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closed to be not unlike that of Cousin in the group which now passed down the Mary Ellen. It also was of brick, with shady street of Warrenford. creeping and flowering vines. A short Like her two friends, Miss Lucy Maxbrick walk also led up from a little gate well dwelt alone in this abandoned old which opened upon the street. There was town. None might say how Warrenford also a little bird in cage at the screened itself existed, still less how its lonely wowindow, and there were big bees among men got on in life. From some place back the quaint, old-fashioned Aowers along in the encircling hills the ravens of the the walk. As to Miss Lucy Maxwell Lord came down. Some said that Warherself, she fully bore out the reputation renford lived on its pension money, derived accorded her by Cousin Mary Ellen. from the Civil War; for certainly not Even as they touched the gate-latch she even these unwarlike Quaker folk had appeared at the door and greeted them. A escaped the compelling militarism of the quaint yet not unlovely picture she made generation just gone by. Warrenford itas she stood there drawing on her mitts. self had lain directly in the path of the Younger than either of the others, she was contending armies, and first one, then clad in the same colorless costume, cut the other, again and again had swept it with small grace of line. There remained clean and bare. Its few public buildin her face, pale though it was, something ings still bore the marks of shot and more of the color of life itself, and life shell, its surviving population also bore beamed from her gentle brown eyes; yet scars, losses, griefs, handed down from naught of sprightliness remained in any the great contest. There were pensions, word or gesture, and she blended perfectly yes.
As to Miss Lucy Maxwell, however, carved pews, and did not blossom in the quiet rumor accorded her certain means stained glass of any lustered windows. inherited from some ancestor who, though Decoration it knew not in any feature, his house and barns were open to all the and not even a pulpit reared itself for the Society of Friends at the times of the propounding of the faith. Colorless, gray, quarterly meetings, nevertheless had been silent, wholly plain, patient, enduring, apworldly enough to accumulate property in parently unperishing, it stood, changed as farming-lands. Miss Lucy Maxwell her- little as any proud cathedral of the Old self lived with two ancient negro serving- World. As it was, so it had been. As it people, and had few activities in life be- had been, so now it seemed fit to remain, yond making book-marks. In her house
year after year, indefinitely. were such pieces of mahogany as collectors Up to the gray door of this
buildcovet, but rarely see on sale. She lived ing came now these three gray figures, on, the last one of her family left in this themselves not much more changed from little valley, where acres once princely had the fashion of days gone by. If no bell been divided and subdivided, enriched, im- summoned them thither, any such sumpoverished, increased, lost, squandered, or mons had been idle. They did not look abandoned, as chance has these matters in about them to see whether others also the history of families. She herself re- came up the winding little road. They mained in Warrenford, one of the very
one else would come. They few accepted figures remaining of the So- were the last to keep the faith, and to ciety of Friends.
open the meeting-house of the Society of “Does thee think we shall be late at the Friends for the midday hour of Fourthmeeting-house, Miss Lucy Maxwell ?” Day. It had been so for years and years. asked Aunt Mary Alice, as she always did They three alone had not failed in the at precisely this hour of each Wednesday faith. morning in the year. And Miss Lucy Once perhaps there had been larger conMaxwell, as she always did on each Wed- gregations, at least on Fourth-Days. nesday morning of the year, replied to her These hitching-racks, built of sturdy oak gently: “No, I do not think we shall be in another generation, had once been late, Aunt Mar' Alice. It is but a short gnawed by many horses; and although the distance now, thee knows.” And then, as grass had now grown into most of the they always did at this time, they unhasten- hollows, the ground beneath had been ing bent their steps up the easy slope of stamped out by long rows of waiting the village street where it turned to ascend hoofs. Now hoof-marks and tooth-marks a gentle, tree-crowned hill.
