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Ralph on the Engine The Young Fireman of the Limited Mail   By:

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[Illustration: THE LOCOMOTIVE SETTLED BACK ON A SLANT. Ralph on the Engine. Frontispiece (Page 10.) ]

RALPH ON THE ENGINE

OR

THE YOUNG FIREMAN OF THE LIMITED MAIL

BY

ALLEN CHAPMAN

AUTHOR OF "RALPH OF THE ROUNDHOUSE," "RALPH IN THE SWITCH TOWER," "THE YOUNG EXPRESS AGENT," "TWO BOY PUBLISHERS," "THE DAREWELL CHUMS," ETC.

ILLUSTRATED

NEW YORK GROSSET & DUNLAP

PUBLISHERS

Made in the United States of America

THE RAILROAD SERIES BY ALLEN CHAPMAN

12mo, Cloth, Illustrated.

RALPH OF THE ROUNDHOUSE Or, Bound to Become a Railroad Man

RALPH IN THE SWITCH TOWER Or, Clearing the Track

RALPH ON THE ENGINE Or, The Young Fireman of the Limited Mail

(Other volumes in preparation.)

GROSSET & DUNLAP PUBLISHERS NEW YORK

Copyright, 1909, by GROSSET & DUNLAP

Ralph on the Engine

CONTENTS

CHAPTER PAGE I. The Night Run 1 II. The Landslide 9 III. Everybody's Friend 19 IV. An Old Time Enemy 27 V. On Special Duty 35 VI. Zeph 43 VII. Limpy Joe's Railroad Restaurant 50 VIII. The Hidden Plunder 58 IX. A Suspicious Proceeding 66 X. The Special 73 XI. Kidnapped 82 XII. The Railroad President 89 XIII. The Short Line Railway 97 XIV. A Railroad Strike 106 XV. The Runaway Trains 116 XVI. Car No. 9176 124 XVII. Under Sealed Orders 132 XVIII. The Strike Leader 142 XIX. The Wire Tappers 150 XX. In Peril 159 XXI. A Friend in Need 165 XXII. The Limited Mail 173 XXIII. The Picnic Train 181 XXIV. In "The Barrens" 190 XXV. Too Late 197 XXVI. The Mad Engineer 205 XXVII. A New Mystery 213 XXVIII. The Freight Thieves 219 XXIX. A Prisoner 226 XXX. The Lost Diamonds 235 XXXI. Justice at Last Conclusion 241

RALPH ON THE ENGINE

CHAPTER I

THE NIGHT RUN

"Ralph Fairbanks."

"On hand, sir."

"You are to relieve Fireman Cooper on the Dover slow freight."

"All right, sir."

Ralph Fairbanks arose from the bench on which he was seated in the roundhouse at Stanley Junction.

Over a dozen men had been his companions for the past hour. There were engineers waiting for their runs, firemen resting after getting their locomotives in order, and "extras," who, like the young railroader himself, were so far on the substitute list only.

Ralph was glad of his appointment. This was his second month of service as a fireman. It had been by no means regular employment, and, as he was industrious and ambitious, he was glad to get at work with the prospect of a steady run.

The foreman of the roundhouse had just turned from his desk after marking Ralph's name on the list when a man hurriedly entered the place. He was rather unsteady in his gait, his face was flushed, and he looked dissolute and unreliable.

"Give me the slow freight run, Forgan," he panted. "I'm listed next."

"Two minutes late," observed the foreman, in a business like way.

"That don't count on a stormy night like this."

"System counts in this establishment always, Jim Evans," said Mr. Forgan.

"I ran all the way."

"Stopped too long at the corner saloon, then," put in Dave Adams, a veteran engineer of the road.

Evans glared at the man who spoke, but recognizing a privileged character, stared down the row of loiterers and demanded:

"Who's got my run?"

"Do you own any particular run, Jim?" inquired Adams, with a grin.

"Well, Griscom's was due me... Continue reading book >>




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