A California Girl by Edward Eldridge
CHAPTER I. CLARA
CHAPTER III. THE
CHAPTER V. BEN
CHAPTER IX. AN
CHAPTER X. MRS.
RETURN OF BEN
FIVE YEARS AFTER
CHAPTER XV. A
CHAPTER XX. IN
CHAPTER XXI. A
THE HERNE PARTY.
CHAPTER XXIII. A
OUT OF BONDAGE.
A CALIFORNIA GIRL
BY EDWARD ELDRIDGE
The Abbey Press PUBLISHERS
114 FIFTH AVENUE NEW YORK
Copyright, 1902 by The Abbey Press
This book is not written for the specialist, but for that restless,
seething multitude known as the masses. It is written for busy
people, for workers, such as the shop-girl, the factory-girl, the
clerk, the mechanic, the farmer, the merchant, and the busy housewife;
but ministers, lawyers, and doctors may find food for thought within
My heart goes out to God's secular army, composed of those who have
neither time nor opportunity to go through learned treatises and
scholarly essays, yet whose natures are hungering for something better
than they see and hear about them. So I have tried to weave into this
story the best and latest thought that has been given to the world,
believing it to be what the workers most need in the performance of
their daily duties, and what will help them out of bondage.
People whose reading and observation have been limited may think
that I have drawn on my imagination altogether for most of the material
in this book. I can assure them that such is not the case; much of it
In regard to Penloe, there have been men who had greater spiritual
gifts than he, and I call to mind one, still living, whose illuminated
countenance and remarkable personality are superior to his. In Penloe
is seen the interior life of the Hindu combined with the best practical
thought of the West.
Let a youth or maiden commence to live the life described by the man
who won the heart of the Oriental Lady, related by Penloe in his
Original Address, and he or she will then realize the facts which
have made the characters of Penloe and Stella.
To any sensitive, fastidious reader I would say, it becomes an
author, in order to be true to life, to present certain characters as
they really are, and put into their mouths the language they actually
Whatever there is of error in the book is the result of egoism;
whatever of truth and love is the work of Him who has brought me up out
of the marshes and lowlands, and caused me to drink at the crystal
fountains of the hills.
A CALIFORNIA GIRL.
CHAPTER I. CLARA LAWTON.
Well, dear, said Mrs. Lawton to her daughter Clara, the home you
will enter to-morrow as a bride is very different from the home that I
entered as your father's bride. Our home was a log cabin in the
Michigan woods, with only an acre of clearing, where the growing season
is only about four months long and the winter eight. Snow lay on the
ground six months of the year, from one to three feet deep. In our
cabin, we had the bare necessaries and your father had to work very
hard cutting cord-wood for a living; but we were very happy, for we had
love and health; and need I say, dear, what a joy it was to us when you
entered our cabin as a passenger on the journey of life.
My wish for you now is, that you may find as much happiness in the
companionship of Charles Herne as I have had in your father's, and as
much joy in the advent of a little one in your home as I did in you.
You have always been one of the kindest and best mothers a girl
ever had, said Clara, warmly.
I have tried to be, said Mrs. Lawton, simply.
Clara Lawton was twenty-two years of age, prepossessing in
appearance, with a bright, happy expression. Her nature was deep and
affectionate, her tastes domestic and social. When she was twenty, Mr.
and Mrs. Lawton had moved to California and settled in the pretty
little city of Roseland, which nestled in the foothills of the Sierra
At a camping party Clara had first met Charles Herne, and the
outcome of that meeting was that to-morrow would be Clara's wedding
Who can describe the thoughts that filled the mind of Clara the
night previous to her marriage? Who, indeed, can describe the thoughts
that fill the mind of any maiden as she lays her head on her pillow the
night previous to her marriage?
All her life she had been taught to consider this the most important
event of her life, the acme of happiness, the end and aim of her
womanhood. The thought of her own little world and the decrees of the
great world at large alike hold her to that belief. That she is a soul
in process of development; that marriage is only one step towards
something higher; that the true union is the joining of hands to work
for humanity, are doctrines which would sound strange in her ears. She
feels that great change that is coming into her life, and her thoughts
are in accordance with her character and circumstances. One bride may
be filled with the sadness of unwilling acquiescence, another with the
joy of complete absorption, a third with the excitement incident upon
an entire change of environment. Clara Lawton's sweet nature prompted
only tender thoughts of the parents she was leaving, strong love for
the man who was to be her husband and the desire to be a true wife and
make their union a happy one.
CHAPTER II. RANCH TALK.
The road going north from the beautiful little city of Roseland to
the mountains is known as the Walnut road. Six miles from Roseland, on
the Walnut road, is Treelawn, the home of Charles Herne. A modern
two-story house is built well back from the road, and between the house
and road are lawns decorated with flower-beds, some tall oleanders,
several banana plants, and choice varieties of roses, vines, and
shrubbery. On one side of the house there is a thriving orange and
lemon orchard; on the other fig, almond, and walnut trees; while back
of the house are other extensive orchards of the finest fruits. The
house is very comfortably furnished, much better than most houses in
the country; its arrangement being very convenient and modern.
Charles Herne, the owner of this property was, at the time our story
opens, a young man of twenty-eight, tall, well built, with a pleasant
open countenance which was a true index of his character. He always
looked closely after his business interests, but at the same time
allowed his generous, kindly spirit full scope.
When Charles was eighteen his father thought it would be well for
him to go out to work a year or so on other ranches, that he might gain
more by experience, get more ideas and know what it was to depend on
himself and make his own way in the world. After an absence of two
years, came the welcome summons home. On the evening of his return,
when Charles and Mr. Herne were seated comfortably on the porch, the
Well, Charles, relate some of your experiences while working on
Though I did not speak of it in my letters, father, said Charles,
I have had a pretty tough time of it since I left home.
I thought so, said his father, and I wish you had written
I should have done so, replied Charles, but I wanted to see if
there was any sand in me and what staying qualities I possessed. Well,
the first job I struck was at the Funson ranch, driving a six-mule team
plowing. The leaders were the most contrary animals that ever had
harness on, the swings never would keep in their places, and the near
wheeler was so ugly that Pete, the man who had been driving the team,
said, 'the Devil couldn't hold a candle to him for pure meanness.' He
told me he used to swear at them all day and then lie awake nights
cursing himself for being such a fool as to drive them. He said, one
morning he took the team out to work, and after he had been working
them about an hour, the off mule began to cut up, backing, bucking, and
refusing to pull with the near one. At last Pete lost his temper and
began laying the whip on him, saying he would 'whale the stuffing out
of him'; then the mule got mad, broke the harness and the whole team
became unmanageable and got away from him. He let them go and started
toward the house, pouring out a steady stream of oaths as he went. Just
at the gate he met the boss and greeted him with, 'I'll see that team
in Hell before I'll ever draw another line over their backs.' Funson
asked him what was the trouble, and Pete said, 'that off mule has been
raising hell, and the Devil has got into 'em all, breaking the harness
and running away.' The boss told Pete not to make a fool of himself,
but to go back to the field and get his team together. Pete said, 'I'll
see you in Hell before I'll ever touch that team again. You haven't a
well broke team on the ranch for a man to handle. You buy a lot of
half-broken, bucking, balky teams because you can get 'em cheap. You
don't care how much hell it gives a man to drive 'em.' Funson told him
to go and hunt up some cattle, and sent another man to drive the mules.
It's an actual fact, father, that if a man had told the boss in polite
and correct language what had happened to the team, he would have
stared in utter astonishment and surprise.
Quite true, my son, quite true, said the old gentleman.
The man that took Pete's place, continued Charles, drove the team
two days and that let him out. Then I came along and got the job.
Didn't Pete laugh when he came through the field with a bunch of cattle
and saw me trying to take the contrariness out of the leaders. He
called out, 'Give 'em hell, give 'em hell!'
When I came up to the barn at night, Pete was there putting up his
broncho, and he greeted me with, 'Well, Charles, how do you like your
I said I wasn't stuck on it.
'It's hell, ain't it?' said he; then added, 'the only way you can
ever get that team to pull steady is to get right in and cuss 'em good;
they are broke to cussing.'
After supper the boys got together in the barn and played cards for
two hours. When they were tired of card-playing, they interested each
other by telling yarns about experiences with women, each striving to
make his story more thrilling than the last, and this entertainment
continued until they were ready to spread out their blankets and sleep.
It is pretty cold sleeping in a barn December nights, even in our
California climate; but, as you know, there are few ranches where the
men are allowed to sleep in the house.
I had to be up before it was light in the mornings and clean off
those mules, feed and harness them, and then have my breakfast. After
breakfast, just as it was getting light, we started to work. The
mornings were very cold. About dark I would bring my team in and by the
time I had unharnessed them, fed them, and had my supper, I was ready
After a man has put all his energy into a long, hard, tedious day's
work, he feels more like a worn-out old plug than a man. He has no
surplus force left to expend in elevating mental pursuits, for it has
been all exhausted in severe physical labor.
Such labor continually kept up, has a tendency to dull what few
good aspirations a man may have had to bring his animal nature under
control. Therefore, after such a day's work, if he has any desires,
they are those of the brute, and it is no wonder that men should want
something of a sensational, exciting nature at night to keep their
minds off themselves and relieve the monotony of their toil.
Well, father, I did lots of thinking when night came, about such
subjects, and came to some very decisive conclusions; but to return to
One night when I was taking the harness off him, the near leader
kicked me on the leg. The pain was so severe that I scarcely slept any
that night. They say a mule will be good and gentle in the barn three
hundred and sixty-four days in the year, for the sake of getting a
chance to kick a man on the three hundred and sixty-fifth day, and I
believe it is so.
After dinner one day, we had just left the house when one of the
men said, 'Didn't the old woman give the boss hell, this noon? I tell
you she's got a temper.' 'Yes,' said Pete, 'but she's not very old, not
forty yet. She's always firing up about something; she keeps him in
hell most of the time. The trouble is,' continued he, 'he's got nothing
broke on his ranch; his mules are not broke, his broncho cows are not
broke, his wife is not broke, and the old cuss himself is not broke.'
After enduring all the torment and petty aggravation that a man
could stand for three months, I left and went to work at the White Oak
Ranch. The boss there set me to grubbing out oaks, and I can assure you
it was a relief after driving those mules.
The third night I was at this place, I was the last to join the men
at the barn, and when I got there I found the teamsters, George and
Harry, making the air blue with oaths. They were giving it to the boss
because he would not get new harnesses, the old ones being mended all
over with wire and baling rope and the lines rotten. Harry's leaders
had broken their lines twice that day, it seemed, and he had nearly
lost control of them in consequence. 'The old fool keeps a-promising
and a-promising to get new harness,' said George, 'but he never gets
it; and he hasn't got a harness on his whole darn ranch that's worth a
whoop in hell.' 'My old plugs broke their harness five times to-day,'
said Harry. 'Since I've been here, the teams have done more damage and
lost more than would pay for a new harness ten times over.'
When I had been there about a month, the hot weather began to come
on, and the feed to dry up, and I had to help clean the ditches out,
ready for irrigating. It was a big job, so many willows to grub out,
and it took much longer to finish it because we were so constantly
called away to drive out cattle and hogs that had broken into the
orchard and grain fields. You see, the feed was getting scarce, there
was more stock than there was feed for, and the fences were very shaky.
The boss kept talking about new fences, but he never had them built, he
was satisfied with patching the old ones.
Well, we got the ditches cleaned out and commenced to irrigate,
using all the water we could get. I was one to help irrigate and look
after the ditches. The work would have been really pleasant if we could
only have kept the band of hogs out. They would get in after the green
feed and break the ditches, causing the water to wash the soil away.
That band of hogs began to torment me as much as the mules had done.
They were so hungry you could not keep them out. I didn't blame them,
poor, lank, starved creatures, for getting in and getting something to
eat. I would have done the same in their case.
At last the boss thought he would shut them up in the barnyard and
feed them. Well, he had forty starved hogs shut up, and he gave them
about as much food each day as ten hogs could eat. Of course, they
became like a pack of wolves, and it was all a man could do to get
through the yard. Forty hogs would come all around him, squealing and
yelling as though they were being butchered, and you had to keep moving
lively or they would bite your legs. Henderson, one of the men, told me
they ate up four cats and three kittens and more chickens than had been
on the table for a year.
One Sunday morning, after breakfast, I commenced to wash my shirt
and overalls, when Henderson called to me, 'Cattle in the peach
orchard!' Now, at the further end of the peach orchard there were a
hundred nice young trees, covered with tender foliage, looking fine. It
seems the cattle got into the orchard in the night and ate all the
growth off them, so they looked just like sticks. It really was a shame
to see such fine trees damaged in that way, but the boss would not take
time to build a good fence around them. That afternoon I went to lie
down in the barn; it was hot, the mosquitoes and flies were getting in
their best licks at me. I was trying to sleep, and just as I was about
succeeding Henderson called out: 'Charles, get your shovel and come
quick.' 'What's the matter?' I asked. 'Why, the hogs have played the
devil and broke the ditches and the water is running all over Hell.'
Mad as I felt about being disturbed, I could not help smiling within at
the thought of water running all over hell, and I said to him: 'If
those hogs can flood hell with water they ought to be sent to a dime
museum.' We went on in silence till we reached the orchard gate, when
Henderson said: 'Do you know, I would rather take a licking than open
that gate, for it's a back-breaker. It hasn't got a hinge, and is as
heavy as an elephant; you have to lift it up and drag it along the
ground. It takes more time to hang a gate that way with a band of iron
to a post or a bent stick in the place of the iron, than it would to
buy two pairs of hinges; and yet that is the only kind he has on the
place. It seems as if everything on the place was devised to make work
as hard, unhandy, and wrong-end-to as possible.'
That evening when we had gathered together as usual, Harry opened
the conversation by saying: 'What a racket there was to-night at
supper! It seems to me the whole family is raising hell all the time,
but I don't blame the old woman much for giving the boss a jawing about
throwing his old broken harness on her bedroom floor, when he came home
in the light rig this afternoon.' 'He is always doing such things,'
said George. 'The front room is more like an old store-room than
anything else. He don't deserve a house; that man ought to live in a
Another of the men said: 'If ever there was any attraction between
the boss and his wife, it has long ago disappeared; and the children!
What a quarreling gang they are.' Then they proceeded to discuss at
length each member of the family, and I must say, father, that although
I had become accustomed to much of the roughness of the life of these
ranches, I was so shocked over some of the things they said that it
took me a long time to get over it. I was not surprised that the boys
should be little reprobates, because I didn't see how they could be
otherwise, living with such a crew of men around them all the time, but
was shocked to hear what they said about the girls. There were two of
them: one fifteen years old, the other eighteen. Rather pretty girls
they were, too. I had talked with them several times and they seemed
modest and quite shy with me. I hadn't seen them much with the other
fellows. Well, father, when those men had finished talking, they hadn't
left those girls a shred of what the world calls a reputation, and the
worst of it was that their stories were for the most part true, as I
afterward ascertained. I could scarcely speak to the girls for several
days; for somehow one expects more of a girl than of a boy, though I
don't know why one should, he added, thoughtfully. I'm sure I'd want
to be as pure as the girl I married.
Well, I studied over the thing a good deal, and I finally came to
this conclusion: Those girls were not bad; they were simply curious.
They led such narrow, cramped lives that there was nothing for their
active brains to feed on, so they naturally turned to the most
interesting thing at hand, themselves, their physical selves. A
superabundance of vitality overshadowed their small mental equipment.
In the absence of suitable entertainment the physical part of their
being had fatally asserted itself. Ignorant of consequences, they
sinned innocently. I felt sorry for them, and during the rest of my
stay there, I tried to give them some glimpses of a more intellectual
Well, continued Charles, I stayed in that hell over a year, then
left and went to the Lonsdale ranch. There we did not use the barn to
sleep in; each man had a bunk to himself in the bunk-house. The
interior of the bunk-house was decorated with several choice works of
art, one representing three young ladies, in abbreviated costumes,
enjoying wine and cigarettes; another showed several men lifting from
the water the nude form of a beautiful young woman who had committed
suicide; while a third was an exciting picture of a jealous woman, in a
much torn garment, holding a pistol to the head of her faithless lover.
Some pictures of Fitzsimmons, Jeffries, and Sharkey also adorned the
walls. Much time was spent in the evenings discussing the various
merits and demerits of the pugilists. I was often surprised at the able
and exhaustive manner in which they would handle the subject, and
showed some remarkable ability in treating of the qualities of the
prize fighting gentlemen. If the same amount of brain power had been
turned in other directions, how useful to their country those men might
have become. I do not wish to convey the idea that they were always
handling such great and momentous topics as the fighting qualities of
those noted gentlemen. Very often, by way of variation, they would talk
of those feminine types of beauty which appeared so conspicuously in
the Police Gazette and the Sporting Times.
It was astonishing the amount of information they displayed
concerning women, what retentive memories they had, and how very
familiar they were with the subject of woman, her ways, and her sex
nature. Their mental horizon was bounded on the north by the affairs of
the ranch, on the east by the boss and his domestic concerns, on the
south by woman as manifested by the various phases of her sexual
nature, and on the west by the gentry of the prize ring. Within these
boundaries was their mental world, their minds never reaching out and
beyond these subjects.
The reading matter on the table was the sensational weekly papers.
I remember one Sunday to my surprise I saw one of the men reading a
book. On looking at the title, it read: 'The Life of Rattlesnake Pete,'
and another man had a book lying on his blankets, entitled 'The
Adventures of Coyote Bill.' Gambling was their favorite pastime. It was
one round of card playing nights and Sundays. When I first went to work
on the Lonsdale ranch, the boss put me to cutting oak wood. After I had
been at work awhile, he came along and told me that I did not hold the
handle of my axe right. The next day he found fault with me for the way
I used a cross-cut saw. A week later I was piling brush to burn, and
the way I laid the brush did not suit him. He was everlastingly blowing
about himself and telling how he did things. I did not seem to be able
to do anything right. One night after supper we had all assembled in
the bunk-house, when Parsons said: 'I tell you boys, hell went pop this
morning. Plaisted gave the boss hell because he commenced to growl at
him for the way he held the lines. Plaisted told him he was the
greatest old crank that ever run a ranch, and that the devil himself
couldn't suit him. He left the team right in the field and called for
his money. I tell you the boss's face was as red as a beet. He had to
give Simmons six dollars a month more to take the team.'
Hendricks said, 'I gave the boss a piece of my mind this morning
when I tried to open the gate leading into the garden. It is a rod
long, and as heavy as hell; the whole weight was on the ground. I told
him any man that had such a gate as that on his ranch never ought to
own a ranch. I said, 'Why in the devil don't you get some hinges and
hang your gates?' Ambrose spoke up, and said, 'Sometimes the boss seems
pleasant enough, but he does like to find fault and tell you what big
things he has done. To hear him talk you would think that his ranch was
the only ranch that was worth anything. He told his visitors to-day
that his place would pay the interest on one hundred thousand dollars.
You know, boys, it wouldn't sell for twelve thousand.'
Parsons said: 'The boss has been growling at me ever since I have
been with him, but I pay no attention to him. He thinks if you don't do
a thing as he does, you don't do it right, and any idea that does not
originate in his brain is not worth anything. To hear him talking to
that lady visiting here to-day you would think he was a perfect man
living on a model ranch.' I will never forget how mad Hendricks was
with the boss one Saturday evening. We had just come from supper when
Hendricks lit his pipe and gave vent to his feelings, as follows: 'If I
had had a four-year-old club at the supper table to-night, I felt so
boiling mad that I would have knocked hell out of him. To hear him go
on a nagging and fault-finding with that little woman of his. There she
has been a-working hard all day, set three good meals, doing the
churning and all the housework besides; and all she gets for her
patient labor is a growl.' 'Yes,' said another man, 'she has been
working like a slave all the week and to-morrow is Sunday, and it will
be to her just the same as any other day.' Hendricks said: 'The boss
thinks more of his old plugs than he does of his wife. See what care he
takes of his horses. One lot is resting while the other lot is working;
then those that have been working are put in the pasture, and those
that have been resting are put to work. But he never seems to think
that poor worn-out woman of his needs a rest and change.'
Parsons added: 'That is not the worst of it. His wife is a
cook-stove slave, and a wash and butter-making machine. It does not
matter how tired she is or otherwise physically unfit, he demands his
marital privileges as a right, regardless of her wishes or protests. I
know it is a fact, for he brags about it.' Parsons continued: 'When a
boy I used to hear preachers talk about hell, and I could not see what
was the use of sending millions and billions of people to eternal
torments, so I thought there ought to be no such place as hell; but if
there is a hell, then I think the boss deserves to go there.'
An intelligent young man from the East by the name of Travers
joined in the conversation by saying: 'When I was a boy I remember how
serious my good father felt because he thought a neighbor had died
without his sins being forgiven, and had gone to hell. At that time the
word hell used to have some meaning on the minds of the people,
and produced on my mind a feeling of fear and awe. But how different it
is now. If a minister was to preach now about all wicked people going
to hell, it would produce no more effect on their minds than water on a
duck's back, for the word hell is now a spent thunderbolt, used
uselessly by the mouths of so many. It may be well for theologians to
know (if any of them believe in hell as preached) whether or not they
have got through discussing hell; their views have no weight whatever
on the minds of the masses, for they are all the time making light,
fun, and sport of the word hell.' 'That's so,' joined in the
men, and they all laughed.
I had been at the Lonsdale ranch about three or four months when I
received your letter asking me to return home.
Well, Charles, said the old man Herne, if I had not worked out
for several years on ranches, I should think your stories slightly
colored, but from my own experience I should say the half has not been
That is so, father, said Charles. I have not stated what I have
seen and heard half strongly enough.
The father said: When I bought this ranch, the first thing I did
was to build solid fences, raise lots of feed and hang gates on hinges
so that a child could open them with its finger. I always make my plans
so that I have more feed than stock. I did not set out an orchard till
the fences were finished, so that nothing could get in. I made it a
point to avoid losing a lot of work through bad management. My hired
men have always had a good house to sleep in, each man having a room to
himself. The house is cool in the summer through having double porches
all round it, and warm in winter because it is well furnished. Men and
teams never go out to work in the winter till the sun is up. Every man
sits down to supper at six, during the summer months, and they have two
hours' nooning. What is the result? I have always had the best men to
work for me, and they never want to leave. Each man is put upon his
honor, and takes as much interest in doing his best for me as if the
place belonged to him. Everything goes on the same at the ranch when I
am away as when I am there. No man has used anything but the most
respectful language to me. I have heard no swearing at teams. In fact,
I have heard no swearing or low stories at all. I never would allow it.
Every day the work is done well and without friction.
Yes, said his son, I used to think your place was heaven while I
Two years from the time this conversation took place, the father
died, leaving the property and some money to his son, Charles, and
seven thousand dollars to his daughter Lena.
Charles Herne was not a student of political economy nor a reader of
sociology, but what he did was done through an innate sense of justice,
with a spirit of generosity, and the munificent treatment of his men
was the manifestation of his noble, free spirit. To-morrow will be the
greatest event so far in the life of Charles Herne, for he brings to
his home his bride.
CHAPTER III. THE MARRIAGE OF CHARLES
Two miles from the Herne ranch, toward Roseland, lived the Holbrooke
On the afternoon of the day which was of such importance in the
lives of two of our characters, Mr. Holbrooke returned from a survey of
his orchard, to be met by his wife with a face full of mysterious
I've got some news, James, she said. Now guess what it is
Sophia has heard from one of her old beaux, said her husband
Get a pail of water and throw it over your dad, Sophia, said Mrs.
Holbrooke. He's always joking you about your beaux. Well, she added,
I see I'll have to tell you, you'll never guess. Charles Herne has
just gone by here with a bran-new suit of clothes, a bran-new matched
team, a bran-new harness, a bran-new buggy, and a bran-new wife. There!
What do you think of that?
Why, said her husband, I think you may see them go by here some
day with a brand-new baby.
The idea of your talking that way before Sophia; that's the way
with you men, your mind is always run on such things.
Well, said her husband, I don't think such a subject is very
foreign to your mind or Sophia's either.
Sophy, let's you and I take your dad and throw him. We can do it,
said Mrs. Holbrooke.
Since the newly-married couple that caused so much interest in the
Holbrooke family had gone by, Sophia had laid down her novel, The
Banker's Daughter, and was gazing dreamily out of the window. The
young lady being of a rather romantic turn of mind, had just been
saying to herself, What a perfect day to be married. Will everything
be as beautiful on my wedding day, I wonder?
Well, said Mrs. Holbrooke, whoever the lady may be, she has got a
good man and a lovely home.
Yes, said her husband, a good job was done when Charles Herne
came into the world.
Don't talk so rough, James. I never saw a man like you in all my
life, said his wife.
The old man Herne had a long head on him when he sent Charles out
into the world to cut his own fodder, added Holbrooke, reflectively.
Yes, said his wife, those hired men of his wouldn't be acting
like gentlemen the way they are now if Charles had not gone out and
Two years ago, he continued, he devoted the entire proceeds from
his orchard for one year, after paying expenses, to fixing up the
cottage for his men. He had it painted and papered; had good carpets
laid down on the floors; large mirrors and pictures on the walls; put
in two large bathrooms with hot and cold water; a billiard table, lots
of small games, all the leading papers and magazines. Bought them a
fine piano, also an organ, and a lot of music, sacred and sentimental.
He also bought a fine matched team with a two-seated buggy, and said:
'Boys, I want you to keep this team for your own riding out evenings,
Saturday afternoons and Sundays. Take care of it among yourselves, and
I hope you all may have many pleasant rides. There isn't a team in the
country gets more grooming than those colts, and not a man has been
known to overdrive them. I never see anything like it, those hired men
at Herne's live and act as if they were members of some gentlemen's
club. They always wash their hands in warm water in the winter, and are
particular about keeping their finger-nails clean. On Sundays to see
those men dressed up, you would think they had never seen dirt. You
don't see Herne's men on a Sunday morning spending their time in
washing overalls, shirts, and socks. Herne keeps a Chinaman to do that
in the week day. Why, if I was to go and offer one of those men a
steady job at ten dollars a month more than Herne pays, he would turn
his nose up at me. You can't get a man to leave; they stick to him
closer than a brother. He has ten standing applicants to fill the next
vacancy he may have. And did you ever see a place where men worked so
orderly, harmoniously, and thoroughly as they do on the Herne ranch?
You don't see any of the trees in his orchard barked through having
careless, mad teamsters while harrowing and cultivating. Herne's
horses, harness, and machinery look better and last more than twice as
long, because the men take great interest in caring for them. It's not
all go out of pocket with Herne in what he does for his men. Some
pretty big returns come back.
Yes, said Mrs. Holbrooke, Lena Herne told me that her brother and
herself were sitting on the porch one evening, and she was talking to
Charles about the men and what he had done for them, when he said,
'Lena, I would not give up the love and respect which these men have
for me, and I for them, and the quiet, peaceful understanding that
exists between us, for all the ranches in the county.' She said that
she and her brother very often spent their evenings with the men in
games, singing and a general social time, and there are lots of young
people in the neighborhood that call on them to play croquet and
lawn-tennis of a Saturday afternoon or to spend a pleasant evening.
Just think, continued Mrs. Holbrooke, those men at Herne's only work
five and a half days in the week, and those days are short ones. I tell
you, Holbrooke, those men have a far better time than you do, though
you own a ranch and they don't; you are a slave compared to them.
Some of the men say that Herne don't talk Christianity to them, but
he puts some mighty big Christian principles in practice, said her
It was as Sophia had mentally said, A perfect day to be married
The newly married couple, as they journeyed from Roseland to
Treelawn, found the sun just warm enough to be pleasant, for it was in
the early part of March. The road was in fine condition, for there was
neither mud nor dust. A gentle breeze wafted the sweet scented odors
from the flower-decked fields, with their carpets of green. All nature
seemed smiling, for was it not its mating season? What was all the
chattering going on in the trees and the songs in the bushes, but the
feathery tribe making love to each other. It seemed as if on this day
all Nature was singing one grand anthem with a hallelujah chorus.
As the happy pair looked at the scene, they forgot for the moment
their own happiness in the contemplation of Nature's grandeur.
Before them rose the variegated hills of the Sierras, the sun
bringing out the brilliant coloring of the rocks; higher behind these
the glittering snow-covered peaks, and above all the matchless blue of
To them the world seemed indeed all joy and beauty, and a home
together, a paradise. And so they entered upon the new life.
CHAPTER IV. JULIA HAMMOND.
The settlement in which Treelawn was located was called Orangeville,
and covered a large area of country. It had a general
storepost-office, church, school-house, hall, blacksmith-shop, and
For reasons best known to himself, Charles Herne had kept his
wedding a secret from all his neighbors, and it was really more by
intuition than by actual knowledge that Mrs. Holbrooke came into
possession of the fact.
On the morning after the wedding, Sam Gilmore, like a good husband,
had quietly risen and dressed himself, leaving his spouse to finish her
nap. After seeing that the fire in the kitchen stove was burning
brightly and the tea-kettle set on, he went to the barn. After a short
time he returned to the house, and putting his head into the bedroom,
said with some excitement, Sarah, I've got some news for you. Charles
Herne has got him a wife.
When Sarah Gilmore received that piece of astounding intelligence,
the mental shock seemed to produce paralysis, for the garment she was
about to put on remained suspended in the air as she exclaimed: Well,
I swan! I thought he was married to his hired pets. How did you hear
the news, Sam?
Nettleton told me. He was over to see if I would let him have the
Did you let them go? asked his wife.
No, I told him I was going to use them on the ranch to-day, said
Sam, closing the door and going back to the barn.
As Sam went out of the bedroom door the paralysis went, too, for no
woman ever moved more quickly in putting on the rest of her garments
than did Sarah Gilmore that morning.
There was a very good breakfast waiting for Sam when he came in from
the barn, and above all Sarah had made him a plate of light, rich
batter-cakes, which he always relished very much. They were set a
little way into the oven with the door open, to keep warm, his good
wife having buttered and sugared them, all ready for Sam to pour rich
cream over them.
After breakfast, as Sam was on his way to the barn, he said to
himself, My! Sarah is a fine cook. I would be willing to bet ten
dollars she can knock the spots out of Charles Herne's wife in cooking;
and she is so cheerful while getting up good meals, and don't make any
fuss about it, either.
Sam and the bays worked well that morning in doing a little light
Sarah lost no time in putting the breakfast dishes into the
dish-pan, but instead of washing them immediately, as was her way, she
was seen going over a well-beaten trail toward a house where smoke was
coming out of the chimney. When she opened the door, she found Mrs.
Green just wiping a mush-bowl which had been used at breakfast.
Well, Carrie, said Sarah Gilmore to Mrs. Green, what do you think
has happened? Charles Herne has come home with a bride.
There, now, Sarah, you surprise me, said Mrs. Green.
I guess every body is surprised, said Mrs. Gilmore.
After a few minutes' more conversation, she hurried back to wash her
dishes and get dinner.
When Sam came to dinner he found his wife in the best of spirits,
with a big dinner for him to enjoy. Sam's alimentive faculty being in a
state of great activity, he ate heartily, finishing up with two pieces
of Sarah's extra rich peach cobbler. After dinner Sam went to the
fire-place where he sat rocking himself, and soon was enjoying a smoke.
He had been smoking about five minutes when his wife said: I really
like the smell of the tobacco you smoke, but if you were to smoke such
stinking stuff as Horace does, I would get up and leave you. But yours
does smell real sweet.
Horace Green is too stingy to smoke good tobacco, said Sam, after
which remark he brought his hand to the side of his leg each time he
let the smoke curl out of his mouth, feeling well satisfied with
himself and all the world beside.
Did you ever have the experience of passing through a large
barnyard, and going from one end to the other with a lean, hungry hog
after you, yelling and squealing, trying to eat you up by snapping
first at one of your legs and then at the other? You kick at him with
first one foot, saying, Sooy, sooy; then you, with the other foot,
kick backwards, saying, Sooy, sooy. And after going through this
performance many, many times, you reach the gate and shut it between
yourself and the hog, leaving him on the inside, amidst deafening noise
made by his hungry squeals. After you have left, he does his best to
tear down the fence, so strong are the pangs of hunger in him.
A few minutes after that you take him a pail of rich buttermilk,
then a large pail of fresh ripe figs, and two dozen ears of sweet corn.
You go out in that barnyard an hour afterwards and you don't hear any
hog noise. You don't see a hog even moving, for he is lying down in the
greatest state of quiet. He will let you do just what you have a mind
to do to him. You can scratch him and you will find him good-natured
and he seems to enjoy your attentions. He is in such a contented, happy
state, that you can roll him or do anything you wish to him.
So it is with some men. By making love to them through their
stomachs, you will find them in as happy a frame of mind as Sam Gilmore
was as he finished his pipe. His wife saw that he was taking his last
puffs, so she said, Sam, can I have the bays to go over to the
Henshaws' this afternoon?
Well, replied Sam, I was going to haul wood, but I guess I can
let that go. What time do you want them?
Two o'clock, said his wife.
Sarah said that Sam brought the bays around to the front door and
was as lively round her and the team as he was twenty years ago when
she was a maiden and he came courting her at her father's.
Talk about the diplomacy of Bismarck, d'Israeli, and the Russian
Ambassador in settling the Eastern question at the close of the
Russo-Turkish war; why there are women in Orangeville who can give them
pointers on diplomacy.
The bays thought that either a peddler or minister was driving them
that afternoon, they made so many short calls. There was one thing
certainSarah Gilmore was not to blame if the people of Orangeville
did not know Charles Herne was married.
When Green entered the house his wife said: Horace, what do you
think? Charles Herne has brought home a bride.
A what? said her husband.
A bride, said his wife. May be it's so long since you saw a
bride, you have entirely forgotten how one looks. You had better hustle
round and pony up that seventy-five dollars you are owing him. He will
need it to buy silks, satins and laces for the bride.
Hell's to pay, said Green.
Early the same morning Henry Storms entered the Crow's Nest saloon
in Orangeville, where two men were talking over the bar to the
saloon-keeper. Storms, walking up to where they were, saluted them by
saying: Hell's broke loose.
What's up now? said one of the men.
Why, said Storms, Charles Herne has got a running mate.
Drinks for four, called out another man.
When the drinks were ready four men raised their glasses, one
saying, Drink hearty to Charles Herne and his partner.
At the conclusion of the toast four glasses of whiskey were emptied
down four men's throats.
A man went down from his house to the road where his mailbox was
nailed to a redwood post. The stage was just coming in.
Any news? asked the man of the stage-driver as he took his mail.
News! said the driver. I should say there was. They tell me that
Charles Herne has been, and gone, and done it.
Saunders, the merchant of Orangeville, told his customers that day
that Charles Herne had got spliced.
Tim Collins took a span of kicking mules to Pierce, the blacksmith,
to be shod.
Well, Tim, I got some news for you, said Pierce.
What is it? said Tim.
Charles Herne has got hitched up.
Now one could not discern any perceptible change in Charles Herne,
if it were true that he had done all the many and varied things which
his neighbors stated he had; such as Brought home a brand-new wife,
Got him a woman, Got a bride, Got a running mate, Been, gone,
and done it, Got spliced, Got hitched up, and so on.
The waves of ether in the atmosphere of Orangeville were pregnant
with all these sayings and produced such an effect on a number of
ladies as to make them call at different times at the Treelawn home.
When some of the ladies had made a call and had seen Mrs. Herne, and
these ladies saw some others in Orangeville who had not seen Mrs.
Herne, conversation did not drag. And as for speculation. Why the
amount of speculative genius displayed by certain ladies of that
locality would eclipse all speculative talent of Kant, Spencer and
Mill. Listen to some of the inquiries: Is she proud? Is she pretty?
Has she much style about her? Do you think they will get along well
together? Is she fond of children? Will they have any babies? Is
she fond of dress? Is she a society lady? Do you think she will get
lonesome? Can she do housework? Is she much account with a needle?
Is she close and saving? Is she extravagant? Do you think she will
put her foot down on Charles Herne furnishing his men with so many
luxuries? Is she happy? Is she a scold? Will she wear the
breeches? and numerous other questions which, like problems concerning
the Universe, will take time to solve.
Clara Herne was very happy in her new home as the wife of Charles
Herne. She found her duties light and pleasant. Everything in the house
and about the house was order and system, no friction, all harmony. She
remarked to her husband one evening: It pays to have good help. Every
one here takes an interest in what he has to do and does it the very
best he knows how, cheerfully and willingly.
She respected her husband exceedingly for the generous way in which
he treated his men, and she helped him to still further their comforts.
On retiring one night after they had both spent the evening with
their men, which they often did, she said to her husband: How good it
is to have love and respect between employers and employed. Every one
speaks in such a kind way; so considerate for the feelings and
interests of each one.
Yes, said her husband, it makes life worth living to treat your
hired help not as if they were merely machines for the use of getting
so much work out of them, but to live and act towards them as if they
were men. Better still to realize the thought always, that they are our
Charles and Clara Herne were very happy as man and wife, because
they were a social unit. They were one in their domestic and social
natures; they were fond of going out to parties, suppers and dances,
and enjoyed entertaining company; they were strictly moral, though not
religious, and occasionally attended church.
One evening about a year after they had been married, they were
sitting in front of the open fire, interesting themselves in talking
about some of the people in Orangeville who were at the party they had
attended the evening previous.
I think last night's party was one of the best we have attended,
said Mrs. Herne.
Yes, said her husband, the Hammonds are great entertainers. They
always make it interesting and pleasant for every one who comes.
Of course, their daughter Julia has a tact for receiving company
and making delicacies for a party, added Clara. What taste she
displayed in the arrangement of the table. Then she herself is
personally a great attraction to the young men. I consider her the
belle of Orangeville. Her age I think is about twenty-one.
Yes, but she has a most unusual development for that age. She has
such a commanding form, so erect; there is something very fascinating
about her expression; and those black eyes of hers denote a powerful
magnetism. No wonder she attracts men so strongly.
She seemed to pay more attention to that young Webber, I thought,
than to any one else. Certainly, she smiled very sweetly upon him.
You don't know Julia, said Mr. Herne, decidedly. She is like a
cat, as meek as Moses or as full of deviltry as Judas Iscariot. She is
just playing with Webber and he is too vain and foolish to see it. Why,
Julia Hammond would not marry Webber if he were the last man in
Orangeville. The man she wants is Ben West, and she scarcely spoke to
him during the evening; in fact, did not pay him as much attention as
she would have paid to the merest stranger. In most girls such an
action would be the result of shyness and the desire to avoid
observation; in Julia, I think it arises from an inborn, stubborn pride
which prevents her from yielding even to such an uncontrollable
feeling. She has an iron will and though she knows she must yield
eventually, she holds herself defiantly as long as she can.
I don't blame her for wanting Ben West, for he is the finest
looking and most popular young man in Orangeville, said Clara.
He is, indeed, replied her husband. Almost any girl in
Orangeville would be glad to marry him, but Julia wants him and she
will get him. He has not lost his heart so far, but Julia has not
played her cards yet. She knows her power and loves to use it. She
would do anything to gain her end.
Why, dear, you seem to be well posted on Julia's disposition, said
You see, he replied, I have known her ever since she has lived in
Orangeville, which has been twelve years. And now I am going to tell
you something that will surprise you. I got it straight from Hammond
himself, and he and I are close friends, as I have helped him
financially out of some hard places. Several times he has made me a
confidant. Only one or two in Orangeville know what I am going to tell
It seems that about four years after Mr. and Mrs. Hammond were
married, Mrs. Hammond received a letter from her cousin, Mrs.
Featherstone, saying that Nat Harrison, a mutual friend, had been shot
dead in a dispute over a faro game. He was under the influence of
liquor at the time of the trouble. He left a wife and a girl baby
eighteen months old, without any means of support, the mother being
incompetent to take care of either herself or the child, and the letter
asked would Mrs. Hammond like to adopt the baby. If so, Mrs.
Featherstone was coming to San Diego in about a month's time and would
bring the child (the Hammonds lived at San Diego then). The mother
would make her home with her aunt.
Mrs. Hammond said, after reading the letter, 'Poor Annie Harrison.
Only think. I sat beside her at the graduating exercises of Nat
Harrison's class, and remember how pleased she was at the applause
which greeted the oration delivered by Nat, American Commerce. So
many congratulated him on his talent and thought he would become a
rising member of the bar, and his voice would be heard in the halls of
legislation of the nation.
'Annie looked so pretty and sweet that day, you could not have
bought her prospects in life for a million dollars. She thought she had
a jewel of a lover, poor thing, she was so innocent of the nature of
men. She knew nothing of the world, for her mother always treated her
as a baby, never teaching her any self-reliance, and had kept her as a
hot-house plant. She grew up with no higher ideal in life for herself
than to be some rich man's toy and pet, under marriage. She was more
adapted to be a flower in the Garden of Eden than to fight the battle
of life in the present state of society.'
Nat Harrison had money and was doing well when he married Annie,
but being a man of strong passions and appetites, Annie's freshness and
bloom soon wilted. Then he sought other pastures for his carnal
pleasures, and with that came drinking and gambling. When his estate
was settled up after his death they found he was in debt.
Mr. and Mrs. Hammond talked the matter over and decided to adopt
the child. They were both much pleased when they received the baby from
Mrs. Featherstone and saw what a fine child she was. They have loved
her and done everything that parents could do for a child of their own
to make her happy. Julia brought lots of sunshine into their home, and
everything went all right and they took a great deal of comfort with
her till she got to be about fourteen and then she seemed to become
stubborn, grew inattentive to her studies, seemed to care less for her
girl companions, but was always with the boys. All she appeared to care
for was to be in their company. She took less interest in things in the
house, did not care about helping her mother, and would have odd
spells. Sometimes she took a notion to do up the work, and it was then
done quickly and well. Then for quite a time it would be like pulling
teeth to get her to do anything. She has the ability if she would only
use it. The last four years she has given Mr. and Mrs. Hammond many an
anxious thought, and they have wished that Ben West or some other such
man would marry her. They see the older she grows the more the hot
blood of her father shows in her. Hammond told me last night at the
party that Julia was great on dress parade, but was not there when it
came to doing the common every day duties of life with no excitement.
Why, Charles, the narrative concerning Julia's life is very
interesting. Some of the people around us would be just as good
material for a novel as those we read about in fiction.
CHAPTER V. BEN WEST.
About a week after Mr. Herne had told his wife the history of Julia
Hammond, Mr. Hammond, on going to the store for some trifle, was
saluted by Saunders, the merchant, with, Heard the news, Hammond?
Hammond said: No. What is it?
Why, Ben West is going to the Klondike, said Saunders.
Going to the Klondike! said Hammond. Why, I don't see what he has
to go there for. He is the only child, his father owns a fine ranch,
and he is always getting big jobs on roads and ditches, making three to
four dollars a day, because he can go ahead and knows just what to do
and how to do it. He has great muscular strength and can lift about
twice as much as any ordinary man.
Oh, he wants to make a stake, said Saunders. He is ambitious.
Wescott spoke up and said: Ben is a rustler; he will get there
Hammond said: He has lots of vim and pluck; has got sand and
backbone to him.
Yes, he is a hummer, said Saunders.
I tell you he has got some ambition and grit, said Stearns,
It was not long before the news spread all over Orangeville, that
Ben West was going to the Klondike, and the abilities which he
possessed as a worker and money maker, and an all round good fellow
were the theme of conversation in many a household and on many a ranch.
When the news reached the ears of the young ladies of Orangeville,
most of them felt a shade of disappointment, because Ben had been good
Not having shown any decided preference for one, he devoted his
attentions to many, and having a good fast team he was able to give the
young ladies many a pleasant ride to dances, parties and church, so he
was a great favorite with them all.
Just previous to Ben West's leaving Orangeville, a great farewell
supper and dance was given him. The attendance was very large. The
young ladies appeared in their best toilets. Julia looked superb and
was very graceful in her deportment. This evening she played her
cards with evident success, and the result was that as Ben West went
home the feeling that had been flickering for some time had now broken
out into a flame that fired his blood. Julia did indeed know her power
and how to use it, and she intended that some one else should be
restless and disturbed as well as herself. So that night there were two
persons in Orangeville who tried to sleep but could not. Ben West
realized that night that he had become a willing slave. Sometimes the
thought seemed pleasant, then again it would be galling in the extreme.
