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The Garies and Their Friends
by Frank J. Webb
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The old man thus alluded to was no other than Master Kinch's father, who had departed from the shop two or three hours previously, promising to return immediately after tea.

This promise appeared to have entirely faded from his recollection, as he was at that moment, as Kinch had supposed, fast asleep, and totally oblivious of the fact that such a person as his hungry descendant was in existence.

Having fully come to the conclusion to suspend operations for the evening, Kinch made two or three excursions into the street, returning each time laden with old hats, coats, and shoes. These he deposited on the counter without order or arrangement, muttering, as he did so, that the old man could sort 'em out in the morning to suit himself. The things being all brought from the street, he had only to close the shutters, which operation was soon effected, and our hungry friend on his way home.

The next morning Mr. De Younge (for the father of Kinch rejoiced in that aristocratic cognomen) was early at his receptacle for old clothes, and it being market-day, he anticipated doing a good business. The old man leisurely took down the shutters, assorted and hung out the old clothes, and was busily engaged in sweeping out the store, when his eye fell upon the paper dropped by Mr. Stevens the evening previous.

"What's dis 'ere," said he, stooping to pick it up; "bill or suthin' like it, I s'pose. What a trial 'tis not to be able to read writin'; don't know whether 'tis worth keeping or not; best save it though till dat ar boy of mine comes, he can read it—he's a scholar. Ah, de children now-a-days has greater 'vantages than deir poor fathers had."

Whilst he was thus soliloquizing, his attention was arrested by the noise of footsteps in the other part of the shop, and looking up, he discerned the tall form of Mr. Walters.

"Why, bless me," said the old man, "dis is an early visit; where you come from, honey, dis time o' day?"

"Oh, I take a walk every morning, to breathe a little of the fresh air; it gives one an appetite for breakfast, you know. You'll let me take the liberty of sitting on your counter, won't you?" he continued; "I want to read a little article in a newspaper I have just purchased."

Assent being readily given, Mr. Walters was soon perusing the journal with great attention; at last he tossed it from him in an impatient manner, and exclaimed, "Of all lying rascals, I think the reporters for this paper are the greatest. Now, for instance, three or four nights since, a gang of villains assaulted one of my tenants—a coloured man—upon his own doorstep, and nearly killed him, and that, too, without the slightest provocation; they then set fire to the house, which was half consumed before it could be extinguished; and it is here stated that the coloured people were the aggressors, and whilst they were engaged in the melee, the house caught fire accidentally." "Yes," rejoined Mr. De Younge; "things are gitting mighty critical even in dese 'ere parts; and I wouldn't live furder down town if you was to give me a house rent-free. Why, it's raly dangerous to go home nights down dere."

"And there is no knowing how long we may be any better off up here," continued Mr. Walters; "the authorities don't seem to take the least notice of them, and the rioters appear to be having it all their own way."

They continued conversing upon the topic for some time, Mr. De Younge being meanwhile engaged in sponging and cleaning some coats he had purchased the day before; in so doing, he was obliged to remove the paper he had picked up from the floor, and it occurred to him to ask Mr. Walters to read it; he therefore handed it to him, saying—

"Jist read dat, honey, won't you? I want to know if it's worth savin'. I've burnt up two or three receipts in my life, and had de bills to pay over; and I'se got rale careful, you know. 'Taint pleasant to pay money twice over for de same thing."

Mr. Walters took the paper extended to him, and, after glancing over it, remarked, "This handwriting is very familiar to me, very; but whose it is, I can't say; it appears to be a list of addresses, or something of that kind." And he read over various names of streets, and numbers of houses. "Why," he exclaimed, with a start of surprise, "here is my own house upon the list, 257, Easton-street; then here is 22, Christian-street; here also are numbers in Baker-street, Bedford-street, Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Streets; in some of which houses I know coloured people live, for one or two of them are my own. This is a strange affair."

As he spoke, he turned over the paper, and read on the other side,—"Places to be attacked." "Why, this looks serious," he continued, with some excitement of manner. "'Places to be attacked,'—don't that seem to you as if it might be a list of places for these rioters to set upon? I really must look into this. Who could have left it here?"

"I raly don't know," replied the old man. "Kinch told me suthin' last night about some gemman comin' here and changing his clothes; p'raps 'twas him. I'd like to know who 'twas myself. Well, wait awhile, my boy will come in directly; maybe he can explain it."

He had scarcely finished speaking, when Master Kinch made his appearance, with his hat, as usual, placed upon nine hairs, and his mouth smeared with the eggs and bacon with which he had been "staying and comforting" himself. He took off his hat on perceiving Mr. Walters, and, with great humility, "hoped that gentleman was well."

"Yes, very well, Kinch," replied Mr. Walters. "We were waiting for you. Can you tell where this came from?" he asked, handing him the mysterious paper.

"Never seen it before, that I know of," replied Kinch, after a short inspection.

"Well, who was here last night?" asked his father; "you said you sold suthin'?"

"So I did," replied Kinch; "sold a whole suit; and the gentleman who put it on said he was going out for a lark. He was changing some papers from his pocket: perhaps he dropped it. I'm to take this suit back to him to-day. Here is his card."

"By heavens!" exclaimed Mr. Walters, after looking at the card, "I know the fellow,—George Stevens, 'Slippery George,'—every one knows him, and can speak no good of him either. Now I recognize the handwriting of the list; I begin to suspect something wrong by seeing his name in connection with this."

Hereupon Kinch was subjected to a severe cross-examination, which had the effect of deepening Mr. Walters's impression, that some plot was being concocted that would result to the detriment of the coloured people; for he was confident that no good could be indicated by the mysterious conduct of Mr. Stevens.

After some deliberation, Kinch received instructions to take home the clothes as directed, and to have his eyes about him; and if he saw or heard anything, he was to report it. In accordance with his instructions, Master Kinch made several journeys to Mr. Stevens's office, but did not succeed in finding that gentleman within; the last trip he made there fatigued him to such a degree, that he determined to wait his arrival, as he judged, from the lateness of the hour, that, if it was his intention to come at all that day, he would soon be there.

"I'll sit down here," said Kinch, who espied an old box in the back part of the entry, "and give myself a little time to blow."

He had not sat long before he heard footsteps on the stairs, and presently the sound of voices became quite audible.

"That's him," ejaculated Kinch, as Mr. Stevens was heard saying, in an angry tone,—"Yes; and a devil of a scrape I got into by your want of sobriety. Had you followed my directions, and met me at Whitticar's, instead of getting drunk as a beast, and being obliged to go home to bed, it wouldn't have happened."

"Well, squire," replied McCloskey, for he was the person addressed by Mr. Stevens, "a man can't be expected always to keep sober."

"He ought to when he has business before him," rejoined Mr. Stevens, sharply; "how the devil am I to trust you to do anything of importance, when I can't depend on your keeping sober a day at a time? Come up to this top landing," continued he, "and listen to me, if you think you are sober enough to comprehend what I say to you."

They now approached, and stood within a few feet of the place where Kinch was sitting, and Mr. Stevens said, with a great deal of emphasis, "Now, I want you to pay the strictest attention to what I say. I had a list of places made out for you last night, but, somehow or other, I lost it. But that is neither here nor there. This is what I want you to attend to particularly. Don't attempt anything to-night; you can't get a sufficient number of the boys together; but, when you do go, you are to take, first, Christian-street, between Eleventh and Twelfth,—there are several nigger families living in that block. Smash in their windows, break their furniture, and, if possible, set one of the houses on fire, and that will draw attention to that locality whilst you are operating elsewhere. By that time, the boys will be ripe for anything. Then you had better go to a house in Easton-street, corner of Shotwell: there is a rich nigger living there whose plunder is worth something. I owe him an old grudge, and I want you to pay it off for me."

"You keep me pretty busy paying your debts. What's the name of this rich nigger?"

"Walters," replied Mr. Stevens; "everybody knows him. Now about that other affair." Here he whispered so low, that Kinch could only learn they were planning an attack on the house of some one, but failed in discovering the name. McCloskey departed as soon as he had received full directions from Mr. Stevens, and his retreating steps might be still heard upon the stairs, when Mr. Stevens unlocked his office-door and entered.

After giving him sufficient time to get quietly seated, Kinch followed, and delivered the clothes left with him the evening previous. He was very much struck with Mr. Stevens's altered appearance, and, in fact, would not have recognized him, but for his voice.

"You don't seem to be well?" remarked Kinch, inquiringly.

"No, I'm not," he replied, gruffly; "I've caught cold." As Kinch was leaving the office, he called after him, "Did you find a paper in your shop this morning?"

"No, sir," replied Kinch, "I didn't;" but mentally he observed, "My daddy did though;" and, fearful of some other troublesome question, he took leave immediately.

Fatigued and out of breath, Kinch arrived at the house of Mr. Walters, where he considered it best to go and communicate what he had learned.

Mr. Walters was at dinner when he received from the maid a summons to the parlour to see a lad, who said his business was a matter "of life or death." He was obliged to smile at the air of importance with which Kinch commenced the relation of what he had overheard—but the smile gave place to a look of anxiety and indignation long ere he had finished, and at the conclusion of the communication he was highly excited and alarmed.

"The infernal scoundrel!" exclaimed Mr. Walters. "Are you sure it was my house?"

"Yes, sure," was Kinch's reply. "You are the only coloured person living in the square—and he said plain enough for anybody to understand, 'Easton-street, corner of Shotwell.' I heard every word but what they said towards the last in a whisper."

"You couldn't catch anything of it?" asked Mr. Walters.

"No, I missed that; they talked too low for me to hear."

After reflecting a few moments, Mr. Walters said: "Not a word of this is to be lisped anywhere except with my permission, and by my direction. Have you had your dinner?"

"No, sir," was the prompt reply.

