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worse of liquor, while Leonora and the young man remained perfectly sober, for I saw they drank sparingly.
On the following morning, I was seated by the kitchen-fire of the inn where we were stopping, when Bellino entered in a fearful rage. I was much alarmed; he stamped and swore so fearfully, I crept into a corner, and trembled for my safety. I soon learned the cause Leonora had decamped through the night, carrying off all his cash and linen, scant as his wardrobe was, leaving him without a farthing to pay for our lodgings. Fortunately for him, she had left his watch: I was sent with it to the pawnbroker's to get all I could on it; and on my return, the partnership was dissolved, for Bellino set off after the runaway. I was left once more alone in the world, without a home or friend, and felt as forlorn as ever.
Until evening came, I had hopes of my master's return; it was not till then I felt fully the bitterness of my present situation, for self-reliance had not yet come to me. As it grew dark, I began to weep; I had not eaten anything throughout the day. I had not one penny in my pocket, and, fearful of being turned out, I looked imploringly at the landlady, for she had scarcely spoken to me during the day, and the few words she did speak were not in an inviting tone they were uttered as if she looked upon me as an intruder upon her hearth, inquiring when I expected my father to return. Observing the silent tears, however, that stole down my face, her heart was touched, her voice and manner softened, and she inquired if Bellino was my father. I told her the sad story of my life, and the good woman wept.
terest. I sat fearful lest the landlady in the hurry of business might forget her promise, for her guests were many; but at last she beckoned to one of them, a plain elderlylooking man, who rose and went to her; and they talked together for a few minutes. My eye was upon them; I saw her point to me, and my heart beat fast as I observed her look pleased as the conversation proceeded. Presently the old man rejoined his company, and after a short time, all eyes were turned upon poor Charlie; he had evidently spoken to them of me.
I was called to the table, and offered drink, which I civilly refused; but taking a glass, I took a little of it, and drank all their healths. Some of them boisterously insisted that I should empty the glass, when the individual who had spoken with the landlady checked them, and I was excused. I was then requested to sing, which I did; and every one in the company gave me a few coppers - it was such a sum as I had never before possessed. It was all my own-delightful feeling! I could scarcely keep my hand out of my pocket; for there was no Blind Willie or Bellino to take it from me, and I almost felt I was no longer poor Charlie.
I retired to my seat by the fire, after I had sung a few songs, anxiously awaiting the result of the landlady's application; but they were so much engrossed in their own debates, that my heart began to sink as they began to drop away. I feared I was forgotten; and they were nearly all gone, when Thomas Ross, the individual to whom the landlady had spoken, came to me: "Poor boy," said he, "come to me at my shop to"Poor boy," said she, "your sorrows be-morrow forenoon, and I will see what I can gan soon; but do not weep, you may remain do for you, if you behave yourself." I with me for a day or two, until I try to find thanked him for his kindness, and he left the a master for you, and save you from this room. vagabond life. Would you wish to be a tradesman?"
"O yes; thank you," I replied; "could I only find a master.'
"There is no fear, trade is brisk and hands scarce; if you are a good boy and industrious, you may yet be a rich man. I expect Thomas Ross and a few master-weavers here in an hour or two; I will speak to him to take you as a learner: he is a good master, it is a good trade, and they make good wages at the calico-weaving, which is easily learned."
Her kind words shed a ray of hope on my despair, and with a grateful heart, I thanked my hostess. At length the expected guests began to drop into the kitchen, where I sat solitary and anxious, listening to every word that was said; their talk was of trade at first, but gradually politics absorbed all their in
VOL. XI. 35
I went to bed that night with a feeling I had never enjoyed before; I could scarcely refrain from leaping and bounding about the room, I was so happy at the prospect of being enabled to earn my bread by my own industry. I was weary of the vagabond life I had been forced to lead. Again, the money I had just received was a temptation to continue it on my own account, without a mas ter to take the whole from me; small as the sum was, it appeared a great one, and had been won without toil: with these thoughts revolving in my mind, I fell asleep.
