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. r7 "WHY DON'T THEY COME " DOLLY'S DRESSMAKEB." CjVJ
ILclgar Helps at Home.
RS. PEARSON came down with pale face
and tired eyes. Baby Rex was teething,
and restless and fretful, and her sleep
had been broken and unrefreshing. She
glanced anxiously at the clock and about
the untidy kitcnen. ine table was not set;
a skillet of potatoes scorched on the stove, sending
tip a cloud of unsavory smoke ; Frank was slicing bread ;
Edgar was putting the dry oatmeal in the dry boiler,
and the dry tea-kettle snapped on a hot lid; Father
Pearson fidgeted about, clumsily attempting sev
: "I asked you to fill the tea-kettle, Frank," he said,
as MrS4 Pearson, having set off the skillet, took the
tea-kettle, and hastened to the sink.
"I forgot; and now there's no water for coffee
again, or oatmeal either!" Frank exclaimed. "Edgar,
I thought you " -
"And I thought you would; I don't see what you
want to cut bread the first thing for, anyway," Ed
gar retorted. ..
"Don't wrangle, boys," Mr. Pearson interposed
mildly adding, "Just give us anything, mother, so
we ean be off."
'Til do the best I can, but the boys have burned
the potatoes, and there's no time for coffee and oat
meal,' she replied unsteadily, with discouragement in
her voice. After a brisk quarter of an hour she re
duced the chaos to a semblance of order, and pro
duced something Jhat passed for breakfast, which
was eaten hurriedly, in a gloomy silence.
"You've got to. have help, some way, mother,"
Mr. Pearson said as he arose from the unsatisfac
tory meal. "I don't sec how we can go on like this;
and yet, until the outlook is 'setter ""
"No," ..she. interrupted, "yuu know we've gone
over it and over it! There's not a cent to spare
from absolute necessities; you can't risk a failure
when times: are fo hard. ,. We'll get on better when
baby is well," She tried to speak bravely, but was
stifling, a, nervous, sob.
"We cannot sacrifice you; we must find some oth
er wy",.,.He hurried, away, with anxiety added to
his already heavy burden. .
The. younger boys, late-bow for school, clattered
about getting read, with Edgar's assistance.
"Mother," he said, when they were off, "I might
stay -at.-ijuptne ami help you."
"No, dear, you; must not,jmss your lessons," she
replied, thanking him with a kiss. .
' . These, were six boys-. in the, Pearson family or
five joyj and the baby, as. they put it. .. . ... ...
"AH wood.chopper&; not a dish-washer among
them,r.. Father Penrson remarked sometimes, a little
reeretfully itmuftbe admitted.
' With the care of -baby, and iookino; after the cloth
ing and, comfort o the entire family, Mrs., Pearson
had enough, "to ?do when the kitchen work and cook-
imr were done for her; but now Edgar the thought
ful shook Jus iTiead, ., 5. . ... j.
He l.ad noticed how .woti. the dear, -mother was
crowing. - 4citod Ms fChrs anxiety?
he poudcred the situation earnestly,, and he and his
older brother, Frank, talked it over that night in
their room before going to bed. Frank had found
Edgar reading when he came up to bed, and he
tried to bring his brother to his way of thinking
that one of the younger boys should help their
mother more. Edgar listened to him for a -while,
and then replied: "Xo, Frank, I have made up my
mind. We can't go on like this, as father says;
there's a job right here, waiting for somebody, and
somebody's got to do it. You are father's right
hand man in the store; Archie's too young, and,
besides, he hates it like poison; Willie and Ted
don't count for much, only at the table. That set
tles it! I am the one to do it."