"I want to despatch a note to Mr. Ellis, by you, if it won't trouble you too much. Can you oblige me?"

"Oh, yes, sir, by all means," replied Kinch, "I'll go there with pleasure."

"Then whilst I'm writing," continued Mr. Walters, "you can be eating your dinner, that will economize time, you know."

Kinch followed the servant who answered the bell into the dining-room which Mr. Walters had just left. On being supplied with a knife and fork, he helped himself bountifully to the roast duck, then pouring out a glass of wine, he drank with great enthusiasm, to "our honoured self," which proceeding caused infinite amusement to the two servants who were peeping at him through the dining-room door. "Der-licious," exclaimed Kinch, depositing his glass upon the table; "guess I'll try another;" and suiting the action to the word, he refilled his glass, and dispatched its contents in the wake of the other. Having laboured upon the duck until his appetite was somewhat appeased, he leant back in his chair and suffered his plate to be changed for another, which being done, he made an attack upon a peach pie, and nearly demolished it outright.

This last performance brought his meal to a conclusion, and with a look of weariness, he remarked, "I don't see how it is—but as soon as I have eat for a little while my appetite is sure to leave me—now I can't eat a bit more. But the worst thing is walking down to Mr. Ellis's. I don't feel a bit like it, but I suppose I must;" and reluctantly rising from the table, he returned to the parlour, where he found Mr. Walters folding the note he had promised to deliver.

As soon as he had despatched Kinch on his errand, Mr. Walters put on his hat and walked to the office of the mayor.

"Is his honour in?" he asked of one of the police, who was lounging in the anteroom.

"Yes, he is—what do you want with him?" asked the official, in a rude tone.

"That, sir, is none of your business," replied Mr. Walters; "if the mayor is in, hand him this card, and say I wish to see him."

Somewhat awed by Mr. Walters's dignified and decided manner, the man went quickly to deliver his message, and returned with an answer that his honour would be obliged to Mr. Walters if he would step into his office.

On following the officer, he was ushered into a small room—the private office of the chief magistrate of the city.

"Take a seat, sir," said the mayor, politely, "it is some time since we have met. I think I had the pleasure of transacting business with you quite frequently some years back if I am not mistaken."

"You are quite correct," replied Mr. Walters, "and being so favourably impressed by your courtesy on the occasions to which you refer, I have ventured to intrude upon you with a matter of great importance, not only to myself, but I think I may say to the public generally. Since this morning, circumstances have come under my notice that leave no doubt on my mind that a thoroughly-concerted plan is afoot for the destruction of the property of a large number of our coloured citizens—mine amongst the rest. You must be aware," he continued, "that many very serious disturbances have occurred lately in the lower part of the city."

"Yes, I've heard something respecting it," replied the mayor, "but I believe they were nothing more than trifling combats between the negroes and the whites in that vicinity."

"Oh, no, sir! I assure you," rejoined Mr. Walters, "they were and are anything but trifling. I regard them, however, as only faint indications of what we may expect if the thing is not promptly suppressed; there is an organized gang of villains, who are combined for the sole purpose of mobbing us coloured citizens; and, as we are inoffensive, we certainly deserve protection; and here," continued Mr. Walters, "is a copy of the list of places upon which it is rumoured an attack is to be made."

"I really don't see how I'm to prevent it, Mr. Walters; with the exception of your own residence, all that are here enumerated are out of my jurisdiction. I can send two or three police for your protection if you think it necessary. But I really can't see my way clear to do anything further."

"Two or three police!" said Mr. Walters, with rising indignation at the apathy and indifference the mayor exhibited; "they would scarcely be of any more use than as many women. If that is the extent of the aid you can afford me, I must do what I can to protect myself."

"I trust your fears lead you to exaggerate the danger," said the mayor, as Mr. Walters arose to depart; "perhaps it is only rumour after all."

"I might have flattered myself with the same idea, did I not feel convinced by what has so recently occurred but a short distance from my own house; at any rate, if I am attacked, they will find I am not unprepared. Good day," and bowing courteously to the mayor, Mr. Walters departed.



CHAPTER XX.

The Attack.

Mr. Walters lost no time in sending messengers to the various parties threatened by the mob, warning them either to leave their houses or to make every exertion for a vigorous defence. Few, however, adopted the latter extremity; the majority fled from their homes, leaving what effects they could not carry away at the mercy of the mob, and sought an asylum in the houses of such kindly-disposed whites as would give them shelter.

Although the authorities of the district had received the most positive information of the nefarious schemes of the rioters, they had not made the slightest efforts to protect the poor creatures threatened in their persons and property, but let the tide of lawlessness flow on unchecked.

Throughout the day parties of coloured people might have been seen hurrying to the upper part of the city: women with terror written on their faces, some with babes in their arms and children at their side, hastening to some temporary place of refuge, in company with men who were bending beneath the weight of household goods.

Mr. Walters had converted his house into a temporary fortress: the shutters of the upper windows had been loop-holed, double bars had been placed across the doors and windows on the ground floor, carpets had been taken up, superfluous furniture removed, and an air of thorough preparation imparted. A few of Mr. Walters's male friends had volunteered their aid in defence of his house, and their services had been accepted.

Mr. Ellis, whose house was quite indefensible (it being situated in a neighbourhood swarming with the class of which the mob was composed), had decided on bringing his family to the house of Mr. Walters, and sharing with him the fortunes of the night, his wife and daughters having declared they would feel as safe there as elsewhere; and, accordingly, about five in the afternoon, Mrs. Ellis came up, accompanied by Kinch and the girls.

Caddy and Kinch, who brought up the rear, seemed very solicitous respecting the safety of a package that the latter bore in his arms.

"What have you there?" asked Mr. Walters, with a smile; "it must be powder, or some other explosive matter, you take such wonderful pains for its preservation. Come, Caddy, tell us what it is; is it powder?"

"No, Mr. Walters, it isn't powder," she replied; "it's nothing that will blow the house up or burn it down."

"What is it, then? You tell us, Kinch."

"Just do, if you think best," said Caddy, giving him a threatening glance; whereupon, Master Kinch looked as much as to say, "If you were to put me on the rack you couldn't get a word out of me."

"I suppose I shall have to give you up," said Mr. Walters at last; "but don't stand here in the entry; come up into the drawing-room."

Mrs. Ellis and Esther followed him upstairs, and stood at the door of the drawing-room surveying the preparations for defence that the appearance of the room so abundantly indicated. Guns were stacked in the corner, a number of pistols lay upon the mantelpiece, and a pile of cartridges was heaped up beside a small keg of powder that stood upon the table opposite the fire-place.

"Dear me!" exclaimed Mrs. Ellis, "this looks dreadful; it almost frightens me out of my wits to see so many dangerous weapons scattered about."

"And how does it affect our quiet Esther?" asked Mr. Walters.

"It makes me wish I were a man," she replied, with considerable vehemence of manner. All started at this language from one of her usually gentle demeanour.

"Why, Esther, how you talk, girl: what's come over you?"

"Talk!" replied she. "I say nothing that I do not feel. As we came through the streets to-day, and I saw so many inoffensive creatures, who, like ourselves, have never done these white wretches the least injury,—to see them and us driven from our homes by a mob of wretches, who can accuse us of nothing but being darker than themselves,—it takes all the woman out of my bosom, and makes me feel like a——" here Esther paused, and bit her lip to prevent the utterance of a fierce expression that hovered on the tip of her tongue.

She then continued: "One poor woman in particular I noticed: she had a babe in her arms, poor thing, and was weeping bitterly because she knew of no place to go to seek for shelter or protection. A couple of white men stood by jeering and taunting her. I felt as though I could have strangled them: had I been a man, I would have attacked them on the spot, if I had been sure they would have killed me the next moment."

"Hush! Esther, hush! my child; you must not talk so, it sounds unwomanly—unchristian. Why, I never heard you talk so before." Esther made no reply, but stood resting her forehead upon the mantelpiece. Her face was flushed with excitement, and her dark eyes glistened like polished jet.

Mr. Walters stood regarding her for a time with evident admiration, and then said, "You are a brave one, after my own heart." Esther hung down her head, confused by the ardent look he cast upon her, as he continued, "You have taken me by surprise; but it's always the way with you quiet people; events like these bring you out—seem to change your very natures, as it were. We must look out," said he, with a smile, turning to one of the young men, "or Miss Ellis will excel us all in courage. I shall expect great things from her if we are attacked to-night."

"Don't make a jest of me, Mr. Walters," said Esther, and as she spoke her eyes moistened and her lip quivered with vexation.

"No, no, my dear girl, don't misunderstand me," replied he, quickly; "nothing was farther from my thoughts. I truly meant all that I said. I believe you to be a brave girl."

"If you really think so," rejoined Esther, "prove it by showing me how to load these." As she spoke she took from the mantel one of the pistols that were lying there, and turned it over to examine it.

"Oh! put that down, Esther, put that down immediately," almost screamed Mrs. Ellis; "what with your speeches and your guns you'll quite set me crazy; do take it from her, Walters; it will certainly go off."

"There's not the least danger, Ellen," he replied; "there's nothing in it."

"Well, I'm afraid of guns, loaded or unloaded; they are dangerous, all of them, whether they have anything in them or not. Do you hear me, Esther; do put that down and come out of here."

"Oh, no, mother," said she, "do let me remain; there, I'll lay the pistols down and won't touch them again whilst you are in the room."

"You may safely leave her in my hands," interposed Mr. Walters. "If she wants to learn, let her; it won't injure her in the least, I'll take care of that." This assurance somewhat quieted Mrs. Ellis, who left the room and took up her quarters in another apartment.

"Now, Mr. Walters," said Esther, taking off her bonnet, I'm quite in earnest about learning to load these pistols, and I wish you to instruct me. You may be hard pressed tonight, and unable to load for yourselves, and in such an emergency I could perhaps be of great use to you."

