Title: Didley Dumps, Or, John Ellard, The Newsboy.
Author: Ratchford F. Starr
Publisher: Alfred Martien
Date: 1873

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Xmas 1879

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[Illustration : An engraved picture of Didley Dumps.]

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Alexander Sloan?


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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1865, by
In the Office of the Clerk of the District Court for the
Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

Stereotyped and Printed by Alfred Martien.

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Chapter page

I.-- Newsboys .....


II.-- Lodging-room in Pear street .....


III.-- John Ellard .....


IV.-- Novel Scenes .....


V.-- Home in Spruce Street .....


VI.-- Home in Third Street .....


VII.-- Correspondence .....


VIII.-- Adventures .....


IX.-- Wednesday Evening Readings .....


X.-- Sabbath Gatherings .....


XI.-- Encouragement .....


XII.-- Ellard's Illness and Death .....


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I N order to continue the protection of the Home to those of the boarders who, having changed their avocation, had ceased to be newsboys, as also to provide for a large class of homeless youth of other callings, the Managers of the Newsboys'Aid Society applied in 1861 for a change in the charter, when the title of the Society became


Many an honest lad has looked with pain and surprise upon the institutions of REFORMATION for which this city is famed, and sighed for a Home, where he could escape the numerous and fearful evils which consign their victims to such enclosures .

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Public sympathy and public charity stood ready to care for him when he became an outcast, but extended no friendly hand to help him on in the path of rectitude. In the midst of this great Christian community, he was unprovided for, unless, through a course of vice, he made himself amenable to the penalty of its violated laws.

The former excellent custom of apprentices living with their employers has long since been abandoned, and few, if any, restraints are now thrown around the thousands of youth in our city, after the toil of the day is over. They have performed the amount of labor required of them, and are left, till the hour for resuming their occupation in the morning, to the designing and unprincipled ones who prey upon them, and who, for the miserable pittance they can make, are willing to hasten these unprotected and uncared for youth onward in the road to ruin. In this

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respect the apprentice is, in many cases, worse off than the stabled cattle of his employer--the dumb beast is carefully housed and provided for, but not so the immortal human being.

There are some noble exceptions, but this is a true picture in most cases. Doubtless many philanthropic and excellent employers are ignorant of the sad condition of their apprentices, and would be amazed could they see them after business hours. Such as do not realize the responsibility devolving upon them in this respect, would do well to read a little book entitled "Bosses and their Boys."

Many of the cheap habitations (they cannot be called homes) where the scanty means of young men compel them to live, are fraught with much evil. Desirous of having them about the premises as little as possible, the proprietors render everything as unattractive as can be, and the young men are forced

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into the streets, or into drinking or dancing saloons for shelter and company.

For want of suitable accommodation, and owing to the deranged state of affairs consequent upon the war, the building occupied by the Society was closed in May, 1864, but it is conidently hoped that funds may soon be obtained to enable the Managers of "The Young Men's Home" to erect one adapted to the requirements of the Society.

This city of BROTHERLY LOVE abounds in monuments of philanthropy, telling of the benevolent care of the blind, the dumb, the orphan, the infirm, and others in distress. May it soon be adorned with a Home to cheer and encourage the youth who support themselves by their industry, but who, as strangers, or through Providential bereavement, are homeless in our midst.

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W HO and what is a Newsboy? All familiar with our large cities know him to be, as the name suggests, a vender of newspapers. With but few exceptions, his scanty apparel and pallid face tell of his acquaintance with great want and suffering. Whatever the state of the weather, he goes his round, with his stock of

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merchandize under his arm, vociferously crying," Second E-deshun ," " Extree ," " Arrival of the Amerikee ," " Latest News ," &c.; He invests his money in the papers of the day, and hastens to the railway depots, steamboat landings, hotels, or some thoroughfare of the city, to sell them at once, or else suffer a loss. The morning issue must give place to that of the afternoon, which has no market value the next morning. Despite his efforts to sell, he is not unfrequently left with a supply on hand, and the temptation to pass them off for those of the following day, is greater than some can resist. For quickness and shrewdness,

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newsboys as a class excel all others. A lad of mere ordinary capacity would starve at the business. The spirit of rivalry which exists among them calls forth every energy, and exposes them to much evil. On one occasion, when reading to a number of them, I pointed to a picture of a boy, and asked if he looked like a newsboy, when I was answered, "No! he's not a newsboy--that fellow! he's too innocent."

Every calamity is so much capital to them, and the more awful or startling it may be, the better for their business. This they well understand, and no efforts are spared

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to magnify the comparatively unimportant news of the day into affairs of great consequence. A dearth of news is often supplied by their ingenuity. They can bring a "steamer from Europe" at any time--accidents happen whenever they feel it necessary that they should, and while the House of Representatives is contesting for a Speaker, "Speaker elected!" is shouted in all directions.

"How is business now?" I once inquired of one of the lads.

"Very dull, sir; so few accidents."

It is no uncommon thing for a lower grade called "grubbers" to gamble away their last penny, and then apply to those to whom they

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had been in the habit of selling, for money to "set them up in business, as they were busted ." Many of our citizens conscientiously refused to purchase their papers, and would, sometimes at considerable personal inconvenience, go to the office or newspaper store, rather than encourage an occupation which seemed to promise only evil to those engaged in it.

Let us follow these boys, when the business and excitement of the day are over, and learn where their homes are--if homes they have. The more favored ones return to their parents--in some cases to a widowed mother, for whom the little

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fellow, patiently toiling from early morning, brings home at the close of the day the few pennies he has earned for their joint support. This is the best phase of a newsboy's life, and were it oftener found, there would be less cause for commiseration. One lad--the support of his mother--has been a communicant in one of our city churches for eight years, and is actively engaged in distributing tracts, when not selling papers. In some instances, parents wait the return of their children, merely for the sake of the little money they are expected to bring with them, to be taken from them with abuse because it was not more,

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and spent in drunkenness and riot. It is not to be wondered at that the poor lads shun such unnatural homes, and seek more attractive associations at the low gambling and drinking saloons. The evenings spent in these places, or at the theatre, or other haunts with which all large cities abound, leaving them penniless, fitly closes with a chance lodging for the night upon the pavement, doorstep, or in the station-house.

This is no fancy sketch, but a true picture of the newsboy's life. And upon whom does the accountability rest for the neglect which abandoned these lads to the certain consequences

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of such a life? Some have entered the army and navy, and were in the Mexican war; * a letter has recently been received from one, dated Utah, where his regiment is now stationed; but many have found their way to the House of Refuge or Penitentiary, and others were on their way there, without a friend to warn them of their danger, or speak to them one kind word of advice. Surely the

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plea of ignorance cannot be urged, for the very appearance of the lads told their sad story; and their shrill, piercing cry, proclaiming the papers they had for sale, arrested the attention of many who might otherwise have passed them unnoticed. Efforts had been made in isolated cases, but there had been no concert of action on their behalf as a class.

"What can be done for these poor newsboys?" I often asked myself, when my sympathy was first awakened by their neglected appearance, and the hopelessness with which all seemed to regard their present condition, and their future prospects. What can be done?

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Some answer, "They are past recovery; and the sooner they get into the House of Refuge or Penitentiary, the better for themselves and for the community." But no. If an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, then surely it is infinitely better to take them by the hand and affectionately lead them off in the opposite direction. However rough may be their exterior, an honest and true heart beats in many a breast, and if let alone by the evil and designing ones who prey upon them, their condition would be entirely different from what it now is.

They do the poor newsboy gross injustice who pronounce his case

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hopeless. However it may be in other cities, there are in Philadelphia men who have worked their way up in this honorable and legitimate business, and who are now in comfortable circumstances, deservedly possessing the respect of the community. Many a youth has his eye fixed upon those who have passed successively through the several grades of the profession, and, struggling to overcome the many difficulties which beset his path, sighs for a helping hand and sympathetic heart, which must not be withheld.

It will be interesting to the reader to know that over forty of the newsboys, who had been at the "Home," entered the service of their country at the breaking out of the rebellion in 1861. This embraced nearly every one of sufficient age and health. Many interesting letters were received from these young soldiers, not a few of whom had their first instruction in military affairs, as members of a company formed at the Home before the war commenced.

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I N 1856 I was led to a serious consideration of my duty in reference to the newsboys; and the desire to know more of them, and to cheer and encourage them, increased as I became better acquainted with their circumstances and wants, but other engagements, and absence from the city, prevented a consummation of my long cherished plans till 1858.

In cooperation with others, a

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meeting was held at Jayne's Hall, on Sunday, January 31, 1858, which was attended by fifty-three newsboys. Several gentlemen were present, some of whom took part in the exercises. As one of them, a member of the press, made his appearance, he was greeted with hearty cheers, and clapping of hands, so delighted were the boys to see him.

It is a matter of interest, worthy of record in the history of this first meeting, that great doubts were expressed by one of the gentlemen as to the propriety of opening the meeting with prayer, fearing interruption on the part of the boys. He, however, complied with my request to do

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so, but first referred the matter to the boys for an expression of their wishes. All manifested their approval by holding up their hands, and, although told by him that they might retain their seats, they immediately arose and remained in respectful silence. Their behaviour was excellent during the two hours the meeting lasted.

A second meeting was held at the same place on the following Sunday, February 7th, when I endeavoured to instruct the boys from the word of God, the only true and safe guide in the path of life. They conducted themselves admirably, except in the use of tobacco to an alarming extent.

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The smallest lads had not only adopted the vile habit of chewing, but some of them actually ate tobacco! A little friendly advice had the desired effect, and there was not only no further trouble upon this score during the remainder of the meeting, but their promise to abstain from the use of the nauseous weed the next Sunday was faithfully kept, as I felt assured it would be.

One of the gentlemen present at the first meeting, and who was well acquainted with most of the boys, having informed me that some of them had on that occasion heard the first kind words ever spoken to them, I was led to ask if this was

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really the case, when several of these poor, ill-used youth, touchingly answered in the affirmative.

A third meeting was held on Sunday the 14th of February, but indisposition prevented my assembling the boys for several succeeding Sundays, after which few could be gathered, and it soon became evident that some other plan must be adopted to secure the desired object. Their great and pressing need was a home , and this I had at our first interview encouraged them to expect, being fully convinced that it was indispensable. The boys never lost sight of this prospect, but pressed the subject upon me whenever I met them in

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the street, with an earnestness that showed how keenly they felt the want of such a shelter. So eager was their expectation, that they watched with interest every furniture wagon, in the hope that it was to their new quarters. Some of them made tours to the west end or most fashionable part of the city, to aid me in my efforts to procure a suitable building, and brought back favorable reports of several of the costly mansions there, which exactly met their lofty ideas.

Arrangements were at last completed, and "The newsboys' Aid Society," formed for the purpose of "providing lodging and education

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for homeless and indigent boys, engaged in the occupation of vending newspapers and periodicals in the city of Philadelphia, and to encourage in them, by suitable means, habits of morality and economy," opened their plain, yet comfortable, lodging rooms in Pear street, on the 29th of May, 1858.

The boys were in high spirits on this occasion, and did ample justice to the "good things" provided for them, and which had been tastefully arranged upon the tables by an experienced public waiter. One of the lads, after watching the movements of this waiter, and gazing upon the banquet he had prepared for them,

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"Come and see me eat boned-turkey, with a darkey to wait on me." p.27.

[Illustration : A newsboy in ragged clothes addresses a middle-aged man in a business suit.]

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hastened to a gentleman, and invited him to be present at the appointed hour, and "see him eat boned turkey, with a darkey waiting upon him." This first entertainment was quite a grand affair, and all seemed to enjoy themselves most heartily. The Rev. Dr. Newton opened the Home with prayer, and reading of the Scriptures. In addressing the boys, he related an interesting anecdote of a lad, who, in his endeavors to untie a knot, was met by a gentlemen, who offered to cut it with a knife, when the little fellow exclaimed, "No, sir! I belong to the try company." The application of the story was excellent, and the boys

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were affectionately urged to form a "newsboys Try Company,' " and to try and be good, and avoid evil of every kind.

