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BY JAS. CLARK.
TIIE WILKINSON'S BLUFFS i
A TALE OF LOVE, MURDER AND SUL
The facts 1 am about to relate are not
the less true, because they wear the air
of romance, and resemble many of the
ground works of the fictions which fan ,
ciful writers weave from their imagina
tions. Not only the incidents of my
story are familiar to the people of this
venerable town, but there are now liv
ing here, descendants of those who play
ed prominent parts in the events which
I shall relate.
At the period of my story, which was
shortly before Burr's attempt to raise
•an expedition against the Spanish pos
sessions in Mexico, this country pre
sented some of the most sublime and
romantic scenery in the world. The
valley of the Red River rivalled in rich
ness and variety of views, the famous
Vale of Avoca, and far exceeded it in
grandeur and sublimity. The dark wat
ers of the Red River meandered without
a mummer, through a country beautiful
ly diversified in hill and dale, now gent
ly stretching through brood prairies
and spreading out into broad lakes, then
gathering its waters within narrow
banks, and rushing like a torrent down
a precipice madly foaming along some
high bluff, and then boldly pushing its
onward course through a dark primeval
forest, where the sound of civilization
had not aroused the slumbering echoes,
or disturbed the wild beasts in their
lairs. Amid all this rich and beauteous
scenery, there is not a more attractive
and romantic spot on Red River titan
Wilkinson's Bluffs, near the town of
Natchitoches.—These Bluffs ascend to
an immense height from the River, and
are perfectly perpendicular. 'rhe river
moves in a quiet and steady current at
the foot of the heights, and the scenery
around is full of sombre subliutity and
On top the bluffs, and not far front
their edge, there stood, at the time of
my story, a plain and rough / but strong.
ly built house, the domicil of a French.
man of the name of Jean B. Villemont.
This Villemont was about forty years
of age, and was a man of strong passions
and terrible wrath. He had emigrated
from France a few years before f bring
ing with him his wife and a lovely daugli- .
ter, just fifteen, and freskand blooming
as a May flower. Shortly tifter his ar
rival at Natchitoches, his wife died, and
thus was the prihcipal restraint remov
ed from his passions.—At this remote
period of the settlement of Louisiana,
there existed all through the frontier
portion of the State, organized bands of
Robbers, who kept the settlements in
tontinual terror by their violence and
depredations. The individuals consti
tuting these bands, were well known to
the colonists, few of whom had the bold
ness to incur the awful revenge which
usually awaited those who informed
upon these malefactors. No settlement
:suffered more from these depredators
than Natchitoches, which at this time
was the principal trading point of the
Northwest portion of Louisiana.
A man of the evil passions and rest
less character of Villemont could not
long resist the indueeirients which were
offered to join the robbers of Red River
(who were then commanded by a cele
brated Spaniard.) He applied for ad
mission into their society, but found
much opposition from the fraternity.
The ground of this opposition Was the
'gear that the secrets of the band !night
leak out through the beautiful daughter
of Villemont, at whose shrine nil the
young colonists were accustomed to
worship. This opposition was, howev
er, so far satis fi ed, that it was agreed to
admit Villemont on condition of his
giving earnest of his valor and determi
nation by disposing of sonic of the nu
merous enemies of the band. He will
ingly accepted the condition, and took a
most horrid oath to destroy whomsoev
er the Chief might designate.
Nitrite him !' exclaimed Villemont,
grasping his knife, and grinning with
ferocious desire to prove a valor which
had been called in question—' and if he
Were my own father, brother or son,
this knife shall find his heart !'
The man you nre to kilt is Auguste
Prudhomme,' slowly and oracularly pro
flounced the grim captain of the robbers.
At the mention of tho name of Prud
homme, the Lace of Villemont grew dead
ly pale—his eyes began to wander arid
his lips to quiver.
VY hat ! do you tremble ?—do you
hesitate V exclaimed the Spaniard s with
fury flashing in his eye.
But the struggle was over. The lin.
gering humanity, the hesitation, the
doubt, had passed away from Ville
mont's face, and an expression of say.
age ferocity and determination darken
*of his countenance.
