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The advocate. (Topeka, Kan.) 1894-1897, May 09, 1894, Image 2

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

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85032018/1894-05-09/ed-1/seq-2/

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"Though authority be a stubborn bear,
Vet he is oft led by the nose with gold."
"Cursed be the social wants that sin against
the strength of youth!
Cursed be the social lies that warp us from the
living truth 1
"Cursed be the sickly forms that err from
honest nature's rule I
Cursed be the gold that gilds the straighten'd
forehead of the fool I"
John had prepared a surprise for the
members of the Church of the Millen
nium. He and Mrs. Delorme had per
suaded Mason to consent to come to
Graham quietly, appear unexpectedly
at the hall Sunday afternoon, and
preach, Rut how destiny mocks menl
On that Saturday evening, at the very
time when, at one extremity of the city,
Mrs. Delorme was driving home from
the railway station with Mason in her
carriage, and while they were discus
sing John's plans and she was telling
how delighted he would be at the
preacher coming, comrade hands were
bearing to a workingman's humble
home at the opposite extremity of the
city John Cotterell's bleeding body.
At the very moment when aunt and
nephew were exchanging at the rail
way station their lirst happy greetings,
a policeman's bullet tore its murderous
way through the blacksmith's body
close to his noble heart, and he fell.
But the half of the world which had
its home at Mrs. Delorme's end of the
town knew no more of the other half
where the useful folk dwelt than of the
inhabitants of any other foreign coun
try. Polite society does not deem it
well bred to mention disagreeable
themes; besides, although he had heard
of it, the shooting of John Cotterell had
mauo but a very trilling impression
upon Mr. Graham s mind a very agree
able impression, it is true, for the inci
dent had ended the stirke and all the
"hands" except John and Ruble had
returned to work by the company's
kind permission, some of them claim
ing that they had been virtually
forced by Cotterell to engage in the
strike alter they had done all they
could to oppose him; still, the occur
rence was not in itself sutlieiently im
portant to make any deep impression
on the general manager's mind. Of
what consequence was the shooting,
even were it the killing of one common
clod of a shop hand, if thereby the
company had got rid of a troublesome
strike? The matter troubled Major
Delorme still less, lie saw in it noth
ing but one more much needed lesson
to these troublesome people as to the ne
cessity of avoiding collisions with sacred
"law and order;" he thought nothing
at all about the man who was shot or
as to what might become of him. Does
any reader feel disposed to ask "law
and order" what it has to say about the
conduct of the policeman who had at
tacked John Cotterell without a shadow
of legal right, and had then shot him
for exercising an American citizen's
right of self -defense ? Why, as to that
that was different. The officer was
protecting property rights, in compari
son with wnich a mere laborer's right
to his liberty or his life is not to be
considered. The policeman may have
been "a little hasty," it is true, but
some discretion must be allowed in
such cases, and to condemn his con
duct in this respect would have a tend
ency to make other policemen "timid"
when called upon to commit murder in
behalf of the sacred rights of property,
and thus cause hesitation when the
timely butchering of a common la
borer would effectually put an end to a
pestiferous strike. So, not only from
motives of politeness, but because of
the trifling character of the incident
Itself, nothing was said that evening in
Major Delorme's gay parlors concern
ing the trivial occurrence in conse
quence of which the angel of death was
that night hovering undecided over the
LAIN3, D. D.
bed where John Cotterell lay. Major
and Mrs. Delorme, General Manager
Graham and the Rev. Marshall Mason
spent a very agreeable evening, and all
slept peacefully at last; two of them in
ignorance, the other two in forgetf ul
ness, of the condition of the humble
blacksmith whose soul was hesitating
upon the brink of eternity.
Ah, Major DelormelGeneralManager
Graham! Ha3 it never occurred to you
that the coarsely clad laborer whose
life your cherished "law and order"
values so lightly is always somebody's
son? is somebody's brother? that a
fond, old mother that a loving wife
may wait his coming? that there may
be children who run to meet him in the
evening? That common clod that
son of poverty and of toil that mere
"hand" you slay with such reckless
celerity; have you never reflected that
he may have human ties ? that there are
hearts as human as yours, perhaps, that
love that poor bit of clay with a soul in
it? Ah, General Manager Graham!
To-morrow you may perceive very
clearly that shooting one of your shop
hands may be a very serious affair after
all ecen to you! Perhaps it may turn
out that this particular murderous
assault made by "law and order" in
your mighty behalf, shall cling to your
memory as if the victim had been rich
enough to make him a human being in
your purse-proud estimation. Not a
brother, of course, for you believe in
"business is business," and "competi
tion is the life of trade," and the bal
ance of that creed, and men engaged
in universal throat cutting can have
no brothers, but certain discoveries
may impress it upon you, arrogant
general manager though you be, that
the wounded blacksmith in yonder
workmgman s poor home was human.
