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About The Red Cloud chief. (Red Cloud, Webster Co., Neb.) 1873-1923 | View Entire Issue (Aug. 3, 1906)
(Contiiitioil from I'liyo Throe.)
while llio Lfzitril Im fnVlsinfc. "" 4'litT il
luis inoro penetrative power. Its eliem
leni comltlimtlon N nearer the mean of
At the proper time lie lmnlnlicd tlieni
1o tlie klfelien to prepare dinner, n
fen st diverted from tlie hour of noon
liy Urn chnneeH of the day. He adopted
overy expedient lo keep (hem lmsy, to
tiro them physically and mentally, to
render them ho exhausted that they
would sleep In blissful calm through
the ordeal to come.
As he could not leave the lamp, and
they refused to eat apart from him,
the dinner, In three courses, was n
breathless affair, fioing up nnd down
five flights of stairs with soup, Joint
nnd pudding, while one carried the
tray and the other swung a hand Inn
'tern In front, required time and exer
tion. They were cheerful ns grigs
Enid, whoe turn It was to bring up
the plates of tapioca, pleaded guilty to
n slight sensation of nervousness.
"I could not help remembering," she
said, "what mi nwful lot of dark Iron
stops there were beneath me. I felt
ns If something were creeping up
quickly behind to grab me by the
"You should go up nnd down three
times In the dark," was Rrand's recipe.
"When you quitted the door level for
the third ascent you would cease to
worry about Impossible grabs."
Constance looked at her watch.
"Only 8 o'clock! What a long day it
lins been!" she commented.
"You must go to bed early. Sleep In
my room. You will soon forget where
you are. Each of the bunks Is com
fortable. Now I will lenve you In
charge of the lamp while I go and lock
They bundled. It sounded so home
like. "Any fear of burglars?" cried Enid.
"Yes; most expert cracksmen wind
mid rain and sleet," he added quietly.
"I must fasten all the storm shutters
nnd make everything snug. Don't stir
until I wake you In the morning."
"Poor old dnd!" sighed Constance.
"What n vigil!"
He was making new entries in the
weather report when she remarked
They were cheerful as arigs over it.
"It is high water about hnlf past 1,
He nodded, pretending to treat the
question as of no special import.
"From all appearances there will bo
n heavy sen," she went on.
"Just nn ordinary bad night," he said
"Do the waves reach far up the light
house In n gale?" she persisted.
Then Brand grnsped the situation
"So that your slumbers may be
peaceful," he said, "I will call your
kind attention to the fact that the
Gulf Hock light lias appeared every
night during the past twenty-live
years, ,or since a date some four years
before you were born, Constance. It
contains -1,000 tons of granite and is
practically monolithic, as If It were
carved out of a quarry. Indeed, I
think its builder went one better than
nature. Here are no cracks or tlssures I
or undetected Haws. The lowest course
Is bolted to the rock with wrought
iron clamps. Every stone Is dove-1
tailed to Its neighbors and clasped to '
them with Iron, above, below and at
tlie sides. If you understand conic sec- i
tlons I could make clearer the sclen-
title aspect of the structure, but you I
can take It from me you are far safer I
here than on a natural rock many i
times the dimensions of this column." !
"That sounds very satisfactory," t
murmured EnUl, sleepily. t
"I am overwhelmed," said Constance,
who grasped the essential fact that ho
had not answered her question. ,
Soon after I) o'clock he kissed them ,
good night. They promised not to sit
up talking. As a guarantee of good be
havior, Enid said she would ring the
electric bell Just before sho climbed
into her bunk.
The signal came soon and lie was
glad. He trusted to the fatigue, the
fresh air, the confidence of the knowl
edge that ho was on guard, to lull
them Into the security of unconscious
ness. The behavior of the mercury puzzled
him. lu tho barometer It fell, In tho
thermometer it rose. Increasing tern
jjeruture combined, with, low pressure,
was not u healthy weather combina
tion In January. Looking back through
the records of several years, he dis
covered a similar set of conditions one
day In March, 1S!)1. He was stationed
then on the northeast coast and failed
to remember any remarkable circum
stance connected with the date, so he
consulted the lighthouse diary for that
year. Ah! Here wns a possible ex
planation. The chief keeper, a stran
ger to him, was something of a meteor
ologist. He had written: "At 4:15 p. in, the
bnromoter stood at 27.1(5 degrees and
the thermometer at -15.80 degrees.
