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Weekly graphic. (Kirksville, Adair Co., Mo.) 1880-1949, December 18, 1896, Image 1

Image and text provided by State Historical Society of Missouri; Columbia, MO

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89066097/1896-12-18/ed-1/seq-1/

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KIRKSVILLE, MISSOURI, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18, 1896
VOL. XVII NO 38
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WEEKLY
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TV
THEHISTAKEN LETTER
CHAPTER V.
At the corner she stopped and
took hold of the fence, leaning
heavily against It. The little bag
fell from her hand and lay half
hidden in a drift of fallen leaves.
Uer face was white and cold, and
her eyes were dark and wide like
those of a dumb creature that is
suffering.
Coming toward her under the
brilliant maples, was Miss AS.is
coni. She was walking along
o uicklv her rich gown falling in
:deeTqf5iabouh5gi
shotting like frosted silver under
the rim of her velvet bonnet. Her
visit had been a pleasant one. She
was smiling. The smile brighten
ed when she saw Polly waiting at
the corner, for she was not yet
near enough to see auytbiug unus
ual in the gills appearance.
"Polly heard the toft nistlenf
the bilk gown, but she could not
lookup. Her eyes were fastened
on a group of garnet chrysanthe
mums just inside the fence. She
noticed, as we all notice some
trivial thing when a great trouble
is upon us, the gracefully curved
petals, the half faded, brown
edged leaves, the delicate, spicy
fragrance of the lovely 11 wers,
and she saw lying just under the
flowers on a cold hard stone walk,
a dead butterfly. A poor, faded,
broken thing, the sport of every
passing breeze. A queer little
smile curved her stiff lips as she
turned to Miss Basconi, who had
stopped at her side.
"Why, Mary, my dear, what
has happened?" Miss Basconi
exclaimed, raising her hands in
alaim.
Polly's lips moved, but no sound
escaped them. She raised her
f lightened, pleading eyes to the
htaitled face.
"You sue sick! Come in. Lean
on me. 1 can't think what.ailb
jou." And she led the girl bark,
for Polly, smuggling with the f.iint
ness that had come upon her, had
no power to resist the gentle au
thority. Miss Basconi said nothing morn
until she had placed Polly in one
of the deep hall chairs. She was
about to riug for Juno when Polly
raised her hand in protest.
"Don't, please don't" she said.
"But somebody must come.
You are very ill, my child "
"No. Just wait a moment.
Open the door, please the door
of the little green parlor."
"Why Polly, I declare you
frighten me. Why mnst I open
the door! You don't want to go
there, do you?"
Polly shuddered.
"Let me call Juno to take you
to your room; and Ruel trust come
at ouec. I am frightened and un
easy." "Forgive me, oh, forgive me! I
was so ignorant I did not mean
She stopped, for the door had
opened and the strarge woman
waB standing before her.
Miss Bascomb drew h rself up
proudly. "May 1 ask, madam,
what thiB intrusion means! Per
mit me ''
"Then you do not know me!'
"Unfortuuately, madam, I do
not."'
"Won't you tell her! You said
you would plead for me. I was
afraid you weie going away. Tell
her who I am."
The woman turned pleadingly
to Polly, but the girl sat white and
dumb.
"Then I must tell yon. I am
Mary Brown, your sister's daugh
ter." VYou! Oh, no. This child is
my niece; why do you come to me
with words like these!"
'They are true words. I am
t your niece, and I can prove it. I
am prepared to satisfy you of my
identity. There are persons in
this city who knew me as the wife
of Koy Willis, and doubtless there
are many who have seen me on
he Btage "
"Hush!"
"Not uutil I hav.e asked you
once, only once, to help me. I am
sick and I have neither money
nor friends. They always give
out at the same time," bhe said
with glim humor. "You can turn
me off for my own sake, or you
can help me for my mother. Miss
Kuth Basconi which bhall it be!"