A few of the boys went to Roseland to see Ben off, and they had a
time all to themselves as they called it in Roseland, the night
previous to his departure. Ben West left with the best wishes and
prayers for good luck following him from all his friends.
When a rising, popular young man leaves his home and neighborhood
for the purpose of making his fortune, he is full of great
expectations, and this thought is shared by all his friends. He departs
with the best wishes following him, for his companions say: If a man
can strike it rich he can. There does not seem the least doubt in
their minds regarding his success, for they have unbounded confidence
in him. Now the young man leaving is exceedingly alive to the
expressions and sentiments of his friends, and he feels that he must
succeed or die in the attempt. His attachment to name and fame and his
personal self is so strong, and he is so susceptible and negative to
the good opinion of those around him, that he feels he will never want
to come back and show himself among his friends unless he has struck it
rich, for he knows there is nothing that succeeds like success.
Talk about the idolatry of the heathen! Is there any idolatry in the
world that is stronger than that which is found in the so-called
Christian world in the year 1900? Where do you find any greater
idolatry than that which is bestowed on money and on woman? There are
more devotees at these two shrines than are to be found worshipping the
Divine. Look at a young man fortunate in the financial world. The first
year in speculations he makes fifty thousand dollars. The second year
he is worth two hundred thousand dollars. The third year he has made
half a million. The fourth year he has become a millionaire. Now listen
to the eulogies and encomiums passed upon him. He is the lion of the
hour, the hero of the day, for he has won the victory that to win fifty
thousand other men had tried and failed. He has attained the great end
for which most men think they were born, money making. What a number of
young ladies see so many excellent qualities in the rising young
millionaire, the Napoleon of Finance. Note how his faults are all
glossed over by their mammas, who are ready to act as if they had
received a retaining fee as his attorneys, so ready are they to defend
him at all times to their daughters and friends. It seems to matter
little about his intellectual gifts or moral character. His financial
success covers a multitude of sins and weaknesses. Should a young lady
raise one or two slight objections in regard to the young millionaire's
character, her mother says: Why, dear, all young men must sow their
wild oats. You must not expect to find a pure young man. All young men
are fast more or less. It would be hard to find an unmarried man that
is moral. After they are married they get steady and settle down.
Should a young lady of moderate means marry a young man who has made
a million dollars, there is more rejoicing by the members of her family
than if she had become a saint or a great angel of light. She thinks
she has attained the great end of her existence in marrying a
millionaire and making for herself name and fame and family position.
Should the young millionaire be a little liberal to a few of his
friends, he becomes more to them than the Lord himself. Other young
men, seeing and knowing all this, are putting forth every effort and
straining every nerve to be successful financiers. They realize that
the power of money is so great to-day in the eyes of many, that unless
they are successful money getters, they are no good to themselves or
their friends. They parody the verse in Proverbs something like this:
With all thy getting, get money; get it honestly if you can, but
get it anyway.
Such is the gospel that is acted out in the commercial world to-day.
All good intentions, all right convictions, all wise counsels of
religious teachers, are side-tracked and become as a dead letter if
they stand in the way to successful money making.
Ben West knew what the sentiment of the people of Orangeville was
towards himself, and it fired his ambition to think of the expressions
conveyed to him by his friends, and his heart was fired still more when
he thought of the possibility of possessing the fine form of Julia
Hammond. He made up his mind that he would be willing to endure all
hardships, that he would leave no stone unturned in order to be
successful; for he saw before him the chance of getting a fortune and
the praise, adoration and admiration of the people of Orangeville.
The form of Julia Hammond seemed to float before the eyes of his
mind day and night; and when he saw, in his imagination, that face with
its sparkling black eyes, and the finely poised head, with its wavy
black hair, her well-rounded bust, and the handsome figure, it made him
feel like removing a mountain of dirt or penetrating the bowels of the
earth, to get the shiny metal which was to open for him the gates of
his earthly paradise.
CHAPTER VI. STELLA WHEELWRIGHT.
One afternoon two men were digging post-holes and setting in redwood
posts on the side of one of the main roads in Orangeville. Everything
had been exceedingly quiet, not a team was seen since dinner. Nothing
in the way of excitement had happened to relieve the monotony of their
work. They were interested and delighted when they heard a noise, and,
looking down the road, saw a vehicle coming, but it was not near enough
to tell whose it was. When it got a little nearer one of the men said:
Why, Alfred, it is the old man Wheelwright and his girl Stella.
Alfred replied to James, the man who has just spoken: Stella was to
school at San José, and her father has been to Roseland to meet the
train which arrived this morning and bring her home.
How she has grown, remarked James, since she went away. She has
improved in her looks very much.
Yes, said Alfred, I think she will make a fine woman, for she has
a bright, intelligent eye, and they say she is real smart in her
studies, away ahead of most of the girls round here. She seems so
different to them. She comes of good stock; her mother is the brightest
and best woman in Orangeville, and her father is a well-posted man.
You must be kind of stuck on her and her folks, replied his
companion. I don't go so much myself on girls who have their heads in
books all the time. What does a fellow want with such a girl as that?
She may be all right to be a school marm, or woman's rights talker, but
I don't want any of them. I say to hell with book women. Give me a girl
like Nance Slater. She is round and plump, don't care much for books or
papers, but is bright and laughing all the day. She is the girl to have
lots of fun with, and when it comes to making a man a good wife, why,
she is the best cook in Orangeville. I was over to Slater's on an
errand the other morning about ten o'clock, and Nance was looking as
pretty as a picture; her cheeks had the blush of the peach on them; her
eyes were sparkling bright, her lips red, and when she laughed, her
teeth looked like the best and whitest ivory you ever saw. She had on
such a pretty, light, calico wrapper, and a white apron with a bib, and
was busy taking out of the oven some mince pies and just putting in
some apple pies. She had a kettle of doughnuts a frying, and a whole
lot of cookie paste ready to cut out and bake. She said: 'James, you
must sample my doughnuts. Mother, give James a cup of coffee to go with
them; there is some hot on the stove.' Nance is a trump. She is
straight goods. The trouble with those Wheelwrights is they live awful
close, and instead of cooking good meals, spend their time in reading
books. They starve in the kitchen to sit in the parlor. The devil take
the books, I say. I wouldn't give a book girl barn room for all the
good she would be to me.
Alfred replied: That's all right; every fellow to his own girl, I
say. It would not do for all to be after the same one. As for me, I
like Stella. She has some stability of character. There is something
interesting about a girl like that, and if she don't care about doing
all the cooking, why, I can help her, if she will only let me enjoy her
The sun went down and the men went each to his own home, being
content in their mind that each man should have his own choice.
Stella was the only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Wheelwright, she being
the only child they ever had had. At the time she returned from school
she was sixteen and would have one year more in school. She was very
precocious, a thorough student, and would allow nothing to divert her
from her studies. She was at that age when the intellectual part of her
nature predominated, though the spiritual was just beginning to tinge
her mind with its coloring. She possessed a strong individuality; she
was a born investigator; would accept no statements without examining
them, and rebelled against a great many of the customs and usages of
society. She did her own thinking, and nothing seemed to please her
more than to take her investigating axe and cut away some of the roots
which held her free spirit in bondage. Problems seemed to be crowding
on her mind thick and fast, and she could not take the time from her
studies to do the necessary amount of reading and thinking to resolve
them, and she was looking forward to the time when her last year would
expire. During this vacation she took much physical exercise, for she
did not believe in developing one side of her nature at the expense of
the other. She rode horseback and climbed the sides of steep mountains,
mixed with the young people in their recreations, such as camping
parties, picnics, and social entertainments. In company she was bright,
witty, and entertaining. She had no fear; was full of confidence, and
was better balanced than her companions in that she was not carried
away by pleasures and the company of the opposite sex.
When she was not away from home on camping or picnic excursions, she
would find time to visit the cabin of an old man who lived alone, and
had sore eyes so that he could not see to read. She would read to him
whatever he liked, cheer him up by her bright, happy talk, and when she
left the old man often thought to himself that her comings were like
angels' visits, for she seemed to lift him up completely out of himself
into a new world. When she laid her head on her pillow at night, after
having spent the evening with old Andrews, she thought how much greater
a satisfaction she derived from hearing that old man say, on her
leaving him: God bless you, Stella, you always bring sunshine to me,
than she did from even the most enjoyable pleasure excursion.
She bestowed the attractions and charm of her social and
intellectual nature less on those outside than those inside her home.
You saw her at her best when talking to her father and mother.
Some parents let their children outgrow them intellectually, so that
there is a great gulf fixed between parents and children, the latter
having nothing in common with the former. Mr. and Mrs. Wheelwright
tried as much as possible to keep themselves in advance of their
daughter's intellectual growth, so that they might always command her
respect for their opinions, and that she might realize that in them she
found two interesting, intelligent companions, whom she could love and
The relationship between many parents and their grown children is
very unsatisfactory; for being on the material plane, there is nothing
very permanent in their relationship. The grown son and his father have
only in common business and social interests; that is their world;
outside of that neither one has any life that he realizes.
It is the same with the grown daughters and their mother. Their life
is mainly in the social and domestic world. Outside of that they
apparently have no existence; but the true ideal parents and children
are those whose life is in the intellectual and spiritual world. They
cease to exist in each other's minds as parents and children, and
realize a stronger and more permanent tie, and intellectual and
spiritual union, which is blessed, glorious, and eternal. They realize
daily that In Him they live, and breathe, and have their being; that
they are immersed in an ocean of Divine love, and that Divine love
permeates them all through and through; and that it is in that ocean of
Divine love that they realize that they are one. They feel a blessed
nearness and dearness and oneness to each other, though separated by
oceans and continents, for they have realized through sweet experience
that the same intelligent spiritual thought and love pulses through
them all as if they were one organism.
CHAPTER VII. PENLOE.
One afternoon Mrs. Herne received a caller. It was Mrs. Cullom. She
had met Mrs. Herne twice at parties and promised to call on her each
time, but for various reasons she had not been able to fulfil her
After the usual introductory talk, Mrs. Cullom said:
Did you ever see Penloe or his mother, Mrs. Lanair?
No, said Mrs. Herne, who are they?
Mrs. Cullom replied: They live up about a mile above where I do.
It's rather lonesome where I live, but it is a very lonesome place
where they live. It is not a good road over there. I don't suppose you
were ever on that road were you?
No, said Mrs. Herne, I have never been over there. Charles said
it was out of the way and a poor road, being muddy in winter and very
dusty in summer.
Well, said Mrs. Cullom, Mrs. Lenair has been on that place about
two years. She seems pleasant, but so different from most women. The
second time I called on her, I got there about two o'clock, and I
thought I would have a nice afternoon chat. So I began talking to her
about my work, and telling her how I worked my butter, and talking to
her about my cooking, and I tried to get her to talk, but she would
only say a few words about such things. About five minutes was as long
as I could get her to talk about her butter and cooking. Why, some
women would talk by the hour on such subjects. Now, she did not appear
stuck up or proud, she seemed so pleasant, her face being very bright
and pleasing; and there seemed to be such a feeling of restfulness
about her that I liked to be with her; but she seems to have so little
to say about matters we are all so much interested in. I could not get
her to talk about herself, so I asked about Penloe, if he was at home.
She said, yes, he had returned from San Francisco last week; that he
had been away three months. That surprised me, Mrs. Herne, because I
did not think they were people who had money to spend in visiting and
seeing the sights of a great city. Why, look at their place, it is not
much; she sold the fruit on the trees for two hundred dollars, and
outside of the orchard they have only pasture enough for four head of
stock. Their house has four rooms, the kitchen is the only room I have
been in, but it is kept very neat. I said to her: 'Does Penloe have
much business in San Francisco?' She smiled and said he had business as
long as he washed dishes in a restaurant. That just took my breath
away, for to see Penloe you would think he would be the last man in the
world to do work like that. I cannot tell you how he looks, but he
looks so different from the young men about here; nothing like them at
all. He has a face that I like, but I don't know him enough to say much
Well, after they had been on that place about eighteen months or
so, I said to Dan one morning after breakfast, that I did not feel like
going out to-day, but I wanted some one here to talk to, and I wished
him to hitch up Puss and Bess and go right up and get Mrs. Lenair to
come down and spend the day with me, and to tell her that when she
wished to go home I would take her back. 'Now, if you don't get a move
on you, Dan,' I said, 'you will come home and find a cold stove and no
dinner and your cook gone.' Dan moved round like a cat on hot bricks.
That kind of talk fetches men to time. I did not have to cook much for
dinner because the day before was Dan's birthday. Dan had killed a veal
two days previous and I made two kinds of rich cake, two kinds of pies,
and some cream puffs. They were very rich. Dan is fond of high living,
and he ate very heartily of it all. I laughed at him, and said I never
saw a man that liked to dig his grave with his teeth so well as he did.
So you see I could get up a good dinner for Mrs. Lenair without having
to cook much. It was not long after Dan left before Mrs. Lenair was
with me. Well, after she had taken off her things and we chatted
awhile, I thought I would tell her the news, as she never goes out
anywhere. So I said: 'Did you hear what a hard time Mrs. Dunn had in
confinement? The doctor thought he would have to take the child with
instruments;' but Mrs. Lenair kept looking out of the window, and all
she said was, 'Is that so?' So I said: 'I suppose you have heard about
Mrs. Warmstey's case. She had a doctor from Orangeville and two from
Roseland.' Just as I said that, she rose from her chair and said so
sweetly: 'Mrs. Cullom, I do want to go out and look at your flowers;
they look beautiful from the window.'
Well, I was clean took off my feet, because I was just beginning to
tell the most interesting part of Mrs. Warmstey's case. I said: 'Why,
yes, Mrs. Lenair,' and I went out with her. She began to be so chatty I
thought she was some one else for awhile. She appeared delighted with
my flowers, and called them such crack-jaw names, and told me all about
their families, and what relation they were to each other. Why, to hear
her talk, you would think flowers had babies, she went on so about male
and female plants. Then she told me that flowers breathed, and told me
all about their coloring, and how they attracted the bee and dusted
themselves on him, and much more I cannot remember. She talked to and
petted them as if they were alive. You would have thought she had been
a flower herself, the way she went on. She said something about the
pencilings and colorings of the Almighty being in the tulips.
When we returned to the house my back was feeling kind of lame, and
gave me one or two of those twister pains. I said: 'Oh, my back! It has
got one of its spells on.' Mrs. Lenair said it would soon go away, and,
to my surprise, it did. Only had it about half an hour, and generally
those spells last me all day. I said: 'Mrs. Lenair, do you have any
ailments? I never hear you complain, if you do.' She said she had not
an ache nor pain in her body for a number of years. I threw my hands up
in astonishment, and said: 'You don't say so?' 'That is the truth,' she
said. And I believe her, for she looks ten years younger than she
really is. 'Why,' I said, 'how different you are from the girls and
women around here. Most all the girls not married are ailing more or
less, and about every married woman has her aches and pains. I can't
make you out.'
Mrs. Lenair laughed, and said: 'If I were like other women I should
be ailing as they are.' Well, I got up just as good a dinner as I knew
how. I put on the table fried ham and eggs, baked veal, potatoes, peas,
canned tomatoes, red currant jelly, fig preserve, canned nectarines,
cream puffs, grape pie, lemon pie, plain cake, and frosted cake; and we
had coffee, chocolate, and milk to drink. I did want her to make out a
good meal, because I thought she never cooked much at home. Well, what
do you think? I could not get her to eat any meat. 'Why,' I said, 'I
would starve if I did not have meat two or three times a day with my
meals.' She said she had not eaten meat for seventeen years, and was
much better without it. She just ate a little potatoes, one egg, some
nectarines, bread and butter, and drank a little milk. I told her she
must try my cream puffs if she would not eat any cake or pie. At last I
did get her to eat a cream puff. That woman don't eat much more than
would keep a mouse alive, and yet she is so hearty and well. I told her
as she ate so little, Dan and I would have to make up for her. And we
did, for we ate as if it were a Thanksgiving dinner. Dan and I say it
is our religion not to die in debt to our stomachs. After dinner I felt
more like sleep than anything else, and I said, 'Mrs. Lenair, let you
and me take a nap.' That seemed to please her, so she laid down on the
lounge and I went and laid on my bed. About an hour later I returned to
the room where I had left Mrs. Lenair.
'Well,' I said, 'I have just had the boss sleep and feel so much
better. I hope you had a good nap.'
Mrs. Lenair said, 'I have had a pleasant time lying here, though I
did not sleep any.'
'Why,' I said, 'I could not lie that way. If I was not sleeping I
would be nervous, and want to be sitting up or moving about.'
Then I said to her: 'I should think you must get terribly lonesome
up at your place, your son having been away so much, and you all alone
with no one to talk to.'
She said: 'I haven't known what it was to be lonesome since I have
lived on the place.'
'Why,' I said, 'I would not live like you do for ten dollars a
day.' She smiled, and said, 'You could not.'
'I don't see how you can stand it,' I said, 'for it is all I can do
to keep from being lonesome here with Dan, and a team to take me
anywhere. I have more callers in a week than you have in a year. I am
fond of company and so is Dan.'
Mrs. Lenair said: 'All you have just said, Mrs. Cullom, shows your
life, your world; we all have different worlds,' she added.
I could hardly understand just what she meant, so I changed the
subject and thought I would talk to her about Penloe.
'Is he home now,' I asked.
She said, 'Yes,' he had got through his work and would be at home
most of the time.
I said: 'Did he ever do any of the kind of work he has been doing
at the different places he worked at before he came to Orangeville? For
he don't look to me,' I said, 'as if he had worked on a ranch or done
road work much.'
She said, 'He never had done hard work till we came to Orangeville,
having only returned to this country from India about a month before
coming here, and when we were in India, Penloe went to the University
of Calcutta as soon as he was ready to enter as a student. I lived in
that city nineteen years.'
'Why, have you lived in India,' I said.
Yes,' she answered. 'I left New York a year after I was married. My
husband represented a New York company in India. He died six years ago,
but we continued to reside there until Penloe finished his University
I was clean taken back by what she said. I said, 'It's none of my
business, Mrs. Lenair, but I don't see why a fine looking young man
like Penloe, with the education you say he has had, don't get light,
pleasant work, if he has to work out, instead of working at such hard
places with the toughest crowds of men.'
All she said was: 'That is his work.'
Why, Mrs. Herne, do you know that he worked on the streets of the
city of Chicago, and for three months with a gang of a thousand men on
the Coast Railroad between Los Angeles and San Francisco! Then he was
at the Oakdale cattle ranch, cowboying it, with that fast gang of boys
that they keep there. Then he worked for awhile at the Simmons ranch,
which is four miles from Roseland, and Simmons always keeps the hardest
crew of men on his place. They go to Roseland every other night or so
and dance at those low dancing-houses with bad women. They get drunk,
fight, and swear all the time. Simmons' ranch has got the name of being
the toughest place to work anywhere round here.
One day when Dan was in Roseland, he saw a man he knew from the
Simmons ranch, so he thought he would hear what the fellow had to say
about Penloe, as we both are curious to find out all we can about that
singular young man.
Dan said: 'Is Penloe working on the Simmons ranch?'
The man said: 'Yes.'
Dan said: 'How does he get along?'
'Get along!' the man said. 'All I have to say is I wish I could get
along as well.'
Dan said: 'What kind of a chap is he, anyway? I kind of want to
know, as he is a neighbor of mine.'
'Well,' the man said, 'I will tell you, and then you can judge for
yourself. I never heard him swear or knew of his telling a lie; he
don't drink or tell smutty yarns, or have anything to do with bad
women. The boss says he works well, and when he is not at work he never
joins the boys in their foolish talk. He is by himself a great deal,
praying, I reckon, but he is very sociable if any one will talk sense.
Let me tell you what he did which will show you what kind of a man he
is. One cold, chilly night in December, when we were all sleeping in
the barn, each man having his own blankets, the boys had just turned in
when a tramp came in and asked if he could sleep in the barn. One of
the boys said, 'Yes.' The fellow lay down on the hay without any
blankets, and as soon as he was laid down his teeth began to chatter
and he shook all over, for he had a chill. Penloe instantly got up and
lit a lantern, took his blankets over to the tramp and said: 'Here,
brother, you have got a chill. Take my blankets and roll yourself up in
them; you will be better in the morning.' From where I lay I could just
see the tramp's face, for Penloe was holding the lantern so the light
went on his face. The fellow looked up at Penloe thunderstruck. I guess
he never had a man speak to him that way before. He said: 'Well,
stranger, you are mighty kind.' So Penloe helped him to roll the
blankets round him, and then he went and lay down on the hay himself
without any covering. The boys did a heap of thinking that night, but
said nothing. The next morning Penloe asked the tramp how he was, and
he said he slept pretty well, but he looked real miserable, as though
he had not had a good square meal for a month and was weak from chills.
Penloe said to the tramp: 'You stay here till I come back,' and he went
to see the boss and told him there was a sick tramp in the barn, and
would he let him stay there and eat at the same table with us till he
got well and strong, and that the boss should take the tramp's board
out of his wages. The boss asked a few questions, studied awhile, then
said, all right, he didn't care. Penloe went back to the tramp and told
him he had seen the boss and he could stay there till he got well and
strong, and to eat his meals with them and it would not cost him a
cent. Tears came in the tramp's eyes, and he tried to say, 'Thank you,
During the day one of the men told the boss what Penloe had done
last night; about giving his blankets up to a tramp and laying all
night himself without any covering. After supper the boss called Penloe
and told him there was a bed for him in the house, and he wanted him to
sleep in it as long as the tramp was here, and as for the tramp, he
would let the fellow stay here and board till he got a job in the
neighborhood. He would not charge a cent for his board to Penloe. He
himself had no work for the tramp.
When the boys heard what Simmons said and did in regard to the
tramp and Penloe, one of them said he was more taken back than if he
had seen the devil come out of hell.
'For you know, Dan,' the man said, 'Old Simmons is a hard nut and
as close-fisted as he can be. Some of the boys think now he has got the
Penloe fever. I think he got a straight look into Penloe's eyes and saw
and felt something he never had seen and felt before. Penloe is a power
when you know him.
The tramp stayed three days and got well. We thought it would be a
month before he would be well enough to go to work, but it is that
Penloe's doings, I know. He must have some power for healing like they
say Christ had. Penloe is never sick. Heat or cold, dry or wet, seem
just the same to him.
'The boss got the tramp a job at Kent's ranch. When he left he gave
Penloe his hand, seemed to tremble a moment, tried to speak, but walked
away without uttering a word. Penloe told the boss that the way the
tramp bid him good-bye and thanked him was eloquently touching and
powerful. The boss is very much changed; he is not so close and hard,
and you now see a few smiles on his wife's face, where before you only
saw lines of sadness; and the children, instead of being scared, as
they used to be when they heard his footsteps coming, now run to meet
him and hang around him.
'Simmons says Penloe was the making of him and family. Simmons has
a high-priced fancy mare that the boys always have said he thought more
of than he did of his family, and no one ever drove her but himself. He
would not loan her out to any one for a day for fifty dollars, yet now
the boys say 'he would let Penloe have the mare to go to hell and
'Some of the boys also seem to have caught the fever, and it has
made a great change in their lives. Penloe will leave the Simmons ranch
soon, but his influence is there to stay. The man said, 'If you have
any more men like Penloe in Orangeville, send them down this way, for
these God forsaken ranches need men like him!'
Dan says Penloe is like his mother in regard to tramps. Why, that
woman was all alone, and a tramp called at her house to get a job of
work. He said work was scarce and he had no money and needed some food;
that he was hungry. He told Dan some time afterwards that before she
replied she gave him a close look all over. He said her eye seemed to
penetrate him, and after scrutinizing him very closely, she said: 'Come
in, friend, you can stay here till you can find work.' She set before
him plenty of good, hearty food, put a napkin to his plate, and talked
to him interestingly about matters which seemed to make him feel that
he was a better man. What do you think Mrs. Lenair had him do, Mrs.
Herne? Why, he was shown into the bathroom, and given one of Penloe's
night-gowns, and after he had taken his bath she had him sleep in her
spare bedroom. 'Why,' I said to Mrs. Lenair, 'how could you do such a
thing? I would no more have done it than I would have slept in a room
with a rattlesnake.'
She said, 'Mrs. Cullom, that man is my brother, and I treated him
as such, and that thought was so impressed on his mind that it touched
his better nature, and he could only think of me with the best and
purest of feelings. I know that it was impossible for that man to hurt
me. I fear no human being in this world.' The tramp stayed at her house
for five days, and at the end of that time he got a chance at
harvesting on the Thornton ranch. When he came to take leave of Mrs.
Lenair, she said to him: 'You have put in five good full days' work,
and here is five dollars for you'handing him a five-dollar gold
piece. He said: 'You did not hire me to work, and for what little I
have done you have paid me a thousand times more than it is worth, in
your conduct towards me. You took me, a poor, miserable, worthless,
homeless tramp into your home, as if I had been your own brother, and
you acted the true sister towards me. Now I wish to play the brother's
part by giving you my work. It is the only thing I can do to show you
how I appreciate your sisterly kindness toward me. I can earn all the
money I need now at the Thornton ranch. I shall never forget you,
because you are the only woman I ever met that received me and treated
me as a sister would her brother; and if you ever need any work done on
your place, and you have not the money to pay for its being done,
remember I am your brother, and will do it gladly; more so than if you
paid me two dollars a day.' She thanked him and said he had better take
the five dollars, and laid it down on the table for him to take. He
said he never would take it, and left it there. His last words to her
were, 'I am going to be a new man.'
Dan was on an errand to her place while the tramp was there. He saw
him working in the orchard as if he was trying to do two days' work in
one. Dan said he couldn't hire a man to work as he was working.
I was rather amused at Dan, continued Mrs. Cullom. When I
returned from having taken Mrs. Lenair home in the evening (on the day
that I told you that Dan went and brought her in the morning to spend
the day), Dan came and took the team. 'Caroline,' he said, 'if you send
me after Mrs. Lenair many times more I shall be falling in love with
her, for I think she is real good, as well as being smart and bright.'
'What! Dan Cullom,' I said. 'She wouldn't have an awful talking man
like you, even if you had a diamond on the end of every hair on your
When Mrs. Cullom was about to leave, Mrs. Herne said: I have
enjoyed your visit so much, Mrs. Cullom. You have got me interested in
Penloe and his mother. I do so want to see them.
That evening Mrs. Herne related part of Mrs. Cullom's conversation
to her husband and asked him if he knew Penloe or his mother.
Penloe I have seen a few times, but his mother I have never seen,
What kind of a man is he? asked his wife.
Well, said Charles, I hardly know him. He is certainly a
remarkable appearing young man. He is so different in his looks and
expression from any man I have ever met or seen; so different from the
kind that I have always associated with, that I could be no judge of
such a man any more than I could be a judge of millinery or silks and
satins, for I have had just about as much to do with one as I have with
Well, said his wife, I want you to arrange in some way so we can
meet them, for I am all worked up over them after what Mrs. Cullom has
told me, and am very curious to see them.
Something will happen in some way, so that we will meet them, he
CHAPTER VIII. BEN WEST'S EXPERIENCE
IN THE KLONDIKE.
At the time Ben West went to the Klondike, a long tedious journey on
a trail had to be made. He realized that whatever ability he possessed
for making his way in that country, he lacked experience as a miner. So
he was on the lookout to see if he could find one or two men of
experience. He met many men on his journey, some of them having had
most remarkable experience in mining and everything else. He met a man
by the name of Adams that he thought would fill the bill; for he said
he had mined in Colorado, Idaho, Arizona, and Nevada. From the talk Ben
West had with different men, he knew now that he was in a country where
men had no known reputations to back them; where every man was looked
upon by every other man as being on the make, without any scruples of
conscience; where you would be laughed at if you took in all men said
about themselves; where a man's word was worth very little and the only
thing that counted was something was in sight.
Adams told Ben West if he wished to secure his services, he would
have to pay his expenses to Dawson City and give him five hundred
dollars in cash before leaving Dawson City to go prospecting, and
furnish him all supplies, and he, in return, would give Ben West half
of whatever he found. Ben West, having several thousand dollars with
him, was willing to take chances, and hired Adams. He also met another
man in his travels who had had some experience, but was dead broke.
His name was Dickey, and he told Ben West if he would grub and stake
him and give him one hundred dollars in cash when in Dawson City, he
would give him half of what he found. Ben West agreed to Dickey's
proposition, and the three men traveled together to Dawson City.
Their journey was of a most tedious, trying character, the weather
being disagreeable in the extreme. It rained more or less every day,
making the travel exceedingly slow and difficult; it being so muddy and
slippery, you seemed as if you went two steps backward to every one you
went forward. The trail in many places was washed out and had to be
repaired before they could proceed. In some places land-slides had
blocked the trail, and it involved a great amount of labor to clear
them off. Everything around Ben West was of a most discouraging nature.
What with being cold and wet all day; leg weary in the extreme when
night came; bill of fare very meagre, consisting of bread, beans,
bacon, and coffee, the men he hired sometimes felt like throwing up the
sponge. For they met many returning who said the country was hell and
no good; many were sick lying along the side of the trail; some were
dying, and they saw some dead; also a good many dead pack animals were
seen. His surroundings were certainly blue.
One morning he awoke very early, long before it was time to rise. It
was raining hard, and the thought came to him, another long tedious wet
day's journey; how much longer would this fearful traveling last? Would
they ever reach Dawson City, or would they, like many others, die on
the road? Then he thought, why was he here? He could not help
contrasting the difference between his environments here and those in
Orangeville. Here all around him was black, barren, cold, wet, and
dismal; with nearly every one cursing the country and calling it hell;
and some felt like calling for some small boy to kick them because they
were fools enough to come here.
Then he thought of his parents in Orangeville with every comfort
inside, and a perfect paradise of fruits and flowers outside. He
thought of California's lovely skies, its balmy, invigorating breezes,
and its many, many sunny days. He said, what would the people who are
journeying along here think if they had a climate like that in
Orangeville, which is matchless this side of heaven? He continued
interrogating himself. Why did I come here? Did I not always have more
of the very best and greatest variety of food than I could eat? Yes.
Did I not always have more fine clothes than I could wear? Yes. Did I
not always have more money than I needed to spend? Yes. Could a man be
more popular than I was in Orangeville? No. In short, could a man have
a much better all round time anywhere than I had in Orangeville? No.
Then why am I here in this strange country, away from friends and loved
ones? A small voice whispered to Ben West, and said: It is because of
your love for popularity, your greed, and because you are a slave to
Julia Hammond. It was the name of Julia Hammond that roused Ben West
from his reverie, that caused him to be restless, to rise, to proceed
on his journey, and bring his iron will to bear, to overcome all
After enduring over thirty days of disagreeable, rainy, muddy
weather, it changed to cold, freezing weather, with snow falling. Many
more hardships the party endured before reaching Dawson City.
When they arrived at Dawson City they felt very rocky and completely
played out. The first week they were in Dawson City, they just rested
and took care of themselves and got well and recuperated. Then Adams
said to Ben West he wanted his money. So Ben gave him his five hundred
dollars, and he also paid Dickey one hundred.
So, after Adams got his money, he said: Come West, let's see the
Ben said: I am here to make money, not to fool it away.
Adams said: Why, West, we have had hell enough in getting here;
let's have some fun to-night. Come, West, and see the show and take in
Ben West said: Adams, I know now where most of your money goes that
you have made mining; but women and whiskey will not get mine.
Go slow, West, these girls are not respectable according to rules
and regulations of society, and I don't say they are, but look out and
see that some one woman does not get away with your money. She
may be considered respectable as the world goes, but there may not be a
great difference between the one woman and these girls. I have seen the
world, West, and men like you before.
Adams' remark had the effect of taking the sails out of Ben West's
self-righteous spirit, and he said nothing more.
It was agreed among the three that they would remain in Dawson City
another week and then they would go prospecting.
The day before starting to go, Ben West thought he had better get
his men, so he went round to the saloons, dives and dance-houses. After
searching about all such places, he found Adams in a dance-house, and
Dickey in the corner of a saloon. Both men were busted and seemed glad
to have Ben come and take care of them. By the next day he got both men
straightened out, and they proceeded on their prospecting tour. Ben
West was determined to learn from Adams all he could in the way of
mining. After they had been out about a week, Ben sent Dickey in one
direction while he and Adams went in another. He watched Adams very
closely and learned lots from him. When they had been together about a
month, Ben West was getting tired of Adams for several reasons. One day
he was prospecting about a quarter of a mile from Adams, when he found
something rich. He brought a few samples to camp at night and showed
them to Adams. When Adams looked at the samples, he said: West, you
have struck it. So the next day Adams went with Ben to see the mine,
and by doing more work it proved to be all that Ben West had expected.
Now that a mine had been found, Adams wanted to get a settlement with
Ben West, as he had been away some time and wanted to get back to
Dawson City. Ben West did not think he owed Adams anything, as Adams
had not found the mine, but for some reason Adams thought he ought to
have an interest in what West found; so they had some wordy trouble.
After many hot words, Ben West agreed to give Adams two thousand
dollars, which offer Adams accepted and then returned to Dawson City to
see and enjoy more fun as he called it. Two weeks later an agent
representing the North American Mining Syndicate bought Ben West's
claim for fifty thousand dollars, giving him a draft for forty thousand
and ten thousand in gold coin.
For a few weeks afterwards Ben West felt rich, then, strange to
relate, a feeling came over him that he was poor, and must make at
least half a million. About a month after he had sold his claim, he met
three men from his native State, California. He was glad to see men
from his State, and they were glad to see him, when they heard him say
that he had sold a claim, as they had very little money and might need
some financial help. Ben West found their company very entertaining and
liked to be with them. After awhile it was decided that all of them
should go in as partners. When they had been out prospecting a few
weeks as partners, it is singular to have to state that there was
trouble over every little show of a claim, and many other matters
caused unpleasantness, though before they became partners they were all
great friends. But the partnership business seemed to make them all at
outs with each other. After they had been out awhile prospecting, Ben
West found out that two of his partners were tender-footed men, never
having had any experience as miners, though they at first tried to make
Ben think they had.
I have got through with partners, said Ben West, and from this
time on I will prospect alone; then what I find will belong to me, and
no second party can claim a share and growl because he can't have it
all. Besides, this partnership is a failure after all. There is more or
less trouble all the time about cooking, packing, getting the fuel for
fire, cleaning up, and putting the things away afterwards. Then how
will it be if a good prospect is found? I shall have all the work to do
and only get half. This resolve was made after a long hard journey of
several days, over a rough slippery trail with now and then deep snow
to wade through, and also over rocky points that one is almost sure to
find in the mountains.
The two tender-footed men were good fellows, but, like too many
others, when the novelty of the enterprise began to develop into a
stern reality, and there was manual labor to be performed, and
hardships to be endured, and some personal sacrifices to be made, they
began to lose heart, get homesick and weary, and to shirk their part;
also to be surly and disagreeable. We won't quarrel, said Ben West,
but when we get to Antelope Springs we will divide our stores and then
each one will 'shift for himself,' as the saying is.
In a few days they arrived at the Springs and at once divided the
supplies. After a couple of days' stay, Ben West started out again
prospecting, and slow tedious work he found it. He toiled day after
day, tired and weary at night, but blessed with a night of sweet sound
sleep so that in the morning he was fresh and ready for another day's
work. Things went on in this way for awhile, then he came to a place
that had been tried but abandoned. Here he worked for about two days
and found what he was looking for. But it was not rich, though his
hopes seemed to revive once more. Here he brought his camping outfit
and went to work in good earnest for about ten days. He took out from
fifteen to thirty dollars per day, and the prospect looked favorable. A
party offered him twenty thousand dollars for his claim, but he refused
it, and after some bargaining he sold it for thirty thousand dollars.
He decided now to not only prospect himself but to stake others for
a half interest in what they found. Amongst them was a young fellow by
the name of Lane, of doubtful reputation, and his partner Bruce. Ben
West gave them a six weeks' outfit to go to a part of the country that
had not been looked over at all. After they had been gone about four
weeks Bruce, Lane's partner, came into camp and wanted Ben West. He was
out in the hills looking for another claim, but Bruce went after him to
get him to go with him to where Lane was, for they had found a good
prospect that was very rich. After getting together the few necessary
things that they needed, off the two men went, and sure enough it was a
rich mine, one that was paying three to six hundred dollars per day.
Now, said Ben West, I am opposed to any partnership business, and
will sell or buy. Just one half of this claim is mine. I will take
twenty-five thousand dollars or agree to give you the same amount for
your half; and would like an answer at once or as soon as you can
Lane and Bruce talked the matter over and finally concluded to sell.
It is a bargain, said Ben West, and we will now go back to town and
I will give you your money.
It looked stormy before bedtime and next morning the snow was quite
deep. Though the snow was still falling, they were anxious to get to
town; so they started on the tedious journey of sixty miles through the
snow, then over a foot deep. Their progress was slow and they did not
make half the distance; being exhausted, they stopped for food and
rest. After eating a cold lunch, they fixed a place and spread their
slender allowance of bedding and turned in for the night. It was bitter
cold, but they were tired; so it was not long before they were all
soundly sleeping. When they awoke in the morning they realized that a
very hard day's travel was before them, having about forty miles to
make before supper.
When Ben West got up he did not feel quite right, for one of his
feet felt kind of odd. It did not take Lane long to find out the foot
had been slightly frozen. So to work they went and thawed it out,
wrapped it up well and started. It did not snow now, but it was cold.
Their progress was slow. When they had traveled about ten miles, Bruce
said: I will push ahead and get a sled and some of the boys to come
and meet you, so make all the distance you can.
All right, said West, send four men with a sled and something to
eat. I will pay the bill and the men for coming.
Bruce arrived in town some time after dark, but though very tired
and hungry he did not eat until he had started four good stout men
after his comrades, whom they met some nine or ten miles out. Poor Ben
West could go no further, for his foot was quite painful, and he and
Lane both waited and watched for relief, which came at last. It was
almost midnight when the relief party arrived. They brought a fine
lunch and a bottle of wine, which both enjoyed very much. After the
lunch was eaten all hands started for the town, where they arrived just
as the day was breaking. The frozen foot proved to be worse than at
first supposed to be. It would keep the owner an invalid for at least
two weeks. Ben West said: Here is a pretty mess. My fortune just at my
fingers' end and a frozen foot tied up for half a month, when I have so
much to do. Why did I not take better care of myself?
At this time Bruce came to see how Ben West was getting along. He
found him nervous and a little feverish. Just be quiet, said Bruce,
it is the best medicine you can have. After Ben West had paid Lane
and Bruce for their claim, Bruce said to West: If you like I will go
with another man, that you may name, and work in your mine until you
come to us. For my pay I want fourteen dollars per day and I'll furnish
my own grub. The bargain was made. Bruce and the man started the next
day, and just sixteen days after Ben West was at his mine.
They had a large pile of pay dirt ready for a clean-up; it was
exceedingly rich and several claim buyers had heard about the rich mine
and were on the ground to buy it from West. After a great deal of talk
West said: The mine is worth a million, but I want to get out of this
country, and the man that pays me five hundred and fifty thousand
dollars gets the mine.
An hour afterwards the agent for an English syndicate purchased the
mine. Ben West having now made his pile determined to lose no time in
getting back to Orangeville, but he intended to stay in San Francisco
till he was thoroughly recuperated before going home.
CHAPTER IX. AN ARRIVAL.
George Combe has said, Mankind love their young and take charge of
them with common accord, yet the love of offspring is much more intense
in the female than in the male, and this difference is manifested from
earliest infancy. The boy wants his whip, horse, drum, top or sword,
but observe the little girl occupied with her doll. She decks it in
fine clothes, prepares for it night linen, puts it into the cradle,
rocks it, takes it up, feeds it, scolds it, and tells it stories. When
she grows older she takes charge of her younger brothers and sisters.
Nothing possesses, in her estimation, greater charms than babies. When
she has grown to maturity and become herself a mother, with what sweet
emotion and gushing tenderness does she caress her little ones.
While the love of offspring is more or less strong in all, yet it
does not manifest itself if there are other tendencies predominant in
the character. Take a woman in whom the love of dress and society is
most active; she will not care for offspring, if her circumstances are
such that it would debar her from enjoying style or society; or if the
artistic inclination is the strongest in her character she would not
want offspring; or if great intellectual tastes are very strong and
love of children only moderate, she would not want offspring; or where
persons have consecrated themselves fully and unreservedly to a
spiritual life in order to become spiritual parents to many, to them
offspring would be a hindrance in their work. But where the domestic
faculties are the strongest, the home is lonesome without children. In
some the maternal instinct is exceedingly strong, for it manifests
itself to such an extent as to become the ruling passion; nothing else
but offspring can satisfy them. And this maternal passion is expressed
in matchless language by Mr. Stephen Phillips: Lucrezia's sudden
outburst of grief and rage against her lonely fate is, poetically
speaking, one of the finest passages in the play:
[Footnote 1: Literary Digest, Dec., 1899.]
Lucrezia! this is that old bitterness.
Bitternessam I bitter? strange, oh strange!
How else? My husband dead and childless left.
My thwarted womanthoughts have inward turned,
And that vain milk like acid in me eats.
Have I not in my thought trained little feet
To venture, and taught little lips to move
Until they shaped the wonder of a word?
I am long practiced. Oh, those children, mine,
Mine, doubly mine; and yet I cannot touch them.
I cannot see them, hear themDoes great God
Expect I shall clasp air and kiss the wind
Forever, and the budding cometh on?
The burgeoning, the cruel flowering;
At night the quickening splash of rain, at dawn
That muffled call of babes how like to birds;
And I amid these sights and sounds must starve
I with so much to give perish of thrift!
Omitted by His casual dew!
You are spared much; children can wring the heart.
Spared! to be spared what was I born to have,
I am a woman, and this very flesh
Demands its natural pangs, its rightful throes,
And I implore with vehemence these pains.
I know that children wound us, and surprise
Even to utter death, till we at last
Turn from a face to flowers; but this my heart
Was ready for these pangs, and had foreseen
Oh! but I grudge the mother her last look
Upon the coffined formthat pang is rich
Envy the shivering cry when gravel falls
And all these maimed wants and thwarted thoughts,
Eternal yearning, answered by the wind,
Have dried in me belief and love and fear.
I am become a danger and a menace,
A wandering fire, a disappointed force,
A perildo you hear, Giovanni? Oh,
It is such souls as mine that go to swell
The childless cavern cry of the barren sea,
Or make that human ending to night wind.
In Mrs. Charles Herne, this feeling was not quite as strong as that
expressed in the play, but after they had been married two years, she
did some quiet thinking in that line. She would sit alone at times, and
let her imagination be active in the thought, what delight it would
give her if when her husband came in the room where she was, she could
take him over to a little crib and turn back the corner of a fancy
worked cover and show him such a sweet, wee, little face nestled on the
pillow, and what joy it would give her, when her husband came in from
his work to put a little one into his arms and see how delighted he
would be to take the child, and then see him sit down and hear him use
language which belongs to baby talk. Again she thought what pleasure it
would give her to start a little toddling form down the pathway to meet
her husband, and to see the little one stand still when it met its
father, and raise its little arms to be taken up. All these thoughts
and many more passed through the mind of Mrs. Herne, for she now knew
for a certainty that such joys would be hers, and many a pleasant laugh
and joke she and her husband had over the coming of a little tot.
One day a little later there was started in the most sacred room in
the house a vibration by the doctor which reached the auditory nerve of
the nurse conveying to the brain a most joyous statement, It is a
boy. The nurse carried it to the kitchen, It is a boy. The Chinaman
cook carried it to the Jap chore boy, It is a boy. The Jap chore boy
carried it to the teamsters, It is a boy. The teamsters carried it to
the men on the ditches, It is a boy. The ditch men carried it to the
men in the orchard, It is a boy. The prune trees took up the glad
news and whispered it to the apricot trees, It is a boy. The apricot
trees whispered it to the peach trees, It is a boy. The peach trees
whispered it to all the other fruit trees, It is a boy.
When Pet, Bell, Blanche and Daisy, with their large udders full of
rich lacteal fluid, heard the news, It is a boy, they gave forth an
extra flow of milk that night. When the frisky mules in the barn lot
heard the joyful tidings, It is a boy, they just cut up and threw
their hind feet higher than ever. You could not see them for the dust
they made. The roosters crowed, It is a boy, and the hens cackled,
It is a boy. The orioles in the mulberry trees warbled out the song,
It is a boy. The dogs, Dash and Rover, in their play that evening
barked at each other, It is a boy. The cats Tom and Malty purred, It
is a boy. It seemed as if the vibrations in all the buildings and all
over the ranch rang out the glad tidings, It is a boy.
