Abigail Stanley Hanna.

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had fired the house. Upon approaching the window, she again discovered
them by the wood pile searching for the axe, which they soon raised,
and cutting several sticks of wood, bore it away to replenish their

In a short time their dusky forms wrapped in their dirty blankets,
were stretched upon the damp ground, with their greasy heads turned
towards the fire, and sleep descended upon their weary lids, and
silence once more reigned round that forest home.

Dove Eye still reclined upon the rock, watching the moon as it hid
its silver beams behind a dark mountain, whose eternal summit lay
stretched along the western horizon.

Mrs. Fuller, too, kept anxious watch. She knew from many of them she
had nothing to fear; they had often warmed themselves by her fire,
had eaten of her bread, and in many ways been partakers of her
hospitality, and she knew the Indian never forgets a kindness.

She gently hushed the feeble wailings of her infant, lest it should
awaken them to savage rage. She almost resolved to take her children
and leave the house while that savage band were weighed down by sleep
and intoxication. But she feared it might exasperate them if they
found her gone, and so she waited the event, lifting her heart to God
in prayer, for he was the refuge of that christian woman, in every
hour of trial.

The sun came up at length, and shed his glorious beams over the face
of rejoicing nature. The birds sang their matin hymns of praise. The
dew drops glittered upon the green grass and tender herbage, and the
restless cows lowed, impatient to wander forth at their accustomed
hour. The children arose, refreshed by their slumber, and as they
looked out upon the dusky sons of the forest, their hearts quaked
within them, and stealing silently into a corner, they awaited their
fate with pale faces.

Dove Eye stole quietly from the rock, and kindling the almost
extinguished fire, hastily prepared their simple morning meal. She
took from a deer skin knapsack, which she carried upon her back, a
neat white cloth, and repaired to the house of Mrs. Fuller, wishing
to exchange some nice dried moose meat for some new milk. Mrs. Fuller
hastily milked, and filling a large pail, Dove Eye bore it to their
place of rendezvous, and the cows went forth to crop the dewy grass.

She then awoke her husband, and soon the dusky group were partaking of
their morning repast, with evident satisfaction, after which they made
preparations to depart. They came, one after another, to get their
hunting utensils and their implements of war, from Mrs. Fuller,
telling her,

"Me no forget white squaw - me bring moose meat for white squaw."

Soon they marched away, in Indian file, and as their dusky forms
disappeared, one after another, behind the forest trees, her heart
rose in thanksgiving to God, for her preservation. Dove Eye lingered
till the rest of her tribe vanished from sight; there was sadness in
her countenance, and sadness in her voice, as she said,

"Dove Eye see white squaw no more. Dove Eye go toward the rising sun,
but Dove Eye come no more."

Mrs. Fuller pressed her hand affectionately, and commending her to the
Great Spirit, she departed to overtake her companions. The children
emerged from their hiding places, a cheerful fire burned upon the
hearth, and the weary mother prepared the morning meal for herself and
her children, with a grateful heart.

When the wandering tribe returned again towards the setting sun, Dove
Eye was not with them - she had "gone to the land where her fathers had

Years passed on - years of trial, of anxiety, and of change. The tall
forest trees gave place to cultivated fields and blooming orchards.

Roads traversed the vast country in every direction. Numerous villages
rose up, on the flourishing banks of the winding Kennebec, and its
proud waters bore many a whitened sail upon its surface.

The red men of the forest have passed away, like the withered leaves
before the autumnal gale, and the wild bear and deer are now strangers
in their secluded haunts.

The young wife and mother passed from the sober matron to mature age,
and there were deep furrows upon her cheek, and the frosts of many
winters whitened her hair; but when she related the events of that
night to her grand-children, or great-grand-children, she ever spoke
with trembling voice, and called it the "long fearful night."

On Hearing a Bird Sing,

December, 1826.

Cease, little warbler, cease thy lay,
For summer, with her sunny day,
Far to the south has fled away;
And autumn's chilly finger
Has touch'd the leaf on ev'ry tree, -
And blighted everything we see;
Then, warbler, do not linger.

