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Mayberry Hill Chronicles

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Letters from Henry




 
The Mayberry Hill Chronicles
Written for Henry Edwards, Summer 1910


Have you ever heard of Casco, in the Pine tree State:
If you have or not no matter, I have something to relate,
About the place called Mayberry Hill, quite famous for it's wealth,
Where visitors from every land come seeking fun or health.

The people of this neighborhood, each one of them seem good,
And every one who visits them ne'er find a lack of food;
The names of some you'll recognise as men quite famous too,
And then again there may be some, of whom you never knew.


Now, Henry Edwards is the man who runs the Pine Hill farm,
He has a voice quite strenuous, which really does no harm,
And Mrs. Emma his good wife can handle him all right,
For she takes dumb-bell exercises, at morning and at night.

Now, Henry when the Spring came round, said it will do no harm,
To do a little painting round, and just shingle up the barn;
No matter how much I spend, we'll paint the kitchen floor,
And Emma darling, you can have a bran new wire screen door.

Then Emma sent for six new chairs, each one of them a beaut,
And now, a sideboard we must have to make the room look cute,
They got one, twas a perfect gem, all finished golden brown,
And Henry set it up, but with the mirror upside down.

Now Emma Edwards has a wheel with which she spins much wool,
And later on knits hose to keep the feet from getting cool;
Although she works so hard, she seems to keep her usual size,
While to reduce her weight, by strenuous dieting, she tries.

For children they had only five, they were their parents' joy,
But four of them are married now, which leaves the youngest boy,
First Luther married Clara, and showed good sense indeed,
And Persis used good judgement too, when she got Samuel Reed.

When Ella to the city went, it proved a fatal day,
For there she met with Ray McLeod, and with him ran away,
Olive the sweetest flower, with E. Mayberry went in May,
He took her to a little town called Oxford, there to stay.

Then Ray and Ella came back home, vacation time to spend,
And made the hill quite lively from beginning to the end,
They came at midnight blowing horns, to get us out of bed,
The noises Ella made alone, would almost wake the dead.

Ray McLeod was one good fellow liked by all the boys he met,
And when they saw him homeward bound, it was with much regret,
They gave him quite a send-off and I think that you can bet,
that it was one the family will not so soon forget.

The boys and girls went down the hill, and in the bushes hid,
And as the party came in sight, they threw away the lid;
The shots rang out, the bells they rang, the horns were all in sight,
The horse stood still in wonderment, and Fluffy barked in fright;

If Ray had only stayed with us a week, or two weeks more,
The people would have flocked to him with bunions by the score,
His skill at cutting down the corns of ladies is complete,
And Emma Edwards had him operate upon her feet.


There is a fluffy little dog we never could forget,
For he was full of life and tricks and noisy? well you bet,
He had four legs with which to walk or run around all day,
But all the same he liked to ride upon a load of hay.

Now just a word about the boy young Henry, may be told,
In winter he just hunts and traps and never minds the cold;
He loves a horse, and owns one too, that sets a lively pace,
And only very few indeed could pass him in a race.

He's quite a mimic, and he knows the way to use his tongue,
He loves to use the telephone, to fool both old and young;
He blushes when the ladies come at all within his reach,
But says, some day, he'll gather in a luscious little peach.

Let us again make mention of the people that we met,
We may as well the story tell, just now lest we forget,
About the family of Welch, they say from Portland came,
They live part way on Scribner Hill, and love to entertain.

They asked a lot of neighbors in one night to have a sing,
And promised them a dance or two, if they would music bring;
We had a dance, also a sing, ice cream, and cake as well,
How many things we had that night, I cant begin to tell.

Charles Whitney took a nice hay rack, filled up with new mown hay,
And loaded up with boys and girls, a dozen I should say;
We started home at twelve oclock, and every one allowed,
The way we shouted out Good Night, we were a jolly crowd.

The next in order on our hill, is Norman Edwards's land,
Why he remains a single man, we cannot understand;
But if the news we can believe, he's casting eyes about
A city, not so far away, where watches are sent out.