And who was Auguste Prudliomme,
and how had he rendered himself the
'AArt - ti4bon
Object of the hate and tevenge of the
Robbers of Red Riverl
Auguste Pru dhomme Wits one or the
bravest and most gallant of the young
Frenthmen who had remained in Natch
itoches after the cession of Louisiana
to the tlnitCd states. His courage;
skill in arms, coolness and sagacity,
had given him a leading position among
the colonists, and thus had he been com
pelled to take a decided part in expo
,and punishing the perpetrators of
the numerous murders and robberies,
ivhich occurred so frequently in that
neighborhood. The robbers, however,
feared as well as hated Prudhomme.
His undaunted bravery & great strength
kept them in continual awe, and eluded
many attempts which had been made to
waylay and assassinate him.
But, it was not fear that caused Vil
lemont's face to grow pale, at the idea of
destroying young Prudhomme. Amid
the desolation which evil passion had
left in the moral sentiments of Villemont,
there grew a single flower of humanity,
a single virtue, linked to a thousand
vices. It was love of his daughter—his
gentle, beautiful Eugenie—the only me
mento of affection of her whose virtues,
whilst she lived, held in restraint the
savage inclinations of the passionate
husband. Eugenie had long been the
belle, the adored of the young men of
Natchitoches. Among others who had
yielded to her charms, was the
and handsome Prudhomme. A warm
and mutual affection soon grew up be
tween them, and they became affianced
Rarely did a day pass over that the
lovers did not meet in Villemont's little
hut, near the bluffs, and spend the swift
flying hours in delightful interchanges
of vows and pleasant dalliance of love.
The absence of the father, who was sel
dom at home, afforded the lovers fre
quent opportunities for these delicious
interviews. Villemont, however, *as
not ignorant of the attachment of Prod
homme to his daughter, nor could he be
considered as entirely insensible to her
happiness.—But his passions, his misan
thropic hate of the world, and brutal
selfishness, prevailed over all the natur
al feelings of the father,nnd he cheerfully
prepared to execute the command of his
chief. Two of the boldest of the robbers
volutite'ered to accompany bid.
It was 12 o'clock at night. The two
lovers were sitting together in the little
parlor of Villemont. The night was mild,
and the windows were up. Presently,
Francois arose, and was preparing to
take leave of Eugenie, when, looking
out of the window, he perceived three
persons creeping stealthily along the
edge of the woods in the direction of
V illemontes hut. Accustomed to' danger
to constant exposure, and ambuscades,
Prudhomme's suspicions were aroused;
and shaddirig hiinself With a slight cur
tain, which hung by the window, he
watched the movements of the suspici
ons individuals. He observed that they
came to a stand, and seemed to be hold
ing a consultation. By their gestures,
they plainly indicated that their pur
poses had reference to some individual
in the hut. 'We are in danger, my be
loved,' remarked Pruclhomme, turning
to his beautiful betrothed, 'we must pre
pare for it?
Eugenie, as heroic as she was lovely,
rushed towards the mantel-piece, and
took from it a rifle, Prudhotnme drew
his sword, and thus the loVers prepared
to make a gallant defence. They had
scarcely prepared for the enc6unter,
when there was a knock at the door.
No answer was given. Another, and
and still there was no
response. 'Then there was a pause Of
nearly a minute, which was followed by
blows of a battering-ram against the
door. This force prevailed and soon the
door was broken through, and three sav
age men came rushing into the room.
Awed by the heroic attitude of Prudhoin
me and Eugenie, the ruffians stopped,
and seemed to hesitate for a moment.
Soon, however, one of them sprang for
ward, nearly on the point of Prudhom
rifer's sWord, and in a voice of passion
'How came you here- , --how dare you
violate the sanctity of my housel"
was Villemont.—Though disguised in
robber's garb, Eugenie did not fail to
recognize her only parent—her father.
