« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »
am not a going to be tricked out of my compliment, at all events : for, if the daughter of a British Colonel has the independence to marry a Yankee' rebel, she must be, to him, at least, a prize richly worth the winning."
“She is not married yet," observed Captain Hendee, with well assumed seriousness : “for before that is suffered to take place, I, who stand as a sort of sponsor for the girl, must be heard in the business : and to this end, I beg leave to read a little from my letter of instructions from her father; which I have never before made known,” he added, producing a letter, from which he proceeded to read to his surprised and wondering auditors the following extract:
“Wi regard to that wayward bairn o mine, an' that Mr. Nabody, her rebel lover, as I became satisfied he was, it is out o' the question I should be consentin' to a match o’sic a sort. Na, she must be cured, an' in some sic way as I named to you. An' that being done, then her old lover, Major Skene, will come in for an easy conquest. But in your moves to this object, let me again caution you to beware how you forbid this intimacy; for ever since mother Eve's dido wi' the apple, the moment you forbid, the Diel taks the woman.”
" Father, how is this, and at this late hour?” exclaimed the astonished son, glancing from the former to the no less surprised girl at his side, who also began to open her lips in remonstrance, when, detecting a lurking smile on the old gentleman's countenance, she stopped short.
“ Perhaps we may as well read a passage from another letter of a more recent date," said the Captain, opening another paper, from which, after slyly enjoying the perplexity of the party interested, a moment, he read,
“So, you sly old Yankee, you an' Jessy hae contrived to checkmate me at last! This comes o’ leaving a daughter in a land o' rebellion: nathless I canna but say, I regret that circumstances will not permit me to be present to take my stoup on the merry occasion, which you say, wi' my consent, is to tak place early the coming summer : weel, you may tell the younker, wi’out hinting my good opinion o' him as aboon written, that, upon the whole, I will own him as a son-in-law, provided he will tak the crap o' wild oats which the chick, frae sa plentifu' a sowing, must now hae ready for the reaping, as a portion o' the wife's dowry.”
“Gad! I begin to like the humeroas old fellow,” said Allen; and that stoup which he regrets he cannot take with us, I will drink to his health as an extra bumper after the ceremony. Though before that takes place, I would ask if there are no more cases which might be settled at this time?”
“We know of none,” replied the Captain and his son, to whom the last part of the speaker's remarks had been addressed in an undertone.
“I do n't know about that,” rejoined the former, “I have been looking about me a little, and it strikes me that there are materials enough, at least. If you will make me master of the ceremonies, with powers to draw out the parties ?.
Certainly, certainly, Colonel,” replied the others, laughing, but shaking their heads dubiously at the well understood suggestion.
“ No faith, eh? Well, there is nothing like trying,” rejoined Allen. “ Jones,” he continued, now turning round to the scout, who had resumed his seat by the side of Ruth, “ Jones, you have been a brave fellow how is it that you are not to be rewarded, at this time, as well as the rest ?"
“Well, I've just been thinking, Colonel, replied Jones, screwing up his phiz, now queerly streaked with blushes, “ that it was rather a hard case, considering, that I should n't have any share in the loaves and fishes. But the fact is, that the fish that I've had in my eye,” he added, casting a sheepish glance at Ruth, wont quite say, whether I’m to be in luck to-day, or not.
“ Aha! just as I thought. But she shall say,” cried Allen, advancing a step towards the confused and blushing maiden, on whom all eyes were now tutned in surprise, at this development of a courtship so little expected; “she shall give you an answer, at least, or, by the wrath of Cupid ! she shall be punished for her cruelty by running a kissing gauntlet through the company. And I'll have the first one,” he added, still further advancing, as if to suit the action to the word.
" It is so ridiculous !” stammered the shrinking Ruth.
“ Perhaps you had rather say yes to my worthy friend, here?" said the former, his lip slightly curling with a sportive smile.
“I should - that is, I - I should,” replied the girl, dropping her head in confusion.
“Do you see that?" exultingly said Allen “I have succeeded in spite of your faithlessness : nor do I believe my triumphs need end even here."
" Ah! I will knock under, Colonel,” observed the Captain, laughing
“Ay, ay,” responded the Major, gaily, “we must now acknowledge your prowess in the court of Cupid, as well as in the camp
of Mars. But be not over ambitious, lest your zeal be dampened by a failure. Where will you find materials for another triumph?”
Here," answered the other, pointing to Neshobee and Zilpah, who, for reasons best understood by themselves, had also pared off in a corner together. “I have been reading eyes, which are about the only book I ever read where we are sure of the truth; and if those who control these persons should have no objections"
“ Never mind that, Colonel, if you have faith for the trial,” exclaimed the old Captain, entering into the full spirit of the game.