Frank Morse, Norman & Luther

He's something of a sporting man, he likes the gun and rod,
In fact he's sooner land a fish, than over turn the sod;
He plays the game of base ball well, a goodly pitcher he,
And knows the way to find the place, where lives the honey bee.

Some mornings Norman Edwards loved to sleep till nearly noon,
And used to kick because they called him to get up so soon;
His dog called Gip, was smart enough to go and get the cows,
The ox and steer helped get good crops, most every one allows.

Two little daughters Norman has, Aurilla and Frances,
They both are lively and make out their many friends to please;
Aurilla lives with Norman, but Frances is at the Hub,
They ought to have a new Mama, but when? That is the rub.

Now Norman's Ma, dame Harrison, we must not pass her by,
In fact we could not very well, indeed, we shall not try;
She watches wisely over things and keeps them well in hand,
And that is just the reason why they have such goodly land.

They've had their share of company, her son from Everett came,
And brought his wife and Frances, but Win' he was quite lame;
but with dame Edward's cooking, which he lived on for a spell,
In just two weeks he started home, both active, strong and well.

Now one more visitor arrived, and if put to the test,
We think that Norman Edwards liked her just a bit the best;
I will not now her name unfold, but surely you cant fail,
You know who caught Potato Bugs and put them in a pail.

A certain Mr Leighton, was quite handy round the place,
He helped make hay and in repairs, he set a rapid pace;
He loved his pipe, also his wife and played croquet quite well,
But travelled fastest when he heard the welcome dinner bell.

His wife also was very cute in everything she did,
And was so very small, that strangers thought she was a kid;
A Lawyer and a Sheriff tried to cross examine her,
But soon found out their questionings they might as well defer.


I'd like to tell you several things, if only I had space,
About the Jordan folks, who came from an old, sturdy race;
Suffice to say, that Willard has a wife, and children three,
A Mother and a sister too, who make the family.

Now sister Ethel means it, when she says I wont or will,
She made a threat a while ago, that keeps our pen most still;
If you dare write much about me, this is what I'll surely do,
Just get my mother, who is smart, to write something of you.

Miss Jordan is a teacher and but few could fill her place,
And she is capable of ruling with both dignity and grace;
But is ready anytime to live upon a different plan,
And use the broom and mixing spoon along with Mr Mann.


The next place that we know about has something of renown,
They call it, wisely, Lake View Farm, on of the best in town;
Now Charles and Ella Whitney they are known both far and near,
They try quite hard to beautify the landscape year by year.

In summer they take boarders, not entirely for the cash,
but partly for their company, altho' it may seem rash;
The season opened June fifteenth and ever since that day,
The house has been will occupied with folks who'd like to stay.

We must describe Charles Whitney, who is in a corking class,
You cannot mention anything he could not bring to pass;
If you would like to hint or fish, he knows just what to do,
And if your soles are all worn out he then tap your shoe.

And when the sap starts in the Spring he taps the Maple trees,
And every body in the house gets sweeter if you please;
He is an expert with the dears, and also with the deer,
The latter sort he sometimes shoots, but would not harm a dear.

He has on failing, some folks know, he never can get full,
And eats ten times a day; With Ella, he must have a pull;
He likes to work, but he can play upon the old Banjo,
Harmonicas are pie to him, he makes the music flow.

Aunt Ella Whitneys' story should be written in a book,
And to commence, we must confess, she is a first class cook;
The dainty, toothsome thins she made, were always a surprise,
And we who ate filled up, until they almost reached our eyes.

She thought of other things to do, or trips that we could take,
We think she laid awake all night some pleasant plans to make;
A picnic, or a concert, or a ride to Poland Springs,
Were just a few among a lot of very jolly things.

She made us all feel quite at home in many happy ways,
None could think of doing aught but sing her loudest praise;
We now recall, the pleasant sail in Mr. Hancock's boat,
Which treat was ours, because of Ella's friendship, he made note.

Now Brother Hunt or Montague, was first the place to reach,
Miss Dingley stayed all through the Spring because she had to teach
She said that six and five are ten, it was a joke but took,
And when we said No tis eleven, she had a funny look.

