Away up in the heart of the Allegheny mountains, in Pocahontas county, West Virginia, is a beautiful little valley through which flows the east fork of the Greenbrier river. At a point where the valley road intersects the old Staunton and Parkersburg turnpike, a famous thoroughfare in its day, is a post office in a farm house. The name of the place is Travelers’ Repose, for it was once a tavern. Crowning some low hills within a stone’s throw of the house are long lines of old Confederate fortifications, skilfully designed and so well “preserved” that an hour’s work by a brigade would put them into serviceable shape for the next civil war. This place had its battle — what was called a battle in the “green and salad days” of the great rebellion.A brigade of Federal troops, the writer’s regiment among them, came over Cheat mountain, fifteen miles to the westward, and, stringing its lines across the little valley, felt the enemy all day; and the enemy did a little feeling, too. There was a great cannonading, which killed about a dozen on each side; then, finding the place too strong for assault, the Federals called the affair a reconnaissance in force, and burying their dead withdrew to the more comfortable place whence they had come. Those dead now lie in a beautiful national cemetery at Grafton, duly registered, so far as identified, and companioned by other Federal dead gathered from the several camps and battlefields of West Virginia. The fallen soldier (the word “hero” appears to be a later invention) has such humble honors as it is possible to give.
SCENE THE FIRST—At the GALAHAD-GREENS’.
Mrs. G.-G. GALAHAD!
Mr. G.-G. (meekly). My love?
Mrs. G.-G. I see that the proprietors of All Sorts are going to follow the American example, and offer a prize of £20 to the wife who makes out the best case for her husband as a Model. It’s just as well, perhaps, that you should know that I’ve made up my mind to enter you!
“And she tied a bunch of violets with a tress of her pretty brown hair.”
She sat in the yellow glow of the lamplight softly humming these words. It was Easter evening, and the newly risen spring world was slowly sinking to a gentle, rosy, opalescent slumber, sweetly tired of the joy which had pervaded it all day. For in the dawn of the perfect morn, it had arisen, stretched out its arms in glorious happiness to greet the Saviour and said its hallelujahs, merrily trilling out carols of bird, and organ and flower-song. But the evening had come, and rest.
There was a letter lying on the table, it read:
The Minister for Fine Arts (to whose Department had been lately added the new sub-section of Electoral Engineering) paid a business visit to the Grand Vizier. According to Eastern etiquette they discoursed for a while on indifferent subjects. The minister only checked himself in time from making a passing reference to the Marathon Race, remembering that the Vizier had a Persian grandmother and might consider any allusion to Marathon as somewhat tactless. Presently the Minister broached the subject of his interview.
“Under the new Constitution are women to have votes?” he asked suddenly.
“To have votes? Women?” exclaimed the Vizier in some astonishment. “My dear Pasha, the New Departure has a flavor of the absurd as it is; don’t let’s try and make it altogether ridiculous. Women have no souls and no intelligence; why on earth should they have votes?”