Young Klondike's fight for a claim, or, The boomers of Raccoon Creek

Young Klondike's fight for a claim, or, The boomers of Raccoon Creek

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Young Klondike's fight for a claim, or, The boomers of Raccoon Creek
Series Title:
Young Klondike
Author of Young Klondike ( Old Miner )
Place of Publication:
New York
Frank Tousey
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
1 online resource (31 p.)


Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels ( lcsh )
Gold mines and mining -- Fiction ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
025502812 ( ALEPH )
15009126 ( OCLC )
Y14-00012 ( USF DOI )
y14.12 ( USF Handle )

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Issued Semi-Monthly-By Subscript'ion $1 .25 pe:r year. Ente:red as Seeond Class Matte1 at the N e w York Post Office by Ji'rank Tousey. No. 18. NEW YORK, NOVEMBER 9 1898 Price 5 Cents. Mr. Ma.xwell pushed on, and soon four figures, w e ll wrappe d up in furs and comfortable clothin g came into view through the snow, with the dog running b e fore them, for the know-ing animal had returned to show them the way.


Stories of a Gold Seeker. IH!ud Berni-Monthly-By Subscription Sl .25 per y ear. Entered as Second Class Matte1 at the New York, N. Y., Post 0.f!l.ce, March 15, 1898. EJntered according to Act ot Congress in the -gear 1898, in the office of the Lib1arian of Congress, Washington, D. C., by Frank Tomey, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 18. NEW YORK, November 9, 1898. Price 5 Cents. OR, THE BOOMERS OF RACCOON CREEK. BY AUTHOR OF YOUNC KLONDIKE. CHAPTER I. JUST IN TIME. "HELP I Help! Help!" The dismal cry rang out above the howling of the storm. "Help Help Help !" Once more it sounded dismally, but the wind bore it away into tho wilderness, and no one knew better than Mr. Maxwell how little chance there was of the cry. being heard. And yet, if it was not heard, death-and nothing less than death-was due to that party of three prospectors, two men and one woman who crouched under the rocks on the hillside, waiting for Mr. Maxwell's return. Winter in the Klondike country is a serious busi ness, and that is where these people were. They had been prospecting among the mountains to the west of Eldorado creek, and like many others who never give much thought to the future had made little or no provision for it, intending to go down to Dawson City as soon as winter set in. Delaying too long, they started just in time to be caught in the first great snowfall of the season, before they reached the settlements along the line of Eldorado creek. Realizing their danger they pushed on for seteral hours through the snow, losing themselves hopelessly just before night came on. All that night and all the next day the storm continued raging, and during that time the small supply of provisions which remained to the party became exhausted. They had no means of making a fire, either. It was a bad case. Hungry and cold with the prospect of another night before them, there is no wonder that Mr. Maxwell and his friends became seriously alarmed. In fact, they were about ready to give up in despair. They crouched under the rs:icks until after midnight, when they were suddenly startled out of the deadly stupor which was creeping over them by the barking of a dog. Fanp y what a welcome sound under the circumstances It gave them new life-hope Ordering his companions to remain where they were, Mr. Maxwell, who was decidedly the most robust of the party, hurried out to the brow of the hill and lis tened. Again the barking of the dog was heard, and still again, after which all was still. It was this which made Mr. Maxwell call for help as he did over and over again, trying by every means in his power to. throw his voice forward through the storm. All useless No answer came ; he did not even have the satisfaction of hearing the dog's bark again ; he began to doubt if he had heard it at all. "It's no use, Maggie," he said to his daughter, when he returned to the shelter. "I'm afraid it was only the howling of the wind." "Don't say that, father. It means death to us. I don't believe I can survive the night." The old prospector groaned. "If you say that it will help to kill me, Maggie,'' he replied. "We must keep up our courage under all circumstances. Jacques-Francois, can you suggest nothing ? it means death to remain here so." It was a useless appeal. The two young French Canadians who ha d joined the father and daughter ba ck among the hills, really knew as little about the region a s he knew himself. The y :were a s helpless as a pair of babies. Every-


2 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR A OLAIM. thing thus devolved on Mr. Maxwell himself, and he fact. With them was a decidedly pretty girl, who wa. s utterly at a loss to know what to do. plowed her way through the snow as boldly as did As the night wore on the storm increased, and so her companions. The other was a little man wearing did the seriousness of their situation. big boots and a plug hat, which seemed singularly Benumbed by cold, Maggie Maxwell kept sinking there in the storm. off to sleep and father had to keep rousing her, "Hello, friend!" called one of the young men for sleep under thes e circumstances meant death. "What are you wandering about here, for? Why The two Frenchmen paced up and down before the don't you come in and get warm?" rocks over a beaten path they had trampled down in "Great Heavens are we so near a human habitathe snow. Sometimes Mr. Maxwell joined them. I tion as all that, then?" gasped the poor prospector. Again he sat by his daughter, who was now too be"Gentlemen, you have come just in time." numbed to stand, encouraging her all he could, hop-He led the way back to the rock shelter, and when ing against hope until sunrise. they reached there it looked as if they had come too Such was their situation at nine o'clock in the morn-late. ing, when the barking of the dog was heard again. Maggie Maxwell had sunk into unconsciousness, and This time it was unmistakable. it was impossible to arouse her. Mr. Maxwell listened to the sound attentively. It "Poor thing! Is she dying?" the young girl ex did not seem to come any closer, and that could mean claimed. "Oh, Ned, we must do something. Let us but one thing. Were they nearer to a mining camp get her to the house as quick as we can." than he had supposed ? "She's freezing !" said the man, with the plug hat. Mr. Maxwell sprang up, a .nd seizing his rifle, fired "That's what's the matter with the girl, she's freez-shot after shot in slow succession. ing to

I YOUNG KLONDIKE"S FIGH1' FOR A CLAIM. 3 right in. Poor thing! Who is she? How dreadful "That's me," laughed the little man. to be lost in a storm like this!" "Yes, they call you the Unknown, I believe?" "Get the front room up-stairs ready for her at once, "So they do." Mrs. Colvin," ordered the younger man. "Build up "I've heard say that nobody knows your name; a good fire, and see that the bed is comfortable. that you won't even tell it to Young Klondike and his We'll keep her down here in the sitting-room until partner.'' you tell us to come.'' "The last is true enough," said Ned, laughing. So they took her into a large room where a bright "If you can inake him tell his name, Mr. Maxwell, wood fire burned on the open hearth. you'll do me the greatest favor in life." It was a room furnished with every comfort and "The last may be true, but the first ain't," chuckled many luxuries, something so unusual for the Klondike, the Unknown, "for there's one person right here in that Mr. Maxwell might have at once guessed into this room who knows my name." whose house he had come, even if he had not already "Meaning yourself," said Dick. recognized the buildings, which wasthe case. "Meaning myself, of course.,., But his whole thought now was of his daughter, "Much good that does us," said Ned. "Why don't and he said but little until he had seen her comfort-you tell us your name and be done with it?" ably in bed up-stairs, where he left her out of danger, I "Ah! that's my secret," laughed the Unknown. in charge of Mrs. Colvin and the young girl. "Go right on with your questions, Mr. Maxwell. It's Then he returned to the open fire in the rooin no use to discuss me." w the two young men and he of the tall hat I "Well, I want to discuss you a little longer," reawa1ted him. plied the prospector, in his slow way. "You see, I've Francois and his companion meanwhile had gone often heard about you people, and I want to satisfy over to the miners' quarters where they were being my curiosity while I've got a chance.'' comfortably entertained. "Fire away, then," said the Unknown. "I'm here "Gentlemen, how can I ever thank you," said Mr. to be talked to, and don't care a hang.'' Maxwell, stretching out his feet to the cheerful blaze. "Well, then, they tell me that you are up here "I need hardly ask where I am; nobody but Young hunting for some mysterious criminal-that so?" Klondike could offer a storm-bound traveler such "So they say.'' shelter as this up here on El Dorado creek.'' "They tell me that you are pretty apt to mistake "You don't have to thank us," replied the young people for this man, and to grab a fellow when he man. "We heard the dog bark and we knew some-least expects it, and sometimes put the handcuffs on thing must be wrong. Then we heard your shots him." and that settled it. Sorry we could not have come "Never saw him actually put the handcuffs on," to you before, but we came as soon as we could." said Dick, "but I've heard him threaten to do it often "You came just in time. My name is Maxwell. enough. You may consider yourself lucky that he I've been doing a little prospecting back among the. didn't try that game on you right there in the mountains here. May I ask which of you is the famsnow." ous Young Klondike? As I said before, I know one "That's right! That's right!" said the Unknown. of you must be he." Go ahead and abuse the old man. He's got no "l'm the fellow they call Young Klondike," laugh-friends !" ed the young man. "Oh, it ain't that I'm abusing anyone, or want Mr. Maxwell was slow of speech, and determined to to," said Mr. Maxwell, "but everybody is curious get things straight. about Young Klondike's crowd. You must know "That's what I thought," he said. "You areNed that." Golden, then?" Any more questions you want to ask, mister?" "I am.'' said Ned, who was beginning to grow tired of all this "Your young friend here is Dick Luckey, I supuseless talk. pose?" "I'd like to ask about this young lady.'' He is." Never mind her." The firm of Golden & Luckey is said to be the rich"Pardon, me. Isn't she Miss Edith Welton?" est in the whole Klondike country." "Yes, she is." "I don't know about that; we've done fairly well, "They say you saved her life on the way out from though.'' Seattle-rescued her from a wrecked steamer. Is that "I should say you had If we can believe wha.t we so ?" hear, you are worth a couple of million at least. I've "Yes, it is. Now I shan't answer an y further heard tell that you came out here just a couple of questions. Miss Welton is a member of the firm of poor New York clerks." Golden & Luckey, and this is the Young Klondike "Well, we didn't have very much, that's a fact.'' mine on El Dorado creek, our principal property, and "Yes, I've heard all about you. This gentleman, you are as welcome here as :flowers in May, providing I take it, is who always goes around you don't bother us with any further questions." with you?" "I'm done," said the prospector. "I've heard all


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR A OLA.IM. about these things so many times that I naturally had received from Mr. Maxwell was valuable, and wanted to know. You can ask me as many questions that the strike on Raccoon creek was worth looking as you like, young man, I'm ready to answer them at, to say the least. all.'' Now, in cases like this, Young Klondike usually "!have only one to ask you," replied Ned. "What acted promptly. Hehad the money to do it with, too. luck did you have back there among the hills ?" If he heard of any claim worth working that he Now, this, we must explain, was a sort of standard cared to take hold of, he never allowed money to stand question with Young Klondike. in the way. Like a sensible fellow he never lost an opportunity "Going back there to work?" he asked Mr. Max-to post himself in his business-and he made it a rule well. to inquire every new region when the chance "No," was the reply. "I'm going back to Dawoffered. son; I'm done." The mountains just back of his own great property "Gomg to locate that claim ?" had been very imperfectly prospected. "Well, hardly; I might." To be sure Young Klondike had done something at I "Hard up, I suppose?" it himself, but it was a big contract, and he felt that "Haven't got a cent to my name. I'm clean he knew nothing about them, and consequently was I busted." ready for any news Mr. Maxwell had to impart. I Here was a case for charity, then, and not one "Well, I didn't make out very well," replied the where it was necessary to buy. old man. "I was only gone three weeks." Young Klondike was very charitable. He felt "You started too late in the season:'"' sorry for Maxwell and with the desire to help him "Yes, so I did." along, offered him f!ve hundred dollars for all his "Strike anything?" rights to the claim on Raccoon creek. Oh, yes; up on Raccoon creek I made a small It is wonderful how the possession of a little money strike. Didn't amount to anything, though." -or even the promise of it will change a man. "Perhaps you didn't work the lead long enough." The moment old Maxwell heard this exceedingly "Perhaps; but I don't believe that. I worked it liberal offer he jumped at the conclusion that Young till it petered out." Klondike knew something about the Raccoon creek "What did you find?" diggings, which was not at all the case. "Why, gold, :Young Klondike; that's what I was j "Well, I think five hundred dollars is too little for after, to be sure." that there claim, boss," he said. "Can't you "Of course ; was it flake gold, or was it nuggets, it a thousand?" or was it dust? Ned stared. He could hardly believe his ears. "Nuggets, mostly." "Well, upon my word, that' s cool," said Dick. Ned Golden kept his own counsel. He wasn't part"By the Jumping Jeremiah, it is as cold as ice!" ing carelessly with the information it had cost him cried the Unknown, in a rage. "That's all the so much to acquire. thanks you get for trying to help a fellow, Young But he knew perfectly well that the nuggets in the Klondike. The claim is as much yours as it is his Klondike country always occur in extensive beds. until it's located. Don't you give him a blame To have found a few nuggets mea .nt that there cent." should be more-a big deposit in all probability. Ned And Ned didn't. He was disgusted with Mr. Max-was open for just such information as this. well's greed and backed out altogether. He questioned Mr. Maxwell further and made him Then they all went out to overlook the beginning of describe the location of Raccoon creek. the work of the day, leaving Mr. Maxwell by the fire Drawing him out more and more he persuaded h!m angry enough to think that he had missed what cer to display a little bag of nuggets taken from this tainly was a good thing. Raccoon creek. "Of course you won't have anything to do with These were spread out upon the table, and Ned ex-that Raccoon creek claim, Ned?" remarked Dick, as amined them closely. they walked over to the main shaft-house. He saw at once that they ran larger than the regu"On the contrary, I'm determined to go up there lation nuggets of the Klondike. and have a look at it just as soon as the storm is To li>Uppose that they were isolated specimens was over," replied Ned. "Something tells me we are go to suppose t!!e improbable, not to say the impos-ing tostrike big luck on Raccoon creek." sible. Ned made up his mind tha.tMr. Maxwell had begun on the extreme edge of a big gold deposit. He felt equally certain that instead of working it toward the deposit he had operated in the wrong diCHAPTER III. THE UNKNOWN AND THE GRIZZLY BEAR. rection, and moved away from it, which would account Two days later Young Klondike with Dick, Edith for the claim petering out suddenly. I and the Unknown started back among the hills for Taken altogether Ned felt that the information he Raccoon creek. l


. YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGH'l' FOR A CLAIM. 5 Now this was the way Young Klondike always did business. Once he undertook to do a thing he always went right to work at it and did his best to carry it out. The day before they started, rather a singular thing happened at the mine. Old man Maxwell, who had been sour and sullen ever since the affair of the money, took himself off in the night, taking his daughter vith him. Where he went, or how, or why, nobody seemed to know, least of all the two French Canadians, Jacques and Francois, to whom Young Klondike had given work in the mine. Still, there was plenty of other mines to which they might have gone both up and down El Dorado creek, or they might even have started to walk to Dawson City, for the creeks were now all frozen solid and the storm had passed away. Young Klondike made all possible inquiry, and then gave it up. It wasn't an affa .ir which concerned hirn very much; -the only thing that seemed strange was that the man should have gone in the middle of the night. He didn't know that old Maxwell was an exceedingly vindictive fellow, a man who in spite of his natural affection for his daughter was ready to sell himself to any vicious scheme where there was a dollar to be made. Nor did he guess that this same Maxwell, instead of feeling the gratitude he should have felt for Ned Golden's timely assistance had. taken a violent hatred toward Young Klondike and Dick, and espe cially toward the Unknown. But more about this later. Not that darkness makes so very much difference up in the Klondike country. People really pay but little attention to it, and were it otherwise, little or no business would be done in the winter, while exactly the reverse is the case. At the mines work goes right on after a fashion, and by the aid of lanterns travelers keep on traveling, but to travel in an unknown region like this in the darkness is another thing. The matter had been discussed, and the unanimous vote was it would not be safe. They had fifteen miles further to go before reaching Raccoon creek, and they accordingly resolved to tie up in this valley for the night. Accordingly a suitable spot was selected, and each one throwing his load on the snow, preparations for building a wicky-up began. Now there are many kinds of The name is properly applied to an Indian shelter of brush or skins. Up in Klondike it stands for such a shelter as Ned Golden and his companions set about building now. First. they got out a short handled ax which they invariably carried on these prospecting tours, and cut down four small spruce trees, lopping off the branches so as to give four good forked stakes. This done, two of the stakes were driven into the snow about six feet apart, and the others were put in place behind them some four feet away. Next ridge poles were put across the stakes and the frame-work of a douhle wichy-up was formed. '.fhe branches cut off and others were now taken and planted in the snow with their thick ends resting against the ridge pole. At present we find Young Klondike wearing snowThis formed the inner covering, andit was so ar-shoes, and carrying a rifle slung over his shoulder, ranged as to divide the wicky-up into two comparttramping through one of those deep valleys which lie ments, the outer one, which was larger, being for the between the mountains back of El Dorado creek. boys and the Unknown, and the inner one for Edith. Edith is right behind him, and behind Edith Dick Next move was to cut hemlock boughs,_ which are walks, and behind Dick again comes the Unknown. I much thicker than spruce, and these were piled up "By the Jumping Jeremiah, this is a fine stretch of the others until you could hardly see an opencountry, boys !" the detective called out just about mg. the time we pieet our friends. "I'd no idea there All that now remained was to make a door which was anything like it so near us. There's wood enough was accomplished by cutting away the hemlocks on that mountain to supply us a hundred years." with a sharp knife, leaving a low entrance through Wood was a scarce article around the Young which it was necessary to crawl in orderto get inside. Klondike Mine, and of course a great deal of it was To have made a larger door would only have been to used in the winter, hence the Unknown's interest now. let in a lot more cold air, and there was enough of "You're right, there is," said Dick. "We could that sure to get in through the small openings be easy send a ga;ng of men up here to cut some and tween the boughs. haul it down to camp." The wicky-up was now complete, and there was "Certainly we can," added Neel, "and I rather nothing left to do put to spread their big blankets inthink I'll do it. We ain't more than fifteen miles side and build a big fire without. from the creek." Everything was as comfortable as possible inside "Our mules can do that business all right," said when they got the lanterns lighted, for by this time the detective, "but look here, boys, it's going to be it was quite dark. dark soon, and we want to begin to think about the The fire shed its warmth through the opening, and night." the big lantern made it light and cheerful, and lent It was only a little after one o'clock, but then it some heat besides. would be dark shortly after two. Edith hustled about and prepared dinner, for in


I ) 6 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. their get forward they had not stopped for I "Rabbits !" cried Ned, suddenly, as two big, Jong that while dayhght lasted. eared Jack rabbits came up out of the snow, and with The cloth was spread directly on the snow, and tin big bounds made for the bushes which here at the plates and cups put in place. foot of the mountain grew quite thick. There was a good soup and canned meat and vege-Edith fired, and so did the Unknown. tables, all heated steaming hot over the fire, coffee, The rabbits bounded on, but a trail of blood was of course, and, bread made by the baker at the mine, left behind them, showing that at least one had been not to mention sundry etceteras which added greatly wounded. to the meal. After dinner, Ned got out his banjo and "I'll get those fellows or bust!" cried the Unknown, played, while Edith sung and the Unknown told and he dashed on into the bushes, disappearing. stories and they put in an hour or so, after which all Suddenly there was a rush and a snarling growl, took their rifles and went out under the stars to see and the voice of the Unknown shouting for help. if it would be possible to pick up a little something in Before anyone had time to say a word or make a the way of fresh meat. move, they saw a huge grizzly bear appear among There was moose to be had and an occasional the bushes. caribou. He had the Unknown in his huge jaw-seemed to Rabbits might be looked for, but without much have caught him-by the coat in the back. hope of finding them, and above all, there was bear The detective was kicking and waving his hands on the programme, and what could be better than wildly. bear steak for hungry travelers, we would like to "Help! Help, boys! Kill him or I'm a goner!" he know ? cried. They wandered along through the valley on their Edith fired at the risk of killing the Unknown. snow-shoes for quite a distance without seeing the The shot was a miss, and the monster shuffled on least trace of game, which, by the way, is very scarce up the side of the mountain with the Unknown shoutin this region, when all at once they struck a line of ing lustily for help. tracks so broad and deep that the uninitiated would have imagined that they must have beenmade by an elephant at least. But no, it was nothing of the sort. CHAPTER IV. THE BIG STRIKE UP RACCOON CREEK. "WHAT'S to be done! Save him! Save him!" Edith cried. As soon as she caught sight of them, Edith said "rabbits!" and she meant rabbits, for a rabbit's track is one of the largest to be found here in the Edith had fired twice, and Ned and Dick had each got in a shot, but it didn't seem to make a bit of dif Track 1 ference to the bear. snow. "We want that fellow !" declared Ned. seems to be pretty fresh, too." "So it is !" said the Unknown. "I'll bet he isn't half an hour gone. Probably he's lying under some bush over there at the beginning of the rise." They now began to follow the tracks, which led them over toward the mountain. "Wonder how much further it is to Raccoon creek, anyhow?" questioned Dick. "Who knows where that interesting stream is located?" "Blest if I do," replied Ned. "The Unknown claims to all right. I'm leaving it entirely to him." "And you may with perfect safety," said the de tective. "Don't you fret, boys; I'll take you to Rac coon creek." "So you've said half a dozen times," replied Ned. "Would you mind telling us where it is, though?" "Why, of course not. Raccoon creek lies right over on the other side of that mountain. Our trail would have led us around the mGuntain, but if you were to climb it and go down on the other side, it would be just the same." "Then it's no great distance away," said Edith. "As the crow flies I don't, believe it's two miles," replied the detective, "but to go around the mount ain it might be five. I remember going to Raccoon creek once before, and to the best of my recollection I've got it straight." On he went up the mountain, and presently disap peared among the ledges. The Unknown had now ceased to struggle and call out; Edith felt afraid that he was dead. It was an exciting moment. They all hurried up the mountain, but it is slow work getting over the grouud with snow-shoes, even on a level, and when you come to climb a mountain with them it is even worse. It seemed almost hopeless to expect to overtake the bear; under ordinary circumstances it would have been easy enough to shoot the beast, but fear of hit ting the detective stood in the way of good aiming, and this was the result. cool," said Ned. "It may not be so bad. I've every confidence in the Unknown, and I'd be will ing to bet that he'll work out of this snap same as he has out of a dozen others." They pushed on, following the trail without difficulty, for the snow was soft here and the impression of the bear's paws was strongly marked. Their suspense was not to last long. As soon as they the ledges they found that the mountain was not the straight ascent they had supposed. Instead of that there was a sharp descent into a deep valley, beyond which the mountains rose again.


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT J!OR A CLAlM. 7 They barely had time to take this in when they "Too big for the wolves to carry away," was the heard a loud shout in the valley, and looking down decision of the Unknown. saw a fearful combat in progress. "Did you hear them howling about last night?" It wa.s the Unknown and the grizzly bear. asked Ned. In some way the detective had managed to get free and draw the long, keen-bladed knife which he always carried. Twice they saw him drive it into the bear and then the big brute went over on the snow. "Hooray! By the Jumping Jeremiah, I've fixed him!" shouted the detective, jumping about the bear. He made a rush in a moment, and drove the knife home That last blow settled it. There was a dead bear in the valley when Young Klondike and the others came down. "Zed, are you hurt?" cried Edith, as they came hurrying up. "Hurt? Not a bit of it! There's no feeling in my overcoat, and that's all my grizzly friend got between his teeth. I'm afraid he is hurt, though." "Wouldn't wonder if he was 1" laughed Ned. "Once I did. I thought we should find our bear all torn to pieces." Reckon they didn't get this way at all," said Dick. 'You see yourself there ain't a trace of them here." There were no tracks on the snow, so it was evident that the wolves did not get on the scent of the bear, and our friends now went to work to put the carcass of the dead grizzly in shape to be used by themselves. First it was necessary to skin it, then to cut it up. It would be a good morning's work for two, so Dick and the Unknown went right at it. There being no chance for any more to work over the bear, Ned and Edith set out to explore the valley which offered some peculiar features, which made Ned think that it might be a good place to look for gold. "You've certainly fixed him. Is he dead?" "Dead as a door nail!" The valley wail long and narrow, and the slope of "Bully for you, Zed How did he get you?" the land from both sides abrupt. "Why, I can't tell you," replied the Unknown. Through the middle of it ran a creek, frozen over "He pounced on me all in a moment. Before I knew for the most part, although here and there where the where I was at, there was the bear riioing on his hind water ran rapidly over shallow there were large air legs, and then he collared me-if you can call catchholes. All this promised well, and Ned at last located ing me by the back of the coat collaring me. Any-one spot where he determined to dig, and said as much to Edith. how, he got me, and on tight unW it pleased his bearship to lay me down." Then you don t mtend to push on to Raccoon "You must have been spry to lay him down the creek?" asked Edith. way you did," said Dick. "You'll be rather surprised, perhaps, when I tell "Well, now, I was, sure I just didn't lie there 1 you that I believe this is Raccoon creek," replied when he dropped me. I jumped up quicker'n scat Ned. and drove my knife in between his ribs. Between "You don't mean that?" ,. you and me, boys, I think I took his bearship by sur"Yes, I do." prise." "But the Unknown is very sure that Raccoon creek "You deserve to have a medal struck in your lies on the other side of this mountain." honor," said Dick. "All's well that ends well." "The Unknown. is mistaken, if I know anything," "A leather medal, dear boy." declared Ned. "I'll bet you what you like this is "Suppose we make it gold," laughed Ned. Raccoon creek." "What shall we put on it?" "But he claims to have been to the creek before." "A big bear with an unknown detective in his "I know; that was in summer time, though, and mouth, legs and arms wriggling." then thing&looked altogether different. I don't "Whose legs and arms-the detective's or the believe he could locate Raccoon cre;;'k now if he tried." bear's ?" "It don't make much difference to us, anyhow. If "Time!" cried Dick. "Enough of this. We've we've got a good prospect here, that's all we want." got the bear anyhow, and there'll be no starving in "I should like to see that hole old man Maxwell this camp for many a day to come." dug, if I can find it, and I believe I can right here. It was indeed a prize in spite of the disagreeable Let's push on further up the creek." circumstances under ;which it was obtained, but none They started ahead then, and following around of the party had any disposition to pursue the advent-behind some high rocks, came suddenly upon a wicky-ure further just then. up. To be sure the moon made it as bright as day, but It was deserted, and looked lonely enough there in it would soon set, and Edith felt that they ought to the snow. lose no time in getting back to camp. Right in front of it the creek ran, and here was an So nothing was done about the bear until morning, air hole bigger than any they had seen yet. This when after an uneventful night they returned to the place offered a more promising prospect even th:;i,n valley, finding the bear just where they had left it. the one Ned had located.


.... ,,,.-8 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR .A. CLAIM. Young Klondike at once declared his. belief that this was old Maxwell's camp. Entering the brushwood shelter, they found a good deal of rubbish and paper scattered about, and upon some of the scraps of paper was Mr. Maxwell's name. "Raccoon creek, by thunder!" cried Ned. "You see now who was right, Edith. It was just exactly as I said." "I can't deny it," replied Edith. "This is evidently Mr. :Maxwell's abandoned camp." "Come, the man who would refuse five hundred dollars for this prospect, situated as he was, must be an idiot." Edith questioned whether or no it was worth any more to them, but Ned was stubbornly determined to try his luck right here. It was the following day before went at it, however. By the time the bear was skinned and cut up it was one o'clock, and that meant dinner, after which Ned having announced his discovery they built another wicky-up at old Maxwell's camp, and spent the balance of the day moving their belongings up to this new location. That night it was broiled bear steaks for supper, and nothing could have been more savory. During the night it grew warmer, and 'by morning a thaw set in. Considering the time of year it was now extraordinarily mild. "Just the weather for us," declared Young Klon dike. "We must make hay while the sun shines. I think we better make up our minds to give at least one week to this, and go about the business in the regular way." "That means a day's wood chopping," said Dick. And so it did, for although they found where old Max well's woodpile had been, there was nothing on it of any consequence. Ned led the way up the mountain side to a hemlock grove, and the rest of the day was spent gathering up dry wood of which there was plenty, some scattered over the ground, and more in the form of trees which had fallen and died. This wood was carried down to cam:I1 and heaped up into a great pile. It took the entire day to get this pile in shape to do any work. Another quiet night passed. The warm we ather continued. What with the heat of the sun during the day and the temperature being above freezing all night, there was quite a ehange in the appearance of the snow next morning. The ground was bare in spots, and in some places the ice was gone off the creek, which had now risen very considerably. It continued to rise all day, and to make matters more interesting a ram storm set in. It was a most uncomfortable .day. Nothing could be done, and it was hard to know where to go, for it was work sitting in the wicky-up, but that was what they had to do. Fortunately Ned had anticipated this, and a big tarpaulin had been brought along. This was spread over the wicky-ups, and kept them comparatively dry inside. That dismal day and the night which followed came to an end at last. Ned was afraid that it would clear off cold, but it didn't; the day following was warm and sunny, and when the sun rose Ned saw that the snow was pretty well gone. Discoveries were now in order. They found old man Maxwell's prospect-hole with out difficulty, and the place where he had done his panning, and in fact every indication that they had struck the right camp. While Edith was getting ready for dinner Ned was just beginning to take out dirt from the prospect-hole. It took two hours to burn out the frost, and then they were only able to work down three feet. Two more would take them below the frost line, Ned calculated, but they dug no more in that hole. Careful panning showed only a few nuggets and but little flake gold. When they quit work that night, the new claim on Raccoon creek looked to be rather a hopeless case. "It's just as I tell you," declared Ned. "We are right on the edge of a deposit, or there's nothing here at all," "Even chance it's the said Dick. "I don't believe it. I can't believe it. The way I argue is that if there wasn't a big deposit near us, we wouldn't find those nuggets lying the way we do. It's always a sure indication." "Then you haven't lost hope?" asked the Un known. "Not a bit of it. On the contrary, I'm more hope ful than ever. It's my opinion that to-morrow will see us with a big strike on our hands." They made every preparation to meet it. All night long a huge was kept up over the ground, lying between Maxwell's prospect-hole and the creek, for Ned, for reasons of his own, based upon the extended experience he had had in the Klondike country, was sure the nugget bed lay in that direc tion. By morning the ground was comparatively soft, and drained of the surface water. Space was then clear. ed and a shaft marked out, six by twelve ; this was full size, for if the prospect proved a success it was Young Klondike's intention to bring up a gang of men and wo:rk the claim all winter, for which reason he concluded that it would be wiser to begin in the regular way. It needed some twenty feet of digging now to get down to the level of Maxwell's hole, for the ground was a little higher here. Ned calculated that it would take three days to ac complish this, but it only took two.