The Rev. John Chambers was also present, and took part in the opening services. In rising to address the boys, he pointed to the well provided tables, and said, "Boys! I expect you would rather be eating those refreshments, than listening to any more speeches." Immediately a loud " Yes, sir ," was heard in various directions, to the great amusement of all in the room, not one of whom enjoyed the joke more than the good man who caused it. His address was listened to with an attention

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which proved how completely he had drawn their thoughts from the direction to which he at first called them. All passed off pleasantly, and boys and visitors seemed equally pleased.

The lodging rooms were provided with twenty-five new iron bedsteads, with new bedding, arranged in a large and airy room. Each bedstead was labelled with the name of its occupant, the boys making their own selection. At nine o'clock that night, I read the twenty-third Psalm at family worship at the Home, and committed to the care of the Good Shepherd the wandering ones he had

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graciously gathered into our fold, praying Him to lead them "in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake."

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M OST of the boys had nicknames, some of which were very odd. Among the most prominent of these were "Didley Dumps," "Oliver Twist," "Dick Turpin," "Splasher," "Butter bowls and hot cakes," "Butcher," "Soldier" "Poodle," "Canes," &c.; On one occasion, while waiting for some of the boys, I asked where they were, and was answered, "Butcher ain't came--Piggie ain't came--

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Splasher's awful hard up, and goin' to enlist.'

As new boys present themselves at the Home, they most generally are introduced to us by some nickname. The last is "Harper's Ferry," so called because he sold papers on the railroad train passing through Harper's Ferry, and was present at the capture of John Brown.

I soon found that this practice had a degrading tendency, and interfered not a little with the efforts made to elevate the boys. To lift them up, their low names must be abandoned, and I am happy to say that very few of them now remain. One was, however, too highly prized

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to be dropped, and the little fellow who bore it was better known as "Didley Dumps" than as "John Ellard."

John Ellard was born in New York, on the 22d of February, 1843. When three years of age he fell from a woodshed, in Albany, where his parents then lived, and received an injury which resulted in a lump on his breast and back, and rendered him deformed for life.

It is said he had a decided averson for school, and while there, that he was more fond of play than study. A favorite amusement was to get under the benches, unknown to the teacher, and "play tricks on the

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boys." He was whipped one day for being late at school, and finding it was not "better late than never," resolved not to venture there again. As a child, he had a fondness for peddling, and sold songs and matches when only eight years of age.

In 1856 he came to Philadelphia, and commenced business as a newsboy at the time of the fearful Burdell tragedy, which created quite a demand for newspapers, and proved a harvest to the boys engaged in selling them.

His malformation so affected his breathing as to render it impossible for him to walk any great distance without resting. He paid the boys

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Ellard returning from his stand. p. 35.

[Illustration : A newsboy carries John Ellard on his back.]

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a cent a ride for carrying him to and from the Home upon their back. It was grand sport to them to have "Didley" on their back, to say nothing of the pay . A ride on some vehicle was stolen as chances occurred, and the passing of an omnibus afforded too good an opportunity to be lost. In jumping from one, opposite the Girard House, he was run over by a carriage, and taken into the hotel, where he was attended by a medical gentleman, who pronounced him not seriously injured. A quarter of a dollar was given him, and off he started to sell his papers.

Previous to the appearance of Master Ellard in Philadelphia, there

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had been a hump-backed newsboy, known as "Didley Dumps," and the boys thought that Ellard, being similarly shaped, should bear the same name as "Old Did," but he thought otherwise, and indignantly refused to answer to it. At last some ten or twelve of his companions accompanied him to the theatre one night, and there obtained his consent to the soubriquet by which he became so generally and favorably known.

Sometimes his bed for the night was a door-step, at other times a box on the pavement, or some vacated cellar or garret. Once he secreted himself under a basket in the Post-office, and spent the night there. A

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newspaper bag would afford him shelter at other times. It was rare sport to him to get into one of these bags at a printing office, and roll himself about. On winter nights he would find his way between the iron bars of a window leading to the boiler room of a printing office, and there seek shelter from the cold and storm. One of these bars was bent, so that when the curve was downwards he could manage to crawl through, but unhappily the bar once turned as he was half way in, and held him fast, till rescued by some of his comrades, who heard his cries for relief.

Ellard was a dear lover of fencing.

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A sword was presented to him by one of his customers, and he made free use of it among the boys. One day while thus engaged in front of an office on Third street, an elderly gentleman, disturbed by their noise, attempted to drive them away, but Ellard thought himself too well armed to beat a retreat, and commenced flourishing his sword in a manner that soon convinced the gentleman of the propriety of self-defence. Master Dumps was arrested and marched off a la militaire to the police station. One of his companions sought him out, soon after he was taken prisoner, and carried him a cent's worth of tobacco

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to comfort him. After a hearing before an alderman, he was released the same evening.

As might be expected in a boy thus deprived of the benefits of any proper moral training, Ellard, when incensed, would frequently give way to such violent passion, as rendered him dangerous to those who had offended him; and at other times, under a sense of real or fancied injuries, he would indulge in sullen obstinacy, from which it was not easy to arouse him. Experience proved that it was best to leave him to reflection, which soon brought him to his senses.

He was a great favorite with the

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boys, though he sometimes handled them rather more roughly than they liked, and beyond what any other than a cripple would have dared to do. They were often entertained by him with remarkable stories of fairies, kings, &c.; How many of these tales originated in his imaginative brain I know not, but he used to get well "posted up" in conversation with some old huckster women, who would tell wonderful things of great men, beginning, very properly, with George Washington, and descending the scale to lesser lights--as a matter of course dealing extensively in the marvellous.

One of his favorite amusements

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was to stand on the table, wrapped in a sheet, and repeat portions of Macbeth and other plays. Thus clad, he would also repeat the following favorite passage:

"Were I so tall to reach the pole,
Or grasp the ocean with a span,
I must be measured by my soul:
The mind's the standard of the man."

Though not a member of the Numismatic Society, he had quite a passion for old coins, of which he was said to be a good judge, and turned many a penny in this lucrative trade.

The most prominent trait in his character was his generosity. He had a sympathizing heart, and would

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give liberally to those in need, though he valued his money too highly to spend it foolishly. Many of the boys received pecuniary assistance from him. Seeing one of the boarders, who was dismissed from the Home because he was too lazy to work for a living, lounging about the door one day, he said to the Superintendent: "I pity poor ---. If you will take him in again, I will go security for his board." In speaking to the lad about his sad want of energy, and of the noble and generous offer of Ellard, I urged him to prove his appreciation of the kindness, and not to allow his benefactor to suffer for it. His reply was,

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"That is not all that Ellard has done for me; many a three and five cent piece he has given me to buy bread with."

Ellard had a number of regular customers to whom he carried papers. A poor blind man was sure to be at the door of one of these customers every day, in time to receive a penny. Sometimes he would ask the little girl that led him who gave the money, and, upon being told that it was "the little newsboy," he would say, "God bless you, my son, and may you sell all the papers you have;" "and," added Ellard, in telling this, "it comes true, for I sell double the papers that any other boy does."

A poor lame man also received a daily allowance of a penny from him; and if Ellard missed him on his way home in the evening, he gave two cents the next evening.

It was his custom to buy a box of matches of a poor blind man whom he passed every morning on his way to business. After lighting his cigar with one, he returned the box, as a present to the man, who was so blind to his own interest as to quarrel with his little customer, and accused him of stealing his matches. Ellard was exceedingly indignant at this unjust accusation, and pronounced

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him an imposter, declaring that he could see, and was only pretending to be blind.

While selling papers at the Girard House one day, a beggar entered the hall, and solicited alms of one of the boarders, who asked Ellard if he would give the man anything. "Whatever you give, I will give double," was the reply. The gentleman gave a cent, and Ellard handed him a quarter of a dollar. Feeling this silent but severe rebuke of a poor deformed lad, the gentleman tendered Ellard half a dollar, saying, "You are an honorable little fellow." The offer was refused by Ellard, who, turning away with an air of

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independence, replied: "I make my money by selling papers."

This generous lad not only took pleasure in doing for others, but was grateful for every act of kindness extended to him. Several times I have heard my name called in the street, and, upon looking around, found him running after me, to give me a paper; and I was obliged to avoid passing his stand, as he was sure to press upon me the most expensive paper he had.

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I WAS naturally desirous to know the result of the first night at the Home, and on making inquiry the next morning, was not a little amused to find that the eleven boys who lodged there had occupied the whole twenty-five beds. Unused to such a luxury, they thought they would make the most of it by going from bed to bed. Much to the discomfort of the Superintendent, who occupied a room

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below, a portion of the night was spent in testing the rolling qualities of the bedsteads, which were mounted on castors. There was, as a matter of course, a battle with the pillows, but they were new, and of good material, and stood the storm well. Ellard had the first choice of a bed, and retained it all the time he was with us.

Religious services were held at the Home on the day after it was opened, Sunday. In the midst of a prayer, I had to separate two boys who were fighting under one of the tables.

Bath tubs had been provided for the boys, who made good use of

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them. On going to the Home early one Sunday afternoon, I found one lad had formed such an attachment for them, that he had been "in four times," and would, doubtless, have doubled the number before the close of the day, had I not prevented it. The water was dripping from him while he pleaded for permission to take another "to get clean." Deprived of this luxury, he tendered six cents for a bed, to which he then wanted to retire, but the regulations forbade the use of beds at such an hour, except in cases of sickness.

One of the managers visited the Home on the evening of the 27th of September, 1858, and saw a little

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fellow who had just made his appearance, and who was in a most filthy condition. To allow him to retire in that state was quite out of the question. The youngster had evidently not been trained in the art of washing, and as no one seemed willing to undertake so arduous a task, my brother manager took off his coat, rolled up his sleeves, and scrubbed him from head to foot. The supply of soap was exhausted before the work was fully accomplished. Ellard, and some of the other boys, looked on in perfect amazement, and contributed two cents each for his breakfast the following morning. The poor child had given all his

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earnings to his mother , who would get what she could from him, to spend in liquor.

In more than one instance intemperate mothers have followed their children to the Home, where they had sought shelter, and given them much trouble and sorrow. The honest and tender-hearted lads have wept at the mortification thus brought upon them. One of them was forced away from the Home by his unnatural mother, in the hope that she would thereby secure more of his earnings, but he ran away from her, and slept in the street, rather than under her roof. the Superintendent was one night obliged

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to awake a child, nine years of age, at the demand of his mother, who took all his money, and then allowed him to return to his bed, and to get his breakfast the following morning as he best could. Measures were taken to prevent a recurrence of these sad abuses, and no little difficulty was experienced in making the poor fellows feel that they were secure under our protection.

Swearing was at first very common among the boys, but an oath is scarcely ever heard now. Soon after the Home was opened, the Superintendent heard a disturbance in the sleeping room one night, and hastened to see what was the matter. One

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of the boys had been chastised by Ellard, whose excuse was, "He swore three times, and I was giving him his nine punches." The boys had agreed among themselves that three punches should be given for every oath, but I very much doubt whether Master Ellard, in imposing this penalty, paid proper attention to the multiplication table. It is much more than likely that three times three made fifteen or twenty in that instance.

On the 20th of October, 1858, the Rev. Mr. Bringhurst exhibited his Magic Lantern at the Home. Eighty boys were present, and enjoyed it exceedingly. Several exclamations,

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such as "That's del-a-tious!" were heard during the evening, and at the close, "three cheers for Bringhurst" were shouted for the reverend gentleman, much to his amusement. Since then there have been two similar exhibitions, and no boys, in any class of society, could have behaved better. There was, of course, many a hearty laugh at the pictures calculated to amuse, while, at other times, "That's serious," would be heard in a faint whisper, expressive of reverence.

Much of the good accomplished at the lodging rooms in Pear street was counterbalanced by the evil influences under which the boys were

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brought at some of the places frequented by them during the day for their meals, and it was found indispensably necessary that a building should be provided where they could have their meals as well as lodging, and thus be more under our care. All seemed highly pleased at the prospect of having a residence of their own, and for this purpose a building was engaged in Spruce street. A day or two after, I met Ellard, and, supposing he knew which house had been selected, I asked him how he liked the idea of moving, when he replied, "I like the idea , but don't like the house ," meaning the magnificent structure in

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Chestnut street, erected by the Pennsylvania Bank, at that time for sale, and which some of the boys had chosen for their home.

