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[We commence a Tale, by an eminent American authoress, which will be found of great interest to our readers, because its scenes are laid in a country dear to Englishmen, though far away from the little spot of which even 'Americans are proud. Because also, it introduces to the reader a race of people scourged and oppressed, and proves that though the colour of the skin may differ, there is a likeness of heart between the white man and his sable brother, which Americans will do well to hold more sacred. It also gives an example of the degrading influences of intemperance, and proves what good resolutions may accomplish even when the soul is sadly downcast. To every well-wisher of mankind the story will prove of welcome interest; whilst to the mere reader searching for novelty and excitement, it will be attractive. Its moral tone is unquestionable; and the chief incidents will be found additionally interesting when it is stated that they are founded upon fact.- Ed. F. F.]
the lantern back into the hands of liis son,
who immediately lighted it, closed the There beautiful and bright he stoodAs born to rule the storm;
door, and took down his cap from the wall, A creature of heroic blood.
“What are you going to do with your A proud, though child-like form."
cap, sir ?” asked Mr. Warland.
Going with you, sir,” firmly, but re“Hark !” exclaimed Mr. Warland, rising spectfully, answered the boy. from his chair, and walking with an un- “And what good are you going to do steady step to the door, which he opened me, I want to know? The night is as dark with a shaking hand. “ Hark! there is as pitch, and the wind howling like a pack some one shouting from the opposite bank of wolves.” of the river. Light the lantern, Marcus. ** That's the reason I want to go with Quick, I say What are you standing in you, sir. It is not the first time I have been that blast for ? Give it to me, and not out with you when it is dark as it is now.” keep me waiting here all night.”
“True, true," said the father, rubbing Snatching the lantern from the hands of his forehead with his hands ; "but if Katy his son, he seized the tongs and tried to wakes she will be frightened at finding bring the glaring coal in contact with the herself alone." wick; but though he blew his hot breath “ She never wakes, father; and if she in strong gusts upon it, and produced a does, Aunt Milly will hear her from the bright flame, his wavering hand was unable kitchen, and come to her directly.” to carry it through the open door of the “Poor thing!” cried the father, in a lantern. Setting down the tongs, or rather softer tone, looking down upon a palethrowing them on the hearth, he swung | cheeked, dark-haired little girl, of about
VOL. VII.NO. LXXIII.
eight years old, fast asleep in a low cot- strokes of the pole which was swayed by bed, in the back part of the room. “Poor the youthful arm of his son. He did not thing !" repeated he, stooping over and speak, for he was angry and ashamed, yet kissing her, “what has she ever done that with his anger and shame an exulting she should be cursed too ?”
pride in his son was mingled. He was “ Father! they are shouting again, proud of the boy, who dared to control louder than ever," said the boy. " Hadn't his brutal appetite, and save him momentwe better start?"
arily from a yet deeper degradation. As “Yes - wait one moment.” He opened | he looked upon his slight figure thrown the door of a small cupboard in the darkest back, standing out in the glare of the lancorner of the apartment, and taking out a tern, while he pressed the pole with all his black bottle, began to pour a light-coloured strength against the rushing water, and fluid in a glass. He was just putting it to thought what he might have made of him, his lips, when Marcus stepped quickly up, and what his probable destiny now was, he and laying his hand on his arm, exclaimed could not suppress a groan of remorse. “No, father, you must not drink that “You are tired, father,” said Marcus.
You cannot ferry the boat steadily “But never mind,” he added, in an encouif you do, and the wind is so strong." raging tone, we shall soon be over, and
“Let me alone, boy. What right have we don't have to tugas hard coming you to prevent me? Let me alone, I back.” say.”
One would have supposed that he was " Please, father. It's wrong. You don't the elder and stronger of the two, to hear know what you are doing. You just now his inspiring tone. said she was cursed-you know you did- “This is a sorry life we lead," said the and yet you are going -Nay, father, you father, speaking for the first time since the shall not drink that before you start.” rebellious act of Marcus.
