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NYPL RESEARCH LIBRARIES



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THE POND. Fr



JOHN GAY; OR, WORK FOR BOYS.



BY JACOB ABBOTT.



IN FOUR VOLUMES.



ILLUSTRATED BY H. W. HERRICK.



v. 3



WORK FOR SUMMER.




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NEW YORK ,:

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PUBLISHED BY KURD AMD t oX 1 -H;r<^ f '

401 BROADWAY, COR. OF WALKER STREET.

1864.

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THE JOHN GAY SERIES.



I. WORK FOR WINTER.

II. WORK FOR SPRING.

III. WORK FOR SUMMER.

IV. WORK FOR AUTUMN.



Entered ac



TUT7 TJF"
i n Hi n EJ

PUBLIC L

796018 A

ASTOli, :.

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ordJngpb Act ofuOTtgress,^ the year 1864, by



"HURD AND IIOUGIITON,

in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for
the Southern District of XL-W York.



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.



STEREOTYPED AND PRINTED BY
H. 0. HOUGHTON AND COMPANY.



CONTENTS.



CHAP. PAGE

I. JOHN'S GREENBACKS .... 5
II. FIXING THE COLORS ... 15

III. SUMMER SNOWBALLING . . .27

IV. DUPLICATE RATIO . . . . 37
V. SMALL CHANGE 45

VI. A CONFERENCE .... 55

VII. WORKING SYSTEMATICALLY . . 66

VIII. THE POND-BOX .... 75

IX. MARY'S HELP 86

X. THE TRELLIS 96

XI. MARY'S PICTURES . . . .107
XII. PREPARATIONS FOR FRAMING . 118

XIII. IMPROVEMENT IN THE POND . .129

XIV. FRAMING THE PICTURES . . 140
XV. QUITE A CARPENTER . . . 155

XVI. SHIP-BUILDING . . . .162

XVII. SAILING THE SHIPS . . . .174
XVIII. THE KITE-SHIP 185



ENGRAVINGS.



PAGE

THE POND Frontispiece.

THE PUMP-PLATFORM 52

MARY COMING . 110



JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.



CHAPTER I.

JOHN'S GREENBACKS.

IN the back yard belonging to the house
where John and Benny lived, there was a
pump not far from the kitchen-door, with
a wooden platform leading out to it from
the door. Before the pump there was a
spout, of the kind which the carpenters
call a shoe, made to catch the waste water,
and convey it into an opening in the
ground, where there was a grating through
which it flowed into a dark recess in the
earth, that led away, Benny could never
imagine where.

Benny used to try to sail boats by means
of the water from this pump, but it troubled
him a good deal to get a pond large
enough. Sometimes he would borrow a
large tin milk -pan from Bridget in the
kitchen, and contrive to block it up level



6 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

under the nose of the pump, and then
pump it full of water, and sail his boats in
that.

At last, one day, it occurred to ' John
that he might make Benny a somewhat
larger pond, by using the spout itself for
this purpose. The spout was pretty wide
at the back end, and was about two feet
long. It was laid upon the platform of
the pump, and made to slope downward
somewhat, so as to carry off the water.
The back end, and the two sides of the
spout, were enclosed by means of narrow
pieces of board nailed on to them, but the
lower end was left open to allow the water
to flow out.

John contrived to block up this lower
end with a piece of wood placed under it,
so as to make it level, and then to make a
kind of dam across the opening by means
of a short board, which he cut as nearly as
possible to the right dimensions, and then
filled in the interstices with clay, so as to
make it nearly water-tight.

" There, Benny," said John, " now you
can pump that full of water, and you will
have quite a large pond. And now I think



JOHN'S GREENBACKS. 7

you ought to pay me for doing this work
for you."

" Well," said Benny, " I would pay you
if I only had some money."

" You can pay me in work," said John.

" Well," replied Benny, " I will be your
apprentice."

" No," said John ; " apprentices are
never paid for their work, only journey-



men."



" What is a journeyman ? " asked Benny.

" He is a man that has learned how to
work at his trade," replied John, " and so
the master pays him for what he does.
When he is an apprentice, he does not
know enough to work for pay ; so he only
works for his teaching and his board. If
you are going to work for pay, you will be
a journeyman."

"Bat I am not going to work for pay,"
said Benny. " I am going to work to pay
you."

