Jesse James' railroad, or, The outlaw brotherhood at bay

Jesse James' railroad, or, The outlaw brotherhood at bay

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Jesse James' railroad, or, The outlaw brotherhood at bay
Series Title:
Jesse James Stories
Lawson, W. B.
Place of Publication:
New York
Street & Smith
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
32 p. ; 26 cm.


Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels ( lcsh )
Criminal investigation ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

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Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
028821004 ( ALEPH )
07359205 ( OCLC )
J14-00046 ( USF DOI )
j14.46 ( USF Handle )

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A DfALlffG WITH Of CRIME Issued Weekly. By Subscription f>er yet1r. Entered as Second Cl ass l.fattl!f' at tile N. 1'. Post Office, by STREET &: SMITH, 238 1Villiam St., N. Y. Entered 1Zccord1'nr to Act of Congress in the ye.r IQ02, in the Office of the LiO..arian of Congress, Washinrfon, D C No. 46. NEW YORK, March 22, 1902. Price Five Cents. JESSE JAMES' RAILROAD: OR, The Brotherhood at Bayo By W. B. LAWSON. CHAPTER I. THE.JAMES BOYS AND THE TRACK-LAYERS. "Come, boys, what are ye lookin' at? Think we come out here on a Sunday school picnic and yo u got nothin' to

2 THE J ESSE JAMES STORIES. The Irishman dodged the clip, and his hard fist made a back-hand svveep that sent Gough on to h i s back. lt was the first time they had come to blows, and ti1e spectacle was one that the other workmen had to stop and admire: The rail which had been lifted was dropped before it had been carried a ya r d toward its final restingplace. There was n o t much sympathy for Gough lying round loose in the gang-. for not a man of them liked to be ordered about a nci sworn at fifty times a day, 11 hen he was doing as 1vell as he could. But thev were afraid of the foreman. He was not a large man; but his voice bad business in it, and he acted all the time as if he were ready to knock anybody down who should answer a word back to his bossing. ''Pat get-a him head broke!" grnnted the Italian. Simil a r expressions passed from lip _to lip among the gang. But Pat did 11ot act scared. He saw the boss kicking in a clums y attempt to r egain his f e et, a !1cl that proved that the man wa. s not seriously hurt. That 1Yas all Pat cared about just then, except the fact that the suspicious horsemen whom he had been observing were a pproaching at a more leisure] y pace. and that each carried a \i\linchester in a handy nosi ti on. Pat lllcGraw had been a co11-puncher in Texas, ;tmong other trades. and he knew how a certain kind of roving gentry carried their \ Vinchesters. In dee d Pat had punched cattle thie\'es and other kinds o f desperadoes. as well as cattle. and whe1i it came to spotting shady characters on the plains of the Southwes t he liacl the eye of a hawk. Tk b ul;c d around a t t h e faces of the crew of track -la : r s They were a common. stupi d muscular lot of men, of th e kinci t o le t a man like Gough abuse them without kicking. Pat wished just then that he had hit the foreman a h arder clip, so as to keep him out of the affair a little longer. Then he could have acted as boss, and used his judgment in dealing -.1-ith the suspicious strangers, who \\"ere at that moment riding up to 11here they stood. But Goug h jumped up, and hi s hand flew to his hip. Out came a revolver . and Pat was coYered. Pat McGraw had no gun of any kind, for the work men on t h e new railroad w ere allo1\ecl to carry no w eapons. "You iniernal bog-trotter!" roared Gough, as Pat backed away fro111 the threatening pi stol. 'Get clown on your knees and beg m:v pardon for hitting me that c l ip, or I'll blow the top of yer head off! Pat was not looking at Gough, and he seemed to have no apprehensions about the safety of t h e top of his head. He saw the t\\<'O horsemen pull u p with i n the length of a horse of Gough, a n d the younger of the two covered the foreman with his \i\Tinchester. "Turn the muzzle of the gun the other way, pil grim, and pass it here!" commanded the voice of the stranger. Gough wheeled, quick as l ightning, carrying the revol ver round as he went, and without turning the muzzle toward his own person as he was ordered. He was surprised, but the appearance of new foes onl y made the r age of his b lood the more furious. He would have shot at the strangers without a word; but the man who him with his \ V i n chester did not giv e him time. The whiplike report, the snarl of deat h agony, the of the revolver as it flew upward and was discharged harmlessly, all b lended into one sound. Gough fell and the track-layers were withou t a foreman for that section. Pat was the braves t man of the whole crew, but the bravest men don' t throw their lives "away. They give them, chee rfully, in a good cause; but they realiz e that they can do that but once, and they wantl to get some return for it for somebody. ''Gintleme n spoke up the Irishman, with a show of empty palms ; y e ve dropped the only pig-headed wan in the crowd, and there's nothing the matter wid bein' fri'ncls wicl the rist av us!" i ''Pas s 01..1t your guns, then,'' ordered the same. stern \ 'o ice 11"hic h h a d giYe n the order to Gough. "Oi've naytber gun or pi stol ycur honor." "Aren' t you one of the bos s es?" ''By good roights O i would be the only wan on e arth, yer honor, but a cruel fate ordered otherwise. lt i s loikely, howiver, that Oi'll have to do the on this section until they get another man here, i owing to the sicknes s wh i ch a wise Providince to have brought upon the gintleman that l ies yonder.'' The stern-faced stranger who had shot Gough erecl his \i\'inchester and flung h imself lightly from his saddle. 'His companion follow e d his example, and at the same time said: "Vv e own the gang all right. Jess. and the quicker we get them back on to their job the better." ''Dont be too sure about owning them, Frank ," replied the other, whi!e his keen eyes swept over t h e crowd of track-layers. The latter were accustomed to obeying, without demur, any one who might be given authority over them: but tbat did not mea n that they would be :;uhmiss i v e to capture b y a couple of desperadoes. \Vliile none of them had had the experience w h icl i Pat had been through, yet most of them had roughec


THE JESSE JAMES STORIE.So 3 it as laborers in a railroad construction gang before this. As they saw the stern-faced men dismount, they little suspected that one was Jesse James, the king of American bandits. One of the track-layers suddenly waved his pick as a signal. As by magic, every man seized a pick, sledge-hammer, spike or tie, and made a rush toward the two outlaws. Crack! from the leveled revolver of Jesse James, and the foremost track-layer fell with a bullet in his brain. The other members of the gang were for the moment staggered by the death of the boldest of their number. But, without a real leader, and seeing that they had only two foes to cope with, they were emboldened to make a clash upon the cool pair who confronted them. The weapons which they wielded were of a formid able character, if they were to come to close quarters. For that matter, the beginning of the fight was at sufficiently close quarters to make the spikes ef fective, should the latter be hurled with precision. But the superior numbers of the track-layers ren-dered them ov e r-confident. -r They made a headlong cla sh toward the foe, and i probably not a man of them doubted but that the two strangers would either spring to the backs of their horses and beat a precipitate retreat, or be overwhelmed by the onslaught. Pat McGraw alone knew that they had no ordinary enemy to deal with and, even as the tracklayers sprang to the attack, the voice of the Irishman rang out: "Howld on, crazi e s! Ivery mother's son av yez will-there, and Oi tow lei ye so!" I The last part of the speech was uttered as the 1 James brothers were seen to spring a litt]e to one side of the line of attack, while at the same time both of them began pumping lead with both hands, the four revo lvers sputtering as if a whole company J of soldiers had received the order to fire. 1 Down went several of the track-layers, as if they had been mown by a scythe. Those in the rear I stumbled heaplong over the quivering bodies of their I fallen comrades, and so the dead and the living were mixed together in a confused and writhing mass. Only Pat McGraw was clear of the me!ee He made no attempt either to escape or to take part in the fight. On the other hand, the quick eye of Jesse James l took in the fact that the Irishman recognized the situation, and that he would have counseled surrender for the track-layers. And Jesse James was not going into the affair with out a definite scheme behind his action. The truth was he did not wish to kill any more of the laborers than he could help. He had other use for them. The men, as soon as they found th a t they were merely rushing to their death, made haste to fall back. Some of them dropped tl1e implements which they held for defense. Others started to run away. "Halt!" The command. was from Jesse James. The tone, rather than the word, was effective The half-dozen track-layers who were running came to a stop. They dropped their weapons, and their hands went up in token of surrender. "There, b'yes," cried Pat, "now ye're comin' to yer sinses. The gintlemen yander have the drap on yez, and it is loikely thot they mane no harrum if yez stand and deliver yer poipes, tobacky and other valuables-the saints know that it is divil a cint of money that ye have to give thim !" The James boys coolly put up their revolvers, and while Frank kept an eye on the workmen to see that they neither attempted to run away nor to renew their resistance, Jesse adv anced to meet McGraw. The latter put out bis hand, while a grin overspread his small, bristly face. "It isn't the first that Oi iver shook hands wicl the clivil, and it is loike that it won't be the last, and it i sn't meself thot would be for putin' on aires," he said. The face of Jesse J a m es did not relax, but he touched the hand of the Irishman in acknowledgment of the greeting. "You ain't the boss of this gang, I fake it?" he asked. "The boss lies where he fell, yander." "Isn't there one among you that can keep the men at their work?" "It is meself thot can do thot, if there be somebody to kape me at the bossin'." "\i\That do you mean by that?" "Oi have a wakeness for whisky, so it is said, and thot stands in the way of my bein' prisiclint of the United States, so Oi have been towld." "\i\There do you keep your whisky?" "Oi don't kape it; Oi dhrink it, dim the stuff!" "No fooling, man-this is a serious business I want the work to go on here, and the sooner you get the track so that a train can run over it to the line of mountains yonder the better. They are working at that end to meet your gang, and a few clays will lay the track over this level stretch, if you hustle. You understand me. You must let whisky alone." "How can Oi? The dimmea stuff makes a jump for me ivery toime Oi come within smellin' distanc e of it. It has a koind of affinity wicl me t'roat--" "Enough of that foolery, man!" snapped J essc James "If there is any whisky here in your camp, I'll take possession of it You will set these men to


4 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. work, and keep them at it. Assure them that I will shoot the first man of them that doesn't put in lively work. will you do that?" "\.Vid pleasure, sur-r." "At it, then." "Moight I ax ye a question. ?" "Yes. "What official of the railroad moight Oi have the honor of addrissin' ?" "I own the road--for the time being, at least. My name is Jesse James." Pat flung up his hands. "\\T ull Oi'll be dimmed!" Then he turned to the track-layers. "Go to \ Norru k he cried; "Oi'm boss!" CHAPTER II. AN ORDER FOR A DANCE. Pat McGraw soon demonstrated his ability to boss a gang of track-layers. As soon as he made them understand the necessity of keeping them at their work, they went at it with more enthusiasm than they had shown before. While several of their number had been shot to death by the bandits, they did not spend time in mourning for them. As for Gough, it was a positive relief to be rid of him, and to have Pat McGraw in his place. The Irishman understood the art of keeping on the good side of the men without losing the power of authority over them, and, while he ordered them rioht and left, and kept them hustling all the time, it with a good humor that made them willing . But Pat was not so submissive to Jesse James as he pretended. To alJ.ow the bandit chief to take possess ion of the uncompleted railroad was a sort of proceeding that he did not relish. He racked his brain for a scheme by which he might hope to outwit the desperadoes. He knew that a construction train would arrive from the east at about sunset, bringing a lot of steel rails, spikes and ties. 1 The train had a long haul to make, and drew only two loads a day. As he thought of it, another fact occurred to him, and it started the sweat on his freckled brow. It was payday, and with the construction train would come the paymaster's car, with money for Gough's and three other gangs. The latter were at work out beyond the low foot hills from which Jesse and Frank James had come. The road was being built from that direction a l so, and the two sections were fast nearing each other. TlTe mountain sections of the road were supplied with rails from the end, but. pay, all came. from the eastern terminus, where the superinten dent's and other offices were located-. An armed an d mounted messenger. carried the money from this end of the completed line to the mountain section. The payments were made fortnightly, a s a matter of safety and convenience, and, although the amount of cash disbursed along this part of the line was not large, yet it amounted to a snug sum-enough, Pat reflected, to make a hold-up worth while to the James boys, unles s they had something bigger on hand As a matter of fact, they did have a greater h a ul in sight, but they meant to make sure of the paymaster's car also, as a "matter of principle ," as Jesse express ed it. All thi s was turned over il'I the mind of Pat Mc Graw, as he ordered the construction gang'about a s if he had nothing else on his mind. He wished t hat there were more intelligent men under him-some in whom he might confide his plans and s u sp icions. But, as a m atter of fact they were but little more efficient in the matter of intelligence than the horses which were also employed to s hift the heavy materials from the place where the train dumped them to a point clo se r to the line of constn1ction. Jesse James stood near for" some time and ob the workers with that peculiarly searching gaze which it wa s so hard to e va de. At the sa m e time it was certain that he furtively observed Pat IVkGraw, and that he made up his mind that the latter was not so simple as h e appeared. Whateve r h e may have thought about it, he vouch safed no remark. Frank James wa s keeping an eye out in another direction the whi le. J ess e approache' him and said : "We have got things to going tolerably well here and twenty-four hours more of i t, with the gang working extra time, will bring th.e two sections to gether. Then we 'll own a railroad. "If there is no hitch in proceedings, said Frq,nk who had his eye on a smooch of smoke appearin on the eastern horizon. ''"\Vhat do you see?" "Construction train coming, I reckon." "Ah! same as we had to tackl e at the other end Only there are only two of us here, if Talcott and hi : trio fail to get here in time. I'll have to pump tha Irishman for pointers, so as to know what we hav got to run up agai nst. And, Frank, the Irishmat is deep as a well. See the show he is making a bossing the track-layers. "The work pe puts in he thinks is all in the in tercst of the railroad company in the end.'' "And so may get him a steady job as boss-that'r3 the idea. A foxy fell ow, and not sorry that we sent the c th er one up the flume. I'll work him for the pointers,


