Jesse James' exploits


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Jesse James' exploits

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Title:
Jesse James' exploits
Series Title:
Jesse James Stories
Creator:
Lawson, W. B.
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New York
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Street & Smith
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English
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32 p. ; 26 cm.

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Dime novels ( lcsh )
Criminal investigation ( lcsh )
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serial ( sobekcm )

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University of South Florida
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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.
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028820460 ( ALEPH )
08650894 ( OCLC )
J14-00035 ( USF DOI )
j14.35 ( USF Handle )

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BLACK DICK WITH JESSE JAMES ON ms BACK, LANDED BETWEEN THE TWO PILES OF STONES CRUSHING THE TREACHEROUS DETECTIVB TO THE GROUND.-(CHAPTER CLXXXV.)

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A DfALlftG WIT H Of C Rlf1E fssu.!d Weellly. By Su!Jscription $2.50 per year. E "tered as Second Class Matt"" a t t/te N. Y. Post Office, by STREET & SMITH, 238 Willia"' St., N. Y. Entered accordingto Act of Conpess in t/te year 1qo2, in tlte Office of tire Libr a rian of Congress, Waslrin!ftOn, D. C. No. 35. N E W YOR K, 4, 1902. Price Cents. Jesse James' Exploits. By W. B.-LA WSON. CHAPTER CLXXXIII. SA vr:o IN 'rHJ;; NICK OF 1nrr:. "No hope. I've shouted till I'm hoarse, and the only answer has been the howl of the coyote and the swish of that buzzar d above who is waiting, patiently waiting, for the time to come when he may feast to the full upon my flesh." The speaker groaned, and then, with a trembling hand, wiped the co l d moisture from his brow. "Before morning I shall be dead, for I know I cannot survi ve the night with this terrible pain, and the drip, drip of my life's blood from the gaping wound in my side which I cannot attend to. What have I done," he moaned, as he cast his bloodshot eyes upward, "that I s hould be made to suffe r such a horrible death? "If I only had a knife I might cut my cursed legs off and stand some chance of beating death, but, as it is, I am forced to lie here in agony and wait for the end to come." A peculiar sound in the near distance caused the man's face, white and d rawn \.vith pain and terror, to take on an expression of eager hopefulness. "A horseman," he gasped, faintly, "and coming this way-he must be coming t hi-s way But while he listened the sound died away, and soon all wa-s sil ent as before. The man of whom we write was young, not more than twenty-five, of fine physica l proportions, with a handsome and intelligent face A few hours before he had met with a terrible accident, and he was now lying on the ground in a deep canon of the Colorado, pinned dO\rn by a fallen sycamore of im mense size, which held his legs to earth as in a vise. A few rods away his horse lay dead. Traveling from the military reservation of Archeluta toward the railway station at Soledad, he had encountered a cyclone as he was about to ford the San Juan River; and,' while endeavoring to seek the shelter of 'a rocky cave a short distance away, was stricken clown by the falling sycamore. The heavy trunk had pinioned his legs, while t h e sh a r p enc;I of a branch had entered his side, inflicting an ugly looking wound from which the blood was still flowing. Jack Darlington's situation was dangerous in the ex treme. His pistol had slipped from his belt when he was hurled from his horse's back, and his knife, which be had hur riedly drawn upon the appmach of the cyclone, in order to cut his way through some tall, overhanging vines, to the cave, had fallen from his hand when he fell, and no lay a few feet away, but beyond his reach. "If I could only see l' believe I could die Iipeace," Darlington mummred, "for mother would cease worrying the moment she knew he wa-s alive and well, and he is both alive and well, for the news I got yester day at Piedra can be relied upon. A gamb l er at that place saw and talked with Luke a week ago. What the boy was doing he could n ot or would not say, but he

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2 THE JESSE JAMES S T ORIES. assured me that my brother was the picture of health, and seemed perfectly contented with his lot." The acuteness of his sufferings made him cease lus cogitations. Ten minutes Jassed, and he lay with hjs eyes closed and breathing so faintly that a doctor of medicine would have declared that his death must be a matter of only a few minutes But Jack Darlington late manager of the Star Comique at Creede, and formerly leatling man of the Palmer Dramatic Company of New Orleans, was not destined to pass away in such a manner. His eyes had scarcely closed when the clatter of horses' hoofs was heard, and presently three men rode down to the ford. The spectade of the dead horse fhst attrac.ted the tion of the IL"ader, a stern-faced man with coal-black hair and piercing eyes. As he approached the animal he caught sight of its insensible rider a few yards farther on. "Great Scott!" lie ejaculated, in strong surprise, "but here is a poor cuss who has been caught on; or caught in, and if he isn't on the eve of croaking then my experience won't count for a nickel.'' His companion hurried to his side, and a moment later the three were exerting their combined strength to lift the log from the insensible man's body. But it was not until they had broken off a short limb of the tree and used it as a lever that they were able to mise the tree and drag the cyclone's victim out. Applications of the ice-cold water of the rivor had the effect, after a while, of bringing Jack Darlington out of 'his stupor. His eyes opened to behold two strange men bending over him, one in the act 'of stanching the flow of blood from the wound ia his side, the other occupied in an examination of the in.frn:ics to his legs. The third member of the group he could not see, for he was kneeling behind him ; with his face buried in his hands. "He's all right, Frank," spoke the man who had reached the ford first and made the discovery of the dead horse and the pinioned man. ''There arc no bones broken, for a wonder, though the flesh is bruised and lacerated terribly." "And the hole in his side will not bother him much, Jesse," returned the other, 'now that I have stopped the claret." "!hank you, gentlemen ,'' said the sufferer, in a weak, tremblirfg voice, "both for your welcome assurances and your lucky arrival and energetic and skillful services." "Hooray!" exclaimed the man whom the rescued one could not see. Then, coming quickly to Darlington's side, he caught the prostrate man by both hands and shook them with a heartines'S that threatened to reopen the wound which the man called Frank had just closed. "Jack, old boy," he joyously criec.1, "but I am deuced gfad that you'll live. And I'm glad, also, to meet you. How's mother?" "Luke, Luke, my brother, is it you?" wa'S all Jack Darlington could say, as with eyes full of tears of hap piness, he returned the pressure of the other's hand. "How glad mother will be when I write that I have found you at last." Luke Darlington, who was a year younger than Jack, resembled him greatly in features and build, though his face wore a more reckless expression, looked frown ingly at the ground as he replied: "I don't ee the use of your telling mother everything." "Everything? What do you mean?''. Jack Darlington's fate expressed the utmost \\Tonder . "Why, about my doings lately. Of course, you've heard?" "I have heard nothing." "Then you don't know who my friends here are?" '' 1:\ o." "They are Frank and Jesse James." 'What!" The injured man raised himself on an elbow and looked from Jesse to Frank in eager curiosity, whic)1 l]ad in it no element of alarm. "I am glad to meet you," he said, earnestly, "for now I can discharge a second duty .. Jesse Jam es regarded him in puzzled wonder. r "I was in Liberty last month," Jack Darlington conT tinned, "and was fortunate enough, while traveling along the creek road, to do your mother, Mrs. Samuels, a service." "You did, eh?'' exclaimed Frank, with deep emotion. "Then you may count on us standing hy you till shcol freezes over.'' "That's what!" spoke the quiet voice of his brother. ''But what happened? She has not been harmed, has she:' ''1:\o. That is, she \\"aS not injured physically, and she was in good health and spirits when I left." Jesse Ja.ipes' brow darkened at Darlington's answer. ''She has been insulted by one of those low-lived de tectives who are hunting us for blood money. Arn I not right?" "Nearly so. The facts of the case are these: \Vhile riding along the road about dark, I was attracted by the loud and angry tones of a voice coming from a clump of bushes on the. creek bank. "I spurred my horse forward, to fiud a tall, spare

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THE J E SSE J AMES 3 woman, of middle age, bound hand and foot to a tree, while before her stood two men, one of whom was brandishing a pistol before her face and talkinig in a rough, brutal manner." Jesse Jam es clenched his hands, and his eyes met those of Frank in a fierce, murderous glance. "When I caught sight of her the man with the pistol was saying: "'If you don't tell me where, they are hidden I'll cut your ears off.'" "\i\That was the hound''S name? Tell me, quick!" hissed Jes se James, as he laid his hand heavily on Jack Darlington's shoulder. "Blason." "I know him," cried Frank James, quickly; "he's. the skunk who ruined Wood Rite's cou sin, Lorita Quinn, and who saved himself from lynching by hiding in the hold of a river steamer." "And I know him," rejoined Luke Darlington, "for the thieving sport who robbed me of all my money in St. Louis, and then tried to murder me by dumping me from the levee into the river when I was drunk." "His companion," continued Jack, "was a stranger to me, and he looked like a tramp. I am inclined to think that he was one, and tha t Blason picked him up in the road somewhere and hired him to as sist in overcoming Mrs. Sanmels. "I had my pistol out and cocked before they saw me, a11d when I called out to announce my presence the tramp \:ook to his heels, and I never saw him again. "I released her as soon as I had laid Blason out," said Jack Darlington, "and afterward accompanied her home. She had very little to say, but the word'S came from her heart." v "She' s a thoroughbred," said Frank. "'vV orth her weight in gold." "If Blason had given her half a show," rejoined Jesse James, "she would have chewed hi : n up." "\i\lhen we parted," resumed Jack, "she said I might meet her sons if I were going to Colorado. 'If you do,' she went on, 'tell them that I am well and in oomfort able circumstances, and also that I am waiting for the time to come when I may go up to Major Holderness' and tell him he is a liar.' And that's all "I'd clean forgotten all about that boast I made," said Frank James. "Hadn't you, Jess?" "No. I was only waiting for a chance to start in and make it good." "Make what good?" queried Luke Darlington. "You are talking in riddles." Jesse James considered a moment before replying. "I reckon I can trust you," he said, with his t cold, searching eyes on Jack Darlington's face. "You can." "If we can't," spoke up Fmnk James, emphatically, "then we'd better commence doubting each other. He ought to be true blue and warra111 ted to wash when he has stood in with mother and is Luke's brother." Jesse James smiled in approval of his brother's speech. Then he said : "As for Blason, who did not know. me, he showed fight "Frank affirmed lip at Ilfajor Holdern. ess', one day--the at once, and for a while we had it tooth and nail. major is a cripple and can't move from his bed-that Mur-"He fired at me twice, and I. returned the compliment, rill, the robber of tjie ante-railway clays, would find himbut it was not until I had dismounted and made for him self a back number if he could come to life and start in on his own ground that the fight got to be really inter-to compete with the outlaws of es ting "Frank 1s no boaster, as a .al thing," pursued : Darlinigton paused a moment, for he was yet very weak Jesse, with at? affectionate glance it his brother's sober, from loss of blood, and Luke patted him affectiona.j:ely resolute countenance, "and he '1:-{jlJfcl never ha \'e made the on the back. asseM:ion that stirred up the if the latter had not Jesse James produced his whisky flask, and Jack drank said in his rasping, p o sitive way. that Murrill, if alive, long and deeply. could give \IS boys points, a,no tliat we'd find mighty soon "We threw away our pistols," he continued, "and whe we came to know.what. kind of a man he wa;;, that fought with knives. At the end of ten minutes I was it would1be worth out while to whirl in and play pupils able to stand up, though cut in seven places, w"hile the :' to his teacher." cowardly brute who had tied Mirs. Samuels to a. tree lay "Rats!" ejaculated Jack Darlington, in strong disgust. at my feet, with his eyes closed and his face with "The major must have been off his nut from booze, or blood froin the slashes I had giyen hin1." else he ,vas an enemy of the Jan1es and Samuels fa1nily."' "Good!" said Frank James, with fierce emphasi s. "The "He was neither," said Jesse. "It was just his c o 1:trnr y hound ought to have been killed." way. He was never kn o \rn to agree w i t h "Bu t he didn't die. He's alive." though he was and is as mild a s a do ve and ::L '1'.c "Then he will be killed," remarked Jesse James, coolly, as they make 'em. and as if he were stating a conceded pr(>position. "But "Well, when he sneeringly intimated that Frank and T my mother--" wer.e a couple of fresh Reubens, who needed instructioa

