Young Wild West and the cattle branders, or, Crooked work on the Big G Ranch

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Young Wild West and the cattle branders, or, Crooked work on the Big G Ranch

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Young Wild West and the cattle branders, or, Crooked work on the Big G Ranch
Series Title:
Wild West Weekly
An Old Scout
Place of Publication:
New York
Frank Tousey
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1 online resource (29 pages)


Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels ( lcsh )
Western stories ( lcsh )
Cattle -- Marking -- Fiction ( lcsh )
Ranches -- Fiction ( Icsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

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University of South Florida
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University of South Florida
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The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
Resource Identifier:
033258173 ( ALEPH )
61434213 ( OCLC )
W16-00022 ( USF DOI )
w16.22 ( USF Handle )

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A MAGAZINE CONTAINING STORIES. SKETCHES Ete. Of !&.med JVcekly By i2.50 pu Year f..,'upyr iyltl mos. bg Jr'r wd.; l'ttbli(J/u;r, 24 Uuun t Square ... York. Pric e 5 Cent s I reckon we'll have to find out something about this, Charlie," said Wild, as he made a leap fo r the end of the cabin. Finding a curtain there, he quickly pulled it apart and a man was disclosed. Spat! Wild's fist shot out and caught him on t h e nose.


' WILD WEST WEEKLY I A Magazine Containing Stories, Sketches., E tc.,of W estern Lile lasuea Weekly-By subacription $ 2.50 p e r 11eM. JiJntere d according to Act of Oongress, in the year 1908, in the of ihe LibrMian of Oongreu, WasMngton, D O., b y Frank Touse11, Publi$her, 24 Union Square, New York. t No. 295. NEW YORK, JUNE 12, 1908, \ PRICE 5 CENTS. Young WiM West tne Cattle ) _.OR\ Crooked Work on the B i g 0 .Ranch By AN OLD SCOUT. CHAPTER I. THE FIRE ON THE PRAIRIE. Ahead of the lin e of flame there was a dense smoke which hu gged the g round just then on account of some freak of the wind. Suddenly this lifted, as though by magic and then our 1 two friend s gave a simu ltaneou s start of surprise. "I smell smoke, Wild." A bunch of cattle was running ahead of the fire! Th: speaker was Charlie, the "yharlie," said Wild, as he bru shed back his lo ng, ,scout and fighter, and chestnut hair and s hook his decisively, "it looks to he a a dressed was young ild West, the dashmg Prmce me as though there i s crooked work going on. Some one of the Saddle and Champ10n Deadshot of the W esti set the g ras s on fire for the purpose of stampeding those It was near s unset on a day in December, a few years cattle. I ll bet on it!" ago, when the ranches of northwe stern Texas were far more few than at present. 1 The clay had been a remark ably warm one, for the seaso n of the J'.ea1r, and the dash in g you ng h ero of the Wild West, so well known to our read ers and his :friends, had camped in a narrow belt of timber land. "\Vhile the s upper was being prepared by the Chinese cook Young Wild Wes t and Cheyenne Charlie decided to walk over to the edge of the timber, wh,ich was n ot more than a couple of hundredyards from the site they had selected as a camping place, and take a look around it. It was just as they were nearing the edgie of the woods when the scout made the remark quoted above. "You're right, Charlie,'' Wild answered, as he sniffed the air. "I hope the prairie ha s not caught fire, for the grass is as dry a s powder. There hasn't been any rain in over a week." ... 'rhe next minute they s tepped out of the woods, and then it was that they saw what caused the smoke. As our h ero had feared, the prairie was on fire. Over a mile to the west a long line of flame was spread ing and it was the smoke ffom this 'that the two had smelled, the1 wind being almost directly that way. One glance told them that the flames had not been in operation more than ten minutes at the most. "That's je st about the_!: size of it, Wild,'' the scout re torted. "I-hello! Th ere's a rider ahead of ther cattle. Looks like a boy from "Hight you are again Charlie. "And look behind the fire. Ther e Look now! vVha.t do you see?" "Four or five hor semen,'' was the quick reply. "That's rig ht. Now what are they doing there, and the other fellow ahead of the fire, with the cat tle? If there i sn't crooked work in this, then my name is not Young; Wild West I seldom make a mistake when I form an opinion, Charlie." "I know yer don't, Wild; an' what you think I a lways think. I can't help it, 'ca use you str ike it je.3t right cveq time. But, say! That :feller ridin along with cattle is in a mighty bad way. Ther fire is swingin' around on both ends, an' if he don t look out he's goin' ter git catched." "That's right, Charlie. I reckon we had b etter get our horses and see if we can't help him. Hurry up!'" The two turned and ran fo tle camp in a hurry. Jini Dart, the other partner of Young Wild West, and the three girls who traveled with them on their trips iu search Of fortune and adventure, were surprised to see them come back in that hurried manner.


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. .Jim who was 1 a boy about the same age as our hero, knew that something was wrong right away. "What's up, Wild?" h e asked "'I'he prairie is on fire, and a hor sema n ancl--about a hundred catt l e are runnin g before the flames Tlie wind is right thi s way, too." 'l'hat was quite enoug h for Dart. He ran to set his horse ready, and he was not much behind when the dashing young deadshot and the scout mounted and rode through the woods. The gi rls were much rnrprised, and they, too, got read y to assist. Th e three were Anna, the wife of Cheyenne Charlie; Arietta Murdock, the golden-haired swe_etheart of Young Wild West, and Eloise Gardner, Jim Dart's sweetheart 'rhe latter two were gir l s in their tee ns, while tho scout's wife was considerably over twenty But she was call ed a g irl, just the same Arietta was the only one of them who had been born and reared in the West, but they could all ride horses to perfection and s hoot r e:i!arkably well, e ither with the rifle or revolv e r. "Anna, you and Eloise had better stay right h ere," said Arietta, with grel!t coolness for one of her sex "You are not as ueed to prairie fires as I am." "Very well, Arietta," the scout's wife replied "J hop the fire won't reach h ere "Well, you heard what Wild said. The wind i s this way Eloise, who was the more timid of the three, put on a fri ghtened look at once. But Arietta reassured h er, however, by saying that she though t there was no danger and then she hastened to get her horse. But Hop Wah, one of the Chinese servants, had heard what the brave girl said, and he was already saddling h er horse which was a splendid white mare 'l'h e girl put the bridle on, and the next minute she was on the animal's back and following the course her dashing young lover nnd his two partners had taken By this time the smoke was quite thick where it sett led among the trees, and the g irl realized that there was surel y danger in sto r e for them. 1 If the fire reached the woods and the dry underbru s h got to blazing, they would certain l y have to shift their qu arters. The spot where they had pitched their camp was an ideal one, since there was a little brook flowing near it and the grass was the best that could be found anywhere in t h e section But they would have to leave it and l ook elsewhere, if necessity it. When Arietta reached the edge of the timber strip she saw that the cattle and horseman our hero had spoken .of were less than a quarter of a mile and that the fire was dangerously close to them But just then a kind providence intervened in behalf of those in danger. The breeze died down t t almost nothing and the smoke arose hi gh in the air. Young Wild West and his partn e r s had galloped for ward to do what they could 'toward saving the hor seman and the cattle, and as the wind died out a cheer went up from them. Arietta answered it, and, waving her plum e d hat, she galloped to m eet them. Our h er o had signa led to the rider to swing off to the left, and he had done so. He barely. cleared the advancing cattle, which were now wild with fear and running for their lives, and then he soon reached the trio of W esterne r s As Arietta galloped up she found Wild and his part ners talking to a boy of fourteen or thereabouts He was very much frightened, and he was trying to tell them how a gangi of catt l e thieves had set the dry grass on fire Meanwhile th' cattle were p u rsuing a course that would clear the camp in the woods, and by a very good margin at that. Consequently there was no fear in that direction. Young Wild West cast a sweep ing glance along the line of fire, and he gave a satisfie d nod. "It won't reach the woods," h e said. ".See! The wind is coming up from the south The flames won't cross that ridge over there, for there i s nothing that will burn there I reckon the galoots didn't s ucceed in doing all they intended to "The cattle belong to my uncle, who owns the Big G Ranch," spoke up the boy. "They have been driven away from the main herd and the villains meant to giet them far enough a.way so they can rebrand them and call them their own. I have been out two days with the cowboys looking for them, and I was the one that found them They call me the Boy T ende rfoot, but I guess I showed them somet hing to-day The cowboys are a long distance from here, but when I struck the trail of the cattle I didn't care. I made up my mind to find them, and I did, too. The villainous gang that drove them away started the fire to burn me up, I guess T hey certainly saw me riding Our fri e nds saw that the boy was a very earnest and truthful fellow, Jor h e told his sto ry without a hitch. "You did .. remarkably well," said Wild. "What is you r name?" "Billy Dover, and I'm all the way from New York." ccrs that so? well, you are a sort of boy tenderfoot, then?',' "'I'hat's right, ; Y 01;ng Wild West." "Ah You seem. to know me, Billy?" "Who woul dn't, after he had heard and read so much abou t you ?" and the boy sm il ed, for he was now pretty cool. "Well, I don't know so much about that. I haven't done so much that people s hould talk a great lot about me. Just because I have the time on my hand s and have a notion of spending it hunting around for excitement, don't say that :r am anything gir eat I lik e the sort of lif e we are leading, and so do my partners and the girls Why, Billy, we have even got a coup le of Chinamen s o they like it, too. What do you think of that?" "Oh, I h:tve beard abont.your Chinamen, lVIr. West one of them, especia ll y I read -about him in a D e nv e r paper about a year ago. He must be a wohder. I s hould like to see him."


._.,,.-YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CAT'rLE BRANDERS. 3 "Well, come right on :with us to the camp, then. The fire is about done for as the wind has veered around so it can do no further damage The barren ridge out there will put an end to it. The cattle won't run much fur ther, and if the galoots who set the grass on fire come along to bother with them we'll soon stop them. You can bet on that, Billy Dove!" uThank you for saying that," replied the boy, his eyes sparkling with pleasure. "The cowboys will be along looking for me pretty soon, and when they hear that Young. Wild West saved me from the cattle in the stam pede they'll be mighty glad You certainly did save my life, I am sure, for I was so exci.ted just then that I would have kept right on for the woods. My pony was tired out, too, and it was' all I could do to keep him from stumbling You waved to me to come this way just in time, I think." "Well, we 'thought that was the best way out of it. Come on, Billy!" 'rhe boy mounted his horse with e,ase, showing how well he had learned that part of ranch life since he had been in Texas. As they went back to the camp, their horses at a walk, Wild introduced him to Arietta and: his partners. He ha cl forgotten to do this before, as Bill Dover was so much of a talker that he did not hardly give him a chance to think about it. The little fellow was abqut the average size for his and rather delicate in appearance. But there was no doubt that the pure, fresh air of the prairie was benefiting his health, and if he remained there long enough he would grow up a robust, hearty man. Anna and Eloise were delighted when they found that all clanger from the :fire was past. They were more than pleased to meet the boy who had been saved from being trampled to by the mad dened cattle, too, and they' welcomed him wa.rmly. Wing, the cook, had kept right on with his preparations for the evening meal, and it was now ready. Billy Dover was very hungry, and he accepted the in vitation to join them at supper without hesitation. He talked as he ate and gave them a brief account of hi s life in New York before he came West to live with his uncl e on the Big G Ranch. The meal was just about over when four cowboys came galloping through the woods. CHAPTER II. WHAT HAPPENED 'rO THE FOREMAN OF THE BIG G RANCH. the boys come!" cried Billy Do,ver. "I knew they would be along soon!" "Where have you been, Kid?" queried a strapping :fellow, who was conspicuous in a :!Jaming red shirt, as he reine d in his mustang within a few paces 0f th

YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. If you want to have trouble with your men, g9 somewhere The other two joined in with him, and their voices else and have it out!" echoed through the woods. "I'd like ter see anything like you make me go some. Bill Myers got up and looked around him in a vague where else!" the cowboy retorted, hotly. sort of. way. "You would, eh? Well, I'll just show you how easy It must have come to him pretty quickly, and, as he it can be done, then To tell you the truth, I don't like had had quite enough of it, he started for his horse the looks of you. I tl\ink you are crooked. Yo u 're no "Where are yer goin/, Bill?" one of the cowboys asked good, in fact! Now, then, you've got just ten seconds to him. get out of this camp. If you don't go in that time I'll "None of your business came the reply. pick you up and throw you in the brook over there You Then he clambered upon the back of his horse and, hear what I say, you big, contrary galoot!" without another word, rode off into the gathering darkAll four of the cowboys opened wide their eyes ness. "Gracious!" exclaimed Billy Dover. "Bill, you'd better "Let him go!" exclaimed' Sam Pratt. "Bill has acted look out! Young Wild West has got his dander up mighty queer of late. There's something wrong witli "Shet up, you little brat!" was the retort. him, an' I know it. He's boui1d ter stick up fur ther 'l'hen, without the least warning, t t e foreman aimed a catt l e thieves, as he says they ain't cattle thieves. Sorter b low at our hero looks ter me as though he be in 'ecl. I can't Wild was expecting such a move and dodged the blow. help thinkin' that way, j boys." Then, as quick; as a flash, he lowered his head and He turned to his two companions as he spoke the last rushed at tlie bulky form of the rascally fellow. words. His right arm encircled his waist and bis left hand They both nodded, showing that they agreed with caught him by the calf of the leg. him. Then -qp he went, the smaU of his ba .ck resting upon It did not take long for the three to get on very friendour hero's shoulders ly terms with Young Wild West and his friends. Almost before Bill realized that he had been seized 'fiiey made no move to follow the foreman, and finally Wild was rushing for the brook. Sam Pratt turned to our hero and said: Splash! "We're a good twenty miles from ther wagon an' ther 'rhe cowboy' landed on his head and shoulders in tl ,rn rest of ther boys, an' it's all of forty miles to ther ra.IJ#h. shallow stream, the water flying in every direction How about us st0ppin' Rere with you folks till mornin' ?'' His companions looked amazed at first; then they "You perfectly welcome,'' was tl:ro ready reply "I grinned. reckon I am able to size folks up a little, if I am only a Bill got out of the brook in a hurry boy. I've come across all kinds of men in my day, and I He grabbed for his big but it had dropped can do pretty well at picking the good from the bad. I from the holster when he went up in the air. take it that you three fellows are all right. The galoot .. His hunting knife was the next thing he reached for, that just went away is all wrong; that is the difference." and, finding it there, he pulled it out and made a rush "You've got that just right, Young Wild West," spoke for Young Wild West up Billy Dover. "I never liked Bill Myers from the first 'rhe young deadshot right there to meet him. I saw of him; but he was the foreman, so I tried to treat Spat! him as such. It did me a lot of good to see you thrash A blow straight from the shoulde1 c;,aught the irate him My! but you must be awful strong! And you are Bill between the eyes and he measured his length on the as quick as a flash, too! If I could be like you when I ground get as big as you are, I would not want anything else in "Hurrah!" cried the boy tenderfoot, who was unable the world I could make my fortune, I know." to keep from giving vent to his delight. "That's the "Well," said Wild, with a. laugh,\:'you just. take things way Young Wild West does it, boys!" .cool and keep yourself in trim, and you'll come out all "It serves Bill right," declared Sam Pratt. "He was right I'll he l p you all I can while I'm with you." lookin' fur fight, an' now he's got it." 'l'he boy tenderfoot was delighted But Bill w as "game," as the cowboys called it, and he "Hurrah!" he exclaimed "Sam, did you hear that?" soon got up and tried to get hold of the agile young dead"I reckon I did," replied the cowboy, who had been shot. busy taking saddle from his mustang and ma.king But the training Young Wild West had received, ready to stop over i;llght. "Young Wild West is ther coupled with his wonderful coolness and judgment, boss of/ all ther deadshots, an' yer kin bet that he kin it an impossibility for the cowboy to do anything. show you things yer never thought of in ther line of His hands grabbed the empty air, and that was all. shootin' an' fightin'." But, as be 'rec)Vered fi::..1m h{s mad rush and came again Th.e cowboys admitted that they had eaten no supper, for our hero, a fist caught him squarely on the point of so Wing was instructed to get something ready for them his jaw, and, with a groan, he felL -This time Bill '.Myers lay perfectly still. "I reckon that will be about all/' said Wild, ras he turned to the three cowboys. "That's ther best I ever seen!" declared Sam Pratt. "Boys, give tlwcc fur Young Wild West!" CHAPTER III. BIJ,I, MYERS AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS'. We will follow Bill Myers, for he is to play an impor tant part in this story.


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS: The villain-for h e certain l y was a villain-headed straight for the burned part of the prairie as soon as he got out of the woods. He was still a. bit dizzy from the blows he hacl received from Young Wild West, ancl it can well be believed that he was very bitter in his hate for the dashing young dead shol / fore with our game?" cried the man who had met him at the edge of th'e clump of trees. "Oh, no; not him, boys. It was Young Wild West whflt done it. Have yer ever hearcl of him?" The men shook their heads It just happened that they .hacl not, for they had come over from Arkansas but six months previous, and none of them could read well enough to glean anything from the papers. "A boy, you say?" one of them queried "Yes; but not a sma ll boy, like Billy,'' replied the foreman ''I s'pose he ain't more'n eigntee n, though But he' s full-grnwn, an' he's as strong as a lion an' as quick as chain lightnin'. I've h eard of him afo re, an' I ought ter have knowecl fmough ter let him alone. But I didn't, 'ca use I was mad, an' that was how I got my medicine. H e give it ter me .good an' hard, boys. But don't think I won't git squa r e I ain't ther one as ever for gives a. person fur cloin' me a. wrong." "I reckon yer ain't, Bill." '\h e then related the whole circumstance, and when he had clone hi s hearers s howed signs of une asi "I'll fix him!'' he exclaimed, under his breath. "Jest wait! We'll see if that young galoot is goin' ter come here teT interfere with what we're doin'. That boy ten derfoot i s ther caus e of it a H, too. If it hadn't been fur him Young Wild west an' his pards wouldn't have both ered, it ain't likely. T!1ey wouldn't have how ther gTass got afire, an' as long as it didn't interfere with them they wou ldn't have tried ter find out. Now it's different. They "e got wind of what's goin' on, 'cause Bill D over kept ta l kin' about ther cattle thieves, an' ther chances is that Young Wild West will straight to ther hnch an' git ther ideas of ther boss 'way up But I'll fix ther young galoot He made an awful show of me,. an' I'll never call it square until he takes a lead pill in ther place where it'll do him ther most good. If it's found out that there' s crooked work goin' on I won't stand much of ne;:s. a chance I reckon I ll git to ther boys an' then we'll talk "It'll. be a great note if our game gits sp'iled," said ther matter over one. "Here we are, with a hundred cattle right in our grasp. W e'Ye got ther brandin' irons right here that will 'l'he fire had gone out by this time, though in some changie thcr big G, Graham's brand, inter a big Q. That Places the roots of the irrass { vere still smoking u was a great scheme of yourn, Bill, ter think of how easy But Bill Myers paid no attention to this. it woul d be ter a Q o'ut of a. G He rode on, just as though he knew exactly wheTe he "Simple enough, thou g h, it?" and Bill smiled a headin

