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Golden Days for Boys and Girls - Volume XIII, No. 51: November 12, 1892
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GOLDEN DAYS

For Boys and Girls

Vol. XIII—No. 51. November 12, 1892.

Philadelphia: JAMES ELVERSON, Publisher.

* * * * *

[Transcriber's Note:

The notation [->] represents the pointing-finger symbol. Text incorporated into advertising illustrations is shown in (parentheses); where necessary, a brief description of the illustration is given in {braces}.

The layout of the advertising pages is shown after all text, along with a list of file names for major illustrations. Typographical errors in the original, whether corrected or not, are listed at the end.]

* * * * *

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*From the Advocate, Londonville, Ohio.*

Good reading matter is as essential to the young people as good food—its effect is seen in after years. Especially do they need good, pure fiction, which engages their attention and excludes mischievous ideas, leaving a lasting impression. In its great variety of short and continued stories, GOLDEN DAYS is among the foremost, and its illustrations are artistic. Puzzledom delights the solvers, while the Letter Box contains much information and is read by old and young. Although the Exchange Column will not publish any notices of a dangerous character, yet it is always crowded and has been used to advantage by its readers. The publisher knows the wants of the young folks, and the pens of the young people's favorite writers are employed for GOLDEN DAYS. It can be purchased weekly, or bound in magazine form, at the end of the month. Send to the publisher, James Elverson, Philadelphia, for a sample copy.

*From The Argus, Ashton, Dakota.*

To the young people of Spink County who enjoy first-class reading we can truthfully recommend GOLDEN DAYS, published by James Elverson, Philadelphia. It is a weekly publication, and filled with the purest of reading matter, and yet the well-known desire of the young for stories of adventure is not forgotten, for while the interest of the reader is held by the power of the writers, yet there is nothing at any time that could offend the most fastidious, while the youthful mind is led on to emulate the good acts portrayed. Write for sample copies.

*From the Milton (Penna.) Economist.*

GOLDEN DAYS is filled with a choice selection of original stories and pure reading matter of the highest order, together with numerous illustrations. The contributors are many of the best and most widely-known story writers of the world. One grand feature of this journal is that it contains nothing that will be in any way leading to the tainting of the moral or religious life of the young, which is the case with so many of the story papers of the present day. We commend the paper to parents who wish to get the best juvenile paper; and those of our young readers who wish to get and read serial stories of a pure and moral tendency should not fail to subscribe to GOLDEN DAYS.

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*From the Daily News, Geneseo, N.Y.*

We wish we could impress upon the mind of every father how cheaply he could make the home circle doubly attractive by subscribing for the GOLDEN DAYS, decidedly the most valuable and most interesting pictorial newspaper we ever saw, not only for the children, but for the entire family. For the sake of his children we sincerely urge every father to send to the office for a specimen copy, when he can see for himself the great value it will be in his family, and he will thank us in his heart for calling his attention to it. Address James Elverson, publisher, GOLDEN DAYS, corner Ninth and Spruce Streets, Philadelphia, Penna.

*From the Clifton and Landsdowne Times.*

GOLDEN DAYS.—We would like to be able to place this weekly journal in the hands of every girl and boy in the county who cannot afford to subscribe for or buy it from news agents. But the girls and boys of that kind, we fear, are "too many for us." A sad fact, too, by-the-way, when we reflect that a little thought and a bit of economy on the part of themselves or their parents would do what it is not in our power to accomplish. Nevertheless, they ought to know what GOLDEN DAYS is, namely, a sixteen-page weekly journal, with finely-illustrated articles on various subjects of interest to young people, embracing natural history, philosophy and other branches of education, together with pleasing, instructive and moral stories by the best authors. It is just what is wanted for the youthful mind seeking for useful information, and ready at the same time to enjoy what is entertaining and healthful. If all girls and boys could peruse and profit by its columns every week, they in time would grow up to be women and men, intelligent, patriotic and influential in their lives; and lest any who may read these words are ignorant—which is hardly possible—of the whereabouts of GOLDEN DAYS, we gladly give the address, James Elverson, Ninth and Spruce Streets, Philadelphia.

*From the Star and News, Mount Joy, Pa.*

GOLDEN DAYS is the title of a weekly publication for boys and girls, published by James Elverson, Philadelphia, at $3 a year. Each issue is filled with a choice selection of original stories and pure reading matter of the highest order, together with numerous illustrations. The contributors are many of the best and most widely known story-writers of the world. One grand feature of this journal is that it contains nothing that will be in any way leading to the tainting of the moral or religious life of the young, which is the case with so many of the story papers of the present day. We commend the paper to parents who wish to get the best juvenile paper, and those of our young readers who wish to get and read serial stories of a pure and moral tendency, should not fail to subscribe for GOLDEN DAYS.

*From the Cincinnati Suburban News.*

Twenty copies of the GOLDEN DAYS are sold weekly at Moore's book store. The number ought to be forty, for it is the best juvenile publication we know of. It is most beautifully illustrated, and the reading is of a very high order, much of it historical and biographical. The price is only six cents per week.

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The GOLDEN DAYS is pushing forward to a position in the field of juvenile journalism that will make it the ne plus ultra. Its stories sparkle with originality and interest, and its poems are the best. Published at $3 a year by James Elverson, Philadelphia, Pa. Send for a free sample copy.

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GOLDEN DAYS FOR BOYS AND GIRLS

(Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1892, by James Elverson, in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington, D.C.)

VOL. XIII.

JAMES ELVERSON, Publisher. N.W. corner Ninth and Spruce Sts.

PHILADELPHIA, NOVEMBER 12, 1892.

TERMS $3.00 Per Annum, In Advance.

No. 51.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

OFF SHORE,

or

Matt and Natt's Venture.

BY WM. PENDLETON CHIPMAN,

Author of "The Mill Boy of the Genesee," "The Young Linemen," etc.

CHAPTER I.

MATT HIRES OUT.

It was a raw, cold day in early April. Since morning, the clouds had been gathering, and they now hung, dark and heavy, over both land and sea. The wind, too, which had been steadily increasing for hours in violence, now blew little short of a gale. It evidently was going to be a terrible night, and that night was nearly at hand.

No one realized this more than the boy who, with a small bundle in one hand and a stout staff in the other, was walking rapidly along the road that runs, for the greater part of the way, in sight of Long Island Sound, from New Haven to New London.

He was a youth that would have attracted attention anywhere. Tall for his age, which could not have been far from eighteen years, he was also of good proportions, and walked with an ease and stride which suggested reserved strength and muscular development; but it was the boy's face that was most noticeable. Frank, open, of singular beauty in feature and outline, there was also upon it unmistakable evidences of intelligence, resoluteness and honesty of purpose. A close observer might also have detected traces of suffering or of sorrow—possibly of some great burden hard to bear.

The boy was none too warmly clad for the chilly air and piercing wind, and now and then drew his light overcoat about him, as though even his rapid walking did not make him entirely comfortable.

He, moreover, looked eagerly ahead, like one who was watching for some signs of his destination. Reaching at length the foot of a long hill, he drew a sigh of relief, and said, aloud:

"I must be near the place now. They said it was at the top of the first long hill I came to, and this must be it."

As he spoke, he quickened his pace to a run and soon reached the summit, quite out of breath, but with a genial warmth in his body that he had not experienced for some hours.

Pausing now a moment to catch his breath, he looked about him. Dim as was the light of the fast-falling evening, he could not help giving an exclamation of delight at the view he beheld.

To the west of him he saw the twinkling lights of several villages, through which he had already passed. To the north, there was a vast stretch of land, shrouded in darkness. To the south was the Sound, its tossing waves capped with white, its islands like so many gems on the bosom of the angry waters.

"It must be a beautiful place to live in, and I hope to find a home here," he remarked, as he resumed his journey.

A few rods farther he reached a farmhouse and turned up to its nearest door. As he was about to knock, a man came from the barn-yard, a little distance away, and accosted him.

"Good-evening!"

"Good-evening!" responded the boy. Then he asked, "Is this Mr. Noman?"

"No, I'm Mr. Goodenough," answered the man, pleasantly. "Noman lives on the adjoining farm. You will have to turn into the next gateway and go down the lane, as his house stands some distance from the road."

"I was told," explained the boy, "that he wished to hire help, and I hoped to get work there. Could you tell me what the prospect is?"

The man had now reached the boy's side, and was looking him over with evident curiosity.

"Well," he replied, slowly. "I think he wants a young fellow for the coming season, and hadn't hired any one the last I knew. But I think you must be a stranger in these parts?"

"Yes," the youth answered, briefly.

And then, thanking the man for his information, he turned away.

"I thought so," Mr. Goodenough called after him, "else you wouldn't want to go there to work."

The boy scarcely gave heed to the remark at the time; but it was not long before he learned, by hard experience, the meaning of it.

A quarter of a mile up the road he reached a gate, and, passing through it, hastened down the narrow lane till he came to a long, low, dilapidated house; but in the darkness, which had by this time fallen, he was not able to form any definite idea of his surroundings.

A feeble light issued from a back window, and, guided by that, he found the rear door of the building.