THE JESSE Jl\MES STORIESo "And of course he 'll give yon Gospel truth, Jess t" "He can do as he like s about that. But if he has half the wit he makes a s how of, he'll go slow about giving me any crooked yarns." The gleam in the co l d gray eyes of Jesse James boded ill to Pat McGraw a s he approached the lat ter. "Pick up thot spike, John, and lave yer fumblin' wid the hammer," the Irishman was saying to the Chinaman, who was clum sy with the sledge, and handy \Yith most other implements. "Se e here, man-what is your name?" Jess e James spoke the que s tion, and t ap p e d Pat on the arm a s he uttered it. :'Me name, i s it?" repeated Pat, as if take n by sur pris e "Yes, and no beating about th e bush. The ques tion s I'm going to put to you can mo s tly be answered with one word to each-yes or no. You will use no unnecessary words, mind. Your name, now?" "Yis, or no," sprang t o Pat's lips. But the gaze from the e yes of the bandit king seemed to go straight to his heart, and to make it beat very slow, a s if it were about to stop. "Oi must lave jokin' wid the clivil t" was his mental conclusion and aloud he answered: "Pat McGraw." "How many times a clay doe s the constructio n lrain arrive from the east?" "Twice." "How many men accompany it?" "That clepincl s. It takes about a dozen to run the train, countin' the ingineer, firemen and brakemen." "Why are there sometimes more than that?" Pat hesit a ted. He was thinking of the pay car, and he realized that he had said more than was called for. The bandit king, observing every expression on the Irishman's face, shrewdly guessed the truth. "Sometimes the construction s uper, comes out to take a look at the gangs," said Pat. "How about the pay car?" "Av coarse that comes whin it is toime." "And it is coming now, isn't it?" The eyes of Jesse James bored into the foreman, and the latter knew that they read the truth. "Yis, Oi expect it will come to-night." "Have you any idea how much cash it carries'?" "There are three gangs to pay, and some salaried min at the other ind of the road. Oi niver figured out more than what should be comin to meself." "How much time is due?" "Two wakes." "I can figure clo s e enough, Pat, and you needn't let it trouble you. Does the pay car have a guard?" "Two or three min, thot is all." "Game?" "They can foight." "Keep the men liv ely till I tell you different. I sec you have tents pitched further down toward the foothills for your camp for the night. There will be a moon to-night, and you will keep things moving two hours later than usual." Oi suppose ye'll be afther takin' charge of the money in the pay car, Misther James?" ''Tend to your busine ss, Pat." "There'll b e a clivil of a kick whin the min don't get their c2sh !" muttered Pat, and Jesse James s miled. The smoke from the approaching train became more plain against the s ky ancl soon the rumble of the laden trucks b ecame auclibie. Frank James was smoking coolly but Jesse cast frequent glances back toward the foothills, from which direction he looked for one Talcott, w ith severa! other members of a recently organized gang. He knew that to hold up l:lie coming train, guarded as it was, with only him self and Fra'nk to manage the crew v vo uld be a considerable undertaking. Pat McGraw was a dangerous element in the cal culation, and yet he could not afford to shoot the man, since the work of laying the track would be sure to fall behind without a competent boss to keep the men to their tasks. The construction train loomed into full view, and it would arrive in five minutes. Then Jesse spoke to Pat: "I'll have to get you to help me a bit now Do you think I could put a bullet through your heart at ten pace s ?" "Oi'll be dimmed if Oi would like to have ye thry it !" Well that is what i will do on the first sign of trea' chery. Let me tell you that you will come out of this o. k. if you go easy. You know that I can handle your men here like so many cattle. Can you sing?" "Like a mockin' bird." "And dance?" "Any !wind of a reel or breakdbwn t" "As the train pulls in yo n will sing and dance as if there wa s a quart of whisky inside of your jacket." "It'll make me toired widout the whisky, but Oi'll thryt" CHAPTER III. HOLDING UP THE P AY TRAIN. If was an odd sight, when the construction t rain, with the pay car hauled at the tai l enO., rumbled and jolted as far as the unfinished state of the road wou l d allow, and there came to a halt. Most of the men had left their work, as much puz zled by what they saw as were the engineer and fire man aboard the locomotive by the sudden antics of Pat McGraw.


' 6 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. Jesse James had already had the bodies of Gough and the dead track-layers hauled to a spot beyond a pile of railroad ties, which concealed them suffi ciently so that they mi ght not betray to the train hands what had taken place. Pat McGraw h a d drawn a little apart from the workmen, and, striking into a rollicking song, was keeping time by dancing a breakdovvn. "VIT hen he entered into a thing, he did so with his whole s oul, whisky or no whisky. He did so then. His voice rang out in a tenor that was as clear as the tones of a cornet. And his heels and toes flew up and down with the wildest abandon, his body twisting and swaying with a gracefulness which \vould not have been looked for in a laborer who was past the prime of life in the matter of years. The track-layers looked on in mute wonder. They thought that Pat must have been treated to some whisky. They had never seen the man act so crazy. But the astonishment of the train hands could not be described. The James brothers had dropped behind another pile of ties close to the track. There, with Winches ters ready to speak, they waited for the next act in the drama. From the pay car stepped a handsome, well1groomed gentleman of fifty-five. He was followed by a younger man, and the latter carried a Winchester in a careless manner, as though he had no idea that he should have occasion to use it. The older man was Gilbert Farnum, division superintendent of the road. He was making the trip unexpectedly, so far as Gough would have been con cerned, if alive. He had horses aboard the train, and was intending to go on with three companions to the sections beyond the foothills. He had just been chosen to the superintendency of this division, and this was his first trip out to see what sort of a route he was to take care of. He had never seen Pat before, but had met Gc1ugh, and he naturally looked for the latter as soon as he got off the train. "\i\There is the boss, Raynor?" he asked of the man with the \Vinchester. "There don't seem to be any. That fellow singing and dancing is McGraw, the best workman on the line, but he is full of whis)

THE JESSE Jf\MES STORIES. 7 with the strange antics of Pat McGraw, who was still dancing and singing as if he went by steam. That both the Irishman and Gough, the foreman had succumbed to a spree was his natural thought. c'\t the same time he ha(\ a premonition that there might be clanger of some kind in the situation to the one \Yho \Yas ;n hi s care in the passenger coach at the rear encl of the train. That one \\ a s his beautiful chrngh\er, ::VIolly Far11u111. She was accompanying him on his trip to the mountains for pleasure, and that there could be anything iike real danger in the expedition. they did not dream. For, "hile the precaution to guard the pay car was ahYays taken, this was not beca u se there hacl been any hint of a hold-up at any time since work o n that part of the road had begun. \i\Tith this one apprehension, Mr. Farnum hastened back to1Yard the pay car. MearnYhile, haying made the brakeman and guard secure-\\hich took but a moment of time-Jesse and Frank J a mes made a swi ft run along the oppo site side of the train and reached the pay car simultaneously with the snperintendent. Farnum had his foot on the step of the car when Jesse J a mes sprang to the platform from the other side and presented his \Vinchester. "Don't yell-not a whimper!" cautioned the bandit king. There was a hnsky sound in Farnum's throat, and that \\ as all. His life was not so precious for its own sake, but he thought of Molly. "You-you a re--'' "Vve are Jesse and Frank James." chipped in the latter, as he thrust himself past his brother and stood at the door of t h e car. "Heavens!" gasped t h e superintendent. Then h e became silent. waiting, evidently, for the next word from hi s captors. That came quickly enough. for Jesse James knew that the conditions \\ere unfaYorable for delay. But the most important step toward obtaining complete possession of the train had been made. "How many men are there inside this car, Mr. Farnum?" demanded Jesse. "There are two. My daughter i s also there. I ha,e heard, James, that you respected women--" "vVit h just the same measure that they respect me. and no more, Mr. Farnum; so don't t r y to beg c,ff on that plea. This train and all there is in it is ours Your daughter has nothing to fear, unless she attempts to balk us. Frank. relieY e the g-entleman of his guns, if he carries any." This was quickly done. Then Jesse Jam es lowered his Winchester and covered the prisofter with a revolver instead. N O\V we will go in and take possession. Farnum w ill lead the way and repeat my orders. If he quibb le s or quavers, Miss Farnum will be fatherless." "As she is motherless already! murmured the s uperintendent. "So much the \ Vor se,'' \\a s the grim retort. Frank James opened the door and stepped back. Mr. Farnum well understood that there was but one thing for him to do, and that was to obey. Had it been merely a question of saving or losing his own life he mig h t have been willing to act the part of the hero and sacrifice it. But that would avail nothing, h e felt sure. So, with a firm and unhesitating step, he passe d into the car, with Jesse and Frank J ames close behind. The car \';as fitted up in t".VO compartments. The one at the rear contained luxurious chairs, like a Pullman coach. Here Molly Farnum was sitting. a book in her lap, but with her eyes gazing across the p lain in the direction of the foothills. "Molly," spoke her father. She turne d with a low. pleased exclamati on. "Oh, father!" she cried. f-faye no fears, Molly, but t h e train has been held up by desperadoes. They will take the money which we bring for paying the workmen. Mr. Farnum tried to speak unconcernedly. Molly was a brave girl and she had heard of hold-ups. But she saw the two stem-faced men back of her father, and both with revolvers in their hands She sprang toward them, terror in her face "Be s ilent, Molly!" sa i d her fatlier. "My lifeperbaps yours also-depends on it!" And she obeyed. CHAPTER IV. JESSE J Ai\IES !\ND THI': SUPERTNTENDEN'f0S DAUGHTER. fo siience the girl stood in the ais l e as her father, fo1101Yecl by the James boys, passed along the length of the compartment to t h e door that opened into the division, "here the safe and t h e g uards That door was locked Beyond it the tvrn guards sat playing cci.rds, their guns ha:1dy, although they had no expectation of being called upoa to make u se of them. "Knock for admittance," commanded Jes::.e James, in a low tone. Farnum obeyed. One of the guards sprang up. "Who i s it?" he deman ded. "ivlr. Farnum." \Vhat i s wanted?'' It was a hard place to put t h e He felt that he was acting as the cat's paw of the bandits-as a decoy-a co1Yard l y part.


':THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. Yet he well knew that even a word of warning from him would not save the treasure. Instead, he knew that it would only cost him his life, perhaps Ivlolly's, probably the lives of the guards, besides. The money must go-so he decided. "Open the door for me," was his ansvver to the inquiry from the guard. "Certainly, Mr. Farnum, if it is all right." Farnum was silent; for to bave said it was all right would h ave been a direct lie to pl ay into the hands of the outlaws, and he could not bring him self to do that. The door was opened without further ceremo:iy, however. The guard did not take his Winchester from its place. His companion still sat with the cards in his hand, \mt looked some\vhat curiously toward the door, for the voice of l\ifr. Farnum had sounded a little unnatural. The instant they look ed throug h the open door and saw, first, the white, terror-stricken face of Molly, and secondly the invincible visages of the outlaws, they instantly divined what was the matter. The guard who opened the door snatched at a revolver. Bang! The report was close to the ear of Mr. Farmnn, from the weapon held by Jesse James. The b11llet passed within an inch of the superintendent's ear, and the guard at the door fell, shot through the brain. The other was on his feet, and so quick was he that his .Winchester spoke next. But he feared hitting either Farnum or Molly, and the bullet was buried in the woodwork of the car. Another crack from the revolver of Jesse James sealed the doom of the last of the faithful guards. Farnum 'vheeled with white and desperate coun-tenance. "Assass ins!" he cri ed, in d e spe ration. ''Father, for my sake, be cautious!" spoke l\!Ioll y She had become calmer than he. She saw that the action of Jesse James had been purely in self -d e fense. It was a matter of his shooting first or lo s ing his lif e a nd the game at the sa me time. "I'm not going to kill your father, Miss Farnum, unless he t ri es to be too brash, and I reckon he won t do t hat, declared Jes se James, speaking for the fir s t time since the car bacl been entered. As he spoke, his eyes me t those of Mo lly Farnum i n a direct glance. She was strangely thrilled by the look. There was no fierceness or threatening in it. For the moment all sign of cruelt y had left his face. The countenance of Frank J a mes was more impas sive just then. As usual, when the moment for cautious action was at hand, the elder brother left the ordering and :entirely with the younger and abler of the pair. Entering the forward compartment of the coach, Jesse directed Farnum to take one of the chairs which had been occupied by a g uard. Molly, in to a gesture from the bandit chief, followed. Frank closed and l ocked the door, and at the same time made sure that the forward door was likewise secu re. The safe v \las a small, ordinary affair, with a combination lock. "Can you open it, Mr. Farnum?" demanded Jesse "Yes. On this trip I was to act as the paymas ter ." "Lucky, for it saves smashing the car with a dynamite cartridge, and making a lot of noise. Come, twirl the knob." }\:fr. Farnum obeyed, as h e had done in everything else. The cash in the safe was transferred to the posses sio n of the outlaws, loosely tied up i 1 a co arse sack. "For my purpose,'' said Jesse, "this stuff is safer out of the safe than in if,, :tb9ugh I've no idea of giv ing up possession of this tr' ai n at present. But the safe would be a bother in case of trouble. I'm a lit tle short-handed, you see, to handle the train and crew." "Not more than a half-score of you outside, I suppose?" said Farnum. Jesse James smiled faintly. "What if I should tell you, Mr. Farnum, that my brother and I have done this little trick without other help?" "Impossible!" "We did it, just the same. But there is still an act or so in the drama that hasn't been presented, so you and your charming daughter will have to excuse us for a while. Frank, we will get the carrion out of here, so as not to offend the lady by the sight of it." Molly had returned to the rear compartment, and sat with her face covered by her hands. As Jesse James rea ched h e r side, he paused and looked down at her. Frank pa ssed on and went out on to the platform to reconnoiter. He knew tha t there was great ri sk in thus leaving even a small part of the trainmen unguarded, although the time which !tad been occupied by the robbery of the pay car was in r eality much briefer than it would seem by the 1 time which it has occupied to relate the event. "Miss Farnum,'' said Jesse Jam es, bending over the girl and speaking in a low voice-a tone that sounded little like that which he used in delivering his commands. She looked up and was thrilled to find the pene tr-ating gaze of the bandit king fixed not unkindly on her fac..e. She trembled, but did not speak.


