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closed to be not unlike that of Cousin Mary Ellen. It also was of brick, with creeping and flowering vines. A short brick walk also led up from a little gate which opened upon the street. There was also a little bird in a cage at the screened window, and there were big bees among the quaint, old-fashioned flowers along the walk. As to Miss Lucy Maxwell herself, she fully bore out the reputation accorded her by Cousin Mary Ellen. Even as they touched the gate-latch she appeared at the door and greeted them. A quaint yet not unlovely picture she made as she stood there drawing on her mitts. Younger than either of the others, she was clad in the same colorless costume, cut with small grace of line. There remained in her face, pale though it was, something more of the color of life itself, and life beamed from her gentle brown eyes; yet naught of sprightliness remained in any word or gesture, and she blended perfectly

in the group which now passed down the shady street of Warrenford.

Like her two friends, Miss Lucy Maxwell dwelt alone in this abandoned old town. None might say how Warrenford itself existed, still less how its lonely women got on in life. From some place back in the encircling hills the ravens of the Lord came down. Some said that Warrenford lived on its pension money, derived from the Civil War; for certainly not even these unwarlike Quaker folk had escaped the compelling militarism of the generation just gone by. Warrenford itself had lain directly in the path of the contending armies, and first one, then the other, again and again had swept it clean and bare. Its few public buildings still bore the marks of shot and shell, its surviving population also bore scars, losses, griefs, handed down from the great contest. There were pensions, yes.

As to Miss Lucy Maxwell, however, quiet rumor accorded her certain means inherited from some ancestor who, though his house and barns were open to all the Society of Friends at the times of the quarterly meetings, nevertheless had been worldly enough to accumulate property in farming-lands. Miss Lucy Maxwell herself lived with two ancient negro servingpeople, and had few activities in life beyond making book-marks. In her house were such pieces of mahogany as collectors covet, but rarely see on sale. She lived on, the last one of her family left in this little valley, where acres once princely had been divided and subdivided, enriched, impoverished, increased, lost, squandered, or abandoned, as chance has these matters in the history of families. She herself remained in Warrenford, one of the very few accepted figures remaining of the Society of Friends.

"Does thee think we shall be late at the meeting-house, Miss Lucy Maxwell?" asked Aunt Mary Alice, as she always did at precisely this hour of each Wednesday morning in the year. And Miss Lucy Maxwell, as she always did on each Wednesday morning of the year, replied to her gently: "No, I do not think we shall be late, Aunt Mar' Alice. It is but a short distance now, thee knows." And then, as they always did at this time, they unhastening bent their steps up the easy slope of the village street where it turned to ascend a gentle, tree-crowned hill.

Through the green of the foliage they could now see the modest and spireless edifice of the Little Stone Church of Warrenford. We must give this name in large letters, for although in the valley it was better known as the Quaker Meetinghouse, and among the Friends themselves was called simply the meeting-house, it stands in the country's military records as the Little Stone Church of this certain county in old Virginia. No one seems to know when or by whom this little gray building was erected, except that the Friends built it some time in the far past. After the Civil War the Friends replaced the broken stones, repaired the roof, set all in order, to become gray and mossgrown again, as it had been so long. Carving or gilding it never knew. No bell ever has surmounted it to call worshipers thither. Its saints sat in the plain and un

carved pews, and did not blossom in the stained glass of any lustered windows. Decoration it knew not in any feature, and not even a pulpit reared itself for the propounding of the faith. Colorless, gray, silent, wholly plain, patient, enduring, apparently unperishing, it stood, changed as little as any proud cathedral of the Old World. As it was, so it had been. As it had been, so now it seemed fit to remain, year after year, indefinitely.

Up to the gray door of this gray building came now these three gray figures, themselves not much more changed from the fashion of days gone by. If no bell summoned them thither, any such summons had been idle. They did not look about them to see whether others also came up the winding little road. They knew no one else would come. They were the last to keep the faith, and to open the meeting-house of the Society of Friends for the midday hour of FourthDay. It had been so for years and years. They three alone had not failed in the faith.

