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- from the -
INDIAN INDUSTRIAL SCHOOL, CARLISLE, PA
T H E C H R I S T M A S T R E E
p e e k ed
and looked up
at the forest trees
that pierced the sky
around. "How big
they are and beautiful,"
it thought, "and I'm so
small I don't suppose I'll ever be of
any use at all."
sprinkled diamonds on
the tender little one.
The big trees spread their
leafy arms to shield it from
the sun. The wild birds sang
a welcome, and the fairies in the
night joined hands and danced
around it - though no mortal saw
the sight. The little tree encouraged,
couldn't help itself but grow till Sum-
mer's Queen departed and King Winter
came with snow, and then the big trees dropped their
leaves to keep it snug and warm,
and lent their stalwart bodies to
protect it from the storm; and soon
the tiny bud became a modest little
tree, but different from all the rest who
watched it lovingly for when its great big
brothers turned in Winter brown and bare
their gentle little sister kept her Summer
beauty fair. At last, because it was too sweet
and beautiful to stay where children couldn't see
it, it was carried off one day (by Santa Claus, they tell me)
and brought in the Home to be for girls
and boys and old folks too a lovely Christ-
mas tree. There, blest by guardian angels
gazing on it from above, its green and graceful
branches bending low with gifts of love it fills the
heart with gladness and good will to all on earth,
and tells the old new story of the Holy Infant's birth.
Out in the cold, dark, dreary woods its sturdy brothers
moan and call their little sister who away from them has
flown, and then the breezes whisper they have seen her crowned
with light surrounded by glad children in the Home on Christmas bright.
| Peace |
| on |
| Good |
| Will |
| to |
| Men. |
A very cheery letter from Mr. Spray, Harlem, Montana, speaks of his school as running along smoothly. Mrs. Spray has received an appointment in the same school. Miss Leila Cornelius, class '96, Carlisle, has reported there for duty. It must be very cold. He says the freeze-up came early in November, and the 2nd of December the temperature was 45 degrees below zero. In such weather he thinks of our steam heat, electric lighting and other comforts.
As has been our custom for years there will be no INDIAN HELPER printed during holiday week. No subscriber will be the loser of a paper, however, as the full quota of fifty-two numbers making the year will be sent to each. Are the printers going to take a holiday? No! They will work as usual, but the time will be used in catching up with some work that has fallen behind, and in making preparations for a good new start in 1898. Christmas Day and New Years Day will be holidays.
The Carlisle "Evening Sentinel" of Dec. 18th, has this to say of the Concert given by the Indian band last week in the Opera House:
Merry Christmas music rally began last evening when the famous Indian school band gave the last of a series of three entertainments in the opera house, in the Y.M.C.A. course. The audience was a large one, and must have inspired Director Dennison Wheelock and his men, for they never played better than last night, playing as they did with rich expression, and rare coloring. Indeed several numbers were rendered with such blending as to cause unusual attention. One of the most appreciative numbers on the excellent programme was the singing of the double Indian quartette, their voices blended nicely and they were heartily encored. "Fiddle and I," by Frank Cayou, with violin obligato by Abram Isaac, and accompaniment on the piano by Miss Senseney, was an excellent rendition on the part of all performers. Truly, Carlisle is proud of her Indian school band, the singers, their instructors -- well, to cut it short, the whole school.
Miss Senseney gave a reception for the choir on last Thursday evening. Guests were requested to costume, and a motley company assembled, some of them completely disguised behind masks. Uncle Sam in the conventional striped coat and trousers and high hat, stalked through the rooms. The Eskimo, dressed in skin parka with a false face that would have made any baboon claim him as brother, seemed a little uncomfortable in the strange surroundings and completely bewildered by the music of piano and tambourine. Members of the "Farmers' Alliance" were present, dressed as though they had left their plows in the furrows and rushed to the party. In contrast with them was one young girl dressed in dainty white with fern leaves fastened all over her gown; Fanny Fern, of course. Maidens in full Indian costume were present, and who will deny that the tall bugler made a pretty boarding school girl, though not dressed quite in the height of the fashion. There were gypsies, Topsy and gentlemen of color in painfully high collars present, and it was remarked that the little gypsy and the young Indian in full buckskin suit, gorgeous in paint and feathers, who squatted in the middle of the floor while refreshments were served, made a very picturesque centre for the company grouped about them. THe party was a decided success. It was such fun to be somebody else for a little while.
