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Mclntyre, put the orphaned little creature
in the bosom of his flannel shirt, and car-
ried it to the log shanty. That was in the
evening, and the whole camp entered seri-
ously into the consideration of how the
little chap's life was to be saved.

A plump, gray, fluffy ball, with an ex-
tremely attenuated nose, the coon babe
slept in a little box filled with cotton bat-
tingbehind the cook-stove, totally oblivious
of the grave question he had raised by his
unwilling advent.

It was Ben Locke who hit upon the
brilliant idea that proved so satisfactory at
first and so productive of disorder later on.
"Try him with Queenie," Locke sug-
gested ; " she might take to him in place
of one of her pups. I believe she 's lone-
some with only Bruce."

Queenie was a half-bred collie, and, as
such, great in motherly instinct, and jealous
to a degree. Her brown eyes searched
Locke's face understandingly as, with fore-
finger extended wamingly, he commanded
her : " Down, Queenie ! Now, now— that 's
a good dog— that 's a good dog!" This
while Mclntyre held the little orphan to
the mother-fount of nourishment.

There is no doubt that Swampy's
methods differed from the collie pup's, for
Queenie curled her lips in a snarl that
showed her white teeth, and growled her
disapproval. But Swampy made good use
of his time ; and presendy, his little stomach
round and taut like a toy drum, he was put
back in his box and presented in this shape
to Queenie for inspection.

No one ever knew how it happened, but
in the morning Swampy was found sleep-
ing with the collie pup at the mother's
side. After that he was made free of the
collie's bed, and made foster-brother to
Bruce, the pup.

He washed his food in a little wooden
trough before he ate it, and poked his thin,
inquisitive nose into cupboards, boxes, and
every nook of the log shanty. From a long
line of swamp-dwelling, night-prowling
ancestry had come to him an inherited
sensitiveness of touch. His slim, black-
skinned fore paws were like another pair
of eyes ; he appeared to be always feeling
for treasure. Sometimes, half angered by
Bruce's foolishness of puppyhood, his
sharp claws cut httle lines of remonstrance
in the youthful collie's face. The thin
parchment ears of Swampy were slitted
into ribbons by the fish-like teeth of his
dog foster-brother. Thus the three played
together, and ate together, with as much
amity, relieved by occasional family jars,
as though they were all dogs or all ra-

When Swampy was a Httle over a year
old, one night the tremulous whistle of his
own kind sang in his slitted ears from a
tree in the forest and something that he
had forgotten all about came to him with
compelling force. He had lain there the
child of a collie mother, and in a minute a
dozen whimpering notes of call reincar-
nated him and he was a coon. Inherited
visions of a black-ash swamp in which he
might puddle all through the hoiu^ of
darkness for frogs and snails and things
delicious to a coon's palate, flashed through
his mind.

He stole softly from the little box that
was his home, raised his gray, black-barred
muzzle, sniffed inquiringly toward the for-
est, and then slipped like a noiseless shadow
across the clearing and was swallowed up
in the gloomed bush.

Men came and went from the Cameron
lumbering gang, and their passing was of
transient regret; but Swampy's defection
laid melancholy upon the whole camp.
The men said he would come back again,
but he did not.

One moon from the passing of Swampy,
—it was a September night,— Locke and
Mclntyre, taking the dogs and their axes,
made their way along three miles of bush-
road to a little clearing in the woods. This

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field was planted in com, and, as Locke
said, every coon in the bush knew it.

Eager in the hunt, having knowledge of
its method, the dogs slipped silently through
a fence ; their masters perched on its top-
most rail and listened to the whispering
corn-leaves as the dogs, panting in blood-
lust, chased through the rusthne stalks, up
and down the dwarf avenues of the minia-
ture forest. A misty moon peeped over a
somber tree wall into the little clearing, turn-
ing to jewels the dewdrops held in the silver
feathers that were the tassels of the com.

Nose to ground, Queenie raced ; at her
heels the pup. When Bmce sought to
forge ahead, the mother lunged at him
with her teeth, adding a yelp of admoni-
tion. She knew that even then, perhaps,
the one they sought was safe settled in a
tree ; but if she clung close to the trail they
would come to his hiding-place and then
her partners in crime, the htmians, would
bring him to earth for a grapple.

At first above the whispering of the
shadowy com came little whines of anxi-
ety, as though Queenie asked : " Where is
he— where is he?" Then there was a
short yelp of delight.

" Found ! There 's one there ! " Locke
muttered, touching his companion's arm.

