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The Under Dog   By: (1838-1915)

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[Illustration: During the trip he sat in the far corner of the car.]






To my Readers :

In the strife of life some men lose place through physical weakness or lost opportunities or impaired abilities; struggle on as they may, they must always be the Under Dog in the fight.

Others are misjudged often by their fellows; sometimes by the law. If you are one of the fellows, you pass the man with a nod. If you are the law, you crush out his life with a sentence.

Still others lose place from being misunderstood; from being out of touch with their surroundings; out of reach of those who, if they knew, would help; men with hearts chilled by neglect, whose smouldering coals coals deep hidden in their nature need only the warm breath of some other man's sympathy to be fanned back into life.

Once in a while there can be met another kind, one whose poverty or uncouthness makes us shun him at sight; and yet one, if we did but know it, with a joyous melody in his heart, ofttimes in tune with our own harmonies. This kind is rare, and when found adds another ripple to our scanty stock of laughter.

These Under Dogs grave and gay have always appealed to me. Their stories are printed here in the hope that they may also appeal to you.




No Respecter of Persons I. The Crime of Samanthy North II. Bud Tilden, Mail Thief III. "Eleven Months and Ten Days" Cap'n Bob of the Screamer A Procession of Umbrellas "Doc" Shipman's Fee Plain Fin Paper Hanger Long Jim Compartment Number Four Cologne to Paris Sammy Marny's Shadow Muffles The Bar Keep His Last Cent


During the trip he sat in the far corner of the car

"I threw him in the bushes and got the letter"

"I git so tired, so tired; please let me go"

I saw the point of a tiny shoe

Everybody was excited and everybody was mad

I hardly knew him, he was so changed




I have been requested to tell this story, and exactly as it happened. The moral any man may draw for himself. I only want to ask my readers the question I have been asking myself ever since I saw the girl: Why should such things be among us?

Marny's studio is over the Art Club.

He was at work on a picture of a caƱon with some Sioux Indians in the foreground, while I sat beside him, watching the play of his masterly brush.

Dear old Aunt Chloe, in white apron and red bandanna, her round black face dimpled with smiles, was busying herself about the room, straightening the rugs, puffing up the cushions of the divan, pushing back the easels to get at the burnt ends of abandoned cigarettes, doing her best, indeed, to bring some kind of domestic order out of Marny's Bohemian chaos.

Now and then she interpolated her efforts with such remarks as:

"No, doan' move. De Colonel" her sobriquet for Marny "doan' keer whar he drap his seegars. But doan' you move, honey" sobriquet for me. "I kin git 'em." Or "Clar to goodness, you pillows look like a passel o' hogs done tromple ye, yo're dat mussed." Critical remarks like these last were given in a low tone, and, although addressed to the offending articles themselves, accompanied by sundry cuffs of her big hand, were really intended to convey Aunt Chloe's private opinion of the habits of her master and his friends.

The talk had drifted from men of the old frontier to border scouts, and then to the Kentucky mountaineers, whom Marny knows as thoroughly as he does the red men.

"They are a great race, these mountaineers," he said to me, as he tossed the end of another cigarette on Aunt Chloe's now clean swept floor. Marny spoke in crisp, detached sentences between the pats of his brush. "Big, strong, whalebone and steel kind of fellows; rather fight than eat. Quick as lightning with a gun; dead shots... Continue reading book >>

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