Oak Openings eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 630 pages of information about Oak Openings.


     The things that once she loved are still the same;
     Yet now there needs another name
     To give the feeling which they claim,
       While she the feeling gives;
     She cannot call it gladness or delight;
     And yet there seems to be a richer, lovelier light
     On e’en the humblest thing that lives. 
                                —­Washington Allston.

The history given by le Bourdon lasted until the canoes reached the south shore.  Glad enough was Dorothy to see them both safe back, for neither of her companions had yet awoke.  It was then midnight, and all now retired to seek the rest which might be so needful to prepare them for the exertions of the next day.  The bee-hunter slept in his canoe, while Margery shared the buffalo-skin of her sister.

As perfect security, for the moment at least, was felt by the sleepers, their slumbers were sound, and reached into the morning.  Then le Bourdon arose, and withdrawing to a proper distance, he threw off his clothes and plunged into the stream, in conformity with a daily practice of his at that genial season of the year.  After bathing, the young man ascended a hill, whence he might get a good view of the opposite shore, and possibly obtain some notion of what the Pottawattamies were about.  In all his movements, however, the bee-hunter had an eye to the concealment of his person, it being of the last importance that the savages should not learn his position.  With the intention of concealment, the fire had been suffered to go down, a smoke being a sign that no Indian would be likely to overlook.  As for the canoe and the bivouac of the party, the wild rice and an intermediate hill formed a perfect cover, so long as nothing was shown above them.

From the height to which he ascended, the bee-hunter, aided by his glass, got a very clear view of Whiskey Centre and the parts adjacent.  The savages were already stirring, and were busy in the various avocations of the red man on a war-path.  One party was disposing of the body of their dead companion.  Several were cooking, or cleaning the wild-fowl shot in the bay, while a group was collected near the spot of the wished-for spring, reluctant to abandon the hopes to which it had given birth, at the very moment they were plotting to obtain the scalp of the “medicine-man.”  The beloved “fire-water,” that seduces so many to their destruction, who have enjoyed the advantages of moral teaching, and which has been a withering curse on the red man of this continent, still had its influence; and the craving appetites of several of the drunkards of the party brought them to the spot, as soon as their eyes opened on the new day.  The bee-hunter could see some of this cluster kneeling on the rocks, lapping like hounds at the scattered little pools of the liquor, while others scented around, in the hope of yet discovering the bird that laid

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Oak Openings from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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