Sh'j stood proud and handsome
before the astonished little old
lady who stared blankly at her.
"Then who is she!" Miss Bas
com asked, looking from the dark,
faded face of the woman to Polly.
"She! why, how should I know!
I supposed she belonged here.
The sight of jne has upset her.'
-S""r"Av-.iSxE
3ene"asmra
lie's daughter. 1 " Miss Bas
coni stood befoie the motionless
girl, helplessly wringing her small
wrinkled hands.
"Then you are an imposter!"
The tall dark woman turned to
Polly? and the girl cowered befoie
her
"How is it! I cannot under
stand, ' MibS Babcom said, hoid
ing out her hands to Polly.
'I got the letter and the the
check. I ," Polly began, but
the strange woman scieamed ex
citedly:
"A letter! A check! And they
were mine. They weie sent in an
swer to my appeal. Do you real
ize your danger? You aie a for
ger! Evan I have not stooped to
that. May be I did'i.t dare,"
wilh a short laugh, "butany way,
I haven't that ou my list. A forg
er and au imposter! A little baby
like you. But you shall suffer for
this. You shall pay dearly for
keeping me out of my lights so
long. You "
But the tall form swayed and
the woman fell to the floor.
In the confusion that followed,
Polly slipped away. Her travel
ling bag was where she had left it
in the drift of autumn leaves.
Gathering it up she hurried away.
The fresh air in her face revived
hor, and the instinct of self pres
ervation made her stiong. Her
heait beat fiercely; what would this
terrible woman do! where, in all
the wide world could she find a
hidiug place! A place where a
girl, friendless and poor would be
safe! And then she thought of
the hated little western home aud
longed for its shelter.
Miss Basconi sat alone in her
room. The night was warm as
in June, but a flie burned on the
hearth and she sat quite near it.
Once in a while Juno opened the
door noiselessly aud peeped in.
Her face wore a look of deepest
distress aud auxiety.
"Wisht Mars Euel come on,"
she said as she was about to close
the door.
'Juno!'
"Yessem."
"See if she needs anything,
please.
"lis, Mis'."
It was something to hear Miss
Basconi speak. For hours she
sat like this, shiveiing by the
fire.
Juno oprned the door across the
hall. The light was very dim,
but it showed the pale face of the
woman who lay upon the bed. The
dark, restless eyes were closed.
The negro woman looked at her.
"I wisht you hadden never come,'
she said under her breath.
The street door opened and Dr.
Berkly entered. He was whist
ling softly like a happy school
boy. Juno hurried down to meet
him. She felt that it was no time
for whibtling and looking happy.
She must put a stop to that.
"Mars Euel, don't make no
fuss, child," she said, with a
solemn shake of her tall turban.
"Why, aunt Juno, what has
clouded your usually bright face!
Is any one sick! What's the mat
ter!" "No, sir, nunnor us haint sick.
I don't count outsiders. I been
erwaitiu' fur you, honey, we all
is."
".Never mind. I don't want
any supper."
"Hit wasn't that, honey."
"What is the matter!" He
passed her before she could an
swer and went to his step-sister's
room
"Euthie, what is the matter!
Wheie is ," Miss Basconi turn
ed to him and the words died on
his lips.
"What has happened!' Tell
me!"
"Oh, Ruel, how can I!"
"Is she hurt or or dead!"
"Ah, my boy, it is worse with
you than I feaied. After all, a
mania only a maul I thought
you were safe doubly secure.
And yet "
"Never mind that, Euthie, tell
me wnat hashappened."
&&4mrgm
!
'Gone!
i"iiy -""
"Yes. She is an impostor, Ruel
aud not my niece. To-d iy Allie's
poor child came to me. The poor,
ruined thing. And she left. How
could she deceive us so?''
Dr. Berkly sat down, his hand
to his forehead ' 'I don't think I
understand, Euthie,'' he said.
