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" ' ' ' ' : ' .' .. '11' V ,; " . t"J
NEW 13LOOMFIELD, TUESDAY, BEPTEMBER 20, 1881.
l " J Uk - T & f u l I L' 1 I 1 1 1 It J Lf J I I - I
An Independent family Newspaper,
IB PUBLtSHIDlVBRT TUB8DAT BT
h MORTIMER & CO.
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fl.50 PEB YI3AU, POSTAGE Fit EE.
so ci s. roit months.
To sutaorlbors residing In this county, whore
we have no piMtn(n to pay. ft illseniiHt of 25 cents
from Mm above terms will be made l( payment Is
made In advance.
W Advertising rates furnished upon applies
DER DOG ANQ'.DER LOBSTER.
Dot dog ho vos onqnisltlve.
VerolTer he vos go,
Und, like dot woman, all der tlino,
Somecllng he vants ter know.
Yone day, all by dot market stbaud.
Vere fish und clams dcy sell,
Dot dog vos poke his nose aboud,
Und find oud vat he shmcll.
Dot lobster he vos took dot snooz;
Mid ono eye open vide,
Und ven der dog vos come along,
Dot lobster he vos spied.
Dot dog he shmell htm mlt his nose,
Und scratch him mlt his paws,
Und push dot lobster all aboud,
Uud vonder vat he vas.
Und den dot lobster he voke np,
Und crawl Just like dotshnatl,
Und make vide open his claws,
Und grab dot doggie's tall.
Und den, so quick as never vas,
Dot cry vent to der Bky,
Uud, like dem swallows vot dcy sing,
Dot dog goes homeward fly.
I make dot run und call dot dog,
Und vlstle awful kind,
Dot make no difference vot I say,
Dot dog don't look pehint.
Dot moral, vos I told you 'boud,
Pefore vob never known
Don't vant to find too much dings out
Dot vosn't ov your own I
THE PUZZLED BANKER.
ft. DUFF, the worthy and respect
ed agent of the Central Bank at
Tollklrk, was startled by his teller, Jas.
Hamilton, coming to him to say, just as
the banker had signed the last official
letter before proceeding to lock up the
safe : " I am sorry to say, sir, the cash
appears to be one hundred pounds
short," James was very pale as he
spoke, and, despite his efforts to prevent
it, his voice trembled. A stranger could
not have told whether the youth's agitation-was
the result of fright or guilt.
Mr. Duff knew him too well to let
the latter alternative dwell in his miud
for even a moment; but the lad's ex
icitement was somewhat infectious, and
it was with just a little throb that he
replied: You're joking, Jamie." Mr.
Duff leaned back in his chair and nib
bled the feather end of his quill as he
looked into the lad's face.
"I never was more serious in my
life," reiterated Hamilton.
" It Is some mare's-nest, depend upon
it," said Mr. Duff in a tone that partly
reassured the young fellow, " Have
yon been very busy at the desk to-day,
" That is the mystery of it, sir ; we
have not been. busy. Hardly three
pages of our cash-book are filled."
"A hundred pounds! Hml lam
.going up stairs to dinner. In the mean
time, check your summations and your
cash, and by-and-by I'll come in to lock
up the safe with ye."
The teller went from the banker's
room to the outer office with a very
jjrave face. Mr. Dullwho lived with
his family, as is customary in Scotland,
in the very commodious house attached
to the bank, sent his letters to be copied
by the junior clerk, aud then went leis
urely up stairs to dinner.
Mr. Duif was, for a mau who does not
-object to permanent residence in a pro
vincial town, a very easy and pleasant
mode of life. His work was not bard,
uor were bis responsibilities very heavy.
He bad a pretty and comfortable borne
in an old fashioned country town,1
and although bis wife lay in the church
yard on the brae by the river side these
ten years, still he had two of the prettl
put girls in Tollklrk Minna and Mary
Dull' (besides Jeuny,the married daugh
ter, who lived in Edinburgh), whose
delight it was to make his life sunny
aud happy. He was naturally being
known to possess private means, and on
account of his official capacity as the
dispenser of discounts and custodian of
the wealth of the neighborhood a man
of some importance in Tollklrk, and
formed part of, as well as moved in,
Tollklrk '8 best society. He was magis
trate and farmer as well as banker; aud
on Buudays, for rnauy a long year, he
had stood beaming behind "theplato,,
at the entrance to the "auld kirk." ,
Everybody knew him, und he knew
everybody ; and perhaps nobody re
spected hlui the less because he pretty
well knew to wilhiu a pound or two
what every ratepayer on his side of the
county was worth, lluancially.
