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mESffiTO'DlSATOH. iSUNMt, ''DECEMBER 25, r1892.
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On this cage will be found some short
stories apropos of this day sent to The Dis
patch by men and women whose names
arc familiar to everyone. No fitter intro
duction could be given them than this
Christmas sentiment lrom E. W. Haliord,
Secretary to President Harrison:
A happy Christmas is the rule, anythinc
else would be an exception. Christmas is
not a national festival; it belongs to the
world in recognition of the Unspeakable
Gilt to all men. Ko human voice has better
sung its carol than that of Charles Dickens,
and so, when the day comes, "God bless us
KEPT HIS ENGAGEMENT.
"at Goodwin's Unlucky Adventures on a
Christmas iglit lie Met His Audicnco
Rt the Expense of Frost Bites and
Bruises An Uncompleted Bridge.
The most eventlnl Christmas I ever
passed was just one year ago. "We had
played in Utica Christmas Eve and were to
leaTe on an early morning train for
Poughkeepsie. The company caught the
train all right, but it was frightfully cold
and a blizzard was raging. I decided to
wait for a later train, which would reach
roughkeepsie just about 5 o'clock. Instead
ot clearing up, however, the storm grew
worse, and the train that I waited for never
came. It was stalled in a drift up the road
tomewhere. I began to Tealize then that it
was a cold day for me in more senses than
I tried to hire an engine, but didn't suc
ceed, for there were none. I finally gave it
up in despair and went back to the hotel.
George Appleton, my manager, was made
ot btemer stuff than I, however, and in
about two hours had organized a party of
stormbound passengers and persuaded
another raiiroad to make up a mixed train
and try to get us tlirougli to the uncom
pleted bridge at Poughkeepsic "We would
be lauded on the opposite side of the river,
they faid, but we could get across to the
tounbythc ferrv. The depot was about
three miles outside oi Utica and it took us
three hours and quarter to reach it. There
"was no fire in the cars' we secured and
mighty little in the engine. At 8 o'clock
Christmas night we were dumped ont at the
lending opposite Poughkeepsie.
The river was full of jagged masses of
jec, and the ferryboats had been compelled
to stop running at G o'clock. There was no
possible wav ot crossing except by the halt
hnished railroad bridge, and "that was
guarded at either end by watchmen, who
had orders to allow no one to pass. More-
J7 Guard Ilc Obdurate.
over, there was no approach to the bridge,
whose ice-clad buttress arose abruptly from
the liver's edge to a height of 100 feet or
mere. The other passengers stopped
right there and songht shelter in a
neighboring hotel. I wanted to follow
their good example, but Appleton
wouldn't let me. He said we had gone
too tar to turn back then, and besides a
sturdy small boy at the hotel had offered to
show us how to" climb the bridge He was
rewarded in advance, and then we set out to
battle with late The small boy took the
lead, Appleton followed him, I made a close
third, aud mv valet, Jack, formed a kind of
rearguard to look alter mv remains in case
of accident Our small guide led us
straight to the huge buttress of the bridge,
which was built of massive blocks ot stone
arranged in terrace form, from its broad
base to its narrow apex. These terraces
were about 15 feet high and covered with
'ieeand snon. It was impossible for a man
to climb them unaided, but the boy was
equal to the emergency. After prowling
about for a tew minutPs" he found a ladder
which had been used by the workmen. I
can't begin to describe the difficulties and
dangers of that climb. But at last we
scrambled to the top. with clothes torn aud
hands brnised and bleeding. Fortunately,
the watchman was walking toward the mid
dle of the bridge, and we had a chance for
a good start before he could stop us. After
a fhort breathing spell Appleton, Jack and
I began our perilous journey along the nar
row footpath that stretched across the
ghastly look'ne iron work. But before we
Lad reached the middle ot the bridge the
watchman stopped us and ordered us to go
back. We pleaded and protested and
argued, but it was no use. He wouldn't
even take a bribe. Hereupon the boy Jack
loudly called my attention to the fact that
the water looked awlully cold down below.
Appleton quickly added that under certain
circumstances it would make an excellent
plunge bath, and I chipped in with a flip
pant rcmarE about it being a three-to-one
That watchman evidently thought we
meditated murder, or some equally desper
ate crime, lor his eyes fairly bulged lrom
thtir sockets as he backed away from us as"
fur as the narrow footpath would permit.
"We brushed by him instantly and continued
on our wav without any further interfer
ence from him. The watchman at the
other end of the bridge, however,
proved oi different metal. He was
w big as two oi" us and we didn't
iV $lP jffivH
dare to attempt any bluff with him. He
was even more obdurate than the other
fellow. It began to look as though all our
labor was to be in vain, when Appleton
whispered to me to run while he engaged
the watchman in conversation. "Well, I
scooted, and so did Jack, but we didn't
coot far, lor we were brought to a sudden
standstill by the abrupt termination of the
bridge at the buttress. It was a sheer hun
dred feet to the ground and there was no
ladder. I gave it up again and could
have wept scalding tears if it hadn't
been ea cold. Appleton, however,
succeeded in pacilying the watch
man and came to our rescue with
grim determination in his stride. He
boldlv jumped down the first terrace aud
called UDon Jack and me to follow. Jack
did so, bnt I hesitated. Those 15 feet
seemed like a precipice and the landing on
the next terrace looked awfully hard and
insecure. I didn't dare to jump, so I com
promised by taking a kind of a toboggan
slide on my coat tail. It wasn't as exhil
arating or as fascinating as many other
slides I've had, but it was quite as exciting.