The instructions and example I had got from Annie were by this time nearly forgotten. I first became careless while with Willie; and in Bellino's service, where the worst of examples was before me, all pious feelings had forsaken me. But now-I think it was partly suggested by a dream
old thoughts came back upon me, and I rose up unconsciously, and found myself upon my knees repeating the prayers Annie had taught me. At length I crept into bed, and again fell asleep.
Early in the forenoon I waited upon Mr. Ross, and was kindly received. From the questions he put, I saw he was suspicious of me from the wandering life I had led, and the people I had been forced to live among he was a member of the Secession Church, and a very religious man; but, thanks to Annie's training and my good memory, I answered to his satisfaction. He inquired not of the songs and ballads I knew, but put questions from the Catechism and Scriptures; and I raised his wonder at the number of texts and passages I could repeat.
He then said "Charlie, I will be your friend, if you behave yourself; I have not at present an empty loom, but you can fill pirns until I get one. In the meantime, you shall have bed and board for your work, and as soon as I can, I will place you on the same terms as my other learners; you will for the first year get the half of your earnings, and after that you shall be free, and get all you can work for." I thanked him for his kindness, and that forenoon commenced my new mode of life. For the first few days I felt my new situation very irksome, the change being great; but still, I plied my task with energy, and pleased my master. Gradually I became reconciled, and filled my pirns with a lighter heart than ever I had sung; and the hours passed like minutes. I knew my work, and for the first time in my life felt happy and independent of the caprice of others; I was in a new world, where all around me were busy and happy. At times they sung, or discussed politics or the passing events; every one was a statesman in his own estimation, and saw no difficulty in setting to rights both church and state, if they were but allowed to do so. At times, we would practice psalmody, for all Mr. Ross's men were members of the church; and I soon picked up the psalmtunes, and was often leader when they were in the mood, for the recently revived religious impression was still strong upon me.
I had no wish to leave my benefactor, and I agreed still to work for him. I had formed friendships with some of my fellow-workmen of sober habits; for, I am sorry to say, several of them were improvident and dissipated, and were only a shade above the inhabitants of the garret, my first associates. My companion and fellow-lodger was James White; he had been the child of misfortune, like myself, in his earlier years, but, unlike me, had been born to brighter prospects. His father, who was in business for himself, and was thought to be prosperous, died after a long sickness; and at his death, from losses and misfortunes, he left his widow and two children in poverty. The widow sunk under her privations and her grief; and James, only five years of age, and his sister younger, were sent to the charity workhouse. From what he told me, I must have been far happier under good Annie than they were under the tyranny of the keeper and matron; for although I suffered toil, cold, and privation, I was not flogged and crushed like him at the caprice of unrestrained cruelty. His sister, along with many others of tender age, sank under their cruel treatment, and this without inquiry. The matron was the harshest of any one in the house a perfect tigress. My heart sickened at the narrative he gave me of the sufferings of the workhouse children under their unchecked officials, whose feeling seemed to be- they are beggars, it is good enough for them; they are not starved, they are clothed, and have a house above their heads-what more do they require? The statements I have heard from James often made my blood boil in my veins, child as I was myself of destitution and poverty.
I will not dwell longer on his workhouse sufferings. At twelve, he was sent from the house as an apprentice to a weaver, where he was overwrought and almost starved; and on the Sabbath confined all day, lest he should run away. But where could he run to? If he returned to the house, his complaint was unheeded and unredressed; he was punished for running away, and then sent back to his oppressor, now backed in his cruelty. After several unsuccessful attempts, he made his escape and reached Glasgow, where he soon obtained employment. He was now twenty years of age, seven of which he had spent in the workhouse, yet he read worse than I, who was taught only by Annie. He was not dissipated, but improvident; not inclined to read, yet eager after oral information, and very acute in the arguments that often oc
In a few weeks, I was seated at my loom, and received instructions from my master, with whom I was a favorite. I joined in family worship, regularly attended church, and felt a peace of mind and calm happiness I cannot describe my time passed as in a pleasant dream. In a short period, I could maintain myself, and at the end of my en-curred in the shop. Although he earned gagement I was comparatively rich: I had a chest of my own, containing changes of linen and of clothes; I was independent, and could more than support myself.
more money than I did, he was often in my debt before his web was out of the loom ; and when he began his rambles he was neither better nor worse than many of the others.
