Walter Harland eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 175 pages of information about Walter Harland.
small, but much regularity had been observed in laying out the streets.  The buildings were mostly composed of wood; and nearly all were painted a pure white with green blinds, which gave a very tasteful appearance to the place.  It had its two churches, and three stores, where all articles necessary to a country trade were sold, from a scythe down to cambric needles and pearl buttons.  There was also an academy, a hotel, one and two public schools, and I believe I have now mentioned the most important of the public buildings of Elmwood, as it then was.  The cool and inviting appearance of the village, as well as its facilities for fishing, boating and other healthful recreations, caused it, in course of time, to become a favorite summer resort for the dwellers in the large cities; and for a few weeks, once a year, Elmwood was crowded with visitors from many distant places, and, as may be readily supposed, these periodical visits of strangers was something which deeply interested the simple residents of our village.  In looking back to-day through the long vista of years which separate the past from the present, the object on which memory is inclined to linger longer is a little brown house near one end of the village of Elmwood.  Kind reader that was the home of my childhood.  There was little in the external appearance of the house or its surroundings to win admiration from the passer-by, but it was my home, and to the young home is ever beautiful.  Recalled by memory the old house looks very familiar to-day, with its sloping roof covered, here and there, with patches of green moss; and the large square chimney in the centre.  Between the house and the street was a level green, in which were several fine shady trees, and one particular tree which stood near the centre was what I most loved of every thing connected with the surroundings of my early home—­this tree was of the species known in Canada as the Silver Fir, and I am certain that every one familiar with this tree will testify, as to its beauty; they grow to a large size with very thick and wide-spreading branches, which extend downward upon the trunk in a circular form, each circle from the top growing larger, till the lower limbs overshadow a large space of ground beneath.  This tree was my delight in the sunny days of childhood and early youth, and in summer most of my school-tasks were committed to memory beneath its friendly shade; and I loved it, in the dreary season of winter, for the deep green which it retained, amid the general desolation by which it was surrounded.  When left a widow my mother was poor, so far as worldly riches is considered.  My father had once been in moderately easy circumstances, but the illness which terminated in his death was long, and the means he had accumulated gradually slipped away, till, at the period of his death, all my mother could call her own was the little brown house which sheltered us, and very thankful was she to find, (when every debt was paid even to the last fraction) that
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Walter Harland from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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