Disagreeable Sheep Wreaks Havoc in 1908

(07/15/2001)

Transcribed by Norma Knotts Shaffer from microfilm of the Calhoun Chronicle dated 5/12/1908.

Marcell is "one ahead."  Marcellus Stump and Sylvanus McCartney have been spending their odd spells trading with each other, both making money; that is, one makes in one deal, the other in the next, keeping something near even.  But Marcell seems to be ahead at present.

You see it was something like this: Van traded Marcell a mowing machine and hay rake, a corn crusher, a Wolf run grit grindstone, a pair of spreaders, with enough bale wire to supply the broken links, and a pair of rubber boots, all of which articles were second-handed, of course, for a thoroughbred Poland-China buck sheep.  The deal being consummated, all the articles bartered were delivered, except a Jersey hen, which McCartney reserved to use of until her biddies were old enough to wean.  Mr. McCartney went next morning to his mill.  He had not been gone very long however, 'till Mr. Sheep who had been placed in a lot near the house, becoming lonesome from having been separated from his old associates and familiar haunts, began to amuse himself by trying to knock a black spot off of one of the boards on the fence.  When McCartney came home in the evening, he found a half acre of fence in splinters on the ground, his wife on the garden fence, some of the children on lumber piles some in the forks of apple trees.  So Van who never fails to find a way out of all difficulties, got all on all fours, and by dodging first behind one stump then another, then a rock or a sapling, succeeded in decoying Mr. Sheep quite a distance from the house.  But then another trouble loomed up.  How in the world was he to get rid of this pesky fellow!  Providence always helps the man who helps himself, and while seated on the branch of a persimmon on tree on the hill near Grant Richards' trying to formulate a plan of escape from this dire predicament, Grant's pups chanced to pass that way in pursuit of a rabbit.  Mr. Sheep thought of the old adage: "a bird in the hand is worth two in the tree," and gave chase to the canine adventurers.  Well now he chased those poor pups across the hill to Mr. McCartney's house that Aaron Bennett recently vacated, where they took refuge under the floor.

In closing this bit of history suffice it to say that Mr. Sheep is master of the situation on that side of the hill, and monarch of all these surveys, which fact that spectacle man can attest who ventured upon his realm, and after having his case of glasses demolished and himself badly bruised managed by the aid of his Lordship, the sheep, to get on the outside.  The McCartney family are living in peace on their side of the hill; but those poor pups are to be pitied -- they dare not stick their heads from under the floor.  Death by starvation stares them in the face.  Nobody cares to venture upon his Lordship's domain, not even Mr. Richards.

Mr. McCartney says that he would not care so much, were it not that he will have to pay tax upon those alfired pups, for most assuredly they will be found upon his premises.  He wants to have one more trade with Mr. Stump and then quit.


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