Like most of them, he could earn money, | frequently from early and improvident marbut could not take care of it. riages, I could have wedded the engaging, I was now an expert tradesman, and earned pretty Mary. After observing a prudent sias much as any one in the shop, till I was lence for a year or two, I resolved to ask her gradually led into all their habits. Being a and her mother's consent, for I knew that good singer, my company was much courted; neither of them looked upon me with an unmy evenings were oftener spent in the tavern favorable eye. I was never so happy as when than in my lodgings. I was called by my we met at night after our day's labor, or landlady, a good, steady lad; for I settled walking by the river-side on a Sunday afterregularly every Saturday evening my weekly noon after church, the three sisters by my bill, and owed no one anything; content if I side, when Mary was always sure to have an had a few shillings over in my pocket for my arm. extra expenses until the web was in, never One forenoon she came home from the facthinking I was one behind. If I fell sick, or tory, unable to remain, she was so unwell. was out of employment, I had not a single A very bad fever was at this time cutting off pound in store to provide for the casualty; great numbers in the city and neighborhood. such was the improvident manner in which My poor Mary lingered a few days between we almost all lived, both married and single. death and life, and at length expired in her There were sixteen of us in Mr. Ross' shop, mother's arms. It was at this time I first all living as I did, except Allan Roy. He saw the triumph of genuine piety over every was careful and penurious, never allowing selfish feeling no murmur escaped the widhimself the smallest comfort or relaxation, ow's lips; the tears streamed down her face, and scarcely taking what was necessary to her eyes raised to heaven with an expression sustain him at his toil; he seemed to have no I shall never forget, so expressive of mental other enjoyment in life than to hoard money anguish struggling with pious resignation. for its own sake. He seldom joined in any I wept for Mary, and long felt her loss. of our discussions; his mind was too intent upon his web. I never could draw from him what was his ultimate aim; for he was void of ambition, and had no intention of becoming a master himself; although he could have done so at any time, for he had a good sum of money in his possession, which he hoarded" up, fearful of trusting it in the bank, or venturing it in trade. He appeared to have but two ideas - toil, toil; and hoard, hoard.
The consequence of all this was, he fell into bad health and died; his penurious habits remaining unchanged to the last, for even the approach of death did not alter them. But his brother James was of a different turn of mind; he gave Allan a funeral so genteel that his old shopmates said: "Could he have seen it, it would have broken his heart." James got the money, and spent it in dissipation; in a few months, he was a poorer man than ever, and ended by enlisting into the 71st Regiment.
For many months I had boarded with a widow, a good and pious woman, her family consisting of three daughters. The two youngest wrought in a neighboring factory; the eldest assisted her mother at home, and took in sewing. The widow, to eke out her means, kept lodgers; and there were three of us. Her son for she had been left with four orphans who had married very young, lived in a distant town, struggling with a numerous family, rather receiving aid from, than assisting, his mother.
It was indeed a happy home. I was treated as a son auf brother; and had it not been for the unmory I saw around me, resulting
That evening she died, Katie sickened; I had just finished reading the fourteenth chapter of St. John, when she leaned forward on the table, and complained of head-ache and shivering. The widow's head sunk on her bosom, as she wrung her hands and groaned : O God! strike not twice; spare my children." Next day she was much worse, and soon followed her sister. My fellow-lodgers had hastened away as soon as the fever came into the house. I was young, and life is sweet, yet I could not think of flying the house of mourning.
But alas! the blight was on the widow's hearth; the youngest, the merry Jeannie, sickened and expired the following day. Thrice had death stricken the young and vigorous, and spared the aged and infirm.
After the funeral, the desolate mother was forced to sell her furniture to defray the expenses of sickness and burial, and go to live with her son to be the drudge and nurse of her daughter-in-law, or linger out her last days in the charity workhouse.