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, THE JESSE JAMES STORIES .. in the art of making the public pay our exJ:>enses, Frank rrot mad and said with an oath that the Jam es boys could knock Jack Mnrri!t\ record and crooked, and that what we'd clone wasn't a patch'n to what we in tended to do. "The major interruptJed Frank with a low whistle ex pressive of derision. "'You're talking with your month, boy,' he jeered 'You've done the best or worst yon can do, and I reckon you'll have to retire soon, on the laurels you have won, and let the younger generations of outlaws do the deeds that will put yours in the shade.' 'What would you say,' said 'Frank, hotly-and Frank is generally as cool as a cucumber-'what would you say if we beat the world's record of reckless, lawless daring inside of the next six months?' "'I'd say,' responded the major, coolly, 'that I'd made a mistake, and that you were some pumpkins after all.' 'Then watch the newspapers,' said Frank, 'and if I don't surprise you, I'm a liar.' "'And I'll consider myself a liar, if you do.'" "You now untlerstand what mothh meant," put 111 Frank James, "when she said to you, Mr. Darlington, that she wanted something to happen so that she could trot up to the major and give him the lie." "The six months will be up in one week from to-mor row ,'' remarked Jesse Jam es, as he lighted a cigarette and critically watched the smok e as it curled up among the branches of the trees above his head, "and if we arie to do anything, the time has come for us to do it." "If we are to do anything!" repeated Frank James, in indignant surprise. "\Vhy I'd dane anything.....:_do any thing to make Major Holderness eat his words." "What do you say, then," suggested J csse, quickly, "to having a raid as is a raid every day for the seven days remaining at our disposal ?'' "I say yes, you bet your life, J ess-e.'' "Very well, then," assented his brother, with the cool composure that was characteristic of his speech and ac tion, "the every-day racket goes. vVe'll astonish the major, and stir up the American public by giving them seven hold-ups in a week.'' CHAPTER CLXXXIV. TIIE TWO PILES OF STONES. Jack Darlington had listened to the talk of the notori ous Jam es boys in silence. when Jesse had frnished, he looked at Luke and said, with a smile: "There won't be much danger of my frying to stop any or a n of these hold-t1ps you were speaking abo:1t, for I'll probably be laid t1p for a week, at least." "I'll take care of you," said Luke, rather reluctantly, and with his eyes on Jesse James. "Why not l eave him in the cave with the old Indian. He' s a medicine man, and a bang-up surgeon. I know it, for, a month ago, after that affair at Hayes City, he fixed up my ann in great shape,'' said Frank. "That will do,'' assented Jesse. Jack Darlington was temoved to the cave, only a short distance away. The lower chamber, which could easily have been found by any traveler in that region, seemed to be the one and only apartment. The victim of the cyclone was looking about him dubi ously, for there were neither blank i ets, nor skins, nor any thing of which a couch might be made, lying about, when Jesse James rolled back a huge oval-shaped rock at the back, disclosing an aperture which led to a grotto of im mense size. The grotto was furnished with blankets provisions, etc., in it sat an old Indian pr_ eparirig herbs before a small fire. Before the James boys left, Jack Darlington intended to ask them a number of pertinent questions about Luke. "I am no saint," he said to himself, as they carried him into the grotto, "and I am satisfied that Luke isn't, either. But I have never robbcl anybody yet, and I don't like to think that Luke has. And yet, here he is, companion and friend of two of the most dangerous and daring des peradoes the American Union has ever known. I hope it w ill turn out that he has fallen in w'i:th them latel:t and that he is not really a member of their band." He was soon to know the position his brother occupied. The Indian furnished the information. He could speak English, having lived the most of his life at an agency, and his first words werie addressed to Luke Darlington. "How do you feel now, Chain-lite?" he said, with a 'friendly grin. "Foot all right, Chain-lite?" ';Yes. The poultice of herbs made it as good as ne\'I' in a day.'' "Aha, Chain-lite, th ere is nothing like Champa's med'cin'. Heap good, you bet." "Chain-iite !" repeated Jack Darlington. "What docs he mean? Is that a nickname of yours?" "Have y-0u never heard of Chain Lightning Luke?" questioned Jesse J amcs, with a look of mild amazement. '"What!" gasped the cyclone's victim, in "Not the bold, lone-hand highwayman of D eadwood ?" "The same,'' said Jesse James, with an amused twinkle in his eye. Jack Darlington groaned, a11d for a while nothing was said. Luke broke the silence.

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THE JESSE JAMES STO RI ES. "I am not working a lone-hand racket any more,'' he said, quietly, "for there's better fun in being associated with the James boys. You'd better join them, too, Jack." "No." "Too pious, perhaps?" with a sneer. "No." "Conscientious scruples against u n lawfully appropriat ing the goods and chatte l s of another?" ''Perh aps." ' Well, suit yourself"-carelessly-"only don't make mother think I m any worse than I am." "I won't." Jess e and Frank James were conversing together in a corner, with a glance now and then toward Chai n Lightning Luke, when Jack said: "I haven t told you yet what became of Blason." wh e re is the skunk?., eagerly exclaimed Frank James." "He is somewhere in Colorado." .. After us?" "Yes. You see, he got well of his wounds about the same time I found myself able to get around again-I didn "t know how badly I was hurt until after I parted with Mrs. Samuels-and I learned from the sheriff that he had got an idea that you were here, and that he in tended to start once in search of you." ''I'd throw up the \Yeek .. s haul to get him," said Jesse James, fiercely."' ' So would l," added Frank. ''You may meet him before the week is over," re marked Jack Darlington; ''and if you do-" "\iVe'll have some fun with him," interrupted Luk 1 e Darlington, wilh a grim smile. '"We?" que/ied his brother. ''Yes. I'i11 going along with Frank and Jesse You won' t need me, Jack, for the Indian will take proper care of you, and in a few days you wiir be able to go back to Jack Darlington bowed his head in silence. He knew by the resolute exp11ession of his face that it would be useless to expostul ate. An hour iater the three bandits we re riding swiftly out of the San Juan cafion. Night found. them 2.t a small mining camp \vithin a few mil es of Soledad. The landlord slunJ;;.. out of sight when Jesse James turned his head towar rl-the doorway of the hotel. His face was with a heavy brown beard, and his eyes were small, shifty and set close together. As he hurried through the hall of the hotel to the r i ear, his little eyes blazed with a savage light. "I'll get you now," he muttered under his breath.' "If not to-night, then to-moiTO\r The ;e\Yard Is twenty thousand dollars, and it will be paid ic: I he captnn' nf Frank and Jesse James, dead or alive." the man was Blason, the alleged detecti'Ve. He was a rascal of the deepest dye, and, after a long record of crime, for which he had escaped punishrn c :it by his cunning, he had turned detective, not for justice's sake, or an honorable desire to earn an honest living, but with the hope of earning the blood-money offered for the extermination of the James boys. He was thoroughly disguised, but so great was his fear of recognition that he was not wi!ling to trust himself even for a moment before clear, cold gaze of Jesse James About ten o "clock Dlason s had o wed his quarry to a small tent back of the shaft of the Golden Crown mine. Here Limber Jim, the one-legg e d sport of Southern Colorado, conducted a faro game, ,,hich, being on the square, was patronized by the miners and cowboys for miles around Blason pe1eped in and saw a sight that made his evil heart turn green with envy. The dealer was Limber Jim's mistress, a tall, finely formed and handsome-featured bl o nde, and opposite to her sat Jesse Jame s with a double stack of blue chips t\ro feet in height. He was playing in lu c k and all the other gamblers had stopped to watch him Blason saw als o that Frank James and Chain Lightning Luke had their eyes on Jes se, to the ex cl Lis i on of every per s on in the tent. By the side of the fair dealer stood the marshal of the camp. Blason knew him for a brave and fearless man. The detective thought of the t\.Venty thousand dollars reward, and made up his mind to earn it at once. Cautiously inserting his head through the opening which served as a door, he signaled the marshal, and then pointed his finger, with many suggestive nods, at the broad back of Jesse James. At that mom ent the dealer raised her eyes from the little tin box which she had been deftly manipulating, and saw him. Without a word, she quickly drew a pistol from the money drawer in front of her and fired. gave a howl of agony and disappeared Frank James heard these words fall i n a low whisper from the dealer's l ips, "It was Blason," and then he dashed past his brother and out of the tent. To h is surprise a n d rage, he could see nothing of the spy who had been shot at. ..

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6 l'HE JESSE JAMES STORIES. CHAPTER CLXXXV. THE FIRST HOLD-UP. Next morning, early, the outlaws were up and stirring. Jesse James' plans far the day had iJeen formed after hearing a statement made by the landlord that a party of Eastern capitalists would visit the town in the afternoon to inspect the leading mines, with a view to purchasing. "They'll start from Soledad," said the talkative boni face, "in a bang-up rig furnished by the superintendent of the Lucky Jonah, a new-fangled surrey, with gold lamps and fancy fixin's on the harness, an sich, an' they'll all get loaded on champagne afore they git here." After breakfast a cowboy approached Jesse James' horse, a noble black from the blue grass region, the gift of a Kentucky admirer, and said that, while it had good points and could probably run like a scared wolf, he had a nag-a little mustang-that could knock the spots off from him. "Can he?" said Jesse, quietly. "Then, suppose you trot him out. If you want a raoe, I'll go you a rattle for five cents or five thousand cart-wheels." "One dollars that I'll make a mile in quicker time than you can," said the cowbDy. "Done." "The race to come off along this road." Jesse James looked at a pile of stones toward which the cowboy had pointed, and his brow clouded. "I thought you'd back out," sneered the cowboy. "Afraid your nag would shy at the rocks, are you?" ''I am afraid of nothing," returned the outlaw, calmly. "If Black Dick can't pass that pile of rocks, I 'll shoot him dead." The cowboy smiled queerly, and then went behind the hotel, to return presently with a sorry-looking mustang of a dirty 1Jrown color, which looked as if he had not seen a comb or brush for weeks. Beside the well-groomed, magnificently proportioned Dick, the mustang l o ok e d like a scarecrow. The money wagiered was put into the landlord's hands, and a well-known miner was selected as starter. At the word "Go!" both horses sprang forward, but Black Dick instantly took the lead. The pile of stones was about three hundred yards from the starting point, and toward it Jesse James' steed went tearing at a gait that promised, if kept up, to leave the mustang far in the rear before half the distance had been traversed. Jesse James had frowned on looking toward the pile of stones when the route for the race had. been mentioned, for the reason that the roadway on one side of the stones had been temporarily closed that morning, in order that the street commissioner of the place might have some needed repairs made. Therefore, if the outlaw hoped to win the raoe, he must induce Black Dick to jump over the obstruction. It was both a dangerous and difficult undertaking, but Jesse James, with lips pressed tightly together, did not hesitate for an instant. When within a few feet of the rocky pile he dashed his spurs in the black horse, and at the same time gave him a smart blow with his whip. "Now!" he cried, in an encouraging tone, and the noble animal, without raising his head, went straight forward toward the pile of stones. But the very moment that Black Dick was preparing to make the greatest leap of his life, a man arose up sud denly in the open space between the two piles and .ex citedly waved a reel bandanna. The man was Blason, the detective. The race was a put-up job, and the cowboy on the mustang was Blason's tool. Another horse than the noble and intelligent anima l which the famous outlaw rode would have shied and thrown his rider roughly and cruelly to the stony ground at such a sudden and startling spectacle. But Black Dick simply reared and backed slightly; and then, while the crowd in the street looked on wit!\ pale and excited faces, and while Frank James covered his face with his hands, expecting in a moment to see his brother on the ground with .the life crushed out of him, while Blason's evil eyes batted in gleefuk anticipation of an early clutching of the reward, Black Dick, with a neigh, a mighty leap and landed fairly in the open space between the two piles of stones, crushing the de tective under his hoofs to the ground as he did so. At the moment the leap was made there came the re port of a pistol, and Jesse Jam es felt a sharp twinge in his shoulder. The bullet had been fired by the cowboy on the mustang, and he was about to press the trigger for the second time, when crack crack! came tw"O reports, one after the other, and he toppled from his mustang and fdl at the feet of Frank James, a c9rpse . Detective B!ason's tool h ad no sooner fallen than a cry arose from the sidewalk back of the spot where Chain Lightning Luke was standing. "Shoot 'em clown-give 'em no quarter! They're the Jam es boys !" Turning quickly, with his pistol cocked, Jack Darling ton's brother saw that the speaker was the sheriff of the county. Blason had doubtless confided his plot to tl:us official, who had stationed himself at a convenient distance to watch its workings. Alongside the sher iff stood three stern-visaged me11, a rmed wit h rifles

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THE JESSE JJ\MES STORIES. ii Luke blazed away without a moment's hesitation. One of the men fell, and the return voliey of his com panions brought blood from the young outlaw's neck. But the bullet only grazed the skin, and h e never mo ved from his position. Crack crack crack Frank and Jesse James had come to the rescue. The one from his position on the back of his horse be tween the piles of stones, and the other on foot, with his back against the wall of a house which came flush with the opposite sidewalk, pumped lead from revolver and rifle until they found themselves masters of the situation. All the non-combatants took to their heels when the fusillade began. Five minutes of rapid, fearless and deadl y work, and the sheriff lay ins ensi ble on the s idewalk from a wound in the h ead and his three allies were slain. Frank James and Chain Lightning Luke had left their horses a block away. They regained them without difficulty, and then the trio rode qui etly out of town. "Was Bla so n dead?" asked Frank James of his brother, after an hour's silence. "I think so. It looked to me as though Dick's foot had crushed in his head. I would have made a closer examina tion if the shootinrr had not started up again just then. T e n miles' ride brought the outlaws to the bank of a dry creek. Here the road turned sharply after the crossing. At the bend there was a dense growth of shrubbery. "Just the place to call the turn on the mining party," 11as Jesse James' comment. ''V\1 e'll hide here in the bushes, and when the Eastern capitalists ca1pe along in their high-1oned get-up, we'll turn loose on the outfit and get away-with hold-up number one." Les.s than half an hour after, a rumble of wheels along the hillside road above the clump of bushes at the bend was heard Drawing dose to the roadway, the three waited for the vehicle to appear Before it came opposite to where t hey were the loud voic e of the driver was heard. "The last load of Easterners I drove over this road," he was saying, "were treated to a little surprise at the bend below us." "What was the surprise?" was the question put by one of the passengers a well-dressed, portl y gentleman, who was s moking a fragrant Havana. "The rig was held up by highwa y men. " I hope vie. !V'On't be treated that way," ,sa id a second member of the party, a little dudishly attired man, with gold-rimmed eyeglasses "No danger, I r eckon,' replied the driver, "because--" He never finished the sentence, for out stepped the three knights of th e road. Frank James seized the bridle Of the nearest horse and brought t11e team to a standst ill. The muzzles of two rifles were pointed al the occupant s of the carriage. "Hands up! saii.l Jesse James, in sharp, menacing tGnes, "or we'll shoot the devil's daylight out of the whole kit of you." CHAPTER CLXXXVI. FRANK JAMES MAKES A MISTi\KE. 111ere were three Easterners in the carriage bclci up by the James boys and Chain Lightning Luke. The driver was an old-timer, and, having met wit h highwa y men before, adopted what h e considered was the most sensible policy. Holding up his hands, he said, with assumed jocularity: "Just skip me, boys, if there's any shootin' to be done for I'm an orphan, and my name's Dennis." Only one of the Easterners-the small dudishly attired man, with the smooth face and eyeglasses, refus ed to obey Jesse James' command. Instead of holding up his hands, he p r oduced his cigar case, and, opening it, said, coolly: "Do you smoke, gentlemen?" A bullet passed thro ugh the case and the fleshy part of hi s arm. "You are not v<'!ry polite," he said, as coolly as before, though his face was a trifle paler ; "but the n your Western bringing up was not probably conducive to the attainment of good n1anners." Frank James who was nearest to the bold and non chalant Easterner, lo oked at him w ith admiring eyes. "You're a daW;y, you are," he saicj, though he kept his pistol for safety's sake on a line with the other's forehead, "and if you were not wedded to the easy life of a capital i st, I would invite yo u to j oin us. Jess,"-speaking to his brother in the tone of command he sometimes used whe n he saw fit to take the leadership, "you and Luke attend to these other mugs, and I'll see that my man here is properly dealt with." "Pump a close of l ead into hi s gizzard if he gives you any more of his monkey l ; rnsiness," replied Jesse James, with a frown. While 1.he latter was speak ing the cludish Easterner was busily engaged in tying a handkerchief about his wounded arm to stop the flow of blood. Having accomplished this operation with feminine daintiness, he looked up, and, presenting the cigar-case to