6 YOUNG WILD WEST AND 'PHE CATTLE BRANDERS. It won't make no difference who it is, either!. I n ever yet seen any one what wasn't a little squeamish w hen ghosts was around." "What yer been doin', Aleck?" asked Bill, show ing much interest. "Well, if you kin scheme ter steal cattle an' make m o n ey, Aleck kin sartin scheme ter scare folks," spoke up one of the five cattle branClers, looking at the man he re ferred to with no little pride "He's a mighty handy galoot with a paint brush, an' at makin' a shanty appear h aunted he ain't got no equal. You jest come up to morrer night, an' we'll show yer somethin' that will make you r hair stand up." "By thunder I guess I'll have ter come, if that's ther had hoped to be the first to tell Godfrey Graham abo u t the prairie fire and the stampede of the cattle. Little Billy Dover had come over with our frie n ds, leaving the three cowboys to look up the cattle 'that had stampeded. 1 When Bill reached the house and went to make his report his hopBs went away up, for the ranchman was not there. CHAPTER IV. WILD "BUSTS" THE BUCKSKIN BRONCHO. case," Bill answered. It is quite likely that the boy tenderfoot would have re"I've got things there that ;will make yer :flesli creep mained with the cowboys to help hunt up the cattle he ter look at em," Aleck went on to say. "An' ther noises had found the evening before if it had not been that you'll h ear will make you wish that yer was somewhere Young Wild West and his friends decided to go to the else than in our log cabin, too." ranch the first thing in the morning. "All right. I'll be over But jest don't fail ter git as That changed the ideas of the boy, and he was anx many of them cattle away afore to morrer night as yer ious to receive some l essons in shooting and horseman ca n, wi11 yer? I need a couple of hundred dollars bad ship from the dashing young 'hero of the Wild West about now." It was a long ride to the ranch, but they got there in "Oh, business afore pleasure, every time!" due time, having made an early start. "I jest wish we could git this young galoot yer call But they had not been there any longer than to have Young Wild West up to our shanty," observed one of the time to be introduced to Billy's aunt when Bill Myers o thers, after a pause. "It would sartinly give him a was seen riding over the prairie toward the house c h ance ter show what he's made of The boy had been telling the ranchman's wife about "Maybe we kin do that all right," answered. "But what had happened and how the cowboy foreman had left if we do he'll git somethinl more than a scare, I reckon. him and the men at the camp of Young Wild West, and I want revenge fur ther beatin' he giive me, an' nothin' when the woman saw Myers coming she ex?laimed : short of h i s scalp will satisfy me." "Why, here comes now! I will wait and hear what "Yer don't mean ter kill him, do yer, Bill?" queried he has to say before I pass judgment on him. He might another. have been in a bad humor last night, and it is most likel "Why not?" was the reply "Won't he git us all hung he is sorry for it to day i f he's allowed ter ha .ve ther chance? Ain't that his "That's right, Auntie," answered the boy tenderfoot, game? Don't he mix up in every piece of crooked busiwho was bound to let her have her own way about it. ness he hears tell of 'an' bust up gangs like ours? Well, But the truth was that Billy had seen just about enough I shou l d reckon so Young Wild West ain't a safe ga l oot to convince him that the foreman was a regular villain, ter have runnin' around loose, boy as he is and he wanted to tell his uncle so as soon as he got the 'l'he subject was kept up for over an hour, and by that chance time the five cattle branders were of the opinion that But the ranchman had gone out to the south range to Young Wild West and his partn:ers were very dangerous look after things, and he would not be back before night. c u stomers, indeed When Bill rode up and inquired for the boss it was T hey were also interested in the girls Bill said he had Mrs. Graham who informed him that he would not be at the camp back until night. "I reckon we'll have ter nave a look at 'em," said Aleck. "All right," said t h e foreman "I don't s'pose there is "Well, ther chances is that they'll all be at our ranch any use in makin' a report ter you, Missus Graham; but I to-morre r So yer kin come over an' make out you're will say that I have found out that ther gialoots what sot l ookin' fur stray catt.le," Bill answered. ther grass on :fire an' give ther kid a hard tussle was 'l'he six villains soon turned in. some greasers from ther 3 X Ranch I run afoul of 'em They did not deem it, necessary to keep a watch, a n d, last night after I left ther kid an' ther boys with Young wrapped in their blankets, they s l ept till da'ylight. Wild West. We had a little time of it, an' I stung one 'rhen after eating what there was to be had, they sep of ther greasers putty; hard. There ain't no use in me arated, Bill Myers striking out for the ranch and the five sayin' about what happened between me an' Young Wild catt l e branders going out to see what they could do with West. l s'pose ther kid has told yer all about that. But t h e catt l e they had d r iven so far from the rangie. I will say that I was putty mad l ast night or I wouldn't The rascally foreman did not reach the ranch until have talked an' done as I did What I got serves me about two in the afternoon, and when he got there he was right, Missus Graham not surprised to find that Young Wild West and his 1 So saying, the hypocritical foreman turned and went friends were there. over to headqu_arters, turru\g his horse l oose B u t h e was disappoi n ted, as well as s urpri sed, for. he to graze a3 he did so. /


I Youla WILD WEST AND THR CA'l"rLE BRANDERS Young Wild Wes t said not a word, but h e had been listening t0 all Myers said "Re's got a pair of black eyes, all right, Wild," re marked Cheyenne Charlie, with a grin "I reckon he sorter was -ashamed of himself when he come an' told what he had ter say. But it wasn't no greasers what set ther prairi e afire, yer kin bet on that! I see n ther galoots an' so did you. You know they wasn't grease r s." "I know that for a fact, Charlie," was t h e reply. "Well, we won't contradict what he said; we'll l et him have it hi s own way. As lon g as he lets me be I am satisfied "Yes, but he won't let yer be, Wild! That ga loot is what yer call s a vindictive one, an' I'm sartin of it." "Well, I think the same wav But never mind This thing will come out> all ri ght: I reckon." Our friends had not eaten anything s ince ea rly that morning, and when the\ r anchman's wif e learned this s h e insisted on putting out the best she had in the house for them. Young Wild W est was willing to pay for what they had, but h e knew that it not the c u sto m for the ranch mim to r eceive anything for meals they gave to travels l\frs Graham took pains to let them know this before they sat down, too. \ What s he put out for them to eat was done with a hearty good will. Billy D over was a great favorite of hi s aunt, and when he told h er what a great h ero Young Wild West was, and how he had promited to teach him something about han dling a gun and riding bronchos, s h e smi l ed and encour aged him to go ahead and l earn all he could. As the woman had been born and r eared in T exas, she thought it very essential that every boy shou ld fnow how to do those things. After dinner Billy got at our hero right away, and the re sult was that he told him to come out and h e would show him a few things in the way of handling a lariat. Billy was delighted, a s may be imagined, and in a few minutes they were over at the corral, where some bucking bron chos were kept. Charlie went along with them, the rest staying at the hou se The scout knew he would be needed to help Wild out in giving the l essons he proposed to give, since hor ses w o uld have to be caught and held while the thing went on. It so happened that when they got to the corra l they found Bill Myers there H e nodded to Wild and Charlie in a c:;ivil way, and then, lookin g at the boy tenderfoot, said : "What are yer up ter now, Billy?" "Young Wrild West is goin g to show me how to bust a bucking broncho," was the reply. "He can do it, if any one can, I guess, Bill." "l\'[aybe he kin; I won't say anything about that. But that buckskin over there in ther corner can't be handled by no man, l et alone a boy." He pointed ont the steed, which was reall y a bad-look in g one. "Have you trie d him, Bill?" the boy asked. "Yes, four or five of us had a try at him the r da y afore yisterday. There wasn't one of u s what could keep on his back rnore'n two minutes, either Ther boys allowed that I done ther best, tho u gh I won't say that I did. I don't believe in braggin' much, anyhow." Wild took all this in for what it meant. H e knew that the foreman would lik e very much to see himi tackle the buckskin, and he decided to satisfy his desire '; W e ll, Billy," he said, turning to the little fellow from the East, "I reek.on you h ad btter not tackle that bron cho, then. I think if I tame him a little first can do it, though. l s uppose you have been on the back of a bucker before f his?" "Oh, yes; Ive three or four of them But they were not real bad ones, and I only got thrown off a coup l e of times." "Well, you can ride out with Charlie and catc h the l:mckskin. The n I'll tame him so you can tack l e him." "All right excla imed Billy, clapping his hands with delight. "I know it will be all right if_ you say so." "I do $UY so.' Go ahead The evil eyes of Bill Myers glinted with sat isfaction. Th e villain really thought that there was not a man, much less a boy, who could do anything with the ugly buckskin broncho, and he anticipated an easy defeat for the boy "hose friends took so much d e light in calling him the Prince of the Saddle. Our hero had mounted his splen did s orrel s tallion Spitfire and Charlie and Billy each rode their own horses when they came to the corral Wild remained seated on the back of hi s horse while the two rode into the corra l to catch. the buckskin Bill Myers ditl not get very close to the dashing Prince of the Saddle In fact, h0 did not want to, for he feared that his feel ings might cause him to say something that would cause a he did not want to be very near the boy if any thing like that happened. Cheyenne Charlie could have caught the buckskin right away, but he knew that Wild wanted to give the boy ten derfoot a ch:mce to learn all lie cou ld, so he did not try. Billy tried twice to lasso the anima l as the scout forced him past hi1n, but he failed both times, and then he called upon Charlie to do it. "You try ag'i n an' then if yer don't 40 it I'll soon git him fur yer," was the reply. The next time the boy succeeded. Charlie.helped him s ubdue the broncho, and then Wild rode up to h e lp them get the sadd le and bridle on him. This was accomp li s hed with nO' little difficulty, for thr. buckskin was certainlv a vicious beast Myers h ad dismounted and was leaning over tlie wire fence about two hundred feet away. Wild cast an occasional g lance at him, and he could tell that tbe villainous foreman was very much interested "I'll soon make him surprised, unless I find that I have struck the worst broncho T ever tried to ride," our hero thought. "He thinks that no one can rid e this bea st because he failed to do it himself His opinion i s probably that what he can't do no one else can Well, we' ll soon find out about it." I Charlie had put his coa't over the broncho's h ead, so it could not see, and t h e anima l was quite st ill now.


8 YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. When Wild was ready he took the bron cho by the bridle rapidly ran to hi own hor se, so h e might be abl e to get and to ld the scout to remove the coat from hi s head. tn him quickly, in case the little fellow met with an acciUp went the animal, hunch ing his back and bringing dent. his four feet together Away went the bu ckski n, forgetting to buck, it seemed, But when he went up Young Wild W est went with for the time being him, and when hi s feet struck the gro und the boy was in Billy had become quite accustomed to the saddle since the sa ddle he h ad been on his uncle's ranch, and he found it. noth-'11he n ensued a sce n e tl).at mad e little Biily Dover h? l d ing different from the r eg ul a r horse he h ad been given hi s breath. to ride. He had seen that same bu ckski n make all who tack.led But t ha.t was only at first him quickly succumb, and to see Young Wild W est sit -The broncho must have finally understood that he had ting on hi s back, fitting himself to every motion the beast a diffe rent person on his back from the one who had con made and with s u ch and ease, too, was thrillquered him, and after a couple of turns around the coring e nou g h to make him wild with joy ral had been made he began to "cut up 'rhe broncho buck ed r eared, kicked, and then got down But. Billy was confident, and he proved to be a very apt and rolled. pupil of Young Wild Wes t But Wild was off his back when the occasion demanded So well did he pattern after t h e dashing youn g dead-it and on again when the buckskin got up. s h ot that the animal failed to throw him by bucking, and ]Tor five minute s the fight for supremacy l asted, and it was not until he got down and rolled that the boy 'as then, partly giving m to t h e dashing youn g Prince of t h e for ced to l eave the_ sadcUe. Saddle, the broncho set out for a g;allop around the car-But be got on his back the ntoment he started to get ral. / up, and t h en away he went agai n. Ridin g with the ease and g r ace of a centaur, Wild kept After about ten minute s of hard wo!:k Billy was sati s the animal and in this way he finally subd ued fied to gi::e it up for the clay. him. Bui he was sati sfied that he wa s making giant s tride s Steaming and br eat hing ha rd the buck s kin was to1rnrc1 breaking himself in a s a broncho buster, and he brou ght to a hal t before Charlie and Billy. was co e l ated that he gave three ch e ers for Young ViTild CHAPTER V. CHARLIE HEARS AN INTERESTING CONVERSATION "What do you think of that, Bill?" ca ll ed out t h e boy tenderfoot, exultantly, as he turned and waved his h and to the foreman of the cowboys. "Oh, that was putty good, I reckon," was the reply. I s'pose ther na g ha s got tamec1 from what happened ter h im ther d ay afore yiste rday. No one could have rid him then an' I know it!" uBut I think h e acted as bad to-day, if not worse. It "a s a different rider h e had to-day, Bill. You ll have to give in to it. You can't come up to Young Wil\]. West at riding a. bucking bron c ho." "You've got a good deal more to say around h ere t han you oughter have, Kid;" was the retort. Then the foreman mounted his horse and rod e away. Charli e watched him and saw that h e was h ead in g to the west, but, thinking that h e was goin g out to look after tli e cattle, he nothing about it. 'rhere was too much on hand just t hen, anyhow, for B illy Dover was cager to mount the broncho. "You've got to keep your eyes open, and be alive to hi s every motion too," said our bero, as h e dismounted and held the tr embling steed by the bit "Give him a boos t to the saddle, Charlie." "Hi ght yer are, Wild." The n ext minute the boy was astride the broncho and the scou t was shorten ing the stirrup s for him "Let him go!" crie d Bill y "Be careful," cautioned Wild, as he obejred, and then West After takin g a few lesson s with the they all went back to the rnn c h and, putting up their hor s e s r e tm;ned to t h e h o u s e It was now well toward the clos e of the afternoon, and Mr s Graham had the supper i.inder way The girl s had in s isted on helping her with the hou Pc h old work, and they were all g etting a l ong nicely. "Where are the two Chinamen, Et?" asked Wild, as he looked into t h e kitchen. "I haven't seen the m s ince i : ight after you went out, Wild," was the reply. "Mos t lik e ly Wing i s dozing some where, but I wouldn t be surpris ed if Hop i in some kind of mi s chief." W ell, if he ha s been able to find any one to play cards w i th him that is what he i s up to, probably." "I don't know of anybody who could play with him, ju s t now, anyhow," spoke up Mrs. Graham "I hardly think t he nwn have got in yet, unles s it might be Bill Myers, the foreman "I reckon I'll take a walk around an' look for him," remarked the t cout He went outside by way of the kitchen and, l ooking a r oun .d, he was just in time to sec Bill Myers ridin g up to the s h e d-lik e structure that was u sed as a qua.rters for the cowboys. But when he saw that theTe was a sadd l ed horse graz ing n ear t h e huiidin g he knew that thcTe was, probabl y a man inside. 1 Myers went on in leavingi his near the other one, without taking a n y notice of Cha rlie.' Then the Rcout moved around and approa ched the s h anty bui l ding from the1 rear. There happened to be a window there, and when he got to and peered in side he saw Hop and a villainous -


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. 9 looking man se at ed on eithe r s ide of a barr e l, playing poker. 'I'hc foreman had jus t entered, and he was looking a.t them, an amused look on hi s face. Quit e a n intere s tin g g am e I reckon," the s cout heard hirv r e ma rk. "Ve lly mu c hee inte lesting s o b e," Hop an s wered, with a s mil e that w a s "childlike and bland." "How lon g have yer been h e r e Ale ck?" the foreman a s k etl, a s h e ste p p ed up a little n e arer. ''Oh, a b out h alf an h our," was the r e ply. "I rode over from the shanty stra i g ht. I seen three gll.1oot s out a.t ther col'i'al f o olin wit h th e r buckin bron c ho s but I didn t know tw o o f 'e m thoug h I g u esse d that on e was Youn g Wild West b y hi s long;, li ght h a ir. Ther oth e r was a tall m a n wit h lon g black hair an' mus t ac h e The r third was the r boy what c ome so near t e r gittin' s mash e d ,ter powd e r unde r the r hoof s of the r c a ttle las t nig ht. I reckon the y was learnin' the r boy how t e r h a ndl e broncho s W e ll, I tho u ght I w o uldn t b othe r with the m so I rod e on a.round an? com e h e r e Wh e n r got h e r e I found this h eathe n, an' t h e r fir s t thing h e don e w a s t e r take out a pack of c ard s an' invite m e t e r try a f e w hands at clraw pok e r. He's mighty s oon at ther gam e too, e ven if he i s a Chi nee." "Me allee s amee Youn g Wild West's c lev e r Chinee, s o be," s pok e up Hop, s milin g and noddin g hi s h e ad "It But the foreman was not inclined that way. "You'd better light out," he s aid. "We don't 'Want no thievin' card sharps around here. Go an' stay with Young vVild Wes t an' hi s gang. That' s whe re yer belong I seen yer la s t night at th e r c amp out on thel"' range. I'll admit that you re a s i ght smarte r than yer look ter be, but yer ain't goin' ter flimflam me, not much! I never bet a.gin' a man whcp. he' s s howin' what he kin do with c ard s I was bit some time ago in that way, an' I know b ette r now." "Allee light," answer e d Hop, and he got up and hur rieclly l ef t the shanty no doubt v e ry glad to think that h e was goin g to ge t away without being forced to give b ac;k his winnin gs "Whe r e s th c r boss?" ask e d Ale ck, as Bill sat down on the b e n c h t h at. as vaca te d b y th e Chinaman. "He'll b e h o m e putty s o o n was the reply. "The n h e k n o w w hat happ e n e d?" "No; but his wife drn)8The r boy told ther whole thin g, yer know. Bu t it & a ll rig ht. I told her it was some ?;[ 'easers fr o m th e r 3 X Ranch wh a t done ther busi neEs. But how about t h e r cattle? Did the r boys gi t any of 'cm yet ?" "I don t kno w I clianged m y mind a bout goin' with 'em, an a.-i soon as I got t o our log shanty I got a fresh hvrse an s tru c k out fur h e r e It's onl y t e n miles, yer kn o w s o I wasn't so ver y l o n g g ittin' here after you you b et, Mis l e r Aleck.)' "We ll I'll me e t y our rai se a n call g ot ? Jud then the sounds m a d e b y an approaching horse yer ; w h at hev yer was heard. ''.}'l e got tee four lillee a ces so L e ""t'hund e r! The r e it g oes a g'in No matter \1 h a t I've g,ot y ou 'vc always g ot somethin a little better. Bill I d ealt thc r cartls m yself that tim e and see what I've g ot." 'Ilh e for e man look e d, and then a shrug of his s hould e r s "Four kin gs ain t nothin' ter four aces Al e ck," he s aid. "I know tha t. But how do yer s 'po s e the r heathen got the r four a ces? "You allee samee deal um aces to m e s o be," Hop an s wer ed, qui ckly "You ve lly nicee d e al er." He wke d in th e p ot, which only amounted to s i x or sev e n dollars, and the n, lookin g a t the for e man, obs erv ed: "You li kee lillee h a nd in um g am e ?" Bill g ot up a nd w :mt to t h e door. "He r e comes th e r b o s s n o w! h e exclaimed. "Now \Ve' ll s o o n fix thi ngs wit h him s o' s h e won't think there's an ything wron g \1ii.h me o r you f e ller s I'll tell my s tory ah ead o f Youn g Wild W e s t an' ther kid." "Good!" Ch e y e nne Charli e thou ght it time to get back to the hou se and report to Wild, s o he promptly left his posi tion at the window and se t out. Hop wa s already the re when the s cout arrived but Charlie paid no attention to him whatev e r. He called our hero a s id e and quickly let him know what he had learned. CHAPTER VI. WILD TO FIND TIIE C ATTLE BRANDERS. "No, was the r e pl y I reckon y ou r e a card s harp in disg uise. I a in't no ga mbl e r, an y how. If Aleck i s fool e nou g h t e r gam b l e wit h yer l e t him go ah ea d." "We ll, I reck o n I'll quit s aid Al e ck, ri s in g to hi s Young Wild wmit was mu c h plea s ed when Charlie told fee t. I ain t got no m o r e m o n e y with me an yhow. He's him about the conver s ation he had heard. took a b out f orty d o ll a r s from m e whi c h was all. I had." "There's crook e d work on the Big G Rancii all 'right," "What m a d e ye r com e ove r s o s oon ? Myer s a s ked, a s he s aid. "I reckon we had b etter s tay h e re long enough Hop b eg an to f ool wit h the card s to straighten out things, Charlie. we' ll see how the "WMI, I thou ght I'd com e ove r an' see if the re \va s any boss of the ranch take s u s fir st, though. If he wants us s tray c a l;tle over this way. We lo s t about two dozen head to help him run down the cattle thieve ,s, all right. ,It is la s t night." jus t in our line." Ale ck s hot a glance at the Chinaman a s h e s poke and Our heil'o thought it best to let Bill Myers go ahead the n g ave a kn o wing wink. with hi s game fo1 the pre s ent. Hop did not see it, but the scout did. So he did not go out to meet the ranchman. Charlie was very much interes ted. A few minutes later Graham came to the hou se. M e anwhil e Hop c1id a few clever things with the cards Billy Dover was waiting for him, and the moment he and tried his be s t to g e t Bill to make a bet with him. appeared the boy tenderfoot exclaimed:


10 YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CAT'l'LE BRANDERS. "Oh, Uncle Gocl:frey Just see who we have as was on the stampede before a prairie fire. I suppose guests! Young Wild West, the Champion Deadshot and yom foreman told you all about that, though?" Prince of the Saddle, is here, and so are hi s friends You "Yes, Bill Myers / was tellin' me somethin' about it. hav e often told me a.bout them, and here they are!" I He says he found out who ther galoots was what sot ther "WJrnt !" exclaimed the ranchman, who was a kindly dry grass on fire, too." l ooking man, with a floricl complexion "Is that right? "Oh, I haven t any doubt but that he knows H ello, Young Wild West! You re welcome to ther Big Wild said this in a peculiar way, and Graham was not G Ranch. I was thinkin' about vou ther other niaht slow to catch on. 'cause I've got lots of trouble on hand s I read He looked a bit puzzled, however, but said nothing. ther El Paso paper how you rounded up a lot of cattle 'rlrn ranchman proved himself to be a very fine enter-thieves down at Bu c khorn Ranch, an' I says to myself, tainer 'Now if that boy an' his pards would only come up this H!' was so glad to have our friends as his guests that way an' take a hand ter help me, how soon ther cattle he could hardly express himself brand ers would be fixed !', It seems too good ter be true And the fact that our hero had promised to aid him it's you, I know, fur I've had them what's seen yer in running down the cattle branders made him all the tell me how yer look." more pleased. Wild shook hands with him, much pleased at the way "So it was through Billy that yer got ter come here?" h e received them. he queri ed after he had talked with all hands and assured "I am Young Wild Wes t, right, Mr Graham," he them over and over again that they w e re as welcome as said "But I don t know why it that I have made s uch the flowers in May at the Big Ranch a reputation. I am sme I n ever get anything put in the "Yes, the boy tenderfoot, as be calls him se lf, was the papers t? make_ people talk about me so. I simp ly try to first to appear on the scene la s t night," answered our do the ri ght thmg by everybody, and because I have been hero. "He ba s the honor of being the one to find the cat a bit lucky in bre aking up a few ba. d gangs don't say that tle the villain s were driving away, you know." I am anythin g so very grea t. My partners des e rv e as "Is that so? Why, Bill Myers didn't say anything much credit as 1 do. And then there's our airls and our about that. Chinamen, they ought to come in for a :riare of the "I reckon he diqn't tell you everything;. He has been prai se, ii there's any to b e g iven out. They very often too much excited about the greasers, maybe." do more than their part in suc h things. The whole thing ''Mayb e so. He sai d it was s ure the r greasers from it, Mr. Graham, i s that we are always going around ther 3 X Ranch what stampeded ther cattle." lookmg for adventure, and if we happen to run up against "We ll, he might be a bit mi s taken, though." band of cattle thieves we just can't h elp taking a band "Diel you folks see ther galoots what sot ther grass on m the game and put t!1em out of business. There are so fire?" many lawless men in these parts that it is hard for an "Yes, Charlie and I saw them plainly." hon est man to run a successful business at cattle raising. "Well, you ought ter know wh ether they was greasers 'l'h e law can't reach such f e llow s, it seems, for they arc or not, then." too away froi:n the court s of justice That is why we "They were not greasers, Mr. Graham." make it our bus mess to go for them every time we aet "Is that right?" t'ne chance." 0 "Yes, that's right." "Good! That's ther way ter talk! Now, if you'll onlv "Then Bill is mistaken." give me a lift an' help me nm down ther galoots that'-8 "Yes, he must be." br&ndin' my cattle with a different brand an' then run"I'll h ave ter a sk him all about it." I ff 11. I'll 1 "S l .. I G 1 I ld l l t t lk th un em o an se m em, pay yer we 1 fur yer serv -ee 1ere, .lv r. ra 1am, wou i ;:e o a w1 you ices. 'I'her cattle branders has got ther thing down so alone for a minute or two." :fine that I can't identify my own cattle when I see 'em. "All right," and the ranchman looked expectant. I don't know jest how it's done, but my brand is a bia G "I wanL you to not say anything to your foreman for a an' tholtgh I've picked out cattle that I !mowe d was while-not until I tell you to,_ in fact," sai d our hero, as from other marks on 'em, I've found :that it wasn't a big the two went out in the hall. "There i s crooked work G on 'em, after all; but a big Q instead. There's no one on your ranch, and if Myers don t know anything about what knows who ther man what uses ther Q brand is, an' it, I don't want him to know just yet. Do J9'U under when a man 4as bought ther cattle with ther brand on stand me?" 'em I've jest got ter let 'em go fur lack of proo f Ther "I understand yer perfectly, Young Wild West. But I brand is ther whole thing in these parts, yer know, Young alwavs did think that Bill was a man what could be trust Wild West." ed. But you kin bet your life that I'll do as you ''Yes, I know," replied our hero. "I have had some say, no matter what I think!" experience in t.hat line. now, Mr. Graham,_ "All right. If you are going to leave it to me to rul) smce you Heern to want us to help you, we'll be only too down the cattle branders I shall have to ask you to do a glad to do so. You see, we are already mixed up in this little as I say" busine ss, as we happened to be on hand last night to "All right. I understand. Not a word will I say ter l end a little assistance to your nephew, who came very Bill or ter any of ther rest of ther cowboys." near goinglunder the hoofs of a small herd of cattle that "That's it. Now I reckon it won't be so very long be/


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. 11 I fore we will know all about it. I'll try and do it inside of forty-eight hours." "Do yer think yer kin do it as quick as that?" "Well, I don t know exact1iJ. Sometimes a fellow has better luck than at other times." "But yer mean ter find out who they are an' then nm e m down?" "Most assdred l y I never yet attempted anything of the .kind that I failed to accomplish You jus t leave this to me, Mr. Graham; with the help of my partners I'll find a. way." The supper at the ranch that night was one such as Mrs. Graham had not gotten up for a lon g time, and she was pleased, as well a s proud, when Cheyenne Charlie re marked that it was "ther most s ub s tantial feed he had sot down ter fur a year or more The scout was a very hearty eater, anyhow, but he gen erally used his tongue well between swallows, and when he told how he had watched Hop playing draw poker with the visiting cowboys he made them all laugh. "That heathe n must be a mighty clever one," observed the ranchman. ''Where did he learn ter play poker, anyhow, Charlie?" "He says he learnE'd it in Fris co," was the reply. "But ther e's no believin' what th e r yall e r galoot says, though. He lies whe n it would do je s t f.I S well ter tell ther truth. He's forever tellin' about a wonderful uncle of his what liv es in China, an' Wing;, which is hi s brother, is willin' ter s wear that he ain't got no uncle. Now, what differ ence does it make ter any one whether he' s got one or not'? We don t care, d o we?" "I am sure we don t Charlie," his wife spoke up. "But if it does him any good to talk about an imaginar1' uncle, it certainly does no one any harm "o; but ther uncle mi ght feel ashamed if he knowed how Hop was lyin' about him, thou gh." This caused a hearty laugh at the scout's expense, and it 'va s fuJlv a minute before he realized what it was about. "Ps haw !" he exclaimed. "How could an uncle feel ashamed of what his neph e w sai'cl about him, when ther nephew never hacl no uncle? I mean, how could he--" But the y were lau g hing hard e r than ever now, so Char lie gave it up and reached for another apple dumpling. Aft e r the supper was over and the ranchman had brcught out pipes and tobacco for those who cared to smoke, Wild called Hop in from the kitchen and told him he might give a little entertainment in magic, if he desired Of course, he was willing; and for the next hour he kept the ranchman and his wife in a state of wonderment and mirth. After the entertainment was over Wild suggested to his partners that they go out for a scout around the range. "We may run across a clue that will l ead u s to finding out who the cattle branders are," he said to Graham "All right; I hope yer do, was the reply. CHAPTER VII. THE "HAUNTED" LOG SHANTY. Charlie had told Wild what h e had heard the man called Aleck say about the log s hanty being only twelve miles from tlie ranch and, knowing that it must be the headquarters of the gang that was branding and selling Graham 's cattle, it was only to be exp ected that our hero wanted to pay the place a visit. He had really found out enough to settle the question as to who the villains were already, but he decided tu work the thing down to a close point, and then spring a trap tha.t would catch all those in the crooked work. Bill Myers was the l eading spirit in the whoie game, but Wild wanted him to be the very last one to be nipped, if the r e was to be any about it. 'rhe scout had even heard Aleck s ay in which direction the log, s hanty lay, so .it was an easy matter for them to s trike out and know pretty w e ll where they were going The ca.ttI'e brander mu st have left the ranch long be fore this, though none of them knew for sure Anyjiow, he had accompli s hed what he had come to the ranch for, which was simply to make Graham believe that he had lost some cattle "This man Aleck must pose a s a rancher," remarked Jim, as they rode along over the prairie in the moonlight and were talking about what h e had said whe n Bill Myer!'! came in and interrupted the card game in the shed "I he poses as one, Wild retorted. "Well, it may be a little ranch that he and his pards occupy. I never asked Graham anything about it, b e cause I did not want him to know too much ju s t yet. He is a very nice man and would do his best to help u s out But he has hi s doubts about certain things and there i s no use in let ting him know too much, for he would not believe some thing s until he sa w them with his own eyes Out on the level prairie they could see., quite a long distance. The moon shone brightly, and if there had been any one within half a mile of them they could easily have seen him. As they rode along they saw some cattle off to the right, but they were grazing quietly, and there was no s ign of any men being near them. It was not long before they reached a sparse growth of timber that grew on the top of a ridge, and once over this they struck some more land that was level. "I reckon we've made about nine or ten miles now," said the scout, as h e tried to sight something in the lin e of a building ahead of them "Yes, we have come that far all right, Wild answered. "I reckon it won't be very l ong now before we sight s ome thing, boys." A couple of mil8 s more and then they were pretty s oce that they saw a house or some kind of building a J.i.ttle to the let 'I'hey chf!nged their course slight ly, and then in a couple of minute s they found they were approaching a longi, low building that look ed a s though it might b e built of lo!!s. A shone from one end of it, and as the three workerl their way aronnd they found that it from the only window at that part of the building. But it was so dim that it appeared to be nothing mora than a canale light. I


\ YOVNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. Wild and his partners had brought their horses down Then a sepulc hral groan sounded, followed immediateto a walk now, and slowly they approached the shanty. ly by a flas h of bluish light. As they got closer to it they could see a dilapidated "What in thund e r does, that mean?" exclaimed Cheybarn in the rear of it, and also a shed enne Charlie, who was s tartled a little at the unearthly But the ranch was certainly one that was "run down," proceedings so to speak. "Ghosts, I reckon," answered Wild. "You ain't afraid There was nothing about it that suggested anything of them, are you, Charlie?" like thrift on the part of those who lived there. He spoke loudly enough for the men inside to hear him Young Wild West and hi s partner s brought their plainly, which was. what he intended. horses to a halt in a littl e grnve not more than two hunThe bluish light continued, so the youn g deadshot fear dred feet from the log shanty and dismounted. lessly pu s h e d ope n the door and looked in s ide. "Now, boys, we'll ju st take a look in that window.!' If they hacl not seen the five men through the window said our hero. "We, want to find out all about this game but a short time before they might have considered it a before we str ike in to round up the bunch of cattle brandstartling scene that met their eyes. ers Hanging from a rafter, so its fleshles s feet barely 0 touched the floor, was a human skeleton! '"That right, Wild," answered the scout, while Dart Near it was a little iron pot, from which came a flame gave a nqd of assent. and considerable smoke Leavin g their horses concealed in the grove, they made wild stepped in, followed by the scout. their way cautiously toward the rear of the house Jim came as far as the door, holding a r e volver in his As they got close fo it they could hear the sounds of hand. voices. "Hello!" cried the dashing young dead shot "What Wild stepped forward and took a peep through the winare you up to here? We a light from your window, dow. and we thou ht we would sto p for a little information. Then he found out why the light showed so dimly Don't try to frighten us with tliis kind of busin.ess, for There was a bag hung up to cover the so the we are not the s ort who scare d." light would not show very far. Then an awful groan rang out. He found that he could see through a little rent in Just how it could have been made by a human being the bag1 however, and it was not long before he was abl e the scout could not understand, and he involuntarily took to discern five men, who were seated about a rough table, a step backward playing cards, drinking and smoking "Mortal man mu s t not come in this house It is the O;ne of them was Aleck, and, by the way he acted, he abode of the dead-the murdered dead!" came in sepul seemed to be the leader of the gang chral tones from somewhere. Charlie and Jim came up and to6k a look. Wild thifu ght quickly. "They seem ter be takin' it mighty easy jest now," t At fir st he had been going to knock the s kele on down said the scout in a whisper. and kick over the blazing pot, but wh e n it occmrecl to "That's right, Charlie," retorted our hero "Suppose him that it might be better to make out that they were we go around and knock at the donr? We will make out frightened, he stepped bac k anLl exclaimed: that w e ar e taldng a look around for the men who set the "I reckon we'd b e tter get out oi here, Charlie We prairie afire, but won't let on that we sus_pect them of don't want to have anything to do with dead people. That, being anything but honest people." certainly was not a natural human being who spoke just "A good idea, Wild then "You two go in, if they'll let you," said Jim. "I'll s'tay The scm1t quickly caught on as to his meaning, and outside and be ready to give you a hand in case you get out he went in a hurry. into trouble." Wild followed him acting very much as though he 'rhjs was satisfactory to all three, so Wild and Charlie was afraid promptly startecl for their horses, so they might rid e up Anoth e r unearthly groan sounded, and then the light and make it appear that they had just arrive& went out. Jim remained right at the side of the s h a nty. Charlie and Jim quickly mounted their horses and ga l-In a very few minutes the sounds made by the aplop ed away, as t hou g h they had not a moment to spare proaching horses rang out But they did not go very far, and then they tlll'ned and Jim l aughed when he saw how quick l y the five villains rode back to the grove jumped to their feet. Jim got there just then, and, with a l a u gh, he exOut went the light in a jiffy claimed: "That's off!" muttered Jim. "They must think some "Wha.t in the world did you do that for, Wild?" body is after them." "Oh, just to let them think that we were almo s t scared Just then Wild and the scout rod e up to the shanty out of our wits," was the reply. 1 and dismounted "Well, I'll bet the galoots think that i s the case. My! It had a old door, which was partly open I couldn't hardly keep from laughing right out." But Wild 1.""Ilocked loudly upon it, thinking it best to "Well, we'll just let them think: that they run us out. pby the part he had planned Maybe it will be the means of helping us get the gang There was no answer, so he knocked again in our net. We'll gto bacJ( to the ranch now, and I want


YOUNG W I LD WEST AND THE CAT'l'LE BRANDERS. 13 you to take pains to make the ranchm:an believe that we w ere frightened away from the log shanty He will nat urally te ll Bill Myer s and the rest of the cowboys, ancl that will make the villains think that they are secure We'll back here to morrow night, after we have got all the information we want, and c]ean this shanty out. Ghosts, eh? Ha, ha, ha! As if the galoots could fool us that way! Why, it is a game that is so childish that I don't see how they could be l ieve that it would work 'rhey rode back to the ra n ch and found the ,girls up and wait ing for them CHAPTER VIII. THE CATTLE BRANDERS "AT HOME." 'I'h e four villains Aleck had left to go and attend to the .-cattle they had managed to drive so far from the range had the luck to find the little herd before the cow bo:y_s belonging to the Big G Ranch came along The cattle branders h ad the nec essa ry tools with so a fire was started in a little hollow, and then, as fast as a stee r could be cau ght and brougiht up it was branded with the altered brand. Th13 big G was turned into a Q with little or no trouble, as far as making the mark was concerned. The fact that it was a new mark and could be detect ed did not worry the men in the least. There was the brand, and they claimed to own the cat tle bearing it. There was on} y one way to beat them at their game, and that was to catch them in the act anq. fo gain,d ;los session of the brands they used. If the cattle had not strayed much farther than the cowboys thouglit they would the branders woul d not have been so s ucces s ful in their game. As it was, they only got two dozen of them fixed with the altered and succeeded in keeping them from the main herd which, as has been stated, numbered bJt.rely a hundred But two dozen cattle amounted to quite a lot, especial ly as they were in fine condition, and there was a market clo se at hand. By clever work the four cattle branders kept the going the way they wanted them to, and an hour or so later, when the cowboys from the Big G Ranch came along and rounded up the stampeded cattle they were just about one-fourth short on them. They happened to catch sight of the others, and those them, and after they got the herd headed in the 'right direction they came galloping up to them. The cowboys knew the branders by sight, though they hacl never q:1ite suspected that they were the ones guilty of the thieving that was going on. When they came up the villains greeted them in a very friendly way, and then told them that they had recovered the cattle from a lot that had been scattered over the range The cowboys did not look at the steers closely enough to discover that t:Q.e' brands upon them were fresh, so they soon left them and went on their way without s uspecting anything wrong. The rascally four drove them over to a herders' camp some ten mi les away, and .into another county, and sold them, as per appointment. Then they made for their log cabin, which was called a ranch by those who knew it, because a few cattle were rai se d there It was close to dark when they got there, and just as they got something to eat ready Aleck, their leader, ar rived lt was a cleverly arranged shanty that the villains had. Aleck was a sort of genius, and he had certainly fol1owed out his hobby of "fixing up -things to scare folkir" to perfection. There -..vas really but one room to the building, but this had been curtained off with a big piece of that was paintecl in almost exact imitation of the logs. Under the floor in this part was a cellar, and it was here that the men had s tored the various articles they had bought and stolen It so happened that Aleck at one time had been con nPcted with a show in El Paso, and he had brought with him a few of the different things he had used in the busi ness, after having been with a bank robbery ancl being fo\ced to leave the town in a hurry Among these articles were a human skeleton that had been wired together, so that it might be taken apart and adjusted again in a s hort time. There was al s o a big, tin horn, which could be used as a megaphone, and it was this t1iat the g roan s ancl sepul chral voices came thiough when Young Wild West Charlie entered the log s hanty. The five villains did not doubt for an instant that the two had been r eally scared, and they lau g h e d heartily as they hurriedly left the building and mounted their horses. They did not know that Jim Dart with Wild and Charlie, and that he had been watching them through the window when they wer e start l ed by the of hoofs If they had known all this they would not have been so elated. It was Aleck who lifted the curtain and came out and extipguished the light. But he took occasion to shut the door first. "Jest put another bag up ter that blamed winder," h e said "I clirln't know any one could see our light th:i;ou g h it. Not that I care if them galoots con ies back or not; but it will make it seem more mysterious like if the r shanty is dark." One of the men hastened to do his bidding and then a lantern was lighted 'rhe skeleton was picked up and bundled down the cel lar through the open trap door. 'rhe pot, with its contents, followed suit, and soon t he room outside was in its former s hape "Now; boys, I reckon it will be a good idea ter g o downstairs, in case they do happen ter come back," sai d Aleck. "Young Wild West is a putty clever young ga loot, 'cordin' ter what Bill Fays abont him; but he can' t s tand skeletons an' noises from ther grave. Ha, ha ha!" It was very humorous, and they all laughed hearti l y


