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T'‘ " f ®;ye flriemt iUirrov. j Vol. 1. No. 4^2. [Selected.] IF SHK IVEKK II Fit F. If she were here To take my hand and "What is it, dear?” She would not see the wrinkles on my face. Nor note the silver where the gold had place; Upon my tiembling lip she’d leave a kiss. And whisper, • barling," and she would not miss The vanished rose; or, if she did. would say "How you have ripened since 1 went away!” The blemishes that others might despise Would still be beautiful to sister's eyes. If she were here. She would not mind the changes; if a tear Should till my eye, 1 know that she would see. And give sweet consolation unto me; Yet in her heart, some things would little heed. Knowing how much their discipline I need. And so, 1 think, though Heaven be not fur, And friends can see us even as we are, They may be glad, like loving sisterhood. Because they know how all things work for good, For The Mirror Tale ol' a Doomed City It was in the latter part of May, 1878, one beautiful morning, that 1 landed at the foot of Jackson square, New Orleans, in the vicinity of the French market, from the deck of one of those steamers which make weekly trips between the Crescent City and Cedar Keys, Florida, in which latter state I had been spending the winter months. Very picturesque and foreign is the sight of this part of the city to the eye of a stranger; but as it has been so often described by various writers I will forego any views of mine on the subject. The first tiling I sat about on my arrival was to secure a comfortable room in some convenient locality, for I had come to stay: and after a few hours search 1 found desirable lodgings on Custom House street, near Bierville, at a very reasonable rate. I was indeed a stranger in a strange land, and having no letters of introduction at first felt somewhat lost, but southerners are proverbially a hospitable people, and especially so in New Orleans; so in a few days L began to feel at home. My efforts to obtain employment were not crowned with success, but as 1 was fairly well “heeled” and the weather was beginning to get very warm I did not exert myself so much in that direction as might otherwise have been the case. Everybody seemed lazy and inclined to take it easy, and I did not find it difficult to fall into the same groove. My favorite rendezvous in the day time used to be the Crescent Hall billard room, which occupies nearly a whole block on the corner of St. Charles and Canal streets, and with whicli many of the readers of this story are no doubt well acquainted, for at the time ot which 1 write I do not believe there was a more expensively furnished or a finer room of its kind in this country. Billiards . and pool in any form having always had an attraction for me, and being a little above the average for an amateur, I found these rooms a pleasant place to pass the heat of the day, and after awhile became acquainted with several others who were, like myself, strangers in the city, and who had been at tracted to the Crescent Hail by the excel lence and comfort of its fittings and the genial atmosphere which pervaded it. There were, 1 think, seven of us in all that formed a sort of clique, and met there every day. Three of them from the north like myself, two Louisianians and onejfrom Kentucky. The latter, who 1 will call Harry Miner, was the life and soul of the party. About twenty-four years of age, good looking, naturally witty, and well read, a fine all-round sportsman, generous to a fault, but an inveterate gambler. Aside from frontier and mining towns there is, I think, no city in the United States where gambling is so extensively and openly conducted as in New Orleans; and any one who is familiar with Royal and St. Charles streets will attest the truth of this statement. One might walk for several blocks on the former street any still evening before he would be out of hearing of the cry of the keno dealer and the rattle of chips. Stillwater, Minn., Wednesday, May 23,1558. Five Gents. Well, our life was an easy, lazy one for many weeks, with little variation except an occasional run of good or had luck, as the case might be. The sun rose higher and hotter day by day in the eastern sky, and poured down its scorching, sweltering rays upon the squalid and filthy inhabitants of the French and Spanish quarters below Canal street. At last one morning. 1 think the *3<»th of July, a few days after the visit of a Mexican circus from Matamoras to the city, we met as usual at our old stamping ground, but with anxious faces; for during the night the Yellow Angle of Death had spread its wings over the French quarter and quarantine was strictly enforced. The daily papers it appeared had for several days tried to suppress the fact that yellow fever was in our midst, hut it had by this time assumed proportions that could not be kept dark. The three northerners and my self, full ot thick, sluggish blood, were naturally the most anxious, the two Louisianians comparatively cool, and Hairy Miner, if he was afraid, certainly never showed any sympton of fear. It is a terrible sensation for a healthy man to suddenly find himself brought face to face with a raging pestilence, with no chance of escape, and with but a very small hope of pulling through alive. Many have said they were not afraid, but nine out of ten lied when they said so. Medical statistics during that