Puslapio vaizdai

to himself his special gang, or clientèle, and to make it as large as possible. To insure that they shall fish for him and no other he uses all the arts of a commercial traveler. He makes a slightly more' favorable price here, relies upon an exhibition of jolly goodfellowship there, and again appeals to longestablished usage and relations. He must be able, too, to fit a client out here and there on credit with the necessary gear for the campaign. By every means in his power


he assures him that he will not do better with any other living skipper, and begs him not to forget it. His own compensation is sometimes a salary, but more often a commission on the amounts brought in. His cabin is six feet by four, by a height sufficient to stand erect in. It has a couple of bunks with squalid calico quilts on them, a rusty iron stove, and a table-leaf letting down from the foot of the mast, at which he sits casting up his accounts on the shinglethat universal record-book-as he cruises in and out of the small harbors, past the reefs with their singular beacons and the little light-houses of the poorer class.

"Do you see yonder light?" our skipper says, as we sail near South Saint George. "Well, there was a feller appointed keeper from somewheres in the State onct, what had never see the water afore, I guess-a regular p'litical job. Well, after he'd been there a little there was complaints ag'in him, and he was hauled up before the board.

"What time do you put your light out?' says the board.

"Nine o'clock,' says this here p'litical keeper. That's when I turns in myself, and I supposed all decent folks was to hum by that time, or ought to be.'"

The smack nowadays runs alongside the wharf of the lobster-factory. From the land side, the first seen of the skip

per is a pair of brawny hands on the stringpiece.


are followed, as he climbs up the side, by his sou'-wester, his patched woolen round-about, and his cowhide boots covering his trowsers to the knee. The great weighingscoop is again rigged, a tub, with a rope and stake handle, is lowered from a small crane at the corner of the wharf, the shingle is resumed, and the live freight, clutching and flapping viciously, begins to be as unceremoniously transferred with shovels as though it was only coals.


The lobster-factories are very numerous, and can hardly escape the notice even of the fashionable visitor to Maine. He is confronted by one, for instance, at the landing of Harpswell, the principal island of Casco Bay, another at the historic old town of Castine, another at Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert, besides the one at Green's Landing. Deer Island has factories at Oceanville and Burnt Cove, forming part of a series, twenty-three in number, which belong to one firm, and stretch all the way

down to the Bay of Fundy. They cannot be called intrinsically inviting, owing to their wholly utilitarian character, although they are apt to have redeeming features in an occasional touch of the picturesque.

The factory opens at one end on the wharf, close to the water. Two men bring in the squirming loads on a stretcher and dump the mass into coppers for boiling. At intervals the covers are hoisted by ropes and pulleys, and dense clouds of steam arise, through which we catch vistas of men, women, and children at work. Two men approach the coppers with stretcher and scoopnets, and they throw rapid scoopfuls, done to a scarlet, backward over their shoulders. The scarlet hue is seen in all quarters-on the steaming stretcher, in the great heaps on the tables, in scattered individuals on the floor, in a large pile of shells and refuse seen through the open door, and in an ox-cartload of the same refuse, farther off, which is being taken away for use as a fertilizer.

The boiled lobster is separated, on long tables, into his constituent parts. The meat of the many-jointed tail is thrust out with a punch. A functionary called a "cracker" frees that of the claws by a couple of deft cuts with a cleaver, and the connecting arms are passed on to be picked out with a fork by the girls. In another department, the meat is placed in the cans. The first girl puts in roughly a suitable selection of the several parts. The next weighs it, and adds or subtracts enough to complete the exact amount desired (one or two pounds). The next forces down the contents with a stamp invented especially for the purpose. The next puts in a tin cover with blows of a little hammer. Then a tray is rapidly filled with the cans, and they are carried to the solderers, who seal them tight except for minute openings in the covers, and put them in another tray, which, by means of a pulley-tackle, is then plunged in bath caldrons, in order that the cans may be boiled till the air is expelled from their contents through the minute openings. Then they are sealed up and are boiled again for several hours, when the process of cooking is complete.

In the packing-room the cans are cleaned with acid, painted a thin coat of green to keep them from rusting, pasted with labels displaying a highly ornamental scarlet lobster rampant against a blue sea, and placed by the gross in pine boxes to await the arrival of the company's vessel, which cruises regularly from factory to factory,