Presently, as the scent freshened, shorter
and sharper came the " Yeh-yeh / " and
then, from a half-burned fallow beyond,
with its blackened stumps and charred logs,
the Queen's voice came back, tingling the
night air with a joyous " Yi-ih-ih, yeh / "

The men slipped from the fence, dashed
through the corn-field, sprawled through
the labyrinth of burned logs, into the woods
on the farther side, over a sandy knoll
clothed with beech and maple, and down
into a black-ash swamp, where the ringing
bark of dogs told they had treed a coon.

"Hullo!" ejaculated Locke, as they
came to the scene of turmoil, "darned if
there ain't another dog ! Where in thunder—
Hanged if it ain't McRae's."

"We 're here first, whatever," Mclntyre
answered. " We 'U make a fire, so we can
see to chop."

The swamp was dry from the stmimer
drought, and while the men gathered
sticks and built a fire, Queenie sat on her
haunches, her nose pointed at the stars,
and her red-brown eyes fixed wistfully on
something very like a fur muff high up in
the ash. Bmce and the McRae dog were

tearing about the tree, jumping against its
smooth-barked trunk, and causing the
forest to echo with their clamor.

" We can throw her into that openin',"
Locke said, as he squinted up the tree;
"let 's hurry. Them McRae boys '11 be
sneakin' in, an' claimin' their cur treed the

As the axes rang sharp and clear against
the ash three men slipped into the firelight
and a voice said : " Hey there, you fellers,
what 're you doin' ? "

Locke grounded his ax and, leaning on
the handle, retorted sarcastically : " Shavin'
myself. What 'd you think I was doin' ? "

"Looks like you was choppin' down
'nother man's coon."

" Not on your broadax, Jack McRae.
Our dogs dmv the coon out of Gillis's
com, an* treed him ; an' as we sort o' hap-
pened along 'bout that time, we kinder
surmised 't would n't be a bad idee to
chop him down."

"Us boys 's got that job in hand, Ben

"We 're first, which is nine points of
the law."

" I 'm thinkin' you ' ve got two points, an'
we've three," McRae rejoined menacingly.

" Look here, Jack McRae," broke in
Mclntyre, " that 's too strong. We 're not
out for trouble, but we 'U chop this coon
down, whatever."

"If you 're a better man nor me, you *re
meanin', Dan Mclntyre, by God ! " and
the speaker slipped off his coat and rolled
up his sleeves.

" Don't swear at me, McRae ; I 'm no
a horse. I '11 take that from no man."

Locke interposed. " What ^s the use of
you river boys lookin' for trouble. You
know just as well as I do, Jack, you 'd
have more 'n your hands full with Dan.
Let the fightin' go till the fall fair at Wal-
lacetown ; there '11 be plenty of it then.
We come out for coons, an' so did you."

" Yes, but you *re comin' by the coon,
Ben, which makes a grand difference."

" Well, I '11 tell you what we 'II do, an'
if that don't go, an' you shove the quarrel
home, me an' Dan '11 take you McRae boys
on, and Archie Campbell can see fair play."

" Well, spit it out of you, Locke."

"We was here first, an' oughter have
first go. Me an' Dan '11 fall the tree, you
keep your dog back, an' if oum don't get
the coon, he 's youm."

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"You 're meanin', Locke, you '11 give
us a smell o' the herrin'. It 's no a fair
shake," objected McRae.

"It 's dead on the square," Locke re-
torted. " It 's a pretty thick bush here in
the swamp, an' most like the ash '11 lodge,
then the coon '11 skip into that elm— per-
haps he '11 do it soon 's the ash starts to
go ; from the run he give our dogs he 's
cunnin' enough for any thin'. Anyway,
't ain't no use good men fightin' over a
pelt that ain't worth more 'n a dollar.
We 're two to three, but we ain't goin' to
take no back water."

The McRaes and Campbell stepped to
one side and debated the question; the
well-known fighting ability of "Strong
Dan" Mclntyre having something of a
mollify*, influence upon their spirits.

Jack McRae came forward presently
and said': " We '11 agree to that, only we '11
draw lots for first try at the coon."

"All right, boys," Locke acquiesced;
"we 'd rather do anythin' than fight,
would n't we, Dan ? " There was a dep-
recating pleasantry in his voice which
amounted to a sneer.

Then he broke two twigs, placed them
between his fingers, and held his hand up
to McRae, saying, "Draw, Jack; long
stick wins."

The other drew; and Locke, throwing
the remaining twig in the fire with an
angry jerk, growled : " You win ; go ahead."

