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rubbed out, and now it is my belief that week and boarding himself. A graceless there isn't a single male human being in boy of the counting-room force who had America who is honest. I held the belt no reverence for anybody or anything, all alone, until last January. Then I was always making fun of this beachwent down, with Rockefeller and Car- comber, and he had a name for him negie and a group of Goulds and Van which somehow seemed intensely apt derbilts and other professional grafters, and descriptive–I don't know why. He and swore off my taxes like the most called him Smiggy McGlural. I offered conscienceless of the lot. I was a great the berth of assistant to Smiggy, and he loss to America, because I was irre- accepted it with alacrity and gratitude. placeable. It is my belief that it will He went at his work with ten times the take fifty years to produce my successor. energy that was left in me. He was not I believe the entire population of the intellectual, but mentality was not reUnited States-exclusive of the women quired or needed in a Morning Call —to be rotten, as far as the dollar is reporter, and so he conducted his office concerned. Understand, I am saying to perfection. I gradually got to leaving these things as a dead person. I should more and more of the work to McGlural. consider it indiscreet in any live one to I grew lazier and lazier, and within thirty make these remarks publicly.
days he was doing almost the whole of it. But, as I was saying, I was loftier forty It was also plain that he could accomyears ago than I am now, and I felt a plish the whole of it, and more, all by deep shame in being situated as I was himself, and therefore had no real need slave of such a journal as the Morning of me. Call. If I had been still loftier I would It was at this crucial moment that have thrown up my berth and gone out that event happened which I mentioned and starved, like any other hero. But awhile ago. Mr. Barnes discharged me. I had never had any experience. I had He did not discharge me rudely. It was dreamed heroism, like everybody, but I not in his nature to do that. He was a had had no practice, and I didn't know large, handsome man, with a kindly face how to begin. I couldn't bear to begin and courteous ways, and was faultless with starving. I had already come near in his dress. He could not have said a to that once or twice in my life, and got rude, ungentle thing to anybody. He no real enjoyment out of remembering took me privately aside and advised me about it. I knew I couldn't get another to resign. It was like a father advising berth if I resigned. I knew it perfectly a son for his good, and I obeyed. well. Therefore I swallowed my humilia I was on the world, now, with notion and stayed where I was. But. where to go. By my Presbyterian trainwhereas there had been little enough in- ing I knew that the Morning Call had terest attaching to my industries before, brought disaster upon itself. I knew the there was none at all now. I continued ways of Providence, and I knew that my work, but I took not the least inter this offense would have to be answered est in it, and naturally there were for. I could not foresee when the penresults. I got to neglecting it. As I have alty would fall nor what shape it would said, there was too much of it for one take, but I was as certain that it would man. The way I was conducting it now, come, sooner or later, as I was of my there was apparently work enough in it own existence. I could not tell whether for two or three. Even Barnes noticed it would fall upon Barnes or upon his that, and told me to get an assistant, on newspaper. But Barnes was the guilty half wages. There was a great hulking one, and I knew, by my training, that creature down in the counting room the punishment always falls upon the good-natured, obliging, unintellectual innocent one, consequently I felt sure and he was getting little or nothing a that it was the newspaper that at some
VOL. CXLIV.-No. 862.-58
future day would suffer for Barnes's Harte had arrived in California in the crime.