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8 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. Frank James, said, in a singularly sweet and persuasive VOICC: "You won't refuse to smoke with me, I know." "Danged if I will," returned the outlaw, quickly and, with a smile he selected a fine Havana, bit off the end and put it in his mouth. ''Allow me," said the Easterner, and out came a solid gold match-case. Frank James took t h e offered light with his disengaged hand, and was soon smoking with h earty enjoyment. "Come, come!" shouted Jesse James, "go through your man, Frank, and let's m ove on. \Ve"ve about finished our job with the others." "How is the business panning out?" inquired Frank, carelessly. "Pretty well; v;e'll scoop a thousand or so into our net." "Let it go at that, then.'" "\i\That Don"t you intend to ievy a contributio n on the dude? "1\ o." "\tVhy not?" "He's a thoroughbred and he's a friend of mine." "You can sure of that," remarked the elude, in a low voice to Frank. "Do you meai1 it?'" "Yes."' "'If I let you off. will yott promise to do me a good t u rn whenever the opportunity offers?" "I do." ''I am sorry I shot you." "That's nothing, for"--puff, puff-"I might have shot you, if you hadn't pulled so q ui ck.'' Frank James gazed into the impassive face of the East erner .in blank surprise 'I say J might have shot you, for I am heeled lik e a Kentuckian . am! I"ve got 'em up my sleeve and in the back of m y n eck ." To prove hi s words, h e calmly produced from e a ch sleeve a silver-mounted derringer, and th.en from the back of his neck, a la i\tle.,,.;ica110, a sharprblade d bowie lmife. Frank James stared at him in amazement . "You are a Jim D andy," he said, as he lowered hi s pistol and held o ut his hand. and if you would like to know what I think of you, shake." The man with the eye glasses put his weapons away and lair! his small, soft and shapely hand in the dreaded law's broad, sunburned palm. "My name is Kenneth Alcott," he whispered, "and I live in Denver. The next, time you visit that beautifui city of the plains, incognito or your bold self, call on me and I can assure you of a royal reception." The tone of the speaker was so frank and engagi n g, and his face seemed to express such honest earnestness, that Frank James, experie n ced studen t of human nature though he was, at once fell under the spell of the Easterner's subtle influence. "I'll call on you before the year is out," h e replied, quickly, as he gave the other's hand a warm pressure, "or you may put down as the biggest liar west of the Mississippi." "Are' you through?" spoke J esse James' harsh voice, "or do you want to hold an all-day seance with your bandbox beauty?" "I am t hrough," returned his brother, coolly, and leav ing the to enjoy his cigar, he walked ov er to the spat where his two comrades were standing. They had plundered the per.sons of the dude's compan ions, but the latter still had their hands up "Fifteen hundred dollars," replied Jes se James. "Not much for the firs t h o ld-up but enough to keep us in peanuts for a few days, I reckon. How did you come out;> '"I'll tell you later,"' replied Frank James, evasively. "All right, and we make your later very soon. Get aboard, you roosters,' he called out to the two Easterners before him, "and you, driver, let the plugs in that rig of yours go spinning along as if the Old Kick was after 'em, or I'll send a bullet or two after you as a gentle reminder that when my bazoo toots the beV has got to ring Sabe?" "I sabe, Jesse," was the prompt response of the Jehu. A minute later and the carriage was across the creek bottom and dashing up the opposite hill. "Ta ta!" said Kenneth Alcott, as he waved his hand to Frank James "and don't forget to call!'' ''"What is he driving at?" asked Jesse James. Frank told him all that had occurred. "I'm .afraid you have been played for a sardine,., was L uke Darlington "s comment. "I've seen that fellow 5 face before, and I'll bet a m in e he"s the richest pige o n i n the flock." "I've a good mind to ride after him a n d make him pun gle," said Jesse Jam es, with an expression of grim r esoltt tion. "Frank gets a soft streak eve r y now and' then and we're always losers when it on." '"Let him alone," urged his brother. 'TH IJ.et my pile on that chap. He's a man of sand, and, \\hat's more, a man of his word, or I'm dead off my kerbase ." "Let him s lid e then," Jesse James grumblingly re sponded; but, mark my words, you'll regret your Sister Nancy tactics before the clay is over." The mine whic h the Eastern capitalists desi red to visit was in the vic init y of th e camp where the fight of the morning had occurned "And now for the camp," said Jesse James, when he

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1 THE JESSE J AMES STORIESo had led Black Dick into the road and mounted him. "I'm going to find out if Blason is alive." And away the three daring o utlaws went. Chain Lightning Luke was the first to reach the pile of stones -where the robber-detective had hidden himself. The obstructions on th e traveled side cyad been cleared away, but a stalwart miri e r stood just beyond the pile with a Winchester at his shoulder. Back !''he tried. "It's certa in death to go on." "Arc you a friend ?" cried Chain Li ghtning Luke, as he reined up hi s hor se almost at the miner's feet. I am an enemy of Dick Blason. L e t th. a t content you." "And why is i t oertain death to go on?" asked Jesse James, who now came up with hi s revolver cocked and ready for instant u se. "Because General Alcott, of Denver, is here, and he has got t ogether a posse that will riddle your whole outfit with bullets if you attempt to take Dick Blason from the jail where he is confined." This was news to Jesse James, but his next words were: "General Alcott! Who is he?" "Senator Tabor's partner, and the richest mine owner in Colorado." J esse James utte red a savage oath. "You h ear, Frank," he cried. "You have been hood winked." "Bet your life you have," said the miner, "for I heard him say, when his rig came in a few minutes ago, that if he di dn't down the James bo ys in this camp, he'd catch 'e m foul before another day passed over his head. "How many men are guarding the jail?" asked Frank James, quietly with a hard . determined look in his eyes. "About tY\ enty." "Then t hey are looking for us to appear, I suppose?" "Yes. The sheriff repeated what yo u said to him, and at once made preparations to re s ist yom : attack:. The arrival of General Alcott later caused the sheriff to double his force, and then put the command of the pos se into the hand s of the general." The three outlaws had thus far been screened by the pile of stones from the view of the people on the street. "Can we cou n t on your aid?" asked Frank James of the miner. "That depends." "On what?" "On what you want me to do. My life is vvorth some thing to me. th oug h I do ,.,,ant to see you corral that vil lain Blason." "Why do you h ate him? asked Jesse J ames. as h e fixed his kee n eyes on the miner 's face as if he would Pead the secrets of his inm ost soul. "I was his partner o nce, and he robbed me." "Ah!" The ejaculation was most expressive. "What business were you engaged in?" asked Frank James. "A business the law wouidn't justify. Is that sufficient?" "Yes What's you r name?" "Pete Surrey." "Jim Cummings' cousin?" "Yes." "Th e n we must count on you." "I am a little stiff in one leg, and I J]aye n o hors e ." "How far off is the j ail?" "T,vo blocks." The miner was well known by reputation to the James boys, and th ey b elieved h e co uld be trusted. Under other circumstances, he might not be overly anxious to serve them, having r etiretl, as was evident from his pre&ent occupatio n of miner, from the perilous voca tion of road-agent, and yet there was no doubt that he entertained bitter enmity toward Dick Bilason. The exp r ession of his face the tones of his voice and the savage way he gripp ed his rifle while tal k ing of the r obber-detec tive ail denoted a most vengeful feeling. "Look up the street," sa id J esse James, peremptorily, "and tell me what yo u see." Pete Surrey mov ed from hi s position so that h e could obey t he ou tlaw chief's command. "I see a crowd in front of the jail." "No one between the jail and this pile of stones?'' "Not a so ul." "Then, here is the part I want you to play. Go to the jail in big excitement, and tell them the r e's a large body of horsem e n coming up the road back of us; that they are all armed, and that they arc pr o bably Jesse J amcs and all his followers." "V/hat good will such a stat e m e nt do you?" asked the miner. doubtfully, as the outlaw pau sed . "I am not through yet Wait till I have finished, an
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0 to THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. prepa1:cd io knock the posse out instead of the posse knocking ns out. N' ow go. Away hobbler\ the miner. Jesse James it prudent not to ride forward and see if Surrey went directly the jail, for fear of ex posing himself. As it was, Frank and Luke were behind the pile of stones, which at this point was raised a few feet higher than th eir h orses' heads. Where the leap of Jesse James' Black Dick had been made, which had for a teniporary result the disablement of Blason, the pile was much lower. Just then the clatter of horses' hoofs in front of the pile of stones macJ.e them give their earnest attention to the savage work about to be thrust upon them. CH APTER CLXXXVII. General Alcott and the sheriff's posse reached a point s everal yards from the intrenchecl outlaws, to be met with a reception they had little dreamed of. Pete Surrey, the miner, had done his work well. Informing Alcott and the sheriff that the James boys, with a large band of followers, were coming down the road with the intention of bombarding the jail and taking Dick Blason from his cell, he had induced the party to march to the stone heap for the purpose of ambushing the des perate raiders when they should come up. The sheriff was riding ahead, conversing earnestly with the dude general, whose eyes, behind his gold-rimmed glasses, sparkled in fierce delight at the expected en counter, when-crack! l went the rifles of the James boys. Down from his saddle feil the Ettie foppish general, with a bullet in his lung, and O\'er keeled :i mine! who was just behind him. Again and again the 'Winchesters of the outlaws belched forth their terrible charges, and one, two, three, four more of the sheriff's party bit the dust. But the sheriff himself had thus far escaped uuharmed. "Back, sheriff.!" shouted Jesse James, after he had fired "' s11ot which killed the officer's horse and brnught the rider to the ground, "this is not your pie." "You're singing in the wrong key," yelled the valiant officer; "I am the law's of this camp, and I'm going to take you in. As he spoke he leaped on to the ston e pile where it was lowest and called upon the remnant of bi s posse to follow him. Encouraged by his daring move, the miners made a rush forward. It was at this moment that Chain Lightning Luke ap peared He let fly with his rifle. Down dropped t he sheriff, se ri o u s ly wounded, and up sprang the James boys, and, with wild yells, faced the on coming miners. Crack t crack! went rifle and pistol, and the air became filled with the groans of the wounded and dying. The three outlaws seemed to bear charmed lives for, though the bullets fl.ew around them like hail and piercecl their clothing, not a dangerous wound was received. Suddenly the firing ceased. The sheriffs posse had been utterly routed Of the twenty men who had followed the dude general and the sheriff to the spot only four were alive and un hurt, and these four were runnin g down the street, weaponless, when Chain Lightning Luke, with his hat off and his eyes blazing like a demon's, sprang over the bar-ricade. "Come on, boys !" he houted. "We can do the trick now without any trouble." "'Sw ipe a horse, Luke," replied Jesse James, as he leaped on the back of Black Dick. "There's one standing in that alley." Chain Lightning Lu\
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THE JESSE J A M E S STORIES. 1 1 He was gone but three minutes, and when he returned his face was black with rage and disappointment. "He's gone, sure enough," he said, with an oath; "but I know what direction he's taken, and we'll overhaul him if we have to ride to Sheol." "This may be a wild-goose chase, Jesse," said Frank, when they were off. "If it is, we'll roast the jailer." But that individual had not deceived them. ''Dick Blason was a passenger on the train bound for Denver, but he was heavily ironed and in the custody of the deputy sheriff. He had been recaptured before he had got far from the jv of his capture. The train had crossed the Rio Navajo and was well on the way to Lone Pine, when an incident occurred that gave the newspapers of the country a pronounced sensa tion. It was furnished by three men, of whom two were Frank and Jesse James. Their fleet horses had carried them to a place of safety, and when they learned next morning at a stage station run by a man and his wife that Dick Blaso11 would be taken on that day's train to Denver, a daring scheme, that was aimed at both plunder and revenge, was quickly con cocted. "We'll have a train hold-up to-day," said Jesse James, with a rnurdero 1s flash of his cold, blue eye, "and at the same time we will settle our score with Dick Blas o n." Frank James gave a prompt assent to the scheme But Luke Darlington, who had maintained a moody siilcnoe while Jesse James was talking, said he reckoned they could count him out. 'Why, what's the matter?" demanded Jesse J arnes, angrily. "Have you become chicken-hearted all of a sudden?'' Chain Lightning Luke met the notorious outlaw's gaze unflinchingly. he said, coldly, "I have not grown chickenhearted; I hav e come to my senses, that's all." ''\;\/hat do you mean?" Jesse James regarded him "in blank astonishment. ''I mean just this. You remember--" "That will do," interrupted Jesse James, harshly. "I don't want to hear any preaching. If you're sick of the game and want to pull out, that's your affair. Go, curse you!" With these words, he turned away and began to tighten Black Dick's girth, preparatory to a mount and a quick departure from the place. Angered beyond endurance at the outlaw's insulting speech, Luke Darlington caught Jesse James by the shoulder and roughly swung him round so that they stood face to face. "I'm a better man than you ever dared to be," he hissed, "and I'm sorry I ever had anyti1ing to do with such a mean scrub as you have just proved yourself to be." The words had hardly left his li11s before he received a stinging blow in the face Chain Lightning Luke staggered back and would have drawn his pistol had not Frank James caught him by the wrist in the nick of time. "Thi-s won't do, boys," he said, sternly. "Come, apolo gize, both of you, and part friends." "No apology from me," r e pli ed his brother, whose face was as pale as death. "And none from me," rejoined Chain Lightning Luke. Frank James frowned. "You're making an ass of yourself, Luke," he said, "and when you think the matt e r over calmly you will see that Jesse had some warrant for speaking as he did. "I thought you'd stick up for your brother," returned Luke, sneeringly. "And now, perhaps, the two of you had better sail i11 and try tO do 111e up." "I won't need Frank's help in this matter," said Jesse James, coldly. "I can do you up alone." "Do you want a duel?" "Y es." ":\fo, no," put in Frank James, yvith an appealing lo ok at his brother. But his was in vain. J esse J a.mes could not forget the words Chain Light ning Luke had us.eel, nor was the latter in a condition to forgive his late partner the insult that had been offered to his courage. H e had determined that morning to leave the James boys, and never again engage in acts of lawlessness and bloodshed. Finding-that the duel was inevitable, Frank James, with a gloomy brow, followed the two determined men to an empty sheep corral, a few hundred Y'ards from the house, but conceal e d from it by a large barn. An understanding as to weapons, etc.,' was spee dily arrived at. The duel was to be fought at twent y paces with re volvers, each man to shoot a:t the word of command, and then advance and firing until one or the other, or both, should be dead or disabled. The duelists took their positions, cocked their revolvers, and held them with the muzzles pointed downward. At the word "Now!" given by Frank James, in a sharp voice, there came but one rep o rt. One of the revolvers had missed fire.

