« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
vard, who realize that it is a breach of eti- der its charge two weekly prayer-meetings
her graduates; and of the class of 1822,
scheme. The Academies recently estab- moral and the Christian influences which lished at St. Johnsbury, Vermont, and at have made her first century illustrious are Hallowell, Maine, are in certain respects still her possessions. That her second cencopies of the Andover school; and no west- tury, therefore, may be even more fruitful ern school claims for itself a higher honor than her first in the training of young men than that of being the Phillips Academy during their most susceptible years in clear, of the West.”
accurate thinking and noble living, is the Such is the Phillips Academy of the past. hope of every friend of the higher education. But the scholarship and the discipline, the
C. F. Thwing.
THE ADVENTURES OF AN ORGAN-GRINDER. WHILE living in California, I became the water! The thought flashed through acquainted with the characters of this his tired brain, making him dizzy for the sketch. The passages in their lives which moment; but he turned and walked wearily are bound together by acts of sympathy toward the wharf, reasoning weakly that and kindheartedness, I lay before my read- God could not blame him greatly; he had ers; other passages not so wholesome are tried this life and found it a failure; his lost in the great whirlpool of time, which, parents were dead, and he had long since though it swallows up many good hopes, forfeited all claims to friendship and kin. kindly draws down into oblivion much of ship. Other people had homes, and friends wretchedness, profligacy and crime. to care for them; everybody else had hands,
Jack, when I knew him, was a sort of too, and here he had these make-believe fragment of life himself, having had both wooden ones, that some charitable persons of his hands shot away at the battle of in New Orleans had purchased for him. He Thibackanville, Louisiana, in our late war; sat down on a pile of lumber, and wondered and having been taken up by circumstances confusedly why folks were not made like which we will not now particularize, after he some of the lower orders of animal life, so left the City Hospital in New Orleans, he that when any of their limbs were torn had drifted along by one wave and another, away by violence, others grew in their until he landed in San Francisco, Califor- places. nia, homeless, penniless, hungry and forlorn. In the years immediately following the He wandered on, up one street and down close of the war, he had found no lack of another, and on, and on, sad and miserable sympathy; now it was an old story; a cripand despondent, getting never a word nor pled soldier was no rarity. “ How do we even a kind look, until he became utterly know you lost your hands that way?” he Hopeless. The pension to which he was had been asked only the day before, when justly entitled by reason of his wounds he had timorously begged for something to received in the United States' service, was
Why don't you go to some governnot awarded him on account of some infor- ment institution, where you will be cared mality in his enlistment as a soldier (he was for?” He knew there were such places only a boy then), so that he was left with where a grateful country cared for her helpout any support whatever.
less sons who had sacrificed all but life on One day, in the midst of his loneliness, her altar; there was one in Maine where he the thought came to him, “I'll kill myself.” was born, but how was he to get there? and But how? He had neither rope, nor fire. when there, how would he get the influence arms, nor knife; if he had, he could pawn of some member of Congress from that them for bread; if he had money he would State, to try to induce the government to buy food rather than poison. There was recognize his claim ?
“ This world is played out' for me,” he place to which he was led was odd enough. still soliloquised ; he would try another; It was a small room in a dilapidated buildand starting to walk along to a place which ing, at the end of a miserable alley leading seemed to be deserted, a sweet voice singing from one of the back streets of the town. attracted him. He looked listlessly around. On a repulsive looking pile of rags and It was a little boy with a tambourine, with straw, lay the victim of yesterday's acciwhich he kept time while he sang :.
“ See! Pedro; here's some one to carry the "God with earthly ills entwineth Hope and comfort from above;
organ; he's a nice man, I know, and he Everywhere His mercy shineth,
hasn't got any hands of his own; and he God is wisdom, God is love."
feels very bad; but he's strong. I can turn, Jack listened and sighed drearily. “Even and we'll make lots of moneys." this child has a way of earning his bread,” “ Buen dia, amigo mio!” said the poor man, he said aloud. “God has given him a voice looking up into Jack's face. It was Spanto sing. He has given me nothing !” ish for “Good day, my friend !”
“ What did you say?" asked the child; “He is an Americano,” explained the boy, “ did you speak to me?”
“ he doesn't know Spanish." Jack shook his head sadly.