" Oh, that 's the same thing," said John.
" You are going to work for pay, and your
pay is this pond, only I have paid you in
advance."

Benny was a little confused at these



8 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

various distinctions about pay, and after a
moment's pause he said,

" Well, I will be your journeyman.
What will be the work for me to do ? '

" Wheeling off the weeds from my gar-
den," said John. u I am weeding out my
garden, and I shall want you to rake up
the weeds as fast as I throw them out, and
wheel them away to the compost-heap."

" I don't like to wheel weeds," said Ben-
ny, beginning to look rather out of hu-
mor.

"But if you are my journeyman," said
John, " you must do just what I say.
That is always the way with journeymen."

" Then I won't be your journeyman at
all," said Benny.

" Then you can't have this pond," said
John.

Benny looked down at the pond, which
he had in the mean time pumped full of
water, and appeared to be very much dis-
turbed in mind at the idea of losing it.

" I can take the dam away," said John,
" and let the water all run out again, if
you are not willing to pay for it."

It was certainly right that Benny should



JOHN'S GREENBACKS. 9

do what he could to recompense John for
the time and pains he had taken to make
his pond ; and it was only strict justice that,
if he was not willing to do this, he should
not have the pond.

But strict justice is not the proper thing
to be dealt out to such a little boy as Ben-
ny by an older brother. Generosity is very
much better.

" On the whole," said John, after a mo-
ment's reflection, " I believe I will let you
have this pond for nothing. And after this,
when you want me to do anything for you,
you must be my journeyman, and work
for me first ; and then I will pay you with
some kind of money, and you must keep
the money ; and, when you want me to do
anything for you, you must pay me."

"What kind of money shall you pay
me ? " asked Benny.

" I will make some money in my shop,"
said John. " I'll go and do it now, while
you stay here and sail your boats in your
new pond."

So John left Benny sailing the boats,
and went into the shop. Here he took a
long and slender strip of wood, and planed



10 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

it out very thin, as thin as a common
book-cover. The piece was about three
fourths of an inch wide. This piece he
divided, by means of his compasses, into
parts an inch and a half long, and then
with the fine saw he sawed through at each
division. Thus he had about a dozen ob-
long pieces, very thin, and somewhat of the
shape of bank-bills. He said to himself
that he was going to make greenbacks of
them, by painting the backs of them green.

He determined to have five denomina-
tions of this money, ones, twos, threes,
fives, and tens ; and he marked the number
denoting the denomination on each piece
with a very narrow chisel, thus, I, II, III,
V, X. As he had twelve pieces in all,
he found he could make four of each de-
nomination.

By the time that he had proceeded thus
far with his work, Benny came into the
shop to see what he was doing. He was
very much pleased with the looks of the
money, and said that he wished that John
would give him some work to do at once,
so as to pay him some of the money.

" No," said John ; " the money is not



JOHN'S GKEENBACKS. 11

ready to be issued yet. It is not fin-
ished."

Benny wished to know what else was to
be done to the pieces.

" I am going to make greenbacks of
them," said John ; " I am going to do it this
evening, when we go in the house. But
you can work if you choose, provided you
will trust me to pay you when the money
is done."

Benny said he was willing to do this,
and John told him that the price he should
pay him for his work would be a dollar an
hour.

" But you will have to pay me two dol-
lars an hour," he added, " for my work."

" Ah, no, John," said Benny, " that would
not be fair."

" Yes," said John, " for I can do as much
for you in one hour as you can do for me
in two. Because you see that I am older
and stronger than you are ; and besides, I
work with tools for you, to make boats and
such things. It is always worth more to
work with tools."

But Benny could not be convinced that
John's work was worth twice as much as



12 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

his, and finally they agreed upon what the
lawyers call a reference ; that is, they both
said that they would leave it to their mother
to decide.

" You must not tell her what you think,"
said John, " and I will not tell her what I
think. We will only ask her how much
she thinks an hour of work that you do for
me is worth, paid in work that I do for
you, that is, how much more my work
is worth than yours."

" Yes," said Benny.

" And will you abide by what she says ? '

" Yes," said Benny ; " if she says your
work is worth twice as much as mine, I will
agree to it."