Mrs Holt and daughter Gertrude, made a visit down to Maine,
This place for them has lots of charm, Helen Canfield also came;
Miss Gertrude likes the men, that is the mail men very well,
Upon the subject of bouquets and things, I should not dwell;

Mrs Holt and Helen Canfield with the cards they liked to play,
Twas hard to get them to their meals at any time of day;
Both tired so hard to win the game I think they called it Flinch,
But when they started losing, why the shoe began to pinch.

The next to come upon the scene was Jim and Emma Doyle,
The day they came was hot enough to make the water boil;
They brought along Miss Curtiss and a Mrs Linfield too,
They were a hungry looking lot, I dont mind telling you.

Now Doyle is quite a man of weight you couldn't call him small,
Two hundred pounds and fifty more, six feet three inches tall;
He ruled us all with iron hand, like king upon his throne,
The way he managed everything, perhaps will ne'er be known.

He laid the law down very hard, breakfast at half past six,
And every one not present then, would get into a fix;
When each new dish was brought us with a name we did not know,
He trained us all to shout aloud Oh Oh: Oh Oh: Oh Oh: .

When Emma Doyle appeared upon the scene we all were glad,
For where she was it would be hard for any one to be sad;
From early morn till late at night, she made thing fairly jump,
And could elicit animation even from a stump.

We understand she has a voice which adds much to her fame,
And takes her part in singing with a chorus I could name;
The Handel and Haydn is the cognomen I think,
And down in Boston to hear them each year is quite the kink.

Miss Curtiss you have heard about, who came with Jim and Emma,
When'eer she sang her famous song she was in a dilemma;
She sand a comic song called over on the Jersey side,
And in it bleated like a goat, in fact we almost died.

Mrs Linfield was on hand d when fun was going round about,
And laughed as hard as any at our meals, we soon found out;
She liked to play a Solitaire for hours and all the time,
And if you asked her how she got along would say, quite fine.

There was Dick and Helen Wilson, just a pretty little pair,
Been married fifteen months, when they came, seeking country air;
They were not used to country life and every thing seemed strange,
But when they found how nice it was, they much enjoyed the change.

Now Dick was very sensible, kept always wide awake,
He soon caught on the making hay and helped the farmers rake;
He worked so hard out in the field, the farmers said at last,
Now Wilson please if you dont mind, dont pitch the hay so fast.

Dick Wilson has a splendid voice, sang for us all the time,
Each night we had a grand concert and all said it was fine;
When dressed as Mrs Johnson at the minstrel show that night,
When Jim as Mr J dressed up they both looked out of sight.

Now Helen was a charming girl and took to country life,
Perhaps if Dick should buy a farm, might make a farmer's wife;
There was something about the place, that seemed to her so queer,
Why one beast was heifer and other called a steer.

There is an article you know tis called the Ouija board,
Helen and all the others questioned it with one accord;
Shall I have children Ouija Dear: now tell the truth to me,
It spelled out very plain, you will have children, at least three.

July the twenty third, we shant forget it very soon,
From Roslindale Miss Christian came, that sultry afternoon;
It did not take her very long to join our jolly crowd,
With form and voice she certainly was very well endowed.

Mrs Hunt from Worcester also came that very afternoon,
And said that after such a ride, a rest was quite a boon;
She got up early Sunday morn and woke Jim Doyle with bells,
To find himself outdone was hard, the story some one tells.

James Adie came from Boston, his vacation time to spend,
He gained ten pounds or more in weight, all meals he did attend;
He went out fishing for some Bass, but couldnt get a fish,
He waited long for dinner, but we got an empty dish.

A friend for Worcester came along, George Dickinson by name,
At first he acted bashful, but that soon he overcame;
He drove about the country and enjoyed it with the rest,
But glad to go back home again and thought the city best.

There came one day a little note that something like this read,
Can you provide for three of us, some victuals and a bed?
An aunt will bring two nephews down, one fourteen and one eight,
Please meet them at the station and we hope they'll not be late.