My next residence was with a young couple, who had only one child. They had come together both equally poor, but by means of economy and industry, had furnished their little home, and were still adding to the stock. I was here quite happy for several months; for it was the abode of peace and love, until the domestic hearth was darkened by intemperance. The husband, who, for love of his wife, had forsaken
his old associates, soon after I became their pened to us since the days of our wants and lodger, gradually began to resume his evil privations. He had, when his mother died, habits; at times coming home late and intox- been sent to the charity workhouse; from icated. At first, the wife used tears and gen- thence to the Lanark cotton-spinning mills, tle remonstrances. He listened to her com- where he learned to be a spinner, and was, plainings mildly, and promised amendment; with the other children, sent to school at but his former habits overcame his faint res-over-hours. Being of quick parts, he atolution, and then his deserted wife could tracted the notice of his superiors, and, by only weep in secret, and watch with an aching patient good conduct, was promoted step by heart for his return. Often in the cold win- step, and his salary increased. He was now ter evenings she would watch for hours, a confidential agent, by economy had saved while her baby slept. several hundred pounds, and was at this time in treaty with a company who were about to commence business, in which he was to be the acting partner. On hearing all this, I could not help feeling as if fortune had dealt unkindly by me, compared with him. The night following was a sleepless one, for 1 turned over and over in my thoughts project after project to better my circumstances; but all alike appeared hopeless except one. At length my mind was made up, and I slept soundly.
At length poor Helen's complainings were met by vituperation; and then followed strife. She became melancholy and dejected; her former tidy habits gradually faded away, for poverty began to pinch with his iron grasp. In the same tenement, there were several females in poor Helen's situation; and these came to condole with her, and talk over their sorrows. Drink was resorted to as a consolation and solace; and the unfortunate Helen soon became its victim, and more its slave than her husband. My home for some time had become very uncomfortable from their squabbles; yet I was loath, on the poor baby's account, to leave the house, for what I paid for my board and lodging was the only money Helen could depend upon when Saturday came round. Article after article had been pledged; even her own and husband's dress. At length it became altogether unbearable blows were exchanged by the wretched pair, and I left the house. Soon after, James enlisted in the army, and left his children to the care of a drunken and degraded mother, made such by his own misconduct.
Month after month passed on, and I was happy and content. As my earnings increased, so did my wants and expenditure. At the end of each week, I was never much richer or poorer than I was at the commencement of the month. I had no desire to change my situation in life; I looked upon labor merely as the means of supplying my wants, for ambition had not yet entered my breast, nor thought of change.
The present hour was all I cared for, until one afternoon I met a young man in a warehouse for which I wrought; and although much changed, I at once recognized him as one of the old inmates of the garret when I lived with Annie. He was the son of a basket-woman, and at that time assisted her by selling matches. The recognition was mutual, although I was in my working-clothes, and he dressed like a gentleman, and transacting business with the firm. Our meeting was cordial, and an appointment was made to visit him at his hotel in the evening after
We met, and talked over what had hap
The whole of next day, as I sat at my loom, I thought of my last night's resolve"; and the more I thought, the more I was pleased, and the easier it appeared of accomplishment. I had often heard that there was no way of acquiring money but by saving; and my plan was, to spend no more of my wages than what was absolutely necessary, and to avoid company in public-houses, where a great part of my earnings had hitherto been consumed. I commenced with goodwill; wages were fair, and trade brisk. My aim appeared distant, but reason told me it was sure; and at the end of a few weeks I was surprised at the progress I was making, and regretted the sums I had needlessly spent. At length I reached the first stage. One Saturday evening I made up the sum of ten pounds, the lowest the banks would receive as a first deposit; and with a feeling of pride I went on Monday to the office, and felt I was already a man of some importance as 1 read my receipt.
None of my acquaintances knew what I was doing with my money, and often bantered me for not joining in their revels as I was wont. The only indulgence I allowed myself was the purchase of a book at one or other of the stands, for I felt lonely in my room after being used to company; and so I soon acquired a taste for reading and amusing information. I at first thought I might, like Roy, turn a miser; but mine was not the lust of money for its own sake, but as the means to attain an end: my object was to accumulate a small capital, and become a master like Edwards, my old associate the spunk-boy. It was emulation that urged me on; it was a race of life, and he had got the start; but the field was open, and my
heart beat high with hope as, month after | here alive to tell it! I feel that my bad fame month, the chances of success became more follows me, yet I have long renounced my and more apparent.