A bright and handsome youth came up to me the evening on which the removal to Spruce street took place, and said, "It is no longer Rue de Pear, but Rue de Spruce." All the furniture, including book-case, and other heavy articles, was carried by the boys, who marched in procession, bearing their respective burdens. It was grand sport to them, and a saving of expense to the Society.

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O N the evening of the 16th of November, 1858, I had the pleasure of uniting with the boys in their first meal at the Home. the Superintendent had, as he supposed, provided enough both for tea and for breakfast the next morning; but his calculations were sadly at fault, as many articles, and in considerable quantities, had to be obtained from neighboring stores to satisfy the demands of the tea-table.

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It did one good to see with what perfect enjoyment they ate; their hearty appetites were a decided benefit to the provision men who furnished the supplies. the Superintendent's record of this meal is as follows: "The boys pitched into it right and left, and soon put everything like eatables out of sight."

The comforts of a Home, such as they now had, were before unknown to many of the boys, and their expressions of gratitude and delight were very touching. A moderate price is charged for board, the payment of which gives them a feeling of self-respect.

They now began to pay some

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[Handwritten below the drawing:] M.B.s. FARM. IN CAMDEN. IV.6 in 1863. Philadelphia APRIL 6TH 1859. p. 59.

[Illustration : A child's drawing of a house.]

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attention to their personal appearance, which they had never done before, and some provided themselves with new and comfortable clothing at their own expense. It was almost impossible to recognize some of them, especially on Sundays. Their clean faces and new apparel presented a strange contrast to their former slovenly habits.

One youth, doubtless prompted by a consciousness of his improved condition, cast a prophetic glance into the future, and built himself, not exactly a castle in the air, but a residence in Camden, New Jersey. A copy of this future home of a Philadelphia newsboy, to be erected

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on the opposite side of the Delaware river, in 1863, is given, that the reader may see to what a height his ambition carried him. It may be well to state that the object to the right of the house is a pump, and I am glad to say that the expectant possessor of the premises is a cold water boy--a strict teetotaller.

Another lad made a spasmodic effort to turn over a new leaf, and having arrayed himself in an unusually clean shirt and an entire suit of clothing, stood before the looking-glass, and, leisurely surveying himself, exclaimed, in a tone of great exultation, " Can this be Scott! "

Ellard likewise made his appearance

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in an entire new suit of clothes, and seemed quite proud of them. He also made a desperate effort to learn to read, and thus make up for his folly in running away from school; but the task was too severe, and after studying an hour or so for a few evenings, during which he could be heard in almost every part of the house, he gave up in despair.

About this time a gentleman, when purchasing a paper of one of the boys, told him not to cheat in making the change. "I belong to the Newsboys' Home," was the reply, deeming that a sufficient guaranty for his honesty, but the gentleman had not heard of any such

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establishment, and asked for an explanation, which the boy was delighted to give. This was followed by an invitation to visit the Home, which was accepted, and the lad had the satisfaction of escorting him there, and introducing him to the Superintendent.

The Sunday services were now attended with much greater regularity than before. The Lord's day had been appropriated by them to amusement and dissipation, and was their day for gambling and other kindred vices. It had long been their custom to repair early every pleasant Sunday morning during the summer to their favorite resorts on

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the banks of the river, and spend the day in card-playing, drinking, &c.; When prevented from visiting these places, many oyster cellars and other similar places were open to them in different parts of the city.

To relinquish this sad and sinful life for instruction in the word of God, was a change too great to be wrought at once, and it is not surprising that while many were persuaded to refrain from thus desecrating the Sabbath, few were willing to listen to the teachings of the Scriptures, a book looked upon by them, in common with very many others, as dull and gloomy, suited only for old age or the death-bed--

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"the book," not to guide them through life, but rather to be shunned. How sad it is to think of the vast multitudes who are thus neglecting this precious "Lamp to our feet." May they be led to behold wondrous things out of God's law, and to walk in the same unto their life's end.

At first some of the boys who were present at our Sunday afternoon gatherings would come well supplied with candy and fruit. These were generously handed from one to the other, and disappeared rapidly. Nothing of this kind is now seen, unless introduced by a new-comer, who very soon yields to

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the influences exerted by the others, and becomes an attentive and respectful listener.

Poor Ellard found it more difficult to be still on Sunday than on any other day. I well remember his restlessness at the third meeting he attended, February 14, 1858. It was late when he entered the room, and soon after his arrival he stretched himself at full length, face downwards, and poising upon the hump on his breast, used it as a pivot on which to whirl himself around, in a most mysterious manner. The sight was quite a novel one to me, but did not appear to be so to the boys. Finding it did not draw their attention

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from the subject before us, I took no notice of it beyond an occasional curious glance. I believe these revolutions were not made through mischief. Poor deformed lad! he looked pale and wearied, and remaining long in a sitting posture was painful to him. I subsequently discovered that, although to a careless observer he might appear to be heedless of what was said, he was an attentive listener. There was an occasional expression of interest in the glance of his quick eye, which could not be mistaken as indicative of strong inward feeling, which, however, with characteristic affection of indifference, he endeavored

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to conceal. Upon one occasion, when a gentleman had ended an address to the boys upon "conscience," as the voice of God speaking in the soul, he expressed his hope that they would remember what had been said, and be able to repeat it at some future time. "I have forgotten it already," said Ellard, throwing himself upon the bench. So far from this being the case, I found, upon questioning him some weeks after, that he recollected the greater part of what had been told him.

The boys had their own summary way of settling disputes, which they were loath to give up. One, however,

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mindful of the advice given by a friend, strove to act the more noble part, and set his comrades a good example. He was struck by another boy in a printing-office, and, instead of returning the blow as had been his custom, he appealed to the gentleman in the office, whom he knew to be interested in the society, and received the assurance that he should not be abused. The assault being repeated, and finding his new-born patience beginning to fail, he exclaimed, "Mr....., if you don't interfere at once, I shall have to take the matter into my own hands."

Some of the boys made such strenuous efforts to do right, that it

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seemed as though they had formed a "Newsboys' Try Company," as had been suggested to them. I happened to think of this suggestion on one occasion, while urging them to persevere in their endeavors to be good, and asked if they remembered what had been told them at the opening of the Home. "Yes!" exclaimed Ellard, "and that fellow nearly cost me my life." Supposing that he referred to something else, I explained myself more fully, but he persisted in his charge, and added, "Didn't he tell us to try, and I nearly broke my neck the other day by trying as he said."

"How was that?"

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"Some of the boys were seeing who could jump down the most steps of the Custom House, and I nearly broke my neck trying" --an application which amused the Reverend gentleman, on hearing of this novel mode of testing the soundness of his teachings.

It would have been well had this poor lad attempted to practise other instructive lessons which had been given him, as his waywardness at times caused great trouble. He was the admitted leader of the boys and upon one occasion exerted this influence in an organized effort to break up the establishment. Having taken offence at an imaginary grievance, he

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left the Home, and proceeded to draw the rest of the boarders into an agreement to leave in a body. His plans being matured he went to the Home on the stipulated evening, and upon the arrival of the hour fixed upon, triumphantly called out, "NOW BOYS!" and arose, as he supposed, to head the procession; but his comrades had reflected upon their folly, and would not accompany him, though for some time he continued to upbraid them for their cowardice. He at length left alone, greatly mortified at his failure, and passionately exclaiming, "I will get you away, if I have to buy you off!" A day or two afterwards he confessed that he

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had done wrong, and asked to be forgiven, promising to behave well if allowed to return. It is needless to add that he was heartily welcomed back.

It was a merciful Providence that thus frustrated the purpose of this poor lad, and preserved for him a home in which we humbly trust he was, by the grace of God, prepared for a home in heaven.

The results of our efforts were such as to encourage us to persevere, notwithstanding the many and serious objections urged by some at the outset of the undertaking. Great as was the advance in changing from the lodging-rooms in Pear street to

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the dwelling in Spruce street, it was felt that yet another step could be taken. A room for lectures and other meetings was necessary, and arrangements were accordingly made to secure a house affording such accommodation.

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O N the 24th of August, 1859, the boys removed to their new quarters, 273 South Third street, where the duties of the Home were entered upon with increased faith and hope. The regulations adopted at the Home in Spruce street were continued, except that the Superintendent and his wife now took their meals with the boys--all at the same table, forming one family.

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A blessing is asked at each meal, and the boys wait for the Superintendent, should he happen to be engaged when they sit down. One evening he was with me in the Manager's room when the tea bell rang, and asked to be excused for a few moments. On his return he informed me he had left to ask a blessing, and found the boys seated at the table waiting for him.

Family worship is held every evening at half-past nine o'clock, and the boys are encouraged to assemble at the Throne of grace, that
"Place of all on earth most sweet,
The blood bought mercy-seat."

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The doors of the Home are closed at ten, our regulations requiring the boys to be in punctually by that hour.

In order to render the Home attractive, a small library has been furnished through the kindness of friends; some of the boys have read every book in it.

A melodeon affords no little pleasure to those learning to play upon it, and aids us in singing, in which instruction is given by one of the Managers of the Society. The boys are fond of singing hymns. The following is their greatest favorite, and is sung frequently, with much spirit.

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"Great the joy when Christians meet;
Christian fellowship, how sweet,
When, their theme of praise the same,
They exalt Jehovah's name!

Sing we, then, eternal love;
Such as did the Father move:
He beheld the world undone;
Loved the world, and gave His Son.

Sing the Son's unbounded love;
How He left the realms above;
Took our nature and our place,
Lived and died to save our race.

Sing we, too, the Spirit's love;
With our stubborn hearts He strove;
Chased the mists of sin away,
Turned our night to glorious day.

Great the joy, the union sweet,
When the saints' in glory meet;
Where the theme is still the same;
Where they praise Jehovah's name."

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[Illustration : [Illustration: lithographic reproduction of a hymn score with lyrics.]Great the joy when Christians meet--In the light, in the light: Christian fellowship, how sweet,In the light of GodLet us walk in the light, Walk in the light: Let us walk in the light, In the light of God. When, their theme of praise the same--In the light, in the light:They exalt Je-hovah's name! In the light of God.]

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The following was the first ever sung by the boys, and was always a favorite of Ellard's.

"To do to others as I would
That they should do to me,
Will make me honest, kind, and good,
As newsboys ought to be.

I know I should not steal, nor use
The smallest thing I see,
Which I should never like to lose
If it belonged to me.

And this plain rule forbids me quite
To strike an angry blow,
Because I should not think it right
If others served me so.

But any kindness they may need
I'll do, whate'er it be,
As I am very glad indeed
When they are kind to me."

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Various innocent amusements are provided, that the boys need not go elsewhere for pleasure, but games of chance are not allowed. In these sports Ellard took a prominent part, providing himself with a banjo and tambourine to help out their concerts, at a time when several became musically inclined.

The boys are anxious to form a "Band" among themselves. It would be a source of great pleasure to all, as the performers, while amusing themselves, would entertain the others. The funds contributed for the support of the Home cannot of course be applied in this way, but it is hoped that the necessary amount

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may soon be furnished. Frequent inquiries are made by the boys as to the time the instruments and teachers will be ready.

One of the managers of our Society recently entertained the boys with a lecture upon the manufacture of paper, and they were astonished to find how old rags were converted into the article in which they traffic.

An exhibition of a skeleton, put together with springs, and an instructive lecture upon the human frame, were kindly given by a gentleman not long since. Some of the boys, somewhat startled at the sight of an object so calculated to affect the feelings, "did not like to look at

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themselves;" another, of a more reckless character, wanted to know "who that chap was before he became a skeleton." I was absent from the city on the evening of the exhibition, but received the following account of it from one of the boys.

"The skeleton exhibition was very successful; there was from forty to fifty boys present; and there was Mr......, and several other gentlemen which I do not know; and there was perfect good order, just as if you were there. All was well pleased, and Mr. Sloan made a few remarks of thanks to the exhibitor. The bones of the skeleton fell down, and there was a general rush made

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by the boys for the door. The gentleman showed something very useful to us about our physical system, and told us about the skeleton's history. As for Mr. Bones, it looked very frightful."