We drew a mental picture of a lady, sixty three,
And wondered as we waited, just how nice of course she'll be;
We donned our best behavior when the carriage drove in sight,
To look as much like Sabbath day, we tried with all our might.

But we were dissapointed when we woke up from our dream,
We thought how true it is, that "Things are seldom what they seem";
She looked so young and pleasing, with a splendid picture hat,
Of all our guessings, each had fallen very flat.

Soon everybody liked her and her friendship wished to make
And all the folks concluded as a leader she would take;
She made the base ball banners, which we at the game could shake,
She drove the horse and hayrack all the way around the lake.

Did we tell you that her name was scotch? no better one on earth,
A Cameron from the Highland Clan, herself to Swedish birth;
We hope some day to meet her with her husband, and take tea,
A rousing welcome he will get if he will bide a'wee.

Now Howard is the eldest boy, a Warren through and through,
His ancestors in history, were men both good and true;
He took a shine to Laura and picked her lots of flowers,
He sat beside her at the meals and spent some pleasant hours.

He also sat beside her when we drove out in the rack,
And to his aunt in front of him, said dont be turning back;
He took her gently by the arm and hand without a glove,
And said if I was old eneough, I might begin to love.

We all went for a walk one day for berries on Pine Hill,
And found them very plentiful and each one got his fill;
He said to Laura Sylvia, the weather is so clear,
This is a very charming place to take your picture dear.

Now Arthur is a little chap, but just as good as gold,
Said Howard seems to get ahead, but wait till I am old;
When I get back, I tell my Ma, his girl was not much good,
He said it in a funny way, but surely understood.


August the seventeenth, there came by chance along this way,
Four charming ladies in a crowd up into Naples Bay;
One of them was a married dame, but single were the rest,
They all looked sweetly pretty, twould be hard to pick the best.

The first one down the gangway and the smallest one of all,
Was Mrs Angie Walker, she was short instead of tall;
Then came Miss Minnie Mason, with her sister Etta too,
And last, not least, came Laura or Miss Sylvia into view.

Angie exclaimed, it is too bad, our boat is so much late,
but I am sure my Uncle Charles, with carriages will wait;
And I expect that Ella will have something nice to eat,
She knows I will be hungry and her food will be a treat.

Now Angie loved to dress up nice and had about a score,
Of dresses grand of every kind, changed thrice a day or more;
She started off one afternoon, all dressed to make a call,
The fates they seemed against her, for she took an awful fall.

Poor Angie then came running back, she flew just like a kite,
The guests on the piazza, how they laughed with all their might;
To see the change from beautiful, to one of sorry plight,
Iv'e spoilt my nicest dress, Oh Dear, My only black and white;

Mrs Walker is quite popular, right here we beg to state,
She had another birthday, on August the twenty eight;
The guests made up a nice bouquet with fragrance very sweet,
Of parsnips, turnips, carrots two, and one nice large red beet.

At the picnic Angie tried one day, to jump a wire fence,
She said my Charlie would not mind, the woods are very dense;
the fence was high and Angie short, she could not do a thing,
With stocking torn and face forlorn, we heard her shout, not sing.

One night they all proposed to play a pretty little game,
We'll play the one called "Animals", and they will all be tame;
Well, Angie had the roosters part, Oh my how she did crow,
the is this, the rest were dumb and Angie was the show.

When Angie started in to dance, the folks all said with glee,
We'll have to give her some great name, "The Belle of Shadagee";
When Angie laughs the people say, they hear her most a mile,
No wonder when she goes away, we miss her voice and smile.

Miss Minnie Mason is the next to come within our scope,
When she arrived her face shown bright with longing and with hope;
She longed to see the Mountains tow'ring up into the sky,
And said I hope they're visible unto the naked eye.

When morning came and Minnie woke, she found the weather clear,
And shouted out to all the girls, the Mountains seem quite near;
Oh, Mr Hunt, please tell me quick, is that Mount Washington?
How grand and beautiful thy look, I'll put my glasses on.

Please point again that Mountain, every hour she asked at least,
Dont mind how much I ask you, for it surely is a feast;
She got up from the supper, just to watch the sunset grand,
And thought that nothing better could be had on sea or land.