To his knock there was a chorus of responses. Dogs barked, children screamed, and above the din a gruff voice shouted, "Come in!"

A little disconcerted by the unusual sounds, the boy, instead of obeying the invitation, knocked again.

Then there was a heavy step across the floor, the door swung open with a jerk, and a tall, raw-boned man, shaggy-bearded and shock haired, stood on the threshold.

Eying the boy a moment in surprise, he asked, somewhat surlily:

"What do ye want, youngster?"

"Are you Mr. Noman?" the boy asked.

"Yes; what of it?" he answered, sharply.

"I was told you wanted help, and I have called to see about it," explained the boy.



"Come in, then!" said Mr. Noman.

And his tones were wonderfully modified.

The boy now obeyed, and found himself in a large room, evidently the kitchen and living-room all in one. There was no carpet on the floor, and a stove, a table and a half-dozen chairs constituted its furniture.

Three large dogs lay before the fire, growling sullenly. A woman and four small children were seated at the table. An empty chair and an unemptied plate showed that Mr. Noman had been eating when he was called to the door.

There was food enough upon the table, but its disorderly arrangement, and the haphazard way in which each child was helping itself, caused the boy to give an involuntary shudder, as his host invited him to sit down "an' take a bite, while they talked over business together."

Mr. Noman evidently meant to give his caller a flattering impression of his hospitality, for he heaped the boy's plate with cold pork, brown bread and vegetables, and even called on his wife to get some of that "apple sass" for the young stranger.

The boy was hungry, and the food was, after all, wholesome, and he stowed away a quantity that surprised himself, if not his host.

When supper was eaten, Mr. Noman pushed back his chair and abruptly asked his guest:

"Who air ye?"

"Matt Rives," promptly replied the boy.

"That's a kinder cur'us name, now, ain't it?" questioned Mr. Noman. "I dunno any Riveses round here. Where be ye from?"

"I came from New York State," replied Matt, with the air of one who had studied his answer, but it seemed for some reason to be very satisfactory to his questioner.

"Any parents?" next inquired Mr. Noman.

"No, sir—nor brothers nor sisters. I've no one but myself to look out for."

"I guess ye ain't used to farm work, be ye?" now inquired Mr. Noman, doubtingly, and looking at Matt's hands, which were as white and soft as a lady's.

"No, sir; but I'm willing to learn," assured Matt.

"Of course ye can't expect much in the way of wages," remarked Mr. Noman, cautiously.

"No, not until I can do my full share of work," replied Matt, indifferently.

A light gleamed for a moment in Mr. Noman's eyes.

"I might give ye ten dollars a month an' board, beginnin' the fust of next month, ye to work round for yer board till then," he ventured.

"Very well," responded the boy; and immediately after he added, "I've walked a good ways to-day, and if you don't mind I'll go to my room."

"Perhaps we'd better draw up a paper of agreement an' both of us sign it," suggested Mr. Noman, rubbing his hands vigorously together, as though well pleased with himself and everybody else.

"All right, if that is your custom," said Matt. "Draw up the paper to suit you, and I'll sign it."

After considerable effort, Mr. Noman produced the following document:

"On this 10th day of April, Matt Rives, a miner of New York State, agres to work for me, Thomas Noman. He's to begin work May fust, an' work 6 munths at 10 dollers an' bord. He's too work till May fust for his bord. If he quits work 'fore his time is up he's to have no pay. To this we agre.

"THOMAS NOMAN, on his part."

Matt read the paper, and could scarcely suppress a smile as he signed his name under Mr. Noman's, and, in imitation of him, added the words "on his part" after the signature.

He knew, however much importance Mr. Noman might attach to it, that as a legal document it had no special force. He simply set down the whole act as one of the whims of his eccentric employer, and gave no more thought to the matter. But it was destined to serve that gentleman's purpose, nevertheless, until taken forcibly from him.

Mr. Noman now showed Matt up to a back room on the second floor, and, telling him that he would call him early in the morning, bade him good-night.

The room Matt had entered was bare and cold; a single chair, a narrow bedstead, a rude rack on the wall to hang his garments upon, were all it contained.

Yet it was evidently with some satisfaction that he opened his bundle, hung up the few clothes it held and prepared for bed.

As he drew the quilts over him, he murmured:

"I don't think I ever had more uncomfortable quarters in my life, and the outlook for the next six months at least is far from encouraging. Still, I would not go back to what I have left behind for anything."

He was tired. The rain that was now falling heavily upon the roof just over his head acted as a sedative and lulled him to sleep. But his was not an unbroken rest, for at times he tossed to and fro and muttered strange, disconnected sentences. One was:

"I know it was not he. I will pay it back to the last cent."

After that the troubled sleeper must have had pleasanter dreams, for a smile played about his lips, and he murmured:

"It is all right now; I've a home at last."

From these, however, he was rudely awakened by a gruff call:

"Matt, Matt! git up an' come out to the barn."

Sleepy, bewildered, he arose and groped about in the darkness for his clothing. By the time he was dressed a full consciousness of his situation had come back to him, and, with a stout heart, Matt went out to begin what was to him equally new duties and a new life.

CHAPTER II.

A LITTLE UNPLEASANTNESS.

It was still dark and the rain fell in torrents as Matt opened the kitchen door and ran hastily out to the barn, where Mrs. Noman, who was making preparations for breakfast, had told him he would find her husband.

He noticed the kitchen timepiece as he passed through the room and saw it was not yet four o'clock. Early rising was evidently one of the things to be expected in his new home.

Reaching the barn, Matt found Mr. Noman engaged in feeding a dozen or more gaunt and ill-kept cows, which seized the musty hay thrown down to them with an avidity that suggested on their part a scarcity of rations.

The same untidiness that marked the house was to be seen about the barn also, which, if anything, was in a more dilapidated condition than the former.

"Good morning, Mr. Noman. What can I do to help you?" asked Matt, pleasantly, as soon as he entered the barn.

"Hum! I don't suppose ye can milk?" was the rather ungracious response.

"No, sir; but I'm willing to learn," replied Matt, good-naturedly.

"Well, I'll see about that after awhile. I s'pose ye might as well begin now as any time. But fust git up on that mow an' throw down more hay. These pesky critters eat more'n their necks is wuth," said Mr. Noman, kicking savagely at a cow that was reaching out for the forkful of hay he was carrying by her.

Matt obeyed with alacrity; and, when that job was finished, it was followed by others, including the milking, wherein the boy proved an apt scholar, until nearly six o'clock, when Mrs. Noman's shrill voice summoned them to breakfast.

That meal, possibly on account of Matt's want of the good appetite he had had the night before, seemed to him greatly inferior to his supper. The coffee was bitter and sweetened with molasses, the johnny-cakes were burnt, and the meat and vegetables cold.

He did his best to eat heartily of the unsavory food, however—partly that he might not seem to his employer over-fastidious in taste, and partly because the morning's work had taught him that he would need all the strength he could obtain ere his day's task was over. Stormy though it was, he felt sure Mr. Noman would find enough for him to do.

In fact, long before the first of May came, Matt realized fully the force of the words Mr. Goodenough shouted after him the night he stopped there to inquire the way to Mr. Noman's.

Had he really known his employer and family, he certainly would not have been over-anxious to hire out to him for the season, for the dilapidated condition of the buildings, and the untidiness and disorder that marked everything about the place, were not, after all, the worst features with which Matt had to deal. He soon found that his employer was a hard, grasping tyrant, while his wife was a termagant, scolding and fault-finding incessantly from morning until night. There was not an animal on the place that escaped the abuse of the master, and not even the master himself eluded the tirades of the mistress.

Matt, by faithfully performing every task assigned him, and thus frequently doing twice over what a boy of his age should have been expected to do, tried to win the approval of both Mr. Noman and his wife. He soon found this impossible, and so contented himself with doing what he felt to be right, and cheerfully bore the scoldings that speedily became an hourly occurrence.

It was indeed astonishing with what good-nature Matt accepted the work and the hard words put upon him. Mr. Noman attributed it to the paper he had asked him to sign, and chuckled to himself at the thought that Matt's fear of losing his wages kept him so industrious and docile.

He confidentially admitted to his wife, one day, that the boy was worth twice what he had agreed to pay him—"only I ain't paid him nothin' as yit," he added, with a knowing look, which his wife seemed to understand, for she replied:

"Now yer up to another of yer capers, Tom Noman. There never was a man on the earth meaner'n ye air!"

But Mr. Goodenough, who knew his neighbors well, could in no way account for the boy's willingness to endure what he knew he must be suffering, and finally his curiosity got the better of him; for, meeting Matt one day as he was returning from the nearest village, he drew up his horses and said:

"Matt, do you know you are the profoundest example of human patience I ever saw?"

"No; is that so?" replied Matt, with a laugh. "What makes you think so?"

"Well," remarked Mr. Goodenough, leaning on his wagon-seat and looking down into the smiling countenance before him, "I have lived here beside Tom Noman and his wife for a dozen years, and know them well enough to be sure that an angel couldn't long stand their fault-finding, and yet you have actually been there six weeks, and are still as cheerful as a lark on one of these beautiful spring mornings. Will you explain to me how you manage to stand it?"