THE JESS E J AMES STORlESo 9 "You will tell of this event in future years, and horrify yonr friends by the statemen t that yo u were once face to face with that greatest of miscreants, Jesse James." "You ha,e

JO THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. the foo thills, and in sight of the section which had. been in charge of Gough. Talcott wa s a w ellbuilt nervous-looking man, s trikingly handsome in face but for a s omewhat mo ro s e and moody e xpres sion which some pa s t e x pe ri e nce had made habitual to him. He was an Eastern man of good bree ding and a c a r ee r \\hich had been ab o ve reproach until lik e many others, he became guilty of a breach of trust. So, a s a defaulter he became a fugitive from jus tice I-le h a d c o me near to ca p tnre or de a th at the hands o f offic e rs who were on his track, and had b e en s aved from that fate by Je ss e Tame s The bandit king had from the fir s t taken a strong lik .ing to this m a n of m ystery, as Talco t t had been calJecl The liking was reciprocated. It s o came about that Talcott wa s one of Jesse Jam es mo s t trusted memb e r s of the secret outlaw brotherhood which had been organized at about that time At the side of Talcott rode Cole Younger, who l1ad lately joined the brotherhood, c oming from the o ld gang that had been disbanded for se v eral months. Swanson, a gi g antic Swede, rode clos e behind t hem and clo s e in the rear the rest of the party fol lo w ed. Suddenly Talcott' s hors e gav e a wild snort and leaped to the very brink of the n arrow track which they were following. Most horses, under a s imilar impuise would have thrown their riders over th e pre cipice. But Talcott was a lover of hors efle s h a nd se lected and trained all -the horses that he rode. So a .gentle pull at the rein re strained the animal. and at the same time the rider wa s free to present hi s V\T inche ster at a shadowy obje c t that w a s moving s tealthily clown the r o ck s on the other side of him. The sharp rep ort startled th e echoes, and the se ratt led back fr o m the rocks ike a fus ilJade from a company o f infantry From below a yelJ went t ip-a nd it wa s a yell of rnortal pain A t t h e sa me t im e a n unc ertain number of men were s e e n t o dart out from the spot wh e re they h a d been crouching below the trail, and make a run for co ver on the o ther s ide. Give it to th e m w ho ever they ma y be!" ord ered Talcott. Cole Younger and S\\ anson fired in s tantly at the flitting form s below them But the unknown foe disappeared even a s they did so There w as no scund to indicat e that their sh o t s h a d been of effect. A moment afterw a rd however, s everal shots were fired up from the concealed enem y and the bullets pattered on the rocks in uncomfortable proximity to the leading outlaws. "This i's a nasty business!" exclaimed Talcott. "vVe're in for a kind of work that we didn't bargain for and it is go ing to make u s mi ss connections with our leader unless I am greatly mistaken." "Who d'ye make out thos e fellow s to be?" queried Cole. H ow s hould I kno w ? But cau t you see that t he y a r e in ambus h clown yon de r a nd we can't get b y th e m w i thout giving them a c hance to practice marks m a n s h i p on u s at their ple a sure!" "\V e h a ven t got to p ass t h a t point where they a re?" "Not if \\'e k e ep right on to the open plain. But can t you imagine that we will h a ve something e l s e to d o ? ''What are you driving at, Talcott?' "How ab out the railroad s ection that \\ e have just captured, and the little party that we left on guard, to keep the gang at work?" .. Y o u think there i s clanger of that crew yonder t a king a hand in that p art of the game?" '" Why. Younger, it i s a s ure thing. That' s what tL1ey' re here for. And I think there is a party big enough to g ive us a big fig h t even if the James brothers were with u s to help." C ole Younge r looke d blue. He had had hard luck t he la s t two or three times that he liad acted as a supporter of the Jam es boy s He wa s getting tired of it. He had recei\ ecl s everal ugly wounds, and there had been about the s am e numbe r of close call s in e s caping capture. M any outlaw s like s ailor s are supers titiou s, an d Cole Younger was especially s o. It seemed to him that h e \ V as made the e s pecial mark of all the danger that c a m e to the follower s of Jess e James. I r e ck o n Fate s et s m e up as a foil to kee p death a way from them brothers," h e had latel y remarked. "Their liv e s are charmed, the d e vil take them, and t h e s tab s a nd bullet s all glance off their hides and c hu g into min e U p to the time that he had joined them, the new brotherhood o f Jes se J arn e s h a d encountered noth ing but the highes t suc c e ss They h a d not met with a s in g le setback. But they were evidently be set by a powerful hos til e part)--probabl y a nervy poss e of deputies with c rd e r s to shoot e very man they found in the mount ains w h o did not giYe a acc ount of him self. "So much for m y li11 kin fortun es with Jes s James again!' g rowl e d C ole settling b a ck in his saddle a s ii h e had made up hi s mind to spend the re s t of the clay right t h e re without a nother kick agains t fate. "Don' t c roak, s aid Talcott; "we've got some thing t o do. and the o nl y ques tion i s how \Ye can do it with the be s t ch a nce of winning out. \ V e aren't ery far from the othe r railroad se ction. But the hill s and rocks come in such a position that I don't believe the sounds of thos e shots were heard by Jesse J a me s and his brothe r So they wilJ continue to ex-


ifHE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 1 1 pect us to arrive, and maybe get themselves into a fix where they will miss us mightily. At the same time, we must go back and find how things are with re s t of our gang. They may be surprised by the enemy and captured or wiped out." "Then you say we must get back to them?" "Th::i.t is our first duty .. "Ar.d you feel sure, do ye, that Jess would tell you. to do just that thing, if he was here?" "He would have less wit than I have given him credit for, I think, if he ordered any other course." "\Vell, then back we go." Talcott had already turned back. They now struck into a gallop. They had not yet gone far from the railroad where they had left a part of their gang to keep the tracklayers to their work. They were soon in sight of the section again. As they rode into the cut they heard the clatter of iron-shod hoofs on the hard roadbed below the point where the track was being laid. The laborers were stolidly lifting the rails and driving spikes. They seemed to care little whether they were working under orders from their em ployers, or from the outlaw captors. Talcott had barely time to give a sharp warning shout to their men when twenty horsemen dashed into view, riding like mad, and yelling like demons! CHAPTER VI. TALCOTT'S PART IN THE BATTLE. The situation of Talcott was not an enviable one for a man who had never lead in a mixed-up -battle with desperate men, and with a desperate crew to command. A glance told him what kind of material he had to contend against. They were cowboys-and a nervy crew of them. Some were veterans in the service on the ranches; others were tenderfeet lately from the East. There were lately-graduated college men among them, with records in football and other athletics Such are not the easiest sort to "down" in a fight, and it someti mes seems as if they had rather fling their lives away for the sake of a glorious battle than to die in a decent and tame fashion. Talcott, better than any one of his followers, understood the mettle of the crowd they had to en counter. He knew they could not be bluffed or fooled. They must be eluded or beaten fairly. The little party with Talcott was heavily outnumbered. For the moment it looked black for them, and ; Talcott devoutly wished that Jesse James was there t o lead his men. t Then, at least, he would not feel that he was re sponsible for def eat. But only for a moment did Talcott falter. Cole Younger, in the light of his recent misfortunes, was in a mood to take to his heels and seek his own safety Not so, however, with the other men. The giant Swede was at the side of Talcott, and his heavy voice rumbled out the question: "Shall we face 'em, or flee?" "Take to the rocks, and waste no lead. At close quarters rip them with your knives!" So ordered Talcott. Cole Younger, still on his horse, whet:led as if he would ride up the track, and so try to escape. "Back here!" shouted Talcott. "If you flunk, Cole Younger, you will have to account for it to Jesse James-and you know him better, perhaps, than I!" That brought Cole around. The weakness had been momentary with him, because of his recent ill luck. with the others he made a break for the shelter of the rocks, although they did not immediately leave the backs of their horses. The track-layers were between the outlaws and the cowboys, and that kept the latter from doing any effective work with their guns. But the laborers lost little time in getting out of the way. By this time, however, the outlaws were well shielded by the rocks, and from vantage point they began to send the bullets back with a rapidity and precision of aim that sent four of the cowboys toppling from their horses to the hard roadbed. They fired another rattling volley back, but not a shot found a mark for which it was intended. Tal cott had evidence that he was making a record for himself in the fact that a half-dozen of the shots pat, tered against the rock that shielded him, or flattened 0111 t(te wall of granite behind him. "They are beginning to hate and fear me," he grimly muttered. "And that is the way, I suppose, that it began with the record of Jesse Jam es. Strange that I should have an ambition to be feared and hated, as he is!" Stra nge, indeed. And yet it is so that the record of every noted outcast begins. And the greater the capacity of that man for greatness in an honorable career, the bitterer will be the struggle against him To excel, whether in good or evil, calls for the same kind of power, and Molly Farnum spoke truly when she said that Jesse James was a great man gone wrong. The outlaws were not hemmed in, and they did not tarry under shelter of the rocks on that account. Their object was to give battle to the cowboys, and that under conditions that would make the attacking party sick of the undertaki ng.


12. THE JESSE J AMES STORIES. The track-layers were unarmed, as was the case with those on the open plain They were a "mixed breed" as to nationality, and had no stomach for a fight either against the outlaws or in defense of the t1' ack. Therefore, when th e co wbo ys c a me y e lling into the cut, and the rifles and revolvers sputtered on both sides of them they were thrown into a panic. Their first thought YilS for their own s afety, and, in spite of commands from the cowboys to halt, they broke in a wild for shelter. This brought many of them near to the concealment of Talcott and the other outlaws. A quick order from the temporary leader of the ou t law band placed revolvers in the hands of s9me of the most intelligent of the workmen, and these were given orders to join in the firingat the cow boys. The four i11en of the outlaw party who had been left" in charge of the section also joined in the re sistance, and as a result the fire poured into the ranks of the attacking party was more than they could vdthstand. Even the laborers who were compelled by Talcott to fire at their friends, were able to wound and crip ple the horses of several of the enemy. And this told heavily against them. Hardly-so it seemed-had the battle be g un, be fore it was ended, and the cowboys, with two wounded, were in full retreat. It was unlikely that they would thus ea s ily give up the attempt to drive the outlaws away from the track section; but Talcott's men had at least a re spite, and the laborers were immediately ordered back to their work. Such was the condition of things at about the time that Jesse and Frank James were taking posses sion of the cash in the pay car on the eastern section which was under construction. And this also explains why the contingent of the outlaw brotherhood expected by Jesse James did not arnve. Seeing tha' t Raynor,' the guard, who had been merely stunned by a blow, had recovered and that he seemed to be leading the brakemen and other train hands in the first real show of resistance that had been made, _Tesse lost no time in running to the s ide of his brother. The latter seemed to be bent on advancing 'upon them single-handed. A number of shots flew about him; but only Raynor knew how to handle a gun, and he wa s still shaky from the blow he had received. The fact that Frank James seemed to feel no concern about the shooting which was being done with him as the mark still further "rattled" the clumsy marksmen. By that time the range was quite close, and Jesse reached his brother's side'. .. Then the brothers rai s e -cl th e ir 'Winchesters. Bang! bang !-almost as a single discharge. Raynor and the fireman at his side fell without more than a deathsign from either. This disposed of all the Winchesters that were opposed to the outlaw s, f o r the engineer had handed his to Raynor, the latter being the better marksman. "Up with your came the order from T esse then, for he did not wish to shoot all the train 'i-nen. having a better use for them. The command was obey e d instantly. The James bo ys a s usual, seemed to bear a charmed life, while e\ ery shot of theirs was a word of doom to a foe. And th a t told more than any \veight of numbers could have clone. The trainhands were disarmed, and then, for the first time, there was not a man on the section who could have fired a shot at Jess e or Frank James Pat McGraw, meanwhile had ceased hi s dancing. The o bject of his being compelled to indulge in s uch a n t ics was, of course, to cr eat a diversion and mysti ficat io n to the trainri1en when th e pay train pulled in "Put the men back to their work. McGraw, or dered Jesse James, when he had made th e engineer ai1cl brakemen secure. Oi wad loike to sphake jist a worrud, Misther returned Pat. "Speak it, then." A f ye wad have the min clp lively worruk, it moight be well to tell them that the ir pay wad b e comin before Cliristmas." M oney if they work, bullets if they loaf t Tell them that," was the retort. "Thot fs the talk." And Pat pa ss ed the \YOrd along to the men. CHAPTER VII. THE MUTINY. Nightfall found the conditions around the captured construction and pay train comparatively peaceful, so far as appearances went. Barely enough men belonging to the crew of the train were left to do the work which mi ght be de manded of them, if the train were to make another trip. Jess e Jam e s had virtually promis ed to pay off the track-layers .Pat p ass ed along the promise, al though, to t ell th e truth, he had little faith in it. The other s ide of the promise-that there would be bullet s for if they did not work-Pat had no doubt but would be fulfilled to the letter. And it w a s this sid e of it that he laid th e greater stress upon. It wa s a moonlight nig ht and, under the command of the brothers, the work of track-laying was


THE JESSE Jf\MES STORIES.; 13 pushed as vigorously after sunset as it had been in the daytime. For that matter, at no time had such rapid progress been made. Revolver in hand, Jesse James pa troled the section and so kept the men down to their vVork. Pat did his part. At the same time he kept his good nature, and evidently entertained no fears as to the outcome so far as he was concerned. "Wad Oi be quarrellin' wid a jay thot wad be afther slapin' as well if he had blowed out me brains as he would if he had trated me to a sup av whisky?" Pat asked himself, when he had a chance to stop and think over the situati o n. "Besides, i sn't the thrack bein' l aid in better toime than iver? And whatever J esse, the devil, may do wid the railroad while h e i s bas sin it h e'll b e loike to lave it for dacint people t o use when he is t'rough wid it. It is me dooty thot Oi'm

