The courier. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1894-1903, July 06, 1901, Page 9, Image 10

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    THE COURIER.
F
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BROTHER WALTON.
KATHARINE MELIOK.
For The Courier.
The little country school house was
dimly lighted. The lamps flickered
IL along the walls and seemed to be trying
I . . ... Kantr tha Hnrlr niohtfhnt. InnWnrl
in at the windows. The worn desks
shone faintly, and the faces of the little
company assembled there shone yet
more faintly, fired heads drooped.
The little prayer meeting waB lagging pt
a slower pace than usual.
Presently, from a dim corner, a stran
ger rose.
"Brethren," he said, "I'm not ac
quainted with you, but I'm acquainted
with God.'"
The voice was thin, but piercing. It
was not a large voice, but it did not
come from a large man. It rose higher
as he went on,
"Why, bless you, he's my captain.
Praise llis name! I've served under
Him for nigh on to twenty-five year.
Hallelujah ! I've got my marchin' orders
an' I'm goin' on, sure of victory. I'm a
minute man fer God. Bless his name !
That's what he wante in his army, be-
loveds. We must always be ready to
fire a shot at sin and Satan. Amen!
Praise the Lord!"
The enthusiasm of the speaker had
carried bis tones almost to a shriek. He
sat down and began to sing in a hoarse
voice.
"Am I a soldier of the cross"
"Who ib he?'' waB the unspoken
thought of every mind, as one after an
other followed the injunction of the
little stranger to be "minute men."
"I wonder if it isn't the man that's
f rented Uncle Abram's place?" said
Phineaa Benton to himself, as the con
gregation filed out into the cool, dark
night. Must be he's been in the army.
He don't walk like a farmer. Well, if it
is, we'll have him for a neighbor."
The next morning two rosy cheeked,
T smiling little lads marched up to Farm
er Benton's door, and asked for "the
loan of a hammer." They belonged to
the new neighbor, "Brother Walton,"
they gravely explained, and then, catch
ing a roguish twinkle in Tommy Ben
ton's eye, were convulsed with snickers.
The farmer looked after them, half
pitiogly, as they went away.
The man that takes Uncle Abram's
place has no easy time of it," he said to
his wife. "Them little lads won't have
so gay a time as they're a-countin on."
The little lads had no easy time, truly.
Farmer Benton often pitied them as he
saw them toiling through the fields be
hind plow or cultivator.
"They ought to be in school," he said
to himself. "It's hard enough for a man
to have to work like that, but they're
too young. He might take some thought
for them, if he don't for himself. He
always brings them to meetin', too. I'll
"'Varrant they'd a heap sooner stay to
home an' rest."
Whatever the little Waltons would
"sooner" have done, they did as their
father bade them. Their love for their
mother, dear old Mother Walton, with
her great, loving heart and her great,
portly frame, was unmixed with thiB
fear that their father inspired. The old
soldier had learned to obey orders, and
he proposed to have bis sons do like
wise. OneThursday evening Phineaa Benton
took hiB way to the little Bchool house
elowly and wearily. His son Tommy
went with him, for he had a matter of
special importance to communicate to
the Walton boys.
Brother Walton was already in his
accustomed place, and Tommy soon dis
covered his friends in a cozy dark cor
ner. He sat down beside them and
entered into an animated discussion
about a ball team that their school was
organizing. Ine wmspers grew ioua
and louder,
bis head.
"Boys,"' he
prayer, even
menced. Let us sing 'We're Marching in a most worldly, unorthodox fashion,
to ZionV whi!o he sung.
u b me house of Bchool,1' whispered 4,.T . .,.,-..,
Johnny Walton as soon as hi, father's NE&J2&
Brothor Walton turned foolishly. One ovening ho strode into
the little meeting with his collar fast -said,
"thie is a house of ened at the back, but no further. The
if services hasn't com- ends curved ud amoni? his curlinc locka
brood,
I
I
head was turned, and Tommy snickered,
but John had already rolled up his eyes
and was singing at the top of his voice.
"Let those refuse to sing," rose the
Btrain, and Johnny looked at his friend
bo solemnly that poor Tom giggled again, cane, stopped
However, the singing drowned such house
minor discords, and soon the order of
service changed.
It has been said that Farmer Benton
waB weary. Perhaps that was why,
when they knelt to pray, be dropped on
one knee. Perhaps it was a mere acci
dent. At any rate, what was bis amaze
ment to hear an earnest supplication
rise,
"Oh, Lord, help us to get down on
both knees before thee!"
Phineaa remembered little more of
that petition. He looked down from his
tall height upon the slight form of the
petitioner, when the service was closed,
and involuntarily straightened himself
at the Bight of that erect figure. Those
shoulders had never beet to the storms
of life. The eyes that had looked
through the smoke of battle were un
dimmed. "It's just his way," thought the good
natured farmer. "I've no call to be put
out."
He thought of those words again
when, some months after, be passed
Uncle Abram's farm and saw hiB neigh- 80 well."
bor marching behind a cultivator, sing
ing at the top of his voice:
"Are there no foes for me to fact,
Must I not stem the flood ;
Is this vile world a friend to grace
To help me on to God."
"He's missed his profession," thought
Phineas Benton; yet when autumn
came Brother Walton's cribs and barns
were filled to overflowing, and his toil
worn hand, when it grasped that of his,
left there a note for an amount that
would have made his easy-going neigh
bor stare.
