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The Topeka state journal. [volume] (Topeka, Kansas) 1892-1980, March 14, 1900, LAST EDITION, Image 12

Image and text provided by Kansas State Historical Society; Topeka, KS

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016014/1900-03-14/ed-1/seq-12/

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A Ponderous Automobile of 1834 Has Been Succeeded by the Light
Running and Marvelous Vehicle of 190a
In spite of all failures and in spite
of numerous mishaps, many minds have
been engaged, theoretically or practi
cally, in attempting to solve the prob
lem of artilicial flight. Long before the
dawn of the present century men were
at work upon dying machines that re
fused to fly, and the same question is
still the most interesting and most im
portant of the scientific problems that
the nineteenth century will leave as a
legacy to the twentieth.
During the past hundred years con
siderable progress has been made to
ward the final solution of the great puz
zle. There has been an advance along
the lines of dirigible balloons, or air
ships, but a flying machine that is in
any way suited to the requirements of
travel or transportation is still beyond
the achievement of man.
That such an invention is not only
one of the possible, but probable re
sults of twentieth century research is
the opinion of most students. Every
thing points to the fact that such an
achievement is soon to be realized. It
is not possible that so much time and
money should have been expended for
nothing, but it will undoubtedly be left
to the next century to discover the true
solution of the problem of successful
aerial navigation.
In spite of all this, however, there
is much in the science of aeronautics
that is deserving of the consideration
in such a series of studies as this. Al
though the great success has not been
achieved, ballooning, as we know it, is
still distinctly a science of the nine
teenth century. Up to the close of the
eighteenth century the progress along
these lines had been scarcely worthy
of notice, whereas the feats that have
been accomplished during the past hun
dred years have been distinctly worthy
of notice.
Among the balloonists who are most
deserving of attention and praise are
Henry Giffard. the Tissandier Brothers,
Gaston and Albert, and Renard and
Krebs. In 1S52 Giffard broke all rec
ords in the history of aeronautics by
constructing a balloon which was pro
pelled by a steam engine. This was
the first air ship that could be navi
gated in a desired direction.
The next great achievement along
these lines was made by Gaston Tis
sandier, who exhibited a balloon that
could be run by means of an electric
storage battery, at the Paris Exposi
tion of 1SS1. Later, assisted by his
brother, he built another model, over
i)0 feet long and 30 feet in diameter,
which was fitted with dynamos and a
f A 1 5
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- air I '!
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- s.
driving screw nearly ten feet in diam
eter, and was supplied with current
from an accumulator weighing about
four hundred pounds. In this machine
the two inventors were able to make
a speed of from seven to nine miles an
hour for an hour or two together.
In 1SS4 Renard and Krebs constructed
a balloon on similar lines, but with it
they were able to obtain a speed that
sometimes equalled fifteen miles an
hour. This invention was one of the
most interesting exhibits at the Paris
exhibition of 1SS9.
Since that time this science has made
rapid progress, but the most pretentious
attempt to put a balloon to practical
use was during the Journey undertaken
by Andree in the hope of reaching the
north pole by the use of his air ship.
Whether he returns or not is a ques
tion that time alone can answer, but
there is one point that he has proved,
and this is that it is possible to con
struct air ships that will be something
more than a toy.
Of course, up to the present time the
faultless balloon has not been con
structed, but the work of recent years
tends to show that this will be attained,
and there can be no question but that
the highest credit should be paid to
the nineteenth century pioneers in this
great work to the men who were able
to give the first practical illustration of
the fact that balloons, like terrestrial
machines, might be made subject to the
control of man.
The search for a successful subma
rine boat has also been going on for
more than a hundred years, but there
is little doubt but that the solution of
this problem will prove to be one of
the greatest achievements of the nine
teenth century. The first mention of
a craft of this nature was made about
the middle of the eighteenth century,
when the Gentleman's Magazine pub
lished the description of a strange boat
constructed by a man named Symons,
which actually dived in the Dart.
During the remainder of the eight
eenth century several attempts were
made to construct a submarine boat
that could be depended upon to come
to the surface again, but while some
good results were obtained, not one of
the crafts proved practicable.
Despite all these failures, however,
the work was taken up by inventors
of the nineteenth century, and the past
hundred years have been rich in prog
ress along these lines of navigation.