14 THE JESS E JAME S S T ORI E S. Some held tamping-bars, some seized picks, others swung spikes and even the ponderous wooden tie s A wild, imp etuous rush was made on the bandit, and his first intimation of the clanger was the whizzing of a spike past his head, within an inch of his ear. With lightning quickness he wheeled, and he did not stop to "call" before the Winchester began to "talk. Then Frank Jam es proved that there was the same k ind of invincibility in him tha t made his brother Jesse merit the title of king of outlaws. The \i\Tinchester sputtered, then was dropped and a revolver appeared in each of the outlaw's hands, and struck in with their tune before the echoes of the other weapon had been tossed back from the mountains. Not only did he do this, but he at the same time kept retreating in a zigzag fashion which confused the aim of the laborers in the throwing of TJ1e men fell like the front rank of a battle line a discharge of Mausers. Those who did not fall, fell back with yells of wildest terror, for, of course, there was no one to hold them up to anything like discipline. Almost half of the workmen fell. aot all were killed, for Frank Jam es made no pretense of precision in the fusillade which he poured at them. "Back here, you cursed idiots!" he yelled, as they stampeded toward the mountain line Jesse James and Pat McGraw had reached the spot where the signal light had been waved just as the fierce battle in which one conquered such over whelming oclcls began. "\Vhat in the cl evil was thot ?" e x claim eel Pat. JP.s se clicl not reply. He wa s gazing at tile sparkling across the plain. They could hear the reports of revolvers and \Vin ches.t e r mingled with the shouts and cries from the men. The n they saw the latter as they stampeded toward the hills coming th i s way!" exclaimed J esse James. ''And ye' re brother is after thim loike a divil !" "They muti1;_iecl, and he had to do some killing, a n d now they' ve quit the work and are running lil

THE JESS E JJ\MES STORIES. 15 "If it had been I should have joined you with a part o f your men, instead of signaling as I did jus'.: now." "V./ ell \\hat is the rest of i t ?" "\Ve killed a good many of the cowboys, though they were rather game in the fight. vVe captured three." "Good! And is that all?" "Three got away. I sent Dutchy and Swanson in pnrs uit. They overtook and shot two of them, but the third escaped. He will tell of the whole af fair, Jesse James, and I leave it to you to reckon on the consequences . A savage curse broke from the lips of the senior outl aw. "You have clone what you con I d, Talcott!" he said, a moment later. although his face was black with the furious dis appointment which the setback brought him. "But it lo o ks as if we would have a big war on our hands before we make use of the railroad in the way we planned on. And you have been kept down to it until now with the cowboy business, s o that you couldn't report to me?" "Yes. And eYen n o w I didn't dare to l eav e the spot." "\i\Thy ?" "Because, I have a n idea that there may be more of the same kidney here in the mountains. Besides I wanted to have the laborers make up for the lost time as much as possible, and I found that they worked l i velier with me about to glare at them. "Good! You are a man after my sort, Talcott. You haven't had the fun all to yo u rself, though. "You had all you could do-you and your brother?" "'vVe captured the working crew easy and there wasn't much fuss with the train that came in. A girl o n board, to make matters interesting. "Eh? A girl, you say?" "Molly Farnum, daughter of the new divi sion super intendent. Talcott grew white to the l ips, and uttered a sound like a gasp. "'vVhat is it?" demanded the outlaw king. "The devil's fate seems to be mine!" "How?" "How lon g s ince Gilbert Farnum became division superintendent of this road, or connected wit h it i n any way?" "McGraw, a boss of track-layers, says it is a new appointment." "I didn't dream that the Farnums were in this part of the country." "Bu t you don't say why the matter disturbs you so much." "Because. Farnum was director in the bank from which I fled as a defaulter! Nor is that a ll." "I should say th a t would b e about enough to make it interesting for you," said Jess e Jam es, with a low whistle. "It isn't the worst, so far as my feelings are con cerned. for Molly Farnum was a cousin to Isabel, the girl to wh o m I wa s betroth ed. They were bo!lom friend s Jesse Jam e s looked at the mor0se cotmtenance of his companion, and then burst into c>. l ow l a u gh. In that laugh there was mockery, and not mirth, and it brought a flush to relie v e the pallor of tbe younger man. "To you it may all seem like a joke! But I warn you, Jesse James--" "You warn m e !" echoed the bandit king, a n d he laughed again, more mockingly than before. Talcott seemed to find it hard to restrain hiniself from making a more pronounced manifestation qf his feelings. "You mock my unhappiness!" he exclaimed. "Yes, from such a cause." "Because, I suppose, you have forgotten what it is to respect such thing s as honor and respectable friends a nd--love ?" "Humbug, t h e whole of them." "You haven't always spoken _in that way to me." "I ha ven't a l ways spoken to you as I felt." '.'You pretended when I fir s t joined your brotherhood-at the time th a t you sav ed my life -that you understood my feelin g. "I understand it now." "Then \ \hat do you mean?" "That it is time for you to stow all of that old gammon. The past is de ad. You are a bandit. Your hand has been raised against soc i ety, and you are getting to be a mighty good man in you r \J\:'ay.'. You'll make a leader. You r e feared now more than any of my. gang excepting my ai1c1 111e." "Perhaps." "Then drop the old bluff. I'll tell you how to kill the last vestige of the old feeling ." "Tell me, then." "Come and let me introduce you to Molly Farnu m in your new role." "My God!" "She was rather kind toward me. I said one or two neat things to her. and she paid me a compl i m ent. Think of that, Talcott!" "You cannot mean it!" "It is true." 'But if she were to see me as I am now--" "She would turn her back on you if you sneaked if you were asl;amed of your new callinl?. But sail 111, and greet her like a man. You a r e hand some, rather dashing, and she'll like yo u better than s h e d i d when you were playing the par t of a virtuous softy with her co u s in."


16 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. Talcott's eyes flashed with a strange, new light. "I've a mind to do as you say!" he exclaimed. "It's the thing to do." "But her father--" "If he starts to preach, offer to show him how you can handle your winchester. If he behaves bumptious, offer to show him how you can handle your dukes. That'll make him civil, and she'll want to hug you because you've come up like a man of nerve. So much for that. About the danger of being interfered with by another posse brought down on us by the cowboy who escaped, we've got to leave something to luck. Come back with me, and I'll send Frank to boss the gang here." "All right-I'll g-o." Cole Younger and the big Swede, as members of the Jam es boys' brotherhood, were left behind to keep the track-layers hustling. The other members of the gang accompanied Jesse James and Talcott back to the other section. They found Frank James with his hands full, but holding the with a display of nerve that was bringing the remnant of the laboring gang down t o business again. Pat McGraw was back at1 his post, and his word had more effect in quelling the mutiny-or, at least, in bringing the men to order-than the fear of be-ing shot. . But Pat was far from bemg 111 good humor hunself. The men were tired, and a third of their number had been shot by the outlaw brothers. Besides, they had not yet seen the promised money. Thev had reached the point where they worked as slaves 'work, because they fear the lash, and not for hope of reward. But already they could see the other gang of men laying rails to them, and, as the way was now smooth, there was fair promise of having the road in shape to run the train on into the mountai11s by sunrise Jesse Jam es called Pat aside, and gave him a roll of money. "Distribute that in the gang!" he said. "Good for yez." "Tell them they may sleep or go to the devil tomorrow-I don't care which!" CHAPTER IX. TALCOTT AND MOLLY FARNUM. "Now, we will see Miss Farnum, Talcott," said Jesse James, as he led the way into the passenger coach where Mr. Farnum and his daughter were imprisoned. "Introduce me as Mr. Talcott, and see if she recognizes me," returned the other. He was no longer pale, nor did he otherwise show more than a slight measure of agitation. He was hardening to face the new life which he had chosen, with all of the reckless abandon which belonged to it. Jesse Jam es was proving to be a grand teacher of the strange art. Mr. Farnum was pacing the floor of the car. He had slept for an hour or two, possibly, and that had taken off the edge of drowsiness which comes to a man when he is fatigued, and he could not sleep agam. Molly Farnum had not slept at all. The killing of the guards had brought to her a terrible shock, of course. Otherwise, the mere robbery of the paycar, and the capture of the road by the James boys would have been to her merely a novel experience with the tingle of adventure in it She thought often of the words and behavior of Jesse Jam es. He had not seemed to be in the least like the man she had always imagined the great bandit to be. As Jesse and Talcott entered the car, she was at the opposite .end of the compartment, near the door which was locked upon the train hands. Her father, pacing the compartment, was in a po sition to meet the gaze of the intruders as soon as the door was opened. He gave Talcott only a slight glance. If the face of the young outlaw looked familiar to him, he did not attach special significance to the fact just then. "How long, may I ask, do you intend to keep us cooped up here, Mr. James?" he demanded. "Only a short time longer, I hope, as we are to make a first run into the mountains over the new track." "What do you mean, sir?" "We have the two sections close together, and expect to connect them by sunrise "Do you mean to say that you have kept the gangs at work all night?" "I have kept them at work all night. "But what do you mean to do? You have looted the train of what cash there was on board, and murdered as many of our men as did their duty in trying to protect the property, and I supposed after that you would be satisfied." "What I have done so far, Mr. Farnum, is only a part of the programme as I had it laid out." "What is the rest of it?" "That I decline to answer. But, Mr. Farnum, perhaps you will be glad to met my companion here. Shall I introduce you?" Farnum gave a quick, keen glance at the face of Talcott. The glance was not sufficient to penetrate even the thin disguise which Talcott had ass u med.


THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 11 Yet he noticed that the face and express ion were quite famil iar, and h e lo oked e xpectant. "Allow me to present to you one of my mos t trusted and nervy lieutenants Mr. Talcott, Mr. Far num," s aid Jesse J a mes, with mock ceremony. "I-I don' t think I feel so very highly honored-" began Farnurn. His speech was interrupted by a scream from the lips of Molly, \\'ho had approached unobserved. "Herman Averill!" she cried. She sprang tO\Yard him, white trembling, half-hesitating, n e v erthe le ss Her hands were outstretched. He took th e m, and his agitation wa s little l e ss than her own. "Molly!" he exclaimed. "\i\ That-what is the meaning of thi s Herman?" "Look at me, and you should be able to guess the riddle!" "You are not a comrade of this-this-?" "Devil, from Satan' s town!" laughed Jess e James. "You might as well gi v e me the name that comes to your lips Miss Farnum. I'm not sensitive." "I am a follower of Jes se James, the king of ban dits," said Talcott, while the hands of Molly still rested in hi s "I cannot believe it!" "She'd rather think you a liar than a bandit!" chipped in Jesse again, with his mocking laugh. Mr. Farnum found his tongue then. He recognized in the dark, handsome, somewhat jaunty young outla w a t the side of Jesse James the trusted cashier who had robbed the Eastern bank and defaulted. The former dir e ctor of the ruined b ank sprang upon Talcott as though h e would have torn him l imb from limb. Molly tried to pres s b ack her infuri ated father. But the latter thrus t h e r a s ide wit h a muttered oath, and attempte d to seize the throa t of the fugi tive. "You shall go back with me, and face the penalty of your crime!" snarled the gentleman. Talcott tried to repul s e the attack without a blow. Molly observed forebearance. And she real ized that it was only in self-defense a t la s t that the young outlaw sent Gilbert Farnum to the ground with a well-directed blow. Farnum got up clumsily, and sank on fo a seat. Molly, seeing that he was not seriously hurt, turned to Talcott. "Have you turned your back forever on the upright life that you once led?" she pleaded. A scornful and bitter smile curled the lips of the young outlaw. "Will you tell me how I may go back to it?. he asked. "Return to your former fri ends-make such reparation as yo u can-confess everything--" And go t o pri s on a nd be branded a s a crimin al, a convict, the r e st o f m y life! A bright prospect!" "The y would b e m e rc i ful." "Your fath e r ju s t showed a sli ght token of the f e elin g to wh i ch I would be treated on a larger: scal e." '"I woul

18 THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. "you will finish your trip on my railr oad, under a free pas5 .'' "Your railroad!" she repeated. 'yes. I control it now. \ncl it will do a littl e business for me before I let go of the property. Farnum had by this time recovered from t he blow so as to rise to his feet again. He had listened to the talk which had been passing, with evident interest. V.Then he again took part in it he was in a more reasonable mood, realizing that he could do nothing toward the capture of Talcott then. Did he but know it, the plan which he had in his brain, by which he hoped soon to set the authorities on the track of the fup itive, was to recei v e a ch ec k from an unexpected Molly Farnum, with her woman's wit, spurred by her woman's love, would stand in the way. Jesse James went out on to the platform ju s t as the sun burst throug h the haze on the eastern horizon. As he did so, the shrill whistle of a locomotive split the air! CHAPTER X ANOTHER ATTACK. "Another train coming-to look up what has be come of this o ne, l ikely!" Such was the exclamation of J esse Jam es, as the sound of the locomotive whistle broke upon the still ness. He was on the rear platform, and could plainlf see the headlight of the coming train. It was beginning to slow up. The bandit king opened the door and called out to Talcott: "Here's business for us, and hurry-up orders!'' Talcott joined him ins ta ntly. The door of the car was clo sed and locked as before. "We'll get out of sight for the moment. \i\lhat brings this train at this infernal minute is more tl1an I can figure out, and I don't like the looks of it in any case." 1 They sprang from the platform and hurried along the length of the train, keeping so close to the c-ars that they were unlik ely to be seen from the engi1w of the other train. J esse .Jam es soon attracted the attention of his other men, who were keeping guard over the engine and with an eye on the track-layers. The fact that the construction train had been moved ahead a few yards at a time, at intervals qf an hour or so, to keep pac e with the laying of the new track, we have omitted to state. Therefore Jess e Jam es and Talcott were within a few paces of the track-layers when they reached the head of the train. A glance showed that the track-layers of the other sectio n had approached to within the length of a few rails of a connectio n with :McGraw's section. Jesse James turned to T alcott, and the fire of an inv in c i ble determination blazed in his eyes. "I gi\'e you leave to shoot or to give orders <:c corcling to your discretion, in the handling Qf the crew on that new train. Take all our men, and don't hesitate at anything. I must speak to McGraw, and I 'll join you in a moment!" he cried. "As you say," said Talcott, coolly. The scanty number of their little band stood awaiting his word. In an instant he had ordered them to stand by him as he h e ld up the locomotive, which was at that moment slowing up \Yithin a few yards of where they stood. J esse Jam es reached the side of McGraw by a leap like that of a tiger. "Throw clown those rails and ties and knock them together with a spike to each. Do you hear me, McGraw?" "They'll sp rid. Mr. James--" "Not the first ti,me they'r e run over, and you know it. I don't care a curse what bec omes of them in three clays. A t them, man! I want to use them within ten minutes-do you mind that?" "Oi mind! Byes. whack dow1 { the s pikes. Hit thim as if they's Oirish. Thin ye can quit worruk for a wake!" The men caught the spirit of the hurry, and worked with a will. At the same time Frank J a m es rode up from the other section. "\i\That train i s that?" he demanded of his brother. "One sent by the devil, I reckon." "I have been having the rails laid in a rather temporary fashion, for the sake of gaining time, Jesse. Is that all right?" "Just what I have ordered done here. McGraw!" "Yis, sur-r !" "Look out that there is no mutiny, for I'll hold yo u res ponsible, and if there is any hitch in my busi7 nes>: at this stage I 'll blow your head off, if it is the only thing I have time to do before I pass in my own checks." "Oi'll take care, Mr. James." "Now, for the new train. vVe a r e a small crowd, but there was never a better chance to prove the stuff we're made of. Ha !-Talcott has got the engineer and fireman out of the cab, and their hands up. Now for the rest of the crew!" Frank and Jesse with Cole Younger and Jigger Jim, the u g ly litt le half-breed, clashed back toward the new ly-arrived train. The latter was made ttp of locomotive, tender, a baggage and smoking car. All were old and dingy. The conductor jumped off. J esse James saw him


THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 19 at a distance, and there was not time to get within proper speakingrange. Up went his \iVinchester. It was an easy ,distance for that to make itsel heard, and its brief terrible message was uttered. The conductor fell. At this juncture from the rear p latform of the smoker a half-score of men leaped, following each other vvith an impetuosity and discipline that s howed them to be there for business. The y were armed to the teeth. Cole Younger, true to the streak of cowardice which seemed for the occasion to h av e obtained pos session of him, whee led about and would have run from the spo t like a frightcneu rabbit. But he actually ran against a revol ver held like a bar in the hand of Jess e James. He half-f ell, blood gushing from his nose "Back to the fight, or.I'll riddle you!" The terrible threat from the lips of the bandit king was the needed bracer for the fagging will of the outlaw. He wheeled and joined in the dash which the James boys, with Talcott and the other members of the Banded Brotherhood, made upon the oncoming crowd In the dim morning ligh t, with a mist descending from the hills, both faces and garb of the men in the attacking party were indistinct. But, as usual, it was Jesse James who opened the ball. v\Tjnche ster and revolvers, the latter succeeding the former with machine lik e rapidity, carried a fusil la de from this one wonderful man which might well have staggered a company of soldiers h a d they been called upon to face it. Jesse James was in the lead. It was so that he always inspired his comrades with a m ad sort of courage that seemed to be actually in different to a rain of bullets. Several of the foremost of the attacking party went down before half the di stance separating them had been spanned The shots began to come back. But a h aze of smoke settled between them, and already the strangers were stricken with the beginning of panic "Into them-through them!" rang the tones of J esse Jam es He set the example by a forward lunge that sent him toward the attacking crowd like a projectile. The others followed, spread out l ike a fan, firing, yelling, joining in a scoffing chorus of laughter started by t he le ader. The parties c ame together, with weapons dis charged, muzzle to muzzle, and the blaze of them hot in each others' faces. A fight iike that cannot last long. -i/ One of the contending parties suddenly broke away, and fled, as wildly ancl impetuously as it had moved in the attack. "Don't let a de vil of them go back to tell the story!" Such was the gri m command of J esse James. There was a smear of blood across his left cheek, and his neck was blackened with powder. These marks but added to the riatural fierceness of aspect which had grown out of one of the wildes t careers that a man ever led. The flying men, now only three in number, and every one wounded, sped down the length of t h e train anu attempted to dodge from sight around the rear e.nd o f it. The firing had for the moment ceased, the revolv ers of the outlaws being emptied. But Jesse and F rank James reloaded as they ran. As the enemy reached the end of the train and ran past it, they made a leap. for the platform. Their purpose was clear to the quick mind of Jesse J ames. They realized that escape b y direct flight would be impos s ible They thought that by getting into the car they could barricade themselves and get some shots at the outlaws through the windows without being themselves so much exposed. It was a good scheme if they could only have made it work. But the one \Vith whom they had to cope was as quick and unerring of brain as he was of hand'. It takes these qualit ies combined to make the leader of that kind. Jesse Jam es did not stop them to fry to make his companions understand t he situation. He was not the man to stand and give orders and watch them executed by someb ody else, when he could make them surer \Yi th his own hand. \ V i th the speed o f a trained runner the outlaw king cro ssed the short intervening distance, reached the rail, seized it, leaped upon the platfoqn and flung himself agains t the door, just as the fugiti v es tried to clo se it in his face For a single p as sionate mornei1t, he maintained a single-handed struggl e against the three men on the other side. Then the door suddenly swung back, and the ban dit king was precipitated into the car. The door slammed shut. J ess e James and his three desperate foes were shut in together I CHAPTER XI. A TERRIBLE FIGHT. Jesse James was as ready for the situation in which h e found him self as he was for everything else. He had a revolver in hand when he plunged into


20 THE J ESSE J AMES S T ORIES the car. In pu s hin g with s o muc,b. for c e again s t the door he wa s thrown in by t h e grea t forc e o f hi s o wn momentum. B u t he w as not confu sed by it so muc h as we re his foes One of the latter h e fell against wit h hi s full weight. Bang !-from the re volver, and t he foe went down without a groan. The other t w o would h av e thrown the m se l v es on to the outla w ch i ef and they we re so w ell a ware of the ch a r acte r o f the m a n wit h w h o m they had to cope that they knew t heir o nl y h o p e o f w in n in g w a s in g e t tin g in the first s h o t s o r c ut s But thei r w eapons we re empty, and they co u l d n o t load with th e marvel o u s fac ilit y wh i c h c ha rac t eri z ed the l o adin g o f the Jam es toys whi l e in ac t ion The y u se d k n i ve s These t h ey attempted t o j a b into the o u t l aw at the same i'nstant that he sent the shot into the t hi i d o n e o f t h e ir n u mb e r It was at too close q uarter s for him to do a n y more s hooting then H e d i d not try Even before h e co u ld pull a knife the two of t h e m were p lun g in g a t him l i k e beasts of p r ey One o f the o u tl aw's c linch ed hand s ca u ght an as s ail a n t under th e c hin T he man was a lmost lif t ed off hi s feet by t he terribl e fo r ce of the b l ow. T h e other made a sweep with his kn ife o n a line wi t h Jesse Jam es' neck. The s l as h was a imed w ell enou gh. B u t a n u pwa r d s win g of the o u t l aw s arm struck the assaila nt's wrist, and t he knife was snapped out o f his grasp w ith spite ful forc e It flew u p and stuck, a n d quivered, in the top of the car. H a d t hi s r e m a ining ass a i l a n t of J esse J a m es bee n of the o r d inary sort, t his would ha ve e n ded t h e fig ht. But he w as a man o f extr ao rdinary m uscula r powers, w i t h some s k ill as a w r estle r and pu gilist b e side s S o the b a ndi t kin g found h i m self s u dde nl y locked in an embrace l ike t h a t o f a g rizzl y b ea r. They sway ed t o a n d fr o i n a t e rribl e struggle. It beca m e a matter o f muscle and skill match e d against the sa m e q u a liti es, a n d bac k ed, o n the one h a n d b y a re aliza ti o n that death wo uld co m e w ith de feat, and on the othe r b y the r esolve that death were b etter than d efeat in a n y case In tha t kind o f a fight maneu ve r s and c o ntortio n s are draw n out w hi c h wo u ld see m otherw i se t o h ave been imp oss i b l e to t he p owers o f human combatants. A t the sa m e t i me, a lthough the strugglin g m e n were for th e m o m e n t u n c o n sc i o u s of the fac t there w as a d espe rate attempt on th e p art of those o n t he outs ide o f the ca r to obtain admittan ce The d oor had a snap loc k a n d the crew o f men who had o cc u p i ed it h a d t h a t loc k se t so as to fasten whenever the door was s hu t tigh t. Thus, h a d the m e n wh o m Tesse James foll o w e d into the car suc ceeded in getting the door fairly closed aga in s t him, th ey would hav e b een temporarily secure. So Frank Jam es and the other. members of the band who had followed cl o se at the heels of J esse w e re a t the d oor trying to ope n it while the terrible struggle was going on inside the car. The two m e n swayed to and fro, their breathing becoming l abored from the desperate ch aracter of the s t rai n w hich was upon them. T here wa s n o r ese r v in g o f powe r s fo r a final effort o n t h e part o f eithe r. E a ch put forth hi s bes t a t the s t art, a nd it was a q uestion as to whic h had t h e g reater str e n gth and abilit y to e xerc ise i t fro m the beginn i n g. Co ul d there h ave been wi tnesses to that struggl e could t h e r e h ave been a n a r e n a for t he exhibiti o n, surro un ded b y c ri t i ca l s pectat o r s-it wo ul d have bee n something to have fo un d a pl a c e a m o n g the r eco r ds o f great gladi a t o ri a l c ontests. B ut onl y t he m en themse lv es knew o f the inte n sity of t h e cont est. To onl y o n e wo uld come th e g l o r y o f it-an d even t ha t g l o r y was to b e b uri e d in the strangel y taciturn silen c e o f t he v ictor. In their evol u tio ns, t h e co mbat ants ranged fr o m one end of the ca r to the oth e r T hi s brought the m a t l as t u p against t h e door o n the o uter s ide of w hic h t he other o u t l aws we r e cla moring and hammering fo r admittan ce. As a nybody knows, t h e door of a n o r di n a r y p assenger car i s stan chly b uil t. \i\Tith out hatchets o r simil a r impl ements i t woul d be n o easy m a t ter to batter clown the door. T he struggl e became a q uesti o n o n t h e p a r t o f J esse James, o f t h e possi bility of u nlocki n g the arms of his assai l a n t fr o m their bearlik e e m b r ace To this end h e finally bent all h i s energy. He got h is a ntagonist again s t t he door and there s u dde nl y s ucceeded in p l anting hi s k nee in t he man's w i nd. T h a t di d the work. The assai l an t r e laxed the t erri b le tensi o n o f hi s a r ms In a n instant J esse J a m es broke away. came a fierce bl ow from the bandit's fis t hit t in g the other in th e m o u th. T h e n the b a n dit's l ef t hand sou g h t his e n e m y's throat found it clos ed o n it p r esse d the head of the fo e back again s t the d oor and m a d e the eyes bulge like those o f a drowning r a t. T h e fight be l o nged t o the outlaw kin g then, and both o f the m kne w it. H e foun d a knife,' there was the sou n d o f s t e el cutt in g fles h a n d t h e gamey foe sank in a limp and bleeding h eap a t t h e f ee t o f J esse J a m es In that b ri ef sp a ce of t ime h e h a d overcome, s in g le-handed, and a t a d isadvantage three as p owerful a n d n e r vy m e n as he had eye r met in hi s whole ca reer.


THE JESSE JAMES 2 1 Then, for the first time he became aware of the sounds of clamor on the outside of the door. He flung it open. In ru s hed Frank James, Cole Younger, Jigger Jim and Talcott. A glance around the car told the story of the terrible fight, in which their l eader had won. Two of the strangers w e r e d ea d But one who had been felled only b y the terrific blow from the fist of J esse James-was ali v e, and in the act o.f rising to a s ittin g posture. Cole Y otmger put a r e \ olver at the s u rvivor's ear, and would have pulled the trigger; but the stern tones of Jess e James uttered the command: "Hold !-I want the man to talk!" Talcott was makin g a swift surve y of the interior of the car, to se e if it conta ined any kind of cargo bes ides th e c rew of men who made s uch a plucky attempt to defea t the James boy s a nd their Banded Brotherhood. Je sse James, although still breathing hard and i. little pale from the effects of the desperate fight for life which he had waged, stepped lightly to the side of the man sitting on the floor of the car. His jaw was quivering with the p a in of the fear iul blow which it had received : "Look here, man!" He looked up into the dark, fierce countenance of the bandit king. "You-you won against them all!" he gasped. "You can see for yours elf." "The fiends mu s t back you in every fight!" "So they do. But we aren't here to discuss th_at. Maybe you don't care whether you live or not?" ''Not for myself s o much. But a man has other reasons for hating to let go, sometimes." "I'll give you a show, if you'll make good use of it." "I've heard it said that Jesse Jam es never spares an enemy "He does when he can make use of him." "Then make use of me, for I want to live." "I want to know how it happens that this train, with a crew of men ready for a fight, antes up here at this infen1al time?" "vVe heard that you and your crowd were plot ting mischief against the road and that the pay train would probably be held up." "How did you find it out?" "A cowboy came in \vith the warning a few hours after the pay-train p ass ed, l as t night." "VVhere did he come from?" "In a beeline from the mountains. There w a s a big crowd of them going to attack you in the hills. But they knew you were slippery, and when they heard th a t the pay-train vvas due to come out yes terday, they sent this courier to give us warning a t the la s t station on thi s s ide ''\Veil who are you? ''A decent man, who has worked for small pay on 1 ranch for more than a year. That big fellow yon der, th a t y o u s eem to have worsted in the fight, was the lea der o f thi s expedition. He has boasted that he would prove that Jes se James would go down a s quick a s any man if he only found that he was bucking agains t somebody that wouldn't scare." The stern lips of the b : andit king curled slight l y But he made no other comment on the speech The way the fight had resulted was comment enough. "How many were there of you in all?" he asked. "Fiftee n counting the train h a nd s But your men held them up at the start. Oh, we were beaten, and that dead ea s y it seems "So it seem s echoed the outlaw. CHAPTER XII. BE G I NNING A F EARFUL RACE. Jesse Jam es might not have carried his questi on ing further had he not caught a peculiar intdnation in the man's voice \vhen he made the last seemingly hopeless speech. That tone s eemed to ha\'e a note of exultation in it. Before tbe man could breathe again the muzzle of a revolver was press ed against his ear. A moan of mortal terror e s caped his lips Yet he dared not stir. He thought that J esse James had obtained from him all the points of information he sought, and that now he was about to encl the life which was of no further use to him. "Man, spoke theoutlaw, what is your name?" "Dave Baxter. And I never had anything fo do again s t y o u Or your crO\\-cl before, sure as J'm a living sinner." "Nobody s a i

