The Project Gutenberg eBook of Stephen H. Branch's Alligator, Vol. 1 no. 05, May 22, 1858

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Title: Stephen H. Branch's Alligator, Vol. 1 no. 05, May 22, 1858

Editor: Stephen H. Branch

Release date: May 22, 2015 [eBook #49020]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Giovanni Fini and The Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at (This file was
produced from images generously made available by The
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Life of Stephen H. Branch. 2
Let the Firemen Stand to their Guns! 3
Lamentations of a Grahamite. 7
For American Youth to Read, and for Thieves and Traitors to Ponder. 12


Volume I.—No. 5.]—— SATURDAY, MAY 22, 1858.—— [Price 2 Cents.



Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1857, by
In the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the United
States for the Southern District of New York.


Life of Stephen H Branch.

very silly, as ointment will soon cure it.” He said: “I knew a man who applied ointment five years, and his itch got worse every year.” This was a bomb that quickened my pulsation. I then said: “Perhaps you have got the salt rheum, and I advise you to consult Dr. Plympton immediately.” He said: “I’ll go now, and I want you to go with me.” As Plympton was the Superintendent of my itch, I did not know what response to make. But as he might be absent, or if at home, determined to remain without while Terry went in, I at length said: “Well, I will go with you,” and over we went to the Doctor’s, who, to my great joy, was not in. I then told Terry that I must go to my room, and get my lessons, but that he mast remain until Dr. Plympton returned, and he said he would. Terry rushed into my room in about an hour, a shade paler than a ghost, and exclaimed:—“Branch! the Doctor says that I must have caught the itch from you, as it is precisely like yours.” If a cannon ball had entered the window, it could not have thrilled my frame like the disclosures of Plympton, which I regarded as safe with him as myself. But the old cat was out, and I had to face her sharp claws. So I told poor Terry the whole story, and that if he had not locked the door, and forced me to sleep with him, he would not have caught the itch. He mildly chided me for not disclosing that I had the itch, as, if I had, he certainly would have unlocked the door with much pleasure, and let me out. But he forgave me, and asked me to room with him, so that we could apply the itch ointment together, before the same fire, and talk the matter over, and compare symptoms, and sympathize with each other, and eat and sleep together with impunity, and read distinguished itch authors, and go to Dr. Plympton’s together, until we got cured. I told Terry that if we did all that, we would so thoroughly inocculate each other with the itch, that all the doctors of the globe could not wrench it from our blood, and that we would transmit the itch to our posterity for ten thousand years, and then it would not be entirely out of the system. Terry looked amazed, and said he felt faint, and called for gin and water, and stared like an

Egyptian Daddy,
Or Tiemann Granny,
Or Peter Mummy,
Or Edward Sonny,
Some five thousand years old,
[3]Whose wills were never sold,
Nor their offices for gold,
As we oft have been told;
Who loved their constituents
Far better than stimulants,
Or their sons and brothers,
And a good many others.
O, fiddle-de-dee,
Ye Coopers three,
You’ll not cheat me,
No, sirs-ree,
While I’m free,

As you’ll see!

And Terry said he hoped I would excuse him, as he felt nervous, and would like to go to bed, and I bade him good night, and went to see Plympton, and assured him that if he told the students I had the itch, it would mortify my feelings, and spread, and terrify all Cambridge, and I might be mobbed, and he most solemnly vowed that he would make no further disclosures. And I returned to the College, and saturated my body with ointment, and retired, and sweat, and scratched all night, and did not close my weary eyes until the Cambridge rooster crowed.

(To be continued to our last loan.)


Let the Firemen Stand to their Guns!

And Never Surrender their Glorious Volunteer System to the Corrupt Politicians, and with it their Widows’ and Orphans’ Fund.

We wrote and published the following document in the New York Herald one year before we opened our batteries against George W. Matsell’s alienage. But it is more appropriate now than in 1854, as the enthusiastic champions of a Paid Fire Department are inclosing and about to overwhelm the adversaries of that fatal system, like the allied armies the great Napoleon at Waterloo. Although we had written the Annual and Special Fire Reports of Alfred Carson in 1851, ‘2, and ‘3, yet we wrote and published this document without his consultation, as he was in Troy, New York, when it appeared in the Herald; but when he read it in the cars between Albany and New York, he was delighted with it, as he informed us on his arrival in this city. The Firemen will perceive that it was written soon after the destruction of Jenning’s Clothing Store in Broadway, and the loss of human life; and that we hurl back the ungenerous charges of almost the universal press of New York, that the firemen were a gang of thieves, because some cheap and scorched and wet clothing was placed over the chilly and mangled and dying firemen by their weeping comrades on that mournful occasion, and found on their dead bodies in the City Hospital.