When he came home at noon the next day he
brought a bundle of gingham bought from his pri
vate savings. "Couldn't you cut me a couple of
long-sleeved aprons, mother, and run them up on
the machine this evening?" he said, as he displayed
the goods. ,
"Aprons!" cried Ted. "Are you goin' into a
"Yes; the home bakery," Edgar replied. TYou
sec," he explained, seating himelf at the .table,
"mother's got to have regular help.. What's every
body's business is nobody's business; -we've proved
that. Under the present system we all do a little,
and none of us does much. Now I'm going to make
the kitchen work my own particular business, moth
er being my general-in-chief. I'll do all the cook
ing as fast as I learn how, and all the dish-washing.."
"Hired girl! Sissy!" exclaimed Ted 'and Willie
together, laughing. ,. ; .
"That's it," Edgar said good-humoredjy.. ,'Wc
certainly need a sissy bad enougli in this family."
"So. we do.; But it isn't an easy .place -to fill, and
I'm afraid you'll make a poor substitute," comment
ed Iris father. . ;
"Wait a while and you'll change your mind,, fath
er. I'm in earnest, and L mean to study cooking as
I hope to study; law some day.", .
. "But you mustn't leave" school, my dear," his
. mother , said. , ' '..;...'
"No, mother.-I -don't intend to. You'll all have
to lie read j for breakfast a . half-four earlier, so I
. can get my work done. Some girls do lots of work
and 50 to school. . Mary Beach works for her board,
jrtid I asked her all: about .it. She accomplishes a
great deal, but I. think I can do as well, or . better,
when I leara how;- A boy past six'ren ought to
k as cmart as a .girl the same age."
.."The hoys 11, make sport of you for doing girls'
work." Archie reminded him.
"Of conrse! I'expcct that! Guc-s I can. stand
it. 1 We've all got io cat yet awhile- whatever we do
in ihe ..future, vand it's a. good thing for a. fellow
to know how .to. cook, sometimes.,'. Don't, you re
jnember how -.Uncle . Toe said he wished he could
cook when lie was in the .army?; Now. then, I'll waU
these dishes .in a jiffy,;while mother puts Rexy to
v He. took to the rork , with a cheerful, willing
earnestness, and his mother's face brlgMened wit.
ARGUS, SATURDAY, MAY 8, 1909.
in, cxjpreosion of relief as she watched and guided
hiai, and the plan began to look feasible.
( "Bat It won 'jt last. . Our Biddy will strike after
a few weeks, of it." Frank prophesied one day. "And
won't, the xrockery suffer!"
Vii't. and see," Edgar replied.
. Pay after day be tramped about the kitchen like
a warrior, conquering the difficulties that arose, with
a. persistent patience and a comforting cheerfulness. ,
His mother often smiled to hear his merry whistle
or boyish roundelay, to the accompaniment of rat
tling pans and kettles. He developed a deft quick
ness. atH the crockery suffered no more than th. us
Prom the first he was not at all ashamed of his
job," and answered the door-bell, if his mother
was not in the house, in his apron if necessary.
Once, so garbed, he conducted, the minister into the
parlor, blushing under the good man's warmly ex
Of course when the boys got liold of it they set
't-'.nc into the Biddy business, I hear," Ralph
"Yep." Edward smiled on the crowd of boys.
."Ho, ho! sloshing in the dish-water like a girl,"
'N'o, I slosh like a boy, and I'm having more
fun than you could shake a stick at." Edgar laughed,
and he thought of "Tom Sawyer."
"Fun!" That was news.
''Yep. You just ought to see me knock the spots
out of the bread-dough. It's great! Beats the
punching-bag all to pieces. You see, 1 bake a whole
lot at once, and have a pile of dough; I roll jup my
sleeves, scrub my fists till you wouldn't know them,
and play I'm a prize-fighter, and cuff, and maul, and
pound that dough in a way to make your eyes
pop. It's soft and .doesn't hurt your hands, and the
more you beat it the better bread it makes. It's
It sounded like it, the way he told of it. Some of
the boys doubled their fists and thumped an imag
inary dough-pile, wishing they could try the real
"But it's women's work, all the same, and noth
ing m it. You wouldn't catch me at it" Tom Smith
"Now look1 here.", . Edgar took from his vest
pocked a dpuble sheet of letter-papei on which he
had pasted a clipping from a newspaper, which he
had ready for such an occasion. "Just listen to what
some men get for doing this kind of 'women's
work.'" He. read; them a clipping of an account
of the salaries paid to some of the great chefs.