In this way I reached terra firma in a some
what dismantled condition. Incidentally I
bade a tearful goodby to my trou:er3 next
It was about two miles from the bridge to
the Opera House and wc had to foot it, be
cause there wasn't a vehicle abroad that
night "We ran most ot the way to keep
lrom freezing, and alter frightening a couple
ot women into hysterics, because they mis
understood our hurried request for informa
tion, we arrived at the theater at 9:15 and
proceeded with the performance. As there
was no time to change I went on just as
I was, looking like a scarecrow on a Massa
chusetts farm. The audience was good
natured, though, and readily forgave me
when they learned what had happened. I
shall never forget that trip and I wouldn't
go through it again, even to elect Harrison.
Nat C Goodwin.
SANTA CLAUS SNOWBOUND.
Ella Wheeler "Wilcox Tells How One or" Her
aily Christmascs Came Ne-ir Being a
Disappointment-A Brother's Sacrifice
Watcliing the Beautiful Drifts.
The holiday season recalls to me one
Christmas morning in my childhood, when
I had attained about my seventh year. I
was n devout believer in Sauta Claus, or
"St Nicholas," a1! I was taught to call the
dear myth. He had never been munifi
cently liberal with me, but he had brought
me each year many necessities, in the way
of a new dress, apron, hood and mittens,
with one or two luxuries like a bright col
ored picture book, a toy, a doll or a stick ot
As many as possible of these gifts were
stuffed into my expectant stocking, and the
remainder were arranged about it, usually
presenting quite an array.
I do not recollect that I ever received a
gift at any other time of the year, and my
anticipations of Xma3 were naturally large
ones. On this particular winter there had
been an unusual fall of snow. A few days
before Christmas a heavy storm set in and
the snow Jell incessantly, rendering the
Wisconsin prairie roads impassable. My
brother, who had been planning a trip to
town, 14 miles distant, to obtain family sup
plies, was obliged to abandon the idea, as
no vehicle or team could brest the huge
I began to worry about the arrival of
"SU Nicholas." I believed that he jour
neyed about in his sleigh drawn by rein
deers, and I feared the blockade might in
convenience him. To my consternation
my mother expressed similar doubts when
I mentioned the matter. She said she
feared he would find the roads impassable,
and honed I would be reasonable if such
proved to be the case. But I found it im
possible to be reasonable even in con
templation of such a disaster. I talked of
nothing else. I watched the still falling
snow through tears, aud I questioned each
grown member ot the family concerniug
the probability of St. Nicholas' detention a
score of times a day. The morning preced
ing Christmas the weather cleared, but
came off sharp aud cold. The drifts were
above the window sills on the west and
north sides of the house.
I stood in a chair and gazed over wide ex
panses of snow, stretching away and away,
like white seas with dritt billows. Here
aud there, widely scattered, a distant chim
ney lifted itselt like the mast of a ship.
Not a team passed the whole day. One or
two neighbors climbed over th'e cresting
tops ot the drifts and hailed each other like
shipwrecked mariners, saying how impass
able the roads were. My disappointment
increased with the hours. As night fell I
pressed my face against the window pane
and peered into the darkness and listened.
I hoped against reason to hear the jangle
oi approaching bells. With the falling of
night my mother had grow n hopeful and en
couraging. She said it might be possible
tbat St Nicholas would come on foot She
had heard ot his doing so in a few instances.
Ut course, in such cases he brought very
nts, but he was expected to Keep his
yearly engagements by leaving some small
I retired to my bed, cheered by this faint
hope. I hung up my stocking, as usual,
and tried to keep my eyes and ears open to
listen for the sound of St Nicholas' loot
steps, but I was soon sound asleep.
I awoke early, and, sitting up in bed, I
glanced eagerly at my stocking. It hung
on the nail seemingly ns limp as when "I
placed it there. My heart sank in my
breast There was no array of parcels on
the floor as in former years. St Nicholas
had not come.
I arose with tears In my eyes and a lump
in my throat and began to make my toilet
The clay loomed before me, long and lonely.
I had drawn on one stocking and reached to
take the other lrom the nail, when lot
something hard lay within hi and there
was a brilliantly illustrated copy of "John
Gilpin's Bide" rolled about a stick of candy
the barber pole candy that to-day looks
more inviting to me than all the tempting
boxes of Huyler orTenny.
St Nicholas came alter all 1 Then, as I
continued with my toilet, light-hearted and
joyous, I found that the old stubbed-out
imrWh i 1 -,. x i i$cTV jOsr-, jJfLJSiuKS-i ?$&&. JjJamas&isS&tfd i&&aMJ&x SiiiMbAaafSMMai&lwSmtftii. VjigJ2aiBafc-'-3ra
shoes had been replaced by shining copper-
toed new ones, and my unnstmas Day was
very bright and glad.
Later in life'I learned that my keen sor
row and disappointment' so worked upon
my brother s heart tbat he Had ridden a
horse through and over knee-deep drifts to
the nearest store, seven miles distant, and
brought home such trifles as his pockets
already burdened witn. necessities lor tne
house would contain.
Ella Witeeleb "Wilcox.