But read, Firemen, read, and unite to a man against all who would destroy the Volunteer[4] Fire System of New York, which is the best ever devised since the forests and Indians yielded to civilization and freedom.

From the New York Herald of May 14, 1854.

Firemen of New York:—The columns of almost every public journal are closed against you. The hand of almost every editor is uplifted to strike you down. The scurvy politicians, to a man, are against you, and the insurance corporations are spending their money freely to distract and subvert your organization, for the first time since the Indians transmitted their fire department to the pale faces. And why this unhallowed alliance of the press, politicians, and insurance corporations, for your demolition? I will tell you. The press would blot out Alfred Carson, because he dared attack them, and silence their base libels on his good name; the corrupt politicians would bury yourselves and Carson in one common ruin, because you have driven their Aldermanic cronies back to their dreary abodes of reflection and remorse, and the biting neglect of meritorious citizens; and the insurance companies have secretly united to destroy you, because you and your predecessors have been so kind and true to them and their ancestors for one or two centuries. Ingratitude is of rare occurrence among honorable men, but from soulless corporations it is to be expected, although they are composed of creatures who profess to have souls.

A paid fire department is the ostensible cry of the press; but your chastisement is their leading motive, because you have clung like brothers to your Chief, against their maledictions. Their first object is to render you obnoxious with the people. And how would they effect this? Not by honorable means, but by branding you indiscriminately as thieves, even while some of you are imploring, in the name of a humane God, to be extricated from burning ruins, and when the thrilling cries of your deceased comrades could be heard in their editorial closets; and, when extricated, (some dead, and others apparently in their last gasp,) these editors send you, editorially, to the hospital or to Greenwood, as a gang of worthless thieves. They thus degrade and lacerate the bleeding hearts of your distracted kindred; and, to make sure of their victims, living and dead, they devise a hellish plot to entrap your noble Chief Engineer to testify against your departed companions, whose testimony before the Coroner’s Jury, was most shamefully perverted by almost every press in the city. And these editors do all this to operate on the people, and in favor of a paid fire department.


Firemen, you do not merit this degradation and this cruel persecution from the press, (the safety of whose costly establishments you watch with such sleepless vigilance,) simply because you have conscientiously testified your undeviating devotion to your Chief, who has shared your perils for so many years, while those who would degrade and destroy you, are sweetly reposing on feather beds, and making glorious dividends from your gratuitous and perilous labors.

The editors prate about the thievish propensities of firemen, as though there were no thieves among the editors; but these editors must be a most infernal set of scamps from their glowing accounts of each other. And the editors prognosticate no more thefts if the firemen are only paid good fat salaries, and are called brigadiers, or brigade firemen. These brigadiers must come direct from Heaven, if there be not, here and there, a devil among them. Louis Napoleon elected himself Emperor through his fire brigades, and other similar organizations; and Matsell, backed by a large portion of the press and the politicians, may have some mischievous game in view, for he is in his shirt sleeves for a fire brigade.—Brigadier Matsell! How that would sound! And a Brigadier of two Departments, viz.: the fire and the police. O, there’s much in that. Did not Matsell once attempt to wear a white fireman’s cap? and did not Anderson make him take it off? And did not Matsell order a general alarm at the fire in Forsyth street the other day? Oh, firemen, why will you repose on a volcano?

Much is said by the press of the independence of the police, under its present organization. But does not Matsell report the trembling policemen for misdemeanor to the Mayor, Recorder, and City Judge, whose action is final in their removal? This power, in the hands of Matsell, is a lash, and enables him, in connection with his captains and lieutenants, to control the city. How easy for a police captain, under instructions from Matsell, to silence the clamors of their political opponents at the polls, and to incarcerate, (in the Tombs or station houses, until the election is over, and the votes are “satisfactorily” counted,) under the pretext of disturbance, all those who dared oppose Matsell’s candidates, and the candidates of Matsell’s friends among the press and the politicians. And if we had another powerful political organization, in the form of a paid fire department, or Napoleonic Fire Brigade, that would harmonize in its action with the police department, and with the leading politicians, and with the press, and with the insurance and other corporations, what would become of the right of practical suffrage in the city of New York? It would exist only in name.

