Buffalo Bill's best bower, or, Calling the turn of Death Notch Dick


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Buffalo Bill's best bower, or, Calling the turn of Death Notch Dick

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Title:
Buffalo Bill's best bower, or, Calling the turn of Death Notch Dick
Series Title:
Buffalo Bill stories
Creator:
Buffalo Bill
Place of Publication:
New York
Publisher:
Street & Smith
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Language:
English
Physical Description:
1 online resource (31 p.) 28 cm.: ;

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Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels. ( rbgenr )
Western stories. ( lcsh )
Buffalo Bill -- Fiction -- 1846-1917 ( lcsh )
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serial ( sobekcm )

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Original Version:
Volume 1, Number 67

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Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
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The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
Resource Identifier:
020823054 ( ALEPH )
223329151 ( OCLC )
B14-00067 ( USFLDC DOI )
b14.67 ( USFLDC Handle )

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. A ,YJEERLY PU8L1CATlON DEVOTED To BORD-=-R HI &TORY Jssuea Weekly. By Subscription $2.JO per year. Entered as .'>econd Class .!Watter at New York Post Office by STREET & SMITH, 238Wzltiam St., N. Y. -----No. 67. oy -rHE.:. P'-UTMCIR' c:>f euFFAl..O 6 1 L.l. "UP WITH THAT LEFT HAND YQURS, QUICK, DEA.TH NOTCH DICK, OR MY BULLET HUNTS YOUR HEART!" CRIED BUFFALO BfLL.

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hn.H Wee.t(y. By St1hscriplw11 $2Jo ;Per year. Entered as Second .Clrzss .Matt" at tlte N. Y Post Office, by STRE. !:T & SMITH, Wt7liam St., N. Y Entered accrdinr to Act of Conrress in tlu year rr;oa, in tlte Office of tlu Lihrorian of Co11,!7'eu, Wasltitsptm, D C. I No. 67. ........"' '. NEW YORK, August 23, 1902. Price Five Cents. -BUFFALO BILL'S BEST .BOWER; OR, CalJing the Turn on Death Notch Dick. By the author of "BUFF ALO BILL." CHAPTER I. A BOY OF THE BORDER. It was a strange place in which to see a youth of sixteen, upon the of the frontier, afoot and alone, with no habitation camp, or human bein g upon whom to call for help within man y a long day's tramp. or dotted with a bunch of timber, while before him rose a mountain range sloping to foothills and seamed with canons, and upon all resting a look of intense sol\tude. But the youth trudged on steadily, as though anxious to reach the foothills, where a stream was visi ble, before darkness should add to the desolation of the scene. And yet the youth thus alone wa s tramping along at a steady pace, carrying a heavy pack upon 11i s back, a rifle thrown across one and a belt of arms about his waist, while his face showed no anxiety at his position and his look was one to do or dare. A handsome sunbronzed face was his-fearless, full of indomitable pluck and will, and he possessed' a well-knit, wiry, athletic form to stand hardship and suffering to an unlimited extent. Behind him stretched boundless plains, here and there b roken by a rise of woodland, cut by a stream A t last he d.rew near to this water course at a point where the bank was heavily fringed with timber, and he said, aloud: A dandy place for a camp, with grass in plenty. "What a pity the redskins killed my pony, for he would have had a feast here-ah! some one is in the timber, for I see a horse feeding there, and pe is sad dled and bridled. "I must go slow, for I am lil
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2 THE He lay down upon the ground as he spoke, sheltering himself behind a rock, and taking a field glass that s,wung at belt, he turned. it upo1'1 the timber. "It is a horse with military saddle and bridle, and he is not staked out. . "I c'an see no rider, and no other animal, so I guess I will go and see what turns up, for if there. be but one it is only mari against bo y and I've had that com bination before .and not been downed." ., .... With this he went on, yet cautiously his rifle now thrown across his arm, ready for use on if it was n eeded : Reacli.ing the edge of the timber, the horse looked up at him and gave a low neigh of pleasure : "I do believe he is alone. "Why, he is coming to mc!et me!" The anim a l came forward for some distahce, then turned slowly and walked away toward the river as though to avoid being taken. The boy followed, talking to the s Qothingl y until suddenly he stopped anq threw his forward. He saw a man not far froi'n hi m, seated upon the bank of the .stream and leaning back against a tree, while in one hand he held a revolver. The man was a soldier, for he wore the uniform of a sergeant. of cavalry, and his eyes were upon the youth with a strange look. The horse had halted by the. side of the soldier, and. was rubbing his nose against his shoulder. "Say, pard, you don't mean shoot, d9 you, for I'm only a boy?" called out the youth. "Come here-I am dying-I thought were rily foe; my eyes are so dimmed now I can hardly see." 'The man spoke c in a low, weal{ voit'e; and the youth quickly strode up fo him, threw down his rifle and pa:rk, and exclaimed: '-"You do look in a bad way, pard; but I can help you." "You can help me by your presence; you can do rrie a favor Heaven will reward you "I'll do anything I can for you; buf y;0u i ;ire wounded." .-"Yest, the w.ork of an assassin of one I deemed my fr iend. He.learned my secret and sougl1t to kill me. He shot me in the back-here is the wound-and when I heard you c oming I thought he was come to finish his work, for he is on m y trail, I know. My noble dumb friend, my hors e led you to me, <,1-nd, thank Goel! I ha v e strengt h yet left to talk to you, though I cannot last much longer. He shot me in the back, then my horse ran off with a 1 d I c -a:me this far, but .could go no further, so waited here to face him and death. "He -had to go to his camp for his in order1 to foliow me; but he will soon be hete, and-' -" "And he will have me to deal with!" was .the ; response of the plucky boy. The youth had seen a horseman coming through the timber, his body bent, and eyes c_ast downward, following a In an instant he had seized his pack and sprang behind the large tree against which the soldier was leaning On came the horseman, and a closer look revealed a heavily-bearded, long-haired man of large stature, welI mounted and armed, and dressed in a combination suit of half buckskin, half miner, wh'ile he wore a large slouch hat that cast a shadow. upon his by rio means prepossessing face l{e spied the wounded soldier and called out, rudely: "Hands up, sergeant, or I lets drive a oun ce o' lead inter yer carkis." ../'I am dying, Brad Dixon, and am unable to raise my hands,.. so do your worst." '"Is tha:t so?. Waal, I know' d I had plugged yer, but wasn t so sure it was as bad as that. I'd kill yer now, only I wants a leetle talk with yer," and the inan dismounted, hut held his revolver cocked and half aJ a of the wounded soldier. ,"You wish me to tell you where the gold is 'tl;J.at I had already taken out of the mine and hidde -fl_a:wa:y, fo : r _you.,are _too lazy to for more." ... "That's .about it, sergeant. The mine is a playin' out, but you has been workin' it on ther sly for some time, I knows, afore you got me .ter help yer, and I is aware that what you has corraled-but of it yer has hid away." "I have, and you shall never know its hiding:..place, for what I found goes as an inheritance to those I love. You saved me .from being killed once in an Indian fight, when I believed you were an honest man, and a scout at the and s6 I sought to pay .that service by giving yo u a share of the mine with me. Yau repaid me, whe:' I took you to the mine by t r ying to kill me the very next time I came to see you at work, but you shall nev .er profit by your cowardly act."

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q'HE BU ff ALO BILL STORIES. 3 '"Won't I, and why?" I "I have one to protect me rrom your cowardly and, thank Heaven!" The man laughed rudely at this, and yet glanced about him, as though suspicious that there lnight be some one near. I But, seeing no one about, he continued: I "Waal, I'll give them yer love half what ther mine pans out, ef ye'll tell me whar yer has hid thet which yer dug out." "Never! I would not believe you, Brad Dixon, and now wish that I had been warned when Buffalo Bill told me not to trust you." "So Buffalo Bill told yer that, did he? Waal, I'll a rope ter fit his neck some day, for there is men 1hot on his trail, for he's .too dangerous a man to let ,live. Come, I hain't got no time ter lose, so tell me lwhar ther gold is, or durn me ef I don't scalp yer alive. Does yer hear me talk?" The sergeant was breathing heavily, his hands lay limp upon each side of him, unable to clasp the re near them. His face was deathly pale and it was evident that he suffered intensely and was dying, for the red stream of life was slowly ebbing at every hard-drawn lbreath from the wound in his back, given him by the 'treacherous ruffian, Brad Dixon. As the latter spoke, he seemed to feel that his vic tim could make no effort to protect himself, so he re placed his revolver in his belt and in its place drew a: long-bladed, ugly-looking knife, as though to carry out his threat to the soldier alive. He stood some half-dozen paces away from him, and, as he made his first step, out from behind the tree suddenly sprang the youth, his revolver leveled, and his words clear and theatening: "Hands up, old man!" A bitter oath broke from the lips of tl1e man, and: dropping his knife on the ground, he quickly clutched at his revolver. Seeing his intention, the youth at once pulled trigger, and 'the right arm of the man was shattered. "Now, up with that other hand!" cried the youth. But the man was game, and he instantly seized a revolver with his left. Again the youth pulled trigger, and the man staggered back, evidently hit hard. But he threw his revolver to a level and fired. ,The bullet cut throue:h the youth's hat, and he again pulled trigger, this shot bringing his foe to his knees, yet pot disabling him so that he could not fire again This bullet tore along the side of the youth, gashing the flesh slightly, but not hurt badly, or demor alized, he once more fired, and with an aim that was deadly, for his bullet pierced the brain of Brad Dixon, who sank forward upon his face, while the sergeant said, faintly: "That settles him, brave lad!" Revolver in hand, the youth advanced toward the fallen man, and, bending over, touched him on the shoulder. ,,. "He is dead," said the sergeant. "I shot to cripple him at first, but the last ttme aimed to kill," said youth, and he turned the body over and beheld the mark of his in his forehead. "Yes, he is but I have seen so many Indians and white men pfay 'possum I wanted to be sure. Now, sir, let me help you." "Nothing can save me now, my brave lad, and what time is left to me, I must make use of, for I have much to say to you; but are you wounded?" "One shot passed througlt my hat here, sir, and another grazed me a little on the side; but it is nothing to cry over," and, opening his shirt, the youth saw where the bullet had torn along, just drawing blood and leaving its track. "You are fortunate, and were brave to face him as you did, when you could have killed him from am bush. "You have an iron ner. ve, C).nd I never saw a finer duel, and you were as cool as an icicle." "It was no time to get excited, sir. I did not wish to kill him, richly as he deserved it, but he forced me to do s .o; but you are suffering, sir." "Yes, these spasms of pain are becoming more fre quent and severe, so I must talk now while I can, for I have something to tell you of importance. "Sit here." The youth first handed him his canteen of cool water from the stream, then made his position more comfortable, and took a seat by his side. The sergeant gazed into his handsome, fearless face, and asked : "Who are you, my lad?" "My name is Sherman Canfield, sir, and l am a boi:der boy."