Through the kindness of the Camden and Amboy Ferry Company, in granting free passage to and from Camden last summer, the boys had grand sport in games of ball, and in running races. They prepared a patent leather belt as a prize, for which they frequently ran. On it was inscribed the following,

[Illustration : [Words written inside a rectangular frame.]PHILADELPHIA NEWSBOY' CHAMPION RACER.]

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This was one of the few amusements in which Ellard could not take part. He was, however, quite expert in certain gymnastic feats, and if he could not get up the ropes or ladder in the gymnasium as fast as the other boys, none could beat him in racing down , or in standing upon the head, a favorite exploit of his. Many merry hours have been spent in the gymnasium, in the yard attached to the Home.

Instruction has been given in writing, reading, grammar, and arithmetic, and one lad has expressed a desire to learn book-keeping.

The greatest difficulty we have to contend against, is that fearfully

View page [illustration]

Ellard's favorite amusement at the newsboys' Gymnasium. p. 84

[Illustration : A group of boys climb ladders and poles next to a narrow three-story building.]

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increasing vice, intemperance. Some of the poor creatures addicted to it have made repeated efforts to reform, but have been led off by falsely called "friends."

It is a fearful accountability which those must meet, who, for the sake of gain, thus tempt a poor lad--perhaps an orphan--to sin and ruin. Were it not for these allurements the reformation of the boys would be comparatively an easy task, as to counteract these influences is more than half the battle. It is distressing to see how sadly disheartened the poor fellows are, when, after having for some time striven to do right, they fall under the temptations

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of those who are ever ready to prey upon them.

Poor Ellard kept last Fourth of July in a manner too many "keep" it, who have not the " independence " to refrain from evil, and a serious accident nearly happened in consequence. Under the influence of liquor, he pointed a pistol at the face of one of his comrades, playfully exclaiming, "I will shoot you." Suiting the action to the word, he fired, and severely burnt the lad's face. Upon realizing what he had done, he was exceedingly alarmed, and deeply penitent.

My total abstinence book, for newsboys and their many friends, of

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whom I claim to be one, is headed thus: "Relying on the help of God to enable us to keep our obligation, we hereby pledge ourselves to abstain hereafter from all intoxicating drinks."

This is read to each one before signing, after which he is welcomed by a hearty shake of the hand.

the Home not only accommodates the boarders, but is the rendezvous of the other newsboys of the city who are living with their relatives or friends. A beneficial society, the "Newsboys' Union," has been formed among themselves. Their meetings

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are held at the Home on Friday evenings. Their weekly dues form a fund from which they aid their members in distress.

After the business of the meeting is over, they sometimes have debates upon various subjects. Ellard was a member of the "Union," and, as a matter of course, took part in these debates. On one occasion the subject was, "Which is the most powerful, the sword or the pen?" An animated discussion followed, during which one lad labored to prove the sword the more powerful of the two.

"If a fellow comes up to you in the dark with a revolver, what good would a pen do? but if you had a

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sword, and he couldn't aim in the dark, you could cut him down." Ellard jumped up, and exclaimed, "Yes! but suppose a robber comes up to you with a sword, and is going to kill you, and you take your pen and write out a check for money for him--don't you think you'd stop him? Now! which is the most powerful?"

The first anniversary of the "Union" was held on 21st January, 1860. The entertainment was gotten up by the boys themselves, and was highly creditable to them. It was exceedingly pleasant to see these young men and lads thus socially and rationally commemorating

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the formation of their society. They have long since learned that intemperance, so generally indulged in at such times, is not necessary to social enjoyment.


1. Opening Speech by the President.

2. Ice cream.

3. Speech by .....

4. Song by .....

5. Pound-cake and lemonade.

6. Speech by .....

7. Candies.

8. Speeches.

Several persons spoke in answer to

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the call of the President. One of the Vice-Presidents declared he "had nothing to say," and could not be persuaded to rise. A committee of two was appointed to wait upon him, lead him to the centre of the room, and convey ideas to him, which he was to express. It was a novel and amusing sight. The committee did their duty faithfully; one on either side, alternately whispering to their Vice-President, who would utter whatever was told him, the two advisers taking very good care that their "ideas" should not be upon the same subject, though conveyed to us through the same channel.

newsboys, like all other sensible

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boys, are remarkably fond of good things, and enjoy "anniversaries." Those kept in connection with our Society are,

Formation of the Newsboys' Union, 21st January.

Opening of the Home, 29th May.


A dinner, to as many as our room will accommodate, is given on the latter occasion.

The boys are very kind to each other, and, in cases of sickness, nurse their invalid companions with tender care; but I cannot vouch for their experience as nurses, unless the system practised by the medical faculty is seriously at fault. An inmate of

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the Home was so dangerously ill, that the doctor had serious doubts of his recovery, and ordered him to be carefully nursed. At the most critical period of his disease, he asked, in his delirium, for oysters, and the boys who were sitting up with him sent at two o'clock in the morning, without consulting the Superintendent, and procured a liberal supply of fried oysters and feasted him upon them. Strange to say, he began to recover from that hour, and was soon as well as ever.

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W HILE I was in Baltimore, in February 1859, the two following letters were received by me.

Philadelphia , Feb. 21st, 1859. Newsboys' Home.

Dear Sir --It affords me great pleasure in writing to you to let you know how we have spent our time since your departure to the "Monumental City."

To be as brief as possible, Patrick S..... came home Sunday evening,

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and brought with him a new boarder, named Peter B..... I know you will be glad to know that there is another added to our Home since the time you were here last. P..... promises to be better for the future. John Ellard and Thomas McD..... were at tthe House of Refuge to-day, and saw the Italian and Ellard's brother. They were both highly pleased with their visit. Ellard thinks that if his brother was only home with us, it would add greatly to his reformation. All the boys are well, and send their best respects to you. All at present.

I remain Your obedient servant.

There is so little demand for newspapers in the summer, owing to the large number of citizens absent from home, that many of the newsboys are

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forced to seek other employment. Several of them go to Cape May, and are engaged to set up the pins in the bowling alleys.

The following are some of the letters received from them last season.

Cape Island , New Jersey,
June 30th, 1859.

To Mr. Alexander Sloan , and all the family.

I send you these few lines informing you that we are in good health, hoping that you and Mrs. Sloan, and all the boys, is the same. It is very dull times down here. There are not over sixty people on the Island, and of course we have not much to do. We have got nothing to do

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except to sweep up in the morning, then we run around the beach, digging and eating clams till night. We have Tom W..... down here, with nothing to do, without money, and starving to death. Yesterday he was tossing up what he would do, drown himself, or sneak home on the boat. I have not seen him since, and I do not know which he has done. We have got Pat C..... here, too, as large as life, and as lazy as ever. B..... is giving him his grub and lodging to the first of July, when he will take him on to work. All he does every morning when he eats his breakfast, he sneaks down to the beach, and gets on top of a bath-

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house, where the sun is shining, and lies there all day.

Tell Mr. Concklin I received them papers, and I am much obliged to him. Send the same every week, and I will make itall right when I come up. I heard that Pat B..... is champion runner of the "newsboys' Trotting Club." I am glad of it, but if he comes down here I think I can take it from him. I have also heard that the * License Bill has passed the Councils, if so, it is the best thing that ever happened for the boys around the corner. I hope Dumps is making out good on his

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stand. Please send us down word how the boys are making out, and how times are around the corner. Write soon. My best respects to all the boys and family. No more at present, but remain yours.

Is S..... making out any better since I left the corner. If he likes his whisky, tell him he cannot get it here. I do not drink nothing stronger than salt water, and won't till I get back.

Cape Island , July 7th, 1859.

Mr. Alexander Sloan:

Dear Sir --I received your letter on the 6th, and we were glad to hear that you and Mrs. Sloan and all the family were well. I am glad to hear

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that all the boys are well, and I hope they will all make out first-rate. I am happy to inform you that Thomas W..... is making out first-rate. He has got a situation digging wells, and he is making from $1.50 to $2 a day, every day he works, but he looks rather bad from hard work. David C..... says he is very sorry he had not time to bid you good-by. He says he was down at the boat selling his papers, and he took a notion to come down, so he got on. Patrick M..... is well, and as fat as usual. I am glad to hear that Sam..... and McC..... are doing so well. I hope that Dumps will continue to make out well, but I

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don't think that he wishes the same for me [sic] I am much obliged to Dick for them papers. I hope to have the chance to return the favor to him some time. I am sorry for B....., but he deserves to get arrested, for he made a promise not to drink for six months the day that I left, and I done the same; but I have kept mine, and I mean to keep it still, for I have never felt better in my life than since I came down here. I am sorry for H..... getting his head cut, but I will bet a half-dollar to a clam-shell, that he was drunk at the time it happened. He could not expect better anyhow, going down in....., he wanted to let the boys

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know that he was a brave man; it would be enough for P..... to do that. I am glad James B..... did not get drowned. A man came down here and told me he saw him going down, but he could not save him. We were all glad to hear that you passed such a pleasant "Fourth." It was the hardest "Fourth" that we ever passed. It rained like cats and dogs all day, and we had not as much as a chew of tobacco to keep us comfortable, and no money to buy any. They had a grand celebration of the "Fourth" down here; the Mayor set off three shooting crackers, and the Common Council one chaser. About four half starved dogs, three

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billygoats, and two pigs, assembled to witness the grand spectacle. The people were nowhere.

Please tell Poodle that he had better not come down here, for he cannot get anything to do yet, nor the other boys either for a week yet. Pat M..... went out catching crabs last Sunday, and he fell into a ditch, and the crabs came near eating the big toe off him. He is getting well. We seen a stranger down here last night, in the shape of B..... He has got nothing to do yet. He says he will be for ever obliged to you, if you will send him down a shirt, pair of pants, a cap, and his bob-tail coat. Put them in a bundle, and put them

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on the steamboat "Balloon." Direct them to M.B., care of T.B., Cape Island.

My best respect to Mrs. Sloan and all the family, and all the boys.

Yours, Respectfully and truly.

During a few days absence from the city last summer, I received the following letter:

Philadelphia , Aug. 15, 1859.

My Dear Friend --It is with great pleasure I write you these few lines, hoping to find you in good health, as this leaves me at present, and all the boys at the Home, and their Superintendent and family, and they

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will be all glad to find you in the same. I am getting along nicely at the Home, and I hope I will keep so. Mr. Sloan tells us that we will soon remove to a new Rudy, * as we call it; a fine time is expected, as there is a debate-room in it.

My father got a letter from my sisters, but he won't let me smell at it, because I went to Cape May without telling him.

When I first went down, I was determined never to return to you again; but at night when I laid in

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bed my heart told me I was wrong, and something told me I was going to come back next week; and I would have given anything to be back, because I thought how kind you was to me, and how I was used down there like a slave. Every night after the first three, when all my anger was gone, I most humbly asked God to forgive me, and that you and Mr. Sloan would do the same, and to get back; but I never let the other boys see me, because they would make fun and laugh at me; and I soon felt that God had heard my prayer. Mr. C..... came down, and when I seen him it made me cry. I tried to get from him,

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but he followed me and shook hands, and told me if I would come up you would take me back. * * * I pray every day that I will become a useful man to you, and that I will repay you in good behaviour. I pray you will return in safety. No more at present, from

Your youthful friend and servant.

*The recommendation to Councils to have the newsboys licensed has not yet been acted upon.

* I was puzzled to know the meaning of this word, and, upon inquiry, was informed that "the other houses were called 'Rudy (Rue de) Pear' and 'Rudy (Rue de) Spruce;' and so the new house is 'Rudy (Rue de) Third.'"

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O N the evening of the 2d September, 1859, while in conversation with the boys at the Home, I was informed by one of them of his intended departure for Memphis the following evening. I expressed surprise, as I knew he had a good situation as a carrier of one of the evening papers, and I had seen him only the day before, contentedly and faithfully serving his papers. Upon questioning him as

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to the cost of such a long and expensive journey, he told me it would not cost him anything, as he had found a ticket in the street. All my remonstrances against using a ticket that did not belong to him were in vain; so he started at the time he had proposed. On his arrival at Memphis he obtained work in a printing-office, and was soon in receipt of good wages. Several letters were written by him, in which he manifested an attachment to the Home and its inmates, and gave spicy accounts of his doings in the West. Unhappily he soon returned to his former dissolute habits, and lost his situation in consequence.

