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She barely managed to an! swer: “The entrance to the vault below, where many Allens who died a long while ago are laid to rest.” She staggered to the door, and stumbled out. He followed, at a loss; more uncomfortable than he cared to acknowledge. Thoughtlessly he released the control of the lamp. With the effect of a physical attack the darkness rushed upon him. He cried out involuntarily. Something had touched him. He couldn't deny its nature. A hand, soft and charnel cold, had brushed his cheek. He had been aware of the contact of each dreadful finger. He flashed his lamp again.
“What was it? Tell me what it was 1” Miss Allen said. | “Hush"
PPARENTLY from the tomb came | a low, derisive laugh. It altered to an expression of grief and was lost
in the night.
Miss Allen screamed once, then swayed, and sank in a heap to the whitened path. Garth turned the light on her face, and knew that his pursuit for that night was ended. For a moment he was afraid she had stopped breathing. He had never seen a clearer case of shock. He swung her in his arms and hurried with her to the house, | looking constantly into the blackness behind, convinced that he was followed by whatever had given him that deathlike touch, by whatever had terrified Miss Allen almost to the point of death. | He glanced at the shelf. The heavy |. rested there, as Miss Allen had Sal (i.
It was a long time before the heat of the living-room fire and the simple remedies he could apply brought her back to a half consciousness. It was only then that he dared telephone the tavern at the village, demanding Allen's return, and Dr. Hannay, telling him that he should come at once. She stared at him with voiceless questions.
All this time the old man, who evidently spent his nights as well as his days in the great chair, mumbled to himself, only once or twice growing coherent:
“Why, what's the matter, Dora? You let Helen frighten you again?”
“Helen's been in here to-night. I couldn't see her, but I heard her. She is restless.”
Or: “Helen's only lonely. She wants company. It's wicked of you to be afraid of her.”
Allen gestured helplessly. He indicated the drowsing old man. The doctor shrugged his shoulders. “He may
last for years.” “We will see. We will see what can be done,” Allen promised vaguely. After the doctor had left, Garth told Allen more elaborately every event of the preceding night. “At least, it's not just my own morbid fancy,” Allen said. “Are you through? You have no hope to offer?” “I am not through,” Garth said stubbornly. “I am going to search the house again by daylight. And I want to examine the vault near which I heard rappings and the cry; where I felt that unbelievable touch.” “It is never quite daylight in the vault,” Allen said gloomily. Yet after he had spent hours in his examination of the house, measuring, sounding each wall, Garth had to con
fess himself beaten there. It was late
The Haunted House
Continued from page 20
afternoon when he gave up and turned to the tomb. He took a crowbar, found in the barn. The door stood open as he had left it the previous evening; but Allen had been right. The late light seemed incapable of penetrating the gloomy vault. Snow, however, had whirled in, and made a white heap on the trapdoor. Garth lost some minutes clearing this away. Then he failed to find the mechanism of the trap, so that by the time he had broken the stone to get leverage for his crowbar, the dusk outside was thick. He pried the heavy door up. Then his light disclosed a flight of stone steps. He descended cautiously into the pit, experiencing again that uncomfortable feeling that he was not alone. At the foot of the stairs he found himself in a species of cave, larger than the room upstairs, and containing more stained
caskets. But he failed to unearth any hiding place, any paraphernalia of trickery.
The room was clearly a mortuary– nothing more. Then what had brushed his face the previous night? He was glad to start up the stairs. He paused, his heart in his throat. What was that black form, partly hanging over the open trap as if to forbid his exit? The light showed him no face, but the black patch seemed to move. He whipped out his revolver. “Who are you? You stay there until I can find out.” But the black thing slipped from his view, and a brief and scarcely heard laugh reached him. He ran on up, his revolver ready. A woman in black stood with a hand on Mrs. Allen's coffin. “Now, let's see!” he cried.