In the evening when all Mr. Herne's men congregated in their fine
quarters to have some music, Osborn sat down to the piano and played
while all the men sang, that old negro song:
Give 'em more children, Lord,
Give 'em more children;
Give 'em more children, Lord,
Give 'em more children.
Osborn said to the boys when retiring, What a feeling of joy the
advent of a little boy has brought to us all on the ranch. Mr. and Mrs.
Herne have got their wish now, for they both wanted a son.
Barnes said: What a fine time we will have with the little fellow,
when he is old enough to toddle. We will have him over here most of the
One day after dinner when the baby was about a month old, a man
standing six feet three inches and weighing two hundred and twenty-five
pounds, came on the porch where Mrs. Herne was sitting with the baby,
and said: Mrs. Herne, the boys want me to take the baby to them. They
are all sitting under the mulberry trees.
Mrs. Herne said: All right, Frank. But the nurse seemed to be
alarmed lest he might hurt the infant, as he was so large and awkward,
not used to handling a baby four weeks old, so she followed Frank and
the baby to where the boys were. Frank said: Here boys, each one of
you can hold him just long enough to pass your opinion upon him. The
men seemed to take as much pride and interest in the child as if he
were their own. After the boy had been in each of the men's arms and
they had passed their judgment on him, the nurse wanted to take the
child back, but tall Frank said: No, I took the baby from Mrs. Herne
and I am going to see the child in her arms safe again. When putting
the baby in her lap he said: The boys all think he is the brightest
baby they ever saw.
After he was gone the nurse said: You ought to see how gentle those
great men handled that baby.
Every day the men always inquired and talked about the baby, and
were eager to watch its growth.
If you entered the house of an evening about the time the baby was
put to bed, you would hear a very sweet, soft voice singing:
Hush! my child, lie still and slumber,
Holy angels guard thy bed.
Heavenly blessings without number
Cluster round thy sacred head.
There is great talk made among many persons about catching different
kinds of disease and sickness, but how seldom you hear people talk
about the contagious qualities of hope, joy and love. Supposing on a
ranch the owner gets up in the morning and starts the vibrations going,
That All is life, All is love, All is joy, and All is God, and there
is a hearty response by his wife who takes up the invocation, All is
life, All is love, All is joy, and All is God. And carrying them into
the kitchen, she adds to them by singing this song:
The thorns that pester and vex my life
Have changed to the flowers in June,
All sounds, disorders, pain and strife
Have rounded into tune.
From the kitchen the chore boy takes up the sayings to the
teamsters, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is God. The
teamsters take up those life-giving words, and instead of swearing at
their teams all day, and talking about hell, their thoughts and talk
is, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is God. The men on the
ditches and in the orchards echo the glad thought, All is life, All is
love, All is joy, All is God. And the birds in the trees sing with
gladness, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is God, and that
very interesting ring-neck bird, the kildee, as it runs along the
ditches and moist places in the orchards, speaks in its peculiar way
that, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is God. And the music
of the waters as it flows along, rippling in the ditches, sings All is
life, All is love, All is joy, All is God. The winds talk it to the
trees, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is God. The trees
whisper it to each other, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is
God, and the music of the insects say the same thing, All is life,
All is love, All is joy, and All is God. When the God of day, with his
effulgent brightness, rises over the hills in the morning and scatters
his luminous rays on the ranch, and writes in lights and shadows his
hieroglyphics that All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is God.
And the one grand anthem that is being sung in the hearts and lives of
all on the ranch is, All is life, All is love, All is joy, All is
With an aspiration like that on the ranch, all cursing and swearing
would disappear; smallness, meanness, jealousy, covetousness and greed
could not live in that atmosphere. That spiritual air in circulation
would kill out all lustful thoughts, pride, vanity, love of strong
liquors, and of coarse animal food. Everything would manifest the
fruits of the Spirit, which are peace, joy and love. All sickness and
disease would disappear, because those life-giving, purifying thoughts
would become incorporated and assimilated in the mind, nerve force, and
enter into the blood, flowing through its veins and arteries all over
the whole system, making the entire organism sound and pure, a fit
temple for the dwelling of the Eternal One.
CHAPTER X. MRS. MARSTON.
In the last three years the beautiful little city of Roseland with
its avenues of palms and magnolias had a boom. Large substantial brick
and granite blocks were erected. Very many new and handsome residences
were built, besides putting a new appearance on some of the old
buildings. The commercial, professional and mechanical classes were all
doing well, and living in expectation of doing still better.
Among those who had prospered by the rise in real estate was a Mrs.
Marston, who owned one of the finest residences in Roseland. At the
time that she enters our story her age was about forty and she had a
son who was twenty years old, a month before he left for Paris, and he
had been gone away four months. Why he had gone to Paris, the stories
concerning his mission to that gay city did not quite harmonize. His
father came to the conclusion ten years ago that his mother was too
much like himself, in being a positive, dominant character; that she
was a little too masculine in her makeup, and he thought he would
prefer a lady for a wife who did not weigh quite as much, and one that
was a little sweeter in disposition, and more playful. When he
reflected that he was worth one hundred and fifty thousand dollars, he
thought that some of the joys of having a sweet wife should be his, and
particularly when he had seen Josephine Stearns, whom he thought would
more than meet his most sanguine expectations, for to his mind, she
seemed to possess all those very desirable qualities of disposition
which he so much admired. In a very indirect way he made his mind known
to Mrs. Marston, who pretended she did not like such a proposition, but
if he would give her fifty thousand dollars and let her have the boy,
she would consent to a divorce. Her husband thought it over in this
way. He said, I am not happy in living with my wife, don't like my
home at all, and what good does it do a man to be worth one hundred and
fifty thousand dollars, if he is not enjoying some of the greatest
pleasures in life. Better have only a hundred thousand dollars with a
pretty sweet young lady like Josephine, than a hundred and fifty
thousand dollars with my present wife. Next morning he scratched his
head, and said in a slow kind of a way, I think fifty thousand dollars
rather steep, but I do not wish to have any fuss or quibbling, and you
can have the boy, and I will give you twenty-five thousand dollars in
cash, and twenty-five thousand in real estate, which she accepted. To
look at her you could not tell what her feelings were, but way down
deep in her heart she was overflowing with gladness to think she was
The rise in real estate made her worth in all as much as her husband
was when he left her. She was known in Roseland as being a lady that
was fond of young people's company, and she was great on entertaining.
She was one of those ladies who are proud, fond of dress and style,
very particular about moving in the upper circles of society, but she
had no interest or sympathy with plain, poor people. She loved to dress
young for her years, was fond of going with young ladies and gentlemen
bicycle riding. She generally had as guests one or two very pretty
young ladies, and another of her fads was to make pets of a few sons of
rich men. As she had a fine large house and loved to entertain, the
leading young men in Roseland, and some of the prettiest and most
stylish young ladies, were very often seen in her parlors and on her
well-kept lawn. The lunches and suppers she served to her guests were
the talk of the town. She had a sister who lived in Orangeville, but
who was so different in her tastes and circumstances that there was
nothing in common between them.
One day she was out driving, and her eyes caught the sight at a
little distance of two persons walking on the sidewalk. She made the
team walk slow when she saw them. They did not see her, but she took in
at a glance what a clear complexion, bright eyes, and lovely form the
young lady had. She said to herself, How beautiful Stella has grown,
but what plain clothes she has on. She reined the team towards the
sidewalk and said, Why, Stella, I did not know you had returned from
school. Good morning, David, she said to her sister's husband. Wont
you both come to the house? David said that Stella had just come in on
the train and they had been doing a few errands and were expected back
by Bertha at a certain time and could not stop now.
Mrs. Marston said to Stella, I want you to come and make me a long
visit. I will be out to-morrow at your house and arrange with your
mother for your coming to visit me. She thanked her aunt for her
invitation and said she would tell her mother.
Mrs. Marston had remarked on more than one occasion to her sister
Bertha, that she would die if she had to stay in a place like
Orangeville over night. As that lady did not feel she was ready to quit
her material form with all its attachments and desires, she decided to
leave Roseland at eight in the morning and that would give her ample
time to have a long chat with her sister, and she could then be home by
five in the evening in time to dress for dinner and receive whoever
might call. She telephoned to her caterer to have ready next morning at
eight, one quart of orange sherbet and one quart of vanilla ice cream,
put into two nice dishes and packed in a box with ice, then put two wet
sacks over the box and set it in another box with a cover. She
telephoned to the livery stable to have her span of handsome chestnuts
brought to her house next morning at eight. The next morning she was up
bright and early and put on just a good plain dress, and was ready to
take the lines promptly at eight from the man who had brought her team.
She drove round to the caterer's and got her box, then she went to the
meat market and told the man to put up six pounds of steak, she called
at the bakery and had the man put in her buggy one frosted fruit cake,
one plain cake, one lemon pie, and a peach cobbler, and one dozen fresh
baked Astor House rolls. After she had got a little way out from
Roseland she stopped at a Chinaman's garden and purchased a few early
vegetables. When she reached her sister's home it was about ten, and
after a few minutes' chat she said to her sister, Bertha, I have come
out to have a visit with you and Stella, and I did not want you to be
giving yourselves a lot of work in the way of getting up a big dinner,
so I bought a few things on my way out, and all they need is to set
them on the table, except the vegetables and meat, and I will attend to
the vegetables; the pies and rolls may need just a little warming.
Mrs. Marston was one of those ladies of skill and ability who could
do anything in the kitchen equal to any hired help when she wished, and
this morning she seemed to be so different to what she generally was,
that her sister Bertha thought she either had improved greatly, or she
had not judged her rightly. She seemed this morning so kind and
thoughtful and so sisterly in her conversation and so ready to assist
in getting dinner. Bertha said to Mrs. Marston, Why, Helen, you have
more steak here than we can eat in a week. To which Mrs. Marston
replied, that she had brought lots of ice to keep it.
When David was called to dinner, it certainly did his eyes and
stomach good to see on the table such a spread of luxuries and
dainties, which were so seldom partaken of by the Wheelwright family,
as they lived very simply. All enjoyed the new bill of fare very much,
and the repast was seasoned by a very pleasant family conversation.
David seemed to open his eyes several times at the turn things were
taking, because there had been times when his wife and her sister did
not harmonize at all.
During the morning when not observed, Mrs. Marston feasted her eyes
on Stella's beautiful form in her new cut wrapper, and mentally said to
herself, When I get some new stylish gowns on that handsome figure,
and that beautiful face under a becoming hat wont those Roseland dudes
just go wild over her? She laughed to herself and thought what fun she
would have with her pets.
After dinner was through they sat at the table resting and talking,
when David said he would like to have Stella come out and help him a
Mrs. Marston spoke up and said, Yes, dear; you go out and help your
father. Your mother and I will wash the dishes.
Mrs. Marston thought now is the time to speak to Bertha about Stella
making me a visit. She opened the conversation by saying: Bertha, I
have seen so little of Stella for several years, that I do wish you
would let her come next week and make me a visit. Not having a
daughter, I feel as if I would like to do something for Stella, that is
to give her a good chance. She is a bright girl and has an exceedingly
fine form, and about all she has ever seen of society are cow-boys and
ranch men, and may be a few ordinary respectable fellows; but I want to
introduce her to bankers' sons, young lawyers, and rich merchants'
sons, and give the girl a show. You see, she is going on eighteen, and
if ever she is going to have an opportunity now is the time. After a
young lady gets past twenty, her chances with the young bloods are not
Well, said her sister, you are very kind, Helen, and I don't know
but what it might be a chance that she needs. You have my consent for
her to make you a visit, and when you give her the invitation you can
tell her what I say.
There is one matter, Bertha, that you will pardon me for speaking
to you about, and I hope you will let me do as I wish, and that is in
the matter of fixing up Stella's wardrobe.
Bertha said: Helen, she is your girl while she is with you, and you
can do whatever you think best.
So when Stella came in from helping her father, Mrs. Marston said:
Stella, I have been talking to your mother about your coming to make
me a visit next week, and she has given her consent and I do hope you
will come and be my daughter for awhile. We will have a fine time, I
can assure you. Only bring the clothes you come in. I will rig you out
from head to foot.
Stella in her own mind felt this way: that she never had any
personal experience of the circle that her aunt was a prominent figure
in, and all she knew about the young men and young ladies connected
with the swim, was only what she had heard and read. She felt that by
personally coming in contact with those of different environments, it
would widen her experience and give her a better knowledge of the
world. So she very kindly thanked her aunt and it was decided that she
would come on Thursday of the following week.
When she arrived Stella was warmly welcomed into the elegantly
furnished home of Mrs. Marston. Her aunt kissed her and seemed
delighted to have her niece with her. The bedroom that her aunt said
would be hers was a gem of beauty, being furnished with one of those
fine enameled brass bedsteads, a fine dresser with a long bevel plate
French mirror, and on the dresser was an elegant toilet set. The
curtains, carpets and draperies matched the tints of the ceiling and
walls. Fine costly pictures hung on the walls representing mostly
scenes of festivities in baronial halls and castles, also in modern
Fifth Avenue palaces; showing up so well the gay brilliant throng of
ladies and gentlemen in the height of their enjoyment. The decorations
and furnishings of the room were well in keeping with the lovely figure
that was to occupy it.
Mrs. Marston had a great deal of personal pride, and she did not
care about taking Stella out till her wardrobe had been replenished.
After breakfast next morning the door-bell rang and a minute or two
afterwards Mrs. Rogers, the dressmaker, was announced by the servant to
Mrs. Marston. When Mrs. Marston went in to see her she said: Good
morning, Mrs. Rogers; my niece is here and I would like you to see her
so you can help me to select what you think would be suitable in the
way of dresses and other garments for her.
Mrs. Marston called Stella in and introduced her to Mrs. Rogers and
said: Mrs. Rogers will go with me to do some shopping, and we want you
to leave entirely to us the matter of selecting your dresses. I am sure
you will be pleased when we get through.
Stella laughed and said: If you show as much good taste in
selecting my dresses as you have in the furnishing and decorating of my
very pretty room, I am sure I shall be more than pleased. Her aunt was
delighted with the compliment.
Mrs. Marston said to Mrs. Rogers: Did you come over on your
Yes, said that lady.
Well, said Mrs. Marston, I will get mine and we will go now and
do the shopping.
At the Marston mansion towards evening several large packages
arrived. Mrs. Marston opened two large ones, looked them over, then
said: Here, Stella, these are for you.
After Stella had looked at them she said: Why, aunt, dear, they are
beautiful, but I am not going to be married now; they are pretty enough
for the most charming bride in Roseland.
While handling the fancy worked underskirts and nightdresses, the
fine silk underwear and costly fancy silk hosiery, she remarked: It is
very kind of you, aunt, to get all these fine things. Then a box was
opened and there was a great assortment of the best shoes, so that
Stella might select several pair from it. She was quite pleased with
the different materials her aunt had selected for her dresses, and Mrs.
Rogers would be up next morning to take her measurement. She was going
to put on a force of assistants for completing them as soon as
Stella was about the same as a prisoner in her aunt's house for a
week. But she had a most enjoyable time in reading some very costly
illustrated books of travel which her aunt had purchased more for style
and appearance than for anything else.
Her aunt said one day, she did not get any time to look at books,
but she was glad Stella could amuse herself in that way so that she
might not find the time long.
No, indeed, aunt, said Stella, I have enjoyed every minute of the
time I have been with you.
The week that Stella was a prisoner her aunt had so arranged matters
that there were few callers and Stella did not see them. And she
herself was out most of the time. Stella was not the least sensitive in
regard to the matter of not going out with her aunt till her new
dresses were made, because she saw that she would be a very conspicuous
figure among the well-dressed young ladies of her aunt's circle. She
would look like a speckled bird among a flock of white pigeons.
After the dress-making was completed Mrs. Rogers went with Mrs.
Marston to the milliner's and purchased a pretty hat, Mrs. Marston
saying she would bring Stella and let her select what more she might
need in the line of millinery.
The week following was one of excitement for Stella, for every day
she was out riding once or twice with her aunt, and meeting so many
young ladies, and the well-dressed young men were very particular when
bowing to Mrs. Marston to recognize the pretty young face at her side.
Towards the end of the week Mrs. Marston gave a swell reception in
honor of her niece. The very élite of Roseland were there, also a few
from other places who were on a visit to friends in Roseland, and all
made a very gay and brilliant party. But if any young lady that evening
looked attractive, bewitching, fascinating, and possessed the power of
making the blood in some of the dudes present tingle from the roots of
their hair to the end of their toes, it was that fresh young girl from
the country, with her sparkling eye, her ready wit; with resources that
seemed inexhaustible for sustaining interesting conversation together
with a manner so simple, so unconscious in all she said and did and so
unassuming, which added much to the charm of her personality. All these
characteristics were manifested in fine well rounded form. Is it any
wonder that some young gentlemen saw a certain form floating before
them after they had put their heads to their pillows that night, and
their brains were active in planning for further acquaintance with that
Some of Mrs. Marston's pets lost no time in availing themselves of
the standing invitation to call any time. Other parties were soon given
by young ladies in Roseland, at which Stella had very pressing
invitations to be present. The young ladies liked her very much; she
was so natural, so sweet, so unaffected; they observed she was not what
is called fellow-struck; while she seemed to enjoy and be perfectly
at home in the society of young gentlemen, the young ladies saw no
signs of her flirting with any of them. There is that peculiarity in
the character of a certain class of young ladies, that while they may
think it is their privilege to flirt and carry on with the young men
they know, yet when a strange young lady is introduced into their
circle of gentlemen friends, they have more respect for her if she
shows some originality and does not behave just exactly as they do.
Mrs. Marston was delighted at the impression Stella made on her
circle of acquaintances, and now the dudes of Roseland paid Mrs.
Marston extra attention and politeness since they had the pleasure of
meeting her niece.
Young Ryland, the banker's son, said to Barker, the rising young
attorney at the Arlington Hotel, Say, Barker, what do you think of
that new flower which Mrs. Marston has put into our garden?
I think, said Barker, she is the prettiest and most fragrant bud
I have seen; a very rare specimen.
Ryland said: She is quite a study; the more you see of her, the
more interesting she grows.
After Stella had been at her aunt's about a month she was seen less
in her aunt's company riding out, but more in the company of the most
stylish men in the city. Her aunt encouraged her in going out with
these young gentlemen. She talked very much to her about how rich young
Ryland's father, the banker, was; and she expected Barker to become one
of the most brilliant lights at the bar. To-day he was worth
twenty-five thousand dollars in his own name. Then there was young
Westbrooke, son of the leading merchant in Roseland, the only son. He
was home from college, with bright prospects. There was young Brookes,
who owned fifty thousand dollars in real estate, and had traveled in
Europe and seen lots of the world. He was a very great catch, her aunt
said. These four young men, who always dressed with great taste, were
Mrs. Marston's favorite pets. For a while Stella favored each one of
these young men with her company, in buggy riding, but towards the end
of the second month Westbrooke was the only one with whom she was seen
She never took her aunt into her confidence by relating her
experience in going out with these various young gentlemen. She thought
it policy not to; but to be pleasant to each one of them, even if she
had decided not to keep company with some of them. She remembered she
was her aunt's guest, and should make herself agreeable to her aunt and
her aunt's friends. What she did not relate to her aunt she did to her
mother, when she returned home from her visit the week after the second
month of her stay in Roseland. In conversation with her mother, Stella
said, I am really glad I went to Aunt Helen's, for I have lived in two
months a year of my life. I have seen so much of a world concerning
which I previously knew nothing only by hearsay. I feel it has done me
good in many ways. Aunt was kind to me, and made everything very
pleasant, and so did her friends. I do say I am glad that I have lived
in her world and tasted of its pleasures, because I don't go now on
what I hear about that world. I know from my own personal experience.
It has given me much to think about, and furnished a great deal of
mental food for the study of character, and I have learned more about
my own self. I know better now than I ever did before my strong points
and weak ones. She told her mother what fine piano players the Miller
girls were, what sweet singers Dr. Lacy's daughters were, and the male
quartette was very fine. Ryland and Westbrooke are members of it, and
after relating a number of other things which she heard and saw, she
told her mother she could not tell her all now, but would some other
So one afternoon, when they were alone, Stella said: Well, mother,
I will relate to you now some of my funny experiences with some of the
swell young gentlemen of Roseland. They were all aunt's special pets. I
had been out riding with young Ryland, the banker's son, several times,
besides sometimes meeting him at parties. He is very dudish, and
dresses very extravagantly. He is labeled as catch number one, because
his father has said his son should take his place in the bank some day,
and on his wedding day he gets a gift from his father of twenty-five
thousand dollars, with the promise of the bulk of his father's fortune
when he dies. On the first few occasions when I met young Ryland he
seemed reserved and quiet, but the more I went out riding with him I
found he was getting rather soft. He did not seem to show any other
traits of character, and his company was dull, but he made it more
sickening each time with soft, slobbering talk. I only went out with
him to please aunt. The last time I rode out with him he plead so hard
for me to allow him to kiss my hand that I consented grudgingly just to
quiet him, but after he kissed it instead of his being quiet, as I
supposed he would be, it seemed to fire him all the more, so that he
wanted to kiss my cheek. You ought to have heard the way he talked; you
would think he was about to die, and the only remedy there was for him
was to kiss my cheek. If he could only kiss me on the cheek, life would
come back to him and he would feel a new man. In my own mind, I said to
myself, 'This is the last time I ride out with you.' The more I tried
to show how foolish he was to want to kiss a young lady that did not
want any such manifestation of affection, the more he persisted, and
said, 'I must kiss you.' I said, 'If I loved you, it would be a real
pleasure to receive a kiss from you, but instead of loving you I lose
all the respect I ever had for you because you try to force me to
accept a kiss from you when I don't want it.' But he persisted, and
said, 'I must kiss you, it will do me lots of good, and won't hurt
you.' I said, 'Have you no respect for me or yourself to act so
senselessly?' He replied, 'It may appear senseless to you, but I can
assure you it would be bliss to me.' I tried to turn the subject of
kissing me to something else, and did the best I could to entertain him
in conversation on other subjects, but no; he was more stubborn than
ever to think of nothing and talk of nothing but kissing me on the
cheek. Not wishing to have any unpleasantness with him on aunt's
account, I said to myself, 'You are nothing but a simple, little,
contrary, foolish child, in a man's form, and I shall have to humor you
as I would a little boy, for you have only the mind of one.' I told him
if he, as a young gentleman of honor, would never say one word more to
me about kissing, he could kiss my cheek just once, which he did and
was quiet afterwards. He was very pleasant during the remainder of our
ride, and when I got out of the buggy I was glad he did not ask if he
could call again on me. When I think of him I cannot keep from
laughing, the foolish simpleton. I would not have him for all the gold
in California. I must tell you about another of aunt's pets I went out
riding with several times. There was more to him than there was to
Ryland; his name is Barker, and he is worth twenty-five thousand
dollars, and aunt says he will become one of the leading lights of the
legal profession. Well, he was full of humor and jokes disposed to be a
little gay in his talk, and from what he related concerning himself one
might infer he had been at times a little swift. One afternoon we were
out in the country riding and he became very animated in his
conversation about taste and style of young ladies' dresses, and from
that went on to say what a fad it was among young men to notice and
admire the bright hosiery which young ladies wore when bicycle riding,
and continued in that style of talk, saying what good taste I displayed
in my dress; he was sure that the pretty, bright hosiery, which he
supposed I wore, would do his eyes good to behold. Just as he was
apparently making a motion as if to inspect my hosiery, his nigh colt
shied at an old post that was leaning over at the side of the road. He
had all he could do to manage the horse. I laughed, and told him 'He
had better keep his mind on the team, and not think about such things
as the kind of hosiery I was wearing, that he must not look upon me as
a dry-goods window.' He acted kind of mad with the colt, and said no
more about ladies' hosiery. That was the last ride we had together.
Well, one evening young Brookes, who was said to be worth fifty
thousand dollars in real estate, and had seen much of Europe in his
travels, called to take me to the theater. I had been out riding with
him several times, and met him at every party. After the play was over,
it being rather a warm night, he asked me if I would not like an
ice-cream, and I agreed; so we went into a café, and the waiter showed
us into one of the private boxes. After bringing ice-cream, cake and
soda-water, he drew the curtains. We had a very pleasant chat while
partaking of the refreshments.
Brookes asked me if I had any objection to his enjoying a
I said 'No.'
Then he asked me if I would have one with him.
I laughed, and said I had not become fashionable enough for that
yet. I would have to live longer in the city.
He said, 'Why, the Paris young ladies smoke.'
'Yes,' I said, 'but I am not a Paris young lady.'
In looking around the little compartment I observed some pictures
on the walls, but I perceived that the artist was not a Rubens or a
Raphael, and they belonged to that class of pictures that one would not
see on the walls of a Sunday-school room.
I saw Mr. Brookes was looking at them, and then he started a
conversation about his travels in Europe, which was very interesting,
saying he was a great lover of art and speaking of works of art he saw
there. He said it was astonishing the genius that had been displayed in
marble and on canvas to represent the beautiful form of woman.
Continuing in that strain, and being free in his expressions, he
finished by saying how lovely must be the beautiful work of nature
which was covered up here, putting his hand on my shoulder. I smiled,
and said, 'This work of Nature is not on exhibition this evening; when
it is, I will send you a complimentary ticket.' He took the remark in
good part, and laughed. We got up and went out, and he saw me to aunt's
door in a very pleasant, gentlemanly way.
Westbrooke, the merchant's son, was the most sensible young man I
met. He appeared greatly interested in his college studies, and we had
lots of good talks on school studies and other subjects.
He asked me if he could come out to see me.
I told him 'yes' for I should be pleased to see him.
I want to tell you, mother, that when I was out and passing through
those funny experiences with the three different gentlemen, I never
felt in the least timid or scared. I felt just as calm and collected as
I do now. I felt this way about the matter: While I have long ago lost
all prudishness, yet I did not wish to stimulate their over-excited
imaginations of sensuous things.
Mrs. Wheelwright said: Well, Stella, if you had not been well
balanced, I should have some doubt about it being best for you to go to
your aunt's. But I knew, dear, your tastes and inclinations were not on
the sense plane, and I thought the opportunity of living in another
world for a while would do you good, for it would be the means of
giving you a better knowledge of yourself than you could get in any
Stella said: Mother, the cow-boys and hired ranch hands have a hard
name. Now, I know this class of men well, and my experience with and
observation of them has taught me that any girl who behaves herself
when in their company will always be treated with respect. There is
some manhood about them in that way. But those fine city dudes have
such a polished, underhanded, deep, sly, foxy way of attaining their
ends. Dr. Lacy's girls told me that those fine, city young gentlemen
loved nothing better than to get acquainted with some pretty, young,
green, innocent girl and enjoy the fun of breaking her in. They are
skilled in that art.
CHAPTER XI. SAUNDERS' CUSTOMERS.
One day, when business was very quiet in the store in Orangeville,
the following conversation took place: Who is that young man of
striking appearance, talking to that old man in the road there? said
Hammond to Saunders, the merchant.
That young man, said Saunders, why, his name is Penloe.
Hammond said: Penloe, why that must be the fellow I have heard my
wife talk about. Has he any other name?
That is all, said Saunders. He does not wish to be called
anything else but Penloe. All his mail comes addressed just 'Penloe,
Orangeville, California.' No. Mr., nor Esquire, nor Rev. nor Dr. nor
Prof., nor anything else. He and his mother are my best customers, in
one way. Not that they buy much, but they never ask my price for the
purpose of beating me down. Nor do they grumble about the quality of my
goods. Why, those two have bought more from this store to give away to
those in poor circumstances, than they have for themselves. And they
keep very still about what they do in giving. There is the Jones
family, who have more children than dollars; they live in that cabin
under the hill, on the Squirrel Creek road. All Jones has is what he
knocks out by hard day's work, and he don't always have work, either.
Well, last winter, when his wife was in confinement and had a long
sick spell of two months, and Jones had typhoid fever about the same
time, they were about down to their last dollar and were in debt. When
Penloe and his mother heard about them, they both went down to Jones'
house. Penloe cut some stove-wood and helped round, and his mother took
care of Mrs. Jones. Also, Penloe paid me $37.50 for merchandise, which
I had furnished them. The doctor had been to Jones' about twice before
they came to take care of him and his wife. They paid the doctor, and
told him (to his surprise, as both his patients were very sick) that he
need not come any more. And they cured them without any medicine. When
Jones got well, they told him he could work on their place till he got
work elsewhere. And they gave him his board and one dollar a day in
cash for a month, and then he went to work on the Kelly ranch.
Jones and his wife have turned over a new leaf since Penloe and his
mother were with them. They look differently, act differently, and talk
differently. Penloe's mother gave them a little sound talk on family
matters. I feel a better man myself when they are round me.
Penloe's mother is away now, and Penloe is not seen much about
here; he is home most of the time, since he quit going out to work.
That is a very different story from what you can tell about most of
the young men in Orangeville, said Hammond. After which remark Hammond
walked out of the store, apparently in a deep study.
Yes, he had much to think about, for he had seen a young man about
twenty-two years of age giving himself, his labor, his money, and his
best thought to help a poor family; to heal them of their sicknesses,
to help them to become self-supporting and independent, by furnishing
them work, and, above, all, to lift them to a higher plane of life,
thus helping them to find within, the kingdom of Heaven. Yes, he
thought of Penloe's age, it was twenty-two; the very age when most
young men think only of gratifying themselves in every little whim and
fancy, of catering to their pride and vanity, and spending all their
time, all their thought, and all their money on themselves; being
lovers of themselves more than lovers of God or any one else. Or they
have become absorbed in some girl, not because she touches their better
nature and does what she can to lift them to a higher plane, but
because she stimulates the activity of their sensual natures, causing
them to live in bondage to their lower selves. Deluding themselves with
the idea that they are enjoying life, they become so engrossed in the
pursuit of 'sense-plane' pleasures that they realize no other life than
the animal-plane of their existence, seeming apparently to be dead to
all high motives, grand ideals and nobleness of purpose.
CHAPTER XII. PENLOE'S SERMON.
The Rev. B.F. Holingsworth was the Congregational minister in
Roseland, but he used to come out every Sunday afternoon to Orangeville
and hold preaching service in the only church there. One Thursday he
received word that his sister, in Oakland, was very sick, and wanted
him to come and see her, and he would have to be away over the Sabbath;
so he wished to get a supply for the two churches, but could not find
any one to fill his place. In talking to the deacons of his Roseland
church about the matter, they told him they would conduct the services
at their church if he could find some one to fill his place at
It was customary for the Rev. B.F. Holingsworth to spend one day in
the week in visiting the good people of Orangeville. Among the pastoral
calls, he visited the home of Penloe and his mother. He was very much
impressed with the spiritual thought and talk of both, and while
neither were members of his congregation he well understood their
position. He saw that for a man like Penloe to come and listen to the
sermons he gave to the people of Orangeville would be like expecting a
student in Harvard College to attend a kindergarten school, with the
expectation of receiving instruction. The minister was broad-minded
enough to perceive that the spiritual food he gave to his flock was
kindergarten talk to Penloe; it was only milk, it was not meat; not the
strong spiritual meat that Penloe lived on. It was all right for
babies, but it was not fit for men who had attained divine realization
in the universal Christ. The Rev. B.F. Holingsworth was too liberal and
charitable to think less of Penloe for not attending his church. He was
glad he had the courage of his convictions instead of masquerading, as
some do, with the appearance of assent to all that is said and taught;
but, being at the same time, within, at variance and holding views
entirely different; but for policy, business interest, family peace,
social position and standing, love of name and fame or salary, acting
the hypocrite because they are arrant cowards.
When thinking of some suitable person to fill the Orangeville pulpit
on the Sunday afternoon of his absence, he could find no one so well
adapted by natural talents, education, experience, and deep spiritual
insight, combined with an irreproachable life, as Penloe. So he went
out to Orangeville to see him. Finding Penloe at home, he made known
the object of his visit. Penloe did not answer him at once, but was
silent for a few minutes; he was thinking that this was a call to a
work which was not of his own seeking, and, as the call to the work had
come to him, he decided to accept it and told the Rev. B.F.
The minister then went to Deacon Allen, of Orangeville, and
explained matters to him, telling him that Penloe would select one of
the hymns to sing before the sermon, but Penloe wished Deacon Allen to
conduct all the other parts of the service, including the reading of
the hymns. The minister desired the Deacon not to tell any one who was
going to preach next Sunday, but to explain to the congregation why he
was absent, and then to introduce Penloe. Deacon Allen had only seen
Penloe once or twice, and while he liked the appearance of the man yet
he knew very little about him. But, under the circumstances, he thought
the minister had done the best he could.
It so happened it was the time of year when there was a number of
visitors in Orangeville, which brought out an unusually large audience,
for it included not only the regular attendants and the visitors, but
those who seldom went to church but did so to-day because they had
company. Mr. and Mrs. Herne, who seldom went, attended to-day, and took
the baby with them, this being the first Sunday of the child being in
short clothes. Of course, some of Herne's hired men had to go, to see
how the baby behaved.
Stella was another irregular attendant at church, but young Mrs.
Sexton, whose husband was away, came round in her buggy and wanted
Stella to go for company's sake.
Stella, through being away at school so much and having gone to
Roseland for a while, had only heard about there being such a young man
as Penloe in Orangeville, but had never seen him; neither had her
Penloe was about the first person at church that Sunday afternoon,
and took a seat in the front pew, next to the pulpit with his back to
the congregation, so, as the people assembled, they saw the back of
some one but did not know who it was. When it was time for the service
to commence the church was about full, but the people all seemed
surprised not to see the minister present. Deacon Allen came forward,
and opened service by giving out a hymn, which was followed by prayer.
Then the choir sang, sweetly, Come unto me all ye that labor and are
heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Then reading from the
Scriptures, which was followed by the singing of a hymn that Penloe had
selected, and Deacon Allen gave out. The hymn was as follows:
See Israel's gentle shepherd stands
With all engaging charms,
Hark, how he calls his tender lambs,
And folds them in his arms.
'Permit them to approach,' he cries,
Nor scorn their humble name,
For 'twas to bless such souls as these
The Lord of angels came.
After singing the hymn, Deacon Allen explained to the congregation
the cause of the minister's absence, and introduced Penloe, to the
great surprise of those present. Penloe, in a simple, unassuming
manner, stepped up to the desk and faced the audience. Casting his eyes
over the mass of upturned faces, he said, in a very pleasant, musical
Dear friends, I will speak to you from the following words, 'Suffer
little children to come unto me, and forbid them not, for of such is
the Kingdom of Heaven.'
The sermon was a most remarkable and original discourse. It held the
close attention of every one present, and at its end the congregation
I think, when I read that sweet story of old,
When Jesus was here among men,
How he called little children as lambs to his fold,
I should like to have been with him then.
I wish that his hands had been placed on my head,
That his arms had been thrown around me,
And that I might have seen his kind look when He said,
'Suffer the little ones to come unto me.'
Penloe's sermon we will give, as told to her mother by Stella, and
also the version published in the Roseland Weekly Gazette.
When Stella arrived home from church her mother noticed that her
countenance was all animation, and her bright eyes seemed to glisten
and sparkle brighter than ever; but she said nothing, knowing Stella
would relate all she had seen and heard of any interest.
Well, mother, said Stella, I have had the greatest surprise and
the greatest pleasure I ever had in my life.
Why, Stella, said her mother, I am very pleased to see and hear
that something has delighted you so much.
Who do you think I saw, and heard preach this afternoon? said
Why, I suppose the minister, said her mother, which was the same
as saying, I don't know, but want you to tell me.
Well, mother, said Stella, it was Penloe. I do wish you had been
there to have seen and heard him. His face, when speaking, at times
looked angelic. His eyes are so clear and bright, his voice sweet and
musical, and he is so graceful in his movement, at the same time so
simple and unassuming in his manner. He is symmetrical in his build,
and as handsome as a picture.
Is he really all that? said her mother, with a smile.
Yes, said Stella, and there is something about him that is a
thousand times more than all that; for there is an earnestness and
sincerity of purpose and a power, such as I have never seen or felt
before, in all he says and does. I don't know how to describe it, for
he is so different to any man I ever met or saw; and, as for his
subject, why, it was just grand. But I cannot help laughing when I
think of the feelings of horror, and so much mocked modesty which I saw
and heard expressed by many who were there this afternoon.
Well, whatever could his subject have been about, to cause those
feelings? said her mother.
It was this mother; he took for his text, 'Suffer little children
to come unto me, and forbid them not, for of such is the Kingdom of
He said it was not his purpose this afternoon to describe in detail
the circumstances which led Jesus to utter those words, nor to enter in
full into the history of those people at that time, nor to describe the
way in which they were raised by their parents in those days, nor how
children were treated in general at the time Jesus walked on the earth,
but to dwell on the thought more particularly about how to bring the
children to Jesus now, and how to help them find the Kingdom of Heaven
within. He said the subject was such a large one that he could only
dwell for a short time on one method for bringing the children to
Jesus, and that was how to bring them up pure and make pure men and
pure women of them. For purity of life and thought was one of the first
steps in coming to Jesus, and finding the Kingdom of Heaven within.
Penloe said such an innovation introduced into our society would be
a God-send to us all, for it would bring about a change in so many ways
for the advancement of the race, as to make the mind almost bewildered
in the contemplation of the giant strides that humanity would make. I
cannot begin to tell you all he said, mother, and I don't think the
congregation took in the full sweep of his great thought.
I will tell you one thing Penloe has done for me. He has cut what
few strings there were which kept me in bondage to my sexual nature. I
am free. And here the beautiful and intellectually bright girl
laughed, and shouted again, I am free! Free from that awful
superstition of sexual bondage. Bless Penloe for helping me to my
freedom, said Stella.
Mrs. Wheelwright said: Stella, there have been millions of women
who have died deaths of untold agony through being in bondage to
their sexual natures.
Mother, said Stella, laughing again, I give you notice that on
and after this I shall speak and act just the same when members of the
other sex are present as I would with my own sex, I don't care what
they may think. I will not be negative to their ideas, for I am free;
and here she clapped her hands, and said, I intend to have the courage
of my convictions under all circumstances.
I must tell you, mother, there were a number there who were
perfectly disgusted that Penloe should have introduced such a subject.
You just ought to have seen the faces on some of the congregation.
The dressmaker, Mrs. Hopkins, and her daughter, said they would not
have come to church if they had known the indecent talk that a strange
man was going to make. The two May girls, with their beaux, were there,
and after the service they acted as if they were afraid to speak to
each other. They went out of the church with their heads down and
seemed afraid to look anywhere; till they saw Deacon Tompkins' wife get
in the buggy, and then the Deacon got in and took the reins and started
the horse. But he had omitted untying the animal from the post, and
they all had a laugh, and that broke the strain they were under, and
they were seen talking to their beaux after that.
After service I went up to the desk and gave Penloe my hand and
thanked him for the help he had given me in breaking my bondage. I told
him he had cut the last string of sex superstition for me. He smiled
and pressed my hand and said he was glad to hear it.
Mother, I did not know that Orangeville had such a young man as
that. Why, just think of it! A fine Sanskrit scholar; he can read
Bengali just as well as I can English, and by his reference to the Old
and New Testament he shows he understood Hebrew and Greek. And think of
it; he is only twenty-two years of age! He is a fine orator, very
eloquent, and has such a command over himself and his audience.
But, mother, great as his scholarship may be, he has a power that
is greater; it is seen in his eyes and in every feature of his handsome
countenance, and felt in the touch of his hand. Its source is not
purely intellectual. I perceive it intuitively, but cannot explain it.
Why, mother, I never thought Penloe was the kind of man he is. From
what I had heard about him, I thought he was one of those quiet,
goody-goody men, but instead of that he is a scholar of the most
advanced school of thought.
Her mother said: Stella, do you know why Penloe took the subject he
did to-day and spoke from it? I think I know; it was this: not that he
liked such subjects more than any others, and perhaps not so much; but
he knew that if such ideas were presented to the public, it had to be
done by those who were not in bondage to name and fame and salary. It
had to be done by those bold, fearless thinkers who will speak the
truth regardless of frowns and smiles. And Penloe did it because he
knew there was no one else that would do it. It was pioneer work.
Stella said: I think so, mother, and he certainly seems well
qualified to do such noble pioneer work.
Mr. and Mrs. Herne, on their way home from church, talked the matter
over. Mr. Herne said: Penloe is the most remarkable man I have seen;
so young and yet so gifted in every way. The secret of his power I do
not know anything about, but he possesses a power such as no other man
I have ever seen. I could not keep away from church if he was going to
speak every Sunday.
Mrs. Herne said: He has the clearest and brightest eyes I ever saw.
I never get tired of looking into them. At times his face brightened so
much during his speaking it looked angelic.
They were both very much impressed with the sincerity and
earnestness of the man, but were not prepared to pass an opinion on the
subject of his discourse. They thought well of his ideas, but did not
know how they would work. It set them both to thinking, and it was
their intention to try if possible to cultivate the acquaintance of
The Roseland Gazette, which was published every Saturday, had
Last Monday and Tuesday strange stories began to be circulated
through this city by persons coming in from Orangeville, concerning
what was said in the Congregational Church there last Sunday. It seems
that the Rev. B.F. Holingsworth, of this city, was called away to see a
sick sister, and he got a man who goes by the name of Penloe to fill
his place. The stories that were put in circulation are of a wild and
varied character. Some started the rumor that Penloe preached that we
all ought to go naked. Another story was, that he said we all ought to
bathe together, regardless of sex, in a nude state. Then some said, he
told the people that all families ought to sleep in one large room, to
appear as much in a nude condition as possible, so as to satisfy all
curiosity. These and other like stories aroused so much interest among
the people of this city, that it has been the upper-most topic of
conversation among them, and led to the inquiry whether it was so, and
was the man a crazy crank or a fool, and how came such a man to be
asked to preach.
Our reporter went out to Orangeville to learn what he could
concerning the matter. He first of all went to see Penloe to get a
certified statement, but that gentleman could not be found anywhere. He
had an interview with Mr. Saunders, the merchant of Orangeville, who
said he was at church last Sunday and heard the sermon.
When asked if the stories which were circulated in Roseland
concerning Penloe's sermon were correct, he replied that in part they
were, and in part they were not.
When asked to state as near as he could remember just what was
'Well,' said the merchant, 'I am not used to that kind of business,
but, as near as I can remember it now, it was something like this:
'In order for children to come to Jesus, they must be pure; that
purity was the basis of all religious growth, and he thought the
present mode of maintaining purity had the very opposite effect to what
it was intended for.'
Here Mr. Saunders stopped and told the reporter he had better go
and see Deacon Allen, who would give him a better account than he
'But I tell you,' continued Mr. Saunders, 'there has been more talk
over this sermon this week in this store, by every one that has come
in, than all other talk put together. This is the first time in the
twelve years that I have kept store, that I ever heard any one talk
about any sermon they heard.'
'Well, Mr. Saunders,' said the reporter, 'what seems to be the
judgment of the people about Penloe and the sermon? You have had an
opportunity of hearing all kinds of opinions.'
'Well,' said Mr. Saunders, 'I heard the old lady Eastman say, that
the next time she sees her minister, she is going to lecture him for
getting that low-down, vulgar man in the pulpit. Why, his talk was
awful. Mrs. Reamy and Mrs. Roberts said they would have both got up in
church and walked out, only it would cause so much disturbance. Two
girls came in to get a spool of thread. While I was waiting on them one
said to the other, My mother said this morning that she would never
again go to church, if that nasty talking man was going to preach. The
other girl said, My father says he is the smartest man that ever spoke
in Orangeville or any other part of California. He wished he would
preach every Sunday. Then, I saw Miss Stella Wheelwright go up to
Penloe at the close of the service and give him her hand, and I was
told she thanked him for helping her to cut the last cords of bondage
to sex superstition. She seemed really delighted with his talk.
'I cannot help laughing when I hear a number of persons who were
not at church last Sunday, say, I wish I had been to meeting last
Sunday and heard the talk.
The reporter next called on Deacon Allen and found that gentleman
ready to relate a portion of the sermon.