Once perhaps there had been larger congregations, at least on Fourth-Days. These hitching-racks, built of sturdy oak in another generation, had once been gnawed by many horses; and although the grass had now grown into most of the hollows, the ground beneath had been stamped out by long rows of waiting hoofs. Now hoof-marks and tooth-marks were toned down, weathered out, themselves bitten by the tooth of Time. Grass grew even up to the weathered boards of the little stoop-sweet, strong, almost purple blue grass of the sort which crossed the Blue Ridge more than one hundred and fifty years before this time. The blue grass also grew thick and strong to the edge of the low, gray stone wall, which, beyond the hitching-racks, fenced off a green and well-shaded hillside. Out of the covering of green, which was little injured by the shade of the stately trees, there rose, on the summit and along the gentle slope of the hillside, many low gravestones of gray sandstone. They were uniform in height, none over two feet above the surface of the purple grass. There is not, even in old England itself, a calmer and more unchanged spot than the old Warrenford burying-ground of the Society of Friends. Here they lay,

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Drawn by F. C. Yohn. Half-tone plate engraved by H. C. Merrill GAZED IN TURN FROM ONE TO ANOTHER OF THE SOCIETY OF FRIENDS"

unpretentious, seemly, silent, the men and women of two centuries.

Line, color, the pomp of fretted stone, the voice of music, the sounds of ceremony and of form, may call others to the gatherings of this or that religion in different corners of the world; but these worshipers, silent and gray, came now to a silent, gray, unornamented household of spiritual appeal alone. Almost it seemed as if the old meeting-house must have grown quietly and gently, without sound of discordant hammer or scrape of trowel, certainly without accompaniment of song, later to be tenanted by those who worship in silence in a faith austerely shorn of all formality.

As they entered, they found places upon that side of the meeting-house always accorded to their sex, which might not mingle with the men of the congregation, although no man had been seen here for many years. Empty as the little church was, it did not sound empty, as do certain other tenantless rooms.

Here, now, before the congregation of three, was no priest or minister, nor had there ever been. There was no lip service here. This spot demanded only the devotion of the heart. These three, following the custom of their creed, now sat with heads bowed slightly, each with her hands folded in her lap. There were no books of song or of prayer. Music had never been known to them. Worship was unsoftened in any way. Unsoftened, did we say? Could that be, when there were present these dove-colored figures, gentle, faithful, reverent? These being here, how softly radiant seemed all this calm interior!

At last, after an hour unbroken by any cough, shuffling, or movement due to unregulated nerves, Aunt Mary Alice arose, turned to Miss Lucy Maxwell, and shook her by the hand. They both shook Cousin Mary Ellen by the hand. Then without word, the services being thus concluded, they turned toward the door. Without much deviation, this had been their custom on Fourth-Day noon every week of the year for many years. They were old ladies now, only one of them less than fifty.

of the burying-ground of the Friends. They hesitated for a time, then drew nearer to the old, gray wall of stone. They looked over into the plot where so long the Friends had buried their dead, an ancient greensward, scarce upheaved even by the more recent mounds. The letters of the small, gray sandstone slabs, unchanging monuments of the Society of Friends, were in some cases almost obliterated by the years. Close observation might have informed the curious that here lay dead, at this or that day, of this or that numbered month of the two centuries ago, Isaac or William or Joseph or Mary or Elizabeth or Rachel, born at such a numbered, not named, time of the calendar, long, long ago. Once in a while some one had cut the grass here. Against the trunks of one or two trees leaned certain gray headstones done in ancient, scrawling script, by accident detached from their proper places, and now never properly to be replaced.

In the soft harmony of this scene was one discordant note. Leaning against the angle at the corner of the wall, so highly polished that the rays of the sun were reflected from its spotless sides, there reclined a shaft of white marble, evidently the work of modern hands. In the inscriptions on the gravestones of the Friends the record of birth and death was held sufficient; and all folk were held even and alike in the eyes of the Lord. All these lay in a democracy of death. No gravestone taller than two feet above the grass had ever been erected here. But here was a pretentious monument four or five feet high at least. It was slender, and well executed in its way, done in the shape of a broken lily. At the base of the stone, well carved, was an inscription:

As they now turned their steps down the little stoop, they glanced across, as they often did, to catch the peaceful picture of the sun and the grass and the trees


Sacred to the Memory of Henrietta, Beloved Wife of Hiram Farwell, who Departed this Life June 21, 19—. A Loving Wife, a Gentle Soul. This Shaft, Typical of Her Purity and Innocence, is Erected by Her Sorrowing Husband. Pity His Grief, and Model your Life upon Hers, thus Untimely


There were two dates, following the fashion of our calendar, not that of the Friends. The wife had been very young at the time of her death; but there had


gone with her one yet younger. the lettering of the main inscription was another, simple and impersonal. It bore no dates, but two dashes, and read, "Infant Son of Henrietta and Hiram Farwell." Below this was the supplication, "God be Merciful to Us All!"

