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his way thither, he had, as a traveling companion, Mrs. Greene, widow of the eminent Revolutionary general, Nathaniel Greene, who was returning with her family to Savannah, after spending the summer at the north. His health being infirm, on his arrival at Savannah, Mrs. Greene kindly invited him to the hospitalities of her residence, until he should become fully restored. Short of money and in a land of strangers, he was coolly informed by his employer that his services were not required, he (B.) having employed another teacher in his stead. Mrs. Greene hereupon urged him to make her house his home, so long as that should be desirable, and pursue, under her roof, the study of the law, which he then contemplated. He gratefully accepted the offer, and commenced the study accordingly.
6. Mrs. Greene happened to be engaged in embroidering on a peculiar frame, known as a tambour. It was badly constructed, so that it injured the fabric while it impeded its production. Mr. Whitney eagerly volunteered to make her a better, and did so, on a plan wholly new, to her great delight and that of her children.
7. A large party of Georgians, from Augusta and the plantations above, soon after paid Mrs. G. a visit, several of them being officers who had served under her husband in the Revolutionary war. Among the topics discussed by them around her fireside was the depressed state of agriculture, and the impossibility of profitably extending the culture of the greenseed cotton, because of the trouble and expense incurred in separating the seed from the fiber. These representations impelled Mrs. Greene to say, “Gentlemen, apply to my young friend, Mr. Whitney; he can make anything.” She thereupon took them into an adjacent room, where she showed them her tambour-frame, and several ingenious toys which Mr. W. had made for the gratification of her children. She
then introduced them to Whitney himself, extolling his genius and commending him to their confidence and friendship. In the conversation which ensued, he observed that he had never seen cotton nor cotton-seed in his life.
8. Mr. Whitney promised nothing and gave littlé encouragement, but went to work. No cotton in the seed being at hand, he went to Savannah and searched there among ware-houses and boats, until he found a small parcel. This he carried home, and secluded with himself in a basement room, where he set himself at work to devise and construct the implement required. Tools being few and rude, he was constrained to make better,— drawing his own wire, because none could, at that time, be bought in the city of Savannah. Mrs. Greene and her next friend, Mr. Miller, whom she soon after married, were the only persons, beside himself, who were allowed the entree of his workshop, in fact, the only ones who clearly knew what he was about. His mysterious hammering and tinkering in that solitary cell were subjects of infinite curiosity, marvel, and ridicule among the younger members of the family. But he did not interfere with their merriment, nor allow them to interfere with his enterprise ; and, before the close of the winter, his machine was so nearly perfected that its success was no longer doubtful.
9. Mrs. Greene, too eager to realize and enjoy her friend's triumph, in view of the existing stagnation of Georgian industry, invited an assemblage, to her house, of leading gentlemen from various parts of the state, and, on the first day after their meeting, conducted them to a temporary building, erected for the machine, in which they saw, with astonishment and delight, that one man with Whitney's invention could separate more cotton from the seed, in a single day, than he could without it by the labor of months.
10. Mr. Phineas Miller, a native of Connecticut, and a graduate of Yale, who had come to Georgia as the teacher of General Greene's children, and who, about this time, became the husband of his widow, now proposed a partnership with Mr. Whitney, by which he engaged to furnish funds to perfect the invention, secure the requisite patents, and manufacture the needed machines; the partners to share equally all profits and emoluments thence resulting. Their contract bears date May 27, 1793; and the firm of Miller and Wlritney immediately commenced what they had good reason to expect would prove a most extensive and highly lucrative business. Mr. Whitney thereupon repaired to Connecticut, there to perfect his invention, secure his patent, and manufacture machines for the southern market.
XXI.-THE DEACON'S MASTERPIECE.
0. W. HOLMES. [Certain words and purases in this selection are in the provincial Yankeo dialect Let the pupil find them, and pronounce them as they are spelled.
1. Have you heard of the wonderful one-hoss shay,
2. Seventeen hundred and fifty-five;
Saw the earth open and gulp her down;
3. Now, in building of chaises, I tell you what, There is always somewhere a weakest spot,In hub, tire, felloe, in spring or thill, In panel or cross-bar or floor or sill, In screw, bolt, thorough-brace, lurking still, Find it somewhere you must and will, - : Above or below, or within or without,And that's the reason, beyond a doubt, A chaise breaks down, but does n't wear out.
4. But the Deacon swore, (as Deacons do, With an “I dew vum” or an “I tell yeou,”) He would build one shay to beat the taown, ’n’ the kaounty 'n' all the kentry raoun’; It should be so built that it couldn' break daown; “Fur,” said the Deacon, “'t's mighty plain Thut the weakes' place mus' stan' the strain; 'n' the way t' fix it, uz I maintain,
Is only jest
5. So the Deacon inquired of the village folk Where he could find the strongest oak, That could n't be split nor bent nor broke, That was for spokes and floor and sills; He sent for lancewood to make the thills; The crossbars were ash, from the straightest trees ; The panels of white-wood, that cuts like cheese,
But lasts like iron for things like these ;
6. Do! I tell you, I rather guess
7. EIGHTEEN HUNDRED;—it came and found The Deacon's masterpiece strong and sound. Eighteen hundred increased by ten ; “Hahnsum kerridge” they called it then. Eighteen hundred and twenty came, Running as usual,—much the same. Thirty and forty at last arrive, And then come fifty and FIFTY-FIVE.
8. Little of all wc value here Wakes on the morn of its hundredth year Without both feeling and looking queer.