In reply to a question put by the reporter, Deacon Allen said:
'Well, there is one thing I liked about Penloe's sermon, instead of
talking about the sins of the wicked people in Chicago, New York,
London or Paris, he talked straight and square to the people he was
facing, about their own sins, which were keeping them out of the
Kingdom of Heaven, for it acted like a curtain over the windows of the
soul so that one could not see the Divine, and feel the sacred presence
of his power within. They had polluted the Temple of the Living God,
and their eyes became blinded so that they could not see that they were
heirs to a rich spiritual inheritance.'
The reporter asked the Deacon what Penloe said in regard to the
best way of bringing about the new method of raising all children up,
as if they were one sex.
The Deacon replied, saying: 'He said: Character and environments
are so different that each must work from the plane he or she is on.
Nothing but the best judgment and experience will be able to grapple
successfully with the problem, but it can be done; it has been done.
And it will be comparatively easy for the next generation to put into
practice, if it is done by the present. Avoid all kinds of food and
drinks that stimulate the passions. And, above all, keep the mind
interested in pure, elevating thoughts and engage in hearty wholesome
recreations, so that the love for the pure and good in time will
predominate, and the angel rule the animal.
'I shall never forget,' continued the Deacon, 'how Penloe's clear,
musical voice rang out through the church, how his brilliant eyes
seemed to penetrate through every one present as he looked them in the
face and put this serious question to them, What victories have you
gained over yourselves?
The Deacon said: 'It makes me feel disgusted to hear some persons
who were at church on Sunday last talk about Penloe being low and
vulgar, when a purer or more spiritual man never walked in this
country; while their own characters are tarnished by being connected
with numerous scandals. While Penloe is not a member of the same church
as I am, yet I know a good man when I meet him and hear him talk.'
Our reporter left Orangeville greatly regretting he did not have
the honor to meet so distinguished a man as Penloe.
Mrs. Trask, wife of Dr. Trask, of Roseland, called on Stella's aunt,
Mrs. Marston, and after a little general conversation, Mrs. Trask said:
Mrs. Marston, have you heard or read anything about the horrid talk
that some crank preacher made in Orangeville last Sunday?
Why, no, said Mrs. Marston, I have not looked at the Gazette
and I have been out but little the past few days, for I have not felt
very well lately, having had a bilious attack.
Mrs. Trask said: I know, Mrs. Marston, you will be perfectly
shocked when I tell you. Why, it's all the talk of the town; just think
of it; a man getting up in the pulpit and telling the people that boys
and girls should appear before each other naked, and that they all
should be brought up as if they were one sex.
Mrs. Marston said: It's perfectly awful to think about such a
thing. Why, it would be dreadful. The preacher must have come from
Paris with French ideas. According to what my son writes me, I should
say that is just about what they do over there.
Mrs. Trask said that her husband said, speaking as a medical man, he
would consider it the greatest step towards the downfall of the human
race. Every one would become so corrupt and depraved sexually that the
race would become weak and puny, with no moral stamina.
After Mrs. Trask had gone, Mrs. Marston got the Roseland Gazette
to see what it said about the matter. When she came to the part where
it stated that her niece had gone up to the desk and given her hand to
the preacher and thanked him for helping her out of sexual bondage, she
was completely overcome and just felt like having a fit. She would
rather have paid a thousand dollars than to have that appear in the
paper. What a disgrace this is to me, after all I have done for her,
ungrateful hussy! She doesn't think about the shame she brings upon me
by her bold actions, with that vulgar crank. While she was smarting
from the effects of wounded pride, her door-bell rang and soon the
servant came in and told Mrs. Marston that Mr. Barker was in the
parlor. Mrs. Marston kept him waiting a few minutes, till she had
composed herself. Soon she came in, bright, smiling and cordially
greeted the rising young attorney who had manifested so much interest
in Stella's hosiery.
Mr. Barker was a perfect Chesterfield in dress and manners, and knew
exactly what part of Mrs. Marston's nature to touch to make her feel
good, and to raise himself one hundred per cent. in her estimation.
Mr. Barker felt as if he had a little grudge against Stella, ever
since the day his wish was not gratified, and now he thought this was
his opportunity to pay her back.
In course of conversation Mr. Barker said: Mrs. Marston, have you
been to Orangeville lately?
No, said Mrs. Marston, I have not been there since Stella
How is your niece, Mrs. Marston? said Mr. Barker.
The last I heard from her she was very well, said Mrs. Marston.
Mr. Barker said: By the way, Mrs. Marston, is there another Miss
Stella Wheelwright in Orangeville besides your niece?
I have not heard of any other young lady by that name, replied
Well, said Mr. Barker, I was hoping there was, for I did not want
to think it was your niece that the Gazette said went up and
gave that vulgar preacher her hand.
I think it must be, replied Mrs. Marston. Continuing, she said:
Of course, I am greatly shocked over the matter and feel that my niece
has hurt me by her foolish conduct. I blame her mother more than I do
her, for she has encouraged Stella in radical ideas.
Mr. Barker said: I don't understand what the man can be thinking
about to talk such vulgar nonsense. He ought to be sent to Stockton
Mrs. Marston said: As for the subject he had under discussion, I
could not think of talking about it to a gentleman. I intend to go to
Orangeville to-morrow and see my sister about the matter. I do wish
Stella would come and live with me; where she would be in the company
of well-bred, well-behaved society people, who have common-sense
It was always customary for Mrs. Marston when she went to
Orangeville to take a great variety of table dainties, and never
mention the real purpose of her visit till after dinner. Mrs. Marston
had been so well disciplined in the art of concealment through living
so much in fashionable society, that she could put on a very pleasant
exterior, when really she was very much disturbed within.
So to-day when she visited her sister Bertha, everything was
exceedingly pleasant, and the topics under discussion were such that
there was perfect harmony in all that was said. Mrs. Marston presented
the bright side of everything in regard to Roseland when talking to
Stella, telling her how certain young gentlemen were continually
inquiring after her, and how her young lady friends were wishing she
would return to Roseland soon, for they did want her to come and visit
them so much.
Stella was interested to hear about her friends in Roseland, and
enjoyed her Aunt Helen's talk.
After dinner was over and settled a little, Mrs. Marston took the
opportunity to say to her sister Bertha (while Stella and her father
were out for awhile): Is it really true, Bertha, what the Roseland
Gazette says in regard to Stella's going up to that crank preacher
at the close of the service and giving him her hand and saying a lot of
queer stuff about sexual bondage?
I was not there myself, Helen, said her sister, but this I do
know, that when Stella returned home she told me herself she did such a
Well, said Mrs. Marston, I always knew Stella was a strange kind
of girl, but I never thought she would disgrace herself and her
relatives in that manner. Why, continued Mrs. Marston, it's all the
talk in Roseland and among Stella's friends, about the disgrace she has
brought on me and herself in talking to such a vulgar man.
Stella's mother could not help smiling within herself at her sister
calling Penloe a vulgar man, when she thought of what her daughter
related to her in regard to her experience with some of the upper ten
Continuing, Mrs. Marston said: It will never do for Stella to
associate with such an indecent man, who preaches French ideas from the
pulpit. Why, Bertha, it will never do. You had better let Stella come
and stay with me till she is married. She is a great favorite with the
young people in Roseland and there are some splendid catches for her
Well, said Bertha, I have no control over her; she can go to
Roseland if she wishes.
But, said Mrs. Marston, it becomes your duty as her mother to
show her the danger of speaking to a man like Penloe. You should keep
her away from his influence and do what you can to encourage her to
Bertha looked her sister Helen in the face and said: Helen, I have
decided to let Stella choose her own path in life and select her own
mate. If she asks my advice I will give it. She has her own life to
lead, and it does not become me to mark it out for her. She must hew
the way. And, supposing I wanted to, do you think it would do any good?
Helen, you know better than that. Could you keep your son from getting
that waiter girl in trouble? And now the poor girl is homeless and
penniless, with a baby, in a hospital, without a friend to keep her,
while your son is walking the streets of Paris as a well dressed
gentleman. Here Mrs. Marston interrupted her and said: Oh, my poor
boy! It makes my blood boil when I think how that nasty, dirty hussy
got my poor Henry into disgrace. Don't mention her, Bertha. It would
have served her right to have died before the child was born.
Bertha said: Helen, you can invite Stella to Roseland, and if she
wishes to go it is just the same to me as if she stayed here, for I
will not be in Stella's way of exercising her freedom.
So when Stella came into the house her aunt said: Stella, I do wish
you would come to Roseland and stay with me.
Thank you, Aunt, you are very kind, but I have certain subjects I
wish to study and I want to be where I can be quiet; but, Aunt, dear, I
will return with you and stay a week, if you will bring me back home at
the end of that time.
All right, Stella, get yourself ready and we will leave right
CHAPTER XIII. RETURN OF BEN WEST.
About two months before Ben West returned to Orangeville, Mr.
Hammond took a letter out of the Orangeville post-office, which read as
Kohn &Kohn, Bankers and Brokers, Stillman Block.
SAN FRANCISCO, April 7, 1899.
Harrison Hammond, Esq.,
DEAR SIR: We have been instructed by Benj. West, Esq.,
one of the leading capitalists of the Klondike, to send
you a draft for five hundred dollars, with a letter
from that gentleman to you, both of which we have
The letter from Ben West to Mr. Hammond was as follows:
DAWSON CITY, KLONDIKE, Feb. 12, 1899.
H. Hammond, Esq.,
FRIEND HAMMOND: After sending Julia the jewelry, I
realized that I had got my foot in it, in this way: She
thinks she must have a costly bridal outfit to match
the jewelry. Now, I have written her that as we will be
married in Orangeville, she need not get anything very
extra fine; that what she thinks she may need in the
way of costly dresses, she can get in San Francisco
after we are married, but I realize she might like a
few good clothes, so I send you five hundred dollars to
buy her what she may need in that line, which I hope
you will accept, as I know the income from a ranch
cannot stand any such extravagance. You will receive
the money from my brokers, Kohn &Kohn. Please keep
this confidential and not let Julia know a word about
After reading the letters Mr. Hammond had a good opportunity of
talking the matter over with his wife, as Julia had gone out for the
They both took a sensible view of the matter and thought that under
the circumstances it would be proper to accept the five hundred
dollars, as Julia would wear the clothes as Ben West's wife, and said
it was very thoughtful in him to send the money.
Mrs. Hammond said, as Julia was going to San Francisco as soon as
she was married, she thought it would be best to go to Fresno and
select her bridal trousseau there. Continuing, she said: Julia knows
you have money in the bank, but how much she has no idea; therefore,
she will not suspect but you are paying for her bridal outfit
So Mrs. Hammond and Julia went to Fresno. On their return Julia
seemed more than pleased with her purchases. It is not to be expected
that each kind of garment that was bought will be mentioned here,
neither will we go into a minute description of the amount of lace,
embroidery, insertion and scallop work on the various garments.
In the four weeks previous to Julia's wedding day she had numerous
callers to see her jewelry and her bridal trousseau.
The amount of close inspection, quick observation, speculative
thought and general talk that was given to all articles pertaining to
the bride's wardrobe and jewelry, if devoted to some of the serious
social problems of the nation, would have settled them thoroughly for
Is it not strange, remarked Mr. Hammond one evening after some
callers had gone and Julia had retired, the amount of interest and
thought people take in things that are really of so little consequence
to them; but things which are of the greatest importance to their own
welfare it is hard to get them to give two minutes' consideration to
them? They want excitement, and love it a great deal more than an
intelligent understanding of such issues as are to them of vital
importance. For instance, government ownership of railroads, telegraphs
and telephones to be operated at cost for the benefit of the people;
the issuing and loaning of money by the government to the people,
instead of by the banks to the people; also the adoption by the nation
of the Initiative and Referendum.
Some of the elderly ladies in Orangeville who had lived in the east
many years before coming to California, brought to Orangeville some of
their old sayings, and one of these sayings began to float through the
atmosphere of Orangeville and was whispered from one to another;
namely, that Julia Hammond had fallen into a tub of butter. Now, on
first hearing such a statement one would think a sad calamity had
happened to the young lady, especially when taking into consideration
that in a few weeks' time she expected to change her name. But upon
making an examination of her wearing apparel, one saw no sign of such
an accident, and when she appeared at the table in her elegant morning
wrapper you could not see any grease spots on her well-fitting garment,
and when you began to wonder what they could mean by saying that Julia
Hammond had fallen into a tub of butter, you resolve you will make a
further and closer scrutiny of that young lady's person. At last it
begins to dawn upon your mind, for you notice that when she puts her
elbow on the table and her hand up to the side of her face, your eyes
are almost dazzled by seeing something on her finger which are
brilliant stones set in gold. When Julia Hammond appeared at the ball
the other night, the main talk of the evening was about her diamond
ring, her gold watch set with diamonds, and her elegant diamond
necklace, making that swan-like neck simply superb.
As she drove her span of matched bays one morning she passed two
young men in a buggy. Then the following conversation took place
between the men:
Fred said to Henry, who was a stranger in Orangeville and was making
him a visit:
Henry, just look at that in her back hair.
That is just elegant, said Henry, as his eyes rested on a very
rich gold hairpin set with diamonds which were sparkling in their
beauty, as the rays of the sun brought out their brilliancy.
Fred said: That's Julia Hammond, the bethrothed of Ben West, who
went to the Klondike and struck it rich, having made a little over half
a million dollars.
The last day Ben West was in Orangeville before leaving for the
Klondike, he had a private talk with Mr. Hammond concerning Julia. Mr.
Hammond gave his consent and wished him prosperity. So it was arranged
that, owing to the long and uncertain carrying of the mails out of the
Klondike country, he would write a letter to Julia as if he had made a
stake, and in the letter make her an offer of marriage, and give it to
Mr. Hammond to hand to Julia when Mr. Hammond received word from Ben by
telegram, saying, Stake made, give the letter to Julia, and Mr.
Hammond was to wire Ben Julia's answer so he would not be kept long in
a state of suspense. This was all carried out to the letter, and Ben
West received a telegram which read: Yes. Have written in full. Julia
Continuing, Fred said: When Ben West was in San Francisco on his
way to the Klondike, he went into the store of Stein &Co., jewelers,
and selected the jewelry he might want, should he make a stake. So when
he received Julia's answer of acceptance he ordered by wire a diamond
ring, a gold watch set in diamonds, a diamond necklace, and a gold
hairpin set with diamonds. Stein &Co. sent them to Julia with Ben
West's love. He wired Kohn &Kohn, the bankers, to pay Stein &Co.
Ben's mother said: 'Those jewels for that girl cost Ben twenty
Henry said: Just think of that fellow's luck. Some men are born
rich, some acquire riches and some have riches thrust upon them.
Fred said: Some men are lucky sure. There's Ben West, who is coming
to Orangeville in a week. All the people will just go wild over him and
lionize him. And won't Julia be sweet to him after giving her all that
jewelry. They say, 'If you want honey you must have money.' Ben has got
the money and now he is going to have the honey; and just think, in
three weeks' time he is going to be married, going to have that pretty,
handsome, fresh young girl all to himself. Isn't she a beauty! My! Ben
will be in clover; he will have a picnic sure.
Henry said: If I could be in Ben West's shoes for just two months,
I would be willing to spend the balance of my life in hell. I would
have one comfort in thinking what a fine time I had had.
Fred said: Ben West will be here to-morrow and he will take good
care to see that not you nor any other man will be in his shoes for two
months from the time he is married.
When Ben set his foot in Orangeville on his return from the
Klondike, the news flew all over the locality, as if the wind had made
it its mission to carry the intelligence all over the country into
every home. Those who knew him least were just as anxious to see him as
those who had always known him. They did want to see, to talk to and
shake hands with the lion of the day, the hero of the hour, the man
whose name was in every one's mouth. If a man had arrived in
Orangeville who had saved twenty persons from drowning, there would not
have been half the desire to see him or hear him talk on how the
persons were saved. Why, Ben West received nothing but one continued
round of hearty hand-shaking and warm greetings, and his ears heard
nothing but eulogies and encomiums and general admiration for the man
who had made himself the owner of the two great idols that are
worshipped by the Western world.
Ben West had got what most men are seeking but few finding. If you
were in Orangeville you would be told that it was a Christian
community; but if you squared them by the command given by Jesus, Seek
ye first the Kingdom of Heaven and its righteousness, and all these
shall be added unto you, you would find them sadly wanting, for the
Kingdom of Heaven is the last thing they want. It is, These things
which shall be added unto you is what they want. For they want their
heaven to be in the possession of things outside of themselves.
A great dance was given in honor of Orangeville's coming man.
Predictions were heard that it would not be long before he would be
Governor of California, with a good show for a seat in the United
Most of the people of Orangeville were great on dances. If they had
a sociable it had to close with a dance; if a political meeting was
held, they had a dance afterwards; a spelling bee wound up with a
dance. If you would let them, they would dance after Sabbath School and
preaching. If you want a big crowd at a meeting, just give out there
will be a dance at the close, and teams will come for miles from all
over the country. Dance; why they want to dance all the time. They
simply become intoxicated with dancing. There is no moderation about
it. They leave the dance hall about four or five o'clock in the
morning. Does that kind of recreation help them physically? How do they
feel during the next day? Does it help them intellectually? Does it
help them spiritually? Then why pursue a course of recreation so
immoderately as to be detrimental to their highest interests?
When Mr. Hammond heard about the great dance that was coming off in
honor of Ben West, he said it did seem to him as if a dance was the
only thing the people of Orangeville could get up. He had never known
them as a community to get up anything else but a dance, and yet, he
said, there are some very fine people who attend these country dances.
Persons of noble character, who live lives of self-denial in their
homes and meet trials and misfortunes bravely and heroically, I am glad
Julia did not attend the dance because it was too near her wedding
day; but Ben West had a very enjoyable time, for the leading young
ladies in Orangeville were delighted at having the opportunity of
dancing once more with their old friend. But now a new interest had
centered in him, in the fact of his being the rising man and soon to be
There was a very large crowd at the dance. A number came from
Roseland; in fact, there were more than the hall could accommodate.
There were a number of men wanting to see Ben West a few minutes on the
side, to talk with him about what show there would be for them at the
Klondike, as each of them wished to be successful like Ben West.
For three weeks previous to his being married, Ben did not know
whether he was afoot or on horseback. What with the joy his father and
mother manifested at having him back again in their home, and the real,
sweet, loving and delightful hours he spent with Julia, who was free in
her demonstrations of affection, he being so worthy of it.
At last that day which always seems so long in coming, but which
always comes, came to Ben West and Julia Hammond. They had a quiet
wedding in the morning; then came the wedding dinner, after which they
went to Roseland, taking in the theater in the evening and stopping at
the Arlington Hotel that night. The next day they took the Flyer for
San Francisco. On arriving in that city they went to the Clifton Hotel.
In the evening they attended the opera.
As Julia had never been to San Francisco, they decided to spend a
week in sight-seeing. The second week they spent in looking at elegant
houses. After looking round for six days they bought a mansion on Van
Ness avenue for eighty thousand dollars. It originally cost one hundred
and thirty thousand. Then, the third week they spent in selecting
furniture, which cost them twenty thousand dollars. The fourth week
they bought a fine matched team and a carriage, for which they paid
fifteen hundred dollars, and kept them at a livery stable. They also
purchased two bicycles and an automobile, and got three servants, a
maid for Julia, a woman to do the housework, and a Chinese cook. All
laundry work was done out of the house. The second month was spent in
going to many interesting places outside of San Francisco as well as
taking in more of the city. Everything so far had run very smoothly.
Then a conversation arose regarding what business Mr. West had
better turn his attention to to occupy himself. After a little talk,
Julia said: You have now about four hundred thousand dollars. I do
wish you could make it a million. How proud I should be of you, Ben, to
have a millionaire for a husband. Just think what the people of
Orangeville will say when they hear you have become a millionaire. Why,
dear, I should just worship you to think that I had got a husband that
was such a successful man as to make a million dollars in so short a
time. When you become a millionaire, Ben, we will go to Europe in
style, and what a gay time we will have in Paris, dear.
What a power some women's soft words and smiles have on a man; he is
owned by them, and it was so in the case of Ben West.
Ben said: Well, dear Julia, I suppose I will have to go to the
Klondike again to make my pile a million.
Julia pouted and looked her prettiest and said: I do hate to have
you go to that cold and disagreeable country, Ben, and it will be so
lonesome for me without you, dear; but, Ben, make your pile quick and
Ben West did not express all he felt in having to go back to the
Klondike, but he had such a pretty, handsome woman for a wife, who
pleased him so much and he was so proud of her, and he loved her
admiration and approval of himself as much as he did his life. So he
decided to return to the Klondike in a month's time. That would give
him, in all, three months of honeymoon. Then he would leave for the
cold regions of the Klondike.
The last week Ben West was with his wife she seemed at times so sad
about his leaving, and would pet him and make so much of him, that she
became doubly dear to him. He said, This is bliss, indeed.
At last the sad day for his parting came. They did the best they
could by cheering each other up, with the expectation of Ben's quick
return and coming back as a millionaire.
Now, when a handsome young bride is left with an
eighty-thousand-dollar house and twenty thousand dollars worth of
furniture, three servants, a carriage and a handsome span of horses,
two bicycles and an automobile, with a good fat bank account to draw
on, she is not going to spend many sad days in the house alone, longing
for the return of her husband. Nor will she be contented to remain at
home and become fascinated in reading Milton's Paradise Lost or
Moody's sermons. No. She is going to have company, and gay companions,
and they will not be all of her own sex either. About a month after Ben
West had returned to the Klondike, Julia had made new acquaintances of
persons who had time, money, and elegant leisure. Returning home from a
swell party one evening, Julia said to herself, What freedom there is
in being married. Your market is made, and you can have lots of fun
dancing, flirting, and so on; while a girl that is unmarried has to be
more careful of herself and her conduct, because it might hinder her
making a desirable match. It is fine to be married to a good-natured
CHAPTER XIV. FIVE YEARS AFTER
It was one of those lovely days in March when nature is decorated in
her best; for each day she adds to her wreath of glory new beauties in
the form of buds and flowers. The trees in the orchard were a sight to
behold in their beautiful and variegated colors. The soft, balmy air
coming up the cañon was full of the perfume of flowers. The birds were
warbling their sweetest notes in the mulberry and walnut trees, and the
hum of the bees were heard around the flowers. All Nature sang through
these various forms, that All is life, All is love, All is joy, and All
On this day two ladies were sitting out on the porch of the Herne
residence, one was a lady with gray hair, the other was her daughter.
Both were sitting in silence. The younger was thinking how very much
like this beautiful day was, to the one five years ago when she entered
her new home as the wife of Charles Herne. Many thoughts were crowding
upon her mind; she was thinking how perfectly, supremely happy she was
on that occasion. Every thing about her seemed to respond to the happy
thought within, and her cup of joy was overflowing. Then the thought
came to her why was it not so to-day? Nature seemed just as beautiful,
her home was more beautiful, and the returns from the sale of their
fruit each year had exceeded their expectations. Her health was good,
she was in harmony with her neighbors, and enjoyed her life among the
people in Orangeville. And above all she had experienced the joys of
motherhood, having a son two years old, and her husband was just as
kind and attentive to her as ever, and yetand yetand yet, must she
confess, yes, she very reluctantly told her thoughts to her mother to
see if she could explain and give her light on those feelings which had
come to the surface many a time, only to be suppressed. But they would
rise again, and the more they were put down, the more they would rise,
till at last she would relieve her mind by telling her mother, who she
knew had had more experience.
Mother, said Clara, why is it, when everything about me is as
good and some things much better than when I was married, and Charles
is just as kind, thoughtful, and loving as a husband and father can be,
and yet after five years of happy, harmonious life, there is less
attraction between us, than when we were first married? Of course, I
have never let Charles think that I felt this way, but I noticed that
after we had been married two months, Charles' kisses, touches, and
pettings did not produce that pleasurable thrill they once did, and it
has been growing more and more that way ever since. Why, even when he
kisses my hand, it does not produce any more pleasure than if I had
kissed my own hand. I remember the time when Charles' kisses used to
send an electric thrill of joy through me; the sound of his coming
footsteps was a delight which gave me more pleasure than a kiss does
Well, Clara, said her mother, you don't expect to have the
high-strung, pleasurable excitement of a bride all the time, do you? I
know my experience was like yours, Clara, and I think from all those I
have heard talk about such matters that theirs is also the same. So I
take it for granted that is how it should be, and cannot be made
different. I would not let my mind dwell on it if I were you, Clara;
for you have got one of the best men for a husband, a fine boy, and a
very comfortable home.
After hearing what her mother had to say, Clara thought it best not
to say any more, for her mother had given her no satisfactory answer,
and seemed to know no more about such matters than she herself did. But
she kept thinking, Did it have to be so?
During the time that Clara was busy with these thoughts and talks
with her mother, there was a man walking through his orchard,
apparently looking at the fruit buds, but his mind was pre-occupied
with another subject. He was thinking that it was five years ago since
he and Clara were married, and he was thinking how happy he was when he
brought her to his home. He was thinking also of the thrills of joy and
pleasure her presence gave him before marriage, and for a month or two
afterwards, when she took his hand in hers and then kissed it; how
soothing and delightful it was; and what an attractive power she had.
But now, how different.
It is just the same as if I kissed myself. She is just as good,
just as loving a wife, so kind and thoughtful, and we never have had
any words, but there is something. I cannot find words to express what
I mean. Is it tameness? Are other married persons like that? And he
began to think about the married life of some of his friends. There
was Winchester and his wife, I remember them when they were courting,
they seemed inseparable, and for a while after they were married they
could not see any one else but each other. If they were out anywhere
they would sit together holding each other's hands, and not wishing to
say much to any one else. After they had been married six months I
notice they have quit holding each other's hands, and now you seldom
see them together much. With how few married couples who have been
married six years do you see that suppleness and alertness, that zeal
to please each other, and be with one another that you see in couples
about to be married.
Charles Herne thought, Why is this so? Why could not the same
attractive power which exists between some couples when they are
married be continued? Charles Herne did not know, his wife Clara Herne
was no wiser than he on that subject, though neither of them had made
their feelings known to the other.
CHAPTER XV. A CONVERSATION ON THE
Penloe had heard several times in regard to Charles Herne being an
exceptionally fine man, liberal in thoughts, as far as he went, very
just and generous to his men, so that the day that Penloe received a
very kind invitation from Mr. and Mrs. Herne to be their guest for a
few days, he accepted it knowing intuitively that he had a work to do
there. As a guest Penloe was not always talkative, but what he did say
was very interesting. He made himself one with men and they all took a
great liking to him; Mr. and Mrs. Herne were very much impressed with
the personality of their distinguished guest, and they enjoyed his
visit with them. He had been several times there since his first visit,
and they had become great friends.
Charles Herne remarked to his wife one day: What a genial,
sociable, humorous companion Penloe is; while of course, he is
thoroughly in earnest and has but one purpose in all he does, which is
to manifest what he calls the Divine, yet he is not serious, sober, and
grave all the time; he is so joyous, hopeful, and full of good-natured
fun, but he never lets it overcome him. I like him because he never
says and does anything for effect or to be considered smart; he is so
simple, humble, and unassuming in his manners, keeping himself in the
background. His influence on me is so different to that of any other
man, and impresses me very deeply. I always feel a better man after a
talk with him. In short, I feel his fine influence in the room even
when he is silent. He gave the men a powerful talk in their parlors the
other evening. He has a faculty for adapting himself to each one; just
knows what to say, when to say it, and how to say it. Several of the
men have made the remark to me that he is a very dear brother to them.
He had visited the men several times since, and they had become
great friends. Any one in a very short acquaintance with Penloe could
not help being impressed with his sincerity of character, his
genuineness and honesty of purpose, as well as his deep spirituality.
Therefore, it naturally follows that he would attract the confidence of
his friends. It was so natural for them to give him their confidence,
they could not withhold it from him, for it seemed to belong to him.
Then again, there are some persons who possess that power of
discernment, that spiritual insight for seeing through and through any
one; nay, more, they appear to have the power of entering into your
most secret thoughts, they enter as if by right, the rooms of your soul
and see all its furniture; they open even the secret chambers, and
enter as if they had been there before many a time, and when you think
you are about to take them into your confidence, you find that they
know what you are about to tell them.
Penloe possessed that gift, and Mrs. Herne realized that he had read
her book of secrets, that he knew all, and, therefore, when she took
him into her confidence, she did so with the half thought that he was
there some time before. She knew that Penloe was competent to give
information on any subject, and he was her true friend, and, therefore,
she could trust him fully.
One day when Penloe and Mrs. Herne were sitting on the porch
admiring the beauties of Nature all around them, Mrs. Herne said:
Penloe, don't you think this is a beautiful place?
When she made that remark, he knew what she was going to speak to
Penloe replied: There is not a ranch in Orangeville that has so
much in the way of the expression of fine taste and natural beauty as
Mrs. Herne said: I shall never forget how delighted I was when I
came here as a bride, and thought could I wish for more, for my cup
seemed full to overflowing. With this comfortable house and beautiful
grounds, and such a feeling of brotherhood existing between my husband
and the men, and everything running so harmoniously, nothing appeared
to be wanting.
Yes, said Penloe. You certainly have an exceptionally fine man in
some respects for a husband; I admire him very much.
And I know he does you, replied Mrs. Herne; continuing, she said:
Since you have favored us with your company and he has been with you
more, I can just begin to see some kind of change come over him; I
hardly know how to describe it; for it is only just commencing; I
notice it a little at times.
Penloe seemed to be absorbed in thought and made no reply.
Mrs. Herne waited a minute or two, and then said: I often think how
thankful I ought to be that I have such a fine man for a husband, and
yet, in one way, I have not realized my ideal, even with all these fine
surroundings, and such a good husband.
Do you think that is strange? asked Penloe.
Well, said Mrs. Herne, that is what I don't know; it is a query
with me, whether any one realizes her ideal in marriage; what do you
think about the matter, Penloe?
Well, I think there are quite a number who realize their ideal in
marriage, replied Penloe.
Mrs. Herne said: Please, Penloe, describe those kind of marriages
to me, for I am interested; it being a matter I have thought a great
Certainly, said Penloe, but which is it you wish me to describe:
What is an ideal marriage? or what are the ideals of those who get
married, and who realize them?
It is the first I am most interested in now, Penloe, said Mrs.
Herne, because I know that is your ideal, and therefore, would be the
correct one to aim for, but Penloe, while I hope you will tell me that,
yet, I ask you as a trusted friend, can you tell me why I have not
realized my ideal? said Mrs. Herne.
I can when you tell me what your ideal is like, said Penloe.
I am afraid you will laugh when I tell you for I know it is so
different from yours, replied Mrs. Herne.
One need never fear a true friend, said Penloe. To a true friend,
if it is necessary, one can speak of his ignorance or weaknesses, and
it may be a great help to him, because a true friend has only one
motive in friendship, and that is to lift the other up to a higher
plane of thought; I mean that is the highest kind of friendship, and is
a good test with which to gauge friendship.
Mrs. Herne was very much impressed with Penloe's idea of friendship;
so high and pure.
Mrs. Herne said: Penloe, you are so near and dear to me as a
friend, that I don't fear to tell you anything, and to show my
confidence in your friendship, I am going to reveal to you something,
that I have never thought it best to tell my husband.
Your confidence shall never be betrayed by me, said Penloe.
Thank you, Penloe, said Mrs. Herne. Now, let me tell you what it
is. Previous to my marriage to Charles Herne there was something in
addition to his true worth and genuine character that attracted me to
him; something about his personality, for I always felt a thrill of joy
when with him; even if I only heard the sound of his coming footsteps,
or he happened to touch my dress, there was a sensation of pleasure;
and when he took my hand, and pressed it and kissed me, it was bliss.
Well, I married him and we came to this beautiful home, and that thrill
of delight continued between me and Charles for about two months, and
during that time I was living in my ideal world. But after two months I
noticed a little less of that feeling, and it kept growing less and
less, till now there is none at all. I love him with my whole heart,
and am devoted to him, my environments are the same, or better in many
ways, seeing that I am a happy mother, and the place has now more
comforts and conveniences than when I came here as a bride; yet that
attraction has gone so that when Charles kisses me or touches me it
seems as if it was my own self kissed me and touched meto make the
union a perfect one, the delight of attraction should always be
present; in that way I have not realized my ideal.
Penloe said: Do you know, Mrs. Herne, there are more than a million
couples whose experience is exactly like your own; and if your
environments had not been so pleasant, and both of your dispositions
well blended, and well balanced, you would have separated long ago, as
many have done, not knowing the real cause, and thinking it was
something else. You see, continued Penloe, before you were married,
you and your husband had both led pure, virtuous lives; and each of you
was like a strong electric battery, charged with the life forces of the
body, which produced this pleasant feeling of attraction, and when you
were married both of you thought and acted like most other married
Mrs. Herne said: Thank you, Penloe; the ideas you have advanced
should become common property of the many.
Penloe replied: Yes; but there are some who have these ideas, but
don't wish to put them in practice.
Mrs. Herne said: Penloe, suppose that two married persons having
been living as most married persons do, and one of the two wished to
live the better way which you have just described, while the other
wished to live as they have been doing, what would be best to do in a
case like that?
Penloe replied: That is a matter that requires the best judgment
possible, so as not to give offence. Great diplomacy must be used where
hard feelings are liable to be produced; but there is one thing that
must always be kept in view and that is that the one who wishes to live
the better way must be true to himself or herself. The matter should be
presented in a very kindly way, showing that it is as much for the
interest of the one not wishing to live the new way as it is for the
one desiring it. Patience must be used, and, above all, kindness and
I am going to ask you now, Penloe, said Mrs. Herne, to tell me
from your standpoint, what kind of unions would you consider the best
To Mrs. Herne's astonishment, Penloe replied: All marriages are the
best ones; even where they are so unhappy as to separate the next day.
The two can only work out their unfoldment from the plane they are now
on, and not from any other plane or place.
Yes, said Mrs. Herne, but supposing I am living the old way, and
after hearing you explain the new way, I wish to live that way.
Penloe said: That would show that you were tired of living on your
old plane, and you were now ready to leave a lower plane for the higher
one. But, supposing I had seen you a week before you were married to
Charles Herne, and explained to you the new way, do you think you would
have been ready to commence your married life by living the new way?
Mrs. Herne laughed, and said: I see it all now; I had to go through
this experience in marriage in order to be ready for the better way.
But are there not some who are ready to live the better way without
having any experience?
Yes, said Penloe, because they were already on a higher plane.
Supposing I take a watch and explain its works to you and your husband;
after I get through, you understand all about its movements because you
were on the mechanical plane to receive the instruction, but your
husband does not, because he has not reached the mechanical plane to
receive it. So it is in regard to receiving ideas on any social, moral,
or spiritual plane.
I understand it now, said Mrs. Herne, for you have the faculty of
making any subject very clear; but I am going to push my question and
get you to describe the grades of the higher planes in marriage.
Penloe replied: There are very, very few persons who are living the
pure life in marriage who have not reached that plane through
experience. Now, it is possible that of two who are about to be
married, one previous to that union may have reached the plane of
purity through experience; while the other, not having had any such
experience, and intending in the main to live purely under marriage,
but for several reasons desires to have some experience before living
the pure life.
Again, where the purpose of the union is to live the pure life,
then the union belongs to the higher plane. But the highest plane of
all is where the two, at the time of marriage, consecrate themselves to
each other and to the service of the Lord in His humanity, keeping
their bodies, as the temples of God, pure and sacred; where both live
above all lustful desires for each other, keeping the life forces for
making the mind and body strong, and fitting themselves to be
instruments of the Divine. Such a union brings the highest bliss to
each of them, and the greater good to the world at large. They do not
require children to make them happy, for their life is in the Divine
One. They fully realize that in Him they live, move, breathe, and have
their being, and they forego for themselves the pleasures of parentage
in order to become a spiritual father and a spiritual mother to the
Mrs. Herne gave Penloe her hand, and said: I sincerely thank you
for the light you have this day given me.
That evening Clara Herne told her husband Penloe's ideas on the
marriage relationship. After listening very closely to all she said,
Mr. Herne sat thinking for a while, then said: Clara, for a long time
I have been reflecting on that subject, and it perplexed me much, but
now that Penloe has made it so very clear, it seems like so many other
things which are hard to find out and understand, but when explained by
a master mind like Penloe, appear simple.
Clara, can you estimate what a great gift Penloe gave you in
imparting those very important truths? and the knowledge he gave you,
he knew you would tell me; therefore, I feel he has given us both a
precious gift, more than if we had received a present of five thousand
dollars. We cannot prize such a dear friend too highly.
They had an hour's very agreeable talk on the matter, and they were
both of one mind, and decided that there and then they would live the
new way; and they both sealed their sacred vow with a pure love kiss.
CHAPTER XVI. TIESTAN.
A few days after Stella had returned home from her visit to her aunt
in Roseland, she and her mother went to call on Penloe; for Mrs.
Wheelwright was as anxious to see such an original man, as Stella was
to set her eyes on a face that had such a beautiful expression.
As we have said, Penloe was living all alone, his mother's work
being for the present in Chicago.
When Penloe came to the door he received Stella in such an agreeable
way as to make her feel perfectly at ease.
Taking his hand, she said: Penloe, this is my mother, Mrs.
Wheelwright; my name is Stella.
With the same grace and ease did he welcome Mrs. Wheelwright, and
the two ladies had not sat in his library more than five minutes before
they felt as if they had known Penloe all their lives, and they seemed
to have a consciousness as if Penloe had known them always. And as wave
after wave of thought came to their minds, Penloe met it and gave them
just what information and truth each one needed in chaste and polished
language; and yet there was no effort at studied phrases on his part,
for it was his natural mode of expression. When talking on certain
subjects and to an interested listener, his discourse seemed like a
string of sapphires, diamonds, pearls, and rubies.
Stella and her mother had sat there looking into those deep,
luminous, spiritual orbs, while the conversationalist was interesting
them, so that two hours had flown before they thought an hour had
As they were about to leave Penloe saw Stella's longing, wistful
eyes glancing over the rows of books. He anticipated the wish by
saying: Stella, any book or books you see here you are at liberty to
If Penloe had made her a present of a thousand dollars in actual
gold coin, she could not have felt as grateful as she did when he gave
her the use of his whole library. It was like pouring water on thirsty
land. Stella was thirsting for information on so many subjects, and now
her wish was gratified. She had the opportunity of getting the reading
matter she longed for so much, but did not have the means to purchase.
And, above all, when Penloe told her he would be pleased to help her in
any line of thought she might wish to investigate, it seemed to her as
if her happiness was complete. Her eyes and her hand expressed it all
on taking leave of Penloe.
The ladies said little in going home. It seemed mutually understood
that they would not give expression to their thoughts till they were
home and sitting together in the evening.
When Stella entered the house she had in her possession three of
Penloe's books. One was Macomber's Oriental Customs, another Woman's
Freedom in Tiestan by Burnette, and the third was Woman's Bondages
After supper was over and the dishes washed and put away, Stella and
her mother sat down and Stella said somewhat abruptly: Mother,
sometimes I wish I had never seen Penloe. Her mother was not very much
surprised to hear her express herself in that way, for she had observed
that Stella's mind was somewhat agitated.
Her mother said: Why, dear, what do you mean?
Stella said: Mother, I mean this: that I can never be contented and
happy in the society of any young man other than Penloe. How can I?
It was a very hard question for her mother to answer, who knew full
well that Penloe had unintentionally made an impression on her
daughter's heart that time could never efface, and she had refrained
from saying much in praise of Penloe, for she knew that it would only
be adding fuel to a very great flame, which it would be impossible for
Stella to quench. She knew that Stella had seen in Penloe a young man
greatly beyond her expectations; even beyond her ideal. Penloe lived in
a world that Stella had only just a faint conception of. It was his
intellect, his exceptionally fine personality, manifested in such a
fine, manly form she admired. But, above all, Stella could see that he
had emptied himself of all save love. And that was so broad, so deep,
so far reaching, so universal in its sympathies, that it stirred her
Mrs. Wheelwright said: I think my daughter has lost something.
Yes, said Stella, I lost it when Penloe delivered his sermon on
that Sunday at church, for I saw in him more than I ever dreamed of
seeing in any man, and when I went up and thanked him for his address,
and those discerning spiritual eyes of his looked so deeply and
searchingly into mine, that he read my secret.
Mrs. Wheelwright went to Stella and pressed her to herself, and
kissed her many times. After awhile Stella said:
Mother, what I want to find in a man is true companionship. Now,
look at the young men in Orangeville. There are a very few that are
kind, steady young men, but then not one of them would be any companion
to me. I don't want to listen to horse talk, or cattle talk, or hog
talk, or some old back East yarns all the time. They all live in the
social and domestic world; there is nothing intellectual about them;
they are not moved by any broad, grand, sweeping, noble impulses. Their
ranch, their home, and the excitement of their barterings and
dickerings, and the doings of a few of their neighbors constitute the
world they live in. And most of them think all that a woman is good
for, is to cook, wash, and raise babies. And mother, I told you what
kind of young men I met in Roseland; now, they are a sample of the top
notch of society. All that many of them want is just the use of a young
lady as a toy. And when they use up the flower, like the bee, they go
to another. As for real manly worth, interesting, intelligent
companionship, it is badly wanting in many of them. Some very few are
much better than the rest.
You know, dear mother, it is not that I want to know a man as a
man, but it is natural that I should want and love an interesting male
companion. When I think what Penloe is, and then think how little and
insignificant I am, a mere child beside him, and only about four years
difference in our ages, it makes me feel discouraged.
Penloe's talk this afternoon, said her mother, shows that he does
not look at it in that way. Don't you remember his saying, 'I have
traveled much, been among people of royalty, title and nobility, have
lived among the rich, and great society leaders, also among great
politicians, learned men, spiritual giants, business people, also among
the poor, also the illiterate, the abandoned, the offscouring, and the
outcasts of society; and I have yet to see the person that is not as
good as I.' So you see he thinks that you are just as good as he. Now,
dear, don't be discouraged in the least. I know just how my daughter
feels; she wants Penloe as her life companion and wishes she could be
to Penloe what he is to her. Stella, dear, calm your mind and remember
that if Penloe is for you, you need not have the least anxiety about
the matter; for there is no power in the universe that can hinder your
being made one. But if he is not for you, then it does not matter how
good or great, how grand or noble he may be, how intellectually
brilliant he may shine, he should be the last man in the world you
should think of as a life companion. For if there is anything that is
true it is those lines of Emerson:
'Whate'er in Nature is thine own,
Floating in air or pent in stone,
Will rive the hills and swim the sea,
And like thy shadow follow thee.'
Also remember the saying, 'My own will come to me.'
Nothing more was said. Stella commenced reading Woman's Freedom in
Tiestan, by Burnette. It occupied most of her spare time the next day,
and she finished it before supper, so that evening after supper Stella
said: O, mother, I have finished reading 'Woman's Freedom in Tiestan.'
It is most interesting. Tiestan is a place little known to the Western
world, very few travelers having ever visited the country. I want to
read a little of it to you.
Her mother replied: I shall be delighted to have you, for she
always interested herself in anything her daughter was pleased with, so
that she might be her companion and confidant when needed.
Stella opened at page 79, and read, as follows:
When the traveler arrives in the city of Semhee, which is the most
important in the country of Tiestan, his guide asks him whether he
would like to go to the Menegam, which means Foreigners' Home, or to
the Eshandam, which means Natives' Home. I told my guide I would go to
the Menegam, which would be conducted after the manners and customs of
the other parts of the Orient, which I had visited. Then, when I had
become accustomed to the ways and manners of the people of Tiestan, I
would go to the Eshandam. Now, while it is very true that very few
travelers from the Western world have ever visited Tiestan, yet the
travel from the other parts of the Orient is great and the people of
Tiestan are familiar with the ideas of the Western world, through the
Oriental travelers. They also have many of the modern improvements from
thence, which they have purchased from Bombay and Calcutta. After
making the necessary arrangements for a week's stay at the Menegam, I
took a walk through some of the most important streets of the city of
Semhee. The first impression which a traveler received in making a tour
through the city is from the fine physique of the girls and women. One
is struck with their independence, graceful carriage, and, as they only
wear two or three garments, it is self evident that they are not
dependent on corsets or waist stiffening for their erect bearing. I
noticed there were very few doctors, and what few there were of the
medical profession were equally divided between the sexes, there being
three women and three men doctors. The city educates them and pays them
to keep the people well. More than two-thirds of the people they heal
without medicine. The profession of dentistry is represented by four
women and four men. They receive their education at the public expense,
and their business is to keep the teeth of the people sound, and put in
new ones where required. Even the judges, lawyers, and city officials
are equally divided between the sexes. I noticed the same rule
prevailed in merchandise, hairdressing, and all kinds of business.