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12 THE JESSE JAM E S STORIES. Both duelists stood erect when the smoke of the weapon which had performed its duty had cleared away. Suddenly Luke Darlington's features contracted in pain, h is pistol droppetl from his nervele ss fingers and he sank slowly to the ground. when J esse Jam es 1 : eached his side was dead. He was bending over,the body of his victim, wit h bitter rC'gr et stamped upon his face, \Nhen a voice from the barn c alled his name. "Hello, J e ... s," it said. "vVhat in creation .are you up to now?" Jesse James l ooked up, and his expression changed q uickly from grief to joy. "Wood Hite!'' he exclaimed. "Where did you drop 'Mi sso uri," wa. the cheery r esponse of the man whose hi s tory had alreacly become a part of that of the outlaw broth ers, but who had been separakd from them for so me time, "and I hav e been hunting you for a fortnight." ''You couldn't have found us out at a more opportune \V ood," said F rank, after hearty handshakings had been indulged in "for we are in want of the services of a man of about your size and nerve \ Vhcn the story of the dt1el was told, Wnod Hite gave his op ini on of Chain Lightnihg Luke's conduct in these words: ''Served him right." After giviagorders to the frightened station-keepe r re garclinpthe disposition of the dead man's body, Jesse James deliberately shot Darlington' s horse dead, then mounted his animal, and, with Frank and Wood Hite, rode away in the direction of the railroad. Thev knew the: country well, and, by hard riding, they h oped 'to reach a certain convenient spot in time for holdi..'!g up the train from Soledad. It was abm1t an hour before sundown when they ai" r ived at their destination, which was the fa1it:her side of a deep cut and where there :-.va,5 a steep embankment o n each side of the track. After tearing up one of the rails, they took theit posi tions behind a pile of rocks and waited for the coming of the trai n CHAPTER CLXXXVITI. AN OAT!! FULFILLED. The Denv e r and Rio Grande express, Durango branch. left St'ledad at ro :30 A M. on a certain T u esda y of a 1r.emorab l e year. In the smoker rode Dick Blason and the deputy sheriff of Arcirnleta County. In the miJ
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THE J E S SE Jf\MES STORIES. . had fallen to the floor, dragged himself to the do o r, unfastened it and shoved it back. Frank James caught the handle of door and swung himself in. While he was occupied at the safe, which he forced the messenger to open, \i\ T ood Hite busied himself with the baggage-mast e r, who had J.eft his end of the car at the moment the express m essenger opened the door of the other compartment and was trying to make his escape from the front. A shot from Rite's rifle sent him tumbling, mortally wounded, to the ground. Shots and screams from one of the Pullmans made Hite start quickly in that direction. As he pa ssed the other cars on his way, he saw affrighted faces. at the windows, and he heard piteous voices calling upon him not to shoot. As soon as the outlaws had shown themselves, the con ductor had recognized them as the dreaded .James boys and Wood Hite. He had been held up before while doing duty on the Texas Pacific, and he knew that his life was not worth a farthing if h e attempted to make any resistance to their demands. "It's Frank and Jesse James," he said to the passengers, as quietly as he could, "and my advice is to keep per fectly still and take whatever comes without grumbling." "Oh, we'll do that, never fear," said a yoting man froth Chicago, with chattering teeth. "I wish I could find a hole to crawl into," said a New York c;apitalist, who had been in the Silverton region to look at a mine, "for, if they go through me, I am a ruin ed n1an." :vieanwhi\.e a scene was transpiring in the smoker which held Dick Blas-on and the deputy sheriff that would have made the passengers in the other cars tremble for their lives cquld they have wit nessed it. Advancing into the car, Jesse James was confronted by the deputy sheriff, who was on hi s way to the door, pist o l in hand, determined to give the robbers battle, no matter what the cost to himself might be. Jesse James had smashed the lock of his \i\i inchester before entering and thrown it away, and, with two re volvers ready for instant use, he blazed away befqre the startled deputy had time to pull the trigger of his own pistol. Down fell the officer, with a bulle t in his h eart. There were but two other passengers in the smoker be sides Dick Blason. One was a sport who was on his way from Durango to Denver with a goodly sized pile in his pockets, the result of a lucky month's clean-up at the faro-table. Determined to defend his property to the last, he l e t fly with his revolver when he saw the deputy sheriff fall. It missed its mark, and an answering shot, fired by Jesse James, struck his pistol hand and made him drop the weapon with a cry of pain. But hi s m otto was "No surre nder." Reaching down with his left h and . he picked up the pistol, but before he could use i t another bullet struck him in the shoulder. At this moment Dick Blas o n, who occupied a scat in front of him, rose up and held his manacled hands ahove his head. Jesse Jarpes was close upon him as he did so. On the savage impulse of the l'uoment, the outlaw clubbed one of his revolvers and brought it clown wit h crushing force on the robbe r -detect iv e's h ead: Blason fell back in his sea t wit h a deep groa n and with the bl ood streaming clown bi s forehead. Catching him by the coat collar, Jesse James was in the act of dragginghis victim into the aisle, when the sounds of a struggle in the doorway by which he had entered made him turn quickly around. \Vha t h e saw caused him to leave B!ason and hasten to the door with a sayage imprecation. Wood Hite was engaged in a struggl e with a young man. They were now on the floor, wit h wood Hite on top. lt was at this juncture that Jesse James started from Blason's side toward the combatants. The y oungman saw his ra ge-distorted face, and he suddenly became vested with the strength of a g i an t. Rolling Hite over, he struck him a powerful blow be tween the eyes, temporarily stunning him, and then leaped up to give battle to th e man who had killed his brother. "Fiend! devil!" he hissed ; "take that!" Out came a: bowie knife, but, as h e made a fierce lunge for the heart of the outlaw, Jesse James flung o ne of his pistols full int o the infuriated detective's face The you n g stranger staggered back against the jamb of the door, dazed and blinded by the blow. Jesse James picked up the weapon which had been of such effective service and struck the man again a nd again, until he fell over, with his h ead upon th e platform out side, and lay motionless. With one satisfied glance at his bleeding and insensibli; victim, Jesse James hastened back to Blason s seat, o nly to find the villain gone. The robber-detective had quickly recovered hi s se n se s and while Jesse James had been pummeling the stra n ge r with the butt of his revolver he had hurrie d to t h e other door and stepped o ut to the ground. But h e was not destined to escape the vengeance of the man who had s1rorn to haYe his life.

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THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. Not knowing whi"ch way to turn for safety, he was hur rying along toward the express and baggage car, when Frank James leaped out of the express compartment and bmught to a st;dclen standstill. Frank had plund e red the express safe single-handed. A brakeman had attempted interfere with his programme by entering the compartment fr.om the paggage encl with a cocked pistol in his hand But he was so excit e d that his aim was wild, and the bullet cut a hole in the side of the car instead of finding its way to the daring out l aw's brain. Frank James sprang upon him like a tiger before he could fire again, and !Jad him on the floor and bound and gagged in a twinkling. when Dick Blason saw Jesse James' brother directly in his path, he fell on his knees and begged piteously for his life. "We'H consider your case by and by," spoke the cold voice of Jesse James behind him. "And now, Frank," he quietly, "we'd better light out: that is, if you have got the boodle. "Fifteen thousand," repeated Frank, tapping a bulging c oat pDcket. "That will do. Come on, Woo d." Hite, who had pick e d him.self up from the floor of the smoker, and who hacl been keeping an eye on the passen g er coaches meanwhile, hurried forward upon his chief's words and the three outlaws, with their prisoner, quickly disappeared over the.pile of rocks . In a thicket a quarter of a mile away they found their horses. Soon after they reached the place the passengers on the train heard a piercing shriek, followed by several pis tol shots. No investigation was made until an hour afterward, when the constable of Amargo and a posse found the dead body of Dick Blason under a tree. Jesse Jam es had fulfilled his oath of vengeance. CHAPTER CLXXXIX. JESSE JAMES IN A TIGHT ELACE--THE FIGHT AT THJt CABIN. Early on the afternoon of Wednesday, the day follow i::lg the robbery of the Denver and Rio Grande express, the little postmistress of Karpay, a thriving mining town, ::t short distance from Paresa Springs, Colorado, was busily engaged in sorting over letters, preparatory to clos ing the mail for the North, when the report of a pistol on the sidewalk in front of the office caused her to leave her work and rush quickly to the door. She saw a man lying on the walk, seemingly dead, an c : on the street opposite, and not twenty feet away, three masked horsemen, all a rmed with rifles. "It's all right, miss," said one of the mysterious horse men, as he took off his hat and made her a polite bow. "The fellow at your door was a little saucy, and we had to punish him." The postmistress, though greatly terrified, yet had the voice to ask : "It's the marshal, isn't it?" "Yes." "What did he do, and who are you?" "He tried to oppose oltr progre ss, and I am the owner of this to;vn." Next door to 1 the post office was the People'.s Bank, and the cashier, his assistant and the president of the institu tion were now standing in the door. "Get back in there, quick!" shouted the man who had addressed the postmistress,. "or you shall share the mar shal's fate, every licking son-of-a-gun of you." "And you had better retire to your office," said a second hors e man to the little woman who had charge of the mails, "for there's a right smart chance for a circus in this vicinity." The postmistress did not wait for a second invitation to take herself out of the way, but stepped inside. of her office quickly and closed and bolted the door. There was a railing along the outer edge of the side walk in front of the bank, and, coolly dismounting, the three desperadoes, who were none other than Frank and Jesse James and Wood Hite, tied their animals to it, and then walked 'toward the bank door. Frank James stood guard outside, while Jesse James and Hite entered the ban-k. The cashier was now at his post, but his assistant and the president were outside the counter talking earnestly together. "Quit that!" yelled Jesse James, who supposed that they planning an offensive demonstration, and upon the words he let fly a bullet, which passed so close to the head of the president, who was the taller of the two, that "the wind of it,'' as he afterward expressed it, made his hair rise. "Throw down your weapons!" was the next command of the outlaw, as he flourished his pistol menacingly. The two bank officer'5 lost no time in complying. Jesse James kept them covered, whife Wood Hite pro ceeded to pick up and stow away the two pistols which had been thrown on the floor. On the cashier's desk was a loaded six-shooter, and he was fingering it nervously when there came a sharp report from Wood Rite's revolve r, and the cashier's weapon f spun along the desk and dropped to the floor with a thud. "Keep your eye on the pair in front of you," said }esse James, in quick, sharp tones, "while I attend to our friend across the way