During all the time that the boys had
been talking in this way, John had been
continuing his work upon his money. He
rubbed each of the pieces upon fine sand-
paper, so as to smooth the edges and the
sides, and make them all perfectly nice and
clean. Benny helped at this work as well
as he could, standing upon the platform
which John had made for him to bring
him up to the proper height.

" John," said Benny, " you have not



JOHN'S GREENBACKS. 13

made money enough. I mean to do a
great deal more work than this will come
to."

" Yes," said John, " but this same money
will do over and over again. You see, first
I shall pay you with it for your work, and
then pretty soon you will come and bring
it to me to pay me for mine. Then I shall
have it again to pay you ; and so it will
be going back and forth all the time, and
in the end will pay for twenty times as
much work as the money itself comes to."

Benny was somewhat puzzled with this
idea of being paid over and over again for
his work, by the same money, but wiser
heads than his have been puzzled before
with the mysterious principles which reg-
ulate the flux and reflux of a circulating
medium, in its going out from and return-
ing to the issuer of it.

So, after standing still a moment, lost in
perplexity, he gave up the attempt to un-
derstand the subject, and went on rubbing
the pieces of money with the sand-paper
more briskly than ever.

By the time that the pieces were all
nicely smoothed, and wiped with a cloth



14 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

clean from the dust which the sand-paper
had made, the bell rang for supper, and the
boys went in.

That evening after supper the boys went
to their desk in the sitting-room, and there
John, taking out his box of paints, rubbed
some pretty green paint, and painted the
backs of all his bills of a bright green.
After the first coat was dry, he put on an-
other, so as to have the wood perfectly cov-
ered. He then painted the edges of each
piece of a bright red, and also carried a nar-
row stripe of red all around the margin on
the front side, too.

As fast as John finished the painting of
the pieces, he laid them down carefully,
charging Benny not to touch them.

" May I touch them when they are dry ? '
asked Benny.

" No," said John ; " you must not touch
them till the colors axe fixed."

" How are you going to fix them ? " asked
Benny.

" With boiled linseed oil," said John.

But I must postpone explaining how
John was going to do this until the next
chapter.



FIXING THE COLORS. 15



CHAPTER II.

FIXING THE COLORS.

ONE of the most important, and at the
same time most delicate of the operations
connected with the manufacture of the real
greenbacks, is to fix the colors, that is,
to make them permanent and indelible, so
that they will not fade out or wear off by
use, and cannot be effaced or altered by
counterfeiters. And John's wooden green-
backs were in this respect like the genuine
ones. It was necessary to fix the colors.
John did this by varnishing them over, after
he had put on the green and the red in
water, with boiled linseed oil.

It is much more easy and convenient to
paint in water-colors that is, in colors
mixed with water than with oil-colors,
which are colors mixed in oil ; but with oil-
colors the work is a great deal more secure
and durable ; for the oil, when it becomes
dry and hard, holds the color so that water
will not take it off. The oil that is used



16 JOHN GAY'S WOKE IN SUMMER.

must be what is called a drying oil, that is,
one of the kind that becomes hard and dry
on exposure to the air. The kind which is
generally used for this purpose is called
boiled linseed oil, and it can be bought at
any painter's.

The paints that are used by painters are
mixed with this, or some other kind of dry-
ing oil, but it is very inconvenient and
troublesome to use it ; for water will not
wash it off, but it will stick and stay wher-
ever it touches ; though it can be washed
off when it is fresh, and before it has had
time to dry, by means of soap, and even
after it is somewhat dry, by spirits of tur-
pentine.

It is so troublesome to do this, that in-
stead of washing their brushes when they
wish to change from one color to another,
painters generally have a separate brush
for every separate color, and this would be
very inconvenient for children.

But there is a way of combining the ad-
vantages of both methods ; and that is by
putting on the colors first with water, and
then, when the water has dried off, wash-
ing them over with oil. This, as it were,



FIXING THE COLORS. IT

makes oil-colors of them after they are put
on ; for the oil soaks in among the parti-
cles of color on the wood, and when it har-
dens it binds them all as firmly together as
if they had been put on in oil, and covers
the \vhole surface moreover, above the
color, with a thin but hard and permanent
coating, like a kind of varnish, which pre-
vents the colors from washing off if they
get wet afterward.

For all such purposes, therefore, as John's,
in the making of his greenbacks, the best
way for boys who are old enough and care-
ful enough to be intrusted with oil in any
form, is to put on the colors first in water,
from a common paint-box, and then after-
ward fix them by applying a coat of oil.