There was not a single employment that was distinctively male or
female, for no distinction was made between them. The same custom
prevailed in all kinds of ball games and sports.
Another impression one quickly notices is that the extremes of
riches and poverty are not seen among the people, for there are no very
rich or very poor; everyone having all the necessary comforts of life
and many of its luxuries.
After staying a week at the Menegam, I felt I was prepared to adopt
the customs of the people of Tiestan; so I engaged a room and board at
the Eshandam, or Natives' Home. Most of those who stop at the Eshandam
are natives who live in the province of Tiestan, they having come to
Semhee either on business or pleasure. Only two meals a day are served:
Breakfast from 7.30 to 9 a.m., and dinner from the hours of 1 to 3 p.m.
I arrived in time for dinner. Persons staying at the Eshandam are
all looked upon while there as members of one family, and it becomes
the duty of the manager to see that all persons sitting at the same
table have been introduced. It would be considered a breach of
etiquette to eat the meal quickly and in silence. I never was in a
hotel dining room where there seemed to be so much freedom and
enjoyment among the guests while taking their meals. Everyone has
plenty of time to eat his meal leisurely. Most of the guests coming
from the different parts of the province of Tiestan, and being well
informed, and all able to converse in two languages, and all having
their minds free from uncertain business enterprises, made their
conversation very interesting and elevating, and their company a
pleasure to enjoy. Meat is never seen on the table. They would feel
indignant and be as much disgusted if meat were set before them, as we
would be to have a cooked baby brought to the table. Eggs are used in
some of their cooking; they are also served in various ways. Their
bread and pastry cannot be excelled anywhere. The dessert consists of a
large variety of nuts, confectionery, and fruits. From two to five
o'clock guests are entertained with music in the beautiful hotel
gardens, where fountains are playing, sending water out in the form of
leaves, umbrellas, hats, rings, and other interesting forms. After the
music is over some indulge in games, others read or write, others chat.
In the evening for those who wish to attend are classes for literature,
science, and spiritual philosophy. It is the business of the hotel to
supply all the wants of its patrons; to see that the intellectual and
spiritual natures are fed as well as to see to the wants of the body.
The reason that the people in the city of Semhee have so much time, is
that all labor and business is performed in six hours. Six hours make a
day's work. No one is idle, every well person is busy at some
productive employment. At the hotel they have no such room as 'Ladies'
Parlor,' the parlor being equally for the use of both sexes, for the
ladies are willing that the men hear any subject they are talking to
each other about. No one smokes in that country. The bedrooms have two
doors. One door leads from the hallway into the bedroom, the other
leads from the bedroom into the bath department, which was twelve feet
wide and was as long as the row of bedrooms. Opposite each room was a
bath-tub and a large movable basin, so that a guest could take a sponge
bath or immerse himself.
The first thing every well person does on rising in the morning is
to go into the bath department and take a cold bath. On my right was a
newly married couple whom I had the pleasure of conversing with at the
dinner yesterday, and on my left was a young lady and her mother with
whom I had the pleasure of enjoying a conversation in the hotel gardens
the day before. I exchanged greetings with all of them in the bath
department, and the feeling was exactly the same as if we all had been
dressed and met at the breakfast. As my room was about the center of
the row I could look each way, and perhaps there were over twenty
persons of both sexes and all ages taking their bath. On the door
leading from the bedroom to the bath department was a writing in
hieroglyphics illuminated and framed, which when deciphered read: 'Sex
is an illusion, illusion is a bondage, break the bondage and be free.
The truth shall make you free.'
After we had taken our baths those who wished were shown into the
room for devotion. When I had entered the room and had sat for a few
minutes I began to realize what a sacred, peaceful influence was in the
place. It seemed to come up from the floor, down from the ceiling, and
out from the walls, and from everything in the room. No talking is
allowed in the room. It is used only for devotion. I performed my
devotions and gave the room my hearty benedictions. I noticed that the
forms of devotion were not all the same, some using one kind of form
and some another, but they all led to the same goal. The devotions were
all carried on in silence. They consisted first of all of breathing
exercises; then bringing the mind to a state of calmness, by repeating
mentally, looking to the East, 'May all beings be happy. May all beings
be peaceful. May all beings be blissful.' Then looking to the South,
repeat the same; then looking to the West, repeat the same, and looking
to the North, repeat the same. After which some of them say mentally:
'Help me to meditate upon the glory of Him who projected this universe.
May He enlighten my mind.' Then they pray in silence for light and
knowledge; also they repeat in silence: 'May I this day live without
discontent, without self-seeking, and without anxiety.' Then follow
concentration and meditation.
After the devotional exercises we had breakfast. I cannot help
remarking that the mind is in a better condition spiritually for
performing and enjoying sacred devotions before breakfast than it is
after it. To have family prayers after breakfast, as many do in the
Western world, hinders the freedom and adaptation that the Orientals
have in their devotion. In the Western world many are present out of
respect or rule, having no sympathy with the devotions, sending out
antagonistic aura which neutralizes the effect of worship, and makes it
cold, formal, flat, dead, and dull, for there is not the right
concentrated spiritual thought in the room, which is very essential for
profitable spiritual exercises.
On leaving the devotional room for breakfast, I could not help
thinking what a fine preparation for the day! With such a commencement
as that, no wonder the day's work is done well, without friction and in
The people in Semhee being of a social nature and free from all
conventionalities of modern society, it was not long before I made the
acquaintance of many very interesting families.
I received an invitation to make my home with one of them during my
stay in the city of Semhee, which I was glad to accept. I found the
life in the home to be very much like that in the hotel, so far as
bathing, devotions, and meals were concerned. One evening a young lady
called at the house to see a young man who is a son of my host. The
young lady stayed about two hours, making herself very agreeable to the
young man, and upon taking her leave she invited him to accompany her
the next evening to a concert. He accepted. The next evening she came
and called for him, took him to the concert and saw him home. It seemed
she had been very friendly with him for about two months. The following
Sunday afternoon the young lady called for the young man and took him
to the park, and as I was informed afterwards when the two were in a
very secluded place, surrounded by shrubbery, she, in a very pretty
way, told him that the more she was with him and the more she saw of
him, the more she felt impressed that she loved him, and had found in
him a true companion, and wished to know how he felt towards her. As he
was in exactly the same state of mind towards her as she was towards
him, they were engaged to be married. I became interested in this
couple, and observed that sometimes the young lady would call and see
him and take him out, and sometimes the young man would call and see
the young lady and take her out. I do not wish to give the reader the
impression that the young ladies of Tiestan always commence the
courtship, for it is as customary for a young man to commence a
courtship as for a young lady. The privilege and pleasure of commencing
a courtship belongs as much to one sex as the other.
One afternoon I was walking along the banks of the beautiful river
which flows through the suburbs of the city of Semhee, and saw a number
of boys and girls, also men and women, all enjoying themselves
swimming. They would swim awhile and then come out, stand or sit on the
bank of the river for another while. Sometimes there would be seen
several hundred persons of all ages on the banks of the river. They no
more thought about their respective natures than they did about the
number of hairs on their head. Among those I saw on the banks of the
river was this very young man and young lady who were engaged to be
married. They were standing up side by side ready to take a plunge in
the river, and in they went and swam about very gracefully. While they
were in the water they both saw me standing on the bank opposite to
where they had stood on the other. They swam to where I was, and came
out of the water to me, and we had a little chat.
If the young lady was invited to stay over night at the young man's
house, she would take her bath with the other members of the family in
the morning, and if the young man received an invitation to stay all
night at the home of the young lady, he, in the morning, would take his
bath with the members of her family.
About a month after the engagement the two were married. The city
Semhee employs four persons who can perform the marriage ceremony, two
men and two women. They were married at the home of the young man. A
lady came to perform the ceremony. She told the couple to stand up and
take hands, and then she asked the young mancalling him by nameif
he would have this womancalling her by nameto be his wife, and he
answered, 'Yes.' Then she asked the young ladycalling her by her
namewould she have this mancalling him by his nameas her husband,
and she answered, 'Yes.' Then she said: 'In the presence of these
witnesses I declare you to be man and wife.' The two then signed a
document stating they were man and wife, which was put on record, and
that ended the ceremony. They were very happy, for each one found in
the other a true, loving companion, and they were one intellectually
As women are engaged in the professions, in business, and perform
all kinds of service as men do, receiving the same compensation, they
are just as financially independent as men are, and, therefore, have no
other motive for marrying than that of true, pure love, finding in each
other a true intellectual and spiritual companion. Of children they
have few, for they believe in quality, and not quantity.
The intellectual and spiritual life predominates over the animal in
all its inhabitants. Do not think from what I have written about the
ladies of Tiestan that they are masculine women. Far from it. They are
just as sweet, pretty, entertaining, attractive, and graceful as any
women to be found in the world. Yes, far more so, for their hours of
duty are short. They have no care, anxiety or sickness to speak of, and
their environments are such as to bring to the surface all that is
pure, good, noble, and sweet; and, above all, the traveler finds the
ladies of Semhee to be real, genuine, and sincere in character.
When Stella had finished reading her selection from Burnette's book,
her mother had a big laugh, and asked her if she wanted to go to
No, mother, it is not Semhee I wish to visit just now, though some
day I certainly would like to see the city of Semhee and meet the
accomplished, enlightened, and free women of Tiestan. What I do want to
see is the women of this country, where there is so much boast of
liberty and freedom, free themselves from the awful bondage of sex
superstition, and all other bondages that have been heaped upon them by
people of the Dark Ages because they are women. Even those who talk so
much about woman's rights, are in bondage up to their necks. Look at
Laura Stevenson in Orangeville; a fine bright young girl, who makes a
hobby of woman's rights, and yet see the bondage she is in. A fine
young man whom she was supposed to respect very much, lay sick in his
cabin all alone, and with all her talk about her independence and
freedom, she never went to see him because he was alone and there was
no woman there. She being a young woman, thought it would not be proper
for her to do it. Laura Stevenson's independence and liberty consist in
having her own way in a few things. She does not know what freedom is.
Her freedom is all sham, and with no reality in it. Then there is Nora
Parks, who is supposed to be advanced, and talks much on woman's
freedom; but watch her how very particular she is in her conduct with
young men who are good, lest she should excite the jealousy of her
husband. Therefore, she is not free, but in bondage to his foolish,
uncalled for jealous feelings. Talk about women being free, they don't
know anything about freedom, for they are all in bondage of some kind
Mrs. Wheelwright said: Stella, among the many fine thoughts which
Burnette brings out in the description of the women of Semhee, that is
a great one which shows woman to be financially independent of man,
previous to marriage and after marriage, too. Therefore, she can
have no other motive for marrying a man than that of mating herself to
a true companion. When that is done the two act as one light, whose
rays reach out and shine on all around them. Blessed is such a life.
Mother, said Stella, I do not fully understand the meaning of the
writing on the bedroom door, which Burnette describes. You remember
that part which reads: 'Sex is an illusion.' I understand too well the
meaning of being in bondage to sex, but that sex is an illusion I do
not see the meaning of, because we know that sex is real and has its
use and purpose.
I cannot enlighten you, my dear, said her mother. You will have
to ask Penloe when you return the books.
Well, mother, said Stella, I am going to put some of my theories
into practice. I say my theories, but I do not exactly mean that; but I
am going to put some advanced ideas into practice in regard to woman's
freedom. I will now tell you one of them, and another later on.
Mother, continued Stella, when a man lives alone and a woman
wishes to go to his house to see him, she has to take another woman
with her because it is not thought proper for a woman to be seen going
alone calling at a house, particularly where a young man lives by
himself. But if a woman lives alone and a man wants to see her he does
not get some other man to go with him. No, he goes alone, and it is
thought all right. Now, mother, I will be free, and, therefore, when I
return the books to Penloe I will go alone.
All right, my dear, said her mother. I am glad, Stella, you have
the courage to practise your convictions. This talk of woman's rights
and freedom we hear so much about and woman's liberty that we read of
in the newspapers, is just so much evasion. A woman who may have known
a good man for several years dare not call on him if he lives alone.
One ounce of practice, Stella, is worth a thousand tons of big talk. Go
ahead, my daughter, I am proud of you, said Mrs. Wheelwright.
The week after Stella went to the house of Penloe to return the
books. Penloe was in his library writing. When he heard a knock he
arose and went to the door in a mechanical kind of way, his mind being
more on the subject of his writing than upon who might be at the door.
When he opened the door Stella said:
Good morning, Penloe; I have come to return your books.
Stella's voice seemed to recall Penloe to where he was, and to
notice who had come to see him.
In a soft, musical voice, he said: Glad to see you, Stella; walk
in, giving her his hand, and Stella was shown in to the library.
When she was seated Penloe said: Excuse me for a minute or two,
and Stella was pleased to do so, for she wanted to be in the room alone
and take notes. But no sooner had Penloe left the room when a different
state of mind came over her, and she did not feel like giving her
attention to anything in the room. For such a wave of peace came over
her mind as she had never experienced before, so that the room seemed
to be full of peace. It was not a dead, sleepy peace, nor a dreamy
peace, but a peace that was refreshing, strengthening, and was exactly
what her mind needed. She sat in perfect bliss drinking in all she
could, when Penloe came into the room. He seemed to her to be all
peace. This delightful condition put her mind in a state of equipoise,
such as she had never felt before; for it was a peace that was tinged
with a Divine quality; and it was about to awaken her more than ever to
the possibilities of the real world, the Divine world, the spiritual
world, the world whose realization so far she had not a knowledge of.
For her supreme life was in her intellectual tastes and in her deep,
loving, true nature, which loved to see what was fitting, right, and
just, actually lived; possessing at the same time the boldness and
courage to be a pioneer of advanced thought, and, above all, she loved
to live her ideas.
On returning to the room Penloe opened the conversation by saying:
Well, Stella, could you find anything interesting in the books?
Interesting, Penloe, said Stella. Why, I have had a very rich
treat in the perusal of them. I felt as if I could not put them down
till I had finished them, for they contain just the light I have been
seeking, and now they have become a part of my own mentality. But I
wish you would explain the meaning of the expression, 'Sex is an
Why, certainly, Stella, I will be glad to do so, for if there is
anything that appears real it is what is known as sex, the qualities of
male and female, we see in all nature. It is said to exist in some
precious stones, and we know it exists in the vegetable world, and in
all animal life. And if there is anything that is real to a boy or
girl, it is that he or she is a boy or girl, and if there is anything
that is real to a man or a woman, it is that he or she is a man or
woman. So strongly has this thought become the life thought of the
human race, that the members of each sex look upon themselves as being
just what their material forms stand for. That is, a woman believes
that she will be a purified woman through all eternity, that the woman
is permanent, real, immortal, and that she will continue on, as a
woman, with her womanly traits of character greatly expanded. While man
thinks that as a man he is real, permanent, and immortal; that he will
continue his existence as a man through all eternity, and that he will
always be known as a man, and always look upon woman as woman. Any
thought contrary to the reality of sex, the masses in the Western world
will not accept, for they live in a sex world, and at present do not
wish to rise above it, for they are in bondage to the reality of sex.
In the prehistoric period of humanity there lived a race of gods, that
is, a race whose members were intellectual and spiritual giants, many
of them spending their whole life in thought, living on a very meagre
diet, needing very little in the way of clothing and shelter, having no
material desires or ambitions to gratify. They, therefore, had an
abundance of time for searching for and investigating spiritual truths.
They were fitted by nature and by their environments for that life, and
they were gifted with revelations of the unseen.
They were called seers or sages, because they could see spiritual
truths which others could not, and it was at this period and through
one of these seers that a voice spoke, 'That which exists is one, men
call it by various names.' That was the conclusion that many other
eminent seers and sages had come to. For they saw that there was one
great Infinite Life Force manifesting itself in all and through all.
That there is a correlation of spiritual forces, and that all the
various phenomena are the one manifestation of this Infinite Life,
which is called by some God, by others Lord, by others Brahma, by
others Jehovah, by others Allah, the meaning of them all being exactly
the same as that expressed in the Bible by the name of God, in whom we
live, move, and breathe and have our being; that we are the
manifestation of Him. In short, our real entity, our real life, our
real self (the Atman), our soul (the Purusa) is Spirit eternal and
immortal. Now the life of the Spirit has no sex in it, but the spirit
manifests itself in these various forms of male and female. The sexual
form is only the instrument, not the Being. For the Being is not sex,
and, therefore, there is nothing connected with sex, that is spiritual
and eternal. It belongs to the external world and the material plane,
and is, therefore, a temporary manifestation suitable to the earth
plane. It becomes necessary, in order to get a true conception of what
we really are (that we are spiritual beings, being neither male nor
female) that we get away from the illusion of sex, and not be in
bondage to it. But the man must look upon the woman as a spiritual
being and not think of her only for what her material form stands for.
If he does he is under an illusion, being in bondage to her body, which
becomes a barrier to realizing the Divine within, and if the woman
looks upon the material form of the man as being the man and that for
which he stands, then she is under an illusion and is in bondage to his
material form, looking upon his male body as the all of man. And such a
thought becomes a hindrance to her realizing her Divine nature.
Remember, Stella, that sex is only apparent, not real. It belongs
to the phenomenal world.
Stella said: To accept the idea you have just advanced I shall have
to begin and lay a new foundation to build upon, for you have swept
away many things I considered truths.
Penloe said: Stella, you are merely casting off old garments that
you have outgrown, and you are now ready for a new robe that fits you.
But remember never to quarrel with the old clothes you once wore. They
have served their purpose and should always be respected.
Stella said: Penloe, the truth you have advanced regarding sex will
take me some time to fully digest.
Certainly, said Penloe, but it will not be long before you will
comprehend it fully in all its relativity and make it a part of your
Stella said: Have you any reading matter to lend me which touches
on this subject, Penloe?
Yes, said Penloe, here are some lectures by the Swami Vivekanada;
one is 'The Real and the Apparent Man,' another is 'Reincarnation,' and
two lectures on the 'Cosmos.' And here are also two books for you to
Stella was delighted to receive the lectures and books. After
thanking Penloe she gave him her hand, and said: I must go, now.
Penloe held her hand, and said: Stella, I see you are very fond of
books, and they are a very great help, and I prize my library very,
very much; but remember, Stella, the whole library of the universe is
within you. Stella, accept a suggestion from one who is your true
friend. Be much in prayer; let your prayer be for light and knowledge;
meditate much on Divine things; and you will be surprised how a flood
of light will sweep over you at times. Pray that the Divine, which was
manifested in such a degree in Jesus, may be manifested in you.
Pressing her hand, he said: God bless you, Stella, and may you ever
feel the presence of your own Divine nature.
Stella will never forget that warm hand grasp and those spiritual
words. For it seemed to her at that very moment that that spiritual
fire, which was always burning with such a glow in Penloe and shining
so brightly through his angelic face, had caused the spark which had
been growing brighter and stronger within her, to burst into a flame,
and what sweet season of soul experience did she realize on her way
Stella had much to think about that evening. She said little to her
parents; her mind was so pre-occupied she could not give attention to
much else. She realized she must make the matter thoroughly clear to
herself so as to have all her thoughts and ideas harmonize, before
communicating them even to her parents. She did not even look into the
literature which Penloe had lent her that evening. She felt like
retiring and thinking. When she laid her head on the pillow that night
it seemed as if it was not to sleep; it was to think. The leaven was
working in Stella's mind. The truths which she had just received were
powerful; it seemed as if she could not get away from them, even if she
wished, for truths possess us, we do not possess them. Nothing in the
universe is more powerful than truth.
After the first wave of the novelty, the beauty, the grandeur and
the thrilling depth of the truth had subsided only temporarily (to be
superseded by a far more powerful wave of the same character), there
came over Stella's mind during this lull, a strong feeling of
attachment to some of the old ideas she had held. It was very easy for
her to let some of her garments drop from her mental form, and be
clothed with new ones, but there were some that seemed rather hard to
loosen; and which were they? One was this: While it cannot be said that
Stella was vain or self-conceited, there was that strong attachment to
the personal I, which is generally seen in positive dominant characters
in the Western world. And as a woman she had everything to make her
feel proud of her form and beauty, with a graceful carriage, combined
with a bright mind and noble purpose. She had realized her power over
the opposite sex. Her dominant thought had been, that as a woman she
was going to lead her sisters out of bondage; that because she was a
woman she had a right to vote; because she was a woman she should not
be in bondage to forms, ceremonies, and customs; because she was a
woman she should not be a slave to sex superstition. But now all this
had been swept away, and it was hard for her to let go all the grand
thoughts she had entertained about woman as woman. But, blessed, noble,
courageous girl, she said: I will follow truth whithersoever it may
lead, and she inscribed truth on her banner, saying, That will I
So she let the last of her old garments drop from her, saying: I
will clothe myself with the garment of truth. The battle had now been
fought and the victory won; and now a wave came sweeping over her mind,
more powerful, with more beauty, with greater grandeur, penetrating far
deeper, stirring the very depths of her nature, and she felt such
freedom as she had never realized in her life before. With this rock,
the corner-stone of truth, she commenced to lay a foundation which is
eternal and immortal.
CHAPTER XVII. PENLOE'S ORIGINAL
The Roseland Gazette was very pleased to get something of a
sensational character in its columns, like the different stories which
had been brought to that city concerning Penloe's sermon delivered in
Orangeville. The State Legislature not being in session (to see how
much money they could get out of the pockets of the people for the
benefit of its members and their friends), there were no sensational
charges of bribery or boodle to report; and as Congress had closed
there was no news concerning laws passed in the interests of bankers,
railroad corporations, sugar trusts, whiskey and other trusts which are
able to furnish members of Congress with funds to carry their schemes
through. It happened to be at a time when news was scarce and dull, and
therefore the press made the most of the matter by writing an editorial
on the subject of sex relationship, which appeared in the paper the
following week, and was as follows:
In our last issue we gave as correct a report of the remarkable
sermon preached by Penloe in the church at Orangeville, as our reporter
could get. Since then most all other subjects of conversation have
subsided in this county and the main topic of conversation has been
Penloe and the sex question. As to Penloe, it is not our purpose in
this article to discuss the man, but some of his ideas. The sex
question is a very peculiar one to the minds of many. Penloe's ideas
are so radical that it gives us a shock all over even to think of
attempting to bring the people to that mode of living. The thought we
have concerning our sex is instilled into us by custom, precept and
example, so that from earliest infancy to introduce such an innovation
as Penloe proposes would apparently, to our minds, seem like
undermining our social structure and its very foundations. While we
admit the state of society is morally low, yet what can be done to
improve it? Can we ever reconcile ourselves to persons of both sexes
and all ages undressing in the presence of each other and all bathing
together naked? We question whether society is ready for such a change?
Penloe's theories are like many other theories, very fine on paper but
when you put them in practice they won't work. What say you, readers?
We would like to hear also from our brothers of the press.
And they did hear from their brethren of the press. For other county
papers took the matter up, being very glad to get something sensational
for their columns; and from county papers the subject got into the big
city dailies throughout California, and they printed very sensational
articles concerning Penloe and his sermon, discussing the sex question
at great length. It was not very long before the Eastern papers had
long articles about Penloe and his sermon, and they wrote much on the
subject. Then the matter reached the magnitude of what is known as a
wave; which swept through the press all over the continent, causing as
much comment and talk as Markham's poem, The Man with the Hoe.
Penloe's mail increased in size rapidly, and he was now receiving
twenty times more letters than all the other mail in Orangeville
combined. It was amusing to see how the letters were addressed. They
read, Dr. Penloe, Rev. Dr. Penloe, Rev. Penloe, Penloe, Esq., Prof.
Penloe, D.D., and LL.D. Letters came to him from every state in the
Union. Here is one:
DEAR SIR:I am shocked and disgusted with you. You
never ought to be allowed to talk from the pulpit in
such a way. The people of Orangeville ought to tar and
feather you and ride you on a rail out of the county.
Another letter was as follows:
Of all the cranks I ever did read about or hear tell
on, you are the darndest. The women folks in my house
are as hot as hell, ever since they read in the paper
what you talked in church. My wife said, 'What a crank
you must be,' and my mother-in-law said hell is too
good for such as you. What a rumpus you have made all
over the country; it seems as if hell is to pay for all
Penloe also received some powerful scorching letters from orthodox
ministers, while on the other hand the liberal and radical elements of
society poured forth eulogies and commendations for his bold original
utterances, for his fearlessness in treating the subject in the
courageous way he did; calling him a brave pioneer and they themselves
would start Penloe Clubs for putting his ideas in practice. He received
many letters from churches in some of the large cities, like the
REV. DR. PENLOE:
DEAR SIR:Our church in this city is an elegant
structure and will seat twelve hundred persons. For
some months we have been looking for a popular young
man to fill our pulpit. It has been very difficult to
find an up-to-date man, one that will draw a
congregation to fill our church, for the audience keeps
growing less every Sunday, because we have not got a
real, live smart man to preach to us. We think if we
could secure your services you would draw the largest
congregation in this city, for your popularity has
swept the country from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and
we feel sure you are the right man. Our people are very
sociable and well to do, many of our members being
rich. We are willing to pay you a salary of seven
thousand dollars a year, and the use of a handsome
house elegantly furnished, and will allow you two
months' vacation, besides paying your expenses to come
here. We will say that, should you accept our offer,
our people will be glad to receive you into their
hearts and homes.
Penloe always answered all such communications, but as for accepting
one of them it was out of the question; for he knew it was not his
field of labor, and if the salary had been a hundred thousand dollars a
year, it would have been no temptation or an inducement to him to
accept the offer. For money, name and fame touched him not; and nothing
could induce him to leave his path of labor for the sake of going into
some new field of work which only held out large material rewards. He
also received many offers from the owners of papers and magazines,
asking him to write his views. The New York Monthly Magazine
offered him one thousand dollars for an eight-page article on the sex
question; provided he would not write on the subject for any other
magazine or paper. Penloe accepted the offer because he considered that
was the best channel to communicate to the world his views on the sex
question. Its readers were of a class that could comprehend the subject
in the spirit in which it was offered. And as for the thousand dollars
Penloe had a sacred purpose he wished to use that money for. A man
wrote to Penloe offering him forty thousand dollars if he would consent
to lecture for one year in all the large cities in the United States.
The man told a friend of his, he was sure after paying Penloe his forty
thousand dollars and all other expenses, he would clear about sixty
thousand dollars himself.
How true it is that a prophet is not without honor, save in his own
country. For Orangeville was the last place to feel the Penloe wave
which swept over all the country. At last the people of Orangeville
reading so much about him in their papers and magazines, began to think
he was something more than a crank, that they must have a great man
amongst them, or else he would never have received such big offers of
money for his services as the papers stated he had, and there would not
have been so much written about him if he was of no account.
Quite a change had come over the people in Roseland concerning
Penloe, and they began to feel differently towards him since his wave
of popularity had swept over the country. Even Stella's aunt had
experienced a change of heart towards him, for she was heard to say,
People's ideas are changing now in regard to the sex question. They
look at the subject so differently now from what they did when I was a
girl. I did not think Penloe was such a smart man as the papers say he
is. He must be, or else he never would have received an offer of forty
thousand dollars to lecture for one year.
A man may possess all the characteristics of a saint and a martyr
combined, and yet the average person is not attracted to him; but as
soon as money and popularity flow towards him, then in his eyes he
becomes next to a God; for people love to be touched on the material
side of their nature rather than on the spiritual. They consider the
spiritual well enough to talk about, and when a friend of theirs dies
they may love to sing Nearer, My God, to Thee and Safe in the Arms
of Jesus, but what they really desire for themselves and families,
above everything else, is a rich blessing of material things; that
which makes well for the body and which puts them in a position to have
full play of the emotional and sensational part of their natures.
So great was the desire among the people of Orangeville and
Roseland, and in fact the whole county, to hear Penloe speak, and to
see the man that so much had been said and written about, that a
committee was sent to him with a request signed by the leading
citizens, asking him to deliver an address to them in Roseland. Penloe
accepted the invitation to speak. The committee secured the use of a
large packing house for the meeting, and fixed it up so that it seated
a very large audience, for they knew that the Penloe wave was at its
height, and about every team from every ranch in the county would be
out on that occasion. As the committee had well advertised more than a
week ahead, that Penloe would deliver a public address, the news
reached to many parts outside the county, so that when the day came for
the meeting to be held a number of strangers from different parts of
the state were seen in Roseland.
We will copy from a San Francisco paper a report of the meeting, as
that paper had a special reporter there who gave a full report of the
AN IMMENSE CROWD
TO PENLOE'S ORIGINAL ADDRESS.
Meeting Opened by the Mayor of Roseland.
If a stranger had been in Roseland to-day he certainly would have
thought from seeing the livery stables crowded with teams from the
country, and every vacant lot and square also filled with teams, and
the crowds of people on the streets all going in one direction, that
some great attraction was going on, and he would be under the
impression that if he went out into the country he would not expect to
see a person or a team, for there never was any occasion before that
brought such a large gathering of people to Roseland. Long before the
time of commencement, the seating capacity of the building was taxed to
its utmost. Promptly at 2 P.M. the Mayor of Roseland and Penloe
appeared on the platform. The Mayor opened the meeting by introducing
Penloe in the following words: Ladies and gentlemen:It gives me
great pleasure to introduce to you this afternoon a gentleman whom you
all have heard and read so much about. Whatever your views may be about
his teaching, I can positively assert the lecturer is a scholar and a
gentleman, every inch of him. Very often a speaker's remarks fail to
have the full weight they are entitled to because persons say he has an
axe to grind, or, he is paid to talk that way. Now I have not the least
idea of the subject the speaker is going to talk to you upon, but this
I can say, he is here this afternoon only because he was invited to
come and speak. He refused all offers of money for his services,
saying, he wished his labors to be a free will offering to you.
Therefore I hope you will give him your closest attention, remembering
he gives you the best product of his mind acquired through years of
study, thought and observation; and that is the richest gift one can
Ladies and gentlemen, I now have the honor of introducing to you
the speaker, known as Penloe.
Penloe rose and came forward to the front of the platform; first
bowing to the Mayor and then to the audience; and as he did so he faced
a sea of upturned faces, who gazed upon one of the most remarkable men
this country has produced. Not very many of the audience had seen
Penloe before, and they were agreeably surprised to see on the platform
before them, so distinguished a personality. It seemed a delight to
look upon him. But few present could begin to size up such a man as he
was. Some of the remarks which one could hear whispered were like the
A young lady said: What beautiful clear eyes he has. It seems as if
you could see his soul in them.
A gentleman was heard to say: He has the most striking personality
of any one I have ever seen.
A lady remarked: Is he not handsome?
A man said: What a fine head and noble countenance he has. It seems
as if the Almighty had stamped himself on him.
Yes, said his wife who was sitting at his side. And did you ever
see a more perfect specimen of physical manhood than he is, so
symmetrical in his build?
Such was the man who faced the large audience and opened his address
* * * * *
The Mayor was correct in calling what I am about to say to you 'a
talk,' for if any one has come here expecting a grand oration, with
flowery language, rounded periods, and finished diction, he will be
Now, dear friends, I love you all, and that is why I call you dear
friends, and that is why I am here this afternoon to talk to you,
because I love you all. Yes, every one of you. I don't care what you
apparently are. Some of you may be greedy and grasping, and some may be
tyrannical and overbearing, or weak and negative; with no backbone or
grit or will; or you may be vain, selfish, ambitious, self-conceited,
carrying your head too high; or you may be one who lives to dance;
loves the whirl and excitement of pleasure; or you may be one who loves
to enjoy eating and drinking and sensual delights. I say, and I repeat
it again, I don't care what you apparently are, I love you all just the
same. I look at you from an entirely different standpoint from which
you look at yourselves. Now you all look at yourselves and at others
according to sex and your environments. Before me I see men who say of
themselves, I am a lawyer; I am a preacher; I am a banker; I am a
doctor; I am a merchant; I am a mechanic; I am an artist; I am a
musician; I am a farmer; I am a common laborer. Before me I see women
who say, I am a dressmaker; I am a milliner; I am a teacher; I am a
clerk; I am a bookkeeper; I am a typewriter; or I am a lawyer's wife,
or banker's wife, or doctor's wife, or merchant's wife, or preacher's
wife, or mechanic's wife, or farmer's wife. You think of yourselves
according to that position you occupy to make your living, or according
to the relationship you hold as wife, mother, daughter, or according to
the family you are a member of. Then again you all esteem yourselves
according to the degree of comfort, luxuries, health, money or property
which each of you may or may not possess. Also whether you are young,
middle aged or old.
Dear brothers and sisters, I do not rate you nor judge you nor look
at you in any way according to your conditions, age, sex or
environments. I look at you to-day not as you look at yourselves, but I
look at you all as spiritual beings, pure and perfect; nay, I look upon
you all as being still more than that, for I look upon you all as being
the manifestation of the One great Infinite Spirit.
Let me make it clearer to you by an illustration: In a certain
province of an Oriental country it was customary at one time for any
young lady who was distinguished in any way for her beauty or her
riches or her titles or her accomplishments, to set a day for receiving
her suitors, and grant each an opportunity to tell what he had to offer
her as an inducement to her to become his bride. In this province there
was a young lady whose beauty of countenance and lovely form, language
is inadequate to describe. In addition to that, her sweet souled
character exceeded her beautiful form and her many accomplishments. So
superior had that character become in its spiritual manifestation, that
many stories were told of her healing the sick, of her spiritual words
and presence reforming the lives of many; and of her having knowledge
of things, persons and subjects that she had neither heard nor read
about. Her youth, her beauty, her spiritual gifts and her many
accomplishments became known throughout the length and breadth of the
province, and she had many suitors for her heart and hand. So a day was
set for her to receive them all, to hear what each one had to offer,
and select the one of her choice. A suitable room was prepared for
receiving them. At the farther end the floor was raised two feet and on
this raised part she took a seat in the centre and near the front, with
all her suitors on her right seated on the lower floor and facing her.
The first suitor that had a hearing was a rich merchant. He said to
her, 'Dearest lady, I have heard much of thee and it now does my eyes
good to behold thee in all thy beauty. I am glad you have consented to
give me the opportunity of telling you what I have to offer you to
become my bride. I am a rich merchant and have a palatial home on the
borders of a beautiful lake. Inside my home is a collection of the
riches and products of skill from all lands that I have traded in. I
have gold and ivory, laces, shawls, silks, fancy wares, rugs, mattings,
spices and perfumes; and I have brought with me some as an offering to
you' (and here he ordered his servants to bring the presents in and
display them before her). 'Be my bride, most gracious lady, and the
wealth from all lands shall be thine.'
The lady smiled on him and told him to take a seat on her left and
have his servants remove the presents.
The next that appeared before the lady was a great warrior.
He said, 'Lovely lady, I am a great warrior. I have led to battle
large armies, and have always been victorious. I have met hand to hand
captains and generals, and have slain them with one blow from my sword'
(and here he drew it out of its sheath and showed it to her. It was a
fine piece of skilled workmanship). 'Should you become my bride no harm
shall ever befall you, no enemy shall come nigh you, and no serpent or
wild beast shall hurt you; for I have killed all kinds of animals and
reptiles. Most lovely one, if thou wilt become my bride, all my
soldiers shall obey thy word, and I will be thy true protector.'
With a smile she motioned him to a place on her left.
The next that appeared as her suitor, said, 'Dear lady, I have a
beautiful home and all it needs is thee, and shouldst thou see fit to
become my bride, you will be a happy and a joyous mother, and in the
love of each other, and in our home, and in our children, will our
happiness be found. Dearest lady, become my bride and thou shalt be the
head of the happiest home in the land.'
She smiled and motioned him to a seat on her left.
The next suitor that came forward was attired in rich cloth trimmed
with lace and gold.
He said, 'Most charming lady, I am a Prince, and if thou wilt
become my bride, I will make thee a Princess. Thou shall have a lovely
court, many servants, costly robes to wear, and millions of people to
worship thee, and do thee homage.'
She smiled and motioned him to a seat on her left.
Other suitors made offers to her. The last suitor that appeared
before the sweet lady was different from all the rest. He was dressed
plainly; he needed nothing to improve his natural appearance, for his
majestic form, his noble countenance and lustrous eyes, surpassed in
attractiveness all the other suitors. When you once saw him you felt as
if you wished to take another look at him, for it seemed to do one's
eyes good to feast them on so grand a man.
He said, 'Thou pure, sweet one. When a youth I was wandering
through a forest and saw a man sitting under a tree. He had a sweeter
countenance than I had ever seen before. He said, My youthful friend,
if thou wilt learn from me thou shalt become good, wise and very
'I thought of my companions and myself in regard to what he said,
and the more I thought about us all, I could not think of one that was
becoming good and wise, or was truly happy. For we were all restless,
going here, and going there, trying this and doing the other to find
happiness. So I thanked him and said, I will be thy pupil, for I wish
to become good, wise and truly happy. He said, Commence to-morrow
morning, and as soon as you awake rise immediately; never lay after you
are awake, for it is not good for one of your age. Then when you rise
bathe in cold water. After you have dressed, he said, read out of
this book which I give you; read every morning for fifteen minutes or
half an hour; then spend a little time in prayer and meditation. And
he gave me instructions in such and said, Live on plain food, eat no
meat, avoid bad companions as you would a Bengal tiger, and before
going to rest at night spend half an hour in prayer and meditation.
Continue faithfully in the performance of these practices for three
months, and then come here to me. I did so, carrying them out to the
letter, and at the end of three months I returned to him. He looked at
me and said, I see by your countenance you have changed. I replied,
Yes, I feel changed altogether. Tell me, he said, in what way do
you feel different?
'I said, When you saw me three months ago my mind was confused
more or less, my imagination ran too much after vain and sensuous
objects. I had too much personal sensitiveness, being attached to
myself so much. I was easily irritated, and always restless, wanting
something I did not have. But now my mind is calm and peaceful, my
imagination dwells on the pure, the good and the beautiful. I no longer
feel envious or jealous or greedy; for love seems to be taking the
place of those feelings.
'Continuing, my teacher said, Let your prayer be for light and
knowledge, and ask the Blessed Infinite One to help you to love all;
let love rule; never mind what others may say about you, or how meanly
they may treat you. Be in earnest to love all. Rise every morning with
this thought: 'How beautiful my brother is; how precious is my sister.'
You may not love a person's ways, but you should always love the
person. Separate the two in your mind and it will help you much. Start
the day with this thought, 'I will live this day without discontent,
without self-seeking, and without anxiety.' Say, 'Lord, deliver me from
all selfish ambitions, and from pride and vanity, and may I become
teachable as a little child.'
'I did so, for I was very desirous of advancing in the Divine life.
'In six months' time I returned to him. He said, Why, brother, how
happy you look; how clear and bright your eyes are; how sweet your
expression has become.
'Yes, I said, I am becoming like you. He said, God bless your
efforts in living the Divine life. Let your prayer be: Do thou manifest
thyself in me, thou Blessed Infinite One. See that I want Thee and
'I did so, for the more I followed his instructions the more of the
Divine life did I realize, and I knew that the angel was ruling the
animal within me. After being his disciple for several years, he said,
Thou art ready now to become a teacher like myself.
'I replied, Dear Guru, my prayer is that in becoming a teacher
like thee, I may be able to lead others in the Divine life as thou hast
led me. I kissed the holy man and he gave me his blessing which has
followed me ever since, and it is with pleasure that I can say in the
spirit of thankfulness and humility, there have been those whose lives
are all the sweeter and brighter through my life and instructions.
Sweet lady, you know what I mean when I say, having obtained freedom
through renunciation I realized illumination, and through the light
which I have received I am in the possession of knowledge which the
many know little about, and through the light and knowledge which I
have received I came to know you long before seeing you to-day. I have
seen you many, many times though you were hundreds of miles away from
me, and I seem to have been in communication with you, though I never
have spoken or written a word to you. Not only so, sweet lady, but it
has been my happiness to receive from you many uplifting thoughts and I
felt as if I was led by the Divine Spirit which is in us all to come
here to-day and say to you: Thou sweet spirit, I have no houses nor
lands, no money nor wealth, no name nor fame, but I have attained
realization, and through that attainment I see the Divine in you; and
its manifestation to such an eminent degree in you has attracted me
towards you, and I say to you now, sweet one, that in your becoming my
bride our lives will be expanded, and we will attain unfoldment that we
could obtain in no other way. Thou bright one, what sweet communings of
soul with soul, we will have; for having consecrated our bodies to the
Eternal One, we will each day manifest a brighter light, and both of us
shine as one in our love for each other, and for all. And, dear one, in
that beautiful light and life will our cup of bliss be filled, and many
besides ourselves will drink therefrom.'
The lady smiled very sweetly on him and bade him take a seat on her
right. Then rising and facing her other suitors she said, 'Friends, I
thank you for the interest and kindness you have shown towards me, but
you all made one mistake, and that is in thinking I am merely just what
this material form stands for, in thinking I am a woman and only a
woman, and nothing but a woman. And in thinking so you come, one with
gifts of silks, laces, gold, ivory, spices and many other things, as if
that was all I needed. Another offers bravery and protection for me,
thinking I was a weak woman and could not take care of myself; another
wants to make me a Princess, so as to excite my pride and vanity, by
causing so many to bow down to me, as if my joy consisted in having my
pride and vanity fed, and in looking upon my fellow beings as my
slaves, whose whole life is to contribute to my enjoyment. Then another
offers me a home and to make me the mother of many children; as if that
was the highest attainment for a spiritual being; while still another
offers me money, good things to eat and drink and wear, only what this
body of mine seems in his eyes. No, I will have to decline all your
offers, because you are under the illusion that I am only a woman.'
Turning to the one on her right she said, 'By a life of self-denial
and discipline through prayer and meditation, and in cultivating the
spirit of love for all, and in making your life a free will offering to
humanity, you attained illumination. The angel now rules the animal and
you have arrived now to the state of realization of the Divine within
you. Not being in bondage to either the man or the woman, for you see
that each is a spiritual being like the other, therefore you look upon
me as a spiritual being manifested in the form of a woman. You have
seen that my wants and desires are spiritual, not material. All that I
need in the material world is very little and comes to me; for as Jesus
has said, Seek ye first the Kingdom of Heaven, and all these things
(material) shall be added unto you.
'Dear friend, you have appealed to my self, my spiritual nature. I
now respond, and, dear one, what I possess in the way of love shall be
yours, for I love you so dearly it will be a joy for me to give you my
love and live in your love, and we will both consecrate ourselves to
each other and to the Lord, in His humanity.'
Penloe, looking earnestly at his audience, said: That is the way,
dear friends, I look on you all this day; not for what your material
forms stand for, not for the environments each of you is placed in, but
I look upon you all as spiritual beings. I look upon you as Divine, and
it is this great, grand and glorious thought that each one of you is
Divine. I want you to take it home with you; I want you to repeat it
over and over again, 'I am Divine'; I want you to think about it
till it becomes part of your own mentality, till it becomes part of the
cells of your brain, till it becomes a part of the life blood of your
body, flowing through your arteries and veins; and all your actions
shall have their source in the grand thought that you are Divine. When
you reach to that plane, your whole course in life will change, and
each one of you before me here will become so changed that you or your
neighbors will hardly know yourselves. For you have been going about
with this thought, 'I am a poor, weak human being.' That man over there
says, 'All there is to me is this body with its appetites and desires.
I drink, I swear, I live a life of lust and that is what I am.' I say
no! a thousand times no! All the qualities of the Divine are within
you; but you have not realized them. Don't look upon yourself any
longer as being that drinking, swearing, lustful man. But look upon
yourself as being Divine; that all the qualities of the universe are
within you, and in you are all the powers of the universe. That poor
woman over there whose life is one of hard, monotonous toil in the
house; you are the mother of too many children. Your life is one round
of work, care and anxiety, and when you look in the glass you see that
work, worry and passion have taken the bloom off your cheeks, the
brightness out of your eyes; you are faded; and it seems as if the
light and life of the world had left you, and you see no bright future.
