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[142]

Friend Whittier and his gentle Quakerly sister seemed delighted to see me, or, rather, he seemed delighted and she seemed pleased. There was a Republican meeting that evening, at which he felt obliged to show himself; but he came back before long, having indiscreetly excused himself by stating that I was at his house. The result was, that a posse of Republicans came, after the meeting was over, to look at the woman who “fired hot shot at Governor Wise.” In the interim, however, I had some cosy chat with Friend Whittier, and it was right pleasant going over our anti-slavery reminiscences. Oh, those were glorious times! working shoulder to shoulder, in such a glow of faith!--too eager working for humanity to care a fig whether our helpers were priests or infidels. That's the service that is pleasing in the sight of God.

Whittier made piteous complaints of time wasted and strength exhausted by the numerous loafers who came to see him out of mere idle curiosity, or to put up with him to save a penny. I was amused to hear his sister describe some of these irruptions in her slow, Quakerly fashion. “Thee has no idea,” said she, “how much time Greenleaf spends in trying to lose these people in the streets. Sometimes he comes home and says, ‘ Well, sister, I had hard work to lose him, but I have lost him.’ ” “But I can never lose a her,” said Whittier. “The women are more pertinacious than the men; don't thee find 'em so, Maria?” I told him I did. “How does thee manage to get time to do anything?” said he. I told him I took care to live away from the railroad, and kept a bulldog and a pitch-fork, and advised him to do the same.

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John G. Whittier (4)
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