|Transcribed by Norma Knotts Shaffer from
microfilm of the Calhoun Chronicle dated 5/12/1908.
Marcell is "one ahead." Marcellus Stump and Sylvanus McCartney
have been spending their odd spells trading with each other, both making
money; that is, one makes in one deal, the other in the next, keeping something
near even. But Marcell seems to be ahead at present.
You see it was something like this: Van traded Marcell a mowing machine
and hay rake, a corn crusher, a Wolf run grit grindstone, a pair of spreaders,
with enough bale wire to supply the broken links, and a pair of rubber
boots, all of which articles were second-handed, of course, for a thoroughbred
Poland-China buck sheep. The deal being consummated, all the articles
bartered were delivered, except a Jersey hen, which McCartney reserved
to use of until her biddies were old enough to wean. Mr. McCartney
went next morning to his mill. He had not been gone very long however,
'till Mr. Sheep who had been placed in a lot near the house, becoming lonesome
from having been separated from his old associates and familiar haunts,
began to amuse himself by trying to knock a black spot off of one of the
boards on the fence. When McCartney came home in the evening, he
found a half acre of fence in splinters on the ground, his wife on the
garden fence, some of the children on lumber piles some in the forks of
apple trees. So Van who never fails to find a way out of all difficulties,
got all on all fours, and by dodging first behind one stump then another,
then a rock or a sapling, succeeded in decoying Mr. Sheep quite a distance
from the house. But then another trouble loomed up. How in
the world was he to get rid of this pesky fellow! Providence always
helps the man who helps himself, and while seated on the branch of a persimmon
on tree on the hill near Grant Richards' trying to formulate a plan of
escape from this dire predicament, Grant's pups chanced to pass that way
in pursuit of a rabbit. Mr. Sheep thought of the old adage: "a bird
in the hand is worth two in the tree," and gave chase to the canine adventurers.
Well now he chased those poor pups across the hill to Mr. McCartney's house
that Aaron Bennett recently vacated, where they took refuge under the floor.
In closing this bit of history suffice it to say that Mr. Sheep is master
of the situation on that side of the hill, and monarch of all these surveys,
which fact that spectacle man can attest who ventured upon his realm, and
after having his case of glasses demolished and himself badly bruised managed
by the aid of his Lordship, the sheep, to get on the outside. The
McCartney family are living in peace on their side of the hill; but those
poor pups are to be pitied -- they dare not stick their heads from under
the floor. Death by starvation stares them in the face. Nobody
cares to venture upon his Lordship's domain, not even Mr. Richards.
Mr. McCartney says that he would not care so much, were it not that
he will have to pay tax upon those alfired pups, for most assuredly they
will be found upon his premises. He wants to have one more trade
with Mr. Stump and then quit.