"I'll try to tell you just how it
was, but I dread it for you It is
worse tha poor Lina Dwight
worse than any thing. You will
have no faith in women now. It
almost kflled you when Lina de
ceived you aud cast your love
aside '
"That is past, Euthie; what is
wrong now!"
"I came home to find a strange
woman waiting for me. I can't re
call all she said I was taken by
suipiisc; she claimed to be my
niece, and she has a locket with
my own picture in it, aud it be
longed to Allie; and she is gone;
at least she is not hem and a few
of her clothes, Juno tells me, are
missing."
"Gone!
creatine?
Euthie?"
That helpless little
Do you mean it,
"I don't suppose she is bo help-,
less, Eael. She must be a wicked
adventuress. I hope, my boy, that
you will not go back to those
dangerous views."
"How (an you think of me at
all? What has been done to find
her?"
"Nothing. I hope she will es
cape. Of course she is nothing to
us.''
"There is some mistake. Have
you tried to find out what it is?'
"Theie is no mistake, Euel. I
saw it all, as soon as I could col
lect my senses after the shock. It
is hard to think of her as a wicked
woman. I am glad so few people
knew her; theie need be no seusa
tion. Mary is very ill. I think
you must see her."
He sat still, his face in his
hands.
"Will you see her, Euel!"
"Send for Hanold. I am not
fit to see a patient."
He got up aud left the room. All
nightlong he walked up and down
the dimly lighted hall trying to
think. It was haidly light when
a messenger came from the hos
pital and asked for him.
"I can't go," he said, turning
away.
"I'm sony, sir, it's the old wo
man. She's going, doctor."
Dr. Beikley put ou his hat and
went out. The early breeze cooled
his burning biow. The stillness
of the morning was lestful to his
aching heart.
He was just in time for the sol
emn last words. When it was
over he went through the wards.
"You are better, this morning,
Mr. Slocum," he said, stopping at
the last cot in the row.
"Yes, doctor, I think I shall be
spared to carry ou the good work
a while longer. But I realize as
never before the uncertainty of life
and the necessity of a careful pie-'
paratiou for deatn. The wine has
been a great comfort to me. It is
a good creature of God, and like
Timothy of old, we may take a lit-
tle for our stomachs' sake. Thank i
the good sister who sent it to me.'
Dr. Berkly started, and the hot
blood throbbed in his throat. This
man knew the poor child. Had she
been afraid of him!
The sick uiau went on; ' 'Now
that I am better, I want to ask
you about a friend of mine, who,
if I mistake not, apsides in this
place. I knew Eerjua little west
em town .called "Morrisville. I
was preaching there at the time,
but my throat gave out and I
yielded the place-to a younger
brother and took this book agency.
I am working my way southward
for the wiuter.'' x
"But your friencU!
"Ah, yes. Sh'ecame here to
live with relatives;?3?IIer name is
Mary Brown. Shewas known as
Polly, among her 'friends. I knew
her father; he was an ungodly man
but her mother was a"' good wo
man.' ?&..
"But Bhe thegirl -who came
here!' fX, fe ,
fSUl a!3sJatfj..51ftit-iii
teS-"-"? 3 C3T5"- S""" 6"'. "
way. Well meaning, but rebellious.
She hated her life the work and
the poverty and all that, I could
not convice her that God had put
her just where she "was. I hope
she is happier now. I was glad
for her when the letter from her
aunt arrived. The name I cannot
recall, though I read the letter.'
"I know her," Dr. Berkly said,
passing on.
He had found out the mistake.
He ' saw it all, now. Poor little
girl. How frightened and troub
led she must be. "How could he
begin his search without creating
the sensation his sister dreaded?
Aud yet he must find her. Per
haps she had left some message for
him. He hurried home, and him
self went to her room. He found
Juno there. She had no message
for him. ,
Miss Basconi waB still in her
room. Dr. Berkley told her what
he had learned.