Now Minnie to the Dance Hall went and said it is not wrong,
I love to dance with Luther, for he is so nice and strong;
Before the dance was over Minnie said, for pity sake,
Ask for just one more dance for me, the Lady of the Lake.

They started to kissing each good night, Miss Minnie with the rest,
She said I do not mind, but do not think it would be best;
Big Henry came along just then, and said this is the place,
And right before us then and there, he kissed her on the face.

And now we have to introduce, Miss Etta, if you please,
they called her some M.Etta, when they started in to tease;
Her voice was soft and pretty, she drove with grace and style,
She talked quite entertaining and to listen was worth while.

At Casco Village dance one night, a man quite tall and slim,
Said, May I waltz with you when'eer the music does begin?
He wore his whiskers pointed and spoke to her quite loud,
He said you dance quite nicely, but how very green the crowd.

M.Etta wrote some funny verse, indeed quite bright was she,
The greatest one of all she wrote was, "Belle of Shadagee;
The boys all thought Miss Etta great, she had a winning way,
In fact there's one in Casco, who would like to have her stay.

Of Laura Sylvia next we'el tell, she was quite slightly made,
When asked to give a solo dance, she said I'm not afraid;
Because there are no strangers here, no one but of our crowd,
but Cyrus Ficket in the corner hid and laughed aloud.

When at our Lakeside picnic Laura found a nice retreat,
And said for me a a paddle in the Lake will be complete;
She did not stay in very long, the water was so cool,
But came out with a rush and sat upon a big toad stool.

She said to dry my clothes will take a long time by the clock,
When Howard to the rescue came and spread them on a rock;
Oh-Howard dear, if you were not so young, I'd be your Queen,
Alas I'me just three times your age, but minus seventeen.

Miss Elsie came from Gorham, where so many Libby's thrive,
And when she came to stay with us, the place seemed much alive;
When Ella went away one day, she cooked the dinner fine,
The bluberry pie she cooked that noon, was extra superfine.

Mr and Mrs Calvert came away from Roxbury town,
And when it came to catching Bass he did them all up brown;
Six bass that weighed just eighteen pounds, was what he caught one day,
He caught so many every time the gave a lot away.

The next to visit us was Lou; Lou Edwards was her name,
Her Mother also with her, form the town of Tauton came;
Now if you will believe it, Lou would sooner dance than eat,
And as a fancy dancer, she would be hard to beat.


Now next the farm of Samuel Reed presents itself to view,
A better and more careful man than Sam, we never knew;
He keeps his house and also barn all looking spic and span,
And with his wife and children two, he is a happy man.

Quite wide awake is Edwin Mayberry, never in a trance,
He fitted up a nice large room, so all of us could dance;
He play his Victor Graphophone as clear as any bell,
About ten couples at a time can dance a contra well.

Just one more form upon the hill, the Ficketts we will trace,
The buildings near the corner make a very sightly place;
The Father is a blacksmith, too in fact, and so is ray,
And Cyrus works a little, but would sooner base ball play.

The boys are fond of teachers, but of course tey must be girl.
ray waited till he found a gem, a precious little Pearl;
And Cyrus he is looking round, his favorite gem to find,
And says he likes the Ruby best, if tis the genuine kind.

It was the merry month of May, when baskets come in play,
That four young ladies thought, they's like to celebrate the day
They started out that evening, all dressed up in male attire,
To call on Arthur Bowen with a basket red as fire.

Their victim when he saw them come, also dressed up quite strange
And started in to chase them when the came within his range;
He caught one frightened teacher in his arms, and said who's this?
And but for help from E and C, he would have had a kiss.

In closing, your indulgence, I must ask for, in this verse,
For all mistakes I may have made, dont make it any worse;
by finding fault with what is written; Laugh and call it fun,
And I'll be much obliged to you and call my story done.

Montague W. Hunt, Casco 1910

P.S.
This may not be worth printing and I dont suppose it is,
If Henry Edwards has it done, the blame must all be his;
And Mr Welch must do the job, to have the thing complete,
For all his printing is first class, his work you cannot beat.