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Memphis , Thursday, Sept. 29, 1859.

Dear Mr. Sloan --I have received your letter this day, and I am glad that you are in good health, and your family, and Mr. ..... I am in three paper offices in Memphis, and I get three dollars in the B.... office every Monday, and I have a jobat the A..... office, at a dollar and a half, for four hours on Tuesday. I have a job of folding the A....., three thousand papers; it takes me six hours, and I get $2.30; and on Wednesday I have a job

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Ca...., a dollar. And that's not all: I have the theatre bills to serve round the town, and I get a dollar and a half. In one week I make $9.30. Memphis is one of the best towns on the Mississippi River; it is one of the money-making places. Any boy can get a place in Memphis at any time.

Give my best respects to Conklin, Ellard, Howe, Bush, Morris, Conlin, and Conlin; and tell them I will write to them as soon as I can, as I have no time at present. Give my best respects to Mrs. Sloan. And, Mr. Sloan, I will pray as you have told me, because I think God is near me. Mr. Sloan, I have to

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pay three dollars a week for board, and I have to sleep in the ..... cellar, as I have to get up at three o'clock in the morning. Mr. Sloan, give my best respects to Mr. ...., and all the Managers of the newsboys' Home at Philadelphia. Mr. Sloan, write to me as soon as you can, for I am anxious to hear from the newsboys of Philadelphia. That is all I have to say at present.

Yours truly.

Memphis , Dec. 6th, 1859.

Dear Sir --I have received your letter on the 6th inst., and am in good health at present, and doing well, and earning twelve dollars a

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week. I am very sorry that C. ... is very sick in the hospital; and he is very sick with the dropsy, and the doctor said that he will be well in a few days; and as soon as he gets well he has a place, too, in the I..... office as fireman. And where he works there is an old press that I use to take the papers off in Lodge Alley, back of the old Pennsylvania Bank; and it is the old press that the ..... use to have. I am very glad to hear that the boys are getting on well in the Home, and I am very glad to hear that M.... is well, and John Ellard; and since C..... has been sick it has taken all my money to keep us both; and the night that

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he took sick it took all my money to pay the doctor, and now I am very glad that he is getting well, and I hope when he gets well he will try and make money, and him and me will do well. * * * I am very glad to hear Mc..... is doing well, and that all the boys are well; and give my best respects to all the boys, and Mr. ....., and to the officers of the Union; and give my best respects to Mrs. Sloan and the cook. That is all I have to say at present.

Yours truly.

St. Louis , Feb. 6th, 1860.

Mr. Sloan --I write to you in good health at present, but I am sorry for not writing before. I have left

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Memphis, because I was a losing money; and when I left Memphis, I gave C.... my place. And I used to spend too much money in drinking, and I started to New Orleans; and when I got there, I tried to get a place to fold papers, but they were all full of folders, and I could not get a place, and I was the second best folder in the city. But then I did not know what to do, but my mind thought of getting a place on a boat, and I did get a job on a St. Louis packet; and when I got to St. Louis, I went to the M..... office. And that was on Wednesday, and they told me to come around to-morrow, and I would see the foreman of the

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folding-room; and I come there on Thursday, and he tried me, and he told me that he would give me a job on Saturday, that one of the boys was a going to leave, and he would give me five dollars a week. But board there is only two dollars and fifty cents a week, and I have two dollars and a half left every week. And I have stopped drinking, and I am a going to save my money, for I expect to come home in May, and have some money with me, and at this present time I have only a dollar to keep me on; but after the week is over I will have plenty. That is all about this, Mr. Sloan. Give my best respects to all the boys, and tell

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them where I am, and tell them to write to me; and give my best respects to Mr. ..... and Mrs. Sloan, and tell Henry Y..... to write to me. That is all I have to say at present--and your best respects.

Yours truly.

St. Louis , February 17th, 1860.

Mr. Sloan --I have received your letter on the 15th inst., and I am glad to find you in good health; and I am glad to hear that the boys are a getting along very well, and I am very sorry to hear that C..... is getting worse. I thought that when C..... would get work he would keep sober, but I found it not so, and

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I am glad to hear that Dickey is getting along very well with the stand; and I am glad to hear that John Howe and M. Bush is in their own places yet, and doing well; and D.... in the mill--and I am glad of it. Mr. Sloan, you wrote to me that you wanted me to tell you more of my adventure. Well, Mr. Sloan, I will tell you. Well, Mr. Sloan, when I was a leaving Memphis, I had just four dollars to draw from the A..... office, and C..... had just two dollars, and he gave it to me, and then I gave him the job to fold the A...., and the A....., and the B....., and then I went down to the boat. Her name was

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the "Ingomar," and I got down on her for two dollars to New Orleans; and I saw wood for my grub all the way down--and I had plenty to eat; and when I got down to New Orleans, I went to the paper office to try to get a place to fold. They told me that they were full of folders. When I found I could not get a job to fold, I went to the river, to see if I could get a job to work on the boats, and I could not get a job; and I staid in New Orleans four days, when I went down to the boats again and tried all them, but they were full. Well, I thought to myself, What would I do? My money was nearly all gone, and at last I thought

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I would go and try work my way on a boat, and I got a job in the cook-house to work my way up to St. Louis--that is fourteen hundred miles from New Orleans. The boat's name was the "War Eagle;" and then I got a job in the R..... office. That is my journey; and I like to work there well; and I get four dollars and fifty cents a week, and I pay two dollars a week for board--and I have good eating. I wrote to C..... about a week ago, and I have not got no answer from him yet. Mr. Sloan, I think I will get a job to go to Pike's Peak in March, and if I should get the job, I will get forty-five dollars a month and board;

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and after staying there a while, I will go to California--it is only thirteen hundred miles from there--and there I will stay for three months, if God will spare me to live that long; then I will come home--if I get the job to go out there--I will. I am now doing well at present, and in good health. Mr. Sloan, next letter that you receive from me, I will send on my dues to the Union, and Mr. Sloan, if you please, to ask the Union how much I owe. Mr. Sloan, I will never come home without I have some money. Mr. Sloan, give my best respects to Mrs. Sloan, and all the boys in the Home, and the Union; and Mr. Sloan, if you please,

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to ask the Union to give me a constitution book and a certificate, for mine was left in Memphis. Do me that favor, if you please, and ask D..... if he ever received that letter that I sent to him. If he did, tell him to write to me.

That is all I have to say; give my best respects to Mr. ... Write to me as soon as possible.

Yours truly.

The writer of these letters appears to have turned over a new leaf. He is now at the Home, very greatly improved, and striving to be a good boy.

The glowing accounts sent by this

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boy in his first letters from Memphis, inspired some of his comrades with a desire to seek their fortunes in the West. Two of them started on foot, and began their journey in high spirits. It was not long before they concluded it would be more pleasant to ride, and seeing a train of cars approaching, they managed to get upon it, and, by eluding the vigilance of the conductors, contrived to steal a ride the greater portion of the way to Pittsburg. Here they spent several days in search of work, sleeping one night in an empty freight car, another over the boiler of a coal barge, and a third in front of the furnace of a rolling mill.

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After wandering about the city for some time, they started for a railroad station, where they became separated, and then lost each other. One of them worked his way to Memphis, the other started on his return to Philadelphia on a Wednesday afternoon. After riding about thirty miles on a freight car he was put off, after which he walked along the railroad track till nine o'clock the next morning, when he again succeeded in obtaining a short ride on another train of cars. A third train carried him as far as Altoona, where he arrived early on Friday morning. After walking a few miles further, he came to a place where

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the road was undergoing repairs; this he knew would compel the next train to travel at a slow pace, and afford him an opportunity of getting upon one of the cars. The officers again drove him from his hiding-place. Walking on, he reached a point where some freight cars were about to start. Getting into one of them, he stowed himself away among the freight, where he fell asleep, wearied and hungry. He does not know how long he slept, but on awaking, the cars were motionless, and he could hear no noise. He attempted to open the door, but it was locked. He then knocked and called to be released, but no one

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answered. How long he remained at this place he cannot tell, but thinks it must have been more than a day, and that it must have been at a "turn out," as he could hear other trains passing continually. At last his car was again in motion, but in what direction he did not know--he hoped it was bound for Philadelphia. On Tuesday afternoon the train again stopped, and after knocking and calling for a long time he was released, and found himself at West Philadelphia. The poor fellow managed to reach the Home, where he was quite sick for several days.

The writer of the following letters sought protection at the Home not

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long since. He had formerly been a newsboy, but got into trouble through his misconduct. He seemed heartily tired of a life of sin, and strove to amend, but the many and sore temptations to which he was subjected were too much for him. Again and again he took a fresh start, and I should have been encouraged though he fell "seventy times seven," had he only continued to strive .

While conversing with him one Sunday about another boy, who was also endeavoring to do well, he said to me, "He gets low-spirited, sir, and says it's no use to try to do right, but I tell him that's the Devil

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tempting him.
But Mr. ... when a chap gets so low, it's very hard work to get up; you can't tell, sir, how difficult I find it."

Baltimore , February 22D, 1860.

Mr. ..........

I send you this to let you know that I am in good health, and doing right so far, and by the grace of God, I hope I always will do what is right. Do not think hard of me for leaving and not letting you know it. I have been going in every store in Baltimore, I thought I could get work. I haven't got none yet, but I don't feel discouraged. Tell Mr. Sloan I thank him and you with my whole heart and soul for your kindness

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towards me--indeed I can't thank you for your kindness towards me. If I don't get no work soon, I will go to Washington, and if I don't get no work there, I will go in the country. W..... and O. B..... came with me; you musn't think I fetched them, for I didn't. I haven't no more to say now but to Mrs....., that is, I thank her with my whole heart for her good kindness towards me. Tell me if you receive this. Write Baltimore post office.

From yours, &c.;

Cincinnati, March 7th, 1860.

Mr. Sloan:

Dear Sir --I write you these few lines to let you know that I am in

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good health. I hope you are the same. Me and W..... and O.B..... is in this city together, and me and W..... got a job soon as we landed in the city, to work in a restaurant for $30 a month and board, and we are now working there, but how long we will stay here we dont know. There is a man in this city who wants me and W..... right badly to go to Kansas for to drive a stage; he says he will give us $25 a month and board, and will take us any time we will go, and we have a notion to go in a couple of weeks. The times out here is very good, I think anybody could get work if he try for it. Me

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and W..... is determined not to go back for two years, and we are bound to have plenty of money when we come. We are trying to make honest and good men out of selfs. Give our best respects to all the boys, and write us an answer.

From Yours, truly.

Ellard, though not a traveller, had his adventure--a short, but exciting trip by water--which is thus related by one of his companions.

"As long as I have been a newsboy, I never knew a more creditable one than John Ellard. He was honest, upright, and industrious, and whenever his assistance was required

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Ellard's Partner, as he appeared before the opening of the newsboys' Home. From a photograph taken in 1857.

[Illustration : A newsboy standing on a corner in a large, ragged coat and shabby hat.]

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The same as a member of the newsboys' Home. From a photograph taken in 1860.

[Illustration : A newsboy standing next to a small table stacked with papers. He is neatly attired in a new suit and hat.]

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he gave it with a good heart, for he would always lend any of the boys whatever sum of money they wanted, if he had it with him; he always had, for he never spent his money foolishly. For one like he so small and deformed a boy, he would go with the rest of the boys, and play with them, and cut up and run around with them to sell his papers in all sorts of weather and at all times.

"I will relate to you a little incident which I seen last fall, in the year 1859. Late in the afternoon it commenced to rain, for all the day large clouds were swimming over the earth, so at last it broke, and

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commenced to rain faster and faster, it came down in torrents, and the streets looked like running rivulets. I was standing in Third street, under an awning, when little Didley Dumps came up to me, and stayed there with me for a little while, and joked about the rain, and he threw a couple of the wet papers he had in the gutter, and laughed at them a floating down with the current. There stood a gentleman on the other side of the street delighted at the act. He was a customer of John's. He started to sell a paper to the gentleman, and with one bound he crossed the gutter, but the rest of the way was up over his

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knee. He sold the paper, and started back for where I was, but when he was half-way over, the last gutter was too deep, and as he made a jump he came short of reaching the curb-stone, and fell headlong in the gutter, and the current took him down, the same as it took his papers. I looked on in astonishment that the water could carry him down. I first thought that he was cutting up or fooling me; so when I seen he had no control of himself, I ran and pulled him out, all drenching wet, as if he fell overboard. He shook himself, took his papers and threw them in the street, then run down in the press-room, and there before a

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big fire he dried himself. He seemed to care no more about it, than if it was nothing."