"Oh, Euel, to think that I have
done this thing! It is all my fault
and here I've been blaming every
body else. You lenow T lost
Maiy's letter and tcould haidly
decide whether the address was
Morrisville, or Mooresville. I
sent iny letter to theiwrong town
aud this poor child-.fcho'uehfc it was
intended lor Jier.HbWtiic; inusb'
have buffered when she knew.
TO UE CONTIIOJED.
DECREE OF THE COURT
In the Matter of the Assingnment
of Alex Doneghy, R. fl. Ringo,
Assignee, Hearing of Objec
tions to Final Report and
settlement of Assignee.
Following is the opinion and de
cree of the Court, Hon. E. J.
Brqaddus, special judge.
The answer says: "Without un
derstanding the import of the or
der he retailed property to the
amuuut of 5129.99."
Here is the ordeiof the judge:
Now, in the absence of this an
swer that would be the issue in this
case, whether or not t'ais order
did permit him to sell at retail, I
am inclined to think that he had
a right under this order, from all
the farts and circumstances sur
louuding, to sell that way, be
cause of this language: That he
be permitted to sell at private sale,
to sell the whole of the said stock
of goods and fixtures in a lump or
any line of said goods separately.''
It is known to the Court of course,
and all the facts show that Mr.
Doneghy was in the retail .and not
in the wholesale business. Of
course I don't know what was in
the mind of the judge. I do not
say, however, that he contemplated
that this business might be con
tinued at retail. In the meantime,
however, the assignee might, with
in his discretion, sell by wholesale
or retail. He is permitted, to do
it if he wants to. In view of the
fact that this was a retail store, in
order that he might sell at a pri-
vate sale for cash, the Court said
that he might be permitted to sell
at wholesale. This seems, to be
in contemplation by the judge,
or, that he might sell at retail if
he wished. I am somewliat in-
clined to believe that that will be
the construction the upper court
will put on it.
As to the other question. Sup
pose we admit that he hal no right
to sell at retail; that this sale at
retail was iu violation of the order
of the court Then we come to
the merits of, the case. It ia the
business of the Court to arrive at
substantial justice and the law of
a case at the same time. The facts
show one thing very clear to my
mind; that no one has been in
jured by the act of the assignee
nobody has been injured. It seems
there has been no substantial in
jury received or sustained by any
party to the suit. Now, as to the
creditors; they have not been in
jured by the action of the assignee,
and I think all the facts in the
case ,ehow, possibly, Mr. Done
ghy has not. Iu the first place,
these goods .were valued at $13,
000 and sold for 9,000. The
raluation put upon them by the
appraisement was 13,000. .- .Now,1
: --ww i 7CTffra- .WVj,-r---.;?i'W
i minium in mm nun mhm ih i i
tion of the order, 129.00 worth
of these goods were sold were
sold wrongfully in violation of the
order. The assignee upon being
informed that it was a probable
violation of the order notifies these
would-be purchasers of the fact
and renders to some of them an
invoice of the goods sold, notify
ing them if they purchased they
would take the money instead of
the goods at the invoice price
not at the invoice price not at
the invoice price but at the ap
praised price. The party who
purchased and who had the larg
est bid was bound to take these
goods aud would buy tuem .with
the understanding that the monej
would be turned over instead o!
the goods that the money would
be turned in at the appraised
price. How is anybody injuied
by that? There is no bidder that
complains except Mr. Mills. He
intimates that if it had not been
for those goods taken out thi
S129. worth of goods taken out
although he was informed all
about it S100 worth, about, he
said he could not say whether it.
was above or below that amount
that was taken out if he had
known of it, having had full ac
cess to the appraisement, he would
probably have bidSGOO or 3800
more. Now, his bid was 8S,000
aud something $5,825.
Now, he says he could not find
out exactly; he did not examine
this appraisement sufficiently to
adVise himself of the exact amount
of goods taken out. And he was
suspicious on that ground and he
did not buy.