Hardly anything in it for you worth the having.
It is to you I bring this grand message, my discouraged sister,
wake up and get out of the illusion that you are what that poor
worn-out body of yours stands for. No, dear sister, a thousand times
no; for you are 'Existence Absolute, Knowledge Absolute, and Bliss
The reason that you and your sex are where you are to-day, is
because you are in bondage to your material forms, looking upon
yourselves and wishing men to look upon you also for what you are in
body, instead of women looking upon themselves as spiritual beings and
having men do the same. The reason that men are where they are to-day
is because they are in bondage to their material forms, looking upon
themselves as being men, and also expecting women to look upon them as
such, instead of men looking upon themselves as pure spiritual beings
possessing the qualities of the Divine, and looking upon women as being
exactly the same spiritually as themselves.
You have all drawn veils over your Divine nature through this
illusion, and from this illusion springs all the acts which keep you
from realizing your Divine nature. Your greed, your vanity, your
self-conceit, your love of praise, your love of self, your attachment
to yourself, and all that is yours, your appetites all act as shades
over the windows of the soul. When will you break these various bonds
and be free?
"There is a story that the king of gods, 'Indra,' once became a
pig, wallowing in mire. He had a she pig and a lot of baby pigs and was
very happy. Then some other angels saw his plight, came to him and told
him, 'You are the king of the gods, you have all the gods to command.
Why are you here?' But Indra said, 'Let me be. I am all right here, I
don't care for the heavens while I have the sow and little pigs.' The
poor gods were at their wits' end what to do. After a time they decided
to come now and again and slay one of the little pigs and then another,
until they had slain all the pigs and the sow, too. When all were dead
Indra began to weep and mourn. Then the gods ripped his pig body open
and he come out of it, and began to laugh. What a hideous dream he had
had. He, the king of gods, to have become a pig and to think that pig
life was the only life. Not only so but to have wanted the whole
universe to come into the pig life.
[Footnote 2: Vivekananda in Raja Voga.]
The soul when it identifies itself with nature forgets that it is
pure and Infinite. The soul does not live, it is life itself. It does
not exist, it is existence itself. The soul does not know, it is
knowledge itself. It is an entire mistake to say the soul lives, or
knows, or loves. Love and existence are not the qualities of the soul,
but its essence. When they get reflected on that something you may call
them the qualities of that something. Remember what you read in Hindu
philosophy, that the finer body, and what is called in Christian
theology the spiritual body, is not the soul. The soul is beyond them
all. It is this soul which is Divine.
Now let us follow out this thought that all of you are Divine and
that each one of you looks upon himself as being Divine, and that you
look upon all others as being Divine also. What is the result? Let's
see. The Divine nature is one of love, one of purity, one of justice,
one of harmony, one of peace. As a Divine being you are looking within
for all your happiness and are not dependent on things outside of
yourself to make you happy. As a Divine being you are not grasping and
wanting things that don't belong to you, and making yourself and others
miserable by wishing you were where you cannot go, or you want things
you cannot have. As a Divine being your conduct towards others under
all circumstances is one of love. Therefore you are not stirring up
contentions and strifes and you are trying, as far as possible, to make
those around you happy, and are yourself striving to be the same under
all circumstances. All things which disturb you keep you from realizing
the Divine. Therefore you have control over your temper and are
manifesting peace and harmony. As you are Divine, you should do your
work in the world without attachment to things of the world. You should
not be owned by the external world, for all forms and things perish,
but the life of the spirit is eternal.
As a Divine being you will be honest and truthful to yourself and
others; you will practise no deception; you will not want what belongs
to others; and try in trade or barter to cheat another, for you look
upon all as Divine like yourself. As a Divine being you will want to
earn your living by the sweat of your own brow, instead of by the sweat
of others as many do to-day.
Let that thought enter the life of the family and instead of the
husband and father being cross and cranky at times, he will always be
the same; trying each day in some new way to make his wife and children
better and happier, and they in return will be a joy to themselves and
a comfort to him. What a happy home where that thought reigns.
Let that thought be carried into the affairs of the County, State
and Nation, and see what a revolution of peace and happiness it would
bring. The first change would be that all women would have the same
right to vote as men have; not because they are women, but because they
are Divine, like man. In short because they are spiritual beings like
The aphorism, 'Equal rights to all and special privileges to none,'
will be lived out, because no one who is living the thought that all
are Divine, will wish to have opportunities that they deny to others.
'An injury to one is the concern of all,' is a maxim that would be
put into practise. 'All for one and one for all' would be acted out in
all the business of life, for all are Divine. All persons in office
would see how best they can serve the public, instead of seeing, as is
done now, how best they can feather their own nests, at the expense of
State legislators would meet, not to see how much there is in it
for themselves, in passing laws, but would pass laws in the interest of
the masses. All forms of corruption would cease, and bribery would
disappear, because all are looked upon as one, and that one is Divine;
and Greed cannot live where that thought predominates. Congress,
instead of passing laws in the interest of bankers, railroad
corporations, manufacturers, and trust companies, would be there for
one purpose, that of making laws in the interest of the whole nation,
and what is known as class legislation would disappear.
All persons engaged in adulterating merchandise would cease their
disgraceful and dishonest business. For, realizing their Divine nature,
they would only make pure articles, and everything would be what it is
marked. All business would be done with honesty of purpose and love of
justice; in fact the character of the Divine would be seen in all
dealings. No longer would the great dailies be owned by the money
power, and intellectual prostitutes write the editorials of their
columns, blinding and deceiving the minds of the people that the
classes may fleece them. In short the ethics of Christ would enter into
the industrial and social systems. Usury would be abolished. Instead of
having Christ so much in prayer and song, in poetry and prose, in
marble and on canvas, we would have him in the halls of legislation, in
railroad operations, in manufactories, in stores, on farms and in the
home. In short he would enter into all the walks of life, and men's
actions would be governed by his teachings, viz.: 'Whatsoever ye would
that men should do unto you do ye also unto them; and as we all wish to
have love and justice shown us, realizing our Divine nature, we would
show it unto others.
Now, I beseech each one of you, I beseech you because I love you,
start to-day with the soul elevating thought, with this grand truth,
that 'You are the Divine,' and live according to your Divine nature and
not be ruled by your animal instincts. If ever you are in doubt about
what you should do and what you should not do, I would say, do whatever
would make you strong physically, whatever would make you strong
intellectually, whatever would make you strong spiritually, and do not
do what would make you weak physically, intellectually, or spiritually.
In living the pure Christ life you always will be well. Remember the
body is the instrument through which the Divine manifests itself;
therefore take care of the body and don't abuse it by too much work or
too much social excitement, or too much of anything. Be moderate and
temperate in all your actions, bathe every morning and have times for
meditation and prayer, and it will not be long before you will make the
whole State of California what it ought to be, a heaven on earth. For
having heaven within, you will make all about you heaven; and let me
tell you that when you leave your material bodies, the only heaven you
will find is that which you will take with you.
CHAPTER XVIII. LETTERS RECEIVED BY
While Penloe was delivering his address there was a man in the
audience who sat near the platform, following the remarks of the
speaker very closely. Looking in his face you could see the marks of
dissipation; the color and lines which drink and carnality leave on the
countenance. To judge his age by his face you might take him to be a
man of fifty, but he was only about thirty years old; for he had lived
twenty years in five. His form was large and well proportioned;
naturally he was a strong man. His clothing consisted of a shirt, a
pair of overalls, both dirty, a pair of suspenders and a pair of shoes.
When Penloe finished his address, and the audience was about to
leave, this man made a rush for the platform, and going up to Penloe
under great emotion, he said in broken utterances with tears in his
eyes: God bless you for showing me that my real nature is Divine. I
have been living the life of a beast, but now I will live the Divine
life. That man afterwards said: The look that Penloe gave me and the
way he pressed my hand will be with me as long as I live.
Penloe saw that if he stayed on the platform or did not leave the
building, he would have a crowd round him. Not wishing to give a
reception and thinking it best to keep the people's minds on what he
said, instead of having them diverted from the subject to him
personally, he hastily left the building. But he received a number of
letters from persons who heard his address. We will copy three as
The first letter we have copied was from the wife of the leading
lawyer in Roseland and read as follows:
DEAR MR. PENLOE:
I would very much have liked to have had an
opportunity of meeting you, that I might tell you what
I am about to write and very much more. Since I heard
your address I so wanted to have a talk with you, as I
have so many questions to ask you, and above all to
tell you what your message has done for me.
I am the wife of a lawyer, and at the age of
twenty-two I graduated from college. A year afterwards
I married Mr. Horton and have been married seven years.
My tastes have always been intellectual with a strong
desire to lead and to be above those around me. I had
little sympathy for the poor and ignorant, and those I
had little in common with I kept aloof from. My friends
looked to me as an authority on most subjects, as I
travelled in Europe two years after I was married. It
will do me good now to confess to you and tell you, I
was cold, vain, self-conceited and my purpose in
reading and travelling was not to help those around me,
but to add glory and fame to myself, and to be thought
a very superior minded person. I carried my head very
high and associated with but few. After seeing you and
listening to your address, I can hardly describe the
state of mind it left me in. But it was something like
a lady might feel when she is dressed in her best and
is very proud of her attire. While she is in that frame
of mind she meets some one who has garments much
superior to hers, and she sees that the clothes she is
wearing are unbecoming and do not fit her, and that she
has been under an illusion in thinking they were so
rich and fine. For when the other garments are shown
her, she feels she had been the most mistaken person in
the world and longs to cast off the garments she is
wearing, that she may put on these superior ones.
Now that was my case exactly. I was the woman attached
to what I thought were my fine clothes. You were the
one with the elegant new gowns, and when you showed me
so clearly that my own costume was nothing but filthy
rags, I was ready to take the superior garments with
which you presented me.
When I think what a foolish, proud, vain woman I have
been, I feel like covering my face with shame; like
hiding my head somewhere. I intend that these feelings
of remorse shall stimulate me towards manifesting the
Divine, in love, in patience, in humility, and in
I will go among the poor and ignorant and become one
with them, in order to raise them to the realization of
their Divine nature.
May they see in me that love for them which I saw in
you for all, and it will give me pleasure to tell those
of my own circle how sweet the Divine life has become
to me, and may I be a spiritual help to them.
My husband was touched by your words, I am glad to
say, and we are both trying to live the Divine life.
When you come to Roseland, be sure and come to our
home. We shall be very pleased to see you and have you
stay with us as long as you can.
Another letter we will copy was from the leading banker of Roseland:
First National Bank.
G. Holmes, President. R. Wells, Cashier.
DEAR BROTHER PENLOE:
It gives me great pleasure to address you as such,
though I am a perfect stranger to you; but after
hearing your address I feel at liberty to call you
brother. I felt your great heart of love throbbing
through all you said in your lecture. Now I must tell
you that a man entered the building to hear you speak
just out of curiosity. He would have laughed if any
one had told him that he might hear something that he
had not heard before or might be impressed by the
lecture, for he felt settled, sure and certain in his
own mind concerning all subjects of interest to him.
But when he heard your clear and forcible remarks, it
knocked him off his feet, taking the last prop away he
leaned on, and there was nothing left for him to do but
to get on the same foundation that you are on. Bless
God, I have done so, and now I am beginning to live as
a new man, the Divine man.
I used to walk the streets thinking I was a great man,
the leading financier in Roseland, and the grand
thought I had of myself was that I was a banker, being
looked up to by those around me because of my financial
standing. But those thoughts are now to me hay and
stubble, and I have burned them.
From this time forth my money and myself will be
consecrated to the service of manifesting the Divine,
and in helping others to do the same. As a proof of my
sincerity I enclose a check for five thousand dollars
for you to use as you think best in spreading the grand
truth which you presented so clearly in your address.
May you, my dear brother, always realize in the highest
degree the presence of your Divine nature.
The following letter is one that is prized very much by Penloe. It
came from the wife of a poor ranchman and bore the marks of its
proximity to the wash-tub, the churn, a child's dirty finger marks, and
the hot tears of a woman overcome with joy:
TANGLEWOOD RANCH, ORANGEVILLE ...
DEAR SIR:O, I have so much to say and don't know
where to begin. I don't get any time to write, have
been waiting for a spell, but don't get any, for one
thing after another keeps crowding me. I have just
wiped the suds from my hands, having left the wash-tub
for a few minutes, saying I would not put off writing
to you any longer.
Well, we went to your meeting and never heard any one
talk like you did before.
My husband and I have not much learning, but you made
it so simple and plain that we could not help
understanding what you meant. I want to say how glad we
both are that we went, because our lot in life has been
dark and hard. I married my husband when a girl of
seventeen. I knew so little, was so green, but was full
of hope and expectations. What a hard experience I have
had, for I have been married ten years and have six
small children; so much sickness, so much hard work. O,
dear! my life has been so hard. I cannot write any more
now, as I must finish getting my washing out.
Well, my clothes are on the line and I am going to
take a few minutes' rest and write a little more. Yes,
life has been hard. How little a poor ignorant girl
thinks or knows what is before her when she gets
married. My husband has felt all discouraged, so many
babies, so much hard work, such hard times to get a
dollar, always in debt to doctors; it made us both grow
cross and cranky and just as soon die as live. Our love
for each other grew cold, and the attraction we had for
each other died out. I told my husband he must take me
out somewhere or else I would go crazy. Every day the
same thing over again from morning to night, tending
babies, standing over a cook-stove, then over a
wash-tub, then churning, no end of dish-washing and
washing babies' clothes. I am going to churn now, when
I take a rest again I will write more.
Well, the butter has come, I will rest and write you
I was telling you how dark our married life has been.
We heard there was going to be a big meeting in
Roseland, and my husband said he would go and see what
it was like. So we went and heard you talk. What you
said made us look at the world and ourselves different
to what we ever did before. We both liked your talk
very much; we talked lots about what you said. When we
got home that day after supper my husband said: 'If I
am Divine, I don't need to chew tobacco, and I quit
right now and will put what tobacco I have got in the
stove.' I said, 'O, Charles, how glad I am.' 'Yes,
Maud,' said Charles, 'I am going to live the Divine
life. Will you help me?' I said, 'Yes, dear Charles,
you know I will.' 'Well, Maud,' said he, 'we thought
our life hard and bitter, but I see now it was through
our not living the Divine life. Maud, I will try and
make your life a little better than I have done,' and
he kissed me. The children looked at us both with great
surprise, for they had never seen my husband kiss me
before. It seemed as if the same feelings had come back
that we had in our courting days. He said, 'You have
the hardest time of it, let me put the children to bed
and you rest; for if I am Divine I must live a life of
love and show my love in helping you all I can.' I
cannot help it, sir, but hot tears are falling fast on
this letter, for the light and love have entered our
home, where before it was darkness and despair. How
sweet it is trying to live the Divine life. I am doing
my best to live that life. We are not going to worry
any more. My husband now is so bright and hopeful, does
all he can to cheer me up, and I am the same for it is
catching like a fever.
Well, my object in writing this to you is to tell you
what your talk has done for us. My husband said, 'If
ever a man had a heart full of love for all, he knows
it is you, and your great heart has touched our hearts.
How can I thank you for what you have done for us? May
God bless you. I shall always pray that you may help
others as you have us. My husband said, 'Tell him I am
a changed man;' and I know he is, and I am a changed
Excuse this letter for having dirt marks on it. While
I was tending the baby one of the children put its
dirty fingers on the letter, but I am going to send it
just as it is.
Mrs. Marston for several reasons went to hear Penloe deliver his
address. One reason was curiosity to hear and see the man that had
caused so much talk everywhere, and another one that the newspapers
from the Atlantic to the Pacific had printed so much about him. Still
another reason was she knew that about all her friends would be there,
and they would be talking about him, and she wished to be posted on a
subject that her friends would be conversing about and to be able to
take her part in the conversation. If there was anything that Mrs.
Marston admired and loved, it was a handsome man. She took great pride
in the fine appearance of her four Roseland young gentlemen guests. A
look of astonishment came over that lady's face when Penloe appeared at
the front of the platform, and she turned her eyes for the first time
on that fine physique, with its symmetrical form and noble countenance.
She was heard to say, That is the handsomest man I have ever seen in
my life. She thought her favorites could not compare with Penloe. She
remarked to a friend of hers: I was surprised when I saw Penloe, for I
thought of him as being a man past middle age, with long hair, unkempt
beard and slovenly dress; but when I saw the best looking young man I
have ever looked upon in my life, and finely dressed, too, I could not
help thinking what a fine society man he would make. I am not surprised
that Stella is taken with him. Why, if that man would only put his time
into making money, he could have his pick of any of our best society
young ladies. What a fine lawyer he would make.
Mrs. Marston thought Penloe a very fine, interesting speaker, but
that lady was not prepared, at present, to give up her sense-plane
enjoyments, in order to live the Divine life.
CHAPTER XIX. MRS. WEST RELATES HER
Mrs. West, the mother of Ben West, had breakfast ready just as her
husband came in from doing the chores about the barn. After Mrs. West
had poured out two cups of Mocha and Java for her husband and herself,
Mr. West, like a good husband, had his wife help herself first and then
himself, after which he began to enjoy the good things she had prepared
for their morning meal.
He noticed that Mrs. West only sipped her coffee occasionally and
did not touch the food on her plate. Seeing in her face that something
was not quite right, he said: What is the matter, dear, you look as if
something troubled you? Have you lost your appetite?
His wife replied: No, William, but I had a dream that disturbed
Why, what could it be to affect you in that way? said her husband.
Well, I will tell you, said his wife. I dreamt I saw our colt
Prince; he seemed as if he did not eat the grain hay you gave him. Then
seeing he did not eat the grain hay, you gave him some alfalfa hay. He
did not eat much of that either, so you thought you would give some
crushed barley. When you saw that he did not eat that, you turned him
out of the barn into your fine alfalfa pasture. He ate a little of the
green feed, but was still very restless and discontented. So you turned
him out where he could get wild feed and have plenty of chance to run.
After you turned him out he just browsed a little, and ran up the road
and down the road snorting and arching his neck very prettily; his
smooth, sleek, glossy, black coat shining in the sun made him look fine
and handsome. You could not make out what was the matter with him, for
he seemed well but was so restless; not contented in any place or
liking any kind of feed. So you thought he might be lonesome and you
turned out some horses to run with him. But he seemed to pay no
attention to them, ate little and was getting more restless and
discontented all the time, not even enjoying his freedom nor knowing
what to do with it. He would every now and then run up and down the
road as if not knowing what to do with himself.
Once in his restless mood he went down the road, and there was a
beautiful young lady sitting near the gate leading to her house. She
saw him coming and noticed how handsome he was, and she thought how
fine it would be to have that noble looking horse to ride and keep it
for her use. So she opened the gate and came to the road and stood
waiting for the colt. When he came to where she was, he looked at her
and arched his neck, and she thought he was handsome; and smiling she
went up to him and just placed her hand on his neck and patted him:
then she talked sweetly to him and passed her hand over his face
several times, and he seemed so quiet and gentle that you would have
thought that it was her he had been wanting, and she seemed to know by
intuition that she had got him in her power; so she opened the gate and
he followed her in. Then she knew she had got him sure, and he was just
what she had wanted. She petted him a little more, then put a bridle on
him and then a saddle. Then she mounted him and off they went and you
could not tell which was the most delighted the colt or the young lady.
At first she was very good to him, and only rode him short distances
and fed him high. He was perfectly docile and she had full control over
him. Afterwards she exacted more service from him, would ride him
longer distances, and later along she not only rode him long distances
but rode him hard and fast and fed and petted him less. Sometimes the
horse was exhausted and about to give out, but in order to revive him
all she had to do was to make a little of him, talk coaxingly and pet
him; and instantly his eye would brighten, animation would come back to
him, and he would do his best to travel. But this kind of usage was
telling on the horse and he was growing poorer all the time. Still she
was exacting and demanded as much from him as ever. After awhile, he
could not begin to travel as he once did, for he was getting weaker and
weaker, and even her pettings were losing power to put life into him,
for it seemed at times as if it had all gone out of him.
One hot day when she was riding him and he seemed very much
fatigued, they were going along the road where there was a fine rich
pasture well fenced, with some fine young horses feeding in it. When
they saw Prince and his mistress they ran round the field, then along
the fence where the road was, and every now and then would look at the
poor worn-out colt carrying his mistress. Then they would run a piece,
throw up their hind legs, toss their heads, showing how much freedom
they enjoyed. Again they would run along the fence and look at him. One
of the horses in the field said to the other, Why, there is our old
companion Prince. I would not have known him, he looks so old and poor.
How thin he has become. Why don't he throw that woman off and be free
like ourselves? Don't you see how she is wearing him out by inches?
Ah! said another horse, He was free like ourselves at one time.
There is not a horse in this pasture that looks as handsome and fat as
he did, but he could not enjoy his freedom. He was restless, till he
became a willing slave to that woman's smiles, caresses and pettings.
He won't live long; she is too hard and makes too many demands on him.
But notice even now his eye will brighten if she pats him on his neck a
little and says a few kind sweet words to him, how he tries to go
faster, but it is only for a very few yards; then he is back again to
his old gait, more tired than before. Do you notice how fresh and fine
she looks, but how poor and worn out he is? She knew her power and has
used it for her self gratification regardless of what might become of
him. Poor fool, he could not see that her kind talk and pettings were
only a means employed to gain her end. She cared nothing for him, only
as he contributed to her pleasure; and there are so many many more
very green colts just like him. One day the young lady had been out
with Prince on a long hard ride, and they were coming home. Prince
could hardly put one foot before the other, so weak and tired was he.
At last when she got him to the stable he fell down and seemed to be in
much pain. She called in assistance and men came with medicine and used
much of it on him, but it was no good; he gave one look at her and
died. She cried over him and put her head on his body and said, He was
the best horse that ever was and I will never have any other horse. I
can never love another as I did him. About a month afterwards she was
seen riding on a fine young bay colt, and both seemed just as happy as
Prince and she did the first time she rode him.
Here Mrs. West stopped.
Her husband said: That was a very strange dream, but I don't see
why that should affect you, for I was out to the barn this morning and
Prince was all right, with a big appetite for his breakfast.
No, Mr. West could not see why that dream could make her feel sad,
but Mrs. West knew, for there was a portion of the dream she did not
relate, and that was, when Prince gave the lady a look just as he was
about to expire, that look on his face Mrs. West saw to be the look and
face of her son Ben West, and the young lady that rode him was Julia
Hammond West, his wife. A short time afterwards Mr. West saw more in
his wife's dream, for he received word stating that his son had died
from exposure in the Klondike. Mr. West saw the notice in a paper about
a month later, of the marriage of their son's wife.
CHAPTER XX. IN THE MOUNTAINS.
One afternoon Penloe was expected to take supper with the
Wheelwrights. He had had a standing invitation for some time, but for
certain reasons had not accepted it till now. The last time he saw
Stella, he said: If it will be agreeable to you all, I will take
supper at your house next Tuesday evening. They were all in high
spirits at the thought of his coming, for a more agreeable,
interesting, and intelligent visitor could not be found.
What little time there was between the time of his arrival and
supper, he kept them laughing by relating some very interesting
At the supper table he was given the seat of honor, Mrs. Wheelwright
being on his right and Stella on his left. Stella had on a fine, white
dress, with white satin ribbon at the neck and sleeves, and, as her
complexion was dark and her hair jet black, it became her exceedingly
well. There are some young ladies who need to have very fine dresses to
make them at all presentable; they are so dependent on the style of the
dress for giving them a good form and fine appearance, but it was not
so with Stella. Her fine form and graceful movements would make any
dress look well; she set off the dress. The table was laid with a
snowy-white damask tablecloth, moss-rose pattern, with napkins to
match. Also a moss-rose tea set. The table did not groan with a lot of
heavy, greasy food; no, there was very fine bread, good sweet butter,
nectarine sauce and blackberry jelly, cake, pineapple sherbet, vanilla
ice-cream, milk, weak tea, and some sweetmeats, and nuts.
The meal was eaten very leisurely, for the conversation was very
interesting, all taking part in it. Penloe had that rare gift of a good
conversationalist, being able to make others talk their best instead of
doing all the talking himself. Stella and Penloe were both good at
repartée. The ladies talked more than Penloe, and there seemed to be a
real genuine feeling, as if one spirit pervaded them all.
After supper, Mr. Wheelwright had an opportunity of talking to
Penloe, on the porch, about subjects that he was most interested in,
while the ladies washed the dishes. Later on, the ladies joined them,
and a most agreeable evening was spent. Mr. and Mrs. Wheelwright
excused themselves when their regular time for retiring came, and as it
was such a lovely moonlight evening, Stella invited Penloe to keep her
company on the porch, saying, The evening is so beautiful. Yes, it
was beautiful. It was one of those matchless evenings in California
that must be seen and enjoyed to be fully appreciated, and by a soul in
touch with the sublime. To realize the grandeur of the sky, with its
clear atmosphere, on those fine evenings, is to experience one of the
richest joys of existence. Language is inadequate to describe such
The two souls on the porch were in touch with the Divine, which
manifested Itself in all these glories, and they were drinking it in to
their fullest capacity. They had sat in silence for a while, when
Penloe said: Stella, I have not had anything that has given me more
satisfaction, or that has pleased me more, and given me encouragement
in my work, so much as the courageous spirit manifested by you on the
day that you in a public way freed yourself from bondage. You taught
the people a lesson they will never forget. That was a grand act,
Stella, and you built into your character on that day qualities which
will stand all trials and temptations; you made a good karma for
yourself. Think how your act has helped others out of bondage.
Stella said: Penloe, it gives me pleasure to hear your approval of
what I have done. But is it not only the fruits of your own work, after
all? Did you not take Stella, a green, ignorant girl as she was, and
lead her to her freedom?
Penloe said: Yes, Stella, I did one kind of work, and you did
another; my work was easy compared to yours. I instructed you, but it
was you who put the instruction in practice, and that counts.
Penloe, said Stella, taking his hand in hers, I realize that
fully, for no one but you could have taught me as you did. No one but
you could have given me the light and knowledge I so much needed, no
one but you could help me open the door which led me into the spiritual
world, and when I entered that world, you were there as my spiritual
Penloe, you have been my very dear social companion, you have been
my very dear intellectual companion, and you have been my very dear
spiritual companion. Your companionship has been that of the truest
friendship, for your every act and thought has been to raise me up to a
higher plane, and I would not be true to my highest and best nature if
I did not tell you that I love you as I can love no other man. You
possessed my heart long before to-night. Do you love Stella, Penloe,
and do you want her to be your life companion, to help you in your
noble work, to love you, and to live the Divine life with you?
Penloe said: Stella, dear, what I have done for you I would do for
any one; but darling, I love you intensely. Yes, dear one, your love to
me is bliss, and there is no one whose companionship I love and enjoy
more than yours, dear Stella, for I see so much of the Divine
manifested in you. And here Penloe took the dear girl to him, and they
were both lost in bliss.
I looked at the moon just then in its silvery brightness, and as it
looked down on that hallowed scene it sent forth such a glow of light
as illuminated the whole heavens and earth. I looked at the planets
witnessing that blissful scene. They were more brilliant than ever, and
vied with each other in sending forth their bright lights. I looked at
the whole canopy of the heavens and, just as the two embraced, an
unusual number of stars of the first magnitude appeared and the whole
sky was decked with millions of fiery worlds. And why should the
heavens not be brilliant on an occasion when the love in two divine
ones is plighted?
Their little whisperings at intervals during the silence, which they
are enjoying, are too sacred to record here; and while they are in that
exceedingly blissful state of mind the thought came to me to note the
nature of kisses. There is the cold kiss, which upon receiving one
wishes he had not been kissed. Then there is the average common kiss.
Then there is the kiss of friendship. Then there is the ordinary love
kiss. Then there is the warm, passionate kiss. But superior to them all
is the pure, spiritual kiss, so intensely sweet, but so very, very
rare. To give such a kiss, and even to enjoy receiving it, one must
have a very high quality of organism. The cells of the brain, the blood
which flows through the arteries and veins, the tissues of the whole
body must have been formed and built up by that all powerful agent,
thought. And that thought must be of the highest order; it must have
emptied itself of all but love, that love which takes in all, and from
that thought and life comes the manifestation of harmony, purity,
sweetness, truth and love. Blessed, thrice blessed indeed, is such a
When two persons of that type of character come together in love,
giving each other through kisses, the expression of their affection,
that kissing is bliss indeed.
After the silence and whisperings of deep love thoughts were over,
Stella with her face looking so beautiful, being flushed from the
realization of her love, said: Penloe, dear, I knew that you were
different from most men in not being dependent on the love of a woman
for your happiness; for you had within you a deep well of living water
from whence came all your joy, and you drank deep draughts from it
daily. Yes, dear, I knew your thoughts, your hopes, your happiness was
centered in that Blessed Infinite One and He was the source of your
peace, your joy and your love. Though I loved you so much, the question
arose in my mind whether you needed my love and companionship.
Penloe said: Stella, darling, it is all true, what you say about my
living in the Eternal One, and that from Him springs all my strength,
my hope and my love; but if that Blessed Infinite One brings another
joy to me in the form of dear Stella's love, why should I not accept it
gladly? Yes, dear, your interesting self, your love is all a gift to me
from the Infinite Spirit. It is an additional joy and pleasure which He
has bestowed upon me, and my prayer is that I may always and fully meet
your expectations, and my self and my love may give you as much joy as
yours gives me.
Stella said: Penloe, dear, my cup is full to overflowing; how good
God is to me.
Penloe said: Stella, darling, I wish to express a thought
concerning love, and it is this. Many times you see two persons in
love, and instead of that experience broadening and intensifying their
love and sympathies, it has a tendency to narrow them down and contract
them and bring them to a very small selfish life, causing them to take
no thought or interest in any one but themselves. They seem to form a
mutual admiration society, and live to gain the praise of each other.
After all, when you analyze them, it is not so much love of each other
as it appears to be, but love of each one for himself. Then there is
that kind of love union which exists between two where, instead of
narrowing and contracting the lovers, it has a tendency to broaden them
out in their love, and make their sympathies universal in their scope;
their love being of that high order which seems to quicken all that is
grand and noble in their natures; and their lives seem to be those of
intense love for each other, and intense love for the Lord in His
Then they sat in blissful silence for a little while, when Penloe
said: Stella, darling, have you thought over what you may have to give
up through becoming a life companion to me? Of course, dear, you know I
have consecrated my life and my endeavors as a free will offering to
the world, and it is not my work nor mission to raise a family. Now,
the instinct to become a mother is very strong in some women's
Stella said: Why, Penloe, dear, I do not have to give up anything
in becoming a life companion to you, for instead of being a material
mother I will become a spiritual mother to many, which is a far higher
joy, and the world has too few spiritual mothers, but too many material
ones of a low grade.
Penloe said: Have you thought over the practical side of our union?
You see, I am not a man that is rustling for dollars from morning till
night, and in my life and work we may, at times perhaps, only have a
log cabin to live in, with bare walls and floors; and our food may be
of the plainest kind, and not much of that either. Your wardrobe may
consist of only one cotton wrapper and flour-sack underwear.
Penloe could not say any more, for Stella put her hand over his
mouth and said, laughingly: You cannot scare me so easily, for it will
take more than only having in my possession one cotton wrapper and
wearing flour-sack underwear, and living in a log cabin with bare walls
and floors, to discourage me. Those things are not of my world; all I
hope is that if I shall have to put on such garments as flour-sack
underwear, it will not offend your artistic eye.
They both had a good laugh, for they feared nothing in this
Universe; least of all that great bugaboo, poverty.
Penloe said: Well, Stella, to be serious, I have made arrangements
for leaving Orangeville for six months. In about a week's time I will
go up into the mountains and live in a log cabin in the pines. I will
be six miles from any human being, and twenty-five miles from
Orangeville. It is necessary that I should be away for awhile from all
psychological influences and cross-currents, and live in the silence. I
realize that I need it to fit me for my work. It is necessary for my
spiritual unfoldment. Christ went up into the mountains and out on the
plains to be alone, so he might gain spiritual strength. All great
spiritual teachers have times for being alone. As I said, I need to
make this change to fit me for my work, for I want to get my mind freed
from all individuality and relativity, so as to see more clearly the
Oneness throughout the Universe. For, as the Swami Vivekananda has said
in his lecture on 'Maya and the Evolution of the Conception of God':
'He who sees in this world of manifoldness that One running through it
all; in this world of death, he who finds that one infinite life; and
in this world of insentience and ignorance, he who finds that one light
and knowledge, unto him belongs eternal peace.' It is more of that
light and knowledge that I need, Stella. In short, it is to commune
more with the Father; it is to realize in a greater degree the presence
of the Divine within, and to have my mind freed from the illusion of
the phenomenal world; for by so doing I become qualified to become a
healer of disease, and also fitted to help many a poor sin-sick life.
Now, Stella, having clearly made known my purpose to you; I want to
tell you that it is better for you that I leave this time. It will
enlighten you more spiritually in this way. Most persons would think
that it should be the greatest pleasure to us both to be together now
as much as we can, so as to see and enjoy the society of each other.
That thought is all right for the many, but not for you and me. It is
better for us both that we do not hear from one another for three
months, and at the end of that time I want you to come up and live
three months with me in that cabin. At the end of that time we will
come back to the world and be made man and wife in the eyes of the law.
All this to some may seem strange and hard, but not to you, Stella,
for I think you have already attained to that plane where you can see
the great good to you which will come from following such a course. If
you follow certain instructions which I will give you, after we have
been separated two weeks, you will have a feeling of my presence with
you, and you will not feel the need of correspondence, for we will be
independent of all letter writing, because we can be in communion with
each other at any time we may wish it.
Stella said: Through you, dear, I have attained to that plane where
I can see it all true what you have said and all for the best; and,
Penloe, dear, Stella will be with you in your cabin at the end of the
first three months, and here she kissed him and he returned the same.
After a little more talk they bid each other farewell.
The next morning after the most eventful evening in Stella's life,
when that young lady kissed her mother good-morning, Mrs. Wheelwright
did not need to be told what had happened on the previous night, for
the way Stella kissed her mother, and the way she moved about to get
breakfast made Mrs. Wheelwright smile inwardly. Just as the three were
about finishing their morning meal, Stella told her parents all that
had happened. They were both delighted in the extreme and Stella
received their blessings and kisses.
Mrs. Wheelwright said to Stella: I am so glad you found a man
worthy of your love, and he certainly is. I could not have made one to
order to suit you as well. All I feared was that he would live without
a wife, because I knew how much you loved him, and no one else would
ever fill his place in your affections. I rejoice daily that we have
such a dear daughter; one that Penloe has seen fit to love and cherish
as a life companion.
Mother, said Stella, there is no such thing as disappointment in
love to those who are living on the plane that Penloe and I are on, for
we are led by the promptings of the Blessed Infinite One, to each
Mrs. Wheelwright said: Oh, if more would only live on the spiritual
plane, how much happier they would be in all that pertains to this
Stella said: I am going to write to aunt to-day and tell her of my
engagement to Penloe. So later in the day she sat down and wrote the
MY DEAR AUNT: As you have always taken so much
interest in my future happiness, I think it no more
than right that I should inform you of my engagement to
Penloe. Yes, dear Aunt, I proposed to him last evening
and he accepted me and has given me his love in return.
Let me thank you, dear Aunt, for your kindness to me,
and I hope that our being engaged may meet with your
approval. Penloe is going to live in the pines for the
next six months. After he has been there three months I
am going up there to live with him, and will be his
log-cabin companion for three months. After that we
will be united in marriage.
Mother and father join me in love to you. As ever,
Your Affect. Niece,
From that time till Stella went to the mountains to live with
Penloe, she was busy in two ways. Her time was occupied in one
direction in writing a little book on the sex question. Barker and
Brookes told her if she would write the book they would pay for having
it printed and would circulate thousands of copies free. Those two
young men were now Stella's co-workers in the grand field of removing
bondage. The other way in which Stella was very busy was in following a
certain course of mental and spiritual exercise as marked out for her
When the three months had expired, Mr. Wheelwright took Stella up to
the pines within one mile of Penloe's cabin. They arrived there at four
in the afternoon. Stella told her father to satisfy him that she would
go up to Penloe's cabin, and then come right back and stay with him
over night, and in the morning after he was gone Penloe would come down
and take her and her valise up with him.
Her father not being sure about the mental telegraphy carried on
between Stella and Penloe, wanted to make sure Penloe was there and all
right before he left his daughter.
It was Penloe's wish for no person to come near his cabin except
When Stella returned to her father, after having gone up to Penloe's
cabin to see if he was all right, she told her father Penloe was well,
and he could see by his daughter's face that everything was all right.
On the next morning Mr. Wheelwright wished his daughter good-bye,
leaving her where they had camped over night.
A few minutes afterwards Penloe appeared, and taking Stella's valise
they both walked up to the cabin. Stella was perfectly charmed with the
beautiful spot where the cabin was located. Some large pines were in
front of the cabin and some very handsome redwoods a few rods in the
rear. A sparkling, rippling brook flowed near the cabin, singing
merrily as it went along.
They lived on two meals a day and found that was all the nourishment
they needed, as they were doing no manual labor, and there was no great
strain on their nervous system.
They spent their time in the following manner: Part of the day was
devoted to prayer, meditation and concentration, and part of the time
in the practise of mental telegraphy; and the balance of the time in
doing what little work there was to do and in walks and talks.
Stella did enjoy the life so very much, and she was rapidly
advancing physically, intellectually and spiritually. As for
lonesomeness, she and Penloe did not know what that was, their minds
being too active to be lonesome. They seemed to be new to each other
every morning and fresh every evening, their life being a perfect joy
and delight in its highest sense; for they realized each day more and
more of their Divine natures. Each day they came in touch with the
Infinite, and when they came down from the mountain their faces shone
as Moses' did of old; for they had walked and talked with God.
CHAPTER XXI. A WEDDING IN
After Mrs. Marston had been in San Francisco about a month, she
received a cablegram from Paris stating that her son had been shot by a
jealous Frenchman and died two hours afterwards. When she had recovered
from her first grief she thought it best to stay in San Francisco two
weeks longer and then return to Roseland. She had not been home long
when she realized how great the change had been on the sex question,
and how Stella's popularity had risen, and of course Mrs. Marston's
mind had to conform to the new thought, which her circle of friends and
most of the community had accepted. It was that lady's creed to have
her ideas in style as much as her dress. It seemed to please her
greatly to hear her niece praised and looked up to as a leader of the
new thought on the sex question; for deep down in her heart she loved
Stella, even if she did not understand some of her strange ways, and
now that her son was dead her affections went out more towards her
When she received the letter from Stella stating she was engaged to
Penloe, she had a good laugh about her proposing to him, and said the
next thing she would hear would be that Stella had bought a
wedding-ring to put on Penloe's finger. Since Mrs. Marston had seen
Penloe there was no man she admired more than him; not on account of
his spiritual thought, but for his distinguished personality, his
graceful manners, and his polished expressions. So when she read about
her niece being engaged to him, she was delighted, for she felt proud
of them both and remarked, They would make the finest appearing couple
to be seen anywhere.
And she now looked forward to the time when they would be married,
that she might have the pleasure of seeing them again. She was forming
plans as to what she would do for Stella. She felt that she was able to
do much for her, as her property was rising in value all the time, and
her income far exceeded her expenditures. Her idea was that a couple,
to be in style when they are married, should visit Europe or some other
country; and, furthermore, it would be also nice for her to be able to
say her niece had gone abroad on her wedding tour. She also remembered
how delighted Stella was to read books of travel when she was at her
house, and she heard her say, I do hope some day I will be able to see
my own and other countries, for the extent of my travel has only been
from Orangeville to San José and return.
About a week before the day set for Stella's wedding, Mrs.
Wheelwright went to Roseland and called on her sister, Mrs. Marston. In
course of conversation, Mrs. Wheelwright said: Well, Helen, it is
Penloe's and Stella's wish to have no one invited to the wedding but
yourself; for, if they invited friends, they could not draw the line
and they could not invite all, and not only so but they think it far
better to have a quiet wedding. Their marriage is so different to that
of any other couple, there being none of that peculiar excitement
connected with their marriage.
Mrs. Marston said: I thought that would be about the kind of
wedding they would have. What I would have liked would be to give
Stella a big wedding at my own house, with all her friends present, but
I knew she would wish to be married at her home in a very quiet way.
Mrs. Wheelwright said: Well, Helen, we shall look for you on
Wednesday of next week. They will be married at eleven in the morning,
by the Rev. B.F. Holingsworth.
On the morning of the wedding, Stella's aunt arrived at ten, Penloe
and the minister came half an hour later. At eleven Penloe and Stella
stood up to be made one in the eyes of the law. The Blessed Infinite
Spirit had made them one some time ago. It is not necessary to remark
how lovely the bride looked, for she always looked lovely, and she did
not wear at her wedding a white silk or satin gown; for she wore a rich
white dress, and it was one that she could wear any time; it became her
exceedingly well. After the usual marriage ceremony was over, the
minister offered a short fervent prayer, after which Penloe and Stella
stood in silent prayer for about two minutes, then Penloe kissed
Stella. The joyful couple then received the congratulations of their
relatives. When Mrs. Marston kissed Stella, she gave her a little
package. A few minutes later Stella excused herself and went to her
room, to open the package her aunt had given her. On opening the
package, she found it contained a small, light-brown covered book, with
a note which read as follows:
SUNNYDOWN, Roseland, Calif.
MY DEAR NIECE:Knowing you had always a strong desire
to travel and see something of the world, I know of no
better time for you to travel than now, on your wedding
In the bank book you will see a sum deposited in your
name, sufficient to take you and Penloe around the
world in first-class style.
Wishing you much joy, dear, with love to you both,
YOUR AUNT HELEN.
Stella opened the bank book to see the amount deposited to her
credit, and to her joy and surprise there were five figures in the
amount. Such a handsome gift touched Stella very much. She realized
then the genuineness of her aunt's interest in her material welfare and
the love she bore her.
When Stella returned to the room where the company was she went to
her aunt, and put her arms round her and kissed her affectionately, and
said: How good you have been to me. Her aunt looked at the beautiful
girl with pride, and seemed delighted to see her so happy. She said:
Stella, dear, I have only you to love, and you deserve all I can do
Mr. and Mrs. Wheelwright were very much gratified by the handsome
gift Stella received from her aunt, and Penloe, whose face was always
the picture of repose, had now an unusual bright smile as he saw
Stella's delight. He went and sat beside Mrs. Marston, and entertained
her with his brilliant conversation, much to that lady's pleasure, for
she enjoyed receiving attention from Penloe.
In course of conversation with Mrs. Marston (while Stella was absent
from the room), in a very becoming and graceful way, he paid a glowing
tribute to Stella's nobility of character and her intrinsic worth,
which pleased Mrs. Marston greatly. Stella's aunt could not think of
sitting down to a very plain meal on such an occasion as her niece's
marriage, neither did she wish to see her sister or Stella with flushed
faces through being over a hot cook-stove. So she had her caterer come
from Roseland, with everything necessary, and take charge of the
wedding dinner. They all had a very sociable time at the table, the
topics of conversation being general, such as Mrs. Marston would be
After dinner, Stella had a few words in private with her aunt before
leaving for Roseland. The gist of the talk was that she, when speaking
of them, was not to say, 'Mr. Penloe Lenair' or 'Mrs. Penloe Lenair,'
or have inserted in the newspapers 'Penloe Lenair, Esq., and wife, are
visiting you, but always speak of us as 'Penloe and Stella,' because we
wish to live in the realization that we are all members of one family,
and to say Mr. or Mrs. is cold, formal and distant; but in being called
by our given names we come near to those who are talking to us, and
they come near to and in touch with us.
After the minister and Mrs. Marston had left, Stella said to Penloe:
I may just as well begin to initiate you into the new order of things
now as any other time, for you are my husband. So I am going to tell
you that we are living in a new age, and instead of the wife obeying
her husband the husband has to obey the wife.
Penloe smiled, and said: I am perfectly willing to obey such a wife
as you are. What are your orders, my dear?
Stella laughed, and said: Well, Penloe, I have been thinking that I
would like to take you over to see an old friend of mine, who has sore
eyes. You have never seen him, and he would be so pleased to have us
come; for he must have many lonely times, because very few persons ever
call on him, and, Penloe, dear, we have such a lot of good things left
from aunt's big wedding dinner that she gave us, and I thought we would
take some of the nice things along with us for the old man to enjoy. He
seldom has anything very good to eat.