One of our lads was recently asked by a gentleman whom he met on the wharf, if he would like to go to the South with him, as he wanted two or three boys for his drug store on the Mississippi. The reply was that he could not go, but that he knew some who would like such a situation. This conversation was mentioned to three boys at the Home, and they hastened at once to the hotel to see "the Doctor." The interview was pronounced satisfactory;--"other boys had gone from

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this city, and were now in receipt of large incomes." These youngsters returned to the Home, unable to talk of anything but the "medical profession," and "drugs and medicines." The pulses of the other boys were examined, and prescriptions given, and the next day I found one of these lads writing his cards thus: "Dr . M ..... B ....., ..................... Mississippi." He inquired the meaning of "M.D.," saying, "I shall have to study all these things now." A form of account was prepared at his request that he "might learn to make out

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bills." Vigorous preparations were made for several days, when the return of one of our boys from the South, whose report that it was "hot enough in that part of the world to cook a beefsteak in the sun," convinced the "Doctors" that whatever "M.D." might mean, they had better let medicines and drugs alone.

Memphis , Tenn., April 15, 1860.

Mr. .......

Dear Sir --Me and W..... is in good health at present. I received your letter in Cincinnati, and it done my heart good to read it; and me and W..... is trying to go up that hill you named in your letter, and

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we hope, by the grace of God, we will gain it.

Mr. ...., we would have wrote to you before now, but we hadn't time. I tell you why we had not time. W.. .. and me got a job to go down the river on a flat boat--me as a deck hand, and W..... as a cook. We were to get fifteen dollars a month; and we went away the day we received your letter--that is the reason we could not write. We were twenty-nine days going down the river, and we left at this city. We are going to New Orleans; so write your letter to that city the same way as you did to Cincinnati. I would write you a great deal more,

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but for the place I am writing at. I have to write quick. You shall hear from us as soon as we can get a place to write. This is to let you know where we are at. We are going in half an hour to New Orleans; farewell for a while. We like your kind and good advice.

Thomas W. and Charles W.

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O N Wednesday evenings I read to the boys, taking care to select such books as will interest and instruct them; sometimes the book is one chosen by the boys themselves. On one occasion, "The Pilgrim's Progress" was asked for, and it was listened to with more than ordinary attention. Many of them had seen it dramatized at the theatre, and from this acquaintance with it were able to recognize many

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of the characters portrayed by good John Bunyan.

At these readings the most attentive listener was John Ellard, who frequently acted as master of ceremonies, by arranging a chair for me, (taking good care to reserve the one next to me for himself,) and in keeping the boys in order. He was always impatient for the exercises to begin, and if the clock happened to mark the appointed time (half-past seven) before I entered the room, which it seldom did, Ellard was sure to be in the dumps , and would exclaim, "There! I knew he would'nt [sic] come!" And if, after commencing to read, I paused a moment

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to explain a passage, or to answer any question about the subject before us, he would instantly call out, "There's five minutes gone already!" I had limited the reading to an hour, but frequently I was obliged to continue for an hour and a half, and sometimes even two hours were consumed. So much interested did they become in this exercise that various expedients were resorted to for the purpose of extending the time, such as placing a cap before the face of clock, so that I could not see the hands.

The explanations given by the boys when I finished reading, proved

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how closely their attention was fixed. One of them said he had listened so hard that it had "driven all he heard out of his head."

One evening, after reading for about half an hour, I requested a friend who had accompanied me, and whose engagements rendered it necessary for him to leave at an early hour, to make a few remarks. True to his colors, he took up the Bible, and spoke of it as the book that most interested him, and, he hoped, was also valued by those present. This interruption was entirely too much for poor Ellard, who became exceedingly indignant at what he deemed an unwarrantable interference

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with his rights. Turning his back upon the speaker, which, unfortunately, caused him to face me, he commenced spitting in such a furious manner, that I found myself in a most unenviable position. To move at such a critical moment was quite out of the question. Happily for me my friend's comments upon 2 Kings ii. 23, 24, were so suited to the audience, and so exceedingly interesting, as to win the attention of even Didley Dumps , despite his very determined opposition, and thus I escaped without harm.

The book which perhaps most interested the boys, was one entitled,

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"Dick, and his Friend Fidus." * Upon closing this book one evening, a strapping young man came up to me, and, shaking himself, said, "That book makes a fellow feel all over."

"Dick" was the admiration of every one of the boys. The account of his courageously withstanding the ridicule of his fellow-boarders was received with applause; and as I took up the Bible to conduct family worship, on the night the book was finished, one boy asked me to read the chapter that Dick read to his

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companions at the boarding-house. This was the first Psalm, every word of which was applicable to the occasion, and was listened to with the deepest attention. May those dear boys experience the blessedness of the man "that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord ."

"Fidus" was acknowledged to be a faithful friend, whose voice they had often heard, and to him was attributed all of Dick's success in life. He is often spoken of, and may, I trust, be heeded.

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The following review is the production of one of the boys.

"I have read the book which bears the title of Dick and his Friend Fidus: my idea is, that it is a true story about conscience, and illustrates it in a most striking manner. It is really one of the most interesting for truthfulness I ever read. It shows us the bad boy's beginning and his ending; it shows us the good boy's beginning and his ending; it shows us that the boy who is willing to obey his mother, ends his days in happiness, while the boy who is too big to call his father by his right name, ends in a most miserable manner. We follow him up to where

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he meets Dick in the store where he is employed, but he finds Dick is not so easy to be made ashamed as when he was a schoolboy; we here see that it was the fear of God that saved Dick, for if he had went with Mark, I dare say he would soon have been as bad as him; and we see what would have been the consequences, he would not have gained the friendship of Charles Wiley, or he would not have got in Mr. Bartlett's store, but might have been in prison, or been a very bad character. It shows us how easy we are tempted to do wrong, (that is, where he goes in the boat,) no matter how much we are determined to do right. It

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shows us how easy it is to go down, and how easy it is to go up, (that is, where he is assailed by his boarders;) it seems he had not strength to do what conscience bade him, (that is, about reading the book,) and if he had not went to his room, I dare say he never would, for it was God gave him strength, and we see how nobly he defeated his ridiculers. This bold stand, I dare say, done him all the good he was in need of, for it raised him friends, and good ones. It shows us how kind and gentle a Christian woman is, and how hard-hearted the negative is, (that is, I mean Aunt Fanny and Mrs. Walker). It shows us that truth is always the best to

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follow, for if Dick had not told about the broken glass, I dare say, Mr. Russell would not have kept him. It shows us how little it takes to make one happy, (that is, where Dick gave his sister the book,) and we see that it was a good reason for Mr. Russell keeping him, for he gave it to his sister with a good heart. It shows us how kind we ought to be to our fellow-men, (that is, where Dick showed the man out of the woods); we see that because of this very good act Mr. Russell was induced to take him; and we see that by Dick obeying Fidus, or Conscience, he leads a happy life, and if every boy does what Conscience tells

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him, he will always do right. I see that all the happiness Dick gained was by following Fidus's advice; it all comes around, first the bonfire, if he had not heeded his advice, Mr. Benton would not have recommended him to Mr. Whilton, and so every good act deserves another."

Sometimes, after reading, I question the boys in mental arithmetic. Their answers are given in much less time than it takes me to work out the sum, so that I am obliged to prepare myself for these exercises. A remarkably fine looking, though roughly clad youth, presented himself one Wednesday evening, and was the first to answer five of the

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ten questions that had been propounded. At the close of the exercise I spoke to him of his knowledge of figures, and asked where he had obtained it. A lad who was standing by remarked,

"Me and this chap used to sit together, didn't we?"

"Where?" I asked.

"O! he has been in the House of Refuge here and in New York three times, and I have been there twice."

While preparing sums one evening, I told the boys they might amuse themselves by asking each other questions, when one inquired,

"Why is Harper's Ferry's nose

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like the second story of the Girard House?"

"Because it's over an eating saloon ."

Two gentlemen were present one evening, and undertook to question the boys, but soon found themselves in difficulty. One asked,

"If I purchase twenty papers at three cents each, and sell twelve at five cents each, do I make or lose by the transaction?" Several voices at once exclaimed,

"Why, you make!"

The question was repeated, under the supposition that it had not been fully understood; but still the same answer was given. These gentlemen

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knew but little of the profession, and required to be informed that the remaining eight copies "could be sold for old paper!"

The boys had a great deal to say upon the subject of John Brown's trial and execution, and their excitement increased as the time of his death approached. They were discussing warmly the question of his release as I entered the Home one Wednesday evening, and I remarked that there was not the slightest prospect of his escaping, as there were too many soldiers guarding him.

"Now! which is the most powerful, the sword or the pen?" exclaimed Ellard. "The sword can't do anything

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for him, but all Governor Wise has to do is to take his pen and write out his pardon."

In addressing such lads as these, it is much too common to tell them that they "may be Presidents of the United States at some future day." I was not sorry at Ellard's reply on one of these occasions: " Who ever heard of a hump-backed President? " It is far better to point them to situations within their reach, and encourage them to persevere in their efforts to become industrious and useful members of society.

*Every boy should have a copy of this excellent little book. It may be procured from the publisher, James S. Claxton, 606 Chestnut street, Philadelphia.

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A T our Sunday afternoon services the boys were allowed the privilege of expressing their views whenever they differed from me. Ellard frequently availed himself of this permission. His remarks were generally very much to the point, but not always so reverent as they might have been.

He quite agreed with me that Naaman was right in heeding the advice given by his servants, and in

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going into the river, as directed by the Prophet; but he was not willing to admit (though I am sure he felt it) that Gehazi did wrong in taking the money and raiment from the Syrian general.

In answer to my inquiry as to what they supposed became of Gehazi, Ellard replied in a voice unnecessarily loud, and in measured accents, "Went to the devil!" The manner in which this was spoken, no less than the reply itself, called forth a hearty laugh from the other boys, while he remained perfectly calm and sedate. I was thankful for the opportunity it gave me to dwell upon the fact, that "all who tell lies

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and steal, as did Gehazi, are sure to go to the devil, if they do not repent." All except Ellard agreed with me that Gehazi was in no way benefitted by the property he had stolen. My argument that he was immediately smitten with leprosy was in vain, and he would insist upon it that Gehazi "got good out of it somehow or other."

After repeated efforts to convince him, I was obliged to make a personal application. I asked,

"What good would your money do you, if you were sick?"

"I'd enjoy it."

"But suppose you were very ill,

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and suffering, you could not enjoy it then."

"I'd have sport out of it somehow or other."

"But suppose, my dear boy, you were dying?"

"Why! I'd have a grand funeral."

A picture was drawn of a "grand funeral" as too often seen, and ended the discussion.

It was difficult for the boys to remember some of the Scripture names, especially that of "Goliath;" but when they became familiar with it, poor Goliath was for a time brought up on almost every occasion. He was the oldest man, the meekest man, and was kept busy leading the

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children of Israel through the Red Sea, or doing other things equally new to me. Ellard greatly admired the courage of David in going forth to meet the "champion" of the Philistines, and rejoiced in the rescue of the three Hebrew youth, and in Daniel's safety in the den of lions.

I once asked, "Who was Moses?"

"The fellow found in the bulrushes," was the reply.

One of the most touching incidents in connection with poor Ellard, was his reply to my reMark, that "God had never done an unkind act, but that everything he made was good."

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"He makes bad things too."

"Tell me one bad thing God has made?"

" Why, He made me a cripple! "

There was a sadness and earnestness of expression in the poor lad's face that plainly told the depth of feeling with which this was spoken, and it was not without difficulty that I succeeded in convincing him that he had much to be thankful for, and that however great his affliction, it was far exceeded by the very many mercies he enjoyed. For some wise and kind purpose God permitted the accident which resulted in maiming the poor boy for life; but this does not prove that the necessary means

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were employed to guard against it. God is not responsible for what occurs through our neglect.