Perhaps the discovery may end in mak
ing you human, too. As to Major De
lorme, not in this life, save by a miracle,
can his sordid nature ever be human
ized. Let him go his way. which is
Satan's way perhaps, God s way, too,
lor such as he.
During the evening Mrs. Delorme
had apologized for Lena's non-appear
ance by stating that she had gone out
to visit a poor lamily who had been
wards of hers belore her departure for
Europe; but next morning she was not
at breakfast, she was not in her room,
and investigation made it certain that
she had not yet returned; and Mr. Gra
ham was uneasy, Such an occurrence
was so unusual, so unlike Lena, that
there must be something wrong. She
was all the general manager had left
him in this world. Her mother had
come back from Europe only to die at
home; and Lena was wearing black for
her now. Mason was up early, and be
fore breakfast had read in the morning
paper a two-column account of the
shooting of his friend of younger days.
Major Delorme had given the account
a perfunctory reading, as became so
thorough a "business man;" but Gra
ham had, for a reason which will be
apparent presently, read it with the
greatest earnestness. The account
stated, among other things, that, at
Ruble s house where John had been
taken, was a young woman, a "Miss
Chipperwell," who seemed, from her
appearance, to belong to a very differ
ent social sphere, and that it was whis
pered that she was the wounded man's
sweetheart. Mason was greatly per
turbed, and at breakfast spoke with
much feeling of his acquaintance with
John; said he was a remarkable man a
f;enius, in fact who could have been a
awyer or preacher had he desired, but
had become a workingman from delib
erate choice, prompted by conscien
tious convictions; and declared they
two had loved each other as brothers;
and much more in the same strain.
Delorme was bored by so much "gush"
from a man of Mason's class over a
common groundling, and dismissed the
whole matter with the highly original
observation that "law and order must
be preserved at any cost." Graham
was siient ana tnougntiui. Airs. De
lorme. who had not read the amount.
was DTfiat.lv aun'tated hv what, cho
gleaned from Mason's talk; and could
scarce reiram irom netraying her ac
quaintance with the blacksmith and
her warm friendshiD for him. fin a
thought monopolized Graham's mind
vnat naa nappenea to .Lena? bud
denlv he looked up. and asked!
"Ry the wav. Hallie. what is the
name of the family Lena went to see?
and where do they live? I must make
some inquiry alter ner at once."
"Their name is Ruble. The man
works in the railway shops in some
capacity, and their home is somewhere
m me vicinity oi tne snops.
"Ruble? Works in the shops?"
shouted Graham. "My God, Hallie!
What if it should but, oh, no; it can't
be Lena."
Mason started, for the truth flashed
upon mm.
"Whv." asked Mrs. Delorme. inno
cently. "What about Lena? I do not
"Lena went there she has not come
home. Have you not read? Look at
this!" and he nervously thrust into her
hands the crumpled morning paper,
with his finger on the passage referring
to "Miss Chipperwell."
Mro. Delorme read it, and understood
it penectiy; ana her changing color be
trayed her perturbation as she read.
Rut she resolved to screen Lena, what
ever might be the truth; and so with
assumea composure remarked:
"What has this to do with Lena? T
am quite sure she has no voiine- ladv
acquaintance here of that name. Miss
unipperweii? jno, l nave never heard
of such a person, and Lena tells me
"Rut do you not see?" demanded
Graham almost fiercely. "Miss Chip
perwell may she not be may not
juena nave triven tnat name to conceal
her own?"
"That looks to me like a very far
fetched surmise. Lena's chief charac
teristic is her absolute candor. She
cannot be induced to act, much less to
utter, an untruth tor any purpose,
however good or desirable. Resides.
this Miss Chipperwell is the wounded
man's sweetheart. How could Lena
Graham be in love with a shop black
smith? The idea is preposterous. You
are excited, or such a thought would
not nave occurreu to you."
"Rlacksmith?" exclaimed Graham.
"Does the paper sav he is a blank-
smith? I didn't notice that. I thought
n caueu mm an agitator.
"The paper says nothing about his
being a blacksmith." said Mainr De
lorme, as he frowned and looked
ratner sharply at his wife,
juason saw Airs. Delorme s predica
ment, and in order to extricate her.
ventured the remark:
"No. it was I who spoke of him as a
Perhaps a preacher ought to adhere
to the truth with more tenacious pre
cision than Mason did on this occasion;
but Mrs. Delorme, at least, was not
disposed to criticise the clerical lapse.
Major Delorme had been too much
bored, and Mr. Graham too much dis
turbed to remember precisely what Ma
son reallv had said about his friend.
and so the explanation proved entirely
"There is some mystery here," said
Graham presently. "The sweetheart
story may be the reporter's invention;
but I am convinced that Miss Chipper-
wen is j,ena. i must go there at once.
I cannot rest till 1 know what this con
duct means. Such intimacy with such
people is a little too much democracy
for my daughter to indulge in. I shall
see about it at once." And he rose
from the table.
