COLD indeed they found little Cath-
  arine, and loosed the rope that
  bound her.  She was laid upon her
  bed at the schoolmaster's house, and Dr.
  Mottet bled her finely, as was then the
  practice of physicians.
    In spite  of  this she quivered faintly
  back to life, under the brisk rubbing ad-
  ministered by Maum Judy from the par-
  sonage, and the choking drops of wine
  which Mr. Harleston, against the doctor's
  orders, coaxed into her mouth.  But she
  spoke not, nor opened her eyes.
     And so, in the early freshness of that
  Sunday morning, she was propped about
  with the cushions of the coach from Com-
  ing T, and slowly borne homeward to her
  mother.  There were outriders before to
  bear the tidings.
     When they turned into the avenue at
  Kensington, lo! who was this that came
  flying down from Kensington House,
  with her frilled sacque of flowered muslin
  ballooning out behind above her satin pet-


  ticoat, her brown hair all unpowdered and
  uncurled, and her sweet face white with
    Who was it before whom all made way,
  stopping the coach and standing back, un-
  covered, silent and sorrowful?  Who was
  it that tore open the coach door before
  any could aid her, and unmindful of
  those standing by, caught her first-born to
  her heart, and sobbed aloud at that most
  piteous spectacle?  Who was it that, all
  at once, regained her dignity and bade
  them drive on to the house, and sat and
  clasped her child, and whispered:

    "0 my baby! 0 my Catharine!" over
  and over, in a voice of keenest self-re-
  proach?  Who could it be but Mistress
    As they lifted her from the coach,
  Catharine opened her eyes with a fright-
  ened look, and murmured in a thick and
  curious voice, "Dear M'sieu' Dutarque!"
  in a way that brought a lump to every
  throat.  Then she spoke no more.
    There was much excitement in the
  faces of the worshippers at Strawberry
  Chapel that morning.  The gentlemen
  oft laid their hands to their short-swords
  with a muttered imprecation.  Each was
  armed, according to law, with either a gun

        LITTLE MISTRESS CHICKEN.          49

  or a pair of horse-pistols, and young Mr.
  Garden had much ado to hold the atten-
  tion of his congregation through the six-
  teen heads of his most excellent discourse.
    The women were all flushed and rest-
  less; the men could hardly keep their
  seats, and the children stole awestruck
  glances through the windows toward the
  graveyard.  It was just as when the Ye-
  massees had been on the warpath, or when
  the pirates had lain off Charles Town bar.
    But the young clergyman knew what it
  was all about.  He had ministered often
  in times of alarm, and he shared now the
  swelling indignation in the hearts of those
  before him.
    After service there was quite a martial
  gathering outside the church, strangely
  different from the usual social assembling
  which made each coach a little reception-
  room and filled the shady spaces beneath
  the live-oaks with the soft, piquant gossip
  of the beaux and belles of St. John's.
  To-day the women huddled together, and
  the men stood apart in earnest groups
  with stern and angry looks.
    They had dragged the wretched Du-
  tarques from their hiding-place, and con-
  fined them in the schoolmaster's house,
  with James Macnamara keeping watch

  before the door, cutlass in hand.  Some
  hotheads counselled hanging the "preecep-
  tor," as they called schoolmasters then, by
  the very rope with which he had bound the
    There did seem a sort of poetical jus-
  tice about this proposition; but the people
  of Carolina were law-abiding and faithful
  subjects of his sacred Majesty, King
  George the Second, and they decided to
  await results, and let the law take its
  course accordingly.
    The master of the free school at
  Charles Town might not be displaced
  save by Act of Assembly, but the com-
  missioners of Childbury school had full
  power to act promptly in such a case as
  this, and they would not be long assem-
  bling.  In the meantime, the men of St.
  John's would care for Monsieur Du-
  tarque after their own fashion while
  waiting the formal action of the commis-
     So it came to pass that when the fair
  began at sunrising on the following Tues-
  day, the third Tuesday in May, accord
  ing to long-established custom, it was
  whispered about that little Catharine
  Chicken might live, after all.  But it was
  also whispered that she was palsied and


