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Title: Legend of Barkhamsted Light House

Author: Lewis Sprague Mills

Release date: August 1, 2011 [eBook #36935]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Bruce William Miller, Cos Cob


Produced by Bruce William Miller, Cos Cob

A Tale from the Litchfield Hills of Connecticut

September 5, 1874, Collinsville, Conn. —
March 7, 1965 East Hartford, Conn.


This legend lingers in the vale,
Like a mist upon the river,
And children listen to the tale,
When the wind is in the chimney.

In the Land of Wooden Nutmegs,
In the Land of Steady Habits,
In the rugged Mountain County,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where the thrifty farmers labor
From the rising to the setting
Of the sun across the meadows,
And the whip-poor-wills come calling,
From the dark'ning fields and woodlands,
Calling through the misty shadows,
Till the lonely night has fallen,
Lingers still this Light House Legend.

In the narrow, rocky valley
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where the moon above the hill-tops,
Shining big and round and yellow,
Lights the farmers' weary foot-steps,
As they slowly leave their labors,
In the fields and rocky pastures,
Looking towards the homes they've builded
Here beside the quiet Tunxis
Where they eat their frugal suppers
And retire on beds of feathers,
Lingers still this Light House Legend.

Midst the roaring winds of winter,
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where the busy flax-wheel's turning
With the yellow threads for linen,
And the clanking loom is busy
With the warp and woof of clothing,
And the carpet loom and spool-wheel,
Ever ready for the toilers,
Clutter up the farmers' kitchens
And the candles flicker darkly
When the wintry blasts come creeping
Through the drafty window casements,
Lingers still this Light House Legend.

In the houses of the farmers,
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where 'the logs are burning slowly,
In the great old-fashioned fire-place
With the kettle hanging, swinging,
And the wind outside is howling
Roaring down the Tunxis Valley,
Piling high the snows of winter
On the road-way and the river
'Till the fox can hardly travel,
Hunting for his chicken supper,
Lingers still this Light House Legend.

O'er the hill-side and the meadows
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where the hawk is hunting chickens,
As they scratch around the farmyard,
Knowing not the hawk is sitting,
Watching from the lofty oak-tree,
Thinking of a juicy chicken
As a royal treat for dinner,
Lingers still this Light House Legend.

In the winter and the summer,
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where the oxen turn the furrows,
And the house-wives do the milking,
Where the windy roads are drifted
And the spring-time mud is deepest,
When the south-wind melts the snow-banks;
Where the winters are the coldest,
And the summers are the hottest—
Listen to the locusts singing
In the trees beside the hay-field,
See the thunder-heads are rising
High above the hazy mountain;
See the sturdy farmers hasten
With the loading of the hay-carts,
Ere the coming of the shower,
Lingers still this Light House Legend.

Midst the forest on the hill-side
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where, beside the granite boulders
Indian pipes, so white and fragile,
Bloom and blush in lovely silence,
Safely hidden, unmolested,
In the rugged Mountain County,
In their shady, woodland bowers.
Is the site of ancient cabins,
Was the home of Molly Barber.

In this Land of Wooden Nutmegs,
In this Land of Steady Habits,
In the rugged Mountain County,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted,
Near the winding Tunxis River,
Where the groaning mills and presses.
Flow with sweet and luscious cider,
In the sunny days of autumn,
Lingers yet this ancient legend,
Told by fathers to their children,
Gathered round the supper table,
When the candle-light is feeble
And the wind is in the chimney—

In this Land of toil and business,
In this land of sun and shadow,
On the slope beside the river,
Is the place and true location,
Of this ancient Light House legend.


Where the Tunxis wanders down,
Twixt the mountains, rolling southward,
In beauty through Barkhamsted Town,
Dwelt a people partly Indian.

In a narrow vale sequestered,
Through which flows the winding Tunxis,
North of peaceful Pleasant Valley
And the grassy fields of "Moose Plain,"
In the gate-way to the County,
Gate-way to the "Mountain County"—
Ragged Mountain to the eastward,
Rugged Woodruff to the westward,
Guarding well the narrow valley,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted,
Where now grow the birch and alder,
Hardy maple, oak and walnut,
Graceful hemlocks, lofty pine trees,
Spreading up the shady hill-side,
Hill-side stony, steep and rocky,
Was a group of ragged cabins,
Dwelt in by a people blended,
Partly white and partly Indian,
Partly from the early settlers,
And the vagabonds of travel.


They dwelt beside the river's flow,
Hunting, toiling through the seasons,
Midst summer heat and winter snow,
Living in the gloomy forest.

Gathered here from many quarters,
Lived this people without system,
On produce scanty of their village,
Small potatoes near the cabins,
Scanty corn between the boulders,
Here and there a stalk of barley,
Beans and squash and hardy melons,
Eked out was it by their hunting,
When they shot or trapped the squirrel,
Or the partridge or the woodchuck,
Woodchuck plump and fat and savory,
Or the fearless woodland pussy,
Walking calmly in the night time,
Fearing not the hunters' arrows,
Or the hound that followed slowly,
Fearful of the mystic perfume,
Or the fox so sly and cunning,
Or the coon from tree top watching,
While the dogs were bravely hunting,
Running 'round and 'round in circles,
Or the rabbit and the chipmunk,
Or by fishing in the river,
Catching trout and eels and suckers,
Where the darkling waters murmured;
Or with fingers deft and nimble,
Out of splints of bending hickory,
Or the heavy strips of white ash,
Wove in fabric strong and useful,
Many ornamental baskets,
Many useful brooms for sweeping,
Which they sold for cash or barter.

On the hill side daily toiling,
Found they roots and herbs for healing,
Ferns to cure the poison ivy,
Soft witch hazel steeped for bruises.
Many medicines they fashioned
For the people of the township,
Selling each for cash or barter.


With one accord you ask to hear
All the story of the Light House
And those who dwelt with hardy cheer
By the peaceful Tunxis River.

Do you wish that I should tell you?
Tell you how this people came here?
All the story of the Light House?
Of the cabins and the village?
Of this people and their labors?
Of the graveyard on the hill side?
Of the forest-sheltered graveyard?
Of this tribe who were the founders?
Of this tribe who were the children?
All the legend of the Light House
By the peaceful Tunxis River
In the town of fair Barkhamsted?

If you wish your questions answered,
Listen to this ancient legend
From the storied hills of Litchfield,
From the confines of Barkhamsted,
And the valley of the Tunxis.


There was a maiden sweet and fair,
Daughter of great Peter Barber,
The richest man residing there,
Always dignified and stately.

Far off then, in regions eastward,
Of the time long past and vanished,
Near the land where flows the river,
Flows the mighty Central River
Through rich Wethersfield a rolling
Southward to the sea-born billows,
Dwelt a rich and portly farmer
By the name of Peter Barber,
Always dignified and stately
Was this wealthy Peter Barber,
To this man was born a daughter,
In the year of sev'nteen-fifteen,
And he named her Molly Barber,
Of appearance bright and comely,
Fairest of the village maidens,
Sunshine of her father's mansion,
Loved and cherished by her mother.
Always truthful was this daughter,
Honored, trusted and respected,
By the people of the hamlet,
Heeding well her parents' wishes.


No fairer maid was ever seen
Than this lovely Molly Barber,
Who moved as graceful as a queen,
Meeting all with joyous welcome.

Golden Yellow were her tresses,
Banked in ringlets o'er her shoulders.
And her eyes the violets rivalled,
Dancing lights like diamonds shining,
Sparkling clear or laughter rippled,
Glad with joy or sad with sorrow,
Meeting each occasion bravely
As a queen without a scepter.

Pearls from ocean's deepest waters
Equalled not the shining jewels
Glowing in her lips' enclosure.
Laughed she like the ringing silver,
As she spoke of many matters,
Shyly joking, singing, talking,
Busy spinning, weaving, sewing,
Ever happy, smiling gayly,
Quoting often from the sagas,
Ancient poems, words of wisdom,
Apt replies to Cupid's arrows.

Sweet and fair and most attractive
Was this lithe and graceful maiden
To the crowds of beaux and daughters,
Basking in the cheerful sunshine
Of her smiles so sweetly beaming.


And many came to win her hand,
Using all the wiles of suitors,
With all the arts at their command-
One alone met her approval.

But of all the ardent suitors,
Seeking for her hand in marriage,
One alone met her approval,
Found his eager courtship welcome,
Found his visits were encouraged.
All the others were rejected,
All the offers that they made her,
All the flowers that they sent her,
All the letters that they wrote her,
All the poems that they brought her,
All the presents that they gave her,
All the riches that they spoke of,
Failed to win her smiling promise.


With hopeful glance and gentle voice,
Kneeling then before her father,
She asked his blessing on her choice,
Looking for a kindly answer.

Speaking shyly with her father,
Molly told of her devotion,
And her choice of all her suitors,
Fair and honest, strong and hardy,
Toiling daily for his living
In the field and in the forest,
Was the one her heart had chosen
For her partner and her husband
And the father of her children.
Kneeling there she softly asked him
For his blessing on their union.


Her father's face grew dark and stern,
Lifted he his voice in anger,
"You shall at once this beggar spurn;
Seek a richer man, my daughter."

Then her father answered sternly,
Spake against her heart's selection,
Saying with a show of anger,
"Choose a richer man, my daughter,
Never shall you wed this fellow,
Born to toil and lowly labor.
Let him find a slave his equal
Here among the village wenches.
Seek a richer man, my daughter
From the suitors that surround you,
One who has ancestral acres,
Meeting all the needs of living
Meeting all the needs of leisure,
Filling life with joy and pleasure,
While his servants do his bidding.
Live, my daughter, like a princess,
Free from weary care and worry,
Stooping not to lowly labor,
Never shall you wed this fellow!"

