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Boys On The Farm

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" Why dont you say a good word in the paper for the boye?" askedoneofthe neighbor boys as he carne into the room where I was busy writing. " What s the matter now, Guy ?" I asked. " Nothing in particular," he answered. " Don't teil me ! I know better ! Boys don't wcar such solenincholy faces for ' nothing in particular.' Come, out with t ! " " Well, then, it isn't any one thing iu particular, it is everything put together makes me so mad. 1 want to pet somebody to write a whole bouk about the way grown folks treat us boys. I teil you - and I want you to put it in the paper - that the boys have a hard time of it on the farm. Wc are hauled out of bed before aunrise to uiilk thecows, cut the wood and do forty other things that nobody else wants to do. I wouldn't mind the work if we ever got any thanks for what we do, or even had anything that we could cali our own. No matter how much we do, or how well we do it, grown folks aro always finding fault. I wonder if they expect us to know how to do everything just right. I guess the men have forgotten that they were boys once. Then the old folks never thiuk that we boy like to have somethingofourown. There's father now, he is always complaining because I don't take an interest in the farm. How can I take an interest in the farm or anything about it ? He never gave me an interest in anything of my own in my life exoept a pair of rabbits, and the firnt time they got into the garden my iabbits had to go. Last year I wantod some chickens of my own, some pure blooded ones you know, hut he wouldn't hear a word of it. Then I begged for a piece of ground where I might raise what I pleased. Do you suppose I got it ? Not much ! And now to top off with he wculdn't let me go to school this winter, says I've got learning enout?h for a farmer, as if l ever expected to be a farmer ! I hate the old farm, and 111 not stay on it a day after I am of age I If father wanted to make a farmer oi me, he took a mighty queer way to do it." " Well, well, Guy ! That will do for once. Please take these letters to the office for me and III thiuk over what you have said." And I did think the matter over until I carne to the conclusión that there was a tood deal more truth than poetry in Guy's tioyisli outliutvt. Like hts father, a good many men take a " mighty queer" way to makc farmers of their boys. They show the boys only the hardest, most barren side of farm life, and then wonder why itjis that their sons leave the farm the first chance they get. If you want your boys to "stick to the farm, stick the farm to the boys." Teach them to like the farming so well that they will have no desire to leave the old home until they leave for homes of their own. You can do this by making home attractive, by takinj.' pains to show them the bright sida of farm life, and by showing them that a man can be a farmer and a gentleman too. Provide your boys with good books, magazines, agricultura] works and papers ; and in6tead of sitting in the corner during the long winter evenings, and bewailing the failure of one erop, predicting the failure of another next season, and declaring that "farming don't pay, and a farmer's life is a slave's life," read with yoor boys, study with them, play chess, back-gamuion, and checkers with them, and if youshould happen to go coasting and skating with them once in a while, you would feel all the better for the fun. Give your boys an interest in the farm. If one is interested in chickens, let him take charge of the poultry ; apd if another shows a taste for gardening, give him a patch of ground and let him work it. Require them to keep jüorough and systemitic accounts of their work, and deal quarely with them. If at the end of the year the boys have done fairly well, do not withhold the praise they have honestly earned ; and if they have failed in anything, don't be discouraged, and don't discourage them - point out their errors and let them try again. I might go on and write a whole sermón on this subject, my heart is full of" good words," for the boys ; but I have said enough to open the eyes of men like Guy's father, and to show them their duty.