MY EARLY CHRISTMAS.
Some remembrance of
I bring at your summons, for
It thrilW me
Its fine flavor drifts down from the doorway
When to live was ecstatic where trouble
Were unknown; and each day glided si
'Neath thG clearest, unclouded, cerulean
Christmas Eve I hung up, by tho fireplace's
A stocuing capacious, beseeching and
Never doubting the miracle, old, with re
nown, Which made Santa Claus drop tho long
To fill that receiver with comfits and toys
Expected by all little girls aud good boys.
Did 1 sleep with such promise I think with
With the other I watched the Good Saint to
A. Stocking Capacious, E'scecliing and Wide
But I never could catch him, in secrecy
Though' wlion morning arrived my broad
stocking was filled.
There were candies, and jewsharps, tops,,
jncknives and balls:
But the fruitfullest present my fancy re
calls (Better far than these trinklcts piled up so
Better far thnn the quarto sizo book.
Was tho s irr, ,steel sho'd sled, on which '
Coasted down the long bill as a swallow
She sat li?ht on my lap, my first sweetheart
Ami I held her soft hand so it might not bo
And her cheek came so near my lips as we
That I helped her much better to stay on
Tho mountain-high hill was too short I soon
I wished it might circuit the planet around;
Bnt since it would not the most consummate
Was to upset the sled and climb up with a
Dainty Mabol, your face and your figure so
Yonr rosy red lips and that silken soft hnir.
Still run through my memory, though the
half is not said;
And I wish you were hero and I bad back
Lack of lame and great fortune 1 would not
Wero you fast In my arms on that hillside
onco morol Joel Bestow.
MRS. LOGAN'S CHRISTMAS TREE.
The Joys or tho Day In Her Father's House
Eons Years Ago.
With me the memory of the Christmas
holidays of my child and girlhood will ever
be one of the most sacred and sweet of my
life, from the larks of the school children,
when I was one of. them, in barring in or out
the teacher till he or she gave us a holiday
and a treat, to the blessed Christmas morn
ing when we all flew into father and
mother's room screaming "Merry Christ
mas!" to find the 13 pairs of well-filled
stockings hanging round the broad old fire
place, and to receive the warm embraces of
those revered and indulgent parents.
lean riever forget the happy hours that
followed in ditplaving our treasures, nor
coming to the table to see father and
mother open the numberless packages that
we used to prepare for them!
The hours that we brothers and sisters
spent in planning and executing our sur
prises for mother, father and each other,
with the merry episodes, mishaps and suc
cesses and pleasures, will cling to us ever
more. The madcap fun we used to have, sleigh
riding, and the merry dancing and candy
pulling with the troops of boys and girls
that were our friends!
How well we remember the sparkling
wood fire in the ample old fireplace, with
rows of apples toasting before it," the great
dishes ot popcorn, popped in a covered
kettle, so white and fresh aud tender: the
sweet, rich nuts and the crystal cider for
tne evenings when we uiemoied in eaca
Li h m -
And Climb Up With a Kits.
others' bomes for a good time and to play
games of forfeit and chance:
For genuine pleasure those times' have
never been surpassed by the stately occa
sions of maturer years, and more than once
our heart has longed for those happy days.
The enstom of ceremonious calls on New
Year's Day did not obtain with ns till later
years, buc'the day was not allowed to pass
without celebration, usually with a dinner
party and dancing in the evening, and
always with closing up of the accounts of
the old year and beginning the new with
many resolves that were broken and for
gotten before the ides of many months had
passed over our heads.
Mbs. John A. Logah.
r .HE RETURNED A HERO.
Amelia E. B.trr Tells a Story or a Frodl
jjal Son and His Welcome Home The
English Victories at Khjber Fuss Ite
callcd. Christmas has not only a personal flavor;
it has a national one, derived from some
event which at that time fills the public
heart On Christmas, 1813, I was at Broom
Hall, Northumberland, a girl of 9 years
old, precociously observant and sympa
thetic; thcrefoie trembling and weeping to
the great interest of the day the sufferings
and dangers of the women and children
with the British array in Cabul. I had heard
the thrilling story of the struggle through
the frozen pass of Khoord-CabuL I had
followed in imagination the heroic death of
the army who perished to a man there amid
its hunger, cold aud treachery, and of the
women and children who as hostages and
prisoners were hurried from fort to tort
while Generals Sale and Pollock and Sir
Richmond Shakespeare were forcing the
Khybcr Pass for their relief
And just before this Christmas had come
the news that they hatl been saved that
husbands and wives and children had met
again,while soldiers cheered aad the mount
ain train guns roared out royal salutes and
the English flag was once more set blowing
lrom the Bala Hissar of Cabul. All the
talk was of these events, and strange stories
were told of dreams ami omens and pre
sentiments relating to them. And I liked this
better than the old cumbrous ceremonies
which were still kept intact in that lonely
halj, and which indeed gieatly wearied the
'Squire, though he would not forbid them.
.But as snon as dinner was over lie escaped
to his private parlor, where he proposed to
go comfortably to sleep as usual over his
But this night something awakened his
heart, and he could not shut his eyes and
forget Twelve years before his son Willy
had left him in a passion. His mother had
hoped and watched, and died calling him
home, but "Willy had never answered the
call and he had now been forgotten. At
this day his father seldom remembered the
face that had been so beloved, and his
sisters sighed and spoke ot something else.