While he was speaking a far-away look had come into Matt's eyes, and a shudder shook his robust frame, as though he saw something very disagreeable to himself; but he answered, quietly enough:

"Mr. Goodenough, there are some things in this world harder to bear than either work or unkind treatment, and I prefer even to live with Tom Noman's family rather than to go back to the life I have left behind me."

With these words, Matt started up his oxen and went on, leaving Mr. Goodenough to resume his way more mystified than ever.

On the first day of June, Matt asked Mr. Noman for the previous month's pay.

They were at work in the cornfield, and the boy's request took his employer so by surprise that his hoe-handle dropped from his grasp.

"Me pay ye now!" he exclaimed. "What air ye thinkin' of?"

Then, as though another idea had come to his mind, he said, persuasively:

"Ye don't need no money, an' 'twill be better to have yer pay all in a lump. Jest think how much it'll be—sixty dollars! an' all yer own."

"But I have a special use for the money," persisted Matt; "and, as I have earned it, I should think you might give it to me."

He spoke all the more emphatically because he knew that Mr. Noman had quite a sum of money by him, and that he could easily pay him if he chose to do so.

For reply, Mr. Noman put his hand into his pocket, and, taking out his wallet, opened it. From it he drew the paper of agreement that Matt and he had signed. He slowly spelled it out, and, when he had finished, asked:

"Does this here paper say anythin' about my payin' ye every month?"

"No, sir," Matt reluctantly admitted.

"But it does say, if ye quit yer work 'fore yer time is up, ye air to have no pay, don't it?" inquired the man, significantly.

"Yes, sir," Matt replied, now realizing how mean and contemptible his employer was, and what had been his real object in drawing up that paper.

"Well, how can I know ye air goin' to stay with me yer hull time till it's up?" he asked, with a show of triumph in his tones.

"Do you mean to say you don't intend to pay me anything until November?" asked Matt, indignantly.

"That's the agreement," answered Mr. Noman, coolly, returning the paper to his wallet and placing it in his pocket. "If ye'll keep yer part I'll keep mine."

He then picked up his hoe and resumed his work.

For the first time since he came to the farm Matt felt an impulse to leave his employer. It was with great difficulty, indeed, that he refrained from throwing down his hoe, going to the house after his few effects, and quitting the place forever. But he did not, and went resolutely on with his work.

Fortunate for him was it—though he did not know it then—that he did so. Later on, he could see that the ruling of his spirit that day won for him, if not a city, certainly the happiest results, though severe trials stood between him and their consummation.

That night, at as early an hour as possible, Matt sought his little room. Closing the door carefully after him, he walked over to the rude rack on the wall and took down his light overcoat. From an inside pocket he drew a long wallet, and from that, a postal card. Addressing it with a pencil to "A. H. Dinsmore, 1143 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y.," he wrote rapidly and in small characters on the reverse side, without giving place or date, the following words:

"DEAR SIR: My promise to send you some money every month until the total amount due you was paid, I cannot keep for this reason: Through a misunderstanding with my employer, I am not to have my pay until the six months for which I have hired out are ended. At that time you may expect a remittance from me.

"Truly yours,

"M. R."

It was several days later, however, before Matt had an opportunity to go to the neighboring village. When he did so, he took care not to drop the postal into the post office, but handed it directly to a mail agent on a passing train.

His reason for this act could not be easily misunderstood. Evidently, he did not care that the Mr. Dinsmore to whom he had written should know his exact whereabouts. But his precaution was unnecessary; for, before the summer months had run by, he was to meet Mr. Dinsmore under circumstances most trying to himself.

CHAPTER III.

SWEPT OUT TO SEA.

Mr. Noman's farm was a large one, and ran clear down to the shore, terminating there in a singular formation of sand and rocks, known throughout that region as "The Camel Humps." A small cove lay west of the formation, while the main waters of the sound stretched out to their widest extent from the south and east. The only point, therefore, where the "humps" touched the mainland was at the north, and even this point of contact was so narrow as simply to furnish a roadway down upon the "humps" themselves.

Of these "humps"—for there were, as their name suggested, but two—the northern one was much the smaller, embracing perhaps an acre of rough soil, covered with a stunted grass, and dotted here and there with red cedars. The southern one, on the other hand, covered also with a scanty vegetation and scattered trees, broadened out so as nearly to land-lock the cove behind it, and cause its waters to rush in or out, according to the tide, through an exceedingly contracted passage at its extreme southwestern end, popularly known as "the sluiceway."

The point of contact of the southern with the northern hump, like the northern hump with the mainland, was also very narrow, and to its narrowness was added another feature—it was so low, or, in more technical language, it was so nearly on a level with the high-water mark, that when there happened to be a strong wind from any eastern quarter, the waters of the sound, on the incoming tide, would rush with great force over the slight barrier and mingle with the waters of the cove, making an island, for the time, of the larger and more southern hump.

Three-quarters of a mile off shore, and a little to the northeast of these humps, was an island of an irregular shape and a few acres in extent, bearing the name of Sheep Island. The name had belonged to it since colonial days, but the reason therefor was unknown, unless at that early period some enterprising farmer had used the island as pasture ground for animals of that kind, which gave the island its title.

This island had in later years, however, a more illustrious inhabitant. A gentleman of considerable means, tired of society, or for some reason at enmity with it, crossed over from the main shore, erected a small house, dug a well, set out trees, planted a garden and built a wharf—in fact, set up thereon a complete habitation. But not long did he endure his self-imposed solitude. Scarcely were his arrangements completed when an unfortunate accident caused his death, and the island and its improvements were left to be the home of the sea-fowls or the temporary abode of some passing fisherman.

This extended description has been given because it is essential that the reader should form a definite idea of the island and its relation to the "Camel Humps;" for on and about them no small portion of our young hero's summer was destined to be spent.

During the fall and winter months previous to Matt's coming to the farm, owing to the repeated storms, there had been landed on the "humps" immense quantities of seaweed, so highly prized by the farmer as a fertilizer. Mr. Noman had contented himself, however, with simply gathering it into a huge pile on the summit of the southern hump, above high-water mark, intending to remove it to the barnyard in the spring. Thus it fell to Matt's lot to cart from the heap to the yard as the weed was needed, and the first week in June found him engaged in this work.

It was a cloudy and threatening day. The wind was from the southeast, and blew with a freshness that promised a severe storm before night.

Perhaps it was on this account that Mr. Noman had directed the boy to engage in this particular work. He was himself obliged to be away on business, and this was a job at which Matt could work alone, and the weather was hardly propitious for any other undertaking. So, immediately after breakfast, Matt yoked the oxen to the cart and started for his first load.

"There ain't over four loads more down there, an' if ye work spry ye can git it all up by night!" Mr. Noman shouted after him, as he drove off.

The distance from the barn to the "humps" was such that, with the roughness of the way, one load for each half-day had usually been regarded as a sufficient task for the slow-walking oxen.

But Matt knew he had an early start, and he determined to do his best to bring all the weed home that day. He therefore quickened the pace of the animals, and before nine o'clock had made his first return to the yard.

Unloading with haste, he immediately started back for his second load. When he crossed from the north to the south hump, he noticed the incoming tide was nearly across the roadway, but thought little of it.

On examining the heap of seaweed, he became convinced that by loading heavily he could carry what remained at two loads.

He therefore pitched away until in his judgment half of the heap was upon the cart. It made a big load, but the oxen were stout, and, bending their necks to the yoke, they, at Matt's command, started slowly off.

As he approached the narrow roadway, he noticed the tide had gained rapidly and was now sweeping over it with considerable force and depth.

Jumping upon the tongue of the cart, he urged his oxen through the tossing waves. To his consternation, the water came well up around the patient animals' backs, and had he not quickly scrambled to the top of his load he would have been thoroughly drenched.

The cattle, however, raised their noses high as possible and plunged bravely through the flood, soon emerging on the other side with their load unharmed.

The rest of the journey home was made without difficulty, and Matt at dinner time had the satisfaction of knowing that two thirds of his appointed work was already accomplished.

Mr. Noman had not yet returned, and, hurrying through dinner, Matt hastened off for his third and last load, hoping to get back to the yard with it before his employer came. But hardly had he started when it began to rain, and as he passed down upon the first hump the wind, having shifted a point or two, was blowing with a velocity that made it difficult for the oxen to stand before it.

Slowly, however, the passage across the first hump was made, and Matt approached the narrow roadway leading to the other, then he stopped the team in sheer amazement.

In front of him was a strip of surging water of uncertain depth, and he instinctively felt that there was a grave risk in attempting to push through to the other side. But he was anxious to secure his load. He had passed through safely enough before, and he resolved to attempt the crossing now, counting on nothing worse than a drenching.

This was a grave mistake, and Matt would have realized it, had he only stopped to think that there was quite a difference between his situation now and when he had made his successful crossing before dinner. Then he had a loaded cart, the wind and tide were both in his favor, and the water had not reached either its present depths or expanse. Now his cart was empty—a significant and important fact, the wind was blowing with greater force and directly against him, while the tide—as he would have seen had he watched it closely—had turned, and was rushing back from the cove and out into the open sound with a strength almost irresistible.

