Sketches and Tales Illustrative of Life in the Backwoods of New Brunswick eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 150 pages of information about Sketches and Tales Illustrative of Life in the Backwoods of New Brunswick.
a fact; so at the end of what we afterwards found to be the third day, we saw the sun shine down on the still smoking woods.  The old woman was weak, I tell you; and for me, I felt considerably used up—­howsomever I got to the shore, and hewed out a canoe from one of our own timber sticks—­there was no need of lucifers to strike a light—­lots of brands were burning about.  I laid some on to it and burnt it out, and soon had a capital craft, and away we went down the stream.  Dead bodies of animals were floating about, and there were some living ones, looking as if they had got out of their latitude, and didn’t think they would find it.  I reckon we weren’t the only sufferers by that ere conflagration.  As we came down to the settlements folks took us for ghosts, we looked so miserable like—­howsomever, with good tendin, we soon came round again; but, to tell you the truth, it makes me feel kind a narvous, when I see a fallow burning ever since.  Tho’ folks could’nt tell how that ere fire happened, and say it was a judgment on lumber men and sich like, I think it came from some settlers’ improvements, who, wishing to raise lots of taters, destroyed the finest block of timber land in the province, besides the ships in Miramichi harbour, folks’ buildings, and many a clever feller, whose latter end was never known.”

“And so I suppose Mr. H.,” said his wife, “that is the reason you make such slim clearings.”  “I estimate your right,” said he; and we, not expecting the spice of sentiment which flavored Mr. H.’s story, left him, and reached home, where we closed the evening by putting into the following shape one of Silas Marvin’s legends, not written with a perryian pen and azure fluid, but with a quill from the wing of a wild goose, shot by our friend Hanselpecker, (who by the way was fond of such game,) as last fall it took its flight from our cold land to the sunny south, and with home-made ink prepared from a decoction of white maple bark.

THE LOST ONE,

A TALE OF THE EARLY SETTLERS.

Beyond the utmost verge of the limits which the white settlers had yet dared to encroach on the red owners of the soil, stood the humble dwelling of Kenneth Gordon, a Scotch emigrant, whom necessity had driven from the blue hills and fertile vallies of his native land, to seek a shelter in the tangled mazes of the forests of the new world.  Few would have had the courage to venture thus into the very power of the savage—­but Kenneth Gordon possessed a strong arm and a hopeful heart, to give the lips he loved unborrowed bread; this nerved him against danger, and, ’spite of the warning of friends, Kenneth pitched his tent twelve miles from the nearest settlement.  Two years passed over the family in their lonely home, and nothing had occurred to disturb their peace, when business required Kenneth’s presence up the river.  One calm and dewy morning he prepared for his journey; Marion Gordon followed

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Sketches and Tales Illustrative of Life in the Backwoods of New Brunswick from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.