This Christmas night, the 'Squire told us
afterward, he could not get Willy out of
his mind. He kept reminding himself of
the lad how he could run aud wrestle and
ride and hunt, how the men envied him and
the women loved him, and bow proud he
himself had been ot his beauty and clev
erness. He became nervous with the iter
ation of the same thought, and finally took
the handkerchief off his-face and stood up.
The room had grown dark and the fire low.
He rang for wood and a man entered with
an armful of ash logo. The 'Squire said:
"Is that you, Baldy?" and the iellow an
swered: "My name is William. I be a new
The logs began to blaz;, the 'Squire
LET ME SEE
looked at the stranger, and when he raised
himself from the hearth he said: "Who are
you, William? Where do you come from?"
Then the man looked at his master, looked
straight into his eyes, and the 'Squire trem
bled and went closer. "Let me see you,"
he said hoarsely. ''Let me see your lace!"
And the new man said, softly:
And the 'Squire told us that something
within him laughed joyously, and that he
felt as if it was growing dark, but that in
the shadows he heard a voice saying,
"Father, forgive me!" and that then he had
to speak, and the words, the only words he
could say were: "Forgive thee, WiHy!
I forgave thee many a year ago!" and with
that he came to himself fully and he was
sitting in his chair and a fine young cavalry
officer was kneeling at hi3 knee and the
servant in the smock frock had disappeared,
and he asked, quickly, "Where is my
, Then he found out that Willy had only
put on the smock frock to see if Willy
"would be welcome for-Willv's own sake;
for he had become a great soldier, and had
been with Sale and Pollock, and had taken
his full share in all the brave deeds that had
been done that famous year in India.
The company were dancing "Money
musk" under the holly and mistletoe boughs
when the 'Squire and his handsome son
came into their presence again. And all
the lovely young girls looked at him, and
some of tne married women, remembering
his face, broke tho dance up with a glad
cry, ana surrounaeu Dotn me iaiueranu me
son with noisy joy. But I noticed that
Wiily very soon passed to the side of the
beautiful Adelaide Piessy and said some
thing to her in a whisper, and she smiled at
him for reply and gave him her hand. And
after that Chistmas really began,a and the
singing and dancing and feasting aud
frolicking that had been only a social neces
sity b:came something very much different
and very much happier.
It is forty-nine years ago, and yet but a
few months since I met a gray haired
woman who had been my companion at
Broom, and she recalled with me every
emotion and event, and added:
"Yes, thev were married, Willy and
Adelaide, and though some of us have been
but poorly used since, as far as I know they
lived happily ever afterward."
Amelia E. Barb.
THREE CHRISTMAS TALES.
George B. McCIollan's First Drum and the
Fnnny Accident That Befell It Spolhn;
the Wine for Daniel Webster Ths
Merry Christmas Bells.
Christmas! What a flood of memories
thfc word revives. To tell of the happiest
Christmas I ever experienced is almost an
impossibility there were so many happy
ones when my father was alive to teach me
how to enjoy them. The first Christmas
that I remember seems now like a scene
from a long-forgotten comedy. I was a
very little boy then, but the -day is im
pressed upon my memory 'by a mishap
never to be forgotten. Who hu not
some time been given a drum by bis
dearest friend and closest confidant
his father? The drum that I received then
was almost as large as I, and the very first
use to which I put it was that of a steplad
der. My ambition at that moment was
to reach the loltv altitude of an arm chair.
The drumhead, however, refused to sus
tain me. and I fell through with a bang.
J How long I might have remained there it
is impossible to say, for J. never coaia nave
extricated myself alone. The hearty laugh
in which my lather indulged when heres
ctted me from my predicament is still a
bright spot in my recollection.
I remember verv distinctly a story that
my father once told me about an incident of
his own boyhood. I had climbed upon his
knee one Christmas eve and asked for it.
"What is the first Christmas that you re
member?" was my question.
"Ob, it is a verv long time ago," an
swered my father. "Your grandfather gave
a dinner to his old friend, Daniel Webster.
Although I was scarcely out of dresses I
bad been entrusted by the butler with the
very responsible function of decanting the
Maderia. The manner in which I per
formed the task was revealed, later on,
when the great statesman, after sipping
his wine in evident dismay, suddenly said:
'McClellan, you were always noted lor the
excellence of your Madeira, but this is the
most extraordinary wine I ever tasted.' I
hope the spirit ot Dan Webster has forgiven
me. In my zeal I had mixed the sherry with
his best Madeira."
Another incident which I have to recall,
for it made a great impression upon me, oc
curred some years later. I hal grown
almost to manhood. My lather, older in
vears of course, was still the same bright,
happy influence, filling tbe'hours always
with the consciousness of his presence and
love. Tho chimes of a neighboring church
were rung At midnightto welcome the anni
versary of Christ's birth. I had been up
very late enjoying the happiness of Christ
mas eve, and hearing the bells I opened
the window to listen to them. Directlv be
neath me I espied my father, who was look
ing out of the window, too.
"Hello!" I cried. "Whatare you doing;
trying to catch cold?"