Her heart sunk, her lovely frame trem
bled, and but for the left arm of her
lover, which encircled her Waist, she
would have fallen to the floor. —Quickly,
however, was she aroused, when per
ceiving one of the robbers aiming a
pistol at Prudhomme, she raised the rifle
and shot him dead. Almost at the same
moment she was struck down, by her
father. Prudhomme stooped to raise
her prostrate form, when Valmont and
the other robber rushed upon him and
levelled him with the floor, by blot's of
HUNTINGDON, PA., TUESDAY, FEBRUARY ,12 1850.
Seizing the insensible form of his
daughter, Villemont directed the other
robber to take that of Prudhomme, and
thus theydragged the lovers to the edge
of the bluff, a few yards from the house.
Casting a glance down , the: fearful des
cent, Villeinont threw his eyes towards
the sky with a hellish laugh, ie if defy
ing the vengeance of Heaven, and gave
the body of his daughter a push down
the awful abyss, Quickly the robber
followed the example and threw the
body of I'rudhorritne over the bluff: The
father cast a look down the fearful preci
pice. The white figure of his daughter
was discernable in the Waters below, and
her arm appeared to wave him towards
her. It was then the pang of remorse,
the gleam of conscience flitted across
the — dark soul of the murderer—the
weakness of humanity came over him;
darkness seemed to close around him.
Casting an imploring look to Heaven,
with a terrific scream he rushed to the
edge and leaped down the precipice.
Several days afterwards, three bodies
were taken out of the river at Clouter
ville, 30 miles below the bluffs. They
proved to be those of the murderer and
suicide, and his innocent victims. They
were buried in the same grave, in the
cemetery of this little village.
As for the robber companion of Ville
mont, he led a life of bloodshed, violence
and drunkenness for a few years, until
one day he was mortally wounded in it
drunken broil. On his deathbed he con
fessed his participation in the terrible
scene we have attempted to describe and
furnished the facts upon which this
"o'er true tale' is founded,—A, 0. Delta.
Love of Children.
Great men-- msn of distinction in civ
il po:icy, in literature, or in military art
usually exhibit a remarkable love of
whildren. DANIEL WEBSTER is said to
frequently delight himself by the inn°•
cent prattle of little boys and girIs—PAT
RICE HENRY, we arc told, was in the, hab-
it of spending most of his leisure hours
in the cociety of the young of his own
household—and the celebrated Sir THOM
AS FOWELL BUXTON, of England, history
informs us, displayed a foundness for
children, amounting to an absolute pas
sion. We haie been much interested
in a biographical notice of him, in which
this beautiful trait of character is elo
quently portrayed, and the eminent vir
tues of the man made to shine with
greater lustre by reason of that dispo
sition of heart which caused him to "de
light in children, and they with their
instinctive perception' of those that like
them, to delight in him." The follow
ing extract is in
( point, and will, we are
suite sure, strike a responsive chord itr
the bosom of every reader :
"He was lying one day and very fa
tigued and tired, on a sofa ; one of his
sons was lying on another; their eyes
where alike just opened, though each
supposed the other to be asleep. Pres
ently, the great, giant-like man—the
man that swayed the Senate, Was look
ed up to by thousands as a leader, and
who seemed born for authority audcom
mand—slowly and quietly rose up from
his position—trod softly and stealthily
across the room—placed a chair—lifted
the feet of the young sleeper and as they
seemed to be hanging uneasily from the
sofa, laid them gently on the chair, and
then crept back again as carefully as he
had gone, and lay down to his own re
pose ! All had been seen; though he
thought not so. It would never have
been mentioned—it might not have been
remembered by him—had it been a thing
known only to the father. It was the
irresistible impulse, the gushing out of
irrepressible affection. I dare say he
turned from the lad with a glow on his
heart and a prayer on his tongue ; a
prayer whose answer he had already,
though unconsciously, secured ; for the
impression of that act on the heart of
the son must haVe given such sacredness
to the wishes of the father as could not
fail, Y should think, to have done more
for the youth's virtues than any mere .
perceptive teachings could have secu
FIFTY GIRLS MARRIED IN ONE HOUSE
—There have been ten operatives mar
ried every yeat from a single boarding
house in this city during the last five
years! The matrimonial thermometer
always runs up to ten, in hot or cold
weather, and makes that the sticking
point. One would suppose it would be
an object for many single young ladies
to become inmates of a house so prolific
in double-blessedness.—Lowell Courier.
tn -- .• A New York letter of SatUrday evening,
published in the Philadelphia American, says—
about 120 officers of various grades have been
discharged from the Custom House to-day. in
order to meet the reduced expenses for collect
ing the revenue.