But, unmindful of these things, Matt bade his oxen go on, and, though they at first shrunk from entering the angry waters, he forced them onward, and at last they began the passage.

For a rod they went steadily on, though the waves dashed over their backs and into the cart, wetting Matt to the knees. Then came a sudden breaker, rolling outward, that lifted the cart and oxen from the road-bed and swept them out into the sound.

The moment Matt realized that the cart was afloat and the oxen swimming for their lives, his impulse was not to save himself, but the unfortunate animals that, through his rashness, had been brought into danger.

Springing, therefore, between them, he caught hold of the yoke with one hand, and with the other wrenched out the iron pin that fastened it to the tongue, and thus freed them from the cart. In the effort, however, he lost his hold upon the yoke, and the next minute found himself left alone, struggling with the angry billows.

He was now forced to look out for himself and could not watch the fate of the oxen, even had he had an inclination to do so, indeed with his water-soaked clothing, which greatly impeded his efforts, there was already a serious question whether he would be able to reach the shore, good swimmer though he was.

With a strength born from the very sense of the danger that overwhelmed him, he turned his face toward the fast receding shore, and swam manfully for it.

For a time he seemed to be gaining, but the tide was too strong for him and his strength was soon exhausted. Slowly he felt himself sinking. Already the waves were dashing over his head.

He made one desperate effort to regain the surface, then there was a faint consciousness of being caught by a huge wave and hurled against some hard object, and all was blank.

[TO BE CONTINUED]



—The average duration of lives in the United States is 41.8 years for storekeepers 43.6 years for teamsters, 44.6 years for seamen, 47.3 years for mechanics, 48.4 years for merchants, 52.6 years for lawyers, and 64.2 years for farmers.



TALES OF BIG FISHES.

The whip ray, sea bat or devil fish, as it is variously named, is fairly plentiful in Galveston Bay, so the appearance of four of these sea monsters at one time the other day did not excite any special remark. But they were seen by three boys, all under sixteen, and they determined to get one and sell it. So one of the boys borrowed a Winchester rifle while the other two got a rowboat and a harpoon, and out they went after their prey. The boys rowed around awhile, and soon saw one of the fishes, and pulled up within forty or fifty feet. One of the boys fired a shot into the ray, which immediately breached, scooting fully twenty feet out and ahead, like a flying fish. Two more shots were fired, and, after beating the water furiously, it died. Then a harpoon was thrown into the creature, and it was towed to the wharf, where it was slung and hoisted out with a windlass. This fish measured fourteen feet from wing tip to wing tip.

Another fish tale from the Gulf of Mexico relates to the adventures of five sailors who were running a small schooner down the coast off Corpus Christi. The vessel was gliding along smoothly when the monotony of the voyage was broken by a six foot tarpon leaping upon the deck from the water. The big fish at once began making things interesting on the boat, and for a time it looked as if the crew would have to jump overboard to escape being knocked lifeless. They finally regained control of their nerve, however, and decided to have it out with the fish, so one of them seized an axe and the others hand-spikes and at the tarpon they went. The struggle was long and fierce, and one of the sailors was knocked overboard by coming in contact with the tarpon's tail. A rope was thrown him and he was pulled back on deck. At last the fish succumbed to the repeated blows of the axe and hand spikes and lay along the deck as dead as a mackerel.

When the steamer Dumois came into Boston recently, she brought as a passenger a man named John Calder, who came on board under peculiar circumstances. He was a Jamaica fisherman, and unwittingly hooked a sword-fish. Mr. Calder didn't want that kind of a fish, but it would not let go, and, as he did not want to lose a long and valuable line by cutting himself away, both man and fish held on until forty miles at sea. At this juncture the steamer came along, the fish was captured, and the plucky fisherman sold the big catch to the marketmen.

"The prettiest battle I ever witnessed was between a young Cuban and two sharks," said an American sea captain. "We had reached Havana and were lying half a mile from the docks, awaiting the signal to go on. Several fruit peddlers had boarded us, among them a swarthy, bare legged young fellow who looked like a pirate. The purser was standing by the rail, holding his five year old son in his arms, watching a couple of monster sharks that were hanging about the vessel, when the child slipped from his grasp and fell into the water. The father plunged overboard and seized him, and the sharks at once made to the pair. The bare-legged young buccaneer dropped the fruit-basket and went over the rail like a flash. As the first shark turned on its back, the invariable prelude to biting, the Cuban rose, and with a long, keen knife fairly disemboweled it. The other was not to be disposed of so easily though. The purser and his child had been pulled on deck, and the combatants had a fair field. The Cuban dived, but the shark did not wait for him to come up and changed his location. Finally the shark advanced straight upon his antagonist, his ugly fin cutting through the water like a knife, turned quickly upon his back, and the huge jaws came together with a vicious snap, but the Cuban was not between them. He had sunk just in time to avoid the shark, and, as the latter passed, shot the steel into it. The old sea wolf made the water boil, and strove desperately to strike his antagonist with his tail but the latter kept well amidships and literally cut him in pieces."

As one of the Peninsular and Oriental steamers was steaming up the Red Sea, the lookout forward called the attention of the officer of the watch to the fact that a huge shark was jammed in between the bobstay-shackle and the stem. Investigation showed that the monster, which was over thirty feet long, was almost cut in two. The stem had struck him just below the gills, and, while his head protruded on the starboard side, his body had slewed in under the port bow. The sharp iron stem had cut into the creature to the depth of a foot, and all efforts to get it clear were unavailing. The captain at last ordered the vessel full speed astern, and that sent the man eater adrift. The accepted theory was that the shark had been asleep on the surface of the sea when struck by the swiftly-moving steamer.



PUZZLEDOM.

No. 663

Original contributions solicited from all. Puzzles containing obsolete words will be received. Write contributions on one side of the paper and apart from all communications. Address 'Puzzle Editor,' Golden Days, Philadelphia, Pa.

ANSWERS TO LAST WEEK'S PUZZLES

No. 1. Tied, diet, tide

No. 2. C A L A M U S A V E R I L L L E G A L L Y A R A M E A N M I L E A G E U L L A G E S S L Y N E S S

No. 3. Eve r

No. 4. A B A A B J U R E S A U G U R Y R U M O R E R O T I C S Y R I N G E C G E

No. 5. Beta, bet, be, bate, bat, at.

No. 6. S I S N E T G E N E R A T E S E M I N A L R E C O R D D E N T S

No. 7. F-all

No. 8. P A D P I L E D P I C A M A R A L A L I T E D E M I S E D D A T E R R E D

No. 9. O we go

No. 10. S P A S P E C T R E A C T I O N T I N T S R O T A T E E N S T A M P E M P

No. 11. Edmund Dantes

No. 12. R C A R C A M E L R A M B L E R R E L A T E D L E T T E R S R E E N A C T D R A G O O N S C O R N E D T O N E D N E D D

NEW PUZZLES

NO. 1. CHARADE

Whate'er my one has brought to light It never was a whole, To think of it brings down my pride And cuts me to the soul.

My principles will not allow That I am "obs." should two Three any word that Webster calls Not just exactly new.

For those of course who patronize Antediluvian lore 'Tis easy quite to build completes And such like by the score.

New York city LUCREZIUS BORGERS

NO. 2. SQUARE

1. Pain in the ear. 2. Town of France. 3. A body reflecting light brightly. 4. A purchaser. 5. A sharp, shrill, harsh sound. 6. P.O. Ontario N.Y. 7. Placed in regular form before a court.

Brooklyn N.Y. MOONSHINE

NO. 3. DOUBLE WORD ENIGMA

In "pine-clad hill," In "harvest home," In "cider mill," In "star-lit dome."

Indulged and spoiled in tender years He grew a wicked youth He early learned to curse and steal And never spoke the truth.

He did not love his books. He said, "Catch me sitting on a stool The livelong day! I'd rather be A dunce than go to school."

Instead of going to school, he'd hide His books and run away, With other bad boys like himself, Into the fields to play.

Or take his gun into the woods The harmless birds to shoot, Or climb the farmer's orchard trees, And steal and eat their fruit.

On Sundays, when he should have gone To Sunday school or church, He'd take his fishing rod and go To fish for trout and perch.

One day while fishing all alone Down by the river side, He tripped, and with a headlong plunge Fell in the river wide.

In vain he cried aloud for help, No one was near to save, The waters closed above his head— He found a watery grave.

Now let this bad boy's fate teach us Complete is wicked in God's sight And let us all henceforth resolve To try and do what's right!

Charleston, S.C. OSCEOLA

NO. 4. RIGHT STAR

1. A letter. 2. A pronoun. 3. A spectre. 4. Quadrupeds of the genus Equus. 5. Defensive arms. 6. Unsweet (Obs.). 7. Startles (Obs.). 8. A bone. 9. A letter.