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The solderers, each with his little sheetiron furnace, bristling with tools, on the table beside him, and the white light of one of a long row of small windows playing over him, give the suggestion of alchemists. Over their heads in a prominent place is a placard : "NOTICE! HOW TO PRESERVE HEALTH: LET THESE TOOLS ALONE!!!" There must be a little history of mischiefmaking attached to this. Who could have interfered with the honest solderers' tools? Could it have been yonder pretty girl, certainly the belle of the lobster-shop? She stands at the end of a long table, in a check apron bound with pink, her arms bare, her brown hair with threads of auburn in it hanging down her back in a braid. She is

of the robuster Yankee type, about which there is no suspicion of consumption. Near her, by the partition, is a disused dory on a heap of coarse salt, which forms a sort of beach for it, and overhead other dories are sandwiched between the rafters. She is very steady, they tell us, and engaged to a young man who sails in the company's freight-smack; and, indeed, we see him come in, in a linen duster over a suit of ready-made clothes, and shake hands with her and his friends and acquaintances round about. When we ask her if we are at liberty to draw her picture, she says she "don't know as it makes any odds," and is evidently not displeased with the proposition. Still, it appears by a certain nervousness in her manner that it does make "odds," for she inquires presently how check "takes," and after that, inventing a plausible pretext for delay, hurries home and returns with her hair discouragingly smoothed down by wetting, and arranged around the front in crimps.

The solderers are paid from twelve to fifteen dollars a week, ordinary men from seven to ten, and the girls no more than three and a half. Yet even at this price a respectable class of female labor is engaged. Some of the young women have taught school in their time. This is not so remarkable when we say that common report has it that there are towns on this coast where, by the excessive shrewdness of rural committeemen, the wages of school-keeping have been reduced to two dollars a week.

The minor employés are generally gathered from the neighborhood. The more skillful are brought in for the season, and have successive engagements at different points. The solderers are in particularly active demand, owing to the extent to which the business of canning has been extended, and seem to have in their vocation a substantial means of livelihood. The sweetcorn season opens as soon as the lobster season closes, and soon after the first of August the solderers will be found making ready to hurry to the country back of Portland, where corn-canning is an industry of great magnitude.

The corn-factories and lobster-factories are owned to a large extent by the same companies, and one may chance to hear it charged that the lobster-law was procured with special reference to this natural connection of the two crops.

“It aint in the interest of the lobster nor yet of the public, the law aint," said an informant who holds this theory. “They say the meat is p'is'n after such a time, but the smacks keeps on catchin' of 'em up and puttin' in ice all summer-that don't look much like it. The parties wants the sawderers down to Freeport and Gorham for cannin' the corn-that's how it is; and they don't want no one else a-goin' on with lobsters when they aint at it. But what was your object in knowin' ?" he interrupts his discourse to ask, not readily conceiving a merely speculative interest in these matters; you thinkin' of startin' a lobster-factory ?"




LIKE lonely sailors on a foreign sea,
Without a compass and without a chart,
Unhelped by all their lore of seaman's art,
Souls drift along in the vast mystery

Of Love's companionship. There cannot be
A solitude so pathless as a heart.

No undiscovered isles lie so apart

From him who seeks, as lie the thoughts that we
Forever yearn to read behind dear eyes,-
The dear eyes that we love, and love to kiss.
Ah, well! But one thing matters to our bliss.
So long as Love's sun goes not down, all skies
Are clear: all shores are friendly: treasure lies
On all we shall not one sweet harbor miss!



miles from the City Hall, New York, and that probably ten million dollars are invested in their lands, structures, and stock; and when it is known that the demand for horticulture in New York is hardly the average of that of other cities of the Union, it will be seen that the business is an important industry. Formerly the practical work was entirely in the hands of European gardeners, but for the past fifteen or sixteen years many of our large floral establishments have been employing young Americans as assistants, taking only such as are qualified by education and intelligence to grasp the more intricate and scientific details of the business. The results from this are already shown in the fact that the American system of propagation and culture is perhaps unequaled in the world; and no better evidence can be given

ALUMINIBALL TAMPEof the truth of this assertion than the fact



THE cultivation of plants for ornamental purposes, both for greenhouse and grounds, has made rapid progress during the past twenty years. It is estimated that there are upward of six hundred commercial florists' establishments within a radius of ten

which any one may verify by a comparison of price-lists-that plants, on an average, are sold at one-third less here than in England, while our rates paid for labor are at least one-half higher. It may be interesting to give briefly in detail some of the leading operations of the business, beginning with propagation by seeds.

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Whenever a plant can be increased by seeds, that plan is adopted in preference to cuttings, or any other method, not only because more vigorous plants are thus obtained, but because this method is simpler, cheaper, and quicker, where large quantities are wanted; and to the amateur in floriculture, or the florist living in sections of the country where plants could not conveniently be sent, seeds afford means of procuring varieties that it would be next to impossible to get in any other way. If the following plan is strictly adhered to, the most delicate plants can be raised from seeds in a com



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mon sitting-room or hot-bed just as well as in a fully appointed greenhouse: For the bed an ordinary sized soap-box may be used, cutting it into sections, and making these into boxes two inches deep, leaving the seams at the bottom wide enough to allow the water to pass off quickly. These shallow boxes should be filled with finely sifted soil, level with the top; and this soil should be pressed down with a board, making it as smooth and level as possible; on this surface the seeds should be sown and pressed gently down with the board, so as to sink them into the soil. Then dry




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