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Tobey's Week In The Country

Tobey's Week In The Country image
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"Have a Herald, missus?" A lady was hurrying acrss Boston Jommon late one summer evening, when a small boy suddenly appeared n the pathway and thus accosted ber. "Papers at this time of nighU You ought to have been in bed hours ago," was the reply. "O missus, I'm sluck on 'em! Please ;o btiy just one." The ohild was so small, the voice so plaintive, and the calicó blouse so thin, ,hat the lady stopped and inquired how many papers he had. "ïen Heralds and three Stars," was the answer. "Give me all," she said, thrusting a silver half dollar into nis thin flngers, "and scamper home as fast as ever you can." "Twice ten's twenty - an' three' s - oh dear! I can't reckon sucb a haull" and the boy's voice fairly trembled with excitement. "It's all right, I haveu't clieated you." "Taint that," he said, with an air of iniured pride. "You want yer change." "No I dori't," was the enephatic reply. "VVhexe do you live?" "South Boston." "You're not going to walk there tor.ight?" "Gourse I am. What else can a chap do?' "Eide in fehehorsecar, to be sure," "But I saves three cents for Tobey when I walks." "Who's tobey?" "O missus, you orter know Tobey! He'a good, he is. He never says swear words, like I do." "But whois he?" "He's my brother, an' 1 takes care of him." "Where's you father?" "Haint got none." "Where's your motlier?" "She got a chance to work up country this summer, an' left me 'n' Tobey to keep house. I supports us," he ádded proudly. The lady was a city inissionary and quite used to seeing all kinds of suffeiiug, but soinething about this child seemed more pitif al than ordinary. "Would you like to go to the country too, you íuid Tobey?" she asked. They had walked along together, and now stood under an electrio light. The child stopped and earefully, almost painf ully, scanned her face. "Be you the wornaa who keeps the Home 't" he inquired with great caution. "Wbat Home do you mean?" she asked. Where the poor ehildren goes in summer," explained the boy. llA cfaap as lives in the alley told me as how he was there last summer, an' l'm a-savin' monev to get Tobey there, eos he's lame, you know, an' has to stay shet up all day." Just then a South Boston car carne along. The lady stopped it, paid the child's f are, and asked him to come and see her the next evening, giving him a card with the street and number. In the meantime she went to see a friend who lived a few miles out of the city, and urged her to take the two children for a week, just to give tbem a taste of country lif e. At ürst i t seemed inipossible to add these strangers to her own farnily of threo children, but the fact of Tobey's lameness touched her heart, and she consented; When the newsboy came the next evening and the plan was unfolded to him, 8omehow he did not look as happy as such good news would warrant. An anxious expression crept into his face, and he said slowly,- "It's real good of you, missus, but - but how 'm I to get Tobey there ?" Thus early do the children of the poor learn to assume care! "Oh, I'll help you," was the cherry reply, and the next morning a carriage with easy cushions and soft pillows, drawn by two üne horses, appeared at the door, and thé brothers vreie rapidly driven away from the noise and heat of the city into a shady road which led to the beautif ui green country beyond. had never seen anything like it, and on reaching the house Tobey begged to be left out on the grass. So Mis. Lane lifted him into a hammock which wa3 swung between two trees, and here he lay all'day long, watching the other children as they played about the yard. They even had their dinner brought out to them, but wheH Tobey tried to swallow hismilkand to eat his fresh strawberries, there was a lump in his throat which seemed to bo right iu the way, and somehow he couldn't see things as plainly as he did at first. "Why ,just look at Tobey!" exclaimed Bessie Lane. "I do believe he's crying: Don't you love strawberries ?" she said, going over to the hammock. "Oh yes, they're beautiful," replied Tobey. "It's all beautifu), and I don'tnever-want-to-go-back." When it came bedtime Bessie went off somewhere by herself, but the boys had a room next to the one occupied by the two strangers. The door was partly