“Upon my word, Colonel Allen, I think you a most incorrigible meddler; but you may proceed, for aught I care,” said Miss Reed, pouting most beautifully,
“Ah, do n't laugh, ye wise ones, till you see,” said the jovial matchmaker, confidently. “Well, Miss Zilpah," he continued, familiarly addressing the half-blood, "you see which way your young mistress is about to travel
now, as you intend to follow her fortunes, do n't you think it would be more pleasant and suitable for you, to have some such brave and trusty companion on the road as Neshobee here would make
?” “ Ki !” exclaimed the girl, with a blush which brought her cheek to a fellow redness with that of the young Indian by her side. “ He! you queer man! But Neshobee, he no hab me."
“ Good!” cried the former, “ there is a challenge for you, my red friend. She says you wont marry her!”
“Umph!” uttered the still grave, though evidently delighted native, a me never know Zilpah tell lie before.”
“There! you unbelievers,” exclaimed Allen, looking round triumphantly upon the company, see what a man can do. Now parson, do your duty."
Reader, our story is told, and, with a word upon the subsequent career of those in whose destinies we trust we have been able in some degree to interest you, we will bid you
adieu : Of that singular, bold, rough, versatile, yet honest and strong minded man, Ethan Allen, little more need be said. The remainder of his public life was devoted to the accomplishment of that object, for which he had so fearlessly contended before the revolution, the independence of his state. And her history sufficiently attests to the importance of his services.
The gallant young officers, after their twice extended furloughs
had expired, leaving their lovely and loving wives at the cottage of Captain Hendee, to cheer and soothe the old veteran in his declining years, and, in due time, to render his second childhood anything but companionless, returned to their posts in the army, in which, honored and distinguished, they remained, till they had witnessed the achievement of their country's independence; when they retired to their homes in the Green Mountains, to receive from their fellow-citizens those substantial memorials of their esteem which may still be found recorded among some of the early acts of the Legislature of Vermont, granting valuable tracts of land to certain individuals for important public services.
Pete Jones and his staid spouse immediately repaired to their little opening in the woods, where, having renewed his acquaintance with his rusty axe, he caused the forest to melt away before his powerful arm, till his labors were rewarded by one of the best farms on the borders of the lake; while his wife became one of the most notable of housewives, having never had cause to regret her abrupt connection with the eccentric, though amiable woodsman, as may be inferred from the opinions she was often heard to express in favor of long men and short courtships.
Widow Story remained on her farm, cultivating and enlarging it with her own hands for many years; when, her oldest son having at length been enabled to butt his mother, to use a chopper's phrase, that is, to get off his cut first, in a trial of skill on the same log, she concluded to betake herself to household duties, giving up her farm work to her sturdy little band of foresters, who, in the process of time, let in the sun on extensive tracts of some of the finest lands on Otter Creek.
Neshobee and his yellow rib continued to reside on the farm of Captain Hendee, in a log hut built expressly for them, till the old gentleman's death; when they removed to the woody shores of the Horicon, where they spent their days in a ceaseless warfare upon the beautiful trout of the lake, and the deer, bear, and other wild animals of its surrounding shores.
And, lastly, the miscreant Sherwood, who, through the inscrutable ways of Providence, was permitted to live, Cain-like, to old age, found his way, at the close of the Revolution, to the common refuge of American tories in Canada, where he finished his days in poverty and disgrace, always obtaining credit by flattery and falsehood, always abusing it by fraud and treachery, and living, indeed, abhorred by men, and seemingly accursed of God.
A LIST OF BOOKS
BENJAMIN B. MUSSEY AND COMPANY,
NO. 29, CORNHILL, AND 36, BRATTLE STREET, BOSTON.
THE MODERN HARP,
Or, BOSTON SACRED MELODIST. - A Collection of Church Music, comprising, in addition to many of the most Popular Tunes in common use, a great variety of new and original Tunes, Sentences, Chants, Motets, and Anthems, adapted to Social and Religious Worship, Societies, Singing Schools, &c. By EDWARD L. WHITE and JOHN E. GOULD.
This Book, in the short space of twelve months, has passed through no less than sixteen editions, and is now used in all the best Choirs and Societies in New England, and is universally considered as one of the best books of Church Music now in use.
" So far as we have been able to examine this work, we shouid judge it to be superior to any modern work that we have seen. Skowhegan Democrat.
“ In bringing this work before the public, no time or pains have been spared to render it not only a popular, but a useful Collection. More than the usual number of new Tunes occupy a space in it, and most of this new Music is of a high character, and possesses the true attributes of Church Music. There is also to be found an unusual number of Sentences, Select Pieces, Chants, &c., suitable for the opening and closing of divine worship, among which the entire service of the Protestant Episcopal Church is given in the order of performance.
· The whole Collection is judiciously arranged, and will undoubtedly ake a rank second to none of the numerous publications of Church Music now in use." - Atlas.