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4 ifHE BUFF J\LO BILL STORIES. "Your looks and actions prove that; but are you alone here upon the frontier?" "Yes, sir; I came out with a party of gold hunters, leaving a happy home in search of adventure and fortune as many boys often .foolishly do, and I am now on my way to seek help for the few of the party who remain, for bad luck has dogged us, we have found no gold, the Indians have kiIIed half of our number, and others are lying wounded in camp. "I volunteered to go for help, and the Indians killed my pony; but I escaped and have tramped it for the past few days. We have been out here for nearly two years, going from mining camp to mining camp, getting into trouble fighting redskins. That is all there is to my life thus far, sir." The sergeant smiled, in spite of his suffering, and replied: "All! But what an all it is, what a lifetime you have passed through already! But now to my story, for I feel that: I am growing we .aker." "Yes, sir. I only wish I could help you." "My nam e is Frank Fessenden, + am orderly sergeant of F troop of cavalry, stationed at Fort Rattle, some forty miles from here. I came West as a gold hunter, failed to find gold and enlisted in the army. One month after, on an Indian trail, I was scouting alone and struck it rich, finding gold; but' I kept my secret, and, being a good frontiersman, would obtain leave for a couple of days, and go and work my mine. Thus I laid up a pretty little fortune, with plenty mor-e gold to find near by, when I had time to work it, after my term of enlistment ran out. I at last de cided to take that man as my comrade, for he saved my life at the risk of his own. "He was a good scout at the fort, but Buffalo Bill dismissed him and warned me against him." "I have heard of Buffalo Bill." "Yes; he is a splendid fellow, the chief of scouts at Fort Rattle, and the king of all bordermen. "Believing I could trust the man, Bracl Dixon, I took him to my mine and set him to work. When I went there this morning he had done but little, and, determined to have all, he fired upon me, giving me my death wound. You have avenged me, and it will be for you, my brave youth, to hear my dying words, and to fulfill the last wishes of a dying man, for I feel that you will do so." "I will do all in my power, sir." "I know that, and I would trust your face, even did I not meet you under the circumstances I nc yo do. Though a soldier in the ranks, I am a man Bt education, and was once rich. 1 th1 "I married the one woman of my love, ar our little daughter, Leilah, are now in a little villagfo in Maryland1 where ml; wife owns her little hon ye and is teaching school, hoping for me to one day r1 turn to them, a rich man. To you I bequeath t tn duty of letting those I love know how I died, an sa that, though I could not come back to them with m riches, they shall at least receive the fortune I hav y< found in these wilds, and which has cost me my !if at the hands of one whom I trusted." tr w CHAPTER II. a: HELD UP. F The voice of the sergeant quivered as he spoke G 1( his wife and child, but he'quickly controlled his emo l tion and resumed: t' "Do you know where Fort Rattle is, my lad?" t "No, sir; but I know about the direction to take a and can find it. It was there I was going for help fo l my pards." "Well, my horse will guide you there, once yot a start him upon the trail, crossing the stream at th1 ford above, a quarter of a mile from here. It i, ( about fifty niiles, but Rex has often traveled the trail 1 night and day, and his good sense will tell him yot 1 wish to go to the fort. "The mine is a dozen miles from here, in a cafioi in yonder mountains. Do you see yonder peaks?' "Yes, sir." "The canon is at its base; but you will find a maf in my pocket of just how to reach there, and full in structions, while the gold I laid away, and whicl Brad Dixon wished to find, I have described on the map just how to get possessi0n of. "To you, my noble friend, .I leave a half share ir my mine, and in the gold I have already hidder, away." "Oh, no, sir! I would not think of such a thing as taking it." "If you refuse, I shall die feeling that I have a great wrong. By your own confession, you here as a gold hunter, and have been unsuccessful. You have thrown two years of your life away, and now have risked yourself to save me. You havi avenged me by killing that man, and I depend upo1

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THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. 5 you alone to give my heritage to my wife and child. ,But you must accept your share, for through you 1 they get or lose all. "Do not hesitate, for every word I speak is an ef1 fort, and I must hasten on to tell you tnore. Will you acc ept the charge, my dying legacy?" I One glance into the earnest, white fate and Sher man Cttnfield felt that it was dangerous to delay, so said: "I will do as you wish sir but I hitv'e rto right to your gold." "You ha v e for you ha v e saved it all from that traitor for tho s e I love "My name and the address of my w ife y ou will find with the map of how to get to the mine and as soon as you reach Fort Rattle, I wish you to write to Mrs. Fessenden telling her of m y sad fate, artd that my legacy to her you will s ee that she my daughter, Leilah, get their share c;&. Say that you are to be the miner to work for the gold, and share alike with them. I wish you to write, now, for I have paper and a stylographic pen with me just as I dictate and, I will force myself to have strength to sign it." The youth took, at the sergeant's direction, paper and pen from his pocket and wrote as he dictated, which was, in effect, that he left to hitn, Sherman Canfield the boy miner a half s hare in the gold mine he owned, and .that he the y outh was to be his executor, carrying out his wishes in full. With a great effort the sergeant roused himself to sign the paper, yet did so in a firm hand at last. Then he fell back and Sherman Canfield felt that he would never rally. He bathed his face and forced some water into his mouth to at least see him open his eyes and smile faintly. "It was I feared all over; but I signed it," he said, in a whisper. "You are better now, sir. "Yes; but I tannot last much ionger. I wish you to go to Colonel Carr, at the fort, and tell him just how I died. Tell Buffalo Bill, also, for he has been a true friend of mine and you will find him just the one to befriend you and put here you wifl need his aid. To Buffalo Bill tell my secret 0f the mine, bt1t to no one else "When you have t a ken a relief party to your com rades, ask Buffalo Bill to go with y ou to my mine, showing him the map, and he will readily fit:1d it. If you feel that you can trust your comrades, hire them to work the mine with you but be sure that you get no one who will be the tI'aitor that Brad Dixon was. "My belongings send to my wife ; along with the gold which is her share, which you cart express through by the Overland coach that leaves Fort Rat tle every two weeks. Now, my young friend, you know all, and just what I wish, and I feel that you will do your duty by a dying man and those he loves, and who depend upon you." "If I fail to do my duty by you sir and those deari to you, may nothing but ill fortune and sorrow dog me through !if e-yes, I vow by all I hold st.cred to be true to yot,t, to yours and your trust in me. So help me Heaven!" and Sherman Canfield clasped the sergeant's hand firmly ; while he raised his own upward 1n' token of his When he looked again into the face there was a smile there-a smile stamped with the:: seal of death! It was a most trying situation for Sherman Can field, a youth of sixteen, alone there in the presence of death, ;md with night ga.thering about him and fifty miles to the nearest human being or habitation as far as he knew. He bent his head in reverence as he saw that the sergeant was dead, arid his eyes were dimmed with tears. Then he took his knife and cut a lock of hair from the temple, and folded it away in the paper he had! written for the soldier miner .to sign. "They be glad to get it," he muttered. Gently he folded the hands over the broad breast, after he had taken from the pockets the leather wal let containing the map and some private papers, along with his purse, watch and chain and seal ring. Wrapping the body in a blanket, taken from his own pack, he was going to catch the sergeant's horse when he glanced down at the dead form of the man he hacl killed. He passed on halted, hesitated and then, turning back as his better nature triumphed, bent over and clasped the hands across the breast, and, taki n g his other much-worn blanket wrapped the body in it, muttering to himself: "He is de a d and I must treat him w ith the rever ence th a t dea t h demand s Then he caught the sergeant's horse without diffi-

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1'HE BUFFALO BlLL STORIES. culty, unsaddled him, and staked him out to feed near by. Going after the horse of the other, he soon had him secure and also staked him out. The haversack of provisions hanging to the sergeant's saddle Sherman Canfield was delighted to get, for his own food was running very low, and he had been on short rations since he had for help. P Spreading the sergeant's blankets for a b'ed, he then built a fire and ate his supper, just as darkness came on, casting gloomy shadows all about him. Having finished the meal, he sought a spot near for the sergeant's last resting-place, and was glad to find that the soldier had a small tied to his saddle, for he was constantly prospecting when on his lonely rides. 1 It took him time to 'dig the two graves, and he put them wide apart, and it was after midnight when, very tired from his hard work, he turned into his blankets and sank to sleep. The sun, piercing the foliage, shone into his face in the morning 'and awoke him. At first it hard to collect his ideas, but the saddles uear him, the horses and the graves recalled t)1e scenes of the day and night before, and he sprang to his feet. The sergeant's watch told him that it was eight o'clock, so he hastily had breakfast, a cup of coffee from the little pot tasting delicious to him, as did also the broiled bacon, roast potatoes and crackers. Having gathere
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1'HE BUFF ,.LO BILL STORIES started out without them, though regretting that they had to leave them behind. l But Sherman Canfield and Nick Buckley were not of the kind fo be thwarted, and quickly made up their minds not to get left. So they bade the party of g,o1d hunters good-by and then followed after them by the next stage: I When they arrived at the stage station where the party was fitted out with horses, tools and provisions, the two bo y s kept hidden until they started upon the trail. Then they appeared purchased ponies and an outfit with the money they had saved up and took the trail of the gold hunters just six hours behind them. They camped first night alone, and the next day pushed on to overtake them, which they did late in the afternoon to the great astonishment of the band of thirteen men. "Say you are glad we have come for you were just thirteen, and that is an unlucky number," said Sherman as the men stood regarding them. "Well, Sherman ; I guess you and Nick will have to go with us, for you certainly deserve to do after the way you have tracked us," said the captait?of the gold hunters. The boys gave a cheer of delight, and were at once enrolled as gold hunters. The mountains were reached at last and the party set to work on the hunt for the y ellow metal. But ill-fortune dogged them. Their captain was killed in a fight in a mining cathp and in seeking another scene with the little they had found to re ward them, they were held up by road agents, and, showing fight several of their number were ruthlessly shot down, Sherman Canfield's pard, Nick, befatally wounded. With his hand clasped in that of his boy pard, Nick Buckley had die d his l as t word s being uttered in a low tone: "Some day1 y ou will a v enge me They buried poor Nick and the others where they had fallen and robbed of their all by the road age. nts, they were compeli'ed to press on on foot, for their horses and provi s ion s had been also taken. After untold hardships they reached another min ing camp and here worked hard for half a year, mak ing only enough to get horses and another outfit for; themselves with which to seek a better paying lead. Thus it cont i nued, ill-luck still dogging them, until .. at the eight who remained decided to return to their homes-all but one. That one was Sherman Canfield. He would not give up, would not confess himself and decided to go back to the stage line with the party and there make a fresh start alone. It was on their way to the Overland Trail that they 'got into a brush with a small band of Indians, and two more of their number were killed. They pushed on, however, until compelled to seek a camping-place account of the wounded, and then it was that Sherman Canfield, the boy miner, showed his nerve by volunteering to go alone for help to Fort Rattle, which one of the wounded men, wh o c;_ould not .go told him ho y v to find. I f,[e set 01,1t upon his pony and w ith his outfit, and the next evening as he was looking fo.r a camp he ran upon a band of In
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THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. A look at the men was sufficient to show t.hat they were a hard-looking lot. They were roughly attired, some as miners, others as cowboys, and one or two wore old uniforms. All were armed with rifles and a belt containing a pair of revolvers and a knife. They had spurs on their top boots, and, though no horses were visible Sherman Canfield felt sure that they were mounted. His first thought was that they were road agents, and he looked them over so to recogn. ize some old foe. But, whatever his thoughts were, he was not left long in doubt as to their intentions toward him, for one, who appeared to be the i eader. said, roughly. : vVell, young man, we've got you in the act, have ?" . we "In what act.?" was the bold query. "Horse stealing, as you know." "I'm no hors e thief," and Sherman gave a sigh of relief. "Hain' t yer? "No." "What be yer ?" "A miner. "Whar from ?" "The lower mines along the range." "Where did you just come from?" "My camp." "Who's with yer ?" "No bne. "Are you camping alone?" My comrades, five in number, are back in camp a hundred anq more miles from here. "We ran upon some reds kins, and had to camp whi l e I came on for help. "Where is yer gain' ? "To Fort Rattle." "Y er'll never see it." "Why not?" "I SiJ-YS so:" I "That does not m a ke it s o. "It does "I don't see it." "You'll se e it : thejl ; for my word goes." "Who are you?" "Cap'n of the vigilantes of Overland City." "That is a mining camp near Fort Rattle, not?" Y. lS it "It be twenty-five miles from ther fort, in tht i mountains and is a mining camp and genera.I se t tlement." 'v "Then what have you to do with me?. l a "I told yer." .v< "Tell me again." t; "You is a horse thief." w "And you are a liar, came the quick response the indignant youth. l 1 i The men laughed, while the captain' s face flushed, I and he replied angrily: "I won't git mad with a man whose minutes i s t numbered." "I don' t care whether you get angry or not, for y ou accuse me of being a hors e thief and I say flatly y ou lie," was the bold remark of Sherman Canfield. "You hears him men?" "We hear," came i n a chorus of voices. "He's young to be in ther horsestealing biz, but y ears hain't no sign no w da y s of virtue or sin, as I has found out! "He's a pert-lookin' young one, too; but, for all that, a ho r s e t hi e f and w e has the e v idence ag' in' him, said the capta in. "We has." "What evidence?" "That horse." He pointed at the animal that haa belongea to Brad Dixon. "That horse belone-ed to a man who sou1Zht to kill me." "vVell ?" "I was quicker than he w as, and he got killed." "You killed Brad Dixon?" cried the captain of the vigilantes whi l e a murmur of surpris e ran among the group. "Yes, Brad Dixon w as hi s name." "And you killed him ? "I was forced t ? do so, or be killed.'." See here, young feller, every one of us here kn owe d Brad Dixon we ll ; he w ere like a brother to us, and h e wa s n t no man fer a kid te r git a way with, onle s s he got it in ther b a ck, and that's jist how it w ere done-see?" "I s ee tha t you lie just as well about that as you do about my being a horse thief. "You is too chipper for one o' your years, and mu s t have yer claw s cfrt. "What s a y yer, boys?" ...