With power equally distributed among the nations of Europe, there would be no cause for war. Nicholas thinks he can resist all Europe in arms: hence the present war. What mainly preserves the union of the States is the equality of representation of States in the American Senate, through which the reserved rights of the States are chiefly protected. And what will preserve the city of New York from conflagration, and best protect the ballot-box, and promote the best interests of the city, will be for the press to be far less grasping in its desires for universal power, through its advocation of, and its subsequent intimate connection with, the leading officers of dangerous political organizations, which must ultimately result in their absorption of the right of suffrage, and perhaps in the destruction of the city itself. Let the press and the public organizations studiously move in their respective spheres, like the States and the General Government,—a serious collision,[6] or too friendly intimacy, being equally fatal to both, and to all concerned.

The Press has power enough, and quite as much as the people can safely allow them. The public corporations have more power than is consistent with the public safety, and the purity and exercise of the elective franchise. But I repeat, that with a police department, and paid fire department, and other public corporations, and the press, all united in a specified object, God have mercy on the city of New York. Farewell, then, to the right of suffrage in this city. The paid firemen and the paid policemen, openly or tacitly sustained by the press, would utterly block up and control the passages leading to the ballot-boxes, permitting (as many of the police do now) only those to vote who could give the countersign. This fearful consolidation of power in the first American city might lead to the most deplorable results to the whole country. We have not existed eighty years as a Republic, which is a very brief period in the silent and trackless footsteps of centuries. The American eagle might fall to-morrow from his projecting cliff, never to rise. Rome ruled, and finally destroyed the Roman Empire. So with Athens and Alexandria, and other ancient cities. Paris, through political organizations, rules France. These associations, controlled by a bold, reckless, and accomplished leader, can make France a republic to-day, and a despotism to-morrow. London, through her public corporations, which were gradually stolen from the people, controls the British empire, on whose vast possessions the sun never sets. And why should not New York, with similar organizations, and controlled by a crafty, irresponsible, unscrupulous, and unbridled press, ultimately reduce the Whole country to despotism and degrading vassalage? Some of our leading and most honorable statesmen will tell you that the city of New York controls the national conventions of either party, and the national politics, through half a dozen bloated political scamps, located in this city and Albany.

Firemen of New York, and other citizens, are you prepared to incur these perils? If not, arise and resist the superhuman efforts to disgrace and destroy you! Grasp and hold with giant strength the little you have left of the right of suffrage;—cling, with undying firmness and affection, to your noble organization; resist the attempts to saddle this tax-ridden city with an additional tax of nearly one million of dollars, for the support of a paid fire department, and avert the possible contingency that some mushroom scoundrel may, at no remote day, haughtily dispense the curses of monarchy or unlimited despotism on the ruins of your country!

A paid fire department, composed of a limited number of hired mercenaries, could not protect this city so effectually as a voluntary system. It could be done in the cities of Europe, where the habitations are composed of bricks, granite, marble, and other substances impervious to fire, but not in New York, where almost every edifice is a pile of shavings, or combustible matter. Moreover, hired civilians are the same as hired soldiers. Both work for pay, and not for public utility and renown. But the volunteer firemen of New York are as zealous and courageous as the soldiers of the Revolution, while paid firemen would evince the slothfulness and cowardice of the British in that memorable contest. Any man contending for liberty, and his wife and children, can easily rend to fragments three cowardly mercenary combatants, and a volunteer fireman of New York, panting for deeds of valor, and the love and respect of his fellow men, can effect more than half a dozen paid lazzaroni, who go to their perilous task as slaves go to the field.


For years the press of New York has disgusted and insulted the firemen, by striving to make the people believe that the police were more efficient at fires than the firemen; and most of these puffs are written at Matsell’s and the Captains’ offices. We now begin to see the motive of this, which was two-fold. First, to make the police system popular with the people—and it has required an immense deal of puffing to make it even tolerable with the people. And, secondly, to prepare the people for another police organization in the form of a paid fire department. We shall not recur to the past, but will recur to the future files of the press, and we will venture the prediction that, ere many days, it will be publicly announced that poor Matsell has either broken his thigh at a fire, or had his coat burned entirely from his back, or that he has saved the lives of seventy-five policemen, by ordering them down stairs just as the fatal crash was about to come; or, fancying himself Chief Engineer, he has actually struck a general alarm, as in Forsyth street. Or it may be announced that Captains Brennan, Leonard, or some other daring policemen, have quenched a tolerably large conflagration before the firemen arrived; and that, at the same terrific fire, they saved the lives of several men, women, and children, at the imminent risk of losing their own valuable lives.