Fly where groves of citron bloom,
And orange orchards shed perfume,
And birds of ev'ry varied plume
With music charm thee:
Fly, little warbler, quickly fly,
Far, far away to southern sky,
Where nought can harm thee.

For, oh, it is no careless voice -
That bids thee fly and seek for joys,
And shun the rushing whirlwind's noise,
That soon will pass before thee.
But one, whose bosom knows full well,
The heartless scene, the winter spell,
That soon will hover o'er thee.


Variety is sweet to me
As many blossoms to the bee;
And I will roam from flower to flower,
Sipping honey ev'ry hour;
I will wander with the bee,
And drink thy sweets, variety.

But if I idly flit away,
All my sunny summer day,
Dancing round from flow'r to flow'r;
What shall grace my winter bow'r?
No, I'll not wander with the bee,
So tempt me not, variety.

But I will prune my myrtle tree,
That in winter green will be,
When other flow'rs are pale and dead:
Their color gone, their beauty fled,
No, I'll not wander with the bee;
So away, variety.

My myrtle then shall be my care,
That's green and fragrant all the year;
I will not spend the fleeting hours
Flitting round more fragrant flow'rs.
I'll not wander with the bee,
So begone, variety.

This in youth should be our care,
To improve for future years;
For if we flit from toy to toy,
Chasing the painted bubble, joy,
No real substance shall we find
To nourish or improve the mind.
Then I'll not wander with the bee
Since it leads to misery.

And youth's fair morn will vanish soon,
And the bright sun grow dim at noon;
Trials will rise along the way,
To cloud the dreary winter day;
Then I'll not wander with the bee,
So farewell, variety.

Henriette Clinton;


Reverses of Fortune.

At the foot of the Alleghany Mountains stands the flourishing village
of Hollidaysburg. On the banks of the blue Juniata, that winds on till
it buries its waters in the rolling Susquehannah, stood the elegant
mansion of Esquire Clinton, the village lawyer. He had lost his young
wife many years since, and Henriette, his only child, shared largely
in the affection of her father. Her every wish was gratified, and she
was educated in the fashionable etiquette of the place. She was the
guiding star in the fashionable circle in which she moved, and a
general favorite.

But there came a change. The father was seized with sudden illness,
and in a few short hours was no more. The grief-stricken Henriette
had watched with an agonized heart the progress of the disease, had
attended to his wants, and supplied his necessities with her own
hands. A skillful physician had done all that medical aid could do,
but nothing could avail. The grim messenger lingered not, and the
beautiful Henriette was left sole mistress of the splendid mansion.

But Frederic Clinton had made preparation for that event, and his lamp
was trimmed and burning when the Master came.

Henriette, too, had given her heart to God, while the freshness of
youth was yet upon it, and now he supported her in her hour of trial.
Her father was borne to the grave, with all the splendor of wealth, a
long train of sympathizing friends following in the procession, and
showing every attention to the bereaved orphan, who was the only

Henriette returned with an aching heart, to the home of her childhood,
and seated herself in her father's library, overwhelmed with grief.

It was a cheerless autumn day, and nature seemed sympathizing in her
sorrow. The fitful gusts of wind came sighing down the mountains, and
sweeping over the usually placid waters of the Juniata, tossed its
waves into tumultuous motion, and drove it more rapidly on in its
serpentine course. The beautiful magnolia that stood before the
window, was filled with its second crop of yellow flowers, that were
faded and ready to pass away, and the surging blasts swept them
unceremoniously from the branches, as it came sighing down the
mountains, and sweeping along the valley. The sun had long since hid
himself behind the summit of the eternal hills, that she had loved to
watch with her father, from that window, while learning lessons
from his lips, of the grandeur and sublimity of God, who spake that
stupendous chain of mountains into existence. And her thought was
turned to that God, who has promised to be "the father of the
fatherless." To him she knelt - to him she prayed. Soothed and
comforted, she arose and entered the parlor. Sympathizing domestics
awaited her pleasure, and obeyed her commands.