"Hello, boy!" he answered. "I always
like to hear Christmas bells, for I feel so
grateful to our God that he made the day a
I have never forgotten that remark and
the reverent manner in which it was ut
tered. The crisp night air and the ringing
chimes impressed it vividly upon my mem
ory. That dear, good friend, my father,
speaks to me yet in those -words, even
though he, has gone to be with Him who
made Christmas a possibility.
Geoege B. McClellax.
NOT WHAT IT USED TO BE.
Secretary Charles Foster Tells of the Merry
Christmas Ce'ebratlons of His Boyhood
The I'ies His Blother Baked -A Frolic
of Thirty-Six Hours.
Christmas is the one day in the year which
above all others should be the occasion of
family reunions and general rejoicing. It
is the mid-winter festival when we should
celebrate the fact that we are alive. I doubt
if there be a man living to-day who, having
attained the ripeness of middle age, does
not look back upon the simple manner in
which Christmas was celebrated 30 or 40
years ago and compare it to the present de
cade very much to the disadvantage of the
The pleasantest Christmas I ever passed
was at my old home in Ohio when I was a
bny. with.no idea ot the honors and respon
sibilities of lite. I remember one occasion
when the sleighing was excellent it was
about the winter of '49-'50, I think when
we were all together at the old home. Noth
ing can ever efface the memory of that day
Trom my mind, for to us it began on the
evening before and ended the morning
after December 25.
I can spc the old kitchen now where we
spent Christmas Eve together, cracking
nuts, pulling candy, with a pitcher of
mulled cider on the table, while the smoke
begrimed walls and ceiling of the quaint
old room rang with laughter and light-hearted-frolic
There was, of course, the
usual contingent of fiddles we never called
them violins in those days and when the
nuts were cracked and the candy pulled the
.floor was cleared and lun ran riot in tbat
old house until nearly daylight. We
danced, we sang, we told stories, we plaved
the good old-fashioned kissing games like
"Snan-and-Catch-'em," "The Needle's
Eye," "Postoffice" and a dozen others that
I have forgotten, and the old folks enjoyed
them just as ranch as the young ones.
It was nearly daylight when we went to
bed, bnt we were up and at it again bright
and early Christmas morning just the same.
I remember that there were a few Simple
presents exchanged, but in those days such
things were given more as mementos than
tor the pnrpose of demonstrating the status
of the donor's fortune, as seems to be the
custom now. The presents that pleased me
most on the occasion to which 1 refer wero
a pair of suspenders from my father and
some soft, thick mittens from my mother.
The morning was spent in talking over
the glorious time of the preceding night and
in laughing, chatting, playing jokes and
What a gathering it was, to be surcl The
table in ordinary use was not half large
enough to seat the company or to accommo
date the viands, and our ingenuity was put
to the test to make it larger. What a din
ner it was! There was wild turkey,'coon,
rabbit pie and 'possum, with vegetables
galore, mulled cider, tea and coffee and such
pies as only a man's, mother ever succeeded
in manufacturing. I don't think a woman
ever learns to make a pie until she has a sou
who is old enough to appreciate it
After dinner nobody wanted to move;
everybody had eaten too much. Gradually,
however, digestion got in its worktind we
came to life again. In the middle of the
afternoon we boys got the horses and sleighs
ready. That consisted in filling the boxes
with straw and buffalo robes, placing the
boxes on traverse sleds and hitching fonr
horses to each outfit Then we went from
house to house, picking up all the boys and
girls in the neighborhood and piling them
into the boxes pell-mell.
I can hear those sleigh bells now some
of them were cow bells to be sure I can
hear the shouts of laughter, the singing,
the witty sayings; I can feel the fun of that
day to this hour.
What a ride we had, covering abont 20
miles! One rig was overturned in a snow
bank, and it looked for an instant as though
a dozen enterprising barbers had begun
business in tbat region. We dug the girls
out, however, put them back in their sleigh
and drove on, happy, merry, fall of life.and
We reaohed vonr destination about dark.
j It was a large hall that had. been warmed
ror us, and there, to tpe scraping of fiddles,
the rattle of bones and the plunk of banjos,
we danced and frolicked nearly all night
There wa3 a supper, too, of baked beans,
cold turkey, cold 'coon, bread and butter,
pie such pie and hot coffee.
It was broad daylight when we got home.
That Christmas was 36 hours long,, and it
was the happiest one I ever spent
NERO AND THE BABY.
Edith Sessions Tapper Tells of a Fright She
Got One Christmas Day A Bis Dos
Was a Child's Guardian Angel A Fretty
I think the happiest Christmas of my life
was brought me by a baby and a Tog. It
was a curious story. I was spending the
holidays at my old home in the country.
We were preparing for a genuine old-fashioned
family Christmas, with turkey, plum
pudding, mince pies, tree and presents ga
lore. All the sisters, brothers and cousins
were there; a delightful air of expectancy
brooded over everything; mysterious whis
pers and a continual exchange of confidences
were going on.
The altogether most delighful feature of
the occasion was the presence of little
Eleanore, the first baby of the entire circle,
who was bowed down to and worshiped by
uncles, aunts and cousins. She was a lovely
child; not a beauty, but winsome and charm
ing, brim full of mischief and possessing
quaint little ways all her own.