Penloe said: So you are going to make a ministering angel of me,
are you, my dear?
Stella said, smiling: I am not going to make you too angelic,
Penloe, because you might take wings and fly away from me, and I want
you to be an angel on the ground and not a soaring one. So get yourself
ready to carry a basket.
Penloe said: I am at your service, my dear.
Stella went into the kitchen, and selected some choice eatables,
such as she knew the old man would most enjoy, and the two were soon on
their way to the cabin. As they were walking along Stella related to
Penloe all she knew of the history of the old man, as he was called,
though he was not more than fifty-eight years old.
When they arrived at the cabin, the old man was busy getting
As soon as Stella spoke to him he knew instantly who it was. His
sight being in that condition that he could see Penloe's form, but
could not see clearly his features, he could distinguish a man's form
from that of a woman's, but that was all. Stella introduced Penloe to
him, and told the old man that they were married this morning,
whereupon the old man instantly congratulated them and showered his
blessings on both of them, saying: Mr. Penloe, what an angel you have
got for a wife! And went on telling Penloe how good she had been to
Stella did not check him, because she knew it would do him good to
have some one to express his feelings to. After the old man had
finished his eulogies on Stella, she told him what she had brought him
and said she would put them where they belonged, for she had cleaned up
his cabin many a time. He was touched to the heart by such thoughtful
kindness, that on their wedding day she should think of him, and he did
not know just what to say he was so overcome; he seemed choked. They
very soon put him at his ease, and in about ten minutes afterwards
conversation had quieted down.
Just then Stella received a mental telegram from Penloe, and it was
not long before the old man was sitting in his rocking chair, fast
asleep. While he was in that condition, Penloe and Stella went into the
silence, remaining in that state for about an hour, when Penloe asked
Stella to get a basin, with some water, a clean cloth, and a towel.
When she had got everything ready, the old man seemed to be waking up.
When he was fully awake, he said: How much better I feel. Stella
said: I have a basin here, with some water. Let me bathe your eyes.
While she was bathing them, she said: Andrew, you are going to see so
that you can read just as well as you could before your eyes became
sore. (As Andrew had always associated Stella in his mind as being a
member of the angelic band, he was ready to believe anything she said.)
He said: Am I? Praise God! (he was a good man). How fine your touch
does feel to my face.
When she had finished bathing his eyes, she gave him a towel to wipe
his eyes with. After he had wiped them, he opened and closed them
several times, when, with his eyes open, he said: Yes, I can see! O, I
can see so much better. I keep seeing clearer all the time. And in a
few minutes he could see Penloe and Stella just as well as they could
The old man was overcome with joy. Looking at Stella, he said:
Bless God! I can see your dear face. And when he cast his eyes on the
features of Penloe he became silent, then he looked at Stella, then at
Penloe, and he seemed in a dream, for he did not know which was the
greater surprise to him, having his sight restored or seeing the
angelic countenances of the two before him.
Penloe took a newspaper and gave it to him, saying: See if you can
Andrew took the paper, and to his great delight he could read it
just as well as when he was a young man. The old man put the paper
down, then in a little while he took it up again and read more, saying:
Yes, it is true. I can see to read to myself. Bless the Lord! I can
see to read. He looked at them both again, and a feeling came over him
as if there was a great distance between him and them. For he said, in
speaking to Stella:
Whereupon Stella laughed, and told him: I am not Mrs. Penloe, for I
am just the same now as I was before I was married. I am your sister
Stella, and my husband is your brother Penloe. Both of us look upon all
boys and men as our brothers, and all girls and women as our sisters,
for we are all members of one family.
The old man sat in silence after Stella spoke; he seemed to be
Stella said: We must go now.
As she wished him good-bye, he said to them: What must I do in
return for the great blessing of sight which has been given me to-day?
Penloe said: Live much in prayer, live in the realization of Divine
love. Remember your body is the temple of God. Keep it as such, and
help others to live the Divine life.
Was there ever a bride so happy as Stella was on the after noon of
her wedding day, when she was returning home to tell her mother the
joyful news that Andrew had recovered his sight. The world has never
seen a happier bride than she was on that afternoon.
Stella had not been in the house but a few minutes before she told
her parents all about Andrew receiving his sight through Penloe's
Penloe said: Why, Stella, were you not the instrument through which
Andrew received his sight? Did he not think that you were the
embodiment of all goodness, all power, and all truth? And when you said
to him, 'Andrew, you are going to see so you can read yourself,' he
believed you, and was he not healed according to his faith?
Stella said: He would not have had his sight restored if you had
not been present. The first time you called on him his sight was
restored, while I have been to his cabin many times before, but never
helped him to see.
Penloe said: Stella, dear, you were not on the spiritual plane that
you are now on when you visited Andrew before. You had not spent much
time in prayer, in meditation, in concentration, in being up in the
mountains, walking and talking with God daily, and living in the
realization of the Kingdom of Heaven within. All this has helped to
make you a healer.
Stella said: Penloe, all you say is true, but I cannot help
thinking that you were the healer.
Penloe said: Stella, dear, you spoke the healing word.
Mrs. Wheelwright, smiling inwardly, said: Children, you have only
been married a few hours, and have got a bone of contention already. I
am surprised at you both.
Stella, putting on a serious face, said: Well, mother, I know it
was Penloe; and Penloe said: Well, mother, I know it was Stella.
Mrs. Wheelwright said: Children, I cannot stay with you while you
quarrel this way, and out she went into the kitchen, happy and
laughing to herself; at the same time rejoicing greatly that the poor
man had received his sight.
There were two others who laughed after Mrs. Wheelwright left the
room, for they knew it was neither Penloe or Stella that healed the
man, but the power of the Blessed Infinite Spirit in both of them, they
being only the instruments through which the healing power was
The evening of Stella's wedding day the two were sitting on the
porch. It was just as lovely a night as it was on the night when they
were plighted. They had been engaged in conversation for a while, when
Penloe said: Stella, I have not given you any wedding ring. It is not
because I have not got one for you, but I wish to give you the history
of the ring before presenting you with it.
Stella said: You will have a very ready listener, Penloe, I can
Penloe said: While attending the University in Calcutta I made the
acquaintance of a young Hindu, who was a student there also. He was in
some respects the brightest of the students, for he had the faculty for
mastering his studies quickly and perfectly, was also very original in
character and full of resources. Though he was a born student, yet he
was well-balanced and did not always have his head in books or in the
clouds; neither did he indulge in social dissipation. While being
social in his nature, he always took sufficient physical recreation to
keep himself well and strong, but nothing more; he never let it get
away with him, as many do in the Western World. He lived up to the
highest light, regulating his conduct so as to make himself strong
intellectually and spiritually. I found him a very interesting
companion, and our friendship was of a very profitable character, in
this way, that when we saw the faults in each other we did in love what
we could to help one another. To overcome our weak points, we
coöperated together for the highest object, and it was our sacred
purpose to always touch the highest and noblest in each other's nature;
and to-night it is with pleasure that I call to mind the sweetness of
his disposition, the sincerity of his purpose, and the brilliancy of
His family had outgrown caste, and when I first visited them at
their home I was introduced to his father and mother, also to a sister
about eighteen years of age, who made up the family. I noticed what a
peculiar expression passed over his sister's face when she looked into
mine for the first time. She had a dreamy, far-away look about her, and
then again I noticed later that she had the very opposite expression on
her physiognomy, being all 'right here'; intensely so, taking in
everything around her. I was very much attracted towards her in this
way, not as a youth would be towards a maidenthere was none of that
feeling whatever. I felt she was a mystic, a powerful one, and she
interested me greatly. When sitting in the room with all the members of
the family, I noticed at times she would eye me very closely; and if I
returned the gaze I saw such an expression in her face as if she did
not belong here at all, but was living on some other planet. She talked
very little, and such a thing as my coming near to her in conversation,
or her saying anything to bring herself near to me, was not to be
expected, with her peculiar makeup, and yet when she would give me her
hand in receiving me, she had such a peculiar sweet way of welcoming
me, that one might think we were very near to each other. And when I
took leave of her with the other members of the family, her partings
seemed very pleasant as she gave me her hand and wished me good-night.
Those eyes of hers seemed as if you could see worlds in them, and
when you looked into them your mind seemed taken away from everything
about you, and you would have to check yourself or else you would feel
as if you had left the body and were passing through the ethereal
She had a remarkable organism, being so very fine in quality. The
first impression one would have on seeing her would be that of
distinction, she was so superior in her makeup to all her kind. Her
features were finely moulded, and her whole contour was perfect. She
had a wonderful presence; so much silent power went with it. I could
not help being conscious of it when in the room with her. I felt as if
something of an elevating nature was coming from her to me all the
time. I always felt a better man after having been in her company. And
before I attained to the plane I am now on, when at times I would be
depressed or discouraged and went into her presence with those
feelings, it would not be long before they left me and I felt as if I
was the strongest and most hopeful man living. She being the most
powerful of the two brought me into her condition and made me feel
strong, like a giant refreshed with new wine.
After visiting at her house many times, I conceived the impression
that for some cause she took a great interest in me, not because I was
a young man, but for some other reason.
Sometimes I would visit the family and she would not be at home,
and late in the evening she would return all alone. She would go
anywhere at any time. I have seen her late at night walking through the
slums of Calcutta all alone. She was free in the truest sense of the
word, not being in bondage to her material form, or in recognizing
family or social standing; she had no superstitions; she was above and
beyond them all. I noticed she was loved very much by her parents and
brother, and seemed to possess a deep affectionate nature herself. Her
peculiar qualities were fully recognized by the family, she having no
household duties to perform, only as the notion might take her.
I was always a welcomed guest at the house, and I felt as much at
home as if I were a member of their family.
After I had known the family about a year, I called at the house
one evening just about the time it was getting dark. Wavernee was
sitting in the door-way. She seemed very pleased to see me and invited
me in, saying: 'The other members of the family are all away.'
The room we went into we entered at its center, and she turned to
the left and walked to the end of the room. She gave me a seat so that
I sat at the extreme end of the room. She closed the door and took a
low seat on my left. To my great surprise, she commenced a conversation
about common things, and talked as interestingly as any intelligent
young lady would talk. We chatted about fifteen minutes, and by that
time the room was dark so I could not see one object from another.
She became silent and I received an impression that she did not
wish me to speak, so we both sat in the silence for about ten minutes,
when the room became illuminated and she herself seemed to be the
brightest object in it. I never saw a room so bright as that in my
life. After a few minutes everything in the room appeared dark except
the wall at the further end; and where it was light there seemed to be
a white covering such as is used for magic lantern pictures. I was
looking at it when there appeared a picture which covered the whole
cloth. It represented men and women of all tribes and nations bending
beneath heavy loads of bondage. I observed their bondages were not all
the same. There was a difference in the kind of bondages the men were
bound with to those that held women in slavery. Then I saw that the men
had some bondages the same as the women had. I observed the bondages of
the women were not all the same. For instance, the American's woman's
bondage in some respects was different from that of the Japanese woman,
and the bondages of the Hindu woman were not the same as that of the
Chinese woman. It was a sad sight. As they were all presented, they
appeared to be living, moving figures.
There were a few Hindu men and women who were free, going among
them trying to lift them out of bondage, but it was very hard, for they
seemed to love being in bondage. Only those who were tired of their
bondages were helped by the workers. Wavernee kept her eyes intently on
the picture all the time, and when she turned her face towards me the
scene disappeared and the whole room became dark. In about ten minutes
the whole room was again illuminated and I never saw Wavernee look so
much like the embodiment of perfect love as she did then. She seemed as
if she had been touched with a live coal from off the altar, the sacred
fire was so bright in her eyes. The atmosphere was one of sacred
blissful love. Whatever there was of lukewarmness or indifference in me
in regard to humanity was licked up, as it were, by a fiery flame of
love. I felt as if my whole nature had become white-heat with love. The
most miserable creature seemed dear and sweet to me.
While I was in that frame of mind the room became dark, except the
further end, and I saw another living scene on the canvas. It was
Wavernee walking along a hot dusty road a few miles from Calcutta. She
seemed indifferent to the heat and dust, and was looking exactly the
same as I have just described her. As she was walking along, I noticed
a little way in front of her was a young woman sitting down on the side
of the road with only a few dirty rags on her poor body. Her face and
form showed marks of sin and disease. When she saw Wavernee coming near
her, she put her hands to her face and held her head down. O, the
apparent contrast between the two! Wavernee sat down beside the young
woman and took one of her hands and held it awhile, meanwhile talking
to her. Then she opened a basket she had and took out a bottle and
poured the contents into a glass and gave it to her to drink. There was
a label on the bottle and glass which read 'love,' and the young woman
drank the glass empty. After awhile Wavernee stood up and the young
woman stood up, too, and as she did so her rags fell from her and she
was clothed like Wavernee, and when I looked into her face I saw no
difference between them.
The scene disappeared, but it was quickly replaced by another which
represented Wavernee and some other native workers clearing large
tracts of land. Then they ploughed and harrowed it. As fast as they
prepared one tract of land for the seed they commenced clearing another
piece. On the land that had been cleared I saw myself and some one else
with me that had a veil over head and face, so I could not see who the
person was; but we were both engaged in the same occupation of sowing
seed, each one of us having a large measure containing the seed. On the
outside of the measure was the word truth. We would sow one piece of
land and then go to another piece that had been cleared and sow that.
On the ground that I had sowed, a crop came up in the form of many men
and some women who were all out of bondage. They were free. Where the
person with me had sowed, there was a crop of many women and some few
men who were out of bondage. They were all free. I wish I could convey
to your mind how happy and joyful they all were.
As this last scene disappeared the whole room became illuminated.
Wavernee looked at me with eyes of celestial love and said: 'Penloe,
thou hast seen all. What appeared before thy vision will convey to thy
mind more than any words of mine. Before you is a future that angels
might desire. Be true to thy highest light, then wilt thou realize what
thy eyes have seen. Your co-worker is one that I love. She knows me
not, but I know her, and when she becomes one with you in your life and
work of love, give her this ring (taking it from her finger and giving
it to me) with my love and tell her to accept it as a symbol of your
union in love and work.
'This ring has a history. It was worn by a beautiful young Indian
princess who, after having been a wife to a prince for two years,
became disgusted with her life, and, weary of all the luxuries of the
court, she left one night in disguise, saying to herself: I can live
here no longer, for I am a greater slave than the poorest of the Pariah
women. My nature cries out for freedom. I would rather be free in
poverty than be a slave in luxury. Give me freedom or give me death!
She lived for many years in the realization of her own highest nature.
She looked on all about her as being God and showed that love and
reverence for all as she did for the Divine Being. Her whole life was
devoted to being a blessing to many others; particularly to the
elevation of those of her own sex. Just before she died she gave it to
my Guru's (Spiritual Teacher) mother, who was then a young woman,
saying: Wear this as a vow that thy life will be consecrated to
lifting thy sisters out of bondage. My Guru gave it to me with its
history, saying: My mother lived and died for woman's freedom. May you
live for the same noble purpose.' Then Wavernee rose and took from a
shelf this beautiful little box, saying: 'Keep the ring in this box.'
After I thanked her she said: 'This is the last time you will see
me, for I am going away and when I return you will have left this
country.' I received a mental suggestion not to ask any questions, and
there seemed to be nothing left for me to say, but to part with such a
sweet exalted character in the way and manner that two spiritual
friends should take leave of each other.
Stella, she was the greatest mystic I ever met in that land of
When Penloe finished his narrative he looked at Stella and saw she
was deeply moved. Neither spoke for a few minutes, then Stella leaned
her head towards Penloe and said in a soft touching voice:
Penloe, dear, I have just seen Wavernee. Oh, what a beautiful
loving soul she is; her countenance is something wonderful! For a few
moments I seemed to be with her in a sacred room in her home in India.
As I entered she came forward and greeted me in a most affectionate
manner. Leading me to a small altar at one end of the room, we both
kneeled for devotion, after which I looked up and saw on the wall the
inscription: 'Our lives are consecrated to the Lord in His humanity.
After I read that everything disappeared, and I realized I was here
on this porch with you, my mind being full of your exceedingly
After a pause Penloe remarked: I am not surprised, Stella, at the
experience you have just had of seeing Wavernee, for I have seen her
twice since I have been in Orangeville. It is a gift which comes to
some in their higher unfoldment. I am very glad you saw Wavernee, for
it is an inspiration to see such a person.
Stella replied: Yes, Penloe, she is all you have described her to
me, and much more. Her presence has a remarkable power of elevating.
She is my ideal, for she is highly gifted and still only full of pure
love. What you have related and what I have seen has been a great
revelation to me, and fills me with joy in the thought of being your
co-worker in living the life as Wavernee saw us as dispensers of truth,
and helpers of humanity through love.
Penloe said: Yes, dear Stella, it is a great blessing and privilege
to be of service to others. It is the test of greatness of character;
for Jesus said: 'He that is greatest of all must be servant of all.'
After a little silence in which both were thinking about the great
work before them, Stella's attention was called to the box containing
the ring, by Penloe handing it to her. On taking it she said: Is not
the box beautiful? Then opening it she took out the ring. It was a
cinnamon garnet ring, made from Ceylon stone, with hieroglyphics
outside and inside beautifully cut. It was a fine piece of skilled
Stella said: Penloe, do tell me the meaning of the hieroglyphics on
the ring. I am very desirous to know.
Penloe said: Outside it reads, 'All are one in God.' Inside it
reads, 'The fire of spirituality burns by continual devotion.'
Stella remarked: How true is the beautiful thought contained in the
outside inscription, 'All are one in God,' for it makes our own union
feel sacred and precious as well as bringing us close to all others.
The inside inscription is an exceedingly fine one, 'The fire of
spirituality burns by continual devotion.' Because without devotion the
spiritual life droops and withers as a flower without water.
Continuing, she said: There are two kinds of devotion, one consisting
of heartfelt prayer and singing from the soul, sacred hymns; and the
other kind consists in rendering service to others. They are both
essential for spiritual growth.
Stella was very much interested in the history of the ring, and
putting it on her finger she said: What a true symbol of the nature of
our union is the ring. I am so glad it is not made of gold and set with
diamonds. If it were I never could wear it, for it would neutralize all
the good I could do. Supposing it had been one of those very handsome
gold rings set with diamonds such as Indian princesses wear. Every
lady's eye, young and old, would be on the ring, while their minds
would be speculating on its great value, and their thoughts so taken up
with its beauty that what I might say to instruct them would have very
little effect, and even the influence of my own life would be small.
No, Penloe, I never would wear a costly ring, not even if you gave it
to me; for it would have a tendency to keep myself and all who saw it
in bondage. This ring is not costly or very attractive, but its history
is rich and the truths cut into it are precious. Here she kissed
Penloe for the ring and spoke again in loving terms concerning
That evening the moon looked down on no happier couple than Penloe
and Stella, for they were both free and attracted towards them all that
was joyous and beautiful in the Universe.
On that porch so sacred in blissful associations, before retiring,
they spent a few minutes in silent prayer, after which I heard them
sing so softly and sweetly, their voices blending in harmony and
melody. I never heard such singing before. I looked up in the starry
firmament, and did my eyes see some of the angelic host looking down on
them as they sang?
If such the sweetness of the streams
What must the fountain be!
CHAPTER XXII. THE HERNE PARTY.
Mr. and Mrs. Herne had become greatly interested in Stella, and they
made their house feel like a home to her whenever she favored them with
a visit, which she did many times previous to her living with Penloe in
the mountains. They were very much attracted towards her and loved her,
for she always brought sunshine with her, and her charming presence,
her agreeable manners, together with her fresh, bright, original
character, so sweet and beautiful, could not but help making her a very
desirable member of the Herne family, for they had come to look upon
her as such since her engagement to Penloe, for Penloe to them was a
dear brother, and now they looked upon Stella as a dear sister.
On the evening that Penloe was relating the story of the ring to
Stella, Charles and Clara Herne were sitting on the porch enjoying the
beautiful evening and entertaining themselves in a conversation about
the newly married couple who were expected to come to-morrow and be
their guests for several days.
While they were talking about the leading part Stella had taken on
the sex question, Clara said to her husband: If Penloe had a wife made
to order he could not have had a more suitable mate than Stella. That
match was made in heaven.
Her husband, who had picked up some of Penloe's ideas, said: Why,
Clara, she was made to order for him.
Clara laughed and said: Well, Charles, do you think I was made to
order for you?
Certainly, and I was made to order for you, my dear, replied he.
Mrs. Herne said: It is very easy to believe that persons so suited
to each other as you and I, and Penloe and Stella, were made to order
for each other, but how about Fred Thaxter and his wife, who were
married a year ago? Mrs. Simmons called on me yesterday and told me she
had heard that Fred was about to apply for a divorce.
Clara said: I feel sorry for them both. Charles, so far, you and I
have not taken any active part in the sex reform movement which has
been just started. While we are of the same mind as Penloe and Stella
in thought, yet we have so far been silent, except in the circle of our
own home, and I think the time has come for us to show our colors.
Charles said: My dear, I am ready to hoist the flag whenever you
say the word.
Clara made answer: I say the word now, Charles.
Charles said: We will have a talk with Penloe and Stella and see
what way we can help the movement forward.
Clara said: I think, Charles, we had better retire early to-night,
for to-morrow Penloe and Stella will be with us for several days, and
we never retire early when they are our guests, and the day after
to-morrow we give a party in their honor.
Early next day, according to an understanding, Mr. Herne sent a man
with his two-seated surrey to Mr. Wheelwright's for his guests, and
about eleven the handsome span of blacks were reined up in front of the
Herne residence, and there were two warm hearts on the porch to greet
the newly married couple. Charles Herne came forward and received
Stella as if she had been his own sister, and she kissed him as if he
were her own brother, and Clara Herne received Penloe in the same way,
for they lived what they taught, and Penloe and Stella called them
Charles and Clara.
Just after dinner Clara was talking about the invited guests to the
party to-morrow, saying that she had received a note from Mrs. Hardy, a
lady who had been married about five years, which read that she could
not come to-morrow as she was sick with her old complaint, but she
wants you both to call on her before starting on your wedding tour.
Continuing, Clara said: How much that poor lady has suffered. I
have heard her talk very strongly of her mother for being so
close-mouthed with her concerning matters that she ought to have
enlightened her about. I remember calling on her at one time and found
her lying on the lounge. At times she was in great pain. I was telling
her about the interest which had just begun to be aroused in the sex
reform movement. She said: 'Oh, if I could only be put back ten years
with the knowledge I have, what an active part I would take in the
movement, for I don't want other girls and women to suffer what I have,
through ignorance and fear.'
Penloe said: Stella, we had better call on Phebe this afternoon,
for neither of us have seen her since we lived our mountain life, and
we will have more time to-day than later.
Stella answered: I am ready any time.
Charles Herne asked Penloe: What time would you like to leave
Penloe said: About two.
Well, said Charles, I will have the boy bring the team round for
you at that time.
It was two o'clock but the team had not yet been brought to the
front of the house. Charles Herne had gone out to the orchard and Clara
was elsewhere in the house. Penloe and Stella were in the parlor.
Penloe said: Stella, I will go up to the barn and see if the team
is ready. So out he went.
While Penloe had gone to the barn for the team, Clara Herne entered
the parlor, with a paper in her hand, and called Stella's attention to
a criticism on the sex reform movement.
When Clara entered the parlor, Stella was standing looking at an oil
painting on the wall. Stella took the paper, and sat down on the
nearest chair. Mrs. Herne went out in the kitchen, and there was Mrs.
Wentworth and her child, who was about three years of age. Mrs.
Wentworth's husband was poor, and they lived on a small, rented place,
near the Herne ranch. Mrs. Wentworth belonged to that type of woman who
has very little inclination for solving the problems of the Universe or
settling the affairs of the nation, but who seem always to have a great
amount of leisure to devote to the doings of her neighbors. It was
seldom that Mrs. Herne had company but that Mrs. Wentworth found some
kind of errand to her house.
One day at dinner Mrs. Herne, in a humorous way, said: I think Mrs.
Wentworth is owing me for about twenty-seven lots of yeast, forty-two
little lots of butter, sufficient matches to light all the fires in
Orangeville for six months, enough loaves of bread to feed a multitude,
for she often is out of bread or had bad luck with her baking. I have
let her have more milk than would be required to drown herself in, and,
as for coal-oil, why the quantity that she has borrowed would
illuminate many dark places of the earth; and my tea and coffee seem
just suited to her taste. Then, after a pause, she said: Well, the
poor woman is welcome to all she has had.
Yes, said her husband, they have a hard time.
To-day she came to get Mrs. Herne to read a letter she had received,
saying: There are some parts that neither my husband or myself can
While Mrs. Herne was engaged in reading the letter, Mrs. Wentworth's
child, seeing the door leading from one room to another open, took the
opportunity of doing a little exploring. It was not long before he was
in the parlor. When he entered Stella just looked up from the paper she
was reading, to see who it was, and went on with her reading, which she
was absorbed in. She had seen the child about the house on other
occasions. Now, where Stella was sitting, there was another chair at
the back of Stella's chair, and this vacant one was against the wall.
On the wall just over the chair was a pretty shelf, with a fancy
bright-colored ball fringe all around it, which attracted the child's
attention. So he climbed up in the chair, and when he stood up on the
seat he saw on the shelf a small, fancy, cut-glass bottle, with a very
shining silver-like top to it; so he put his hand out and took it from
the shelf, after which he turned round and faced the back of Stella's
chair. In passing the bottle from one hand to the other, in order to
help himself down with his possessions, his faculty of weight not being
as yet well trained, he let go of the bottle before he had got a firm
hold of it with the other hand, and the result was that it fell on
Stella's shoulder. Fortunately the stopper did not come off till it
reached her lap, when she received the whole contents of a bottle of
ink on her wedding dress.
Just about that time Mrs. Wentworth said to Mrs. Herne: I must go
and see what that child is doing; and she arrived in the room just as
the bottle of ink fell into Stella's lap. Mrs. Wentworth took the
situation in at a glance and the hot blood instantly flew to her face,
and hotter words came from her mouth; and, among other things she said,
My God! that brat of mine has spoiled your fine, white dress; and
she took the boy, and was spanking him amidst hot words and the cries
of the child.
Stella said: Please don't hurt the child; it's nothing, it's
nothing, Mrs. Wentworth. But the mother paid no attention to Stella's
protests, but left the room with the child just as Mrs. Herne entered.
Clara said: Why, Stella, dear, what is the matter? Stella laughed,
and said: I have got some new figures on my wedding dress. Don't you
think they are pretty?
On seeing Stella's skirt and underskirt all saturated with ink in
places, Clara was not quite prepared to enter into the same laughable
mood as her guest, but said:
Stella, dear, how well you take it! I wish I could be that way.
To which Stella replied: I would not have a disturbed mind for a
dozen of the best dresses ever made. Clara, nothing is so dear and
sacred to me as 'the peace of mind which passeth all understanding.'
Clara said: I see you kept the ink from going on my new carpet, by
rolling your skirts up. It's just like your thoughtfulness, dear.
Mrs. Wentworth came running into the room, saying: Penloe is
waiting outside with the team. What will you do? Stella smiling, went
to the door, and holding out the front of her dress said, laughing,
Penloe, how do you like these hieroglyphics on my dress?
Penloe laughed, and said: They are different to any I have ever
In about fifteen minutes Stella took her seat beside Penloe, with
some new garments on, which she had brought with her, and they went on
their way to Mrs. Harding's.
After they were gone, Mrs. Wentworth said to Mrs. Herne: I never
seen anything like those two in all my life. If that had happened to me
I would have been so mad that I would have cursed and swore, and felt
like warming the child's hide. And as for my husband, do you think he
would have laughed and sat in the buggy, like a hen on her nest? No, he
would have been in and out of the buggy many times; every minute he
would be looking up at the house to see if I was coming, and now and
then calling out to ask me if it took me all day to change my dress.
Then he would think he had something to do about the horse's head, then
back to his seat, then out again, doing something to the back of the
buggy, then he would look up at the house again, with a frown on his
face, and call out, 'Are you never coming?' He would be as restless as
a fox in a cage.
Mrs. Herne smiled at the description of Mr. Wentworth's disposition,
as given by his wife, and said, in a quiet tone: We all need more
patience and self-control.
On the following day all were very busy in the Herne household,
making preparations for the party. Penloe and Stella attended to the
rearranging of the furniture and decorating the rooms, while Clara
superintended the supplies for the table. The guests arrived a few
minutes after five. To Clara Herne's great surprise, the last guest to
arrive came in the form of Mrs. Harding. Clara Herne, in receiving her,
said: What, Phebe, I am so glad you are able to come.
When they were all alone in the room where the ladies left their
wraps and hats, Clara said: Do tell me, Phebe, what has made you so
much better, for after reading your note I had no idea of seeing you
No more had I when I wrote the note, said Phebe. But, Clara, have
you not heard? Did not Penloe or Stella tell you?
No, said Clara; when I asked them how you were, Stella told me
what you said about your condition when she asked you how you were.
Well, Clara, I will tell you, said Mrs. Harding. Penloe and
Stella were with me about an hour. After they had been in the room with
me about ten minutes, they talked very little. About half an hour
afterwards such a sweet feeling of peace and rest came over me; all
pain had left me, and when they said 'good-bye,' I felt healed and I
keep feeling better all the time. Clara, my heart is full of joy and
gratitude to that man of God and his angel wife. What beautiful
countenances they have.
At half past five the company sat down at a long table which was
tastefully spread with viands and dainties to tempt the appetite of the
most fastidious epicure. Penloe sat on Clara's right, and Stella sat on
the left of Charles Herne. Four of Mr. Herne's men waited on the table;
so well did they perform this service that a stranger could not have
told them from professional waiters.
The meal was thoroughly enjoyed amidst mirth and laughter, wit and
humor, jokes and short stories, for the whole company were in the best
After supper some of the guests sat on the porch, others walked
about the grounds, and some played croquet. Among the invited guests
were Prof. French and wife, a couple who had been married about a year;
they were both professional musicians, living in San Francisco, and
were visiting their relatives, the King family, and they received an
invitation with the King family to the party.
Among those who were sitting on the porch were Mr. and Mrs. Bates.
They had always been very friendly with the Hernes and lived only about
two miles distant from them.
A little later in the evening the croquet players and those who had
been strolling about the grounds were coming towards the house, just as
Mr. Bates was relating to Mr. and Mrs. Herne what to him had been a
very trying experience. Mr. Bates always called Mr. Herne Charles. He
Charles, I don't know that I would have been here to-night if it
had not been for my wife.
Why, how is that? said Mr. Herne.
Mr. Bates replied: Well, I will tell you. This morning, Weeks' boy
was playing with my boy in the barn. There were a number of sacks of
barley and wheat on the floor. The boys got to scuffling, one boy
trying to throw the other down. At last my boy got Weeks' boy down and
gave him a blow and ran out of the barn with Weeks' boy after him. They
both ran out into the orchard and then over the fence to Page's barn.
Now, when Weeks' boy ran after my lad he left the barn door open. There
was no one about the barn at the time the boys left. My man and I were
at the further end of the ranch fixing the line fence. When we came up
at noon we found the barn door open and that fine four-year-old colt of
mine and a lot of hogs were all in the barn eating grain. They had torn
every sack open and had eaten more than half of it. The colt had eaten
so much as to make him bloat. When I saw it all I felt so mad I had to
use some hot words. When I went to the house I told my wife about it.
At first she seemed put out, but when she saw how wrathy I was she
tried to cool me down. I asked where the boy was, and she said, 'Weeks'
boy was here and asked for our boy to go to his place to play and have
dinner. They said they were going to get Page's boy to play with them.'
I felt so worried about the colt and so mad at the boys I could not eat
my dinner. I told my wife I did not feel like coming here to-night, and
when I said that I saw I had made matters worse, so I went out to the
barn and worked over the colt some more. When the boy came home I had
him tell me all about it. I told him if he or any boy with him ever
left the barn door open again he would not want to sit down for a
Just here Mrs. Bates said to Mrs. Herne: Henry does take such
things so hard. It seems as if he can never get over it.
Mr. Bates spoke up a little louder and said: Such thoughtless,
careless doings as that are enough to make any one lose his temper.
Why, I came very near losing the colt, besides the damage the hogs did
to the grain.
Mrs. Herne said: Mr. Bates, I must tell you what an experience
Stella had yesterday, and see if you don't think she had something to
Mr. Bates said: Would like to hear it; misery always loves
So Mrs. Herne commenced telling about the bottle of ink falling into
Stella's lap. Just as she commenced to relate the incident Penloe came
on the porch with Mrs. French, and they took a seat near Mrs. Herne.
About two minutes later Prof. French and Stella joined the group, and
before Mrs. Herne had got to that part of the story where she asks
Stella, What is the matter? and Stella laughed and said: I got some
new figures on my wedding dress, don't you think they are pretty?
about all the guests were now grouped about Mrs. Herne. They were
either sitting on the wide porch or standing near by. When Mrs. Herne
had finished, Mr. Bates said in a comical kind of way: If that had
been my wedding dress, I would have felt so mad that I would feel like
throwing the youngster out of the window and swearing a blue streak.
Turning to Stella, he said: I have got no such control over myself
as you have. I wish I had.
Mrs. French said: Stella, how could you take it so cheerfully? Why,
if that had been my wedding dress, I would have felt too mad to speak;
in fact, I don't know just what I would do.
Pretty Miss Grace Nettleton, a young lady full of fun and always the
life of any party, laughingly said: As I intend to be an old maid, no
bottle of ink will ever fall on my wedding dress, but if such a thing
should happen I would feel like going to bed and having a good cry.
Several other ladies remarked: I don't see how Stella could have
been so peaceful and pleasant. I know I never could.
Miss Baker, the school teacher, who had many trying pupils, remarked
to Mrs. French: I wish I could control myself like Stella; how easy I
could govern the scholars.
Penloe said: Did any of you ever hear the story of Shuka?
Several answered: No.
Mrs. French said: Do tell it, Penloe.
Yes, said Mrs. Herne, we all would like to hear it. The company
became very attentive while Penloe related the following story with
There was a great sage called Vyasa. This Vyasa was the writer
of the Vedanta philosophy, a holy man. His father had tried to become a
very perfect man and failed; his grandfather tried and failed; his
great-grandfather tried and failed; he himself did not succeed
perfectly, but his son Shuka was born perfect. He taught this son, and
after teaching him himself, he sent him to the court of King Janaka. He
was a great king and was called Videha. Videha means 'outside the
body.' Although a king, he had entirely forgotten that he had a body;
he was a spirit all the time. The boy was sent to be taught by him. The
king knew that Vyasa's son was coming to him to learn, so he made
certain arrangements beforehand, and when the boy presented himself at
the gates of the palace, the guards took no notice of him whatsoever.
They only gave him a place to sit, and he sat there for three days and
nights, nobody speaking to him, nobody asking who he was or whence he
was. He was the son of this great sage, his father was honored by the
whole country, and he himself was a most respectable person; yet the
low vulgar guards of the palace would take no notice of him.
[Footnote 3: Karma Yoga, Vivekananda.]
After that, suddenly, the ministers of the king and all the high
officials came there and received him with the greatest honors. They
took him in and showed him into splendid rooms, gave him the most
fragrant baths and wonderful dresses, and for eight days they kept him
there in all kinds of luxury. That face did not change; he was the same
in the midst of this luxury as at the door. Then he was brought before
the king. The king was on his throne, music was playing, and dancing
and other amusements going on. The king gave him a cup of milk, full to
the brim, and asked him to go round the hall seven times without
spilling a drop. The boy took the cup and proceeded in the midst of
this music and the beautiful faces. Seven times he went round, and not
a drop was spilled. The boy's mind could not be attracted by anything
in the world unless he allowed it. And when he brought the cup to the
king, the king said to him: 'What your father has taught you and what
you have learned yourself, I only repeat; you have known the truth. Go
When Penloe had finished Mrs. Herne said: Thank you, Penloe, that
is very good, for it brings out the idea so well.
Mrs. French said: Is not that very fine, Penloe? I never heard that
thought expressed before. It is new to me.
Dr. Finch, who was a well educated young dentist, said: That
thought, though old to the people of the Orient, is just beginning to
come to the front in the literature of the West. I was very much
gratified in listening to Penloe.
Saunders, the merchant, laughed and said: If it had been me sitting
at the gate, instead of Shuka, I would have got mad in ten minutes and
gone home, if the guards had treated me in that manner.
It began to get a little cool on the porch and the company were
invited into the large double parlors to play some games. After
enjoying a variety of games for an hour, it was proposed to have some
music. The Hernes had a fine-toned piano, and it was always kept in
tune. Several young gentlemen asked Miss Grace Nettleton for a song,
and all the other members of the company joined in the request. Miss
Nettleton said she would like some one to play the accompaniment, and
Prof. French said: I will play for you.
As Miss Grace Nettleton was a young lady of romantic turn of mind
and very fond of reading love stories and singing love songs, she
selected one to sing according to her taste, from which we give the
Sitting on the garden gate,
Where the little butterfly reposes,
Now I hate to tell, but then I must,
'Twas love among the roses.
Some of the young people being delighted with that sentimental song,
called for another, for they could not think of her taking her seat
after singing only one; so she very kindly sang another. In a very
soft, sweet voice, she sang a song containing the following verse:
I love to think of thee, when evening closes,
Over landscapes bright and fair,
I love to think of thee when earth reposes,
To calm a grief which none can share.
When every eyelid hovers
When every heart but mine is free,
'Tis then, O then, I love to think of thee.
If the true feeling of one or two young gentlemen present could be
told, they certainly would like to have had Miss Grace Nettleton think
of them in that way. After receiving many compliments from the company,
the young lady took her seat. Mrs. French, who was a professional
musician like her husband, was called for and sang with fine effect, I
am dreaming, yes I am dreaming, the happy hours away, etc, etc. Her
fine cultivated voice was much appreciated by the company and they were
eager to have Mrs. French sing again, but she wished to save her voice,
and got her husband to sing Beautiful Isle of the Sea. His fine
baritone voice was a great treat to the guests, for it was seldom such
talent as that of himself and wife was heard in the parlors of
Stella was called for and Professor French played the accompaniment,
while she in a very sweet and feeling voice sang, Hark! I Hear an
Angel Sing. As her graceful form stood beside the instrument with her
face and eyes turned a little upwards, she seemed to be lost to
everything mundane, and when she sang those soul-melting words that she
heard the angel sing, the effect was complete, for it seemed to those
present as if it was the voice of an angel singing those words and not
that of a human being.
The attention was so great that when she finished you could have
heard a pin drop. The effect was very fine. There were some there who
will never forget that song. Professor French and his wife were very
much taken with Stella's singing; both of them pressed her hand and
thanked her for her sweet song. They afterwards said, in all their
musical career they never heard anything to equal it of its kind. The
song was entirely new to every one present.
Mrs. French, who was half in doubt in her own mind as to whether
Penloe had any musical talent or not, said: Perhaps Penloe will favor
us with some music.
Prof. French said: Yes, Penloe, I would like to hear you very
much. Mrs. Herne laughed and said: It seems strange to think that,
though Penloe has made many visits to our house, I never thought to ask
him if he could play, for we always have so much interesting
conversation that I never think about music.
Stella laughed and said: Why, Clara, I don't know myself whether
Penloe can play the piano, for he is so modest about his attainments.
We have sung together many times, but I am like you, I never thought to
ask him if he could play. Turning to Penloe, she said: Now, Penloe, I
do want to hear you play so much; and when he rose to take his seat at
the instrument curiosity reached its height in the minds of Mr. and
Mrs. Herne as well as Stella, so eager were they to see his personality
manifested in music.
The eyes of each member of the company were now riveted on that
remarkable figure who had just begun to finger a few keys with one
hand. He did not do as some would-be performers sometimes do, strike
eight to ten keys as soon as they touch the piano, but, strange to say,
he commenced playing with one hand.
We will here give the words concerning Penloe's performance as told
to a friend in San Francisco by Mrs. French in her own unique way, as
My husband and I being at a party one evening given by Mr. and Mrs.
Herne in Orangeville, I met a gentleman there by the name of Penloe,
who certainly is the most gifted man I ever have met in all my travels.
There is a power in his personality that is irresistible; you cannot
help being drawn towards him. But his power is of that kind that is
uplifting and elevating, and there is something very sweet in his
nature. After supper I took a little walk with him about the grounds,
and his conversation was exceedingly interesting. I will never forget
the talk I had with him. He seemed to be able to bring out of me ideas
which I had never expressed before; in fact, making me talk, as it
were, above myself. In thinking it over, I must say my own conversation
was a surprise to me; and as for him, while he does not take you all of
a sudden into great depths of thought, or attach wings to you and have
you flying through the heavens, yet he has the genius of taking the
most commonplace subjects and causing you to see such an interest and
beauty in them as you never saw before. After we all assembled in the
large double parlors and had some games, there were several who favored
the company with instrumental and vocal music, when I thought it would
be no more than proper to ask Penloe to play. After he had been seated
at the piano a few minutes, I was a little in doubt whether I had not
made a mistake in asking him, for he commenced playing with one hand
and only touching one key at a time, more like a child playing. He
still went on playing with one hand, but touching two and three keys at
a time. I noticed some ladies and gentlemen began looking at each other
and then at Penloe, hardly knowing what to make of such playing. As he
proceeded further in his performance with one hand, though the playing
was simple, yet there was a peculiarity about it that can hardly be
expressed as he went along with his apparently amateur performance.
Then he used his other hand and fingered a few more keys occasionally,
and I felt an interest growing in me, and also those around me seemed
to share the same feeling. A little later and the fingers of both hands
were going a little more rapidly over the key-board, and the childish
and amateur performer had ceased and the playing began to impress me as
being that of a young professional. I began to feel myself more drawn
into the playing, and when the playing of a young professional had
given place to the experienced professional, I was all attention; but
it was not long before the professional had disappeared and I knew that
the music I was listening to now was that of a genius. I was conscious
a great master was at the instrument, and after that I seemed not to be
conscious of the performer or those about me, and how long I was in
that condition I do not know. When I came to myself again, the music
had ceased, there was no performer there, for Penloe had left the room.
In talking with some others of the party about Penloe's playing, it
seemed to have produced exactly the same effect on them as it did on
me. I will, in a very inadequate way, tell you as near as I can the
impression it made upon me. I felt, when he first commenced to play in
his child-like way, as if all our minds were very much scattered; that
is, I mean as if a great separateness and distinction existed, and as
he proceeded with his playing it seemed to have the effect of
collecting our minds and bringing them together till we all seemed to
be just one mind. Then there arose in this one mind a desire, and the
desire grew till it created a disturbance, and it kept increasing and
growing more powerful till it burst into a storm of passion, and the
storm became furious within; for it seemed at times as if it would rend
and tear me to pieces, and I was about to be conquered by it. I felt
like saying, 'Must I yield? Is yielding the only way out of this? Must
I give way and let it have full sway over me?' I said, 'Must I let it
die out by consuming its own self?' And as I was about to cry out in
despair, 'There is no other way; I will feed the fire till there is
nothing left for it to burn;' and just as I was on the brink, on the
edge of the precipice, as it were, the fury of the storm being at its
very height, then all of a sudden I saw a light and the storm began to
lose some of its fury, and the clouds appeared not so black, and the
light seemed growing brighter. At last the storm ceased within me, and
the dark clouds were disappearing fast, till the last one had gone and
a wave of sunshine swept over my soul, and I felt like saying, 'How
peaceful it is after the storm,' and while I was enjoying that sweet
feeling of peace a change came over me, I began to be lifted, as it
were out of my little self, and myself and the world seemed to be
larger than I had ever imagined. I began, as it were, to rise, and
great as the world had grown I had grown greater still. Then I entered
a much larger world than even the great one I had lived in, and when I
had outgrown that grand world, I went into another still more
beautiful, and on I went rising out of one beautiful world into another
far superior till I reached a condition that human language cannot
convey the blissful state of the soul in me. Oh, the happiness I then
realized. I shall never forget. My husband, in speaking of the piece
Penloe played, said: 'That music was never composed on earth, it was
born in heaven,' Mr. Herne heard my husband make that remark, and said,
'In order to play that kind of music, you have got to live in the same
world as Penloe does. That is how it has its birth.'