One by one the problems that have pre
vented the successful use of subma
rine craft have been overcome. Some-
mi u" in . .m
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'H FVi.
times it has been at the cost of human
life, and always at a great outlay of
time and money, but now, at the close
of the century, it looks as If the world
was to reap the benefit of all this re
search. WTith the Gustave Zede In France and
the Holland and Argonaut in this coun
try, there seems to be little reason to
believe that the successful submarine
boat has not been found. The great
American inventor, Fulton, failed, just
as Symonds and Bushnell had failed
before him, but to their failures are
due a portion of the'credit of the pres
ent success of Holland or of Lake.
If there is any department of hu
man endeavor in which unprecedented
progress has been made during the
past century, it is in that of road trans
portation. In the eighteenth century
the vehicles were still far from what
one might have anticipated, and jour
neys were made as often on horseback
as by any other way.
To-day the crude vehicles have dis
appeared. In the early part of the
present century they gave place to con
veyances that were as comfortable as
they were safe and ornamental, but
now even these are disappearing to
make way for a new vehicle that would
have astonished our forefathers be
yond the power of expression. This ve
hicle, of course, is the automobile.
Of course, as is well known, the steam
carriage antedates the locomotive, and
Isaac Newton suggested a rude form
of the machine as early as 1680. From
that time until the present day invent
ors have been at work trying to dis
cover some suitable conveyance of this
One of the first automobiles, however,
was made in the early part of the pres
ent century, and it is thus described
by "The Mechanics' Magazine" for Jan
uary, 1834: "The carriage is built to
carry fifty passengers. The wheels are
about six inches broad in the tire and
eight feet in diameter. The crank shaft
worked by the cylinders is connected
by endless chains with the axles of the
hind wheels of the carriage, and each
wheel has a separate axle.
"The spokes of the wheels are so con
structed as to operate like springs to
the whole machine that is, to give and
take according to the inequalities of
the road.
"The boiler consists of a series of
double tubes, one within the other,
placed in a vertical position around a
circular fireplace, and communicating
with it; the heated air passes through
these tubes, which are everywhere sur
rounded by water. The tubes are in
the form of siphons, to counteract the
effect of unequal expansion. The
draught is produced by a fanner worked
by the engine, and the furnace is madd
to consume its own smoke."
Crude as such a machine would be
to-day, it was a mechanical marvel
three-quarters of a century ago, for it
was not until 1S62 or 1S63 that even
these steam road vehicles came into
practical use. Constant efforts were
made to improve them, however, and
by 1893 it began to look as if the art
of automobile building would finally be
In that year a steam carriage made
the trip from Paris to Rouen and re
turn, a distance of some eighty miles,
in twelve hours and fifty minutes, an
achievement that was everywhere
praised. Two years later, however, at
the French competition, a petroleum
carriage made a run of 736 miles in
forty-eight hours and fifty-three min
utes, or a little more than fifteen miles
an hour.
Not only is the automobile one of the
most remarkable inventions of this
century, but it has been of great ser
vice to the people of the United States
in that it has given a strong impetus
to the movement in favor of good roads.
Xew Tort's Kew Apparatus For En
abling the Firemen to See
Through Flames.
The new searchlight fire engine,
which was built on the suggestions fur
nished by Fire Chief Croker of New
York, arrived there a short time ago
from Elmira. It was received at the
department repair shop in West Third
street by Chief of Construction Ryan,
who immediately started to get the en
gine ready for service. It was given a
test and was found to work success
fully. The machine is the first searchlight
fire engine ever constructed, and is ex
pected to almost revolutionize the pres
ent method of fighting interior fires by
enabling the firemen to overcome the
great barrier of smoke. The light pen
etrating the smoke will allow the fire
men to locate the seat of the fire in
stead of, as at present, groping around
in darkness and directing streams of
water ahead.
The machine will be located In the
quarters of Engine Company 20, which
commands the great dry goods district,
where fires are hottest and smoke the
densest. It will be manned by an offi
cer, engineers and complement of fire
men, and will respond to alarms .for
large fires and when called out by spe
cial alarms.
Directly connected to the engine is a
marine-type multipolar generator, sup
plying sixty-five amperes of current at
a pressure of thirty volts. On each side
of the driver's seat is placed an eigh-teen-inch
projector, and the seat folds
over so that the projectors can swing
through a complete circle.
