Silas Bradford's Boy

Silas Bradford's Boy

by Joseph C Lincoln

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Late on a late autumn afternoon in the year 1903 the Village of
Denboro, in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, was undergoing
inspection and appraisal. It did not know that it was undergoing
anything of the kind, nor would it have been in the least troubled
if it had known.

Denboro was satisfied with itself. "Not a city--no! Not a crowded
metropolis, teeming with riches and poverty, its gilded palaces
rubbing elbows with its sin-soaked slums--not that indeed. But a
community of homes, the homes of God-fearing men and noble women,
a town with churches and schools, of prosperous shops and a well-
patronized circulating library, whose sons have sailed the seven
seas, whose daughters have reared their children to be true
Americans--in short, my friends, perhaps as fine an example of what
a town should be as may be found between the surging billows of the
Atlantic upon the one hand and the blue bosom of the Pacific upon
the other." (See the address of the Hon. Alonzo Pearson, delivered
at the celebration of the two hundredth anniversary of the
incorporation of the township of Denboro, and on file in the office
of Abel Snow, town clerk.)

No, Denboro would not have feared inspection, it would have
welcomed it; the more perfect the diamond the purer its glitter
beneath the magnifying glass. If it had been aware that Banks
Bradford, as he strolled down Main Street toward home and supper
that afternoon, was looking it over with amused condescension it
would not have cared at all. Several of its citizens looked young
Mr. Bradford over as he passed, and their comments were singularly
free from awe or uneasiness.

"Who did you say?" queried Ebenezer Tadgett, peering through the
panes of the window of his secondhand shop. "Who did you say
'twas, Joe?"

Jotham Gott, the cards of the euchre hand which had just been dealt
him clutched in his huge fist, answered casually. "Oh, it's that
boy of Margaret Bradford's," he said. "Cap'n Silas Bradford's son.
He belongs here in town, but he's been away so much, up to college
and studyin' law and the like of that, that I guess you ain't seen
much of him since you come to Denboro to live, Ebenezer. His first
name's Silas, same as his father's was, but they always call him by
his middle one--Banks. Lord knows why! If my old man was as smart
as Cap'n Silas was in his day and time I'd be proud to use his name
even if 'twas Judas; yes"--with a chuckle--"even if 'twas Eliab--
and that's stretchin' things up to the limit of eyesight, you'll
have to give in."

The third member of the euchre party was a tall, raw-boned, stoop-
shouldered individual with a long face, the most prominent feature
of which was nose. His surname was Gibbons and his Christian name
Eliab. He sniffed through the prominent feature just mentioned and
turned on his heel.

"Humph!" he growled. "If my eyesight was so poor I played the king
thinkin' 'twas the right bower I'd keep still, seems to me. Come
on, boys; come on! You owe me seven cents so fur, Jotham, and I'm
cal'latin' to make it ten in a couple more hands, which is all
we've got time for."

Product Details

BN ID: 2940013696402
Publisher: WDS Publishing
Publication date: 01/21/2012
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 303 KB

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