There was a heavy sea and a No. 7 gale
blowing from the S. K.-W. About Ji
o'clock the wind Increased to a hurri
cane and the sea became more violent
than I have seen It during five years'
experience of (his station. Judging
solely by the clouds and the flight of
birds, I should Imagine that the cy
clonic center passed over the Scllly
Isles and the Land's End."
Then next day:
"A steady northeast wind stilled the
sen most effectually. Within twenty
four hours of the first signs of the bur-1
rlcane the channel was practicable for
small craft. A fisherman reports that
the coast Is strewn with wreckage."
Brand mused over the entries for
awhile. With his night glasses he
peered long Into the teeth of the grow-1
lng storm to see If he could find tlie
double Hash of the magnificent light on
the Bishop Kock, one of the Atlantic
breakwaters of the Scllly Isles. It was
fully thirty-five miles distant, but It '
flung Its radiance over the waters from
a height of 1 i:i feet, and the Gulf Bock
lamp stood ll'.O feet above high water
mark. A landsman would not have dis
tinguished even the nearer revolutions
of the St. Agnes light, o-spoolnlly In the
prevalent gloom, and wisps of spindrift
were already striking the lantern and
blurring the glass.
Nevertheless he caught the quick
flashes reflected from clouds low, but
unbroken As yet there was a chance
of the incoming tide bringing better
weather, and lie bent again over the
record of tlie equinoctial gale In 181)1. (
Soon he abandoned this hope. Tlie
growing thunder of the reef as the tide
advanced gave the first unmistakable
warning of what was to come. As a
mere matter of noise the reef roared';
its loudest at half tide, lie understood '
now that a gale had swept across tho '
Atlantic In an irregular track. How-'
soever the winds may rage the tides
remain steadfast, and the great waves
now rushing up from the west were '
actually harbingers of the fierce blast j
which had created them. I
Of course the threatened turmoil In !
nowise disconcerted him. It might bo
that the rock would remain InaccessI- ;
hie during many days, in that event I
the girls would take the watch -after '
the lamp was extinguished, and they
must learn to endure the monotony and
discomforts of existence In a storm
bound lighthouse. They would be nerv
ous unquestionably perhaps he had
forgotten how nervous but Brand was
a philosopher, and at present lie was
most taken up with wonderment at the
curious blend of circumstances which
resulted In their presence on the rock
Ha! A tremor shook (he great pillar.
Ho heard without the frenzied shriek
of the first repulsed roller which thing
Itself on the sleek and rounded wall.
Would the girls sleep through the next
few hours? Possibly, If awake, they
would attribute the vibration of the
column to the wind. He trusted It
might lie so. Shut In as tliey were,
(hey could not distinguish sounds. Ev
erything to them would be a confused
hum. with nn occasional shiver as the
granite braced its mighty heart to re
sist the enemy.
But what new note was this In tho
outer chaos? An ordinary gale shud-
Some of these adventurers, forced up
by the reef, hit the lighthouse with
greater force than many a cannon ball
fired In battles which have made his
tory. Time after time the splendid
structure winced beneath the blow.
If Stephen Brand were ever fated to
know fear he was face to face with the
ugly phantom then. The granite col
umn would not yield, but it was quite
I within the bounds of possibility that
i the entire lantern might bo carried
' away and he with It.
i He thought, with a catching of his
I breath, of tho two girls In the tiny
room beneath. For one fleeting instant
his mortal eyes gazed into the unseen.
But the call of duty restored him, The
excessive draft affected the lamp.
