It gives us much satisfaction to know that "S" still lives, all rumors
to the contrary notwithstanding. When we penned that article, we did not suppose
we were criticising the project of a sick man, having never, knowingly, courted
a fencing match with any person unable to return the blow. At this time "S"
had been spending some few weeks on the old Colony Coast, hunting out inquiries
all the way from Plymouth Rock to Martha's Vineyard. Our supposition was that
he would come back to Deerfield, rejuvenated by sea breezes and antiquity, and
would sail into the Monument contest with all the vim of a Roman gladiator.
Unfortunately; our friend came back seriously unwell, but is now much better,
and has already buried "Pocumtuck," and proposes, still further, to
write a series of articles upon monuments, beginning, we presume, with
the tower of Babel, and ending with the one in the old Deerfield graveyard which
was "gratuitously" erected by "Uncle Sid." When
our friend can prove that it is necessary for a cow to have two tails, he may
perhaps convince us that another monument for the fathers of the town
is necessary. We have already a monument which covers the entire subject, and
"S." will find it so if he will look at the west side of the Soldiers'
Monument. Three sides are devoted to the young men who fell during the rebellion,
and the west side to the fathers of the town. It seems, by this, that "Pocumtuck"
is not the only man who has defective eyesight. Our eyesight was defective because
we made use of a symbolic word, and chose to say granite soldier instead
of red sandstone soldier. Perhaps making use of red sandstone would
have improved the soldier and the sentence, and also the reputation of "Pocumtuck's"
eyes. But where have our neighbor's eyes been during all this time that he has
failed to see that west side inscription, as follows:
"This Monument stands upon the old meeting house hill, and is within the
limits of the Old Fort, built A. D., 1689, and which remained until A. D., 1758,
and was one of the chief defenses of the early settlers against the attacks
of the savage Indians. With pious affection and gratitude, their descendants
would hereby associate the sacrifices and sufferings of the fathers of the town
in establishing our institutions with those of our fathers in defending them.
'Aye, call it holy ground,
The spot where first they trod;
They have left unstained what here they found--
Freedom to worship God.'"
If the above does not clearly show that the fathers have been sufficiently
honored by monumental inscription, then our eyesight is as defective as our
neighbor states. It is not very probably that this question of another monument
in Deerfield will seriously affect the destiny of either Europe or America.
It seems to most of us a childish project, with which we do not care to be bored.
Every silly plan generally has several tails attached, and we have heard it
said if the monument is erected we must go through the splendid agony of a bi-centennial
celebration, at which the committee of arrangements and special constables will
have an opportunity to wear blue ribbon badges, and others can be gratified
with a seat on the platform. "Pocumtuck" has become so thoroughly
selfish that he would much rather sell a pair of boots or a gallon of non-explosive
kerosene than take any stock in appendix monuments or celebrations which are
more wearisome than beneficial. Neighbor Sheldon is writing a good history of
the town, and let us endeavor to give it a large circulation, but do not bother
us, the majority, with too many unnecessary projects.
Mr. Editor, you are probably tired of this subject, and the next time I bother
you, it will be upon some other topic. Neighbor "S." does not get
off the track very often, but when he does, we shall claim the privilege to
give him a little wholesome advice. POCUMTUCK.