Newspaper Page Text
Yoi. XY.—No. 34.
IT will be twenty-two years ago the first of the coining month that two young men then residing in Omaha became possessed of the mining spirit which was pre valent throughout the land. This min -Qg excitement had been fanned to a white heat by the discovery of im mense bodies of rich ore at. the hither to unknown mining camp ofLeaaville, Colo. Montana had for a number ot years been a factor in the production «>f placer gold but at the date of which i write quartz mining was beginning to take tbe front place in the territo ry’s (for Montana was then a territory) industries. The young men after a careful consideration of the matter came to the conclusion that Montana offered the widest field to men whose capital could be counted in two figures. They had no sooner came to this con clusion than they began to weigh the merits of the two routes of travel open to them. One route was west over the Unioc Pacific railroad to Ogden, thence north by a narrow guage road and by •stage to Butte City, the rising miufng camp of Montana. The other route was by boat from Sioux City, lowa, up the Missouri river to Fort Benton, a distance of 2,160 miles. The latter preposition had the most elements of adventure in it. and accordingly on April 8, ISBO, these two young men together with 149 other seekers of for tune found themselves on board the steamer Helena, bound for that golden Eldorado which they all fondly be lieved would reward them a thousand fold for the privations which they were destiued to uudergo. The steamer Helena was a fine boat but she was overloaded and the conse quence was she always got stuck in the shallow spots of the river, or else daring heavy winds she became un manageable and had to be tied up to the bank. The steamer did not pretend to run at night at ail. The first stop to unload freight was made at an lonian agency on the Xe brash a side of the river. At this agency live the remnants of that portion of the Sioux nation which devastated sec tions of Minnesota in the early Ws. One of the stops made was at Pierre, now the capital of South Dakota, but at that time simply a freighting point for the Black Hills. The p'ace was then composed of a general store, blacksmith shop, two saloons and a dance house. The three latter places were doing a rushing busiuess as the town was filled witL muie-skinnerß, bull-whackers, cowboys, etc. It was a tough crowd, so tough in fact that the captain dropped down stream a couple of miles before up for the night The scenery along this section of the Missouri, or until the mouth of the Yellowstone is reached, is anything tout grand. The river wends its way between high banks composed of a clay soil called by the natives ‘•gumbo.” It is the continual washing of these banks of earth into the river that gives to the Missouri its muddy, turbid waters. These banks were broken here and there by dense growths of cotton wood trees. These groves furnished the fuel snpply for the steamers plying back and forth on the bosom of the river. The wood was chopped and piled up on the bank in the wintertime by squaw men, (a term applied to white men who married Indian women) who made a good thing oat of the business as the timber coat them absolutely nothing. H Reminiscence of isso. A TRIP UP THE MISSOURI PI YEP WHEN THE WEST WAS YOUNG. The passengers from the lower decks could see nothing, but from the pilot house deck they could rest their eyes with nothing less than vast rolling prairies which extended as far as the vision could reach Little we thought as we gazed at these seemingly illimit able plains that in a little less than a quarter of a century they would be dotted with smiling fields, prosperous villages and that the whistle of many locomotives would be heard where now was seeming desolation and eternal silence. The monotony of the trip was broken by stops to unload supplies at the nu merous forts and JLudiau agencies. The coming of the steamer was a gala day in the lives of the inhabitants of these isolated places of abode. This was more especially the ease at the agencies where the whole population, old and young, bucks, squaws, pap pooses and dogs lined up as reception committees. At tbe Standing Rock agency, where tbe boat laid op an en tire day. the unsophisticated savages in dulged in foot racing and horse racing for the benefit of tbe sporting element among the passengers, and incidentally relieved them of their surplus coin. The stop for Bismarck was only notable from the fxt that the boat landing was over a mile from the town, and we had to wade through a couple of inches of sand in order to get a view of the future capital of North Dakota. Bismarek was at this period the west ern terminus of the Northern Pacific railroad. After leaving the mouth of the Yel lowstone the scenery began tc chauge and soofi became of that grand charac ter belonging solely to a mountainous country. The river was now bordered by mighty hills and rocky eminences. Tnese hills appeared to rise in terraces aE they receded from the river and at last culminated in giaHt mountain ranges whose snowy summits were just visible through breaks in the hills from the steamer’s decks. There is one dangerous place in thi* section cf the river known as Drowned Men’s rapids. They are so-called from the fact that eight men who were de scending the river in a batteau wtre overturned and all were drowned in the swift current. The steamboat in try ing to breast this stretch of water had to resort to other help outside of her powerful engine. As an aid to the boats the government has placed nig piles at intervals of 200 feet on the west shore. The steamer’s crew fastened one end of rope cable some 300 feet in length to one of these piles. During this