open, so they could see all that was going on within. Bef ore getting iato bed the boys kneeled down by their mother and said something in a low tone. "What are they adoin', Tobey?" whispered his brother, for though younger, Tobey seemed to know more about sorce things than the boy who sold the papers and could flnd his way anywhere about the crocked streets of Boston. "I reckon it's a prayin'," said Tobey softly. "Let us, too." "I dunno how." "Nor I, too. But there must be somebody called Jesus, for days when you was gone I used to hear a woman down stairs a-singin', 'Jesus, my all, to heaven is gone.' An' it alwaya made me feel bad here," he continued, laying his hand on his heart, "when you'd swear, though I dunno why." By this time Nirs. Lane came in to see about helping the lame boy to bed, and while taking off his bJouse, he said to her: "Would you mind tellin' usif there's a Jesús, an' who He is?" Mrs. Lane wa3 so surprised that a child in New England should ask sucha question that she could scarcely reply. Taking a low rocking-chair, she gathered the helpless little heathen in her arms, while his brother sat by on a bassock, and there in the moonlight, long after her own boys were asleep, she talked to them of the Saviour's wonderful birth, promising to teil the'i more each night. i When the Lane cbildren found that their visitors hart never been to Sabbath school, and did not even know "ïïow I lay me," they set about the work of missionaries in good earnest. It was really quite exciting to explain the pictures of Bible scènes in their books and papers to those who were wholly ignorant of them, and it was astonishing how much they learned themselves whlle trying to be teachers. Tho veek was so very short that thcy teased their mother to keep the boys another, and then another, till it was September before Tobey and his brother went back to Boston, and there were maoy tears shed all arouad on the day of parting. Now they both attend mission schools, and the Lane children are carefully saving their pennies to help pay the board of some other children for a week in the country. Paganint's Pet Oae cUy, while approaehing Paria in a diligence, after his visit to England, Paganini had the mortiücation of seeing his beloved Guarnerius fall from the roof of the coach. The delicate instrument received a palpable injury and had to be taken to Vuillaume, thE famous maker and repairer of violins established. in the French capital. Vuillaume not only mended it - as the story but made an exact faesmile of it, taking both to the Italian virtuoso with the remark that the two instrumenta, lying siüe by side in his laboratory,had pazzled him as to their identity. The dismayed musician seized flrat one and Uien the other, played upon both, and caref ully examined them, together and apart, and ended by exclaiming in distress tliat he could not decide which was his own. TIe strode about the room wild, ecstatic, and in tears- faith and fury alike struggling for the mastery in him, till the honest Parisian, overeóme by the sight of a grief and a bewilderment so genuine, and ne ver from thefirst intending to deceive his cliënt, asked hitn to keep both violins as a pleuge of his esteem and admiration, at the same time pointing out thesham Guamerius, for which he begged an honorablo place in Paganini's household. Who can doubt after this that new violins may be made to look, and speakr, as well as old ones. - All the Year RoumL . A BKAYfi MAS. "So you want me to tell you a story ftbout a brave man, little people," said Coloaoi Orayieck, as his half-dozen nephew and nieces, tired with their aftcrnoon's play, gathered around his arm chair by thefire. "Well, I've seen plenty oí' them :n my time, bnt the bravest man I ever knevv was a young Ensign in our regiment whorn ive uw.l to cali 'Gentleman Bob' - and right well he desc-rved the name, though not as wemeant it ! Sokliering is a vcry diQ'erent thing nov? from what it WBS in my young duys, and íea have lear-ned - what it's a pity tliey did not learo sooner - that a man may make noue tl-.e worse ofüeer for beiiig a gentleman and a Christian. Henry Havelock taught us that pietty fairly, but in the rough oíd times it wa.s a very different thing. Then the harder au English officer drank, aud the louder he swore, and the more he bullied his meu, aud the tead,-or be was to fight a duel or to joiu iu