to make sure you wouldn't go back to town converted. There’ll be time enough for all that later. Now we must work. I've looked everywhere for you. It's dark, but you have your light.” She climbed to the lower niche, so that her head was above the level of Mrs. Allen's casket. “Take your crowbar,” she directed. “Lift the top of this box. I want to see inside.” “Nora !” “I’ll take my chances,” she said impatiently. “I'd have done it without you if I’d had the strength. The screws are all loose. Hurry!” With a sense of sacrilege he obeyed her. She laughed lightly, and jumped down. He started to climb in her place, but the crowbar slipped, and the lid fell with a dull resonance. Before he could insert the instrument again, Nora grasped his arm. “We’re making too much noise,” she whispered. “What was that? I thought I heard—”
through the door ahead of him. The door slammed in his face, but he grasped the knob, pushing with all his strength, so that the key could not be turned. Nora ran up and added her strength. The door was released. They stumbled into the dark hall. But a light burned in the inner room, and they heard feet running there, and Allen's Volce : “Why aren't you in bed? What in the name of Heaven's happened?” Garth and Nora entered. The old man clutched at the arms of his chair as if he reacted to an absurd ambition to rise. Allen's sister was at the telephone, frantically rattling the receiver, while Allen stared. “Quick! Quick!” the woman urged desperately. “Two—four. Dr. Hannay's residence.” “Take the telephone from her, Mr. Allen,” Nora directed. “No questions now.” Allen's face twisted with pain, but he moved to obey. His hand caught the telephone and drew it away from his sister's mouth. But she struggled with a desperate, an unsuspected strength. Nora nodded. “Help him, Jim. She mustn't be heard over that telephone.”
ARTH caught the woman's arms and forced her across the room. Nora made a rough gag with her handkerchief. “Take the telephone,” she said to Allen. “Tell Dr. Hannay that your sister is worse, and that the detective has lost his nerve and quit. The doctor must come at once.” Allen started to protest, but the doctor was connected, and he obeyed, at a loss. “He’s coming right over,” he said when he had replaced the receiver. “I’ve done what you wished. I have a right to know. What has my sister done, that you treat her this way?” Nora lowered the handkerchief. “Let her go, Jim. I think she realizes the game is up.” Garth relaxed his grasp. The exhausted woman leaned against the wall, breathing harshly. “Your wife, Mr. Allen,” Garth said uncertainly, “is not in her—” “Stop, Jim" Nora cried. “He might not understand. Come, Mr. Allen Bring your sister with you. We’ve plenty of time before the doctor arrives.” She led them down the path between the rattling bushes to the sepulcher. The shivering woman shrank from the charnel dampness of the place. “I sounded all these boxes,” said, “and I can tell you which happen to be empty just now, and which are not. I couldn't lift the trap, but we can easily find out about the boxes in the lower vault.” She tapped the casket which bore Mrs. Allen's plate. “This one is not empty. the lid up again, Jim.” Garth worked with an increasing excitement, knowing very well that Nora was not one to make mistakes. He pried the lid open. Allen and he climbed up so that they could peer within the casket. At once Allen sprang down, and, ashamed and angered, stared helplessly at his sister. For a moment Garth clung there, appraising with a sense of sheer wonder a fortune in cloths, silks, jewels, furs—luxuries that had not paid thousands of dollars in duties at the port of entry, but that would now. He gasped as he approximated the value of the contents of the other desolate-appearing boxes. He stepped down and glanced with a sort of admiration at the beaten woman. “I know, Miss Allen,” Nora said quietly, “that you and the doctor are not the only ones implicated. There are some very prosperous people in this little village. If you cared to turn state's evidence now—” “She'll tell all she knows,” Allen said harshly.
“I want to save the doctor,” she pleaded. “I did it for his sake. But I will talk.”
Nora . Garth went ahead of them toward the house to welcome the doctor. . . . “Just because I take spiritualism seriously,” Nora explained later to Garth, “I caught points in Allen's story the other night that made me certain he hadn't seen any ghost. The first vision stood in the hall. In order for him to observe it the door had to be opened. In order for it to vanish from his sight the door had to be closed. A pretty material vision, I thought at Once. “And you remember that the face was phosphorescent, an old trick to frighten credulous people. It was a useful one here, as, otherwise, even in the dim moonlight, and in his excited frame of mind, he might have seen it wasn't his wife. He said, you recall, that the face was blurred; wanted to believe it was the spirit of his wife, which he had half expected. “Some one, then, with much the same build, was masquerading in his wife's clothes, to play on his imaginative disposition and scare him out of the house. His sister inevitably suggested herself. But who had opened and closed the door for her? Allen had said the doctor loved her. All they had to do was to slip into her room opposite before Allen could get from his bed, across the floor, and open his door. And she was frightened into illness by the necessity for such a trick. Therefore she and the doctor were up to some dangerous and illegal game.”