"Thee knows," said Aunt Mary Alice, turning to her companions at length, "that I loved Henrietta as my own sister. But now look at this. Tch! tch! To think of such vanity and worldliness as this, here in the Friends' burying-ground!"

The others at first made no comment. It seemed understood that the subject was not altogether new. It was Miss Lucy Maxwell who at last ventured a word.

"But there was-thee very well knows, Aunt Mar' Alice-there was the baby." Her eyes, brown and gentle, sought the kindly face of Cousin Mary Ellen. The latter nodded slowly.

"Pride of the flesh," rejoined the elder woman, promptly, with a sniff, almost a snort. "Vanity. Yes, indeed; thee needs only go to Balt'mer or to Washington to see in the burying-grounds gravestones very much larger than any of these. But what of the reckoning before the Lord. when the dead shall rise? I ask thee that, now, Lucy Maxwell; and I ask thee, Cousin Mar' Ellen.”

"Does the Lord on high judge between the colors on gravestones, Aunt Mar' Alice?" demanded Miss Lucy Maxwell with rising courage. "This is so white and plain, it seems to have no pomp about it. 'Beloved!'"

"The Lord's face is set against vanity, that thee well knows, Lucy Maxwell," answered Aunt Mary Alice. "Henrietta Doane, either before or after her marriage, did not vaunt herself above her neighbors. Why should the husband vaunt for her? See now, if this marble were set up there in our burying-ground, it would show distinct from all the others. Such pridefulness has never been known in this valley.


And that thee both knows very

Miss Lucy Maxwell spoke almost as though she had not heard when presently she resumed:

"That little babe-that little, little child! Thee sees, Aunt Mar' Alice, it never knew its mother. It could not vaunt itself overmuch."

"But the child's mother-look at that inscription!"

"She died not having knowledge of her child. Neither lived. They should not be separated now. And, besides, I knew Henrietta Doane as well as any of thee. She was white as the lily itself, as good and sinless. What worldliness is there in calling her 'Beloved' before God? Besides, the Society of Friends is not what once it was."

Aunt Mary Alice's ire arose. "Let Hiram Farwell raise this monument in his own yard, if he likes, but not here, where for two hundred years the brothers and sisters have lain down in peace. As they lived plain, so they lie plain there; so they will arise plain before the Lord."

But the soft voice of the other rejoined: "If Hiram Farwell forgot all the ways of the Friends, at least he has not forgotten the wife that he found here among us Friends; and neither has he forgotten her little child. He could have had a much more worldly gravestone than this. It says, 'Beloved.''

Her gentle protest did not convince the other sister in the church. "Lucy Maxwell, I say thee grieves me, that thee does. Such words of stubbornness-it is not seemly in thee. Thee raises thy will against the ways of the Lord and against the custom of the Society of Friends. Thee must have more care, Lucy Maxwell."

The slender figure opposite her stiffened into lines as rigid as her own. The pink in the face of the younger saint deepened yet more, schooled though she was to meekness and consent.

"What does thee mean, then, Lucy Maxwell?" cried Aunt Mary Alice, horrified.

"Only this, Aunt Mar' Alice: if we do not agree, then how can we sit together in the meeting-house? There are Hicksite Friends, as thee knows, and others, the Orthodox Friends, as thee knows; yet both societies are sincere, and that is the test. If I am sincere, how can I sit in thy company in the meeting-house, saying all the time in my heart: 'Aunt Mar' Alice, thee is wrong. Thee is wrong'?"

"But it is thee that is wrong, Lucy Maxwell," broke out the other. "Thee would end the society here in Warrenford, that is what thee would do. But

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