While the Cameron men sat holding
their dogs, the others sank eager axes into
the soft flesh of the black ash.

Soon a shivering moan went up from the
tree ; its top trembled and swayed ; as Jack
McRae drove the blade of his ax to its
eye there was a crackling scream of dis-
solution; the ash reeled drunkenly for a
second, and then swept downward. Half-
way in its fall to earth a strong limb
caught in the elm and the tree hung sus-
pended. With a powerful stroke the axman
knocked the butt from its holding stump,
the tree rolled and, with a swishing sigh,
fell to its side.

The McRae dog dashed into the many-
limbed top in a fruitless search; for the
racoon, running blithely along a limb
while the tree swayed in mid-air, had
jumped into a slender tamarack and clam-
bered nimbly to its top.

The two men waited till the McRaes
came back to the fire, their faces sullen

with anger. Then Locke stepped over
to the tamarack and ran his eye up its
length, which was like the tapering spar of
a yacht.

"The coon 's up there right enough,"
he said, " an' there ain't no use fallin' this
saplin'; it 'd never come down— it 'd
lodge sure."

He sat down and pulled off his boots,
saying: "I '11 shinny up an' shake him
down. You watch the dogs, Dan."

Locke had been a sailor on the Great
Lakes and with arm and knee he worked
up the tamarack like a boy. As he ap-
proached, the much-hunted one moved
from the crotch in which he had huddled
and crept cautiously along a slender limb,
where he hung by his long, sharp claws.

" Look out below ! " Locke cried, stand-
ing in the crotch : then he struck the limb
a sharp blow with the sole of his foot.
The coon, dislodged, drew in a great
lungful of air, till he was blown out like a
football, and fell lightly to earth.

With a rush Queenie and Bruce were
upon him ; and then, even as they stuck
their noses into his fat stomach as he lay
on his back ready to battle, the two dogs
sheathed their teeth and, drawing back a
little, sniffed in a puzzled manner at the
quarry. And through the sensitive nostrils
of the collie mother vibrated the faint
scent that reawakened a memory almost
obliterated ; it was the scent that once had
stood for one of her own children. She
gave a whine of delight; pleading, eager
it was, and with her paw she scratched
coaxingly at the coon's neck.

The foster-mother had come by the
truth : it was Swampy, the escaped one.

But with him, a half-generation re-
claimed from the forest life, memory was
shorter; he had lapsed rapidly to the
primal savagery of his race. His white
teeth gleamed for an instant in the fire-
light and then were buried in the paw that
was the transmitter of mother affection.

With a yelp of pain, even of indignant
remonstrance, the collie sprang back, and
Swampy, rolling leisurely to his feet, scut-
tled back to the tamarack and, quite re-
gardless of the fact that his man-enemy
was up aloft, prepared to climb beyond
reach of the meddlesome dogs.

The men sitting below had watched
with astonishment this curious little panto-
mime, all but Mclntyre ; to him had come

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the thought that the coon must be the
escaped Swampy: the dogs would have
torn to ribbons any other.

When Swampy laid unfilial teeth upon
the paw of Queenie and she shrank back,
Jim McRae said, and his voice was keyed
high in a sneer : " Blamed if the dogs ain't
feared o' coon! Yon 's a good coon-dog
you 've got, Dan Mclntyre." Then he
gave an irritating laugh of derision.

Just as Swampy reached the tree, Camp-
bell took his hand from the collar of the
McRae dog. and the latter, darting for-
ward with a snarl in his throat, pounced
upon the escaping coon.

Then Swampy*s foster-mother Queenie
and his foster-brother Bruce sank teeth
of remonstrance into the rash McRae
dog, and sought to tear him limb from

With an oath, Jack McRae sprang for-
ward and kicked Queenie in the ribs. And
even as he kicked, something like the paw
of a bear smote him in the neck, to the
end that he went headlong over the dogs.
Then the other McRae and Campbell fell
upon the smiter, " Strong Dan,'*and sought
to batter him in the way of reproval.

The din of battle came to Locke's ears,
and his breeches screeched and fairly
smoked with the friction of his descent as
he shot down the scale-barked tamarack.
It was a time for rapid descent: he was
needed. Strong Dan was surely being
dragged to earth when his companion,
crouching, after the manner of sailors in
a fight, made entry to the festive scene.

