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VOL. XIV. IvTEW BLOOMFIELD, TUESDAY, JUNE 22, 1880. NO. 20.
An Independent Family Newspaper,
18 PCBLIBflSD IVBRYTUBSDAT BT
F. MORTIMER & CO.
INVARIABLY IN ADVANCE.
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Taking a Second Thought.
THERE comes a time In some men's
lives, when they uiU9t make a deci
sion with regard to the arrangements of
their property, even while they live,
because age has come upon them, almost
like a thief In the night ; and their
limbs have become stiffened, and refuse
to do the work which In their youth
was pleasant. Even to think of bodily
toll wearies them. Perhaps their Angers
are not so stiff but that they can milk
two or three cows, but their knees are
not supple enough to bend easily to the
level of the milking stool. They cau
sit in the barn and husk corn, on a
pleasant autumn morning, and can feed
the stock, and even work the hay cutter;
they must do some few "chores," or
they cannot feel contented, as they
were not born or educated to be drones
In the great bee-hive of the world. At
four-years of oge, wee toddling babies as
they were, they delighted to follow in
their father's foot-steps, and pick up
potatoes, and throw the seed into the
furrows, and to feel that they worked
and " helped father." But all this is
changed now, and morning and evening
they loiter by the fireside, dreading to
rise from the old arm chair, and go out
to see what John or Patrick is doing In
the barn or wood bouse, and give orders
, for the day's work.
Perhaps my old friend Mr. Lamson's
experience will point the moral I desire
to enforce. He outlived his wife and
daughters, and his son brought his wife
and family to fill their places and make
the old man comfortable. He reached
the age when the grasshopper became a
burden, and his heart was no longer
engrossed with buying and selling and
making the farm productive. Ho ar
rangements were made whereby the
eon should feel well paid for his labors,
but the father should hold the reins,
even If he did not drive, and do what
work he pleased. For two years this
plan worked well, and they seemed a
united, happy family ; " grandpa" was
well cared for and respected by all, and
could go wherever he pleased. Almost
daily he took a drive to the village and
visited the store, whose owner was his
friend and adviser. But one day he
came down earlier than usual and asked
to see Mr. Monroe in private, and told
him he was on his way to the lawyer's
office to convey his farm to his son.
Mr. Monroe shook his head slowly at
this information and said : " Don't do
it I Hold the reins and let Jim drive.
Human nature Is too weak, to trust.
Don't tempt Jim."
" Tempt him I what do you mean? I
give blm the farm and he boards me,
and gives me $25 every three months,
and I give him the stock and farming
tools and a thousand dollars in bank
stock. See, here's the agreement all
written down, can't be no mistake, and
I needn't worry about the crops, the
stock or anything, but sit 'by the fire
and doze and read the newspapers and
see how the politicians fight, and drive
down the bill and see you every day."
Mr. Monroe read the agreement In
his slow quiet way. " Hum. Nothing
about a horse to drive here. When the
old mare isn't yours, how'll you come
down the hill ? You can't foot It very
"Foot It!" cried Mr. Lamsom, "Land
o' QoBhens ! Who's a going to foot it 1
Haven't 1 got the old mare and that fine
team besides, and three as likely colts
aa this country ever saw ? What are
you thinking about?"
None on 'em yours after you have
'signed that deed," said bis friend. " My
advice is, hold on to your farm till
you're dead. I've been In this town
over thirty years j I've seen such cases
But Mr. Lainson had a strong leaven
of obstinacy In his composition, and
the more his friend urged hlin not to
convey the farm, the more he was
bound to do it.
Bo the lawyer's office waB visited, and
the deed made out, but as the son was
not there, he concluded to carry it home
to have it signed, and asked two neigh
bors to witness It. When he returned
home, the deed was shown to him and
wife, and the eldest boy, and they all
rejoiced at last "grandpa" had been
made to do what was for the good of the
whole family. At night, Jim laid his
plans for the next spring's work, intend
ing to make radical changes in every
thing, while his wife planned a famous
dairy, and laid schemes which equaled
those of the milkmaid of story-book
Next day the winds blew loud and
shrill, and the snow fell ceaselessly, so
that the neighbors could not be sum
moned and the deed signed. But Jim
and his wife cared not for the wind or
storm, and discussed their new plans
before the old man until his few white
hairs almost stood on end at the changes
that were to be made. The pine grove
near the house, which sheltered it from
the north wind, must come down, Jim
said" it ought to have been cut long
ago, father, and plowed up for potatoes.