“Obliged to be The resolute boy snatched the glass from called out like a dog, in the darkest night, his father's hand, and dashed the contents and the roughest winds, for anybody and into the fire. A sudden illuminating blaze everybody. I don't mind it in the day, flashed through the room, as suddenly pro- time; but when the heavens scowl as black ducing a pale-blue flame, curling slenderly as they do now, and the water looks like upward. Then darting through the door, ink beneath us, I feel as if I were on the he waved his lantern in the air, and gave gloomy Styx.” the peculiar halloo of the boatman to in- “I like it better in the night, father; it dicate to the waiting traveller that the is so much more exciting. I don't care ferry was about to cross the river. Mr. how dark it is; we can turn the boat into Warland, who would have wrestled with a a comet, and send out a long, red streamer, man who endeavoured by mild means to that looks grandly enough behind us. As deprive him of the burning beverage, by for the wind, the stronger the better. I which he sought to stimulate his dulled love to hear the river roar after us. It and exhausted spirits, yielded to the bold sounds like music to me. Hurrah! father, will of a boy of ten, without daring to re- here we are, and here is a carriage waiting sist, and followed him, muttering, not for us, sure enough.” loudly, but deeply, out of the cabin. The rough, grinding sound of the boat Marcus hoisted the lantern on a slight upon the gravelly bank, and a sudden jerk post that was elevated at the end of the which almost threw Mr. Warland from his boat, but so as not to interfere with the feet, but which Marcus stood without a entrance of carriages, and seizing one vibration, gave notice to the occupants of pole, gave the other without speaking into the carriage that the ferry was ready for his father's hand. The river had a strong, them to cross.
The horses came slowly, rapid current, so that they were obliged to and tightly reined, down the steep bank, go up the stream some distance before they and stepped with thundering hoofs on the were able to cross it. The lantern threw a wet planks of the boat, which pushed off red wake on the dark water, over which the the moment the wheels rolled from the boat glided heavily and sullenly, though sand. A gentleman and lady were in the now Mr. Warland emulated the vigorous carriage, and the lady leaned on the
shoulder of the gentleman, as if feeble and son, and the lady forgot her alarm while weary. She was wrapped up daintily in gazing upon him, and the gentleman his rich shawls, and blankets were placed in fears for the lady. He was struck with the the bottom of the carriage to cover her mind, the spirit that breathed from that feet. There was a young black girl too on boyish face-she with the striking beauty the front seat, but her dark outline was of its lineaments - both with the contrast scarcely distinguishable amid the dark he presented to the rude occupation in shadows of night. When the boat was which he was engaged. The boy caught about half-way over the river, the horses their earnest gaze, and turning with a began to be restless and step backward and quick, deep blush, he again bent over the forward, much to the alarm of the lady. pole, which began to dip in a deeper, Lifting her languid head from her hus- stronger current. When they reached the band's shoulder, she insisted upon getting opposite bank, the lady and gentleman out of the carriage.
held a low conversation, and then the gen"There is no danger, Isabel,” said her tleman, turning courteously to Mr. Warhusband. Keep quiet, and do not ex- land, asked him if he knew of any house of pose yourself to taking cold by this need- entertainment near, where they could
pass less alarm." But even while he was speak- the night, as Mrs. Bellamy was very much ing the horses went back still farther, fatigued, and unwilling to travel farther in though the driver stood at their head, with the darkness. a controlling arm. Forgetting her fatigue “ There is no house of entertainment at and debility, the lady jumped out, while all," answered Mr. Warland," within seher husband, finding it in vain to reason veral miles of here, and no house within a with her, followed, and taking one of the mile. The roads are very bad, and there blankets, threw it on the bottom of the is a very steep hill to go up before you boat for her to stand on, and gathered her reach it.” shawls round her, which the strong winds “ What shall I do?” exclaimed the lady, were filling like the sails of a ship. looking anxiously at the log cabin before
"Look! husband," she whispered, “look | them; “I cannot, I dare not travel farther at that boy-what a beautiful face and to-night. Cannot this good man give us figure he has !” Marcus was standing, a bed ?” with his right hand grasping the long pole, “I am very sorry, madam,” replied Mr. by which he was propelling the boat, while Warland, with much more politeness of with his left he pushed back the locks that manner than they expected from a ferrywere blowing over his temples. The blaze man, “I cannot offer you any suitable of the lantern fell full upon him, and accommodations. My cabin is too rough lighted him up with a pale glory, while the and ill-furnished to ask you to sit down in, thick shadows all settled behind him, in a much less to sleep in.” kind of rich, Rembrandt background. “I don't care for accommodations,” she Though he had been recklessly, fearlessly cried, earnestly. “No matter how rough exposed to the sun and wind, regardless of the bed, how coarse the fare, I will not their bronzing influence, his cheek and complain ; but