  speechless.  The brows of men grew omi-
  nously dark as the whispers grew and
    Monsieur Dutarque watched the great
  gathering on Market Square from an
  upper window.  There was the wide,
  striped booth where the Court of Piepow-
  der was held, to deal justice to the dusty-
  foot trader-pieds poudreux.  There were
  the well-bred horses led to and fro to
  show off their fine points; there were the
  groups of noble black cattle that throve
  so wondrously in the woods of Carolina;
  there were the poultry-venders and the
  venders of game and furs, much as on any
  ordinary market day.
    In addition Monsieur Dutarque could
  see the stalls of those who sold gloves,
  handkerchiefs, stockings, ribands and
  other fallals, the peddlers of pewter, cop-
  per or brass household utensils, of corks
  and grindstones, drugs, snuff, painters'
  colors and gunpowder.  These only vis-
  ited Childbury once in six months.
    The toll-gatherer sat in his accustomed
  spot under a great pecan nut tree, with
  his clerk beside him, inscribing in a book
  the names of all buyers and sellers, and
  a description of all animals or slaves
  brought here for sale, while the directors


  of the fair, in their gold lace and cocked
  hats, rode hither and thither amid the
   The schoolmaster could see also the
  preparations for the sports of the day, the
  vaulting, dancing and bear-baiting, the
  archery and ball-playing; and he could
  hear the bells of the Morrice dancers jin-
  gling in the distance, as they made ready
  for their merry doings.
    He heard also the voice of the crier,
  -calling aloud the notice of the time the
  fair should endure, which every one knew
  quite as well as he did, to be until the fol-
  lowing Friday.
    Suspicious-looking characters were al-
  ready offering from the large packs they
  carried fine silks, gold and silver lace,
  French cambrics, chintz, Hyson tea,
  Dutch linens, fine Flanders lace, and
  other foreign goods-chiefly Spanish, at
  astonishingly low prices.  The coaches of
  the neighboring gentry, with liveried
  coachmen driving the fine horses, and
  with crests painted on the side panels.
  thronged the narrow streets; and Mon-
  sieur Dutarque turned a ghastly yellow
  as he noted the threatening glances lifted
  toward his window.
    It had been at the close of just such a

        LITTLE MISTRESS CHICKEN.           53

  fair as this, in another part of the Prov-
  ince, that Monsieur Dutarque had once
  been arrested for calling a neighbor, who
  had just served with him upon the jury,
  by the contemptuous epithet of "Daffy-
  down-dilly" - an actionable offence in
  Carolina.  But that had been child's play
  compared to the fate he read in the low-
  ering eyes of these determined men.
    Meanwhile, what of Catharine?
    That very day she opened her eyes wide
  and tried to smile at the new baby, but
  her mouth twisted in a piteous way that
  half-broke Mistress Lydia's heart.  This
  Catharine did not know, for to her it
  seemed that she had entered Paradise.
    From the moment she had looked up
  into that beloved face, that she had never
  thought to see again, she never more could
  doubt her mother's love.  As for the new
  baby-surely it was the most wondrous
  thing alive.
    Even Mr. Ball, so grand and tall, of
  whom she had been jealous and of whom
  she had also stood in awe, seeemed bent on
  being as kind to her as her own never-to-
  be-forgotten father.  She felt very weak,
  as though she had been through a long
  illness, but it was very delightful to lie
  still and listen to her mother singing.


    This was what Mistress Lydia sang, in
  a voice like a mocking-bird:

          You pretty birds that sit and sing
            Amidst the shady valleys,
          Go see how sweetly Phyllis walks
            Within her guarded alleys.

    Often she would change the tune to

        Send back my long-strayed eyes to me
        Which oh! too long have dwelt on thee!