operation the boat was tied to the shore so as to enable the crew to land and drag the cable up shore the re quired distance. The steamer end of the cable was fastened to the capstan or nigger in the bow of the boat. As the capstan revolved the eabie was taken in. By this means the steamer slowly but surely surmounted the diffi culties of the passage. The boat at this point lost a deckhand over board. The poor fellow’s bead came to the surface just once. The only excitement we had after the tassel with the rap ids was when we arrived at Cow Island. The buffalo were crossing the river at this point in immense numbers. As every man on board had some kind of a firearm they all began popping away at this moving mass of animate, but I venture to saj not one of the beasts received a fatal wound as none stopped but all kept on “IT IS \CVEB TOO LATE TO MEAD.” STILLWATER, MINNESOTA, THURSDAY, MARCH 13, 1902. their headiong way as tho a band of imps were hurrying them cm. Cow- Island is also famous as the place where Chief Joseph and the Nez Perc-es crossed the Missouri in their flight from Oregon, through Idaho and Montana on their way to safety across the British line. After leaving Cow Island the boat made one stop before reaching Fort Benton for the purpose of unloading freight, and that was at Fort Assini boine landing. The fort itself was SO miles to the north near the Bear Paw mountains. As the boat would lie nere all day discharging freight my friend and I the two young men first men tioned; determined to walk over to the mountains which appeared to us to be about four or five miles away. We had hardly got started when a soldier asked us where we were going, and upon be iug informed he told ns that we would have to walk about forty miles. We concluded to postpone tbe trip. The next day we arrived at Fort Benton tired out with our long trip but happy in expectations of the fu ture, tho our combined capital con sisted of but ten cents and unbounded faith in our capability to wrest fortune from tbe grim bold of tbe mountains. F. The World's Verdict By Flavel Scott Mixes. Tl*e drops of witter slang across the camels' back Had leaked, and all the day upon the desert sands The water, drop by drop, had fallen, till at last Tbe skins were well-nigh drained, and that which still remained When gathered in the enp of gold made fewer drops Than there were jewels bordering tbe goblet’s bowl. Tbe brother pilgrims, who together sought tbe shrine Of holy Ali’s martyred sons, at Maggrib. saw The rain which tbe day had brought onto their lives. And each one looked the other steadfast in the eye. Each saw the shadow of the wings of Azraei. Yet for a moment neither spoke, save in low prayer. And then the elder whispered. ‘•Brother, drink, and peace and life be tbine " The other answered: "God is God. It is the Prophet’s will—drink thou." Thus argued they Until El Marfa, and they laid them down to rest; The cup between, and each heid out his hand to push The goblet with its precious drops of life away. It was El Ghadda when they waked. Tbe burn ing sun Had been on high four hours, and within that time Had dried the water up. When this the brothers saw. They bowed ia prayer, and rising, loosed their bea-ts. And bane them wander where they wonlu. Then, sick and faiut.' They laid them down again, and in their dreams of thirst The cup o’erftowed with crystal water which each gave Unto his brother. When again the red sun set They passed Into the Garden of the Faitbfnl Ones. Next day a caravan passed by that spot, and saw Tbe brothers lying with their hands stretched ont as tho To grasp the golden cup, each still in death's embrace. And one long-bearded sheik, whose hair was white with age. Picked up the cop, noted the studding gems, and sighed, Questioning the greed by which man was made to give Up life, and ail Hfe held, ter one small bit of gold. And then the caravan pnasorl on again. —Harper’s Weekly. A young woman in London took a pig in infancy and brought it up, as she says, “like a Christian.” Complaint was made to the authorities, and the sanitary officers who went-to investi gate found the pig in bed between two white sheets, with its head on a pillow mid its body covered with a white lace Pctprr K*-ad Brfurt the Chovtawfua iVefe, FAILURE. There is so much about Success in the public prints nowadays that one naturally is led to infer that failure is the common lot of mankind and that ! the successful ones are in the small minority. I suppose this is true after a fashion: at least many writers and | mo6t old men say it is. Stevenson—in what is. singularly enough, one of the | most stimulating essays of the English language—takes this view of life, even going so far as to affirm, quoting the last words of Charles the Second, that the majority of us are “unconscionably long a-dying” and little * else. The Preacher, also, in that marvelous book Ecclesiastes, written thousands of years before newspapers were dreamed of. sings the same song when be laments that “All is vanity.” The sentiment has been echoed with eountless varia tions ever since men commenced to herd together and follow leaders. In a way, I suppose it is true. I sup- J pose no man ever reached the pinna cles of his desires and ambitions. But I have some doubts as to whether all who failed to achieve those giddy heights considered themselves failures. Not that I doubt tbe sincerity of tbe writers who have taken this view of the world. They received their cue from men wbo were more than men— who were milestones that mark the progress of the race. But to us, who are no more than what Walt Whitman termed “average men,” such writings are apt to be dispiriting, rather than inspiring. What Stevenson, for in stance, would regard as failure, you or