"But, my child," replied he, "to be of use in the manner you propose, you would be compelled to remain in quite an exposed situation."

"I am aware of that," calmly rejoined Esther. "And still you are not afraid?" he asked, in surprise.

"Why should I be; I shall not be any more exposed than you or my father."

"That's enough—I'll teach you. Look here," said Mr. Walters, "observe how I load this." Esther gave her undivided attention to the work before her, and when he had finished, she took up another pistol and loaded it with a precision and celerity that would have reflected honour on a more practised hand.

"Well done!—capital!" exclaimed Mr. Walters, as she laid down the weapon. "You'll do, my girl; as I said before, you are one after my own heart. Now, whilst you are loading the rest, I will go downstairs, where I have some little matters to attend to." On the stair-way he was met by Kinch and Caddy, who were tugging up a large kettle of water. "Is it possible, Caddy," asked Mr. Walters, "that your propensity to dabble in soap and water has overcome you even at this critical time? You certainly can't be going to scrub?"

"No, I'm not going to scrub," she replied, "nor do anything like it. We've got our plans, haven't we, Kinch?"

"Let's hear what your plans are. I'd like to be enlightened a little, if convenient," said Mr. Walters.

"Well, it's not convenient, Mr. Walters, so you need not expect to hear a word about them. You'd only laugh if we were to tell you, so we're going to keep it to ourselves, ain't we, Kinch?"

The latter, thus appealed to, put on an air of profound mystery, and intimated that if they were permitted to pursue the even tenor of their way, great results might be expected; but if they were balked in their designs, he could not answer for the consequences.

"You and Esther have your plans," resumed Caddy, "and we have ours. We don't believe in powder and shot, and don't want anything to do with guns; for my part I'm afraid of them, so please let us go by—do, now, that's a good soul!"

"You seem to forget that I'm the commander of this fortress," said Mr. Walters, "and that I have a right to know everything that transpires within it; but I see you look obstinate, and as I haven't time to settle the matter now, you may pass on. I wonder what they can be about," he remarked, as they hurried on. "I must steal up by-and-by and see for myself."

One after another the various friends of Mr. Walters came in, each bringing some vague report of the designs of the mob. They all described the excitement as growing more intense; that the houses of various prominent Abolitionists had been threatened; that an attempt had been made to fire one of the coloured churches; and that, notwithstanding the rioters made little scruple in declaring their intentions, the authorities were not using the slightest effort to restrain them, or to protect the parties threatened. Day was fast waning, and the approaching night brought with it clouds and cold.

Whilst they had been engaged in their preparations for defence, none had time to reflect upon the danger of their situation; but now that all was prepared, and there was nothing to sustain the excitement of the last few hours, a chill crept over the circle who were gathered round the fire. There were no candles burning, and the uncertain glow from the grate gave a rather weird-like look to the group. The arms stacked in the corner of the room, and the occasional glitter of the pistol-barrels as the flames rose and fell, gave the whole a peculiarly strange effect.

"We look belligerent enough, I should think," remarked Mr. Walters, looking around him. "I wish we were well out of this: it's terrible to be driven to these extremities—but we are not the aggressors, thank God! and the results, be they what they may, are not of our seeking. I have a right to defend my own: I have asked protection of the law, and it is too weak, or too indifferent, to give it; so I have no alternative but to protect myself. But who is here? It has grown so dark in the room that I can scarcely distinguish any one. Where are all the ladies?" "None are here except myself," answered Esther; "all the rest are below stairs."

"And where are you? I hear, but can't see you; give me your hand," said he, extending his own in the direction from which her voice proceeded. "How cold your hand is," he continued; "are you frightened?"

"Frightened!" she replied; "I never felt calmer in my life—put your finger on my pulse."

Mr. Walters did as he was desired, and exclaimed, "Steady as a clock. I trust nothing may occur before morning to cause it to beat more hurriedly."

"Let us put some wood on these coals," suggested Mr. Ellis; "it will make a slight blaze, and give us a chance to see each other." As he spoke he took up a few small fagots and cast them upon the fire.

The wood snapped and crackled, as the flames mounted the chimney and cast a cheerful glow upon the surrounding objects: suddenly a thoroughly ignited piece flew off from the rest and fell on the table in the midst of the cartridges. "Run for your lives!" shrieked one of the party. "The powder! the powder!" Simultaneously they nearly all rushed to the door.

Mr. Walters stood as one petrified. Esther alone, of the whole party, retained her presence of mind; springing forward, she grasped the blazing fragment and dashed it back again into the grate. All this passed in a few seconds, and in the end Esther was so overcome with excitement and terror, that she fainted outright. Hearing no report, those who had fled cautiously returned, and by their united efforts she was soon restored to consciousness.

"What a narrow escape!" said she, trembling, and covering her face with her hands; "it makes me shudder to think of it."

"We owe our lives to you, my brave girl," said Mr. Walters; "your presence of mind has quite put us all to the blush."

"Oh! move the powder some distance off, or the same thing may happen again. Please do move it, Mr. Walters; I shall have no peace whilst it is there."

Whilst they were thus engaged, a loud commotion was heard below stairs, and with one accord all started in the direction from whence the noise proceeded.

"Bring a light! bring a light!" cried Mrs. Ellis; "something dreadful has happened." A light was soon procured, and the cause of this second alarm fully ascertained.

Master Kinch, in his anxiety to give himself as warlike an appearance as possible, had added to his accoutrements an old sword that he had discovered in an out-of-the-way corner of the garret. Not being accustomed to weapons of this nature, he had been constantly getting it between his legs, and had already been precipitated by it down a flight of steps, to the imminent risk of his neck. Undaunted, however, by this mishap, he had clung to it with wonderful tenacity, until it had again caused a disaster the noise of which had brought all parties into the room where it had occurred.

The light being brought, Master Kinch crawled out from under a table with his head and back covered with batter, a pan of which had been overturned upon him, in consequence of his having been tripped up by his sword and falling violently against the table on which it stood.

"I said you had better take that skewer off," exclaimed Caddy: "It's a wonder it hasn't broke your neck before now; but you are such a goose you would wear it," said she, surveying her aide-de-camp with derision, as he vainly endeavoured to scrape the batter from his face.

"Please give me some water," cried Kinch, looking from one to the other of the laughing group: "help a feller to get it off, can't you—it's all in my eyes, and the yeast is blinding me."

The only answer to this appeal was an additional shout of laughter, without the slightest effort for his relief. At last Caddy, taking compassion upon his forlorn condition, procured a basin of water, and assisted him to wash from his woolly pate what had been intended for the next day's meal. "This is the farce after what was almost a tragedy," said Mr. Walters, as they ascended the stairs again; "I wonder what we shall have next!"

They all returned to their chairs by the drawing-room fire after this occurrence, and remained in comparative silence for some time, until loud cries of "Fire! fire!" startled them from their seats.

"The whole of the lower part of the city appears to be in a blaze," exclaimed one of the party who had hastened to the window; "look at the flames—they are ascending from several places. They are at their work; we may expect them here soon."

"Well, they'll find us prepared when they do come," rejoined Mr. Walters.

"What do you propose?" asked Mr. Ellis. "Are we to fire on them at once, or wait for their attack?"

"Wait for their attack, by all means," said he, in reply;—"if they throw stones, you'll find plenty in that room with which to return the compliment; if they resort to fire-arms, then we will do the same; I want to be strictly on the defensive—but at the same time we must defend ourselves fully and energetically."

In about an hour after this conversation a dull roar was heard in the distance, which grew louder and nearer every moment.

"Hist!" said Esther; "do you hear that noise? Listen! isn't that the mob coming?"

Mr. Walters opened the shutter, and then the sound became more distinct. On they came, nearer and nearer, until the noise of their voices became almost deafening.

There was something awful in the appearance of the motley crowd that, like a torrent, foamed and surged through the streets. Some were bearing large pine torches that filled the air with thick smoke and partially lighted up the surrounding gloom. Most of them were armed with clubs, and a few with guns and pistols.

As they approached the house, there seemed to be a sort of consultation between the ringleaders, for soon after every light was extinguished, and the deafening yells of "Kill the niggers!" "Down with the Abolitionists!" were almost entirely stilled.

"I wonder what that means," said Mr. Walters, who had closed the shutter, and was surveying, through an aperture that had been cut, the turbulent mass below. "Look out for something soon."

He had scarcely finished speaking, when a voice in the street cried, "One—two—three!" and immediately there followed a volley of missiles, crushing in the windows of the chamber above, and rattling upon the shutters of the room in which the party of defenders were gathered. A yell then went up from the mob, followed by another shower of stones.

"It is now our turn," said Mr. Walters, coolly. "Four of you place yourselves at the windows of the adjoining room; the rest remain here. When you see a bright light reflected on the crowd below, throw open the shutters, and hurl down stones as long as the light is shining. Now, take your places, and as soon as you are prepared stamp upon the floor."

Each of the men now armed themselves with two or more of the largest stones they could find, from the heap that had been provided for the occasion; and in a few seconds a loud stamping upon the floor informed Mr. Walters that all was ready. He now opened the aperture in the shutter, and placed therein a powerful reflecting light which brought the shouting crowd below clearly into view, and in an instant a shower of heavy stones came crashing down upon their upturned faces.

Yells of rage and agony ascended from the throng, who, not seeing any previous signs of life in the house, had no anticipation of so prompt and severe a response to their attack. For a time they swayed to and fro, bewildered by the intense light and crushing shower of stones that had so suddenly fallen upon them. Those in the rear, however, pressing forward, did not permit the most exposed to retire out of reach of missiles from the house; on perceiving which, Mr. Walters again turned the light upon them, and immediately another stony shower came rattling down, which caused a precipitate retreat.