They can also be placed at any ver
tical angle. The projectors are supplied
with special deiiecting glass fronts,
making it possible to cover a large area
with the light at short range; or by
using the plain glass fronts, also sup
plied, the light may be thrown out in
parallel rays to a great distance.
Few Spots Where Criminals May Con
ceal Themselves From the Man
With the Warrant
It was Dick Swiveller who checked
off the streets of London and then de
cided that there was practically no
thoroughfare that he could traverse
without fear of meeting a creditor, and
the fugitive criminals of to-day are
in much the same position. They may
seat themselves before a map 'and
study the countries of the earth until
mountains, rivers and cities mingle and
become one before their weary eyes, but
they will be unable to select a single
spot in the whole civilized world in
which they would be safe from the
pursuit of the dreaded man with a war
rant. To-day extradition constitutes so
much a part of the jurisprudence of all
countries that it is difficult for one to
remember that such a condition of af
fairs is something that is very new, but
the public records show that it has
only been within the past few years
that the world has had no city of ref
uge to which the criminal might hasten
in the hour of his escape.
A few years ago there were many
such spots, scattered from one end of
the earth to the other, and in those
days the fugitive had but to select his
place of abode. If he arrived at the
chosen habitation, justice was unable
to reach him.
At that time safe harbors were of
fered by Spain, Turkey, Algiers, Ja
pan, Holland, Chili, Ecuador, the Phil
ippines, Cuba and all of Central Amer
ica with the exception of British Hon
duras, to all kinds of criminals from the
United States, from murderers down,
while the places to which such offend
ers as embezzlers might flee was much
Almost everyone can remember the
time when every runaway bank cashier
found refuge in Canada, but gradually
the desirable hiding places commenced
to narrow down. The United States
Government lost no opportunity to per
suade other Powers that nothing could
be more advantageous than an, extra
dition treaty, and it has now accom
plished its purpose. Several years ago
Canada passed the law that has made
the Dominion an unhealthy resort for
such tourists, and still later, Japan
adopted a treaty covering what are
called the "crimes against property."
Eventually things simmered down un
til there was nothing left but Central
j merica, and at last only Spanish Hon
duras was left. The treaty clause that
was adopted in 189S robbed the fugitive
of his last place of refuge, so that to
day those who desire to escape the
strong arm of justice will have to take
up their abode upon some desert island
or upon some one of the islands in the
Pacific that are rarely if ever visited,
and that have absolutely no means of
communication with the civilized world.
While it is quite probable that the
fugitive in question would be able to
escape discovery in such a place, he
would not be thoroughly . safe even
there, for any country that desired his
presence before the court would not
hesitate to go and take him bodily from
an island that had no treaty relations
with its government.
At the present time no one of these
islands offers a safer haven than Pit
cairn, in the Pacific, but the question
that would trouble the gentleman who
desired to escape would be as to the
means of leaching that Island. It is so
far away from the ordinary routes of
travel that the regular ocean steamers
never stop at its one port, and the only
visitors are occasional sailing vessels
that put in for water and to give the
islanders an opportunity to exchange
their products for clothes and other
necessities of life. .
It is doubtful, however, if any fugi
tive who had been used to the refine
ments of civilized life would be willing
to take up his abode on the island, even
for the sake of his liberty. To those
who are unacquainted with the condi
tions that now exist on the island the
very name of Pitcairn is suggestive of
all kinds of romantic associations.
Even the dull old school geographies
used to pause for a moment in their
painful round of rivers, boundaries and
"principal oxports," to linger pleasantly
over the romance of the mutiny on the
British ship Bounty, in 1789, and the
landing of the leader, Fletcher Chris
tian, with eight other Englishmen, six
Polynesian men and twelve Polynesian
women, on lonely Pitcairn Island, where
they founded a colony and agreed to
live without law.
There is no question but that the life
was a wild whirl while it lasted, but
in eleven years every adult on the is
land had either been murdered or had
died of dissipation, with the exception
of old Alexander Smith, who was left
alone with the children, who had
sprung up like weeds.