I, from our lowly position, would count success: and when a great thinker is disheartened at his inability to reach the core of some great truth, you and I are catching hold of the minor drip pings of his intellect and marveling how one brain could have fathomed or evolved them all. Consequently when be points out so vividly that as soon as a child is born it is sentenced to death, that it is merely permitted to eke out its existence under a reprieve, we find it discouraging. We are here and we are anxious to do the best we ean; not to have failure always staring us in the face. Webster defines failnre as “Want of suceess. Deterioration, Decay” and sev eral other unpleasant things. I beg to take issue with the learned gentleman on the question. I believe failure to be, in common with many other things not ordinarily so classed, entirely a condition of mind. I believe it is easily possible for a man not to suc ceed in an undertaking, and still not to fail. Tbe fbilure is the quitter, the man who lies down under his burden aud, without half trying, says he can’t get up. For such a person life is a pretty tongh proposition; for no one is going to help a man who doesn’t try to help himself. It is a useless waste of energy to do so; it is about as profitable as to shy pebbles into tbe ocean in hopes of increasing* its breadth But the man who honestly tries to accomplish what be starts out to do, who' tries with all his energy and strength, is never a failure. Suppose he doesn’t reach the goal he aims for; so long as he keeps on trying he is a better man each night than be was when be arose in tbe morning—better physically, mentally, morally and some times financially, and one can’t better oneself and fail at the same time. Supposing he does not gain; so lcng as he has his shoulder to the wheel he is not losing; the hope that be will make progress tomorrow still bums strong within him; and if the object of his en deavor is a worthy one, the chances are that he has, all unconsciously,' made some iriend who will aid him later ea The failure in hfe is the quitter, the one who lies down and howls for help every time the world does not use him as he thinks it should. The man with the drag or drink habit who tights against the appetite for ail there is in him isn’t a failure until the time comes when he lies down and gives up. If he talks much of his trouble he is a nui sance, but so long as he tights he re mains in the world of live people. The man who meets with business reverses and gets up to his warlock in debt hasn’t failed until he contemplates leaving town between days without first paying np. So long as he meets his creditors face to face and takes any work he can scare up until things come his way once more, he isn’t a failure. He is merely a bankrupt. Failure is a condition of mind. When yon really fail yon mentally. place your foot on your own neck and kick yourself. Many members of this circle know what it is to start out in life with pret ty bright prospects, and they also know how those roseate prospects have ne glected to make good their promises. They likewise know who is to blame for this but that is neither here nor there. I suppose the world calls such men failures. Well, that is its privi lege, and it breaks no bones. But I think a man would be foolish, to say the least, to quit any game which he believed to be right beeaoae of what people thought of him. And so long as be has the makings of one more fight in him. to admit that he Is a “has been” is childish. I am not so sure that the tendency of the day to vaunt and laud so-called success, and to condemn so-called fail ure in such unmeasured terms, is par ticularly healthful. It keeps one from minding one’s own business. What Jones accomplishes or does not accom plish can really be of no earthly inter est to Smith, unless the latter has some intimate relations with the -former. I am not so sore that this extended pub lication of tbe acts and movements of oar so-called successful citizens is to be altogether commended. A fortu nate million-doliar stock deal in New York may awaken the “divine un rest” in the bosom of some embryonic financier in San Francisco, but it may also breed covetousness and jealousy, neither of which is supposed to be an attribnte of the Gods, in worthy hearts. But, on the other hand, to read the life history of such men as the late John S. Pilisburv or Frank H. Peavey is to receive an impetus in the right direc tion. However, this is a digression, and is not very apropos. And now a few words in conclusion. After one has one’s ideas straightened out iu one’s mind, to think much about success or failure is a waste of Those whose minds dwell upon the lat ter are likely to fear it, and so give up their enterprises before they are fairly started. The past is dead; the future an unknown quantity. The present alone is ours—nut to dream m *ut to do in. If there is a lesso r '1 . ned from the past,' »I 1 and good; A not forget it. If we can shape tbe future to our own ends, well and good; if not there is no reason to be discouraged. We may not live to see it. But I lay this down for a fundamental truth, that the man who does the best he knows bow, wherever he may be sit uated, is never a failure, nor does he fear failure. “Wherever a man’s post is, whether he has chosen it of his own will, or whether he has been placed at it by his commander, there it is bis duty to remain and face tbe danger, without thinking of death, or of any other thing, except dishonor.” X. New Woman Simply because a woman marries a man is no reason why she should takehis name. Old Bachelor—Just so. Tbe poor fellow ought to be allowed to keep something he can call his own.—St. Terms- ' Simper rear, la ad' a nee iekmb.-j six Months 50cents.