14 YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CAT'l'LE BRANDERS. The cellar, as it was called, was really the only living apartment in the log shanty It was dug in a bank of sand and was as dry as could be. Ventilation was cauroed by a draught of pure air, which came in from a passage fifty feet away from the building;and thence up the chimney that was built of mud and sticks, the old-fashioned way_. The five cattb branders were soon down in the snug retreat and a bright light illumined the scene To one a little curious the cellar would ha;ve proved very interesting, Pictures adorned the walls and there was some carpet on the board floor. The furniture wa,s s uch that would hardly be expected to be found in a well-kept ranch, much less an under ground apartment beneath a log shanty on the prairi e But the villains had obtained this one day when they held up a small party of emigrants, who were bound to some place in Mexico. They them and forced them to leav e on foot, and when they were out of sight they made off with the furniture and other hou seho ld article s These, together with the articles Aleck had been Jlble to bring with him from El aso, made the place pretty well stocked. The men slept in hammock s that were hung from the floor beam s overhead. 1rhe "ghost game" had not been going on long enough :for 'the shanty to have the reputation of being hunted. The fact was that the villafus had not got things in operation until a few days before. Those who f new the place at all ca lled it Aleck' s ranch which was quite enough. Just how Aleck expected to have this go on, wb.en he was going. to frighten those he did not like away from the bu:liding by hi s ghost trick, the villains probably n ever thought of. The main bu s iness they were engaged in at present was branding and selling the cattle from the well-stocked B ig G Ranch. They were going to keep it up llntil they were forced to stop, too, and since Bill Myers, the foreman of the ranch, was running the crooked work for them, it seemed as though it could go on indefinitely. 'I'he five men knew that Myers feared Young Wild West, but they had made the boy flee from the shanty il\ such a hurry that they laughed and declared that his fears were grroundles,s. "A galoot might be able 'ter put up a great fight an' s h oot straight an' all that, but when it comes ter skele tons an' unearthly speakin', that's different," said one of them. "Young Wild West is only human, after all; an' human can't take a likin' 'ter things what ain't human." "Well, I reckqn we're human enough, ain't we?" asked Aleck, and then he laughed again, as he thought how our friends bad been frightened from the shanty. "Yes, we're human, all right," the villain who bad spoken answered. "But it don t seem that way, not when you git ter groanin' through that tin horn." "Well, that's a hobby of mine. I like ter scare folks, especia lly them what thinks they\e mighty s mart. Jest wait till Bill bears about this. I reckon he'll be over here in ther mornin', anyhow. It may be that he ll hear about it, for it are most likely that Young Wild Wes t will tell Graham about ther shanty h e re bein' haunted." "He couldn' t keep from tellin' about it. Who could I'd like ter l{now ?" asked one "Well, if we're asked anything about it we'll jest make out that we don't know nothin' about it. We'll say we wasn't here last night." "That's it. We kin say that we was down to ther Fork on business." The Fork referred to was a sett lement about twenty miles south of the old lag cabin, and was a sort o4: head quarters for the ranchmen of the surrou nding country. five turned in a couple of hour s later, well satisfied with what had happen ed. 'l'h e next morning, a littl e after eig ht, Bill Myers shGwed up, much to their satisfactio n. CHAPTER IX .TIM AND THE BOY TAKE THE TRAIL. The gir l s ]).ad spent the evening while Wild and his partners \vere away playing dominoes with Mrs. Graham, a nd it is safe to say that the latter had never spent a more pleasant evening. The ranchman had passed the time reading a paper that was a pout two weeks old, though, it being new to him, it made no di.fferenpe. W : hen our hero and his J)artners got back they were all more or less anxious to find out how they had mane out. "Didn't see nothin' of any one, did yer ?" Grah .m a s ked. "We saw a skeleton standing up in a log shanty about r a dozen miles from here and heard some very strange noises," Wild answered. "I reckon we struck a haunted house, all right." "What?" The ranchman look e d s urprised. "Yes," went on Wild, casting a look at Arietta that meant that she need not be surpr i sed at he said, "we were riding along over the range, when we saw a log s hanty with a light in. the window. It was not a very bright li ght, but it was a ligh t, ju st the s ame. When we got to it we dismounted and went to the door, finding it open a li ttle way. Then, as Charlie and I went inside, a bright li ght shot up and we saw a grinning skeleton be fore us. Groans and voices that appeared to come from the grave sound ed then, and we thought we had better get out. We don't want anything to.1 do witli haunt ed houses, do we, boys?" "Not nrnch P answered Jim, while the scout shook his head, as though he thoroughly agreed with him. "Why, Wild!" exclaimed the scout's wife, looking at hifu in a puzzled way. "You don't believe in ghosts, you know you don't."


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CA'l"rLE BRANDERS. 15 Just then Arietta caught her eye and the look she gave Young Wild West?" Myers asked, looking at the boy, deher meant that it was all right. fiantly. "No, I never did believe in ghosts, Anna," our hero "Well, that is true. But I w ill bet on it, so if you care answered. "But we thought it time to get out, and we to take me up, a hundred dollars." did so." \ "That would be a foolish bet ter make, when yer know "I don t know where yer could have been, unless it was tha.t yer didn't have no time ter count how many there Aleck 's p la ce," said the ranchman; s haking his head. was," said the foreman, s hru gging his should ers "He's ther man what was here jest afore night. He's got "We ll there may be a way to prove it. H ere's the some few cattle over there, an' he 's suppose d ter live in money, if you care about covering it." ther olci log shanty with ther few men what work s fur "Well, I wouldn't take ther word of your pards o r ther him. There ain t nobody as knows much about him an' boy tenderfoot," retorted the villain, trying his best to his gang; but from what I've seen of him he 's a mighty giet out of it. quiet feller an' minds hi s own business putty well It "You need not do that. We will wait till we catch seems sorter strange that there shou l d be anyt hin g l ike the galoots who set the grass on fire; then we will prove g h osts in hi s shanty; if any one e l se had told me this I it by what they have to say. wouldn't have believed 'em "That's foolish talk, :Young Wild W est Keep your "Well, I have told you just what happened, Mr Gra money in your clothes. You've got a great deal more of ham," said Wild, shaking his head in a solemn way. it than I have an' I ain't goin ter tie up any of what I "I'll ask Myers about it in ther mornin'," the ran c hhave go.t. I mi ght want ter use it a lon g t ime afore them man retort ed. "Maybe h e's heard somet hin' about it." greasers is catched For half an hour the topic was kept up, and then they "A ll ri g ht, Bill. Don t ever say that I didn't offer you all went to the s leeping quarters that had been assigne d a good thing in the way of a bet." to them Wild put the money back in hi s pocket. Our hero took car e to get up with the sun, for he It was just then that Billy came out of the wanted Bill Myers to know all about what h e had told house. Graham, and he thought the villain might go away rather The boy had bee n tired out, ancI' he had retir e d before early our hero and hi s partners returned the night before. But as as it was, h e found the ranchman up and Consequently he knew nothing of what had happ e n e d out of the house. un ti l hi s aunt told him a few minutes after he got up. Wild walked over to the she d ancl found him there, I "How about the gihos ts you saw l ast ni ght, Young Wild tal1"ing to the foreman. West?" h e called out, as he ran up. "What .was ij;, some "Come h e re, Wild!" said Graham, callin g to him "I humbu g to frighten you?" reckon Bill don t bear you no girudge fur what happened "Well, there isn't m u ch of a humbug about a human ther night afore l ast I've been talking to him an' he skel eton ancl groa n s ancl voices in a room where the re is Sl'\YS a s how he heard Aleck say that there was mighty no chance of any one being hidden to make them, Billy," s trange noi ses in ther old log s hanty. But he says he Wild answered, s hakin g hi s head and assum ing a very senever heard him say anything about seein' skeleton s an' rious look. bright li ghts an' sic h like. "No that's right eno!O'h" and Bill changed his man' 0 "What was it that you an' your pill:ds seen, if yer don't n e r instantly rcind tellin' me?" spoke up the foreman Bill Mye r s smiled in a peculi a r way and the n went back Wild told all about it, making out that he was into the shed very much afrai d of going to t h e place agai n. Wild walked back to the house with the ranchman a nd Myer s could not concea l ibe delight this caused him, the boy tenderfoot though he no doubt thought h e did Billy wanted to know all about the pec uliar advent ure "It's might y funny," he declared "I'll run across of the night before, so our h ero told him what he thought Aleck or some of hi s men some time, an' I'll try an' find he 6ught to know just then out somet hin' about it. Boss, I s'pose yer know tha.t ther As they went in the house Charlie and Jim showed boys go t in with ther cattle we was lookin fur?" up. "No! Diel they, Bill?" queried ihaham. Wild call ed them aside and said, in a low tone of voice: "Yes, late last, night. They'r e all insrde asleep now. "Myers know s all about it now. He will be lighting There was a little over seventy of ther stee rs, an' they out to see the cattle branders before l ong, see if he don't." land ed 'em all safe I reckon we didn't lose none, after "Good! Are yer goin ter foll er him, Wild?" Charlie all." asked. "We ll I'm mighty g lad t e r hear that they got 'em, "Well, I thought about l etting Jim and the boy do that. though I'm dead sa.rtin that there was a hundred or more We will stay around here for a while." what was missin'." "I'll be glad to go, and it is quite likely that Bill y will, "'11here was easi l y a hundred in the herd that came so too,'' Jim spoke up n ear running the boy clown," spoke up Wild watching the "Well, hurry up and get your breakfast then." forem an's face as he JPOke. Wild then went to the boy tenderfoot and said: "Y r think so?" and the ranchman's face lighted up. "I reckon it, will do you good to take a ride out on the "I would bet on it," was the reply. range with Jim this morn ing. He' ll be apt to show you "Well, if yer was ter bet on it how could yer prove it, someth in g ahout riding."


16 WILD WEST AND 1rHE CATTLE BRANDERS. "All right," was the quick reply. all about you; you know. You are a very smart Chinee, "Get your breakfast, then, for Jim always likes to get and that is the truth. When you say that I am smart out early." that isn t ther truth. 'That's ther difference between us, 'l' he breakfast was not long in colling, and then they all sat down and enjoyed it, the girls being up in time. "Allee light," Hop answered. "Me likee play a lillee But when Ji1n went out to get the horses with the boy gamee dlaw pokee, so be. But you allee samee 'fiaid me he found that, Bill Myers had just gone out cheatee you." This made little difference, however, and he soon got "Well, Young Wild West told us you would, didn't ready. he?" 1 'fhen, with the d e lighted Billy at his side, he galloped "Lat light; but you watchee velly muchee clo'see, and away on the fi:esh trail that showed on the dew-covered you see me samee cheatee, len you shootee off um grass. pigtail! Lat velly muchee square?" Hop Wah was a little late in getting up this particular "Well, that is a pretty good offer, I reckon." morning. The fact was that Sam Pratt was very fond of poker. When he did show up he found Wing eating hii> breakMost of the cowboys were, as it was a means of passfast in the kitchen, and he promptly joined him. ing the time away in their leisure hours, even if the ante Mrs. Graham had been telling Wing about the ghost was very small. Wild and his partners had see n the night before, and as It had been payday but three or four days before, and soon as Hop sat down she s hirted in to let him know all most of them had a big part of their wages left. aLout it. Pratt never spent all he made, anyhow, so he had a The clever Chinaman was not a littl e surprised couple of hundred dollar s stowed away for a "rainy day." But when she declared that Wild, Charlie and Jim had But he could not resist the temptation to get in a game left the lo. g shanty very much frightened, he shook his with the Chinaman, especially as such an inducement head and grinneu had been put out. "Ley no 'fiaid of um ghosts, so be,'' he declared. "Must It.Hop was caught cheating he was to have lii s pigtall be some funny business, allee samee." shot off! But the good woman would not have it that way. Of course, none of the cowboys would have gone as far As soon as Hop had finished his breakfast he sought as that. Wild and ask e d him about it. But the chances are that they would make him pay back "Never mind, Hop," was the reply. "I reckon it is all what he had won from them if he was caught playing right. Don t say an y more a bout it just now. I reckon any way unfair. we'll get the ghost before long." Pratt turned and walked into the shed, where the other Hop understood now, for 11e 'va s qu1'ck to catch on to a akf t two were cleaning up the remains of their bre as thing, and when told to do f::O he a lwa.ys k ept a still ft 'h' Pratt grinned as the Chinaman came in a er im. tongue. tl k? "Here's Hop, boys!" he said. "What do yer "Me knowee velly muchee well lat you no 'fiaid of um He's lookin fur a game of d!aw!" gho s ts, s o lie, Mis l e r Wild," he declared. "Well, if any one wants to tllink that we were afraid, "He is, eh?" answered one. "Well, I'd je s t like ter see some of his wonderful work with the cards-blamed just let the m do so, Hop." "Allee light, Misler Wild." if I wouldn't! Young Wilcl West has warned us ag"in piayin' with him, but that makes no difference ; I'm willin' ter tackle him fur a few hands, anyhow. We ain't got CHAPTER X. THE GA:i\'[E OF "DLA W PO KEE." Hop was not lon g in :finding out that the cowboys had He always interested in cowboys, probably because he could generally :find victims among them a.t playing draw poker. He was not long in seek ing Sam .Pratt, the man who hacl stuck to Bill Dover when the foreman was against him, and, smiling in higcheerful way, he observed: a Velly nicee morning so be." "Yes, it's :fine, Hop," answered the cowboy, who had learned the Celestial's name from being in camp with him. Hep kne'v his name too, and he continued, blandly: "You velly muchee smartee cowboy, Misler Platt." "No bouquets, please," laughed tlie cowboy. "I heard a thing ter do this forenoon but ter 1ay arouncl. Poker i s jest my hobby." "Me, too!" spoke up the other. Pratt gave a nod of satisfaction. Hop's face wore a very innocent expression now, and. to look at him one would have thought that he was any thing but a card s harp. The rough table was soon cleared, then the Celes tial smi led and sat down. As the others took their places he produced a new deck 0 cards. ,..'.:Yer carry 'em right with yer, I see," observed.., Pratt. "Me allee samee keepee plenty cards, so be," was the reply. "WeU, I reckon I'll look ther deck over first, if yer don't mind." Hop had no objections whatever, since the cards were perfectly straight Pratt looked them over carefully, and then, to make s ure, counted them.


YOUNG WILD WES T AND THE CA'l' TLE B RANDERS He tossed out the extra card called the "joker," which comes with every pack, saying: "Take that, Hop; maybe ye"r kin make an ace out of it when yer have got three an' need another one." "Allee light," was the reply; and then the clever Chi naman took the card, look at it thoughtfully for a mo ment and laid it down on the table, face up. "You makee lillee mistakee," he said, cheerf ully. "Lat not um jokee; lat um seven. of hearts, so be." Sam Pratt looked at the card in blank amazement. He was absolutely sure that he had tossed the joke r over to the Chinaman. But there was the card, and it was the seven of hearts As he started to run over the cards to correct the mis take Hop picked up the card, looked at it and then laid it down again "Lat um jokee, allee light!" he exclaimed. "Me makee lillee mistakee, so be." If the cowboys had been surprised before, they were astonished now. All three had seen the seven of hearts lying on the table, and yet it turned out to b e the joker of the new pack, after all. Hop now took the card arid placed it in one 0 pock ets. No one knew how he had managed to puzzle them that way, but it was very easy for him to do it, since he could do sleight-of-hand tricks to perfection. He had simply taken a card from another pack just like the one h e bad laid on the table, and it was easy enough for him to substitute it for the joker. "Me no cheatee," he declared, smiling l y, as Pratt slow ly shuffled the cards. "l\fo velly goodee Chinee; me go to um Sunday school in Flisco, s o be The cowboys acted as though they their doubts about hi's being so very hone st, for tliey coul d not get over what had just happened None of them could bring himself to think that Hop had changed the ca.rd, for they were sure they had seen it all the time. But they were not sure, after all; they simply thought they were "Whattee um ante you play?" Hop asked, when they had cut for deal, and it :fell to the cowboy on his left. "Oh, we want to play ter pass ther time a.way, more'n anything else," answered Pratt. "S'pose we start off with a quarter?" "Allee light," was the smiling rejoinder "Me no play to win um money; me wan tee showee you lat me no cheatee, so be." The three men actuaJly thought that he meant what he said-that he was going to be strictly honest with them, in fact. But they were badly deceived, as will be seen The first hand was a rather tame affair, since no one anything higher than a pair of nines, and Pratt took the pot, which amounted to about a dollar and a half It was his deal now and, being able to manipulate the cards pretty well, he proceeded t<:i give himself a good hand. He succeeded remarkably well and Hop knew just wha.t he was up to, for he was too sharp to be fool ed by a man who k new less abou t that kind of b u siness t han he did hi mself. But he did not care how muc h the cowboys cheated The game on and no one won a great d eal. After a while Hop thought it time to get i n some of h is fine work, so when the deal came to him for t h e sec ond time he fixed up the cards j ustas_ he wanted to, a n d neit h e r of t h e t h ree cowboys dreamed of s u c h a thing as any cheati n g on his part. No big hands had been he l d so far, a n d thi s was the time 'l'hen they were all going to hold t h em Hop gave them each a pair to start w ith. Pratt got kings, t h e man n ext to h im quee n s and the third a pair of jacks The Chinaman did not get a pair h imself, but he was going ta have just what he wanted on the draw The ante being u p, they a ll came in for the draw. Each took three cards, as might be expected, and whe n they found that they had four of a kind t hey felt rat h er elated But each thoug h t he was the on l y one who h eld s u c h a hand, of course Hop drew to an ace and got the other three. The betting got a littl e warm this time The cowboy with the four jacks j umped it up to five dollars at the first chance he got. Pratt met the raise and lifted it two, just to l ead h im on, probab l y He was a l i ttle surprised to see the other man c o m e in and lift it five. Hop shook his head, as though he did not think h e stood any chance, and then he met the r aise and put it up five b etter. ''Maybe um rnakee l illee bluffee," he said, smi l i n g blandly "Me no 'flaid to lose um lillee money, so be." Then it went around again, and when it came Hop's turn he had to put up twenty dollars to meet the amoun t Rut he cheerfully did this, and then raised it ten dol/ l a rs. "Let her go!" exclaimed the cowboy with the four jacks. "There's five more, jest ter make it interes tin'." "That's abO'Ut all I kin find in my c l othes, so I'll have to call yer," said t lte man with the four queens. "All right; call it is, then," and Pratt put up t h e amount required "Me hav'ee see you, so be obser ved Hop. "Whattee you gottee ?" "Four jacks!" callec1 out the cowboy, as he showe d them and reached for the money "Hol d on spoke up the man with the four q ueen s "I reckon I kin beat you. ,, "An' I reckon I kin beat yer both !" cried Pratt, as h e showed his four kings. "Me gottee four lillee ace!!f," said Hop, innocently 'Vell y nicee hand, so be The cowboys were amazed. They looked at each other in silence for a EeCODU or two and then Sam Pratt jumped to his feet and exclaimed: "Serves u s right, boys! We wouldn't take Young Wil d West's advice He's winged u s fu r fai r ; a n we didn t catc h h im c hcat i n', either.)' /