With the help of a few settlers
dropped by stray ships, he began the
Christian era, the Anno Domini of the
Pitcairn microcosm, and from that date
the virtues and simplicity of the Pit
cairn islanders became one of the pret
tiest pages in the history of modern
That is the romantic side of the story,
the bright side that history tells. There
is another and darker side, however,
that has been left to the modern chron
icler to relate. For years things re
mained in an ideal condition in Pit
cairn. Everyone was moral and loved
his neighbor as he loved himself, but
gradually things began to change. Gen
erations of intermarriage in a few fam
ilies, coupled with the vices bred in
the plenty and idleness of the tropical
island, gradually undid all the good
work that had been done by the earlier
settlers, and to-day, it is stated, the
people are little more than a race of
To banish a fugitive to live among
such people would be worse than' to
sentence him to prison, and existence
on any of" the other islands -where he
would be likely to be sheltered would
be just as desirable.
As the result, therefore, it may be
said with truth that there is no place
in the civilized world where the es
caped law breaker can hide his head.
To-day his. government could follow
him to any spot where he might go,
for even those places where there is
no definite treaty are always willing to
give up the criminal who has taken ref
uge in that land. Among all civilized
powers the principle of extradition is
found and demands for the surrender
of a fugitive by one government to an
other are usually complied with on the
ground of international comity.
Of course it must be remembered that
there are certain offenses in the mon
archical states of Europe that could
not be regarded as crimes in this coun
try, and in no possible way can the
present extradition treaty be so twist
ed as to permit of the surrender of for
eign fugitives who have taken refuge
in the United States because of such
For instance, in Germany a man
might be seriously punished for hav
ing offended the dignity of the Emper
or, but if he succeeded in reaching these
shores the fact that he had been ac
cused of lese majeste would not be suf
ficient to persuade the officials of this
country to give him up.
In the United States the work of ex
tradition is done through the solicitor
of the State Department, and the ex
pense is borne by the counties of the
State demanding the fugitive. The
United States Government bears the ex
pense only in the case of violators of
the United States laws, such as coun
terfeiters and mail robbers. The aver
age cost of bringing a fugitive back
to this country is $500, and in many
cases the crime committed is not suffi
ciently serious to warrant such an out
lay. In important instances, however,
much greater sums will be spent, for
the French Government spent more
than 200,000 francs in obtaining the ex
tradition of Carpenter and other em
ployees of the Railway of Northern
Of late eome governments have been
trying to make Nihilism, Anarchism
and the like extraditable, but nothing
has been accomplished along, this line
owing to the fact that it is very hard
to discriminate between these and oth
er political offenders. King Humbert
of Italy and the Czar of Russia are
particularly anxious to see this provis
ion made. They desire to make an
arcy, like piracy, a common crime, but
the United States will not heed the sug
gestion. Like most countries with free
institutions, it has a serious objection
to turning over political prisoners, and
in cases where other- and extraditable
offenses are charged, they have even
refused to surrender the fugitive - on
the extraditable offense unless there
first should be an understanding that
he should be tried for the latter and not
for the political crime.
In this way does the law of this coun
try protect the man who has succeeded
in escaping from any political despot
ism in Europe, but in cases of actual
crime against life or property, the gov
ernments of to-day have no sympathy
for the criminal. One by one his places
of refuge have been taken from him
until now he will be compelled to take
up his abode in a balloon or upon a
practically desert island or else run
the chance of being able to conceal his
identity in places where he is not
known. Of course this is being done
ivery day, and it is possible that the de
ception might be carried out success
fully, but in no way does this condition
of uncertainty compare to the time
when Europe, Asia and Africa, as well
as North and South America, all of
fered havens of refuge to the violators
of law.
He is in the Wall Taper Trnst, While
His Wile Slakes Statues.
Trusts have received the stamp of
approval of the reigning family in
Great Britain. It is announced that
Queen Victoria's son-in-law, the Mar
quis of Lome, is one of the principal
organizers of the gigantic trust which
has been formed to control the wall pa
per output of the world.
Lord Lorne has long .been interested
in the production of wall papers, hav
ing been for six years the active part
ner of a firm of house decorators and
paperhangers in Chelsea, London.
Many i3 the suburban residence that
has had the hangings of its parlor, the
ceilings of its dining room and the
cornices of its halls designed by the
brother-in-law of the Prince of Wales.