Now, there is no complaint by
the other bidders no one except
Mr. Miils
Now, that is the only evidence
in this case that tends to IJlkrow
suspicion upon the transaction.
The other evidence in the case,
the conduct and bearing of the
assignee doesn't carry that out
at all.
Now, it appears when first noti
fied he at once stopped the sale,
according to the Court as con
strued by Mr. Milan Then he
notified all the parties and he said
he told some of the bidders. It is
contended here that he favored
Hart that Mr. Hart was induced
to bid more; still Hart did not be
come the purchaser. While the
assignee probably might have been
wrong in this action in relation to
the otl.er bidders, because to give
away a bid to one bidder would
be to the disadvantage of the one
who had bid, yet he was under no
obligations to refrain from doing
this He was not required to re
receive sealed bids. He had
a right to go into the open
market and say to Mr. Mills:
"What will yon give!" or to Mr.
Hart: "What will you give!"
He had a right to state that such
a party had offered SS.OOO or any
amount if he wanted to that was
bid. He had a rignt to tell what
the bids were, because he is not
like a public contractor receiving
bids under seal. He was under
no obligation to do that. These
bidders, however, might have
thought he was takiug an unfair
advantage of them, but he was not.
This was no secret sale. It was
a public and open sale aud he had
a right to tell any other bidder
what another bidder had bid if he
wanted to.
Suppose, now, he had not sold
these goods to Mr. Ecnert sup
pose he refused to sell aud some
time afterwards tried to get an
others sale and these goods hadn't
brought $9,000; suppose they only
brought $8,000. This estate would
have to stand the loss, because he
was not bound under the order of
the Court and by his duties as
assignee to receive a bid of $9,100.
He might have refused that and
exercised discretion. If it had
been shown to the Court that he
had exercised wise discretion then
the estate would have had to
bear the loss.
But suppose that had been cal
led into question, and the creditors
had said: "You have not exer
cised precaution as a careful and
nrntontditioti nrtivhf trt nnrlor ffia
IhwWmwii aaAMw airatn thrras
by lost $1,000." Well, il it was
shown that the goods were ap
p raided by a competent merchant
as this gentleman from Macon (C.
D. Sharp) seems to be who ad
vised him to take the amount he
got as the best thing he could do,
fie estate would have had to jave
stood the loss of S1,000
The law only requires a man to
exercise discretion as ordinary,
prudent men would exercise in
conducting their own business.
He is not called upon to exercise
a high degree of discretion any
moie than any body else. He is
only required to exercise such
diligence as a person of ordinary
prudence would exerciss under
ordinary circumstances; like a
prudent and diligent man would
exercise in his own affairs; no
more nor less.
Now, they say these goods are
worth 13,000 by appraised value.
Candidly, some witness testified
for the assignee that they were
practically new. What value did
they have as new goods! Put that
value on them and then discount
them to the value of $13,000. Now,
it is contended that it cannot be
done for the reason that these
goods were thrown upon the mark
et to be sold at wholesale to the
purchaser, rlf'- theyj-gmust-'bring
the valuation the appraisers placed
upon them the assignee would only
have to advertise these goods for
sale at 13,000 the appraised
price and no other sum. Then
he would have a cash value, to go
by and if he did not get that he
could not sell at all; there would
be no sale for the goods. That
would be the situation in that
event. But the fact is he must
sell, he must sell at such a price
as he can get. He cannot hold
these goods; he cannot retain these
goods. The order of the Court is
imperative that he must sell them
that is at a forced sale. It is a
compulsory sale. He cannot hold
these goods for six months or a
year. If he did then the Court
would hold him responsible for
negligence.
Now, has it been shown in this
case that he could have sold for
more than he did sell! That is
the case. Has it been shown that
he could have sold for mote than
he did? If he could then he is
liable and he should be charged
with the difference. But there is
not a single witness tht testified
that he could have sold these
goods for more money than he
got.