I shall have the trees felled at once.
And the back lot must be drained and
sowed to corn. I shall make the farm
produce twice as much as you did, but
to do this I must keep twice as much
stock, and Eliza thinks she would like
a large dairy ; and perhaps you wouldn't
mind going up stairs to sleep, and let
us have a milk-room made out of your
bed-room. In summertime you wouldn't
mind it, and in winter we'll fix you
The father made no reply, but he
thought of Mr. Monroe's advice ; and
while he seemed to doze, he was think
ing of his wife and little children, and
of the pine grove he had seen grow up
to tall, stately trees, from tiny seedlings
and of the associations that made the
old bed-room, with its quaint chest of
drawers, its curtained bedstead and old
table and chairs and desk, so dear to
him. Another day passed, and still the
storm raged ; the plans for changes were
continued, and the old man was made to
feel that not a foot of the land belonged
to him, and hardly the chair he sat In.
Not that Jim and Eliza were unkind
to him, or the children disrespectful,
but the very atmosphere of the place
seemed changed to him, and he went to
bed at least an hour earlier than usual.
Jim said to Eliza : " Father don't seem
as chirp as usual ; hope he hasn't taken
cold. But he is an old man and it can't
be expected that he'll last much longer.
I saw him looking at mother's and
sister Mary's pictures this afternoon.
He'll join 'em soon."
And the good wife looked as if she
would say "Amen I" but like a wise
woman she kept silence, answering
only by an affirmative nod.
On the third day, however, the sun
shone out bright and clear, and the
snow had fallen in just sufficient quanti
ties to make good sleighing. Jim was
early astir and the paths all broken out
and arrangements made for cutting the
pine woods that day, and the household
were jubilant over the return of sun
shine. But " grandpa" sat silent in his
arm-chair and thought: "Shall I let
things remain as they are? Shall I
give up my bed-room, let my woods
my pride be cut down ? Yes, yes, I
am an old man, I shall soon go. I'd
better let the young ones have their
way, even to giving up my dear old
bed room. Only a little while shall I
remain ; give me peace while I do."
Dinner came In good season, and then
Mr. Lamson thought It would do him
good to take a sleigh ride to the store
and see bis old friend. So he walked
out to the barn where Patrick was
feeding the cattle, and told him to har
ness the old mare.
"Mr. Jim just told me to harness her
for him ; he and his wife are going to
the corner," said Patrick. ;
" Well, let Jim take Dick or;Tom. I
want my old mare, and you bring her
round," said the old man as he turned
away and went to his bed room to put
on Ids outer garments. As lie struggled
into his coat he heard Patrick bring up
the sleigh, and tell Jim what he had
said about going to the store.
"Hey I what's that?" asked Jim,
" wanted to go to the store? Well, he'll
have to wait till another afternoon.
Come along, Elba; bring the children;
tumble in there, Jlmmle. I guess
'grandpa' will wait this time. He
drives altogether too much for IiIb
health, any way."
And away they went, leaving the old
man a prey to dlHturblng thoughts.
Could it be that Ills son Jim could treat
him like that?
For an hour or two he sat In silent
thought; then took up the newspaper
to entertain himself. But it had lost Its
power, lie could not read, and was at
last, forced to go to the barn and look at
the stock, and talk to Patrick, who was
very ready to tell him of all the work
that had been already laid out for the
coming spring. Mr. Lamson heard
him in silence and asked no questions,
for his heart was weary with heaviness,
and he could not rouse himself to take
any Interest in the conversation, and
soon returned to the house.
Before the family returned, however,
he had determined upon the course he
would take. Jim had commenced al
together too strong, and had evidently
forgotten that the deed was unsigned.
In truth it would have been signed and
recorded at once if Mr. Monroe had not
urged him so strongly to keep the reins
in ills own hands. - Although over
eighty years of age, he was shrewd and
thoughtful still, and he felt that a little
trial of the change would not come
amiss. He would have seen the pine
trees cut down without a murmur, and
perhaps have given up his bed-room for
the good of the farm ; but when his old
Maggie that he had driven for fifteen
years was taken from him in such a
heartless manner, he rebelled, and had
now come to the conclusion that he
would destroy the deed, but In order to
do it without the appearance of anger,
he must sleep upon it.
When the sleigh bells announced
Jim's return, the old man lifted his
head looked out of the window, and
Baw the family enter the door without
moving from the chair; and seemed
quietly asleep until tea was ready.