Sho was jnst beginning to talk, and her
funny little gibberish was a never ceasing
fnnd of amusement Of course she was
greatly interested in the Christmas prepara
tions, and watched the arrangement of the
evergreens and wreaths with childish de-
THERE LAY BABY
light There was another interested spec
tator that was everwithher Nero a great,
ugly-faced mastifE He was a severe
sort of dog, having great regard for his
persoual dignitv and allowing very few
familiarities. But tbat blessed baby was
his tyrant She rode him. She pulled his
ears and tail; she fell asleep with her curly,
blond head pillowed on his side, and Nero
bore all with a resigned stoicism which was
sublime. He constituted himself her body
guard aud followed her constantly.
"We are not going to have evergreens
enough for the ceiling," announced
Eleanore's pretty mamma, who was chair
woman of the Committee on Decoration,
"and you, Teddy, must go and get a few
more. Yon are absolutely of no use here,
and you might as well help us out"
I grumbled over leaving a glowing open
fire and an interesting novel, but there wa
no help for me. I was informed that J
could not be an idler and cumberer of the
ground at snch a time as this.
"And you might as well take Eleanor
with you," suggested her mother; "the
ground is smooth, and it will do you'good
to push a baby carriage'
So the child was wrapped in furs and we
set out, for the. woods, quite a mile from the
house. Nero started to attend us.
- "Go back, sir," I said, starapinii my fopt.
"It's bad enough to take to the woods with
a baby, but I will not nave you tagging."
He looked at me uith an injured expres
sion, but preserving his dignity under these
trying circumstances, returned sadly to the
It was a clear, cold, bracing day. There
was no snow on the ground, only a slight
powdering on fences, twigs and branches.
The walk and the exercise of pushing
Eleanore's carriage set my chefeks aglow.
The baby coned and prattled in delight
We entered the pine woods, whose resinous
breath stole to my senses with refreshing
I gathered some evergreens, and then
suddenly recalling a spot where the red tea
berries "were wont to grow, I tucked the
afghan closer about the child and said:
"Now, darling, sit still here a minute
while aunty goes to get some booful berries
for the baby."
She laughed and nodded. I left her.look
ing back and thinking what a picture she
was, nestled among her cushions and furs,
her dear little face peeping out from her
attaint little brown hood.
I couldn't have been away from her more
than ten minutes. AVhen I came back, my
hands filled with teaberries, laughing and
calling to her, my heart save a great leap
and then stocd still the carriage yWas
I have not a distinct remembrance of
what happened. I can only recall the
frantic rush through the woods, screaming
her name, looking everywhere, until worn
out and exhausted, I flung myself on the
ground and burst into tears.
AVhat couid I do? How conld I ever re
turn to the house and the child's mother?
In despair I pictured the scene, the re
proaches, the hunt. Ah, where would we
find our darling? How would we find her?
Iu agony I started to my feet, hurried
back to the empty baby carriage and set
out for home. I vaguely noticed that it
was nearly sunset Night coming on, aud
somewhere in those awful, dim, mysterious
woods was a tender little cry Id wandering
alone, suffering, dying, perhaps.
They told me afterward that when I
staggered into the house I was like a. dead
woman. I could not speak, but pointed
silently to the empty carriage. And then
someone was it Eleanore's mother? mer
cifully toot me by the hand and led me
into the parlor. The tree was a thing of
beauty, a-glitter with dainty baubles, tapers
and toys. They were all there in a group,
surveying it and there on the fur rug, be
fore the glowing, open fire, lay a big, black,
dignified dog,- and with her head pillowed
on his shoulder, fast asleep Eleanore 1
"Why! why! how!" I stammered; and
then, as the room got black and everybody
seemed floating away, someone said:
"Don't, Teddy, dear! It was all right
Nero brought her home. We were only
worried about you."
And some way I found myself on the rug,
my arms about the baby and the dog, weep
ing like a child lrom very happiness aud
That was a happy Christmas.
Edith Sessions TuprEB.
A FAST RIDE FOR A WAGER.
How Noil Burgess Almost Bost His Life to
Win a Dinner He Will Eat To-Day
Speed of a Chartered En;ino-Tho Acci
dents. A red letter Christmas Day in my exist
ence was one year ago. I will remember it
the longest day I live, for in a race to win
a bet I nearly lest my life. It happened
Two years ago, when the "County Fair"
was on at "Union Square Theater, Nw
York, I met an old boyhood friend alter
the matinee performance on Christmas
Day. Our meeting was a joyous one in
deed, and we spent the time between the
matinee and evening performance in re
calling anecdotes and events of our youth
and in discussing theatrical matters, for my
friend bad become a manager of considera
ble reputation. After a bird and our last
bottle preparatory to my night's perform
ance my friend made a wager.
"Now, Neil, vou play in Boston next
Christmas Day, I believe." said he. "Well,
I'll invite you to a spread at Del's on that
day, and I'll bet yon don't keep the en
gagement, and it's only a short run from
Boston to New York at that"
Not tor a moment ihinking'of my mati
nee performance in Boston, and the short
time that woqld leave me lor a run to New
York,-1 at once made the bet, naming my
own hour, 7:30 a. jl, for onr breakfast I
agreed, if I failed to keep my appointment,
on the following Christmas Day, the one
we are now anproaching, to lay covers for
my friend and ten others he' might name.
Did I keep the appointment?
Ot course I did. I left Boston at mid
night last Christmas Eve, and was at Del
monico's at 7:30 o'clock sharp to meet my
Did I enjoy the repast?