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIFHT FOR A CLAIM. 9 By quitting time on the second evening they were well below the frost line and had struck black sand. This looked decidedly favorable. In Maxwell's :hole there was no black sand, and it is in this that the deposit of nuggets is usually to be found. Still there was nothing certain. Ned washed out a few of the pans of sand before they knocked off, but there was almost no gold in the stuff. Morning came and it was stLll warm and sunny. The weather could not have been more favorable if it had been made to order. It was really very unusual for this season of the year. Now to get down to business!" exclaimed Ned as soon as breakfast was over. "We must make it go to-day or not at all." They started in on the black sand by lantern light at half-past six. As it is not easy work panning in the dark, they kept right on digging until nine, whep the sun rose. "No sign of big, nuggets yet," said Ned, leaning on his shovel, "and yet we have run the hole two feet more." "Shall we try a pan or two?" asked Dick. well. perhaps it would be as well, but somehow I'd like to put it through a bit further." "No objection, but I see Zed is getting restless; he's about as anxious as a man can be to find out what we've got here." "That's all nonsense," declared the Unknown, who was on the ground above doing the hoisting. "I'm perfectly willing to bow to the opinion of Professor Klondike. If he don't know how to work out a pros pect-hole in good shape there's no man living who does." Now this was tr ue enough. Ned had been wonderfully successful in his mining operations on the Klondike and up the creeks. To be sure he had made mistakes and spent his time working claims that were valueless, but then every-Unknown can begin panning and see what you make out of it. Until we strike bed rock I don't feel like giving up." So Young Klondike worked on alone digging in the middle of the shaft, and banking the sand up against the sides. It was dull work and not enlivened any by the occasional calls from Dick. "Nothing in this pan was the cry. ''Just a color in this. Two nuggets here!" These were the calls as the different pans were washed out. Dick tried his last pan after about an hour's work. "I won't do any more," he declared, "for it's really no use. If this don't pan out better than the others we may as well give it up." Just then came a cry from the shaft. Hooray! Eureka! Here we are at last!" Dick dropped the pan and ran like a madman. As he dropped it at the Unknown's feet, of course, the _detective had t o tumble over it and go sprawling. But he picked himself up in a hurry, and got to the mouth of the shaft as soon as Edith, who came run ning out of the wicky-up. "What's the row?" he shouted. "By the Jump ing Jeremiah are we in it again ? Ye gods and little fishes Speak up, Young Klondike, and let a fellow know." "It's a big strike!" called Ned from out of the shaft. "The whole bottom of this blessed old pros pect-hole is full of gold." CHAPTER V. HOW YOUNG KLONDIKE MADE A HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS AND LOST IT INSIDE OF A WEEK. body does that. It is part of the programme. IF there ever was a jubilant crowd on the KlonOn the other hand, Young Klondike had struck dike, it was our prospectors around Raccoon creek claims of amazing richness. now. They had made the fortune of the firm of Golden They made the air fairly ring with their shouts. & Luckey. Tbese young men were millionaires. The discovery was really a great one. Decidedly Ned's opinion was of value; it was sought When Dick got down into the shaft he found that for by many old miners. The Unknown would have Ned had struck into a perfect nest of nuggets. been a fool to have ignored it now. There they lay, those dull yellow bits, p a cked in "We'll go on down about two feet further," de-among the black sand like sardines in a box. clared Ned. "It is easy digging here in the sand, They filled the entire surface of the hole as and that will take us until about noon. Right away opened, and there was every reason to believe that after dinner, we will begin panning whether we strike others were there underlying the black sand. anything or not." The Unknown took a survey of the situation from At noon there was no change in the appearance of the top of the hole. the sand in the bottom of the shaft. "Oh, I can see well enough," he declared, lookN ed felt quite discouraged. He knew well enough ing down. "I don't like this climbing down into that there was nothing great in what had been taken the shafts for a cent. By the Jumping Jeremiah, out. boys, this is a regular old-time strike Ned, how Still he made up his mind to persevere until dark at I deep does it go down?" all events. "Give it up. To China, I hope." "I'll dig here alone, Dick," he said; "you and the "Stick the pick into it Run the spade down


10 YOUNG FIGHT FOH, A CL.Al.\I. This may be only a thin layer of the yellow boys I once winter set in that would be an end to operations all." until the opening of spring, as far as their indiYidual "Oh, I've tried that already. They go down at efforts were concerned. a foot." R e alizing this fully Ned called a meeting for con" And that alone means a fortune. We can drift sulta tion that night. and drift, and scoop 'em out by the bucket full." "Shall we attempt t9 run here this winter? that's "Of course; it is just as I told you. Old Maxwell the qnesLion," said Young Klondike. "We want to got on the edge of a big deposit. I never saw nug-decide it now." gets such as he showed me since we came to the "How much will it cost for us to fit up this place Klondike, that did1i't mean just that." for 'viuter work?" asked Dick. "Samples, samples !" cried Edith. "Have I got "That's the first question," said Edith, "and the to come down into the hole to see them? Where's next is, have we still time to do it?" your gallantry, boys?" "Answer to the first probably five thousand dol" Wait a moment and we'll send you up a bucket lars," said Ned promptly. "To the second it is full!" cried Ned. doubtful. We can try; we may succeed and may The Unknown let the bucket down then;and Ned fail." and Dick shoveled it full. "Then I say let's put it off till spring," said Dick. It was a fine display. The bottom of that hole "But I don t like putting off things. Here's a good seemed to be made up almost of pure nuggets-there prospect and I say it should be pushed." was very little sand. "Let me make a suggestion," said the Unknown. It was hardly necessary to do any panning on such "Let's take out all we can this week, and quit on stuff as this in order to find out how its value ran. Saturday night no matter what the showing is." Still Edith and the Unknown washed oat a few "I favor that," said Dick. pans. "And I," add e d Edith. It ran fully four ounces to the pan, which was great "I don 't, but I give in," said Ned. "The majority luck. rules." The nuggets averaged about the size of a pea. "Then that being settled what we shall do uext is Some ran up as big as robins' eggs, others were to make good our hold on this claim," said the de mere graius. There was also much coarse flake gold. tective. "I say we had better get down to Dawson Whife the panuing was in progress, Ned and Dick with our dust, record the claim and make ourselves scooped out a small hole in the middle of the shaft to solid." a depth of about three feet. "That's the talk," said Ned. "We haven't been The deposit continued unchanged. down to Dawson in some time. I agree uo that." There could be no doubt that Young Klondike had Edith and Dick join e d right in. made a strike of immense value. It was so agreed, and next day, the weather holding "I'll look up old Maxwell and pay him well for fine, work was pushed harder than ever. this," declared Ned. "I don't want to wrong any During this da. y the entire bottom of the shaft was man." laid bare, and the result was most satisfactory. "That's what's the matter," said Dick. "It The nugget bed filled the whole space. would ease my conscience to have you do it, yet it's Great work was done during the afternoon. not to be den ied that Maxwell was an old ginger to It just simply amounted to hoisting out gold and attempt to get money out of you the way he nothing else, for there was almost no sand. After the first flush of the excitement. was over, the About twenty-firn thousand dollars was taken out situa::ion was discussed, and it was determined to take I before six o'clock. out all the gold they could that afternoon. Next day there was over thirty thousand dollars There was no telling when the weather might taken out, and by the end of the week Golden & change again, or how soon they would see the neces-Luckey found themselves one hundred thousand dol sity for making a move. lars richer than they had been when they started in There never was such an afternoon's work-never! to work vn Racc oon creek. They kept it up to six o'clock working the last.part I It was one of the most successful undertakings in of the time with lanterns, and the result was tre-which Young Klondike had ever engaged. mendous. This was Saturday night, and the weather still con-It was evident that if this state of things continued, tinued perfect. It was most unusual for this time of Young Klondike and his partners were destined to year. the biggest kind of a big haul inside of a very "We'll put in a good night's rest and pack our few days. gold over to the Yonng Klondike to-morrow," Ned Still it was not feasible to work this claim so declared. through the winter. The terrible climate of the Klondike stood dead in the way of that. Any day might bring another snow storm, and The gold was piled up in a special wicky-up built for the purpose. It was packed in small bags which could be easily tied together and slung over the shoulder.


' YOU-'G KLONDJKE"S FIGHT FOR A CLA.L\1. 11 Of course it \nis not possible for ou1 four friends to carry one hundred t1bousand dollars in gold at one load. Fifty pounds apiece was about the limit, and that meant slow progress. Ned calculated that they could do it in two trips by bringing back help from the Young Klondike on their return. It was Dick's first watch that night. As there had not been an alarm of any kind since they started in here, Dick did not look for one to-night, and yet just before twelve o'clock it came. Dick was pacing up and down before the wicky-up, hen his attention was attracted by a slight sound just inside the timber line behind the brush shelters. Seizing his rifle he crept around behind the wicky up, and peered in among the spruce trees. He could see nothing and for some moments hear nothing. Then, as he watched, it seemed to him that there was some animal moving among the spruces. "It's a fox, and I'll bet on it," thought Dick. "I can catch that fellow if I'm sharp." He tip-toed to the spruces, and stood peering in among the trees. Again all was silence. Dick bega. n to wonder if after all he could have been mistaken, when all at once a rope came whizzing through the air and landed over1his head. Dick realized what had happened instantly. He ha. d been lassoed He tried to grab the rope and failed. Ned dreamed he suddenly awoke and could hear a rustling of a woman's dress outside the wicky-up. This bothered him. He thought that he ought to get outside and see what the sound meant, but when he tried to do so, found to his horror, that he could not move hand nor foot. Then it seemed to him that he saw the girl, l\'faggie Maxwell, come stealing into the wicky up. She looked at him as he lay there asleep-Ned could see himself sleeping-and then looked at the Unknown. This did not seem to sa .tisfy her, for she drew back and passed into the other wicky -up where Edith slept. The brush wall which divided the two shelters was no bar to Ned's seeing all this. He could look right into the other wicky-up, iLnd see the g irl bending over Edith. "vVake up! Wake up!" she called. "There's danger in sleeping here!" Then instantly Ned was broad awake himself and sitting up in his blankets. The dream was so vivid that he could not believe that it was other than real, and he sprang to his feet, threw aside the blankets and seizing his rifle ran into the other "icky-up to see Edith sitting up and staringabout. "Ned! Oh, Ned! What is it? Where is she?" gasped Edith, not much more than half awake. "The girl-did you see her?" cried Ned. Yes, yes She was here She shook me and woke me up Where has she gone?" It tightened about his rieck before he could remove it, and over went poor Dick sprawling on the Get up quick, Edith ; there's something wrong here!" cried Ned. "Either both of us have been ground. . ,, Instantly two men leaped out from among the dreammg'. or that girl was ma second ago. spruces, and jumped on him. He ran mto .the other. ':icky-up, sho.ok up the UnOne clapped a handkerchief in his mouth, the other k nown and, without waitmg to explam, rushed outscized his rifle and throwing it in among the spruces, I side to look for Dick, who, of course, was not to be proceeded to tie his hands. seen. Dick was a prisoner before he knew where he was. "Dick! Dick!" he shouted. "Where are you, Three other men now joined the others. Dick?" They were as tough a looking lot as Dick had ever "Ye gods and little fishes, what's the matter seen. now?" cried the Unknown, who with rifle in hand "Hustle him, Jim Rayburn! Hustle him!" whis-came stumbling efut of the wicky-up. pered the man who did the tying. "Get him quiet "Dick has gone! There's been somebody prowl-as quick as you can and lay for the others." ing about the camp !" The man who had lassoed poor Dick wound the "Who?" rope over his arm and stat'ted off among the spruces, "A girl-looked like Maggie Maxwell." D l r l h d b h 1 l Did vou see her ?. leading ic { as i le a een a orse or a mu e, t le .; others following. "I either saw her or dreamed it. Edith saw her, Wei need scarcely say that Dick was terribly though." J chagrined, still there was worse to come, as he was "Yes, I'm sure I did," said Edith, coming out now very soon to find out. "I was awakened by somebody shaking me, and Leaving Dick to follow his leader, we must return when I opened my eyes, there was that Maxwell for a few moments to the wicky-ups. girl looking right into my face. 'You want to get Ned, Edith and the Unknown were sleeping peace-up and defend yourselves,' was what she said to me. fully here, relying upon Dick to do the watching. 'My father has betrayed you! You will all be mur-It was strange that Ned should take to dreaming, dered in your sleep!' as he did just then. "Exactly what I

r 12 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. "Impossible How could I see through that wall of brush?" "Dick1 We must find Dick!" cried the Unknowu, and off he started for the timber line. Ned started to follow, but the Unknown shouted back: "Stay there and look out for Edith and the gold!" Cocking his rifte so as to be ready for instant action, Ned held back, and the Unknown disappeared among the spruces. Crack, bang l Two shots and a shout came from among the spruces then, and all at once four men rushed out into the open and began blazing away. If it, had been daylight, it would have been all up with Young Klondike and Edith in an instant; that is if these men meant to kill, which perhaps is doubt ful. Ned fired for business, but it went for nothing. He managed to get in two shots, when there came a rush from behind, and three men jumped upon them. Ned's rifle was wrenched from his hand a .nd he found himself sprawling on the ground in a twink ling. One of the men-he was a perfect giant, seized Edith roughly, and hustled her off to the timber line. It was no use for Ned to struggle. They had him fast. The two men held him in a grip of iron, and others came running out of the timber. There were six alto gether. Among them was old man Maxwell, who carried a lantern. "That's young Klondike," he cried. (C That's the fellow who stole my claim l Hold him, boys, till we can get the gold!" They flocked to the wicky-up and easily discovering where the gold was hidden, began to bring out the bags. In dumb despair Ned watched them as they car ried bag after bag in among the timber. There was nothing to be done, no chance to he!p himself. Three times the men came back to. the camp, and three times they left it loaded down with gold. Soon the last bag had been taken. All this time old man Maxwell kept the light on Ned. He chuckled as he saw the bags go, and kept say-your life, old man, and I saved your daughter's life l D o you forget the night of the storm?" "Forget nothing!" cried Maxwell. "This claim is mine and I mean to fight for it. Kill him, boys, be fore his infernal luck steps in to save him. Anyhow we've made our pile." "Hold your jaw, old man l We propose to finish the job without you urging us on," growled one of the gang. And he added : "Stand him up against the bush there, boys. We'll bore a hole through him and send the bullet out on the other side." CHAPTER VI. CAUGHT ON THE LEDGE. CRACK l Crack l Twice the rifle spoke. Tw.o shots went whirling toward Young Klondike. Ned gave a sharp cry, and throwing up his hands, pitched forward on his face and lay as still as death upon the frozen ground. "That settles him!" cried old Maxwell, jubilantly. "We've snuffed out the young upstart. Now, then; boys, let's get off to Dawson with the gold !" They all seemed to take it for granted that Ned had been killed first fire, and so indeed it looked. Nothing of the sort. Young Klondike was as brave as they make 'em, and foxy, too. When they stood him with his back to the wicky up and prepared to fire, Ned saw that the only chance to save himself was to keep his wits about and play 'possum. It was a slim chance, too. If those first shots proved fatal, then the game was up and there was no hope. But they didn't. Where they went to Ned never knew. It was enough that they didn't go into him. "Here's my chance," thought Ned to himself, and he dropped It was the luckiest thing be ever did, for it saved his life. Lying perfectly still, scarcely daring to breathe, Ned waited for the men to go. ing: "What did I tell you? I'll get square with you. said so, and I always do what I say." He did not dare to jump up the moment he found I himself alone, either; it would have been mere mad ness to do that. But Ned never answered. Talk would have done no good ; besides, he was too much ove:i;:powered to speak. "All gone!" cried one of the men, as they returned after taking away the last bag. "Then kill the snoozer !" cried old Maxwell, viciously. "That was the bargain! Kill him now!" "ls this your gratitude?" gasped Ned. "l saved He waited until the last sound of their footsteps had died away, and then slowly crawled to his feet. Nothing happened. Ned stood listening, but all was still. It is easy to imagine his feelings now. It seemed as if everything worth having in life had suddenly been taken from him. Of all the startling shocks which had come to