/ 22 THE JESSE JAMES STORKESo You know there aren't many good hiding places among those hills." "I know. Is that all?" "That is all." ''I'll let you live till I find out that you have lied to me or kept something back-eYen a word-back from me. Then you go the way of all liars!" Jesse James made a sign to Jigger Jim to make the man secure. Then he spoke to Talcott. "What have you done with the crew belonging to this train ?" "Those that had the wit to surrender instead of being shot are bound in good shape and locked in a car." "Good." Jess e James drew his brother Frank aside so that Baxter might not hear the orders given, and said: "I wi.ll put you and Cole Younger in charge of this train. You will ride in the cab wifh the engi neer, and fireman, and if they don't keep down to their work you will know what to do." "I reckon so. So you're going to move this train at the same time that you do the other?" "It must follow close, and I'm going to let 'em both out for all they're worth." "How about the halt up among the hills?" "It has got to be made." "And the cargo taken on?" "Yes." "How about this warning that seems to have been sent ahead?" "Oh, somebody has been spying. Curse it all!there is always somebody spying!" "But we will have close work getting past sta tion beyond the hills." ''It must be done." "\Vi th both trains?" "\Vit h both trains." "'vVe need only one." "If this was left it would give them something to follow u s with. As it is, this can follow our other train and cover us from the rear." "They'll get a locomotive and car and give chase just the same." The lips of Jesse Jam es closed with grim resolve. "Then wreck this one, and block the track!" Frank James saw tl1e wisdom of his brother's plan. "Queer I didn't think of that before," he said. Morning had dawned. It had been an eventful night, and the James boys and Talcott realized that there promised to be a most ev e ntful day ahead of them. From the cowboy attack among the hill s and this organiz ed attempt to capture them before they should have time to get away with the first train which they had captured, it was plain that they had been spied upon for some time. A s cheme to catch the m redhanded in the mi ds t of one of their bold undertakings had been formed. To those in charge of this plan, information had been furnished. But this was only of a meagre character, and not entirely correct as to detail. It was evidently suspected that the James boys were working in that vicinity, and that they had some plot under way. But there had not been time to s ufficiently warn those in charge of the construe tion of the new railway. For that matter, it had been the purpose of those in charge of the undertaking against them to lea ve the James boys free to show their hand in whatever game they might hav e on foot. But it was littl e suspected that the outlaws had an undertaking in hand whose boldness involved the capture of a railroad under construction, and the making use of the same for their own purposes. On one point the enemies of the outlaws had been correctly informed. This was concerning the numbers of the Banded Brotherhood. That Jesse and Frank Jam es were backed by only a small number of men was a fact which had been banked on quite heavily in the plan to capture or an nihilate them. How this over-confidence resulted in the attacks made upon them, has already been shown The first train of which they had taken possession was the one mad e up entirely of construction cars on the mountain end of the route. The locomotive u se d on that train was an old one, and not adapted to fast running. The cars were mostly of the short, tilting kind knovm as "clump cars." This train, after it was held up, had been run on to a short spur-track among the hills. The fire under the locomotive boiler was drawn, the trucks blocked with heavy timbers, and the outfit otherwise rendered in such condition that many hours of labor would be required before it could be made use of.


THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 23 Having briefly g;one over the conditions vvith hi s brother and Talcott, Jesse James went out to look ont for the final move in the game. I He found McGraw driving the last spike neces sary to make the connection of the sections with his ow n hand "All roight, Jesse James!" li'e exclaimed, as the bandit king approached. "Ye can n m your trains up into the mountains a-hootin, if it plases ye!" "What do you intend to do-you and yonr labor ers?" "It would suit us av ye would take u s on your train to the town on the other s ide av the hills, and l ave u s to oui O\\'n destruction. It i s loi k ely thot the rail road may nade us again whin you get through wicl it, and are ready to sill out." "I will lock you all into a car and take you along. Run your men in right here, and no lost time about it. Steam i s up and ,..,-e will be on the whir l wit hin five minutes ... Pat McGraw was quick to make the men understand that t h e ir labors were ove r for the present, and that they might go into the nearest car and s leep their fi I\ a fr er the protracted peri od of work. Jes se James personally made sure that the car was made secure after the men ,, ere inside of it. Within the five-minute limit named by him the construction train was under headway, moving toward the hill s The two gangs o f workmen were locked into one car. Jesse Jam es entered the cab of the leading locomotive, and saw that the engineer got the best possibl e speed out of the engine. T h e o ntl aw chief had run a locomotiYe himself on one or two occasions, and could haYe dispensed with the sen-ices of the driver, if necessary. But it be s t suited his present purposes to be free from the trouble and responsibility of running the engine. Back in the pay-car was Talcott, in company with Molly Farnum and her father. The other members of the Banded Brotherhood were d i st ributed through the brn trains in such a manner as to guard all parts of them. Frank James and Cole Younger, as sugg 'ested by Jesse, rode in the i.;ab of the second locomoti\'e. It was so that the captured trains, booming over he railroad \vhich for the time being, was ow ned by the outlaw king and his Banded Brotherhood, wound their way up among the hill s with a crash and a roar that a\\:akened new echoes At the most lonely point amid the mountain' spur the foremost train was pulled up short, with a screaming of brakes and grinding of trucks. \Vi th a hurry born of discipline, and the exactness of the order s previously given, a half-dozen men sprang off and clashed out into a hidden recess at one side, and abO\e the track. In a quarter-of-an-hour a heavy wagon, drawn by two horses and the same number of mules, rumbled forth from the narrow pass among the' rocks: It ,, as accompanied by J esse James' men. It was laden with tre a sure in boxes and sacks. This was hu s tled on to one of the cars. Then Jesse James gave the order to the engine-driver: "Now, push the steam to her! Stop for nothing!'' CHAPTER XIII. CONCLUSION. Just a word more of explanation, and then we may proceed with the final and most critical incident of this episode in the career of the James boys. For several yea rs Jesse James had made u se of a hidden place among those hills as a cac h e for treasu re which he and hi s men had captured in various raid:J for m i ies around. The hiding-place wa s a safe one until t h e railroad was laid out along a course very close to it. From the hour t hat the road was projected J esse James felt in creasiqg concern for the safety of his treasure. He must manage in some manner to t ransport it to a new place of hiding. The nearest point which he considered safe was beyond the first station west of the hills. There \\as a lonely stretch of country, where it would be possible to transport the treasure with mules if it could only be carried more quickly past the station ref erred to. It was 011 this account that he plan ned to capture the railroad before trains should begin to run regul a rly. and make u se of a train for transporting the \ alua ble s to the point \vhence it woul d be possible t o make use of the slower means for the final stage of the s hift. Now the plan was being carried into execution. But, un s uspected by h i m, as we h ave sa id, he had -.


24 THE JESSE 'JAMES STORIES. been spied on, and it had been discovered that he had some scheme on foot. But the character of that plan had not been discovered. On boomed the trains, the leading one now laden with a precious store. Once through the hills there was a stretch of downgrade. Here the speed was increased to the point of reck lessness. "We'll jump the track-that's what we'll do!" growled the engine-driver. "I reckon not," said Jesse James. "It is new, remember, and there's a chance of a flaw somewhere." "Let her go !" That stopped the discussion. An engine-driver always risks his life more or less, and he wasn't scared. Indeed, he began to admire the invincible man at his side, to whom death se .emed to be a sport. Suddenly the engineer, whose eye s never left the track ahead, turned his eyes toward the stern face of the outlaw chief. "There' s a train ahead o f us!" "Are you sure?" "Dead sure." "Going which way?" "It is coming toward us "They think to drive me back into the hills, and to hold me there as in a trap." "'vVell, I suppose we'll have to reverse?" ,The engine-driver began to shift the lever. hand of Jesse Jam es covered hi s gripping it tight. "No !-straight ahead, if it takes us to hades!" he gritted. "You-you don't mean that you will smash into that train, head-on?" "As they choose about that." "You mean that you will force them to turn back or be responsible for the colli sion?" "Just that!" "My God !-if they don't' catch on to the trick 111 time--" '''vVe ll have plenty of company as we sail into kingdom come-that is all!" "That's where we're bound, all right!" said the en gineer. The train they were rushing to meet loomed more and more plainly into sight. "Give 'em the danger-screech!'' ordered Jesse James The air qui 1 ered with the sound, which is not al ways audible to those who are in the cab of a lo comotive. They could s e e a white spurt of steam from the whi s t le of the ad vancing train. But the roar of their own drowned the sound of it. Nearer and n earer the two trains drew to each other. It w o uld so o n be too late to avert the colli s ion. "Can it be that that fo b i s going to run into u s ?" snarl e d the engine-driver. The fireman was white a s a s heet. Shall we jump as we str ike ?" he a s ked. ''No." "It i s death!" "It is that in either case, if they don't-but they're slowing up! I reckoned they'd weaken!" It was so. The train into which they seemed to be running with deadly certainty was pulling up as short as airbrakes would accompli s h the feat. The y were at a standstill by the time Jesse James' train wa s within five hundred yards of them. The next in stant they began to move backward. 13efore they were under full speed in that direc tion, however, the pursuing train was so close tllat the pilots of the two engines almost touched. It wa s a terrible moment, for the hand of Jesse James, s till gripping that of the en g ine-driver, would not let the latter slacken the pace an iota. Slide in t o them if they slow up by a hair!" said Jesse Jam es into the ear of the grim man at his side. But the driver of the other engine realized by this time that there w as only one thing for him to do, and that was to keep out of the way. In the pay-car there were three anxious persons, and all had their heads out of windows watching the terrible race. Talcott compreliende d the situation, and well did he know that Jesse Jam es would not stop for any life on that train or any other. Molly Farnum was pale, but strangely resolute. "That devil cares not how many lives he sacri fices!" exclaimed her father. To this she made no answer. She was at the side of Talcott, and, unconsciously, perhaps, her hand found his, and was tightly clasped.


'{HE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 25 "'fhis is a dreadful life!" she murmured. "But it is not a tame one, and I am in it to stay!" came back in the low tones of the man at her side. She looked into his face. She was strangely thrilled by the look that met hers. Not a word was spoken then, but the clasp of their hands grew closer. \i\Then they saw that the other train had tnrnecl back, and that the imminence of death was at least averted, the lips of the young and handsome outlaw touched the soft cheek so close to his own. Then she met his gaze.:.._hers fell-her cheeks flushed with a beauty which had never appeared in them before-and the pledge of a love which could not die passed mutely between them. Such was the little life-drama which passed, or, rather began-while the dreadful race over the rails went on. Soon they knew that they were approaching the station. "What now?" demanded the eng.ineer at the side. of Jesse Jam es. "Straight on!" "The other train may try to signal for the switch!" "If they dare to fly on to one at this pace, we can stand it." "That's so. But they're creeping away from us a bit. The grade is steeper there. I believe they'll try for the switch!" This proved to be the fact. But, in risking it, they had to take something more than their own success in getting over the frogs safely into account. I\ they allowed the Jam es boys' train to follow them they would be just as surely smashed as though they had allowed the collision to occnr on the open track. signaling the switchman \vas made to under stand enough of the situation to do the right thing, as far as he was able. Fortunately, he knew his business. The switch was turned, the leaditig train was jerked on to the side track, and the moment it cleared the switch was tnrned back again. Just in time. The James boys' trains, together, swept on over the straight track, while the switchman clung to the lever with straining arms and bulging eyes, for he did not have time to lock th. e switch. It was over. In a moment they flashed past the station, and swept on with a roar out on to the stretch bf lonely plain, fo be succeeded by the ruggeder mountains beyond. "Keep her clown to it!" breathed Jesse James. "It was a big thing, though!" muttered the en gine-driver. "And, Jesse James, from this hour I'll say you are the nerviest man living It is enough td make me half-wish that I belonged to your gang my self." "I'm in want of good men; but I'm death to spies, so have a care!" If any pursuit was attempted then, the James boys had too good a lead to be troubled by it. The point which they wished to reach was arrived at two hours later, only a few small stations being on the way. The work of unloading the treasure and shifting it away toward the new and distant cache by means of horses, which in waiting, was successfully ac complished. And it would be many a day, if ever, before the new hiding-place would be in danger. All hint as to the object of the trip was carefullY. guarded from the occupants of the two trains who were not in the confidence of Jesse Jam es. Both trains were sent back to the station which they passed with such furious haste, and where they had such a narrow escape. Molly Farnum went with her father. But a month later she met Talcott, the latter in disguise, and the pair were united in marriage. Then the Jam es boys and their Banded Brotherhood temporarily disbanded, separating, and so con fused and defeated all attempt to avenge this, one of their boldest and most sanguinary feats. His brief ownership of a railroad furnished a unique episode in the career of Jesse James, the ban dit king. 'l'l!E END. Next week' s issue (No. 47) will contain "Jesse James Foiled; or, The Pinkerton's Best Plan." Did you ever hear of Jesse Jam es' pursuit of a treasure box, and how he burnt the town of \Vind Hollow to secure it? The Pinkertons l aid their best plan to catch him on that occasion. That they faile d w a s only due to the splendid nerve and dash of t h e g reat outlaw. Look out for it next week, boys.