Brother Walton did not believe in
pride. He often addressed young peo
ple u'pon the folly of spending valuable
time before a "lookin' glass." The good
brother seldom spent bis own time so
One winter day a tierce storm swept
over the little school house, and Tommy,
"He's mighty spry fer his ago, an'
bein' his health's broken," thought tho
watcher. "He'll Bonn have that pieco
ready for piantin' But-what-in-Sam
Hill is he up to? Has he found suthin
in the furrow? Or Well, I will-be-bumfisticated!
Pray in', as I'm a sinner!
That does beat me!" The farmer walked
down the road.
Down in the furrowtho lines in ono
grimy hand, the other on the handle of
with several other children, unable to the plow, Brother Walton was kneeling.
make his way home against the hurri-
at Brother Walton's
"Come in, come in and welcome!"
cried the little man. "Praise the Lord
we have a roof over our heads this awful
night."
Tommy looked at him and wondered
why he bad thought Johnny's father
cross. He watched the farmer wrap
himself up and go with his boyB to
make the horses and cows and pigs com
fortable. He saw him, presently, come
staggering up through the snow with a
heavy burden.
"Got room for one more, mother?"
he railed at the door, aa his wife hast
ened to let him in, and then Tommy
saw him holding a little Iamb in his
arms.
"It would get its nose cold tonight,
I'm afraid. Can we make room for it?"
Tommy's eyes opened wide. Why he
was surprised he could not tell, but he
looked at the lamb for a a long time.
"It's surprising what luck that man
The horses started. He chocked them
with a word. It waB long beforo he
rose and went to work with a shout.
"Hallelujah! Get up Mose. Praiso
the Lord! Amen!"
And as he strode along his quavering
voice rose:
" I'll tell you when I fee! the best
Glory Hallelujah!
It's after I am blessed
Praise ye the Lord!"
Woman's Economic Independence.
This is the latest slogan of reform:
"The wholesale prostitution of woman
hood by making it necessary for any
woman to find some man to support her
must be stopped.' Sounds well, doesn't
it? But it isn't exactly a true statement
of conditions. The aim of marriage is
to reach a state in which the woman
supplements and supports the man in
her own way and according to the laws
of her nature. No man can have anv-
"It aint luck," Phineas answered.
"As near as 1 can make out, it's down
right stick-to-itivene6B. I never see
harder working folks than that man
and his two boys,"
"Vet he alius has time fer meetins
an' sich."
"lee, he puts me in mind of Crom
well's soldiers: the harder they prayed,
the better they fought."
The neighbor paused on bis home
ward way and looked over at the field
where Brother Walton was spring-plowing.
He was walking erect, with firm
step, more like a sentry on duty than a
farmer at the plow. The strength of
his life in its prime bad been wasted in
a southern priion.but he had never lost
she bearing of a soldier.
KRnEmfBzfi-KM
LLUBIIIilllllllllV'-'? .JiKvHILLV2iLLLLLB
Jndrcw (amejic.
,. . ,
thing much, if be be married, if his wife
has," said a neighbor to Tommy's father does not help him get it. She may con
one bright spring morning. "Your Un- tribute as much to the family resourcos
cle Abram's farm don't ginerly turn out by her sympathies and her kindness us
he does by his hustling. Economic in
dependence for women is all right so
far as it goes, but it doesn't go far. A
man does not support a woman half as
much as a good woman supports him.
A woman's contribution to the family in
thought, in solace, in the services in
which she is expert, has a value and it
is recognized. She is paid for her work
in any well-arranged home. She has a
fair share of every good thing that
comes to the union. Wives are not
slaves simply because they do not han
dle all the money. They are relieved of
the worry of handling it.and they Bpend
the greater part of all a family epends.
The average wife of any half-way de
cent husband gets more, as things go
nowadays, than she would get if she
were placed by her husband on salary.
The wife "on an allowance" has, usually,
a hard time of it. The allowance tends
to the minimum. The wife who goes
, auoiu buu uiuaeu unia ana leaves tnem
woo moi uy ner ausoana will get more
things and meet with less grumbling
than the woman on regular ealary. The
economic independence of woman is a
delusion. A man must be able to sup
port a woman because, sb nature and
observation show, the thoroughly well,
atrong woman in marriage is a rarit '.
Her earning capacity is smaller than a
man's and a great part of the time it is
7i if if we mean by earning capacity,
ability to do hard work. On the other
hand, in another senee, an ill or invalid
wife may be worth more to a man's suc
cess than all the physical potentiality of
an Amazon. Who shall measure affec
tion and sympathy and even the value
of a sweet woman's physical helpfulness
as an inspiration to her husband, in
mere dollars and cents? No woman is
merely an appendage to a man in the
married state. She has a value for we
are not considering the valueless sort of
folks. And figuring out all the expense
of the home the woman has her full
share, when she does not voluntarily
divert it tn her children or when she
does not deny herself to help her hus
band into a position wherein be may
give her a greater share of the value of
their partnership. Women drudge, of
course; so do men. Each drudges for
both. Put wives on salaries and tho
salaries nill be small. Moreover, sal
aries will drive love out of their work
which to be good, in the home must be
loving work. The wife undoubtedly
should have her own money, but ahe
doesn't work for money. Marriage isn't
wholly a business, as reformers think.
Love is its greatest factor and the lov
ing and beloved woman, in ninety nine
cases out of one hundred, is not a de
pendent. Her share of the money made
in the partnership will average up fairly
well with that of the man. The Mirror
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