A MAD MINISTER.
There is probably the maddest minister living at Black River Falls, that can be found in America to-day. He is a real nice man, and his name is Burt Wheeler. He preaches good sound sense, and everybody likes him. He has got friends at Neillsville, and all around there. At Black River Falls there is no license, and liquor is unknown, while at Neillsville there is license, and one can have benzine at every meal. The other day the express took a jug from Neillsville to the Falls, directed to the reverend gentleman, and on the card attached to the jug handle was the following notice:
“Old Bourbon—We have license here, and knowing you have none in your town we thought it but kindness to remember your wants.”
When a jug, or a keg arrives at the Falls by express, every citizen notices it, and they investigate, and when the jug came into the express office the expressman winked, and in a few minutes half the population of the darling little village was there. They read the note on the card and winked at each other. One man as he took a piece of cut sugar out of a barrel, said he had long suspected that Burt liked his toddy. Another fellow, picking a mouthful off a codfish, remarked that you couldn’t always tell about these confounded ministers. Frank Cooper, the editor of the Banner, though he looked pained when he saw the name “Old Bourbon” on the jug, and noticed the immense size of the jug remarked that it was the best way not to condemn a man till the returns were all in. The reverened gentleman was interrupted in his preparation of his sermon by a neighboring lady who just dropped in to tell the news, and when she sighed and told him that his jug of whisky which he had ordered from Neillsville, was in the express office, he could hardly believe his ears. He had always, to the best of his knowledge and belief, tried to lead a different life, and this was too much—too much bourbon. Scratching out the last line that he had written, which was something about something biting like an anaconda, and stinging like a ready reckoner, he put on his coat and started down town, resolved to face the multitude, conscious of his innocence. He approached the express office a little nervous. The crowd filled the street, and as he passed a raftsman with red breeches on, said he wouldn’t have such a nose as that on him for a hundred dollars. “He is full now,” said another, as the Reverend gentleman put his hand on an awning post to steady himself in the trying emergency. A man who was sitting on a salt barrel, whittling a shingle, and who had one trousers leg tucked in his boot, and a red sash around him, said if it could be proved that Wheeler was a drinking man it would be a hard blow at religion, but he didn’t know as he cared a blank anyway. The elder went in the express office and the crowd fell back to give the chief mourner a chance to look