But Pedro could speak English pretty “Give me a bit,” said the little fellow, well; and soon the few preliminaries were holding out his tambourine.
settled; Jack in the meantime somewhat “I have no bit, child; I have nothing, appeasing his hunger by sharing the scanty nothing ; ” Jack answered piteously. dinner little Chispa brought from an old
The little boy sang again, “ Hope and table drawer. Then calling to mind his confort, hope and comfort from above," hospital experience, Jack directed Chispa with a voice like a bird; and he trilled an how to apply a wet bandage to Pedro's inimpromptu refrain,“ hope, hope, hope,” jured ankle, for the limb was not broken which sounded like a chirp.
after all. Presently he was in the streets “ Hope for what?" asked Jack; "there's seeking for the parish priest, who, an old nothing to do, nothing to live for," and he woman in the adjoining tenement had told looked again toward the bay which glowed him, knew something of surgery. in the still, noonday sun like molten silver. After Jack had left the dingy alley and
“Could you carry Pedro's organ?” said was walking along in quest of the priest, the boy, suddenly, taking in the situation the consciousness that he had something to at a glance. “ Pedro broke his leg, yester- do, made him feel like a new creature. He day; the wheels run over it; he can't walk. knew that God had not yet quite forsaken I've sung, and sung, all day, and shooken my him, and he resolved that he would no tambourine; but folks don't inind me much, longer neglect his prayers he had been and I don't get much moneys. Do you taught in the far away New England home, think you can carry the organ on your but would thank Rim that very night beback? I can turn it, but it's too heavy for fore he slept for saving him from the horri. me to carry.”
ble sin he had so lately been contemplating, Yes,” replied Jack, jumping up :-“I am and for opening to him a way to gain an strong enough as far as iny body goes to honest living. The kind-hearted old priest carry anything."
accompanied him back to Pedro's quarters, “Come, then,” cried his little friend, pip- and, after examining the inflamed ankle, ing the refrain again, and dancing on ahead. adjusting the bandage, and leaving some Jack followed mechanically, wondering now soft linen bandages and washes to be ap. if he had indeed taken the fatal leap from plied as he had directed, took his leave. the wharf, and this small personåge trudg- On the morrow, leaving Pedro as coming on before him was an imp or an angel fortable as it was possible to make him, leading him on to some unknown region, or Chispa and Jack went forth on their first whether he was still on the earth. The day's venture. After a little practice Jack
found that playing the organ came within none; and often there would be a bit of story the capability of his poor wrists, and as he or poetry that would excite a sympathetic ground away, and Chispa sang and danced thrill in the hearts of these uncultivated and shook his tambourine, it would have children of nature. Jack thought a great been hard to tell which of the two was the deal about Chispa, and when they were out happier. They had very good success, and by themselves he sometimes questioned him when they came back at night tired and about his past life. hungry, the three regaled themselves with “Where did you learn that ?” he asked what was to them a royal supper. The one day, as Chispa sang his favorite dirty room to which Chispa and Jack came
“God is wisdom, God is love." at night with their daily earnings, was Par- “Oh, I don't know," said the child; “I adise to the latter. The dwelling of which bave known it always, I guess. I somehow
I it was a part was almost a ruin; degraded remember a lady holding me in her lap in a and vicious people who were either too be- room where there were flowers, and a bird sotted or lazy to work in the town or in the in a cage, and beautiful pictures, and such mines, occupied other parts of it, and other a big, nice fire, and a splendid great dog dwellings adjacent of like character; but it painted in the carpet before it; and oh! it was a home to him.
is just like a dream, only it is not a dream. Yet these people, Pedro's neighbors and I was not asleep, and she used to sing lots acquaintances, treated him with great ten- of stories to me." derness. They observed Jack at first with “ What else do you remember, Chispa ?” much curiosity, and with some distrust; but Oh, I remember the water and a ship; before many days he had won their confi- and a great many folks; and a man with an dence by his kinduess to Pedro, and the organ who said I was his boy, but I wasn't deftness he showed in house-keeping in such his boy; and he went away and gave me to narrow and unhandy quarters; for with his Pedro." memory of the ways of a New England After a few days Jack resolved to broach farmhouse, Jack did his best to transform the subject to Pedro himself. The poor old the rickety old room into the semblance of Spaniard was very reticent at first, but a home, and was not unsuccessful.