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, THE JESSE JJ\MES STORIES. 15 He was over the counte r in another in stant and had hi s pist o l at the now th o roughly cowed cashier's ear. The safe door was open, and, after o ne quick glance in that direction, Jesse James pulled out several salt sacks from his pocket. "Here, you,. h e said, in a threatening voice, "just whirl in lively, and dump the contents of that safe into these sacks. Don't mix the boodle, but put gold and currency into one sack and si l ver int o another! See?" "Yes, yes," said the trembling cashier. This operation had been performed, and Jesse Jam es had rec e i ved the sack of plunder, when ther e came a loud warnin g shout from Frank. "Corne out here quick, boys," he called, "for h ell' s a-popping, sure enough!" T h e next mom e nt there came seve ral sha rp suggestive reports, and Frank James, hatless ar.d with his pistol arm hanging usel ess by hi s s ide, rushed into the room. What had occurred outside was this : The marshal of Karpay had a deputy, a half-breed who had o n ce bee n an outlaw himself. He was as brav e as a lion, and when the n ews r eac hed him in the saloon where he was playing poke r with a miner t:1at masked r obbers had shot his superior and wer e lo ot ing the bank, he hurried out o n the street, and, hastily getting together a posse, started toward tlle scene of the robb e ry. Frank James saw the m en coming, and, realizing the danger, shouted to his brother to come out, and at the same m o men t fired at the head of the deputy marshal. The shot took effect in th e officer s side, and as h e went clown the posse behind him let go a volley which sent Frank James' hat flying fr o m his head and smashed the bones of his forearm Ci:ack crack! crack! went the pistols o utside as Jesse James reached the side of his brother. One g l ance through the ope n door made him grit his teet h in savage rage. The deput y marshal's posse had shot and the three horses of the out l aws. "It's a hand-to-hand fight for lif e o r death now," hissed Jesse Jam es: "Our time has c6me, I reckon, quietly responC:ed his brother. ":Maybe, but not un til I have made some of th ose curs outside bite the dust." Then he added, quickly, as a number of stern faces showed tnemselves at the door : "Get behind me, Frank, for you re disabled. L et Wood and me run our end of the circus .''. H i te was now at his leader's side, really ro sell his life as dearly as possible. HLet 'e m have it, boys!" s h oute d a voi1J e from the door It was that of the deputy marshal, who, t h o ugh severely wounded, had crawled to the sidewalk in front of the bank, and was now directing the movements of his m en. A dozen reports that sounded as one followed this com mand. \Vhen the smoke cleared a way on l y one of the three bank r obbe rs stooc! erect. That one was Je sse James. At his feet lay his brother, wit h a still, white face At hi s side was Wood Hite, writhing from a num be r of terrible wounds, while ne;:trly back of him the assistant cashier la y motionless, hi s h eart forever stilled. The bullets of the deputy marshal's posse had struck friend as well as foe. The president and J esse James were unhurt. The for mer gave a cry of terror whe n h e saw the a s sistant cashier fall, and, darting toward the rear, opened a door which led to an alley and quickly put himself out of r eac h of further bullets. Believing that hi s brothe r was dead, J esse James fol l owed close up on hi s he e l s Several shots were frred after !tim, but not o n e reached his pe r son. Jn th e alley wer e severa l sadd l e horses. Mounting one of them, h e cut the rope h alter with his knife, and, digging his spu rs into the animals s ides, rode furiously out of the alley. Reaching the main street, he saw there was a large crowd in fr ont of the bank, and that nearly eve r y man was armed "We've laid o ut two," sho u ted one of the crowd, "and now l et's convert the ot her int o a corpse and make a proper clay's work of it. The speaker was o n h o r seback, and he galloped in the direction of Jesse Jam es as .soo n as the words left his lips A dozen m ou nt ed men followed his example. A way went the pursued and the pursuers. J csse James had not gone ove r a mile of ground before he discovered, to his ext r eme sa tisfa ct ion, that the 110-rse he had stolen was fleeter than any of the animals of his enem ies. It was late at night when he reach e d what he suppose d was a safe retreat in the mountains. While urging his horse up a steep trail in a thickly wooded cai)on he came upon a miner 's cabin. There was nothing inside but a table and a pile of straw and a few t in dishes Having secured his h o rse, the hunted out law went into the cabin, and, throwing hims elf upon the straw, to the im mediate confusio n of a family of kangaroo rats, who had made a nesting place of the pile, he closed his eye s and tried to snatch a few hour.s' sleep.

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THE JESSE JAM ES STORIES. In vain. The exciting events of the day, the death of his much l oved comrade and brother, Frank, and the thought of the p erils that must confront him when he should seek to make his escape from the mountains, aH conspired to banish sluri 1 ber from his eyel i ds. As h e lay up on the pile of straw, starii1g gloomily at the rafters which could be plainl y seen, for the m oo n was shining brightly, the sound of m e n 's voices in the n ea r distance r eached h i s ears. He p l aced but o ne construction upon it. His e nemies had never lost his trail and wer e now close at h a nd. Starting to his fe et, he cock.ed his pistol and made for th e door . ';He re he is, boys!'' yell ed a voice not twenty feet away, and sho uts and ye lls now dangero u sly near we nt up in an s\\ er. It was now too late to retreat. He mu st tight hi s ba tt l e in th e cabin. But before he clo sed t h e door h e blazed away at the man who had gone ahea d o f hi s fell ows and h ad discovered th e outlaw's presence The scout-for s uch he might be called-fell dead in his tracks; the rep eating rifle w hi ch h e carried falling i n front of him. Jesse Jam es saw the ritl e and determined to possess it \i\Tith suc h a weapon in his possession, he might be able to beat the officer's posse off. Luck favored him as h e s tarted forward to grasp it. The ca bin s t ood in a !it tl e flat, and to r e ach it a steep hill had to b e climbed. The pursuers were n ot a hundred yards awa y whe n the scout fell, and yet it took them a full minute to urge their h orses up the h ill. By the tim e they reached the spot w h ere scout had fallen, J esse James, with the repeating rifle in hi s h and, was inside the cabin and had the doo r closed The l e ad er of the party o f purs uers was about to give some orders to hi s m en, when the desperate o utlaw thn:st his rifle thro u g h the cabin wind ow and began firin g. While Jesse James was fig h ti n g for his lif e in th e cabin, a h o r seman rode int o Karpay, and, announcing h imself as a deputy s h eriff from Archuleta Co un ty, asked to be direct e d to the office of the marshal. "He's dead," answered the sa l oon-keeper, to whom the questi o n had be e n put The h orse man 's face expressed th e greatest surprise "He was mortally wounded by one of the James b oys this afterno o n and died at sundown "The James b oys savagely ejaculated th e horseman. "They are the coons I am 1-ooking after." "What do you want them for?" queried the dispenser of liquid refreshment. "For the train robbery yesterday, which resulted in the death of my partner "Who was he?" "Another deputy sheriff." "Oh! The officer who was taking Dick Blason to D enver?" "Same party." "Well, I h ope the boys w h o are out after Jesse James w ill bring him in dead or alive, for you to look at." "There is a posse afte r him, is there?" "Yes. " \ Vhere are Frank James and Wood Hi. te, his part ners?" Jn jail. T he saloo n-k eepe r then appeased the deputy marshal' s curiosity by a graphic narrative of the fight at the bank. "Wood Hite i s as good as dead," h e added, "but Frank J ames i s n t hurt much. He's got a brok e n arm and a trifling wound in the scalp, aud that's all. \iVhcm he was picked up from the bank floor every one thought he was dead but he soo n came to, for h e had o nl y been stunned b y a bullet whic h grazed hi s skull." "Who i s guarding the jail now that the marshal is dead and his assistant is laid up?" asked the deputy from Archuleta. "Dan ged if I know. Some trusty, probably, for all the abl e-bo died, r e liable men have gone off on the hunt for J esse Thanking the sa loonkeepe r for hi s information the h orsema n r ode off in th e direction of the jail. He ch u ckled soft l y when h e was o ut o f h ear ing. Lucky I was riding out of Amargo yesterd ay on a prospecting tour-prospecting for a l o ne miner whom I might hold up for a stake to get me out of this cursed count r y o r I might not have been able to play the deputy s h erift r acket to-clay, and at the sa m e time be of service to the men who put that thieving scoundrel Dick Blason out of the way. Yes, it was a lucky chance which took Pete Surrey to the cu t a n d brought him in sight of the wrecked train of t h e D e nv e r and Rio Grande." And, with further cogitati o ns o f a satisfacto ry nature, th e miner w h o so materially assist e d the plans of the James boys and Cha in L ightning Luke at the mining camp in Archul et a Co un ty three days before rode l eis urel y up to the jail. He had been a witness to the fight at the sto ne heap, but had n ot tak e n part in it, for the reason that h e soon saw that th e three outlaws were able to hold their own After the fight h e would have followed th e James boys o u t of town ha d he bee n the possessor of a horse, or if he cou l d have fonncl o n e anywhere up o n the street

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THE ,!ESSE JAMES 17 Failing to secur e a s t eed, h e was forced to remain in hiding until nightfall. Then he ventured forth, prowled around the camp until he found a saddle horse tied to a tree across the street from a dance-house. Mounting it quickly, he rOC:e away without asking leave of the owner. Accident brought him to t!1e railway cut about half an hour after the train robbery. Being unknown to any of the passengers or train hands, he passed himself off a s an honest miner, and, \Yhile going through the smoker, came upon the dead body of the deputy sheriff who had left S o ledad that clay with Dick Blason. Without being observed by the train hands, who had followed him into the smoker, Surrey unfastened the dead deputy's badge and attached it to his own person. He had no definite idea at that moment as to what use he should make of it, but a short time afterward, when he had been made acquainted with all th e details of the train robbery, and had looked upon the dead body of Dick Blason, he determined to make the badge serve the pur pose of assisting Jesse James and his compani o ns, in case a favorable opportunity for so doing should arise. Surrey had entertained for Blason a deep and deadly hatred, and the knowledge that the robber-detective had met his death at the hands of the James boys aroused within his breast ari eager desire to Fepay them for their work. He rode into Karpay without having heard of the bank robbery, but when the saloon-keeper had related what had occurred, and had further informed him that the lit tle jail, owing to the absence of the assistant marshal (who had officiated as jail er) and the greater portion of the male population, was practically without defense, he quickly made up his mind to a certain course of action. At the jail he found a trusty in charge, a misdem ea nor prisoner, whose term of imprisonment would soon ex pire, and who had been promoted to a responsible position on account of good behavior. Surrey showed his badge and introduc ed him self in his assumed char:icter. There was no one in the jail office while they con versed. "Can I see Frank James?" asked the false deputy sheriff, he had told the story of the train robbery. "Certainly." The trusty unlocked a closet door, took clown from a hook a big bunch of keys and then walked across the room to the iron door which opened into th e tank where the cells were located. Surrey, with an expression on his face that would have made the trusty start with alarm could he hav e seen it stood directly behind him. The key was turned in the heavy door and the bars \\ere raised. But the nnsuspicious trusty never went any farther with his part of acc o mmodation. He had placed his hand on the knob, with the intention of pulling the ooor open, whe n a weight descended on his h ead, and h e kne w no m ore un ti l h e fou nd himself, half .an hour late:-, lying on the floor, bou n d ha nd and foot. Frank James was sitting on a bunk in his oell, his mind a prey to the most gloomy forebodings, when the door was suddenly op e ned and Pete Surrey stepped in. The outlaw prisoner did not recognize him, for he had met the miner but o n ce before, but \Yhen Pete had ex plained his connection with the affair at the mining camp in Archuleta County, his face lig hted up and he grasped the false deputy by the hand A few words sufficed to make Frank James acquainted with the s itua tion. But they did not leave the tank until they had looked in on Wood Hite. "Ko use, boys," said the latter, with a groan, "I'm too badly bunged up to be moved. You'll have to make the riffle without me." vVhen they found that he was not even able to raise himself from his pillow, they regretfully left him. In the jail office the weapons taken from Frank James at the time of his capture were found, and, well armed, the two desperadoes left the jail. It was a m oonlight ni g ht, as has been previously stated, but there \\ere no people moving about on the stree ts. T he sto res had been closed for some time, and the only lights visible came from saloor:s and dance-houses. Moun ted on the animal that Pete Surrey had appro priated, they galloped out of town following t he route taken by Jesse James and his pursuers A few mile s' riding brought them alongside a solitary horseman. He was joo-gin g along at a slow pace, wit h his arms around the horn of t he sa ddle and hi s h ead t h row n for ward up o n the horse's neck. '"Drunk, for a million dolla rs,'" wa Pete Surrey"s com ment. '"Then I'll have n o t r ouble in tra n sact ing a littl e bu si n ess v.-ith him," returned Frank Jam es, with a peculiar smile. He dismounted quickly and, rwming in froat of the h o rse of the stranger, who wa probably a miner, from hi s dress, seized the bridle with o n e hanp and jerked the horseman to the gronnd with the ot h er. The drunkard's head struck the grolind with such force that he did n ot even utter a groan.

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18 THEJESSE JAMES STORIES Springing into the saddle, Frank James took the lead, and the two frier;ids, now separately mounted, pursued their journey at a much faster pace than before. "I know a good place for roosting to-night," said Sur rey. "It's a cabin that an old partner of mine used to occupy, and th e re are two ways to get to it, a long way and a short way. The long way is traveled the most, but we can save a couple of hours by taking the shorter route." "Then, let's take it by all means." An hour's ride brought them to the banks of a creek. "Only half a mile more," said Surrey, "and we'll be at the cabirt." They had crossed the creek and were winding around a ridge, \"1hen a pistol report n o t far away reache ears. "That came from the directi o n of the cabin," 1emarked Surrey. "And it was Jesse's old Quan trell pistol that spoke," said Frank James quickly. ''It's got a peculiar crack, and I can distingui s h it anywhere." As they hurried their horses forward over the broken and perilous trail, a 1 egular fusillade of shots was heard. 1They've got him in a corner," said Frank James, in a fever of excitement, but l]:'s not dead yet. Upward onward they r o d e at the imminent risk of breaking their necks, until they came in sight of the rear of the cabin and the horse of Jesse James, which was snorting and plunging in affright about the tree to which he was tethered A sudden lull in the firing occurred \ \ he n they dis mounted at the back door of the cabin. "Are you there, Jesse? called out Frank James, in a hoarse whisper, as he put his mottth to the of the door. "Yes,',. was the resp o n se, in a l o ud, clear, joyiul voice; "and, if it's not your ghost, Frank, we'll clean this whole caboodle out in a jiffy." Pete Surrey utter e d a shout at these words that awoke the mountain echoes and carried consternation into the hearts of the posse huddled together a hundred yard be yond the cabin in a clump of brush. Frank James cle ared hi s throat and let out the old Quantrell yell. Then the back door was flung op e n a nd he \\'as in the glad embrace of his brother. "I've given 'e m a terrible rally already said J esse in a voice of savage triumph, and my luck has stayed with me from the beginning-I haven't got a scratch." He had been lucky, indeed. When he opened fire through the window with the rifle picked up outside, the force of besiegers realized that the capture of the terrible outlaw could only be eff ected at a bloody expense. But every man had followed the trail of Jesse James, knowing that he was taking his life in his hand, and therefore, prepared1 in a measure, for whatever reception might be met with. The fire was retu rned, and the bullets crashed through the wooden front of the cabin, but none found lodgement in the body of the desperate mat.1 inside. But every time that Jes:se James' rifle spoke, an enemy went down, either dead or seriously wounded. When three of the pursuers had fallen, the posse became frenzied, and they came on with shouts and yells, but paused when within fifty feet of t.he cabin, where two more of their number bit the dust. They now realized that the accuracy of the fire from the cabin was too much for them, and that it would be the height of folly to advance farther. So they fell back, screening themselves behind logs and brush, and keeping up a steady fire in the direction of a foe they could not see, and whose exact locality they could only gi.1ess. The balls were coming into the structure pretty fast, and at last one came so near Jesse James face that it made his blood tingle. At this moment he paused to charge his rifle with fresh cartridges. "We've hit him sure," whjspered one of the posse whm the lull came, "and now is the time when we may make a rush with some chance of laying him out for good." "He may be playing 'possum," suggested a wiser spirit. "Let's wait a while before showing burselves in the open again. But another, the leader of the party, advised a strategic movement, and the advice was at once taken. Jesse James, peering through a chink in the, boards, saw the men through the brush to flank him oi1 both sides Crack! c rack! went his repeating l'ifle, first on one side of the open space before the cabin and then bn the other, and d0\n1 went two more of his pursuers. O nly five m e n now remained to oppose him and when he saw th em re treat for the second time, his spirits rose, and he felt that the battle was already won. His brother, whom he believed to be dead, came up \\ith Pete Surrey while he was watching at his chink for th e next movement o f his enemies. Frank James advice was that the three of them should rush o ut oi the cabin an d make a charge upon the rem nant of the posse. ''All right, Jesse James, with alacrity, and, open ing the door, they leaped out into the open with a series of wild yells that made the little band of five, now