He took life very easy, as I have said ;
making no undue fuss when an accom
modation bill was preseuted to him, if
be knew as he was certain to know
the pedigree and progress through life of
the drawer aud ludorser. He wns re
spected, too, by bis Edinburgh employ
ers as a man of prudence aud sagacity,
who never made bad debts, never
troubled them with applications for
rise of salary or transfer of agency
whose books always stood the minutest
inspection, aud who, speaking general
ly, wanted no favors from them, llath
er, granted favors, by occasional invita
tions to visit blrn at Tollklrk, where
there is unsurpassed trout and salmon
fishing, besides magnificent " links" for
golf, and where the local distillery yields
a liquid of more than local reputation.
The city-birds were not slow to accept
such invitations, Mr. Duff being over
a tumbler of toddy the best of company,
and generous in the matter of horses
and fishing rods. The chief inspector
of the bank came often enough to woo
the fair Jenny, the eldest of the family,
and took ber away with blm one sum
mer day, to the general bereavement of
The banker did not hurry over dinner
on the particular afternoon of which I
write, When he went up stairs be did
not give a second thought to James
Hamilton's pale face, but quickly Bet
tied himself in bis arm-chair, after do
ingjustlce to bis simple repast, to read
for the second time the report of his
own speech at the parochial board. given
at length in the Tollklrk Herald, the
line roll of his own somewhat improv
edspoken sentences seen in black and
white, communicating a pleasing sense
of complacence and importance as in
fluencing public opinion. It was near
ly seven o'clock before Mr. Duff remem
bered that be had not yet locked up his
safe, and his clerks were probably wait
ing below for blm. He was surprised
when he opened the office door leading
to the hall of bis house to find Hamil
ton still, bending over bis cash-book
with an expressslon of deep anxiety on
bis face, and bundles of bank notes ly
ing on the desk before bim,
"What, James, still in a fogj"' be
asked, cheerfully, as be came in. " Not
found your difference, eh ?"
" I am a hundred pounds short, sir,
Hamilton bad toiled through every
entry over and over again, bad counted
and recounted bis bundles of notes, and
now had a very sharply defined fear in
heart, and a vision in the background of
bis imagination of a dearly loved old
mother waiting for him at home, and
who was ill able to bear the responsibili
ty of such a loss if loss it should prove
" A mare's-nest, I'll be bound," Mr.
Duff said, good naturedly, taking Ham
ilton's place before the cash-book. Very
carefully and with a keen eye he weut
over each entry ; very carefully, too, he
counted the cash, and recounted it ; but
only to find that Hamilton's words
were too true. The cash was undoubted,
ly one .hundred pounds short.
" I think we had better sleep over It,"
Mr. Duff said at last, looking at bis
watch. "The difference wilr turn up
in the morning, you may depend upon
It." Then the cash and books were
carried into the safe, and the office clos
ed for the night.
Poor Hamilton lay awake nearly all
night thinking over some probable clue
to the whereabouts of the missing
money. Never before had be left the
bank with such a dread on his mind, for
be felt certain that be bad gone over
each item of the day, that he bad not
over-paid auy one to such an extent;
and he knew that on blm devolved the
responsibility to make good any such
deficiency. He hardly spoke to bio
mother as he ate what she called his
"ruined dinner" spoiled by three long
hours' watting in the oven ; nor could
she get from him all through the even
ing a hint of the cause of his trouble.
She guessed, and hinted that perhaps
Minna Dull', "the little lltrt," bnd some
thing to do with bis gloom; for she knew
bow her boy's heart lay in regard to
the bunker's younger daughter; but her
son's reply was equivalent toasnub.
He was in the office two hours before
official bank-hours on the following
morning ; but no trace of the missing
money could be found. During theduy,
the banker's customers who had on the
previous day been paid large sums, were
asked to check their payments; but
when four o'clock arrived the cash had
again to bo coutited, the balance still
showed one hundred pounds short. If
the money bad been paid away in error,
no man had been honest enough to re
turn it. Then for the first time in the
history of the Tollklrk branch a defi
ciency in the cash bad to be reported to
the head office. A hundred pounds to a
rich man may seem a small matter to
worry over ; but to James Hamilton,
whose yearly ' salary, after ten years'
faithful and conscientious service, did
not amount to one hundred pounds, and
whose mother save for the help of a
trifling annuity left by ber husband
was in great measure dependant upon
blm the liability to refund this sum
weighed heavy. He became anxious
and nervous, not being altogether certain
that the authorities of the bank might
not suspect him of having appropriated
the money ; and from very nervous
ness was guilty during the next few
days of making severul small mistakes
in bis cash dealings, which confirmed
blm in the belief that be paid the money
to some unscrupulous rascal who did
not mean to acknowledge it.