“T) UT,” Garth said, “the second vision materialized and disappeared in the room itself.” “I paid little attention to that,” Nora answered with a smile. “Remember Allen was sick. The fever that nearly killed him was certainly at his brain that night. He had been waiting, desiring with all his soul to see her. As the first vision had been a trick, so, from his own story, it was easy to see that the second had sprung from the imagination of a morbid and a very ill trian. “It was the third appearance that decided me to come. Instead of scaring him permanently away, his sister had made him long to come back. So she tried to show him that his wife was ~ inimical, didn’t want him near. He saw Miss Allen's conception of an unfriendly spirit from the foot of the stairs, by the light of a single candle; and I think it was that sense of unfriendliness, of a dismissal, that sent him to us. “I knew you wouldn't have much chance to get at the truth since you
would be announced as a detective; so I quietly took the same train, and slipped off on the side away from the station. “I followed you and explored the grounds. I felt from the first the tomb might hold the solution, for I thought for a time, as you did, that Mrs. Allen might be alive and a prisoner, because of her money which they would have lost if she had left Allen. Then it occurred to me what a splendid hiding place that tomb was for forbidden merchandise. As you know, the front door of the house was left unlocked for the convenience of these people. I came and went, like a thief in the night, but as I pleased. I took the key, which was in plain sight, opened the tomb, and replaced the key. I heard nearly everything you said last night. “I saw the doctor return to help Miss Allen with the hocus-pocus that was designed to scare you off. Scraping footsteps in the hall and the neighboring rooms, a studied scream—such things can be made very convincing by night in a lonely house with a reputation for being haunted. I followed while you and she searched, hoping she would give me a clue.”
“It gave me a chance to learn something when she warned the doctor, as she was bound to do; but she only told him, when he carried her upstairs, that there was a mysterious spy about, and that he was to slip across the border at her first alarm. The very proximity of the border was a pointer to the truth.
“In any case I didn't want to stay around here by daylight, so I took the main road to the customhouse. The chief knew my father, and he talked willingly enough of the enormous leak that for more than two years they hadn't been able to stop. I promised. I’d get his smugglers; and that's all, Jim. It comes down, as so many cases do, to a woman's mad infatuation for a man.”
“Ghosts and women,” Garth mused, “seem to be a little beyond me.” |
“Even you'll admit, Nora, it would be helpful if I could take them more to heart.”
The Play of the Week
Continued from page 15
to let the case drop. After all, what is a cracked safe or a cracked skull between twins? The play ends with Mary clasped in the arms of the hero and expressing the hope that her newly found sister will learn to love her. We rather think she will. Of course she may be a little annoyed at first at being shot in the head, but she must be somewhat reconciled to the affair by the fact that the man who fired the revolver was one of her sister’s best friends.