The shcool entertainment on last Monday evening was a sort of Christmas event. The stage trimmings, with quaint fire-place in which was a glowing fire and hanging kettle added to the picturesqueness of the scene. The programs, with "A Merry Christmas," printed in brilliant red, was the first reminder of what was coming. On the outside page was a stanza from Milton's Hymn to the Nativity. The singing by the entire school received more than usual applause from the faculty. Spring Time waltz, accompanied by clarinet, violin and piano was sung with very pleasing effect. Didn't little Agnes White speak well and loud? Frank Cayou's solo pleased everybody and he was obliged to respond with an encore. Miss Cochran's pupils did themselves proud in the scene from Dickens' "Christmas Carol." Oscar Davis spoke remarkably well. "Somebody's Mother,' stood vividly out to view when he was through. The sparkling little piano solo "Spring Carol," by Edythe Pierce enlivened all, and the double quartette, deserves special mention. Miss Simmons', James Flannery's and J. Wheelock's voices being specially conspicuous, while all blended beautifully. "The Poet's Calendar," by pupils from 5, 6, and 7 in costume representing the months of the year was well done. Theodora Davis quite captured the audience in her very natural message to Santa Claus through the Telephone. "Primitive Life in New York," adapted from Irving's Knickerbocker History of New York was good, but perhaps the best thing of the evening was Fannie Harris as Mrs. Ruggles preparing her nine "youn'uns" for the Christmas Dinner, taken from Kate Douglas Wiggins' "Bird's Christmas Carol." The evening was delightful throughout. The band did its part and was enjoyed as it always is. The pupils from the lower grades, Maude Murphy, No. 1, and Julio Romero, No. 3 deserve mention for the efforts made.
NO HELPER NEXT WEEK.
Our schools will have a vacation for a week.
We hear that Philip Lavatta is band leader at Ft. Hall.
Constance Lane has gone to visit friends and relatives in Massachusetts.
Howard Gansworth, '94, is in from Princeton College to spend the holidays.
A number of our boys and girls have gone on invitations to the country to spend the holidays with their former farm fathers and mothers.
Never did Christmas tree look more beautiful than the trees of our campus on Wednesday covered with flaky white, glistening in electric light.
An Indio-Turkey war will begin today. Sixty-five turkeys for the pupils' dinner have been taken prisoners of war. Poor innocent creatures! We love 'em so that we want to eat 'em up.
Edward Marsden, of Lane Seminary, Cincinnati, has a new piano, which he says he bought in preference to a bicycle. Mr. Marsden is a lover of good music and he plays eight different instruments.
Dr. and Mrs. Eastman are located in Washington, at present. The Doctor is agent for the Sisseton and Flandrau Indians, to secure rights that were taken away just after the Minnesota Massacre in 1862.
The Bakery is a place that is going on quietly from day to day, doing a very important work and doing it well. What is more conducive to bodily comfort than the staff of life? and in the Bakery, Indian boys do all the baking without supervision, working hundreds of pounds of flour, daily, into good sweet bread.
Is there any one here now who remembers Bessie West, a pupil in the early days of our school? Yes, indeed, there are several, and they were very much pleased to hear from her through a letter to the Captain, this week. She has been Mrs. Cully for some time and is the mother of a bright little family of children. The Captain was glad to get a small bag of pecan-nuts, gathered by Bessie from the trees on her place.
The snow on Wednesday morning was so altogether beautiful that the girls went into ecstasies as they came out from breakfast. It was the first real snowball snow we have had thus far, and the dash they made for each other was very funny. But there must have been wet feet, and the Man-on-the-band-stand wondered who would take the trouble to dry them. It is only a foolish, silly little girl who says, "Oh, I never take cold."
The Standards and Invincibles gave a rousing reception last Saturday night, the Susans being well represented through individual invitations. The spacious gymnasium and the Y.M.C.A. Hall joining, each attractively decorated in society and school colors and with Japanese lanterns, and full of bright young people spending a happy hour together, presented an enchanting scene. After a period of social enjoyment in which the electric battery played a conspicuous part, refreshments were served when a feast of reason and flow of soul ensued, Capt. Pratt and the society presidents responding to calls for speeches.
Remember there will be no HELPER printed next week.
Harry Hutchinson, who was married about last Christmas at his home in the North West has been given a young son for a Christmas present.
"Enclosed is 10 cents to renew my subscription. I have found the HELPER such pleasant company that I thought we would keep together another year," says a subscriber.
Another says: "I like the weekly letter very well and as long as the Lord allows me a dime and extension of life I hope to be a reader of your little Great INDIAN HELPER.
Harvey Warner, ex-Carlisle, now at his home among the Omahas, writes to Mr. Steele, of Carlisle, the friend of all our Indian boys, a very interesting letter. Harvey has been farming for the past three years and working at his carpenter trade between times. He is now about to establish a carpenter-shop of his own. He says his home has had a Christmas present of a baby boy, whose name is Roy Warner, and the baby sends Mr. Steele a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Snow is three feet deep in some places there and they are having cold weather.