    So Catharine lay still and was happy,
  feeling herself wrapped about with lov-
  ing-kindness.  They all tried to make her
  forget the terrible ordeal through which
  she had passed; but happy as she was,
  they could not cure the fixed look of
  fright in those bonny eyes of hers.  To-
  ward noon she frowned a little, made a
  great effort, and said in that new, thick,
  unnatural voice:
    "Don't let them hurt poor M'sieu' Du-
    Then they knew that she had overheard
  some of the muttered threats of venge-
  ance that had been made by all who came
  to look upon her.
    By and by she whispered: "I want my
    Thus it chanced that a boy rode post-
  haste to Childbury with a note for Mr.


  Ball.  When he returned, having with-
  stood all the fascinations of the fair, and
  hastened back as fast as horse's feet could
  bring him, he had in his pocket a cooter,
  which, if not Flying Childers was, as
  Maum Amy promptly remarked, "He
  ve'y spit'n image!."
    This was not long after midday.  Be-
  fore sunset, when the fair should close for
  the day, old Mr. Elias Ball, in the red
  velvet cap he always wore, rode into
  Childbury, having driven out from
  Charles Town the day before.
    He was there joined by all the gentle-
  men for miles around.  They all looked
  very imposing and dignified, mounted on
  their thoroughbreds.
    Then seven of these gentlemen sepa-
  rated from the rest, and went into the
  schoolhouse, where they shut themselves
  up. In the short interval of their retire-
  ment, Monsieur Dutarque was formally
  deposed, and Childbury school was with-
  out a master.
    As they emerged once more, Monsieur
  Dutarque slunk, trembling, from the win-
  dow, for he knew that his hour had come.
  Presently Madame Dutarque, sobbing
  and crying, was led forth by the usher.
  The gentlemen took off their hats to her


  very politely, and she was led down to
  the ferry and put aboard the flat.
    Then it was Monsieur Dutarque's turn.
    What sombre eyes met his!
    He cowered abjectly, and pleaded with
  them miserably, in an agony of fright, for
  he was sure they meant to do him to
  death.  An overseer stood by with a cow-
  skin whip held ready in his hand.  Money,
  who had escaped punishment this time,
  waited, with a beaming face, which yet
  had something fierce about it, to bare the
  schoolmaster's back to the blow his own
  hand had so often inflicted in days
  gone by.
    A motley crowd gathered round.  All
  the idlers of the fair were there-the in-
  solvent debtors who, secure in immunity
  from arrest, so long as the fair should en-
  dure, crept from their hiding-places at
  these times of merrymaking; the roving
  vagrants who had no settled abiding
  place, but roamed through the wilder-
  ness, seeking the settlement where laws
  should be least burdensome, and food
  most easily obtained.
    Free persons of color were also there,
  having come out from Charles Town to
  buy and sell on their own account, and
  the liveried servants of the gentry, proud

         LITTLE MISTRESS CHICKEN.         57

  and lazy like the pampered menials of an
  older aristocracy, yet withal full of the
  wit and the love of humorous excitement
  that belongs to the negro temperament.
     The peddlers from afar were full of
  curiosity, and even the Indians with their
  fanner baskets and their peltry drew near
  with impassive faces to witness the dis-
  grace of the preceptor.
     What was the hitch in the proceedings?
  Why was the sport so long delayed?  The
  crowd was growing impatient, while, for
  the schoolmaster, an eternity of suspense
  was dragging its slow length along.
     Money glared at him like a wild beast
  waiting, and to the frightened French-
  man the proportions of the overseer
  seemed truly gigantic.
     A horrible recollection sickened him.  It
  was of a slave who had died under just
  such a lash-yet the man who had held it
  had been small, and not possessed of un-
  usual bodily strength
     There was a universal groan of disap-
  pointment when young Mr. Ball pushed
  to the front and said a few words gently
  to the crowd.  Then he read from a note
  he held:
     "Catharine hath spoken, to pray the
  gentlemen not to harm Monsieur Du-