Rising slowly, Molly answered,
Answered slowly, speaking calmly,
Though her heart was torn with sorrow,
"Listen, father, to your daughter,
Speaking of her heart's affection-
Him alone of all the suitors
Holds my love and admiration,
Him alone I wish to marry.
May I have your blessing, father?"

Bitter was her father's answer,
Cutting her like winds of winter,
"Seek a richer man, my daughter,
Never shall you wed this beggar!"


Then Molly bravely took her stand,
"Cross me now and I will marry
The man who first may seek my hand,
Whether white or any color."

Answered Molly, speaking calmly,
"Always have I sought to please you,
All your wishes have I followed—
Cross me now and I will marry
Him who first in love may ask me."


So Molly's father called the Law,
Set a guard around his mansion,
And on his household then he saw
Sadness, like a shadow, falling.

Adamant was Molly's father,
Changing not his angry order,
Heeding not his daughter's pleading,
Or her mother's mediation.
Stern and cross grew Molly's father,
Posted warnings 'gainst the "beggar",
Asked the Law to force his order,
Set a guard around his mansion,
Walked in blackness through his kitchen,
Spoke with angry tone and gesture,
Swore that he would "kill the beggar",
Thinking to subdue his daughter,
Knowing not her wilful spirit
Matched his own in daring purpose,
Knowing not the years of sorrow
That his harshness was preparing,
All the numbness and the pathos
That would follow his decision;
All the anguish and the sadness
He was storing for the future;
Knowing not that he was driving
From his heart his only daughter.
"Right" was he, in his opinion,
"Never would he reconsider."

Silent were the tearful servants
In their angry master's presence—
Speaking words of fierce resentment

In their angry master's absence,
For they all adored fair Molly
And approved her choice of suitors.

Sadness settled on the household,
On their lives there fell a shadow,
Fell a dark and gloomy shadow,
Resting there and never lifted.


And when rich Peter Barber died,
Followed still the gloomy shadow—
Forever with him to abide,
For the soul for aye remembers.

Deep and dark the gloomy shadow
Followed through the seasons,
Ever followed Peter Barber,
Ever rested on his household
Till his gloomy years were ended.
And it followed Peter Barber
On his sad and fearful journey
To the land of the Hereafter,
For the soul for aye remembers
All the good and all the evil
By its early master fashioned
From the cradle to the graveyard.
Thus it is that we are building
Day by day, a Heav'n or Hades
For our soul's eternal homeland.
Thus the souls of all man-kind,
When released from earthly bondage,
Seek the place their master fashioned.

On this sad and fearful journey,
Peter Barber, looking backward,
From the gloomy realms of Limbo,
Saw again his daughter kneeling,
Humbly seeking for his blessing
On the union she had chosen;
Heard his angry voice replying,
"Never shall you wed this beggar."

Deeper, darker grew the shadow,
Resting there and never lifted,
Even in the long Hereafter,
For the soul for aye remembers,
Looking earthward through the ages,
Viewing all events and noting
Whether more of good, or evil,
By its earthly master fashioned,
Struggles onward through the eons,
Grieving when the wrong is winning,
Happy when the evil falters,
Joyous when the good arises.
Thus the soul's eternal welfare
Rests upon its earthly master.


And soon there came unto the maid,
Narragansett born, James Chaugham,
Accustomed to the woodland shade,
Later to a home of culture.

As the days went rolling onward,
Time disclosed an Indian suitor,
Noble member of New England's
Greatest tribe of warring Indians,
Narragansett born, James Chaugham,
From the confines of Block Island,
Called "The Island of Manisses"
By the Narragansett Indians.

In his veins a little Spanish—
This the legends whisper faintly—
Mingled with the Narragansett
From a Spanish Senorita,
Shipwrecked, Spanish Senorita,
Mother of his honored father,
Rescued from the roaring billows,
On the shore of lone Block Island,
By the Narragansett sannups
And adopted by the chieftain,
As a loved and honored daughter.

Tall and straight and very handsome
Was this Narragansett suitor,
Once a savage from the forest
With a face with paint resplendent,
And a head-dress gay with plumage
Gathered from the feathered inmates
Of the forest dense and dusky.

In the cold and dreary winter,
When the snow was on the hill-sides
And he hunted in the forest,
On his back hung bow and arrow;
On his feet soft shoes of deer-skin
Made a many colored cov'ring,
And the brilliant, shaggy leggings
Made his brawny limbs more graceful,
While his body was protected
By a blanket yellow, blue and crimson.

In the sweet and pleasant spring-time,
Wearing apron soft and pliant,
Bordered round with beaded colors,
On his feet his shoes of deer-skin,
On his head the plumes of eagles,
Traveled softly by the rivers
While his honored father taught him
How to fish with bow and arrow,
How to shoot the flying squirrel,
How to trail the wary roebuck,
How to build a humble dwelling,
Midst the., lonely forest shadows,
How to meet each changing season.

Later lived he in the village,
In a house and not a wigwam,
"Many moons" among the settlers
In the hamlet by the river,
By the mighty Central River,
Where the big canoes were floating
On the Cove beside the village.

Educated, too, this Indian,
In the manner and the customs,
In the language, and the habits
Of the whiteman's way of living,
Dressed in shirt and coat and trousers,
Seemed he hardly from the forest
But as one with habitation
In a home of gentle culture.


He spoke of life and love and home,
"Much of wampum, many blankets",
Together many years to roam
Safely onward through the seasons.

Chaugham, working in the garden,
Peter Barber's flower garden,
Daily mingled with the servants,
Heard of Peter Barber's order,
And of Molly's daring answer.

'Neath the trees he saw her walking,
'Neath the trees he saw her weeping,
And his heart was filled with sorrow,
Sorrow for the lovely maiden,
So he picked a rose, a red rose,
From the fragrant garden flowers,
Shyly gave it to the maiden,
With a pleasant smile of friendship.

Molly took the rose, the red rose,
Thanked the Indian for his kindness,
Coyly smelled the rose, the red rose,
Saying, "May we meet to-morrow?"

Daily then they met together,
Daily talked of many matters,
'Neath the trees beside the garden.

All the while a watchful sentry,
Peter Barber's watchful sentry,
Out beside the leafy hedgerow,
At the gateway to the mansion,
Stood with loaded musket guarding
'Gainst the entrance of the "Beggar."

Molly, baffled by her father,
But with spirit still unbroken,
Met the Indian's kindly glances,
Listened to his ardent promise,
"Much of wampum, many blankets",
Saw a chance to keep her promise—
"Cross me now and I will marry
Him who first in love may ask me."
Saw the anger of her father
Slowly melting into sorrow,
As the years went rolling onward
And herself a humble toiler
In some distant forest cabin.

Each too proud to reconsider,
Followed then the loss of friendship,
Each to bear a heavy burden.


Then Molly said, "I'll go with you,
Leaving here my angry father,
And live with you the long years through,
Happy in some wood-land wigwam."

Hied the maiden to the Redman,
Turned her back on life luxurious,
Left her father's lofty mansion,
By the mighty Central River,
All its ways polite and social,
All the acres broad and fertile,
Of which she was the only heiress;
All her mother's kind caresses,
Smiles and love and kindly counsels,
All her many ardent suitors,
Hoping with this dusky Indian
She might live as spouse and partner.


And when the ev'ning shadows fell,
Married by the village justice,
When softly rang the curfew bell,
Side by side they hastened westward.

Secret was their hasty marriage,
By a trusted village justice,
Loyal friend of Molly Barber.

In the month of June their wedding,
In the year of sev'nteen forty,
In the warm and joyous spring-time,
When the winter snows were over,
With the coming of the south-wind.
Big canoes were safely sailing
On the Mighty Central River,
For the ice had floated southward
And the fields were gay with flowers—

Green leaves growing in the forest;
Green the grass across the meadows;
Robin Red-breast gayly singing
"Welcome to the joyous spring-time."


On Indian Hill they found a friend,
Comely Tomo, crafty chieftain,
To take their part, their cause defend
'Gainst the angry Peter Barber.

Secret was their quick departure,
In the night-time, stealing westward—
Molly, with her cloak about her,
Followed Chaugham ever closely,
O'er the Talcott Mountain speeding,
Crossing Farmington's broad meadows,
Turning northward 'gainst the river,
Till they reached an Indian village
In the foot-hills of the mountains,
Near the swiftly flowing Tunxis.
"Indian Hill," the settlers named it,
Place of Indian habitation,

Site of Chieftain Tomo's village
Twenty wigwams, ninety Indians
Busy fishing in the river,
Busy hunting in the forest,
Busy farming on the upland.
Even now we find the circles
Of their hearth-stones on the hill-side.

South by west Nepaug resided.
Old and ugly was this chieftain,
Short and small, wearing ear-rings,
Gave his name to stream and village.

South by east, beneath the oak trees,
Where a winding brook made music,
Stood Waquakeag's wee village
Chief Waquakeag, called Cherry,
Still remembered in the murmur
Of the Cherry Brook's clear water.

Up the stream from Cherry's wigwam
Lived the Indian chieftain, Quinnaug,
With his little tribe about him
On the site of Canton Center,
Where are store and church and chapel.

Northward from, the home of Quinnaug,
Midst the rocks beside the mountain,
Was a group of Indian wigwams,
Home of Crump, a quiet chieftain,
With his Indian friends around him.
Even now we find his ovens
And the circles of his hearth stones.

Thus we find it in the records,
In the records of the Town of Canton.