Varnish is still better, for it gives the
wood or the substance, whatever it is that
is painted, a fine glossy surface ; but var-
nish is more expensive than oil.

John painted his greenbacks, as has al-
ready been said, in the house in the even-
ing, and left them there on his desk to dry.
The next morning he and Benny, taking
them up carefully, carried them out to the

shop to be oiled.

2



18 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

He kept his bottle of oil on the lower
shelf of the cupboard at the end of his
bench, and the brush by the side of it.
This brush was one that once belonged to
a bottle of mucilage, and when the muci-
lage was used out, John had saved the
brush ; and, after soaking it in water all one
night to dissolve off the hardened mucilage,
he washed it clean the next morning, and
it made an excellent brush for his oil. He
washed it carefully too, with soap, every
time that he used it, so that it never be-
came stiff and hard, but was always in
good order for use.

The bottle, too, and the cork which
stopped the mouth of it, were always clean
and in good order ; for John always wiped
out the mouth of the bottle with a rag,
after he had been using it, before he put
the cork in, and he also, in the beginning,
rubbed a very little tallow on the cork,
which not only helped to keep the air from
penetrating through the interstices around
it, and so hardening the oil inside, but also
made it go in and come out easily.

You will perhaps guess that the person
who taught him all these things was Eben-



FIXING THE COLORS. 19

ezer ; but you are mistaken if you do, as
will appear presently.

John brought out the greenbacks and laid
them down carefully on a smooth board
upon his bench, and then took out his oil
and his brush. Then he paused and
seemed to be lost in thought.

" What is it ? ' asked Benny.

" I am thinking," said John.

" What are you thinking about ? ' asked
Benny.

" I am thinking whether I had better oil
my greenbacks with my brush or with a
rag. It is nicer to do it with the brush ;
but then I have the trouble of washing the
brush afterward. But if I take a rag, then
when I have done I throw the rag away.
So when I have only a little oiling to do,
I generally take a rag, one of those."

So saying, John pointed to a little shelf
which he had made against the wall op-
posite to his bench, on which lay a little
pile of cotton rags, about two inches square
each, which he had prepared by tearing up
some large pieces of cotton cloth that his
mother had given him out of her rag-bag.

John used these rags for various purposes



20 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

such as oiling any small thing that he
had made ; as, for instance, a handle for
some little tool, or an arrow for Benny, or
a silk-winder for his mother. All these
things look much better when oiled, as by
that means the colors of the wood, whether
it be pine, mahogany, birch, or any of the
more valuable fancy woods, are brought out
by the oil, and made to look much prettier
Then, besides, the surface, when thus oiled,
becomes hard and impervious to water, so
that the piece does not take a stain so
easily, and thus keeps cleaner and nicer
under use.

John also used his little rags to wipe his
tools with, when he whetted them on his
oil-stone, and to wipe out the mouth of his
oil-bottle before he put the cork in, after
using it, and for many other purposes.
He called them his towels.

" On the whole," said John, after pausing
for a moment to consider whether he should
use his brush or a little towel, to oil his
greenbacks, " I think it will be better to
take the brush. That will be the best way,
and Ebenezer says, ' Do what you do in
the very best way, no matter for the
trouble.'



FIXING THE COLOES. 21

John had a little saucer, which I think
must have once belonged to a doll's tea-set,
for it was not bigger round than the palm
of his hand, and so could not have been
intended to be used by real people. Be-
sides, his cousin Mary gave it to him, and
it probably belonged to a set which she
had when she was a little girl. He took
this saucer and poured out a few drops of
the oil into it, taking care to turn the bottle
round, and cant it over backward when he
had done pouring, so as to let the drop
that remained on the lip flow back into the
bottle, instead of running down outside.

It was not Ebenezer, as has been in-
timated once before, that taught John such
niceties as these. Ebenezer was extremely
precise and particular about all substantial
things, and about everything that con-
cerned the rapid and perfect completion of
his work ; but he paid no attention to those
little niceties in respect to the modes of
doing it, which are very important for a
gentleman to observe, who undertakes to
amuse himself with mechanical operations.
It was John's uncle Edward who taught
him things of this kind,



22 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

Ebenezer would have considered it very
small business to make up a parcel of
little towels to wipe his tools with. He
used to reach out upon his bench and take
up a handful of shavings, wherever he saw
them, for this purpose, and then throw them
down upon the floor. And when he poured
oil out of his oil-bottle he paid very little
attention to the drop that was left upon the
lip of the glass. The consequence was that
in process of time the mouth and neck of
the bottle became all gummed over with
a mass of hardened oil, like the drippings
from a flaring candle, so thick that you
could not tell what the original shape of
it was at all.