I was residing with a respectable widow in the Gallowgate, where I had been for several months, when a new lodger came to take up his abode with her. I was struck with his appearance on the Sunday when I first saw him. He had evidently been in better circumstances, for his clothes were made in the extreme of fashion, although now threadbare; his manners and address were above those of a mechanic; and he had a look of bygone dissipation, with a fixed melancholy in his expression. During the two weeks he had been in the house, his hours had been most regular, and he was always strictly sober when he came home to his lodgings.
It was the third week before any intercourse took place between us. The landlady had told me that the poor lad, as she called him, appeared broken-hearted, and this made me feel a certain interest in him. She had lent him one of my books during my absence in the day, and replaced it on my table before my return. One evening I had come home rather sooner than usual, and was sitting at the window, when she came and requested the loan of one of my books for Mr. Kennedy. I told the good woman to inform him that he was welcome to any of them, and I should be happy to have his company on any evening, either in his own room or mine. From this time, a night seldom passed without our meeting. I felt happy in his company, and learned much from him, for he had been well educated, and possessed a soundness of judgment quite new to me.
One evening he came home more depressed than usual. I knew he was out of a situation; but this evening there was a wildness in his manner and fierceness in his eyes that almost alarmed me for his safety. I inquired what was the matter; he made me no answer for some time, but paced the room. Having said all I could to soothe him, he came and stood by the fire, his elbows resting on the mantel-piece, and his face covered by the palms of his hands.
folly; for months I have not tasted anything stronger than water, and I am resolved never again to put within my lips the insidious destroyer of my once bright prospects. Graham, I have had hundreds of my own, and at this moment have not five shillings in the world. I am unfit for laborious out-door work; I have no trade; I am useful only in a situation of trust, where steadiness alone is required. Dishonesty was never laid to my charge, yet I am a ruined man; and, were it not for my early education, I would put a period to my misery this night."
I looked at him with pity and surprise; for his feelings of repentance and remorse I could not comprehend-they were strangers to my breast. I could look back upon my past life with thankfulness; it had been of continued progress and increasing comfort; I had nothing to repent of or regret. I said all I could to soothe him and inspire hope; but my words, I could perceive, fell cold on his ear. When we parted for the night he took my hand in his and thanked me for my kind endeavors.
The following evening I found him in my room, if possible more depressed than he was the one before. Anxious to know something of his former history, I turned the discourse to the ups and downs of life; and, in hope of his being equally communicative, I told him my own story. He for some time seemed to waive the subject, but at length spoke out.
"My father," said he, was a merchant, not wealthy, but far above want, with a thriving business, created by his own care and industry. I was the youngest of three, a brother and sister; our parents were most kind and indulgent, but my father was strict in enforcing all religious observances, for he was an elder in the church. Well do I remember that the Sabbath was a day of privation and suffering to us; and I am now ashamed to think how often, with my brother and sister, I mourned its return. How quick are children to observe and reflect! I was often, when very young, in my father's shop, "Graham," said he at length," I feel and and at times saw him praising goods to a thank you for your kindness; but I am a customer I had heard him tell my mother ruined man nothing can redeem the past. were not what they ought to be; and, young I am now drinking the dregs of my cup of as I was, my mind whispered, Can my father folly, and their bitterness I can no longer tell lies? Once a poor widow, whose husendure. I have placed a gulf between me band had lately died, was pleading with him and my future prospects I see no mode of for a little forbearance, until she was enabled overleaping; my fellow-men have put a ban to pay a small sum she was indebted to him; I have been after two situations he spoke very harshly to her; yet he had to-day, both of them far below my former read the evening before the twenty-second standing, and have been rejected on one chapter of Exodus, where, in the twentyapplication I was rejected rudely; on the second verse, it says: Ye shall not afflict other, with taunts and insult-and I am any widow, or fatherless child.' I would