any !ow fcolic, the better his eomrades liked him,and l'm afraid wo vero much the Mme as the rest. So you may fancy what ve thought vvhen a man like 'Gentleman Bob' ca.ue unoug us, who was always quiet and sober '.ntï orderly, and, instéád oí' brawling and noting like Uie rest of ns, spent al I o f his pare timo over dry scientitic books that e knew nothing about, and read a chaptar of the Bible every moruiug and evening. How we did laugh at hira, and make mock of him, to be snre ! But the provokiug thing was that he never seemed ío miad it oue bit, aud he was so good-naturcd, and so ready to do any one a good turn whcn he could, that it certainly ought to have made ns ashamcd of ourselves ; but it didr.-t, mores tho pity. But bcforc long somcthiiig did make U3 isüamed oí ourselves, and this was it. Our Colonel was in a great hurry one day to tind out whereahonts of a village that wasn't marked on his map, and nono of us could help Hm, wlu-n. lo and bohold' forward stoppeil '(entlenuui ];ib,' wilh a neat little map of his own drawing, aud there was tfie verv place, just -where it should Do. The C'óloml looked at it, and then at us, aud s;iid giimly, "It's not oftea, gentlemen, that tiie younKst nlHorr of a regiment is also thó .MiMJ'tt-üt; Jet th" hv.a leason to so" "Y9n may ne snre tnls refiroor' maae ns the more unnieroii'til in ialkingagaiust poor Bob; and perluips we mi";ht havo done fiomething more thau talk but fpv a thiug that náppeued oue night at mess. Our junior Captain, a rouh. bv.Ilyiug kind (tt l'ellow; ivas soing to empty a glass of wine over Bob 's hcad, wlieu the Ensign gfasped lijs wrist,and overtunml the wine ■ipon hira iustead. r.nd Iho rist was black and blue from that sqneeze for mauy a day after. About a month aftcr thii, oue of our men, wha usud to have lits of niadne8S every now and thon iïom au old wouud in tho tiend, enme flving along with a big kuife iu his hand, slashing at everything withiu rcaeh. Some cried to shoot him, but !!ol):;aid, quietly, 'A mau'slifeis worth more tlmn Uiat; lot me try.' And ia a moment he had soizod the fellow è knifehand, and tripped hiiu so cleverly that he was down before we coutd cali out; and then some oí the men carne up and securcd him. Of course we conld say nothing against Bobs plnck aller that; but all this was a trille to what was coming. A few days luter came óne of the greatcst battles of the war, and we were so hard pressed on the left (-where my regimeut was) that at last there was nothing lor it but to fall back. We forrned again under cover of some thickets, but even there we had enongh to do to hold our ground, for the enemy had brought up several guns, and were giving it to um pretty hot. riudtleuly, between two gusts of smoke, one of our wonndcd, lying out on tho open plain. was seen (o wave his hand feebly, ;is if tbr help. It was onc of our Lieutenants. who bad been harder than any one upon 'tleutlcman Iic!i,' ancl his chance wae H poor one, for it seemed cerlain death to try aud reácn him throngh sueh a pelt of 3hot, while if a hullet lidu't finish him the scorehio:: sim was Drot.ty sure to do iL . All at once aman wm Been steppmg out from the sheltering thicket, and that man was 'Gentleman Bob.' He never looked to right or left, but went stvaight to where his persecutor was lying helpless, and triod to raise hiiu. At first the Krenc.l) bangcd away at him liko fury, but whcn 'liey saw what he was doing, several officera called out, 'Ne tirez pas, mes enfants' ('Don't fire, my boys,' ) and raised their caps to him in alute. Bob lifted the wounded man gently in his arms, and shielding hira with his own body, brought him back into our lines; and such a cheer as went up then I never hearJ "uefore or since." "And did that horrid Lieutenant die, iickuy net.' nnswered the Coionei, r.M'jli itifi. 'bi1 1 ra kony lo say the 'horrki !!. -::u 'uant' was no olhcr than mysellV' ".h, miele! were you ever as nanghty is tliat ?" lisped a voice iu toucs of amazeüent. "But wbat bccaniiof'Gent'.emauBob?" i;ik'd m iüipationt boy. "Hes now my rtspected brotber-in-law, aud ytíifr papa, ' said the Colonel, exebanging a sly look with a liue-looking man on Mie other side of the room, who hart been listcning lo the story with a quiet smilc. "And now that you've had yonr tale, L0 and .say goodiiight, for it s high time lör hv-hv. - Haritaa Xouna FMs.


Old News
Ann Arbor Democrat