Miscellany (1845)

A woman named Johnny

A young woman was recently taken to the New York City Hospital from Anthony street with a broken leg, who went by the name of “Johnny.” It is said that she acted in the capacity of stage driver nearly three years on one of the omnibus routes I n Boston. Dressed in male apparel, she chewed tobacco, smoked segars, drank brandy, and swore as valiantly as any of her confederates, and her sex were never discovered. It was during this time that she adopted this name which is now the only one by which she is known.


A dead blue-bird

A dead blue-bird was found clinging with its feet to one of the wires of Morse’s Electro Magnetic Telegrpah, a few miles from Washington city. The body of the bird was examined and no shot wound, or wound of any kind, was discovered sufficient to produce death, which has led to the belief that the poor thing was killed while perched upon the wire, some time during the operation of the telegraph, by a shock of electricity.


A curious Pencil

A curious pencil was shown us yesterday, says the Philadelphia Spirit of the Times. Move one slide and it becomes a pen; move another and it is pencil; another and it is a tooth-pick. One end opens and exhibits a place of deposite for leads. Then the instrument unscrewed at the centre, displays a balance for weighing letters, from one eight of an ounce up to two ounces, with the price of postage by the new law marked on the margin. Truly this is a combination of utilities, and all for fifty cents.


Rattle Snake.

Mr. Benjamin Hoyt, of cord, N.H. killed a rattle snake, a few days since, which was five feet long and nine inches in circumference; forty-nine eggs were taken from it. It had twelve rattles consequently it was fifteen years old.


Selfish Axioms

A northern editor thinks that the old maxim of “keep what you’ve got, and get what you can,” does not always hold good-for instance if a man has a toothache he is not particularly anxious about keeping it for any length of time!


A Coquette

A coquette may be compared to tinder, which lays itself out to catch sparks, but does not always succeed in lighting a match.



We like to talk over our disasters because they are ours; add others like to listen, because they are not theirs.


To Love Mankind

In order to love mankind – expect but little from them; in order to view their faults without bitterness, we must be accustom ourselves to pardon them; and perceive that indulgence is justice which frail humanity has a right to demand from wisdom.


A Definite Answer

The following may be called a very definite answer – “Will you apologize or fight?”

“Sure I will.”


A True Gentleman

Whoever is honest, generous, courteous, honourable and candid, is a true gentleman, whether learned or unlearned, rich or poor.


Who to Trust

Trust him little who praises all, him less who censures all, and him least who is indifferent about all.



We try to deceive ourselves as to the shortness of time, and so we divide and measure it in large portions – years and centuries. The succession of minutes seem like the swift following of waves in a brook, and a year or age is like a vast sea, the motion of which escapes our notice. In large cities, we tend to forget the shortness of life in its multiplicity; for every man seems to protect his neighbor, just as an army – we think only of those who survive, not of those who have fallen.


No Sweeter Music

Earth has no sweeter music than a gentle word breathed into a sorrowing heart.


An Army of Principle

An army of principle will penetrate where an army of soldiers cannot.
It is neither the Rhine nor the Ocena that will arrest its progress. It marches on the horizon of the world, and will conquer.


Disasters, Ours and Theirs

We like to talk over our disasters because they are ours; and others like to listen, because they are not theirs.


Virtue like flowers

Virtue, like flowers, sheds its fragrance most profusely when trampled upon.



All accidental sorrows may be dwelt upon with calmness, or recollected with gratitude to Him who sent them; the sorrows that spring from ourselves preserve their unmitigated bitterness.



Evils in the journey of life, are like the hills which alarm travellers upon the road; they both appear great at a distance; but when we approach them we find that they are far less insurmountable than we had conceived.



A severe thunder storm visited Lowell yesterday afternoon, and continued for some time over an hour. A young man by the name of Parker, in the employment of Samuel Lawrence, about his residence on Belvidere hill, was instantly killed while at work in a field. Two others were at work with him, and were both knocked down, but not injured. A house was struck on Lewis street, and another on Alden street, which latter was very badly shattered, and a young girl in it so severely stunned as to render her recovery yet doubtful.

—Boston Bee


Widow sells Head

The Brooklyn Advertiser contains a long and horrid story, the substance of which is that one Edward Higbee died about two weeks ago at Wallabout, of a cancer on the face, and his widow refused to let the body be seen by his relatives prior to the funeral. Afterwards, suspicious circumstances arising, the body was disinterested on Friday night and found to be headless – the widow substantially admitted that she had sold the head to a doctor.



Water is the cheapest, purest, healthiest, and to those who habitually use it, the most agreeable of all beverages.


The Dying Wish

A little Sunday school girl, when dying, wished for her mother to put no roses round her head in the coffin, and on being asked why not, said, “Because Christ’s head was crowned with thorns!” – This beautiful thought has been versified by James Montgomery Esq.

‘Mamma’ a little maiden said,
Almost with her expiring sigh,
‘Put no sweet roses round my head,
When in my coffin-dress I lie,

‘Why not, my dear,’ the mother cried –
‘What flowers so well a corpse adorns?’
‘Mamma,’ the innocent replied,
‘They crowned our Savior’s head with thorns.’


