On Horseback By Charles Dudley Warner

 -  This is such an unheard-of thing that we refused to
credit it. When the Friend attempted to arouse the - Page 50
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This Is Such An Unheard-Of Thing That We Refused To Credit It.

When the Friend attempted to arouse the indignation of the Professor about the barbarity of this jail, the latter defended it on the ground that as confinement was the only punishment that murderers were likely to receive in this region, it was well to make their detention disagreeable to them.

But the Friend did not like this wild-beast cage for men, and could only exclaim,

"Oh, murder! what crimes are done in thy name."

If the comrades wished an adventure, they had a small one, more interesting to them than to the public, the morning they left Bakersville to ride to Burnsville, which sets itself up as the capital of Yancey. The way for the first three miles lay down a small creek and in a valley fairly settled, the houses, a store, and a grist-mill giving evidence of the new enterprise of the region. When Toe River was reached, there was a choice of routes. We might ford the Toe at that point, where the river was wide, but shallow, and the crossing safe, and climb over the mountain by a rough but sightly road, or descend the stream by a better road and ford the river at a place rather dangerous to those unfamiliar with it. The danger attracted us, but we promptly chose the hill road on account of the views, for we were weary of the limited valley prospects.

The Toe River, even here, where it bears westward, is a very respectable stream in size, and not to be trifled with after a shower.

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