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THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. htJ l e "I guess he'll hev ter hang, cap, for we has ther ',;i
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10 THE BlJff /'iLO BILL STORIES. "You has b een a lready trieo; but, see here, d i d ther sergeant. give yer any mission ter carry out for him?" and thit man asked the question eagerly. "He told me to report his death to Colonel Carr, and to send his watch, ring and purse home to his wife." "Y pu .has got 'em?" "Yes.'" "All right, maybe we'll git some good pickin' off your dead body, arter all. "Come, pards, throw a lariat over him, tie his hands ano string him up oyer 'yonder limb/' and the vig ilante captain pointed to a tree near by with a limb that grew low and branched far out. Quick as t flash a lasso coiled abou t Sherman Cal) field pi n ioning his arms to his stde, whi_le. another fell about his neck, he was dragged from the sad dle; just as a horseman dashed out of the timber, a revolver in e.ach hand. "Harm. that boy and you settle with me!" came the words, while the vigil;;i,ntes called ottt in chorus: "Buffalo Bill!" CHAPTE R IV. 1 BUFFALO BILL TO THE RESCUE. Almost like an apparition Buffalo Bill had appeared upon the scene He had cbme through the pine thicket, where the car .pet pme straw had deadened th e' sound of hoofs, and he had not been seen until he sudde n ly out hefore astonished eyes of t he vigi lantes : a revolver in each a up o n his face as though he ha d no dread of the number s against him, .and defied them all. There he sat, upright ahd threatening, in his sad dle, horse and man presenting a splendid picture, one that faseinated young Sherma' n Carffi e ld, as he stood bound and with the lariat about hjs and ttpbh whom the eyes of all the vigilantes were riveted The coming of Buffalo Bill. had checked the tnurderers in their intention to string the youth up t6 the limb. They stood by interruption of thei r cruel deed Each one waited for their t:;;i.ptain to speak. But he seemed to have lost the power of speech, so Buffal o Bill broke tnd w ith: "See here, Dunn, wha t does thi s handed outrage mean?" 1 "We was out on the trail of horse thieves, Bill, and has caught that means we intendiB to hang him," was the dogged reply "Hang that boy?" sneered the scout. "He's mean enough to steal horses and git awa' 1 with our pard, Brad Dixon." 11 "What do you mean?" "He's kilt Brad Dixon." "I'll warrant that, if he did, he was forced to do s o 1 to save himself from being robbed or murdered.'' ) "See here1 Buffalo Bill, does you accuse our pard! of being a robber and a murderer?" "I speak of a man as I find him, Dunn, and I kicked Dixon out of my band of scouts because he1 was a thief and a desperado. It is true he was white-1 washed by a few in the camp of Overland City, and you became his friend, but that was nothing to his favor or to yours, and I repeat that I believe the, youth was justified in killing him.' "See here, Chief of Scouts W. F Cody, you are carrying too high a hand in this country,' aNd you'll have to crawfish, or it will be the worst for you." "You bet it will," sung out the others, in ch o r us. l Buffalo Bill's response was a mocking laugh, and he continued, after a minute. : "Come, my young friend, give an account of your seU, and also why you have Sergea-nt Fessenden's horse there?" I-le rode up to the youth as he spoke, took the l asso from about his neck, and the other from around his body. Sherman Canfield gave a sigh of relief, and then said: "I'll tell you the' story, sir, as I told it to these men claim to be vigilantes "They are, after a fashion, persecuting the innocent very often and taking no heed of the guilty; but the colonel is going td stop their l ittle game." "And we'll stop yours, Buffalo Bill, for you can't bully us." The chief of scouts paid no heed to the words, but said: "Now to your story, my boy." In a few words Sherman Canfield told the story, as known to the reade r, of the misfortunes of the g o ld hunters, and how he had started for aid a n d came a cross the dying sergeant.

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if HE BU ff ALO BILL STORIES 11 11 that the sergeant had told him, save to send his ects home, he kept to himself, and just how the 1 el had been fought between Brad Dixon and him a f nd Buffalo Bill listened with deepest attention, and en said: "You did good work when you turned up the toes Brad Dixon, my boy, and doubtle s s saved me from lling him, 1 "It will cast a gloom over all at the fort to learn poor Sergeant Fessenden's death, for he was a ble fellow, and the colonel will appreciate your fending him, when dying, from a desperado. "This trail will take you to the fort, and you can I de the sergeant's horse and take your traps on him, r the horse of Dixon these men will claim, so they f e n have him." f d "You bet we takes him." "Don't be too sure, Dunn, or I'll leave it for Colo : el Carr to decide. I was on my way to Overland ,..ity, when I saw from the stage that you and your ang were in some deviltry, so I came down to see hat it was." I "I'm awful glad you came, sir, for these men would ave hanged me." Ir have to stop ttieir vigilante game now, or I have orders from Colonel Carr to put up some lacards in Overland City against any more such wless acts, and stating that he will see to it that rime is properly punished. "I am on my way there now, and, Dunn, I'll give you one of the placards now, so you will no longer tlead ignorance of the colonel's orders," and the cout a placard and handed it to the vigi ante captam. All the while that Buffalo Bill had been on the cene the vigilantes were becoming more and more undsy. They were measuring their strength against his, ot as regards numbers, for they could have overhelmed him; but dare they attack him was the question which was uppermost in their minds. They had no doubt if it came to a fight that of their number must go under, but so would Buffalo Bill. But that would not be the end of it. He was chief of scouts at Fort Rattle, he had a large band of splendid scouts, guides and Indian fighters under his command, and, then, too, he was \ It the idol of the army, and a great favorite with Colonel Carr. -His death would be followed by a revenge that would sweep all lawless characters from that part of the frontier at least. This the vigilantes, self-constituted judges and ex. ecutioners though they were, dare not risk. So when Buffalo Bill told Sherman Canfield to go on to the fort, while he went to the settlement to place the placards of Colonel Carr, the vigilante cap tain said nothing. The v igilantes were also not so sure that Buffalo Bill was not accompanied by a number of scouts, who were within easy call of his voice. Under such circumstances the scout's fearless game of bluff awed the vigilantes, while Sherm'an Canfield look;ed on in utter amazement. If he had doubted the stories told of Buffalo Bill around the campfires, there was no longer room for doubt in his mind when he saw him come up and defy a dozen desperate men. The youth watched Caleb Dunn, when the chief of scouts h,eld the placard out to him, but the vigilante captain refused it, and said: "I don't take it, Buffalo Bill." "As you please. "I'll read it to you," and he at once began, as follows: "Whereas, there are certain men banded together on this bor der, und e r the name of vigilantes, and in their acts have perp e trated crimes against innocent men, allowing the guilty to escape I hereby order all such to disband at once, leaving the keeping of law and order and punishment of criminals to the military officers of the United States Government. "If tnese so-called vigilantes do not at once disband, and again 1 attempt to assume the right to hunt down and punish the they will at once be dealt with as outlaws themselves, as per my inst!"uctior1.; fr o m the Secretary of War. "Signed, etc The sc ollGI used after reading the placard. and said: "Dunn, you and your men have heard what the colonel orders. This is mainly aimed at and, as I have read it to you, there is no excuse for your saying you do not know. the orders, so I warn you to very quickly obey." "We'll hold a meeting in Overland City first, Buf falo Bill, and see if the miners and settlers decide that the colonel had a right to i ssue such orders." "As you please. Now, my take that trail to the fort and report 'to Colon'el Carr upon your arrival. I will be back there. by night and see you."

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12 THE BU ff ALO BILL STOIU?::5. "Thank,,yau, sir!" and Sherman Canfield at once began his preparations for riding on his way on the sergeant's horse, leaving the animal of Brad Dixon behind him. "I warn you, Dunn, not to foll ow that boy," said Buffalo Bill, as he watched the youth ride away, and, when he disappeared in the distance, he put spurs to his horse and rode off in the opposite direction. "'vVell, I've heard many stories of Buffalo Bill and what he could do; but he certainly is the gamest man I ever saw to tackle, alone, that gang of cutthoats. "The sergeant told me I would find him a splendid fellow, and he is. "I owe him my life, for, if he had not come up when he did, I'd have been coyote grub new, that. is certain. "I'll never forget him, never, and if I can ever serve him in any way, I will. "Those fellows, I believe, belonged to the gang of agents who killed my poor pard, Nick Buck ley, and yet I am not sure. "I only wish that I was. "I am in luck that they did get the papers, watch and other things, as I was fearful that they would." So mused the brave boy as he rode on his way along the trail. Coming to a stream, Rex plungeJ boldly in, and, as he stopped to drink, Sherman Canfield saw on the shore ahead sever(\l appear in the trail, and he noticed that they wex:e masked .. Glancing behind him, to his alarm he beheld other horsemen, also maskeq. "Well, I'm in for it again, and where is Buffalo Bill?" he said, anxiously. His look behind him showed that he was hemmed m. There were three men in his front, three behind him, and all were masked. Were they the vigilantes or not? He could not tell for when they had halted they had been on foot, and he now saw that these horse men wore black gowns to hide their clothing. He was about half-way across, and where a large rock was in the center of the stream, rising some feet abo ve the water. At once th. e boy made up his mind to act, and his thought was for the sergeant's wife and child, not himself. He had bundled the sergeant's papers, watc._ chain and ring away in a package which he had tiey up tightly. 'V Then he had put his revolvers and knife with it and around all had tied his rubber coat, making compact and water-tight bundle. "The weight of the revolvers will sink it, and I'l chance it right by this rock, anchoring it with the ser geant's sword," he muttered. So slipped out the bundle, pulled the sword o'\' of the scabbard, thrust it through a leather bound about the package, and, leaning over, pusher the point down into the bottom of the stream. He then the butt of his rifle and shoved sword the full length of the blade to the hilt. : Gazing carefully down into the water he coul barely see the object, which looked like a small rocki and the water was not very clear. [ He took the position of the rock, with objects on both shores, and then twisted about in his saddle, a though he was undecided to do. t He felt confident that the men had not seen him anchor the bundle, and he twisted his horse about as though afraid, which in reality he was. At last one of the men behind him called out: Say, pard, we is tired waiting for you to come ashore, so we'll hurry you with a bullet." "Never mind; I am coming." He start:ed to cross as before, but he was hailed again by the men on both shores and told to go back. "But I'm going to the fort." "Come back, fer we wants yer." Sherman hesitated still, when one of the men raised his revolver and a bullet passed unpleasantly near his head. He at once saw that they were not to be trifled with, so turned and rode back. "I say, pard, we want you." "What do you want with me?" "You'll know later. Say, Slayback, you take him with you soon as we have him foul, and we 'll git 011 and report for safety, see?" Yas, I see; but be sure and fix him sartin, for I've a idee he s a young wolf ter handle," said the man called Slayback. Y Ql.l be,t he be, or his looks belies him," and with this a lariat was thrown over the form of Sherman