Then Jim told the news that he had
learned at the store, and Eliza told what
her sister said about the dairy she had
planned, and that Jim bad been looking
at some cows to add to his stock and so
on. The old man made no reply, but
Jim did not notice It, so greatly was he
interested in his own affairs.
After they were alone at uight, Eliza
"Jim, did you notice grandpa at the
table ? He did not speak one word
not even to the baby. My mind mis
gives me about him. He looks as if he
might have a shock any moment. We
ought not to have taken Maggie this
afternoon. Something will come of it;
I feel sure it is not all right. You
know that deed Is neither signed nor
Then Jim had a thorn planted in his
pillow for the night, but he replied with
a man's disdain of woman's wisdom.
"No, I didn't notice him. You are
always on the lookout for something
ahead. If he is in danger of a shock,
he mustn't go driving round the country
alone. Then, the mare's mine anyway
and he knows It too. When I go to the
store he can go along."
The hours as they were tolled off upon
the old, tall clock that night, crept very
slowly, to both father and son. Little
sleep closed their eyelids, Jim being
thoroughly awakened to the fact that
as yet the farm was not his, 'and that he
ought to have attended to that needful
business before be drove to the "corner"
to tell his friends of the plana he had
made for its tillage.
When Jim came down stairs next
morning his father had Just kindled a
fire in the sitting room stove, and as
soon as the fire blazed in the kitchen he
called to him to come in. Jim came at
once, and seeing a folded paper in the
old man's hand, he said :
" What'a that, father ? , Have you had
the deed executed ?"
" No," replied Mr. Lamson, " nor do
I intend to do so." The same moment
he stooped down, and thrust the folded
paper into the brightest flame, which
shriveled it to ashes.
"There It goes," he continued, "and
our bargain will remain as it was, or
you may make other arrangements.
While I live I Intend to hold the reins,
and drive when I please. When I am
gone I hope you will do the same.
Don't tempt little Jlmmle as I have
tempted you. It was wrong, all wrong ;
human nature is very weak, and the old
must go to the wall if the young so will
it. The Lord forgive us all. But shake
hands and be friends, Jim. I'll give
you some more cows ; Eliza shall have
the dairy, but not In my dear old room.
The back lot shall be dralued, but the
pine trees must stand."
Jim gave him his hand, or rather the
old man took it, and pressed it warmly ;
but he seemed like one dazed. The furm
not his! The deed burned! Could it
Before he was fully awake to the situ
ation Eliza came in, and the father told
her of the destruction of the deed and
his reasons for doing it. Already she
knew that something was amiss, so the
blow was not so crushing in Its effeots
upon her, and she walked up to Mr.
Lainson and kinged him on the cheek
and said: "Of course, dear father, you
will do as you please in the matter,"
and left the room to prepare the break
fast. Then Jim repeated her words parrot-like,
and went to the barn to chew
the cud of remorse.
Mr. Lamson lived five years longer,
then died of an apopletlo shock, as his
daughter-in-law had predicted. But he
never had occasion to regret that be
burned the deed. His heart softened
more and more to his children, and he
only held the reins, allowing them to
manage the affairs of the farm and
dairy as they pleased but when he
pleased he could be the master.
B03S FOR FIVE MINUTES.
THE other day a mild looking tramp
called at the door of a resident and
" Sir, I am a tramp."
" Yes, I see you are."
" But I am not here to ask for either
food, money or clothing. I have just
had a bite, my clothes are good enough,
and, if I had money, I should doubtless
get inebriated and sent up."
"Well, what do you want?"
" There are four tramps down street
and I know they'll call here. It is five
years since I began traveling around. I
suppose I've been called a loafer and a
dead beat and a thief ten thousand times
and I've been shot at, clubbed, broomed
and scalded times without record. Now
I want to change."
" Well, all I ask is that you'll let me
represent your house when those tramps
This was agreed to. He sat down on
the steps, removed bis hat, lighted the
stub of his cigar and was reading a cir
cular when the four chaps slouched up
and entered the yard.
" What in Arkansas do you fellows
want in my yard ?" exclaimed the
tramp as he rose up.
" Suthin' to eat," was the meek and
" Something to eat ! Why, you mis
erable, thick-ribbed cadavers, go and
earn it, then. Do you suppose I have
nothing to do but keep a free hotel for
" Can't get no work," mumbled the
bigest of the lot.