YOUNG WILD WEST A N D THE CATTLE BR A NDERS H o p raked in t h e pot and was stowi n g the mon e y in "We w ant to g o w ith you, ju s t for a litt le exercise," hi s poc ket when Wil d and Ch a rlie cam e i nto the s h e d hi s sweet heart a n s w e r ed. CHAPTER XI. WILD TALKS TOTHE CATTLE BRAN D ERS Y es," spoke up f h e scout's wif e "Eloise ha s d e cid e d to take a lesson in br ea d-makin g fro m Mr s Gra.ha m and s h e does not ca r e to g o out. W e -would lik e to g o al o n g with y ou, pro v idin g you a r e not g oin g on a n y s pe c i a l bus i ness." "All r i ght; come ri ght a long, the n. Hop y o u g o and get the horses ready." "What's the matter, boys?" a s ked Wi ld, as he noticed "Alle e l ight, Mis l e r Wild s aid Hop who was s ittin g how s heepi s h the three .cowboys looked. on the porch "We jest let him go an' do it," was Pratt's reply "Bu t Away h e went, and the g.irl s hast e ned to ge t ready to it w a s our fau l t. He promised ter let u s c u t h i s p i gtail take t h e r ide off if we ca.t ched him chcatin' He got our money, an' It was rn?t because the y d i d not ge t en o u g h of the s ad we d i d n t catc h him, so I recko n ther b l amed o l d p igtai l dle, but it was diff e r ent g oin g out f o r a little while than stays wl].er e it is!" ridin g all the day l o n g thro u g h a wild erness or unbroke n '"Se rves yer r ight," s poke up Ch e yenne Char li e "Yer p l a in. o u ghte r h ave ] mowed better than t e r think. that y e r could A s the y rod e alon g n ot hing'\ but t h e graz ing cattle c ould cat c h t h er heathen g aloot chea tin' H e don't allow no be seen, s ave t h e ir na t ur a l s urroundings; there was noth on e ter catch him at it; t hat' s the r r e a s on h e kin win in g like a man o r a h o rse in s i g ht. wh eneve r he feel s l ike it. Why, h e kin beat the r best But w h e n they h a d c over e d about fiv e mil es, and card sha r p what ever struc k a minin c amp! r e a c hed the top of a littl e ridge, they' s udd e nl y came :in "How much did you win Hop ? a s k e d Wild. s i ght of four h o rsem e n. "Not vell y m u c hee," was the r e p l y They_ w e re easily h a lf a mil e away, but it did no. t tak e "Well s h e ll it out, wh a tever it i s Youn g Wild West t w o seconds to t e ll t h a t o n e o f them "No-no spoke up Pratt, s hakin g hi s h e ad I won't was the villain c all e d Aleck. my money back. H e won it, an it's hi s "Hello h e excl a im e d "The r e a r e some of the cat-The oth e r s d ecl1;1re d the sa m e thing, but our h erl> kn e w tl e brand e rs, I reckon W e 'll keep ri ght on a h e ad, ai:id that t h e e lever Chi naman h a d b e at e n t h e m t hrou g h hi s they w ill mos t lik e l y turn over toward u s : Y o u two g irl s l e i g h t of-hand work, and he did not want him to tak e will draw the m ir n othing e lse. It i s lik e l y that they are their m oney I not used to seei ng l adies ridin g around o n the prairie ",Tust fin d o u t how much y ou each lost and the n tak e itj Th a t 's ri g ht, Wild," a nswered t h e scout, w hil e Ari etta back," h e s aid "HOiJ won't car e ; h e ha s got pl e nty of and Ann a nodd e d and s mil e d money witho;ut tha t The four m e n had seen t h e m b y thi s time, and as our "Me a llee s amee gotte e p l e nty mon e y s o b e,'' Hop r e fri e nd s rod e on they w e r e seen to c h ange the ir c our s e m arked, and the n h e s howed a r o ll of greenba c k s that I s o the ir p aths w o uld c ross. al most dazzl e d the of the cowboys. In a v ery few minutes they m e t. This h ad t h e effe c t of makin g t h e m foe l a s thou g h H e llo, Youn g Wild W est called out Aleck for it they mi ght a s well tak e back wha t they had los t. was h e s ure e n o u g h. It was soon figur e d up a nd then the turne d H e ll o answered W i ld. S ay, you r e jus t the f ellow it o ve r smiling a s tho u g h it did not make the lea s t bit I want t o see Wha t kind of a place do you liv e in a nyof diffe r en c e to him how?" Now," said Wild, "I'll tell :Y9u :Jg ain not to gambl e "We ll, it ain t muc h of a s h anty I reckon," Ale c k an .._ wit h h im H e wili bea t y ou at an y game you try. Pok e r s w e r e d in tha t was m e ant to be innocent. i s n ot t h e onl y thin g h e knows I r eckon he ung e r s tand s How man y of y ou live the r e ?" a bout every g am e ther e is going that gambling can b e Ther e's five o f u s a ltogethe r H e r e's four now; ther d o n e w i t h." oth e r m a n i s home looki n aft e r things jest now rhe cowboys nodded Wild saw tha t the man was a p retty g o o d l iar, to u s e "I r e ckon once is enou g h fur me," Pra'tt s aid the expression, and h e thou ght h e woul d give h im a An' me, too e xclai m e d the other two, s peaki n g a s chance to go furthe r if in o n e voice "Wer e any of you at home l a s t night?" he queried, W il d and C h ar l ie now left t h e s h e d and wen t and got jus t as t h ough h e was anxiou s to find out s omething that h o r ses was both e ring him. They mean t to take a ride aro u nd a n d fetc h u p at the "No; we was all down to ther Fork, an' we didn t git log sh an ty afte r a while home till some time afte r m i d n ight," A l eck a n swer ed, Hop, h aving n o furth ,er cha nce to gamb le, turned an d r eadi l y w e n t b a c k to the h o use. Wild s hook h is head Our h ero a n d t h e scout soon mou nte d t h eir h orses. "Why, w h at's ther matter?" A l eck asked, a tw i nk l e o f But just as t hey were about to ride off Arietta called am u s em e n t and delight in his eyes. to the m fro m the porc h of the house "Well, I'll t e ll you," said Wild 1 "That log s h anty of "What's up ? 'the young deads h ot aske d as h e t urned you rs is h a u nted, and h aunted pretty bad, too and rod e to war d the house. "Well I d on't lmow abo u t tha t. We have h eard queer


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLB BRANDERS. sound s in it, but we always la id it ter 'magi nation. Was you over ter see us?" "We happened along that way and, seeing a light in the window, we stopped." "What time was this?" Wild told him the w ; hole story then, and Aleck and hi s men see med to be greatly interested There was no doubt that they wer e much amused, too. "Did yer find your cattle yet?" Charlie a s ked, changing the subject "No," was the reply. "I wonde} if Graham's cowboys got what was astray of hi s?" "They got all but about two dozen,'' Wild answered, quickly. "Then some one must have s tole 'em." "Yes, tbe cattle branders must have got them, and, after changing the brand on them, took them away to some place and sold them. That is being done right along around here, I reckon.'" "It's about time it wa::i s topped,'' said Aleck, s h aking hi s head. "Well, we going to put a stop to it, all right." "Yer are, eh?" I There was a smi l e of am u s ement on the villain's face a ? he the que st ion. "Yes, I reckon we'll manage to run across the galoots before very long. W e are out l ooking for them now "Yer don't s'pose they would han g around as close i>'l thi s to ther ranch, after cleanin' up some of ther cattle, do ver?" "You can't tell what they miglit do. We are likely to strike them at any time, I think." "We ll,, I hope yer do. If yer want any help just cai l on us at any time. I reckon it's as much ter u s a s it i s 'ter Graham He's got ten times tlier cattle that we have, which makes a loss a ll tber worse ter us." The four cattle brander s now turned and rode away. As they did this Wild noticed that one of them car ried a bundle that was doge up in a bag. Th:is was strapped to hi s sadd l ebags, and from one end of it the unmistakab l e handle of a branding iron pro-truded -"Hello!" exclaimed the boy, as he urged hi s horse to him. "Are you going to do any branding to-day?" "Yes; we've got a few cal ves ter brand," was the reply, while the man turned red in the face. ter know my name. Ther folks what brought me up jest called me Aleck, so I never bothered with any other name." "Is that sq'.\ Well, if you didn't care to hav e a name it's your business, not mine. But l et's see, your brand ing irons, will you?"' "No!" The answ e r came q uick and s h arp Wild was close enough to'. reach out and grab the han dle that protruded from the e nd of the bundle; and al' quick as a flash he did so. Out it came, and as h e looked at the l etter on the end he saw that it was a Q. 'l'hat's a mighty funny A, Aleck,'' h e sajd, coolly. "Queer, isn't it?" The cattle brander s were dismayed. CHAPTER XII. O UR FRIENDS GET THE CROOKED BRANDS. A l eck soon found the use of his tongue. "That brandin' iron was found a little while ago by man yer took it from," he declared. "We thought we had a mighty iood clue as ter ther findin' of ther galoots what's been stealin' our catt le, so we was ridin' off ter work it up. We didn't want you ter see 'cause we'd like ter have t h er credit of runnin' dOIND. their catt l e branders." ,;Oh, I see. Well, that 1i s q ui te a brand, i sn't it? But let me see the others you have there." "You've seen enough, I reckon, Young Wild West! J est let u s a l one now, or we'll have ter be a little liarsl:i wit h yer. Don't n!edd l e too much with other folks' business, is my advice ." Wild quickly drew it revolv er. i[ want that 'bundle !" he said ste rnly. "':!'hat's what's ther matter!" e 'xclaimed Cheyenne Charlie, as he whipped out his brace of guns. "If you galoots try ter be a li ttle har s h wiiih u s I reckon you'll your medicine, that's all!" Arietta, too, drew a revolver from her belt. 'l'h e girl was ready to do s hare, in case it became n ecessary "ls that so?" "I r eckon you' ll let u s see the branding irons, won't "Yes, that's right; ain't it, Aleck?" you?" our hero aBked, coolly, while a s mile played about "Of course, it's right!" exclaim ed Aleck. "Why s hould his mouth. he doubt yer, anyhow?" "Oh, we don't care so much,'' r ep li ed Aleck. "There's "What is your mark?" Wild went on to ask. the r whole otitfit that Tom found this mornin'. You kin "What's that?" Aleck hasteneil to say. see what's in it, if yer want ter. We thought as how we "What mark do you use on your cattle-your branding might as well git ther credit fur findin' ther irons, an' mark I mean?" that's why we didn't want no one else t e:r see 'em jest "A i s my mark.H now. T om, l et 'em see 'em." "A is for Aleck, eh?" Tom as h e was ca ll ed, quickly unloosened the bundle "Yes.1 and hand ed it to our hero. "I s h ould think you would use the initial of your la st' Thank you!" the boy answered, c almly. "We'll take name." these back to the ranch with us. Then we' ll know that "Well, I don't happ en ter have any last name. Aleck there won't be any of the catt l e belonging to the Big G is ther only name I ever knowed. My fa.the!' an' mother Ranch to have the brands on them altered for a while. It were killed by Injuns when I was a little boy, -&oo young i s a filig1'.ty good thing that you f e llow s found this bundle.


20 YOUNG WILD WEST. AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. If any of your own branding irons are in it I'll take them I out and let you keep them." '' 'rJ rnre ain't any of ours there. Ther bundle is je st as we fonnd it, 'cept that we opened it an' had a look at what wa s irl it. I tie d it up ag'in jest like it was first off." Wild saw that Charlie and Arietta would take care of the villains in case they tried to act against them, s o h e put his revolver back in the holster and proceeded to unwrap the irons. There were three of them, and when he looked at them he found that the mark on them was meaningless. It was really the curved line, with the necessary tail to it, to make a Q of a G. 'rhe young deadshot understood it rigiht away) for he had seen such brands before. "1'his is pretty good," he said, looking at one of the brands. "If this is burnea into the hide of a steer so it connects with the G on Graham's cattle, it will l eave a Q. Queer i s n t it?" Aleck tried to smile, but he made a miserable failure of it. your foreman ha s been responsible for it all. Bill Myers is in l eague with the cattle bra.ndets, and he1 has made it possib lE: for them to pla y their game successfu lly. He is a rank scoundrel, and he h as got to take his medicine when the time comes. The gang over in the old log cabin will be scoop ed in to-night, so will the ghost We were not frightened l ast night, as we made out; we sim ply thought it b est to make it appear that way, so you would tell Bill Myers about it and make him think that we were afraid of the place. I want you to understand the whole thing now, before we go any further." "Well,' answered the ranchm an, af ter h e had gathered his thou ghts, "I belieV'e ever y word' you say, Young Wild West. I'm goin' t er let yer run this business ter suit yourself You said yer wouldn't be long in runnin' down ther cattle branders, an' it looks as though yer won't be, either." "Not very long, Mr. Graham. Why, we listened at the window of the log cabin last night before we went in, and we heard t he galoots talking about their business. They lei u s know all there was to the game. If they believe they scarecl. us away from the shanty they are very much It was evident that he was in a very uneasy frame of mistaken as they will find out to-night. I want you to mind just then. go along with us when we make the roundup." "Well," observed our hero, "I reck0n we'll take these "All right," was the reply. "I'll only be too glad ter irons to the ranch and let Mr Graham see them. H e go." will understand how easy it ha s been for him to lose hi s "But you must not say a word to Bill Myers about J.t." cattle then;" no!" yer ain't goin'.t;r let u s have ther of doin' "Here comes ther galoot now," said Cheyenne Charlie, an_:ythmg out who the r is:' eh, Young who happened to be looking over the prairie just then. w:;d West queried Aleck, now speakmg I Sure enough, the vil}iiinous foreman was coming along Oh, yes You galoots can have all the credit. But at an easy gait. we'll do the findin g I thought fir s t that you might know something about the game, but since you say that you picked up the bundle, I suppose I'll Jw

YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. lH wer e l y in g on the por c h, c o vere d w!.,th the bag they had been wra pp e d in. "Wha t did yer find? a s k e d the foreman, looking at our h ero, expec tantl y "Oh, we found the tool s the brander s have been using to c h a n ge the m a rk on Mr. Graham's cattle, that's all," was the reply. "Is t h a t s o ? Myer s' face G h a nged color, and it was plain that he was mu c h a s toni s h ed. Bu t h e soon p u t on a cool way, and then he inquired as to how the br and s had been found. But our fri e nd s did not let him know anything further tha n t hat they had found them above five miles from he ran c h. Bill Myer s l ooke d at the irons curiously, just a though he di d n o t kno w a ll ab out them. "Do yer s 'pose that thing would change a G to a Q ?" h e aske d, as h e h e ld up one of the bra.D.ds that was used to alt e r the mark. 'Let's try it an' s e e jes t what it will do," suggested Cheyenne Charl ie "Boss; git your regular iron an' fetch it ar o und to the kitch e n. We' ll h eat ther iron s an' try it." The scout h a d some thing in hi s mind jus t then that he did n o t l e t o ut. Gr a ham los t no tim e in getting his gular branding iron, and t h e n to sav e the trouble kin ing a fire, they all w ent a round to the kitchen ; where there was a good fir e in t h e s tove. C harli e to o k the two irons he wanted and placed them in the fir e .Jus t the n Myer s removed hi s coat and hung it on a nail that was driven in t h e back of the hou 9e. The scou t looked at the coat and then he gave a nod of s ati s faction. CHAPTER XIII. "Hop,! iiaid he, "jes t s pread ther ba c k of that ooat out, will yer? T'm goin' ter brand it." He nodded to the buck s kin coat Bill Mye r s had hung on the nail. I guess not!" cried the foreman, a s he s prang to get the coat. But Wild, realizing what Charlie was up to, pus hed him back. "Let him do it," he sliid, per suasive ly. "The coat i s an old one, anyhow; and it will look all right with a big G on the back of it." the r e was something'in the manner of the young dead s hot that'told the foreman that h e had better give in. He w a s getting decidedly uncomfortable now. Hop stepped up and ; s miling blandly, pulled out the coat, s o the back was display ed. The scout quickly thrus t the regular brand of the ranchman a g ain s t it, and a s soon a s it begian t o s moke he pulled it a way and the l ette r G was t h e r e a s plain as though it h a d b e en paint e d with bla c k paint. "That leok s put t y g ood," he s aid, noddin g with satis faction. "Now I'll alter it s omewhat." Up went the oth e r brand, ri ght wh e re it ought to go; and the ne xt minut e it was pulled a w a y and the letter G had c han ged to a bi g Q. "That's what I call s putty good!" the s cout exclaimed. "'Now, then, Wild, wh,atJs ter be done with the r coat?" "Bill will wear it, jus t the sam e," was the reply. "No, I won't!" r e tort e d the 'for e man, angrily. "I don t want no brand on my back, I r e ckon." u Well, you don t need any to tell what you are," said our hero coolly. "Wgat do y e r m e an, Youn g Wild West?" "I mean that you ar e re s pon s ible for all the c rooked work that ha s b'ee n g .oing on her e Do you under s tand that? ju s t hold up your hand s for you're my prisoner!" Wild thought he. might as well s pring the trap then as BIIL MYERS TAKES HIS MEDICINE. any oth e r time. I If Myers was captured the five villa5:ns who were in Wh i l e the iron s w e r e b e in g heat e d the girls and Mrs league with him would know nothing of it until they were Gr a ham cam e out s id e to learn what was going on. c aptured. The n H o p app a r e d on t h e s c e ne. Myers turned as pal e as death. "What a r e you goin g t o do, Charlie?" a s ked Anna, as "Wha-what do yer m e an?" he stammered. s h e w a t c hed h e r husband fooling with the irons he had "Bill, you're crooked!" exclaim e d the ranchman, his placed in the fir e eyes flas hing. "You' ve been playin' m e false. right along. "I' m g oin' te r s h o w yer how easy it is ter make a Q You've help e d t e r s teal thou s ands of dollars worth of catou t of a G," w:as t h e reply. tle from me! You've got ter go ter jail Bill Myers!" Oh! I under s t and." "Never!" was the d e fiant s hout, and, with a bound, the You m a kee a ll ee sam ee burnee, Misler Charlie?" a s ked ra s caily foreman was a way. Hop ge ttin g v e r y c uriou s H e got around the corner of the hou s e and made for "Yes, an' if yer d on t look out I'll put thei: brand on his hor se. / you!" was the r e pl y Charlie was going to brin g him down by a s hot in the "No puttee um blaRd on poor Chinee; me no cow, so calf of the leg, but Wild s topp e d him. be." "Leave him to m e," he s aid. "I'll s oon get him." The r e was a laugh at this eve n Myers joining in The das hing youngdead s hot ran :for hi s hor s e and The brand s wer e s oon h eate d and then the scout came quickly threw the s addl e on him. / out wit h op e in eithe r hand. Myer s had a littl e duqculty in c atchin g hi s hor se, but Probably the y w e re n 6 t hot enou g h to brand a steer, no one offered to interfere with him afte r Young Wild but they would an s wer the purpo s e the scout had in his Wes t s aid he should be left to him. mind. They could have easily caught i him, too.