, Its ardor must be checked. With a
' steady hand he readjusted the little
, brass screws they were so superbly
Indifferent to all this pandemonium
Just little brass screws, doing their
1 work and heeding naught beside. Sud
denly there came to him the trium
phant knowledge that the pure white
beam of the light was hewing its path
through the savage assailant without
as calmly and fearlessly as It lit up
the ocean wilds on a midsummer night
of moonlight and soft zephyrs.
"Thank Clod for that!" he murmured
aloud. "How en u a man die better
than at his post?"
Tho ring of Iron beneath caught his
cars, lie turned from the lnmp. Con
stance appeared, pale, with shining
eyes. She carried the lantern. Behind
her crept Enid, who had been crying.
She strove now to check her tears.
"Is this sort of thing normal, or a
special performance arranged for our
benefit?" said his daughter, with a lino
attempt at a smile.
"Oil, dad, I am so frightened!" cried
Enid. "Why does it howl so?"
Tho Kind You ILivo Always Bought, and which has been
in it.so for over 30 years, has borno tho signature or
nnd has been made under his per-
jwyhs sonal supervision since its infancy.
All Counterfeits, Imitations nnd Just-as-good" are but
Experiments that trillo with nnd endanger tho health of
Infants and Children Experience against Experiment.
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Castoria is a harmless substitute for Castor Oil, Pare
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contains neither Opium, Morphine nor other Narcotic
substance. Its age is its guarantee. It destroys "Worms
and allays Feverishncss. It cures Diarrhoea and Wind
Colic. It relieves Teething Troubles, cures Constipation
and Flatulency. It assimilates tho Food, regulates tho
Stomach and Bowels, giving healthy and natural sleep.
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Bears tlie Signature of
lered and whistled and chanted Its
way past the lantern lu varying tones.
It sang, It piped, it hollowed, It play
ed on giant reeds and crashed with
cymbals. Now ho looked at the clock,
after midnight there was a sustained
screech in tho voice of the tempest
which he did not remember having
heard before. At last the explanation
dawned on hlni. The hurricane was
there, a few feet away, shut oft' from
him by mere sheets of glass. The
lighthouse thrust Its tall shaft into
this merciless tornado with giini stead
fastness, and around its smooth con
tours poured a volume of unearthly
melody which seemed to surge up from
the broad base and was flung oft Into
the darkness by the outer sweep of tho
The wind was traveling seventy,
eighty, mayhap a hundred miles an
hour. Not during all his service nor
In earlier travels through distant lands
had he ever witnessed a storm of such
fury. Ho thought he heard something
crack overhead. He looked aloft, but
all seemed well. Not until next day
did he discover that the wind vane had
been carried away, n wrought iron
shank nearly two Indies thick having
snapped like a piece of worsted at tho
place whero tho tempest had found a
Ho tried to look out into the heart
or tho gale. Tho air was full of fly
ing foam, hut the sea was beaten flat.
If the growling monster beneath tried
to fling a defiant crest tit tho tornado
the whole niass of water, many tons in
weight, wns instantly torn from tho
gurfuco nnd llung into nothingness.
Tsnys a good deal for Stephen
Brand's courage that he was
able to laugh Just then, but It
Is a fine thing for a man lu a
moment of supreniest danger to be '
called on to comfort a weeping woman.
The next minute might be their last, j
Of that he was fully conscious. Even
before the girls readied his side ho felt
a curious lifting movement of the
whole frame of the lantern. Steel nnd
glass alike were yielding to the sus
tained violence of the wind pressure.
Well were they molded, by men whose
conscience need harbor no reproach of
dishonest craftsmanship. They were
being tested now almost beyond en- j
Some natures would have found relief i
in prayer. Gladly would Constance t
and Enid have sunk on their knees and
besought tho Master of tlie winds to J
spare them and those at sea. But
Brand, believing that a catastrophe
wns Imminent, decided that In order
to save the girls' lives he must neither
alarm them nor lose an unnecessary i
To desert tlie light that was Impos- j
slide personally. If given tho least
warning ho would spring toward the
Iron rail that curved by the side of tho
stairs to the service room and take his j
chance; otherwise he would go with .
the lamp. There was no other nlterna- i
tive; tho girls must leave him at once, i
Tho laugh with which ho greeted
their appearance gave him time to
"I ought to scold you, but I won't,"
he cried. 'J A re you plucky enough to
descend to the kitchen nnd make three
nice cups of cocoa?"