epidemic show that one-third of those who died per ished from fright. Day by day and week by week passed by. and still our little band remained unbroken. Nearly all business by this time was suspended, with the excep tion of gambling houses, saloons, drug stores, and undertakers’ establishments. Men dropped in the pangs of the first attack of the fever at the very faro tables, their chips in their hands waiting for the turn of a card: dealers were carried from their chairs to their bed to die, and undertakers charged, to their everlasting shame be it said, fabulous prices for coffins and burials, and reaped a harvest that many of them never lived to enjoy. Day by day some hibitue of the billiard room disappeared. No one asked where he was. VVe all knew! Whose turn would come next? Some in their fright endeavored to pass the picket lines which surrounded the city and were shot, Everyone drank, and many to excess. Our chief excitement was the daily evening paper, a little folio sheet which published the death list as near as they could compute it. Now and then a name familiar to all of us would appear, and then we would look at each other as much as to say, Who next? I had written some little time before to inv far-off home for a remittance, as my funds were getting somewhat low, and 1 did not want to go to the Charity Hospital if 1 should fall a victim to “Bronze John.” One night when the epidemic was at its height, and the daily death rate had run over 500, we were all down in the bar room, where Harry Miner was holding high carnival. haviDg had an extra good run of luck against faro bank that afternoon. Wine flowed freely, and in our drunken hilarity we had forgotten our mournful surround ings. Filling our glasses and his own Harry said in a loud voice, “A toast I’ll give you, a toast.” We raised our glasses. “Here,” said he, “is to a short life and a merry one, and to h —l with ‘Bronze John,’” and drain ing his glass shattered it in atoms against the wall. We all involuntarily shrank at the words of the toast, but drank it down in silence, and then dispersed for the night. Next morning I arose and repaired as usual to the Crescent Hall. One by one the others dropped in, but no Miner. At last, at 2 o’clock. I and one of the southerners started for his room to hunt him, and enter ing his bed room found him lying there alone in a raving delirium. He, as was so often the case, had been stricken down with the fever in the dead of night with no one near to help him. For three days and a half we stayed by him and nursed him. but even his splendid constitution could not save him, and at the end of the third day the deadly black vomit set in and after holding him forcibly in bed all night he was a yellow, rotting corpse in the morning. Was it fate? I know not. Or was it a “ IT IS NEVER TOO LATE TO MEND.” just retribution for the gauntlet he dung in defiance at the feet of the Angel of Death, i cannot tell. But this 1 know, that before the autumn leaves Began to fall two only of our little partj remained alive —one of the southerners and myself. God bless the noble conduct of the north to us sufferers at that time, and keep the Crescent City from such another dire visitation. Wii.l. T. “Guilty or Not Guilty?” Kditor Mirror The very pointed interrogatory which heads this article is one that lias been put to each of us as are involuntarily dwelling here, and whether we responded affirmatively or negatively the fact remains painfully ap parent—we are here. Now, being here, it appears to me that the first thing we should take into consideration is how to shape our course as to make our enforced sojourn as endurable as possible. To do this we must first of ail endeavor to comply with the rules established for our guidance and thus escape the punishment which is very likely to follow their infraction. Some of them may appear to be (and no doubt are) un necessarily severe, but so long as they re main unrepealed we cannot blame the offi cer who simply does his duty in enforcing them; but he should be vested with a cer tain discretionary power so that he could distinguish between an intentional and un intentional violation, and act accordingly as circumstances may appear to dictate. It is essentially necessary that strict discipline should be maintained in a place of this kind, otherwise confusion would reign supreme; but is the absolute enforcement of all the existing rules actually necessary to secure the requsite discipline that should prevail? One of our inmates (L. M.) in a recently published article takes exception to Rule 5, that which strictly forbids our conversing with one another, or to communicate any in telligence by way of writing, signs, etc., except such as is necessary to convey our wants to our keeper. The penalty for a violation of this rule if enforced is: six days in the dungeon, six days loss of good time, and a fine of two dollars and seventy cents. L. M. very eloquently portrays some of the evils which follow a strict en forcement of this rule and proves conclu sively that the author of the old saying that “A still tongue makes a wise head.” could never have lived under such a form of government as ours, or he would have had the best of reasons for changing his views as set forth in the quotation. This rule, along with the rest by which we are governed, was established by the board of inspectors Feb. 6, 1876. more than twelve years