It seemed an age, although In reality
barely a month bad passed, before u
note from Mr. Tait, the chief Inspector
(Mr. Duff's son-in-law) set the matter at
rest. " In consideration," the note ran,
" of the admirable mode in which the
business of the branch at Tollkitk has
hitherto been conducted, the directors
have agreed to wipe off the deficiency
in cueli, whloh it may be hoped will yet
turn up and be recredited ; but in doing
so it must be firmly kept iu view that
directors by no means establish the pres
ent case as a precedent,aud must remind
the gentleman who has charge of the
bank's cash at Tollklrk that at no future
time will the directors be disposed to
relieve blm of the responsibility attach
ed to bis office."
" There, Jamie ; take that to your
mother," said Mr. Duff.klndly, handing
the official note to Hamilton. "I thought
Peter would manage it" ( referring to bis
sou-iu-law, the inspector) ; "but we
maun cu' canny," said the banker, re
lapsing into broad Scotch, ' to put the
reproof, if such it might be called, in
the gentlest form, to spare the lad's
There were tears of relief in Hamil
ton's eyes as he read the note. " That
i generous treatment, sir ; I was afraid
that they would roup sell by auction
rue aud my old mother out of Toll
kirk." "Roup ye? I couldn't spare ye,
Then the youth weut home to bis
mother jubilant, a burden lifted from
But on the next evening, after busi
ness hours, Hamilton's faee was whiter
than ever. His bands were trembling
as he fumbled over his cash, and " cast"
aud " re-cusi" the long columns of fig
ures in his cash-book. It was market
day, a busy day, and large sums had
passed into and out of bis bands. To
bis horror, be found bis cash three huiu
dred pounds short l He bad not the
courage ou this occasion to go to Mr.
Duff's room with bis plaint. But the
banker saw at once as be passed througb
the office on bis way up stairs that some
thing was wrongt
" You are late, Mr. Hamilton." (Mr.
Duff never In a general way called
James 'Mr.' His doing so now Implied
"Yes, sir; but I think I won't be
long;" bis lips felt parched from excite
ment. "Are ye ready to lock up the safe
with me V"
"Not quite. It you are In no burry,
sir, perhaps we can lock up when you
" Very well."
Mr. Duff went up stairs; but on this
occasion be did not linger over bis meal.
When he came down half an hour later,
Hamilton was not ready to lock the
safe. He was sitting looking into space,
his bead resting on his hands.
" Have you balanced yourcash now J",
Mr. Duff asked, with just a perceptible
edge of annoyance in bis tone.
".No, sir, I differ three hundred
" Over or short 1"',
"Mercy on us 1 This will not do.
You must bestir yourself and and find
it. I have to go out to a meeting to
night." The banker spoke sternly.
Hamilton once more under Mr. Duff's
eye, nervously went over bis figures
and counted his cash. The deficiency
could iu no way be accounted for.
" This Is terribly awkward, James."
There were tears In the youth's voice
as be uttered "Yes, sir; and It will
drive me mad."
When Mr. Duff returned from his
meeting at eleven o'clock, Hamilton
was as far from peace as ever. The
younger clerks bad gone away. Again
the banker and Hamilton went over
each item together in vain.
" We can't report this to the head
office, whatever happens," quoth Mr.
" What is to be done, sir?"
They looked blankly In' each other's
faces. Both men went to bed with
heavy hearts ; nor did the search next
day throw any light on the mysterious
transaction. Mr. Duff could not bring
himself to report this second deficiency
to bis head office; and the only alterna
tive left was to refund the amount from
his own private means. This, as may
be imagined, be did very reluctantly ;
and for the first time in bis experience be
watched the younger men, and perhaps
his trusted teller too, with just a faint
irrepressible glimmering of suspicion.
A mistake of this sort might happen
once ; but to happen a second time at so
Bhort an interval, made blm uneasy on
other matters than mere loss of money.
He bad a framework of mahogany aud
glass made for Hamilton's desk, so that
no one could come near the cash in fu
ture but Hamilton himself. And so,
with what grace be could summon, and
with many grave warnings, Mr. Duff
paid the " short" money, having as he
said, to "grin and bear it."