Lord Lorne and his royal wife are
poor, and it is not to drive away ennui
but to add to his income that he has
gone into business. True, his wife re
ceives from the Crown an income of
$30,000 a year, with the use of apart
ments in Kensington Palace. But the
expenses incumbent upon her as a
daughter of the Queen, such as, for in
stance, the maintenance of gentlemen
and ladies-in-waiting, the charities to
which she is expected to contribute,
etc., more than swallow up this an
nuity; and as the Marquis has mani
fested his-disapproval of the third mar
riage which the aged Duke of. Argyle
contracted recently he receives little
financial assistance from his father.
The Princess is herself not above
working. Not only is she a clever
painter, ready at all times to sell her
pictures, but she is skilful with the
chisel, and ready to take an order for
a statue or a bust, charging as much as
$S,o00 and $15,000 for her handiwork.
Approved by Eussell Sage.
"The financial situation in America,"
said Mr. Sage, '"was never more legiti
mate and sound than it is to-day. The
only cloud on the horizon is the pres
ent War ' between Great Britain and
the Boers. If by clever states
manship international trouble is avert
ed, there is no reason why good busi
ness should not have plain sailing in
the United States for a long time. If
the war should be confined exclusively
to themselves, the effect would not be
disastrous in any way to American fi
nances, for now, after the first shock
our affairs here will run on smoothly
and normally, and a considerable stim
ulation in the prices of our products
will ensue. The great danger is that
as one spark may put a city In flames,
so a war comparatively insignificant
in itself may involve several of the
first- class powers. The keenest states
men cannot foresee the results.
"The money question here has dis
turbed public sentiment for thirty or
forty days. The great demand upon the
city banks for loans has come from all
parts of the country, as well as from
large dealers who are making applica
tions for great sums of money for bus
iness purposes. That the country at
large is in a very prosperous condition
commercially is indicated by the de
mand upon New York banks from Chi
cago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, St. Paul,
and in fact from almost all tho big
cities of the United States.
"That business men are preparing for
a greatly increased volume of business
in the immediate future is shown by
the fact that they are willing to pay
full rates and a premium for money in
order to be in readiness for any tax
which new enterprises may put upon
their financial resources. " There is lit
tle chance of any relaxation in the
price of money in the near future, as it
is now loaning at full rates and a pre
pium of from one to one and a half per
cent, for thirty days,' three or six
months. This is the strongest kind of
an indication of the way in which bus
iness men regard money prospects.
"The offer of the Government to an
ticipate interest on bonds will help to
ease the money situation temporarily,
but high- prices of money are legiti
mately due in consequence of vastly in
creased demands for industrial pur
poses. Our cotton and wheat have a
great market, and at high prices will
bring vast sums of money from abroad.
For we are spreading out and develop
ing markets all over the world, many
of which are greater than we can sup
ply at present. Of course, all of this is
a great stimulus to money. On the
other hand, the very high price of iron
has retarded the entering into contracts
for the building of steam roads, trol
ley lines, bridges, and the great build
ings which are to-day constructed so
largely of iron and steel. This has had
the effect of restricting to a limited ex
tent the employment of labor.
"Apart from this question of war and
its many complications and uncertain
ties, the business prospects of the
United States are infinitely brighter
than ever before in the history of the
country, as any one with a keen eye
and good digestion can see.
"Industrials have got to take a back
seat, that is. most of them. There have
been forced upon an ill-advised public
great amounts of stock of over-capitalized
concerns of tMis character. Of
course, I have no reference to first-class
properties. There was a time during
the recent advance in prices all along
the line when many industrials of ques
tionable value were advanced in price
artificially in sympathy with the gen
eral market. The banks were prevailed
upon to loan money on some of these
securities, and I was afraid that this
indiscretion might lead to a panic. But
that danger is happily passed. A high
rate is now demanded for money ad
vanced on the majority of industrials,
and even then it is insisted that they
be put in at low prices. The rejection
of these stocks by the banks of late has
tended to increase public confidence in
the integrity of our financial institu
tions. "Naturally, high rates for money will
cause the holders of gilt-edged securi
ties that pay small dividends to sell
out and loan their money at higher
rates. The rates on mortgages will no
doubt be advanced, but this will not
hurt real estate, as the higher salaries
paid to working people will enable them
in turn to pay higher rent. The people
in this country should remember one
thing; that is, they are not living upon
themselves, but upon the world at
large, which they have made their mar
ket, through industry and moral in
tegrity. "In this war between England and
the Boers we should, as I say, unques
tionably support England, not only be
cause she stood beside us during our
recent war, but because England and
America combined would be more pow
erful, morally, intellectually and finan
cially, than all the rest of the world.