' 22 YOUNG WILD WEST AND 'THE CATTLE BRANDERS. By the time the villain was a hundred yards away from If Young Wild West hadn't happened along1 you' d never the house Wild was in the act of mounting hi s sorrel s talknowed about ther crooked work. You was losin' c a ttle, lion. an' that was all yer did know. Ha, ha, ha! I'm satis His friends knew tha.t he would overtake the foreman :fled." before he got half a mile. The villain really acted as though he was partly satThe sorrel was too speedy for anything in the line of isfied, anyhow. horsefle s h on1' the Big G Ranch. What he s aid did not tend to le ssen the ranchman's But Myer s ,did not seem to thfak that he was going to wrath any. be caught very easily. "You' ll git it all right, see if yer don't!' : he exclaimed. It was hi s desire to get to the log cabin with his friends, "Oh, you scoundrel, yon! To think that yer fooled me and once there he felt that h e would be s afe, for a while this way!" anyhow. / The pri s oner lau g hed again But when h e had covered about a quarte r of a mile h e Graham was mad enough to s trike him bound and help-looked around and saw how useless was hi s effort less to defend him s elf, as he was. Young Wild West was swooping down upon him like a But Wild soon quieted him. cyclone "I reckon you had bett e r wait till toward night to send He pulled a r e volver from hi s belt. oyer to the Fork,'' he s aid. "We don't want the help of "Keep back or I'll shoot you or your horse!" he s houta ny one to get the ghos t to-night. I reckon there i s 1ed. enough to do that.'' "You put that back or I'll drop you!" was the retort. Myers flas h e d an angry g lance at the boy. "I mean what I say, Bill Myers!" "Yer have been foolin' u s about bein' afraid, I reckon," There was a revolv e r in Wild's hand now, and the for e -h e s aid. W e ll all right. But yer ain't comin' out of man realized that hi s life was not worth a pinch of s nuff if this a s nice as yer think yer will, maybe he refu sed to obey. Th ere was somet hin g that was s iginificant in the way He dropped the weapon back into the hol s ter and then he spoke, and our hero looked at him s h a rply. tried get hi s br?ncho to a faster gait. "Where are lly and my partner?" he a s ked, sudBut it was a vam at tempt. denly. On came the s orrel like a whirlwip.d, Young Wild "Ha, ha, ha!" lal,gh ed the villain. "You catch on putty swinging hi s trus ty lariat, ready_for the throw that would easy, don t yer? J est find 'em that's all!" settle the race. "Oh, w e' ll find them all ri g ht. But you jus t tell me A cry of rage and -fear combined l eft the lips of the what you know about them, or I'll begin to clip off your crooked foreman. e ars with bullets! Do JOU hear what I say, you sneaki n g Thencoyote?" Whizz Out came the boy's revolver s and Myers promptly lost The lasso flew out and circled through the air. hi s bluffing way. Down came the noose over the heads of foth horse and "I don't know nothin about em," he said', quickly. "I rider. seen 'em :follerin' my trail this mornin', an' that's a.U I Bill 's dodging proved futile, a nd with a jerk, he came know." to the ground with the broncho. "All rig ht. Charlie and I will start out in search of Our hero was on the s pot before h e could get up. them, leaving you in charge of the boss. Don't let him "I reckon I've got you, Bill," he said, s miling at him get away, no matter what you do, "Mr. Graham." coolly. "You cQUldn't have got away, a n yhow, for if I "Yer kin bet your life I won't, Wild! was the retort. had not stopped Charlie he would have shot you in the leg Five minute s later Young Wild West and Cheyenne long before you got your horse. I ju st wanted a litt l e Charlie were galloping in the dire ctio n of the log cabin pra<;tice with the s o I let you get ahead. Jus t hold up your hands, please." The broncho !/).Ot up as soon as it was and gal loped back to its quarters, minu s its rid e r. Bill Myer s was quickl y dis armed, and then, fastening the rope about hi s body, his arm s pinned to his sides, Wild mounted hi s h o rse and sta rted back for the house. rhere was nothin g to do but for Bill to leg it along, for if he r e fused to walk h e would be dr agged. A s he was brought to the house Graham proml{tly laid hi s hand on hi s s houlder and exclaifaed : "Bill, you've got ter s uff er fur what you've done. I'm goin' ter send ri ght ove r to ther Fork fur ther marshal I'll make ther charge ag'in yer that will either hang yer or send yer ter prison. .'.f mean every word I say, Bill Myer s !" "All right," was the reply. "You were too much of a thick-headed fool to fil}d out anything yourself, boss! CHAPTER XIV WHAT HAPPENED TO Jil\1 AND BILLY. W e will now turn om attention to Jim Dart and Billy Dover. They w e re not so very l o n g in covering the distance tween the ranchand the logi cabin, and when they neared the latter they slowed clown and let their horses walk Onpe or twice they had cau ght s i ght of Bin Myers, but he had been los t to view each time, either from getting b e hind a ridge or a clump of trees. But Jim blew that he had g one direct 'to the shanty, for there was the trail to prove it. "Billy," s aid he, "we m ust be a bit careful now. We


-,\ YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. 23 know that we have got villains to deal with, and there is no telling just what they might do." "Do you really think that Bill Myers is a villain?" the boy asked, looking close l y at his companio n. "Yes, there is no question about it. We know all about him, Billy The cattl e branders hang out in this shanty, and he is one of them, only he lives on the Big G Ranch and is deceiving your uncle and his men "Well, he ought to be caught in his work and punished for it, then. -, "Oh, he'll get what is coming to hi1n; don't make any mistake about that. Wild promised your uncle to help him run the cattl e branders down, and he'll never stop u ntil it is done. That's the way Wild does things, you know." "Yes, I know 1 The two were now within a hundred yards of the shanty, and just then a man came out and waved to them. It was not Myers, but one of the five Jim had seen through the win,dow the night before. "Hello!" called out Dart. "What is up?" 'Come here!" was the retort. "You're from ther Big G Ranch, ain't yer ?" "Yes. What's the matter over there?" f'Somethin' has happened tor Bill Myers, who come h ere a little while ago. This blamed plaoe-must be haunt ed, fur a jest catched Bill right afore my very eyes an' took him up through ther roof!" 'rhe spot Jim and theboy tenderfoot had halted at was near a thick clump of bushes. They never thought that danger lurked behind the bushes, but such was the case "We don't want anything to do with a haunted shanty, not much!" called out Jim. "I reckon Myers will turn up, all right.'' .../ Just then a lariat settled over Jim's head and shoulders and before he could hJlp himself he was pulled from the saddle Bill y turned in a startled way. and found a number of men in the bushes. They were Myers, Aleck and the dthers of the gang Two revolvers were leveled at the boy, so he promptly But as bad as he was, the foreman could not bring him self to murder the two in cold blood "Put 'em in ther cellar, boys," he said. "To-night we'll dispose of So Jim. and Billy were taken to the shanty, and in a littl e while they were prisoners in the cellar. Their horses were turned loose to gp where they saw fit, and then the four men set out to try their luck a}. branding cattle again, leaving the one man of the gang a-t the shanty to take care of the prisoners. Bill Myers remained there for a while, and the more he thought over what he had done the more he became COIJjTinced that he had made an awful mistake. "Knox," said he, turning to the man who had been l eft to guard the prisoners, "I'm mighty sorry we bothered with 'em now. We don't dare ter let 'em go, fur that would mean that ther jig was up No Theive got ter die now; that's all there is ter it!" Jim and Billy heard this, as the two villains were i n the cepar_. right close to them. To Jim what the villain said meant hope, but to Billy it signified nothing but despair The little fellow was not use d to falling int'o the hands of villainous gangs, and he surely thought that it was all up with him, unless something intervened very soon. But he was very brave about it, and not a whimper cam e from him. Perhaps it was Jim's coolness that kept him up how ever. "Well, I didn't know tha.t yer wanted ter catch 'em till ycr said so when yer seen 'em comin' this way, Bill," said the man called Knox, in answer to the remark of the for e man. "Murder is mighty business, an' I don't want none of it, fur my part. "Well, I don't want any of it, either. J?ut that boy has caused all this trouble; and the other fellow is one of Young Wild West's pards. Young Wild West means ter clean us up, I s'pose He'll find out who we are afore long an' then we'll git it. If "'.e expect ter stay h ere do business we've got ter kill off them what's after us, that's all." gave in. "Well, I'll tell yer right now that I ain't goin' ter have Jim was quickly disarmed ;md bound. and then Bill was nothin' ter do with ther killin' business J'll jest git treated in a like manner. ready ter light out fur othef part of ther country, "It was mighty smart in your two galoots ter foller just as soon as I kin have a talk with Aleck an' ther rest me, wasn't it?" said Myers, mockitgly. "I don't s'pose I'm putty sure that they'll want ter do ther same thing. you\ve got any idea of ever gittin' back to ther ranch, Anyhow, ther blamed ghosts that come around here of have yer? Kid, l hate you fur what you've done! I'm nights will run u s out, if Young Wild West don't goin' ter give yer to ther ghosts of that shanty there! It was evident that the man said this for the benefit Your friends here will git ther same dose! Neither one of the two prisoners. of yer will ever leave ther shanty alive! Yer hear what I "I'm blamed sorry I ever said ter bother with these two say You've folU1d who ther cattle branders are, but it saicl Myers, as he paced back and forth throug h won't do no good!" the cellar "We've got ourselves in a hole, an' that's The factAwas that Bill Myers really blamed the boy tenall there is to it. There' s only one way ter git out of it, for Young Wild West taking an interest in the an' that's ter finish 'em an' bury 'em where their friends hunting down of the branders, and as he had taken a will never find 'em !" r strong dislike to him when he first came to the A cry of fear left the l ipsof Billy as these words sound he was now quite bad enough to make away with the ed on his ears innocent boy. "Bill!" he cried, imploringly, "you wouldn't do anyJ im Dart was Young Wild West's partner, so that was thing as bad as that, would you? Let us go, and we'll eno u gh to seal his death warrant, anyhcw I n ever tell who it was that caught us until you've had a I


I \ YOUNG WILD WEST A.ND 'rHE CA'l"rLE BRANDERS. chance to get away. Oh, Bill! I thought you was a nice It was the cattle brander called Knox :qian \Vlien I first come to live at uncle's ranch." "Hello, Heathen tn called out the villain, who had left ''Ha, ha, ha!" laughed Bill, harshly "So yer don't the log s hanty less Lhan harf an hour before, after liber want ter die, eh.? How about ther other galoot? I'll bet ating Jim and the boy tenderfoot. "Where are you bound he don t want ter, eitrier." for?" ':I am not worrying a bit about that," up Jim, "Me takee lillee lid e for um he alth, so be; where you quickly. "I knew pre tty well :what I was doing when I go, Misler Melican Man?" stanted on your trail. Young Wild West and Cheyenne "I'm goin' to town." Charlie will soon be along. Then you'll have to look out ''You likee havee lillee smokee ?" Hop asked, o:fferittg for your self As far as you killing us, you dare not do him a cigar, of which he had.,everal in his pockets. it, and you know it. You have made a mistake, and y.ou "Don't mind if I do. Will vou have a little bugjuice ?" know admit it, in fact. Now, then, think the Hop could not have bee;:i. better pleased. He took i:i. way to giet out of it. good pull at the bottle, and then pulled out his big, yellow Bill sw01: e at this, but it was evident that he wa: hit silk handkerchief to wip e it off before handing it back. pretty hard: But it so happened that h e h a d a bottl e the "Come on upstairs, Knox, an' we'll talk it over," he same size as that one in'his pocket, and when h e handed said. it back it was empty. Knox knew that the weresecurely tied, so he The one that was nearly :full went into hi s pocket unde r followe d the l eader of the gang to the floor above. cover of the handkerchi ef. The two sat down behind the curtain that :was painted Knox did not care to drink just then. to imitate logs, and then Bill sai d : If he had he would not have done so, anyhow-not "I don t know what ter do about this ." from that bottle. "S'pose we hav e a drl.llk?" suggested Knox. He dropped it in hi s pocket without knowing the dif-'rhe two drank, and Bill seeme d to feel better. ference and then he coolly lighted the cigar Hop had "Knox," said he, "you keep tlier two here till I come given him. back, which might not be till after dark I'm goin' te:r "I hope we'll meet ag'in some time, H eathen!' I ain't git what belongs ter me at thei;ranch an' then draw some got long ter stay around these h ere diggin 's money ahead an' light out. I reckon it'll be ther best "Goodby, Misler Melican Man," ans:wered Hop, a.ri.d thing fur u s all ter do now. If Young Wild West happens then he started along the trail the man had been ter come along, j est hav e the ske leton ready an' scare him ing when h e met him. awey. I hope ther rest of ther boys comes back early. By some chance he missed the s hanty altogether ancl I don't think they s hould have gone out braridin' this 1 kept going right on. mornin', but Aleck think s he knows b est ." He would not have done this if there had not been a Knox nodded, and then, after he tool} another drink patch of timber right between him and the spot where it from the bottle, yers left the shanty and rode back to was located. the ranch, only to be caught and made a prisoner, as the Hop did not watch the trail very closely, and fir s t reader knows. thing he knew he was on a wide trail that looked as Knox went down the cellar and walked up to the pri s though several had ridden back and forth ,over it many oners. times. "I reckon I'll let you two galoots gp putty soon," he Things were working queerly just now, but Hop did "I've jest macle up my mind that I kin do better not know it. by skippin' out &lone. This goin' ,in a gang won't work It happened that the four cattle branders had made up very well." their minds to come back to the sha nty. "Let u s go right away, then," said Billy. They had lost their branding irons, so they could do "Wait tffi Bill gits out oj sight," was the retort. no busines s that morning. :F'ive minutes later he had gathered up what he deAfter riding around for a while to nialrn it appear sired to take with him, and then Knox liberated the that they were lookiiT'g for their cattle, they turned and prisoners, after fir s t gaining their promise not to. intermade their way toward the s hanty. fore with him Aleck knew the Celestial moment he laid eyes on ---him, and Hop, of course, knew him. CHAPTER XV. "Velly nicee mornin', so be," said Hop, bowing to the HOP DOES SOME SCOUTING. leader of the four. "YOU likee playee lill ee dlaw pokee ?:' Wild and Charlie hacl scarce ly gone when Hop hastily "Not much, you heath e n galoot!" was the retort. saddled his broncho. "What are yer doin' here, anyhow?" Then he away, not knowing just what he was "Me comee outee to look for um. ghosts ; be," was going to do, or what might happen. tihereply. 'rhe Chinaman tock a slig1htly different course to 1..that "Oh! 1Have yer found any?" from which Wild and had gone, he thinking "Me no findee um s hanty, so be." if he came up from another clirection he Illlght be more "Well, come o:r;i. with us; we'll take you right to it.'' apt to prove of some assistance. Hop, thinking that Wild and Charlie were surely there, When be had covered about ten miles of the distance signified his willingness to go, and he turned his hor s e he suddenly saw a horseman approaching and rode along with the cattle brander s


YOUNG WILD WEST AND THE BRANDERS' Pretty soon the shanty came in sight, and when Hop saw that there was no sign of our hero and Charlie th'.ere he began to think that they' must have been there and gione. And this was the case, too 'rhe fact was there was no one in the shanty now. Jim and Billy had found their horses after a short search, and then they se t out for the ranch. And Wild and Charlie, meeting them and hearing their story, decid ed to wait unti night to come to the shanty and get the four men. So when Hop got to the shanty he was really in the power of Aleck and the re st, and with no chance to receive any immediate help from any one .1 "Come right in, an' we'll treat yer ter some tanglefoot," said Aleck, as Hop dismounted. H e did not wait for him to accept or refuse, but pu1led him right ins ide. The four villains, seeing nothing of Knox, thought that he was probably in the cellar with the two prisoners. Hop s::it flown. Aleck brought out a bottle of whi sky and five tin ' E;,ach of the men took a drink from the bottle, using the tin c up s "Who tleat lat timee?" Hop asked, smiling blandly at the villains. I "I did," replied Aleck. "It's your turn now." "Allee light." Hop pulled all the cups over to him and then picked up the bottle. '.Fhen hi s other went into one the mysterious pockets he had ou the inside of the loose-fitting coat he wwa "Me g,ottee uncl e in China whattee velly muchee ,._ !lmartee," h e said, a s he h eld up t11e bottle and looked through it. It was only natural that the eyes of the fpur men should follow him, and during that short period of time he emptied the contents of a little vial of powder into the four cups. Some got a little more than others, b.ut none of the four missed receiving enough to suit the Chinaman. The powder was a powerful drug. Hop always carried ;;u,c h things wishing to join the re s t and ,find out whether or not Jim and the boy had LP.en found, ho meant Lo drug the villains in a }\urry He knew very well that the next thing on the carpet would be that he would hav e hi s money tak,e:d from him. Then what would happen he could not tell. 1 But h e was going to stop all chances of anything hap pening to him now. He poured out the 'l_Vhisky and had the satisfaction of seeing the powder dissolve the minute the liquid struck it. He fixed his own cup la st, and then, raising it_ to his lip s, he exclaime d : "Here um velly goodee luckee, so be!" They all drank, draining their cups. Hop began sing ing a Chinese song now. But the drug was quick in action, and the firsp thing he knew the fonr villains were lying on t h e floor about him, sound asleep. "Me allee samee lightee oute e now, so be," he mut tered, and out he walked. Mounting his broncho, he ro(\.e away. at a gallop, as though he feared that the drugged men might awaken ;Hop did not cover the ground so very fast, for after he gpt a mile away from the shanty he felt that was ,not necessary. He was satisfied with the result of his trip, providing nothing happened to Jim and the boy. At length he rode up to the house and, seeing t4em all on the p Q rch, where they had gathered :finishing the noooday meal, Hoptook off hi s hat and yelled: ''Hip hi! Hoolay! Me allee samee MelicaR man)" CHAPTER XVI. CONCLUSION. As might be supposed, Wild and Charfie were not sur prised when they. met Jim and the boy tenderfoot com ing from the direction of the so-called haunted shanty. But when they li rte ned to what they had to tell theIJ. t h ey were not only surprised, but amazed. "Ther murderin' galoot!" exclaimed the scout. "Ain't it good that we got him, Wild?" "Yes, Charlie; things could not have turned any better than when you branded hi s coat for pim. "You have got Bill Myer s, you say?" Dart asirnd. "Ho you mean tJ:iat you have made him a prisoner?" "Yes, Jim," our hero replied. "We nailed him almost as soon as he came back to the ranch." Then he was told all that had .taken place. This was all very interesting to Jim, and so it was to Billy Dover. I They all rode back to the ranch, with the understand-ing that they were to go to the shanty after daik and cle;;in oot the "ghost's," as well as the cattle branders "Can I go with you?" Billy asked. "Yes, why not?'' was the reply. "Good! I want to sec the fun." The boy clappeJ hi s ha;nds with delight. ; "Well, if that 11keleton s hows up to-night you'll see me knock it into a cocked hat. Then I'll rjp down that cur tam they've got l the re a jiffy, and the first face I see I am going to hit good and hard. with my fist!" The boy laughed "Won't that be breaking up a gihost scheme, though!" he exclaimed. When tbey got to the ranch they were in time for dinner, and the girls were delighted to .e, e that Jim and Billy were with Wild and Charlie. Our hero took Jim to see the prisoner, who was con fined in an outside building and under the charge 04: Sam Pratt, the cowboy. ''There he i s !" said Pratt, poiilting to the viliai!f, who sat on the floor, his hands tied behind him. "Yer) wouldn't never think that he'd ever been a boss over nie, wou l d yer? Mr. Graham has promoted me ter be foi:eman now; but, somehow, I don't care mugh about it. I don't believe in driV:in' men, an' I don't know how I'll make out if I'm easy with 'em." 1 "You will make out all right,'> said Jim.,


26 YOUNG WILD WES'l' AND THE CATTLE BRANDERS. Bill Myers would have nothing to say, so after he was s ure that he was hard and fast OUT hero l ed the way back to the house. They all had dinner, and, as ha s been stated, when they had been on the porch a few minutes Hop rode up. ,_ The sto ry of the Chinaman was a s urprisin g one, too, and t hey all agreed that it was not so bad that he went out, after all. Along toward nightfall the ran c hman despatched on e of his cowbovs to the sett lement for the marshal "Tell him" that. there will be about four more to take with him when he goes b:;wk," Wild said to th cowboy. The messengier rode off, arid then, after they had eaten s upp er, our fri e nd s got ready to pay the visit to the log shanty. 'rhey arranged it s o that it would be dark, just before the moon aro se, when they got there The girls did not seem to want to take in the trip, so Wild and hi s two partners and the ranchman and Billy Dover were the only one s to strike out But after they left Hop set. out ... after them, as was generally hi s custom. Meanwhil e let u s see what was taking place in the shanty about this time. Hop had spoke n truly when he said it would be dark before the four villains awoke Aleck was the fir s t one to awaken, and when he found his companions lying on the floor around him he knew not what to make of it. But it soon daw:ued upon him and, stagge ring to his feet, h e went to the table "Ther cunnin' Chinee drug ge d us, I reckon," he said. "Well, this i s too bad! I wond,er where Knox i s ?'r He got a drink of water and then, feeling better, he quickly arou sed his companions. It took a bout fifteen minutes to get them thoroughly awake, and by that time it was da.rk for fair. It was just then that the clatter of hoof s sounded near at hand, then the voice of Young Wild Wes t rang out, exclaiming : "Fire a few s hots to scare away the ghosls before we get too close, boys! Now! L et her go!'} Then four or five s hot s ran g out. Ale. ck grasped situation just as our h e ro wanted him to. "Git out ther pot an' ther alcoho l !'r h e exclaimed. "Up with ther ske l eto n boys! We' ll soon show 'em that ther ghost ain't afraid of pistol shots Hmry, now!" The villains ha ste ned to obey, and in a very short time they had the ske leton and pot in place 'fhe pot simply contained sand, and when a quantit y of alcohol was pour ed on this and li ghted it would burn with a ghostly g lare, and last quite a l ength of time The men got behind the curta in a s soon as the pot was light ed, and then Aleck u_p the big horn and began to groan furiously. Just then Young Wild W sst and Cheyenne Charlie Cbarlie," s aid Wilkeleton to the floor. 1 SQUAR.E, NEW YORK, and you w ill r eceive the c opies "I reckon we'll have to :find out something a bout this, you order by return