Many years ago, there lived in Wes
tern Pennsylvania, General---, a rev
olutionary worthy, who hitd done the
State some service. He united with the
courage and chivalry of the soldier, an
ittipctuous and positive tettper which
brooked 110 contradiction of his \word, or
disobedience of his orders. Ploughing
one day on his farm, one of his horses
became restive and unmanageable where
upon the testy Cincinnatus struck him
so violently on the head that the animal
fell lifeless at his feet. On seeing a fa
vorite steed, lately full of life and spirit,
stretched on the ground, his rage was
changed to regret and self reproach ;
but knowing nothing better to be done he
disengaged the harness and went to the
house. He Pent for a fellow who did
jobs nbout the neighborhood, to go into
the field where he would find the horse,
and skin him forthwith and take his hide
to the tanners.
4 ' What! Old Roney dead inquired the
"Dead or alive, what's that your bus
iness?" exclaimed the General, with
characteristic violence; "go do as I bid
you, and never ask me questions."
The man accordingly went to his busi
ness, and after a considerable time re
turned for his pay.
" Well, Jake, what do you ask'!"
" Why, only '75 cents, General."
" Seventy-five d-Is ! not pay
But stop a bit, General s it isn't much
considering all the trouble. 1 don't ax
for the skinning alone, but then such a
work as I had to catch—"
"Fire and furies!—catch him—was
"Aye, General, alive and kicking;
and a pretty hot chass 1 had to give him
'round the field, before I got a chance to
knock him down."
" What ! you infernal scoundrel, did
you kill him V' exclaimed the veteran
bursting with rage.':'
Yes, Air you know 1 could not skin
"You diabolical villain, I'll kill you!"
• "Oh ! don't General, don't," pried
Jake, awing a retreat ; "there ' s nog
law as far as I know, against killing your
horse, though it mought be murder if you
kill me. Besides, you know, I always
obey military orders."
A Judicial Anecdote.
Pedro, I, eighth king of Portugal, was
remarkable for his steady and impartial
administration of justice; of which the
following is a remarkable instance:
"An ecclesiastic, in a high fit of pas
sion, killed a mason, whom he had em
ployed, for not executing something
agreeable to his mind.—The king dis
sembled the knowledge of the crime and
left it to the cognizance of the proper
courts, where the issue of the business
was, that the priest was suspended from
saying mass for a year. At this punish
ment the family of the deceased were
"The king Caused it to be hinted to
the mason's son that he should kill the
preist, which he did; and having fallen
into the hands of just ice,he was condemn
,ed to suffer death; but as no capital
punishment could be executed without
the king's consent, this was laid before
him among the rest; upon which he ask
ed what was the young man's trade ! It
was answered that he followed his
father's trade; then said the king I shall
'commute this punishment by restraining
him from meddling with stone or mortar
for a twelve-month. But after this he
punished capital crimes in the clergy
with death; and When they desired that
his majesty would be pleased to icier
their case to a superior tribunal, he an
swe'red, very calmly, that is what I mean
to do; for 1 send them to the highest of
all tribunals, to that of their Melrer and
PREDESTINATION.—"DO you belieie in
predestination 1" said a captain of a
Mississippi steamer to a clergyman,
who happened to be traveling with him.
" Of course 1 do."
" And you also believe that what is to
be, will be 1"
" Well, I'm glad to beer it!"
"Because, I intend to pass that boat
ahead in fifteen consecutive minutes, if
there be any virtue in pine knots and
loaded safety valves. So don't be Mann.
ed, for if the biters aint to burst, they
Here the divine began putting on his
hat, and looked very much like back
ing out which the captain observing he
" thought you said you brheved in
predestination, and what is to be will
4 , So 1 do, but I prefer being a little
nearer the stern when it takes place."