"Wh-e-e-w!" whistled tialph. "Thousands of dol
lars! Whaf a lot for just cooking!" -
'"Just for cooking,'" quoted iEdgar. "Did you
never think, son, how , important cooking is, and
eating, - too? Tom has, I know," and they all
laughed, for Tom could do wonders in the matter of
"I don't know as I'm so much more given to eat
ing than the rest of you." Tom protested, "unless
it's doughnuts.. Say, do they let yon make.'em, Ed?"
'I should say.so! -by the peck! I can make
dandy ones, too! Going to make a lot Saturday;
if you fellows H tome rpund about ten, I'll let you
sample 'em. . But you've got to stay on the 'back
porch, for i scrub Saturday mornings, aud I won't
have you tracking the floor."
. They were, there, and watched enviously as he
nourished about, magnifying his importance, and
"AT THE SIDE DOOR." 7 ' AT THM MCIC DOOft.
patronizingly distributing two cakes each. Crisp and
brown and fragrant, just from the kettle, ""hey left
with the impression that his was an enviable posi
tion, and spread abroad his skill as a cook; and his
fame grew. . - .
He kept at it all winter, learning readily because
he put his mind to it, 3nd doing the cooking to
the satisfaction and content of the family, and with
considerable pride in his own dexterity. His moth
er often declared that she would never get such
"I don't know that I'd care to go intp.it as a
life business, but while I'm getting ready for some
thing else, this is good enough," he said at times.
Early one morning in June, soon after school had
closed, a young man Called at the Pearson home.
"I hear that you have a young fellow here who
can cook. May I see him, please?" he asked
Edgar came forward, aproned from chin to shoes.
"I do a little in that line," he said. .......
"How much of a little? And are you open to an
offer of a situation?"
"To go out cooking?" Edgar exclaimed, and his
brothers at the table could not refrain from laugh
ing. Even his mother smiled.
The stranger smiled, too. explaining: "A lot of
our club fellows go up to the Lakes every summer;
we have a camp there and a good outfit, but we
find it difficult to get a reliable cook and caretaker.
We come and go, and want some one trustworthy
there all the time. You're younger than I expected,
but you look dependable. What kind of cooking can
"Most of the plain and some of the frills, like pie
and gingercake, doughnuts and rice-pudding." Ed
gar hastily ran over the list of his accomplish
ments. "You'll do; we never had a man who could cook
as much. We give fifty dollars a month and ex
penses. We would want you next week, and prob
ably until the last of September. What do you
"I'll go, and cook my prettiest," Edgar replied ex
citedly. "We'll call it settled, then," replied the visitor.
"My name is Thompson, and I will be at the sta
tion to-morrow in time for the 12.30 afternoon
train. Meet me there."
It was a hot June midday when Edgar arrived
at the station. He was there ahead. of time; no one
was about the building but a cab man removing
come baggage from the box-seat, and a perspiring
iceman lazily crossing the street with the daily
charge for the waiting-room ice-cooler. As F.dgar
drew nearer, however, Mr. ""hompson came down
the steps with his grip-sack and rods, and failed
his new cook. Together they went acrdss the street
and bought a few things at the hardware-store.
As the time approached for the departure of the
train, Edg:ir's friends began to arrive, and . soon
it seemed that every boy he ever knew was there.
" Edgar boarded the train, to an accompaniment
of cheers from tl.e boys. I" t he was saying to him-
self: "Three months at fifty dollars a month! I'll
get rich! Mother shall have a good Bridget in my
place. I see my -way through college! I'll cook my
self through! Hurrah! Hurrah!"
The boys saw him off with considerable envy.