Greater Than. Her Play
AM afraid that the story as outlined here may not sound very convincing, but no more did it when played at the Astor Theatre. And yet for all the extravagant absurdities of “Cornered,” it affords an amusing evening. Largely this is because of Madge Kennedy. Her talent for farce is not much employed, but she seems to have come back from the moving pictures with a definite flair for the portrayal of more serious emotion. It comes as a surprise, but there is no denying the existence of the gift. For instance, the scene in which the hero makes love to the thief under a misapprehension as to her identity is of shoddy , and incredible stuff; but for all that the spectator
will get from it that sudden, sharp, stabbing sensation which informs him that, all unaware, he has come upon an emotional actress. Even more useful is Miss Kennedy's ability to be funny when the author intends that she shall, and at still other moments when he meant her to be serious. Whenever the play approaches the uttermost limits of absurdity the star disarms contemptuous laughter by playing with a light touch of banter. You may not believe in the play, but it is quite evident that neither does she. A common meeting ground may be had on the basis of regarding it as a sort of outlandish picture puzzle. It is interesting to find the missing pietes even if none of them is in any way related to the human soul. |
Tit for Tat
ODSON MITCHELL, the author of
“Cornered,” is an actor at present
playing in “The Tavern.” Curiously enough, “The Tavern” is a burlesque of just the sort of play which Mr. Mitchell has written. “Cornered” serves to hold attention almost entirely through its tricks. Many of them are ingenious. Still, the shrewdest stratagem of all lay in stealing Madge Kennedy away from the movies,
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her eyes grow larger—or such was the
effect as she opened them widely. Perhaps he misread their message. To him Phil Abingdon's expression was that of detected guilt. ore than ever convinced of the truth of his suspicions: “Perhaps you were looking for a cab?” he suggested. Overcoming her surprise, or whatever emotion had claimed her at the moment of this unexpected meeting, Phil Abingdon took Harley's outstretched hand and held it for a moment before replying. “I had almost despaired of finding one,” she said, “and I am late already.” “The porter at the Savoy would get you one.” “I have tried there and got tired of waiting,” she answered quite simply.
OR a moment Harley's suspicions were almost dispelled, and, observing an empty cab approaching, he signaled to the man to pull up. “Where do you want to go to?” he inquired, opening the door. “I am due at Dr. McMurdoch's,” she replied, stepping into the cab. Paul Harley hesitated, glancing from the speaker to the driver. . “I wonder if you have time to come with me,” said Phil Abingdon. “I know the doctor wants to see you.” “I will come with pleasure,” replied Harley, a statement which was no more than true. Accordingly he gave the necessary directions to the taxi man and seated himself beside the girl in the cab. “I am awfully glad of an opportunity of a chat with you, Mr. Harley,” said Phil Abingdon. “The last few days have seemed like one long nightmare to me.” She sighed pathetically, “Surely Dr. McMurdoch is right, and all the horrible doubts which troubled us were idle ones after all?” She turned to Harley, looking almost eagerly into his face. “Poor daddy hadn't an enemy in the world, I am sure,” she said. “His extraordinary words to you no doubt have some simple explanation. Oh, it would be such a relief to know that his end was a natural one. At least it would dull the misery of it all a little bit.” The appeal in her eyes was of a kind which Harley found much difficulty in resisting. It would have been happiness to offer consolation to this sorrowing girl. But, although he could not honestly assure her that he had abandoned his theories, he realized that the horror of her suspicions was having a dreadful effect upon Phil Abingdon's mind. “You may quite possibly be right,” he said gently. “In any event, I hope you will think as little as possible about the morbid side of this unhappy business.” “I try to,” she assured him earnestly, “but you can imagine how hard the task is. I know that you must have some good reason for your idea; something, I mean, other than the mere words which have puzzled us all so much. Won't you tell me?” Now, Paul Harley had determined, since the girl was unacquainted with Nicol Brinn, to conceal from her all that he had learned from that extraordinary man. In this determination he had been actuated, too, by the promptings of the note of danger which, once seemingly attuned to the movements of Sir Charles Abingdon, had, after the surgeon's death, apparently become centered upon himself and upon Nicol Brinn. He dreaded the thought that the cloud might stretch out over the life of this girl who sat beside him and whom he felt so urgently called upon to protect from such a menace.
HE cloud.” What was this cloud,
whence did it emanate, and by whom
had it been called into being? He looked into the violet eyes, and as a while before he had moved alone through the wilderness of London, now he seemed to be alone with Phil Abingdon on the border of a spirit world which had no existence for the multitudes around. Physically he was very close to her at that moment; and when he replied he replied evasively: “I have absolutely no scrap of evidence, Miss
Abingdon, pointing to foul play. The circumstances were peculiar, of course, but I have every confidence in Dr. McMurdoch's efficiency. Since he is satisfied, it would be mere impertinence on my part to question his verdict.” Phil Abingdon repeated the weary sigh and turned her head aside, glancing down to where with one small shoe she was restlessly tapping the floor of the cab. They were both silent for some moments. “Don’t you trust me?” she asked suddenly. “Or don't you think I am clever enough to share your confidence?” As she spoke she looked at him challengingly, and he felt all the force of personality which underlay her outward lightness of manner. “I both trust you and respect your intelligence,” he answered quietly. “If I withhold anything from you, I am prompted by a very different motive from the one you suggest.” “Then you are keeping something from me,” she said softly. “I knew you were.” “Miss Abingdon,” replied Harley, “when the worst trials of this affair are over, I want to have a long talk with you. Until then, won't you believe that I am acting for the best?” But Phil Abingdon's glance was unrelenting. “In your opinion it may be so, but you won’t do me the honor of consulting mine.”
