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American Detective Fiction    Prior to July 1891

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  Published in
The New York Ledger, March 23, 1861.
 
A Lawyer’s Story
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Told by Himself
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  my wishes; but her mother said we’d better wait until I got back with my money—predicting that “something would be sure to happen,” and asserting that the Drews were “mighty slippery fellows,” and that no Van Buren, (my name,) that she had ever heard of, ever had any luck. Not finding myself comfortable in the Widow’s parlor I soon withdrew, and went slowly back to my office.

The next morning I mounted my horse, and with light heart pursued the road to Tyndale.  I was two days upon the way, and slept the second night at a little country tavern, a few miles distant from my pseudo uncle. I had intended to reach his house that evening, but the heaviness of the roads prevented. The next morning I was early astir, and rode up to Martin Drew’s door, just as he, with his family, was seating himself at the breakfast table.

I was welcomed with great show of cordiality by the various members of the family, all of whom, save the eldest son, George, were present. I might have believed myself among warm friends had not the memory of mymother’s sufferings in that house saved . . .

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    About thirty years ago I was a young lawyer with nothing but my profession and two very strong aspirations. The first was to succeed and make a great name at the bar; the other to be able to marry the lady of my love.

One morning I went down to my office, which my boy had just opened, and found awaiting me there a letter which gave me the greatest pleasure. It announced, in the first place, the death of my grand-uncle, who, with my grandfather, had cruelly turned my mother out of doors when she was a girl; and in the second place it informed me that my grand-uncle, touched by remorse, had left me a legacy of five thousand dollars. The writer of the letter, Martin Drew, who was my uncle, requested me to come to Tyndale at once to get my money, and expressed much affection for me, and said his family were all anxious to see me, and many other such things which excited my suspicions.

That afternoon I called at the widow Curtiss’s to inform her daughter Laura of my good fortune, and to ask the dear girl to “name the day.” Laura was quite ready to comply with

   

 

 


 

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