) YOUl\G KLUN DIKE'S FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. )3 Young Klondike since he began his career up here in this wild region, this was probably the worst. "They've carriec!_ off Edith and they have probably shot poor Dick," he thought. "As for Zed, I don't suppose there is a ghost of a chance that he is still alive." Filled with these dismal thoughts, Young Klondike crept toward the timber line. -< He had scarcely entered the spruces when he dis covered that he had a definite trail to work on. There was still snow here among the trees, and the footsteps of the gang were very plainly marked. They led toward the mountainside, and Ned was just smart enough to know what this probably As he crept on the mystery suddenly explained itself, for Ned caught sight of a dusky figure standing against a tree. It was Dick! Dark as it was, Ned recognized him as he crept nearer. Dick was tied to the tree and was kicking his feet against it, calling Qut the best he could with a handkerchief in his mouth. Of course Ned rushed to his assistance the instant he made this welcome discovery. "Oh, Dick Dick how could you let them do it?" he groaned, as he cut the cords which bound the boy to the tree. meant. Poor Dick couldn't speak until he got the handkerOn the other side of the mountain lay El Dorado chief out of his mouth, but he made it up after that. creek. 1 "Ned, don't blame me," he groaned. "It's bad Any one following this trail over the mountain enough without that. They; caught me foul. I would not only come to the creek, but would strike it thought I should go mad here, but I've got a new far below the Young Klondike mine, in fact, almost j grip on myself, now that I know you are alive. at its point of union with Bonanza creek. Where's Edith? Where's the Unknown? Great Chances were that Bonanza creek was still open, Scott, do speak up, and tell me what has occurred." although the upper part of El Dorado was closed for By the time Dick knew all that Ned had to tell the winter when Ned left the mine. they were well up on the side of the mountain, still "So they mean to take that gold to Dawson, do following the trail. they?" thought Ned; ''that means Edith, too. I It was hard work in the darkness, but the stars must keep cool. No use in breaking down, bad and helped on a great deal, and it must be remembered all as it is. There's work to be done for Edith, if that up in tl}e Klondike country people get used to nothing else." traveling in the dark. Bitter thoughts were in Young Klondike's mind as "So it was old Maxwell, was it?" said Dick. "The he followed that trail through the snow. ungrateful skunk I didn't see him, though I thought He expected nothing but to stutnble over Dick's I heard his voice once. Wonder why they didn't kill dead body every step, or it might be the Unknown. me, or at least try?" With noiseless tread he pushed his way on, and "Didn't you see anything of them after they first came out at the mountain's foot. tied you up?" asked Ned. Here the ascent was abrupt, but the trail went on "Not a thing. I heard them coming and going up over the rocks. though, and I imagined that an attack had been Ned paused and looked up, catching sight of a light made on the camp. You can just imagine my feelfar above him. ings, Ned. Heavens! I thought I should go raving Watching it closely he saw that it came from a lan-mad when I heard one of them say that they'd killed tern, moving along against the side of the mountain Young Klondike. If it had been true they might as about two hundred feet up. well have killed me, too, for I shouldn't have to At first he could see no one, but as he watched dark I live without you." shadows seemed to stand out against the rocks. "Don't say that," replied Ned; "we've got Edith "There they go," he thought. "That's the trail to think of now." over the mountain. Probably they know all about it. ''And Zed." Oh, the scoundrels! I--thunder! what was that?" "I don't forget him. We may be leaving the poor It was a curious noise close beside hjm. fellow's dead body behind us. If the Unknown had It sounded like the stifled cry of some animal, and been alive it seems to me that he would have made then faint blows were struck. some sign before this." Ned's heart almost stood still. They hurried on as fast as the rugged nature of He was unarmed, and the startling events of the their path would permit. night had rendered him terribly nervous. At last they came out upon a narrow ledge, which Again the cry was heard, and the pounding noise ran on under grea. t overhanging cliffs. came with it. They were far up on the mountainside now, and Of course it was necessary to know what this there was snow everywhere on it that it had a chance meant, and Ned turned in among the spruces. to lodge. He at once saw that he still had a trail, but whether On the ledge there was plenty of it, and the trail it was the main trail or not, of course he could not tell, was ptainer than ever. for one went up the mountainside and there was the "We ought to have a good chance to overtake light to consider, too. them," declared Ned. "They are loaded down with


14. YOUNG KLONDIKE'S 'FIGH'f FOR A CL.A.IM. the gold and we are light. I really don't see how they can escape us ; still there has been a good deal of time lost." we'll get there, don't you worry." ."I ain't worrying. I'm only thinking. My idea is that this ledge may take a turn soon. I expect to come in sight of ,them at any moment." Ned was entirely right, for this was just what they did. Suddenly the ledge wound a round a be .etling cliff, and then they saw the light right ahead of them. Here was a large semi-circular space m among the cliffs. It was level and sheltered; just the spot for a camp. A fire was burning on the snow, :md they could see dark figures moving about .it, as they peered around the corner of the cliff. "Hold up!" whispered Dick. "There's their camp." "Sure enough! Can you make out anything?" "No, I can't Lots of them though." "How many of the gang were there altogether?" "Oh, there seemed to be a lot of them coming and going. You must remember that I wa s in amo11g the trees, so I can't be sure." "They've tied up here for the night all right, though." So they have. We've got to get into that camp, Ned." "You bet, if Edith is there, and I have no doubt she is." Wish I was sure ('}f it." "We can only find out by snea king up and having a closer look." But the time hadn't come to go then. They crept on along under the cliffs, but before they had gone ten feet further a man suddenly sprang out from among the broken rocks, which here formed the side of the cliff, and confronted them. "Halt! Stand your ground!" he said, in a deep voice, throwing up a rifle at the same time. It would have been startling enough if it had been anybody else but the Unknown. There the little detective was a.s large as life, and not hurt a bit. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, what a scare you gave me, boys!" he exclaimed. "I thought I was hem med in by the enemy, sure." "Don't say anything about that. I thought I'd got to shoot someone," replied Ned. "So you are ahead of us, it seems !" "Of course. Ain't I always in the lead ?" "Where in thunder have you been? Why didn't you com!') back? Don't you know those fellows have carried off Edith, and they came near killing me?" "Don't talft, Ned; I know all about it. Do you think I could have failed to come if I'd hau the chance? You ought to know me better than that, dear boy." Did they get you, Zed "Of course they did. Didn't you hear the shot?" "Yes. Were you hit?" "No They jumped on me, t hough, and had me a prisoner so quick that I didn't know where I was at. Oh, Ned, I tell you it was tough to stand there tied up t o a tree and see them take Edith past, and then go with the gold ; but the worst of all was when I hea.rd them say they had killetl you. Burn that ma.n Maxwell He's the most ungrateful snoozer I ever heard of; all the same he don't know how to tie knots, not for a little bit. If it hadn't been for that I might 0have been tied to the tree still, instead of being here now. See that light?" The Unknown pointed to the fire as he wound up this long speech. "That's their camp," said Dick. "That's what it is. Don't stop to tell your story, boys. lt'f! enough for me to know that you are alive. Edith is over there and she's got to be rescued. As for the gold, let it go to grass if we can't get that dea r girl away from those scoundrels." "You are sure?" asked Ned. "Positive." "See her now?" "No; but I was up very close to the camp a few moments ago and I saw her then.'' "What was she doing?" "Lying on the snow wrapped up in a blanket. Maxwell's daughter was with her. Oh, the ungrate ful hussy! I'd like to wring her neck!" "Perhaps she can't help herself. I haven't told you what that girl did for Edith yet." "I think we may safely put Maggie down as all right," said the detective, when Ned told what happened in the wicky-ups. While they were talking they stood watching the fire. They could distinctly see all that was going on there in the hollow, but were perfectly safe themselves. The men seemed to be settling down to sleep. One by one they rolled themselves up in their blankets a,nd la. y down around the fire until only three remained awake. These three sat together smoking and talking, and it did seem as though they would never quit. At last two of them gave it up, and "went to roost," as the detective expressed it. "Now is certainly our time if it's ever coming-," said the Unknown. "Boys, we've got to act." "I'm more than ready," replied Ned. "I suppose it's a case of sneaking into that camp and doing the rescue act." "That's what it is. Are you game for it, Dick?" "Don't ask me a question like that, or I shall be tempted to pitch you off the ledge," replied Dick. "Game for it Of coursPI'm game for anything that will help Edith now." The words were scarcely spoken when a ,11 hands were startled by a sharp, cracking sound like the re port of a pistol. j I {


YOU.NG KLONDIKE"S FIGHT FOR A CLADL 15 "A shot!" gasped Ned. "Someone has his eye on us, then!" "Not on your life! That's no shot!" sa id the de tective. "H's a more serious business, I'm afraid." "\Vhat do you mean?" asked Dick. "Not cracking,__ of the rocl\:s !" said Ned. "You don't mean that the ledge is breaking away?" Now this was exactly what the detective mea11t, and he said so. Up in the Klondike country where the cold is so intense, seams a11d fissures are always opening in the rocky ledges, and not infrequently there occur tremendous and cave-ins. Young Klondike had been through several ex periences of this kind, and he knew just how serious a matter it was Jia, ble to be. Here they were standing on a narrow ledge of rock with towering cliffs above them, and a precipice of fully two hundred feet extending down into the valley below. The width of this ledge was not over twenty feet in the widest place, Should it break in front of them they would be cut off from Edith entirely. Should it break behind their own retrea.t be cut off, which might be just as serious ; so taken altogether it was anything but a pleasant prospect here. Again the cracking sound was heard, and still again. After that all \Vas quiet, but the last two cracks were unmistakable. The sounds came from the rocks, whatever they might mean. "Pshaw There's no use bothering our heads about this," said the Unknown. "It may not amount to anything after N ow's our time, and so here goes! Single file, boys! Follow rne !" They stole on into the hollow, keeping well under the shadow of the rocks and crept on, until they came opposite the fire, using the greatest care to prevent the guard from catching sight of them. Long before they reached this place, they saw that the g'uard was old Maxwell himself. He was pacing up and down before the fire, carrying a rifle in his hand. Of course there was nothing very formidable in the old man, but the trouble was about the rifle. How to get around it they did not know. "If we shoot, the whole camp will be up in arms in a moment," said the detective, "and if he shoots at us it will be just the same." "How many do you make of them, Zed ?" asked Dick. "I couldn't make more than twelve," replied the detective, "but that's enough and don't you forget it." "Too ma .ny for us to tackle if they all come down upon us at once," said Ned. "This is;a case where one man can do better than a dozen. I'm going up there to the fire. I'm g'oing to do the job alone." "Young Klondike, are you crazy?" demanded the detecti Ye. "Not at all. I only mean to succeed." "You mean to make a failure and to lose your life into the bargain. Have you forgotten that these scoundrels have already tried to kill you once? I'm the man to try this job single handed if it is to be tried that way at all." "Hush! Not another word. I'm going, and I'm going now." Stepping out boldly from the shadow of the rocks., Young Klondike made a bee line for the fire. The detective would have followed, but Dick held him back. "You'Ye got to let Ned have his own way," be said. 'He'll never be satisfied unless you do." "I'll stay," said the Unknown, "but it is only be cause I see now that I can help him more. Still, I'm the one who ought to have gone." With the bright fire before him and the dark back ground of the rocks behind, Ned was practically invisible. He had counted on that when he made the move. On the other hand old Maxwell, with the fire be hind him, could be seen with perfect distinctness, and the Unknown would hold hi.m covered, as Ned well knew. This was his object in making the move. He could use his revolver, and at the same time have his hands practically free. So Ned went on through the snow. Fortune favored him not a little. Maxwell was walking away from the fire when he started. Then he stopped to fix his moccasin, and that took time. Meanwhile Ned gained the fire and dropped flat on the snow, era wling on noiselessly with his eyes open for Edith. Maxwell was on the other side of the fire and did not see him; so far, all was well. But where was Edith? That was the question. Ned glanced back. He could not see either Dick or the Unknown, it. was so dark there m;der the rocks. The sleeping men lay all around him. He saw the bags of gold ban keel up against the cliffs with a blanket thrown partly over them. Between the pile of bags and the cliff there was a narrow space. Ned wondered if Edith could be there. Just then Maxwell looked his way, and he had to wait a moment. Then the old scoundrel turned and walked off again, and Ned improved the opportunity by dragging himself up to the bags. He had made no mistake. Edith lay behind them. The poor girl was tied band and foot. She raised her head as Ned looked over the bags. "Hist, Edith! Don't say a word!" he breathed. "I'm here to save you now." He drew his knife and wriggled around behind the bags, cutting the cords which held Edith captive.


r 16 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGH'l' FOR A CLAIM. "Are you free now ? Are there any more ?" he I CHAPTER VII. whispered, when this was done. "All free, Ned. Oh, do be careful They'll kill IN THE CA VE OF GOLD. you if they catch you." "Which I don't intend they shall do. Now, Edith, "SURRENDER! We've got you now! Surrender to listen to me." the Boomers of Raccoon creek, or we'll shoot every "I'm listening, Ned." one of you dead where you st.and!" "We've got to make a strike for freedom, and it The gang were just coming round the' corner of the must be a bold one to succeed." rocks when the ledge fell, and as Young Klondike's "I'm ready for anything." party stood there holding on to each other, they could "Then when I say the word spring up and run for hear the shouts. ,your life over toward the cliff, where Zed and Dick "Hold on to Edith, Dick!" cried Ned. "We'll are waiting. I'll protect you with my revolver, and fight till the last!" the Unknown has a rifle. We've only old Maxwell to Crack! went his revolver, and a man dropped on .deal with, and we are sure to succeed." the ledge. "I'm all ready, Ned." ..11 Perhaps this would have made matters worse for "Then now is the time. Here we go !" them if the situation had not suddenly changed, for They sprang up and Edith ran at full speed toward the answer was a shower of rifle balls which came the cliff. whirling about their heads. The movement was almost noiseless, and yet Max-Fortunately there was no damage done, and before well saw them. the shots could be repeated another thunderous c!'ack Instantly he fired, at the same time shouting to the broke upon their ears. men to wake up. The noise was deafening, and was followed by proN ed threw up his revolver and go. t in two shots, and found silence. the Unknown's rifle cracked, too, as they ran for dear "Gee whiz! the whole mountain is coming down!" Jife toward the cliffs. they heard one of the men shout, and the whole gang It looked as though a flght was on hand then, for ran back around the turn in the rocks as fast as their :Several of the men were on their feet iri a twinkling. legs could carry them. "What's the row? What is it? Where are they?" "We've got to follow!" cried Ned. "It's death to they could hear them shout. remain here!" "There they go! The girl has escaped. It's Young He started to run, but the Unknown caught him Klondike! He's alive!" shouted Maxwell, firing and held him back .again. Even this did not save him. By this time Edith and Ned.had gained the shadow Instantly there was another crash and down went -0f the cliffs. another section of the ledge from the turn in the cliffs "Saved!" cried the Unknown. "By the Jumping up to where Ned stood . Jeremiah, you've done it, Young Klondike. Now for The rocks slipped from under his feet, but the Un the retreat, and may Heaven help us to hold our still stood on firm footing-stood struggling -0wn !" with all his might to hold Ned up, but it was no use. They ran back on the narrow ledge, rounded the The boy slipped away from him and went whirling .eorner of the rocks and hurried on. down into the abyss with one wild heart-rending cry. "They are following us," said Dick. "No use "Oh, Ned Ned !" cried the Unknown. He We've got to fight for it." dropped on his knees, buried his face in his hands and "And who says we can't do it ?" cried the detect-groaned. ive. "Here, Edith, you get forward with Dick; Ned Dick and Edith stood together, holding on to .and I will do the defensive act." other, overcome with the awful horror of the The words were scarcely spoken when everybody Ned was gone, and there was no telling at what m-was by a noise like the of a can-stant tp.ey might be called upon to follow him. Tv._o non. sections of the ledge had been carried down, and it "Ye gods and little fishes The rocks are going!" I seemed altogether probable that what was left would gasped the detective. soon go, too. It was so They had already gone as he spoke. such was the situation when, to the immense relief With a thunderous noise the ledge right in front of of all Ned's voice was heard calling from below. them slipped away from the cliffs, and went "Hello, up there! Hello!" the shout came. down into the valley with, a rush and a roar w_h1ch "Oh, hear him!" cried Dick, and Edith gave a seemed to shake the mountain to its very foundat10ns. glad shout. "Caught on the ledge, by thunder!" gasped the The U':lknown was on his feet in an instant. :Unknown. "We can neither advance nor retreat!" "Ned, Ned!" he called, in a voice loud enough to have readied the "Boomers of Raccoon creek," around the bend in the cliff. "I'm all right up to the present time!" answered


