« PreviousContinue »
ND so one day a fairy came—for who but a fairy brings
With hedges trimmed to a proper line -
Allowed to enter there !
Guarding the entrance stair."
HEN morning came, the little maid woke with feelings akin to awe,
But she took up the box and made her rounds, for the word of a fairy was law.
Her hedges were trimmed to a proper line,-
Ran reckless riot there !-
Guarded the entrance stair!
By ORVILLE W. MOSHER, JR.
The story I am about to tell is of Indians, a like coyotes," as Grandma Greenborough exbattle and hidden treasure. The battle and the pressed it. They carried with them the bodies Indians are real, and as for the treasure that of their own dead and a great mass of plunder may be real, too, for all I know, and some of taken from the Chippewas. the things that I tell about did happen and Why the Sioux did not stop to massacre the others might have happened.
few whites crouched fearfully in the two As long as there are boys in New Richmond, homes set alone on the prairie, it is hard to St. Croix County, Wisconsin, they will tell the say, but they did not; and that night, when the story of the great Find to succeeding genera- moon came out and lit up the wide, level plain, tions of boys, and they, in turn, will pass it on the men of the family loaded their wives and again to other generations as long as there are children into their wagons and hurried away boys in New Richmond; and I reckon that will to Fort Snelling, near Minneapolis, to be under be a long time, judging from the large crop of the protection of the United States soldiers. boys there now. You see, things just like this There they stayed through the long, terrible, don't happen every day in the week, and, when anxious weeks, during which each day brought they do come, they simply stagger the imagina- news of the massacre of settlers and destruction, and I am going to tell it to you all so that tion of emigrant trains, until the Sioux were you can see for yourself. But first I must at last corralled on their reservation and it begin a long way back.
was safe to return.
Nearly seventy years had passed away since IN 1842 two families, working northward from that time, and now we boys sat at the feet of Ohio in their canvas-covered wagons, halted the white-haired, kind old lady, looked out their journey on the shore of what is now over the battle-field, and listened. Instead of called Bass Lake, some eight miles south of prairie and woods dotting the landscape, there New Richmond. They constructed log cabins were well-kept farms. It seemed as though on the prairie and proceeded to wrest a living nothing could have happened there, so calm from the wilderness. Of that little settlement and peaceful it looked. How little did we of people by the lake, only one is now living, think or know that soon the reality of that a white-haired old lady by the name of Green- battle would be brought home to us! You borough. We boys used to gather on her back can't always tell—a mighty quiet time may porch after she had supplied our internal contain within it the seeds of genuine excitecravings with a plentiful supply of ginger ment, for Jimmy Warrick–or, to be more cookies, and then she would tell us about a exact and to give him the name read out at the battle that took place between the Chippewas Sunday-school, James Montgomery Warrick, and Sioux, right over there where her field of Jr.—was there. He sat there and listened to corn was waving in the breeze. She told how Grandma Greenborough's stories and tucked she, as a frightened little girl, peered between away dozens of perfectly good cookies. He the logs of the cabin garret late one afternoon was just the same sort of boy as any of the and saw a band of Chippewas, some seventy rest of us; but he had an imagination that his in number, sorely pressed, plunge their pant- mother said was like a "house afire," and that ing ponies into the lake from the opposite imagination ran to Indians. He was fond of shore and swim them for a landing near her Indians. He collected “Injun” arrow-heads house. I remember she said some of the In- and chummed with every Indian or half-breed dians hung by their horses' tails and let the who stuck his nose into New Richmond. He horses pull them through the water. She told was so good at shooting with the bow and how, almost immediately following them, there arrows that his Indian friends had made him appeared a band of some two hundred Sioux, that he could kill squirrels and rabbits with on war ponies, pursuing them.