"The house is full of niggers!—the house is full of niggers!" cried several voices—"Shoot them! kill them!" and immediately several shots were fired at the window by the mob below.

"Don't fire yet," said Mr. Walters to one of the young men who had his hand upon a gun. "Stop awhile. When we do fire, let it be to some purpose—let us make sure that some one is hit."

Whilst they were talking, two or three bullets pierced the shutters, and flattened themselves upon the ceiling above.

"Those are rifle bullets," remarked one of the young men—"do let us fire."

"It is too great a risk to approach the windows at present; keep quiet for a little while; and, when the light is shown again, fire. But, hark!" continued he, "they are trying to burst open the door. We can't reach them there without exposing ourselves, and if they should get into the entry it would be hard work to dislodge them."

"Let us give them a round; probably it will disperse those farthest off—and those at the door will follow," suggested one of the young men.

"We'll try it, at any rate," replied Walters. "Take your places, don't fire until I show the light—then pick your man, and let him have it. There is no use to fire, you know, unless you hit somebody. Are you ready?" he asked.

"Yes," was the prompt reply.

"Then here goes," said he, turning the light upon the crowd below—who, having some experience in what would follow, did their best to get out of reach; but they were too late—for the appearance of the light was followed by the instantaneous report of several guns which did fearful execution amidst the throng of ruffians. Two or three fell on the spot, and were carried off by their comrades with fearful execrations.

The firing now became frequent on both sides, and Esther's services came into constant requisition. It was in vain that her father endeavoured to persuade her to leave the room; notwithstanding the shutters had been thrown open to facilitate operations from within and the exposure thereby greatly increased, she resolutely refused to retire, and continued fearlessly to load the guns and hand them to the men.

"They've got axes at work upon the door, if they are not dislodged, they'll cut their way in," exclaimed one of the young men—"the stones are exhausted, and I don't know what we shall do."

Just then the splash of water was heard, followed by shrieks of agony.

"Oh, God! I'm scalded! I'm scalded!" cried one of the men upon the steps. "Take me away! take me away!"

In the midst of his cries another volume of scalding water came pouring down upon the group at the door, which was followed by a rush from the premises.

"What is that—who could have done that—where has that water come from?" asked Mr. Walters, as he saw the seething shower pass the window, and fall upon the heads below. "I must go and see."

He ran upstairs, and found Kinch and Caddy busy putting on more water, they having exhausted one kettle-full—into which they had put two or three pounds of cayenne pepper—on the heads of the crowd below.

"We gave 'em a settler, didn't we, Mr. Walters?" asked Caddy, as he entered the room. "It takes us; we fight with hot water. This," said she, holding up a dipper, "is my gun. I guess we made 'em squeal."

"You've done well, Caddy," replied he—"first-rate, my girl. I believe you've driven them off entirely," he continued, peeping out of the window. "They are going off, at any rate," said he, drawing in his head; "whether they will return or not is more than I can say. Keep plenty of hot water, ready, but don't expose yourselves, children. Weren't you afraid to go to the window?" he asked.

"We didn't go near it. Look at this," replied Caddy, fitting a broom handle into the end of a very large tin dipper. "Kinch cut this to fit; so we have nothing to do but to stand back here, dip up the water, and let them have it; the length of the handle keeps us from being seen from the street. That was Kinch's plan."

"And a capital one it was too. Your head, Kinch, evidently has no batter within, if it has without; there is a great deal in that. Keep a bright look out," continued Mr. Walters; "I'm going downstairs. If they come again, let them have plenty of your warm pepper-sauce."

On returning to the drawing-room, Mr. Walters found Mr. Dennis, one of the company, preparing to go out. "I'm about to avail myself of the advantage afforded by my fair complexion, and play the spy," said he. "They can't discern at night what I am, and I may be able to learn some of their plans."

"A most excellent idea," said Mr. Walters; "but pray be careful. You may meet some one who will recognise you."

"Never fear," replied Mr. Dennis. "I'll keep a bright look out for that." And, drawing his cap far down over his eyes, to screen his face as much as possible, he sallied out into the street.

He had not been absent more than a quarter of an hour, when he returned limping into the house. "Have they attacked you—are you hurt?" asked the anxious group by which he was surrounded.

"I'm hurt-, but not by them. I got on very well, and gleaned a great deal of information, when I heard a sudden exclamation, and, on looking round, I found myself recognized by a white man of my acquaintance. I ran immediately; and whether I was pursued or not, I'm unable to say. I had almost reached here, when my foot caught in a grating and gave my ancle such a wrench that I'm unable to stand." As he spoke, his face grew pale from the suffering the limb was occasioning. "I'm sorry, very sorry," he continued, limping to the sofa; "I was going out again immediately. They intend making an attack on Mr. Garie's house: I didn't hear his name mentioned, but I heard one of the men, who appeared to be a ringleader, say, 'We're going up to Winter-street, to give a coat of tar and feathers to a white man, who is married to a nigger woman.' They can allude to none but him. How annoying that this accident should have happened just now, of all times. They ought to be warned."

"Oh, poor Emily!" cried Esther, bursting into tears; "it will kill her, I know it will; she is so ill. Some one must go and warn them. Let me try; the mob, even if I met them, surely would not assault a woman."

"You mustn't think of such a thing, Esther," exclaimed Mr. Walters; "the idea isn't to be entertained for a moment. You don't know what ruthless wretches they are. Your colour discovered you would find your sex but a trifling protection. I'd go, but it would be certain death to me: my black face would quickly obtain for me a passport to another world if I were discovered in the street just now."

"I'll go," calmly spoke Mr. Ellis. "I can't rest here and think of what they are exposed to. By skulking through bye-streets and keeping under the shadows of houses I may escape observation—at any rate, I must run the risk." And he began to button up his coat. "Don't let your mother know I'm gone; stick by her, my girl," said he, kissing Esther; "trust in God,—He'll protect me."

Esther hung sobbing on her father's neck. "Oh, father, father," said she, "I couldn't bear to see you go for any one but Emily and the children."

"I know it, dear," he replied; "it's my duty. Garie would do the same for me, I know, even at greater risk. Good-bye! good-bye!" And, disengaging himself from the weeping girl, he started on his errand of mercy.

Walking swiftly forwards, he passed over more than two-thirds of the way without the slightest interruption, the streets through which he passed being almost entirely deserted. He had arrived within a couple of squares of the Garies, when suddenly, on turning a corner, he found himself in the midst of a gang of ruffians.

"Here's a nigger! here's a nigger!" shouted two or three of them, almost simultaneously, making at the same time a rush at Mr. Ellis, who turned and ran, followed by the whole gang. Fear lent him wings, and he fast outstripped his pursuers, and would have entirely escaped, had he not turned into a street which unfortunately was closed at the other end. This he did not discover until it was too late to retrace his steps, his pursuers having already entered the street.

Looking for some retreat, he perceived he was standing near an unfinished building. Tearing off the boards that were nailed across the window, he vaulted into the room, knocking off his hat, which fell upon the pavement behind him. Scarcely had he groped his way to the staircase of the dwelling when he heard the footsteps of his pursuers.

"He can't have got through," exclaimed one of them, "the street is closed up at the end; he must be up here somewhere."

Lighting one of their torches, they began to look around them, and soon discovered the hat lying beneath the window.

"He's in here, boys; we've tree'd the 'coon," laughingly exclaimed one of the ruffians. "Let's after him."

Tearing off the remainder of the boards, one or two entered, opened the door from the inside, and gave admission to the rest.

Mr. Ellis mounted to the second story, followed by his pursuers; on he went, until he reached the attic, from which a ladder led to the roof. Ascending this, he drew it up after him, and found himself on the roof of a house that was entirely isolated.

The whole extent of the danger flashed upon him at once. Here he was completely hemmed in, without the smallest chance for escape. He approached the edge and looked over, but could discover nothing near enough to reach by a leap.

"I must sell my life dearly," he said. "God be my helper now—He is all I have to rely upon." And as he spoke, the great drops of sweat fell from his forehead. Espying a sheet of lead upon the roof, he rolled it into a club of tolerable thickness, and waited the approach of his pursuers.

"He's gone on the roof," he heard one of them exclaim, "and pulled the ladder up after him." Just then, a head emerged from the trap-door, the owner of which, perceiving Mr. Ellis, set up a shout of triumph.

"We've got him! we've got him!—here he is!" which cries were answered by the exultant voices of his comrades below.

An attempt was now made by one of them to gain the roof; but he immediately received a blow from Mr. Ellis that knocked him senseless into the arms of his companions. Another attempted the same feat, and met a similar fate.

This caused a parley as to the best mode of proceeding, which resulted in the simultaneous appearance of three of the rioters at the opening. Nothing daunted, Mr. Ellis attacked them with such fierceness and energy that they were forced to descend, muttering the direst curses. In a few moments another head appeared, at which Mr. Ellis aimed a blow of great force; and the club descended upon a hat placed upon a stick. Not meeting the resistance expected, it flew from his hand, and he was thrown forward, nearly falling down the doorway.

With a shout of triumph, they seized his arm, and held him firmly, until one or two of them mounted the roof.

"Throw him over! throw him over!" exclaimed some of the fiercest of the crowd. One or two of the more merciful endeavoured to interfere against killing him outright; but the frenzy of the majority triumphed, and they determined to cast him into the street below.

Mr. Ellis clung to the chimney, shrieking,—"Save me! save me!—Help! help! Will no one save me!" His cries were unheeded by the ruffians, and the people at the surrounding windows were unable to afford him any assistance, even if they were disposed to do so.