A CLUNGSE ADVERTISEMENT.—The fol
lowing advertisement is copied from
"Adieu Tea Chin Chin, Sculptot, res.
pectfully acquaints masters of ships tra
ding from Canton to India, that they may
be furnished with figure-heads, of any
size, according to order, at one-fourth
the price charged in Europe. He also
recommends ; for private venturd,•the fol
lowing idols, brass, gold and silver :
"The hawk of Vishmoo, which has re
liefs of his incarnation ; in a fish, boar,
lion and turtle.
"An Egyptian Apis, a golden calf and
bull as worshipped by the pious follow
ers of Zoroaster.
"Two silver mammosits, with gold
ear-rings, a ram, an alligator, a crab, a
laughing hyena, with a variety of house
hold gods, on a small scale, calculated
for family worship. Eighteen months
credit will be given, or a discount of
fifteen per cent, for payment of the sum
allied to the article. Direct China street,
Canton, under the marble rhinoceros,
and gilt hydra."
AN UGLY EDlTOR.—Prentice, of the
Louisville Journal, whose supremacy as
the ugliest specimen of nature's handi
work extant, we believe is indisputable,
seems desirous of dividing his empire
with his neighbor of the Democrat,
whose claims to a share in the honors,
he thus advances:
"We went to the menagerie, on Satur
day, and after a - while observed a aenoral
rush of all the little boys and girls to
wards a certain point near the entrance.
At first we did not know what to make
of it, but we soon found that the little
folks were gathering around our neigh:
bar of the Democrat under the inpres
sloe that lie was an Ourang Outang. It
was amusing to listen to their questions
and remarks. "Which part of him is
his facel" 7 . said one. "Isn't the ugly
thing Making mouths at usl" said a
second. "What did they cut bin tail
ofT forl" said a third. "I wonder why
such a nasty beast was created?" said a
fourth. "He never was created at Mi—
lle was only guessed at," said a fifth:"
JOHN RAxiinro.—lt was readiness
which made John Randolph sn terrible
in retort. He was the Thersites of con
gress, a tongue stabber. No hyperbole
of contempts or scorn could be launched
at him, but he could overtop it with
something more scornful and contemptu
ous. Opposition only maddened him
into more brilliant bitterness. "Isn't it
a shame, Mr. President," said he one
day in the Senate, "that the noble bull
dogs of the Administration should be
I wasting their time in worrying the rats
of the Opposition." Immediately the
Senate was in an uproar, and he was
clamorously called to order. The presid
ing officer, however, sustained him, and
pointing his long skinny finger at hrs
opponents,Randolph screamed out,
"Rats, did sayl—mice, mice!"—Whz:p
A SCENE IN COURT.—‘ 1 call upon you,'
said the counsellor, .to state distinctly
upon what authority you are prepared
to swear to the mare's agel'—' Upon
what authority V said the ostler inter
ogntively. 'You tire to reply, and not
repeat the question put to you.' .1
does'nt consider a man's bound to ans.
wer a question afore lie's had time to
turn it in his mind.' Nothing can be
more simple, sir, than the question gut.
I again repeat It. Upon what authority
do you swear to the animal's age V 'The
best authority,' responded the witness
gruffly. Then why such evasion 1
Why not state it at oneel"Well then
if you must have it—' 'Must ! I must
and Will have it,' vociferated the coun
sellor, interrupting the witness. 'Well
theng you must and will have it,' rejoin
ed the ostler with imperturable gravity,
'why then, I had it from the mare's own
mouth.' A simultaneous burst of laugh.
ter rang through the court.
WHO IS lllT.—What can the Portland
Transcript mean by instituting such in
quiries as the following. Isn't this a free
countryl—“What is pleasenter or more
perfectly agreeable than to see a friend
who owes a little bill, which he never
has money to pay, going aft on expen
sive excursions, rides, to parties of
pleasure, or to places of amusement. It's
n satisfaction to know that they have
the means of enjoying therriselfes, even
though you don't yourself. Whould it
not be a good idea for our legislature to
exempt two thirds of every mans in
come for this purposel
D`TERairre.--In London t there are
12,000 children regularly under training
to crime, 30,000 thieves, 6000 receivers
of stolen goods, 23,000 persons picked
up in a state of drunkenness, 50,000 ha.
bitual gin drinkers, and 150,000 of both
sexes leading an abandoi.ed life.
