text
THE PROMISED LAND
By Frank Fiteon.
" Mary Seaton set downiier full pall
"and stared over the, distant Mils.
She had lived all her five and pwen-
ty years 'in the little,""jofdid settle
ment "on the plains, f Ever since child
uhood 'she Ijad longed to -cross the
mountains which seemed to shutdier
' in and press on her untU'they became
She knew jEhat beyond them no
man had set foqt, except the wander-
"The Dam's Burst.'
i ing traders and trappers of the north
west. There lay freedom. Perhaps it
was from her half-Indian , mother
t that she inherited this love "of free
i dom. Her father,- the hard-working
. old Scotch .farmer, had lived in the
t village for 20 years. He-was satisfied
with his lot. He never wanted to go
x. further nor Joe, either, Joe who, at
i-her father's insistence, had wrung
' from her an unwilling "yes" to his
j suit-tf-mpnth before. f
TheyVere to be .married the fol
'JMaiyi'A calledher father sharply,
"What are yoo-doing, lass Dream
ing again?" - -j-
Mary took in the pail and sat-down
to a cheerless supper.
The village of Elkwood lay in a val
ley, just below the new, huge govern
ment dam, now neanng completion,
wherein all the head waters of Rock
river fretted. and surged. Soon they
would be led cut.through a score of
apertures to carry moisture to the
thirsty fields. Mary hated the dam,
because it would. mean more self-satisfaction
to Elkwood. With the new
prosperity that it would bring there
would be no hope that Joe would ever
take her away
And shehated the prison, of ma
sonry; built at the head of the-valley.
She hated it "because she knew that
it .held imprisoned men who longed
for freedom even as she longed for it.
There dwelled all Othose for whom
civilization meant servitude, 'men
whose whole lives had beea warfare
against "this smug, self-satisfied so
ciety of the plains.
There "was one man a tall, lithe,
dark-Jiaired fellow, whose eyes seem
ed to her, like those of a captive eagle
which her father had once possessed.
He was. a trusty. Sometimes he dr.ove
the prison van down the hill, filled
with its goods of prison making, to
the railroad terminus. She knew that
he was one of those untamed souls
whose home lay.oa the other side of
the mountains, '
After supper Joe came-Joe, with
his smooth, sleek faceandair of own
ership: He had not courted, her he
had courted, her lather's favor, and
her father had gipen her to Joe. ,
"You'llitake Joe, my lass' he said
to her. 'He's a good farmer and has
the best land in Elkwood. You'll take
him next month." -
.Obedience had always been neces-i
sary to Mary, because she knew lie'
futility of rebellion. There was no
refuge for her. She knew no other
place than JElkwood.
-She went to bed and-in, her dreams
,she was with the eagle-eyed man: of