HE did not answer him, but stared abstractedly out of the cab window; and Harley did not break this silence, much as he would have liked to do so. He was mentally reviewing his labors of the preceding day when, in the character of a Colonial visitor with much time on his hands, he had haunted the Savoy for hours in the hope of obtaining a glimpse of Ormuz Khan. His vigil had been fruitless, and on returning by a roundabout route to his office he had bitterly charged himself with wasting valuable time upon a side issue. Yet when, later, he had sat in his study endeavoring to arrange his ideas in order, he had discovered many points in his own defense. If his ineffective surveillance of Ormuz Khan had been dictated by interest in Phil Abingdon rather than by strictly professional motives, it was, nevertheless, an ordinary part of the conduct of such a case. But while he had personally undertaken the matter of his excellency he had left the work of studying the activities of Nicol Brinn to an assistant. He could not succeed in convincing himself that, on the evidence available, the movements of the Oriental gentleman were more important than those of the American. “Here we are,” said Phil Abingdon. She alighted, and Harley dismissed the cabman and followed the girl into Dr. McMurdoch's house. Here he made the acquaintance of Mrs. McMurdoch, who, as experience had taught him to anticipate, was as plump and merry and vivacious as her husband was lean, gloomy, and taciturn. But she was a perfect well of sympathy, as her treatment of the bereaved girl showed. She took her in her arms and hugged her in a way that was good to see. “We were waiting for you, dear,” she said when the formality of presenting Harley was over. “Are you quite sure that you want to go?”
S a result he found himself a few minutes later entering the hall of the late Sir Charles's house. The gloved hand resting on his arm trembled, but when he looked down solicitously into Phil Abingdon's face she smiled bravely, and momentarily her clasp tightened as if to reassure him. It seemed quite natural that she should derive comfort from the presence of this comparative stranger; and neither of the two, as they stood there looking at the tributes to the memory of the late Sir Charles—which overflowed from a neighboring room into the lobby and were even piled upon the library table—were conscious of any strangeness in the situation. The first thing that had struck Harley on entering the house had been an overpowering perfume of hyacinths. Now he saw whence it arose; for, conspicuous amid the wreaths and crosses, was an enormous device formed of hyacinths. Its proportions dwarfed those of all the others. Mrs. Howett, the housekeeper, a sadeyed little figure, appeared now from behind the bank of flowers. Her grief could not rob her of that Old World manner which was hers, and she saluted the visitors with a bow which promised to develop into a curtsy. Noting the direction of Phil Abingdon's glance, which was set upon a card attached to the wreath of hyacinths: “It was the first to arrive, Miss Phil,” she said. “Isn’t it beautiful ?” “It’s wonderful,” said the girl, moving forward and drawing Harley along with her. She glanced from the card up to his face, which was set in a rather grim expression. “Ormuz Khan has been so good,” she said. “He sent his secretary to see if he could be of any assistance yesterday, but I certainly had not expected this.” Her eyes filled with tears again, and, because he thought they were tears of gratitude, Harley clenched his hand tightly so that the muscles of his forearm became taut to Phil Abingdon's touch. She looked up at him, smiling pathetically: “Don’t you think it was awfully kind of him?” she asked. “Very,” replied Harley.