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THE JESSE Jt'\MES STORIES. 1 9 crouch ed behind a big bowlcler, feel that their doom was sealed unless they t oo k to their heels and ran like the win cl. There was no consultation between them as to what thev should do. As :me man they jumped up, and, leaving their horses behind, ran, as Jesse James expressed it, "like scared wolves with a pack of hounds at their heels." The pursuit was not carried far, no1; did the outlaws put forth their best efforts to overtake and wipe out the fteeing quintet. Returning to the cabin, they inspected the animals left behind by the posse, and, finding three that suited them better than the ones that had brought them into the mountains, they turned the others loose, and with Pete Surrey as guide, traveled all night in a northerly direc tion. Morning found them on the bank of a small mountain stream about ten miles from Del Norte. Selecting a convenient shelter at some distance from the trail, they tethered their animals and then threw themselves on the glass f
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20 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. Frank and Jesse J a m es and Pete Surrey rode down the hill t o \rnrd the office They wer e all masked, in deference to the wish of Surrey who preferred to r e main unkn own. "And I don't want my friend, t h e s up erinte ndent, hurt," h e said, earnestly, if it can possibly be avoided." "All righ t, Pete," r espo nd ed J esse James. "If I have to hit him I will give it to him easy." T h e super.i11tendcnt came t o the d oor of th e office as th e three ma sked men r ode up. H e gave one gla nce in their direction, and, realizing the s i tuatio n retreated inside and closed and bolted the door. J esse Jam es sn'liled. "He's true grit," h e remarked, "and I h ope it won't be nec essary to la y him o ut ." The foreman and hi s assistant were standing by the l e d ge, un ce rtai n how to act, when F rank James espie d them. Bringing hi s rifl e to bear upon t h e two men, h e called out, s harply: "Come for ward, quick, with your hands up i f you don't want to p l ay the l eadi n g part at a funeral." The men rai sed their hands quickly and came forward. CHAPTER CXC. A SURPRISE FOR THE JAMES BOYS When the for ema n and his assistant had approached w i t hin a few ya rd s o f the o utlaws, Frank James com mand ed them to h a lt. They obeyed promptly, and then Pete Surrey was in st ru cted to relieve them of their weapcns and ti e them up. While this ope rat ion was being performed, under Frank James' watc hful eyes, J esse James' face was turned t o ward th e door of the office. There was but one window, and i t was o n the farther side. "Come o ut of there, Mr. Superintendent!" spoke the lead e r of the outla .vs, in a voice of ste rn authority, "and don't mak e a fool of yourself. You can't save the money, and we're b ound to get it, eve n if we ha ve to .fill you full o f lead." No answer. "Trying to play smart, are you. Then take this and this." Two rifle s h ots rang out, the bullets passing through the thin panels o f the door, but eliciting no response fro m within. The work of tyin g the min e foreman and his assistant had now been concluded, and F rank James and Pete Surrey st e pped to J esse's side 'What's the matter w ith that blanked fool of a s uper intendent ?'1 grow led Jesse James. "Maybe he has fall e n int o a fit," suggested F r ank. "From fright?" "Yes." "Don't you b elieve it,': put in Pete SL1rrey, quick l y, "for a braver man n ever s tepp ed in s hoe leather. " \i\Th y don't h e mak e a n o i se then? "Blamed if I know." "Let's give him a volley all t oget h e r and then break in the door." "That's th e ti cke t." Bang! went t h e rifles, and when the echoes had died away utte r silence r e ign ed. "He's not in there," sa id Frank James, "for at s uch close range and with such a little seve n by-nine affair to fire into"-the office in realit y was only eight by t en "we cou l d n t have failed to hit him if h e had been in th e r e.' The doo r was burst open, and th e three outla,vs sprang m. "No o ne h e re, just a s I said," r emarked Frank J ames, with a l owering brow. "But there's th e sa fe," pointing to a corner, "and we'll get the boodle, an y how ." The safe did not stand against a wall, but a couple of feet fro m it. But F rank Jam es met with a surprise as h e tciok a step forward. From behind th e sa f e rose up the form of the superin tendent. In each h a nd was a pistol, and h e commenced firing inst antly. Down dropped Pete Surrey, s h o t through the heart, before the Jam es boys could pull a trigger. went a bulle t as J esse Jame raised his r evo lv e r, and he f e ll back a pace and gasped for breath. But he was not harmed, for the bullet, th ough true in its aim, had flattened against the o utlaw 's coat of mail. Frank James fired almost at th e same instant that his brother staggered back, and the brave superintendent tumbled clown in hi s corner, wit h a ghastly wound in the b ead. He Lmconscio11<> when the brothers r eac hed !'iim. "Too bad, Frani-:,'' said Jesse with a sorrowful s hak(' of th e hea(I, "for I would rath e r have disabled him ." -"He's not dead, and he'll liv e to be a grandfather, bar r i n g accidents," was Frank's quick reply, as he made an exam ination o f th e wound. "His skull is all right. It's o nly th e flesh that's torn. "Then let 's bind him, and let 's hurry out of this. It's 'bout time the min e rs we re her e." When the s up e rintendent had been tied up, a search for th e money was begun. Curse the luck!". grovvl ed J esse James, after he had explored the safe, "there isn't a bean here

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T H E JESSE STl .,.J. 21 Frank James, who had been turning out the contents of th e victim's pockets, h e ld out a hand with a few gold pieces in it. "And that's all h e's got o n hi s person,'' he r ejoi ned in deep disgust. "Onl y forty-five collars." The superintendent now ope ned his eyes. "Wh e r e's the boodle?" d emanded J esse James, angrily. "Speak o r I'll brain yo u. The vvotmded man s h ook hi s head. Brain me if yo u will," he sa id faintly, 'butyo u won't make me t e ll you whe r e it is." They lo oke d in every n oo k, turned out drawers, tried the planks of the floor and tapped the \ v alls. No m o ney anywhere. "Th ere w ere notes aggregating eleven thousand do llar s in thi s office a while ago," S"aid J esse James, as h e stooped over the calm l y resolute superint endent, "and we 11a n t them. "They are not yours, and yo u might hunt a year and n ot find them," sa id the superintendent, with firmness. "But 11e might find 'em in 11al( a minu te, if we kne11 where they were,_ eh?'' r emarked Frank James, ca r elessly. "Yes "Then they are hidden somewhere in this room. J ess, go to the door and keep a sharp lookout for the min e rs, and I'll mak e another search." "I'll do better than that, r esponded his brother, grimly. "I'll go to the mouth of the shaft, cut the ropes of the cage, a nd prevent the miners from coming up ." As soo n as h e had gone to execute this missio n, Frank Jame s dragged the superintendent int o the middl e of th e room. Believing that his last moment ha d come, th e brave mif\e official clos e d hi s eyes. "I've a good mind to kill you,'' said Frank James, slowly; "but, as I believe that I'll find that m o n ey by your aid, I am going to l et you liv e With th ese words, the outlaw proceeded to act in pursuanc e of a certain theory that had come into hi s mind. He looked steadi l y at the safe a moment, and then g l anced quickly at th e superinten dent. The latter 's eyes had b ee n hi s movements, and now l ooked coolly int o hi s 'Good,'' thought Frank James. 'Tl\ ca tch him out yet." From th e s afe the outlaw fix ed hi s -attention o n the l ittle table where th e superintendent did his writing. Again Frank James turned, and eye met eye T h e superintendent' s gaz.e was a s s teady as before The n ext article of furniture that arrested the outlaw's gaze was an old-ashioned armchair in front of the d esk. Frank J ames looked at th e chair long and critically. Then he w h eeled sharply and confronted the superin t e n dent. The latter's eyes sudden l y fell. "Aha!" said th e o utlaw, in a to n e of satisfact i o n, "I've got yo u n ow, my man You ha ve sec reted t h e n otes so me where ab o ut that c h ai r ... The s up e rint endent made rro answer, bnt F rank James saw that hi s lip s trembled slig htly. T h e c u shion upon the eat was fir st exami n ed, bnt n o m onev was there. The o ut law next exe r ted his stre ngth t o pull off t h e rounds, in th e h ope that one of t h em might be fou nd to be h ollow. Rut all were so lid. "It's the seat itself, t h e n," h e muttered, and h e tapp e d it, and, puttin g hi s ea r down, listened eager ly. At la st h e h ad struck t h e clew he was lo oking for. The seat gave forth a h ollo w so u nd. .-.A f ew expe rim ent and the top was lifted off and the con tents o f th e h ollow p l ace were before h im Si lv er certificates galore. \ N h oop la !'' h e s houted, in the excess of his glee. "We' ve made t he riffle at l ast, Jesse.'" His brother appeared i11 the doorway a mom ent after th e words hacl left his l ip s He h ad severed the ropes attached to the cage and sent the la tter t umblin g down t h e shaft, to the te rribl e alarm of the min e r s below wh o cou l d not imagine w hat was h appe nin g above. Some thought it the work of an e n e m y intent up o n their destructi o n ; o th e r s t hat t h e fore man or s up e rin t e nd e n t had go n e craz y J esse James l ooked at the h eap of si l ver notes, and then s l ap ped hi s broth e r proudl y on the ba ck. 'Yo u'v e got a great h ead, F r ank," he said, admiringly. "How, in t h e name of all that's wonderful, did you get on to thi s hidin g-p lace?" rank told him "I cave, wa s hi s brother's comment. "You may take the whole business. I don'r want a ce nt. F rank J a m es s mil ed, and t hen rapidly stuff ed the notes into hi s pocket. The s uperint e nd ent uttere d a groan as sa w the m o ney disappear. "It's a rough deal o n you, o ld man," r emarke d Jesse James, in a tone of m ee k sympat hy; "but th e n you mu st r eme mber that t h e min e i s panning out well, and that the re's m ore m o ney where t hi s ca m e from." They did n o t l eave th e office until they had relieved the b ody of th ei r dea d co rnr;i.cle of the plunder they had given to him a few h ours before .. "Po o r Pete!" said Frank as h e ste pped out of th e office. "He was a da nd y while h e la sted That night the tw o bro the r s camped near Monte Vista. Friday afternoo n found t h e m within a few miles o f the

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22 1"fK Jf;.:SSE JAMES STORIES. railway junction at Alamosa, w ithout having met with any adventures worth recording. From a conversat i o n wit h a cowboy whom t h ey m et on the r oad, and who proved to be a friend of Pete Surrey, a nd a man to be trusted, they learned that common report placed them in another section of th e State. "Thafs good n ews," said J esse James, after t h ey had parted with the cowboy, "for now we may run into Ala mosa for a little time with o ut fear of having a mob at our heel s to cut us up alive.'1 The James boys were adepts at disg u ising themselves, though they went about in their proper pe rson s the greate r part of t h e time. They rode to a grove of trees o n t he outskirts of tow n staked their horses, and then made some important changes in t h e ir personal appea r a nce. It was about nine o'clock when they set o ut on their exped ition to A l amosa. At the first hotel they stopped and went boldly up to th e i egister. "Some of our friends may be h ere," Jesse had r emarked, "and, i f so, we want to see th e m of course." But no fam i liar nam e appeared on the r egister. They l eft the hotel, and were standing on the sidewalk, l ooking about fma restauran t w h en a s h ort, stout man, whose face wore a prosperous look, passed them and went up the stairs of a l odging-house a few doors below. "Th at's old Boxem, catt l e king of Nebraska/' whispered Jesse to Frank, "and i f we can cnly corral h im, we'll be catchi n g the fattest pigeon in the West." ''He never carries any money with him," returned F rank James with a frown. "He does all hi s business with checks. "I know it, and my scheme is not to hold h i m up for \\hat he's got on his person. It knocks that sort of a racket into a cocked hat.' "You p r opose to abduct hi m and hold him for ransom?" "That's it.'' "Can we do it?" "We can try. ... ""h e first thing to find out i s when he intends to leave town. The n ex t is, what i s the nature of the business that brought him here?" "How are we going to find ou t?" "I am goi n g u p to his room and hav e a talk with him. He's an easy-going old coon, and when I introduce my self as a cattle man from T exas-we have got a cattle ranch d ow n there, there won't be any lie in that-he'll ope n hi s heart to me at o nce." I hope he will," rejoined Frank James but his face exp re sse d doubt. "He's an eccentric cuss," resumed Jess e "and you never find him at a h o tel. He selects a quiet lodging house and eats at restaurants. I'll talk with him a w hile, and then I'll ask him to have a plate of oysters with me." "Perhap s h e has -jusJ come from a r estaurant." I don't believe it, for he always picks his teeth for an h our after ea ting. That's another peculiarity '"Well, go up a nd try him D o n t b e gone long." I won't; and in the m ean time yo u c a n go over to that restaurant across the street and wait for me." "All right." J esse James was gone half an h o ur. As he entered the r estaurant, talking familiarly with Boxe m Frank Jame s said to him se lf, with a smi le: "Talk about great h ea ds. why, Jesse 's beats min e all hollow." Jesse pa i d no attention to his brother, beyond giving him o ne quick, meaning glance. An h our passed and the cattle king and the outlaw stood at t h e restaurant door, the former picking his teeth and in a m ost amiable humor. ''I'll see yo u o n Sunday," Frank James from within heard him say, "for to-morrow I've got to go out into the hills to look a t some cattle I'm thinking of buying, and then we can come to some arrange ment abou1: your Texas herds ." J esse James bade him good-night and then came for wa rd to hi s brother, "We can make it easily," he w hi spe r ed, "for the old coo n is go ing out of town alone." "Horseback?., "No, in a driving ca rt.'' "What time does he intend to start?'' "Ver y early. Five o'clock." "Good ." Boxem was a light s leeper and next morning he was up before daybreak. The r estaurants were not open, so he breakfasted on cracfoers and cheese and a few h orns of whisky in a saloon. Neither J esse nor Frank James s aw him leave the town,