The subject of my address one Sunday afternoon, was taken from the fifty-first Psalm, and, among other questions, I asked the meaning of the tenth verse, "Create in me a clean heart." Ellard replied, "Like a fellow having a dirty shirt, asking for a clean one." However homely this answer may at first appear, it cannot be doubted that "our righteousness is as filthy rags ."

So inured was poor Ellard to the hardening influences to which he had been subjected, before he found shelter at the Home, that it was

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difficult for him to realize there was such a thing as disinterested kindness, and it was some time before the Society fully won his confidence.

When we first became acquainted with him he was saving his money "to fee a lawyer to get his brother out of tthe House of Refuge," and had twenty dollars deposited in a Savings Institution, the safety of which he very much doubted. "I dare say it will bust like all the rest of them. If it does, I'll cut the heart out of the man."

He was advised to keep his money, which he happily did, and it accumulated to nearly four times the amount stated. I went to the House of

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Refuge in the hope of making some arrangement for transferring the brother to our Home, but his conduct had been such as to render his release unadvisable.

One Sunday, not long after the Home was opened, I was speaking of honesty, when Ellard interrupted me.

"They say honesty is the best policy, but I don't believe it."

"Do you not?"

"No! its all nonsense."

"How do you make that out?"

"Because I proved it."

"Tell me how you proved that honesty is not the best policy."

"Why, one day some of us were

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in Chestnut street, when I saw a lady drop her port-monnaie. I picked it up and ran after her, and handed it to her. She was very cross to me, and said it was not hers; but after feeling her pocket she said it was , and snatched it from me, and walked off without saying 'thank you.'"

"Well, my boy, however improperly the lady may have acted, you felt conscious of having done right, and you must forgive her for not acknowledging your honesty and kindness."

"The boys laughed at me, and called me a fool for my pains, and so I was."

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"Indeed you were not. It was your duty to restore the lost property to its owner, and you would do so again, should an opportunity offer, would you not?"

"No; I wouldn't."

It is not difficult to conceive of the injurious effect of such a return for the kindness and honesty of this poor boy. This was sadly evinced by the feeling with which he dwelt upon the circumstance. He had sought no pecuniary reward, and would have been abundantly compensated by a mere expression of thanks; but even this was wanting, and a sense of injury and disappointment long rankled in his breast.

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A T the commencement of our efforts in behalf of the newsboys, we were met by various objections. One went so far as to say, that "all attempts at the reformation of society were hopeless, and that the only way was to let it get so bad that it would right itself." It is sufficient to say, that this doctrine is at variance with the teachings of Scripture, and the results of

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our labors abundantly prove how wise and kind these teachings are.

In one respect the hopes of the Managers of the Society have been fulfilled in a manner different from their expectations. A number of the boys who first sought shelter under our roof, have been so far reclaimed as to return to their parents or friends, whom they had deserted; and, in some instances, are giving promise of useful lives. While this lessens the number of our boarders, it strengthens our faith, and encourages us to persevere in the work we have undertaken. New boys occasionally present themselves, and the Home is ever open to those who may

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unhappily yield to temptation, and again seek shelter under our roof. Some of the boys have no other home than the one furnished them by the Society. The following letter is from one of the inmates.

Philadelphia , December 21, 1859.

Mr. ....

I can remember the first night I stopped at the Home. I think I was drunk. I know I always liked to drink, for every night I could be found in the theatre, or in a drinking saloon. I kept on in this way, spending what money I could earn, until I got under the good advice of the Managers and Mr. Sloan: this checked my wild way of living. The

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first time the Managers came to read, it gave me great pleasure to find myself in the Home, instead of being in the theatre, and so through the Managers and Superintendent, especially MR..... and ...., me and several others were led from a life of wickedness and sin. I am sure I owe everything I got to the Home, for I can see now what it would have led me to; for the boys who were then my companions are now, I must say with regret, notorious drunkards, and I know if I had kept with them, I would be the same as them. I know that I learnt one thing, and that is more precious to me than all the rum in the world,

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and that is about God, which I know he has been watching over me ever since I was first taught to love him at the newsboys' Home. I could not express half what it has done for me.

Yours very truly.

Not long since a nicely dressed young man seated himself next to me in a city passenger car, and entered into an intelligent conversation. He was one of those who had returned to live with his relatives, and who had borne one of the objectionable names mentioned in Chapter III. He informed me, among other things, with evident

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satisfaction, of the improvement in his writing, and the pleasure he took in striving to advance himself. Another lad named in Chapter III., who has likewise returned to his relatives, recently showed me a pair of spectacles, the first he had made for the manufacturer whose establishment he has entered. The workmanship was excellent, and evinced great mechanical skill.

A few of the boys have left the newspaper business, and entered stores and offices; others have become proprietors of "stands," which is regarded as a decided advance in the profession. Ellard was the first of our boys to reach this promotion,

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and his success in the business was perhaps not less owing to his being deformed, than to his civility to his customers. An incident which he related as having occurred the first day he opened his stand, greatly encouraged him.

"I made up my mind to say 'thank you' to everybody that bought of me, and they all looked surprised and pleased. One gentleman bought a penny 'Ledger,' and as I folded it up, and gave it to him, said, 'Thank you, sir,' and he soon came back, and bought twelve cents worth of papers."

There is a manifest improvement in the behaviour of the boys at the

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Home, and in the character of their conversation. I was struck with this upon entering the room one evening, as they were seated around the tea-table, looking bright and happy, and discussing with great interest that passage of Scripture, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." One asked my opinion of its meaning, which was given after learning what they had to say on the subject. Some thought it shut out all rich men, because a camel could not get through the eye of a needle; others thought that rich men have so much to do, looking

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after their property, that it was difficult for them to give their attention to religion.

The softening influences of the Home--I should rather say, of the gospel of Christ--under whose benign teachings the inmates are daily brought, were in no case more distinctly marked than in John Ellard. It was evident that a change had come over his rough and stubborn nature, and that a gentleness which we were fain to ascribe to the strivings of the Holy Spirit, was manifesting itself in the heart of this poor boy. This change was noticed by several, who spoke of it as something remarkable.

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A short time since I was informed of the illness of a lad who had been a companion of some of the newsboys, and had occasionally sold papers, but who was not acknowledged as properly belonging to the profession. the Superintendent and I went immediately to see him, and offered to receive him into the Home, and do what we could for him; but the lady who had kindly taken him into her house, and nursed him, though a stranger, with a mother's care, had made him too comfortable to wish to leave. He was the child of respectable parents, whose loss of property and subsequent death left their children unprovided

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for; and this poor lad, thrown upon the world, rapidly sank into vice, which brought him to a premature grave.

At first he refused to see us, and declared that we should not speak to him upon the subject of religion; but I was informed that he was the child of a pious mother, who had often prayed with and for him; and I could not doubt that the promise, "ask, and ye shall receive," was now being fulfilled . For several weeks before his death he manifested an earnest desire for religious instruction, and for prayer; and often spoke touchingly of his requests to God

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"to take away his wicked heart, and give him a good heart."

Two of our boys were in the habit of visiting him, and I shall long remember with what feelings I listened to one of them reading the ninth Psalm to him. Verily "the Lord is a refuge in times of trouble," and "the needy shall not always be forgotten," nor "the expectation of the poor perish for ever."

The following letter is from one of these boys:

To Mr. ....

Dear Sir --After leaving your house last evening, rejoicing over our good fortune of having an apple and an orange to eat, we hastened

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on our errand with the jelly to where poor P..... is living-- knocked at the door--lady came--told her Mr. ... sent this to the sick boy. She asked us if we would like to see him; we answered, "Yes, ma'am." She told us to sit in the parlor; she called him from below, and the three of us were left alone in the parlor. We conversed for a long time about old times; he said he was getting weaker every day, and wouldn't live long. He talked about Ellard, and was very anxious to know if he died religious. We told him yes, and told how he spent his last hours. He told us how he got acquainted with the lady he was

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living with, and how kind she was to him. After a long pause, for he was out of breath, H..... asked him if he ever prayed; he said he never did until Mr. ... came to see him; he said he couldn't get his mind steady on one thing: he thinks of the Saviour one moment, and of something else another; and it troubles him greatly, for he wants to be saved. He said he tried to say a long prayer the other night, and he thought of the devil before he was done, instead of God; so he says a short one now, so he can't think of nothing but God. We told him all about his soul we could, to make him happy. We were about to

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retire, when he requested us to sing a hymn for him, which we were very glad to do, but we could not find any hymn-books. There was a large Bible on the table, and some tracts. I would have read the Bible if I knew what chapter; so I read two tracts--I don't think of their names; one was about faith in God. He said he would like to be listening to Mr. ..... all the time. The tracts gave him a great deal of pleasure, and we bade him good-night, promising him to return in a few evenings, and went on our way home.

Your most humble servant.

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The day after the death of this lad, the soul of one of the inmates of our Home entered its eternal rest. The deceased was one of the oldest newspaper carriers in the city, and had passed through a chequered life, but it is unnecessary to say more than that his character had been undergoing a marked change for several months before he was taken ill. It had been his custom to spend Sunday afternoon in lecturing upon temperance in the market houses, and upon the wharves, but he relinquished this for "instruction in righteousness" at our Sabbath gatherings, at which he became a most regular attendant.

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In the early stage of his disease, he was strongly advised to enter the hospital, to which he reluctantly consented, but, after remaining there a short time, he longed so for the companionship of the boys, that he returned, and was most faithfully attended by a medical gentleman, for whose unremitting care the Managers are under deep obligations.

In one of our conversations he alluded with much feeling to the account given of our blessed Saviour, in Isaiah liii., and frequently spoke of Christ as his only hope.

Two days before his death, as I was about to engage in prayer, I

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asked him what he would most like me to pray for-- what , above everything else, he most desired. " Pray that I may have a fuller assurance in Christ ," was his reply. At our last prayer his request was, that God would take him to himself .

After taking leave of him, I turned when near the door for a parting look at my dying friend. As I stood sorrowing over his sufferings, his eye caught mine, and I raised my arm and pointed upwards , but said nothing. Immediately his face was radiant with a heavenly smile, and in a full, clear voice, he exclaimed, ' I'm before you !"

This once poor, now rich, man has

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left a letter addressed to the Managers of the Society, expressive of his gratitude, and we feel more than ever encouraged to labor on in our Master's work, praying that "it may please Him to bring into the way of truth all such as have erred and are deceived."

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O N Sunday, the 6th of November, 1859, I noticed that Ellard was suffering from a severe cold. On Tuesday, the 8th, he complained of a pain in his breast, and sore throat. A medical gentleman, one of the Managers of the Society, called to see him, and kindly and faithfully attended him. On the 10th he was better, and on the 12th obtained the physician's consent to leave his bed, and return to his

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stand. Towards the close of the month, he was attacked with coughing spells morning and night, which continued to increase.

On the evening of 7th December he entered the Home while I was there, and finding him so much worse, I took him to the physician, who prescribed for him. His cough was very troublesome the next day, and he complained of pains in his body. On the 9th, the physician having informed me of his dangerous state, I felt it my duty to acquaint him with it at once. The poor lad revolted at the thought of death, and irritably denounced the physician and declared that he would go

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out the next day. But this was not to be. The hand that now held him was the relentless hand of the angel of death. I felt most sensibly that much was to be done for his undying soul, and that there was but a brief and uncertain period in which to do it. When I first proposed to pray at his bedside, he assented in a manner that told of a severe struggle of mind. It was my blessed privilege to kneel at his side morning and evening, and he manifested an increased interest each time. On the 10th and 11th he seemed better, but was very ill on the 13th. I taught him a prayer, which he committed to memory, and

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repeated after me, as I presented it on his behalf at the throne of grace.

the Superintendent was kneeling at the other side of the dying lad, and when I had closed my prayer, he threw himself on the bed, and implored him to give his heart to the Saviour. Poor Ellard looked upon Mr. Sloan as his father, and was loved by him as an own child. The tears fell from the man of God as he pleaded, "O! John, will you not look to the Saviour? He loves you, and will forgive you all your sins, if you will only give your heart to him. Say John! will you not look to Him? Do, do! give yourself to Him." This is a most imperfect record of words;

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the emotions and the sacredness of that hallowed scene cannot be described.