This was all very well for a farmer's
shop, and for a workman who always wore
a working-dress. The time that is required
for doing things nicely would have been
thrown away for him. It was different,
however, for a young gentleman like Ed-
ward, or for a boy like John, who must al-
ways keep their dress clean and nice, and
who often wish to bring their work into
the house, and even into the parlor.

John learned to be so neat and nice in his



FIXING THE COLORS. 23

work by his practice during the summer,
that on the following winter he used often
to put his bottle of oil and one of varnish,
his brush, his little towels, and his box of
paints, all upon a large wooden tray that he
made for the purpose, and bring them into
the parlor during the long evenings, and
there work, in company with Mary and Ben-
ny, in making little toys of various kinds,
and painting and varnishing them.

" Now, Benny," said John, after he had
begun oiling his greenbacks, " go out in
the barn and bring me in three or four
clean straws. Don't be long choosing
them, but come quick. I will count it as
a part of your time that I am to pay you
for."

Benny ran off to execute this commis-
sion. When he returned with the straws,
he found that John had already oiled two
or three of the greenbacks. John selected
two long straws from those which Benny
brought, and laid them down pretty near
together on the board, and then placed
the greenbacks that he had oiled across
them.

"What is that for?" asked Benny.



24 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

" What do you put the greenbacks on the
straws for ? '

" To keep them up off the board," said
John, u so that the air can come to them
all around and harden the oil."

John proceeded in this way to oil all his
greenbacks, and Benny was surprised to
find how much it improved the appearance
of them. It not only made the painted
portions on the back and on the edges look
bright and pretty, but it also brought out
the color of the wood on the facing where
it had not been painted, and deepened and
darkened it so as to give a finished look
to the whole piece. Some of the oil, too,
settled in the marks made by the chisel to
denote the denomination of the piece, and
made them look a great deal plainer.

On the whole, Benny was so much pleased
with the appearance of the money that he
began to think that, if he should earn some
of it, and John should pay him, instead of
paying it back to John for work that John
was to do for him, he should rather keep it
for his own.

" Very well," said John, " you can keep
it if you please. When people earn money



FIXING THE COLORS. 25

by their work, they have a right to keep it,
or spend it, just as they like."

After the greenbacks were all oiled, John
set the board which contained them before
the window to dry, and then went to wash
his brush. He brought out a cake of
brown soap from the kitchen, and then,
while Benny pumped, he held the soap and
his brush under the stream of water, and
when they were wet he rubbed the brush
upon the soap until he had made a good
lather upon it, working the brush every
way so as to make sure that the lather
should penetrate among all the bristles.

Then, after rinsing off the brush by let-
ting Benny pump some clean water upon it,
he carried the soap back to the kitchen and
then returned with Benny to the shop,
where he wiped the brush dry with one of
his towels, and then put brush and oil-bot-
tle away in their place, all ready to be used
another time.

" And now, when will the greenbacks be
dry ? " asked Benny.

" To-morrow," said John. " But if you
choose you can earn one of them to-day,
and I can set it aside on the board and it



26 JOHN GAY'S WORK IN SUMMER.

will be yours ; only you can't take it away
very well till to-morrow."

Well," said Benny, I '11 go and get
the wheelbarrow, and wheel away the
weeds."



SUMMER SNOWBALLING. 27



CHAPTER HI.

SUMMER SNOWBALLING.

ONE day in the early part of June there
was a cold rain-storm, and John and Ben-
ny, after playing for some time in the barn
and sheds, and doing a little work in John's
shop, came into the house and proceeded
to the sitting-room, where they found their
mother sitting by a small fire which had
been made there.

" Mother," said John, " it is as cold as
winter. All your plants in the garden will
freeze."

" No," said his mother, " nothing can
freeze to-day. The cold is not down to
thirty-two ; and nothing freezes till the
thermometer goes down to thirty-two."

" But, mother, you don't know but that


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