In those days now dim and distant,
Ere the settlers came to Canton,
Sturdy farmers from Massacoe
Traveled westward to the river,
Viewed the land and found it fertile,

Ploughed and planted in the "Hop Yard "
All had loaded muskets handy,
And a guard was ever watching,
Lest the lurking Indian scalp them

Often in the lonely night-time,
In their little shelter eastward,
Where is now the cemetery,
Lonely Dyer Cemetery,
Oldest in the Town of Canton,
Where to-day the silent tomb stones
Stand like Ghosts in silver moon-light,
Wakeful sentries heard the tom-tom
In the hands of crafty Tomo
Beating softly like an echo,
Send a message to his watchers
Up and down the Tunxis River,
On the low-lands and the hill-sides

Then they heard a loon replying,
As he flew along the river.
On the hill an owl was hooting,
And a fox was somewhere barking.
Far away a wolf was howling,
As he wandered through the forest.
Close at hand a bird was singing
"Whip-poor-will," in rhythmic measure,
Singing by the hill-side shelter,
"Whip-poor-will," in softer accents,
Like an echo from the misty lowlands,
Till the air was filled with music.

These were scouts of crafty Tomo,
To their chieftain thus replying,
Telling him of all adventures,
As they scouted by the river,
As they glided through the forest,
As they watched the early settlers,
As they listened in the darkness,
Lest some foe approach the village.

To this little Indian village,
Twenty wigwams in a circle,
Midst the foot-hills of the mountains,
Came fair Peter Barber's daughter
And her Indian husband, Chaugham.

For a moon and more they tarried,
Tarried with these friendly Indians
Living in their twenty wigwams,
Oval houses midst the forest,
Lofty pine trees, oaks and hemlocks
On the westward sloping hill-sides,
Looking eastward to the sunrise,
Looking westward to the sunset.

Lying west of Indian Hill-top,
'Twixt the river and the village,
Was an open, rolling up-land,
Cultivated by the Indians
In those days now dim and distant.

Here the golden corn was planted
In the soft and pleasant spring-time.
Here the golden ears were gathered
When the harvest moon was yellow.

Sheltered from the winds of winter
Were the twenty Indian wigwams
By the circle of the mountains,
Rising westward, northward, eastward,
And beyond the rolling up-land,
Was an inlet from the river,
From the swiftly flowing Tunxis.
Still and deep this inlet water
Where the trout were ever plenty
In the cove below the meadows
'Neath the bank so steep and rugged.

In the warm and pleasant summer,
Here canoes were safely floating.
Farther westward rolled the Tunxis,
And the ripple of the waters
Ever filled the place with music.

Where this Tunxis tribe of Indians
Dwelt in peace upon the hill-side,
Have been found their pots for cooking,
And their hatchets, knives and arrows
Made of stone from Hedgehog Mountain.

Where the Indians built their wigwams,
Safely hidden midst the mountains,
Guarded by the Tunxis River,
Now the whiteman has his cabins,

Summer cabins near the river,
Sheltered by the ancient forest,
Midst the glory of the sunrise
And the splendor of the sunset.

Where the light canoes were floating
Are the wild ducks swimming, diving.
And above the pines and hemlocks
Crows are calling through the seasons.

Dressed in dirty Indian fashion,
Chaugham mingled with the others,
Seemed a member of the village.

Molly, stained all dark and dusky,
Crudely clothed in Indian garments,
And her hair all greased and blackened,
Combed out straight as was the custom
Practiced by the Indian women,
Carried water from the river,
Pounded corn and mended blankets,
Seemed a simple Indian woman.

Thus they dwelt among, the Indians,
Thus they tarried in the village.
For a moon and more they lingered
Waiting for the dread pursuers,
Sent by angry Peter Barber,
Hunting by the Central River,
Hunting up and down the meadows,
Hunting eastward towards the sunrise,
Hunting through the western woodlands,
Hunting for his wayward daughter.


The Constable and Sheriff came
To the little Indian village
Presenting Peter Barber's claim
For his wayward daughter, Molly.

Slowly through the gloomy forests,
From the Mighty Central River,
Came the Constable and Sheriff—
Seen afar and soon reported
By the faithful scouts of Tomo-
Sent by angry Peter Barber
And the money he had promised,
If they caught his wayward daughter.

When the sun was high at midday,
Shining warmly in the valley,
In the valley of the Tunxis,
Came they to the Indian village.

Tomo met them by his wigwam,
Asked their names and all their business
In the peaceful Indian village.

Answered then the Sheriff, saying,
"We are Constable and Sheriff
From the Mighty Central River,
Sent by angry Peter Barber,
Hunting for his wayward daughter
Fleeing from her father's wigwam
With her Indian husband, Chaugham.

"We have come to capture White Girl,
Pretty White Girl, Molly Barber,
Long and golden are her tresses,
Banked in ringlets o'er her shoulders.
Fair and white the youthful maiden,
Like the lilies in the springtime.

"Chieftain Tomo, have you seen her?
With her Indian husband, Chaugham?
Is she hiding in your village?"

Slowly spoke the stately Tomo,
"This a peaceful Indian village,
And your questions shall be answered.
All we have we show you gladly,
All our people and our wigwams."

Then the chieftain called his people,
Beat the drum that called assembly.
O'er the hills and through the valley,
Rolled the urgent call of Tomo—

"Gather 'round me, O My People,
Quickly let the tribe assemble,
For the Sheriff seeks a White Girl."

Gathered then the Indian people
From the twenty sombre wigwams,
From the hunting in the forest,
From the fishing in the river,
From the scouting in the valley.

When the tribe had thus assembled,
In the space before the wigwams,
Spake the chieftain, crafty Tomo,—

"Ne-top-ki-ki-ta, Ski-dem-bak.
Harken unto me, My People,
Here are Constable and Sheriff
From the Mighty Central River,
Looking for a pretty White Girl,
Lovely White Girl, Molly Barber.
Golden yellow are her tresses
Banked in ringlets o'er her shoulders,
Lovely White Girl, Molly Barber,
Fleeing from her father's wigwam,
With her Indian husband, Chaugham.

"Listen well and look around you,
For the Constable and Sheriff
Think she's hiding in our village.

Have you seen her, O My People?
Pretty White Girl, Molly Barber,
With her golden, yellow tresses
Banked in ringlets o'er her shoulders?

Have you seen her? Have you seen her
By the river, in the forest?
Is she with us in the village?

"If you see her, quickly tell me
And I'll send her to her father."

When the chief had finished speaking,
No one moved and no one answered.
All were silent in the village.

Looking o'er his loyal people,
Viewing all the upturned faces,
Slowly spoke the crafty Tomo,—


Then in solemn, stately accents,
Spake the chieftain, crafty Tomo,
To the Constable and Sheriff,

"Go and search my people's wigwams,
Look in all the secret places.
If you find White Girl, you catch her,
Take her to her angry father."

Then the Constable and Sheriff
Hastened to the Indian dwellings,
Eagerly they searched each wigwam,
Leaving all the contents scattered,
But they found no White Girl hidden,
Found no White Girl's shoes or clothing,
Found no tracks or trace of White Girl.

All the time the heart of Molly
Beat in silent fear and terror,
As she waited with the others,
Lest her father's hunters find her,
Lest they take her to her father.

When the anxious hunt was ended,
When the Constable and Sheriff
Had departed empty handed,
Had departed sadly homeward—
Followed by the scouts 'of Tomo,
Lest they circle and, returning,
Creep in darkness near the village,
Thinking Tomo may have tricked them,
Hoping still to find the daughter
Of the angry Peter Barber,
Then the people of the village
Put their wigwams all in order,
Sought their usual occupations
'Till the sun, all low descending,
Warned them Of the gloomy twilight,
And the coming of the darkness,
With the need of peaceful slumber.
So they ate their frugal supper,
Fish from out the Tunxis River,
Squirrels from the lonely forest—
Speaking as they ate their supper,
Oft of Molly and of Chaugham,
And the visit of the sheriff.
Whispered words of praise for Tomo,
"Mighty Tomo, Crafty Chieftain,
Always speaking words of wisdom."

When the twilight turned to darkness,
All the weary people slumbered,
Save the wary scouts who listened,
Watching through the night-time,
Watching by the Tunxis River,
Watching on the lonely hill-side.

When the twilight turned to darkness,
All the weary people slumbered,
Save the kindly Chieftain, Tomo,
At the door-way of his wigwam,
With the Narraganset, Chaugham,
Talking, planning for the morrow-
How to further aid the couple,
How to hide them ever safely,
In some lonely mountain fastness,
Where the angry Peter Barber,
Ever searching, couldn't find them—

All the time the kindly Chieftain
Listened to his scouts reporting,
From the hill-side and the river—
"Whip-poor-will" a bird was singing—
"All is well along the hill-side,"
And a loon was softly calling—
"All is well along the river."

When the morning sun was shining,
Molly Barber and her husband,
With the aid of Tomo's sannups
Bearing axes and equipment,
Hastened northward through the forest,
Ever near the Tunxis River,
To the side of Ragged Mountain,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted,
And beside the sparkling river
Found a place for habitation,
Builded there a lonely cabin,
Midst the trees beside the mountain,
Built a cabin in the Greenwoods,
Deep within the gloomy shadows.
First of all the early cabins
Built within Barkhamsted borders,

Strong and sturdy was this cabin,
Built of logs of oak and hemlock,
Home of Molly and of Chaugham,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,

Catamounts and bears and panthers
Sniffed around the lonely cabin
In the dark and dreary night-time.
Molly feared these forest creatures,
Feared they'd break the fragile windows,
Feared they'd enter through the windows,
Feared they'd kill herself and Chaugham.

Many sleepless nights she trembled
At the howling of the wolf-pack
In the valley by the Tunxis.

Oft she thought of home and mother
By the mighty Central River,
But her courage did not fail her
When she thought of Peter Barber
And his cruel, angry shouting.

Oft she whispered in the darkness,
"Better fear the catamountains,
Better face the bears and panthers,
Better hear the wild wolves howling
Than an angry father shouting,
Or reside within the shadow
Of his dark and gloomy presence."