This base stuff, and these monstrous lies, which daily fill the columns of the Press, concocted by the Police Department as early and valuable news, may have rendered the Police Department a little more tolerable with the people, but, at the same time, it has created a breach and a deadly hatred between the policemen and the firemen that will not be effaced while the present race of editors shall exist. And if they would atone for the mischief they have thus created, and would have more friendly relations subsist between the Police and Fire Departments, the sooner they stop such disgusting nonsense the better for them, and for the city at large.

Stephen H. Branch.

May 14, 1854.

And now, firemen, be vigilant, or you are lost. You are surrounded by spies and internal foes, who talk in favor of the Volunteer System, and yet in ambush are toiling unceasingly against it. The Fire Department swarms with these hypocrites, who are mostly politicians, and employed to stab your Volunteer System by the chief robbers of the politicians, who desire to strangle the rights of the people, and rob and oppress them with taxation, through two such overshadowing political organizations as the Fire and Police Departments.


Stephen H. Branch’s Alligator.



At the advent of Homœopathy a physician said: “There, Branch, take one drop every hour, and if you feel a twitch in the arms, or fingers, or toes, describe your electric thrills as accurately as possible, and let me see your notes when we meet again.” The anticipated twitches in the far extremities alarmed us, lest our heart might get a slight twitch, and we be very suddenly twitched into the grim abode of withered skeletons. We were eating Graham bread at this time with Horace Greeley, in Barclay street, and averaged about eight loaves a day between us, exclusive of the mush and stewed apples. An allopathic physician had assured us that all our fat was gone, save a small chunk near the spleen, and Horace warned us to take no medicine, but to duck our carcase every day, which would[8] soon bring to the surface all the indiscretions of early years, as he had long averaged two baths a day, which produced two hundred boils, of which only twenty-eight remained. So, on a winter’s morning, about five o’clock, we entered a little Egyptian mummy canvas perpendicular box, (before the introduction of the blessed Croton,) and hooked the canvas pine-frame door, and pulled the string, and down came the icy water. In our thrilling despair and unconsciousness, we grasped the string, like a drowning man a straw, and jerked and re-jerked it, until we broke the entire upper cistern arrangements, when down came ten hogsheads of rain water on our poor head, and washed away the mummy box, and us with it. After a Jonah scuffle, we crawled out of the box, and opened the bath-room door, and screamed fire, and murder, and sea-weed, and ran down stairs, with ten hogsheads of water at our heels. We ran into the kitchen, where the servants slept, who sprang from their beds, and ran into the street, and yelled, and aroused the neighbors,—and hens cackled, and cats mewed, and dogs barked, in all directions. We seized a tub and dashed up stairs against the overwhelming torrent, and found about forty lean Grahamites, up to their knees in water, and poor MacDonald Clarke and Horace Greeley among them, bailing for their lives, in their nocturnal mantles. Chairs, and books, and umbrellas, were floating on the bosom of the waters, and the scene resembled the devastation of Noah’s deluge, or the encampment of California miners, at the rise and desolation of the Sacramento and her tributary streams. The walls were soon re-plastered, and new carpets laid, and chaos and saturation departed. We partially recovered from the bathing concussion, but were slowly wasting, and approaching the Spirit land, when we consulted an allopathic physician, (who was an old friend of ours,) who told us that Graham bread and mush had diminished and nearly paralyzed our kidneys, and that we must drink gin or die. We told him that our Father was President of the Rhode Island State Temperance Society, and that we belonged to three Teetotal Societies, and was President of one, and Recording Secretary of another, and that we could not drink gin, although we might possibly go ginger pop, without violating the Constitution of either Society. The Doctor then said: “Well, Branch, give me both hands, and let me also embrace you most fervently, and even kiss you, as you will probably die in about three days, and I shall never see you again, until I come to your funeral. Good by, my good fellow, and may God bless you in the other world.” “Good Lord, Doctor, don’t go—but bring on your gin, and I’ll drink a gallon to begin with, and more if you say so. I’m not prepared to die, and dam the Temperance Societies, where life