Jack was so kind to him that at last he Had the early lives of these neighbors of told in his broken English how it was Pedro's been different, had they not been that Chispa came under his care and keepbrought up in poverty and unthrifty habits, ing. their condition would have been more fa- A man, a brother street musician of Pe. vorable. As it was, they appreciated Jack's dro's, a rascally sort of fellow, had died two efforts, and each as he could brought some years before; and having no relatives gave thing to contribute towards his domestic Chispa and the organ to him. He said that economy. Thus a table, chairs, and at last as he was strolling about the country in one a comfortable lounge for the invalid found of the Eastern States he heard the little boy their way into the dwelling. The priest sing, and stole him away, leaving some of his continued his calls; and although Pedro's clothes on a river bank near which the boy's ankle was nearly healed, a rheumatic fever parents lived, and where he sometimes had slowly crept into his system so that the played, so that they should be made to be. poor old man was quite helpless.
lieve that the boy had been drowned. He Jack was the only one of the three who brought him to California in a sailing vescould read, and now old books and newspa- sel and had but just begun to reap the harpers were picked up, and at night pulled out vest of “bits” that the sweet singing of this of ragged pockets, when he would read cunning little fellow brought him in, when aloud to Chispa and Pedro and a few of the Bartolome, for that was the stroller's name, neighbors, thus helping them rapidly to was fatally stabbed by an infuriated China learn our language. If the literature was man in a street fight. He lived long enough not always of the best, it was better than to send for Pedro, to whom he gave his or
gan and the custody of the little boy, as he the newly-arrived steamer. Mr. and Mrs. had said.
Terhune almost instantly recognized Bertie; Pedro had too little knowledge of our lan- and he very soon recalled the voice and face guage at that time to make any inquiries of his mother in the midst of her tearful about the child's parentage, had he wished
The locket was produced and to do so; and I am inclined to think that he identified, and the equally overjoyed father did not, for Bartolome's possession in the rapturously embraced his long lost little shape of little Chispa, with his rare beauty boy. So Chispa's career as a street minand wonderful voice drawing crowds of lis- strel was ended. teners, had been the envy of the whole The theory that Bertie had been abducted brotherhood of organ-grinders. After maks had never been entertained by the stricken ing Jack promise that no harm should be parents, even in the face of the fact that the fall him in any event, Pedro took from a body could not be found. It seemed that small leather bag that was tied around his the little fellow being passionately fond of body a little casket, to which was attached the water, would run away when opportua slender gold chain, and gave it to Jack. nity offered to the river bank; and it was on On the locket was engraved, “Bertie Ter- one of these occasions, when playing in a hune, Newark, N. J.”
boat belonging to his father, a little skiff Jack could write after a fashion with his tied to the bank, that he attracted the notice false hand, and he now sat down and wrote of Bartolome, the organ-grinder, as he was out the facts as intelligently and explicitly passing along the street between Mr. Teras was possible in the form of a letter, and hune's ground and the river. The finding directed it, “ To the Parents of Bertie Ter- of the little hat and blue embroidered sack hune, Newark, New Jersey."
on the grassy bank was evidence enough This was before there was a telegraph be that little Bertie was drowned. The letter tween California and the Eastern States, or that Jack wrote had been immediately forthe great Pacific railroad had been built; so warded to Mr. Terhune on its arrival at the Jack knew he would have to wait a long Newark post-office, and the glad parents retime for an answer to come by the next solved to go to California in person on the steamer. He and Pedro had agreed that next steamer, instead of writing, for they little Chispa should be told nothing of this knew a letter could not get to San Francisco locket, or the letter that had been sent, un- any sooner than they. til at least a satisfactory reply had been The little community of Chispa's friends received. The days passed, while Jack with were greatly grieved over the loss of their his organ, and Chispa with his tambourine, pet; and Jack, although he had been instrucontinued tramping about the streets play. mental in restoring him to his father and ing and singing as usual, until the time mother, was almost inconsolable when it when a return steamer was daily expected, came to the parting. Mr. and Mrs. Terwhich Jack hoped would bring the desired hune both insisted that Jack should return intelligence from the East.
with them, for Mr. T. had determined that The day came at last when the good he would provide bandsomely for his future, steamship “ Panama" having arrived, Jack and Bertie lent his tears to their entreaties; was to go to the post-office for a letter. He but Jack could not be induced to go. But and Chispa would play and sing on the way on the day before the departure of the thither; so as Jack was grinding away and steamer, Mr. T. having repeatedly urged Chispa was shaking his tambourine and so Jack to let him know in what manner he wonderfully singing and trilling an old could reward him, he ventured to divulge a Spanish ballad near the entrance of one of pet scheme of his that had been revolving the great hotels, they were suddenly con- in his mind during the week the family had fronted by a gentleman and lady who had been waiting for the steamer to start. Jack just alighted from the hotel coach, which told Mr. Terhune that he would thankfully had brought them and other passengers from receive a moderate sum of money with