Ebooks, Fiction, Non-Fiction 1000s of Free books and stories online to read now ~ Main Page




An Honest Miner - Harper's


If you go into a mining district in Cornwall, England, you will see, not far from the mine works, rows of neat little cottages; most of them are extremely clean in the interior, and here the miners may be found seated at comfortable fires, frequently reading, or in the summer evenings working in their little gardens or in the potato fields. Frequently they become experienced floriculturists, and at the flower shows that occur annually in several of the Cornish towns they often carry off the prizes.

A pleasing anecdote is recorded of the honesty of a poor Cornish miner. There lived at St. Ives a lady named Prudence Worth, whose charity was remarkable. A miner living at Camborne had his goods seized for rent, which he could not pay. He had heard of the many good deeds done by "Madam" Worth, as she was usually called, and he determined to apply to her for assistance. He said:

"Madam, I am come to you in great trouble. My goods are seized for rent, and they will be sold if I can not get the money immediately."

"Where do you live?" inquired Mrs. Worth.

"In Camborne, and I work in Stray Park Mine."

"I know nothing of you," observed the lady, "and you may be a drunkard, or an impostor."

"Madam," replied the miner, with energy, "as I live, I am neither; and if you will lend me the money, I will return it in four months."

The money was lent, the period of four months elapsed, and, true to his promise, the poor miner, notwithstanding that bad luck had attended him, had managed to get the amount borrowed together, and set off on foot with it. Arriving at Hayle River, he found the tide coming up, but to save a journey of three miles round by St. Erith Bridge, he resolved to cross the water, which appeared to him shallow enough for this purpose. The poor fellow had, however, miscalculated the depth, and was drowned. When the body was brought to shore, his wife said that he had left home with three guineas in his pocket for Madam Worth. Search was made in his pockets, and no money was found, but some one observed that his right hand was firmly clinched. It was opened, and found to contain the three guineas.