Without Mfting a finger we can, by our
attitude, compel all other nations to
keep their hands off. This will have
the effect of not only shortening the war
with the Boers, but preventing the dis
organization of business and finance
throughout the whole civilized world."
(?:.- A . ..i. i.i. ii i
Though He Has Kot by Any Means
Found the Animal He Wanted.
When Secretary Root was at Lake
Champlain with the President, he was
called upon to review the Twenty
sixth Volunteer Regiment, stationed at
Plattsburg BarraGks, and . he greatly
admired the sight of the field officers
dashing about the parade grounds upon
their curveting steeds. He was offered
a mount upon one of these mettlesome
animals, but coyly refused and stuck
to terra flrma.
But the fine picture remained in his
mind, and after his return, while sit
ting in his office, one fine afternoon, he
summoned to him Adjt.-Gen. Corbin.
"General," he remarked, "I have been
a busy man for a number of years
Gen. Corbin bowed his head in as
sent. "And, General, for my business I have
neglected many pleasures pleasures
and pastimes, sir that I once enjoyed."
"Yes, Mr. Secretary."
"One of which. General, I am sorry to
state, is the noble and king-like sport
of equestrianism. Ah, horseback rid
ing a firm seat and a steady hand, a
gallop in the bracing air over a smooth
road! Could anything be more enjoy
able?" "Nothing, Mr. Secretary. Nothing."
"Well, General, to come to the point,
I find that now, in the course of my
duties, I shall need a suitable mount
occasionally, and you know there is
nothing like knowing the horse one has
under one. I desire to make use of your
superior judgment in these matters."
"Certainly, Mr. Secretary."
"As I said, I have neglected the exer
cise, and, of course ah! well, I would
like an animal with a mild temper,
sweet dispositioned, you know, and a
broad back the sort that is hard to
fall off of.-
"I understand, Mr. Secretary. I will
ask Gen. Ludingfon. who has had con
siderable more experience than either
of us, to aid me in making the selec
tion." "And I say, General," called the Sec
retary, "this need not be made public,
you know not just now, at any rate."
"Yes, Mr. Secretary."
Gen. Corbin hurried up stairs to the
office of the Quartermaster General.
"Ludington!" he gasped, short of
breath, "the Secretary of War wants us
to help him buy a horse a riding horse.
He wants a fine, good looking horse,
with a broad back, so he can't fall off,
and gentle as a dog."
"Sure! Sure!" answered Gen. Lud
ington. "I can get it for him. Sure!
What color does he want?"
"Wait a minute and I'll ask him."
Gen. Corbin retraced his steps and
found the Secretary waiting for him.
"Mr. Secretary, Gen. Ludington wants
to know what color horse you want."
"Ah, yes, let me see. What color? I
had never thought of that. I always
rather fancied a gray horse, you know;
perhaps it was from a picture I once
saw. Yes, I believe it was. You re
ca"ll the magnificent gray horse Napo
leon strides in the canvas, 'The Eve of
"A splendid animal, Mr. Secretary." s
"And then there was Alexander's Bu
cephalus a magnificent black, if I re
member. Black is a beautiful color for
a horse."
"But, Mr. Secretary, Bucephalus was
i ? ns:
well, ah! you might say not exactly
well broken."
"Well, sir, I have no objection to a
sorrel. In fact, I am not particular
about the color, sir. A broad back,
though, remember; that is the main
point and the disposition."
Gen. Corbin again visited the Quar
termaster General.
"Ludington," he said, "the Secretary
says he likes a gray, and he likes a
black, and a sorrel or a bay, or a straw
berry roan in fact, any color,
just so the horse is gentle and he won't
fall off."
"Sure, sure!" raid the Quartermaster
General. "I will find him right away."
But Gen. Ludington was too san
guine, for the horse has not yet been
M l
i i .. - .1

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