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT :FOR A CLAIM. 17 Ned, coolly enough. "I can hold on here for an hour if necessary, but all the same I'd like to get up." "Look down and see if you can see him, Zed!" cried Edith. "Oh, be quick !" The detective dropped flat on the snow and : peered over the edge. Ned was about ten feet below him standing on a narrow projection of the cliff, formed by the new creek. It was an awful position. Not one in ten thousand could have held their own there so. But Ned was one of the cool kind. He had landed on this narrow footing and managed to hold his place. He intended to keep on holding it to the last gasp, and his very coolness made his friends cool too. "All right up there?" he called, cheerfully. "That's what we are," replied detective. "Everything seems firm enough here. What are we to do for you!l" Get me up." "With a rope it would be easy, but as it is, I don't see how we are going to do it." "I do." "Tell it, then. If it costs my life I'll try." "It won't cost your life if you are cool. Let down your legs; I can climb up over you." "Can't hold on, Ned. No use talking!" groaned the Unknown. Dick can hold you, and Edith can hold Dick. with those two pulling a .gainst us we ought to be able to make it go." The Unknown shuddered. It was not for himself that he feared, however, and he instantly gave in. "I'll try it," he said, quietly, "but if one of us goes the other goes." "If you're afraid, don't try it." "It ain't that I'm afraid for myself. It's for you, Ned. "Never mind me. I'm a-goner if I stay here." It must be done," said Dick. "If. you won't try it, Zed, I will." "Your legs are longer, Dick. You're taller than I am, and I'm ever so much stronger than you." It was perfectly evident that the Unknown was right, and without another word Dick stepped in front of him. "Here, take my hands," he said. ;Edith, you get hold of the Unknown and pull back for all you are worth." It was an awful moment. When Dick felt Ned's grip on his legs he thought he would faint, but he fought it off and clutched the Unknown's hands for dear life. Little by little, inch by inch, Young Klondike pulled himself up over Dick. Edith had to turn her head away; she could not look at him. One slip meant death, but the slip did not come. When Edith looked again there was Ned sitting on the snow, and the Unknown was pulling Dick up. The poor boy had fainted now. He would have dropped into the abyss if the Unknown had not kept tight hold of his hands. It took them all some moments to cool off, and by that time Dick was himself again. "Safe for the instant," said the Unknown, cheer fully. "Now, then, let's imagine it's all right, and going to stay so. Boys, what shall we do?" "Wait for daylight," said Ned, in his quiet way. "We can't do anything else. There's no use trying. We've just got to take it easy, and accept the situa tion as it is." "And if the ledge falls?" suggested Dick, with a shudder. "Then we all go together. Now not another word about it. I'm going to take it easy while I can." Fancy taking it easy under such circumstances as these! But they had to. From that time on until' daylight came they remained there on the ledge, sometimes crouching on the snow, sometimes pacing up aud down to try and keep the deathly chill from striking in too deep. It was an awful night, take it how you will, and morning brought no relief except that it was now light and they could see their terrible position and understand it better. Toward the camp of the boomers the rock had fallen away so as to leave almost a straight edge on a line with what remained, but with the other side it was different. Here a mass of the cliff above had fallen, and they could not look around into the opening, but the rocks were so ragged that Ned declared he could climb around the turn and see just how matters stood, al though this seemed a dreadful undertaking, and one not likely to do much good. E .;en an ad venture with the boomers was to be preferred to this, the Unknown declared, and he pro posed to call for help and appeal to the enemy to lend them a hand. 'I wouldn't," said Edith, very emphatically. "They are a hard lot. You just ought to have heard them talk There's one fellow there named Jim Ray burn, who is particularly down on you, Ned. He de clared that he would never rest until he had run us out of the valley. You ought to have heard him! It was awful! I never heard such talk in my life!" "Why, what have I ever done to bring about this kind of feeling?" replied Ned. "Oh, he's an Anarchist. He's down on all rich men." "I suppose he wouldn't mind making a million him self, though?" "Not a bit, but I guess he prefers stealing our gold to digging?" "Where did they all come from, anyhow?" "From what I heard them say, I think they've got a camp further up the mountain; They've been pros pecting around one place and another, Maggie Max well told me. The poor girl was real good to me,


18 YOUNG KLONDJKE"S FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. She tried her best to save us from this attack, and But if there had been a million in sight, Young really risked her life coming into our camp the way Klondike and his friends would have cheerfully ex-she did." changed it all for freedom just about that time. "Then you don't think it would pay us to call "We can't stop for gold now," said the Unknown; them, Edith?" "what we want to do is to push on and see if we can't "I'm sure it wouldn 't, even if they are still there, find some way out of this." which I very much doubt." They walked on then, leaving the gold behind them, "That settles it, then. Something has got to be not even taking so much as a single specimen. done, though. I'm going to risk it on that wall. It As they advanced the cave grew narrower. It, had might be that the rocks are so broken away that we a downward tendency; they were evidently descend could climb up to the top of the cliffs around the bend ing the mountain, but after covering about two lrnnhere." dred yards they suddeuly came up against a wall of It was useless to try to stop Ned, now that he had rock and could go no further. once made up his mind to make the attempt. 1 "Floored again!" exclaimed the detective, "but if It was a fearful thing to see him clinging to those there was only someone up there with a rope we rocks like a fly, and working his way around the would be all right." corner, and yet after all it was not so very dangerous if one could only keep his head. Ned did it all right, and he had no sooner turned the bend than he made a great discovery. There was a cave liere. The fall of the rocks had taken the back clean out of it. Six steps brought him into the cave, and his friends, who had been listening breathlessly, were overjoyed to hear his glad shout. "I've struck it I've struck it!" he cried. "HurThere was light shining in upon them overhead through a jagged opening in the rocks. This open ing was about twenty feet up, just high enougl1 to be entirely out of reach, and the detective gazed upon it with a despairing face. "So near and yet so far!" he exclaimed. ''"\Ve are cornered here, boys, and I don't the Jumping Jeremiah, what's that?" It was startling enough under the circumstances. Suddenly the entrance to the cave was darkened, and a face looked down upon them. ray! We are safe!" "Ma,ggie Maxwell!" cried Edith, recognizing the "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I knew relief would old prospector's daughter at a glance. cpme with the daylight!" cried the detective. "What "Are you there, Miss Welton?" called the girl. have you struck, dear boy ?" "Is that you who spoke?" "A cave l A big one Come round here, Zed; it's "Y cs, yes!" ans>vered Edith. "Oh, Maggie! You no trick." Tl d t 1 t t t t tried your best to help us before-help us now!" le e os no ime rymg 1 H 1 1 N t 1 d 1 y th. fif f Pl t h. f t tl 1 11 f tl b k l'ff us 1 o so ou ou are w1 m ty eet an mg ee m le 10 ows 0 le ro 1 of the boomers' camp. If they knew you were here he worked his way around, clutchrng the pr0Ject10ns I I d tl f b t t I' . can o no 11ng or you u -as l is m 00om 0 of rock above, and 111 a moment was standmg m the I t ,, 0 0 ry cave alongside of Ned. Edith followed and then came Dick. "Tha.t's the talk!" exclaimed the Unknown. "You Their spirits immensely now. It seemed as if help us, sister, and we'll do the right thing by you, all danger had passed. don't ;you it Have you got rope?" The cave was about twenty feet wide, and extend-Theres ropes m the camp, but I can t get them ed off into the cliff as far as they could see. '"'There must be some outlet to this," said the detective. "Of couese it can't run on forever without a break." "What's this? What's t.his ?" cried Dick, making a dart across the cave just then. He stopped and picked up a big "More gold !" cried Edith. "A case of gold '' echoed the detective. "Look, boys The floor here is strewn with nuggets. We've struck it rich aga. in l This is a veritable cave of gold!" CHAPTER VIII. NED FALLS INTO THE HANDS OF THE BOOMERS. now." "Got to wait till night?" a sked Ned. it if it will make our chances better. out till then." "Better do We can hold "I suppose it would be safer, but perhaps he won't. have to. They are bri11gi11g the g9ld over the ridge. Just now they are most all in the camp, but they'll go back in a minute. Wait l I'll call you up again." Then the face disa .ppeared and a long wait followed. It was anything but agreeable to know that relief was so near and yet so The Unknown paced the floor of the cave uneasily, and they discussed the situation until it was worn threadbare. At last the opening above was darkened agam. IT was certainly a big discovery. "Are you still there?" called the. girl. "Remem There was a great number of those golden nuggets, I ber I can't see you down there in the dark, although big and little scattered about the floor of the cave. I suppose you can see me plain enough."


\ I i r K L O NDIKKS FIGHT FOB A CLAIM. 19 "We are all here," replied Neel. "Have they gone i 'Thunder and guns! vVhy, it's Young Klondike?" now?" cried Rayburn. "The dead come back to life again "They've started. I only so hope some of them How the burning blue blazes did you come here?" won't take a notion to come back again." It took Ned just about one second to come to the "Perhaps you'd better wait?" conclusion that the thing for him to do was to conceal "No, no! Then they'll return. Whatever is to be the presence of his friends in the cave. done must be done now." "Now, gentlemen," he said, quietly, "what's the The face disappeared for an instant and then a rope use in you and I quarreling. I'm here and you'ye came tumbling down through the hole. got the drop on me-that's ail." "Now is your time!" called the girl. "I've made "Well, I should say we had got the drop on you," the other end of this rope fast around a tree. I can't growled Jim Rayburn. "Throw up your hands if pull you up-I ain't strong enough, but if one of you you want to live." could climb up he might pull the others. I've done Ned dropped the rope and threw up his hands. all I can do." "Does this mean a funeral?" he asked. "l'mgood fo1that !"cried Ned. "How did you "It ought to," replied Rayburn. "It may before know we were here, Maggie?" we get through with it. I'd like to know how yo11 "Heard your voices," replied the girl. "We knew got here first, when we thought you lying dead there was a cave here, and when I heard the talking; at the bottom of the cliff Hang me, Young Klon I suspected where it came from, don't you see?" dike, if you ha.ven't got as many lives as my grand I see that you have come to our help just in time, mother's cat. a.nd don't you forget it, you will be well rewarded for "l might have been dead and I don't know why I 'this." ain't, but all the same I did manage to climb up over "I don't want any reward," r e plied the girl, feel-the rocks." ingly. "I'm only doing for you what you did for me "That's more than I can believe. Where's the and my father. I'm ashamed of father. I knew he rest of your gang?" was a bad man, but I didn't think he was tbe un"How can I tell?" grateful one he has shown himself to be "They went down?" "Never mind! You're all right. I'm coming "Yes, they are down now I can't help it. I've J1ow. You are sure the rope is fast?" got all I can do to look out for myself." "Oh, yes It can't slip Come on!" "Well, it's a thundering pity you didn't go with Neel seized the rope and climbed up hand over hand. them, you young monopolizer of mmes. Do you In a moment he was out of the cave and found him-think you own the earth? Ain't you satisfied to leave self standing upon the edge of a broad level stretch, us poor boomers this one little claim here on Raccoon well wooded with stunted fir trees. There was a log creek? No, by time, you ain't satisfied. You wa.nt cabin at no great distance away. l it a.11." "Now for the others," he cried. "Maggie, you're It was amazing with what bitterness the man a. brick I shall never forget you Dick, catch on spoke. to that rope!" "Stow that," growled Corney Brown. "We want He shook the rope, and when Dick's weight was to know what brought this fellow here." felt at the other end, he gave it a hearty pull. "I've told you all there is to tell :tbout that," said All at once he felt it part, and heard Dick fall back Ned "It was a mere accident. After I came up to the floor of the cave. the rocks I was wandering about, and I struck this "Thunder! That's a bad job!" gasped Ned. "Are place-that is all." you hurt, Dick?" "Then I say kill him off-hand," said Corney Brown. "Not a bit Confound the rotten old thing What "Let's have no more bloody nonsense about it-kill are we going to do now?" him now." "There's more rope in the hut," said Maggie. Perhaps Jim Rayburn might have been inclined to "I'll go and get it." do this on his own account if he had been let alone, "I'll go," said Ned "It won't take me as long as but like a good many other people he did not relish it docs you." being dictated to by anyone else Never in all his life did Young Klondike make a "Whose boss of the boomers, you or me, Corney bigger mistake, although perhaps in the end it would Brown?" he demanded, with a surly growl. have come out just the same. "Well, you are, Jim. I don't deny that." He mn to the hut which was fitted up with rude "Exactly so. Let me boss this job, then. Yon benches inside, and had just succeeded in finding the know what I am-I'm an Anarchist. You know what rope when suddenly the door was darkened by three we all are-we are all Anarchists, straight Chicago men brand. We came out here to make a leveling of l t was J im Rayburn, Corney Brown and another. things, and to do that we've got to get our hands on Young Klondike recognized the two who had tried money. \Ve've got our hands on money-Young to kill him, and it is unnecessary to say that they Klondike's money, and we are not only going to knew him at a glance. hold on to that, but we are going to get our hooks on


...... """'""'"'""""',,,..,,,,,,,,., ..... -=-----........... -----""""'... ------20 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT A CLAIM. Raccoon creek claim, t.oo, ble ssings that old I Young Klondike at once, and sa rn more trouble 1d10t of a Maxwell for telhng us about it! That's m the end." what we're up to, Corney, and when we've done that He turned fiercely on Ned and seized him by the we'll make Young Klondike shell out some of his throat, at the same time dra.wing a revolver and mun, say a million or so, for the good of the cause. pressing it against his breast. Now, then, ain't that better than killing him"What do you know about this rope?" hedemand-say ?" ed, fiercely. "Speak up or you die! What do you I don't know but what it is," growled Corney. know about the rope?" "Anyhow, you are boss, and I suppose you'll have your way.'' Ned listened to all this with a sinking hea .rt. These boomers, then, were nothing more nor less than a gang of Anarchists, who had their own peculiar ideas about a young man making as many mill ions as he had been lucky to make. To give away the secret of the cave to such men, would only bring on trouble, especially to Edith, for whatever their motive might have been in capturing her, it existed still. "They'll have to stay where they are for the present, that's sure," thought Ned, "and there's another thmg certain they ain't very likely to get away without my help." He could see through the open door that Maggie Maxwell had vanished. Probably the girl had gone into the woods upon seeing the men return, he thought, and he was quite right. Maggie, seeing what had happened, and knowing that she could do no good by remaining near the mouth of the cave, very wisely took herself out of the way. "Well, what do you propose to do with me?" asked Ned. "You fellows have got a lot to say, but I don't care to stand here wiuh my hands up just the same." "We are going to put you where you'll be safe until we get through bringing those gold bags of yours over here," replied Rayburn-" that's what we are going to do with you, young man. As for tbe rest, you have heard my plan, if you ain't deaf, and I pro pose to see that it's carried out." He winked at Corney Brown, and they seized Ned and hustled him out of the hut and over toward the mouth of the cave, the other man remaining at the hut. It dawned upon Ned at once that it was their intention to drop him down through the opening, and he was glad of it. At least he would be back with his friends again. The only thing that bothered him now was the fear that Maggie had left the end of the broken rope fastened to the tree. "If that's there then we are dead given away, and I'm sure I don't know what I shall do," thought Ned, as they drew near the cave. It was there. Corney Brown caught sight of it first. "Who tied that rope to the tree?" he sung out. "Why, it's one of our ropes," added Rayburn. "Sure enough! Who did?" .. Of course it's our rope, whose else would it be?" demanded Corney. "This is treachery, this is. I say CHAPTER IX. NED CAPTURES THE BOSS BOOMERS AND MAKES THEM WORK. ANYBODY but Young Klondike would have been in clined to give up in despair at this sudden turning of the tables, or at least to have said something in his excitement that would have brouglit death. Ned kept perfectly cool. "What do I know about your old rope?" he de manded. "Let goof my throat-you're choking me." "Let go!" said Jim Rayburn, "what are you mussing with the prisoner for, Corney ? Let him speak." Corney put up his revolver, because Jim drew his, and flourished it threateningly. Then they began quarreling together, and this gave Ned time to think. A bright idea came to him all of a sudden, and he instantly determined to carry it out if possible. "If you fellows will hold your jawing a minute and listen to me, I'll tell you something about that rope," he calmly said. "Well, tell it then," growled Corney, "I knew blame well that you knew something about it-for didn't we catch you with a rope in your hand?" "Exactly! I was going down into that hole to see what I could find." "The deuce you were! What does that mean?" "Just that I thought I heard someone talking down there." "Impossible! It's only a cave." "I didn't suppose it was anything else Listen and you'll hear them talking now." Ned spoke these words as loud as possible. He wanted Dick and the Unknown to hear, and he knew them well enough to be sure that they would instantly imagine that he had some scheme on hand, and try to help him carry it out. Immediately the voices were heard, the Unknown and Dick could be depended upon, it seemed. Rayburn and Corney looked astonished. "Blamed if there ain't someone down there!" said Corney; "yet I aon't see how that can be." "Can you see anything down there?" asked Ned innocently. Rayburn and Corney leaned over the hole and looked down This was just the chance Ned was looking for.