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THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. 13 and his arms were secured tightly to his 1e ith another lariat he was made fast to his sadit while he asked : iWhat do you intend to do with me?" llihat depends." pon what?" r pon what yer knows when yer is questioned. But put a gag in his mouth, pards, ter i;top his music now." he order was obeyed, and poor Sherman found self more securely bound and gagged. hen the men held a short conversation together, while Slayback rode into the stream leading the se ridden by the youth, and tmned up it close to shore, the others beckoned to those <\Cross the r to join them, and the party rode off ba:ck on the 1 they had come. n spite of his great danger, Sherman Canfield was ghted to see that his clever ruse to keep the sernt's valuable package from being discovered had t been noticed by any the masked outlaws. n e looked back time and again, as the man Slay k led him on up the stream, the horses keeping rer the bank they had left, and where the water s shallowest. ut his looks showed that the masked men had t gone out into the stream to see why hq ha.cl not once come ashore at their command, and, in spite his gag and the bands which pained him, his breast. unded with triumph p.t his having outwitted his sked foes. CHAPTER V. BUFFALO BILL' SURPRISED. Buffalo Bill rode away from the group of vigi tes, after seeing Sherman Canfield depart, as ough he had not the slightest fear of their proving acherous. Not that he did not regard them as capable of ing, but after he had seen the youth, 'told him to e on to the fort, and warned them, he did not ink they would dare follow him to carry. out their iginal intention. He went at a canter along the trail leading to verland City, distant some twenty miles. The '.'city'" was a mining camp in the mountains, mbined with a settlement consisting of a dozen ranches in a large val!ey, and as many as a score of small farms scattered about in the vicinity. With the ranches, farms and mining camp the country occupied was quite extensive, while there was a fort in the mountains, and corrals, to which all could retreat for safety, but which was unoccu pied save when the Jndians were on the warpath. The settlement of Overland City boasted of a few stores, blacksmith shops, a tavern, church and school and all was under the protection of Fort Rattle, twenty miles away by the most direct trail. All told, there were perhaps six hundred souls in the settlement, several tliousands of heads of cattle, some sheep and hogs, and a number of horses, so that there was plunder and stock enough to contin ually tempt the Inlians and the road agents, while the fort had to keep a close watch that the settlers should not be surprised. That the community was the prey to much lawless ness there was no doubt; and life was held very cheap while horse stealing and cattle thieving, with raids upon the mines by outlaws, was a weekly occur rence. There were a number of spirits in the camps, men who were more or less idle, who had formed themselves into a band known as the Range Regulators, and they had been most energetic in their self-im. posed task of punishing those whom they deemed foes to lawless living. But there were constant complaints from the better element that these Ranger Regulators were no better than the men they hunted down, being gam blers and bad characters generally. Having heard such complaints made time and again, Colonel Carr put Buffalo Bill upon the tracks of the Ranger Regulators to shadow their deeds, and the result was a report which led the able commandant at Fort Rattle to decide to break up the band, for, though the chief of scouts had not been able -to jasten upon them any direct act of crime, he yet had discovered that they were uni vers ally feared, looked upon as desperadoes, and had allowed s everal of their comrades of like ilk to go unpuni$hecl while they had made innocent men s uffer. So it was that the colonel' s placard w a s 1ritten, and Buffalo Bill wa s se n t to put copies up at the cross trails, in the settlement, the mining camp and wherever they would be seen. He was on this duty when he so opportunely dis-

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14 if HE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. covered that the Ranger Regulators had a prisoner and were going to cause him to suffer in some way. Seeing, as he approached, that the prisoner was a youth, he had not cpunted danger and odds, but had dashed upon the scene and by sheer pluck had won the victory. Keeping at a ra.pid canter on toward Overland City, he halted at a place where" two trails crossed and stuck up a placard where it would be readily seen. Another halt for the same purpose was made at the first mining camp, and then at the tavern, sa loons ancl stores in Overland City, a great many of the people congratulating Q.im upon his work when they read what it was and 'Saying to him: "We owe this to you, Buffalo Bill." Having finished his work in the immediate settle ment, he turned to pass back through the camp and then go to the fort by another trail from the one he }J.ad come, when he met the Ranger Regulators face to face, mounted and riding toward their quarters. He n
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THE BUFFALO BILL 15 "Just like you, but they could not misunderstand that." "They understood it, sir; but when I came back through Overland City I met the band, and counteci them, and they had not had time to get away with the boy." "Then what has become of him?" "I wish to believe, sir, that he has been lost.'' "Who is he?" "He gave me his name as Sherman Canfield, and he lives in Omaha. "He came with a boy pard, along with some goldr t hunters who have .met oply misfortune the two ye?-rS they have been' out here, and the remnant of the hand, five in number, are now camped in the moun'.. tains a hundred miles from here, wa'iting for the youth to bring them relief. "He vc>lunteered to come to Fort Rattle fotr aid, and his story was told in an honest way that no one n . could doubt." Then Buffalo Bill went on with the story as he heard it from the lips of Sherman Canfield, and the e, colonel seemed greatly shocked at the news of Set-geant Fessenden's death, and said: .. e-:"Fessenden was dreaming of a commission, :cody, fnd I have often wondered why he enlisted as a prie \Tate soldier, for he was a man of refinement and 0education, a perfect gentleman in his manners and "bearing. ,''I aIJl deeply pained to hear of h_is sad end, but he otiad a most mysterious way of going off oh several lays' jaunts whenever he could get leave, and I waS' that he would some day z:ieet his death." rrtell his secret, Colopel Carr, fo:. I t. I "He was, as you said, a of education, and a horough geologist, and his jaunts were in search of :old, he told me." "Did he find any?" e1r "That I do not know, sir, but l believe )hat lost 1oy knO\VS, alL" ... -"Cody, that boy m _ust be found," was Colonel response. hot "Yes, sir, dead or alive, he must be found,, and if has be:1} tie must avenged," was the of the chief of scouts in a deep, earnest voice 1at showed that he was aroused-to rescue or avenge. "He killed the man Dixon in a duel over thesertant's body, you say?" "Yes, si r, and then by the sergeant until he died, and of course he had the effects of Fessert. I den, his papers and all else, though he djd not say so, I judge for a reason, as he was talking before those Ranger Reguiators." "Did they really to hang him?" "Beyond all doubt, sir." "For what ?" "They accused him of being a horse thief, as he had Dixon:s horse, and 'then of murdering their. com rade." how did the boy get the drop oti that desperate. fellow Dixot;l ?" "I only know frptn ;.what he said, sir; and, seeing him, you will "\Vhen the sergeant died, hfi. hastened to the fort?" .. "No, sir, for he buried the sergeant, and the body of Dixon as well, he told me, camped for the night, and the next rhorning let the horse he rode, Fessenden's, show the way to the fort." "The boy good stuff in him?" "He has, indeed : sir.'' , "Well, what is to be done about him?'., "I will 'go with a dozen of my men, sir, to the Coyote Canon and cainp until mo .ming; when \.Vill be 011 the. to ta _ke his and see where he went, or if others met him." . "Who else could meet him that would do 11,im harm, Cody}" Well, sir, I ,am. always on the watch for roa d agel1ts about, .at}, d : be l])ay have run upon a gang of these : : ". "Very true__..:.the masked Gold Ghouls) as they. are pleased .to call themselves, and not without reason, as they are a bad lot of murdering, ghoulish robhers." "I hope some day we can wipe them out, colonel; but they move in a most mysterious way, and it is har-der to trail them and run them down than it is to catch Indians." "I agree with you;, but you wfll start, .then, tonight with your men?" "Yes, sir, so as to he ready to take the boy's trail at dawn, and, now I think of it, sir, as he was riding Sergeant Fessenden's horse, there no need to a? YQU I told you he let the ani mal be his guide?"

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1 '3 THE BUFF-J\LO BILL STORIES. "Yes, he is not lost, but some harm has befallen the poor boy." "i wish you would take some extra couriers along I and send me news as you find it to-mqrrow, Cody." "I will, sir," and, bidding the colonel good-night, the chief of scouts went to his own quarters and sent for his band of Indian fighters to meet him there. They soon in his as fine a lot of !llen ever were seen in one group, most cif them over siX feet, with superb physiques, handsome, res fearless faces, a,....d dead shots, rough riders -and' splendJd lariat throwers every one of them. Most. of them wore their hair long, and they were qressc;:d in buckskin, even to wearing moccasins, and one and all were armed with the b.est of weapons. In a few words Buffalo Bill told them of the rea son for his calling them together, described the scene with the Ranger made known the d'eath of Sergeant Fessenden, and then the killing of Brad Dixon by the brave youth, a description of whom was given the scouts. The men who were to go with the
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, THE BUFFALO Bill STORIES. t7 't!yes searched every foot of the bank for some trace of a trail. He did not seem to tire, or grow impatient, but held right on slowly, still scanning the shore. At last he came to where a small inlet flowed into the river, and here he halted. He regarded the bottom of the little stream closely and its sides, as though he expected to find some re sult from his observation. The rivulet was but a few inches deep, the water, ran slovrly, and the bottom was sandy. Up -the stream the scout rode a few paces, and then suddenly halted. His eyes had been rewarded by a sign. That sign would not have been noticed save by a skilled frontiersman, but to Buffalo Bilt it told wonders. \iVhat he saw was where bunches of grass had been cropped off in several places along the banks. 1'A horse did that as he went by," muttered the scout, and soon after he came to where there were hoof-tracks in the soft bank. "Ah! the horse that was being led attempted to get out of the stream here. "I am on the right track; those hoof prints tell the story." 'He turned in the stream, and, riding back to its mouth, hailed his comrade on the other side. "Come over, Ben, for I have signs," he called out. The man went on to where he could cross at the shoals, and soon after joined his chief. Up the little stream they went for several miles, and then they came to a meadow under a cliff. In this meadow were two horses staked out. They had been unsaddled, the saddles and han$ing upon a tree near, but their riders were not visible anywhere-. One of the horses was the sergeant's, Rex, the other the animal ridden by the masked guard who had been left in charge of Canfield-:the man Sla yback. But neither Slayback nor his young prisoner were anywhere to be seen. . "So far so, good," said Buffalo Bill. But there was no one in sight, and the keen eyes of .the two men could find no track left by those they were to discover. "Ben." "Yes, chief." "I take it that the boy was brought here by guard, and, as the horses are left. it cannot be verY, far to some camp 6r retreat." "That's so, sir." "Now, those who have got hold of the boy cannot be the Ranger "I don't exactly see how they could be, as you met the gang in Overland City after they had parted from the boy, chief." "Yes; he went on toward the fort and got caught between two parties of the Masked Gold Ghouls, fon who else could it be that captured him?" "No .one else but the Gold Ghouls." "That is my way of reading the signs, and they1 sent him on here under the guard of one of their. number, while the others followed another trail." "That's it, Chief Cody "Now, we must catch those who come here .for. these horses, for we cannot follow any foot trail awayj from here." "We can bag 'em when they come." Well, Ben, I will go into hiding here to-day, while you return to the ford and wait for the men to come m. "Let them go into camp there, unless they have made some important discovery, and you and Jack th.en come back up here." "Yes, chief." "Leave your horses half a mile below ana come on foot, keeping in hiding u"util you reach me, for I sh all take up a position ni yonder clump of rocks, with the half a dozen cedars upon it. If they come for the yo? are gone I will have sot?e thing to report, and if not you and Jack can go on duty through the night, in fact must remain here until they do come, or you are sure that they know you are on the watch and have given up the horses, for they may have a hiding-place near and see us. "Those chances we must run, but you mus t give them no opportunity to picl< you off from an am bush and you will have to live upon cold food and water for a few days, so bring plenty with you from the camp." "I will, chief." "Take my horse back with you, for if I have to ride there are two animals, -and when I am relieved by you to-night I will take yours and Jack's' horses back with me."