WILD WEST WEEKLY. 27 WILD WEST WEEKLY NEW YORK, JUNE 12, 1908. Terms to Subsc ribers. .Single Coples ........... ................................. O n e Copy Three nonths ................................. One Copy Six nonths .................................... One Co pJ' ne Year .. : ............................... .. Postage Free. How To SEND MONEY. .05 Ce nts .65 $1.25 2.50 At our risk send P. 0. M oney Order, Check, or Registered Letter: re mittances in any other way are at your risk. We accept Postage Stampe the same as cash. When sending silver wrap the coin in a separate piece of paper to avoid cutting the envelope. W1'ite 11our name and address 1Jlainly. ..d.ddres. lette1s to Frank T ou s ey., Publisher 2.c U n i on S q., New York. SOME GOOD ARTIC L E S In Germany, a boy ten years old was sent by his father to pay a debt of $25. On the way to the house of the creditor the boy stopped at a gr-0cery and bought a stick of gum. He had half a mile farther to go, and upon reaching the house discovered that he had lost the money. The lad's father is now suing the grocer for the amount, claiming that the stick of gum made the boy careless, and that if it hadn't been sold to him he wouldn't have lost the $25. It looks as if it would take a lot of law to decide that' case. \ The Irish terrier which exhibited its tricks recently at the Westminster police court is by no means the first ani mal which has relieved the tedium of an English court of law by its antics. In a Manchester police court a baboon which I appeared in the dock with its owner, on a charge of breaking into a fowl house, showed its contempt for the court by stealing and chewing up pens under the very nose of the magistrate. .At a London court 109 frogs were produced in evidence; in another case a porcupine was exhibited on the witness table of a county court to show whether or n-0t it was worth the money claimed for it; while among other animals which have made similar nconventional appearances in recent years have been cats, donkey11 (not, however, allowed within the precincts of the court), and a baby lion. It was at an informal session, after one of the regular meet ings of a religious convention, that the New Hampshire min ister told some of his best stories. ,"There is one man in our church," he said, "who is as good as gold, but so long-winded that he tires everybody out. .At one time it was suggested by one of the d'eacons that in order to avoid the extreme length of this good man's remarks at prayer meeting, we might make a five-minute limit. This I inaugurated at the next meeting, and it was cheering to us all to see that/ when the long-winded man rose to speak he held his open watch in his left hand. When the limit was all btrt reached he said: 'Finding, my dear friends, that I have only a few seconds left in which to speak, and having much to say, I will throw the rest of my remarks into the form of a prayer.' The present road system of France was started by Nap a leon I. No new roads of importance have been opened in some years, but the work of the engineers in the Department of Public Works of France is confined to keeping the roads in a state of high efficiency. France, to its remote and inac cessible sections, is so traversed with excellent roadways that there is now no necessity of adding any more lines of commu nication. The highways are the chief competitors of the rail roads. The far-reaching and splendidly maintained road sys tem has distinctly favored the small landed proprietors, and in their prosperity, and their ensuing distribution. of wealth, lies the key to the secret of the wonderfu l financial vitality and solid prosperity of the French nation. The road system of France has been of far greater value to the country as the means of raising.the value of lands and of putting the small peasant proprietors in easy communication with their markets than have the railways. Collar buttons are made not only of various metals, but a l s o and in great numbers, of wood. Round sticks of wood are fed into machines, which turn the buttons and cut them off, automatically. Taken from the turning machines, the collar buttons thus made are placed, thousands of them at o n ce, in a barrel-shaped receptacle containing japan varnish, in which they are rolled and tumbled until each is completely coated. To be dried, they are placed, thousands at a time, in a similar drying apparatus, in which they are rolled and tumbled again, to keep them from sticking together, until they are thorough l y dry, and then there are the finished buttons, which have never been touched by hand. Wooden collar buttons are sold to t h e trade by the great gross, but they are not counted out in such numbers, for even machine counting would take some time, and cost money; so the weight of a great gross being known, discovered by actual counting and weighing, they weigh out the buttons for packing, such and such a weight of them making a great gross. In this way they practically oount o u t 1,728 buttons at a time, that number being, in the trade, the wooden collar button unit. These collar buttons of wood are sold to dealers in laundry supplies a)ld to manufacturers o f shirtwaists. .Altogether, the number used for these purposes is enormous, amounting to many millions annually ._ Wood e n collar buttons are one of the minor products of factor ies making a specialty of turned wood goods. GRINS A N D CHUCKLES. "Was the fishing good down at the lake?" "Good? Sayt it was so bully that nobol:ly had to lie about it!" Tess-Well, there's one thing about May Stiles. She has the courage of -her convictions. Jess-Indeed? How d o y ou mean? Tess-She's convinced that she can wear a N o 4 s hoe. Tommy-Pop, was writing done on tablets of stone i n the old days? Tommy's Pop-Yes, my son. Tommy-Gee! I t must have taken a crowbar to break the newti! "They have discovered footprints, three feet long, i n the sands of Oregon, supposed to belong to a lost race." I t fs impossible to conceive how a race that made footprints three feet long could get lost. The boarder, who was a month behind with the was Sl,lrprised at the size of the heap of mashed ):lotatoes on the plate the girl had brought him. He was even mo r e sur prised when he found a folded paper ill the center o f the h eap But he didn't open it. He knew what it was Carefully wip ing it with his napkin, he put i t in his vest pocket, and went a h ead calmly with his dinJ?.er. You can't disconce r t an experience d boarder. "Fare!" The passenger gave no heed. "Fare, please!" Still was the passenger oblivious. "By the ejaculatory term, 'fare,'" said the conductor, "I imply no reference to the state o f t h e weather, the complexion of the admirable blonde you obse r ve in the contiguous seat, nor even to the quality of service vou ch safed by this philanthropic corporation. I merely allude, in .a manner perhaps lacking in delicacy, but not in conciseness, to the monetary obligation set up b your pres1mce in this car, and suggest that, without oontempering your celerity with enunciation, you liquidate." .At this point the passenge r emerged from his tranc e


28 WILD i WEST WEEKLY. THE IRONWOOD CLUB By PAUL BRADDON. "Murdered by tramps," were the word s that greeted my ears as I trudged along the forest road in one of the northern counties of Michigan under the hot sunshine of a June day. An old man had been murdered in his cabin for money-a Jone old fellow, who lived a hermit "life, and great excitement preva'iled in the neighborhood. I had been sent to the scene of the murder by a woman was interested in the case, and I went to ferret the assassin out and see him impri soned for hi s crime. A dozen men, rough frontiersmen, were gathered about the rude log-cabin when I approached, with my bundle on my s houlder, and looked upon the scene. which it was u sed. There were too many tracks about the house to note any particular one. After making some further inquiries, I left the cabin, taking the ironwood club with me "The man who cut this club is undoubtedly the murderer," I reasoned. "I must find Who cut it and watch the fellow. This i s a clew that I feel sure will lead to something." I scanned the forest clo se l y in the vicinity, but saw no ironwoods among the saplings. It was not here, then, that the bludgeon of death was cut. I crossed the wagon-road that led v.ast from the village of Morgan, six miles distant, and entered the woods beyond I came upon a path that Jed into the denser forest. Instinctively I followed this path, believing that it must lead somewhere. I had gone perhaps half a mile when I came to a sudden The body of a slender, newl:ir cut sapling lay bes ide the path< I at once examined it to find lhat i t was ironwood and that the club I carried bad been cut from the same. A brief corn"Eh? Who's this?" parison assured me of this beyond a doubt. Sharp, suspicious glances were cast over me. I resembled a r I now pursued my way, and in a little 1.ime came out in tramp very much, and those men were just at present in an front of a log house, about which were many shavings. 4,lgly mood I did not fear/ them, however. I had carried my Under a shed near was a shaving horse, and near it several life in my hand on too many occasions for that. bunches of shingles. Just as I came up an old man came to the "What seems to be the trouble, geil:tlemen?" I questioned, in door of the hou se. He greeted me with a gruff good-morning, a pleasant voice, that served to di sarm enmity and suspici on and asked my business "Old Ramroyd hez been murdered, answered a giant settler. "I'm in the north woods looking for a job," I said, "Some ornary cuss hes gin Sam his quietus wi' a club. Ef we my bundle to a log, club and all. 1 git our 'tands on him wei'll fix him." "Waal, you won't git rione here," growled the old chap, The man looke9savage enough to keep his word. rather s urlily. I pushed my way inside the rude frontier cabin, and there my "Did 7ou know old Sam Ramroyd was dead? I questioned eyes met a sight that was sickening in the extreme. abruptly, my eyes fixed on the fellow 's face keenly. An old gray-bearded, gra;-haired man, c l ad almost in rags, "Yes, I did. I was over this mornin'. 'Twas a beastly 'baq lay l'Jrostrate near the center of the room, his presenting job, stranger. I warned old Sam lots o' times, but it didn't a ghastly sight, having been beaten to a jelly with some blunt seem t,o do no good. Rev they got the murderer?" the floor and matted hair saturated with blood I "No. 'Have you seen any. suspicious characters about here?" and brams. "Not any. Nobody comes to see old Si Bunday 'cept be The old eyes were open and glassy, filled with a nameless wants ter git a few shingles. Nelse, of course, comes up, but horror that it was terrible to contemplate. it's ter see Mandy, I reckon," and the old shingle weaver gave It was indeed a cruel murder. vent to a chuckle. "Who did it?" At length I put this question to the assembled men. "That's the question, cap!" grunted a tall, gaunt man. "El' we Jmow'd 'twouldn't take us long to fix him so he wouldn't do no more jobs of the same kind. Most folks think 'twas a tramp, but I don t low .no thin' of the kind." "Them fellers has got 'nough ter ans'er for 'thout puttin' more on their s houlders than they're guilty of. Now, it don't look likely that a ,stranger-an' a tramp would be a stranger would look into this hyer house fur money, does "it?-nor to as him to hev it?" The gaut old fellow pointed at the last toward the ragged "Who is Nelse?" "Nelse Faddock, him that.was widder Eade's boy. A goodfor-nothin' chap mostly, but I s'pose he likes Mandy, and the gal's took all of a heap fur him." "Your daughter?" "Yes, cap," with a trifle straightening of the lean old form. "Corne over an' Ghat ef ye like. I am goin' ter work. The olci i.ah was soon 1tt his post shaving shingles. I moved over and sat down near. Seeing a hatchet, I picked it up and examined it with some curiosity. There was a peculiar shaped nick near the center. This interested me not a little. Why? corpse. Simply for the reason that I had noticed a peculiar crease on I felt that there was much .\visdom in the words of the set-both ends of the ironwood club that showed a defect in the inlier. "'Twan't no stranger as did this, you kin bet yer life on thet; but someone who know'd Sam Ramroyd had four hundred dollars hoarded up in this old shanty." "He did. have that amount, you think?" I expect 'so, stranger." '"l'hen your theory seems to be a sensible one." I made a thorough examination of the room, and soon found the weapon that had been used in performing the awful work. was an iron-wood club, about three feet in length, the full size of the from which it had been cut, somethi. ng like two inches in diameter ..... The small end had been whittld with a knife, making a neat handle. Doubtles s the club had been cut for the express purpose for strument doing the cutting. Carelessly, while talking with Mr. Bunday, I placed the edge of the hatchet along the spot cut at the end of the ironwood stick. The fact was at once patent to my mind that this was the hatchet that had cut the murderous bludgeon. "Hello, cap! Where'd you get that?" The old shingle-weaver suddenl y h e ld out his hand for the hatchet. I found it right here in the shavings. "Land, is that so? I misse d the hatchet two days ago. Glad :rou !ve found it, cap, for I've needed it more'n twice what it's worth. I've rummaged them shavings over a dozen times. I don't see how it come to be there now." It did seem strange:


WILD WEST WEEKLY. 29 "Has Mr. Faddock been here to-day?" "Miss Sanger," I said, rising and laying my hand on her "This mornin'. He's gone to Morgan, and feelin' mighty shoulder, "there is good reason for this ignorant woodman's good he was, too. I'm given to thinkin' the ornary cuss s'pects sudden wealth. He is the assassin of Sam Ramroyd." to git Mandy 'fore lonp, they both looked so awful cunnin' "The Infamous scoundrel! I'll not touch this cloth again-when I seed 'em together." it was bought with blood!" and she flung the silken drapery Soon after I left the vicinity of the shingle-weaver's cabin. from her with a vengeance. I was assured that his hatchet had cut the ironwood club that "Be calm, Miss Sanger," I said. "You of course expect a been used to murder Ramroyd. Now to find the user of the visit ere long from this Nelse Faddock." hatchet. "Yes, he promised to come this morning with trimmings for Was it old Si Bunday? the dress." I did not believe it was. It might be Nelse Faddock, and I "Then he will undoubtedly put in an appearance before long. resolved to learn more of the fellow. Morgan was his Will you aid me a little, Miss Sanger?" and I resolved to go there soon to loolr for him. Meantime I went back to the scene of the murder. I learned that an old watch and pocketbook were misi:;ing, as well as the old man' s money, the latter having been taken from a hole the floor. I The country sheriff was already on the ground, and several local detectives. All sorts of stories were afloat, the general theoh being that some men from the lumber camps near had committed the deed, and the sheriff and his depuiies, full of this idea, turned their investigation in that direction. I was convinced the local detectives were on the wrong track. They examined the club which I had returned, but found little in this to excite notice. I was permitted to retain the wea pon when I made known my business to the sheriff, and that night, long after dark, I set out on my return to the village of Morgan. Early on the following day I called on my fair patron, in whose service I was now engaged. Miss Betty Sanger was a spinster; one of those lively, ener"I am wiling to do anything, of course, to bring a villain to justice," answered the dressmaker, in a calm tone that increased my admiration for her. I laid my plan before the spinster in a few words, and she promised to carry out my instructions to the letter. Even while we were talking the sound of steps was heard ascending th!e stairs, and Betty gave me a significant glance. "I will step behind this curtain," said I, pointing to an apartment curtained from the main room. Betty nodded, and I had, hardly time to slip into concealment, ere the door opened un ceremoniously and the man of my thoughts entered the apart-ment of the dressmaker. He handed Betty Sanger a bundle and said: "Them's the ,best trimmin's I could find in Morgan, Miss' Sanger. Don't spare no expense now, will you? I want Mandy to look stunnin'. It'll make the old man's eyes stick out when he sees that new dress; but I swow Mandy'll fill it to perfec tion." "One moment, Mr. Faddock," said the little dressmaker, in. getic business women, who had thus far made her own way her softest tones. "In making a dress of this kind, so valu in the world, and at the present time was village dressmaker. able, I usually require a small sum of money In advance." Old Ramroyd was an uncle, which accounts for Miss Sanger's "Eh? Money. Waal, how much?" interest in the case. She had often tried to influence him to I Quickly he. drew forth an old black wallet and opened it. A lead a different life, all to no purpose. Now that he was foully thick roll of bills met the llressmaker's eye, murdered; she resolved to spend her whole means, if need be, "Nelse, where did you get Uncle Sam pocket-in trapping the assassin. book?" "Such a queer thing has happened since you went away yes-Betty Sanger put the question suddenly and coolly. The terday, Mr. Sharp," said Betty Sanger, after I given my man started, an

These Books Tell You Everything! !. COMPLETE SET IS A REGULAR ENOYCLOPE:DIA!' EaveP. Most of the books are also pro fusely illu strated, and all of the subjects treate d upon are explained in such a simple manner that aDJ' child. can thoroughly understand them. Look over the list as classified and see if you want to know anything about the subjecta mentioned. THESE BOOKS ARE FOR SALE BY ALL NEWSDEALERS OR WILL BE SENT BY MAIL TO '.ANY '.ADDRESS FROM THIS OFFICE ON RECEIPT OF PRICE, TEN CENTS EACH, OR ANY THREE BOOKS FOR TWENTY-FIVE CENTS. POSTAGE STAMPS TAKEN THE SAME AS MONEY. Addr es s FRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 24 Union Square N.Y. -. MESMERISM. No. 81. HOW TO MESMERIZE.-Containing the mos t ap proved methods of mesmeri s m ; al s o how to cure all kinds of diseases by animal mi>gnetism, or, magn e tic healing. By Prof. Leo Hugo Koch, A. Q. (,, author of "How to Hypnotize," etc. PALMISTRY. No. 82. HOW TO DO, PALMISTRY.-Containing the most ap prov ed methods of readmg the lines on the hand, together with a full explanation of their m ea ning. Also explaining phrenology, and the key for telling charac t e r by th e bumps on the head, By Leo Hugo Koch, A. C. S. Fully illu strated. HYPNOTISM. No. 83. HOW TO HYPNOTIZE.-Containing va uable and in structive information regarding the scienc e of hypnotjsm. Also explaining the most approved methods whi c h are by the leading hypnotists of the world. By Leo Hugo KQCh, A.C.S. SPORTING. No. 21. HOW TO AND FISH.-The most complete hunting and fishing guide ever publi s hed. It contains full in structions about guns, hunting dog s tra ps, trapping and fishing, together with descriptions of g ame and fis h. No. 26. HOW TO ROW, SAIL AND BUILD A BOAT.-Fully illustrated. Every boy should know 'how to row and sail a boat. Full instructions are given in this litt l e b ook, together with in atructions on swimming and ridin g c omp a ni o n sports to boating. No. 47. HOW TO BREAK, RIDE AND DRIVE A HORSE.A complete treatise on the hor se D esc r i bin g t he most us e ful hors e s for business, the best hors e s for the road; als o valuable recipes for diseases pecaliar to the hor s e. No. 48. HOW TO BUILD AND SAIL CANOES. -A handy b6ok for boys; containing full dir e ct i ons for constructing canoes and the most popular manner of sailing them. Fu11y Wustrated. BY. O. Stansfield Hicks. 1 FORTUNE TELLING. Na. 1. NAPOLEON'S ORACULUM AND DREAM BOOk.C!:ontaining the great oracle of human d e stin y ; also the true mean ing of almost any kind of dre ams, tog e th e r wi t h charms, ceremonies, and curious games of cards. A c omple te b o ok. No. 23. HOW 'l'O EXPLAIN DREAMS.-fEverybody dreams, from the little child to the age d man and woman. This little book 1ives the explanation to all kinds of dre am s together with lucky and unlucky Jays, and "Napoleon's Orac ulum," the book of fate. No. 28. HOW TO TELL FORTUNES.-Everyone is desirous of knowinc what his future life will bring forth, wh ethe r happiness or misery, wealth or poverty. You can tell by a glance at this little book. Buy one and be convinced. Tell your own fortune. Tell the fortune of your friends. No. 76. HOW TO '.rELL FORTUNES BY THE HAND.Containing rules for telling fortunes by tb e aid of lines of the hand, or the secret of palmistry. Also the secr e t of telling future events by aid of moles, marks, scars, etc. Illustrated. By A. Anderson ATHLETIC. No. 6. HOW TO BECOME AN ATHLETE.-Giving full in atruction for the. use of dumb bells, Indian clubs, parallel bars, horizontal bars and various other methods of developing a good, healthy muscle; containing over sixty illustration s. Every boy can become strong and healthy by following the instructions contained in this little book. No. 10. HOW TO BOX.-The art of self-defense made easy. Containing over thirty illustrations of guards, blows, and the diff e r ent positions of a good boxer. Every boy should obtain one of these useful and instructive books, as it will teach you how to box without an instructor. No. 25. HOW TO BECOME A GYMNAST.-Containing full Instructions for all kinds of g y m n a s ti c sports and athletic exercises. Embracing thirty-five illustrations. By Professor W. Macdonald. A handy and useful book. No. 34. HOW ro FENCE.-Containing full instruction for fencing and the use of the broadsworJ ; also instruction in archery. Described with twenty-one practical illustrations, giving tile best positions fencing. A complete book. TRICKS WITH CARDS. No. 51. i!OW TO DO TRICKS WITH explanations of t'he general principles of sleight-of-hand applicable to card tricks; of card tricks with ordinary cards and not requiring aleight-of-hand; of tricks involving sleight-of-hand, or the use of 'Pl!Cialll prel!ared i:ardll. By l'rofessor HalJ:ner. lllustrated. No. 72 HOW TO DO SIXTY TRICKS WITH CARDS.-Em. bracing all of the latest an No. 74. HOW TO WRITE LETTERS taining full instructions for writing letters on almost any aubject ru!es and composition, with specimen


