Page:Poor White.djvu/63

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him, was at work on some new creation of the whit- tier's art. The travelers were impressed and told the tale abroad. Allie's fame spread to other towns. " He has a good brain," the citizen of Bidwell said, shaking his head. " He don't appear to know very much, but look what he does ! He must be carrying all sorts of notions around inside of his head." Jane Orange, widow of a lawyer, and with the sin- gle exception of Thomas Butterworth, a farmer who owned over a thousand acres of land and lived with his daughter on a farm a mile south of town, the richest person in town, was known to every one in Bidwell, but was not liked. She was called stingy and it was said that she and her husband had cheated every one with whom they had dealings in order to get their start in life. The town ached for the privilege of doing what they called " bringing them down a peg." Jane's hus- band had once been the Bidwell town attorney and later had charge of the settlement of an estate belong- ing to Ed Lucas, a farmer who died leaving two hun- dred acres of land and two daughters. The farmer's daughters, every one said, " came out at the small end of the horn," and John Orange began to grow rich. It was said he was worth fifty thousand dollars. All during the latter part of his life the lawyer went to the city of Cleveland on business every week, and when he was at home and even in the hottest weather he went about dressed in a long black coat. When she went to the stores to buy supplies for her house Jane Orange was watched closely by the merchants. She was sus- pected of carrying away small articles that could be slipped into the pockets of her dress. One afternoon in Toddmore's grocery, when she thought no one was

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