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18 THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. "And when we give up, if they don't come, we can ride the two here, chief?" ''That is just it, Ben. Now slip away, and do not r eturn before nightfall." The scout did slip away from the retreat among the rocks, leaving Buffo.lo Bill on the watch The fact that he might have to face several men did not worry the chief of scouts in the least. He had a good had his rifle and belt of arms with him, and was ready for any danger that might come his w ay. ,He spread his blankets in the shelter of the group of cedars, and, arranging branches about him, which would hide him and yet give him a v.iewlof the horses staked out a couple of hundred yard& away fr.orn the group of rocks, he settled down to,-w<;lit for the rest o f the day with all the of an Indian. Meanwhile Scout Ben had gone to where his own and the chie"f's horses had been left, and, mounting, ridden away down the stream. He led the chief's horse, and re turned by the water just as they had come. Reaching the lar g e stream he held on down it s banks after he left the little creek, and arrived at the camp near the ford where two scouts had been left with the pack animals and extra hcfrses in case of an a cciqent, for Buffalo Bill never went on a trail even for a day without being prepared for a week's stay if necessar y An hour after the arri v al of Ben th e two men sent down the river to search the bank s returned stating trey had gope as far as they found it possible for a ny horse to leave the stream by either bank. . The other scouts came in later, and they reported having tracked the fiy e horses to where the trail was ,lost in the great number of other ,hoo r tracks going. t<;> and from Overland City. 1 "We have been foiled, Ben and now it remains to see what luck the chief will ha v e ," said Jack, as he wepared to go with Ben to join Buffalo Bill. CHAPTER VII. A M ASKED ENEMY. Buffalo Bill was not one to fret at delay. He had schooled himself to wait patiently for anything that was worth waiting for. There were the two horses staked out, the ser geant's and the one ridden, bey9nd doubt he be'" lieved, by an outlaw That Sherman Canfield was a prisoner he was sure. Taken on foot from where the horses had been left he would not naJurally be far away. The meadow where the horse s were was in the head of a large canon, surrounded by l ofty, b old cliffs that were certainly impossible for a, t o climb. But a man could scale them,' and doubtless that was the way the captor had taken hi s captive. If there was a retreat near i-t was where the horses could not be taken. If those Gold Ghouls were mounted, then they certainly had a place where they kept their horses: Having placed his prisoner in safety, the guard would without doubt, return to take the horses to th e ir hiding-place. Thus argued Buffalo Bill and he would wait for the coming of that man who wanted those horses. It was late in the afternoon when the shadows from the cliff were falling acro s s the meadowland that he happened to glance upward and beheld a man suddenly come into view. . ) He appeared upon the cliff glanced down to where the hdrses were feeding and' then walked a way Now and then his head a ppeared in view, but then dis appeared vHe i s coming into the meadow after the h ors e s I could not see distinctly, but I. hi: wore a m a sk. : r i. "Well, I must unmask him, tha_ t is all/! .: A So mu s ed the scout and he at once prepared for the ordeal he felt before him. He got his rifle and re volver ready and waited. It was more than a half hour before the man sud-. . denl y reapp e ared in the inea dow coming along the base of the cliff s He ran and leaped little creek as he ap proached it and walked straight toward the horses That he wor e <\-ma;;k now saw dis tinctly, and he was armeft with a rifle sfong at his back and a belt in which rev ol v ers wet e visible. . He first., tow ,ard the qf the gua.rd pulled up the stake rope. and led p im.:to: thetree where the saddle and bridle hung.

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.. il'HE BUFF ALO B I L L STORIES. 19 He had iust tightened the girth, when he heard the words quietly uttered: "Say, pard, let us get better acquainted." With an exclamation of alarm, he threw himself into his saddle, and was dashing away, when loud came the command from Buffalo Bill: "Halt, or I will bring: you down !" His answer was to fire his revolver at the scout, and at once camf! a reply. Down went the horse in a heap, the man falling heavily, but quickly dragging himself to the of the animal's body. He attempted to use his rifle against the scout, now rushing upon him, but the weapon hp.cl been broken in his fall, and pe dropped it for his which he quickly drew. Surrender and I will spare you!" shouted Buffalo Bill. But the response was a shot that clipped the scout's shoulder. Then Buffalo Bill pulled trigger, striking the horn of the saddle behind which the man was sheltering himself. He hoped to splinter it, blinding the man so that he could run upon him and capture him alive. T h e splinters did fly in his face, but his eyes were uninjured, protected by mask as they were, and he fired again, this time the bullet whistling by the scout's l e ft ear. Still anxious to take him alive Buffalo Bill took big chances, and this time fired to break the pistol arm. The b ullet passed through the flesh, but did nbt harin t h e bone, and the outl aw at bay again fired, shoutin g as he did so: "I know y o u, Buffalo Bill, and it is your life or mine!" "Then your life it is," responded Buffalo Bill, as he still ran upon the man, and, halting quickly, he took a i m and the bullet crashed through the brain of the o utlaw. The horse by Buffa l o Bill had fallen with his head under him, thus, with his saddle and traps on, it formed a good breastwork for his rider. The man had thrown himself at full length behind him, and prepared to fight to the death. Thus Buffalo :Bill had found him, his revolver still clutched in his hand, as he lay upon his The scout turned him over and removed the mask, which the bullet had passed through! A darkly bronzed, bearded face was revealed, the bullet having entered the forehead. It was an ugly face, even in death, and the man wore the coarse garb of a mountaineer. About his waist was a buckskin belt heavy with gold, silver and paper money, and in it also were a couple of watches and some jewelry. Upon his hat4 made into a pin, was a twenty-dollar gold prece, th emblem pf the Gold Ghouls. My shot was not amiss, for this shows who and what he was," muttered the scout, and he took the gold-piece pin off of the slouch hat, and put it in the money belt he wore. "There are my three shots all accounted for J but I am sorry I had to kill him. "If I could only have taken him alive, I would have been glad, indeed. "Now to leave him until the boys come, but, as ao one ever will doubtless come for the horses, at least until they come to see what has become of their pard, I will give Rex some water." He went up to the sergeant's horse as he spoke and led him to water, staking him out in a feeding place when he took him back. The horse proved his appreciation of the kindn ess by a lo\;V neigh, for he had not had any water since staked out by the man who was Sherman Canfield's guard. Going toward the cliffs from which the man had come, Buffalo Bill sought. to find some trail of where he had come down But a search of an hour rev:ealed nothing, and, as it was becoming too dark to see, he retreated to his place of refuge and awaited the coming of the two men he expected. They came half an hour after nightfall, and tho scout at once told them what had occurred, and then went on to say: "We must fix that dead horse up in a position as though he was only lying down to rest, and stake him out where he was before. The sergeant's horse must be put back at dawn where he was first left, and you two boys go. into hiding here for a couple of days, for, when finding their comrade do.es not re-turn, they may come here to look him up. I "If they do, try and catch one of them, at least, a live. If they dd not return, then come on t o t h e

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20 THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. fort. 'That map yon der we will take back in the woods and hang to-night." They were not long in hanging the outlaw's body, and the horse, with the aid of Rex, was dragged to his former place and with stakes his body and head were as tho!Jgh he was simply lying down, so if any one cam e to the cliff above it would appear as though nothing had happened in the meadow. When all was arranged, Buffalo Bin went dpwn to where the scouts had left their Ben accom panying him, and, mounting one of the animals, he rode away. It was after midnight when he rode into camp and his men welcomed him gladly, as they always did, for he was their idol, and they heard his story of the fight in the meadow with the Masked Gold Ghoul. Then they told how they had been foiled their efforts to make any discovery of importance, while they had lost the trail of the men they had followed. In the morning there rode into the camp the party sent to find the grave of the dead sei;,geant, and they had the nody with them. They had ridden hard, and had been met at Coyote Canon by an ambulance, so were to take the body on at once to the fort. Having left orders with the men who were to still remain in camp until the return of the two who had been left to watch for the comin g of the outlaws to the meadow, Buffalo Bill decided to wait no longer for the rescue of Canfield, but to go at once with a band of his scouts to the aid of the youth's comrades, whom he hoped to find from what had been told him as to their place of refuge. ,, CHAPTER VIII. FOUND. Buffalo Bill was most anxious regarding the fate of the brave boy who had so strangely crossed his path, and then so mysteriously disappeared. He had done all he could to rescue him so far, had 1t1ade the discovery that it was by the Gold Ghouls that he had been carried off, and, having killed one of them, he had left two of his best men on watch for l)thers. If they made any discovery, either capturing an 01.tilaw sent to look up their comrade, or had tracked him to his lair, then the tnen would know what to do whom he in the camp for just such a possibility. The body of Sergeant Fessenden had been taken on to the fort, under the guard of scouts, and the re port made to the chief had exactly carried out the story of Sherman Canfield. This, and his duel with the outlaw in the meadow, and what were his surmises, the chief of scouts had written to Colonel Carr, stating that he had gone on with eight of his men to the aid of the youth's comrades, who, from what the boy had said, sadly needed assistance. The first night's camp Buffalo Bill made where foe sergeant and Brad Dixon had been buried; but he was off at dawn on the trail to find tlJ,e gold-hunters in distress. The youth had told him enough as to where he had left them, that he would not have to follow his trail, if that was possible, so he struck off across the country to reach the locality with all haste. A well-packed animal had been brought along, with food in plenty, and Buffalo Bill led himself, straight as the crow flies, as he was noted for going when not followi_ng a trail. He only rpoved from course where he had to do so, and the sun was yet an hour high when he came to a halt nn d remarked to his comrades: "Here is a trail, and it must be theirs, for it is a week old, at least, and yuu see that there is the mark of a travois, which must have been made for a wounded man unable to ride." The scouts dismounted, followed the trail on foot for a mile,. examined .it closely and they were con vince d that they were on the track of the party to be rescued. There were the tracks of nine horses, or rather ponies, none of them being shod, and the scraping trail of a travois fastened to one of them. The tr;i.il led toward a mountain range not far away. At a gallop the chief led his men on, hoping t reach the camp of the before darkness set in. They came to a stream, which they crossed, then saw that the trail followed along the banks of a tiny creek flowing out of a canon. Then Buffalo Bill, at the mouth of the i cafion, made another discovery, which was the track of a single

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THE BU ff J\LO BILL STORIES. 21 horse coming out of it a "rid branching off along the mountain range. This track seemed fresher than the main trail, and thb same hoof prints were found among those going on up the caii.on. "V./ e are right, for that is the track of the boy's 'Pony, when he came for help for his comrades. "We will find them up this canon," said Buffalo Bill. But as they rode on at a canter they crossed a trail coming from one side, where they now saw there was an opening through into another canon ... This trail was made by a dozen ponies, none of them being shod, and turned on up the canon. "That looks like an Indian trail, boys, ai;d we 'will be apt to find the party besieged, if they have not been wi.red out. "We'll push on rapidly." And on they went, now at a fast gallop, to, after a ride of a mile further, come in view of a smoke from a campfire at the head of a cafi.on. The smoke came from a huge log that \Vas still burning, for the camp held no living being. But, dead ones it' did hold, for here, scattered about, killed and scalped, were the gold hunters, and at the approach of the scouts, scores of coyotes dashed yelping away. "We h
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22 THE-BUfl"ALO vain for moccasin tracks. But the imprints of boots are frequent. "The wounds received by the men were in each case made with a revolver bullet, for I tested the size with large rifle bullets, and they would not enter the wounds, while pistol bullets did. I also noticed, although the coyotes had been tugging at the bodies, that three out of the five bodies had powder burns upon their faces, showing that the shots were made at close quarters. They also had half a dozen wounds, any one of which would have killed them, and Indians do not throw ammunition away shoot ing into dead bodies, but white men do for effect." "Y called the turn, Chief Cody, for white men, not Injuns, did the work; but they fixed it, by scalping the bodies and in other ways to look that way," said one of the scouts. "And here is stronger proof, still, for I picked up this gold pin last night, and it is the badge worn by Gold Gouls," and Buffalo Bill up one of the twenty-dollar gold pieces mounted as a pin, and added: "I've got two now." The more the scouts thought over the matter the more they were convinced that the little band of gold hunters had been wiped out by white men, not redskins. There was in their minds thorough conviction, after hearing their chief's opinion, and then the talk turned upon just who those white men could The gold pin badge found by Buffalo Bill pointed to the Gold Gauls being the guilty ones. But it seemed as though the party who had done the deed had gone there especially for the purpose' of killing the gold hunters. The Indians, Sherman Canfield had said, haO. driven the gold hunters to retreat to the cafion, but had not followed them there for some reason. When he had left the had 1 not been in sight, and later he had run upon the same band and they had killed his horse But the Indians knew that the gold hunters had retreated to the mountain range, yet, how the outlaws had found it out was the question. Buffalo Bill, in talking it .over with his men, told what young Canfield had said in the presence of the Ranger Regulators, so that the scouts might give their opinions, and of ten he good ideas from their doing SQ, They were not long in giving their opinions, and that of one of them caught the chief's ear at once. "What did you say, Ernest?" "Well, sir, I was thinking as the Regulators heard the boy's story as you did, they must have been as well posted as you were as to where to find them, and in talking it over at Overland City some men, who were perhaps secretly Gold Gauls had heard th em, and started off to find the outfit." "That looks plausible, Ernest, especially as they might have supposed, in spite of Canfield saying they had been unlucky, that the g-old hunters had considerable gold with them." "That's about it, chief." "Then we will take the trail aqd follow it, wherever it leads." "You are the doctor, sir," said Ernest, with a smile, and half an hour after the scouts were mounted and on the trail out of the cafion. It departed by a different route from the qne it had come in, and there were a number more tracks covering it, for the riders the gold hunters' horses with them on the retreat. Buffalo Bill led the way, and once the trail left the cafion it branched off into the mountans going straight for the Indian country. This caused the scouts to look at each other, as though they were losing faith in the theory of the chief that it was white men who had done the deed. But if Buffalo Bill was losing faith in his opinions did not reveal it but held straight on upon the trail for mile after mile. The men were becoming more and more con vinced that Indians were in reality the guilty c;mes, and were growing a trifle anxious at their chief push ing so near the village stronghold of the redskins, when suddenly they saw their leader turn sharply to the right. He made no comment, but from where he turned off, a hundred feet away could be seen the main Indian trail to the stronghold, lying many rods be low the one the scouts followed. The latter could not be seen from the Indian trail, and it branched off before reaching it. This would indicate that if the Indians were the guilty ones they had, for some reason, avoided the trail to their own village. On went the chief of scouts as before, the trail