Proper measures were taken for an investigation of Mr. Clinton's
affairs, and the estate was pronounced insolvent, and all was offered
for sale. At first Henriette could scarcely believe the assertion, but
when she became convinced of its truth, she nerved her mind to meet
the trial, relying upon that God "who tempers the wind to the shorn

She immediately dismissed her domestics, who had been faithful so
long to the family, watching over their young mistress, during her
childhood and early youth, and now they felt grieved to leave her. She
gave each one a present from her own treasures, procured good places
for them, retaining only the dear old nurse in her service, for a few
days, till the auction had taken place.

Henriette had never been accustomed to labor, and old Mary was
surprised upon seeing her enter the dining room, with her glossy brown
hair parted neatly over her high marble forehead, clad in a simple
gingham, which she had prepared for a morning dress, with a brown
linen apron, to assist her in making the necessary arrangements for
her removal and the coming sale.

The rooms were put in the best possible order, and the luxurious
furniture arranged with great care, that everything might show to the
best advantage. She selected a few choice volumes from the library,
and placed them in a large trunk, which was to contain her own
wardrobe, and which she had decided upon keeping, if circumstances
would permit.

This had been her favorite room; one window looked out upon the
mountains, that lifted their heads in majestic grandeur, and seemed
supporting the very clouds upon their lofty summits, while their
jagged sides looked as though they would drop upon the valley below.
But they had stood for ages the same, braving the fury of the wintry
storm as its surging blasts swept over them, or parched by the burning
rays of the noonday sun, as he poured his fierce scorching beams upon
them. She had looked upon them too in the twilight hour, when the
coming darkness would present strange, mysterious shadows, and the
craggy rocks would assume the forms of men, and fancy would conjure up
a lawless band of midnight plunderers emerging from their dark caves,
upon the mountain side.

But now she was looking out of that window perhaps for the last time,
and the unbidden tear would spring to her eye. The books were nicely
dusted, the comfortable stuffed rocking chair stood in its usual place
where her father used to love to sit so well, and a splendid ottoman
stood before it, which was usually her seat. Her elegant little chair
covered with crimson velvet, stood by the window, where she ever loved
to linger to look out upon the mountains, always finding some new
trace of beauty, as she gazed upon their cloud capped summits. But now
she must linger no longer; the rich covering was placed exactly square
upon the elegant little table, and every particle of dust was banished
from the room, and there were duties elsewhere that demanded her
attention. As she turned to leave the room, she raised her eyes to the
portraits of her parents that hung suspended on the wall opposite her,
in heavy gilt frames. The likenesses were very natural, and now seemed
smiling upon her with life-like affection. At this time the man
entered with whom she had procured board, and who had kindly offered
to assist in removing any articles she might wish to convey to his
house. The dear resemblances of her idolized parents were removed
from the spot they had occupied so many years, to be carried to a
stranger's home. Henriette felt less regret at parting from the place
now those loved faces were removed. There were many little treasures
associated with dear memories she would gladly have taken, but a
strict sense of honor forbade her. She turned away, locking the door,
but leaving the key in it, to be turned next by a stranger's hand. She
drew up her music stool, and seating herself upon it touched the keys
of her piano with a skillful hand, and sang with a trembling voice,

"Farewell, farewell, is a lonely sound."

She closed the instrument as she finished the pieced saying,

"It is the last time."

There was one hour before the auction, and already were curious eyes
peering round the premises. Every thing being arranged to their minds,
Henriette dismissed the dear old nurse with many tears and a generous
reward. She would live near by and would see her every day, and this
was a source of great comfort to both.

Henriette now ran down the beautiful terraced walk, through her
father's garden, till she reached a beautiful arbor on the brink of
the river, where she had spent so many happy hours. Here was her
guitar, her father's flute, and the book they had last read together.
She seated herself upon the richly cushioned seat, and looked upon
the winding waters that seemed mocking her sad heart as they danced
sparkling on beneath the mellow rays of the autumnal sun, its bosom
ruffled by the autumnal breeze. At the foot of the terrace her fairy
skiff lay moored, which used to dance upon the wave by moonlight,
while she and her father made the air resound with the melody of their
music; but there was little time to linger here.