THE STAGE. No. 41. T!ru BOYS OF NEW YORK END MEN'S Jorrn BQOK.-Containing a great variety of the latest jokes used by the most famous end men. No amateur minstrels is comp lete without this wonderful little book. No. 42. THE BOYS OF NEW YORK STUMP SPEAKER. Containing a varied assortment of stump speeches, Negro, Dutch and Irish. Also end men's jokes. Just the thing for home amuse JDent and amateur shows. No. 45. THE BOYS OF NEW YORK MINSTREL GUIDE '.AND JOKM BOOK.-Something new and very instructive. Every boy shou ld obtain this book, as it contains full instructions for or ganizing an amateur minstrel troupe. No. 65. MULDOON' S JOKES.-This is one of the most original joke books ever published, and it is brimful of wit and humor. It contains a large collection of songs, jokes, conundrums, etc., of Terrence Muldoon, the great wit, humorist, and practical joker of the day. lJJvery boy who can enjoy a good substantial joke should iobta in a copy imm ediately No 79. HOW TO BECOME AN ACTOR.-Containing com1>lete instructions how to make up for various characters on the stage; together with the duties of the Stage Manager, Prompter, Scenic Artist and Property Man. By a prominent Stage Manage r. No 80. GUS WILLIAMS' JOKE BOOK.-Containing the lat est j okes, anecdotes and funny stories of this world-renowned and ev e r popular German comedian. Sixty-four pages ; handsome colored cover containing a half-tone photo of the author. HOUSEKEEPING. No. 16. HOW TO KEEP A WINDOW GARDEN.-Containing full instructions for constructing a window garden either in town or country, and the most approved m ethods for raising beautiful Oowers at home. The most complete book of the kind ever publish e d. No. 30. HOW TO COO K.-One of the most instructive books on cooking eve r published. It contains recipes for cooking meats fish game and oysters; also pies, puddings, cakes and all kinds of pastry, and a grand collection of recipes by one of our most popular cooks. No. 37. HOW TO KEEP HOUSE.-It contains information for ever.y body boys, girls, men and women; it will teach you how to make almost anything around the liouse, such as parlor ornaments, cements, Aeolian harps, and bird lime for catching birds. ELECTRICAL. No. 46. HOW TO MAKE AND USE ELECTRICITY.-A d1e cription of the wonderful uses of elect ri city and e l ectro magnetism; to gethe r with full instructions for making Electric Toys, Batte ries, etc. By George Trebel, A. M., M. D. Containing over fifty il lustrations. No 64 HOW TO MAKE ELECTRICAL MACHINES.-Con taining full uirections for making electrical machines, indu ctio n coils dynamos. and many novel toys to be worked by electricity. By R. A. R. Bennett. Fully illustrated. No. 67 HOW 'l'O DO ELECTRICAL TRICKS.-Containing a large collection of instructive and highly amusing electrical tricks, tog ethe r with illustrations. By A. Anderson. No. 31. HOW TO BECOME A SPEAKER.-Containing f_.., teen illustrations, giving the different positions to a good speaker, reader and elocutio nist. Also containing gems froa the popular '.luthors of prose and poetry, arranged in the moat simple and concise manne r possib l e No. 49. _HOW TO r>U!e s for conducting d bates, outlines for. qu.estions for dis2ussion, and tbt b9 sources for procurmg mformat10n on the questions 11:ivu. SOCIET'I. No. 3. HOW T O FLIRT.-The arts and wiles of fiirtat'1oi{ are fully by this little book. Besides the various methods of ba.r.dkerch i ef fan, glove, parasol window and hat flirtation, it con tams a .full hst of the language and sentiment of flowers, which f9 m_teresting to everybody, both aid and young. You cannot be happJ without one. 4. H.OW _TO DANqE is the title of a new and handsome _book Jll{lt JSsued .E rank Tousey. It contai na full instruc t10ns Ill the art of dancmg, etiquette in the ball room and at partiea, how to dress, and full directions .for calling off in all }:lopular square dances. No. l? HOW T<;> LOVJ)l .-A guide to love. and g1vmg sensible advice, rules and etiquette to be observed, with many curious and interestin g things not gen erally known. No. li. HOW TO DRESS.-Containing full instruc tion in the art of dressing and appearing well at home and abroad giving the selections of colors, material, and how to have them made up. No. 18 HOW TO BECOl\IE BEAUTIFUL.-One of the most valuable little books eve r given to the world. Everybody wishes to know how to become beautiful, both male ancl female '.rhe secret is simple, and almost costless. Read this bQ and be con vince d ho w to become beautiful BIRDS AND ANIMALS. No. 7. HOW TO KEEP BIRDS.-Handsomely illush'ated ant containing full instructions for the management and training of the canary, mockingbird, bobolink, blackbird, paroquet, parrot, etc. No 39. HOW TO RAISE DOGS, POULTRY, PIGEONS AND RABBITS.-A useful and instructive book Handsomely illu trated. By Ira Drofraw. No. 40. HOW TO MAKE AND SET TRAPS.-Including binte on how to catch mol es weasels, otter, rats, squirrels and bird1. Also how to cure skins. Copious!.}' illustrated. By J. Harringtoa Keene. No 50. HOW TO STUFF BIRDS :A.ND 'ANIMALS,_.& valuab l e book, giving instructions in collecting, preparing, mountina and preserving birds, animals and ins ects. No .. 54. TO KEEP AND l\IANAGE PETS.-Giving com plet\! as to the m_anner an.d method of rais ing, keepinr, tammg, breedmg, and managmg all kmds of pets; also giving full instructions for making cages, etc. Fully exp l ained by twenty-eigbC illustrations, making it the most complete book of "the kind ever published. MISCELLANEOUS. :"\ 8. HOW TO BECOME A SCIENTIST,_.A useful and ln str\1ctive b.ook, givi?g a treatise O? chemistry; also e.s per1ments rn acoustics, mechamcs, mathe matics, chemistry, and di E NTE RTA IN M \:=NT. r ect.ions for making fireworks, colored fires, and -gas balloons. Thia No. 9. HOW TO BEOOl\IE A VENTRILOQUIST.-By Harry book cannot be equaled. 1 K el'nedy. Tbe secret given away. Every intelligent boy reading No. 14. HOW TO MAKEl CANDY.-A complete band-book for thi!> book of instructions, by a practical professor (delighting multi-making.all kinds of candy. etc. tud es evE!'ry night with his wonderful imitations), can master the No. 84. HOW '.rO BEJCOME Al'I full art, and create any amount of fun for him se lf and friends It is the information regarding choice of subjects, the use of words and the greatest book ('Ver published. and there's millions (of fun) in it. manner of preparing and submitting manuscript. Also containing No. 20. HOW TO ENTERTAIN AN EVENING PARTY-A valuable information as to the neatness, l eg i bility and genernl com very valuable little book just published. A complete compend ium positioIJ of manuscript, essential to a successful author. By Prince of games, sports, card diversions, comic recitations, etc., suitable H iland. 1 for parlor or drawing-room entertainment. It contains more for the No. 38. HOW TO BECOME YOUR OWN DOCTOR-A won m oney than an:v book pub l ished. derfu l book, containing u se ful and practical information in the No 35. HOW' TO PLAY GAMES.-A complete and useful little treatment of ordinary diseases and ailments common to every book, containing the rules and regulations of billiards, bagatelle, family. Abounding in useful and effective recipes for general com ba c kgammon, croquet. domin oes, etc. plaints. No 36. HOW TO SOLVE CONUNDRUMS.-Containing all NQ. 55 HOW TO COLLECT STAMPS AND COINS.-Con the leading conundrums of the day, amusing riddles, curious catches taining valuable information regarding the co lle cting and arranging and witty sayings. of stamps and coins. Hands omely illustrated. No. 52. HOW TO PLAY CARDS.-A complete and bandy little No. 58 HOW TO BE A DETEC'rIVE.-By Old King Brady, b ook, !?iving the rules and full directions for playing Euchre, Cribthe world-known detective. In which he lays down some valualtl e bage, Casino, Forty-Five, Rounce, Pedro Sancho, Draw Poker, and sensible rules for beginners, and also relates some adventure :Auction Pitc h, All Fours, and many other popular games of cards. and experiences of well-known detectives. No. 66. HOW TO DO PUZZLES.-Containing over three hunNo. 60. HOW TO BECOME A PHOTOGRAPHER.-Contain dred interesting puzzles and conundrums, with key to same A ing useful information regarding the Camera and how to work it; comp lete book. Fully illustrated. By A. Anderson. a l so how to make Photographic Magic Lantern Slides and other ETIQUETTE. Handsomely illustrated. By Captain w. De w. No. 13. HOW TO DO IT; OR, BOOK OF ETIQUETTE.-It No. ''ow TO BECOME A WEST POINT MILITARY Is a great life secret, and one that every young man desires to know CADET.-.... ''\taining full explanations how to gain admittance, all about. There's happiness in it. course of Study, l

Latest Issues -.a '' W 0 R K A N D W I N CONTAINING THE GREAT FRED FE.ARNOT STORIES. I COLORED COVERS. 32 p .AGES. PRICE 5 CENTS. 489 Fred Fearnot as a Backstop; or, Winning a Hot Ball 494 Fred Fearnot and the Raft Boy; or, Rough Life on the Game. Mississippi. 490 Fred Fearnot and "Old Mystery"; or, The Hermit of 495 Fred Fearnpt's Steal to Second; or, The Trick that Turn-Spirit Lake. ed the Tide. 4':H Fred Fearnot and the One-Armed Wonder; or, Putting 496 Fred Fearnot's' New Stroke; or, Beating the Champion Them Over the Plate. Swimmer. 497 Fred Fearnot's Quarrel with Terry; or, Settling a Friend-492 Fred Fearnot and the Sti;eet Singer; or, The Little Queen ly Dispute. of Song. 498 Fred Fearnot's Schoolbo y Stars; or, Teaching a Young, 493 Fred Fearnot's Lucky Hit; or, Winning Out the Ninth. Nine the Game. ''WI o E AWAKE WEEKLY1 COLORED COVERS. CONTAINING STORIES OF Boy FIREMEN'., 32 PAGES. PRICE 5 CENTS. 105 Young Wide Awake's Terror; or, Brave Work in a Burn110 Young Wide Awake and the Old Vet; or, Working Shoul-ing Coal Mine. der to Shoulder. 106 Y .oung Wide Awake's Race With Death; or, Battling With 111 Young Wide Awake's Dangerous Deal; or, The Only the Elements. Chance for Life. 10 7 Young Wide Awake's Courage; or, The Capture of the "Norwich Six. 108 Young Wide Awake's Little Pard; or, The Boy Hero of the Flames. 109 Young Wide Fiery Duel; or, the Nep tunes a Lesson. 112 Young Wide Awake and the Factory Boys; or, The Feat that Mane Him Famous. 113 Young Wide Awake's Secret Enemies; or, The Plot to De stroy a City. 114 Young Wide Awake's Sudden Fear; or, The Fireman's Trick that Won the Day. "FAME AND FORTUNE WEEKLY" COLORED COVERS. CONTAINING STORIES OF BOYS WHO MAKE MONEY. 32 PAGES. PRICE 5 CENTS. 133 A Lucky Contract; or, The Boy Who Made a Raft of 138 A Boy Stockbroker; or, From Errand Boy to Millionaire. Money (A Wall Street Story. ) 134 A Big Risk; or, The Game that Woli. 135 On Pirate's Isle ; or, The Treasure of the Seven Craters. 136 A Wall Street Mystery; or, The Boy Who Beat the Syndi cate. 139 Facing the World; or, A Poor Boy's Fight for Fortune. 140 A Tip Worth a Milliof; or, How a Boy Worked It in Wall Street. 141 Bill y, the Cabin Boy ; or, The Treasure of Skeleton Island. 137 Dick Hadley's Mine; or, The Boy+ Gqld Diggers of Mex-v2 Just His Luck; or, Climbing the Ladder of Fame and l<'or sale by all newsdealers, or will be sent to any address on receipt of price, 5 cents p e r copy, in money or postag e stamps, by 'PRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 24 Union Square, New York. IF YOU WANT ANY BACK NUMBERS of our Weeklies and cannot procure them from newsdealers, they can be obtained from this office direct. Cut out and fill In the following Order Blank and send It to us with the price ot the weeklies you w ant and we will send them to you by retura mail. POSTAGE STAMPS TAKEN THE SAME AS MONEY. !" FRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 24 Union Square, New York. DE.AR Sui-Enclosed find ...... cents for which send me: . ._ 190 ... copies of WORK AND WIN, Nos ......................................... WIDE AWAKE WEEKLY, Nos ............................................ ,. :: :: :: ::: :: :: : : : : : : :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: ;: ::,:: :: :: :: : PLUCK AND LUCK Nos ............................................... SECRET SERVICE, Nos ...................................................... FAME AND FORTUNE WEEKLY, Nos ....................................... Ten-Cent Hand Books, Nos ....................................... ................. iN' ame ............................ Street and No ..... : ....... Town .......... State ...............


WILD WEST WEEKLY 1l magazine Gontai n ing Stotties, Sketehes, ete., of Ulestettn Ilif e. El"Y"' .A.1'1" C>I.....I> SCC>"UT. 32 PAGES HANDSOME COLORED COVERS PRICE 5 CENTS All of these exciting stories are founded on facts. Young Wild West is a hero with whom the author was acquainted. His daring deeds and thrilling adventures have never b een surpassed. They form the base of the most dashing stories ever published. Read the following numbers of this most interesting magazine and be convinced: I LATES T l::i::iUE,;; 241 Young Wild West G ul c h 270 Y o un g \Yi l d 1 W e s t Exposing t h e Expre s s Robbers; or, With Arietta U Golddust ('ity. Y oung Wild West and the Cowbo y Traile r ; or, The Ranchman s R e v e n ge. and Monte Mac k ; or, The Girl of Golde n 271 242 Y oung \\'lid West and the Silve r Seek ers; or, Arietta" s "Hot Lea d Sauce." 243 Y oung Wild W est' s Lively Lasso, and H o w It C orrale d the Cow b o y Crooks. 272 Y o ung \\'ild W est and the Missing S cout; or, Arie t t a and the Madman, 244 Young Wild W est at Grease r Gulc h ; o r, Arletta and the lll exicans. 245 Wild W est and the Cavalry King; o r .l'h e Rac e ltival Rider. 273 Young Wild West Doome d to D eath; qr, Arietta and the RiO c Queen. Masked 274 With a 275 Young Wild W est on a Golde n Trail; or, The Myste r y of Magic Pass. Young Wild West Fighting the Indians; or, The Up1-;s : n g of the Ute s. 246 Young Wild West and the Si oux S calpers; o r How Arietta Saved H e r Life. 247 Young Wild \\'est and the Rival S couts; o r The Raid of the Cow b o y Gang. 248 Young Wild W est' s Box of Bullion; or, Arietta and the Overland R obbers. 249 Young Wild W est's Barebac k R eat; o r The Boss Boy of the Broncho Busters. 250 Young Wild W est at I'ire Hill; o r. H o w Arietta Save d the Flag. 251 Young Wild W est and the Grease r Giant; o r, M e xi can Mike's" lllistake 252 Y oung Wl1d West at Ske l eton Itanc h ; o r A r i etta and the D eath Trap. 253 Young Wild W est' s G old Grip; and H o w H e H e ld the Claim. 2 5 4 Y oung Wild West and the Gray Gang; o r, Arietta' s Daring Device 255 Young Wild W est a t Lonesome Licks; o r, The Phantom of Pilgrim Pass. 256 Young Wild W est' s Biggest Strike ; or, Arietta and the Abandone d Mine. 257 Young Wild W est and the Rlve r R angers; or, The Cave Queen of the Y e ll owstone 258 Young Wild West' s C owboy Call; o r Arietta and the Smugglers. 259 Young Wild W est and the Moqui lll edicine l\1an ; 0 1-, D oing the Dance of D eath. 260 Young Wild W est on a Tre a sure Trail ; o r and the Sil ver Lode 261 Young Wild W est and the D eadwoo d D e n ; o r The l ?ight fo r Half a Millio n 262 Young Wild W e s t as a Prairie Pilot; o r Arietta and the Bron cho Queen. 263 Young Wild W est Laying D own the Law; or, The "Bad" M e n of B l a c k Ila ll. 264 Y oung Wild W est' s Paying Place r ; o r Arietta s Luc k y Shot. 265 Young Wild W est' s Double Tra p ; 0 1-, D owning a D a nger o u s Gang. 266 Young Wild W e s t afte r the M e x lean R aide rs; o r Arietta on a Hot Trnil. 267 Young Wild W est and the Navajo C h ie f : o r Fie r ce Time s on the Pla ins. 2flS Y oung Wild W est C h asing the H orse Thie ves; or, Arietta and the Corra l My s t e r y. 269 Young Wild West and the Mine Girl; or, The Secr e t Band of Slive r Shaft. 276 Young Wild W est on a Cattle Range ; or, Arie tta aud t h e '"H a d .. Co wb o y 277 Y oung Wild West's Gallop for Glory; or, The D e a t h L eague o f Ace High. 278 Y oung Wild W est's Silve r 'Searc h ; or, Arietta and the Lost rrre a s ur e 279 Y o ung Wild W est at D eath G orge ; or, Cheyenne C h arlie s Hard Pan Hit. 280 Y oung Wild W est and "Monte r e y Blll" ; or, Arietta" s Game of Bluff. 2 8 1 Y o ung Wild Wes t and t h e D eadshot Cowboy: or, A n ;gh O l d .l'im e at Iluckhorn R a n c h 2 8 2 Young Wild W e st's Cavalry Charge ; or, The Sho t tha t Sa,ed Arletta's Life. 283 Y o un g Wild West"s Three Days Hunt; or, The R a'dPrs of R e d Ravine. 2 8 4 Y oung Wild W est and "Silve r S t r eam"'; o r The 'i\ "hlte Girl Captive of the Sioux. 285 Yo un g Wild W est and the Dispute d Claim ; or, Ariettas Go ld e n Sho w e r 286 Y oung Wild West and the Greas e r Guide; 01, The Trap t hat F aile d t o W ork. 2 8 7 Y oung Wild West s Ripping Itound-U p ; o r Arietta s r erll. 288 Y oung Wild West's Toug hest Trail: o r Baffle d b y R andi t s 289 Y oung Wild W est at "Forbidde n Pass.'' and H o w Arietta Pai d t h e Toll. 2 9 0 2 9 1 2 9 2 293 2!>4 295 2()6 Y oung Wild W est and the Indian Traito r ; o r The Charg } of the R e d Brigade Y oung Wild West and the Mas k e d Cowbo y ; 01-, Arietta's r.2 a d y Rope. Y oung Wild West and the R a n c h e r o's D a u ghte r : o r A Uot o :<.1 Time in M e xi c o. Young Wild W est and t h e Sand Hill "Te rrors" ; o r, The Itoad Agents of the Santa F'e Trail. Young Wild West Afte r "White Horse Jack"'; or, Arietta and the Wild Mu s t ang. Young Wild W est and the Cattle Rranders; or, Cro ok e d W ork o n the Big G Ranc h Y oung Wild W est' s Four l P oes; or, The S ecret Band of Co l d Camp. For sale by all n ewsdealers, or will be sent to any address ?n receipt of price, 5 ce nts per copy, in m o n ey o r posta ge stamps, by PRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 24 Union N. Y. IF YOU WANT ANY BACK NUMBERS ot our Weeklies and cannot procure them from n e wsdea l ers. they can be obtained from this offic e direct. Cut out and fill in the following Ord e r Blank and send it to us with the price of the weeklies y o u want a n d we wlll send them to you by return mail. POSTAGE STAMPS TAKEN THE SAM E AS MONEY :FRANK TO USEY, Publi s h e r 24 U nion Square N e w York. ... .. ... ....... ........ 190 DEA R Sm-Enclosed find ..... cent s for whi c h please send me: .... copi e s of WORK AND WIN, Nos .... ............................... ............................ \VIDE AW AKE WEEKLY, Nos .......... ..... ............................... ....... WILD \ .VEST WEEKLY, Nos .... .......... ...... .... ....................... .... ... '' THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76, No s ............... ............... ...... ................ PLUCK AND LUCK Nos .. ............ : .......... .......................... ... .... '' SECRET SERVICE N o s .. .... .................................. .. ... .......... ........ FAME AND FORTUNE WEEKLY, Nos ...... ......... .................... ............. Ten Cent Hand Books, Nos .............. .... ................... .... ........... ...... N a me .................... ..... S t r eet a n d No ... ............ Town ... : ... .. 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