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“ [238] bad. And then they had tables all around the house kivered over with [ ] caps and pin-cushions and ten thousands such little knic-knacks, tryin‘ to sell 'em to the fellows that were bowin‘ and scrapin‘ and kungeerin‘ about 'em. They wouldn't let no Democrats in, for fear they'd disgust the ladies, or scare the little gals, or dirty the floor. I looked in at the window, and there was this same fellow Shields floatin‘ about on the air, without heft or earthly substances, just like a lock of cat fur where cats had been fighting.”

“He was paying his money to this one, and that one, and t'other one, and sufferin‘ great loss because it wasn't silver instead of State paper; and the sweet distress he seemed to be in,--his very features, in the ecstatic agony of his soul, spoke audibly and distinctly, ‘Dear girls, it is distressing, but I cannot marry you all. Too well I know how much you suffer; but do, do remember, it is not my fault that I am so handsome and so interesting.’ ”

“As this last was expressed by a most exquisite contortion of his face, he seized hold of one of their hands, and squeezed, and held on to it about a quarter of an hour. ‘Oh, my good fellow!’ says I to myself, ‘if that was one of our Democratic gals in the Lost Townships, the way you'd get a brass pin let into you would be about up to the head.’ He a Democrat! Fiddlesticks! I tell you, Aunt ‘Becca, he's a Whig, and no mistake: nobody but a Whig could make such a conceity dunce of himself.”

“Well,” says I, “maybe he is; but, if he is, I'm mistaken the worst sort. Maybe so, maybe so; but, if I am, I'll suffer by it; I'll be a Democrat if it turns out that Shields is a Whig, considerin‘ you shall be a Whig if he turns out a Democrat.”

“A bargain, by jingoes!” says he; “but how will we find out?”

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James Shields (2)
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