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THE BUFF ALO B ill STORIES. 23 leading him now back almost in the direction they. had come, yet going obliquely to the left. A few miles on the trail and each scout was con vinced that their chief as usual, was right, for they saw that the trail wa s setting away tov vard Overland City and not to the Indian camp. When at last the chief halted for a night camp, he simp l y remarked: "They played a grand bluff to go so near the In jian village, and then branch off. "But it did not fool us worth a cent, did it, boys?" The boys were silent, for it had fooled them, and not their chief. They were too near the Indian villa g e to build lires, so camped in the dark and ate a cold supper, while a strong guard was posted for the night. But no alarm came, and a:t dawn they were again i n the saddle following the same devious trail which ;vas now seemingly leading directly for Overland :ity. The trail the scouts followe d soon showed them :hat there was no longer any doubt a s to who had it, when they came to where the pai:ty had :amped. "They are two nights and a day ahead of us boys ; mt we know we are right. This i s no Indian's :amping place, but a \\'hite man's, and Buffal o Bill )Ointed to si gns that hi s men at once read as an open >ook such as the tracks of boots, the building of me large fire instead of several little ones as is the ndian custom,' and the manner in vhich the horses 1ad been staked out. They came to the Overland City trail toward 1ightfall, and there the one they followed joii1ed it, he tracks becon1in g so blended with many others as 10t to be picked out, even by the keen eyes of the couts It was here, too, where the trail of the five horsenen from the river had been lost by the scouts who 1ad been following it, and s o Buffalo Bill said: "The tra'il at least goes toward O verland City, and here it ends. "There also are to be found the men who killed hose gold hunters, and, not knowing that we hav e l iscovered their deed, in time they can be found out. "I will ride on into Overlanp City and try and nd out if any party of men ha v e been seen to leave ; or come in during the last few days, save, of ourse, the Ranger Regulators." "Had we not better go with you, chief? "No, I will go alone. "Some of em may be hot about the colonel's or der to the Ranger Regulators to disband, and wish to take their spite out on you. "I will seek no trouble, boys, but if it c'Omes I must meet it. "You go to the river and camp to-night, and I will come there, to-morrow we will push for the fort. I hope Ben has brought in some news of that poor youn g pard of mine, and with a wave of his hand Buffal o Bill continued on the trail to Overland City . He knew a number of the people the. re, but was nof sure of any real friends, and so he felt that he would have to be cautious about whom he ques: tionecl. Arriving in Overland City, he saw that the placards of the colonel had been torn down but he did not care for tha t s o long as they were known, and thus had answered their purpose. Riding up to the tavern, he saw crowd there, and one man called out, as he s aw him: I s 'pose you has come to kn.ow who tu1' down them papers, Buffalo Bill?" "Oh, no; it is none of my business, so long as I put them up and they were read." "Waal, I n1ade it my business to take 'em down, and I sa y s that whar the army don' t pertect us, we has got ter do it ourselves, ar1d we intends ter have ther Ranger Regulators ter do the biz, an.ct don' t you forgit it." "That i s your opinion1 I suppose?" "It' s more than mine, and you'll find it out, 'fo'o," "Well, I am not the commandqnt, so go anq tell Colonel Carr, not me, "Oh, you'll tell him, and, so he knows it, that's what I wants." See here, you know what that placard read, do you not?" "I does." "You intend to disobey it?" "Yes; I is one of ther Ranger Regulators, and you bet, I'm in it ter stay." "All right; you arid your gang just attempt to run this frontier as you have been doing, an.d you have: m y word for it that Colonel Carr will treat you j us t as he would any other outlaws, so take advice a n d be warned."

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24 THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. -' "Does yer threaten me, Buffalo Bill?" and the stood in holy awe of, at once attempted to draw his man dropped his hand upon his revolver. revolver. "See here, pard, you seem to be spoiling for a No one saw the scout draw his weapon. fight." His hands had held his bridle reins, and he did not Buffalo Bill smiled as he uttered the words. His make a motion toward a revolver in his belt, but yet face showed no anger, no excitement. one hand did hold a weapon, a small Derringer Quickly came the words: which it covered, and, before his adversary could "Yas, when my rights is put down by soldiers, I is draw his pistol from its holster at his waist, there spoilin' for a fight, and I hain't afeerd o' you, ef yer / came ... a loud report, followed by a yell of pain. do be Buffalo Bill." The large bullP,t of the little Derringer had broken This was a airect challenge flung into the face of the hand of the regulator, causing him to howl with the scout. anguish. The crowd understood it as such, and they gazed at the man with surprise, for, reckless as they knew him to be, they did not believe he would dare face Buffalo Bill. The sco\.tt did not accept the challenge, as many expected he would, by attempting to draw his re volver and beginning a duel then and there. Instead, he said with the utmost calmness and a tone of sadness in his voice: "See here, pard, life is too short to spend it in quarreling, and,' more, it is too valuable to be thrown away. "I do not wish to kill you, I do not intend you shall kill me, so, if you have any grievance against Colonel Carr, go to the fort and tell him so-conv ince him that you are not as bad as the criminals that your band of regulators hunt down." you call us a lot of criminals?" "No; I have no real proof that you are, only I know a great many innocent people have suffered at the hands of the Regulators, a number of guilty ones have escaped, and the colonel has been asked by the best people of the settlemnt to disband you. "He has done so, and if you do not obey h is orders, he will treat you as outlaws. "That is all there is in it, pard, so don't let us qua r rel." "Waal, we hain't goin' ter disband ter please him and a few cranks in this settlement, and I warns you thet we means business, and ef you don't wish ter tarn up yer toes jist git out o' this community and go a-flyin'; see?" As he spoke, the man, deceived by the quiet man ner of Buffalo Bill, which he mistook for fear of him, for he was a well-known character, whom many \ But in a second of time the Derringer had disap-peared from the scout's hand, and in its place ap peared his revolver, which he had quickly drawn. Covering the man with it, Buffalo Bill cried, in a voice not to be mistaken: "Up with that left hand of yours; quick, or my bul let hunts your heart!" The man, wild with pain, rage and fear, quickly raised his left hand, his right hanging useless and bleeding by his side, while he whined out, piteously: "Don't kill me1 Bill, for my hand is up!" A loud laugh of derision greeted his words, while up behind Buffalo Bill came four of his scotits, who, a g ain s t his orders in their anxiety for him, had fol lowed him into O verland City. "No need of us, chief I see. "Lardy! if it hain't Death Notch Dick you has got corraled," and the s couts laughed as thev recognized the lieutenant of the Ranger Regulators, and a man ;yhose boas t was that his victims were all remem L e red by red marks upon his hat, and there were nine of these crimson stains, which he had placed there as a record of his deadly deeds. I The arrival of the four scouts caused a qmeter feel1 in the crowd for it seemed to indicate t,hat they were .there to defend their chief, arid others might be near at hand perhaps a body of soldiers, for it was looked .upon as a very reckless thing for Buffalo ,,Bill to have come into Overland City alone, after the feel, ing many had against him for his putting up the colonel s placard. . The better men of the crowd were glad to see the scouts come, and they were assured that there would be no further troul:fle: The fallen idol of the element who had regarded Death Notch Dick,-the lieutenant of the Ranger Reg1

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t'HE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. 25 ulators, had no sympathy from the crowd, in spite of his bullet-shattered hand. He stood, white-faced, suffering and glaring, be fore the chief of swtits, his left hand still elevated. The crowd had laughed at him to see how quickly, alter starting the trouble with Buffalo Bill, he had been humbled. Not one present was there who did not know that Buffalo Bill had not fired to kill, but to wound, and none knew this better than Death Notch Dick. That the scout's aim had been so true witt a lit tle Derringer, not much longer than his finger, was proof of what he was capable of doing with a re volver. Buffalo Bill was the first to break the silence, and he spoke in a kindly tone: "Come, Pard Dick, lower your hand, for quits, as you wanted to kill me, and I was only a trifle the "Ernest, go and hunt up the doctor and bring him with all speed here, while I stop the flow of blood," and Buffalo Bill took his silk scarf from about his and, approaching Death Notch Dick, drew up the sleeve of his shirt and tied it ab out the arm to check its bleeding. :! "It passed through the back of the hand shatter-ing the bone of the middle finger, so it is not so bad' after all, considering that a Derringer bullet made the wound. "Ah.I here comes Dr. Dillon now. Fortunately, t he was near at hand." (i As the scout spoke, there dashed up to the spot n Scout Ernest, accompanied by Dr. 1Dillon, a young physician who had been an army surgeon, but who e had resigned to practice in the settlement, as he felt 5 that it was more profitable than mining or army pa y and he had a sweethe art waiting for him until he 1-could save up money enough to build her a home in Y the East. ., e He was a skilled surgeon, and had his surgical and s medici11e case with him. 11 ''Ah, Bill, this is some of your work, is it? [-"Yes, and you have been playing surgeon also? D -"Give the man a stiff drink of whi s ky, and I'll soon have him all right," and the young doctor set to 1e in a way that proved his skill. t d The shattered bone was taken out, the wound dressec;l, and the hand placed in a sling, and then d Death Notch Dick gTOwled out: much, Doc, does yer charge?" "Nothing for Buffalo Bill's work, Dick-let it go at that, and I'll nurse it well for you, only you must not pick a quarrel with my friend here, or you'll get the worst of it. "Bill has two natures, the lamb and the lion, and my advice is not to rub him against the fur." "Much obleeged, Doc, and I guess I'll take your advice, seein' as I made a fool o' myself and got downed in the bargain and he held out his left hand to the scout, who grasped it warmly, and, half an hour after, having had a talk with Dr. Duke Dillon, he mounted his horse and rode away, followed by his scouts one of whom said: "You must pardon us, chief, for following you, but we fearea trouble." "That is all right, boys and I am glad you ca me." "And don't trust Death Notch Dick, for he is as treacherous as a snake, and that handshake meant that he intended to get square some day." "Maybe he will," was the quiet reply of Buffalo Bill, and he added: "We are but human, and a bullet properly aimed will down the best of us. But I could find out nothing about any party going into Overland, or leaving it, but Dr. Dillon is going to try and do so for me, and he is true as steel." It was after nightfall when they rode into the camp on the river, and they found that the two men left at the meadow had just come in, not thinkin'g it worth while to wait any longer, as the wolves were tearing the dead horse to pieces at every chance they and none of the comrades of the man who had been slain by Buffalo Bill had come in search of him. The next morning the scouts broke camp and pulled out for Fort Rattle. CHAPTER IX. THE YOUNG PRISONER. Though in very hard luck, as prisoner to a band of masked men, and being led away, where he did not know, young Sherman Canfield did not lose his wonderful pluck. He was suffering from his bonds and the gag in his mouth, and he was uncertain of his fate, but he was glad to remember that he had thwarted the men at least from getting hold of the serg1eant's map, papers and valuables and that Buffalo Bill would soon discover that he had nqt up_ at the fort.