A dry and sepulchral cough of disap: .
proval came from Dr. McMurdoch, and Harley divined with joy that when the ordeal of the next day was over, Phil Abingdon would have to face crossexamination by the conscientious Scotsman respecting this stranger whose attentions, if Orientally extravagant, were instinct with such generous sympathy. For some reason the heavy perfume of the hyacinths affected him unpleasantly. All his old doubts and suspicions found a new life, so that his share in the conversation which presently arose became confined to a few laconic answers to direct questions. He was angry, and his anger was more than half directed against himself, because he knew that he had no shadow of right to question this girl about her friendships or even to advise her. He determined, however, even at the cost of incurring a rebuke, to urge Dr. McMurdoch to employ all the influence he possessed to terminate an acquaintanceship which could not be otherwise than undesirable, if it were not actually dangerous.
When, presently, the party returned to the neighboring house of the physician, however, Harley's plans in this respect were destroyed by the action of Dr. McMurdoch, in whose composition tact was not a predominant factor. Almost before they were seated in the doctor's drawing room he voiced his disapproval. “Phil,” he said, ignoring a silent appeal from his wife, “this is, mayhap, no time to speak of the matter; but I'm not glad to see the hyacinths.” Phil Abingdon's chin quivered rebelliously, and, to Harley's dismay, it was upon him that she fixed her gaze in replying. “Perhaps you also disapprove of his excellency's kindness?” she said indignantly. Harley found himself temporarily at a loss for words. She was perfectly well aware that he disapproved, and now was taking a cruel pleasure in reminding him of the fact that he was not entitled to do so. Had he been capable of that calm analysis to which ordimarily he submitted all psychological problems, he must have found matter for rejoicing in this desire of the girl's to hurt him. “I am afraid, Miss Abingdon,” he replied quietly, “that the matter is not one on which I am entitled to express any opinion.” She continued to look at him challengingly, but: “Quite right, Mr. Harley,” said Dr. McMurdoch, “but if you were, your
opinion would be the same as mine.”
Toledo—the City Young Blood Built
Continued from page 11
been distracted by strikes, controversy, bad State legislation like the Smith One Per Cent Tax Law, and the abnormal conditions produced by the war. But on the whole it has been an unquestionably productive emphasis. Toledo is the only city I can cite where any stranger can find the art institute by asking any child on any street. It is the only city I have ever heard about where every crippled child is assured necessary operations, special supplies, and vocational education fitted to his deformity. It is the only city that has come to my notice where the commercial body of the town—in this case a strong federation of 3,600—has published to its members the whole need of the school system without a single concession to local pride, where the board of education has proposed a program honestly true to the need. Homes, in Toledo, as far as they go, are nearly all homes. Not flats. Or cliff dwellings. Or rooming houses. Or monotonous sheds. All of these wart dwellings are to be found there. And there have not been for ten years back nearly enough of homes of any kind. Still, the woman visitor who wrote to one of the newspapers stands justified: “Toledo is a beautiful city. We loved your avenues and shade trees, the irregular streets. The attractive homes, with their good-sized lawns, did not look like mere ‘houses,’ but homes— real homes.” At the head of the school system is a creditable city university. Two of the high schools are models of modern equipment, safety, and beauty. Seven of the forty graded buildings are similarly fine. There are forty-three kindergartens, open to kiddies for two years, not one. A work that is genuinely thrilling is done for the blind, the deaf, and the otherwise handicapped. Vacation schools, continuation schools, and evening schools are developing here as favorably as anywhere, I venture. But— Four of the school buildings, one of them new, have no playgrounds. Two children out of every three are in old buildings or portables. Only one child in ten is in the high school. Scarcely half the children finish the elementary schools. Not unusual in an industrial town? No. But a city is more than an industrial town.