For a hundred years this cabin
Stood beside the Tunxis River,
By the famous Tunxis River,
River nam,ed for Tunxis Indians,
Calm and peaceful Indians dwelling
In their Farmington round houses,
And the term, "The Tunxis River,"
Signifies, in Indian accents,
"Beautiful and rapid river."


And deep within the dreamy wood,
Where the sheltering hemlocks rustled,
Beneath the hill their cabin stood,
Looking out upon the river.
The oak leaves trembled in the breeze,
Slowly rolled the Tunxis River,
And high above the leafy trees,
Flew the woodcock ever circling.

Thus it was that Molly Barber
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham,
Were the first of all the settlers,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted,
Where her father couldn't find them,
Hidden in the gloomy forest,
Where the Tunxis River wanders
Through the dark and gloomy forest,
With the woodcock ever tapping,
Tapping on the mighty oak trees,
O'er the pine trees ever screaming,
Circling high above the mountain,
And the sea-gulls, fishing, screeching,
Dipping low above the water,
And the great, blue herons wading,
Wading, fishing in the river,
Calling, calling through the twilight.


One ford above, one ford below,
Easy crossings of the Tunxis,
For shallow there the water's flow
In the Town of fair Barkhamsted.

Here they built their lonely cabin
In a Paradise of Beauty.
Shaded by a spreading larch tree,
Midst the spring time's rich profusion,
Near the Tunxis winding southward,
Like a pathway through the forest,
With two fords for easy crossing,
Where the leafy boughs are parted
And the slanting rays of sunlight

Glisten on the tiny wavelets
As they dance along the shallows
O'er the pebbles and the boulders.

Here the mountain bending eastward,
Leaves a place for habitation
Midst the rocks and mighty ledges—
"Light-House Flats" beside the river,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted.


Then one by one the children came,
Eight in all to break the silence,
And each one bore a pale-face name
Hiding not its Indian features.

Here they dwelt while-years rolled onward,
Bringing children to the cabin,
Lonely cabin on the mountain,
Eight, in all the silence breaking
[n the lonely; Light House cabin,

Two were boys with feet so nimble,
Little Solomon and Samuel,
Hallowed names from out the Bible,
Six were girls with smiling faces,
Mary, Mercy, Sally, Polly,
Then came Elizabeth and Hannah.
Blended in each youthful figure
Was the fairness of their mother
With the darker hue of father,
Like a shadow on a lily.
Long and straight and black their hair was,
Like the Narragansett children.


While hearth flames danced in magic plays,
James and Molly told their children

The stories of their childhood days—
Wethersfield and Narragansett.

Molly told them of her mother,
All the kindness of her mother
And the story of her father,
Of her proud and wealthy father
And her home beside the river
Where the big canoes were floating
On the mighty Central River;
Told them of the early plowing
In the fields beside the river,
And the harvest in the autumn—
All the golden corn and pumpkins.

Told them of the holy Sabbath,—
How in church the people gathered,
Listened to the pastor's sermons,
Prayed to God for his protection.
Taught them all to say "Our Father— "
Ere they closed their eyes in slumber,
Tried to teach them to be Christians,
Even in the lonely forest.

Then she told them of the parties,
With the fiddling and the dancing,
'Till their minds were filled with wonder
As they listened to her stories.

Chaugham told them of his parents
Living in their Indian wigwam
On the confines of Block Island,
Storied "Island of Manisses,"
Rising midst the swinging ocean.
There between the storm-lashed ledges,
With the shifting sand and sea-weed,
Ever drifting all about them
Lie canoe and sailing vessel,
Broken by the wild waves' fury.

Chaugham told them of his boyhood,
Of the fishing in the ocean,
Of the hunting in the forest
And the coming of the white man.
Told them of his Indian father,
All his skill in fishing, hunting.
Told them of the forest dances,
Taught them how to pray to Manito,
How to scare the evil spirits,
Dji-bai, from the fires eternal,
Souls of wicked ones departed
From the pathways of the living
To the fires beneath the mountains,
Fires beneath the smoking mountains,
Where they surfer through the ages,
Coming, back at times in anger,
Seeking vengeance on the living.

Told them of the talking spirits,
Ghosts that wander in the night-time,
Viewing old familiar places;
Ghosts that whisper in the darkness,
Souls of those who once were with us.
Souls of honest, kindly people
Ever absent in the day-time,
Often present in the night-time;
Always peaceful, harmless spirits,
From the Happy Realms of Sunset,
From the wigwams of the Blessed,
Souls of those who have departed
Coming back to scenes deserted,
Seeking old familiar places,
Singing, talking in the darkness,

Told them of the festive dances,
In the autumn in the moonlight,
When the ears of corn were yellow
And they gathered in the harvest.

Taught them how to chant sedately,
When they met along the pathway,
"Hun-da-hun-he; Hun-da-hun-he,"
Peacefully we walk together,
"Hun-da-hun-he; Hun-da-hun-he."

This was friendship's sacred token
Known by all the Narragansetts.

Taught them ancient Indian legends,
Legends of the Narragansetts,
All the mystery of creation,
How the lands and seas were fashioned,
By great Manito, the Mighty,

Little Solomon and Samuel
Learned to dance in wild abandon
Swiftly round the flashing firelight,
Like the Narragansett sannups—
All the children learned the legends
Of the Narragansett people.

With a background partly whiteman,
From the sayings of their mother;
With a background partly Indian,
From the sayings of their father,
Growing up, they roamed the valley,
Traveled often through the township,
Mingled daily with the natives,
Meeting many, making friendships.


The yearly seasons rolled along,
Bringing marriage to the hill-side
And daily Molly's gentle song
Soothed her children's children's slumber.

Six were married in the valley,
Binding thus in holy wedlock
Families of the early settlers
And the Narragansett children
From the cabin in the forest,
Home of Molly and James Chaugham.

Samuel married Green of Sharon,
Mercy married Isaac Jacklin.
Polly married William Wilson,
Mary Chaugham married Webster,
Hannah married Reuben Barber,
(Barber's parents came from Canton),
Solomon and Hayes were married
In the Ragged Mountain cabin
On the lonely mountain-side.

Two there were that died unmarried,—
Sally died in early childhood
And Elizabeth, unmarried,
Lingered in her father's cabin,
Lingered to the age of eighty,
Died at eighty, still unmarried,
Died in eighteen four and fifty.


And to Gum Webster and his wife,
Daughter of fair Molly Barber,
Was born a son known through his life
As "Sol Webster, Basket Maker."

Mary Chaugham married Webster,
Later known as "Old Gum Webster,'
Built a cabin on the hill-side,
Lived and died beside the Tunxis,
And their bones are in the graveyard,
In the graveyard on the hill-side
in the shelter of the forest;
None to guard their final slumber.

Solomon, the son of Webster
And his wife, fair Mary Chaugham,
Married Mary Niles of Riverton,
Lived by making brooms and baskets
Lasting for a generation;
Sold them on the streets of Winsted,
Kept a garden, worked for farmers,
Died when he was two and ninety,
In the month of January,
In the year of nineteen hundred.

Even now in conversation
On the busy streets of Winsted,
In the valley of the Tunxis,
People speak of "Old Sol Webster"
And the baskets that he fashioned.


Soon Polly Wilson's house was built
On the side of Ragged Mountain
And Wilson preached 'gainst sin and guilt
In the meeting house in Colebrook.

Polly Chaugham married Wilson,
William Wilson, preacher, soldier
Wounded in the fray at Monmouth,
Fighting in the Revolution;,
Lying; wounded near the cannon,
Molly Pitcher gave him water,
Dressed his wounded side and ankle,
Knowing; not the Light House story,
Saw him only as a soldier,
Bravely fighting for his country.

For her deeds that day in battle,
Molly Pitcher's name was honored;
Soldiers called her "Major Molly,"
Congress made her "Sergeant Molly."

William Wilson built a log house
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
In the Little Light House Village,
With a fireplace strong and ample—
Wood was plenty for the cutting.

Often 'till the midnight hour
Gleamed the fire light through the side-walls
Of his airy mountain cabin,
Light House for the weary travelers
Toiling on the Tunxis pathway.

Held in high esteem was Wilson,
Many years he was a preacher,
Limping slowly to the service,
Where the people gathered weekly,
Eager for his righteous sermons
And the sight of Polly Wilson
With her dozen restless children,
Scrubbed and polished for the solemn
Sunday prayer and lengthy sermon
By their father in the pulpit,
In a meeting house in Colebrook,
Hemlock Meeting House in Colebrook.

Fallen now that house of worship,
Baptist Meeting House in Colebrook,
Built in five and eighteen hundred.
Gone the pulpit and the altar,
And the names of those who worshipped
Now are written on the tombstones
In the Hemlock Cemetery.

Buried, too, the Hemlock pastors,
Bellows, Talmage, Morse and Dory,
Atwell, Garvin, Wilson, Watrous.

All their toil and preaching ended;
All their sermons are forgotten,
But the good they did is living
On in present generations.


The Tunxis, as it rolled along,
Saw new cabins on the hill-side,
And heard the children's twilight song,
Ere they closed their eyes in slumber.

Two of Molly Barber's children
Dug new cellars on the hill-side,
'Neath the pine trees ever sighing,
Built new cabins in the forest—
Tiger lilies grew beside them.
Fragrance from the purple lilacs
Floated through the air at spring-time.

Ever busy were the people,
On the hill-side in the cabins
And along the winding river.
Oft they hunted through the forest
For the rabbit and the squirrel.
Oft they labored by the river
Building swift canoes for sailing.
Often in the shallow water,
Spearing eels and trout and suckers,
Food for hungry, growing children,
In the cabins in the village—
Light House children, more descendants,
Children playing on the hill-side,
Children playing by the river,
Children swimming in the river,
In the pleasant days of summer.
Children playing by the cabins,
"Bar-wa-see" they said at sunset,
To the sun beyond the hill-top,
Western hill across the river.
To the moon, "Nu-garti-an-a"
As it rose o'er Ragged Mountain.
Thus they spoke in Indian accents.