Despite his cries and resistance, they forced him to the edge of the roof; he clinging to them the while, and shrieking in agonized terror. Forcing off his hold, they thrust him forward and got him partially over the edge, where he clung calling frantically for aid. One of the villains, to make him loose his hold, struck on his fingers with the handle of a hatchet found on the roof; not succeeding in breaking his hold by these means, with, an oath he struck with the blade, severing two of the fingers from one hand and deeply mangling the other.

With a yell of agony, Mr. Ellis let go his hold, and fell upon a pile of rubbish below, whilst a cry of triumphant malignity went up from the crowd on the roof.

A gentleman and some of his friends kindly carried the insensible man into his house. "Poor fellow!" said he, "he is killed, I believe. What a gang of wretches. These things are dreadful; that such a thing can be permitted in a Christian city is perfectly appalling." The half-dressed family gathered around the mangled form of Mr. Ellis, and gave vent to loud expressions of sympathy. A doctor was quickly sent for, who stanched the blood that was flowing from his hands and head.

"I don't think he can live," said he, "the fall was too great. As far as I can judge, his legs and two of his ribs are broken. The best thing we can do, is to get him conveyed to the hospital; look in his pockets, perhaps we can find out who he is."

There was nothing found, however, that afforded the least clue to his name and residence; and he was, therefore, as soon as persons could be procured to assist, borne to the hospital, where his wounds were dressed, and the broken limbs set.



CHAPTER XXI.

More Horrors.

Unaware of the impending danger, Mr. Garie sat watching by the bedside of his wife. She had been quite ill; but on the evening of which we write, although nervous and wakeful, was much better. The bleak winds of the fast approaching winter dealt unkindly with her delicate frame, accustomed as she was to the soft breezes of her Southern home.

Mr. Garie had been sitting up looking at the fires in the lower part of the city. Not having been out all that day or the one previous, he knew nothing of the fearful state into which matters had fallen.

"Those lights are dying away, my dear," said he to his wife; "there must have been quite an extensive conflagration." Taking out his watch, he continued, "almost two o'clock; why, how late I've been sitting up. I really don't know whether it's worth while to go to bed or not, I should be obliged to get up again at five o'clock; I go to New York to-morrow, or rather to-day; there are some matters connected with Uncle John's will that require my personal attention. Dear old man, how suddenly he died."

"I wish, dear, you could put off your journey until I am better," said Mrs. Garie, faintly; "I do hate you to go just now."

"I would if I could, Emily; but it is impossible. I shall be back to-morrow, or the next day, at farthest. Whilst I'm there, I'll——"

"Hush!" interrupted Mrs. Garie, "stop a moment. Don't you hear a noise like the shouting of a great many people." "Oh, it's only the firemen," replied he; "as I was about to observe—"

"Hush!" cried she again. "Listen now, that don't sound like the firemen in the least." Mr. Garie paused as the sound of a number of voices became more distinct.

Wrapping his dressing-gown more closely about him, he walked into the front room, which overlooked the street. Opening the window, he saw a number of men—some bearing torches—coming rapidly in the direction of his dwelling. "I wonder what all this is for; what can it mean," he exclaimed.

They had now approached sufficiently near for him to understand their cries. "Down with the Abolitionist—down with the Amalgamationist! give them tar and feathers!"

"It's a mob—and that word Amalgamationist—can it be pointed at me? It hardly seems possible; and yet I have a fear that there is something wrong."

"What is it, Garie? What is the matter?" asked his wife, who, with a shawl hastily thrown across her shoulders, was standing pale and trembling by the window.

"Go in, Emily, my dear, for Heaven's sake; you'll get your death of cold in this bleak night air—go in; as soon as I discover the occasion of the disturbance, I'll come and tell you. Pray go in." Mrs. Garie retired a few feet from the window, and stood listening to the shouts in the street.

The rioters, led on evidently by some one who knew what he was about, pressed forward to Mr. Garie's house; and soon the garden in front was filled with the shouting crowd.

"What do you all want—why are you on my premises, creating this disturbance?" cried Mr. Garie.

"Come down and you'll soon find out. You white livered Abolitionist, come out, damn you! we are going to give you a coat of tar and feathers, and your black wench nine-and-thirty. Yes, come down—come down!" shouted several, "or we will come up after you."

"I warn you," replied Mr. Garie, "against any attempt at violence upon my person, family, or property. I forbid you to advance another foot upon the premises. If any man of you enters my house, I'll shoot him down as quick as I would a mad dog."

"Shut up your gap; none of your cussed speeches," said a voice in the crowd; "if you don't come down and give yourself up, we'll come in and take you—that's the talk, ain't it, boys?" A general shout of approval answered this speech, and several stones were thrown at Mr. Garie, one of which struck him on the breast.

Seeing the utter futility of attempting to parley with the infuriated wretches below, he ran into the room, exclaiming, "Put on some clothes, Emily! shoes first—quick—quick, wife!—your life depends upon it. I'll bring down the children and wake the servants. We must escape from the house—we are attacked by a mob of demons. Hurry, Emily! do, for God sake!"

Mr. Garie aroused the sleeping children, and threw some clothes upon them, over which he wrapped shawls or blankets, or whatever came to hand. Rushing into the next room, he snatched a pair of loaded pistols from the drawer of his dressing-stand, and then hurried his terrified wife and children down the stairs.

"This way, dear—this way!" he cried, leading on toward the back door; "out that way through the gate with the children, and into some of the neighbour's houses. I'll stand here to keep the way."

"No, no, Garie," she replied, frantically; "I won't go without you."

"You must!" he cried, stamping his foot impatiently; "this is no time to parley—go, or we shall all be murdered. Listen, they've broken in the door. Quick—quick! go on;" and as he spoke, he pressed her and the children out of the door, and closed it behind them.

Mrs. Garie ran down the garden, followed by the children; to her horror, she found the gate locked, and the key nowhere to be found.

"What shall we do?" she cried. "Oh, we shall all be killed!" and her limbs trembled beneath her with cold and terror. "Let us hide in here, mother," suggested Clarence, running toward the wood-house; "we'll be safe in there." Seeing that nothing better could be done, Mrs. Garie availed herself of the suggestion; and when she was fairly inside the place, fell fainting upon the ground.

As she escaped through the back door, the mob broke in at the front, and were confronting Mr. Garie, as he stood with his pistol pointed at them, prepared to fire.

"Come another step forward and I fire!" exclaimed he, resolutely; but those in the rear urged the advance of those in front, who approached cautiously nearer and nearer their victim. Fearful of opening the door behind him, lest he should show the way taken by his retreating wife, he stood uncertain how to act; a severe blow from a stone, however, made him lose all reflection, and he immediately fired. A loud shriek followed the report of his pistol, and a shower of stones was immediately hurled upon him.

He quickly fired again, and was endeavouring to open the door to effect his escape, when a pistol was discharged close to his head and he fell forward on the entry floor lifeless.

All this transpired in a few moments, and in the semi-darkness of the entry. Rushing forward over his lifeless form, the villains hastened upstairs in search of Mrs. Garie. They ran shouting through the house, stealing everything valuable that they could lay their hands upon, and wantonly destroying the furniture; they would have fired the house, but were prevented by McCloskey, who acted as leader of the gang.

For two long hours they ransacked the house, breaking all they could not carry off, drinking the wine in Mr. Garie's cellar, and shouting and screaming like so many fiends.

Mrs. Garie and the children lay crouching with terror in the wood-house, listening to the ruffians as they went through the yard cursing her and her husband and uttering the direst threats of what they would do should she fall into their hands. Once she almost fainted on hearing one of them propose opening the wood-house, to see if there was anything of value in it—but breathed again when they abandoned it as not worth their attention.

The children crouched down beside her—scarcely daring to whisper, lest they should attract the attention of their persecutors. Shivering with cold they drew closer around them the blanket with which they had been providentially provided.

"Brother, my feet are so cold," sobbed little Em. "I can't feel my toes. Oh, I'm so cold!"

"Put your feet closer to me, sissy," answered her brother, baring himself to enwrap her more thoroughly; "put my stockings on over yours;" and, as well as they were able in the dark, he drew his stockings on over her benumbed feet. "There, sis, that's better," he whispered, with an attempt at cheerfulness, "now you'll be warmer."

Just then Clarence heard a groan from his mother, so loud indeed that it would have been heard without but for the noise and excitement around the house—and feeling for her in the dark, he asked, "Mother, are you worse? are you sick?"

A groan was her only answer.

"Mother, mother," he whispered, "do speak, please do!" and he endeavoured to put his arm around her.

"Don't, dear—don't," said she, faintly, "just take care of your sister—you can't do me any good—don't speak, dear, the men will hear you."

Reluctantly the frightened child turned his attention again to his little sister; ever and anon suppressed groans from his mother would reach his ears—at last he heard a groan even fierce in its intensity; and then the sounds grew fainter and fainter until they entirely ceased. The night to the poor shivering creatures in their hiding place seemed interminably long, and the sound of voices in the house had not long ceased when the faint light of day pierced their cheerless shelter.

Hearing the voices of some neighbours in the yard, Clarence hastened out, and seizing one of the ladies by the dress, cried imploringly, "Do come to my mother, she's sick."

"Why, where did you come from, chil?" said the lady, with a start of astonishment. "Where have you been?"

"In there," he answered, pointing to the wood-house. "Mother and sister are in there."

The lady, accompanied by one or two others, hastened to the wood-house.

"Where is she?" asked the foremost, for in the gloom of the place she could not perceive anything.

"Here," replied Clarence, "she's lying here." On opening a small window, they saw Mrs. Garie lying in a corner stretched upon the boards, her head supported by some blocks. "She's asleep," said Clarence. "Mother—mother," but there came no answer. "MOTHER," said he, still louder, but yet there was no response.

Stepping forward, one of the females opened the shawl, which was held firmly in the clenched hands of Mrs. Garie—and there in her lap partially covered by her scanty nightdress, was discovered a new-born babe, who with its mother had journeyed in the darkness, cold, and night, to the better land, that they might pour out their woes upon the bosom of their Creator.