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THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 2 3 for they were miles away on the road he purposed travel ing an hour after they parted with him the night before. Prudence warned them not to remain in town over night. Boxen1s route led toward Alkali Springs, and he was j ogg ing along in his cart thinking of the excellent bar gain he was going to drive with the cattle owner in th e hills, when two masked men sprang into the road and commanded him to stop. Having but a few dollars in his pockets, and not antici pating an abduction, he ch._eerfully complied. "All right, boys," he replied. "I'll stop, of course. But you won't make much of a haul out of me, I can tell you." ""We'll sec about that," said Frank James, quietly, I "when we have had a little private conversation with you." Boxem's face became suddenly pale. 'You don't want to detain me here, I hope," he said, with a look of entr eaty. "Shut up!" replied Jesse James, roughly, "the time to talk this matter over has not yet arrived." Boxem made a furious resistance when the outlaws were tying him up, but it was of no avail. Jumping into the cart beside him, Jes se James took the reins in his hands and turned the cart from the main thoroughfare into a disused wagon-road that led up a nar row ravine. Frank James followed with the saddJ.e hor ses Several hours afterward Boxem signed a check in favor of James \arinw (Jesse James' assumed nam e for the oc casion) or order, for twenty-five thousand dollars. Jesse James started after dark toward Alkali Springs to cash it. "I don't believe I'll have any difficulty in getting the money,'' he said to Frank as he started out, ;'for Boxem is well known h ereabouts, and I shall present myself as a cattle ma.n." CHAPTER CXCI. AN RAID. Jesse James rode all night and shortly after daybreak he met with the first adventure of the day. On turning a bend in a thickly-wooded district he heard some one singing, "Tell :Vle 'Nith Yom Eyes," in a rich, uncultivated baritone. Jesse James stopped and lis tened nntii the song was ended. Presently he heard a crackling noise in the bushes, and a wood-chopper stepped into the road with an ax over his shoulder. He was a young, stalwart, pleasant-faced fellow, and. as he halted suddenly at the sight of the stern-faced horse man, a deck of cards fell from his bosom to the ground. Jesse James with a laugh, asked him if it was a cold deck. "If it is," he added, jocularly, "you can't play with me. I'm on the dead square and no heathen Chinee." The wood -ch opper blushed. "It's the only deck I have," he said. "You play sometimes, of course." "Yes, when I can find any one to play with." "vVhere is your cabin:" "Yes. "A few dollars." ;
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!I 24 T H E J ESSE JAMES STORIES. Jars l oser, he that he would have to work a grand bluff if he hoped to recoup his losses. He was the dealer and got two deuces for a starte r After regarding his hand thoughtfully for a while, he put twenty dollars into the pot. The wood-chopper debated some time and then fol low ed suit. "I'll tak e two ca rds, said J csse Jam es, as he held out a king with his deuces. "One will
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THE J E S SE J AMES STORIES. 2 5 They parted in high good humor, after they had taken a number of drinks from a bottle of whisky which the wooc'.-chopper had produced. It was l ate in the forenoon when Jesse James arrived in sight of Alkali Springs. "One more hold-up, he said to himse lf, as he looked with speculative eyes at an advancing mule team, "and the week 's programme will have been carried out. One more hold-up then good-by for a long long tim e to th_e United States. we'll go to :vre:xico and hav e a royal time among the dons and donnas, the se n o r s and senori tas. This is the seventh clay-by tf1e great ho:n spoon" the words were spoken alond and in g-reat disgust-''hu t this is Sunday. I hadn't thought of it before. "A pretty how-d e -do, this is." he mutt ered. angrily as he reined ;n his horse. ;'Going to Alkali Springs to cash a check on the Sabbath day. 1 ought to be kicked by a mule for n ot rememb er ing what clay of the week it is And Frank is in the same b o at. well, well"-with a philosophical sigh-''I suppose it is what ought to have been expected, considering that with us all days of the week are the same. "What is to be clone?" ran his thoughts. "I might go on to the Springs and try to dispose of the check, but there' s not much likelihood that I can find a man ii1 the town who has twenty-five thousantl dollars in his pockets. No, I'll have to wait until to-morrow. In the meantime, I'll transact a little bu siness of a different kind." The mule team wa s yet some distance away, but Jesse James, who had th e eye of a hawk, saw that 011e of the wa
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26 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. "Oh, well, I may as \\ell tell you, I suppose. My name i s F rank Boxem." "Son of'the Nebraska cattle king?'' "Yes." "vVhere are your "Comrades?" "A short di s tance away." There was a short pause. Then Jesse James said, commandingly: "Let me up if you want to save your father's life." "My father! Why, he has gone into the mountains to buy cattle "He went into the mountains,'' said Jesse James, coolly, "but he hasn't bought any cattle, and if I am n o t by his side before dark, he will be introduced to old Beelzebub. "What do you mean?" queried Frank Boxem, in alarm. "I mean that he is a prisoner in the hands of Frank, and that Frank has orders to put him to death if I do not return by dusk." "I don't believe you." "Perhaps yot1 will believe the evidence of a check I have upon my person." "'Let me s ee it," cried rhe young man, who was now trembling violently. "Feel in the breast pocket of m y coat and you will find it." "Oh, no sonny," was the quick reply; "you can't fool me that way. If I remove one of my ha1ids you '11 be better ffxed than vou are now. Take it out your self Jesse James scowled, but was forced to comply. Tn a pocketbook the check for twenty-five thousand dol1ars, signed by Boxem, se ni o r \Yas found. The sdn looked at it thoiJghtfull y "I was on my way to get it cashed, said Jesse James but as Frank thought the old man might have put a little joker in it he rigged up the scheme that will in your father' s death if I don't show up at a certain time." "What do you want me to do?" asked Frank Boxem. "Releas e me and yo u may ke e p the check, and I ll turn your father l oose." ''The word of an outlaw is no good. Jesse James' dark face flushed wit h anger. ''Mine is,'' he said, curtly, "but if you don1t feel like trusting me, why, your old man may go to the devil and be done with it." Frank Boxem pondered a moment before he gave his answer. "Come, be quick/' urged Jesse James, "for some of your comrades may appear, and then all w ill. be up w ith both m e an d your dad. The young man r:moved hi s grasp o n the outla w and rose up "I'll trus t yo u," he s a id, bu t yo u mu s t permit me to go with you." "I have no objection, provicle
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Send in your exchange notices, boys. We will publish them all in a special "Exchange Department." ABOUT FAMOUS MEN. Boys, turn to page 31 and see the announcement of the new Contest. Everybody is to have another try at the valuable prizes offered. Don r miss this opportunity, but send in your article at once. Following are some of the best articles received during the week: Read them, and then send in your own! The Third Martyr 'President. (By M. Alan Humble, Oxford, N. C.) The third martyr President of the United States, William McKinley, was born in the little village of Niles, Trumbull County, Ohio, January 29, 1 843. He was the seventh child of his parents, and was intended for the ministry, but fate had otherwise ordained it, and so William entered the profession of the law. On June' 11, 1 861, he enlisted in Company E, Twentythird Ohio Voiunteers, as a private, was promoted in 1862, to commissary sergeant, and to lieutenant later in the same year. In 1864 he was commissiolled captain alld in 1865, olle month before the assassinatioll of de11t Lincoln, was brevetted major for '' gallaut and meritorious senices at the battles of Opequan, Cedar Creek and Fisher's Hill.' At the end of the war he returned to Poland, Ohio, a11:>s. When Captain Paul Jones arrived in Virginia the rumblings of war with the mother country were heard in the distance: He at once offered his services to the Continental Congress, and was made first lieutenant of the Alfred, a small war vessel of the first American navy. After proving his skill and bravery, he was pro moted to the rank of captain. Soon after this he wrote in a letter to a friend: "I had the honor to hoist, with my own hands, the flag of freedom the first time it was displayed on the Delaware, ' etc. I11 June, 1777, Captain Jones was appointed com mander of the frigate Rallger. He l:ad many adventures in this \ essel with the glorious Stars and Stripes float ing above him. In February, 1779. Captain Jones was appointed commander of a French ship which be named the Bon Homme Richard, after Benjamin Franklin's famous almanac. This vessel's last and greatest battle took place off the coast of Yorkshire with the new English warship, the Serapis. At the beginning of the battle au eigbteenpound shot of the Serapis entered the rotten hull of the

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{' .. I 28 THE JESSE JAMES ST O RIES. Ri chard. Af t er this the E11glish commander hailed Jones: "Ha\e yon struck?" The reply was, "I haven't begun to fight." After three a11d one-half hours of battle the Serapis surrendered. In this vessel he set sail for Lexel, Roi land. I thi1-1k this last battle his greatest achievement. It shows the btavety, courage, skill and shrewdness of one of the truest patriots that ever drew breath. He died unmarried i11 Paris July 18, 1792. Admiral Farragut. ( B y Leon=" Frallle, Milwaukee, David Glasgo w Farragut, our first ad111ir:il was born of lowly parents, uear K uox ville Tenn., on July 5 1801. While David was only a small boy his father lllOved to New Orleans. The b oy took st1ch a n interest iii t he navy that Com mod o re David Porter adopte d him When ouly nine years old he became a midshipman, and a t ele\e11 made his first cruise o n the Essex. He was with her when s he \\ias captured by the Phoe be alld the Cherub at Val parais i11 1814. For over forty years hi s lif e was 1rnmarked by any grea t event. Although b y birth and marriage connected witll the South, he was al\ yays true to the Uuion A11d, in l8fr1, wh e n the war broke Ollt he was 111ade com tuander of the Western Gulf Blockading Squadron, with the rank of flag officer. His special duty was to op e n the Mississippi and capture New Orleans 1.'his he soo n accomplished, and for it received the th a11ks of Congress, and was made rear admiral. After opening th e Mississippi he returned to the gulf, and after the capture of Vicksburg by Grant, went to attack Mobile. In this battle he lashed himself to the rigging of hi s vesse l. finally captmed the forts after a desperate fight in "hich he lo s t one of hi s own ships. This was the lalit of his active service, for owing to ill health he asked to be recalled. 1'be grade of vice admital was created for him, and in 1366 Congress made him admiral. He had command of the European squadron in 18678. On returning home the veteran admiral retired to private life, and died at Portsmouth navy yard August 14, 1870 Farragut was one of the bravest best men our country has ever known. fte was never afraid to do right under any circumstances, and was always true to his coun try. General Andre w Jackson. (By Claude H. Zimmerman, Fort Worth, Texas.) General Andrew Jackson, familiarly known as Old Hickory, made his mark in history at a great crisis of the war. He was entrusted with command at a threat., ened point, which was at the city of New Orleans. H e arrived there ou the second day of December, 1814 After his arrival he b eg an making preparations for the defense of the town. In the battle that occurred there shottly afte r there were eight Americans killed and about 2,000 British killed. An interesting feature of General Jackson's arrival in New Orleans was his personal appearance. H e was tall and gaunt, of very sallow complexio u his h ead was protected with a small, close fitting cap. He was very shabbily dresse d. He wore au old blue coat, while his legs were covered with long dragon boots, reaching to hi s knees. A very striking foature of his face was his piercing b lack eyes and determined expression. I think th e greatest deed done by General Andrew Jackso n was w!Je11 he saved the city of New Orlea11s. Thomas Jefferson, Who Wrote the Declaration of Independence (By William Shannon.) Thomas Jefferson was born in 1743, at Shadwell, Virginia, :rnd died in 1826. He was a member of the Continental Congres s a11d drafted the Declaration of Independeilce and drew up the Act of Religious i
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, THE JESSE Jf\MES STORIES. 29 who recei ved the greatest number of votes next to t h ose of the successftll candidate, became Vice-President.) This period i1iarks the downfall of the Federalists. For the next forty years the Democrats held control. It was about this time that a marked change took place in men's dress, and breeches and loug stockings begah to give way to trousers-a product of the French Revolutiou. The British Minister, Mr. Merry, says Jefferson wore '1 pantaloons and slippers" when he received him. How Daniel Boone Fooled the Indians. (By Robert Green, Bowliug Green, Ky.) Colonel Daniel B oone was enabled by the compensation wbich the State of Virginia gave him for hi s military s erv ic es, to purchase several tracts of land, whi c h he cultivated with his u s ual industry, varying.his agricultnral pursuits with hunting expeditions. On one of these tracts he e r e cted a rude log house near which he planted a small patch o f tobacco to s up ply his neighbors, for he never used the weed himse lf. He had built a t obacco h o us e for curing it, of' rails. ten feet in height and roofed with cane aud grass. The stalks we re split and strung o n sticks about four f eet long, the ends of these being laid on poles, which wer e placed in tiers across the building. The lower tit r being dry, Boone was busy remo vi ng it to the upper part of the building, supporting himself on the lower pol e s when looking down he saw that four Indians, armed with guns, had entered the iow door. One of them said to him: "Now, Boone, we got you. You no get away m ore We carry o:ff to Chilicothe. This time you no chea t us an)' more." Looking down from his perch, Boone recognized the intruders as some o f the Shawnees who had captured him in 1778, aud answere d, pleasantly: 11 Ah, old friends, glad to s e e you. Wait a little till I have fini s h e d putting up this tobacco, will you. Yon can stand there and watch me." The loac;led guns which h ad been poiuted at hi s breast, were lowered, and the Indians stood watching his every movement. At l as t so intereste d did they become in answering his questions about old acquaintances and in his promises to give them his tobacco that they bec ame l ess attentive and did not see that he had gathered the dry tobacco into such a p ositio11 that a touch would send it in their faces. At that in s t ant be t ouc h ed the tobacco a nd jumped upon the m with as muc h of th e dried toba c co as be could gather in h i s anus, filling their eyes aud nostrils wi t h it. Dust-bliuded a nd stran gling,_ they could uot foll ow him as he rnshed t o ward the cabin where he could defend himself. Looking around when he was ab out fifte e n or twenty yard,; from the house, he saw them groping in all directions and h e h erird ttiem cursing him as a rogue and the m se ves as fools. CORRESPONDENCE. I think the JESSE }AMES WEEKLY is all right. Washington. MORRIS ROSEN. You are quite right. The finest stories ever written about the James boys are containe d in this weekly. I am a constant re a der of your JESSE }1}.MES WEEKLY, and think they are jus t excellent. Columbus, Ohio. WrLL!Al\I SHANNON. We appreciate your words of iJrais e No expe11se is being spared to give om r e ad e r s the best and most authentic tales to be obtained of Jesse James and bis bandit followers. TALES OF HUNTING AND TRAPPING \YIHA T CAME A BEAR HUNT. Reader, allow me to introduce to your notice Bob Weldon aud myself. The former w a s as fine a fellow as ever dre \ 'I' b ead 011 a painted re dskin; five fee t e leven i11 bis stockings, light blue eyes and hair, a nd, taken all :in all, was a p er fect type of manliness and beauty. He could hit a pipe-stem as -far as he could see it, a nd once his rifle was raised, J yelping redskin was sure to gci unde r. As for myself-well never mind me. Of course, I was Bob's opposi te in everything except f earless ne ss, and tbat accounts for the great liking we felt for one another. We were inseparable. Where Bob went, I went, and vice versa. Mauy beaver have we