Pontiac, Ill. CAN'T TELL

NO. 5. SYNCOPATION

A one arose between some bees— Indeed of them 'twas very wicked— They fluttered in about the trees, Among the grass and in the thicket

Some thoughtless bees within the hive A scheme upon the drones were working, To make them labor they did strive But "drones" were only made for shirking

The queen now on the scene appeared, A fine her coming quickly making For she among them all was feared— Their hearts were filled with fear and quaking

Said she "A 'drone' can never toil, A 'sinecure' is his position He lives on those who till the soil, Like any other politician."

New York city JEJUNE

NO. 6. HALF SQUARE

1. Clairvoyance. 2. Computation. 3. Parts of a flower consisting of the stalk and the anther (Bot.) 4. Buffoons. 5. A hard amorphous mineral. 6. Open thefts (Rare.) 7. Belonging to it. 8. To see (Obs. Word Supp.) 9. A letter.

Rochester N.Y. THEO LOGY

NO. 7. CHARADE

An old man sat in his easy chair, The firsts of his life almost done How thankful am I, in this world of care, That my course is nearly run.

My second is waiting to greet me In mansions so bright—far away In the glorious house I shall soon be, Where all is eternal day.

This would have been a hard total From its cares I hope soon to be free With me I think all things will be well When the Son in His glory I see.

Iowa City, Iowa TANGANIKA

NO. 8. OCTAGON

1. To destroy. 2. A venomous reptile inhabiting the East Indies. 3. The bleak. 4. Little wheels. 5. Comely. 6. A friend. 7. An Arabian prince, military commander and governor of a conquered province. 8. Drives together (Obs.).

Louisville, Ky. X ACTLY

NO. 9. BEHEADMENT

Palm tree boughs are lacing Through which the moonlight steals, And bathes the spot like silver Where India's daughter kneels Her white robes round her falling Her hair as black as night Has its coil of richest rubies Like a crown of crimson light.

A lamp on the shining water It is a simple test, Does he prime live, her lover— Lone star on the river's breast? See it nears the turning Now it's rocking to and fro In a splash, like liquid silver, Then it flickers and grows low.

India's white-robed maiden Clasps her hands so tight Her face grows pale with anguish, Fine brighter grows the light, Then on through the lily masses, Like a spark amid the blue, Floating safely onward— Floating slowly from her view

Philadelphia, Pa. SNOWBALL

NO. 10. NEWARK ICOSAHEDRON

1. A small cask. 2. A genus of climbing shrubs. 3. A kind of cover for the finger. 4. Exemption from oblivion. 5. To dye. 6. Images. 7. A genus of acanthopterygious fishes. 8. A house whose walls are composed of logs. 9. General figure. 10. To stir. 11. One who mingles. 12. A surgeon's instrument for scraping bones. 13. To plow.

Newark, N.J. JO HOOTY

NO. 11. NUMERICAL

Edith, dear, do you not recall How we stood long years ago 2, 1, the bridge, one cold, bleak all Looking at the pool below?

How we watched the dry leaves sailing, 2, 3, 4, 8 its cold breast While the breeze was softly wailing, As it bore them to their rest?

How you wondered, were they happy Now their life was 2, 8, 4 last? How can they 6 and 7 happy When their summer life is past?

Ah! the years have fallen round me Since we stood beside the stream And I have shown the hopes that found me Then to earth were but a dream.

Oh, were you and I together On that bridge, once 5, 2, 8, 4 I would give a different answer, Than I did in days of yore

I would tell of summers fading— How the sun must set at night And of all the thick mists shading, Sun and summer from the sight

I would tell of that deep yearning Springing from the fading years For a sun that has no turning— For a life that has no tears

Yes! those little leaves that we recall, Drifting on the streamlet's breast They were glad, that bleak and chill all— They were glad for they had rest.

Charleston, W. Va. R E FLECT

[->] Answers will appear in our next issue solvers in six weeks.

SOLVERS.

Puzzles in PUZZLEDOM No. 657 were correctly solved by Madora Carl, Hello Ian, Ran-de Ran, Night Owls, Lowell, Weesle, Charles Goodwin, Crovit, Willie Wimple, Romulus, Night, Windsor Boy, Osceola, Flora Nightingale, Addie Shun, Jejune, Stanna, Carrie Wolmer, Mary McK., Lucrezius Borgers, Claude Hopper, Katie O'Neill, Tweedledum and Tweedledee, John Watson, Dovey, Fleur de Lis, Rosalind, Little Nell, Spider, C. Saw, Legs, Joe-de Joe, Flare, Dorio, Marcellus, Maxwell, Louise M. Danforth, Cora Denham, Woggins & Co., Herbie O., Brig, War Horse, Essie E., B. Gonia, Mary Roland, Theresa, Mary Pollard, Uncas, Duchess, Olive, Coupay, May De Hosmer, Al Derman, Meandhim, Beta, Tanganika and Arcanum, V. I. Olin, Lib Bee and A. L. Vin.

*COMPLETE LIST—Madora.*



Easy Methods Of

MAKING SLIDES FOR THE MAGIC LANTERN,

By John Boyd.

The new three-wick and four-wick magic lanterns which are now made are so good, and give so much better results than the old oil lanterns, that they are coming largely into use, and for ordinary purposes they do remarkably well. The better class of them stands comparison even with the oxy-hydrogen light, although of course they are excelled by it. They are so easily manipulated that many boys now possess them and work them with good effect. The more expensive ones are fitted with first-class lenses, and can be used also with the oxy-hydrogen light.

Two years ago my boys became the happy owners of one, and many a pleasant evening has been passed since, looking at photographs and pictures by its aid.

It has been used with good effect, even in large rooms, to show diagrams, to illustrate lectures and to exhibit pictures to the Sunday-school children.

No sooner had the lantern been obtained, however, than a demand arose for pictures to show with it. In most large towns they can be hired from the opticians, but they cost at least twenty-five cents a dozen per night and, apart from the expense, it is not always convenient to get them; then to purchase them is more than most boys can afford, as the commonest, full-sized chromolithographed slides cost from two and a half to three dollars a dozen, while hand-painted pictures or photographs vary from three to ten dollars a dozen.

Accordingly we determined to try if we could not make slides for ourselves, and, as our efforts were crowned with a fair measure of success, I think it will interest the boy-readers of GOLDEN DAYS, many of whom, I feel sure, own lanterns, to hear what systems we found to be the best and easiest. I shall confine myself to those pictures that can be made entirely by hand, and accordingly will leave photographs out altogether.

Bought hand-painted slides are usually first photographed on to the glass from a large outline drawing, and then colored; but so few boys have the means of making their slides in this manner that it will be best to pass this system by, especially as I shall describe a method of making the sketch which answers as well, and is much easier.

At the very outset, we were met with a difficulty that we feared would be insurmountable, and that was that it was almost impossible to make a neat, fine-lined sketch with a brush and paint on plain, smooth glass; and, even when this last had been managed, the coloring process often washed out the outlines and made unsightly smudges, and, as every little line, spot or smear shows with painful distinctness when magnified on the sheet, we soon saw that amateur work on these lines would never do. Fortunately I remembered a process, which I once saw used by a microscopist, to make diagrams for the lantern to illustrate his lectures, which answered admirably.

This was simply to draw, with a very hard lead pencil, on ground glass, then to cover the ground surface with varnish, which rendered the glass perfectly transparent.

I tried this plan, and got such good results from it that I can strongly recommend it. By following out the instructions and hints I shall give, any boy can readily and rapidly make a large series of excellent pictures for his lantern, which will answer his purpose quite as well as the most expensive bought slides.

This system has four great advantages: 1. Pictures can easily be traced on the ground glass, and to those who, like myself, would find it difficult to invent their own pictures, or to copy them, this counts for a great deal. 2. The outline can be made very fine, but still very distinct. 3. The paint will not take on the lead-marks; this renders it much easier to prevent the color going over the edge of an outline. 4. It is also very much easier to paint on the slightly rough surface of the ground glass.

There should be no difficulty in procuring this glass at any glazier's. It need not be plate glass; ordinary ground glass will do, care being taken to select that with a sufficiently fine and smooth surface, and not too thick.

I have found water colors for lantern slides the best for painting with. They are very much easier to use than the oil colors, and are quite as transparent. Ordinary paints will not do, as some of them come out perfectly opaque, but a box of the special paints can be procured for a dollar. A camel's-hair brush, however, is of no use; you must have a stiff sable brush. One No. 3 or No. 4 will be a handy size, and will answer for all purposes, even for the finest lines.

In selecting subjects, use those where the outlines are clear and of a size adapted to the usual sort of slides, which are invariably made now three and a quarter inches square.

First rub a dozen ground glasses perfectly clean with a wash-leather that has been washed in water in which a little soda has been dissolved, to make it quite free from grease. During this cleaning process, the surface of the glass can be sufficiently moistened by breathing on it.

Trace the entire series of outlines on the ground glasses with an H.H.H. pencil, making the lines even lighter than the original, for it will be found most convenient to have a number of slides, say a dozen, in process at one time. Brush off any loose fragments of black lead, taking care that they do not mark the glass.

