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Fifty Famous People   By: (1841-1925)

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First Page:

Bill Rozmiarek, Juliet Sutherland, Charles Franks and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team.

FIFTY FAMOUS PEOPLE

A BOOK OF SHORT STORIES

BY JAMES BALDWIN

PREFATORY NOTE

One of the best things to be said of the stories in this volume is that, although they are not biographical, they are about real persons who actually lived and performed their parts in the great drama of the world's history. Some of these persons were more famous than others, yet all have left enduring "footprints on the sands of time" and their names will not cease to be remembered. In each of the stories there is a basis of truth and an ethical lesson which cannot fail to have a wholesome influence; and each possesses elements of interest which, it is believed, will go far towards proving the fallibility of the doctrine that children find delight only in tales of the imaginative and unreal. The fact that there are a few more than fifty famous people mentioned in the volume may be credited to the author's wish to give good measure.

CONTENTS

SAVING THE BIRDS

ANOTHER BIRD STORY

SPEAKING A PIECE

WRITING A COMPOSITION

THE WHISTLE

THE ETTRICK SHEPHERD

THE CALIPH AND THE POET

"BECOS! BECOS! BECOS!"

A LESSON IN HUMILITY

THE MIDNIGHT RIDE

THE BOY AND THE WOLF

ANOTHER WOLF STORY

THE HORSESHOE NAILS

THE LANDLORD'S MISTAKE

A LESSON IN MANNERS

GOING TO SEA

THE SHEPHERD BOY PAINTER

TWO GREAT PAINTERS

THE KING AND THE BEES

OUR FIRST GREAT PAINTER

THE YOUNG SCOUT

THE LAD WHO RODE SIDESADDLE

THE WHISPERERS

HOW A PRINCE LEARNED TO READ

"READ AND YOU WILL KNOW"

THE YOUNG CUPBEARER

THE SONS OF THE CALIPH

THE BOY AND THE ROBBERS

A LESSON IN JUSTICE

THE GENERAL AND THE FOX

THE BOMB

A STORY OF OLD ROME

SAVED BY A DOLPHIN

"LITTLE BROTHERS OF THE AIR"

A CLEVER SLAVE

THE DARK DAY

THE SURLY GUEST

THE STORY OF A GREAT STORY

THE KING AND THE PAGE

THE HUNTED KING

"TRY, TRY AGAIN!"

WHY HE CARRIED THE TURKEY

THE PADDLE WHEEL BOAT

THE CALIPH AND THE GARDENER

THE COWHERD WHO BECAME A POET

THE LOVER OF MEN

THE CHARCOAL MAN AND THE KING

WHICH WAS THE KING?

THE GOLDEN TRIPOD

SAVING THE BIRDS

One day in spring four men were riding on horseback along a country road. These men were lawyers, and they were going to the next town to attend court.

There had been a rain, and the ground was very soft. Water was dripping from the trees, and the grass was wet.

The four lawyers rode along, one behind another; for the pathway was narrow, and the mud on each side of it was deep. They rode slowly, and talked and laughed and were very jolly.

As they were passing through a grove of small trees, they heard a great fluttering over their heads and a feeble chirping in the grass by the roadside.

"Stith! stith! stith!" came from the leafy branches above them.

"Cheep! cheep! cheep!" came from the wet grass.

"What is the matter here?" asked the first lawyer, whose name was Speed. "Oh, it's only some old robins!" said the second lawyer, whose name was Hardin. "The storm has blown two of the little ones out of the nest. They are too young to fly, and the mother bird is making a great fuss about it."

"What a pity! They'll die down there in the grass," said the third lawyer, whose name I forget.

"Oh, well! They're nothing but birds," said Mr. Hardin. "Why should we bother?"

"Yes, why should we?" said Mr. Speed.

The three men, as they passed, looked down and saw the little birds fluttering in the cold, wet grass. They saw the mother robin flying about, and crying to her mate.

Then they rode on, talking and laughing as before. In a few minutes they had forgotten about the birds.

But the fourth lawyer, whose name was Abraham Lincoln, stopped. He got down from his horse and very gently took the little ones up in his big warm hands.

They did not seem frightened, but chirped softly, as if they knew they were safe.

"Never mind, my little fellows," said Mr. Lincoln "I will put you in your own cozy little bed."

[Illustration]

Then he looked up to find the nest from which they had fallen... Continue reading book >>




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