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A short, square chunk of a man walked into a shipping office on the East Side, and inquired for the Manager of the Line. He had kindly blue eyes, a stub nose, and a mouth that shut to like a rat-trap, and stayed shut. Under his chin hung a pair of half-moon whiskers which framed his weather-beaten face as a spike collar frames a dog's. "You don't want to send this vessel to sea again," blurted out the chunk. "She ought to go to the dry-dock. Her... more...

I. BABCOCK'S DISCOVERY Something worried Babcock. One could see that from the impatient gesture with which he turned away from the ferry window on learning he had half an hour to wait. He paced the slip with hands deep in his pockets, his head on his chest. Every now and then he stopped, snapped open his watch and shut it again quickly, as if to hurry the lagging minutes. For the first time in years Tom Grogan, who had always unloaded his... more...

CHAPTER I THE DOCTOR'S GIG One lovely spring morning—and this story begins on a spring morning some fifty years or more ago—a joy of a morning that made one glad to be alive, when the radiant sunshine had turned the ribbon of a road that ran from Warehold village to Barnegat Light and the sea to satin, the wide marshes to velvet, and the belts of stunted pines to bands of purple—on this spring morning, then, Martha Sands, the... more...

This collection of stories has been labelled "The Veiled Lady" as being the easiest way out of a dilemma; and yet the title may be misleading. While, beyond doubt, there is between these covers a most charming and lovable Houri, to whom the nightingales sing lullabies, there can also be found a surpassingly beautiful Venetian whose love affairs upset a Quarter, a common-sense, motherly nurse whose heart warmed toward her companion in the... more...

Wilyum!.....WILYUM!" It was mine host of the Ferry Inn at Cook-ham who was calling, and at the top of his voice—and a big-chested voice it was—the sound leaping into crescendo as the object of his search remained hidden. Then he turned to me: "He's somewheres 'round the boat house—you can't miss him—there's too much of him!" "Are ye wantin' me, sor?" came another shout as I rounded the squat building stuffed with... more...


Now and then in my various prowlings I have met a man with a personality; one with mental equipment, heart endowment, self-forgetfulness, and charm—the kind of charm that makes you glad when he comes and sorry when he goes. One was a big-chested, straight-backed, clear-eyed, clean-souled sea-dog, with arms of hickory, fingers of steel, and a brain in instant touch with a button marked "Experience and Pluck." Another was a devil-may-care,... more...

Once in a while there come to me out of the long ago the fragments of a story I have not thought of for years—one that has been hidden in the dim lumber-room of my brain where I store my by-gone memories. These fragments thrust themselves out of the past as do the cuffs of an old-fashioned coat, the flutings of a flounce, or the lacings of a bodice from out a quickly opened bureau drawer. Only when you follow the cuff along the sleeve to... more...

Within a day's journey of Kennedy Square lay another wide breathing-space, its winding paths worn smooth by countless hurrying feet. Over its flat monotony straggled a line of gnarled willows, marking the wanderings of some guileless brook long since swallowed up and lost in the mazes of the great city like many another young life fresh from green fields and sunny hill-sides. This desert of weeds and sun-dried, yellow grass, this kraal for... more...

CHAPTER I Peter was still poring over his ledger one dark afternoon in December, his bald head glistening like a huge ostrich egg under the flare of the overhead gas jets, when Patrick, the night watchman, catching sight of my face peering through the outer grating, opened the door of the Bank. The sight so late in the day was an unusual one, for in all the years that I have called at the Bank—ten, now—no, eleven since we first knew... more...

COMPOSITION My chief reason for confining these four talks to the outdoor sketch is because I have been an outdoor painter since I was sixteen years of age; have never in my whole life painted what is known as a studio picture evolved from memory or from my inner consciousness, or from any one of my outdoor sketches. My pictures are begun and finished often at one sitting, never more than three sittings; and a white umbrella and a three-legged... more...