You are now ready to proceed with the coloring, but, as you will wish to be sure as you go on that you are keeping them sufficiently transparent, it will be found to be a great help if you can always see through them, even while painting them.



You had better, therefore, make an inclined stand, and this can easily be done, the only tools really required being a knife, a brad-awl and a screw-driver. Procure one piece of wood 14 inches by 6 inches, one piece of wood 12 inches by 6 inches, one piece of wood 14 inches by 12 inches, all 3/8 inch or 1/4 inch thick.

Divide the first piece along the dotted line A to B, by cutting right through it with the point of your knife. These two pieces will make the sides of your stand. The piece 14 inches by 12 inches will make the bottom.

Cut two laths 14 inches long, 1/2 inch wide, out of wood 1/4 inch thick, and tack them along the upper inner edges of the two sides a quarter of an inch below the top. These will form two ledges. Now fasten the piece 12 inches by 6 inches to rest on these ledges, which will serve to support the hand. The upper portion remaining must be filled up by a piece of strong, clear glass, 14 inches by 8 inches, which will rest on the ledge at each side, and need not be fastened in, as it will sometimes have to be removed to be cleaned.

Fasten all the parts together with screws, so that you can take it to pieces and pack it away flat when not in use. Those screws with a ring at the end instead of a head, such as are used to fasten into the backs of picture frames to hang them by, are the handiest, as they can be put in with the fingers, and cost hardly any more than ordinary screws.

This stand will be large enough to hold six slides at once, and enables the light to shine right through them. A sheet of white paper should be placed underneath to throw the light up.

Should the light be too strong it can easily be modified by spreading a sheet of thin, white tissue-paper between the glass and the slides.

Of course daylight is best to work by, but I find you can get on very nicely with an ordinary oil lamp, if placed at a convenient distance from the stand.

An ordinary paintbox will contain twelve colors—namely, two blues, neutral, crimson, brown, yellow, scarlet, burnt sienna, orange, two greens and black, all but the last being quite transparent. These will be found sufficient for ordinary work, as they can be greatly varied by judicious mixing.

First of all the skies should be painted in on all twelve slides. As long as you do not go over the outlines, great care need not be taken about laying the color on evenly.

Now cut off a small piece of clean washleather, which has an even, smooth surface. Let the color become nearly dry, then proceed to dab it all over with the washleather, held on the end of the finger, breathing on the slide when necessary, in order to keep it sufficiently moist.

This process must be continued carefully until the whole painted surface is perfectly even and shows no mark of the brush, and only sufficient paint must be left on to give a blue tint.

You must always remember that if too darkly painted the pictures will be too opaque. Clouds can be put in nicely also with the bit of washleather, but extra work of this sort is hardly worth while.

Then proceed to tint the other portions of the pictures with suitable colors, doing one color at a time right through the set of slides, but after applying each color, immediately dab with the washleather, to render the color even and light.

You will find that by keeping to one color at a time you will get along much quicker, and will also make the pictures more uniform.

When you have completely tinted all the pictures and "dabbed" all the colored portions, you may then go over them all again and shade them up where required with rather stronger colors, taking care, however, not to overdo this.

You will find for faces yellow, with a very slight addition of crimson, answers the best. It may not look all right on the slide, but it will when thrown on the sheet.

You will need to consider the effect of the various colors, as some show much more strongly than others. The next process is to varnish the glasses to render them transparent.

With most color boxes for painting magic lantern slides a bottle of varnish for this purpose is supplied, which answers fairly well. It has to be painted on, after the slides are thoroughly dry, with a large camel's-hair brush.

Lay one coat on by drawing the brush right across from one side to the other, taking care that the lines of varnish so deposited slightly over-lap one another. When this coat of varnish is perfectly dry and hard, another and sometimes even a third coat must be applied, and it is best to lay it on at right angles to the previous coat, so that all the surface is sure to be covered.

Make each coat as thin as possible, and to facilitate this keep the brush soft by occasionally applying a little turpentine to it. This, however, is a slow and tantalizing process of varnishing, and there is an easier and better one. Procure a bottle of Canada balsam in benzole. It is used for mounting microscopic objects in, and can be got from any optician's. It should be quite fluid. Get a large wide-mouthed bottle and pour the balsam and benzole into it. Then add to it as much again pure benzole. It should now be nearly as fluid as water. This is your varnish. Apply it just as a photographer coats his glass plate with collodion. That is done in this manner. Take hold of the slide by one corner and pour on to it a sufficient quantity of the balsam and benzole to cover it.

You may need to encourage it to flow by slightly tilting the slide, and sometimes it may even be needful to take a clean quill toothpick and direct it into some corners that otherwise would be missed. Then pour back all the superfluous varnish into the bottle from one corner of the slide; the varnish remaining will rapidly harden, as the benzole evaporates quickly, and the hardening may be hastened by applying a little heat, but while hardening the slides should be protected from dust.



I make mine perfectly hard by baking them on a thin iron plate fixed a few inches above a small spirit lamp, but you need to take care not to make the slides too hot, or they may crack. I can easily varnish and harden a dozen slides in less than an hour.

A thin plate of iron, such as is used for an oven plate, can be arranged on blocks of wood, a sufficient height over the spirit lamp. One coat of this varnish is usually sufficient to render the slides perfectly transparent, but a second coat can be applied as soon as the first is hard if necessary.

The slides are now finished, but the varnished surface will easily scratch, and must be protected by a piece of clean glass. Between the glasses a thin paper mount should be laid, which may be a circle, an oval, or a square, according to which is most suitable to the pictures, and then the two glasses must be fastened together by narrow slips of paper gummed round the edge. These mounts, and slips of paper ready gummed, can be procured from any optician, and will save labor, especially in fixing up the edges.

Before you join the glasses together insert at the right hand top corner a number, so that by looking at this number you can readily arrange the pictures in their proper sequence, and also tell which is the right side up when putting them into the lantern carrier.

Sometimes you may wish to copy some other slides, but owing to their having the covering glasses on you cannot trace them readily direct on to your ground glasses.

This difficulty is overcome by using tracing paper, making the lines with a fine crow-quill and ink. Then you can easily trace from these copies through the ground glass. We also made some very good sets of shadow pictures by cutting out suitable sketches in paper from the comic and other illustrated journals, and mounting them between two sheets of glass. These answered admirably, and when carefully cut out, no one would believe, when thrown on the sheet, that they had not been painted.

We also made some sets of tracings on plain glass, of sketches in black and white. Of course ink would not do, as a fine line could not be drawn with it, and it was too transparent, but we found that, by using black water color, in which a drop or two of thin gum had been mixed, it was quite easy to draw upon plain glass with a fine pen, and then the solid parts could be filled in with a sable brush.

Comic sets copied from the illustrated papers were very easily made, and came out exceedingly well on the sheet and afforded great amusement. This system, and the cutting out in paper, is very simple, and of course takes much less time than the colored and varnished drawings on roughened glass.



THE AKHOOND OF SWAT.

By J. H. S.

A number of years ago there came over the cable an announcement that the Akhoond of Swat had died, and immediately there was an outburst of merriment in the newspapers. No one could tell who or what he was, many believed him to be a myth, and for a long time the Akhoond was a standing joke among paragraph writers all over the world.

But the Akhoond was a real personage and no joke, and it is only recently that we have found out what a really great man he was.

Swat itself is a considerable province of Afghanistan, bordering on India, and just southwest of the Pamirs. The Akhoond was not, however, its civil ruler. At any rate, he was not nominally so. The title Akhoond merely means "teacher," and he was, primarily, a religious teacher and nothing more.

He lived in the town of Saidu, and he reached manhood and began to teach the people more than half a century ago, when Dost Mohammed was Ameer of Cabul.

An intense fanatic and a mystic, he exerted a marvelous sway over the people of Swat, who like all the Afghan tribes, are nervous, imaginative, and given to mysticism. So he became not only their spiritual prophet, but their military leader as well.

He led the hosts of Islam against the Sikhs, in the days when Dost Mohammed planned to conquer all India, and many are the stories told of his prowess.

Nor did he fight alone against the Indians, but in 1863 he led the Afghans in their battle with the British at Umbeyla, and made himself the most feared man in all the Afghan empire.

When not busy in the wars, the Akhoond was always to be found at Saidu. From sunrise to sunset he sat in his mosque, reproving the erring, comforting the mourners, encouraging the faithful, and cursing the obstinate unbelievers.

Disputes of every sort were brought to him for settlement. Troubles of all kinds were brought to him to be made right. Hundreds of miracles were performed by him every day. The sick were made well in an instant.

A man would come, lamenting that his horse was lost, and would find it the next moment at the door of the mosque. A carpenter was bewailing that a beam was three feet too short for the needed purpose, and in a twinkling it grew to exactly the length required.

A visitor in the city wished to return speedily to his home in Constantinople, thousands of miles away. He was bade to close his eyes, and the next moment opened them in his home.

To tell the people of Swat that these things were not so, would have been equivalent to telling them that light was darkness. No wonder, then, that the Akhoond was a power in the land, and that Ameer after Ameer sought his assistance.

