The Path of Duty, and Other Stories eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 310 pages of information about The Path of Duty, and Other Stories.
were her name and she replied in the affirmative, I thought going to school might not be so bad after all.  After giving Miss Edmonds my name and age, my mother held some conversation with her regarding my studies, and left me with an encouraging smile.  I felt all my timidity return when I thought of entering the school-room with Miss Edmonds, but her kind and friendly manner reassured me.  The school consisted of about thirty girls, many of them older than myself.  I had feared that my attainments would be inferior to those of the youngest of the pupils, and I was equally pleased and surprised when Miss Edmonds, after a long and careful examination in regard to my acquirements, placed me in one of the higher classes.  There was to me an irresistible attraction in the countenance and manner of my teacher; and, from the first moment I saw her I loved her.  Although her home is now far distant from mine, and we have not met for many years, I love her as dearly now as when she took me by the hand when a child of eleven years.  She conducted her school in a very systematic and orderly manner, and was very particular to require perfect recitations from her pupils; but as I possessed a retentive memory, I found my tasks much lighter than did many of my classmates.

When I had been about a year at school, Miss Edmonds offered a prize, in the class to which I belonged, to the young lady who should write the most able composition upon a given subject.  The prize was to be a small gold pencil-case, and was to be awarded at the close of the summer term.  The closing day at length came; there was much suppressed excitement when we were called to order that morning.  As we expected no visitors till the afternoon, we spent the morning mostly in reviewing our various studies.  By two o’clock our school-room was crowded.  We first passed a very searching examination in the different studies we had pursued during the past year.  I believe we passed our examination in a manner creditable both to our teacher and to ourselves.

The reading of our compositions was reserved, as the closing exercise.  The compositions, with the name of the writer, were read by Miss Edmonds.  Each person present was at liberty to write down each name as it was read by our teacher, annexing to it the numbers one, two or three, according to their opinion of the merits of the composition, each desk being furnished with paper, pens and ink for the purpose.  When the compositions had all been read, the slips of paper were collected and handed to our pastor, who was to read aloud the fortunate name with the greatest number of ones annexed.  What then was my amazement and that of all present when our pastor, after carefully examining the papers, rose and said,—­“Miss Clara Roscom will please come forward, and receive from the hands of Miss Edmonds the reward of so much merit.”  I remember I felt a nervous dread of crossing the large school-room alone, when I knew every eye would be directed to me.  Composing myself

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The Path of Duty, and Other Stories from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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