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" I never saw a town pump," said Patty.
"You shall see one now,” said her mother, smiling.
At that moment Patty saw that Tony was throwing something up in the air, and catching it. She wondered what it was, and looked at him so curiously, that Tony stopped, and stretched out his hand to " little missy.” It was full of the largest acorns Patty had ever seen, - beautiful green acorns, pretty enough for toys.
"Where did you get them?” said Patty.
"The children brought them from the old oak by the spring,” said Tony. "I guess they are the biggest acorns in the world.”
"If I had only had my eyes open,” said Pat'ty, "I might have got some myself.”
"You may have these," said Tony; and Patty put them into her pocket with delight.
Just then the men stopped rowing, and held the boat against a flight of steps with their oars, so that Patty and her mother could go up. Patty was soon on the wharf; but Mrs. Gray staid behind to give something to each of the men.
Tony gave the black bags to a negro on the
wharf, and told him to take them to Newton's Hotel; and then he walked behind Mrs. Gray and Patty as they strolled through the town.
They had eaten some sandwiches on the boat. Judy had taken care that there should be brightred ham, and snowy chicken, and sweet cornbread ready for them at the first hungry moment.
They could not find any grass in the streets. Alexandria seemed as busy as any other town; but Mrs. Gray found her way to the two pumps which supplied the whole town with water twenty years ago.
"I don't know what they do now," she said to Patty ; "but it could only have happened where there were slaves. Free servants would not have carried water such distances, nor could any servants have been spared to bring it, where only a few were kept.”
In a few moments they came to the Episcopal Church, where Washington used to go. It was a very plain building. Patty said it looked like Church Green in Boston. " Yes,” said mamma,
only it is built of brick, and the spire is heavy, and square, and low.”
There was an arched door on each side, and a sort of bow-window behind the pulpit. Tony lifted Patty up so that she could look in at the window, and see the pew in which the General used to sit. Tony could not tell her much about it. He only knew that it had cost more than any other pew in the church, and that ever since Washington's day somebody of his name had owned it. The old Pohick Church still stands in the forest; but no minister has preached there for fifty years.
"Mamma,” said Patty, when Tony set her down, " wasn't Washington very foolish to spend so much money for things? That pew don't look very fashionable.
fashionable. What did he want of all his fine clothes ? "
" There are some questions that I can't answer,” said Mrs. Gray, smiling. "When he was a little boy, Washington was not thought very generous; his father had to make him ashamed of stinginess. When he was a grown man, he wanted some fine carriage horses, and General Lee told him he could not have his, because he would never pay more than half price for anything! To look at his orders on little
Matty's book, you would think he wanted everything fashionable and showy; but Benedict Arnold became a traitor because he wished to live in luxury, and could not bear Washington's rebuke. When Oliver Wolcott, of Connecticut, was made a government officer, he went to New York to see if he could live on fifteen hundred dollars a year. When he got there, he wrote back to his wife that he must live on one thousand, for the President's example would make anything more seem unbecoming and extravagant.”
While Mrs. Gray was talking, the little party had moved on. They were now opposite the Court House. It had pillars in front, and a pretty iron railing round the yard.
Mrs. Gray pointed to it. "Patty,” said she, guess what happened in that yard?” "I can't guess,” said Patty.
"Well,” said Mrs. Gray, " that is the spot where one of the smallest men in Virginia knocked George Washington down.”
"Why, mamma,” said Patty, "I thought he was the strongest man that ever was !”
"So he was," said her mother. ee When he
was a boy, he was fond of all manly sports. He did not care for marbles at all ; but he could leap, and lift, and run. No weather kept him in doors; and he was often seen to throw a stone across the river at Fredericksburg. It is said there has never been a man since who could do it. His father was a very strong man also. His gun is still in existence. He used to hold it at arm's length, and fire away at the ducks on the Potomac. Now nobody can fire it without a rest."
"But, mamma,” said Patty," who could knock Washington down?”
"A very small man, named Payne,” said Mrs. Gray, "and I will tell you about it; it will make you understand the General better. He was only twenty-two years old, and was stationed here with his regiment, of which he was Colonel. There was a great excitement about an election. Washington said something hot. Payne lifted his walnut stick, and threw him down with one blow. Washington's regiment were all enraged; but he went himself to meet the men, and quieted them.
"The next day he went to the tavern, and