LOOK O N PACE 30 FOR ANNOUNCEMENT OF TtUS CONTEST. B OXI N Ci CONTEST Time! First Round's ov e r in this conte st. I tell you, boy s, it was a hot one The letters have come in t;o quick that they kept the editor blocking and ducking to k eep fr o m being s w amped in t h e whir lwind o f en vel o pes. You're d oing grea t work, boys. Keep it up, and w e ll bre a k all records. Now, get rea d y to read some ratt ling go o d stor ies. Clang -the bell has run g and the contest is on ag-ain. A Cl ose Bout. (By A. Le R oy P e n usy lvania.) We h a d c h ose n a m ember b y the u a m e of Bob B ntchko, and o n e un k n ow n F r e d e rick Peter s, w h o we r e to g o the l imit o f e i ght r ounds, one we i ghing 140 pounds and the other r 36, a p r etty good m atch. The fir s t round was a little bit o f clever foo twork b y both bnt was fini s h e d in the last by a l ef t h oo k w h ic h put Peter son t o the floo r. Getting u p, h e rus h ed Bob to the ro p es. Bo b sidestepped in time t o avoid a n upper cut, a n d r eturne d with a l e f t whic h ca u ght Charli e ou the n ose a n d drew b l o o d fir s t t im e C h arlie m ade a swing, w h ic h would have l a nd e d a bad o u e, b u t i t was blocked by Bob, wh o sent in a straight l e ft for Ch arlie's b rea d b a s k e t. 'i'his was bi ocke d and Ch arlie see in g an opening, let out a good o n e w h ic h c aught B o b 011 the so l a r ple x u s aud made him see stars Bob looked as i f h e was getting a little g ro g g y, but s oon ca m e to. H e s t arte d iu a l ittle slow, but h e g u a r d e d w e ll a n d se e i n g n o opeuin g l a nded a n over -haud b low w hi c h put C harlie to th e floor. Time was ver y n early up for Ch arlie. Bob rushed h irn to the corne r. C h arlie clinc hed. Breakin g, Ch arlie gave h im a h a lf-ram j olt i n the s h or t ribs, w hich made him a little s i c k for a while Bob, bracing u p, tho u ght of a c l ever si d e-s t e p h e l earne d a while btfor e. Rushing a t his opponent, h e trie d a l e ft for the ear, throwiug himse lf o n the side o f Peterso n at the same time l a nded his ri g h t o v e r hi s o p ponent's h e a r t whic h made him fa ll like a rock, jus t a s the b e ll rang. Getting u p good and wea k for a star t h e sparred a little. fo r wind, guarding w e ll a t t h e sam e time and w atchiug for a cl1auce to g e t in a knoc k out b lo w Bracin g u p h e saw an openin g. Wi t h a ll the force he had h e trie d an npper cut. H e l os t hi s ba l ance, mi ssed and fe ll iuto Bob's a r ms, at the sarne time r ece i v iu g a l ef t in the jaw which sent liim reel i n g t o the floo r face a n d haml s covered with blood. This knocked h i m Ollt. Bob received a bo x o f c igars fr o m the club a s t h e wiu n e r whil e Pet e rson 11e v e r l oo ked fo r a n other bou t with Bo b but j oined us and i s now a m e mber of our 1'i gers' Club, aucl d o i n g well. F ishing and Fighting. (By Roy S t e v e n s, Me. ) O n e day whe n Joe Broo k s was f'\shing in a little po n d back of a m i ll a boy c a m e a l o u g a n d thre w some rocks into the pond t o sca r e away the fis h He was an e nem y of J oe s. Joe d id not say a n ything the fir s t t w o o r three rock s. But w h e n the boy kept on throw in g the m he said : ''Will yo u p iease s top?" "No, I won' t," said t h e other. "The n we w i ll see whether you will o r not." So J oe se t hi s pole and w ent u p the b ank and sa i d : "Wha t di d you rnean b y throwing stones into the pond \"'\> h e r e I w a s fishing?" I m ea n t o scare away the fis h s o you could not catch any," said the other for be felt sure h e could put Joe out iu a very f e w minute s for h e had d one it befo r e. Joe had bee n t aking l essons for t w o weeks. "Well," said J o e m y fri end u p here has a set o f boxing g loves. W e will go u p the r e and ,put them on and see w ho i s the be s t m a n. They started for the barn, where they found five o r


THE JESSE JAMES STORIES. 27 six boys boxing. When they got through Joe put one pair on and he the other pair, and they went at it. After they had been boxing for five or ten minutes Joe gave him an upper-cut and down he went. When he got up he said he had enough. While they had been boxing a friend of Jim's-which was the name of the boy Joe bad whipped-came into the barn. "You can't do that to me," he said to Joe. ''Put them on and see,'' said Joe. So they put them on and went to boxing. They had boxed two or three minutes when }oe gave him one in the jaw, and he had enough. They took off their g loves and shook bands, and were good friends after that. The Shop Boxing Contest. (By Joel Les lie, Ohio.) I have been reading Jess e James stories and think they are good stories. I will now write my story, so here I go: It was a cold day in winter. The wind was blowing fiercely, and there were nine or ten boys in the shop having a jolly time when a boy by the name of James said: ''I will go anybody a game of boxing." One boy by the name of Tom said: ' I will go you a g ame.'' So the y put on the glo v e s and started the game. 'I'he first thing J a mes did was to give Tom an uppercut which him on the floor, then the others gav e three cheers for Jam e s Tom got up and started to box when a boy who had a watch yelled time, and they both stoppe d at once. The next round Tom knocked James five or six feet away, and he lay still for five minutes and then he was madder than ever, and said he did not want to box any more that day, but he would some other day. Tom said he did not know be could fight so well, and all the boys said that that was the best fight they had seen for a long time. They each gave Tom ten ceuts, and James five cents. Tom said he was getting rich, and then they all said it was getting late and they went home. J\ Lively Contest. (By H. Jorgensen, Iowa.) Round One. Both men spar lightly for opening. Farmer makes right-band feint for neck and lands a quick left jab on Steward's wind. Both men exchange rapid body blows. Farmer leads with left for Steward's neck. Steward parries with ease" and sends in a stinging right on Farmer's neck, and left on nose. Round ends with first blood for Steward. Hound Two. Opens with both men in good shape and out for blood. Steward lands left on Farmer's heart, Farmer lands right on Steward's wind, men clinch, break and Farmer \_ lands stiff uppercut on Steward's jaw, which Boors him. Steward gets up feeling groggy. Gong sounds and round closes with a lively mix-up. Ro:md Three. spar for opening. Farmer leads a left for neck. Steward ducks and sends in a stiff right on Farmer's wind. Men clinch, break, and both deliver a number of good body blows. Round closes with both men on their feet. Round Four. Steward forces fighting. Farmer lowers head, which draws an uppercut from Steward. He guards and lands a rain of blows on Stcward'-s body and face. Men clinch, break, and Steward delivers a stiff left on Farmer' s jaw. Farmer falls on his knees, gets up and receives a bad left on wind, which floors him; the gong saves Farmer. Round Five. Round opens with Farmer nearly out. Farmer leads left for wind and receives a stiff right on eye and left on chin. He staggers and fights for wind. Steward leads for face and misses. Men clinch, break: and exchange blows for a few sec onds. Farmer still weak. Steward follows him up and lands a stiff right 011 wind, and left on jaw, which floors Farmer. Farmer is counted out, amid a deafening upioar of applause. J\ Laughable Contest. ( By Harry Lowet, 0 T.) ''Right this way, boys, to see the big boxing match be tween Kid Evans and Fred Kellie. It's just begun." Round One. Time. The two come together, they shake hands and the fight begins Stepping back a few paces, Kellie made a rush. Evans ducked his head and landed a blow on the ribs which made Kellie grunt. He raised up and then began hitting right and left. He reached over and hit Evans a jolt over the left eye, which made Evans stagger. Then Evans struck out his right hand and caught Kellie under the chin and knocked him down. "Time!" called out the timekeeper. Everyone roared with laughter when Kellie began to pick himself up. They were rubbed down when time was called a gain. They were both to their feet. Evans backed Kellie to the ropes and hit him in the mouth. Then he ran to the center of the ring, and Kellie was ducking and dodging. He thougbt that Evans w a s standing ready to hit him. Everybody was laughing, and he happened to see that he was making a fool of himself. He made a rnsh at Evans with a scowl on his face. Evans stopped squ;;ired himself and waited for him. Kellie struck a blow at Evans and Evans threw up his guard, kn'bcked off his blow and let one come square fronY his shoulder and hit Kellie on the jaw. The fight was over. Kellie thought he bad an easy thing when he saw Kid Evans, but he found out later .


ADVENTURES. Keep your eyes open for this pag e each week, boys. You will always find he1'e some thrilling s tory-perhaps a hairbreadth escape by sea, or a da1e-de vil advent ure on land. They are from the pens of the best write r s of exciting stories i n the world -veteran hunters, Indian fighters and border men, s cou t s s o ldiers and saiio zs-men whose lives have been spent in facing danger of all sorts in all pads of the world They have w ritten a collection of the finest s tori e s tha t have ever been to l d. They knew how to do it, for they are thoroughly familiar with the scenes they write about. Look out for them, boy s ; they are a spl e ndid lot of thrilling tales. If you admire a plucky and clever boy, read first of thes e stori e s. It tells of a brave fight against Apaches by a New Mexican boy, and the wild r i de he took to re s cue his fri m ds. THE DEFENDER OF ARACENA. R v WILLIAM M URRA 'I G RAYDON Xavier Brito w a s a little New !lle x i ca n who livednot in these times, but away back in 1 8 45 wh e n New Mexico did not belong to the Unite d States at all. He was a descendant of thos e hardy S panisli settlers who long a g o wres ted the l and from the P u eblos, and now lived on fri endly terms 1Yith their o n e-tim e enemie s But, though the Pueblos had been pacified many years b e fore, the Apaches, the Utes and the Comanches w ere still deadly enemies to the n e w settlers, a nd year afttr year scattered villages w ere d estroyed, shepherds mur dered and their flock s driv en off. Xavier was ouly sixtee n tall for his age, n ith sleek, black hair and a rich olive c omplex i o n. He was a brave lad, fond o f all sport, and skillful with the flintlock, the riata and the spear. His father, Jose Brito, live d in the little-

THE JESSE Ji\MES STORIES. 29 to defense. Yes, there was one. Xavier quickly closed the heavy gate. ''He! p me here,'' he cried; ''roll those stones it, Pedro! drop the liars into thei r soc k ets, Manuel! Now, then, to the walls! Get ready your spears, your bows, your muskets; we may hold out until the men return, Father t o ld me to defend the town and I'm going to do it." Brave Xavi e r Hjs example shamed the cowards, put sudden courage into the hearts of the despairing, and all flocked to the watch-towers, armed with everything they could lay thc:ir hands on. Even the women came, ready to take their husband's places. Soon th e Apaches came dashing over the ridge and galloped up to the walls with fier c e yells, surprised to find the gates closed and their entry disputed. Baffled and angered, they withdrew for a time, but it was soo u plain tha t they had no intention of abandoniug the attack, for presently they picketed their horses be fore the walls and swarm e:l up t o the gates, shooting arrows, hurling spears and yelling like a troop of demons One of the foremost was picked off with Xavier's own flintlock, and taking c ourage at this, the old men and the wo m e n cast a shower of spears that did much damage among the enemy, and they again withdrew from the assault. But Xavier knew well that the worst was yet to come, and very soon his fears were verified, for a dozen or more of the bravest A pa ch e s advanced to the wa ll bearing great beams on their shoulders, taken from a ruined building jus t outside the town. A rough scaffold was soon constructed, and in spite of the bullets and spears that thinned out their ranks, one by oue, they clambered to the t op ot the wall. "fhe b esiege d broke into loud wailings and lamenta tions, losing all bup e but Xavier was no t ye t at the end of his res ources. The peopl'e were crowded into the t wo towers that stood on each side of the g a tes One of these was larger an d more solidly built than the other, and there Xavier concentrated his forces in safety just as several of the Apaches dropped from the wall into the town and tore away the fastenings of the gates. Xavier watched them with g na shing teeth. If only he liarl a force sufficieut to sally out and attack them. But be could do nothing, of cours e, except to hurl spears and shoot arrows, and this on l y se rved the more to enrage the Apaches, as the great gates were torn open and they swarmed with piercing yells into the town. They soon discovered that not a victim wa<; within reach, a s they ransacked the hou s es, and in a short time they were swanning about the watch tower. Here they could do little, for Xavier had hauled up the la dder which gave access to the tower by the little window far up the side, aud the lower portion was of sol i d adobe strongly cemented. "Don't be afraid," whispered Xavier, cheerily, "but shoot, pour down your weapons on the foe, and he gave tbe 1 au example by training his fiiutlock on a big war rior beneath him, droppiug him like a log The Apaches replied with a cloud of arrows that wounded two of the besieged-not dangerously, however -and then the inmates of the tower replied so vigorously that the foe dodged under co ver in utter con sternatio n. Thus a coupie of hours pas.'-:e d, with occasional fruit less ru s h es on the of the Indians, and a stern resist ance from the watcnful New Mexicans. But the spears and arrow s were running low, and ammunition for the flintlocks was scarce. Xavier realized that unless the men returned soon the tower would be taken and the inmates massa cred. Even as this en tered h is mind, the Apaches bounded forward with a huge beam for a battering ram, aud dealt the foundations several stunning blows befor e they could be repulsed, while at the same moment half-adozen of their companions gained the wall, and from this point of vantage shot their arrows into the windows of the tower. But what hope was there that the men would return? They were mil es away, on the banks of the Gila, per h a p s se::irchiug for the cu11ning Apaches, and little dreaming that the y bad circled and gon e back to commit more depredatioans, for Xavier h ad 110 doubt that these were the very Indians-or a part of them at least -who had devastated P uleo. He bravely tri ed to repre ss his fears but with each moment the ontlook grew darker, and when another assault from the battering -ram loosened some of the great stones of the to we r, b e saw that something desperate must be do11e. Perhaps some one could escape from the town and go for aid. Glancing over the wall at the horses picketed on the plain, hope flashed into bis heart. He called the peo ple arot111d him, and briefly told bow great the peril was. Then he pointed to the horses. "Pedro, Manenl," he cried "one of you must go for aid. You are flee t-footed. You can easily capture one of the hors es and get away. I will remain and guard the tower till your return." But they refused. "The 1 : isk is too great," they replied, "we will surely be caught." There were none willing to go. Xavier hesita ted. He w i s hed to go himself, he felt as though it would be cowardly to abandon his fri e nds. But there was 110 other \my, so, bidding all be of good cheer, and fight well he tied one end of his riata to a proj ection in tile tower and dropped the other over the wall. A careful glance showed him halfa dozeu Apaches standing about the gates. He wa s nearer the hors es than they by half-a -doz en yards. Singling out the be s t-l o o king mustang, a powerful bay that was p ic ke t ed on the edge near the town, he slid rapidly down the las s o band over hand, and dropped to the g r ound. With every muscle strained, he sprang forward, and was half way to the goal, when a chorus of yells rose from his r ea r. He was disco v e r ed. This only spurred him to greater efforts, and in a few seconds he sprang with a bound to the back of the chosen horse, severed the riat a with his keen-edged kn i f e and was off like tbe wind, bending low to avoid the shower_ of arrows and spears that whiz zed by his head. He rode straight to the westward, digging bis heels into the mustang's flanks, and looking backward from