Ventilating Hat

Art M. Legrand Smith of Albany, has invented a summer hat with a ventilating crown, it is said.  On the top is an open work circle with an inflating damper opening and closing, so as to command a draft, much in the fashion of the stove.  A contemporary remarks that he should think it capital article for over heated imaginations and hotheads generally.



General rules don’t apply in all cases. we once knew a man who is so careful not to give offense, that in speaking of general falls, he would qualify his remarks by saying, “present company excepted.”  He chanced to be in company with some ladies, and spoke of an absent one as the ugliest person he ever saw, present company excepted.  Now this mistake was perhaps worse than that made by the boy who, speaking of the greatest man he ever saw, was told by his mother he must always except their minister.  A few days after he rushed into the presence of his mother, and exclaimed, “mother, I have seen the greatest hog down town that I ever saw, except our minister!”



Runaway Slaves

Success to the runaways. – slaves are running off from Maryland and Virginia almost by the hundreds.  If northern people “don’t want ‘em  let loose among us,” they had better go in for the abolition of slavery, and then the colored population of the South will stay at home.

—Ind Freeman


Bed Comforter

An Irish servant girl was requested by a lady to go to one of our dry goods stores and obtain a “bed comforter” for her. About an hour afterwards she returned with one of the clerks.  Of course the lady fainted.


The First Gun

Mr. John Buttrick, of Lowell, Mass. Has in his possession, the first gun which was fired at the British, by an organized force, in the war of the revolution. It was used by his grandfather, who commanded the minute-men assembled to oppose the British army which marched out of Boston on the 12th of April, 1775, for the purpose of destroying the stores at Lexington and Concord.


Friends like Clothes

There are men who make use of their friends as they do their clothes, which they leave off when they have worn them out.


Large for his Age

There is a young giant growing in Limington, Me. He is nine years old, weighs one hundred and fifty pounds and is a very cheerful little fellow. His father and mother are below the medium size. He has been growing at this tremendous rate for about two years, without the aid of electricity, guano or artificial stimulant.


Alarm Clock

A Dutchman bid an extraordinary price for an alarm clock, and gave a reason-“Dat as he loft to rise early, he had now nothing to do but pull a spring and he could vake himself.”


Don’t Preach

An Excellent Sentiment. – Frederika Brenner, the talented Swedish authoress, remarks, “We should not preach so much to people; we should give them an interest in life, something to love, something to  live for; we should, if possible, make them happy, or put them in a way to happiness – then they would unquestionably be good.


Horrible Accident

A horrible occurrence took place yesterday morning, at Kensington Iron Works. A man by the name of J.T. Bradford, fell in between two large cast iron cog wheels, and was instantly torn to fragments.

—Pittsburg Journal of Wednesday



Ever consider your time mis-spent, when it is devoted to over objects than those while are really useful and benevolent.



The end of life is to render it happy which it endures.



Dr. Chilton, the chemist, in Broadway, has a living chameleon, just arrived from Borneo. It changes its colors almost momentarily, at times. It has the appearance of a lizard, is about sixteen inches in length, and perhaps three or four in circumference. It feeds on flies and other inscets, which it catches with its tongue, darting it out with the velocity of lightening, and with unerring accuracy a distance of at least a foot.

—N.Y. News


Attornies in China

No attornies are allowed by law in China, but some assuming that character, act in that capacity contrary to the emperial mandate. They are thus curiously described by a literary Chinese: - Villainous and perfecrse vagabonds, who are fond of making a stir, and who, either by fraudulent or crafty scheme, excite discord, or by disorderly and illegal proceedings, intimidaty and impose upon the people.


A Grand Sleigh Ride,

A Grand Sleigh Ride, from Lowell to Lancaster, is in contemplation, by a portion of our citizens – to come off in New-Year’s day, “wind and weather” permitting. The Lowell Brass Band is to blow for the occasion, and from what we learn, it promises to be no mean affair. As the Tickets are limited, those who are desirous of joining in the festivities of the occasion, had better secure them immediately of the managers, Charles II. Bridge, Isaac N. Fitts, Richard Tripp and Joel Powers.


How Many Minds

How many minds – almost all the great ones – were formed in secrecy and solitude without knowing whether they should ever make a genius or not! All they knew was, that they liked what they were about, and give their whole souls to it.


Believe Not

Hear no ill of a friend, nor speak any of an enemy. Believe not all you hear, nor speak all you believe.


Persecution or Persuasion

Whenever we find ourselves more inclined to persecute than persuade, we may then be certain that our zeal has more of pride in it than of charity, and are beginning to feel more for ourselves than of our master.


Cakes and Doughnuts

Wooden cakes beautifully frosted, and mahogany doughnuts, are advertised to be let for parties down east.


Brazilian Friend

A Brazilian introduction is  - This is my friend: - if he steals anything, I am accountable for it.


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