" You would— blank you !— Huh ! "
That was a grunt at the butt end of a
blow, as Locke's fist swung inward on
Campbell's chin and dropped him to his
knees. Before Locke could recoil to guard,
Jim McRae's long arm flopped around
like the loose end of a flail, and the Scotch-
man's fist, as hard as a horse's hoof from
rough toil, smashed like a brick into the
sailor's face.

It was a joyous mill, flagging not for the
new-fangled innovation of rounds. It was
one long continuous swirling round, full
of action, good old-time rough-and-tumble
rules governing the contest.

Locke was a master in the sailor's fight-
ing art, which is a method of fair execu-
tion; and Mclntyre's strength, known
throughout the county, was as hurtful as
a bear's. On the other side there were

three of the river boys : the McRaes, long
of hmb, clean of wind, like cats on their
feet— proper woodsmen ; while Campbell,
though short of statiu-e, had been nick-
named " Fighting Archie." Hate and clan
rivalry set a fast pace, and the combat-
ants' diligent method would soon bring a
verdict for one side or the other.

Meanwhile the cause of the httle un-
pleasantness had scuttled up the tamarack
once more, where he sat blinking curiously
at the extraordinary animals who shattered
the peace of the forest below. Because of
the preoccupation of their masters, the
dogs carried on their engagement, until
Watch, outnumbered and sorely bitten,
curled his tail between his legs and took
to the darkened bush with howls of disgust.

The uneven ground, the big ro ; Jt>f ♦the
elm, and the slippery moss-covered sticks,
introduced a rare element of chance into
the contest. Sometimes "Strong Dan"
was on his back with two men atop, until
Locke, throtthng one of them, would slip
and all hands go rolling over one another
like pups at play. It was Uke a football
scrimmage; in the faulty, glimmering
firelight a hard-knuckled fist, missing its
mark, would land on the nose of a friend.

The Marquis of Queensbury and his
rules had never puzzled the minds of these
busy Scotchmen. It was go-as-you-please,
kick, and slug, and clench in that ring,
which was the whole black-ash swamp.
Rough-and-tumble bars nothing but the
gouge and the bite ; and, so far, the com-
batants adhered closely to these honorable
rules. It was a scrap of fervor, fast and
furious; at times a little breathing-spell
coming in a clench. They were almost too
busy for speech. Once Mclntyre grunted :
" Take that, McRae, blank you ! " as his
Scotch knuckles, high in bone, ripped like
a saw at his opponent's eyebrow. And
Jack retaliated with a kick that would have
opened an oak door.

Locke, less economical of speech than
the Scots, encoiu-aged his fighting comrade
from time to time. " Give it — to him—
Dan ! I 'm at yoiu-— back." And he was.
But, unfortunately for his powers of succor,
he was surrounded himself. Three men can
deploy in battle more promiscuously than
two ; so there was always a spare fist ready
to prod either Dan or Ben just as he was
getting the better of his opponent.

Locke's face was redder than the rose.

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and the crimson hue had smeared his shirt-
front; he peered with difficulty from be-
neath a beehive, or something, that hung
heavily over his left eye. Three times
Campbell had been knocked as many feet ;
but he was a wasp, a terrier that came
snarling back to meddle officiously with
foiu" good men who desired to settle, in
their own way, a difference of opinion.

Once the two McRaes held Mclntyre
in their long arms until he was like a
figure of the Laocoon. Jack's left had
Dan's head in chancery, while with his
right he upper-cut, only to batter his
knuckles against the Mclntyre skull.

" Will you take water now, blank you ? "
McRae panted.

For answer Strong Dan buckled his hips
sidewise and with a feint of throwing his
opponent backward, gave him the rolling-
hip lock, and McRae turned in the air,
falling on his back heavily. That would
have settled it if it had not been for the
spare man. Before Mclntyre could re-
cover from the throw he was back-heeled
by the brother and brought down, with a
McRae atop.

Locke, jumping back from a swing of
Campbell's fist, found time for an im-
promptu kick at Jim McRae's ribs; and
at the same minute Mclntyre turned his
man beneath.

Jack was up again, and, first pivoting a
blow into the base of Locke's skull by
way of assistance to Campbell, reached
down and clutched at Mclntyre's throat
with his long fingers for a strangle-hold.
Then he pitched forward at a blow from
Locke, and the three,— the two McRaes
and Mclntyre,— rolled over and over in a
ground-tussle. Suddenly Jim McRae's
hand, clutching treacherously at his en-
emy's face, found an opening, and two
fingers slipped into his mouth, fastening
upon the cheek in a gouge-hold.