THE JESSE Jl\MES STORIES. time to time at the half-doze n mounted Appaches who we r e riding furiously in pursuit. His steed was a fine animal, and, one by one, he distanced his foes until a solitary wa_rrior remained, who was mounted as superbly as himself. i Boxing Contest Now Running All efforts to s h ake him off were vain, and for mile s I the distance between them remaine d unchange d Then Xavier discovered that his own horse was giving out, and a glance showed that the Apache was steadily gaining. He w as armed with a bow and spear, too, while Xavier had only a k n i fe. His sole hope lay in keeping ahead, and he employed ev ery possible device to drive his horse onward. But the hoofs of the Apache's mustang rang still clearer in his ear, and suddenly an a r row whizzed b y hi s head. Crouching low on his steed's neck, Xavier still urged the jaded bea s t forward, but that instant a second arrow struck the h o r s e in the flank, and his rider was pitched headforemost to the ground. Xavier rose and staggered blindly towa rd the crest of the ridge before him, but bi s merciless foe was almost at his heels and in a few seconds all would be over. Already the savage whoo p of triumph ros e on the air, and the spear was poised for a fatal c as t when a loud report was heard, and the Apache fell lifeles s from his horse,. Xavier look e d up to see the m e n of Aracena, l e d by bis o w n father, riding over the crest of the ridge. The lad's story was quickly told, and in hot h aste the meri galloped toward the town, Xavier mounted behind bis father. They arri, ed barely in time, for the watch tower was tottering on its foun dations, and the inmates had used their last spear and fired their last charge. The Apaches fled in confu s ion but the New Mexic a n s purs u ed the m closel y, and many were slain before they r eached the b anks of the G il a. Of course, Xavier's brave exploit m ad e him a h ero and for many years afterward the ta l e of h i s d e fense of Arac e na wa s a househ o ld story at New Mexican fire side s The Shiends and Ryall Bout. (By Karl Dannenburg N. Y.) When I was in Phila de lphia I witnessed the fight between Grassy Shields and Lew Ryall From the s t art of the first round Ryall we n t out to scor e a knockout. H e rus hed at Shie l ds in savage s t y l e but the l atter stood it bravely, aud gave Ryall a s goo d as he sent. At the e n d of the first round R yall hit Shields a knockout, but the bell saved him. The s econd and third rounds were a r epe titio1i of the fir s t. Ryall h a d the b etter of the fourth, for he clo sed one of Shield's eyes. But Shield s came up strong in the fifth round, for he hit R y al! a swi11g in t h e ja w an d would have followed it up, but t!Je be ll saved Ryal !. The men fought hard in the la s t round until a minute b efor e the close w h e n the punishment b e h a d received began to tell on Shields. Ry all s ai led into him and I anded both h a n ds b a rd on Shield' s face, but the bell raug before b e put hi s man oiit. SEVENTEEN PRIZES SPALDING PUNCHING BAGS FIFTEEN SPALDING BOXING GLOVES SETS OF .... The bvo boys who write the best s t ories will each receive a Spalding uExpert" Punching Bag, made of finest selected Napa tan l eather. The workinanship is the same as i n the Fitzsimmons s pecial bag. Doublestitched, welted seams, re-in forced one-piece top. Best quality Para rubber bladd e r An extremel y durable a n d lively bag. and carefully selected before packing. Each b a g complete in box with bladder, rubber cord for floor and rope for ceiling attachment. The four next best storie s will win for their writers sets of 8paldi n g regulations oz. boxi11g gloves. TWO PAIRS OF CLOVES TO EACH SET. Made after the Corbett pattern of soft craven tan leather, well-padded, with elastic wrist bands. There wiil be eleve n prizes in the third c lass Eleven sets of two pair of S palding boxing gloves. Regular p attern, made of li ght-colored soft tanned leather, well-padded, elastic wristbands. 'l'hese bags and gloves are The Best that can b e obtained anywhere. They are well worth trying for. HOW TO CET THEM Thin. k of any exciting boxing beut you have w itnessed o r participated in. Sit down and write as good a description of it as you know how. 1'fake it livel y. Throw in a ll the upper cuts and half arm jolts, and do it in five hunSred words or l e s s Every boy who has ever seen a boxing contest bas a chance to capture one of the prizes. 'l'he contest may be between boys or m en, o r w e ll -known atnateurs. If you shoul d n o t win a prize you stand a goo d chance of seeing you r story and nan1e i n print, anyway. 'fo becon1e a CGf\tes tant you 1nust cut out the Boxing Contes t Coup o n on thi s page. fill it out properly, and sent it t o TES SE J A)IES WEEKLY, 238 William Street, New York City, together wfth your article. No contribution without this coupon will-be considered. Come along, boys, and inake things hum. THIS CONTEST CLOSES MAY 1, 1902. C9UPON. JESSE JJ\MES WEEKLY BOXING CONTEST Date ............................................. Name ............................................................ City or Town ................................................... . .. State .....................................................................


JESSE JAMES STORIES. (LARGE SIZE.) The Best Stories Published of the Famous Western Outlaw. 8-J esse J arnes' Daring Deed; or, The Raid on the Pine Ridge Jail. 9-J esse Jam es at the Throttle; or, The Hold-Up at Dead Man's Ditch. 10--J esse Jam es' Double; or, The Man from Missouri. II-Jes se James the Moonshiners; or, The Train Robbers' Trail in Kentucky. 12-Jesst;: James' Close Call; or, Outlaw's Last Rally in Southern Wyoming. 13-Jesse James in Chicago; or, The Bandit King's Bold Play. 14Jesse Jam es in New Orleans; or, The Man in the Black Domino. I 5-J esse Jam es' Signal Code; or, The Outlaw Gang's Desperate Strategy. I 6 -Jesse Jam es on the Mississ ippi; or, T)1e Duel at Midnight. I 7-J e sse Jam es' Cave; or, The Secret of the Dead. 18-The James Boys in St. Louis; or, The Mysteries of a Great City. I9-J esse Jam es at Bay; or, The Train Robbers' Trail. 20-Jesse James in .Disguise; or, The Missouri Outlaw as a Showman. 21-J esse James' Feud with the Elkins Gang; or, The Bandit's Revenge. 22-Jesse Jam es' Chase Through Tennessee; or, Tracked by Bloodhounds. 23-Jesse Jam es In Deadwood; or, The Ghost of Shadow Gulch. 24-J esse Jam es' Deal in Dead Valley; or, At Odds of Fifty to One. 25-Jesse James on the Trail for Revenge; or, T he Outlaw's Oath. 26-Jesse James' Kiclnaping Plot; or, The Massacre at Weldon's. 27-Jesse Jam es Among the Mormons; or, Condemned to Death by the Saints. 28-J esse James' Capture and Escape; or, Outwitting the Pancake Diggings Posse. 29-Jesse James' Hunt to Death; or, The Fate of the Outl aw Vasquez. '!111'. 30-Jesse James' Escape From Cheyenne; or, In League with the Wyoming Regulators. J 3r:--Jesse James' RichPrize; or, The Battl e at the Old Stone House. 32-J e sse Jam es and His Ally, Polk wells; or, An Errand of Life or Death. 33-J esse James in New York; or, T h e Missing Millionaire. 34-Jesse James' Deal in Sacramento; or, Holding Up the Overland Express. 35-Jesse James Against the Record; or, Seven Hold-Ups in a Week. 36-Jesse James and the Woodford Raid; or, The Nervy Bandit Hard Pushed. 37-Jesse James' Narrowest Escape; or, Cha s ed by a Desperate Band. 38-J esse James and the Black Valise; or, Robber Against Robber. 39-The James Boys Driven to the Wall; or, The Three Lives of Wild Decatur. 40-J esse James' Ruse; or, The Escape from "Lame Horse Settlement." 41-J esse Jam es in Mexico; or, Raiders of t h e Rio Grande . 42-Jesse James' Double Game; or, Golding the Dandy Sport from Denver. 43-J esse James Surrounded; or The Desperate Stand at Cutthroat Ranch. 44-J esse James' Spy; or, Corralling a VVhole Town. 1 45-The James Boys' Brotherhood; or, The l\Ian of All of the above numb ers al ways on hand. If you cannot get them from your five cents a c:opy will bring them to y ou by mai4 p ostpaid STREET & SMllli, Publishers, 238 William Street, New York.


15 lid Gold .atches G IVEN AWAY Not Gold Filled Watches Not Gold Plated Watches BUT ABSOLUTELY Solid Gold Watches 1 .__, W A R R A N TED UNITE D STATES ASSAY. FULL PARTICULARS IN NUMBER BOYS OF AMERICA. 20. HOW TO WRITE A SHELDON'S 201H CENTURY LETTER WRITER The best gui d e to correct modern letter writing published! PRICE. 1-0 CENT S I n this volu me, e ver y phras e of lett e r writing is t reJted, a n d i n nu me r able s ampl es o f correct l y-writt e n l etter s are gi v en showin g ho w a yo u ng m a n m a y addre ss a bank e r o r a teacher a friend or a stran g er, a br i d egroo m or a w idower, et c e t c A PEW O P THE MANY S U B JECTS: G r a mmar-Paragrap h s -TitlesCo n structi o n of a Lett e r Postcr i pts S tamps--Social L etters-Fami l y Letter s-A F a t her's Letter t o an E r r i n g So n --A Bro ther's \ Y arning to a S i s t e r-Th e Si s ter's Reply -Letters o f I ntr duct i on-Letters of Condole n c e LettefsofCongrat u ic>.tion-LoveLetters-Wedding Anuouncem e nts-Ceremon y and Rec eption-Form Suitabl e fo r Invitations -1\Ia r r iage A nnounc e m ent-Valentines-Gene r a l Invitations-Acceptances a n d Regrets-Notes of C e remo n y and Com p limen t B usines s Letters-Application i n A n swer t o AdvertisementM i s c ellaneous L ette r s, etc., e tc. F o r sale by all newsdc e.ler s. If ordered by mall, add f our cents for posta ge. STREl:!T & SMITH, 2 38 W Uliam St., N. Y. City ...... .,,"'J"""',....., .... A Book That Young Men May Read With Profit. OR, How to be Beautiful PRICE. 10 CENTS. R ea d tire l is t o f som e o f tl1" subje ct s treated: T ypes of Beauty-Health Essentia l lo. Beauty-Exercise-FoodBrain and Nerve Foods-Muscle-Making Foods-Heat Pro ducmg Food s-Ventilation-Sleep-Clotlnn g G e nernl Hints o n DressFabrics and Color s Hints AboutJewelry-Thc Skm. S tandard.Recip e s-For Sunburn a u d Freckle s -For Blotches and Pimples-Moth Patc hes a n d M o les-Face P o w d ers a n d R ouges L i!? Salve and Rouge T h e Eyes-The Nos e-The Lips -The Bre ath-The Teet h T o De-velo p T h 1oal a n d Bus t T h e Hair For Dandruff-Pomades T o Keep the Hai r in Cur l. T h e Care of Hands-Beauty Paste-Cam p hor Ice. The Feet-For Corns-For Bunions-For M o i s t Feel-Ing rowing Nails. Ilathing'-How t o Acquire F l e s h Effect of Mental E x e_rtion -;-L o v e the Great Bea u t ifi er-Rea l and Imagmary B e a u ties-How to Grow Old Grac e fully -Beautiful Ma t ernity. The '\Vo1na n of t h e F uture The Perfect Man a .nd Woman-Man-\Voman. For sale b y 1111 newsllealers. II ordered by mail, add lour until for postage. STREET & SMITH, Publishers, 238 William Street, N. Y.


St.Georae for En2l ., .. THE BEST AND MOST FAMOUS BOOKS WRITTEN FOR B0YS ARE PUBLISHED IN TtJEPrice, 10 Cents. All Newsdealers These books are full size. Bound in handsome illuminated The authors of the stories published in the Medal Library hold first place in the hearts of the youth of our land. Among the many writers found in this libr ary may be mentioned the riames of OLIVER OPTIC HORHIO ALGER, JR. G. A. H[NTY JAM[S OTIS rnWARD s". [LUS GEO. MANVILLE fNN FRANK H. CONVERSE ARTHUR S[WALL W. H. G. KINGSTON GORDON STABLES CAPT. MAYNE R[ID LIEUT. LOUNSB[RRY GILBERT PATJ[N LEON HWIS WM. MURRAY GRA YOON CAPT. MARRYAT CUTHB[RT BEDE JULES V[RNE MATTHEW WHITE, JR. BROOKS McCORMICK STREET & SMITH, Publishers, 238 WILLIAM ST., NEW YORK from Canal Boy The Boy s I aves to President


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