Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 78.djvu/261

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ONCE upon a time a young king started out to find a better country and a better people. He had been born and raised among the common children of his country, but none of them suspected him to be a king. Even he himself scarcely realized his royal birth, and never guessed the golden harvest that one day would be his after he had really discovered his own country and established his rule over it.

So eager was he to find his kingdom and the people he was to rule over that he set out even before he was fully grown, and like all good travelers followed the sun westward, leaving behind the rugged hillsides where as a child he had lived near the great sea.

Westward, ever westward, the young king traveled, and once he thought he had found his land and his people beyond the mountains in the valley of the Great Miami;[1] but he soon learned that he was to rule a larger kingdom in a greater country still nearer the setting sun. And as he wandered on, he came, at last, to the Land of the Illini[2] which stretched away farther than the eye could see, a broad expanse of almost unbroken prairie land.

"This," said he, "is my country, here will I prosper, here will I be happy, and here will I stay and establish my kingdom." The young king found an ideal home for himself on this dark prairie soil, and for many years he lived as a very independent bachelor; but there finally came a time when the supply of food which he had found already prepared in the soil became partially exhausted, and in hunger he said to himself." It is not good for man to be alone." He then sought a princess named "Clover," and thereafter always rejoiced that she consented to be his queen. Where she prepared the soil. King Corn was again as well fed as ever.

Queen Clover found that the supply of food in the soil had not been completely exhausted during King Corn's life as a bachelor, but only that the supply of some ready prepared foodstuffs was much depleted, and from the remaining total supply of raw materials she was able to prepare much food fit for the king's use, and she was also able to prepare the king's bed in the soil as it had never before been prepared for Mm.

Years passed, and they were happy and prosperous years; but finally

  1. The Miami Valley in Ohio.
  2. Illini is the Indian name for Illinois, which means the land of men.