I cannot ride with these brow were as fair as a girl's; and his fair wild horses any farther this dark night." hair too, long and curling, floated back “The horses are not wild, Isabel,” said from his forehead, with a wild grace and her husband, with a smile. “They are glossiness, as if it were born to sport with very safe and manageable ; but I know the river breeze that so often wantoned you are timid, and cannot help it. If this with its profusion. His eyes were of a gentleman is willing to take us in for the clear, deep, cerulean blue, with very dark night, I shall certainly be under obligalashes, and his finely formed eyebrows were tions to him, for your sake.” also of a much darker hue than his hair. If I had a bed," stammered Mr. WarHis mouth, beautiful as the Apollo Bel- land, ashamed and vexed at his poverty, videre's, had also the slightly scornful ex- well knowing that it was the curse he had pression that curls the parted lip of the drawn upon himself, and that he too once young divinity. He certainly was a very had the bread of affluence. remarkable-looking boy for a ferryman's “Let us give them our bed, father,” said
i Marcus, in a low voice, approaching close to The beams overhead being unfloored, the
his father ; we can sleep upon the floor.” eye could travel upward to the apex of the
“I am sorry to put you to inconve- roof, so that there was an illusion of loftinience, my fine boy,” cried Mr. Bellamy ; ness given to the building, low and confined but I thank you very much for your oblig- as it was. Mr. Bellamy, who had been ing offer. I know Mrs. Bellamy will not with Mr. Warland, to arrange in some way refuse it."
for the accommodation of his horses, now Marcus did not like to be called a "fine entered with the master of the house, and boy” by the rich man whom he was about drawing a chair towards the fire, appeared to accommodate. It sounded too patron- to gladden in the influence of the cheering ising. He did not mean that he should blaze. He was a fine, benevolent-looking hear the offer. He wanted his father to man, with a kindness and heartiness of have the credit of it, if there was any credit manner which even Mr. Warland could not in it, of which he was not at all convinced. resist. He seemed so well satisfied with He knew what was due to the stranger the accommodations offered, so sorry for within one's gate, as well as the children | the trouble they were giving, it was imposof the wealthy; and there was something sible to grudge a hospitality so gratefully about the lady so sweet and winning, her received, and so urgently required. slightest request seemed clothed with the The blazing fire in the chimney threw absoluteness of a command. He led the every object out in strong relief, and even way to the cabin, holding his lantern low, suffused with a glow the fair, pale face of so as to illumine the ground where the the weary lady, who, half reclining on the Lady stepped. When they entered, there bed, supported by her elbow, suffered was certainly nothing very inviting in the her
wander aspect of those unlathed, unplastered walls, around the fireplace, though it rested and poorly furnished room, to the eye of with increasing interest on the remarkablethe delicate and weary traveller ; but it was looking boy, who stood beside her husband a place of safety, and it was certainly pre- with the air of a young aristocrat, in spite ferable to the danger of bad roads, fiery of his common apparel. She looked from horses, and a night of inky darkness. The him to his father, on whose brow the only chairs that were visible were wooden unmistakeable seal of intemperance was frames, with untanned leather bottoms; stamped,--that mark of sin and shame, and a low bedstead, covered with a blue and which grows broader and deeper, till the white woollen counterpane, looked hard image of God is utterly defaced. He might and repulsive. Still there was an air of once have been a handsome man; for his neatness, and even of comfort. There forehead was lofty, and his features symwere curtains to the lower part of the win- metrical; but his eyes had a pale, watery dows, which, though made of white do- lustre, and his face was bloated and dismestic, were perfectly neat, and the pillow coloured. ^ He was now, however, perfectly cases, and all of the sheets that were sober,- thanks to the bold interference visible, were of snowy purity. Mrs. Bellamy of his dauntless boy before they left the sat down on the side of the bed, while the cabin, -and as he sat conversing with Mr. black girl brought in her blankets, and Bellamy, the latter was astonished at the kneeling down, spread one beneath her feet ease and refinement of his language. By on the uncarpeted floor. Marcus thought certain classic allusions, he soon discovered the lady's feet must be very dainty things, that he had had a collegiate education, and since they were not allowed to press any- was a good scholar; and he also learned thing harder than wool; and he thought, that he had known some of the most distoo, how many there were who would be tinguished men of the day; and yet he was thankful to have those soft, nice blankets located on the banks of that wild stream, to cover them, and shield their bodies from in an obscure log-cabin, lonely and poor, the cold. He threw some pine-knots on a common ferryman, and he was bringing the dying embers of the hearth, which soon up his noble boy for the same inglorious kindling, a flood of radiance went rolling occupation. These things troubled the all over the dark walls, converting them, benevolent Mr. Bellamy, and he longed to for the time, into an illuminated dome. fathom their mystery.