'fifties, twenty-three or twenty-four Sure enough! Among the very first years old, and had wandered up into the pictures that arrived, in the fourth week surface diggings of the camp at Yreka, of April—there stood the Morning Call a place which had acquired its curious building towering out of the wrecked name when in its first days it much city, like a Washington Monument; and needed a name through an accident. the body of it was all gone, and nothing There was a bake shop with a canvas was left but the iron bones! It was then sign which had not yet been put up, that I said, “How wonderful are the but had been painted and stretched to ways of Providence!" I had known it dry in such a way that the word bakery, would happen. I had known it for forty all but the B, showed through and was years. I had never lost my confidence reversed. A stranger read it wrong end in Providence during all that time. It first, Yreka, and supposed that that was was put off longer than I was expecting, the name of the camp. The campers but it was now comprehensive and satis were satisfied with it and adopted it. factory enough to make up for that. Harte taught school in that camp sev
In those ancient times the counting eral months. He also edited the weekly room of the Morning Call was on the rag which was doing duty as a newsground floor; the office of the superin- paper. He spent a little time also in tendent of the United States Mint was the pocket mining camp of Jackass on the next floor above, with Bret Gulch (where I tarried, some years later, Harte as private secretary of the super- during three months.) It was at Yreka intendent. The quarters of the editorial and Jackass Gulch that Harte learned to staff and the reporter were on the third accurately observe and put with photofloor, and the composing room on the graphic exactness on paper the woodland fourth and final floor. I spent a good scenery of California and the general deal of time with Bret Harte in his office country aspects—the stagecoach, its after Smiggy McGlural came, but not driver and its passengers, and the clothbefore that. Harte was doing a good ing and general style of the surface deal of writing for the Californian-con miner, the gambler, and their women; tributing “Condensed Novels" and and it was also in these places that he sketches to it, and also acting as editor, learned, without the trouble of obseryI think. I was a contributor. So was ing, all that he didn't know about minCharles H. Webb, also Prentiss Mulford, ing, and how to make it read as if an also a young lawyer named Hastings, expert were behind the pen. It was in who gave promise of distinguishing him those places that he also learned how to self in literature some day. Charles fascinate Europe and America with the Warren Stoddard · was a contributor. quaint dialect of the minera dialect Ambrose Bierce, who is still writing which no man in heaven or earth had acceptably for the magazines to-day, ever used until Harte invented it. With was then employed on some paper in Harte it died, but it was no loss. By and San Francisco—the Golden Era, perhaps. by he came to San Francisco. He was a We had very good times together-very compositor by trade, and got work in social and pleasant times. But that was the Golden Era office at ten dollars a after Smiggy McGlural came to my week. assistance; there was no leisure before that. Smiggy was a great advantage to Harte was paid for setting type only, me-during thirty days. Then he turned but he lightened his labors and enterinto a disaster.
tained himself by contributing literaIt was Mr. Swain, superintendent of ture to the paper uninvited. The editor the Mint, who discovered Bret Harte. and proprietor, Joe Lawrence, never saw
Harte's manuscripts, because there
there and vivid as if one of those splendid weren't any.
his literature and luminous Brazilian butterflies had out of his head while at work at the case, lighted there. Harte's dainty selfand set it up as he spun. The Golden complacencies extended to his carriage Era was ostensibly and ostentatiously a and gait. His carriage was graceful and literary paper, but its literature was easy, his gait was of the mincing sort, pretty feeble and sloppy, and only but was the right gait for him. exhibited the literary forms, without I knew him intimately in the days really being literary. Mr. Swain, the when he was private secretary on the superintendent of the Mint, noticed a second floor and I a fading and perishing new note in that Golden Era orchestra reporter on the third, with Smiggy a new and fresh and spirited note that McGlural looming doomfully in the near rose above that orchestra's mumbling distance. I knew him intimately when confusion and was recognizable as music. he came East five years later, in 1870, He asked Joe Lawrence who the per to take the editorship of the proposed former was, and Lawrence told him. It Lakeside Magazine, Chicago, and crossed seemed to Mr. Swain a shame that the continent through such a prodigious Harte should be wasting himself in such blaze of national interest and excitement a place and on such a pittance, so he that one might have supposed he was took him away, made him his private the Viceroy of India on a progress, or secretary on a good salary, with little or Halley's comet come again after seventynothing to do, and told him to follow five years of lamented absence. his own bent and develop his talent. I knew him pretty intimately thenceHarte was willing, and the development forth until he crossed the ocean to be began.
consul, first at Crefeld, in Germany, Bret Harte was one of the pleasantest and afterward in Glasgow. He never men I have ever known. He was also returned to America. one of the unpleasantest men I have Harte told me once, when he was ever known. He was showy, meretri- spending a business fortnight in my cious, insincere; and he constantly house in Hartford, that his fame was an advertised these qualities in his dress. accident-an accident that he much reHe was distinctly pretty, in spite of the gretted for a while. He said he had fact that his face was badly pitted with written “The Heathen Chinee" for smallpox. In the days when he could amusement; then had thrown it into the afford it—and in the days when he waste-basket; that presently there was a couldn't-his clothes always exceeded call for copy to finish out the Overland the fashion by a shade or two. He was Monthly and let it get to press. He had always conspicuously a little more in- nothing else, so he fished the “Chinee" tensely fashionable than the fashion out of the basket and sent that. As we ablest of the rest of the community. He all remember, it created an explosion of had good taste in clothes. With all his delight whose reverberations reached the conspicuousness there was never any last confines of Christendom; and thing really loud or offensive about Harte's name, from being obscure to them. They always had a single smart invisibility in the one week, was little accent, effectively located, and notorious and as visible, in the next, as that accent would have distinguished if it had been painted on the sky in Harte from any other of the ultra- letters of astronomical magnitude. He fashionables. Oftenest it was his neck- regarded this fame as a disaster, because tie. Always it was of a single color, and he was already at work on such things intense. Most frequently, perhaps, it as "The Luck of Roaring Camp," and was crimson-a flash of flame under his “Tennessee's Partner.” In the San chin; or it was indigo blue, and as hot Franciscan days Bret Harte was by no
means ashamed when he was praised as cheerful, easy-laughing Bret Harte, a being a successful imitator of Dickens Bret Harte to whom it was a bubbling in America, a remark which indicates a and effervescent joy to be alive. That fact-to wit, that there were a great Bret Harte died in San Francisco. It many people in America, at that time,
was the corpse of that Bret Harte that who were ambitiously and undisguisedly swept in splendor across the continent; imitating 'Dickens. His long novel, that refused to go to the Chicago banGabriel Conroy, is as much like Dickens quet given in its honor because there had as if Dickens had written it himself. been a breach of etiquette a carriage
It is a pity that we cannot escape from had not been sent for it; that resumed life when we are young.