For a week or so things worked well
under the new arrangement; but for
the third time Mr. Duff was destined to
see Hamilton poring over bis books
long after bank hours, but this time to
bear that the luckless lad was short by
no less than five hundred pounds ! Had
the shrewd, quick-witted James Hamil
ton after ten years of faithful service be
come suddenly dolt V"
"This is beyond endurance," the
banker said, sharply, as the fact was
communicated to him.
" It is most strange," replied the help
less teller, feeling that the Fates were
" It is impossible you can have paid
the money away."
" It is gone, sir."
" Then you must find it. I can no
longer be responsible for your blunders.
Here is no less a sum than nine hundred
pounds in less than six weeks to be ac
counted for. Many a one has been sent
across the sea for less."
The youth put his bands over bis face
and fairly burst into tears. "I must
give it up, sir. I can't stand this. I
uiUBt leave this place."
Mr. Duff was looking at blm with
very keen eyes as this was sobbed out,
"Leave Tollklrk t Understand, Mr.
Hamilton, tbatyou dare not leave Toll
kirk before this matter is cleared up."
For the greater part of the night the
men sat up searching; but when the
molnlng came they were as far from the
mark as ever.
Mj. Duff, much to the surprise of cus
tomers of the bank, next day " took
over" the cash himself, and, rather
awkwardly from want of practice, be
come his own caBhler. Hamilton was
degraded to subordinate duties. His
spirit, poor fellow I was fairly broken.
No trace of the missing money could be
found. Of course, Mr. Duff could not
long continue acting as teller. The
work Interfered with even more im
A son of Mr. Traill, the parish min
lster,who was employed at the Aberdeen
branch of the same bank, at this time
visited Tollklrk, and beiDg of the same
craft, spent a good deal of time in Mr.
Duffs company. The subject of the
missing money was broached and dis
cussed between them. It so happened
that George Traill was engaged to be
married to Mary Duff ; and the banker
having lost confidence in Hamilton ,and
feeling sorely in need of capable help,
proposed that George should apply to
the directors of the bank for the appoint
ment of joint-agent or partner with
himself in the management of the Toll
klrk branch. So it came about that in
a short time George Traill, a shrewd,
practical business man, relieved Mr.
Duff at the telling-table, in order to
bank's customers. For 'some days all,
went well. Then came market-day.
At the close of the day Mr. Traill's cash
was five hundred pounds short!
Dismay fell on the quiet little bank in
Tollklrk. The former uneasiness be
came in the office a panic. Hamilton
bad been made ill by the anxiety of bis
position, was in bed on the day that Mr.
Traill's deficiency occured. After close
ly scrutinizing every entry in the books,
Traill came to the conclusion that he had
not paid the money In excess to any one
and the notes must have been stolen by
some one on the premises. The bank's
safe was duly examined ; but the locks
bore no marks of being tampered with.
The windows and doors of "the office
were unaffected ; and Mr. Duff's domes
ticswho swept out the office had been
bis servants aud were known to him for
years. The matter was on this occasion
reported to the bank's bead office; but
thence came the cold intimation, that
no further deficiency could be made good
and referring the bank agents to their
recent letter to that effect of such and
such a date.
Mr. Duff began to think the place
was haunted. Wherever the money
was gone, it bad to be paid up; raising
the total losses made in thi mysterious
way to the unpalatable sum of fourteen
hundred pounds in less three three
months. The mystery was all the deep
er that during the day of the difference
In Traill's cash it had happened there
had not been a single cash payment
amounting to five hundred pounds.
Then there came vague rumors such as
the police, had the matter passed into
their hand?, would certainly have made
use of that there was an itinerant lock
smith, a gipsy, in the neighborhood to
whom popular rumor attributed almost
miraculous power iu the manipulation
of locks. Yet it would take a very clev
er locksmith indeed to open the Central
Bank's safe unheard in the bouse, and
to close it again without leaving traces
of his work. The safe had a foundation
of eight feet of stone, and was coated on
the floor, wall, and roof with a two
inch plate of solid iron, and each there
were four doors had two keys and sepa
rate locks. Through the lock of the
outer door an iron bolt was each even
ing shot down from Mr. Duffs bed-room
above, and while that bolt was down,
no key in the world could open the door.
It was necessary to b in Mr. Duff's bed
room before the bolt could be drawn or
dropped. It was extremely improbable
that there were any in Tollklrk who
could, even with the necessary keys in
their hauds, find their way into the
No longer was Mr. Duff able to leave
the bank with an easy mind for a two
o'clock luncheon with forty winks to
follow as had been bis custom these
twenty years. He was closely on the
watch. Yet there was no visible causa
for suspicion. Bankers and clerks were
fast becoming demoralized in the mili
tary sense from sheer fright, aecelera-