" Oh, you can't ? Been looking all
over the country I s'pose. People got
all the help they want eh ? Want to be
cashieri and confidential advisers, don't
"Nobody don't give us a show," said
the third man.
" That's it I That's your cue I No
one will take you in with your old rags
and dirt and sore heels, and weep over
you, and ask you to please be good, and
put you in the parlor bedroom and feed
you on chicken broth ! How awful it is
that you can't be put on ice and laid
away where you won't melt!"
"Willyer give us Buthin'?" impu
dently demanded the fourth.
" Will I ? You're Just right, I will.
I'll give you five seconds to get outside
of that gate, and I'll tell you in addition
that if I ever see you in this neighbor
hood again, I'll tie you Into hard knots
and hire a sore-eyed dog tbK you to
ueatn. Oit up and git I Move on hurry
out with you 1"
They shuffled out as fast as they could
and when they had turned the corner,
the tramp nut on his hat. nut oat his
Inch of elgar for another smoke, and
said to the gentleman :
" You have done me a great favor,and
I am grateful. I already feel better for
the change, and I do solemnly believe if
I could only have got an excuse to
throw 'em over the fence. 1 should hava
been almost ready to reform and start
out as a lecturer. Oood-ay. I shall nev
er forget your klndneBS."
He had been boss for live minutes.
Saved by Hit, Skates.
AN old Lake Superior trapper named
Thomas Judson, was once suddenly
surrounded by a band of fierce Indiana
from whom he expected no good. While
making free with his outfit, they found
a pair of skates among his other trap
pings, and were immensely puzzled at
them. A funny thought occurred to
the hunter as he saw their curiosity, for
his gray eye twinkled merrily.
" Ice moccasin," he said, putting a
skate on his foot and then made gliding
motion that the feet take in skating.
"Ugh !" grunted the Indian chief,
pointing to the narrow blade of the
skates and shaking his head. As they
were near the Ice, Thomas proposed to
fasten them on a young brave for trial.
The Indians welcomed the plan with
glee, for, though savages they were great
lovers of sport. Selecting the bravest
and swiftest young fellow, the chief bade
him stick out his feet, which he did
rather suspiciously. The skates were
soon strapped on, and the young buck
helped to his feet. The ice waa like
glass, and as he started to move, you
know what followed. His feet flew out
from under him and down he came with
a crack. Such shouts of laughter as the
rest set up ! The young fellow was grit,
ty, and scrambled up to try it again, but
with the same result. -
The chief now signaled the hunter to
show them how these things worked.
Thomas fastened on the skates with
great care, picked up his rifle and used
it as a cane, pretending to support him
self. He moved awkwardly, fell down,
got up and stumbled a round, the Indiana
all the time laughing and capering at
the sport. Gradually Thomas stumbled
a little further away, whirling about and
making believe it was very hard work
to keep his balance until he was near
the point where the smooth lake ice
stretched miles and miles away. Sud
denly gathering himself up, he grasped
his rifle firmly, gave a warwhoop aa
wild as the Indian's own, and dashed
up the lake like an arrow, skating as ho
had never skated before. If he had dis
appeared in the air, the Indians couldn't
have been more astonished. Of course
they couldn't hope to catch him, over
the glassy ice, and they stood gaping
after him, wondering more and more at
the magic " ice moccasins."
Nothing pleased old Thomas better In
after years than to tell how be had .
" fooled the redskins."
Bidding for a Church Pew.
A case of excessive caution developed
some serious results the other day in
Hartford in the purchase of a church
pew. The auction was fixed for a cer
tain day, but one of the prominent gen
tlemen of the church who for some
yeara past has paid $50 each year for his
pew, waa unable to attend. Ue request
ed a friend to bid for him. Later he
met another friend, and accidentally
mentioned that he would not be able to
attend the auction, asked his friend also
to see to it that be bad his old pew as
heretofore. The auction took place, and
the pew was put up. 'Fifty dollars,"
said friend number one. Fifty-one,"
said number two. " Fifty-three," " Fifty-four,"
and on till there had been
thirty-eight bids, when one friend, think
ing he had gone aa far aa discretion
permitted, stopped ; and the other took it
triumphantly at $38. " Put it down for
Dr. ," he said, and the astonishment
of the other bidder knew no bounds.
They bad been bidding against each
other in behalf of the same gentleman,
who had forgotten to tell number two
that he had also spoken to number one.
It helps the receipts so much.