Just think what it cost him to speak
In this bantering way, careless of
words, though each additional syllable
might mean death to all three.
Ills request had tho exact effect lie
calculated. For once Constance wns
deceived nnd looked her surprise.
Enid, more volatile, smiled through
her tears. So It was not quite as bad
ns they imagined, tills gale. Their fa
ther could never be so matter of fact
In the face of real peril to all of them.
Cocoa! Fancy a man giving his
thoughts to cocoa while they were ex
pecting the lighthouse to be hurled Into
the English channel!
Ho turned again to manipulate tho
"Now, do not stand thoro shivering,"
ho said, "but harden your hearts nnd
go. Use tho oil' stove. By the time it
Constance, of the viking breed, would
let hlni sco that ho had no mouopoly of
the family motto, "Audeo." She, too,
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go. Enid!" Plio cried.
'He shall have his cocoa, poor man!"
Ho looked over his shoulder and
caught ids daughter glancing nt hlni
from the well of tho stairs.
"Bad night!" he shouted cheerfully,
and ho cheated her quick Intelligence a
They were gone. Perchanco it was
his last sight of them In this life. Three
times tho stalwart framework creaked.
Once It moved so perceptibly that tho
curtain rings jlimled. Then he remem
bered fliewords of Isaiah:
"For thou hast been a strength to the
poor, a strength to the needy in his dis
tress, a refuge from the storm, a shad
ow from the heat, when the blast of
the terrible ones Is as a storm against
The blast of the terrible ones! "What
a vivid pen picture of the awesome
forces of nature! How long would this
tornado continue? Already It must
have strewed its path, with havoc at
sen and on land. His physical senses
were elevated to the supernatural. He
seemed to acquire abnormal powers of
sight and hearing. He could see the
trees bending before the wrathful
wind, hear the crashing tiles and brick
work as houses were demolished and
people hurled to death. But thoro wns
no ecstasy of soul, no mental altitude.
In qujek reaction came the fanciful
memory of the hardy old salt who
cheered Ills shipmates during a ter
rific gale with tho trite remark:
"I pity the poor folk ashore on a
night like this."
What a curious jumble of emotions
jostled In his brain. A step from the
sublime to the ridiculous! Not even a
step. They were inextricably Inter
woven, tlie woof and the warp of
things. He recalled the odd expression
of an olllcer who had passed unscathed
through the inferno of Splon kop. i
"I had no sense of fear," snld he,
"but my teeth began to ache." i
Brand, n student, even of himself,
discovered thnt bis dominant sensation
was one of curiosity.
"If it lias to be," said his nervous
system, "let It come quickly." He felt
like a man lying on the operating table
waiting for the chloroform.
Suddenly 'the bright flame 'of the
lamp lessened. The use that was his
second nature caused him to raise the .
wicks and admit more draft. Even
while his deft fingers arranged the1
complex burner his ear caught a
change In the external din. The shriek
of tlie wind dropped to a thunderous'
growl. This was a gale, not a tempest.
God be praised, the crisis had passed!
The hurricane had lasted thirty-five
minutes. A similar tornado sulllced to ,
wreck one-half of the city of St. Louis.
This one, as he learned afterward,'
swept around the south of Ireland,
created a tidal wave which did great
damage to the Scllly Isles and the
headlands of the south coast, yet spent
Itself somewhere In the North sea.
Dwellers In Inland cities were amazed
nnd incredulous when the newspapers
spoke of Its extraordinary violence. A
truth is harder to swallow than a He
all the time.
Up clattered Enid with the steaming
beverage, Constance, the lantern bear
ort providing the rear guardv
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