Ot course I did. It was the best that gold
could procure. But I didn't leave Delmon
ico's till it was too late to catch my ex
press. Every moment I stared in "New
York lessened the possibility of my playing
that matinee in Boston. A Christmas Day
matinee is worth for the "County Fair" in
Boston about 51,000, and then, too, I wonld
not have disappointed my audience for five
times $1,000 on a Christmas Day. I had ar
ranged to make the matinee hour 3 o'clock,
as a matter of business.
I chartered an engine from the consoli
dated railroad, and at half-past 9 left the
Grand Central depot to make the Boston
Theater at 3 o'clock or a quarter-past 3
o'clock at the latest We were following
AND THE DOO.
the express and the track was kept clear for
us right through.
"It we can catch that express I'll put you
aboard and lay over at New Haven," said
the engineer as we flew along.
"But she's 30 minutes ahead?"
"True," he replied, "but there is a possi
bility of her getting a hot box and lagging
n little on the way. She is heavily loaded
with Christmas homegoers and won't make
time. I'll try it anyway."
I have heard of fast rnns made by old
Commodore Vanderbilt and other famous
railroaders, and I have ridden on fast trains
myself all over the world, but that engine
didn't seem to touch the rails at all. I al
most imagined her cutting across lots
through the woods and barren fields; my
head was dizzy, but I clung to the cab seat
and canght an occasional breath.
"We'll catch the express atNewHa
?en," said the smiling engineer as he pat
ted the lever of his elegant machine. "We'll
catch the express. "
I was trying to catch my breath and could
scarcely gasp out my reply, "I li-o-p-e so.
As we were nearingMilfonl, a town about
20 miles from New Haven, onr mishaps be
gan. First we tossed ahorse over a ten-foot
lence, and then, near West Haven, we
smashed a farmer's wagon. The farmer's
horse balked just clear of the track, and he
wouldn't budge, even when we whizzed
down upon him. The farmer jumped jnst
in time. We sped on, for wc had not taken
life, and I ventured to gasp out:
"How much will this trip cost me?"
'.'You're alive, ain't you?" sang out the
engineer as he ordered his feeder to shovel
in more coal.
Five miles from New Haven Te sighted a
handcar on the track ahead. We had jnst
passed a curve and couldn't stop in time.
We whistled and whistled, and the car men
jumped off into the ditch.
"Duck your head," shouted the engineer.
".Vow, Dud: Tour Etad."
We ploughed through that big hand car
loaded with tools and railroad parapher
nalia. Axes ant) crowbars flew about that
cab, and the cannonade lasted, it seemed to
me, fully two minutes. All the glass in the
cab was'shattereil, and what was left of the
car was scattered abont the fields. We had
to stop this time to make some needed re
pairs. Thccollision had nearly thrown the
engine off" the track, but the great speed at
which we were running saved us.
Did I catch the express?
Yes, sir'ee. The train was delayed at
New Haven, and I actually had time for
luncheon there. I bought a couple of bot
tles for tbat engimer the coolest man I
ever met If we" had run into a river I
really believe he would have quietly sung
"Say, duck your head, we're in for it"
I received the bill the next dav, bnt won't
say how much it cost me to settle it This
Christmas Day I take dinner with myjfriend
in New York, and instead of paying for ten
of his friends he pays for ten of mine.
60 HOME ON CHRISTMAS.
Elizabeth Stuart Fhclps Tells a Talo or a
Boarding House and Dissecting Boom
That Has a Moral An Artist Spoils a
We were in a city whose name is of no
conseqnence, at s boarding house whose
address I hare long since forgotten two
young women, sufficiently familiar with
dear and comfortable homes, and, fortu
nately or unfortunately, strangers to the
miseries of boarding bouse life. My friend
iis- If? ri i k 1&
was a medical student in a Urge university
whose code ot honor admitted women cor
dially and graduated them well trained. I
was there for several reasons, mt for the
sake of the medical school, which
I never visited except to accom
pany my student home, and of whose
ghastly mysteries I had and have to this
day an irrational horror. My friend's turn
to dissect her portion of the "material" be
fell her at the holidays. We put the point
to a vote tween us two girls, and our
dog, the King Charles spaniel whose fate it
was to share our exile and decided bv m
majority ot two against one to sacrifice our
vacation, spend Christmas in the boarding
house, and by working steadily through the
recess finish the anatomical task which
frowned before us. The dog pleaded for the
country for the great white house, tho
blazing open fires, the dear faces, the pure,
fine air, the big garden, the sweep of snow
lit fields, the glorious horizon, and the
sleighrides through the wooded, roads and
dipping hills of Andover. . But we sternlr
took the hand of duty, or the thing which
bore that aspect to our minds, and comfort
ed the dog for his misfortune in belonging
to such conscientious women, and promised
him a Christmas dinner of fried liver, and
tried to forget how it looked in Andover,
'and resolutely stayed by "the subject"
It was a poor littlo pauper Irish girl, I
remembered lawful "materia".' Nobodv
bad claimed her till the proper. time was
over, and now, by the mysterious law of
sacrifice, it fell to' her lot, as the last act of
her unknown .earthly story, to teach the
solemn science of life and death to this
more fortunate woman. Years, afterward
hundreds of suffering women called her
blessed who compassed her rare power as a
healer I like "to think partly by th
help of that Irish pauper girl and by the
surrender of those lost holidays.