were toned down, weathered out, themThrough the green of the foliage they selves bitten by the tooth of Time. Grass could now see the modest and spireless grew even up to the weathered boards of edifice of the Little Stone Church of War- the little stoop-sweet, strong, almost purrenford. We must give this name in large ple blue grass of the sort which crossed letters, for although in the valley it was the Blue Ridge more than one hundred better known as the Quaker Meeting- and fifty years before this time. house, and among the Friends themselves The blue grass also grew thick and was called simply the meeting-house, it strong to the edge of the low, gray stone stands in the country's military records as wall, which, beyond the hitching-racks, the Little Stone Church of this certain fenced off a green and well-shaded hillcounty in old Virginia. No one seems to side. Out of the covering of green, which know when or by whom this little gray was little injured by the shade of the building was erected, except that the stately trees, there rose, on the summit Friends built it some time in the far past. and along the gentle slope of the hillside, After the Civil War the Friends replaced many low gravestones of gray sandstone. the broken stones, repaired the roof, set They were uniform in height, none over all in order, to become gray and moss- two feet above the surface of the purple grown again, as it had been so long. Carv- grass. There is not, even in old England ing or gilding it never knew. No bell itself, a calmer and more unchanged spot ever has surmounted it to call worshipers than the old Warrenford burying-ground thither. Its saints sat in the plain and un- of the Society of Friends. Here they lay,
unpretentious, seemly, silent, the men and of the burying-ground of the Friends. women of two centuries.
They hesitated for a time, then drew Line, color, the pomp of fretted stone, nearer to the old, gray wall of stone. They the voice of music, the sounds of ceremony looked over into the plot where so long and of form, may call others to the gath- the Friends had buried their dead, an anerings of this or that religion in different cient greensward, scarce upheaved even by corners of the world; but these worship- the more recent mounds. The letters of ers, silent and gray, came now to a silent, the small, gray sandstone slabs, unchanggray, unornamented household of spiritual ing monuments of the Society of Friends, appeal alone. Almost it seemed as if the were in some cases almost obliterated by old meeting-house must have grown quietly the years. Close observation might have and gently, without sound of discordant informed the curious that here lay dead, at hammer or scrape of trowel, certainly this or that day, of this or that numbered without accompaniment of song, later to month of the two centuries ago, Isaac or be tenanted by those who worship in si- William or Joseph or Mary or Elizabeth lence in a faith austerely shorn of all for- or Rachel, born at such a numbered, not mality.
named, time of the calendar, long, long As they entered, they found places upon ago. Once in a while some one had cut that side of the meeting-house always ac- the grass here. Against the trunks of one corded to their sex, which might not min- or two trees leaned certain gray headgle with the men of the congregation, al- stones done in ancient, scrawling script, though no man had been seen here for by accident detached from their proper many years. Empty as the little church places, and now never properly to be rewas, it did not sound empty, as do certain placed. other tenantless rooms.
In the soft harmony of this scene was Here, now, before the congregation of one discordant note. Leaning against the three, was no priest or minister, nor had angle at the corner of the wall, so highly there ever been. There was no lip service polished that the rays of the sun were rehere. This spot demanded only the devotion flected from its spotless sides, there reof the heart. These three, following the clined a shaft of white marble, evidently custom of their creed, now sat with heads the work of modern hands. In the inbowed slightly, each with her hands folded scriptions on the gravestones of the in her lap. There were no books of song or Friends the record of birth and death was of prayer. Music had never been known to held sufficient; and all folk were held even them. Worship was unsoftened in any and alike in the eyes of the Lord. All way. Unsoftened, did we say ? Could these lay in a democracy of death. No that be, when there were present these gravestone taller than two feet above the dove-colored figures, gentle, faithful, rev- grass had ever been erected here. But erent? These being here, how softly radi- here was a pretentious monument four or ant seemed all this calm interior!
five feet high at least. It was slender, At last, after an hour unbroken by any and well executed in its way, done in the cough, shuffling, or movement due to un- shape of a broken lily. At the base of the regulated nerves, Aunt Mary Alice arose, stone, well carved, was an inscription: turned to Miss Lucy Maxwell, and shook her by the hand. They both shook Cousin
Sacred to the Memory of Henrietta, BelovMary Ellen by the hand. Then without
ed Wife of Hiram Farwell, who Departed this word, the services being thus concluded, Life June 21, 19–. A Loving Wife, a they turned toward the door. Without
Gentle Soul. This Shaft, Typical of Her much deviation, this had been their cus
Purity and Innocence, is Erected by Her tom on Fourth-Day noon every week of Sorrowing Husband. Pity His Grief, and the year for many years. They were old Model your Life upon Hers, thus Untimely ladies now, only one of them less than
As they now turned their steps down There were two dates, following the the little stoop, they glanced across, as fashion of our calendar, not that of the the often did, to catch the peaceful pic- Friends. The wife had been very young ture of the sun and the grass and the trees at the time of her death; but there had
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gone with her one yet younger. Below “But the child's mother - look at that the lettering of the main inscription was inscription!" another, simple and impersonal. It bore "She died not having knowledge of her no dates, but two dashes, and read, “In- child. Neither lived. They should not fant Son of Henrietta and Hiram Far- be separated now. And, besides, I knew well." Below this was the supplication, Henrietta Doane as well as any of thee. 'God be Merciful to Us All!”