Oft the children sang at twilight,
Sang in accents soft and plaintive,
Ere they closed their eyes in slumber,
Sang a prayer that Molly taught them,
Sang it softly in the twilight—

"Evil spirits are around us,
Keep us, Lord, all through the darkness.
By the stream a loon is calling,
Keep us, Lord, all through the darkness.
On the hill a fox is barking,
Keep us, Lord, all through the darkness.
In the village while we're sleeping,
Keep us, Lord, all through the darkness.
Da-wa-hee-gen, da wa-hee-gen."


The village on the hill-side grew,
Thirty cabins on the hill-side,

And all worked hard to feed the crew,
Hunting, fishing, weaving baskets.

Dwelling here within the forest,
In the sunshine and the shadow,
While the years were rolling onward,
Other children came and other
Cabins rose beside the river
In the shadow of the forest,
Till the cabins made a village—
Thirty cabins on the hill-side.

Through this little Indian village,
Ran a wood-land stream a-winding
Down the side of Ragged Mountain,
Small and scarcely seen in summer,
"Mud-pie Place" for Indian children,

Playing on the mountain side—
Mighty in the early spring time,
When the winter snows were melting;
Mighty in the sultry summer
Midst the flashing of the lightning,
Midst the rolling of the thunder,
Midst the heavy driven showers
On the mountain and the valley.

Many children in the village,
Children playing on the island,
On the island in the river,
Playing 'round their mimic wigwams,
Thinking they were mighty hunters
Seeking game among the bushes.

Children climbing to the tree-tops,
Children roosting on the branches,
Playing they were sleepy chickens,
Roosting out of reach of foxes.

Many little voices crying,
Many little feet to cover
When the winter snows were falling.

Many baskets to be woven
To exchange for food and clothing.

Many fishing in the river,
Seeking food for hungry children.

Many hunting in the forest,
Many making bows and arrows
For the hunting of the squirrel
And the lovely wood-land pussy.
Walking bravely through the forest,
That the village may not suffer,
That the food may be sufficient.


The trail 'became a winding road,
Leading past the Indian village,

For man and beast with heavy load
Toiling through the gloomy forest.

In the year of seventeen hundred
Seventy-two was built a road-way,
First of all the winding road-ways,
Past the cabins on the hill-side,
Trail-like road for white man travel.

Nailed across the cabin windows
Were the skins of coons and foxes,
Hides of catamounts and beaver.
Through these shaggy window curtains,
Where small holes were burned for day-light,
Dimly lighting up the cabins,
Nightly shone the crackling fire-light
From the wood-fire in the fire-place,
Cheerful signs of habitation
To belated trav'lers toiling
On the road beside the river
'Neath old Ragged Mountain's shadow,
Thus the trav'lers tell the story
In their books about the Light House.


And when the stage came through the night,
Past the lonely Indian cabins,
The driver, seeing rays of light,
Shouted gladly, "There's the Light House!

More and more the white man traveled,
So the road-way by the river
Was improved for stage coach service
In the year of sev'nteen hundred-
Eight and ninety—turnpike road-way
Past the lonely Light House Village,
Turnpike road-way for the coaches,
Albany and Hartford coaches,
Coaches on the Greenwoods Turnpike,
Turnpike by the Tunxis River.

Far from Albany the coaches,
Rolling nightly through the forests,
Passed the home of Molly Barber.
And the stories of the cabins
On the side of Ragged Mountain
Spread from city unto city.

Passing on the lonely turnpike,
On the turnpike by the river
In the year of eighteen hundred,
And the years that slowly followed,
Through the dim and fearful shadows,
Where the mists hung dark and heavy,
When the great owls hooted sadly,
Nightly came the stage a-creaking
On its journey to New Hartford.

Seeing light within the forest,
"There's the Light House!" cried the driver,
"Five more miles to reach New Hartford!"

Light House for the stage coach traffic,
For the ocean waves were rolling
Sixty miles away to southward,
And no ships were on the river,
Sailing past the Indian cabins.

Thus was named the ancient village,
Village of Barkhamsted Indians,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
By the winding Tunxis River.


When Chaugham saw New Hartford's doom,
Pictured 'gainst the clouds of ev'ning,
His signal fire lit up the gloom,
Warning of impending danger.

Ever friendly to the white man,
Chaugham dwelt all unmolested
In his cabin on the mountain.

Once he read in smoke-cloud signals,
As the twilight shadows gathered,
Indian plans at Satan's Kingdom
To attack and burn New Hartford.
Hast'ning to the mountain summit,
Up the trail so steep and rugged,
Midst the rocks and jagged boulders,
To the lofty granite lookout,
"Chaugham Rock" atop the mountain,
Chaugham lit the danger signal.
Leaped the flames against the darkness.
Answered then New Hartford's signal
From the top of Town Hill flaming,
And the people of New Hartford
Saw the fire and met the danger,
Saving barns and homes and cattle,
While the women and the children
Rested safely in the fortress,
On the top of Town Hill standing,
Guarded by New Hartford's bravest;
Fortress built of mighty timbers
From the pine trees of the Mast Swamp,
For protection 'gainst the Indians,
Indians of dread Satan's Kingdom,
Thus we find it in the records.

Friendly were the early settlers
To the lonely Light House people,
Dwelling in their lowly ca'bins
On the side of Ragged Mountain.

Round and round the yearly cycle
Rolled the ever changing seasons,
With the coming of the robins,
In the sweet and pleasant spring times;
With the sunshine and the shadows
In the sultry days of summers;
With the robins flying southward
Midst the falling leaves of autumn;
With the lonely desolation
In the cold and dreary winters.


With summer heat and winter cold,
Changed the river's nightly cadence,
As seasons passed and years grew old
In the valley of the Tunxis.

With the changing of the seasons,
Changed the river's nightly cadence.
In the sumlmer and the autumn,
Quiet was the Tunxis River,
Just a murmur of the waters
As they wandered ever southward
Through the sultry shadows flowing,
Making music in the night time
For the people of the village.

In the cold and dreary winters,
Flowing in its ice-bound channel,
Hardly was the river's murmur
Heard within the little village;
Yet the sleepers oft were startled,
When the northern lights were shining,

In the cold and frosty night-time,
By the sudden cracking, snapping,
Of the ice along the river,
Breaking thus the star-lit silence
Of the river and the village.

When the air of spring grew warmer,
Black and low the storm clouds gathered,
Driven by the east wind's power,
Swept across the darkened sky-ways,
Pouring rain upon the valley,
'Till the river, slowly swelling,
Moaning 'neath its heavy bondage,
Burst its hard and icy fetters.
Raced the swirling billows foaming,
Sweeping southward through the forest.;
Tossing logs and jagged ice-cakes,
With a mighty roar of waters,
Crashing on the rocks and boulders,
Tossing spray across the hill-side,
'Till the people of the village
Trembled at the river's power,
Fearing for their habitations.


And Molly Barber labored bravely on,
Strong and stately, hale and hearty,
Until brave Chaugham's life was gone,
And they laid him in the grave-yard;

Wisely, kindly Molly Barber,
Long the wife of Honest Chaugham,
As is written in the records,
Moved about among her children,
Strong and stately, hale and hearty,
Loved by all her children's children.

Though the children grew like rabbits,
Still she taught them how to cipher,
How to read and write a little—
Thus we find it in the records—
Taught the prayers she learned from mother,
In her father's stately mansion,
Near the mighty Central River,
Long ago when she was little

And her world was filled with gladness.
Sped her years to five and eighty,
From her birth beside the river,
By the mighty Central River,
In her father's stately mansion,
With its comforts and its riches,
Still she toiled beside the river,
In the valley of the Tunxis,
Through the ever changing seasons,
Watching o'er her children's children
To the third great generation,
Till they called her Granny Chaugham,
And her name became a legend,
Fold beyond the distant oceans,
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham
Lived respected by all people,
To the year of eighteen hundred,
When his spirit left the hill side,
On its journey to the Happy Hunting
Ground beyond the western sunset.


The clouds obscured the western sky,
Darkness circled round the grave yard
As Molly sadly breathed a sigh
O'er the grave of Honest Chaugham.

There was sorrow in the village,
When they laid him on the hill side
Southward where the soil is sandy,
In the grave yard in the forest.
Molly tried to read the Scriptures,
So the children have reported,
From an old and tattered Bible—
Last of all her childhood treasures,
Given by her loving mother,
But her voice was low and broken,
Hardly could they hear her speaking,
So they sat in gloomy silence
'Till the ev'ning shadows lengthened,
And they left him there in darkness
With a field-stone for a marker,
Seen to-day on Ragged Mountain
In the graveyard's dim enclosure
In the town of fair Barkhamsted.


All lonely, weary and bereft,
Granny Chaugham thought of mother
And all the friends that she had left
By the mighty Central River.

Only then did Granny Chaugham
Seem to feel the years were many;
Only then did Granny Chaugham
Seem to think of home and mother
And her father's spacious mansion
By the mighty Central River,
With the flowers in the spring-time
And the yellow leaves of autumn;
Then the coming of the winter
And the friends that used to gather
In the ev'ning in the parlor—
All the fiddling and the dancing,
All the gay and playful parties,
All the games they played together,
Thinking not of gloom or sorrow—
Joyous days now gone forever—
Days when father was good-natured
And her mother's days were happy.


And from the darkness came a voice—
"Gone forever are your parents;
Long years ago you had your choice,
Speaking with your angry father."