She put the little arbor in order, and repaired next to her
conservatory, filled with rich and rare exotics, took a hasty glance,
moving the choice plants into the position that best suited her good
taste, and wiping the dust from its polished shelves. Her father's
chair occupied its place by his favorite window that looked out upon
the Juniata that was indistinctly seen, peeping its little spots of
blue through the thick leaves of the plants that almost hid it from
view. She took a last look, passing on to the aviary, where a choice
collection of birds filled the ear with their melody. Old nurse had
attended to this department, and she caressed her pets, and smoothed
their feathers, and breathing a sad adieu, turned to take a last look
at her favorite Sullensifadda, as she had named her noble steed. She
patted his neck, told him coaxingly he would never again climb the
mountain pass with her upon his back; took a last look of her father's
splendid saddle horse of dapple grey, and his jet black span of
carriage horses, and passed round through the richly cultivated
grounds, and gardens where every thing that wealth could procure lay
spread out before the eye. She took a hasty look, a hasty leave of all
and felt that sense of desolation known to almost every human heart,
when called upon to part from dear familiar objects. She looked at her
elegant gold watch, and finding her time had expired, returned to
the house. Already there had many arrived who wished to attend the
auction. Henriette entered a small apartment, seated herself upon a
low stool, and wept as she heard the unfeeling remarks and low jests,
as the vulgar crowd pulled about the furniture, turning it from side
to side, declaring they had no idea Esq. Clinton's mansion was so
meanly furnished. But we will not dwell upon this painful scene.

Mr. Charles Norcross purchased the house with all its appurtenances.
The furniture was distributed about here and there among the
wealthy citizens, who wished to add some article of luxury to their
establishment. And all was gone. Sold for less than half its value,
and poor Henriette had the mortification of hearing that the debts
were not cancelled. So she disposed of her gold watch and pencil, her
father's watch, a box of rich jewelry, and every available article in
her possession to contribute her mite to keep dishonor from resting
upon her father's name. She then went forth penniless upon the world.
But there was a light in her eye and firmness in her step that told of
a "will to do, a soul to dare." She had been educated in the customs
of the village, and had been an aristocrat. Now she had another lesson
to learn, a sad lesson speaking of the depravity of the human heart,
and now she must learn all the cold heartlessness of that world that
had heretofore shone so brightly upon her pathway. She did not once
think in her grief that her change in fortune would make any change in
friendship's tone, but alas! the society in which she had moved was
very, very exclusive, and to labor with the hands was to bar the door
of that society forever against one.

Henriette at first did not realize this, and when she met her former
gay companions, was surprised when they passed her with an averted
eye, or a slight nod of recognition. Frequently was she called upon to
meet that sudden death chill that falls so often upon the human heart,
when the fond affections of many years gush warmly up to the eye and
lip, as we meet some long cherished friend who passes us by with a
cold, scornful glance. O this is poverty's bitterest curse, and this
too must be met. Those who might have removed many a sharp thorn from
the pathway of the lonely Henriette, but added sharpness to their
point, and made her feel and deeply feel,

"Man's inhumanity to man,
Makes countless thousands mourn."

The poor girl felt there was no time to sit still, for she was a
destitute orphan, and she must try to help herself, and so she
repaired to Mrs. Cobb, the most fashionable dress maker in the
village, to see if she could learn her trade.

Matters were satisfactorily arranged, and she commenced immediately.
A willing hand and active mind made the task easier than she had
anticipated. It was soon a matter of conversation through all the
village, when it became known that the haughty Henriette Clinton was
going to be a dress maker, and many were the remarks that were made
upon her everlasting gingham dress, for her nice sense of propriety
prevented her from wearing the rich articles of apparel contained in
her wardrobe; and at present she could procure no other. She formed
the resolution sometimes of disposing of some of her costly garments
to relieve her present necessity, but they had been selected by her
dear father, and were all that remained to her as a link of her past
intercourse with him, and so she clung to them as dear remembrances of
the past, the happy past.

She sat through the long weary hours with her eyes bent upon her work,
and made rapid proficiency in the art she was acquiring.