Shere Ali was the last. When he began his last struggle with the British, he begged the Akhoond to lead his armies as of old. But death stepped in, and the Akhoond passed into history.

Yet still his virtues abide. The mosque in which he taught is the holiest place in all Swat, and miracles are daily wrought there. The Akhoond's son does not succeed him as a teacher, but he inherits the worldly possessions of the Akhoond, and these are enough to make him the richest man in all Swat.



[This Story began in No.44.]

A PLUCKY GIRL or, "For Father's Sake."

A Story Of Prairie Land

BY CELIA PEARSE,

Author Of "Little Gothamites," "Will She Win Her Way?" "A Wise Little Woman," etc., etc.

CHAPTER XXIV.

Lottie was so vexed and indignant that, for a moment, she could neither move nor speak. Eva, too, was perplexed, and whispered into Lottie's ear:

"What does the woman want? Is she going to take our things away from us?"

Before Lottie could reply, the man who had been loitering around the barn and outside premises, came up to the door, and, with a smile meant to be ingratiating, bade them good-morning.

Lottie started at the sound of his voice. She thought she recognized it, but was not quite sure. She rose from her chair and returned the greeting.

"I'm one of your new neighbors," continued the visitor, planting himself in the doorway and resting a hand upon the frame upon either side. "The old woman an' me thought we'd come over an' git acquainted. I reckon she has told you who we air?"

Lottie listened to this speech with intent ears. Yes, the voice was the same she had heard that evening, weeks before, plotting to deprive them of their home.

She did not doubt that it was he who had persuaded Jimmy to run away; that he was the "friend" who had promised the boy work and wages and independence, and so had gotten him out of his way.

Lottie crossed the room, Eva still clinging to her hand, and, when but a few steps distant from the man in the doorway, stopped, and, looking him straight in the eye, said:

"Yes, Mr. Highton, I know who you are. Will you please tell me where my brother Jimmy is?"

Mr. Highton's hands dropped from the door-frame, and he took a step backward. A dark flush spread over his countenance; his eyes wavered and fell. But he recovered himself almost instantly, and, with a harsh, disagreeable laugh, made answer.

"Tell you where your brother Jimmy is? Why, miss, I didn't know you had a brother Jimmy. Has the young man been gittin' himself lost?"

"No, he has not been getting himself lost; but some one, pretending to be his friend, has persuaded him to leave us, promising him money and good times. And, Mr. Highton, I believe that you are the man!"

Mr. Mart Highton laughed again, more harshly and boisterously than before. Then he said, still pretending to be amused:

"I declare I didn't expect to be treated this way, or I shouldn't 'a come to see you. I'll send one o' the boys next time, an' mebbe you'll treat 'em better. You hain't so much as invited me in to take a seat!"

Lottie turned indignantly away, and, without giving the solicited invitation, retreated to the sitting-room.

Here she found Mrs. Highton, seated in the big arm-chair, looking about her with a self-satisfied air.

As Lottie and Eva entered, she exclaimed:

"Well, you an' Mart's been gittin' acquainted, I reckon. I heerd you laughin' together. He's mighty friendly, an' easy to git acquainted with. We all be, fer that matter. Some folks is so kind o' stuck up, or somethin', that it takes a month o' Sundays to git to know 'em. But the Hightons ain't that way!"

Lottie made no reply to these remarks. She was troubled and disgusted, and did not know how to get rid of her unwelcome visitors. She sank, silently, upon the couch by the window.

Mrs. Highton stopped her rocking, and turned her chair so that she could face her listeners, and resumed:

"Mart an' me's bin talkin' 'bout the way you children's situated here. Mrs. Green told me all about it, afore she went away. An' she says to me, says she, 'Them poor, motherless, orphant children hadn't orto be livin' over there by theirselves,' says she; 'but the oldest girl'—that's you, I reckon" nodding at Lottie—"'is mighty sot an' determined, an' is bound to stick to the place.'

"So Mart an' me, we've been talkin' it over, an' we concluded to come an' hev a talk with you. He says to me, says he, 'If the children want to go to their relations, we'll buy their housell stuff—fer we're a-needin' the things—an' they kin take the money an' go. But if they'd ruther stay, why, let 'em stay.'"

Mrs. Highton paused a moment, as if expecting to be thanked for this generous concession. But as Lottie made no response, she continued:

"Him an' me thought that if you was so sot to stay here, mebbe you'd be willin' to let us move in with you. His brother Ike's got a big family, an' they're about took possession of the cabin the Greens moved out of. The boys is goin' to put up shanties on their claims, but we'd like to git settled quick as we kin, for we've been livin' jest 'anyhow' long 'nough. We could all live together in one family, an' that way your livin' wouldn't cost you a cent. Mart says he'd look after things on the place, an' I'd be a kind o' mother to you. It wouldn't be near so lonesome fer you, an' it would be a 'commodation to us. Our gittin' the use o' the house an' sich like would make you square about the board-bill. Now, what do you say to our offer?"



Lottie shuddered at the idea of living in the house with these people. And, being forewarned, she was quick to see that this was a plan designed to entrap her—that the Hightons wished to get possession of the house, and a hold upon the place, so as to oust her completely; for that they would not scruple to get rid of herself and Eva, when it suited them to do so, she was well assured. Jimmy, poor, credulous boy, had already been gotten out of the way. Oh, why did not her father come?

Her heart felt as if it would burst, and for a moment she could not utter one word. But she struggled bravely for composure, and presently said, in a voice that in spite of her trembled a little:

"I cannot make any such arrangement. I hope and expect my father home soon. And he would not be pleased to find his house filled with strangers. Eva and I are getting along very well, and we have plenty to live on."

"It seems to me you orto be satisfied by this time that your father ain't never goin' to come back," replied Mrs. Highton, in a harsh voice. "It's orful silly of you to stick to that notion! An' you orto consider 'tain't fit fer you two girls to be livin' here alone. There ain't no knowin' what might happen. It would be 'nough sight better if you had somebody here to look after you. Then ag'in, you wouldn't be tied down to home like you be now. You'd hev somebody to leave the little girl with, an' could git out an' enjoy yourself like other young folks. You'd better think twice afore you say 'no' fer good an' all."

Lottie felt Eva's fingers closing tightly upon her own, the poor child was imagining herself left to the care of Mrs. Highton! She pressed the quivering little hand reassuringly and rose to her feet.

"I don't need to think any more about it. I have given you my answer," she said, firmly.

At that moment a heavy step was heard crossing the porch, and Mr. Highton, with a sneering smile upon his face, thrust his head through the open window.

"Come, old woman," he said to his wife, "you go along home an' see 'bout gittin' dinner, an' I'll settle this matter with little miss, here."

CHAPTER XXV.

The stars were growing dim, and a faint light was dawning in the east, when, at last, Jimmy Claxton's slumbers were disturbed and he opened his sleepy eyes.

There was a confusion of sounds filling his ears, a snapping and snarling and growling that frightened and bewildered him. It was several moments before he could remember where he was or why he was there, lying on the ground beneath the open sky.

But his brain cleared presently, and he sprang to his feet and looked about him. Where was his friend and companion of the previous day? Where were the horses he had himself so carefully picketed the evening before? And what was that snarling, fighting mass just visible in the dawning light but a few rods distant?

Jimmy found himself very much awake about this time, for it had flashed upon him that at least a score of prairie-wolves were there before him and that the yelping that had awakened him came from their throats.

He involuntarily opened his mouth to call out for Mr. Highton, but the thought came quickly into his mind that a sound from him might draw the attention of the pack to himself, and this restrained him.

He wondered where Mr. Highton could be, and what it was that the wolves were fighting over and feasting upon. A terrible fear took possession of him. Had the creatures killed Mr. Highton while he lay sleeping, and were they now devouring him?

He dared not venture nearer to investigate. He was afraid to move at all lest the beasts should hear him. But, after a little hesitation, he resolved to try to get away to the opposite side of the ravine and there conceal himself until the pack dispersed.

Jimmy moved cautiously away, but had not gone far when, turning to look back, he saw half a dozen of the wolves coming toward him at a gallop.

He knew that he could not outrun them, and, looking about for any possible refuge, he saw, not far away, projecting ten or fifteen feet above the surface of the ravine, the scraggy branches of a tree, which overhung the depths beneath it.

With his best speed the boy dashed forward, and, scrambling down the sides of the gorge until he reached the spot in which the tree was rooted, he began to climb up its bent and twisted trunk.

The tree was but a small one, and its upper branches were hardly strong enough to bear his weight, but he climbed upward until they swayed and bent, and threatened to snap beneath him; then, grasping the largest of them, one in each hand, and resting his feet on the best support he could find for them, Jimmy braced himself and awaited his pursuers.

They soon came up, and leaped and howled and snarled about the tree, but they could not reach their wished-for prey; and, after awhile, they seemed to realize that they were losing their share—and a slender one it must have been, or they would never have deserted it—of the feast being enjoyed by their fellows, and trotted back, to renew their fight over poor Cottontail's bones.