. "Just think of all the fun you're going to have,
and get paid for it, too!" Ralph said.
"Why, boy," Edgar chaffed, "it's nothing but
women's work just a sissy dish-water job," and he
waved his hat from the car window."
HE Princess sat in a ha!r of state,
A lady of high degree: , -
Her garments hee and her stately mien
Were a goodly sight to see;', . . ,
1 The children cried as they gazed with pride,
" Then ran to' their games away
"We must leave her there she is far too fair
And fine for every day!"
THE Princess mourned her lonely fate
As she sat in her chair apart; .
"How I long for the bliss of a child's sweet Ida
And the love of a child's true heart 1 .
One fond caress might spoil my dress.
So I never may join their play.
Unhappy me! It is sad to be -Too
fine for every day!"
T HE Princess fell from her chair of irate
1 (Was it chance, or a bold design?) ; .
As the dog passed by, and she caught his eye
And she never more was fine! . -The
children came from their joyous game
To soothe her pain away,
And she smiled to know, as. they kissed her
She was fit for every day!
HANNAH G. FERNALD.
When pansies came, a trifle hit..-.
The garden looked so gay,
They feared there were no colors left.
Their . hearts shook with dismay.
But sunshine kissed them comforted,
- And little threads of rain
Came down, with many colors.
And made them grave again.
So one was crowned with . purple.
And one with sunshine's gold;
Another blossomed like a flame,
And. warmed the Spring from cold.
"The pansies are ..the dearest,"
The children gaily said; - .
"They're like a broken rainbow.
Caught in a garden bed." ;:'"..
CHARLOTTE E. CHITTENDEN.
LITTLE MabeL while she's sitting
Or, it may (be, when she's flitting
Through the house is always knitting.
What a busy girl you" say.
Sure, a noble work she's doing
Some sweet charity pursuing
Knitting thus from day to day.
And I think I hear a babel -Of
young voices, praising Mabel;
Wishing, too, that they were able
To be so industrious. .
And perhaps another ftelin
Into their warm hearts i stealing
Which we might call envious.
Yet while weeks and days are going.
And the knitting, too. is growing,
What good work is Mabel showing?
What sweet charity begun?
For there's not a friend or neighbor
Who knows aught of . Mabel's lioor.
Or one good deed she Kas done.
Ah, you little folks ?te guessing,
I dare say, the fact distressing,
Which I must be now confessing;
A fact that everyone admits
Parents, teachers, playmates floutin.r
Frownirrg, fretting, scolding, pouting-
'Tis her eyebrows Mabel knit si
By MARY F- K. HUTCHINSON.
OW s'pose you're five or six years -
Or seb'n or eight or nine, -j
An' have a ma thet's awrful good -
(Ermost ee good ex mine ) ;
An' s'pose yer brithday comes eround.
What's goin ter happen then? ---i i
Say! 1 don't think you're very smart
To have ter guess again !
You'll have a birthday party!
An youll invite Oh, everyone .,
You know, onless you're mean!
An' all the boys '11 git there fust.
. All lookin slick an' clean, y .
An' all the girls, in dress-up duds,
Wifl act ez if they're dumb
Except Nell Jones, who giggles so
Folks wish she hadn't cc.mc.
When there's a birthday T-
Big sistfr'll try to start some games,
' Bat that won't help a bit; i .":
Yer oui't play even blind-nan's buff
- When no one will be "it!"
An' ev'ry game that she thinks up V
These kids "do'wanter play";
They jest stan' round, look at thcrcst
In aa epectin' way.
When there's a birthday party! -
But when yer ma sez jest five words:
"Now. children, come this wav.r
An lead, 'em towards the dinin'-roorr
" Things change "be t then, and saj !.
Them boys an girls all a1k at once
An' never "think o? sches. ' - "
While they jest stuff with. lolly-nor .
Ice-cream. an mrtsarf cakes
An thafs ibx -birthday (art,