ago. and is a relic of a system of pun ishment in prison which happily bids fair to soon become obsolete. It is the only one of the twenty-seven that operates decidedly to our disadvantage, and the onlyone towhich any of us can with fairness take exception. Its strict enforcement at all times and in all places is productive of more harm than good, as can be verified by any unpreju diced person who may choose to study the matter in all its details. Now, in regard to the working of this rule: Does prohibition really prohibit? It does to a certain extent; but the rule is nearly as much honored in the breach as in the observance. Go into any of our shops and you will notice that if the guaid is on the qui vive (and he generally is most un pleasantly so) the convicts are to all appear ances deeply interested in the work upon which they may happen to be employed, but let the vigilance of the guard be relaxed but for a few moments, and there are but few who will fail to take advantage of it by holding a whispered conversation with his neighbor. Can any one blame them for following a natural impulse? They are "taking chances,” and if detected are sum moned to the guard’s desk and questioned in reference to it; they will, if they think they will get off with a reprimand, plead “guilty;” but if on the other hand they think they are “in for it,” and will have to pay the full penalty, they will invariably plead “not guilty” and stick to it. A friend of ours in addressing us not long since said that he was very sorry to hear that the habit of lying had grown so prevalent among us, and earnestly advised us to quit it as a step toward reformation. There is an old saying to the effect that a liar is worse than a thief, for while you may be using propel precautionary measures to prevent the dep radatinn of tlie latter, the former will get in his work every time in spite of every ef fort made to prevent it. The rigorous en forcement of Rule 5 places a premium on lying and tends to encourage deceit and, as L. M. says, weeks, months, and years of practice make an adept at deception—the habit is fixed. Let us suppose that a man of ordinary in telligence, in good health, and of sound intellect were to pass say two years here, during whicli time the silent system was rigidly enforced. Do you think that he would go forth with an intellect wholly un impaired? 1 think not. and venture to as sert that an expert on insanity would after investigation arrive at the same conclusion. How much worse then is the case ot the men and boys who are unable to read and write, and who have no other employment during the fourteen or sixteen hours they are confined in their cells than to meditate over their misfortunes? Strong, indeed, must be the intellect that can stand the strain of a lengthly siege of that kind. Now, I don’t wish my motive in writing this article to be misconstrued. I don't do it for the purpose of making any one more discontented with their position; on the con trary, 1 advise cheerful and ready compli ance with all the rules now in force, not only as a matter of polic3\ but to show the authorities that we are deserving of a good and liberal treatment as we hope they may soon be induced to bestow. An administra tion that has already “covered itself with glory” in allowing the establishment of The Mikhor which is receiving the commenda tion-of many worthy people and the press throughout the country, will not stop at half-way measures. Let our sympathizing friends on the outside world unite with us in endeavoring to ameliorate our condition and they may rest assured that they will have earned our lasting gratitude, and that their efforts in our behalf will he properly appreciated. We don’t wish that any of the existing rules should be changed to suit our whims or caprices; but we do contend that the exercise of our mental faculties are as essential to our intellectual developement as is physical exercise to bodily health. Let us hope that the present administra tion will not be disposed to call a halt on their present advanced position, but will move on in the good work they have al ready begun, and thus gain the credit and honor which is sure to follow the perform ance of a good work well accomplished. What we need to learn first of all is loy alty to supreme things. There are in hu man life low, lower and lowest things; there are high, higher and highest things. Food, raiment, art, architecture, the pur suit of the material and beautiful must be subordinate to goodness and truth. “The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.” Righteousness is more than riches; charity is above esthetics; truth is higher than the temple, consecra tion than the altar, and how to be like Christ a weightier problem than the pattern of a dado. —J. L. Russell. Ascertain clearly what is wrong with you, and so far as you know any means of mend ing it, take those means, and have done. When you are examining yourself, never call yourself merely a sinner; that is very eheap abuse, and utterly useless. But call yourself a liar, a coward, a sluggard, a glut ton, or an evil eyed, jealous wretch, il you indeed find yourself to be in any wise any of these.—John Ruskin. How often we sigh for opportunities of usefulness, whilst we neglect the openings of Providence in little things which would frequently lead to the accomplishment of most important usefulness. —Pawtucket Gazette. Tammany.