Mr. Norcross, who purchased the Clinton estate, was a man of a low
sordid mind not at all calculated to appreciate the elegance of his
domicile. He was a merchant, and had rapidly come into possession of
great wealth, and wishing to climb a little higher upon the ladder
of aristocracy, he thought a purchase of the lawyer's splendid
establishment would forward his progress. Therefore, selling his own
place at a very high price, and purchasing that at an equally low one,
did not much diminish his hoarded gold. But after all they were not
the Clintons. It was only Mr. Norcross the store-keeper, and they had
many steps to climb before they could reach that position in society
they were so desirous of attaining. They bowed to one, scraped to
another, parties were made, and many means devised, all of which were
accompanied with disappointment, as the least desired would come, and
those for whom the party was made would just as surely stay away.

Mrs. Norcross was a large coarse woman, with red hair, light blue
eyes, and freckled face, but with a good humored expression of
countenance. Her two daughters, Araminta and Clarinda, were not very
refined in their manners, owing to a deficiency in their education,
but were good hearted, cheerful girls. Araminta was much pleased with
Henriette's horse, but did not appreciate the name, and declared he
should be called Selim, for she knew she had read of some great
man who had a horse by that name, and who ever heard of one named
Sullensifadda, ugly name. She mounted him one day, gaily caparisoned,
but he being equally unaccostomed to his new name and rider, soon
convinced her he had a light pair of heels.

Henriette sat busily at work by the window, when the clatter of the
well known hoofs sounded upon her ear, and she raised her eyes just in
time to see her well remembered steed flying toward the mountain
pass with the speed of lightning, while the frightened Araminta was
clinging to his mane to prevent falling to the ground, her long riding
dress and veil were streaming behind her their full length in the
wind, which was blowing pretty briskly, and her small riding-cap was
drawn a little farther upon one side than the rules of gentility
seemed to require. Henriette pitied the poor girl, but she could not
help smiling at her ludicrous appearance. She turned pale when she
saw the horse turn suddenly down a narrow path that led to the river,
plunge into its dashing waves, and swimming round a circuitous route,
spring back upon the shore, and setting his face towards home, bore
back the mortified girl all wet and dripping through the streets at
too rapid a rate for any one to interfere with his arrangements,
arriving at home apparently well satisfied with his performance.

Months passed away, such months as Henriette had never known before.
She could have borne her toil, her simple fare, and the ten thousand
deprivations she was subjected to, had this been all; but the averted
looks of her friends were more than all these. She used to sit a
little while in the twilight hour upon her parents' graves, and recall
their loved forms and tender words, and people her imagination with
by-gone scenes, and then, as she contrasted the present, her cherished
text would come to illuminate her mind and calm her troubled spirit,
"all things work together for good to them that fear God," and she was
comforted and strengthened to go on her weary way, for this took in
life with all its little incidents, its every day trials, and she
returned to the active duties of life, realizing that "this is not our

Ere the spring returned she had accomplished her wish, and entered
into many families as dress maker where she used to be admitted as an
equal, if not superior. She maintained her dignity of deportment, for
now she well knew poverty did not deteriorate from worth, a
lesson perhaps she too might have been slow to learn under some
circumstances, but which now had been taught her by stern necessity,
and her rigid lessons are never soon forgotten.

She had taken the rich trimming from some of her plainest dresses, and
wore them when she could not possibly avoid it. She did her work with
great neatness and dispatch, and was supplied with all she could
possibly do, so that she remunerated the kind hearted woman who had
boarded her through her apprenticeship, and been very attentive to her
in many ways, for she truly pitied the poor orphan.

In the spring Mr. Clinton's vacant office was again occupied by a
young lawyer, who came into the village, from New York, named Henry
Lorton, and half the young ladies' heads were turned, by the beauty
and elegance of the young northerner. Parties were formed, walks
projected up the mountains, moonlight sails upon the silvery bosom of
the Juniata, and every means devised to draw the young lawyer into
company, and love with the southern beauties; but they declared his
heart was as cold as the region he came from.

All these things Henriette heard, as she sat plying her needle, or

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Online LibraryAbigail Stanley HannaWithered Leaves from Memory's Garland → online text (page 11 of 19)