When Bret its eastward journey, leaving behind the Harte started East in his new-born glory, grand scheme of the Lakeside Monthly thirty-six years ago, with the eyes of in sorrowful collapse; that undertook to the world upon him, he had lived all of give all the product of its brain for one his life that was worth living. He was year to an Eastern magazine for ten entering upon a career of poverty, debt, thousand dollars-a stupendous sum in bitterness, and a worldwide fame which those days—but collected and spent the must have often been odious to him, money before the year was out, and There was a happy Bret Harte, a con then began a dismal and harassing deathtented Bret Harte, an ambitious Bret in-life which was to cease only at the grave. Harte, a hopeful Bret Harte, a bright,
(Written in 1906) (To be continued)
THE DEEP PORT OF NORMANDY
BY HERBERT ADAMS GIBBONS
A MONG tourists the English Chan
the falaises of song and story, which are nel has a bad name. Whoever con not at Calais or Boulogne. And they fesses shamefacedly to the nosy man in have always missed experiencing the the smoking room, “Yes, my first trip perfect approach to France. abroad,” is told that the Atlantic suc A youngster whose way of getting to cessfully crossed does not mean immu the Exposition of 1900 was by cattle ship nity until the Continent is reached. walked from Liverpool to London to “You think you can stand it rough? save the pound sterling he had earned Well, wait till you tackle the Channel, mucking out stalls. He had no choice. and you see the bow go down, the Newhaven-Dieppe was the only route to boat spin, and then slide over.” Because Paris within the means of the possessor of Channel terror most Americans see of sixteen shillings and sixpence. (For France first at Calais or Boulogne. The three-and-six had gone to meals and habit of the short crossing is formed for lodgings across England.) How the life. As if one couldn't get bowled over Channel behaved I do not remember. in an hour as easily as in three! When But I do remember coming suddenly out you suggest that one does not know the of the sea upon a wall of land whiter chalk cliffs of Normandy until one has than the waves which dashed against itsailed into Dieppe, you are asked how a solid wall that showed no opening long the passage takes. Seventy-five until we were close upon it, then the miles from Newhaven! More than three narrow cliff-bound entrance, a sharp hours at sea! No, siree, not for me! bend, and the steamer docking at a jetty
Fear of seasickness makes the three on which the Paris train was waiting. exclamations an incontrovertible syllo- We had seemed to penetrate France gism. Personally conducted or travel through a barrier of falaises as the sun ing independently, Americans go from had reached the ocean through a thick Dover to Calais, from Folkstone to mist half an hour earlier, unexpectedly Boulogne. They are a bit let down to and completely. The first contact with find that the falaises of which they have France is a memory as mystical and heard so much are not as imposing as glorious as it is precious. But I have althe cliffs of the Sussex coast from which ways regretted that I took the train. they started. Having been able to see Paris could have waited. Paris should the French coast before they boarded have waited. I might never bave rethe Channel steamer, there was no glam- turned to Dieppe. What a risk I ran! our, no mystery about it. The victims Up to this point the Artist listened of the beaten path become its slaves. without smile or word. At Simpson's They do not realize that in travel it is one is tempted by the generous cut off the
as in other pursuits—the a peripatetic roast to use one's mouth choicest is not always conveniently at for a single purpose until the plate is hand, thrusting itself in your way at clear. For a man who really did not each step. Who seeks finds. How often want any lunch, who had declared his is one told that the cliffs of Normandy, intention of skipping lunch to catch the the much-sung falaises, are "not so afternoon boat to Calais so he could be much, after all." But they have not seen home that night, when I ran into him