VOL. XV, NO. 7•
Be Careful how your Speak.
Hush!—why should you speak against
the character of a female? It is all she
has to depend upon in this world. Jost
give the impression wings that she is
not so '
' , nod es she should be, and it will
fly to every nook and corner of the town.
The story you Whisper will return in
tones of thunder, to astonish even your
self, who was the first guilty wretch to
repeat so base a story.- A word has of
ten proved the ruin of a virtuous soul
a word thoughtlessly spoken, it may be,
but reported by an mind. Suppress
any thought, which, if uttered, might
injure the character or feelings of alt.
other. A thought 'may be stifled at its
birth, but a word spoken may nevei• be
lost. Weigh everything you utter •so
that none may misconstrue your fan ,
gunge or receive a wrong impression.--
Above all, never,
even in jest, whisper
words, which if true, would throw a
blight upon a spotless reputation.
IN THE MINES.—The Pottsville
Emporium of yesterday says:
On Monday morning last, Mr. Jamey
Begley and his brother, with one other
miner, went to work as usual in the
North America Mines, near this borough
and had been but a short time in' the
mines when the two biothers were suf
focated by black damp, and fell. Their
companion made his escape and gave
the alarm, when measures were immedi
ately taken to rescue the Begleys, but
when reached, some teten hours after,
were both dead I' Jame,: Begley leaVe3
a young wife, his brother was single.
THE FRESENT YEAR.-A Garden
notspaper has recently published a
prophecy by a Benedictine Monk, who
died in 1847, the purport of which is
that the present year, isul, will be one
of unusual prosperity. The different
sects of Christianity will in that year
accord. The Sultan will be poisoned,
and his empire will become christian.
Russia will suffer much from a warlike
nation in the east. A Otritai . prince
will fmind an eastern empire. Grain,
fruit, lentils and other vegitables, will
be so plentiful that the barns will be
unable to contain them.—The disease
of the sweet pntatoe will every where
cease, and old men will not remember
such a year of fruitfulness. The wine
of this year will surpass that of the
year of the comet.
NE WSPAPETS.—The reading of a good
and well conducted newspaper, even for
the short space of one quarter of a year;
brings more sound instruction, and
leaves a deeper impression, than would
be acquired, probably, in the best schools
in twelve months. Talk to the mem,
bers of a family who read the piper::;
and compare their information and in.
teligence with those who do not. The
difference is beyond comparison . .—lrisla
o c i- Virtue is the queen of labor
opinion the mistress of fools; vanity the
pride of nature ; and contention the
overthrow of families.
Beauty eventually deserts its posses.;
sor ; but virtue and taleintd accompany
him to the graire.
A year of pleasure passes like a float.
ing breeze; but a moment of misfortune
seems en ctige of paid.
Love labour; if yod do not want it
for food you may for physic.
If a man spends five dollars foolishly
and ddy tt+hdt ought he to gain the next/
Ca- A Yankee has invented a new
kind of ink, called 'the love letter ink,'
which is a sure safeguard against ac
tions fur breach of promise of marriage;
as the ink fades away and leaves tlra
sheet blank in about four weeks after
the letter has been written.
D- I hope you will be able to sup
port me," said a young lady while wa•lk
ing out one evening with her intended,
during a somewhat slippery state °rift's
Why yes,' said the somewhat hesi
tating swain, ' with n little assistance
from your father.' There was some
confusion, and a profound silenCe.
Father what dots the Printer
live on V
4 - Why child 1'
Because you said you hakl'nt paid
him for four years and you still take the
6 Wife, spank that and.'
SAV, PETE, some Whig stole
half my pig last night."
" How do you know it was a Whig ;
"Because; if it had been a loco he'd
have taken the whole of it,"
We left then.
[l:7- i won't cover your heel, ILH be
darned if I do,' as the rugged stocking
said to the novel reading young lady.