It is true, as Mrs. French told her friend, that after the music had
lost some of its power over her she realized that Penloe had left the
room. The piano being near the door, which was open, and no one sitting
between the door and the piano, when Penloe ceased playing he quietly
left the room and sat in a chair on the porch. About five minutes
later, a soft footstep was heard on the porch and the sound of a light
rustle of a dress, for Stella had taken a seat beside Penloe. His
performance at the piano had stirred the dear girl's nature to its
greatest depths and also had scaled its lofty heights. On that porch,
gazing at the grand canopy of the heavens, those two souls listened to
such strains of music as only the purified hear.
CHAPTER XXIII. A VISIT FROM BARKER
About ten o'clock the next morning after the party, Mr. Herne was in
the front yard, superintending some work, when he saw a buggy coming
towards his house and he recognized the occupants as being Mr. Herbert
Barker and Mr. Stanley Brookes, of Roseland. When the team stopped in
front of the house. Mr. Herne was there to receive the two gentlemen.
After shaking hands and exchanging a few pleasant words, Mr. Barker
asked: Are Penloe and Stella here?
Mr. Herne said: Yes, they are, come in, gentlemen, and gave them
seats in the parlor, saying, You had better stay to dinner, and I will
have a man take care of your team, an invitation which they gladly
accepted. Mr. Herne entered the sitting-room to tell Penloe and Stella
that Barker and Brookes were in the parlor waiting to see them. Since
those two gentlemen had become Stella's co-workers for sex reform
consequently they had seen much of each other, and had come to a mutual
understanding that they would lay aside all formalities and act as
brother and sister; therefore, instead of addressing each other as Mr.
or Mrs., they called each other by their given names.
When Penloe and Stella entered the parlor, the two gentlemen rose
from their seats and came forward to tender their congratulations to
the newly married couple. After a lively social chat, Stanley Brookes
made known the object of their morning call in the following words.
Looking at Stella, he said: Since you were with us last in Roseland,
we have been receiving information through various channels concerning
certain persons, in a number of towns and cities, who may be considered
advanced enough to profit by our literature. In most cases the persons
receiving it have written for more, to circulate among their friends.
Since sending a second lot, we have been in receipt of a number of
letters, like the following, and here Brookes took one from a large
package of letters, and read it to Penloe and Stella. It was as
LOS ANGELES, Cal.
Stanley Brookes, Esq.,
DEAR SIR: The literature which you kindly sent me I
placed where I knew it would do the most good. It gives
me pleasure to inform you that the California idea is
gaining ground here, and interest is growing faster
than I anticipated. I was not aware there were so many
ready for the sex reform thought; but in talking with
some of the more advanced, they said that they had done
a little thinking along this line for some time, but
their ideas were only half formed, and this reading
matter was just what they needed to let the light into
their minds. They are all now anxious to have a
meeting, and want to know if you could get Penloe and
Stella to come here and speak. They think the largest
hall in this city would not hold the crowd that would
want to hear and see those two
much-talked-of-and-written-about persons. I will see
that all their expenses are paid, if you will see to
getting them here. I know if they come it will give the
movement a big lift. Write as soon as you know if they
Yours for Reform,
At the conclusion of reading the letter Brookes said: It seems that
some of our literature got into the State of Colorado. The papers in
that State called it the 'California Idea,' and as the 'C.I.' began to
grow they called it the 'California Movement.' Some of the papers in
this State have used the same expression, and the people in California
seem to be pleased with the names given the new sex thought.
Stella laughed, and said: Well, Stanley, I rather like the names
C.I. and C.M. Don't you, Penloe?
Penloe said: Yes, the term or name 'Sex Reform Thought' I think
very ambiguous, but C.I. and C.M. are names which convey to the mind
the ideas they are intended to express.
Brookes said: Stella, I will read you another letter I received from
a friend of mine in Bakersfield:
Stanley Brookes, Esq.,
DEAR FRIEND BROOKES: Yes, it is just as you say,
Bakersfield may be a very fast town, but there are some
people here who are ripe for the 'C. Movement.' My
experience and what I see here about me every day have
made me so sick of the old ideas concerning sex that it
does me good to see the interest people are taking in
the literature you sent me. One woman told me that the
pamphlet I gave her had been read by nine persons. Say,
old boy, don't you think you could get Penloe and
Stella to come here and wake us up a little more. My,
they would be a drawing-card! I will see that they are
not out anything by coming. Now, do your level best to
get them here, for they would start the ball a-rolling
in fine shape.
Yours for the 'C.I.,'
Holding up the package of letters, Brookes said: Here are letters
from Ventura, San José, San Diego, Santa Barbara, Riverside, Oakland,
Sacramento, and a number of other places, all asking the same question,
'Could I get you both to come to their places to speak.' They all seem
so anxious to see and hear the leaders of the great C.M., and that is
why Herbert and I are here this morning to see if you both will accept
these pressing invitations to speak in a cause which is so dear to
Stella said: I appreciate your kind thoughtfulness in coming out
here to see us, and thus give us an opportunity of talking the matter
over together. Then she was silent, and Barker and Brookes both said
afterwards they never saw Stella look so serious and sober since they
knew her as she looked then. It seemed as if a struggle was going on
within her. After a few minutes' silence, there seemed to be a feeling
in Stella's voice as she spoke. Looking straight at the two young men
before her, she said: To you I can speak in confidence. My aunt (Mrs.
Marston) has known for a year or two that I had a great desire to
travel and see the world. Since I first met Penloe that desire has
grown much stronger. On my wedding day, aunt gave me a bank book with
ten thousand dollars placed to my credit, saying it was to be used for
the purpose of enjoying our honeymoon on a long journey around the
world. I can hardly tell you how delighted I was when I thought what
had been only a dream to me was about to be realized. Next week we were
going to Roseland to visit aunt, then we were going abroad. Yes, Penloe
and I have had such delightful talks about the countries we were going
to visit. We talked much about some of the places and people in India
we expected to see. Penloe has told me about the Sannyasins and the
great Yogis of India, saying he could arrange matters so that we could
live with some of them for a while. The thought of seeing and talking
with those wonderful spiritual giants has kept me awake at night, my
mind filled with joyous thoughts. He said, 'The great Yogi Kattakhan
has conquered all nature, and at any time he could put himself in a
mental condition so that he could give the contents of any book in any
part of the world.'
I remember the last time I was with you in Roseland, both of you
were telling me you had read Burnette's book on 'The Freedom of the
Women of Tiestan,' also Wharburton's 'The Land of Surprises.' Well, we
had decided to visit the city of Semhee, in Tiestan, and see those
remarkable people. Till now I had not thought of there being anything
to prevent our going.
Barker said: Well, Stella, all we had heard was that you were
married, and we did not know anything about your contemplated tour.
Stella said: It was quite right for you to come and see us, and I
am very glad you have. Of course, we intended calling on you both
before we left for the Orient. Now, what I have told you is that you
may see and know exactly how we are situated in regard to accepting the
invitation to speak in the various places. The C.M. is dear to me, yes,
very dear. I rejoice in the progress the movement is making through the
efforts of you both, and before giving you an answer I must go and
think it over, so you will please excuse me.
As her graceful figure was leaving the room, she said: Penloe, come
to our room about fifteen minutes before dinner. Clara told me that
they were going to have dinner at one o'clock to-day.
After Stella had left the room, Penloe chatted with the young men
about the C.M., and then said: Would you like to take a walk about the
place? and they both said, Yes, this is our first visit to Treelawn.
This was the first time Barker and Brookes had met Penloe. They had
heard him deliver his address in Roseland, and were now pleased to have
the opportunity of enjoying his company. Penloe was about their age,
and the three became interested in relating some of their college
experiences. Barker and Brookes were eager to have Penloe tell them all
about the Hindu students, and what kind of men the Hindu professors
are. They had many a laugh while Penloe was relating some experiences
which seemed very peculiar to them. Penloe's interesting conversation
had made time pass very rapidly with them, and it was near the dinner
hour before they were aware of it.
Penloe said: Please excuse me, I hear Stella calling. Taking out
his watch he said: It is about time I was in the room; I did not think
it was so late.
After Penloe had left them, Barker said to Brookes: Did you hear
Stella calling Penloe?
No, said Brookes, did you?
No, I never heard her voice, said Barker, but what did he mean by
saying she called him?
He meant she called him by what they call mental telegraphy, said
When Stella left the parlor and went to her room and had taken a
seat, her mind was filled with many conflicting thoughts and emotions.
She said to herself: I was so unprepared for this; it was only last
night I remarked to Penloe, in about two weeks we would be on the ocean
going to Japan. And, why can you not go? said a powerful voice
within her. You surely are not going to disappoint your aunt, are you,
by not going, after she has shown such love towards you as to give you
ten thousand dollars to travel on? A little voice spoke within her and
said: Are you and Penloe not the leaders of the C.M., and would it be
right for you to leave just as an interest is being awakened? The
powerful voice said: Stella, this is your wedding tour, and you have
accepted the money given you to go and you would not be doing yourself
justice to stay at home now. The little voice said: Stella, what
effect do you think your influence would have on Barker and Brookes and
other young workers, if they see you indifferent to the calls? You have
always talked as if you would be willing to sacrifice everything for
the cause which is so dear to you. The strong voice said: Yes, but if
you put off going now you will have to return the money to your aunt,
and when you are ready to go you may not have the money to go with.
The little voice said: Stella, can you not give up the pleasure of a
wedding tour for the sake of helping others out of bondage into
freedom, thus making their lives happier and brighter? The powerful
voice said: It is only idle curiosity on the part of the people
wanting to see you. Do not be influenced by them; just think how it
will help you in your future labors to have visited the Oriental
countries and sat at the feet of those great Spiritual luminaries of
India. If you go now, you have got the money and you have got Penloe,
who is the most interesting traveling companion you could have. He
knows many languages and can master the Japanese and Chinese in a month
or two. If you don't go now, but postpone it till you think you can go,
then perhaps Penloe might be dead and how could you enjoy traveling
without him? That suggestion touched Stella very deeply. After awhile
the little voice said: Stella, dear, have the people of Japan, of
China, of Persia, or of India sent an invitation to come and speak to
them? Are the great Sannyasins and Yogis looking forward to receiving a
visit from you? If the people of the Orient had given you a special
call, it would be right for you to go now. They have not called you at
all; but the people of California have. They want you to follow up the
grand noble work you so heroically commenced, a work so dear to you
that you were willing to make every sacrifice in order to be true to
yourself and thus free others from bondage. Go into the silence,
Stella, ask the Blessed Spirit for light and knowledge and he will show
you which path to choose.
And that is just what Stella did. When she came out of the silence
her face was radiant and her mind settled and clear.
When Penloe entered the room Stella spoke in a serious tone and
said: I have half a mind to be just a wee bit put out with you,
because you have acted so indifferently in regard to our wedding tour.
Why, it does not seem to concern you whether we go or stay here. With
a half twinkle in her eye she said: I must say, you don't act like
most men would who had just married a young lady with ten thousand
dollars to spend on a wedding tour.
Penloe said: I will answer you, Stella, dear, as if you spoke in
Stella said: That is just what I want you to do, Penloe.
He said: Stella, why should I care whether I am here or going on a
wedding tour through the Orient with you? All I have to do is to
realize and manifest the Divine. Stella, I have learned this one
lesson, that I am not in it, for it is He that is doing it all.
It was He that placed me in certain environments in India for my
spiritual unfoldment. It was He that brought me to Orangeville. It was
He that caused you and me to come together as co-workers in a cause
which is so dear to us. It was He that made us man and wife. It was He
that caused you to pass through this struggle which you have just had
with yourself and brought you out victorious. It was He that caused you
just now to cut the last cord of attachment and made you free.
Penloe had been standing while he talked and just here Stella rose
from her seat and, going up to him, put her arms round his neck and
said: Yes, dear, it is He, it is He. He hath done it all and He has
given me you as my husband and spiritual teacher. She kissed him and
said: Bless you, dear.
Continuing, she said: Do you know that the fight I have just had
has been the most trying and severe I ever experienced?
Yes, dear, said Penloe, I know all about it, and when a youth I
thought I was free from all attachment, till I passed through the most
trying experience in my life, which showed me I was not free from all
desire and attachment. In coming out of that struggle I cut the last
cord which bound me to the external, and since then I have been free,
and illumination followed, and that is why I have received light, and
knew before I rose the next morning after our wedding we would not go
now on a wedding tour, but would speak all through the State of
California. I knew what a struggle you were going to have, and I knew
it was necessary in order that you might be free from all attachment,
for the love of traveling through the Orient owned you just a little,
and now that you have become truly free illumination will be yours. He
ceased speaking and kissed her.
Stella said: I must take care and let nothing own me, for I see
that as soon as I allow myself to be owned I become its slave, and you
know, dear, that freedom from everything is my goal.
Penloe and Stella entered the dining-room just as Mrs. Herne had
seated Barker and Brookes at the table. As Stella took her seat the two
young men thought they had never seen her face so beautiful, with its
sweet smile and calm expression. Her vivacity brought out the wit and
humor of the two guests, who were always considered good company at any
one's table. Penloe said little, because he saw how the two young men
were enjoying Stella's bright conversation. After dinner the company
adjourned to the parlor.
Stella seated herself between her two friends, and looking at Barker
she said: I must tell you and Stanley that we have given up going on
our wedding tour through the Oriental countries. We both feel we are
wanted here and we will stay where our work calls us.
Barker replied saying: Your decision is grand and we will feel much
encouraged in having you with us.
Stella said: We will spend a week with aunt before starting out to
speak. During our stay in Roseland we will see much of each other and
have opportunities for perfecting our plans.
Two days later Penloe and Stella became the guests of Mrs. Marston,
arriving at that lady's house about four in the afternoon, which was an
hour before Stella's aunt dined. Mrs. Marston was delighted to receive
her niece and her husband, for she was at her best when she had
company. After dinner, as it was a little chilly, a fire was lit in the
open grate and the three sat round to enjoy a social time.
Mrs. Marston said: Stella, I suppose you and Penloe have all your
plans made for your wedding tour.
Stella said: Well, Aunt, we had made many plans and I had built
several castles which I expected to occupy during our journey, but we
received a visit from Herbert and Stanley while we were at Charles' and
Clara's and they brought with them a number of letters containing
invitations for us to speak on the 'California Idea,' as it is now
called, and we think it best to give up our wedding tour and do what we
can to help forward the California movement; and, Aunt, the money which
you so very kindly gave me to use for a wedding tour, I feel I ought to
return to you, as we are not going; and so here is a check for the full
amount of your gift made payable to your order.
Mrs. Marston received the check from Stella and said: I had hoped
you would have gone on your tour.
And added in a laughing tone: You two are the strangest persons I
have ever met. The idea of giving up ten thousand dollars and losing
the opportunity of seeing the most interesting countries in the world,
for the sake of talking to persons who are curious to see how you both
look because they have read about you in the papers.
I appreciate your gift just the same, Aunt, as if we had used the
money, said Stella.
Mrs. Marston said: Of course, I want you both to do whatever you
think best. As they continued their conversation the door-bell rang
and four of Stella's friends called to see her. They were Dr. Lacey's
two daughters and two young gentlemen. They spent the evening in games
and music, and when they left it was late. Mrs. Marston, Penloe and
Stella sat in front of the fire a few minutes before retiring, and just
before Stella rose from her seat to wish her aunt good-night, Mrs.
Marston said: Stella, dear, I thought I would have a little fun with
you so I accepted the check, but I had no intention of taking the money
back. No, dear, I want you to keep it and use it as you think best;
and taking the check off the mantel with a laugh she threw it into the
Stella rose from her seat to wish her aunt good-night, and thanked
her again for her handsome gift.
Mrs. Marston's guests spent a very pleasant time in Roseland. As
they were very popular, they received many invitations to dinner. They
saw Barker and Brookes every day and had chats about the C.M. After
several consultations in regard to making arrangements for the work,
they at last reached the conclusion that it would be best for Penloe
and Stella to go to Southern California and commence their labors
there. At Penloe's request the two young men agreed to accompany them,
as Penloe said there was a kind of work to be done that they were
adapted for and their services would be really needed. And as Charles
and Clara Herne wished to be actively engaged in the C.M., it was
decided to transfer the head office from Roseland to Orangeville, where
the Hernes would see to the sending out of literature and do all the
correspondence, and so that would relieve Barker and Brookes, and they
could travel with Penloe and Stella, and Mr. Herne could do their work
and see to his ranch. Barker said: Brookes and I will pay all our own
expenses connected with the work, and Penloe said: For the present we
will do likewise, as we do not wish to accept money from any one for
our services; for by so doing our influence will be much greater.
Brookes said: Why, Penloe, the people who have invited you and
Stella to speak have expressed a wish to pay all expenses and
remunerate you both for your services as well. When I think how hard
you worked to get what few dollars you may have saved from your
earnings, I hardly think you are called upon to use your hard earnings
when there are so many more financially able to pay your expenses.
I thank you, Stanley, said Penloe, for your interest in my
financial welfare, but I see you are under the same impression that
many others are, in thinking that I worked out for the money there was
in it. If it had been money I wanted, I could have accepted a very fine
offer from a university to fill the Chair of Oriental Languages; but
instead of being Professor of Sanskrit and drawing a fine salary, I
took the position as dishwasher in a restaurant in San Francisco for
awhile. Then I worked with pick and shovel on the Pacific Coast Road.
Next I worked on the streets in the City of Chicago. I returned to
Orangeville and took a position as cowboy on a great cattle ranch near
Orangeville. Then I worked out as a ranch hand. I did all this hard,
disagreeable work for my spiritual unfoldment. I did it to bring myself
in touch with the hard lot of the masses. I did it also to show that if
a man is upright in his purpose he can live the Divine life anywhere.
Again, I did it that I might minister to the needs and necessities of
that class of men who see and hear so little in their lives to touch
their Divine nature. That was excellent for me; it helped to broaden
and fit me for other work.
Brookes said: It must have been exceedingly disagreeable to a man
of your tastes, culture and refinement, to perform such hard muscular
work in such rough surroundings, among coarse animal men.
Penloe said: It would have been all that you have just expressed
had it not been for the fact that neither my work, my rough, tough
companions, nor my disagreeable environments were my world. No, they
were not my world. I built a wall around me and allowed none of these
things to enter my inner thought. My life was one of bliss, for I was
all the time drinking deep at the fountain of Divine love, and by His
help I trained and disciplined myself so that I saw Him in my hard
manual toil. I saw Him in all my uninviting environments, and, above
all, I saw Him in my animal companions.
Barker and Brookes saw such a glow of spiritual fire in Penloe's
face as he finished his last remark as they had never seen there
before. They realized they were in the presence of a divine man, and
their natures had been touched by his discourse.
After a pause Penloe said: My father left me property which brings
me an income sufficient to make me independent of receiving financial
support from those we intend to address.
After further talk in regard to perfecting arrangements, it was
decided that Barker and Brookes should go to Los Angeles and arrange
for Penloe and Stella to speak on Thursday evening of the following
week. The committee of arrangements in Los Angeles saw the need of
securing the largest hall in the city, for the city dailies had taken
up the matter of their coming and dwelt upon it, so that interest in
the subject combined with curiosity to see and hear two such remarkable
personages caused the committee to do their best to provide
accommodations for the large crowd they expected. Before the time for
opening the meeting every seat in the large hall had been taken and
standing room was all that was left, and that even was taken by the
time the meeting was opened.
The Mayor of Los Angeles opened the meeting in the following
It gives me great pleasure this evening to see before me this large
and intelligent audience. I am proud to think that this audience before
me to-night has demonstrated the wisdom and good sense of the leaders
of the C.I. in selecting this city, above all others in this State, to
open the campaign for the C.M. In order that you may feel better
acquainted with the persons who will address you to-night, I will let
you into a little secret which came to me in a very indirect way. It
seems that the gentleman and lady who are on the platform were about to
start on their wedding tour through the Oriental countries, and they
had received the gift of a handsome sum of money to defray their
traveling expenses; but when Los Angeles and other places sent pressing
invitations to them to speak they gave up their wedding tour and
returned the money to the giver in order that they might be able to
accept the call which you and other cities have given them. I must say,
in justice to the giver, it was subsequently returned. They are here at
their own expense, they receive no remuneration whatever. I tell you
this so you may appreciate their nobility and fidelity of character,
their honesty of purpose in so grand a cause. Ladies and gentlemen, I
now have the honor of introducing to you Penloe and Stella, the leaders
of the C.I., who will address you this evening.
When Penloe and Stella came forward the whole audience rose and
In regard to the meeting, we will quote a few extracts from one of
the Los Angeles dailies: However various the views on the C.I. the
audience may have which heard Penloe and Stella last night, there can
be but one thought in regard to the speakers themselves, and that is
they are the two most remarkable and distinguished personalities that
ever appeared before a Los Angeles audience. As speakers, they are
brilliant, logical and impressive, and soon inspire you with their
sincerity of purpose and with confidence in themselves. It seems there
is tacked on to the C.I. 'Woman's Suffrage', for it is claimed that
a woman is still in bondage till she stands equal before the law, and
has all the rights and privileges that a man has.
Penloe's remarks were addressed more particularly to men, looking
at the C.I. from the standpoint of a man, while Stella presented the
Penloe put these questions to the men of the audience: 'Is there a
man here to-night who does not think that the average woman is as
intelligent as the average man? Is there a man here to-night who does
not think that woman has a divine nature the same as man? I would like
to see the man rise in this audience who thinks he has a divine nature,
but does not wish another being who has a divine nature to enjoy the
same privileges as he himself enjoys?'... Stella portrayed in a telling
manner the sufferings and misery which have been woman's lot through
being in bondage to her material form.... We here give a few notes from
A woman who is in bondage to her material form can never rise above
the idea that she is just a woman and nothing more.
A woman to be free must have a higher idea of herself than that she
is only a woman.
A woman can only advance as her thought concerning herself
When woman looks upon herself as an intellectual and spiritual
being, and not as just being a woman only, and her whole thought is to
adorn her mind and manifest the qualities of her soul, then will man
look upon her with the same eyes as she looks upon herself.
It is not man that keeps woman in bondage, but woman keeps herself
in bondage through the thought she has concerning herself.... Stella
said we are not here on a flying visit, we have decided to remain in
Southern California till two-thirds of its inhabitants are not only
talking of but living the C.I., and we will stay here till we
get a vote of two-thirds from all males over twenty-one, and all women
over eighteen, in favor of woman's suffrage. It does not matter how
pressing the calls to speak elsewhere may be, we shall not accept them
till the work is completely done in Southern California.
CHAPTER XXIV. OUT OF BONDAGE.
The next day after the meeting Barker and Brookes were busy with the
C.I. Committee of Los Angeles in dividing the work up and organizing,
so that each ward of the city had its committee, whose business it was
to do all it could in enlightening the people of the ward in which the
Penloe and Stella devoted one afternoon and evening to informal
talks in each ward in the city, those present having the privilege of
asking questions. After Penloe and Stella had worked in every ward,
they went with Barker and Brookes to San Diego and spent a week there;
then they worked all the other towns in Southern California, and then
returned to Los Angeles. On their return they were more than satisfied
with the progress of the C.M. What helped the movement very much was
the character which Penloe and Stella gave it. When some of the more
conservative element suggested the impropriety or immodesty of the
C.I., they were met with the answer: Look at Penloe and Stella, who
live the idea every day of their lives. Are there any purer-minded
persons than they are? Do not the best people of the city open their
houses to welcome them? Did they not tell how living the life helped
them intellectually and spiritually? Those replies quieted all
opposition and gave courage to those who were a little timid and
fearful, also to those in doubt whether it was right or not. As the
movement was gaining ground rapidly, persons began to think how very
foolish it was to entertain such thoughts as they had been accustomed
to concerning the sexes. The movement in Southern California showed how
the movement would work elsewhere in this way. It was one of those
movements that needed a few intelligent, courageous spirits in a
locality to start it, and when once it got a going, most of the other
members of the community fell in line, and when it was about
universally adopted in one locality, the people living in the next
county soon joined the movement. After three months' labor in Los
Angeles a vote was taken. For Woman's Suffrage, eighty-five per cent.
voted Yes, and by a very careful estimate seventy-five per cent. had
put in practice in one form or another the C.I. Soon San Diego followed
Los Angeles, then Pasadena and Riverside, and soon after all the other
towns in Southern California fell in line. The result was wired all
over the State and nation.
During the progress of the movement in Southern California, Mr. and
Mrs. Herne were not idle. They put their hands in their pockets freely,
and paid for much of the printed matter they circulated.
Now that Southern California had gone overwhelmingly for the C.I.
Penloe and Stella, Barker and Brookes, felt at liberty to accept some
of the many urgent calls from other parts of the State. They were
continually receiving calls from other States, but would accept none
till the same condition prevailed throughout the whole State as now
existed in Southern California and the State Legislature had granted to
woman the same legal standing in the eyes of the law that man had.
The next places visited by the workers were Bakersfield, Hanford,
Tulare, Visalia, Fresno, Oakland, and San Francisco. In all these
places they found the work in a more or less advanced state. The fact
that Southern California had gone for the C.I. was a great help in
forwarding the movement in other places, so that after about eight
months' work in these cities just named, and some other places, it was
found that the entire State had been carried for the C.M. and Woman's
Suffrage, except one county. The Legislature was about to meet in a
month's time, and would give to woman the suffrage, and place her, in
other respects, on an equality with man in the eyes of the law.
Great work was being done in the last county, so that it joined the
rest of California for progressive thought, and the whole State was
carried for the C.I. just as the Legislature passed the necessary acts
for woman's legal freedom. The news was wired to every State in the
Union, and California was one scene of rejoicing throughout the entire
State. It was a great day for California when her men and women threw
off the yoke of superstition and ignorance and thus cut some of the
bonds which had held them in ignorance. They had taken one great stride
toward the goal of freedom. California now took her true place among
the States in the Union, for she led the way toward freedom in its
The leaders of advanced thought in Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and
Idaho were very active in working for the C.I. All these States having
granted woman the suffrage before the C.M. was started, the workers
found it easy to get them to follow California in the grand procession
Wyoming, which was the first to grant the suffrage to woman, was the
next to join California; then came Colorado, then Utah, and then Idaho
wheeled into line.
Penloe and Stella were receiving calls to labor from other States,
and finally decided to go to Illinois. Kansas wired the following
message to the Central Committee of California: Kansas is all ablaze
with the C.M. from its center to its circumference, and its fires have
leaped the borders into Nebraska, Iowa, and reached Minnesota.
After the C.I. had been practised in Southern California a few
months, if a young gentleman had just returned to the East from Los
Angeles, his friends wanted to know immediately how the C.I. worked.
Mr. Franklin Hart, of New York, a young gentleman who had just
returned from Los Angeles, was sitting in a parlor with some young
friends, and they all wanted him to relate his impressions of the C.I.
in Los Angeles. When he was describing its workings, two or three young
ladies put their hands to their faces and laughed, one saying, How
strange and funny it must have seemed. Another young lady remarked,
There has been too much foolishness about such things. Mr. Franklin
Hart said: After you have been there about a week the old idea seems
stranger than the new. You wonder to yourself however such thoughts
could have fastened themselves on us for generations and generations.
Prof. Dawson, of Boston, visited Los Angeles two years after the
C.I. had been in operation, and wrote a letter to the leading Boston
daily, as follows:
DEAR SIR: Being naturally of a conservative turn of
mind, I came to Los Angeles with ideas unfavorable to
the C.M. I had not taken the least stock in what the
papers said or the people of California wrote in regard
to the practical workings of the C.I. I expected the
defenses of morality and modesty had been swept away by
such ideas, and that the communities of Southern
California had sunk into licentiousness. I had spent
two years in California about eight years ago, and I
considered at that time that the morals of the people
were not of a high order. So I expected to find society
in a still worse moral condition now. I have been here
six months, and, in justice to truth, I must state the
facts even if they show that my previous opinions were
incorrect. To those who study the people closely in
regard to sex matters, I can say truthfully that sexual
excitement has fallen fifty per cent., and that obscene
pictures and stories have no attraction for the people.
The low places of amusement, that used to be run under
the name of 'Variety Theaters,' and other such names,
are closed up, for the reason, as a former proprietor
of one of these resorts expressed it, 'A leg and bosom
show has no attraction for the people since the C.I.
has been in operation.' Houses of prostitution are
less in number by forty per cent., so the chief of
police informed me, and I saw a large number of them
closed. The low dives are closed, and places where
girls made exhibitions of themselves for the sole
purpose of exciting passion in man are no more. They
died for want of patronage. The forms of each sex are
looked at now with eyes which see purity and beauty.
I notice, also, the conversation among young people
has improved greatly, being of a higher and purer kind.
Now I practised the C.I. myself, and came in contact
with many of both sexes. After very careful observation
in Los Angeles, and other towns in Southern California,
I feel I am in a position to know and I can state that
I now consider the C.I. is the greatest reform movement
that the world has ever seen.
In about a year later the four progressive States known as Kansas,
Nebraska, Minnesota, and Iowa, had removed all barriers from woman's
political freedom and placed her, in the eyes of the law, where
California had. The C.I. having become the predominant thought, it was
lived throughout these four States. The C.M. received a great impetus
when they fell into line with the other advanced States.
Penloe and Stella, with Barker and Brookes and other workers, had
worked for over a year in Illinois, and now they were concentrating all
their forces in Chicago, the other part of the State being all right.
It was in that city that a great battle for reform had to be fought.
The opposition was strong. It consisted of society ladies and
gentlemen, who thought woman's position was above politics; that is, to
their minds it was far higher for a woman to be prettily and daintily
dressed, and to be a petted slave, than to use her God-given intellect
for the benefit of herself and the nation in which she lived. The other
wing of the opposition consisted of those who were making money in the
saloon business and running low places of amusement. They did not want
woman to vote in making laws which might be detrimental to their
business interests. As the opposition became strong in its concerted
action to overthrow the influence of the reform forces, the two great
figure-heads, the two grand leaders of the C.M. seemed to acquire
increased energy and power. Listen to what Barker and Brookes said,
after having attended a meeting in the great Auditorium of the Lake
City, when over a thousand had to be turned away for want of room:
Though I have been so much with Penloe and Stella like yourself,
and one would naturally think that the influence of their personality
had become common, yet such is not my experience, said Brookes.
Barker replied: Is not that strange, where we see them almost every
day, as we have done for about two years? Instead of their influence
becoming tame and commonplace, it seems to take a renewed force and
power with each day, and they appear to carry a newness and freshness
with them continually. Their efforts to-night were the greatest of
Brookes said: I saw the power of the Yogi to-night as I never had
witnessed it, to such a degree, before. Did you notice, Barker, that at
the close of the meeting, instead of having some prominent person
speaking against the C.M., there was not one dissenting voice when
opportunity was given, but the short speeches which were made by
prominent members of the audience were all in favor of the movement.
Just think of the number of invitations that poured in upon them to
deliver the same address in other parts of the city. The battle is won,
Barker, for no opposition can withstand that power which was manifested
It was as Brookes said, the opposing forces had to yield, for there
was a seen and an unseen power sent out which swept and overcame all
opposition, and a month later Illinois was counted in with the
procession which California was leading. A year later the great States
of Ohio and Pennsylvania had joined the ranks, followed by the old Bay
State with its conservative element, and Boston became the scene of
illumination and rejoicing. The influence of these great States was
felt in many smaller ones, and they also helped to swell the wave of
the C.M. by joining the ranks. Quite a large percentage of that element
in the big cities, who profited by pandering and catering to the
depraved tastes of human nature, had left the city in which they
carried on their places of business now that the C.I. was practised,
and they had gone to the City of New York, thinking the element to
which they belonged was too powerful in Gotham ever to be driven out by
the C.M., and it was in this city where the greatest of all battles for
reform thought was fought.
When Penloe and Stella with Barker and Brookes left Chicago, they
went to the City of New York, staying in Boston a week on their way.
They had now been in this city for over a year and had called together
picked workers from many other States who were in the procession for
reform. The opposition was the same as that encountered in Chicago,
only ten times as strong.
When they had been in the city eighteen months, some few of the
churches had helped forward the work, just as some churches did in
other cities. Penloe decided that every church and every society of
every kind that had for its basis of organization love and justice,
should receive a special invitation to join in this great moral reform
movement, and special work should be allotted them. Penloe and Stella
made a personal visit to the leaders of the various sects,
denominations and societies, and ably presented the case for their
consideration, showing that the life of their organization depended
upon their members being active living workers for truth, purity and
justice. He put each society on record as to where they stood, whether
its organization was merely that of a social club, or whether it was
ready to stand and work for the principles it claimed to have for its
foundation. Be it said to the credit of each society, sect and
organization, they all responded heartily and coöperated with Penloe
and Stella in helping forward the grand reform; for they saw it was
useless to prate about love, purity, justice and freedom, with woman
debarred by law from her legal and political rights and tolerating a
social custom which excited the worst passions and bred prurient
curiosity. It was a grand and glorious sight, such as the world had not
witnessed before, to see Catholics, Unitarians, Methodists,
Universalists, Baptists, Episcopalians, Congregationalists,
Presbyterians, Theosophists, members of the Jewish Synagogue,
representatives of the Vedanta, together with the Y.M.C.A. and
Y.W.C.A., Christian Union, Christian Science and Socialists Societies,
and all other such societies join in the work. The members of these
various bodies coming in contact with those two great spiritual
luminaries, seemed to receive such an influx of the Divine as purified
their own organizations and made them what they should always be, a
great power for good. With such concentrated efforts by such an
army of workers, the enemy gave way and New York City became the beacon
light to travelers from other nations; not as it had been a city of
greed and lust, but a city where woman stood before the law the same as
man, and where its citizens were beginning to walk a little more in the
line of purity and freedom.
Just before the battle was won in the State of New York, the
agitation which had been going on in England, Wales, Scotland and
Ireland for over two years culminated in a victory for the reform
forces. Two years after the State of New York was won, the C.M. had
carried every State in the Union, and also Canada. Australia and New
Zealand not wishing to be behind in all that stood for advanced thought
and freedom, fell in line with the other English-speaking countries.
Penloe and Stella did not consider the work finished yet, and they
called for a congress of representative workers to meet in the
Auditorium in Chicago at a suitable date, which would give all time to
be present. Each State and country were to send two delegates, one man
and one woman. Australia, New Zealand, England, Scotland, Wales,
Ireland, Canada, and every State in the Union were all represented at
When the Congress assembled, it was unanimously agreed that Stella
After the meeting had been opened and some preliminaries had been
gone through, Penloe said: In the call for this congress it was stated
that its purpose was to consider how best to carry on this great work
in foreign countries, but before doing so I think it would be best to
change the name of the work. It seems necessary that some names, as
well as races, should pass through the period of evolution. The reason
why I will briefly state, as follows: In some countries where it is
necessary to carry on this work, they are not in bondage, and the name
C.I. would not convey the meaning of the full scope of our work; for
while it is true they do not discriminate between the sexes, yet they
are in bondage in many other different ways, and while the work
originally started with the idea of freeing men and women from the
shackles of sexual bondage with the name of 'Sex Reform Movement,' yet
afterwards it was called the 'California Idea,' and the name included
Woman's Suffrage, so as to make her free before the law, before man,
and before the whole world. And as it grew its name changed to
'California Movement.' But now that the work has grown to such gigantic
proportions, having about taken in all the English speaking countries,
the work has also grown in its scope of usefulness and its object now
is not only to free the mind from sexual bondage, not only to see that
woman holds the same place as man in the eyes of the law of the land
that she lives in, but still more, to FREE HUMANITY FROM ALL BONDAGES
OF EVERY KIND OR CHARACTER. Therefore, I propose that the name to be
given to the movement shall be 'Reform Forces,' for under this
name and banner all can work.
After a little discussion the name given by Penloe was adopted
The next business was to hear from some of the delegates in regard
to plans for carrying on the work in foreign countries. After hearing
many different plans proposed, and listening to various suggestions
from many of the delegates, the plan mapped out by Penloe was finally
It was something like this: That each country or State should have
its special work. Europe was portioned off to England, Wales, Scotland,
Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. They were to divide the
work among themselves. New York took Southern India, Pennsylvania took
Northern India. The northern half of China was allotted to Illinois,
the southern half, to Ohio. Mexico was given to Texas. The islands of
the Pacific to California. South America was portioned off to other
States. Massachusetts was given Japan, Egypt was given to Michigan.
Persia to Indiana. Every State had a certain work of its own in some
foreign country separate from that which was done by other States and
countries. Each State or country was to send just four teachers to the
country they had taken to enlighten. The teachers must be all round
characters, with high intellectual attainments, and possessing at the
same time rich spiritual gifts and free from family ties.
The line of work marked out for the teachers was as follows: First,
to locate themselves in the largest city in the country to which they
To make themselves thoroughly familiar with the writings and
teachings of the founders of the predominant religion of the country to
which they are sent.
To find out all that is known of the leading saints and sages who
have lived in their lives the prevailing religion of the country in
which they lived.
To study thoroughly the habits, customs and bondages of the people
of the country to which they are sent. Then to cultivate the
acquaintance of the most intellectual and spiritually inclined native
men and women and get them interested in the work of the Reform Forces.
To appeal to them, and reach them through the teachings of the founders
of their own religion, as well as by what has been written and said by
their own saints and sages. Get the intelligent natives of both sexes
to become the leaders and teachers to their people. Get the native
teachers to work to strike at some of the bondages which they think the
people are ready to free themselves from first, and when the people
have thrown off one bondage then to work to get them to be free from
After the teachers have got a group of intelligent native workers in
the line of the Reform Forces in one city, they are to go to another
city and do the same till the whole country has native workers in every
part working along the line of the Reform Forces.
From Penloe's remarks before the Congress, concerning the religions
of other nations, we will copy the following extract. If any one will
study the teachings of the saints and sages of other religions, he will
find that the essence of spiritual thought contained in them all is
about the same as that contained in Christianity. The mistake which has
been made by missionaries and others lie in thinking that the ritual
and practices of the masses represent the thoughts of the great
spiritual luminaries of those religions. The masses of the Oriental
countries no more represent the real thoughts of the great spiritual
teachers of those countries than the commercial cannibalism of the West
represents the teachings of Christ. In fact, the masses of the Oriental
countries are in ignorance of the real spiritual thought of their own
religion, as much as the masses of the Western World are of theirs, and
the teachers who are sent out by the West would help forward the work
of the Reform Forces by showing the natives that the ideas of the
reform forces are in the line of thought of their own great saints and
sages. There is not a delegate present who is not able to show that the
work of the Reform Forces is in accordance with the teachings of
Christianity. I can also clearly show to you from the teachings of the
Zendavesta, of the Koran, of Buddha, of Krishna, of Lord Gauranga, of
Seyed, Mohammed Ali, and of Rama Krishna, that the spiritual thought of
the Reform Forces is in accordance with those teachings. Krishna,
Buddha, Jesus, Gauranga, and Rama Krishna, were all the manifestation
of God in the flesh. They towered head and shoulders above all others
in the manifestation of the Divine.
Supposing I was a true follower of Buddha and a person who was a
true follower of Jesus spoke to me about the grand life and teachings
of Jesus, what would his opinion of me be if he saw that I was jealous
because he said nothing about Buddha, or because I thought the more
beauty and glory he saw in Jesus it lessened and belittled the
character of Buddha. Would he not be right in thinking I was ignorantly
and foolishly jealous, and that that feeling ought not to exist in a
true follower of Buddha? What then when you speak to a follower of
Jesus about the divine life of Buddha or Krishna, if he should become
incensed in manner and speech and manifest a feeling of jealousy,
acting as it were that in seeing the Divine in Buddha or Krishna made
you think less of Jesus. And yet that is a common experience which one
meets with among very many of the followers of Jesus. No, for in
proportion as you live the true Buddha life or Krishna life, so do you
live the true Christ life, and if I have imbibed the spiritual thought
of Jesus, I have also imbibed the true spiritual thought of Buddha and
Krishna. Thinking that the Divine was manifested in Buddha or Krishna,
does not lessen the exalted conception which one may have of the Divine
manifested in Jesus. The Divine is in all, but is manifested in
some persons to a much greater degree than in others.
Just before the Congress closed Mr. Rattenbury, one of the delegates
from California, rose to make a statement. He said: Since the Congress
had assembled he and the lady delegate from California had been in the
receipt of numerous telegrams from persons living in different parts of
the State they represented, to the effect that California did not wish
to take the Philippine Islands, but they would take the other islands
of the Pacific, and also they would send Penloe and Stella to make a
tour through the Oriental countries to help forward the work of the
Reform Forces as they saw best. The delegation from California has made
arrangements with the delegation from New Zealand and Australia, so
that the latter take the Philippine Islands as their field of labor, as
those islands are near to them. Therefore the delegation from England
and the other countries who have taken Europe as their field of work,
have kindly consented to release Australia and New Zealand from helping
them, so that they might take the Philippine Islands. It might be well
for me to state that the delegation from California has waited on
Penloe and Stella, to ask them if they would go East, and I am pleased
to say that they have consented.
He added, further: It is with mingled feelings of pride and
pleasure that I stand to-day as one of the delegates from California. I
am proud to represent that grand State, with its past achievements. Her
boast before has always been of her fertility and marvelous resources,
such as her rich mines, her large wheat fields, her prolific orchards,
bearing fruits belonging to many climes, her fine vineyards, with
clusters of luscious grapes, superior to those of Eschol, her grand
floral display, her great forests, and her oil wells. But now we can
boast that in its genial climate, surrounded by its grand scenery and
its lofty peaks, which lift their heads to heaven, that Stella, the
pearl of womanhood, should be born. It was under these influences,
surrounded by advanced liberal thought that she grew up. On the soil
that she was born did she consecrate herself and all that was dear to
her to liberating humanity from its many bondages. Starting out with
the idea of helping those of her own sex to throw off a bondage which
has held them in superstition and ignorance, and which also has been
the cause of untold suffering and misery as well as millions of deaths,
she labored heroically under social persecution and ostracism. But when
the purity and nobility of her grand character was fully known, those
obstacles to her work disappeared as snow does before the heat of the
sun, for her whole nature being of intense love, its heat melted all
prejudices before it. All of you are familiar with the grand work in
her own State. I need not touch on her work in other States, for you
all know it so well. I am glad to state that California which has
always been so proud of her material resources is now far prouder of
the fact that on its soil was born 'The Coming Woman,' 'The
Ideal Woman,' 'The Glory of California,' and that her shores
attracted the great Yogi Penloe. California having already given Penloe
and Stella to the Nation, now bestows them to the World. When they
travel through many countries scattering light and knowledge wherever
they go, they will always know that wherever they are, even in the
furthest corner of the earth, that back of them, in all their travels,
are the wealth and great hearts of the people of the Golden State.
* * * * *
Two days before Penloe and Stella left San Francisco for Japan, I
was seated in the parlor of Treelawn, in front of the large bay window.
On my right was Penloe and on my left was Stella. The windows were
raised and a gentle breeze wafted the fragrant odors from the flower
beds into the room, filling the parlor with perfume. At times the
muslin curtains puffed out gracefully by the gentle breeze, and the
external atmosphere was like the internal of my companions' sweetness
and harmony. The other members of the company were Mr. and Mrs.
Wheelwright and Mr. and Mrs. Herne. Many reminiscences were gone over.
Penloe in a very nice way spoke of the influence on owners of ranches,
through Mr. Herne's noble example of the treatment of his men, and
there was a great improvement in the treatment that ranchers gave to
their hired help, and the ranches became more profitable accordingly.
Clara Herne expressed her thoughts and feelings in regard to how
different the world and herself looked to her now, to what it did when
she first entered her home as a bride. She added: The world within me
has become so beautiful, so bright, and so very large. How lovely life
has become, what a pleasure it is to live.
It did me good to look into the faces of Stella's parents. That
grand old couple who had lived a life of purity under marriage, and who
gave to the world, Stella, The Pride of California.
I must now part with two very dear friends, two whom I have known so
well, two whom I have loved with all the warmth of an intense nature,
two who have been an inspiration to my life.
The consoling thought I have in taking leave of them is, that though
visibly they are not with me, yet they are always with me in proportion
as I manifest the same spiritual life which has made them so dear to
me. May they both be to you, dear reader, what they are to me.
[Illustration: THE END]