them, and sometimes shot the glass insulators The Chippewas, their horses too exhausted of the telegraph-poles when the railroad men to run farther, turned to fight in the unequal were n't looking. I was a little younger than match and were killed to the last man. And Warrick, but I was in his “gang,” and he let then the Sioux stripped the bodies of the slain me go with him once in a while to hunt arrowand all rode away "yip-yipping, and barking points or cornelians, so I know all about him
If you want to see some real Indians, come out the willows lay thick and close. But Jimmy and visit your aunt and me during fair week. We
and I went there, and we knew where a break are going to let them kill a few beeves in the oldfashioned way-riding bareback, one rawhide strand
in the cliff, the entrance covered with brush, held in their teeth to guide the horse, and bow and led to a small cañon where the water had arrows to kill the beeves with. I will have Red
washed, and there we would set up targets and Horse meet you at the Lame Deer Station and drive
shoot and cook our dinner sometimes. Nobody you over to the agency.
but just us two knew the place. We never Did Jimmy want to go! Did he? Well,
told anybody for fear the East Enders would would n't you?
jump it; and I guess you know that would So we all said good-by to him as he went
mean war between the east and west ends of away on the train, carrying his bow and ar- town, sure enough. rows, and some colored handkerchiefs and About a month after Jimmy got back from gewgaws that he said he was going to trade. his trip to his uncle, Jimmy and I were in there My, he looked happy!
and were getting a fire ready and stopping
a while to shoot an arrow through a We were most awfully lonesome after Jimmy had gone, because he was always stir- barrel-hoop that we would roll across the ring up something new, and all we did was
from somewhere, a just go swimming and wish he would hurry dropped at our feet.
“That did n't roll down the cliff, did it?" up and come back and tell us all about it. It was two whole months before he came back;
asked Jimmy. and when he did, my, but he was loaded down
"I dunno," said I; "it might have; nobody with curios! He had a whole Indian suit- knows this place; it must have just got loose
and rolled down.' beaded vest, feathers, leggings, and all. We boys just looked up to him; and if he put on a
We did n't say anything more about it, thinkfew airs, we did n't mind, because anybody ing it was nothing; but about five minutes
later another stone landed where the first one who had been chumming around with chiefs has a right to put on airs. He would talk
had fallen, and Jimmy said, "I 'm going to see about Charging Eagle, Wahitika, and Wau
about this." And he slipped through the brush.
A half-hour later he came back, saying he poose just as though he had known them for years. We boys stood around and listened
could n't find anybody, but he was sure some with our mouths open. But most of all Jimmy one was around, for stones had dropped near talked about his friend Powless, the son of
him and he had heard some one calling like a one of the Santee Sioux chiefs there, and screech-owl behind him. He had n't more Jimmy hinted at a visit and spoke mysteriously
than said this when from behind a rock, not about something big that Powless knew. How ten feet from us, stepped an Indian boy. we boys wished we could see him and tag along
“Powless !” yelled Jimmy, as he sprang towith him and Jimmy when they went explor
ward his friend. ing! But Jimmy said that it was something
"How, how," said Powless, making a sign mighty important, and only they two should across Jimmy's right arm. My, were n't my
eyes just sticking out, though! for he was I was with Jimmy when he came—Powless, dressed all up in sure-enough Indian clothes, I mean. The boys of New Richmond know
hair tied with strips of fur and two feathers, where Honey Hole and Fox Hole are, on
and moccasins and fringed leggings and everyWillow River, where we all used to go swim- thing. ming. The river takes a wide bend down Jimmy and Powless talked together for a below Wearses, and flows smoothly. on for moment, making signs with their hands, and about a mile, where it is a little broken by then Jimmy came to me and said: "Powless rocks and the bank on the right-hand side rises
and me are going into the woods now, you tall and steep. We boys liked to roll rocks down go home and don't tell anybody. Promise, the sides and hear them splash. Beyond this, ‘Cross your heart I hope to die.'" the forest thickens and boys don't go there so
So I said, “Cross my heart I hope to die,” much, because it is marshy. Along the banks
and then I went home and did n't say a thing. of the river are the lower fringes of the forest
I hated like the dickens to go home; but I that, following these shores, sweeps northward
knew if I tried to tag along, they'd run away to the great woods of Northern Wisconsin, from me and Jimmy would n't let me go with with all their mysteries of lake and stream. him again—I guess you know what that would As I was saying, the boys did n't go much beyond the high cliffs; for it was marshy and The first thing we knew anything big had