YOUNG DlKE'li FIGHT FOlt A CLAL\1. With one quick movement he gave 1'oth ::i, vi0lent push, and down they went into the hole. "Grab 'em, Dick! Hold 'em, Zed!" he cried "Don't let them get away from you!" "Don't you fret! We've got 'em!" Dick's voice answered, and the Unknown, with a chuckling laugh, called out: "By the Jumping Jeremiah, this is my man! I've got him at last! Stand around there! Keep your hands up! Make one move and you die!" Ned flung himself on the ground and peered down into the hole. "Is it all right?" he called, barely able to make out the forms of his friends below. "All right, you bet! We've got 'em foul!" cried the Unknown. Corney was whining and begging them not to klll him, and Jim Rayburn's deep imprecations could be distinctly heard. "Who are they, Ned?" called Dick. They are the bosses of the boomers-a pair of desperate Anarchists!" answered Ned. "Hello! Here's Maggie Maxwell a .gain! Keep 'em covered. I'll throw you down rope enough to tie them as soon as I can. Now then, Maggie! I've got the upper hand, you see?" "Oh,:l'm so glad! So glad !" cried the girl; "they are the worst of all the gang ; the other can be managed easy enough." "We want him, though," said Ned, "a.nd I'm going for him now. Stay here, Maggie, and keep watch." "Oh, do be carefu1 of yourself Are you armed?" "Yes; those fellows got one of my revolvers, but I have another." "Don't hesitate to use it. Father and the rest of the gang may be back any minute. If they come all is lost." Ned walked rapidly toward the hut calling as he went. "Hello What's the matter?" cried the ma.n, a stupid fellow, by the way, running out of the hut. "Matter enough," answered Ned. "Your two friends have tumbled into a hole out here. Get a rope quick, and come and help them out." "Blame it all, have they tumbled into the cave?" growled the man. "Don't see how they came to do that." "Why, one missed his footing and slipped in, and the other grabbed him and was pulled down with him," said Ned. The fellow seemed to believe him and went into the hut to get the rope. Ned hurried on to the door and was ready for him the instant he appeared "You can drop that rope and throw up your hands, neighbor!" he said, coolly, thrusting the revolver in his face. ''Gee whiz! What's this?" gasped the boomer, turning as white as death. "Cold business! Drop it! Up hands!" Down went the rope and up went the hands. "Maggie! Maggie! Come here!" called Ned. Maggie Maxwell came running up and following directions took the revolver, while Ned tied the man's hands behind him, and made the other end of the rope fast to one of the bunks. "We've got you all right now, neighbor," laughed Ned. "I reckon you won't bother us any more." "Don't kill me, boss," whined the man. "1'11 do you a good turn if you'll spare my life." "You will, eh? What's your name?" "Fritz Geiger." "Germa. n, eh? Well, Frit.z, what do you know ?" "I know a short cut to your camp on El Dorado creek for one thh1g Don't you remember me?" Seems to me your face is rather familiar." "It ought to be. I used to work at the Young Klondike." "A great many have worked for me. I can't place you, but that don't make any difference. If you'll work for me now, I'll pay you well." "I'll do it." "I'll give you a thousand dolla .rs down to come over on my side and help me get back the gold I .dug on Raccoon creek." "I can do it. The bulk of it is hidden behind the hut h ere, boss, but you must be spry, the rest of t he gang will soon be here with the balance, and they are a bad lot." "Stay where you are till I come back and I'll take you up on that offer," said Ned. "Ma, ggie, we\v:i.nt all the rope we can lay our hands on, r.nd then we are off for the cave." Ten minutes later Young Klondike had the boom ers completely at his mercy, or rather Dick and the Unknown had, for with the ropes let down into the cave they were tied fast. "Now then, for the hoistmg !"cried the Unknown. Ye gods and little fishes I'm about ready to come out of this hole." "Time!" called Ned. "Here goes a rope that won't break." "Prisoners first, or you going to leave 'em here ?" asked Dick. "We are going to take 'em up, and make the m do a little honest work for once in their lives," re plied Ned. "But it's Edith first, every time." Never mind me," said Edith. "I'll take my turn." "It's your turn now," said Ned. "Fasten the rope under her arms, Dick. See that everything is tight." "Ready!" called Dick in a moment, and Ned and Maggie pulled on the rope, which had been passed around a tree, and Edith came up out of the hole. Then Jim Rayburn was hoisted up, and next Cor ney. Dick followed, and the Unknown came iast. The two Anarchists looked rather foolish, a.nd seemed greatly disturbed. "1 suppose you think yourself a confoundt>dly smart fellow, Young Klondike?" growled Jim. "He's smart enough for us every time," said Cor


22 YOU.NG FIGU'l' FOR A CLAIM. ney. "He ought to ha,ve been shot off-hand-The miners turned out to meet them, and gave that's what ought to have been done to him." Young Klondike a rattling reception. "If you two fellows don't hold your jaw I'll shoot Rayburn and Corney were as meek as lambs now, you off-hand!" cried the Unknown. ''Now, then, and made no objection when they were locker.. up in Young Klondike, here we are all safe and sound! the mill until it should be decidtd how to dispose Perhaps you'll be good enough to tell me what ought of them. to be done?" That night after working hours Young Klondike, "The first thing to do is to thank t.11is g'irl for her a .fter due consultation with his partners, made one help," said Ned. of those happy strokes of good policy which sencd "Aud I do with all my heart," added Edith. "If to bind his workmen to him. there is anything I can do for you, Maggie, it shall Calling thenf all together at ;the mill, he told be dpne." about the claim on Raccoon creek, and the wonderful "You can do nothing," replied the girl feelingly, deposit of nuggets. "although I thank you a thousand times. I can't "Boys," he said, "it ain't a winter claim, but I'm determined to work it now. I want twelYe desert my father, bad as he is. Don't lose any time; please go!" men to help me out, a nd every man shall have a share in this mine. I'm going to organize a company, and This was good advice, and Ned determined to fol-you who join me in this winter's work shall all haYe low it. Dick and the Unknown were of the same an interest. Who'll go? l'll leaYe it to yourselns mind, as soon as they understood how the case was. to decide." The prisoners were now taken back to the hut, and Now there were about twenty men working on the the man Fritz set free. Young Klondike at that time, and all wanted to go. The gold bags were found hidden behind the hut, The prospect of exposure and hard work in the winter \vhere the boomers had put them, and Ned proceeded did not deter them a bit. toloaddo\\l'\J,Fritz,andthenJimRayburnandCorney, "Can't be done," said Ned, when they all began being disarmed and set free, were made to take their talking together. "I can't let in more than twehe share. on this deal, so it will have to be a matter of lot." "Gosh! This is bard lines. Do you mean to make So the lots were drawn. The name of each man pack horses out of us?" growled Rayburn, when he was written on a slip of paper and put into a hat, found out what Ned proposed to do. Edith drawing out twelve. "That's exactly what we mean," said the UnAs she drew the names she called them out aloud, known. "You are the horses and I'm the driver, and thus the matter was settled. and let me tell you this much, if you make one move The new Raccoon mining company was accordingly to double on us or show the least sign of treachery formed. I'm going to shoot you and no monkey business. By Next day Ned and Dick started for Dawson City to the Jumping Jeremiah, I say what I mean!" locate their claim, going as far as the mouth of Bon-Within ten minutes from the time they reached the anza creek by dog team, for a cold snap had come hut the procession started. and the creeks were frozen over now. Fritz led the way and Young Klondike walked be-The Klondike was still open, however, and as Ned side him. Ma .ggie Maxwell waved good-by to them had left his naphtha la unch at the mouth of Bonanza, from the hut. where there was a mine, they were able to put The poor girl was in tears; she had taken a gnat through to Dawson, file their claim and get .back to fancy to Edith, and Ned's last kind words touched her Bonanza creek before the river closed. deeply I This wa. s the last of river travel that winter. "If you ever wa .nt a friend come to me," he said; Ned drove the dogs into Young Klondike in a snow "and remember this-while I don't recognize your storm. father's claim to the mine on Raccoon creek, I fully His first inquiry was for Raybuni and Corney l'ecognize your on me. I shall pay to you at Brown. any time you will call for it the sum of ten thousand ''Oh," said the Unknown, "they are working for dollars. This I count as due you for what you have their living now. We got tired of holding them pris done for us, and not because your father has any hold oners and put them to work in the mine." on the claim." This sounded and was all very well as far as it Fritz led the way through a narrow pass, and after went, but next mormng when Ned went out to the a little they came out upon the side of the mountain boarding-house to have a talk with the two boomers, where an extended view could be had. being -anxious to get some points about the rest of To their great satisfaction the Young Klondike the gang, he found that they had vanished in the mine was plainly visible, and not more than ten miles night. away. Where they had gone or how, no one could tell. Nothing was seen of the boomers, and inside of three hou!'s the heavily loaded procession came into camp.


.,..-------....... .----___...... -YOUl\G KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOB. A. CLAIM. 23 CHAPTER X. THE FIGHT FOR THE CLAIM BEGINS. WHAT in thunder is the matter with you, Young Klondike?" asked the Unknown, as Ned hurried back to the house, meeting the dete-ctive at the door. "lVIatter enough Those fellows have taken French le .ave." "What fellows?" "Jim Rayburn and Corney." "By the Jumping Jeremiah, you don't say so !" But it was so, and nobody seemed able to explain it. '".l"hat means a fight for the claim," said Ned em-phatically, "but that shan't deter us. The Raccoon Creek Mining Company is a fixed fact now, and tomorrow morning we mwke our start, boomers or no boomers !" It was a busy day. Six 'dog sleds were loaded down with goods for the new diggings. There were the parts of a portable house in two, mining tools, and every appliance for doing good work on two more, and provisions enough for a month's supply on the others. Beside these things, the .men were all well loaded when the time to start came next morning. Young Klondike's company consisted .of seventeen persons-the twelve miners, his own party and Fritz Geiger, who was anxious to go back with the rest. The start was made an hour before daylight, as the old trail under the mountain was to be their road, and they could ba.rdly hope to do much more than put it through to Raccoon creek before dark. The snow was deep, but as the men were all pro vided with snow-shoes, -they had no more than the usual difficulty in walking on those clumsy appliances, and the dogs managed fairly well for the first few miles. But when they struck the valley, the snow became light and feathery, and the dogs made terrible work hauling the sleds. Darkness settled down upon them before they reached the creek, but Ned kept urging them on, and after a terrible pull they managed to reach the brush shelters which were deserted and undistmbed. It was now about four o'clock in the afternoon, and as the weather was gTowing decidedly colder Ned saw that some good, honest hustling had to be done to keep them alive through the night. Many hands-if they are willing hands-make easy work. Axes were unshipped, and trees felled and boughs lopped off, and before six o'clock ten brush huts had been built. In these there was room enough for all, and' plenty of space for the provisions and tools, besides a comfortable shelter for the dogs. Meanwhile, great fires had been built, and when supper was served everybody felt comfortable and happy, and the night passed without an alarm. j First thing next morning the gang was put to work to shovel out the prospect-hole, and build a frost fire in the bottom, while others cut away the ice in the creek, so that water for the gold washing could be obtained. It was noon before the first pan of nuggets came out, and all hands went wild with enthusiasm. There was no doubt about the enormous richness of claim before, but the men were slow to believe it until they saw it with their own eyes. "Are you ready to fight for the claim now, boys?" Ned asked. It is scarcely necessary to record the answer. These men were ready to stand by Young Klondike to the last. i As the clay advanced it grew decidedly warmer. When night closed in upon them it was quite mild. Ned sat up until midnight aud left one of his most trusted men on guard when he turned in at last. He wondered if the boomers had departed from their mountain retreat and was inclined to think so, for, supposing they had not, it certainly seemed strange that no effort had been made to work the claim. Along about two o'clock Ned was suddenly awakened by a slight noise behind him. He started up to see a, face peering through a part-ing in the hemlock boughs. "Who's. there?" he exclaimed, springing up. Crack! Instantly a shot was fired. The ball whizzed past Young Klondike's head and the face instantly vanished. Seizing his rifle, Ned rushed out of the hut. The stars were shining brightly and there was not a soul to be seen, not even the guard. All was as silent as the grave, too, until Dick's voice was heard calling : "Hello What's the row?" "Come out here, Dick," answered Ned, quietly. Dick came scrambling out of the hut sleepily, grasping his rifle. .. "Didn't I hear a shot?" he asked. "Well, I should say you did. It went right over your head." 'Vho fired it ?" "Can't make out-can't see the guard, either, but there was somebody looking in at me just before tlie shot came." "This means trouble, Ned." "I'm afraid it does." Shall we wake the boys ?" "No; not until we know more. I want to find out what's up before I raise the alarm." "Let's get around behind the hut and there's any trail." "Just what I propose." "Perhaps we'd better wake Fritz?" "What does he know about it? Just you hold on. This is only a trick, ar.d if we find the trail you can take my word for it that will be a part of the trick,


24 YOUNG FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. too, and my idea is to make these fellows think they've l By this time there was a general alarm all through failed." the camp. "What do you mean?" "I mean just this: These fellows expect me to call up the whole gang a'nd they expect to have the trail followed up. As soon as the camp bas been cleared they'll pounce down on it, and grab everything they can lay their bands on. I make no doubt that they are watching us now." "More than likely. That don't tell me what you are going to do about it, though." I'm going to watch. First let's find the trail." They went around behind the shelters, and there, sure enough, were footsteps in the snow. There were signs of a struggle, too, and there also was the track of the guard, showing bow be bad come around from the front, no doubt to investigate some alarm. "He was captured here," said Ned'. "They carried him off into the woods, sure." Shall we follow?" "That would be just what they expect." "But you wouldn't let the poor fellow ren.ain in their hands ?" "No. In spite of my theory, I think we'll have to have help. I guess we'd better call the Unknown." "Help, boss! Help Quick They are going to knife me!" The cry came out from among the timber where the guard had been carried. Not a doubt now that the boomers were at their old tricks a .gain. Following the impulse of the moment, Ned and Dick ran in the direction of the sound and were inside the timber line in a moment. It would have been a serious mistake if Ned's eyes had been less sharp than they were. Behind every tree was a man Crack Bang Instantly Ned fired twice and re-treated. Dick got in two shots alse before he jumped back. "They are all there!" he cried. "You bet Here they come !" Half a dozen men sprang out from behind the trees and began blazing away. "Boomers Boomers !" cried Ned, rushing around to the front of the camp. All at once there was another rush from the timber. It was old man Maxwell, and four men this time. They carried blazing torches in their bands which they threw against the brush shelters. They did their work only too well. In an instant the hemlocks were afire. The Unknown came tumbling out of his shelter in a hurry, and Edith, grasping her rifle, rushed out of bed; most of the men were out with their rifles by the time Ned and Dick got around in front of the burning huts. "It's the boomers It's the boomers, and they've captured Dan Casey!" shouted Ned. "Let them have it, boys! Steady now! Fire! Never mind the huts!" They blazed away, returning shot for shot with the boomers, who, seeing that they were likely to get the worst of it, sullenly retreated to the timber, leaving Young Klondike to manage his burning camp the best he could. CHAPTER XI. LOOKING FOR THE GANG. "WELL, now, by the Jumping Jeremiah, they've pretty well cleaned us out." Of course it was the Unknown who made this re mark. The detective stood gazing at the ruins of the camp which it had taken so much trouble to build. Once hemlock boughs get burning, there is no such thing as stopping them. Seeing plainly that there was no time to follow up I the enemy if be expected to save any of his belong ings, Young Klondi'ke ordered the men to give their whole attention to getting out the goods, and fortunately everything of any real value was saved. But the fire left the camp a wreck and made active work necessary to repair the loss. Leaving six men to attend to this, Young Klondike, with Dick, Edith, the Unknown and the rest, lighted lanterns, and arming themselves with rifles, started to follow the boomers' trail. They bad not gone twenty yards before they came upon the dead body of poor Dan Casey. There he lay upon the snow with a knife di1'ven into his heart. Tied to the hilt of the knife was a folded paper, on which was written : "Your fate, Young Klondike, and the fate of every man in your party if you don't immediately vacate your camp on Raccoon creek. Understand this, we mean to fight for that claim to the last gasp." This was the letter, and Jim Rayburn signed it. It was anything but a pleasant discovery, to say the least. Everywhere the torches struck the mischief was "What scoundrels they are!" exclaimed Edith. done. "Ob, Ned, I wish this hadn't occurred. It will "Clear 'em out! Drive 'em off the claim!" shout-throw a blight on this claim from the start." ed old Maxwell, and by the light of the burning hem"He shall be avenged!" cried Ned. "I declare locks Young Klondike could see Jim Rayburn and l right here and now that I'll never rest until that Brown among the rest. wretch of a Rayburn bas paid for this."