The women gazed in mournful silence on the touching scene before them. Clarence was on his knees, regarding with fear and wonder the unnatural stillness of his mother—the child had never before looked on death, and could not recognize its presence. Laying his hand on her cold cheek, he cried, with faltering voice, "Mother, can't you speak?" but there was no answering light in the fixed stare of those glassy eyes, and the lips of the dead could not move. "Why don't she speak?" he asked.

"She can't, my dear; you must come away and leave her. She's better off, my darling—she's dead."

Then there was a cry of grief sprung up from the heart of that orphan boy, that rang in those women's ears for long years after; it was the first outbreak of a loving childish heart pierced with life's bitterest grief—a mother's loss.

The two children were kindly taken into the house of some benevolent neighbour, as the servants had all fled none knew whither. Little Em was in a profound stupor—the result of cold and terror, and it was found necessary to place her under the care of a physician.

After they had all gone, an inquest was held by the coroner, and a very unsatisfactory and untruthful verdict pronounced—one that did not at all coincide with the circumstances of the case, but such a one as might have been expected where there was a great desire to screen the affair from public scrutiny.



CHAPTER XXII.

An Anxious Day.

Esther Ellis, devoured with anxiety respecting the safety of her father and the Garies, paced with impatient step up and down the drawing-room. Opening the window, she looked to see if she could discover any signs of day. "It's pitchy dark," she exclaimed, "and yet almost five o'clock. Father has run a fearful risk. I hope nothing has happened to him."

"I trust not. I think he's safe enough somewhere," said Mr. Walters. "He's no doubt been very cautious, and avoided meeting any one—don't worry yourself, my child, 'tis most likely he remained with them wherever they went; probably they are at the house of some of their neighbours."

"I can't help feeling dreadfully oppressed and anxious," continued she. "I wish he would come."

Whilst she was speaking, her mother entered the room. "Any news of your father?" she asked, in a tone of anxiety.

Esther endeavoured to conceal her own apprehensions, and rejoined, in as cheerful tone as she could assume—"Not yet, mother—it's too dark for us to expect him yet—he'll remain most likely until daylight."

"He shouldn't have gone had I been here—he's no business to expose himself in this way."

"But, mother," interrupted Esther, "only think of it—the safety of Emily and the children were depending on it—we mustn't be selfish."

"I know we oughtn't to be, my child," rejoined her mother, "but it's natural to the best of us—sometimes we can't help it." Five—six—seven o'clock came and passed, and still there were no tidings of Mr. Ellis.

"I can bear this suspense no longer," exclaimed Esther. "If father don't come soon, I shall go and look for him. I've tried to flatter myself that he's safe; but I'm almost convinced now that something has happened to him, or he'd have come back long before this—he knows how anxious we would all be about him. I've tried to quiet mother and Caddy by suggesting various reasons for his delay, but, at the same time, I cannot but cherish the most dismal forebodings. I must go and look for him."

"No, no, Esther—stay where you are at present—leave that to me. I'll order a carriage and go up to Garie's immediately."

"Well, do, Mr. Walters, and hurry back: won't you?" she rejoined, as he left the apartment.

In a few moments he returned, prepared to start, and was speedily driven to Winter-street. He found a group of people gathered before the gate, gazing into the house. "The place has been attacked," said he, as he walked towards the front door—picking his way amidst fragments of furniture, straw, and broken glass. At the entrance of the house he was met by Mr. Balch, Mr. Garie's lawyer.

"This is a shocking affair, Walters," said he, extending his hand—he was an old friend of Mr. Walters.

"Very shocking, indeed," he replied, looking around. "But where is Garie? We sent to warn them of this. I hope they are all safe."

"Safe!" repeated Mr. Balch, with an air of astonishment. "Why, man, haven't you heard?"

"Heard what?" asked Mr. Walters, looking alarmed.

"That Mr. and Mrs. Garie are dead—both were killed last night."

The shock of this sudden and totally unexpected disclosure was such that Mr. Walters leaned against the doorway for support. "It can't be possible," he exclaimed at last, "not dead!" "Yes, dead, I regret to say—he was shot through the head—and she died in the wood-house, of premature confinement, brought on by fright and exposure."

"And the children?" gasped Walters.

"They are safe, with some neighbours—it's heart-breaking to hear them weeping for their mother." Here a tear glistened in the eye of Mr. Balch, and ran down his cheek. Brushing it off, he continued: "The coroner has just held an inquest, and they gave a most truthless verdict: nothing whatever is said of the cause of the murder, or of the murderers; they simply rendered a verdict—death caused by a wound from a pistol-shot, and hers—death from exposure. There seemed the greatest anxiety on the part of the coroner to get the matter over as quickly as possible, and few or no witnesses were examined. But I'm determined to sift the matter to the bottom; if the perpetrators of the murder can be discovered, I'll leave no means untried to find them."

"Do you know any one who sat on the inquest?" asked Walters.

"Yes, one," was the reply, "Slippery George, the lawyer; you are acquainted with him—George Stevens. I find he resides next door."

"Do you know," here interrupted Mr. Walters, "that I've my suspicions that that villain is at the bottom of these disturbances or at least has a large share in them. I have a paper in my possession, in his handwriting—it is in fact a list of the places destroyed by the mob last night—it fell into the hands of a friend of mine by accident—he gave it to me—it put me on my guard; and when the villains attacked my house last night they got rather a warmer reception than they bargained for."

"You astonish me! Is it possible your place was assaulted also?" asked Mr. Balch.

"Indeed, it was—and a hot battle we had of it for a short space of time. But how did you hear of this affair?"

"I was sent for by I can't tell whom. When I came and saw what had happened, I immediately set about searching for a will that I made for Mr. Garie a few weeks since; it was witnessed and signed at my office, and he brought it away with him. I can't discover it anywhere. I've ransacked every cranny. It must have been carried off by some one. You are named in it conjointly with myself as executor. All the property is left to her, poor thing, and his children. We must endeavour to find it somewhere—at any rate the children are secure; they are the only heirs—he had not, to my knowledge, a single white relative. But let us go in and see the bodies."

They walked together into the back room where the bodies were lying. Mrs. Garie was stretched upon the sofa, covered with a piano cloth; and her husband was laid upon a long table, with a silk window-curtain thrown across his face.

The two gazed in silence on the face of Mr. Garie—the brow was still knit, the eyes staring vacantly, and the marble whiteness of the face unbroken, save by a few gouts of blood near a small blue spot over the eye where the bullet had entered.

"He was the best-hearted creature in the world," said Walters, as he re-covered the face.

"Won't you look at her?" asked Mr. Balch.

"No, no—I can't," continued Walters; "I've seen horrors enough for one morning. I've another thing on my mind! A friend who assisted in the defence of my house started up here last night, to warn them of their danger, and when I left home he had not returned: it's evident he hasn't been here, and I greatly fear some misfortune has befallen him. Where are the children? Poor little orphans, I must see them before I go."

Accompanied by Mr. Balch, he called at the house where Clarence and Em had found temporary shelter. The children ran to him as soon as he entered the room. "Oh! Mr. Walters," sobbed Clarence, "my mother's dead—my mother's dead!"

"Hush, dears—hush!" he replied, endeavouring to restrain his own tears, as he took little Em in his arms. "Don't cry, my darling," said he, as she gave rent to a fresh outburst of tears.

"Oh, Mr. Walters!" said she, still sobbing, "she was all the mother I had."

Mr. Balch here endeavoured to assist in pacifying the two little mourners.

"Why don't father come?" asked Clarence. "Have you seen him, Mr. Walters?"

Mr. Walters was quite taken aback by this inquiry, which clearly showed that the children were still unaware of the extent of their misfortunes. "I've seen him, my child," said he, evasively; "you'll see him before long." And fearful of further questioning, he left the house, promising soon to return.

Unable longer to endure her anxiety respecting her father, Esther determined not to await the return of Mr. Walters, which had already been greatly delayed, but to go herself in search of him. It had occurred to her that, instead of returning from the Garies direct to them, he had probably gone to his own home to see if it had been disturbed during the night.

Encouraged by this idea, without consulting any one, she hastily put on her cloak and bonnet, and took the direction of her home. Numbers of people were wending their way to the lower part of the city, to gratify their curiosity by gazing upon the havoc made by the rioters during the past night.

Esther found her home a heap of smoking ruins; some of the neighbours who recognized her gathered round, expressing their sympathy and regret. But she seemed comparatively careless respecting the loss of their property; and in answer to their kind expressions, could only ask, "Have you seen my father?—do you know where my father is?"

None, however, had seen him; and after gazing for a short time upon the ruins of what was once a happy home, she turned mournfully away, and walked back to Mr. Walters's.

"Has father come?" she inquired, as soon as the door was opened. "Not yet!" was the discouraging reply: "and Mr. Walters, he hasn't come back, either, miss!"

Esther stood for some moments hesitating whether to go in, or to proceed in her search. The voice of her mother calling her from the stairway decided her, and she went in.

Mrs. Ellis and Caddy wept freely on learning from Esther the destruction of their home. This cause of grief, added to the anxiety produced by the prolonged absence of Mr. Ellis, rendered them truly miserable.

Whilst they were condoling with one another, Mr. Walters returned. He was unable to conceal his fears that something had happened to Mr. Ellis, and frankly told them so; he also gave a detailed account of what had befallen the Garies, to the great horror and grief of all.

As soon as arrangements could be made, Mr. Walters and Esther set out in search of her father. All day long they went from place to place, but gained no tidings of him; and weary and disheartened they returned at night, bringing with them the distressing intelligence of their utter failure to procure any information respecting him.



CHAPTER XXIII.

The Lost One Found.

