Frontier days were made up of many different kinds of humans. There were men who were muddy-bellied coyotes, so low that they hugged the ground like a snake. There were girls whose cheeks were so toughened by shame as to be hardly knowable from squaws. There were stoic Indians with red-raw, liquor-dilated eyes, peaceable and just when sober, boastful and intolerant when drunk. And then there were those White Men, those moulders, those makers of the great, big open-hearted West, that had not yet been denatured by nesters and wire fences, men to whom a Colt gun was the court of last appeal and who did not carry a warrant in their pockets until it was worn out, men who faced staggering odds and danger single-handed and alone, men who created and worked out and made an Ideal Civilization,--a country where doors were left unlocked at night and the windows of the mind were always open,--men who were always kind to the weak and unprotected, even if they did have hoofs and horns, men like William B. (Bat) Masterson and Wyatt Earp. They and their kind made the frontier, that Great West which we can now look back upon as the most romantic era of our American History.
Jordan, who prided himself on what he knew about dogs, and men, said that Bull's former owner probably was a city man, and was in the habit of coming home at six; that the dog was waiting for him to appear. Be that as it may, in the days to come Bull gave up this custom. No one knew what he felt about the loss of his old master. He became a Montana dog. The city was to know him no more.
Now he waddled along after Whitey, who was making for a straw stack, near the stable. Among the field mice, gophers, rabbits, and such that thought this stack was a pretty nice place to hang around, were two hens that were of the same opinion. At least they made their nests in the stack and laid their eggs there. And they were the only hens that the Bar O boasted, for hens were scarce in Montana in those days--as Buck said, "almost as scarce as hen's teeth, an' every one knows there ain't no such thing."
It was Whitey's particular business to gather the eggs of those hens, which they saw fit to lay early in the m