The Strength of Gideon

The Strength of Gideon
and Other Stories

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The Strength of Gideon by Paul Laurence Dunbar

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The Strength of Gideon
and Other Stories

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Contents: Strength of Gideon--Mammy Peggy's Pride--Viney's Free Papers--The Fruitful Sleeping of The Rev. Elisha Edwards--The Ingrate--The Case of 'Ca'line'--The Finish of Patsy Barnes--One Man's Fortunes--Jim's Probation--Uncle Simon's Sundays Out--Mr. Cornelius Johnson, Office-Seeker--An Old-Time Christmas--A Mess of Pottage--The Trustfulness of Polly--The Tragedy at Three Forks--The Finding of Zach--Johnsonham, Junior--The Faith Cure Man--A Council of State--Silas Jackson

Book Excerpt

Ellen; you hear? Now that's the one promise I ask of you,--come what may, look after the women folks." And the man promised and went away smiling.

His year of engagement, the happiest time of a young man's life, began on golden wings. There came rumors of war, and the wings of the glad-hued year drooped sadly. Sadly they drooped, and seemed to fold, when one day, between the rumors and predictions of strife, Dudley Stone, the old master, slipped quietly away out into the unknown.

There were wife, daughter, son, and faithful slaves about his bed, and they wept for him sincere tears, for he had been a good husband and father and a kind master. But he smiled, and, conscious to the last, whispered to them a cheery good-bye. Then, turning to Gideon, who stood there bowed with grief, he raised one weak finger, and his lips made the word, "Remember!"

They laid him where they had laid one generation after another of the Stones and it seemed as if a pall of sorrow had fallen upon the whole place.

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