On the day succeeding the events described in our last chapter, Mr. Walters called upon Mr. Balch, for the purpose of making the necessary preparations for the interment of Mr. and Mrs. Garie.

"I think," said Mr. Balch, "we had better bury them in the Ash-grove cemetery; it's a lovely spot—all my people are buried there."

"The place is fine enough, I acknowledge," rejoined Mr. Walters; "but I much doubt if you can procure the necessary ground."

"Oh, yes, you can!" said Mr. Balch; "there are a number of lots still unappropriated."

"That may very likely be so; but are you sure we can get one if we apply?"

"Of course we can—what is to prevent?" asked Mr. Balch.

"You forget," replied Mr. Walters, "that Mrs. Garie was a coloured woman."

"If it wasn't such a solemn subject I really should be obliged to laugh at you, Walters," rejoined Mr. Balch, with a smile—"you talk ridiculously. What can her complexion have to do with her being buried there, I should like to know?"

"It has everything to do with it! Can it be possible you are not aware that they won't even permit a coloured person to walk through the ground, much less to be buried there!"

"You astonish me, Walters! Are you sure of it?"

"I give you my word of honour it is so! But why should you be astonished at such treatment of the dead, when you see how they conduct themselves towards the living? I have a friend," continued Mr. Walters, "who purchased a pew for himself and family in a white-church, and the deacons actually removed the floor from under it, to prevent his sitting there. They refuse us permission to kneel by the side of the white communicants at the Lord's Supper, and give us separate pews in obscure corners of their churches. All this you know—why, then, be surprised that they carry their prejudices into their graveyards?—the conduct is all of a piece."

"Well, Walters, I know the way things are conducted in our churches is exceedingly reprehensible; but I really did not know they stretched their prejudices to such an extent."

"I assure you they do, then," resumed Mr. Walters; "and in this very matter you'll find I'm correct. Ask Stormley, the undertaker, and hear what he'll tell you. Oh! a case in point.—About six months ago, one of our wealthiest citizens lost by death an old family servant, a coloured woman, a sort of half-housekeeper—half-friend. She resembled him so much, that it was generally believed she was his sister. Well, he tried to have her laid in their family vault, and it was refused; the directors thought it would be creating a bad precedent—they said, as they would not sell lots to coloured persons, they couldn't consistently permit them to be buried in those of the whites."

"Then Ash-grove must be abandoned; and in lieu of that what can you propose?" asked Mr. Balch.

"I should say we can't do better than lay them in the graveyard of the coloured Episcopal church."

"Let it be there, then. You will see to the arrangements, Walters. I shall have enough on my hands for the present, searching for that will: I have already offered a large reward for it—I trust it may turn up yet."

"Perhaps it may," rejoined Mr. Walters; "we must hope so, at least. I've brought the children to my house, where they are under the care of a young lady who was a great friend of their mother's; though it seems like putting too much upon the poor young creature, to throw them upon her for consolation, when she is almost distracted with her own griefs. I think I mentioned to you yesterday, that her father is missing; and, to add to their anxieties, their property has been all destroyed by the rioters. They have a home with me for the present, and may remain there as long as they please."

"Oh! I remember you told me something of them yesterday; and now I come to think of it, I saw in the Journal this morning, that a coloured man was lying at the hospital very much injured, whose name they could not ascertain. Can it be possible that he is the man you are in search of?"

"Let me see the article," asked Mr. Walters. Mr. Balch handed him the paper, and pointed out the paragraph in question.

"I'll go immediately to the hospital," said he, as he finished reading, "and see if it is my poor friend; I have great fears that it is. You'll excuse my leaving so abruptly—I must be off immediately."

On hastening to the hospital, Mr. Walters arrived just in time to be admitted to the wards; and on being shown the person whose name they had been unable to discover, he immediately recognized his friend.

"Ellis, my poor fellow," he exclaimed, springing forward.

"Stop, stop," cried the attendant, laying his hand upon Mr. Walters's shoulder; "he is hovering between life and death, the least agitation might be fatal to him. The doctor says, if he survives the night, he may probably get better; but he has small chance of life. I hardly think he will last twelve hours more, he's been dreadfully beaten; there are two or three gashes on his head, his leg is broken, and his hands have been so much cut, that the surgeon thinks they'll never be of any use to him, even if he recovers."

"What awful intelligence for his family," said Mr. Walters; "they are already half distracted about him."

Mr. Ellis lay perfectly unconscious of what was passing around him, and his moans were deeply affecting to hear, unable to move but one limb—he was the picture of helplessness and misery.

"It's time to close; we don't permit visitors to remain after this hour," said the attendant; "come to-morrow, you can see your friend, and remain longer with him;" and bidding Mr. Walters good morning, he ushered him from the ward.

"How shall I ever find means to break this to the girls and their mother?" said he, as he left the gates of the hospital; "it will almost kill them; really I don't know what I shall say to them."

He walked homeward with hesitating steps, and on arriving at his house, he paused awhile before the door, mustering up courage to enter; at last he opened it with the air of a man who had a disagreeable duty to perform, and had made up his mind to go through with it. "Tell Miss Ellis to come to the drawing-room," said he to the servant; "merely say she's wanted—don't say I've returned."

He waited but a few moments before Esther made her appearance, looking sad and anxious. "Oh, it's you," she said, with some surprise. "You have news of father?"

"Yes, Esther, I have news; but I am sorry to say not of a pleasant character."

"Oh, Mr. Walters, nothing serious I hope has happened to him?" she asked, in an agitated tone.

"I'm sorry to say there has, Esther; he has met with an accident—a sad and severe one—he's been badly wounded." Esther turned deadly pale at this announcement, and leaned upon the table for support.

"I sent for you, Esther," continued Mr. Walters, "in preference to your mother, because I knew you to be courageous in danger, and I trusted you would be equally so in misfortune. Your father's case is a very critical one—very. It appears that after leaving here, he fell into the hands of the rioters, by whom he was shockingly beaten. He was taken to the hospital, where he now remains."

"Oh, let me go to him at once, do, Mr. Walters!

"My dear child, it is impossible for you to see him to-day, it is long past the visiting hour; moreover, I don't think him in a state that would permit the least agitation. To-morrow you can go with me." Esther did not weep, her heart was too full for tears. With a pale face, and trembling lips, she said to Mr. Walters, "God give us strength to bear up under these misfortunes; we are homeless—almost beggars—our friends have been murdered, and my father is now trembling on the brink of the grave; such troubles as these," said she, sinking into a chair, "are enough to crush any one."

"I know it, Esther; I know it, my child. I sympathize with you deeply. All that I have is at your disposal. You may command me in anything. Give yourself no uneasiness respecting the future of your mother and family, let the result to your father be what it may: always bear in mind that, next to God, I am your best friend. I speak thus frankly to you, Esther, because I would not have you cherish any hopes of your father's recovery; from his appearance, I should say there is but little, if any. I leave to you, my good girl, the task of breaking this sad news to your mother and sister; I would tell them, but I must confess, Esther, I'm not equal to it, the events of the last day or two have almost overpowered me."

Esther's lips quivered again, as she repeated the words, "Little hope; did the doctor say that?" she asked.

"I did not see the doctor," replied he; "perhaps there may be a favourable change during the night. I'd have you prepare for the worst, whilst you hope for the best. Go now and try to break it as gently as possible to your mother."

Esther left the room with heavy step, and walked to the chamber where her mother was sitting. Caddy also was there, rocking backwards and forwards in a chair, in an earnest endeavour to soothe to sleep little Em, who was sitting in her lap.

"Who was it, Esther?" asked, her mother.

"Mr. Walters," she hesitatingly answered.

"Was it? Well, has he heard anything of your father?" she asked, anxiously.

Esther turned away her head, and remained silent.

"Why don't you answer?" asked her mother, with an alarmed look; "if you know anything of him, for God's sake tell me. Whatever it may be, it can't be worse than I expect; is he dead?" she asked.

"No—no, mother, he's not dead; but he's sick, very sick, mother. Mr. Walters found him in the hospital."

"In the hospital! how came he there? Don't deceive me, Esther, there's something behind all this; are you telling me the truth? is he still alive?"

"Mother, believe me, he is still alive, but how long he may remain so, God only knows." Mrs. Ellis, at this communication, leant her head upon the table, and wept uncontrollably. Caddy put down her little charge, and stood beside her mother, endeavouring to soothe her, whilst unable to restrain her own grief.

"Let us go to him, Esther," said her mother, rising; "I must see him—let us go at once."

"We can't, mother; Mr. Walters says it's impossible for us to see him to-day; they don't admit visitors after a certain hour in the morning."

"They must admit me: I'll tell them I'm his wife; when they know that, they can't refuse me." Quickly dressing themselves, Esther, Caddy, and their mother were about to start for the hospital, when Mr. Walters entered.

"Where are you all going?" he asked.

"To the hospital," answered Mrs. Ellis; "I must see my husband."

"I have just sent there, Ellen, to make arrangements to hear of him every hour. You will only have the grief of being refused admission if you go; they're exceedingly strict—no one is admitted to visit a patient after a certain hour; try and compose yourselves; sit down, I want to talk to you for a little while."

Mrs. Ellis mechanically obeyed; and on sitting down, little Em crept into her lap, and nestled in her arms.

"Ellen," said Mr. Walters, taking a seat by her; "it's useless to disguise the fact that Ellis is in a precarious situation—how long he may be sick it is impossible to say; as soon as it is practicable, should he get better, we will bring him here. You remember, Ellen, that years ago, when I was young and poor, Ellis often befriended me—now 'tis my turn. You must all make up your minds to remain with me—for ever, if you like—for the present, whether you like it or not. I'm going to be dreadfully obstinate, and have my own way completely about the matter. Here I've a large house, furnished from top to bottom with every comfort. Often I've wandered through it, and thought myself a selfish old fellow to be surrounded with so much luxury, and keep it entirely to myself. God has blessed me with abundance, and to what better use can it be appropriated than the relief of my friends? Now, Ellen, you shall superintend the whole of the establishment, Esther shall nurse her father, Caddy shall stir up the servants, and I'll look on and find my happiness in seeing you all happy. Now, what objection can you urge against that arrangement?" concluded he, triumphantly.