Just as Locke had landed a subduing
blow over Campbell's heart he heard a
half-smothered cry of " Gouge ! " from his
comrade. The flickering firelight fell red
upon the polished steel of an ax almost at
Locke's feet. With an oath the sailor
swung it over his head, and, springing to
the struggling group, cried : " Let him up,
you dogs, or I '11 split your heads open !
I '11 smash you like a rat for gouging—
you cowardly Indians ! "

Locke's address was short and very

much to the point ; even the advantage of
a gouge-hold sank into insignificance com-
pared with the advantage a man held
standing above them, ax in hand. With a
growl Jack McRae rose to his feet, while
the fingers of Jim uncurled from their
vise-like grip.

With a twist Dan turned the McRae
under and sprang to his feet, saying : " Get
up now, you dirty dog, whatever ! Stand by,
Ben, to see fair play, an' I '11 lick the two
of them. Fightin' river boys— gougers! "

It was a fine point, this discrimins^ng
between the kick and the gouge ; but the
latter was well over the hne into the

"Never mind, Dan," Locke expostu-
lated ; " we gave them more 'n they sent
—they got their bellyful of fight this time.
We don't scrap with old women that

Mclntyre was of the patient, quiet kind
usually, and, as is the manner of that tribe,
when his blood was up, was hard to subdue.

" I '11 tell you this whatever. Jack Mc-
Rae," he said angrily, " I '11 give you a
thrashin' for this night's work yet. You 've
boasted from Rodney to the town-line that
you could best any man in the Scotch
Block, an' I 'II make you eat your words. An'
forbye you 're doubtin' what I 'm sayin*,
just step out here an' fight like a man."

"You '11 get your chance, Mclntyre,"
McRae retorted, "where there '11 .not be
cowards swingin' axes."

This exchange of compliments was good,
in a way, for the respite from action al-
lowed the heated blood to cool. And as
for fighting, it would have been a greedy
man who would have clamored for more
than had been served out in the ' ash-
swamp. Mclntyre's face bore eloquent
testimony to the excellence of the enter-
tainment, and the McRaes were battle-
scarred to a high degree.

As the two parties gathered their axes
and prepared to depart, Mclntyre spoke
again : " I '11 tell you. Jack McRae, why
Queenie did n't tackle the coon, fearin*
ye '11 spread it from the town-line to the
lake that she 's no a good coon-dog : yon
coon is Swampy, that she raised as one of
her own pups ; and that 's why she 'd no
put a tooth in him. And now, Locke, do
you away up the tamarack* again and bring
Swampy down in your arms this time.
We '11 take him back to the shanty."

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I'ruin a photograph







T is thirty-five years since
the fall of the Second
French Empire, and no
authentic account has
ever been published of
one of the most interest-
ing and dramatic inci-
dents of that memorable event— the flight
of the Empress Eugenie from her capital^
In a forthcoming volume of the " Memoirs
of Dr. Thomas W. Evans," there is an
accurate and complete narrative of what
happened to her Majesty, from the time
she made her escape from the palace of
the Tuileries until she found a new home
at Chiselhurst in England, and of this
narrative the present article forms a part.
In it will be found freely and frankly ex-
pressed the first thoughts of the Empress
after her fall from power. That morning
1 See postscript to th:

of the 5th of September, 1870, was a
" psychological moment " in her life, and
the record of her acts and opinions at the
time cannot fail to interest the reader who
cares to know something more of her per-
sonality and character.

Having been requested by the executors
of the estate of the late Dr. Evans to edit
his " Memoirs," after I had consented to
do this work, — but before I had seen the
material, — I informed the Empress in the
course of a conversation with her that I
had consented to edit Dr. Evans's manu-
script, remarking, at the same time, that I
hoped I should not discover in them any
petites indiscretions that might annoy her.
She at once replied : " So far as anything
you find may relate to myself, publish what
you like, only iell the truths

As I have a personal knowledge of what
is article. — Editor.

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took place during the time covered by the
pages that follow, it is scarcely necessary
for me to say that while, in preparing
them for publication, I have availed my-
self of the liberty generously and nobly
accorded to me, I have not forgotten my
own responsibility for the statements they

It will be remembered that the fall of the
empire was sudden and unexpected. Im-
mediately after the official announcement of
the disaster at Sedan (September 1, 1870),
when it became known that Napoleon III
and his whole army were prisoners of war,
the Empress, who had been acting as re-
gent, was called upon to abdicate. Before
the first step could be taken to form a
provisional government, the ringleaders of

Online LibraryA. B. (Alfred Barton) RendleThe Century → online text (page 103 of 120)