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOK A. CLAIM. 25 An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth is part of l He now sat down on the snow, and took his break-the unwritten law of the Klondike. fast with the rest. Such work as this meets with but small favor Once in a while he would look back at the Unknown. among the honest miners, and the men were loud in their demands to be allowed to go on and hunt the murderers down. As for Ned, he had no other idea, and they imme diately started on to follow the trail. It led them to the foot of the mountain, and then turned abruptly to the right, and ran along the base of the cliffs for about half a mile, when it suddenly vanished. Young Klondike stopped and stared, hardly able to believe his eyes. "What in the world does this mean?" he exclaim ed. "What's become of them, I'd like to know." It was most mysterious. Here were the footprints, trodden deep in the snow, up to that point, and there they suddenly ceased. "Ye gods and little fishes, here's a case for a detective!" cried the Unknown. "Yes, but I'd like to see the detective who could solve the mystery. Did they vamsh into the air or sink into the snow, or what?" "Give it up for now, but give me time to think about it, and I ll give you the answer." "It's a trick of some kind," said Dick; "and I'll be blest if I can make head or tail of it." "It's a bluff," said the Unknown. "This is done to throw us off the scent. If anybody is hungry, now is the time to take breakfast. I want a chance to think." Sometimes the detective was standing still, looking at the snow; at others he was pacing up and down, with his tall hat tipped back on his head. "Zed's stumped," declared Dick. "He' ll never find out what that mystery means." "Who says he won't?" said Edith. "lf I was given to betting, I'd put up good money that he will."\ About five minutes later Dick looked around again. "Hello Where is he now ?" he exclaimed. The Unknown had vanished. Ned sprang up and hurried to the spot. '"There was nothing to be seen of the detective. His footprints, which he had taken care to keep apart from those of the boomers did not go on, so it was evident that he had not moved forward. Where then had he gone ? Just as the boomer had disappeared, so h a d the Unknown. "This knocks me all out," declared Ned. "Dick, come here." Dick came, and Ned pointed to the footprints. "Can you imagine where he's gone ?" he asked. Dick couldn't get around the problem, but Edith solved it an instant later. "He pulled down the branch and went up that tree with it !" she exclaimed. As all h .ands were hungry t his with general approval. Now, on their right grew a thick clump of spruce trees, the mountain being on the left. They were evidently of great age; the heavy branches grew right down to the snow, but the trees were so old that there were also heavy branches above. suggestion met It would have been an easy matter for the Un known to have pulled down one of these upper A fire was built, coffee made and ham fried; but branches and by its aid climb up into the tree. lthe Unknown paid no attention to all this. "Wouldn't wonder if you had hit it!" cried Ned. He kept pacing up and down looking at the snow. "Ha Ha Ha !" A chuckling laugh was heard. Ned joined him after a little. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I'm all right! I know "It beats the band where they went to, it just where they went now!" the Unknown cried. does," said the detective; "the more I think of it They could hear him, but couldn't see him. the more I don't see what the explanation is." "Where are you, Zed?" cried Edith. "' "I say the same," replied Ned. "I've been puz"Find out Ha! Ha! I've caught the trail!" zling my brains over it, but I can't make out what it "He ain't up the tree, but he's in there somewhere," means." exclaimed Ned, and he made a break in among the "If the footprints ended near the rocks I might spruces, striking a huge bowlder before he had gone fancy they jumped over on them, and that there was ten feet, which had been completely concealed from a secret cave or something of the sort, but they where they' stood. couldn't jump to the rocks from here." The Unknown was seated on the bowlder laughing. "That's righii,. It just couldn't be done. Can't "This is all right," he said. ''Those f e llows were you think of some other scheme?" shrewd; they meant to throw us off the scent and The detective couldn't and he said so, and then he did it. Every mother's i!On of them climbed that tree asked Ned to go away and leave him. and went from it to the next one and then jumped on "I can work this problem.out better alone," he de-the rock. You can see for yourself, boys, that the clared. "You go and get your breakfast, d ear boy, trail begins right here." and rely on me to have some answer for you before This was the case. B e yond the bowld e r the tra il long" -ran into the woods. All they had to do was to follow Ned returned to the fire which had been started right on now. back a little way from where the ended, so that "You go back and get your breakfast, Zed. We'll the Unknown's operations might not be interfered j keep right on with this," said Ned. with. "Don't know as I want to do that," said the de-


26 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGH'l' FOR A. OLA.IM. tective. "I've made a ten strike and I may spoil it "Suppose you go back and bring up the boys. by stopping to eat." Edith and I will stay here and wait for you!" But Ned insisted, and at last the Unknown yielded Dick demurred, but as Ned insisted, it was finally and went back. decided way. Dick was strongly of the opinion that it would be Dick took the lantern and started, leaving Ned and 1 better to wait until daylight, but Ned was determined Edith under a projecting rock at the base of the to_push ahead. mountain, which formed a sort of cave. "They must have a good start of us," he said," and Here they remained for nearly an which was 1 all I propose to do is to follow them out of the woods longer than they had expected. and find out what turn they took. This trail don't "What can be keeping them?" exclaimed Ned at lead up on the mountains, and if they've got another last. "Upon my word, it seems as if they ought .to camp somewhere about here we want to know it right have been here by this time. I can't understand it away." at all." "What do you mean to do if you locate them?" "It ain't possible that they have missed their way, asked Edith. is it?" questioned Edith. "They ought to be shot, every one of them," de"I don't see how it can be with Dick to guide clared Dick. them." "But we ain't in that business." "It's almost a pity we didn't bring Fritz Geiger "No, we'll act fair," said Ned. "The El Dorado along with us. He might have helped us out here." Regulators shall try them. We'll have no lynching. Edith had said this before, but Young Klondike Back to the Young Klondike they go, and we'll prodid not agree with her. ceed in the usual way." He had left Fritz back at Raccoon creek, to help Now, it must be understood that among the miners work on the rebuilding of the camp, because he did on the creeks emptying into the Klondike, murder not feel sure of the man. cases and robberies are not as a rule submitted to Ned now began pacing up and down before the the law. cave, while Edith reclined under the shelter of the It is impossible to do so. To send criminals to I rocks on the blankets. Dawson City would not only be expensive, but in The moments passed, and still there was no sign of the winter often impossible. their friends. For this reason the mine owners have an associa tion of their own, a sort of Vigilance committee which passes under the name of the El Dorado Regulators, who meet and hear the evidence against the criminal. The decision of the Regulators is final. Sometimes the criminal is condemned to be shot, sometimes they are hung or run out of the region, but they are never imprisoned, for that is impossible. From the decision of the Regulators there is no ap peal. Young Klondike was a Regulator, and Dick was another, but it took six to try a man. So Ned determined that in case of capture hewould run the boomers back to the Young Klondike, call in the Regulators and punish them according as the de cision went. Leaving the Unknown to go back to breakfast, Ned, Dick and Edith now moved on along the trail. It led them through the woods for about half a mile, and then they came suddenly out upon, an open plain through which a creek ran. The creek was frozen over, of course, and the trail ran right across it. Ned followed it to the base of the mountain on the other side, where it entered a gloomy defile. "This is as far as we can safely go now," he de clared. "To show our light in there would certainly be running a great risk." "Do you prbpose to go back?" asked Dick. "I don't see the sense in all of us going back." "Nor I." "Something has happened. We must go back and look them up," he declared at last. "I can't stand this sort of thing any longer. We ought to have gone with Dick. I'll not separate again." Now, this was a decided case of shutting the stable door after the horse was out. Morning was just at hand, and feeling certain that he would be able to follow the trail, Young Klondike was preparing for a start, when all at once a sharp firing was heard in the distance. "What in the world is that?" Edith exclaimed. "Trouble!" cried Ned. Something has gone wrong.'' "Of course it can't be anything but our boys fight ing with the boomers." "Don't see how it can. It ain't to be supposed that there is anyone else up here." "The shots are away over there on our left." "Not so very far, either, Edith. Listen to them! They are making things lively, whoever they are." Sha.ll we go over and investigate?" "I suppose we might as well. It's leaving the trail, to be sure, but we can't very well miss our way back. We shall have our own trail to guide us when we want to return." They started along the base of the mountain, making the best time possible through the snow, which had drifted here and lay deep. Before they had gone far they came to another de file leading in between high, rocky walls. The shots which still continued at intervals seemed


' r Y6UNG KLONDIKE'S FIG HT FOR A CLAIM. 27 to be up this opening, and right here Young Klon dike struck a trail. "By gracious They went this way, Edith !" he exclaimed. There were many footprints to the trail. Evidently a large company of men, some with snow-shoes and some without, had entered the can yon. "That's what's the matter," said Ned. "They went this way. How could Dick make such a mis take?" "If there had been a trail to follow it. would seem to be easy enough," said Edith. This opening looks just like the can see that." There's no denying it." "Are you sure there was no trail here, Ned ? The snow is so trampled down that it isn't easy to tell." If Zed was here he could tell." "So can you if you'll study these footprints a bit." "I'll do that. Here, let's take it easy. They seem to have stopped fl.ring now. Whatever mischief has been done been done, and the delay of a few moments can't make any difference." Ned bent over the footprints and examined them with attention. There are two trails here," he said at last. "Sure?" "Oh, yes." "How do you get at it?" "Well, see; the snow-shoe prints cover the others in ever so rnany places." "Most of our men have snow -shoes." "Exactly, and the few who didn't make these prints, you see how they lie over others which have been made before?" Ned pointed out the places. Edith decided that his reasoning was correct. There could be no doubt that Dick bad led the party into this canyon. But how came the mistake ; that was the question. Ned had a theory for that, too. "I'll tell you how it was!" he exclaimed. "There were two trails leading away from the spruce tree, and Dick got the wrong one." "We've got to go up into the canyon there, Ned; that's all there is about it," Edith declared. And they went. There was nothing else to do if they wanted to unite with their friends and keep on looking for the gang. CHAPTER XII. THE LAST OF THE BOOMERS. THE sun rose as Ned entered the canyon. Up and down the rugged walls the snow glittered, and the long icicles sparkled. It was a beautiful sight, but Ned was in no mood to admire the beauties of Klondike scenery just then. Pushing in for a few hundred yards, always keep-ing with the trail, Young Klondike was suddenly brought to a halt by seeing a man step out from the rocks, and plant himself in the middle of the canyon. He took off his hat and waved it as a signal to Ned. "Hello, Fritz Geiger !" cried Edith. "We are all right now!" "Hello, boss! I was just coming after you!" call ed Fritz, hurrying forward. "They are all up this way!" He came up and joined Ned and Edith, talking as he advanced. "We seem to have missed you, boss," he said. "Don't know how it is. Mr. Luckey was sure he had the right trail, but it seems he hadn't after all. It was a deuce of a mistake, too, for we ran in on the gang suddenly and gave them the scare when we hadn't ought to. Suppose you heard the fl.ring just now?" "Yes, we did. Anybody hurt?" asked Ned, anx iously. "Nobody on our side. I don't know how it went with the boomers They retreated up the mountain and I'm afraid we've lost them now." The man's manner was perfectly natural. It was impossible for Young Klondike to suspect him. "Where are the boys now, Fritz?" he asked. "Right ahead here watching for the enemy. They've just discovered that they'd made a mistake and got into the wrong canyon, and Mr. Luckey told me to go back and look you up." "Do you know this place?" "Not at all." "The boomers never came in here while you were with them?" "Never I suppose they were afraid to go back to our old hut up on the mountain for fear you would follow them there." "Like enough you're right. Lead on, Fritz. It's a good job we met you. I was just beginning to wonder what I should do." Fritz pushed on up the canyon. Suddenly coming to a place where a cross canyon ran off to the right, he turned aside. At the same instant there were strange sounds heard ahead. A huge rock seemed to be crashing down the mountain. They could hear it tearing over the ledges, and then it struck with a force which made the grou11d tremble. "What in thunder is that?" gasped Ned, stopping short. "None of your business, Young Klondike!" cried Fritz, suddenly throwing up his rifle and covering Ned. "You'll surrender-that's what you'll do !" "Not to you, you scoundrel!" shouted Ned, and he instantly fired, as did the treacherous boomer. Both shots missed, and no more were It would have been useless on Ned's part, for in the same instant three men sprang out from among


2 8 YOUNG KLO NDIKE'S FIGH'l' FOR A CLA.Illl. the rocks behind them, and three more joined Fritz in front. Among the latter were Jim Rayburn and Corney Brown. "You'll surrender, Young Klondike !" shouted the former. "We've got you now, you blasted monopolist We are going to win this fight for the Raccoon creek claim !" Evidently Young Klondike and Edith had fallen into the hands of the enemy, and there we must leave them, while for the time being we return to Dick and the. Unknown. It happened just as Ned figured it 0ut. Dick got back to camp all right., and found the Un known impatiently awaiting his return. An immediate start was made for the canyon, but when they reached the bowlder behind the spruce trees they struck the double trail, which the detective had not noticed before. Nor did they notice it now. In the darkness they went off on the new trail, which led them a long way around through the woods, coming out upon the frozen creek at last. They never doubted for an instant that they were going right until now, when Dick suddenly declared that they had gone twice as far as they should have done. This started the detective up, and he began to examine the trail. "No snow-shoes here," he declared. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I'm an ass! I ought to looked into this before." But the trail led straight on, and there were the mountains right ahead. They crossed over to them, and struck the canyon ; the trail led into the canyon, but Dick knew that it could not be the same canyon that he and Ned had struck. He immediately proposed following along the foot of the cliffs until they came to the cave, and no doubt they would have done so, if just at that moment they had not caught sight of three men looking out at them between the walls of the canyon. "The boomers !" cried Geiger, running forward. "There they are There they are!" He was out of sight in a moment around the bend of the rocks, and the three men, who jumped back the moment they caught sight of Dick's party disap peared too. Treachery !" cried the detective. "That fellow means to desert. After him, boys!" They all went up the canyon on the run, but saw nothing of the men until they had passed the mouth of the cross canyon where Ned was betrayed and came suddenly into a small circular inclosure, or sink, where towering cliffs surrounded them on all sides The passage in was through a narrow opening between the rocks, not over four feet wide, thtough which they passed single file. They had no sooner entered the sink when this passage was blocked by a dozen boomers, who in-stantly opened fire upon them and drove them back into the sink. It was bot work for a few moments. The boomers were well armed and good shots, and if it had been daylight there is no doubt that some damage would have been done. As it was the Klondikers were on the full retreat, and no efforts on the part of Dick and the Unknown could rally them, when all at once the boomers turned and ran back through the narrow pass which formed the mouth of the sink This brought a halt and a lecture from the Un known. "What's the matter with you fellows? Are you a pack of cowards?" he cried. "Don't you want to see poor Dan Casey avenged? I'm ashamed of you all! If this is the way you are going to fight the sooner we give up the job the better. Better call in the boomers and surrender, I say." "We'd better get out of here as quick as ever we can, that's what we"d better do," said Dick. "We are in a trap." We'll get out if they'll let us," said the detective, "but I doubt very much if they give us the chance, and in the meantime, like enough, they are after Ned and Edith. We've made a deuce of a mistake, and that treacherous skunk Fritz knew we were doing it all the time." They started back for the pass now. Da .ylight had come, but they could see nothing of their enemies they had almost reached the pass, when the Unknown suddenly caught sight of four men up on the cliffs. There was a big bowlder here. It had lodged on the edge of the cliff which overhung the pass on the right, and the four men were pushing on it with all their might. Crash it went down into the pass, choking it up completely. This was one of those singular freaks of nature called rocking stones. The bowlder had lodged on the edge of the cliff, and although as big as a house it only needed a comparatively slight force to send it crashing down in the way it came. It was a bad job for Dick and his party. Hemmed in now with the bowlder blocking the way in front and the cliffs all about them, it looked very much as if they were in the sink to stay. Such was their situation when the attack was made upon Young Klondike and Edith. The fight for the Raccoon creek claim was in full swing now. Ned and Edith were at once made prisoners and hurried on through the cross canyon until they came to the entrance to a sizable cave, where there was a fire burning. This was evidently the boomers' camp. "So, so, Young Klondike!" sneered Rayburn, "we've got you hard and fast again, it seems. You will put us at your dirty work and keep us slaving like horses, will you? Didn't go down, did it? When we got ready to escape we escaped, didn't we ? Ha,