     Even the schoolmaster looked up with
  a working face, while they who knew and
  loved Catharine looked upon each other,
  nodding their heads and saying, with
     "Then she can speak again!"
     To Mr. Ball himself, who, by some
  oversight, had only now received the note
  from the clerk with whom it had been
  left, at first this seemed a fact so great as
  to swallow up all remembrance of what
  they had meant to inflict upon the cruel
  master.  But with the rabble it was a dif-
  ferent thing.  There was a pause which,
  to the waiting victim, seemed like the
  pause the panther makes before he
     In that pause, those among the crowd
  who were capable of fine perceptions were
  moved by the sweetness of that message
  from the injured child.  But for the rest,
  they were simply beasts balked of their
     They began to hoot and hiss.  Then
  they saw that the gentlemen were holding
  an earnest consultation, and that at the
  end of it Mr. Ball whispered an order
  in the ear of Money, who thereupon
  hastened off grinning with delight.  The
  crowd took heart of grace, realizing that

        LITTLE MISTRESS CHICKEN.           59

  something might yet be in store to gratify
  their love of sport.
    It was all managed very swiftly, but
  Childbury has never witnessed such a
  scene, before or since.  The schoolmaster
  was seized by rough hands, stripped of his
  tie-wig and of his long-skirted black coat,
  and tied, face tailwards, on a mule, with
  the very rope with which he had tied the
  child.  And here came the drummer-boys
  of the militia companies!
    Rub-a-dub-dub! Rub-a-dub-dub!
    A wild rabble followed, throwing
  stones or worse, in spite of the efforts of
  the gentlemen to keep some kind of order.
  Through all the streets of the little town
  rushed the excited mob, shouting derisive
  epithets, while the drummer-boys beat
  their best, and the mule caught the full
  spirit of the occasion, and lashed out with
  his hind-legs, to the great delight of all
  who came behind.
    Proud Mistress Austin - Catharine's
  Aunt Ann-leaned from her coach-win-
  dow and waved her kerchief with a face
  of complacent disdain, while her younger
  sister Elizabeth shrank back in terror
  from the rude and exciting scene.
     So down the steep bluff, until the ferry-
  boat was reached, over the river, across


  the narrow causeway, and on to the great
  pine woods went Monsieur Dutarque.
  Afar there followed him the booming of
  the drum, the shrill shouts of derision.
  The schoolmaster knew that never again
  could he hold up his head in the Province
  of Carolina.
    A fair-haired child, who is still old-
  fashioned in her tastes, and likes the final
  "And they married and lived happily
  ever after" of the old tales, has asked me
  what became of Catharine.  As this is a
  true story, and not fiction, I may perhaps
  be pardoned if I quote from an old rec-
  ord before me.
    "March 10, 1763. - Mrs. Catharine
  Chicken and Elias and Isaac Ball went
  down in Mr. Benjm.  Bonneau's Conno,
  and he went himself with them to their
  Uncle Laurens to be anockalated for ye
     So Catharine lived to grow up, and she
  not only grew up, but shortly after the
  date of this old record, she was married to
  young Mr. Benjamin Simons, of Middleburg
  Plantation, Cooper River.  Her picture
  hangs to-day in the house of one of
  her descendants, in Christ Church parish.
     It may be known by the eyes, and by
  the pathetic twist in the sensitive mouth.

        LITTLE MISTRESS CHICKEN.            61

  For Catharine bore with her to the grave
  the mark of Monsieur Dutarque's cruelty.
  But then, you see, this marred only her
  mortal face which long ago was dust.
    You will not find Childbury town upon
  your map, and should you visit to-day the
  place where it stood, you will see only two
  tall chimneys, which belonged to the tav-
  ern, a pile of bricks where stood "ye
  schoole," many time-stained tombstones,
  and Strawberry chapel, old and quaint
  and tree-begirt, where on winter Sundays
  you may still find assembled many direct
  descendants of the determined men who
  on that bright May-day, so long ago,
  drummed Monsieur Dutarque out of
  Childbury town.

                 THE END.