In the mean time another figure was folded round her ebon neck. She had added to the group, and a very important evidently prepared herself for the occasion, one in the ferryman's cabin. It was Aunt and looked as if she were conscious of Milly, the only negro that remained of the bearing on her shoulders the tottering wreck of Mr. Warland's fallen fortunes, honours of the house of Warland. It must which she endeavoured to retrieve in the be acknowledged that Aunt Milly had one dignity of her single person. She had a fault, that grew into a kind of monomania. great deal of family pride, and notwith. In her desire to conceal the poverty to
the low condition to which her which her master was reduced, she indulged master was reduced, she remembered his in a spirit of exaggeration, which increased former station in society, and in the pre- upon her unconsciously. She actually sence of strangers treated him with marked began to believe herself in the existence of deference and respect, as if, by clothing those resources which her imagination suphim in her imagination with the light of plied, she had so often had recourse to other days, she could cause others to forget them in the day of trouble. his present altered and degraded situation. Mrs. Bellamy felt nearly as much surShe had been the nurse of his children, prise to see this very respectable and and for two or three years had watched stately-looking negro a member of the over their desolate and orphan childhood, family, as the fair-haired boy she admired with the tenderness and devotion of a so much, and acknowledged her lowly mother. When Mrs. Warland was on her greeting with a gentle curtsey, that took deathbed, where a broken heart had laid captive at once Aunt Milly's susceptible her, she bound her husband, then awakened heart. The black girl, who was sitting on to a remorseful consciousness of the fatal the soft blankets at her mistress's feet, consequences of his degeneracy, by a looked up, with a bright exhibition of solemn proniise, never to part with this smiling ivory, on this noble manifestation faithful and attached creature.
of one of her own colour. “ All the rest are gone," said the dying “ What would mistress like for her mother—" all sold, scattered, and broken supper?” asked Aunt Milly, rolling up up-Milly alone remains; she loves my her large eyeballs, as if endeavouring to poor children, and will be a mother to recollect the many luxuries with which she them when I am gone. Promise me, as could supply her. “ The chickens would you hope for comfort and pardon in your be too tough killed off all of a sudden, or last moments, never to give up this their I could have some fried in batter, and last friend, their only stay."
there wouldn't be time for the muffins and Mr. Warland, in an agony of remorse, egg-cake to rise ; but e’enemost anything promised all she required, and the faithful else in the world that mistress would like, slave declared they should spill every drop she shall have for the wanting. I haven't of her heart's blood, sooner than separate been head-cook in master's family these her from the children she loved better than twelve years for nothing." her - own life. From that moment she An arch smile fluttered over the rosy devoted herself to their interests with a lips of Marcus at Aunt Milly's grandilofidelity that never wavered, and an affection quent exhibition of hospitality, knowing that never abated. There was no sacrifice what a poor supper she really would be too great for their comfort, or too mighty obliged to prepare for the appetite of the for her love. Let us not be accused of travellers. drawing an exaggerated picture of the “ Thank you,” replied Mrs. Bellamy, sable race. "We speak what we do know “I will not trouble you for anything but -We testify to that which we have seen." a cup of tea; we all have eaten quite lately
Aunt Milly stood, with her hands folded in the carriage, and are not hungry in the over her clean, white apron, as on a com
least. You know travellers always carry fortablelittle shelf, curtseying to the strange their luncheons with them.” lady with respectful lowliness. A hand- “ Yes, mistress ; bless your soul, yes," kerchief of mingled orange and red was answered Aunt Milly, inexpressibly retwisted round her retreating forehead, and lieved ; “when my poor dear mistress used another of the same blending hues was to go a journeying, I allos stuffed the car