Mrs. McMurdoch's glance to: positively beseeching, but the physician ignored it. “As your father's oldest friend,” he continued, “I feel called upon to remark that it isn't usual for strangers to thrust their attentions upon a bereaved family.” “Oh,” said Phil Abingdon with animation, “do I understand that this is also your opinion, Mr. Harley?” “As a man of the world,” declared Dr. McMurdoch gloomily, “it cannot fail to be.” Tardily enough he now succumbed to the silent entreaties of his wife: “I will speak of this later,” he concluded. “Mayhap, I should not have spoken now.” Tears began to trickle down Phil Abingdon's cheeks. “Oh, my dear, my dear!” cried little Mrs. McMurdoch, running to her side. But the girl sprang up, escaping from the encircling arm of the motherly old lady. She shook her head disdainfully, as if to banish tears and weakness, and glanced rapidly around from face to face. “I think you are all perfectly cruel and horrible,” she said in a choking voice, turned and ran out. ' A distant door banged. “H’m,” muttered Dr. “I’ve put my foot in it.” His wife looked at him in speechless indignation and then followed Phil Abingdon from the room. (To be continued)
The Board of Education has proposed a building program requiring $11,000,000 or more. In support of it moves a veritable phalanx of clubs, neighborhood organizations, and social workers. Every vote upon it so far has been favorable. If it all goes through—and I think it may—Toledo will rank altogether forward of the “industrial towns” and among the first fifteen cities of the whole nation, no matter what their size, in the value of school equipment. In the field of play, the city about maintains its rank in population. Sixteen baseball diamonds are kept busy by fourteen leagues. Ten tennis courts and twelve football grounds are used extensively. Some 1,250 persons hold permits for the municipal golf course. There is an acre of park for each 159 of the people, which, in view of their rapid increase, is decidedly creditable. Yet for 81,000 youths and children there are only six general playgrounds and only three swimming pools.
O know Toledo as her people know her, however, you must see the Museum of Art. “We have never found a man who took the civil-service examination who did not know where the Art Museum is,” reports the city civil-service commissioner. “But we have found many a one who could not direct a person to the leading hotels.” Thousands of school children voted on the Seven Wonders of Toledo. They put the Museum of Art first by a large majority. Then came the Overland factory, the Second National Bank Building, the electric sign “You Will Do Better In Toledo,” the Cherry Street Bridge, the Scott High School, and the city's rank as a railroad center. Children really built the museum building. Their pennies, nickels, and dimes made a pile four feet high in a bank window. The younger women in the shops formed a committee to raise money. There were committees of stenographers, débutantes, laborers, and newsboys. The last-named take a surprising part in whatever is proposed for this city. Good old John Gunkel—“Gunk” to the boys—saw to that when he put up the Toledo Newsboys' Home. For this cause all the boys worked like beavers, subscribing a dollar a month, and on the slightest warrant crying through the streets: “All 'bout the Art
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white's weather Prophet fore-
Musm!” On the day the building was opened it was free from debt.
It provides what other and more usual art institutes provide—galleries of beautiful paintings (including a specially fine Blakelock and Van Dyck’s “St. Martin Dividing His Mantle,” given to Toledo in the name of the Belgian people). There are casts, porcelains, sculpture, and a growing art library. A school of design is going ahead by leaps and bounds. Wherever you go and whatever you see, you will find no paid guards, no paid guides. Boys and girls do all the guarding and guiding that are needed. On any Saturday you can see in the basement hundreds of typical healthful, happy American youngsters picnicking at luncheon time in order to be in the Museum all day. No pressure is put upon them by the schools or any other agency. They come for interest| ing talks, for free music hours, for story hours, for service in | bird conservation, for study of nature according to the ideals of their hero, John Burroughs. In one recent year, surely surpassed in 1920, the Museum had 86,000 constructive contacts with the child life of the city. One day 20,000 trooped past Mr. Burroughs to dedicate a monument to him. Well might he say it was his happiest day. Yet as they marched these Toledo citizens of the morrow looked up for the approval of the two rich personalities that have given the Museum so lovely a character.
could not talk to good advantage. There was a sense of shrinking hesitation that I knew was fatal to success. I came to the conclusion that if I knew more about the class of men I wanted to reach I would be able to get a grip on my fears. So I picked out a group of specimens and laid them aside for intensive study. I selected the managers of big manufacturing concerns, contractors, real-estate promoters, and railroad men—fellows who would be able to buy paint in large quantities if they bought any at all. There were twenty men in the group, and I knew them all by reputation, but very little about them personally.
Go in and Win!
Y next step was to put the name of each man on a little card—an idea I had got out of one of the books—and then write underneath all I could learn about them. Little by little I found out about their business and social relations, their clubs, and their friends. As I worked along this line I found myself breathing the same atmosphere as my prospects. I did not know it at the time, but I was doing the very best possible thing to prepare the way for an approach to the men I wanted to interview. To employ technical terms, I was analyzing my possible market.