PAGE 31

THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. trapped, and many an Indiau h as b e en wiped out as we stood s ide by side, and defied their yelling hordes to approa ch us. One day Bub and I w ent ont in search of bear m eat, with which to stock our larder. For several days previous we had "llOt seen a single Indian, and so long as they left us alone, we were not likely to hunt t h em up. We left the big Red River and strnck a southwesterly course toward th e Comanche conn t ry, where we kuew bears were pretty pl ,enty; but luck was against us. We had been gone two clays before we caught sight of a single grizzly, but on the third day we espied quite a large one enjoying himself on a rocky led ge among the rnouutains. Bob was eager to salute, bn t b efore he could raise his rifle Bruin was' 'gone from our g aze." '"I'bunderation !" (Bob's favorite word), "ef thet ar b'ar didn't know I wur gwine to s hoot, sculp me!" I nodded my head, and was abollt to resume our journey when Bob seized me. "By ginger!" be exclaimed pointi11g a little to the westward of us, "look yonder, D a ve! Ef thet ain' t Injin I dunno what is!" Following the direction pointed at, I could see a thin wreath of smoke rising from the forest, which was about two miles distant. Bob was all excitement-a rare thing for him-and was for instantly setting forward and letti11g the redskins hear from us; but at this moment a horseman emerged from the forest and approached us at full speed. He was followed by a pack of the yell ing thieves, who occasionally s eJJt a shot a fter him. As they neare d us Bob gradually coo led down and by the t ime the horseman made us out he was perfectly cairn. We had l oose ned knives and r evolvers, and seeu to the priming of om guns, and wer e prepared to give the heathen s sharp work. The fodiaus had discovered us :;i.bont the same time with the white, and as the latter liastened his speed they theirs, until they came to a dead halt. The strahger rode up, and dismounted. He was an elderly nian-probably fifty-yet he bore his years lightly. As he dismounted, Bob said: ''Tight brnsh, stranger. How rna11y on yer has ther imps wiped out?" ''Ten, all told-eight men and two women," answered the stranger. 1 'Wal, ef they want any more, I guess Dave and I'll sell our sculps ef they are willin' ter pay ther price. Purty high, though. Eh, Dave?" ''Yes," I replied;'' they must win them to wear them.,) The stranger gazed first at Bob and then at me, and finally said: ''You surely don't expect to be able to keep them at bay?" "I dunno," answered Bob "Ef you. mean do we s p ec to git away, I s ez yes! But ef you mean without gittin' hit, I sez again, mighty risky!" While this short dialogue was iu progress, I had kept mf eyes on the Iudians, who were spreading out in tbe form of a s emi-circle, carefully keeping out of riAe range Our position wasn' t a very enviable one_; to the front was a band of yelling Comances, and in our rear was a high bluff, which it was impossi b le to climb. I watched tile savages and found that our continued silence had given them a sen s e of security which was rendering them careless, and on pointing it out to Bob be exclaimed: ''Dave, look at that painted imp. I kin reach him, or I'm a painted sinner." No sooner said than doue; up went his rifle and down went the redskin The imps se t '11p a yell and rushed toward the fallen brave, but I sent a shot toward them which brought them to their senses and they again retreated out of rifle rang e, leaving another of their braves upou the ground. The stranger had no rifle, and Bob noticing it, said: 'I Stranger, I s'pose yer wants to do sum thin,' so yer kin set to work pullin' up ther grass fur about fifteen feet round yer. I'm goin' to give them imps pertickler fits, I am.'' I gazed at Bob in astonishment, as did the stranger, but the latter instantly set to w or)c. Bob's idea gradually dawueg upon me-be was going to set the grass on fire! A strong wind was dnvmg from us toward the savages, and they would have to nm for their lives.-Several times the Indians approached rather close, and always fell back one or two l ess, and uow t hey were apparently in consultation as to the best course for them to pursue. Bob emptied bis powder horn on the grass at the edge of the small clearing, and, giving the stranger his pistoL said: ''When I guv the r word jest let her rip." The Indians bad arranged upon their plans, and with a loud yell set forward They'meant to carry our position by assault. Bob yelled, 'Fire!" and a blinding flash succeeded by a heavy cloud of smoke, hid tbe enemy from our view. The next moment a strong flame shot upward-the dry grass had caught. In vain the savage s strove to e sca pe The fire gained upon them rapidly. The forest caught, and the few who had reached its recesses fell victims to the devouring flames. We started for our home the following day, and reached it without further adventure.

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r All Aboard for .the New Contest! JS THE PLAN: Look up what interesting factsyou can, about any American-living or dead. Chose anybody you piease-Washingtort or Lincolh, Paul Revere, or General.Grant, "Bob" Evans or Admfral Sampson, or anybody else you want to writ:e about. Thetl sitdbwn and write an article about him. Tell all about him, the brave'deeds be did, or the fam,ous words he uttered, etc. ., All of the best articles will be published ouring the progress of the contest in a special departnieni of the JESSE JAMES WEEKLY. . No contribution must be longer than 500 word". r." : REMEMBER: Whether your contribution wins a prite or ,IJ,O J d's-a good. cha11ce or being published, together of the writer. .,.. : ' .... ,\':_ J MA61C LANTERNS, PENKNIVES .1ND dfilZZLES AW A 'Y:" 1 The two who send us the most interesting and best-writ ten articles will each receive a first-class Camera, complete with achromatic Jens, and loaded with six ilxposures each. Absolutely ready for use For square pictui'es, 3 1-2 x 3 1-2 inches; capacity, six el!:posutes witnout r.eloading ; size of camera, 4 1-2 x 4 1-2 x 4 inches; weight1 1 5 well made, covered with grain leather and haildSOI11.eJy:,'fi1aish:ed. The five who send us the next best \\(itl each receive a "Sterling" Magic Lantern Outfit, togcU1el: 'Yitb 72 admission tickets and a larg-e show bill. Each fan-tem1 js;::lo jnches high, 4 inches iq d_iameter, with a 1 1-2 inch,rtlano-cotnf>lex conden sing lens and a a-4 inch double complex li'!ns. Uses kerosene oil only. The five who send us the next best articles will each receive a Handsome Pearl-Handled Knife. These knives have each four blades of the best.English steel, h':11delled and t empere d. 'fhe handle is pe:hli the lining brass, and the bolsters German silver. For ten. ne,:t best desc1ipt.ions, ten sets of the latest and most entertaining Puzzles mid N15,7elties on the market, numbering three puzzles each, including Uncle lsaac's P::twnshop Puzzle, the l\lagic Marble Puzzle, and the Demon Outfit. 'l'o become a contestant for the prizes you must cut out the Character Contest Coupon, printed herewith. Fill it out properly and send it to JESSE JAMES WEEKLY, care of Street & Smith, 238 William S t r eet, New Yprk City, together with your article No contribution will be considered that does not have this coupon accompanying it. COUPON. '' JESSE JAMES WEEKLY" CllARACTER CONTEST No. 2. Date ................................................ 1901 Name ................................................................. City or Town ..... .' .................................................. State ................................................................ .. ....... THIS CONTEST CLOSES FEBRUARY I, 1902. HOW TO WRITE A LETTER! SHELDON'S 20rn CENTURY LETTER vVRITER The best guide to correct modern letter wriilng published/ PRICE. 1.0 CENTS. -In this voiume, every phrase of letter writing is treated, and in numerable samples of correctly-writ ten letters are given, showing how a young man may address a banker or a teacher, a friend or a stranger, a bridegroom or a widower, etc., etc. A FEW OF THE MANY SUBJECTS: Grammar-Paragraphs-Titles-Construction of a Letter -Postcripts Stamps-Social Letters-Family L etters-A Father's Letter to an Erring Son-A Brother's Warning to a Sister-The Sister' s Reply -Letters of Intr duction-Letters of CondolenceLettersof Congratulation-Love Letters-Wedding Announcements-Ceremony and Reception-Form Suitable for Invitations-Marriage Announce ment-Valentines-General Invitations-Acceptances and Regrets-Notes of Ceremony and Com pliment-Business Letters-Application in Answer to Advertisement-Miscellaneous Letters, etc., etc. For sale by all newsdea.lers. .If ordered by mllll, add four cents for postage. STREET & SMITH, 238 William St., N. Y. City. .. l '

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JESSE JAMES STORIES. (LARG-:re SIZEJ The best stories published the famous Western outlaw. I-Jesse James, the O utlaw A Narrati ve of the James Boys 2-Jesse James' Legacy; or The Border Cycl one. 3 J esse James Dare-Devil Dance ; or, Betrayed by O n e of Them. 4-Jesse James' Black Agents; o r The Wild Raid at Bullion City. 5-J esse Jam es' Oath; or, Trac k e d to Death. 6---J esse James in Wyoming; or, The D e n in the Black Hills. 7-Jesse James, Rub e Burrows & Co. 8-J esse James Daring Deeds; or, The Raid on the Pine Ridg e Jail. 9-Jesse James at the Throttle; or, The H o ld-Up at Dead Man's Ditch . 10-J esse James' D o uble; or, The Man from Missouri II-Jesse Jam es Among the Moonsl1iners; or, The Train Robbers' Trail in Kentucky. 12-Jesse Jame s' Close C all ; or, The Outlaw's Last Rally in Southern wyoming. I8-The James Boys in St. Louis ; or, The Mysteries of a Great City. 19-Jesse James at Bay; or, The Train Robbers' Trail. 20-Jesse James in Disguise; or, The Missouri Outlaw as a Showman. (Series) JESSE JAMES' EXPLOITS : 2I-Chapters l-7 describe Jesse James' Feud with the Elkins Gang. 22-Chapters 8-19 describe Jesse James Chase Through Tennessee. 23-Chapters 20-32 describe Jesse James Among the Mormons. 24-Chapters 33-46 describe Jesse James' D eal in Dead Valley. 25-Chapters describe Jesse James on the Trail for Revenge. 26---Chapters 58-74 de scr ibe Jesse James Kidnaping Plot. I3-Jesse Jam es in Chicago; or, The Bandit King's Bold I 75-87 describe Jesse James Death Pl 111 Dakota. Deal ay. 14-Jesse James in New Orleans; or, The Man in the Black Domino 15---;-Jesse James Signal Code; or, The O utl aw Gang's Desperate Strategy I6-J esse James o n the Mississippi; or, The Duel at Midnight. 17-Jesse James' Cave; or The Secret of the Dead. 28-Chapters 88-96 describe the Jam es Boys' Cap ture and Escape Pancak e Diggi ngs. 29-Chapters 97-I12 describe Jesse James' Hunt to Death of the Outlaw Vasquez. 30-Chapter s lI3-129 describe Jesse James' Escape from Cheyenne. 31-Chapters 129-I36 describe J esse James Rich Prize. All of the above nuenbers on hand. If you cannot get them from your five cents a copy will bring them to you by mail, postpaid. STREET & SMITH, Publishers, 238 William Street ... New York.

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JESSE JAMES STORIES. (LARGE SIZE.> _ bes! __ st9ries p u b l i s h e d of t h e famous Western o u t l a w 1-Jesse J ames the Outl aw A Narrative of the James Boys. 2 Jesse James' Legacy ; or, Th

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