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"But unluckily, we have no hereditary nobility."

The killing of the two Marylanders and the peddler was not known until many weeks thereafter. The report of the murder of Langford spread like wildfire. The Kentucky Gazette, January 2, 1799, in a characteristically brief paragraph gave sufficient details of the discovery of the body on December 14 to impress its readers with the seriousness of an act of barbarity that might be repeated by the Harpes at any time. “We also learn,” says this paragraph, “that Mr. Ballenger is in pursuit of them, with a determined resolution never to quit the chase until he has secured them.”




But when I cum to find him out,

"Well ... Mr. Retief did play the role of messenger."

[Pg 386]

“I think,” she said, “any one that was kind could do it; but only not a girl. Girls are good for so little. Do you remember Captain Gaunt, who came to town a few weeks ago? Sir Thomas, I have heard that something has happened to Captain Gaunt. I don’t know how to tell you. Perhaps you will think that it is not my business; but don’t you think it is your friend’s business, when you get into trouble? Don’t you think that—that people who know you—who care a little for you—should always be ready to help?”




"It would be wicked of me to leave him by himself," she cried in tearful distress. "He could never get on without me. I think it would kill him, and I should never forgive myself."

“I have,” said the other, with a supercilious gaze, perusing the large figure from top to toe.

Amidst all these voices and festivities sat Oswald, with a vast paper cap shaped rather like the dome of a Russian church cocked over his blind side, listening distractedly, noting this and that, saying little, thinking many things.


In those days there was but little betting done until the day of the race, and most generally not until the horses were on the track. On this occasion Commodore Stockdon, who, besides being a Commodore in our navy was also a true sportsman and a prominent breeder and importer of thoroughbreds, and who owned and raced some prominent horses of the day, proposed on the evening before the race to Mr. Pringle, the most noted sporting man of that day, in Washington, that he would bet him ,000 on Duane, provided he liked the looks of the horse the next day. The bet was promptly taken, and the next day when the horses were brought out, after carefully inspecting Duane, the Commodore told Pringle it was “a go.” This settled it. No money passed, and rarely ever did with big bettors. In those days men’s words were sufficient. What a striking difference between then and now! Here a Commodore in the navy bets ,000 with a noted gambler, with nothing more than the word “go” between them, and yet either would have sold the clothes off his back rather than to crawfish out of the bet, or in any way defraud the other. This even bet seemed to make the mark for others to go by, and the money went on even up, and by the cartload in sums from fifty to five and ten thousand dollars a side. As a rule the Southern contingent backed Duane, while the New Yorkers piled their wealth on Boston. McCargo’s mulatto boy, Steve, who had ridden Carter against Boston, at Long Island, was now up on Duane to make another desperate effort to down the champion, while Cornelius, Boston’s old rider, a negro boy who belonged to Mr. Reeves, the owner of the horse, was in the pigskin on his favorite.



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