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26 THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. That. the great scout would look him up, he did not doubt; but when he saw the care taken by his guardi to cover up his trail he could not see how it was possible for even Buffalo Bill to track him. He had escaped the Ranger Regulators, to fall : iu to the hands of a band that must be far worse, fo1, where the former pretended to be law abiders, the latter masked their faces and prey ed upon their fellow men. The man who had him in keeping had stuck well to the river, and then to the bed of the little rivulet, until at last they came in sight of a meadow overi;ung by a lofty cliff. Here he seemed to feel that he was safe, or had thrown pursuit wholly off his trail, for he staked his hor ses out, made Sherman dismount, and then, seeing that the youth was suffering greatly with the gag he removed it from his mouth and gave him a drink of water from his canteen. Sherman said, in his dry way: "Thank you, sir, for being humau. "I was nearly choked to death." "Waal, I don't mind yer yellin' here, so I'll give yer a rest on ther gag; but don't come no monkey work, or I'll make yer swallow it again." "Just tell me what monkey work is, so I can avoid \ it." 1'Y ou knows well enough. "You is a prisoner, and I has got ter keep yer hands tied, though I'll loosen ther bonds a leetle and tie 'em in front, as we ha? climbing to do, and plenty of it." "Where are you taking me?" ")iaybe to your grave/' was the significan:t re1nark.' "It's the same trail all must travel," came the cool reply. "Waal, you don't skeer very bad and I've got a sneakin' notion you is a hard nut ter crack, if yer hain't been many years out o' baby clothes. i "Come, we'll push on now, and when we gits whar I'm takin' yer, then yer111 hev more time to rest than you'll want." "Arc you gojng to walk?" I "YOU bet." "Isn't it just as cheap to ride?" "Ther fare is about ther same," and the man and added : ".You're a good one." "And, if signs don't fail me, you're a bad one." "Come, don't get fresh, or I'll muzzle yer ag'in." "I'm dumb." The man laughed and led the way toward the cliff,1 when Sherman said: "See here, why not ride?" He was anxious to leave a trail, but the man answered: "Horses can't go up whar we does, and so we walks. "Come here, now." He led the way up to the cliff, where a rocky shelf was visible some twenty feet above their heads, and upon it grew a small cedar, one limb of which was dead. The man had brought his lariat along, and, skill fully throwing it, the noose 'caught over the bare limb and was drawn taut. Then up the cliff went the man, climbing the lariat / with his hands, and using his feet against the rocks. Reaching the i:ocky shelf, he called out: "I'll make it easier for you, pard." With this he lowered a large rope he had taken from its hiding place among the rocks, and on the end of which there was a kind of harness to fasten about the form. Descei;iding the rope, he fastened the harness aboi1t Sherman, and, climbing up again, began to haul him up slowly. "You is a pretty. good heft," he said, as he drew the youth upon the shelf and took off the harness. Then he hid the away among the rocks, picked up his lariat and told the youth to follow him. Sherman did so in silence, and they. went along the rocky shelf, climbing upward here and there, and at times passing along narrow spCl:ces where only the most nerve would steady a man. Twice the guide asked the youth whether he go dizzy at great heights, and each time the answe came: "Don't mind me, but push on only I wish my arms free, so I could cling to the rocks." The boy had de v ised a plan for escape already. He would first induce his captor to free his hands, and then he would make a sudden dash for liberty. To carry out his plan would reqhire some strategy. First, he must induce the outlaw '. o believe that h :wa:; unable .to climb further, becau.se of. hi$ weari

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THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. 27 ness, unless he had his hands free to assist him in his efforts. So the boy began to lag behind. He lifted his foot at each step as if it were weighted with lead, and his breath came in panting gasps, while his mouth hung open. All this was assumed, of course, as the boy had-a frame like steel and the endurance and wind of a broncho, and he could easily have run the outlaw, who was evidently a drinking man, off his legs, if put to it. The appearance of extreme weariness fooled the outlaw completely. The climb was a hard one for him, and he thought that it must be doubly hard for his young companion. And so, when the boy stum bled and fell behind, he sometimes lent him a helping hand, and sometimes waited a moment until the boy had apparently rested a little and was more able to proeeed on the hard climb they were taking. Meanwhile, Sherman was observing the trail care fully, noting the places where he must be careful of his footings, and the rocks which would shelter him from a shot. At length he pretended to stumble and fall heavily upon the ground. He lay there, panting, for a while, while the outlaw waited, and finally lifted him upon his feet. But the boy fell limply to the ground again, and made a motion with his hands to indica_te that the bonds were cutting into his flesh. "Waal," said the bandit, "I guess you'll rest easier fer a minute, if yer bindings is cut, and thar'.s no chanst of yer gittin' away from me in yer present condition." He leaned over as he spoke, and severed the bonds binding the hands of the boy. A second later, he was dashed on the grdund with a force that stunned him, and his former prisoner was away, bounding like an antelope down the trail, up which he had climbed so laboriously and slowly. CHAPTER X. BUFFALO BILL'S REPORT. The return of the two scouts to the camp on the river, without having seen the outlaws Jere ex pected to look up their lost comrade, was a great disappointment to Buffalo Bill. He had hoped that they would have some news. But, as none was to be had, he broke camp to return to the fort, and, after making a full report to Colonel Carr, make a fresh start in search of the lost youth. So back to the fort they went, and, upon their ar rival, Buffalo Bill found the colonel anxiously awaiting him. "Well, Cody, I am glad to you back; but where is that brave boy?" "In the hands of the Gold Ghouls, colonel, I am very sorry to say." "I received your report of your camp and what you were doing, but nothing very late, so tell me what has been done." "Well, sir, in one sense, considerable, in another; very little." "Yes, it was a good thing to get the body of poor Fessenden, and I am glad that you did so. We buried him with full honors, but the paymaster has been waiting to write to his wife and send the pay due ,him, hoping you would come in with the boy, who could give further information." "I am sorry I did not find him, colonel; but I have by no means given up hope. He is a plucky fellow, and well able .to look out for chances to escape, and, if they have done him no harm, I am he mav turn up in camp soon." "I sincerely hope so." "I intend to go out again, sir, and take my best men, for a thorough search for the retreat of the Gold Ghouls, who certainly are in the mountains beyond Coyote Canon, for the man who had the youth prisoner went in that direction with him, and the one who came for the horse, also came from there." "And did not return?" the colonel said, signifi cantly, qaving heard the story of the chief of scouts' adventure from those who had come iti with the sergeant's body. "No, sir; he was burieci where he fell; but the leav ing of the horses where I found them proves that one cannot ride to the retreat that way, and the man who came after them came from over the cliff. "His idea was to c;arry the horses around, how far I do not know, but certainly their retreat must be where they can go. and come on horseback." "I should certainly think so, Cody, but you went off on the trail of the boy to the relief of his comrades r'

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28 THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. "Yes, sir, and I have a sad story to tell you of our discovery." The story was told, of finding the bodies, and how they had been scalped and all indications left to let it be s upposed Indians had done .the deed. The brows darkened as Buffalo Bill went on to give his proofs that white men were the guilty and they could only be the Gold Ghouls, while they had been tracked into Overland City settle ment. "IJ the boy was here, colonel, he could pick".out the ponies belonging to his comrades, and we would soon have the men. "Eut, without him, it will be hard to find them, unless Dr. Duke Dillon can find me a clew, and he is trying to look up the case now ." "He will find the men if any one there will, but he will have to be careful, as those Gold Ghouls must have spies arid secret friends in the settlement." "There is no doubt of that, colonel; but I have a: teport to make, sir, and I trust you will not consider I : "Ht3w -do the other regulators take my order to disband?" dThey will obey it, sir, and save trouble, but they growl, of course." "I shall send a troop tbrough the settlemen once 1 each week, to show them I am on the. watch." I will; be a good idea, sir, and Dr. Dillqn will re-j port anything of importance as he promised me tol do so ; and g0ing all a.tourtd as he does to the min ing camps;ranches, arms, and Iivirlg right' in Over land City he has every chance to find out if anything is going wro11g." 4 "He certainly has, and he is a plucky fellow, too, but now to this ttnfortunate young prctege of yours, this brave boy Canfield, for we must' make a strong effort to rescue him?" .r "We must, sir, and I will to-night with a dozen of my picked men for that pttrpose," was falo Bill's reply. CHAPTER XI. to blame in the matter, though there were witcoNcLusrON. nesses you can get the story from, also, sir." Before Buffalo Bill':; party were ready tostart that "I believe your words indicate a killing scrape, but night, a small figure limped slo_wly up toward the pal feel that you will tell me the affair as it happened." rade ground, in front of the fort, and was challengeq "I will, sir; but it is not so bad as a killing scrape. by the sentry. "N 0 man shuns the taking of human life more "Shentian Canfield, a friend of Buffalo Bill," was than I, sir, but on account of my position as a scout, the an.swer to the_ sentry's gruffly Uttered: "Who goes there?" 1 am 9ften forced into a difficulty that means my life A half hour later, Sherman was seated or that of my foe, and such was the case to-day, sir. at a steaming hot supper, and a half hour after that "You have heard of Death Notch Dick, sir?" was telling of his escape from the Gold Ghouls. "Ah, yes-"a desperado, though one of the Ranger Sherman, whom the great scout had taken a fancy to, accompanied Buffalo Bill on many of his scouts after that. Buffalo Bill always referring to him as "Well,' sir, he began to kick against your order to his "Best Bower." the got abusiv .e, and, thou.gh I In one of these scouts the maps indicating the advised him, for the good of his health, to. go slow, sition of the gohl mine, which Sherman had fallen he attempted to draw his revolver on me, when, havhalf heir .to? were.' located, and the mine found, ,, ing slippe'1 my Derringer. from my sleeve into my; .. together \Vlt? gold enough stored near 1t to make (1 . Sherman a nch man. gnp, I i;ent : a bullet .through his hand. Sherm1in Canfield decided to go East, on the ad\ 1I then ordered him to hold the other up, and Dr . vice of Buffalo Bill, who urged him to : complete his 1 Dillon WiS s ent for and fixed him up all right. education. TljE END. "He shook hands with me when I left, -but he'll kill J:lle. the first chance he gets, as I well know :",,. Next week's is sue 1 (N0. 68) will contain: "Buffal o 1 "There is no doubt of .that, Cody, fot he is a des. Bill-and -the ,?. old Ghouls ; or, atEleperate dangerous and very bad man and I regret phan.t ock. Sherman. Canfie:ld -q1d not go East, as . he to, and agam fell mto the hands of the that yo.u .were sb merciful, and I shall let the Gold q-hou.ls. How he escaped agai1,J, and how Bt1frest. as it 1s, only be care.ful to keep your eye on him. falo Bill wiped the Gold Ghouls off.the,. face of the I "I will, sir." earth will be told in next week's issue.