She was white as the lily itself, as good "Thee knows," said Aunt Mary Alice, and sinless. What worldliness is there in turning to her companions at length, calling her 'Beloved' before God? Be“that I loved Henrietta as my own sister. sides, the Society of Friends is not what But now look at this. Tch! tch! To once it was." think of such vanity and worldliness as Aunt Mary Alice's ire arose.
“Let this, here in the Friends' burying-ground !" Hiram Farwell raise this monument in his
The others at first made no comment. own yard, if he likes, but not here, where It seemed understood that the subject was for two hundred years the brothers and not altogether new. It was Miss Lucy sisters have lain down in peace. As they Maxwell who at last ventured a word. lived plain, so they lie plain there; so they
“But there was- thee very well knows, will arise plain before the Lord." Aunt Mar' Alice — there was the baby." But the soft voice of the other rejoined: Her eyes, brown and gentle, sought the "If Hiram Farwell forgot all the ways of kindly face of Cousin Mary Ellen. The the Friends, at least he has not forgotten latter nodded slowly.
the wife that he found here among us “Pride of the flesh,” rejoined the elder Friends; and neither has he forgotten her woman, promptly, with a sniff, almost a little child. He could have had a much snort. “Vanity. Yes, indeed; thee needs more worldly gravestone than this. It only go to Balt'mer or to Washington to
says, 'Beloved.' see in the burying-grounds gravestones Her gentle protest did not convince the very much larger than any of these. But other sister in the church. “Lucy Maxwhat of the reckoning before the Lord well, I say thee grieves me, that thee does. when the dead shall rise ? I ask thee that, Such words of stubbornness-it is not now, Lucy Maxwell; and I ask thee, seemly in thee.
seemly in thee. Thee raises thy will Cousin Mar' Ellen."
against the ways of the Lord and against "Does the Lord on high judge between the custom of the Society of Friends. the colors on gravestones, Aunt Mar' Thee must have more care, Lucy MaxAlice?" demanded Miss Lucy Maxwell well.” with rising courage.
“This is so white The slender figure opposite her stiffand plain, it seems to have no pomp about ened into lines as rigid as her own. The it. “Beloved !'"
pink in the face of the younger saint deep"The Lord's face is set against vanity, ened yet more, schooled though she was to that thee well knows, Lucy Maxwell," meekness and consent. answered Aunt Mary Alice. “Henrietta “What does thee mean, then, Lucy Doane, either before or after her mar- Maxwell?” cried Aunt Mary Alice, horriage, did not vaunt herself above her rified. neighbors. Why should the husband vaunt “Only this, Aunt Mar' Alice: if we do for her? See now, if this marble were set not agree, then how can we sit together up there in our burying-ground, it would in the meeting-house? There are Hickshow distinct from all the others. Such site Friends, as thee knows, and others, pridefulness has never been known in this the Orthodox Friends, as thee knows; yet valley. And that thee both knows very both societies are sincere, and that is the
test. If I am sincere, how can I sit in thy Miss Lucy Maxwell spoke almost as company in the meeting-house, saying all though she had not heard when presently the time in my heart: 'Aunt Mar' Alice, she resumed:
thee is wrong. Thee is wrong'?" "That little babe - that little, little “But it is thee that is wrong, Lucy child! Thee sees, Aunt Mar' Alice, it Maxwell,” broke out the other. “Thee never knew its mother. It could not would end the society here in Warsenvaunt itself overmuch."
ford, that is what thee would do. But