Well, now, you take into con
sideration another thing; there is
another view of this case. It is a
pait of the history of the country
and a part of the law of the land
and the courts take knowledge of
it. What does a bankrupt sale
signify? It signifies that goods
are thrown upon the market; not
voluntarily where a party may
withdraw them if he does not get
the proper price, but they are
forced upon the market and bound
to sell whether they bring a good
price or not. That is what ruins
prices on goods like these.
They cannot be held. They
must be sold. They are forced
upon the market and these purch
asers, such men as Mr. Eckert aud
Mr. Hart, bid for bankrupt stocks
all over this country, as far over
as Clay county. They take these
facts into consideration, that these
bankrupt prices and they bid with
that view and when they buy the
goods they expect to sell them as
a bankrupt stock, at low prices.
These stocks of goods yon will,
find offered for sale everywhere all
over the country. The3e bank
rupt stores under-sell all the regu
lar stores in the country. You
find them everywhere in all the
towns.
It appears te me that this man,
Mr. Eingo, acted in perfect good
faith.
"Now, in the New Jersey case,
to which I have been referred, the
trustee acted in good faith but he
acted willfully; he acted in con
travention to the powers of the
trust and against his express
agreement to consult with three
other persons: that was a part of ,
.tiftSJfi3!Wejj,He.4th
was best to uo wnac ne uia, due
he had no right to do so without
consultation with the persons
named. He thought his act was
best, but he acted willfully and
outside of the duties of the trust.
Now, here is this man; if this
was a wrongful act in selling this
$129 worth of goods, it was not a
willful one; he did not act willful
ly; he acted in good faith. If this
was against the provisions of the
order of the Court and he knew it
he had no right to sell it at retail,
he acted willfully aud in violation
of that order. Notwithstan ling it
might have been in good faith, he
may have been held responsible
for the act.
This is the distinction between
the New Jersey case and our case
here, because it would not have
done for him to say: "I don't care
about the order of the Court," and
gone on in his own way. If he
should misinterpret the order aud
act iu good faith, the act produces
no wrong, injures nobody, then of
course it is a mere omission of
duty without any damage to any
body.
But did he! That is the ques
tion. Even if he was restricted to
sell by wholesale or iu a lump, ev
en if io be construed that he had
no.right to retail or dispose of
some of these goods, when- he
titids out he had disobeyed the or
der of the Court he said to the
purchaser: "You take these goods;
it is true that some have been dis
posed of at an appraised price,
but here is the inventory. You
are the highest bidder; you take
these goods the same as if they
had not been sold aud 1 return you
the money, the price paid, in place
of the price of the goods.'' In
that case I don't think there is
any substantial harm done. At
the most it is a mere technicality
and courts don't legard technicali
ties where there has been no dam
age done.
That is the best view I have of
the case, gentlemen. Where no
body is harmed I think t.ie court
ought to protect the party. It seems
to me that that is the correct view
of it. I don't know anything abont
the parties. I don't know any-
thing about Mr. Eingo nor what
kind of a man he is nor what kind
of a man the plaintiff is, but it
see "as to me that the assignee has
acted with more than ordinary
prudence.
It is true he let Eeed go in there
sometimes, but Mr. Eeed seems
to be a substantial man, a man of
means; president of a bank; a man
of property. On the witness stand
he seems to be a straightforward
man of good sense. There is
nochiug to show that he could not
be trusted. The assignee had a
right to trust him. He had a
right to send anybody in there.
He had a right to turn over the
keys to anybody, but if he turned
them over to a party who abused
his trust he would have theu been
liable, but it don'c appear that
Mr. Eeed abused anybody's trust.
I think the justice of the case as
well as the law is ou the side of
.Mr. Eingo. The objection of the
assignee is dismissed and the
judgement of the court is that the
final report of the assignee be af
firmed. To Cure u Cold in One Day
Take laxative Bromo Quinine
tablets. All druggists refuud the
money, if it fails to cure. 25c. For
Sale by B. F. Henry.
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