Mrs. Platt, our old friend and fellow laborer in the Indian work, now well up in years, writes from her new home in Oberlin, Ohio, that she goes two and a half miles for Sabbath service where she has a class of boys in Sunday School who want her to shorten her lesson to get time to tell them of her Indian work. She had them at her home one evening, some of them going four miles that they might see the pictures she has of Carlsle and its pupils and learn of the work here. Mrs. Platt wishes to be kindly remembered to all her acquaintances at the school, and we know of no better way to reach all than through the columns of the HELPER.
Mrs. Paul Corbett, nee Lydia Smith when a student of Carlisle, tells by letter of their pleasant home in Idaho. It will be remembered that Paul was also a student of Carlisle. Lydia speaks very beautifully of the contentment she feels in her home, and yet she misses the school life, its joys and her many cherished friends. She says: "How I'd love to come there just now and see Carlisle." Paul has a store, and he was at the time of writing in Lewiston purchasing Christmas things for his store. Lydia sees Johnson Spcncer often and says a great change has come over him. They are all proud of him.
Energetic work was begun on the new athletic field this week, by outside parties who have taken the contract, but the snow has interrupted progress. Mr. Mason Pratt, of Steelton, surveyed the plot which takes in part of the old baseball ground with extension in the field at the north. The field is to be leveled off and put in first class shape. An athletic field is an absolute necessity if we are going to take part in such sports. More boys have been hurt on our hard, uneven ground, practicing football than in all the games they played with opposing teams. They will have a sodded turf to practice on, when the new field is complete. It will embrace a good baseball ground and place for tennis courts and other sports, beside a good running track.
Christmas is a festival celebrated by the family.
The rich man's family, the poor man's family, the family who lives in a log hut, the family who inhabits the over-crowded flat of a large city, and the family that dwells in a palace, each finds something to enjoy at Christmas time.
The heart stricken mother and the careworn father endeavor to make the children happy on Christmas day if at no other time.
While there is much suffering in the world, at Christmas time there is more joy than sorrow.
Children, especially the Indian children of the Indian schools, are learning to think forward to Christmas as a day of giving as well as receiving.
The baskets of presents that will go from the girls' quarters to the boys' quarters, to be met with other baskets from the boys' quarters going to the girls' tomorrow morning or late tonight would indicate that our boys and girls have entered with zest and with the proper spirit into Christmas preparations.
No longer do we sit back and think we have nothing to do but to receive, and feel blue and discouraged if we do not get as much as we wanted.
We are learning to be thankful for small remembrances, and to take more pleasure in giving than receiving.
MARRYING DOES NOT ALWAYS SAVE.
No less eminent an authority than the Rev. Mr. Moody says:
The most subtle and deceitful hope which ever existed, and one which wrecks the happiness of many a young girl's life, is the common delusion that a woman can best reform a man by marrying him.
It is a mystery to me how people can be so blinded to the hundreds of cases in every community, where tottering homes have fallen and innocent lives have been wrecked because some young girl has persisted in marrying a scoundrel in the hope of saving him.
I have never known such a union, and have seen hundreds of them, result in anything but sadness and disaster.
Let no young girl think that she may be able to accomplish what a loving mother or sympathetic sisters have been unable to do.
Before there is any contract of marriage there should be convincing proof that there has been real and thorough regeneration.
Let us look away from ourselves a moment.
Let us take as an example something the Bible condemns -- the use of intoxicants.
Young people do not realize as they should that intoxicants inevitably shatter the will, leaving only in its place that fatal obstinacy that persists in the drink habit.
If you have a good will, thank God and preserve it; you are rich. If you have a weak will, with God's help strengthen and cultivate it.
THE SMALL GIRLS WRITE TO SANTA CLAUS.
The Man-on-the-band-stand found some of their letters and was curious to see what they asked for.
One little girl says:
"I want a doll and some dishes, and picture books. I want work basket and box of candy to eat; jumping-jack, too."
"I want you to bring me some apples, baby, ball, sheep, baby-carriage and a hoop."
"A mouth organ, a blue ribbon and kitchen stove."
"My bed is close to the door," says one little girl.
"How cold is it up in north pole?"
"Please bring me little earrings, stove to cook, chairs, and some bananas."
"We are going to have a Christmas tree: this is what I would like to have on it: a dollie, pop-corn, rubber ball that I could throw and not break the windows; a string of beads and a ring, some peanuts, apples and oranges."
One very modest, kind-hearted little girl only asked for a doll, but ends her letter with: "Please don't forget the poor children."
After reading the above who can say that Indian children are any different from other children?
I am made of 13 letters.
My 5, 3, 4, 13 is used to call people to meals.
My 2, 8, 9, 10 is a good thing to have on the door when thieves are around.
My 6, 11, 12, 5 is a good thing to do about Christmas time, to cheer people up.
My 9, 1, 7 is a house pet.
My whole is a wearing apparel that the little Indian girls think is good to own about this time.
The worst spendthrift is one who wastes time.