Jimmy breathed freer for a few minutes after their departure, but his situation was anything but comfortable or agreeable. It was a strain upon his muscles to maintain his position, and there was constant danger that the limbs he was supporting himself by would break and tumble him to the bottom of the ravine. And yet he dared not descend to the ground, because, the wolves might attack or pursue him at any moment. The day grew brighter and the sun appeared, and still Jimmy clung to his swaying, uncertain support, until it seemed to him that he must descend and give relief to his aching arms and feet.

But he knew that a race between himself and the wolves upon the open prairie would be a hopeless one for him; for, emboldened as the naturally cowardly creatures always were by numbers, they would never give up the chase until they had run him down.

Thus two long hours passed, and meantime a painful consciousness grew upon him that his usual morning meal was lacking. He thought, with longing, of the delicious, mealy, baked potatoes and corn-fritters, with their respective accompaniments of cream-gravy and fresh butter, that had probably adorned Lottie's breakfast-table, and wondered if, when released from his very unpleasant predicament, he would have strength enough remaining to enable him to make his way to the ranch, ten miles further on, according to Mr. Highton, where he could procure something to fill the "aching void" that was making him more and more uncomfortable.

At length, to his great joy, the sounds of fighting and snarling grew less and less, and although he was unable to see from his station the place where the pack had congregated, Jimmy felt sure that they had dispersed, and, wearied and cramped, he ventured to descend to the ground.

He stole cautiously out of the ravine to reconnoitre, and found his surmise correct. There was not a wolf to be seen. They had stolen away through the tall grass to their abiding-places, and the prairie showed no sign of any living creature save himself.

After waiting a short time to make sure that they were really gone, Jimmy ran forward to discover what it was that they had been feasting upon. As he neared the spot, he uttered a cry of dismay. The tall grass had hidden the object until he was within a few yards of it, but now he saw that it had been his pony. The bones were not yet picked clean, although more than half of the carcass was eaten, and Jimmy wondered, as he rushed forward, that the voracious beasts had left a morsel undevoured. But he did not wonder long; for a low, peculiar sound, seeming to rise from the earth at his very feet, startled him, and he saw, stretched upon the ground like a great cat, not six yards away, an animal the like of which he had never seen before. But he had heard of the lions which sometimes came down from the mountainous and broken country farther west, and knew that this creature must be one of them.

He understood then what had driven the wolves away, and wished himself safely back in his tree-top. The lion lashed its tail and partly rose from its position on the ground, but it subsided again as Jimmy stood stock-still, with eyes of horror fixed upon it. The probabilities are that it was satiated with food, and only wished to guard the prey it had already secured from further molestation. However that may be, it made no other movement than to lift its head and swish its tail, as if in warning, and Jimmy backed slowly away as long as he could endure the strain of moving slowly; and then, when he felt that he must run, he turned and flew over the ground with the speed of a deer until he was forced to stop from sheer exhaustion.

CHAPTER XXVI.

When Jimmy at length stopped running, he found that he had left the ravine quite out of sight. The country about him was rolling, and as the wind waved the tall grass before his eyes, it was as if he were looking upon a great gray-green sea, and the ravine doubtless lay between the billow-like swells of land that spread out in vast expanse before him.

He looked about him and became more and more bewildered. He could not determine which course he ought to take in order to reach the ranch described to him by Mr. Highton.

It never occurred to him that this great cattle ranch, where he was to get "big wages" and have "lots of fun," had no existence, save in his "friend's" imagination.

Then again he fell to wondering where Mr. Highton could be. He could not bring himself to believe that a man—a grown man—had been so frightened by the lion that he had run away and left him—a boy—to take his chances, unarmed and alone!

And yet the last he knew of Mr. Highton, he was lying near him, with his saddle and bridle beneath his head, apparently sleeping and settled for the night.

And now Jimmy recalled the fact that, when he was awakened that morning and had looked about him, there was no saddle or other accoutrements to be seen, and the natural conclusion was that Mr. Highton had ridden deliberately away. It might be that he had gone upon some exploring expedition of his own and knew nothing of the lion—that he meant to return.

But Jimmy found little comfort in these reflections, and he began to wish most heartily that he was safely back in his own comfortable home.

Then his thoughts took a different direction. He wondered what Lottie and Eva would say, if they knew of the fate which had befallen poor Cottontail, their pet and favorite! And what would Lottie think when she discovered that he had abstracted papers from his father's desk? She had always guarded the contents of the desk so jealously, that nothing should be destroyed or mislaid that had been placed there by her parents for safe keeping.

His conduct had put on a new appearance to him, all at once, and he felt miserable and ashamed. Mr. Highton had assured him that he wanted the documents only for a short time, to compare some figures and numbers, which would help him the better to locate a claim of his own, about which there was some difficulty.

But Jimmy's confidence in his whilom friend was weakening with a rapidity that made him very uncomfortable; and the longer he meditated the more certain he was that he had been fooled and that Mr. Highton had purposely deserted him.

He began to realize how much easier it is to take a wrong step than to retrace it. It seemed to him that he could never return home and tell the dismal tale of the poor pony's fate, and of his own guilt in the matter of taking those papers from his father's desk.

What then was to be done? Jimmy did not know, and his unhappy reflections became so unbearable that he could no longer rest, and he hurried on again.

The sun beat down upon him, his thirst increased and he grew faint with hunger and weariness; but he walked on and on, hoping every moment to see some sign of human habitation. But he hoped in vain; not so much as a herder's hut met his eye. On every side stretched the sea-like prairie, and no living thing was to be seen.

And so for weary hours he toiled on, distracted with thirst, sick for lack of food and growing more bewildered and disheartened with every step. At length he sank down, utterly exhausted.

It was then about four o'clock in the afternoon, and he had been walking beneath a burning sun since early morning, and had had no morsel of food or drop of water since the evening before.

He fell into a sort of stupor, and while he thus lay dark clouds began to gather, and mutterings of thunder rolled along the sky. And presently the sun was obscured and a kind of weird twilight settled down upon the prairie.

For a time the thunder ceased, the air grew thick and close, and the silence of death seemed to have fallen upon the world.

Then came a mighty roar, as if the elements were defying each other, and the rain was dashed upon the earth or swirled through the air with furious force.

The dashing of the rain upon his face aroused Jimmy, and he rose up, fighting against the wind, which threatened to take him off his feet, and, holding out his hands, he gathered enough of the down-pouring flood to appease his thirst.

Then he staggered on, buffeted by the wind and blinded by the driving rain, turning this way and that to escape the lashings of the deluge that swept over him, until his strength gave out, and he dropped to the ground more dead than alive.

At that instant he felt himself picked up and whirled through the air as if he had been a feather.

Then he knew no more until, opening his eyes, he found the sun shining upon his face and the clear, blue sky above him.

But the sun was not more than an hour high, and the thought that he must pass another night alone upon the prairie was discouraging.

His clothes were wet as they could be, and the cool wind, blowing upon him, made him tremble and shiver.

He was bruised and sore and weak, but happily his "ride upon the storm" had not resulted in serious injury. There were no broken bones to disable him.

The water he had drank had refreshed him greatly, but oh, how hunger gnawed upon him!

He sat up and looked about him in shivering despair. He found that he had been lying upon the verge of a fissure in the ground, such as are often come upon in prairie countries.

It was but a few feet deep and three or four wide at the top. He threw himself forward, face downward, and looked listlessly into this cleft in the earth, thinking that perhaps, if he had strength enough left to gather an armful or two of grass to lie upon, a bed down there, sheltered as it would be from the wind, would be more comfortable than where he then was.

But as his dull eyes roved over the bottom of the narrow chasm, they saw something that put new life and hope into his despairing heart.

A few yards from where he lay, evidently blown there by the storm that had just passed, were three or four prairie-chickens, huddled together, with drenched plumage, their lives drowned out of them.

The trench had been filled with water by the tremendous fall of rain, which had now soaked away through the fissures in its bottom, and the chickens had lodged against some unevenness of surface, as the water subsided.

Jimmy descended into the gap and quickly secured one of the birds; then he looked about for some means of cooking it. He was ravenously hungry, but could he eat raw meat?

CHAPTER XXVII.

Lottie was startled out of her self-possession by Mr. Highton's speech to his wife. She turned quickly, and stretching out an imploring hand toward her, begged her not to go.

But Mrs. Highton, with a coarse laugh, exclaimed, "Oh, you needn't be afraid. He ain't a-goin' to hurt you!" and walked out of the room.

There were a few whispered words between man and wife before the woman left the house, and while these were being said, Lottie's courage was coming back, and when Mr. Highton came in he found her seated composedly upon the lounge, with Eva nestled close to her side.

He threw himself into the arm-chair which his wife had vacated, and sat for some minutes eying Lottie from under his shaggy eye-brows, without speaking. Then he shifted in his seat, crossed one leg over the other and said, in an insinuating tone.

"You seem to hev a very poor opinion of me, miss."

Lottie made no reply to this, and he continued, more roughly:

"You think I had a hand in your brother's runnin' off. How did you come by sech an idea as that?"

"I have already told you that I know some one persuaded him to go. No one but you could have had any object in doing that," replied Lottie, steadily.

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