"Why, we shall put you to great inconvenience, and place ourselves under an obligation we can never repay," answered Mrs. Ellis.

"Don't despair of that—never mind the obligation; try and be as cheerful as you can; to-morrow we shall see Ellis, and perhaps find him better; let us at least hope for the best."

Esther looked with grateful admiration at Mr. Walters, as he left the room. "What a good heart he has, mother," said she, as he closed the door behind him; "just such a great tender heart as one should expect to find in so fine a form."

Mrs. Ellis and her daughters were the first who were found next day, at the office of the doorkeeper of the hospital waiting an opportunity to see their sick friends.

"You're early, ma'am," said a little bald-headed official, who sat at his desk fronting the door; "take a chair near the fire—it's dreadful cold this morning."

"Very cold," replied Esther, taking a seat beside her mother; "how long will it be before we can go in?"

"Oh, you've good an hour to wait—the doctor hasn't come yet," replied the door-keeper. "How is my husband?" tremblingly inquired Mrs. Ellis.

"Who is your husband?—you don't know his number, do you? Never know names here—go by numbers."

"We don't know the number," rejoined Esther; "my father's name is Ellis; he was brought here two or three nights since—he was beaten by the mob."

"Oh, yes; I know now who you mean—number sixty—bad case that, shocking bad case—hands chopped—head smashed—leg broke; he'll have to cross over, I guess—make a die of it, I'm afraid."

Mrs. Ellis shuddered, and turned pale, as the man coolly discussed her husband's injuries, and their probable fatal termination. Caddy, observing her agitation, said, "Please, sir, don't talk of it; mother can't bear it."

The man looked at them compassionately for a few moments—then continued: "You mustn't think me hard-hearted—I see so much of these things, that I can't feel them as others do. This is a dreadful thing to you, no doubt, but it's an every-day song to me—people are always coming here mangled in all sorts of ways—so, you see, I've got used to it—in fact, I'd rather miss 'em now if they didn't come. I've sat in this seat every day for almost twenty years;" and he looked on the girls and their mother as he gave them this piece of information as if he thought they ought to regard him henceforth with great reverence.

Not finding them disposed to converse, the doorkeeper resumed the newspaper he was reading when they entered, and was soon deeply engrossed in a horrible steam-boat accident.

The sound of wheels in the courtyard attracting his attention, he looked up, and remarked: "Here's the doctor—as soon as he has walked the wards you'll be admitted."

Mrs. Ellis and her daughters turned round as the door opened, and, to their great joy, recognized Doctor Burdett.

"How d'ye do?" said he, extending his hand to Mrs. Ellis—"what's the matter? Crying!" he continued, looking at their tearful faces; "what has happened?"

"Oh, doctor," said Esther, "father's lying here, very much injured; and they think he'll die," said she, giving way to a fresh burst of grief.

"Very much injured—die—how is this?—I knew nothing of it—I haven't been here before this week."

Esther hereupon briefly related the misfortunes that had befallen her father.

"Dear me—dear me," repeated the kind old doctor.

"There, my dear; don't fret—he'll get better, my child—I'll take him in hand at once. My dear Mrs. Ellis, weeping won't do the least good, and only make you sick yourself. Stop, do now—I'll go and see him immediately, and as soon as possible you shall be admitted."

They had not long to wait before a message came from Doctor Burdett, informing them that they could now be permitted to see the sufferer.

"You must control yourselves," said the doctor to the sobbing women, as he met them at the door; "you mustn't do anything to agitate him—his situation is extremely critical."

The girls and their mother followed him to the bedside of Mr. Ellis, who, ghastly pale, lay before them, apparently unconscious.

Mrs. Ellis gave but one look at her husband, and, with a faint cry, sank fainting upon the floor. The noise partially aroused him; he turned his head, and, after an apparent effort, recognized his daughters standing beside him: he made a feeble attempt to raise his mutilated hands, and murmured faintly, "You've come at last!" then closing his eyes, he dropped his arms, as if exhausted by the effort.

Esther knelt beside him, and pressed a kiss on his pale face. "Father!—father!" said she, softly. He opened his eyes again, and a smile of pleasure broke over his wan face, and lighted up his eyes, as he feebly said, "God bless you, darlings! I thought you'd never come. Where's mother and Caddy?"

"Here," answered Esther, "here, by me; your looks frightened her so, that she's fainted." Doctor Burdett here interposed, and said: "You must all go now; he's too weak to bear more at present."

"Let me stay with him a little longer," pleaded Esther.

"No, my child, it's impossible," he continued; "besides, your mother will need your attention;" and, whilst he spoke, he led her into an adjoining room, where the others had preceded her.



CHAPTER XXIV.

Charlie Distinguishes Himself.

Charlie had now been many weeks under the hospitable roof of Mrs. Bird, improving in health and appearance. Indeed, it would have been a wonder if he had not, as the kind mistress of the mansion seemed to do nought else, from day to day, but study plans for his comfort and pleasure. There was one sad drawback upon the contentment of the dear old lady, and that was her inability to procure Charlie's admission to the academy.

One morning Mr. Whately called upon her, and, throwing himself into a chair, exclaimed: "It's all to no purpose; their laws are as unalterable as those of the Medes and Persians—arguments and entreaty are equally thrown away upon them; I've been closeted at least half a dozen times with each director; and as all I can say won't make your protege a shade whiter, I'm afraid his admission to the academy must be given up."

"It's too bad," rejoined Mrs. Bird. "And who, may I ask, were the principal opposers?"

"They all opposed it, except Mr. Weeks and Mr. Bentham."

"Indeed!—why they are the very ones that I anticipated would go against it tooth and nail. And Mr. Glentworth—surely he was on our side?"

"He!—why, my dear madam, he was the most rabid of the lot. With his sanctified face and canting tongue!"

"I'm almost ashamed to own it—but it's the truth, and I shouldn't hesitate to tell it—I found the most pious of the directors the least accessible; as to old Glentworth, he actually talked to me as if I was recommending the committal of some horrid sin. I'm afraid I shall be set down by him as a rabid Abolitionist, I got so warm on the subject. I've cherished as strong prejudices against coloured people as any one; but I tell you, seeing how contemptible it makes others appear, has gone a great way towards eradicating it in me. I found myself obliged to use the same arguments against it that are used by the Abolitionists, and in endeavouring to convince others of the absurdity of their prejudices, I convinced myself."

"I'd set my heart upon it," said Mrs. Bird, in a tone of regret; "but I suppose I'll have to give it up. Charlie don't know I've made application for his admission, and has been asking me to let him go. A great many of the boys who attend there have become acquainted with him, and it was only yesterday that Mr. Glentworth's sons were teasing me to consent to his beginning there the next term. The boys," concluded she, "have better hearts than their parents."

"Oh, I begin to believe it's all sham, this prejudice; I'm getting quite disgusted with myself for having had it—or rather thinking I had it. As for saying it is innate, or that there is any natural antipathy to that class, it's all perfect folly; children are not born with it, or why shouldn't they shrink from a black nurse or playmate? It's all bosh," concluded he, indignantly, as he brought his cane down with a rap.

"Charlie's been quite a means of grace to you," laughingly rejoined Mrs. Bird, amused at his vehemence of manner. "Well, I'm going to send him to Sabbath-school next Sunday; and, if there is a rebellion against his admission there, I shall be quite in despair."

It is frequently the case, that we are urged by circumstances to the advocacy of a measure in which we take but little interest, and of the propriety of which we are often very sceptical; but so surely as it is just in itself, in our endeavours to convert others we convince ourselves; and, from lukewarm apologists, we become earnest advocates. This was just Mr. Whately's case: he had begun to canvass for the admission of Charlie with a doubtful sense of its propriety, and in attempting to overcome the groundless prejudices of others, he was convicted of his own.

Happily, in his case, conviction was followed by conversion, and as he walked home from Mrs. Bird's, he made up his mind that, if they attempted to exclude Charlie from the Sabbath-school, he would give them a piece of his mind, and then resign his superintendency of it.

On arriving at home, he found waiting for him a young lady, who was formerly a member of his class in the Sabbath-school. "I've come," said she, "to consult you about forming an adult class in our school for coloured persons. We have a girl living with us, who would be very glad to attend, and she knows two or three others. I'll willingly take the class myself. I've consulted the pastor and several others, and no one seems to anticipate any objections from the scholars, if we keep them on a separate bench, and do not mix them up with the white children."

"I'm delighted to hear you propose it," answered Mr. Whately, quite overjoyed at the opening it presented, "the plan meets my warmest approval. I decidedly agree with you in the propriety of our making some effort for the elevation and instruction of this hitherto neglected class—any aid I can render——"

"You astonish me," interrupted Miss Cass, "though I must say very agreeably. You were the last person from whom I thought of obtaining any countenance. I did not come to you until armed with the consent of almost all the parties interested, because from you I anticipated considerable opposition," and in her delight, the young girl grasped Mr. Whately's hand, and shook it very heartily.

"Oh, my opinions relative to coloured people have lately undergone considerable modification; in fact," said he, with some little confusion, "quite a thorough revolution. I don't, think we have quite done our duty by these people. Well, well, we must make the future atone for the past."

Miss Cass had entered upon her project with all the enthusiasm of youth, and being anxious that her class, "in point of numbers," should make a presentable appearance, had drafted into it no less a person than Aunt Comfort.

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