Lying on her bed at midnight,
Lonely Granny Chaugham murmured,
So her children have reported,
"Mother, I am weary waiting
For a sight of you and father
And my home beside the river—
All the vines above the door-way,
All the flowers in the garden—
Looking back I now am weeping
In my hut on Ragged Mountain.

"Follows here the gloomy shadow
From our mansion by the river,
And the angry words of father
In my ears are ever ringing—
Still I see your sorrow, Mother,
On the day my heart was broken
By the angry words of father,
'Never shall you wed this beggar.'
Mother! Mother! Have you missed me?

Then in answer came a whisper,
From the darkness came a whisper,
Moving like a darker shadow,
Like a gloomy thought of sorrow
In the blackness of the night-time,
Making all the world seem hopeless,
Speaking sadly in the darkness
"Lo! I'm dead and long departed
To the land beyond the sunset."


Tis ever thus when hope is gone,
Feeble grow the lagging foot-steps
And slow the hands that carry on,
Waiting for the final shadow.

Only then her footsteps faltered,
Only then she seemed discouraged,
Still she labored for her children,
Cooking woodchuck in the cabin,
Boiling squirrels in the kettle,
And the fearless woodland pussy,
Broiled above the glowing embers,
Browned and ready for their supper;
Pounded corn in ancient mortar,
In the cabin in the forest,
Caring for the many children,
Indian children of the Light House,
Tokens of her father's anger
And her own unyielding answer.

Feeble grew her aged footsteps,
Toiling there beside the river.
Gone her youth and all her beauty,
Gone her joyous smiles and laughter,
Snowy white her tangled tresses.
Now her thoughts kept turning backward
To the distant days of childhood,
To the happy days with mother.

Clearly still she thought of father,
Say her children's children's children,
And his bitter words of anger,
Giving her no word of kindness,
When she humbly sought his blessing,
On the union she had chosen,
Yet her spirit lived unbroken,
But the weary years were many,
Saddened by the bitter quarrel,
"But" she whispered very slowly,
'Though the years again roll backward,
Filling life with youth and beauty,
Bringing crowds of wealth suitors,
Never would I wed for money,
Where my heart refused to follow."
"Better toil through life in freedom
Than be bought by suitor's money
Like a lowly slave at auction."


When autumn lay on vale and hill,
Sadness came into the cabin
Where Granny Chaugham lay so still,
For her troubled life was ended.

When the autumn moon was yellow
And the forest colors fading;
When the maple leaves were falling,
Floating on the Tunxis waters,
And the birds were southward flying
In the pleasant Indian summer,
Thus 'tis written in the records,
Granny Chaugham's days were over,
All her joys and sorrows ended
For she died in eighteen twenty—
And her age—one hundred five years.


And there beside the open grave
William Wilson spoke of Molly,
A woman grandly true and brave,
Worthy of their kind remembrance.

Gathered there her children
And her children's children's children
To the third great generation,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
'Neath the branches of the oak trees,
When the autumn sun was slanting
Westward o'er the Tunxis River.

Aged by many years of labor,
William Wilson read the Bible,
Spoke of Molly's sweet devotion
To her husband and her children;
Prayed that God above reward her.

Then they bore her to the graveyard,
Left her there alone in silence,
With a field-stone for a marker.
Molly's life and work were ended.
Burdened by her father's anger,
She had struggled on unbroken,
Hidden in the gloomy forest,
On the side of Ragged Mountain
In the town of fair Barkhamsted.

Had she wed a wealthy suitor,
As her angry father ordered,
Lived among the rich and stately,
Long ago her name forgotten,
Hidden in the dusty records
Of the town beside the river,
By the mighty Central River;
Of her life no story written,
Or her legend in the valley
In the town of fair Barkhamsted.


In lowly hut on mountain side,
Eating squirrel, skunk and woodchuck,
She far outlived the farmer's bride,
Eating beef and bread and butter.

Longer lived she in the cabin,
Drinking from the Tunxis River,
Pounding corn for hungry children;
Longer lived she eating woodchuck,
And the fearless woodland pussy;
Longer lived she sleeping nightly
On her bed of hemlock branches
Than the housewives of the farmers,
Living in their boarded houses,
Eating beef and bread and butter;
Drinking from the oaken bucket,
Sleeping on their beds of feathers,
Free from father's burning anger
And the shouting of his orders.


And then the son of Mossock came,
Made his home in Colebrook River,
To spear the fish and hunt for game,
Fearing not the forest creatures.

After Molly's sad departure,
To the Land of the Hereafter,
Dwelt Elizabeth, unmarried,
And a couple village children,
Safely in the lonely Chaugham cabin,
On the side of Ragged Mountain.

As the years were rolling onward,
Few the children in the village,
Scattered were the Light House people,
Through the State, and through the nation,
Seeking other habitations.

In the year of eighteen forty,
South on Farmington's broad meadow,
Dwelt a wicked Tunxis Indian,
Henry, often called Manassa,
Son of Solomon, the Mossock,
From the realms of Satan's Kingdom,
Where the Tunxis cut a channel,
Southward through the granite mountain,

In the confines of New Hartford.
In the year of eighteen forty
Henry came to Chaugham's cabin,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
Saw Elizabeth was busy,
Still he lingered at the doorway,
Telling of his many troubles,
Begging food and begging money,
Saying that he was related;
Wandered through the little village,

Speaking softly, acting kindly,
Hiding all his evil customs,
Seemed a decent sort of fellow.
Hinted marriage was his object,
But Elizabeth refused him,
So he went away to Colebrook,
Went to Colebrook by the River—
Lovely Colebrook where the forests
And the meadows swarmed with partridge,
Rabbit, quail and merry squirrel.

When the early Colebrook settlers
Built their cabins in the valley,
In the Colebrook River valley,
In the year of seventeen seventy,
Through the woodlands roamed the panther,
Looking downward from the branches,
Seeking unsuspecting quarry.
Shyly midst the gloomy shadows
Catamounts were ever hiding.
On the steep and rocky mountains,
Bordered on the river valley,
Bears were lurking midst the ledges.

Nightly through the winding valley,
Rang the howling of the wolf-pack,
Tracking deer along the meadows.

Pussy-footing through the woodlands,
Seeking mice and other rodents,
Were the wild cats, sleek and furry.

Here and there the busy beavers
Built their dams and cozy houses
On the river tributaries.

To this land of wild abundance
In the year of eighteen forty,
Came the wary son of Mossock,
Built his shack against a boulder
On the side of Corliss Mountain,
Fearing not the forest creatures,
Or the shadows in the night time,
Fearing not the bears and wild cats.

Sly and crafty was this Indian,
Sly and crafty like his father,
Double talking with his neighbors,
Hardy, early Colebrook settlers,
Busy in their little village,
Busy building shops and houses,
Building meeting house and school house,
Busy making cloth of cotton,
By the sparkling Colebrook River.

There the busy store and tavern,
Where the people spent their money.

On the turnpike through the village,
Daily rolled the heavy stage coach,
Mail and people coming, going
By the sparkling Colebrook River.

Union Church, no longer needed
For the Sunday prayer and sermon,
Soon became the village center
Where the people met for business,
Where the people met for pleasure.

All the school was filled with children,
Ninety children in the school house,
Happy Colebrook River children
Playing daily by the road side.

On each holy, Sabbath morning,
All the church was filled with people.
Friends and neighbors prayed together,
Asking God to bless their children,
Praying to God to bless their village
By the sparkling Colebrook River.


So Uncle Barnice White was slain,
"For a dead man tells no stories,"
While Henry waited in the rain,
"Tells no stories—tells no stories."

To Manassa's little shelter,
Built against a mighty boulder,
On the side of Corliss Mountain,
Nightly came Manassa's comrades,
Wayward youth then dwelling near him,
Balcomb, Co'bb, Calhoun and Calburn,
Talking, gambling, drinking cider,
While Manassa, sly and crafty,
Spoke of plans for raising money,
"Plenty money and no working,"
Saying, "Lo! The Tollgate Keeper,
Barnice White, has plenty money
From his cider mills and brandy,
From the Tollgate on the Turnpike,"

On a night all dark and gloomy,
Leaving no one in his cottage,
Cottage on the lower roadway,
While the noisy winds were blowing,
Uncle Barnice sought the village
For a meeting at the school house.

"Now's the time," Manassa whispered,
And Calhoun and Balcomb entered
Barnice's lonely, darkened cottage,
Stole his money and some cider.

When the aged Tollgate Keeper,
Known to all as Uncle Barnice,
Found his money had been stolen,
He at once accused Manassa
And his lazy, wayward comrades,
Saying they were thieves and robbers.

Then Manassa, sly and crafty,
Playing nightly, with his comrades,
Games of cards and drinking cider,
In his shack against the boulder,
On the side of Corliss Mountain,
Sang in accents low and solemn—
"Have you heard the ancient saying—
How a dead man tells no stories,
Tells no stories, tells no stories,
How a dead man tells no stories?"

Then he added in a whisper—
"Let us see this Tollgate Keeper
In the darkness of the night time,
In the bedroom of his cottage,
Lest he tell the village people,
Of the money that is stolen—
Tell them we are thieves and robbers,
Only fit to be arrested."

March the thirtieth it happened,
In the year of eighteen fifty.

In the shack against the boulder
On the side of Corliss Mountain,
When the night was dark and heavy
And a dreary rain was falling,
Gathered Cobb, Calhoun and Balcomb,
With Manassa, drinking brandy,
Playing cards, while all were thinking,
"How a dead man tells no stories,
Tells no stories, tells no stories,
How a dead man tells no stories."
'Till the brandy jug was empty,
And the game they played forgotten—
All the time the rain was falling.