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Hustle them in now, boys, if you ever hustled in yo' lives before. This is your last chance. Only a few days m o re. R emember a11 entries must be in by September 1st. R emember you still have a chance for o ne of those fishing Rmiember they are the fl.nest prizes we ever o ffered. Ft,Sll particulars in regard to this on page 3t. A Fa.11 of Slate. (By Harry Mc.Nulty, Ind.) At the close of school last September ( rgor), I thought that I would like to work in the mines. So I bought an outfit for working in the mines-lamp, boots, etc. I got started, and we had been working (my father and my self) for about three months, when one day about nine o'clock in the morning, I had just got the car loaded, all but one large chunk for the corner. So I went over to ame end of the room to get a block, and was rolling it over toward the car, when all of a sudden there was a crash, and I was caught under a heavy fall of slate and pinned so I couldn't movt:. My father was working in the next room. He heard the fall, and came running in. Then there was another man came in. They got a prop and pried the slate off me, and then got hold of my feet and pulled me out I I-was under there about three minutes, and it seemed to me about three hours. My back was wrenched pretty badly, and my arm and back were pretty well cut up. My hands were numb for about two weeks. I was in bed for a month afterward. If it had n9t been for that chunk of coal I was rolling over, I would have been killed. The men said it was a miracle I was not killed as it was. There are a good many men here who can vouch for the truth of this. A M ishap. (By Willis Butler, La.) I was working at Simpson's Steam Laundry last vaca tion, and had to bring a horse and wagon home at night. One Saturday it was late before I started, and I had a glass-sided wagon. The road was pretty bad part of the way, and when I got to the bad part I met another laundry wagon standing in the middle of the road, but as it was dark, I thought it was on the side and started driving around it. When I got about even with it my glass-sided wagon began to turn over slowly, and then went on over with ,fue in it. A man caught the horse, and when I got out it was found that my arm and hip were hurt, and I had lost my money, besides doing damage to the wagon. The horse was soon unhitched, and I managed to get him home although I was hurt. The rest of the things were gotten by Mr. Simpson, when he came along. My arm and hip are all right now, and I am working in a drug store. Adventures On a Bicycle. (By R. G. Leonard, Andover, Ohio.) It was on the night of the Fourth of July, 1902, ana I was going to a neighboring village to witness the display of firewoi;ks that had been advertised I intended to go in a carriage, but it was so late when I got ready to go that I decided to take my bicycle, it hav ing a headlight. On the way somebody threw a fire cracker in the road ahead of me. I was going so fast that I could not stop in time, so I got the front wheel on it and as it did not go off, I thought that it had gone out, but as the hind wheel was on it it went off; blowing a hole in the tire. / I did not see WhQ threw it, and upon searching, could find nQ trace of them. I got a bicycle without a headlight of a friend, and continued my journey. I reached the village at about six o'clock. They had a fine display of fireworks. When I got ready to return home, it was so dark that I could only din-r&y see the outlines of the road I followed a carriage about half a mile; it then turned out on a crossroad. I then had to go alone. I had not gone ten rods before I struck a rough spot. I tried to turn the bicycle to one side, but in doing so the

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30 THE BUFF J\.1:-0 BILL STPRIES. front wheel swung around crosswise of the road, and the bicycle was going fast enough to twist about six inches of the tire off the rim. !'managed to replace it, however. I then went a half mile when suddenly a horse and carriage 1oomed up in the darkness about five feet ahead of me. I managed to turn aside and let it pass. In another mile a good-sized creek ran alongside of the road. I reached this spot in about ten minutes. The road was very rough here, and I had to keep straining my eyes to see the path. I was at the worst spot when I suddenly looked up and saw a horse and carriage within about two feet of the front of the bicycle. I endeavored to tum out on the creek side. I had not turned more than a foot when the shoulder of the horse struck the front of the bicycle and sent it spinning toward the creek; as it went in, I jumped off. The water was up to my arms where I jumped off. Wh.en I mana&"ed to get ashore, horse and carriage had disappeared 111 the darkness. I did not try to recover the bicycle, but started home on foot, which I reached at mid.night. It rained during the night. When I went in search of the bicycle next day, the water had risen so high that it had washed away. I had a bicy1:le to pay for. I think tnat it was a night quite full of incidents for a thirteen-year-old boy. Fall Through a Trap-Door. (By William Hunt, Pa. ) While w<">rking in a carpenter shop I was sweeping the floor : The shavings were kept in the cellar, and on the top floor was a hole about two feet wide, which went to the cellar. I was walking along and slipped and fell through. I caught the floor as I went down, and called for help. A man who worked there pulled me up, and I was always careful since then : General Custer's Last name. (By Homer Lester, Wyoming ) , It was announced during the carnival week at Sheri dan, Wyoming, that there would be a reproduction of General Custer's last battle between the Crow lndians ancl three companies of the State National Guard of Wyoming; Company D, of Sheridan, Wyoming; Company C, of Buffalo, Wyoming, and also Company A, of New Castle, Wyoming, making about one hundred of the State National Guard. There were about six hundred Indians, brought down from the Crow Reservation, and a large number of them were to take part in the battle. I am a member of the State National Guard, oj Com pany D, of Sheridan, Wyoming and so yo u may know tbat I was glad enough to take part in the battle. The battle was to take place on a hill, close to town, ai1d at five. o'clock on the afteq10on of July 4 1902 when the time arrived for the battfe. I was glad to see that a large crowd had assembled to watch us. Be fore the battle took place it was said that thel,"e were fifteen th.ousand people gathered on the hill to see the battle ; well, at last the hour of the battle arrived, and the waiting crowd was relieved by seeing the Indians troops going silently to their places. We were marched around one large hill and dowl\. ridge on the other side, and when we were about half( down the hill the Indians came swarming down overwhelming numbers. The Indians swarmed around through us, shootin 1 yelling all tpe time, until we would have been all kill they had used ball cartridges. 1 1 The pictures that were taken of us, I suppose, i !here were three ,1 h<;!re with cameras takmg pictures for the movmg pt 1 c machines. S aved By a Frien d (By Harry English, Ind.) This is a true story. ( r a The waters were high, and I and some of my fr j thought we would go swimming . We wept to called Rock Bottom." I went in first and swam out halfway back, when one of my fri: came to help me I told him I would on my He went to the shore and watched me I had almost to the shore when my other friend, by the na 'I Miller, saw me start to sink. I went under three u and he swam and caught me. When I got to the biJ.c was as white as a sheet. (I I said I would never go in deep water until I '1 swim well. SI I am twelve years old i d A Seco nd o f Peril. J l e .(By Walter Williamson, N. J.)' One day, as I was walking by an apple orchard, I ''s; a shot, followed by a cry of "G, et out of there." I l ir around and saw about six boys running toward me J 1i hinp them, running like a deer, was a man with a gSic his hands. N The J;ioys r.unning like mad. They soon o . s. the low fence that surrounded the orchard, and in jiflit they were even with me The man once more raised his 'gun and fi' red. I the hum of the shot, an d a shrill scream from one boys who had been hit. Instantly I s tarted on a run, too. I had an ide. if I didn't, the man might take me for an apple thi'ia. was bigger than the other boys, and the man followt )y I kept right on for the railroad track. I could htt :Jt heavy panting of my pursuer, and I knew he was d l, ,fl nearer. f's When I reached the track, I glanced 0ver my sh 10 I and saw he was almost on top of me. I gave a,se burst of speed, crossecl the track, bounced over /e. fence, and was again speeding over a field. --:Just ahead of .me was a street where the trolle I! passed. I st.rained every hius.de to reach )t. < Aite mg several and scratchmg myse!f .. :Ver, l '") "Stop, you thief!" cried my pursuer. Several : heard his cry, and !oohd at me ai. I sped past. I s ,,1.

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THE BUFFALO BILL STO RIES. 81 '3s the street just as a car turned a bend in the I did not see the car till I was near the track. s 've a cry of horro; as I saw the car not three yards me. I put on fresh speed, and seemed about to rhe track in safety, when I tripped and fell. lucky I was running so fast, or I might have t illed. . As it was, I struck the ground slantingly !nt slid,,ing across the track in a second. .lf:ked myself up, bruised all over, and started on n The crowd thought I was under the wheels, and 1rrounded the car. .. : dodged in to an alley and hid -HI! the ex t .<1t was over. After the cro d dispersed, I came those that saw me did not know I was the boy td passed through that awful "Second of Peril." man who chased me never caught me. In fact, I aw him again, and I don't want to. An Experience With a Swindler. fri (By Carl Cronkwright, Ind.) a ),cludeCl to write an experience of my grandfather, r about thirty years ago. fr: trying to relate it in his own words, as nearly as ba;. t d after a big show, a man stepped up to me and fat'If you to the night show and brag it up, I will 1e tu five dollars.' e h;id him that I would stay at that price. So saying, ded me a ten-dollar bill, which I placed in a I 1 hat:id to hold. I drew out my pocketbook. At snatched the bill out of my friend's hand ; and also whic!1 I in the act opening, and o run. I rose up m my seat, bemg on the top d leaning forward, I struck him with my clinched le-driver blow at the back of the ear. tocked him clean from the seats and landed him on ds and knees at the He dragged himself r I saw that he was bleeding at the ear. He disapI l in some dressing tent. I gave chase, but could e. 1ing o f him. a not being great, I gave it up and joined my Nho said: 'I looked for tqose datldes to cut you .. s.' But' I told him that they told me that I did I N'1,t." I i ne ide; A Clou Shave. (By W. Stone, Mass.) thiiaY when I was about twelve years old I and some owt')YS were playing ball in a pasture near the house other boy shooting sparrows with a .22 dr Jk .' s he by robbers, or were nearly run over by a train; perhaps 1t was a close shave in a burning building, in scaling a precipice, in or swimming; whatever it was, WRITE IT UP. Do it m less than 500 words, and mail it to us with the accompany ingcoupon. All entries must be in before September I. The contest closes on that date. The Prizes Will Be Awarded to the Seven Boys Sending in the Best Stories. Look on the back cover of No. !2 for photograph and description of one of the prizes. To Become a Oonte1tant tor Theae Prize cut out the Anec-1 dote Contest Coupon printed herewith, 1111 lt out properly, and send it to BUFFALO BILL WEEKLY care of Street & William Street, New York Citr, together with your anecdote. No anecdote will be considered tba does not have this coueon a .ccompanylng' Jt, OOUPON. BUFFALO BILL WEEKLY ANECDOTE CONTEST, No. 4. Name street and Num\ler ................................................ City or Town.. ., State: . :. Title of Anecdote ............................................. :

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BlJFFAl o Bl Lt STORIES . CI.tARGn siz::&.) .. . Containing the Only Stories Authorized by Hon. WILLIAM F. CODY ("Buffalo Bill.'1.' .39-Buffalo Bill's Duel; or, J\mong the Mexican Miners. 40_.:.Buffalo Bill and the Prairie Wolves; or, Hunting the Bandits of Boneyard Gulch. / -41-Buffalo Bill at Painted Rocks er, /\fterthe Human Buzzards ... 42-Buffalo Bill imd the BoY. Trailer; or, /\fter Kidnappers in 1 43-Buffal o Bill In Zl11;za11; Canyon; or, fighting Red Band. 44-Buffalo 8111'& Red or, Hand to Hand with the Devil Gang. 45-Buffalo Bill in the Bad Lands; or, Trailing the Veiled Squaw. 46-Buffalo Bill's Trail of the Ghost Dancers; or, The Sioux Chief's Seer.et. .. 47-Buffalo Bill's IYeadliest Deal; or, The Do ,omed Desperadoes of Satan's Mine. 48-Buffalo Secret; or, The Trail of a Traitor. r'r: 49-Buffalo Bill's Phantom Hunt; or, The Gold Guide of Colorado Ca,nvon.1 50-Buffalo Bill'. 8 Brother in Buckskin;_ or, The Redskin Lariat Rang'ers 51-Buffalo Bill' s Trail of the M 'an The Doom of the Branded Hand. 52-Buffalo Bill's B o y Pard; or, Training the. BucksJdn Bov. 53-Buffalo Bill's Vow of Vengeance; or, The Scout's Boy J\lly. 54-Buffalo Bill and the Mad Hermit; or, finding a Lost Trail. 55-Buffalo Bill's Bonanza; or, The Clan of the Silver Circle. 56-6uffalo Bill's Mascot; or The Mystery of Death Valley. 57-Buffat o Bill and the Surgeon Scout; or, The Brave Dumb Messenger. 58-Buffalo Bill s Mvsterious Trail; or, Trac k ing a Hidden F oe. 59-Buffalo Bill and the Masked Hussar; o r fighting the P rairie f 60-Buffalo Bill's Blind; or, R unnin g the Death Gauntlet. 61-Buffalo Bill and the Masked Driver: or. The Fatal -Run Through Canyon. r 62-Buffalo Bill's Still Hunt; or, Fighting the Robber of the Ranges; 63-Buffalo Bill and the Red Riders; or,. The Mad Driver of the o,erla (ls. 64-Buffalo Dead-Shot Pard; or, Will:-o-theWisp of the TraH.s \ 65-Buffalo Bill's or, The R e d:ttand Renegade's Death. . , 66-Buffalo Red Trail; or, I\ Race for Ranson. : Back numbers always on hand. If you cannot iret them from your news,kaler, fiye a copy will brin2' them to you, by mail, postpaid. ..\ i STRE'ET SMITH, Vublishers, > 238 WII...I...IA1" ST.9 NEW CITY.


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