The Lake of the Sky eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 364 pages of information about The Lake of the Sky.
called the attention of certain belligerent adherents of the south to it, and they determined to secure it.  But the loyal sons of the Union were also alert and Captain A.W.  Pray, who was then in the Nevada mining metropolis, succeeded in getting and maintaining possession of it.  As he moved to Glenbrook, on Lake Tahoe, that year, he took the cannon with him.  Being mounted on a carriage with fairly high wheels, these latter were taken and converted into a hay-wagon, with which, for several years, he hauled hay from the Glenbrook meadows to his barn in town.  The cannon itself was mounted on a heavy wooden block to which it was affixed with iron bands, securely held in place by bolts and nuts.  For years it was used at Glenbrook on all patriotic and special occasions.  Fremont never came back to claim it.  The government made no claim upon it.  So while Captain Pray regarded it as his own it was commonly understood and generally accepted that it was town property, to be used by all alike on occasions of public rejoicing.

After Captain Fray’s death, however, the cannon was sold by his widow to the Native Sons of Nevada, and the news of the sale soon spread abroad and caused no little commotion.  To say that the people were astonished is to put it mildly.  They were in a state of consternation.  Fremont’s cannon sold and going to be removed?  Impossible!  No! it was so!  The purchasers were coming to remove it the next day.

Were they?  That remained to be seen!

That night in the darkness, three or four determined men quietly and stealthily removed the nuts from the bolts, and, leaving the block of wood, quietly carried the cannon and hid it in a car of scrap-iron that was to be transported the next day from Glenbrook to Tahoe City.

When the day dawned and the purchasers arrived, the cannon was not to be found, and no one, apparently, knew what had become of it.  Solicitations, arguments, threats had no effect.  The cannon was gone.  That was all there was to it, and Mrs. Pray and the Nevada purchasers had to accept that—­to them—­disagreeable fact.

But the cannon was not lost.  It was only gone on before.  For several years it remained hidden under the blacksmith shop at Tahoe City, its presence known only to the few conspirators—­one of whom was my informant.  About five years ago it was resurrected and ever since then its brazen throat has bellowed the salutation of the Fourth of July to the loyal inhabitants of Tahoe.  It now stands on the slight hill overlooking the Lake at Tahoe City, a short distance east of the hotel.

CHAPTER XXXVI

THE MOUNT ROSE OBSERVATORY

While Californians rightly and justly claim Tahoe as their own, it must not be forgotten that Nevadans have an equal claim.  In the Nevada State University, situated at Reno, there is a magnificent band of young men, working and teaching as professors, who regard all opportunities as sacred trusts, and who are making for their university a wonderful record of scientific achievement for universal benefit.

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The Lake of the Sky from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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