"Better go," Manassa whispered,
"Go to see this Tollgate Keeper,
In the bedroom of his cottage,
For a dead man tells no stories,
Tells no stories, tells no stories,
For a dead man tells no stories."

So they stole across the mountain
To the road to Colebrook River,
But Manassa, sly and crafty,
Sly and crafty like his father,
Sprained his ankle on the hill-side;
Limped along in seeming anguish,
Reached the slope on Woodruff hill-side,

Said he could no farther travel,
Wanted Cobb to stay beside him
In the rain and dismal darkness
While his friends, Calhoun and Balcomb,
Went to see this Tollgate Keeper
In the bed room of his cottage,
Where they slew him in the darkness,
Slew the aged Tollgate Keeper,
"For a dead man tells no stories,
Tells no stories, tells no stories,
For a dead man tells no stories."

Thus they murdered Uncle Barnice,
March the thirtieth it happened,
In the year of eighteen fifty.

In the meeting house in Colebrook—
Meeting house in Colebrook River—
Where the people gathered weeping,
April third of eighteen fifty,
Sadly spoke the aged parson
Of the death of Uncle Barnice;
Praised his many deeds of kindness
In the Colebrook River Village.

In the graveyard is his tombstone,
By the church in Colebrook River,
Where we read the fearful story—

was murdered
Mar. 30, 1850.
Aged 69."

To Elizabeth, awakened
On the holy Sabbath morning—
March the thirty-first, at sunrise—
Of the year of eighteen fifty,
Came the sad and fearful story
Of the awful deeds of Henry,
Son of Solomon, the Mossock,
And his friends, Calhoun and Balcomb.

Then she wept in shame and sorrow.
Said it was a thing of evil
Ever to have seen this Henry,
Ever with him to have spoken,
For he acted like the Ruler,
Of that dread and awful kingdom,
Where the savage sinners gather,
By the Tunxis in New Hartford.

Quickly Henry was arrested,
With his friends, Calhoun and Balcomb,
Tried and led away to prison,
Prison by the Central River.
Later Henry won a "pardon"
When 'twas found he only acted
As a helper in the murder
Of the aged Tollgate Keeper,
And he died a helpless beggar
In the Farmington red Town House.

Thus we find it in the records,
Records of the ancient Light House,
Records of the Town of Colebrook,
Written by the early settlers,
Telling of the roving Mohawks;
Telling of the forts they builded
For protection 'gainst the Indians
Ever hunting in the forests,
Fishing in the streams and river,
Dwelling in their summer wigwams
By the sparkling Colebrook River,
Storing food and furs for winter.

In the homes along the river-
Peaceful flowing Colebrook River—
Children listen to the stories
Of the bears and wolves and wild cats,
And the Mohawks on the meadows
Living in their summer wigwams.

Sad their faces as they listen
To the story of Manassa
In his shack against the boulder
On the side of Corliss Mountain,
Drinking brandy with his comrades,
Balcomb, Cobb, Calhoun and Calburn.

Sad their faces as they listen
To the story of Manassa
Singing, while he drank and gambled,—
"Have you heard the ancient saying,
How a dead man tells no stories,
Tells no stories, tells no stories,
How a dead man tells no stories?"

Sad their faces as they listen
To the story of the murder
Of the aged Tollgate Keeper,
Barnice White of Colebrook River,
On that fearful night of horror,
In the year of eighteen fifty.

To the school at Colebrook River,
Where the happy children gather,
As the years are rolling onward,
Daily Barnice White's descendants
Come to study with the others,
Ever dreaming, looking backward
To that awful night of horror.

Up and down the Colebrook River,
In the homesteads of the people,
And across the wooded hill-sides,
Where they labor in the forests,
Still this ancient story lingers
Like a mist upon the river,
Like a shadow on the mountain.


The cabin home was bare and cold,
And the winter winds were howling,
When Elizabeth, all sick and old,
Died at night, alone in darkness.

Few the people on the hill-side,
As the years went rolling onward,
Yet, Elizabeth still lingered
In the ancient Chaugham cabin,
Saw the village growing smaller,
For the people were departing.

Saw deserted cabins falling,
And the growing desolation
On the side of Ragged Mountain.

Few the people in the village,
In the little Indian village,
Founded by her kindly parents,
In the year of seventeen forty.

Still this ancient mountain cabin
Sheltered Chaugham's lonely daughter.
For a hundred years this shelter
Stood against the storms of winter
And the sultry heat of summer.
For a hundred years this shelter
Stood beside the rolling Tunxis
And was viewed by many people.

Cold the cabin in the winter,
For the winds were whistling through it.
Damp the cabin in the summer,
For the roof let in the water,
And the ancient floor had settled,
Yet Elizabeth still lingered
In the shaky mountain cabin,
For she had no other shelter.

Calmly watching as the seasons,
Came and went across the hill-side,
Here Elizabeth resided,
Caring for the mountain cabin,
Since her parents had departed
To the Land of the Hereafter;
Daily mending, sewing, cooking,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
'Till she reached the age of eighty—
Died in eighteen four and fifty,
Died at eighty, still unmarried,
Died alone at night in darkness,
When the winter wind was howling,
And was buried in the grave yard,
Southward in the lonely graveyard,
On the side of Ragged Mountain.


Now forward through the years,
Ever more and more descendants
Are toiling midst hopes and fears,
Mingling with the nation's millions.

Joseph Elwell married Tilda,
Daughter born to Polly Wilson
And her husband, William Wilson,
Dwelt on Burlington's fair hill-side
In a little forest cabin,
Making baskets for the people,
Sold them often in the village—
Collinsville beside the river.

Many dogs, awake and watching,
Guarded well the home of Elwell,
Through the daytime and the night time,
Warding off intruding strangers.

Tilda, versed in healing powers,
Found in many plants and flowers,
Helped to cure the sick and wounded,
Brought relief to ailing people.

Tilda's younger sister, Eunice,
Married thrifty farmer Warner,
Lived a useful life of service,
Rearing sturdy, happy children,
Known in Burlington and Canton.

Thus the story of these people
Carries on to generations
Yet unborn—an endless story.

Endless is the Light House story,
All the lives of all the children,
All adventures and achievements,
To the eighth great generation-
Others coming in the future—
All their names and all their service
In their many fields of labor,
So we leave it to the future,
While the legends of this people
Spread the fame of fair Barkhamsted,
Far beyond our nation's borders,
And the Light House on the hill-side
Stands secure in song and story.

Ever onward still they travel,
Father, son and grandson marching,
Generations pressing forward,
Down the vista of the ages.

Molly Barber and James Chaugham—
Dead and buried—gone forever:
Scattered now are their descendants.
Some are in the Town of Woodbury
Busy digging graves and hunting;
Some in Riverton and Colebrook,
Some in Harwinton and Winsted,
Some in Michigan are living.

Some there are who fought with honor
Through the heat and sweat of summer
And the wind and cold of winter
In the Civil War for freedom
Of the toiling colored people.

Others later 'gainst the Axis,
Fought beyond the nation's borders,
World War First and World War Second;
Suffered in the deadly battles,
On the sandy dunes of Tunis,
On the plains of Central Europe,
On Pacific's sultry islands;
Gave their lives for peace and order
And the things they thought were holy,
Even as their mother, Molly,
Sacrificed her life for honor,
In a Ragged Mountain cabin.

Coming from the hill-side cabin,
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
In the town of fair Barkhamsted,
By the rolling Tunxis River
Generations speeding onward
In an ever widening circle,
Carry far the blood of Chaugham
And his spouse, brave Molly Barber,
Down the years with Adams, Hobson,
Jacklin, Lawrence, Barber, Elwell,
Webster, Doty, Berry, Cockran,
And the thousands yet to follow.

Through the ages still they journey,
Ever more and more descendants,
From that Ragged Mountain cabin,
Home of fearless Molly Barber
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham.

Onward now, and ever onward
Shall they go, all through the ages
To Eternity's last borders—
Sent by Peter Barber's anger
And his daughter's resolution.

Had she yielded to her father
Other souls would journey onward,
Who is there to judge between them?


The tiger lilies blooming there
Sing of ancient habitation,
And lilacs' fragrance on the air
Breathes a song of early settlers.

Gone the cabins from the hill-side,
Friendly lights no longer twinkle
Through the skins of fox and beaver.

"On the side of Ragged Mountain,
In some crevice of the ledges,
In some shady, sandy hollow,
Is an old sea captain's treasure."

This a legend loudly whispers,
While the people tell the story—
Story of an old sea captain,
Spanish friend of Chaugham's father,
From the confines of Block Island.

Oft he came to visit Chaugham,
Loaded down with golden treasure,
Often staid a week and longer,
Talked of treasure ships and righting,
Ship to ship upon the billows.

Oft he came to visit Chaugham,
Loaded down with treasure,
But departed empty handed.

Through the years the treasure hunters
Search the side of Ragged Mountain,
Near the site of Chaugham's cabin,
For the old sea captain's money.

All the hill-side and the graveyard
Have been spaded and examined,
Searching for this fabled fortune,
In a pot of gold reported,
Buried on the lonely mountain.

Through the years the treasure hunters
Search the side of Ragged Mountain,
Searching, searching, never finding—
Still they're searching for the treasure,
Buried on the mountain-side.

O'er this wild romantic hill-side
Wildly blow the winds of winter,
Softly sigh the summer zephyrs;
Sad and lonely seems the forest,
Watching o'er the empty cellars.

On a boulder by the roadside,
Is a worn inscription telling
Briefly of the ancient village.

Ever flowing, winding southward,
Still the Tunxis River murmurs
Of the Light House on the hill-side
And the people of the village.

Standing there beside the river
Echoes of the past come floating,
On the sighing breezes floating,
Voices of the Light House people,
From the lonely mountain shadows,
Home of ageless Molly Barber.

