Best Short Stories eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 175 pages of information about Best Short Stories.

When he had stopped, Edison looked up and said in a still, small voice, and with a serious face: 

“Must not the Kiel Canal be very crowded, your Excellency?”


A man and a woman entered a cafe.

“Do you want oysters, Louise?” asked the man, as he glanced over the bill of fare.

“Yes, George,” answered the woman, “and I want a hassock, too.”

George nodded, and as he handed the waiter his written order, he said: 

“Bring a hassock for the lady.”

“Yes, sir,” answered the waiter, “one hassock.”

A moment later the waiter, apparently puzzled, approached the man, and leaning over him, said: 

“Excuse me, sir, but I have only been here two days and do not want to make any mistakes.  Will the lady have the hassock broiled or fried?”


Joe T. Marshall, formerly of Kansas, recently became the father of an eight-pound boy, and wished to cable the news to his family in America.

The censor refused to allow the message to go through.

“What’s the matter?” Marshall asked indignantly.

“We aren’t permitted to announce the arrival of Americans in France!”


David Belasco was smiling at the extravagant attentions that are lavished by the rich upon pet dogs.  He spoke of the canine operations for appendicitis, the canine tooth crownings, the canine wardrobes, and then he said: 

“How servants hate these pampered curs!  At a house where I was calling one cold day the fat and pompous butler entered the drawing-room and said: 

“‘Did you ring, madam?’

“‘Yes, Harrison, I wish you to take Fido out walking for two hours.’

“Harrison frowned slightly.  ‘But Fido won’t follow me, madam,’ he said.

“‘Then, Harrison, you must follow Fido.’”


A company of very new soldiers were out on a wide heath, practising the art of taking cover.  The officer in charge of them turned to one of the rawest of his men.

“Get down behind that hillock there,” he ordered, sternly, “and mind, not a move or a sound!”

A few minutes later he looked around to see if they were all concealed, and, to his despair, observed something wriggling behind the small mound.  Even as he watched the movements became more frantic.

“I say, you there!” he shouted, angrily, “do you know you are giving our position away to the enemy?”

“Yes, sir,” said the recruit, in a voice of cool desperation, “and do you know that this is an anthill?”


A young fellow who was the crack sprinter of his town—­somewhere in the South—­was unfortunate enough to have a very dilatory laundress.  One evening, when he was out for a practice run in his rather airy and abbreviated track costume, he chanced to dash past the house of that dusky lady, who at the time was a couple of weeks in arrears with his washing.

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Best Short Stories from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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