We sent off" the Christmas packages and
wished we, too, could be tied up and ex
pressed home prepaid, and sighed or cried
ourselves to sleep according to our nature,
and woke, and it was Christmas morning,
and the htt honrrlin honse was tir
j tramping restlessly and homelessly up and
aonn stairs and wnere were tne dear, tbs
dearest voices, wishing that our Christmas
might be merry and our souls-at peace?
Wc came down to breakfast with aching
hearts, but smiling, faces, as in holy duty
bound. AH the boarders were "up, as we
say, by which we mean that they were
down, all but one, an artist, not yet visible.
He bore an ancient and dittinguishedamily
name, but he was not very popular in our
boarding house, cue could hardlv say why.
Oar landlady' daughter, a pretty, gentle
girl, had ingeniously contrived to lay some
little gilt at every plate upon the long
table. She was pleased with the flutter of
kind words and thanks which greeted her
thoughtful effort to give to so many exiled
people a sense ot home, and her young face
flushed with pleasure.
As we sat there chatting and smiling and
warming each other's homesick hearts and
hers as well as we conld for Christmas' sake,
the late boarder came down.
"Merrv Christmas, Mr. 1" cried the
landlady's daughter. She turned her sweet
face toward him with a happy, trustful
look. He stood for a moment black as a
cyclone. Tnen he broke forth: "Merry
Christmas I should say! It's cold enough
in my room to freeze ont "
He mentioned a place to which one is
not in the habit of alluding on Christmas
Day, and flung himself down to his break
fast amid a silence such as a man'might re
call with a pang upon his dy.ing day.
That night wheu I drew the curtain I
stood for awhile and looked with less than
the usual shudder at the piazza roof where
tbe Irish girl'd heart, in a, jar of alcohol,
rested in tbe cold moonlight, painless and
calm. And I s.iid:
"Child of ignorance, sleep well. You
have served a nobler end than any man who
trains his hand to sacred art while his" un
educated soul is grovelling in blasphemy!"
And from that day to this I have prayed
a separate holiday prayer: "For all personi
doomed to board at Christmas time!"
Then, now aud lorever, it is by what wa
lose that we learn to value what we have.
From that breakfast hour to this I have
known how to add to my Litany, "Bless
God for home on Christmas Day!" And
thus ends the moral of this brief tale' "Hol
iday Law. If you are in a home stay there.
If you have any to go to go there, anil thank
heaven and pray pardon for your sotijj, if,
ont of madness, or or folly, orofth.n ig
norance which is a compound of both, yoa
obey not this sacred clause in life's long
Elizabetb Stuart PnELPs Ward.
JOYS OF THE FATHER.
Speaker Crisp Tells of the Fleasnre ot
Flaying Santa Clans for His Little Ones
Music of Childish Voices at Feep of
man ever experi
ences are those on
which his children
are gathered around
him enjoying thi
annual invitation ol
Santa Claus and the
joys he brings ta
them in so many
and such varied
My own life hai
Charles F. Oisp.
been particularly happy in this respect,
aud, although shadows intervene now be
tween me and the place where the stock
ings used to hang, I can look back upon
those times with the perfect conviction
that at no period in my existence have I
experienced such perfect joy as when I could
hear the prattle of many childish voices -at
peep of day voices that were impatiently
awaiting sunrise, lonzing eagerly for the
fire to be lighted in the nursery that they
might spring from their beds and hasten to
see what St Nicholas had brought for their
There were six of those little folk born to
us within ten vears. As the7 stood in line,
side by side, their little heads formed tht
stepl dder to happiness over which any
father's fancy might climb with that calm
enjorraent w'hich supersedes ev7 other
Every Cnristmas Eve was a gala time in
onr house then. It was a delight to con
template their eagerness and innocence, to
answer their mnltitudinous questions, to
indulge them in their raptures of expecta
tion, to administer to the fond fancies
which are all in all to child life, all in all
to the fathers and mothers of such children.
It was no small task to induce the little
ones to retire Christmas Eve, but when at
last they were asleep the joys that 1 experi
enced in playing the rart of Santa Clans
and in filling each little stocking" with
longed-for toys were greater, I know, than
anv tbat can ever come to me again.
Now, even though sadness is tnlxe-Twith
that precious season ot the year, it will
ever "remain a glorious event" to me, for
with it comes the memory ot the days that
were. My own boyhood sinks into insig
nificance in tbe contemplation ot tbe happy
faces, rosy cheeks,ea;er voices and light
footsteps I have seen and heard around my
own fireside among my own children.
The father and mother of a family should
be tpe happiest people in the world at
Christmas time, evn though some of the
merry voices may have been stilled by the
changes which time invokes, bnt when the
children are all there, laughing, daccing,
shouting, singing, running, stamping, blow
ing horns and whistles and pounding drums,
words utterly fail to depict the acme ol
happiness a parent feels; the heart falters
and is dumb when joy such as this become!
The happiest Christmas days I ever lived
were with my own children, when I knew
them to be happy. Charles F. Crisp.
Can Yoa Punctuate This?
A correspondent of the New York Suit, of
late date, says, print these four lines with
out punctuation and no one wonld believe
them, yet rightly punctuated they are true;
Every lady In every land
lius twenty nails on eaoh band
Five and twentv on hands aud feet
This is truo without deceit