Tiger lilies blossom yearly,
Near the shallow, empty cellars,
Here and there a lonely lilac
Flowers gaily in the spring time,
Sweet reminder of the people
Once residing in the village.

Here and there throughout the valley
People say, "The lilacs growing
Strong and hardy by my window
Are descendants of the lilacs
Growing in the Light House village,
Planted there by Molly Barber."

Baskets fashioned on the hill-side
By the lonely Light House people
Still are cherished in the valley.
Thus the name of Molly Barber
Lives beyond her earthly journey
In neat handiwork and flowers.

Forest shades the lonely grave yard
Where within the dim enclosure
Over fifty dead are buried—
Many have no standing markers.

There the grave of Molly Barber,
Scarcely seen among the others,
Mute reminder of the quarrel
Of a maiden and her father;
All the harshness of his anger,
All the firmness of his daughter
And the sorrow of her mother—
Grim reminder to all fathers,
"Deal more wisely with your daughter."


A hush is on the mountain side—
Silent is the lonely grave yard.
Asleep the Indian and his bride-
Molly Barber—Honest Chaugham.

Now afar beyond the valley,
In a world of toil and pleasure,
In a world of joy and sorrow,

Last of all he told more slowly
All the story of the graveyard,
Many people proudly boasting,
Say, ''The blood of Molly Barber
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham,
From the Narragansett nation,
And the Spanish Senorita
Daily courses through my being."

Hallowed are the Light House cabins,
Once on Ragged Mountain,
In the lonely Peoples' Forest
By the river in Barkhamsted.

Hallowed is the lonely grave yard
With its palisade and headstones,
Though they're crude and nameless markers,
And the name of Molly Barber,
With her spouse, the Honest Chaugham,
Known afar in song and story.

Generations yet unborn,
Oft shall listen to the story
Of the famous Light House village,
Home of ageless Molly Barber,
By the Tunxis in Barkhamsted.
Oft they'll meet the Light House children,
As they journey through the ages,
To the final Armageddon
When the age of man is ended
And the clock of time is broken.


Sol Webster and his aged wife
Oft retold the famous story,
Recounting scenes of Light House life
On the side of Ragged Mountain.

Through the slowly rolling seasons
Lived Sol Webster and his partner,
Aged Mary Niles of Riverton,

Ever busy making baskets,
Baskets in the Robert's homestead,
Nestled on the slope of Hart's Hill,
Near the Tunxis, south of Riverton,
Westward o'er the shining river
From the storied Light House village.

Many people came to see them,
Many people asking questions,
Questions of the Light House Village—
"Who was Chaugham? Who was Molly?"

Famous then the basket-maker,
Grandson of fair Molly Barber,
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham.

Old and weak and poor they lingered,
For a time beside the Tunxis,
Telling each who stopped to listen,
Al1 the story of brave Molly
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham,
How he was with Spain connected
Through the Spanish Senorita,
How the Light House Village prospered
With its two and thirty cabins
On the side of Ragged Mountain,
How the people made a living,
Daily hunting, fishing, trading,
Making baskets strong and useful;
All the names of all the children

Of the hill-side generations.
Last of all he told more slowly
All the story of the graveyard,
Southward on the sandy hill-side
Where beneath the forest shadows,
"Over fifty dead were buried."

Thus the ancient basket-maker
Told the story of his people,
Legend of the famous Light House
In a paradise of beauty
Midst the hills of Litchfield County.
From his lips this ancient legend
Of the village on the hill-side.


To-day the place is calm and still,
Save the ripple of the Tunxis,
Or zephyrs sighing on the hill—
Voices from the Indian village.

Ye who love the ancient legends
Ye who read the ancient stories,
Ye who visit ancient places,
Linger in the Peoples' Forest
On the side of Ragged Mountain
In the town of fair Barkhamsted.

Listen as the breezes whisper,
"Molly Barber—Honest Chaugham."
Wander through the lonely graveyard
Where the silent dead are resting,
Pause beside the empty cellars;
Listen to the Tunxis flowing
Slowly southward through the forest.

Here it was on Ragged Mountain
Years ago that Molly Barber,
With her spouse, the Honest Chaugham
Built her home and reared her children.

On the river and the hill-side
Float the echoes of their voices,
In the murmur of the waters,
In the winds that sway the branches,
In the breeze that whispers sadly,
In the silence of the forest.


And now we think them dead and gone,
But their spirits live forever
And through their children carry on
Far beyond this quiet valley.

Molly sleeps within the graveyard,
Hearing not the robins singing
In the sweet and pleasant spring time;
Feeling not the cold of winter,
Or the burning heat of summer;
Tasting not the woodland pussy,
Or the woodchuck fat and juicy;
Smelling not the scented lilacs,
Or the springtime's sweet aroma;
Seeing not the changing seasons
With the sunlight and the shadows.

Molly Barber—Honest Chaugham,
Resting in the lonely graveyard,
All their toil and sorrow ended;
Down the ages their descendants
Carry on the life they sheltered
Here beside the Tunxis River
In their crude and lowly cabin,
Forest home of Molly Barber
And her spouse, the Honest Chaugham.


The changing seasons come and go
Swiftly through the ancient valley
And here where Tunxis waters flow
Ever shall this legend linger.

Still the Tunxis River wanders
Slowly through the gloomy forest.
Still the music of its water,
In the quiet days of summer,
Sings of peace and sweet contentment.

Gentle-flowing Tunxis River,
Tranquil in the sultry summer,
Quiet in the golden autumn,
Peaceful in the hoary winter,
Mighty in the early spring-time.

In the cold and dreary winters,
Snows lie deep upon the hill-side,
Scarce a sound to break the silence
O'er the lonely, empty cellars
And the graveyard in the forest.

Hardly changed the hill and valley
Since the day that Molly Barber,
With her spouse, the Honest Chaugham,
Made her home on Ragged Mountain.

Still the Indian pipes are blooming,
White and fragile in the spring-time,
Hiding in their leafy bowers
Midst the shadows of the forest.

Still the woodcock's busy tapping,
Tapping on the mighty oak trees,
O'er the pine-trees screaming,
Circling high above the mountain.

Still the sea-gulls scan the river,
Dipping low above the water,
Seeking shining fish for supper.

Still the great, blue herons linger,
Wading, fishing in the river,
Calling, calling through the twilight.

In the latter days of autumn,
"Who?", the solemn owl is calling,
"Who is in the lonely valley?"

Oft when shades of night are creeping
Softly through the ancient valley,
Come the whip-poor-wills a calling
Each to each across the seasons.
Undisturbed they haunt the valley,
For the Light House's gone forever,
And the stage coach ceased its travels
On the turnpike by the river
Where the Light House Legend whispers,
"Molly Barber—Honest Chaugham."

From the storied hills of Litchfield,
From the confines of Barkhamsted,
From the Vale of Winding Waters,
Through the world this legend wanders
From the parents to the children,
And from neighbour unto neighbour
By the spoken word and letter
O'er the plains and o'er the mountains,
O'er the rivers and the oceans,
Through the onward rolling seasons,
Toward the final Day of Judgment,
When the deeds of Peter Barber
And his wilful daughter, Molly,
Shall be weighed and justly measured
By the Ruler of the Ages.


Comely Tomo, called Servampsin,
Sometimes worshipped with the Whiteman;
Heard the Whiteman's prayers and sermons
Heard the Whiteman read the Bible,
Heard the story of creation
For the Indian and the Whiteman,
How the lands and seas were fashioned
In the distant lonely ages
By the unseen god in Heaven—
This the land of the Hereafter
For the Indian and the Whiteman,
Autumn land beyond the sunset.

Tomo listened to the story—
How the world was filled with darkness
Till the coming of the sunlight,
Saw the leaves come forth in springtime
Saw the grass upon the meadow,
Saw the coming of the bluebird,
Heard the singing of the robin
In the sunlit fields of summer
For the Indian and the Whiteman.

Saw the falling snow in winter
On the meadow and the forest,
On the river and the mountain,
For the Indian and the Whiteman.

Saw the ever changing seasons
Meet the Indian and the Whiteman.

Saw the fox and busy beaver,
Saw the deer along the meadow,
Fashioned by the Great Jehova.

Saw the trout within the river,
Made by Manito, the Mighty,
For the Indian and the Whiteman.

Heard the Great Jehova speaking,
Like Great Manito, the Mighty,
To the Indian and the Whiteman,
In the flashing of the lightning
And the rolling of the thunder;

Found that Manito, the Mighty,
And the god the Whiteman worshipped
Were the same, the great Creator
Of the Whiteman and the Indian.

Then he weekly called assembly,
Talked of Manito, the Mighty,
And the god the Whiteman worshipped,
Saying, "Listen, O my children,
Lo! There is but one Great Spirit
For the Indian and the Whiteman,
Let us worship him together."

"If you doubt my words of wisdom,
If you think I am mistaken,
Watch and listen when I'm dying.
If you hear the rolling thunder,
If you see the flashing lightning,
Know that I am not mistaken.
If you hear no rolling thunder,
If you see no flashing lightning,
Know that I have spoken vainly."

In the year of seventeen sixty,
In the warm and pleasant autumn,
When the yellow leaves were falling,
When the sun was bright at noon-day,
And the sky was clear and cloudless,
Aged Tomo died at ninety.

All the people watched and listened,
Waiting for the rolling thunder
And the flashing of the lightning
Proving Tomo's words of wisdom.

All the people watched and listened
For a silence in the heavens
Proving Tomo was mistaken.

Then a rolling crash of thunder
Shook the little Indian village,
And the sky was filled with lightning,
Brighter than the sun at noon-day.

Rolling thunder, flashing lightning
When the sky was clear and cloudless,
Proved their chief was not mistaken,
Proved there is but one Great Spirit
For the Indian and the Whiteman.