Page:Abraham Lincoln, A Story and a Play.djvu/27

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Out in the World

As Abraham grew up, more and more people came to his part of the country to settle. A village called Gentryville grew up a mile or so from the Lincoln home. In the general store there, Abraham was clerk for a whole winter. Every evening and Saturday afternoons, this store was a gathering-place for all the men of the country side. They talked politics, told stories, and read aloud from the weekly newspapers, so the young clerk learned much at this time about what was going on in the world outside.

Mr. Gentry, the owner of the store, took a great liking to his young clerk, and gave him a chance to see something of that outside world. He loaded a flat boat with corn, flour, bacon and other things raised in the country near by, and gave it into the charge of Abraham and his son Allen. They were to go down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers and sell the goods to the owners of the plantations where sugar and cotton were raised by negro slaves. He promised Abraham eight dollars a month, besides paying his fare home on a steamboat.

This seemed a large sum of money to the young man; besides, he was glad of the chance