proceeded soon to test the quality of his fare by taking breakfast in the bosom of his family.
The cheapness of the entertainment was its best recommendation.
After breakfast Horace performed an act which I believe he had never spontaneously performed before.
He bought some clothes, with a view to render himself more presentable.
They were of the commonest kind, and the garments were few, but the purchase absorbed nearly half his capital.
Satisfied with his appearance, he now began the round of the printing-offices, going into every one he could find, and asking for employment—merely asking, and going away, without a word, as soon as he was refused.
In the course of the morning, he found himself in the office of the Journal of Commerce, and he chanced to direct his inquiry, “if they wanted a hand,” to the late David Hale
, one of the proprietors of the paper.
took a survey of the person who had presumed to address him, and replied in substance as follows:—
‘My opinion is, young man, that you're a runaway apprentice, and you'd better go home to your master.’
Horace endeavored to explain his position and circumstances, but the impetuous Hale
could be brought to no more gracious response than, ‘Be off about your business, and don't bother us.’
Horace, more amused than indignant, retired, and pursued his way to the next office.
All that day he walked the streets, climbed into upper stories, came down again, ascended other heights, descended, dived into basements, traversed passages, groped through labyrinths, ever asking the same question, “ Do you want a hand ” and ever receiving the same reply, in various degrees of civility, “No
He walked ten times as many miles as he needed, for he was not aware that nearly all the printing-offices in New York are in the same square mile.
He went the entire length of many streets which any body could have told him did not contain one.
He went home on Friday evening very tired and a little discouraged.
Early on Saturday morning he resumed the search, and continued it with energy till the evening.
But no one wanted a hand.
Business seemed to be at a stand-still, or every office had its full complement of men. On Saturday evening he was still more fatigued.
He resolved to remain in the city a day or two longer, and then, if