- - - *. Go where you like in it and observe.
With them have worked a score of rich men and women, headed by President E. D. Libbey, Mr. Frederick B. Shoemaker (now deceased), Mr. John N. Willys, and their wives.
Is a little money needed for a loan
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I was establishing a bond of common interest, aside from interest in paint, by learning about people and things in which we all felt concerned. As I thus came to know these men better, and to realize that they were human just like the rest of us, I felt my fears gradually decrease.
Then I firmly resolved to go right down the list and canvass the men, one by one, just as I had called on my neighbors. It was a slow process, as I could see them only at odd times– during the lunch hour, when I could get away for a few minutes, and on holidays. It was amazing what confidence my foreknowledge of these men gave me. It was so easy to find subjects of common conversation.
Five men of the twenty gave me orders—one for six new houses he was putting up, another for a garage, a third for an addition to his factory, a fourth for his residence, and last of all I landed a big order for dark-red paint for freight cars. I actually obtained an order that some of the star salesmen had been trying without success to get for a long time. Later I learned that the order came to me because I had a better knowledge of the paints. I had made a study of the particular kind of paint that would best serve that road, and when I laid the matter before the railroad official, with an exact statement of cost and durability, he signed the order at once.
When the news of these orders reached the sales manager he sent for me. He wanted me to give all of my time to selling, and he predicted that I would be very successful. His talk was encouraging, yet I hesitated. I thought of the warm berth I had in the shipping room, and I was loath to leave it. To hold that job and sell goods on the side was a comfortable way of doing business, for I did not have to make good as a salesman, but if I cut loose and relied on selling entirely I would not have anything to fall back upon. There it was again. The old Fear bobbing up to taunt me. I was too fond of a sure thing. I had not yet learned to venture.
givers, the children with clear, beautiful eyes and the children who are blind, the laborers and the benefactors, the King and Queen of Belgium who came to unveil the Van Dyck and the foreign-born six-year-olds whose stockings Mrs. Stevens must dry before they can sit in the auditorium without risk of colds, they would vote overwhelmingly, I know, that the beautiful and special character of the institute was the seal of a loving service rarer and more precious than money.
HIS devotion to humanity is only easier to identify in the Art Museum than in other departments of Toledo life. It is not limited to the Museum. You come upon it in the watchfulness of Toledo folk over crippled children, in their keeping of the emphasis on the making of homes, in their valiant planning for their schools. Throughout the city it is warrant for a hope for the Toledo of to-morrow larger than that of her harbor, her railroads, or her factories. It is the great understanding in this industrial city of the Middle West that makes possible the city symphony.
Taking Fear by the Throat
The sales manager had offered me a liberal drawing account and a big commission. It was almost like going into business for myself. If I took large orders, I would make big pay, and if I took small ones, why, of course, I would make less. I asked for a little time in which to think the matter over. In place of screwing up my courage for the venture I tried to conjure up excuses. I told my father and mother all about it, and purposely enlarged upon the risk I would take. They were delighted with the opportunity, and ridi
culed the idea of failure. And the girl! She fairly shouted when I told her. She seemed to be expecting it, and
told me that it was the one big chance of my life and that I must go right in and win. So I screwed up my courage and told the sales manager I would accept his offer. The next moment I would have asked for the old job back again if my pride had not come to my rescue.
The Spur of Anger
HERE was no backing out now. I
had to take the plunge to keep my
own self-respect. You have read about men driving themselves forward in battle. It took all the courage they could muster up, but they did it. As the day approached for me to start on my maiden trip as a full-fledged salesman, I had to grip myself with a mighty effort of will to keep from running away. Autosuggestion did not amount to a hill of beans in this struggle. I had to fight it out and master my fear by sheer will power, and drive myself right up into the front of the battle line. Perhaps autosuggestion had given me the will power to do such a thing, but, be that as it may, I took the decisive step while I was literally scared through and through. It was the thought of being out among utter strangers that gave me the final scare. The first man I called upon—a dealer in a little place of five thousand—made me angry by his contemptuous treatment, and the moment I got angry my fears left me. I worked with terrific