--On board the steamer Indiana
, on one of her trips down the Mississippi
, there happened to be on board a Hoosier from the Wabush, who was going to New Orleans, and had provided himself with an old fiddle, fancying he could fiddle as well as the best man, and planting himself where he could attract notice, scraped away.
The fellow couldn't fiddle any more than a setting hen, and the horrible noise disturbed his fellow passengers.
A Frenchman of very delicate nerves and musical ear was especially annoyed.
He fluttered, fidgeted, and swore at the fiddler.
The passengers tried various expedients to rid themselves of the Hoosier and his fiddle, but it was no go; he swore he'd "musick just as long as he pleased." At last a big Kentuckian sprang from his seat saying, "I'll fix him" Placing himself by the fiddler, he commenced braying with all his might.
The effect of this move was beyond description.
Old Kaintuck brayed so loud that he drowned the screeching of the fiddle, and amid the shouts of the passengers the discomfited Hoosier retreated, leaving the Kentuckian and his imitation of Balaam's friend.
The delight of the Frenchman knew no lounds, and quiet was restored.
During the night the Kentuckian left the boat.
The next morning, before breakfast, the passengers were strartled by the discordant sounds of the tormentor.
Hoosier had discovered the coast was clear, and was bound to avenge himself on the passengers.
Louder and worse than ever screamed the fiddle.
, just seated to read his paper, on the first sound rose and looked anxiously around, shrugged his shoulders, and then shouted: "Vare is he!
vare is he!
Queeck! queeck! Vare is Monsieur Kentuck
, de man vat play on de jackass!"