"X O. do not iro there. Your nresence
might cause a scandal. Should vour
notion prove correct, your recognition
wouia at once reveal Lena s identity,
which, if she be Miss Chipperwell, I am
Sure she is concealing for some ner-
fectly worthy reason. Let me drive
there. I am frequently seen visiting
the poor, which, pardon me, I fear you
are not: and mv Dresence there would
excite little remark. Resides, I am a
woman, and 1 can ascertain the real
truth, which, being a man, you never
"You are right. Hallie. We men are
liable to make great fools of ourselves
if left alone. When can you go ?"
'At once. 1 shall meet you at din
ner, till which time rest content, for I
shall do whatever ought to be done. J
bear some relationship to Lena, you
"True, true, Hallie. I know you
will do what is for the best. Rut I am
quite nervous; Lena is all I have left."
"If you have no serious objection,
Aunt Hallie, I would like to go with
you," said Mason. "As I used to know
Mr. Cotterell, I might be of some ser
vice, perhaps."
"Certainly," said the Major.
"The very thing," said Graham, who
had not the slightest suspicion that
Mason might view favorably Lena's
scandalous impropriety in "mixing
up" with poor people who had got into
the reprehensible habit of working for
a living.
"I am sure I shall be delighted to
have you go, Marshall," said Mrs. De
lorme, who alone understood Mason's
views. "I know nothing of the local
ity, and it might be very desirable to
have a man around. Then, too, you
are a stranger, and vour relatinnshin
will excite no comment. Let us go to-
getner, ny an means."
At Mrs. Delorme's suggestion, the
carriage and driver were dispensed
with, and Mason and she took an un
ostentatious phaeton instead.' They
arrived at Ruble's about 11 o'clock, it
was Sunday, and people who were Cot-
tereu s inenas, or wno were merely
Clirions. were COnstnntlv nnminer onA
going, or collecting in little prnnns in
the scanty front yard, at the dilapi-
aatea ience, or in tne road, or m the
2T0Ve Onnosite. The "rlirinriiichod.
looking" man and the handsome
woman, so unmistaKauiy belonging to
the upper world, attracted much atten
tion as thev alighted at the tiimhlo.
down gate. They were observed from
tne nouse, aiso; ana as JNirs. Delorme
stood waiting for Mason, who was
seeking some object to which to hitch
me norse, .Lena nastenea aown tne
walk and greeted her aunt. This inci
dent raised the eurinsitv nf observers
to an almost unendurable height; but
it was not appeased by any remark the
people couiu overhear with even hair
triggered ears. Mason soon came nn
and Mrs. Delorme, speaking in a well-
oreu low tone, saiu:
"Lena, mv neohew and vour cousin.
the Rev. Marshall Mason, of whose ex
pected coming 1 told you yesterday."
-Ana .air. uottereirs inenu, added
Lena, as she gave Mason her hand.
"Yes. and Mr. Cotterell found-him
for me," said Mrs. Delorme. "How is
Mr. Cotterell? Marshall and I were
entirely ignorant of the dreadful affair
unui we iearnea oi it irom the morn
ing paper an hour ago."
"The Paper? I have not seen it nnr
thought of it. They do not get it here;
uiey are very poor, you Know, nut
how good these poor people are!"
Then, with a look of sincere aston
ishment: "Can it he nnssihle Aunt ITaltio
that it was onlv vesterdav von were
expecting Cousin Mason ? and that it
wasoniy last evening that why, . it
seems to me to have been weeks ago."
"Yes. it was onlv vesterdav. (!an we
see Mr. Cotterell if we go in ?"
"His physicians gave very strict
Orders that he must not see anvnne nnr
attempt to talk; that he must not be
cAiiu&eu iu iub uuiiger oi any kiiiu or.
excitement. Thev have not nermit.ted
me to see him since last evening when
tney naa just Drought him here. Uh,
it was so awful! He is sleeping now
under the influence nf snme nni.ire "
"The physician's orders must be
obeyed," said Mason. "I would not for
the world endanger my friend's recov
ery. Wre can see him another time."
"Did vou lodge here last nio-htV" in
quired Mrs. Delorme. "The house is so
small I do not see how thev cnuM en
tertain an extra lodger."
".No. A young woman who teaches
in the public schools and lives a few
doors from here took me to stav with
her; Mrs. Ruble promising to send for
ma i n saca tf onv o n '
"How is Mr. Cotterell ? You did not
answer me awhile ago."
"The physician says Mr. Cotterell is
in a very critical condition. Oh, it is
so dreadful! And how cruel it was!"
And Lena, though she tried hard to
avoid it, burst into tears.
Mason made excuse that he wisher!
to mingle with some shopmen who
were tailing a snort aistance away,
and left Lena and her aunt alone.
They crossed the road to where there

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