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. 211 ha, ha It takes a smart man to get the best of Jim / choos{l, but no good will come of it. Remember what Rayburn, and don't you forget it! Come out here, I tell you. Justice will be done!" Maxwell! We've got your enemies again!" "Hold your jaw!" broke in Rayburn savagely. Old man came shuffling out of the cave "We want none of your preaching! Stand up there l blinking at the light. now I No, you won't? Lift him up, boys I" Looking in through 'the entrance Ned and Edlth "I can face the music," said Ned, rising. "You've could see Maggie working at the breakfast. She paid got the drop .on me. I ain't afraid to die!" I no attention; in fact, she did not seem to see them at Most certamly the boomers of Raccoon creek had all. the drop on Young Klondike just then, for they cov"Well, well, well! I swan! So you have!" chuckled the old scoundrel. "It's Young Klondike and the gal. Where's the rest of their crew ?" "Hemmed in the sink. The boys tumbled down the rocking stone and blocked up the pass." "Well, I vow Jim, you did do it, didn't you? Nothing the matter with oar taking possession of my claim now, I reckon. Oh, no !" ered him with their rifles as be stood there against the wall, calmly facing his awful fate. Meanwhile what of Maggie Maxwell? Had she forgotten her gratitude ? Could she stand by and see Young Klondike murdered in cold blood? Not by any means Maggie was a brave girl and a true one in spite of the wretched influences under which she had been brought up. She waited only to learn the whole story and then while breakfast was in progress watched her chance and slipped out of the cave, running through the cross canyon at full speed. Perhaps Dick and the Unknown would have f elt sink, while we go down and clear out the others at some slight encouragement if they could have kno wn the claim." this, but they didn't, of course I guess not You can thank Fritz for this. He ran ahead and gave us warning. I tole you Fritz would work it. That's why we left him behind us at the mine. Now, then, what's to be done with these two? As for the rest let 'em starve to death in the "Shoot 'em!" said old Maxwell, vindic t ively. Hemmed in the sink Dick's party found themselves "Shoot 'em That's what ought to have been done in a sorry plight. in the first place .,, "By the Jumping Jeremiah, this is the worst yet," "Not the girl. We'd better let her live." the Unknown exclaimed. "To be walled up here like "Well, I don't care about the gal so much. If you a rat in a trap makes me tired Ye gods and little want to let her live, why do it, but Young Klondike fishes, I ought to be cowhided for missing the trail !" must die !" "It's as much my fault as yours," declared I ick. "Settled," said Rayburn. "Now, then, my brave "You didn't know the trail and I did. When a man young monopolizer, say your prayers I'll give you can't follow back his own footprints through the snow fifteen minutes. Take the gal into the inner cave, it is high time that something should be done!" boys, and tie her up for the present, or she'll be mak"Well," said the detective, "there's no sort of use ing Satan's own row if you don't." making any more talk about it. We've got to act. It was hard lines for Ned. Separated from Edith, What's worrying me the most is the fear that Ned he sat there in the corner of the cave while the boom-and Edith will fall into the hands of the boomers. If ers ate their break(ast. that should happen, there's no telling_ what the result No attention was paid to him. Rayburn and Corney might be." were discussing a plan of attack upon the men left at It bad already happened, if he had only known it, the claim. and the result threatened to be very serious. The At last Jim Rayburn sprang up and announced Unknown would have been wild if be had gussed that the time had come. the truth. "We'll kill him JlOW Stand him up against the A short time was spent in trying to scale the wall there I" be said. Then suddenly looking around, bowlder, but it proved to be impossible. Its slippery he added: sides resisted all Dick's efforts, and if Dick couldn't "Where's Maggie? Why ain't she here?" climb it then it was quite certain that nobody else The girl bad vanished. could. Old Maxwell called her outside, but she did not an"That won't do. How about the cliffs?" said the swer. He looked for her in the inner cave, but she Unknown. "It does seem as if there ought to be not there. some means of getting up, but I'll be hanged if I can "Oh, she's taken herself off somewhere!" he desee any way." clared. "She don't like this sort of business. No They tried it on both sides of the bowlder, but failed matter. Fire away and get done with it. I shan't utterly. rest satisfied while Yooog Klondike is alive!" Further on the cliffs were perpendicular, and there "You ungrateful wretch!" broke out Ned, drawn was just no chance at all. out of his silence at last. "I shouldn't think you They were just about to give up in despair, when could! Have you forgotten how I saved your life? all at once Dick spied a woman's figure on the cliff This is your return, is it? You can kill me if you I from which the bowlder had been pushed down.


30 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S FIGHT FOR A CLAIM. "Maggie Maxwell!" he cried. "Hooray! We are holding back on the part of Young Klondike's men going to have help now!" any more. "Mr. ,Luckey! Mr. Luckey! Come and save The Unknown had the handcuffs, which he always them!" shouted Maggie from the cliffs. "Young carried, on Rayburn's wrists in a jiffy, and Dick Klondike and Miss Edith are in the hands of the backed old Maxwell up against the wall, and held boomers. If you ain't quick murder will be done!" him there while the boomers were secured. This startling announcement aroused everybody, Ned ran into the inner cave and brought out of course, but Maggie was p.ot one of the kind to talk Edith, who had been in terrible agony, for, of and not act. course, she could hear all that.passed outside. She knew all about the sink, and had not come un-After that Young Klondike returned to Raccoon prepared. creek, taking his prisoners with him. They did not stop longer than to bury poor Dan Casey, how Down came a long rope tumbling over the cliff. ever, but marched their prisoners back to the "I've made it fast to a tree here!" called Maggie. "1 know you can pull yourself up, Mr. Luckey, and miNne. t d th R 1 t d d th th h 1 th l 't ,, ex ay e egu a ors were summone an e en you can e p ose w io can t 1 b It took Dick just about two minutes to put himself I h d tl h't f th f th t t t f th l'ff axwe s owe ie w i e ea er rom es ar on 0 e c i . and told how Jim Rayburn shot Dan Casey. While the Unknown was commg up Maggie told This settled the fate of the boss of the boomers. all, and Dick's impatience was so great that he c?uld He was shot at sundown, and the rest of the gang scarcely wait for the others to follow. It took time, were hunted off down the creek with a that for some had to be pulled up'over the rocks. any one who returned would m:et with a similar fate. And well might he impatient. No Shortly after the whole party returned to Raccoon could have_ been more critical than Young Klondike s creek, Maggie Maxwell going with them. then, but it was even w?rse a few later The brave girl remained some time with Edith, when poor Ned stood facmg the boomers rifles, for subsequently marrying one of the miners at the new then it looked as though all was over. claim. Ned closed his eyes, waiting for the fatal shots-prepared to die. But the shots did not come. Something else did though. Suddenly there was a rush outside the cave and a wild shout. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I've got my man at last '' cried the voice of the Unknown. There was a revolver at Jim Rayburn's head and another at old man Maxwell's, while the rifles of the Klondikers covered the Raccoon creek gang. It was all over now. Relief had come just at the critical moment. No The Raccoon creek diggings proved immensely suc cessful, and greatly added to the wealth of Golden & Luckey. 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Ad dress Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. HOW TO DO CHEMICAL TRICKS-Containing over one hun dred highly amusing and inRtructive tricks with chemicals. By A. Anderson. Handsomely illustrated. Price 10 cents. F o r sale by all newsdealers, or sent post-paid, upon receipt of price. Address Frank Tousey, Publisher, 29 West 26th Street, N e w York.


r <=BOOKS IHA T TELL YOU EVERYTHING. VALUABLE INFORMATION Price Only 10 C e nts No. J Napoleon's Oraculum and Dream Book.-Contahtates and Canada. Also table ot distances by water to foreign ports, hack fares in the cities, reports of the census, etc., etc., making it one of the most complete and handy books published. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Touse y, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 20. How to Entertain an Evening Par ty.-A very valuable little book just published. A complete compendium of games, sports, card diversions, comic recreations, etc., suitable for parlor or drawing-room entertainment. It con tains more for the money than any book pub lished. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 21. How to Hunt and Fish.-'.l'he mos, complete hunting n.nd fishing ever pub lished. n contains fnll instructions about guns. hunting dogs, traps, trapping and fishing. to gether with descriptions of game and fisht Price JO cen ts. Frank Tousey, publish er, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. How to Do Second Sight.-Heller'a second sight explained by his former assistant, Fred Hunt, Jr. Explaining how the secret dia logues were carried on between the magician and the bo;r on the stage; also giving all the codes and signals. The only authentic explana tion of se-:ond sight. Price 10 cents. Address Frank 'l'ousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 23. How to JGxplain Dreams.-Every body drea ms, from the little child to the aged man and wom>l'k. No. 31. How to Uecome a Speaker.-Con taining fourteen illustrations, g .iving the diffe r ent positions requisite to become a good er, reader and elocutionist. Also contaming gems from all the popular authors of prose and poetry, arranged m the most simple and con cise manner possible. Price 10 cents. Acidresa publisher, 29 West 26th Street, No. 32. How to IUde a Bicycle.-Hand somely illustrated, and containing full direc tions for mounting, riding and managing a bi c;rcle, fully explained with practica l ilh1stra t10ns; also drections 1'.or picking out a machine. Price 10 cents. Addreas Frank Tous81f, publish er, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 33. How to Behave.-Containlng the rules and etiquette of good society and the easi est and most approTod methods of appearing to good at parties, balls, the theater, church, and m the drawing-room. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 34. How to Fence.-Contalning full in strnction for fencing and the use of the broad sword; also instruction in archery. Described with twenty-one practical illustrations, giVing the best positions in fencing. A complete book. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, pub Usher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 35. How to Play Games.-A complete and useful little book, containing the rules and regulations of billi a rds, bagatelle, backgam mon, croquet, dominoes, etc. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 36. How to Solve Conundrums.-Con taining all the leading conundrums of the day, amusing riddles, curious catches and witty say ings. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 37. How to Keep House.-It contains information for everybody, boys, girls, men and women; It will teach you how to make almost anything around the house, such as parlor or naments, brackets cements, reolian harps, and bird lime for catching birds. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. No. 38. How to Become Your Own Doctor, -A wonderful book, containing useful and practical information in the treatment of ordi nary diseases and ailments common to everr family. Abounding in useful and effective reci pea tor general complaints. Price 10 cents. Ad dress Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 W est 26th Street, New York.


YOUNG GLORY. I 0 0 N"" T ...A.IN""IN"" G PAi-RIOTIC WAR STORIES. j HANDSOMELY .COLORED COVERS. 32 Reading Pages. EVERY STORY COMPLETE. PRICE 5 CENTSe PRICE 5 CENTSm ALREADY PUBLISHED: By COMMODORE MORGAN. 1 Young 'Glory, the Hero of the White Squadron. 2 Young Glory on Shore; or, Fighting For the Stars and Stripes . 3 Young Glory and the Spanish Cruiser; or, A Brave Fight Against Odds. 4 Young Glory in Cuba; or, Helping the Insurgents. 5 Young Glory Under Fire; Fighting the Spaniards in Cuban Waters. 6 Young Glory in Morro Castle; or, Bescuing American Prisoners. 7 Young Glory With Gomez; or, Baiding and Scouting in Cuba. 8 Young Glory With Commodore Dewey; or, Defeating the Spaniards a, t Manila. 9 Young Glory at San Antonio; or, Brave Work With the Cuban Patriots. 10 Young Glory in the Philippine Islands; or, The Capture o f Manila. 11 Young Glory With Commodore Schley; or, The Spanish Fleet a t Santiago. 12 Young Glory With Admiral Sampson; or, The Destruction of Spain's Fleet. 13 Young Glory With General Shafter; or, Driving the Spaniards from Cuba. 14 Young Glory With General Merritt; or, Hard Fighting in the Philippine Islands. 15 Young Glory on the Vesuvius; or, The Dynamite Cruiser's Daring Work. 16 Young Glory's Gun-Boat: Bunning the Santiago Batteries. 17 Young Glory at the Front; or, The Capture of Santiago. FOR SALE BY ALL NEWSDEALERS OR WILL BE SENT TO ANY ADDRESS ON RECEIPT OF PRICE, 5 CENTS PER COPY. ADDRESS FRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 29 "VV"est 26th. St.,


YOUNG KLONDIKE. STORIES A GOLD SEEKER. Handsomely Colored Covers. 32 Pages.. Issued Twiee a Month. Price 5 Cents. 1 Young Klondike; or, Off for the Dand of Gold. :! Young Klondikes Claim; or, Nine Goldeu Nuggets. 3 Young K londike's First Million; or, His Great Strike on El Do rado Creek. Young Klondike and the Claim Agents; or, Fighting the Land Sharks of Dawson City. 5 Young Klondike's New Diggings; or, The Great Gold Find on Owl Creek. 6 Young Klondike's Chase; o r, the Gold Pirates of the Yukon. 7 Young Klondike's Golden I s land; or, Half a Million in Dust. 8 Youn g Klondike's Seven Strikes; or, The Gold Hunters of High Rock. 9 Young Klondike's Journey to Juneau; or, Guarding a Milli9n in Gold. IQ Young Klondike's Lucky Camp; or, \Vorking t he Unknowu's Claim. Price 5 Cents. 11 Young Klondike's Los t Million; or, The Mine Wrec kers of Gol d Creek. 12 Young Klondike's Gold Syndicate; or, Breaking the B rokers of Dawson City. 13 Youug Klondike's Golden Eagle; or, \Vorking a Hidde n Mine. 14 Yeung Klondike's Tr1.tmp Card; or, The Rush to Rocky River. 15 Young Klondikes Arctic Trail; or, Lost in a Sea cf Ice. 16 Youug Klondike's New Bonanza; or, The Gold Diggers of Frcuch Gulch. 17 Young Kl ondike's Death Trap; or, Los/; Undergrnund. 1 8 Young Klondike's Fight for a Claim; or, Ti1e Boomers. of Raccoon Creek. 10 Young Klondike's Deep Sea Diggings; or, \Vorking at t he Mouth of the Yukon. 20 Young Klondike s winte r Camp; or, Mining Under the Snow. For Sale by All Newsdealers, or will be Sent to Any Address on Receipt of Price, 5 Cents Per Copy, by FRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 29 VV est 26th St., New York.


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