Wednesday, 14th. At six o'clock this morning he was very low. Throughout the day he complained of inward pain, and had increased difficulty in breathing. the Superintendent, who spent the greater part of the time with him, carried him about the room in his arms. When not thus holding him, he was seated at his bedside, with the eyes of the poor sufferer fixed upon him. The dear boy thought that he was dying, and calling one of his companions present, to whom he had loaned money, he said, "I forgive you all

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you owe me, and tell.....anD.... that I forgive them all they owe me." Shortly after, he said to Mr. Sloan, "Oh! how I would like to see all the boys; but if I cannot, just give them my respects." He also said, "I forgive all who owe me anything."

A Christian gentleman, who had manifested great interest in him, called at noon and spoke of the Saviour's love. Addressing a lad who was present, the gentleman expressed a hope that he prayed, and asked him to remember his dying companion in his prayers. Ellard looked up and said, "That boy says his prayers every night and morning."

In the evening he repeated the prayer I had taught him.

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ELLARD'S PRAYER. O GOD, please pardon my sins; give me a new heart, and fit me for Hea- ven, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

[Illustration : [A box is on this page with large writing inside. Inside it says:]]

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One of his companions had a dispute with him shortly before he was taken ill, and I was anxious that it should be settled, and friendship restored, before it was too late, as I well knew it would cast a gloom over the subsequent life of the survivor, and perhaps prove his ruin, were there not a reconciliation. After leaving Ellard, I waited some time for this lad's return to the Home, and, calling him aside, explained my anxiety on his behalf. The sympathetic chord was touched, and he wept aloud. When sufficiently composed, he went to Ellard's room, and falling upon his knees at his bedside, the tears flowing

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down his cheeks, he asked Ellard to forgive him. "O," said Ellard, "I forgave you long ago." This was too much for the penitent youth. Clasping his hands, and lifting his eyes to heaven, he prayed for his suffering companion. The scene was an exceedingly touching one, and the Superintendent and boys present were affected to tears; indeed, the former was so much overcome as to be obliged to retire for a few moments. Twice during the night Ellard requested the boys who were sitting up with him, to hold him in the posture of prayer on his bed, as he was too weak to leave it; and thus sustained, he prayed audibly.

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Who can doubt that that prayer was heard and answered by Him who inspired it? If not recorded before, surely the name of John Ellard was then written in the Book of Life. " Him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out. " John vi. 37.

Thursday, 15th. He was evidently much weaker to-day, and early in the morning suffered severe pain. He was more than ever anxious that Mr. Sloan should remain with him, and repeatedly asked him not to leave the room. Faithful to his charge, this Christian Superintendent was not absent from him five minutes during the day, but spent

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much of it on the bed, with the dying lad's arm around his neck, or resting his head upon his lap.

Awaking from a doze, he again said, "I would like to see all the boys; but if I cannot, just give them my respects." When I saw him at nine o'clock in the morning, he was free from pain, and evinced more interest in prayer than he had done before.

About eleven o'clock the pain returned, and rendered him very restless. He said, "I am going--I am dying. O that I could see my father, and sister, and brother! but it is too late--too late--I am dying!"

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Mr. Sloan asked if there was anything he would like to say before his death, when he replied, "Nothing, but send my best respects to ....." Shortly after, he cried, and said, "O, I am dying--Mr. Sloan, what time is it?" Upon being informed that it wanted twenty-five minutes of twelve o'clock, he said, "Well, if any one wishes to see me, they must see me soon, for I will die by twelve." A Christian lady spoke to him of the Saviour, and not being able to speak, he nodded assent to what she said. Through her kindness, a softer bed was provided for him, for which he felt grateful. Quite a number of his companions

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visited him frequently, and he spoke to them when able to do so.

Having expressed a wish for an orange, one was at once obtained. He urged those present to share it with him, and was not satisfied till he induced a child of the Superintendent's to take part of it. In the afternoon the pain left him, but he continued to grow weaker. A little after midnight he told Mr. Sloan that he was dying; and when asked if he was going to heaven, he answered, "Yes." "Do you feel that Jesus loves you?" "Yes." "Can I see MR.....?" he then asked. the Superintendent replied in the affirmative, and said he would send for

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me. "Do, for I am dying." Two of the boys were sent for me. They hastened to my residence, but did not succeed in awakening me by ringing the bell. Recollections of their former misdeeds, and a wholesome dread of the police, leading them to fear that they might be arrested if they knocked or remained longer at the door at such an hour of the night, they returned to the Home. Soon after Ellard sent for me, and before I could have got to him, his glazed eye fixed in death, he said, "That ain't Mr. .....," the last words spoken by him. At a quarter before three o'clock his spirit returned to God who gave it.

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It gently passed away, while Mr. Sloan and three of the boys were praying at his bedside.

It was the opinion of the three medical gentlemen who visited him in his illness, that he might linger longer than he did, otherwise I should have been present at the departure of one in whom I had become so deeply interested.

"Unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required." The advantages and opportunities of each of us will be the weight by which we shall be tested when "weighed in the balances." Let us then charitably reflect upon the case of the forgiving, and I believe forgiven,

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John Ellard, the newsboy whose advantages were small indeed, compared with those we have enjoyed.

However reckless his life had been, "to the Lord our God belong mercies and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him ." He died at the " mercy-seat ," and " none can perish there ."

Soon after it pleased God in his infinite mercy and goodness to bring me to a saving knowledge of himself, I was informed of the sudden death of one whom I knew to be of very intemperate habits, and I was greatly surprised to learn that he died a happy death, exclaiming, " Come,

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Lord Jesus, come quickly!
" The more I reflected upon it, the greater difficulty I had in comprehending how such an one, hurried into eternity, could enter the door over which is written,

Upon inquiry of those present at his death, I found that the poor creature had died of delirium tremens, and that the words quoted had been uttered in his ravings. Since then I have ever looked with distrust upon what is commonly called a " death-bed repentance ," and, although in the case of poor Ellard there was indicated the clearest evidence of undisturbed

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reason, and an appreciation, not only of his danger, but of the momentous issues of the great change about to take place, yet I should have felt far less confidence in his safety had there been no evidence of the previous work of the Holy Spirit in his soul. In the language of one of the boys, Ellard had been "growing more sorry."

Notwithstanding my dread of putting off repentance till the eleventh hour, I know that God "of his great mercy hath promised forgiveness of sins to all those who, with hearty repentance and true faith, turn unto Him," whether at the first or eleventh hour.

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"E'er since, by faith, I saw the stream,
Thy flowing wounds supply,
REDEEMING LOVE has been my theme,
And shall be till I die."

The decease of this poor lad was noticed with much feeling by the newspapers of the city; the following are extracts from two of them, the latter of which gives an account of the funeral.


"But a few weeks have elapsed since we gave notice of a visit to the Newsboys' Aid Society, at No. 273 South Third Street. At the time we visited the Institution, little John Ellard opened the door and welcomed us into the building. He seemed to be in a very happy mood that evening, and talked and joked with us about the weather, the Home

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for the newsboys, and other subjects. In writing the article we did, we were feelingly impressed with the beneficial results that had already been attained by the opening of this building, for it provided a comfortable shelter and home for little Ellard, the deformed newsboy.

"In passing Sixth and Chestnut streets yesterday morning, we were shocked at seeing crape drawn around the paper stand that rests against the County building. A few pieces of white ribbon were attached to the crape, indicating that the testimonial was for one of tender years. The profuse decorations that we have seen attached to many a wealthy man's palace never made so deep an impression on us as did this signal of woe about the newsboy's stand. Anxiously seeking some one who could enlighten us, our worst fears were realized, when we learned that Master Ellard, the proprietor of the stand, had deceased.

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"Poor little Ellard! how we shall miss his cheerful face in our walks, and what a blank he will leave in the newsboy's Home. Where shall another boy be found, who was the pet of those rough, but kind-hearted newsboys. But a few evenings ago we saw one of the boys carrying him home on his shoulder, and this was not an unusual occurrence, for there was a strong competition for the privilege of carrying the little fellow home after his daily labors had ceased. In short, nothing was considered a hardship by the boys, if it tended to please their generous little friend.

"Master Ellard had many warm friends among the business community, and some of the most respectable of them patronized his stand every morning. It is a consolation to the friends of humanity to know that woman's hand ministered to the wants of the little merchant during

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his illness, and all that kind hearts could desire was done to alleviate his condition. His funeral will be attended by his late companions and others, and many will drop a tear on that occasion, to the memory of poor Ellard.

"The clergy will perform the last sad rites over our little friend, and if they succeed in getting their hearers to emulate his example, they will have accomplished much.

"Thank God, we have a newsboys' Home, where in life every want and comfort is supplied, in sickness woman's soothing attention is ever present, and in death a Christian burial is vouchsafed."


"We mentioned, a few days since, the death of a well-known newsboy. On Monday morning his funeral was attended by fifty-six newsboys, six

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of whom carried the body from the Home to the church, and thence to the grave in St. Joseph's church-yard. Others would gladly have attended, but were prevented by their morning engagements. From their rough exteriors, society has always thought that these lads were only fit for a career of wickedness and an end of shame; and so the poor fellows have, till very recently, been treated as Pariahs and moral lepers. The case of John Ellard shows that the few true-hearted Christian gentlemen were right, who believed that they could be saved in spite of their surroundings, and so transformed that their lives should be useful and honorable, and their deaths not without hope.

"All the good impulses of this boy were carefully encouraged by the kind friends who had taken him up, and he had become noted for his economy, industry, and generosity.

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He was always ready to help his comrades who were in want, and a short time before his death he sent word to those who had borrowed of him that he "forgave them all they owed him." His last request was to see one of the Managers who had frequently prayed with him during his illness, and throughout all his sickness he manifested a gentle, forgiving, and patient disposition, and his whole deportment was such as those interested in his future could have wished.

"Now that this one boy should have been furnished with a cheerful Christian home, and cared for, when in pain and suffering, by skilful physicians and kind and watchful attendants, is enough to reward all who have labored for this neglected class, and we commend the fact to the benevolent, and ask them to give a little attention to a charity which is doing so much good."

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Copy of a letter received from one of the aldermen of the city.

Mr. Sloan, Superintendent of the newsboys' Home:

Dear Sir --I am indebted seventy-five cents to "Didley Dumps" for papers, please inform me to whom I can pay the money.

Poor Didley Dumps! may we, when the cold hand of death beckons us away, leave behind us as many friends, and as few enemies.

Extract from a letter dated Memphis, Tennessee, from a newsboy, formerly an inmate of the Home.

"I have heard from ..... about the death of John Ellard, and it made the tears come out, and I could not stop for half an hour. I have received a paper, it was the ....., and in it was the death of Ellard, and it was ..... that sent it to me. Mr. Sloan, I have got a Baltimore paper, and it had the

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death of John Ellard, and I gave it to a Philadelphia boy, and he knew John, and this boy used to stand at the corner of Sixth and Chestnut."

There are, in all large cities, hundreds of persons who have no place they can call their own, and who would be truly thankful for a bright, happy home, conducted on Christian principles, where, for a moderate sum, which they would cheerfully pay, and which would amply support such an establishment, they could have the protection and comfort they so much need.

A Home of this kind, for each sex, is very much wanted in Philadelphia, and would be attended with blessed results.

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Several applications were made to our Society for the admission of persons not engaged in vending newspapers or books, and some were at first recieved; but the boys felt that their Home should be for their exclusive benefit, and it has been found necessary to make it so, although there is room for many more boarders.

Clean and attractive tea and coffee saloons, to take the place of the many vile "pauper-making dens" which disgrace our cities, and which are increasing with fearful rapidity, are also much needed, and many honest and generous-hearted men would gladly avail themselves of them, were they established.

Were half the zeal expended in

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denunciation of intemperance and other vices, exerted in well-directed efforts to provide such places of resort for those whose sad condition calls so loudly for sympathy, their reformation would no longer wear an aspect so hopeless.

Are there none in this city, noted for its Christian liberality, who will act upon these suggestions? The undertaking is full of promise, and its faithful performance would insure a rich reward.