and death and decayed kidneys are involved.” He then went to the Astor House, and got a quart of the purest gin, and told us to drink freely of it, which we did, and soon felt so happy that we arose from our bed, and went to Mitchell’s Olympic Theatre, where the sweet Mary Taylor was placarded for the Child of the Regiment, and Mitchell for Jem Bags. The gin had now got the better of us, and we talked, and laughed, and hissed the actors, until Mitchell approached the foot-lights, and made an inflammatory speech against us, when a deafening shout arose: “Put him out! put him out!” and out we went, in a mighty hurry, over the heads of ladies and gentlemen. On reaching the outer door, a policeman saw us, whom we had learned to read and write, who accompanied us to the Graham House, and left us at the street door. We staggered up stairs, and got into the bed room of two nervous old maids, who were rigid Grahamites, and as[9] thin as shads, who screamed so frightfully, that we got out as soon as possible, lest they would scratch our eyes out, and tear us to bleeding tatters. We then got into the bed room of Horace Greeley, who poked out his bald head from his straw pillow and scanty Graham bed-clothes, and exclaimed: “Who’s there?” “Thou pale and ghastly shadow! what dost thou in my bed? How dare you enter the sacred precincts of my domestic castle?” “Yon dam drunken vagabond! you are a liar, if you say I’m in your bed. This is my room, and my couch, and if you don’t leave, I’ll throw my boot at your bewildered skull.—Hence! thou miserable sot! Away!” We then approached him, and sat on the side of his narrow cot, and stroked his chin, when he gave us a tremendous blow, in the face, and made our nose bleed copiously. He then arose, and perceiving who we were, expressed the deepest sorrow, and bathed our nostrils, and led us to our room in the attic, and undressed us, and put us to bed, and tucked in the blankets, and after a scathing lecture against intemperance, he left us with a fond good night. We sent for our gin physician, who said that whoever cured us, must cure our nerves, and he could not do it. This we regarded as our final knell, and we began to read the Bible and hymn book, and prepare for death. But a homœopathic physician was strongly recommended, whom we consulted, who gave us phosphorus and aconitum, which revived us like galvanic batteries, and he then told us to exchange Graham bread and mush for beef-soup and tenderloin, and we recovered rapidly. We were teaching a lad, whose dear little sister had the dysentery, with two allopathic butchers in attendance, who, after bleeding, and leeching, and blistering, and suffusing her system with mercury, recommended brandy as a last resort. The little angel had her last fit, as was supposed, and as her father was exhausted and bed-ridden with grief and a burning fever, we went for a coffin towards midnight, and entered a store where there was a lamp in its expiring rays, and rang the bell, when in the drear and narrow perspective, we beheld the lank and greedy grave-digger in his shirt and pants, and black nightcap, approaching us, in about the measured pace of “Hamlet’s Ghost.”—He had a dark lantern, and seemed a hideous spectre emerging from the regions of the dead. We were extremely nervous, and awfully dyspeptic, and unusually depressed from the protracted storm, and could endure his fearful aspect no longer, and when within five paces of our trembling person, we darted from the coffin store, and ran as though the evil Nicholas was after us. The sexton suspected us for a thief, and chased us several blocks, but we flew like a whirlwind, and the devil himself could not have caught us. On reaching the abode of the suffering innocent, we found that she had emerged from the last fit, and off we scampered for the homœopathic physician who had saved our life with phosphorus, and aconitum, and beef soup, and tenderloin. We aroused him from his couch, and we were by the side of the little invalid in twenty minutes, when the Doctor removed a tooth, (her jaws being apparently closed in death,) and deposited about four drops of medicine in her mouth, which was continued during the night, and at twelve, meridian, she ate egg and potato combined, with milk, and in five days she rollicked all over the house. While conducting the Matsell Investigation, we wrote a Disquisition on Worms, and Mrs. Doughty, (the amiable wife of Mr. Doughty, who was long connected with the New York Street Department, and whose lovely daughter married a member of the great Banking House of Prime, Ward, & King,) called on the noble and supremely beautiful Mrs. Alderman John[10] H. Briggs, and said: “I reside near Newark, New Jersey. My husband’s name is Samuel S. Doughty, (who was Street Commissioner of the City of New York in 1844 and ‘45,) and is very wealthy, and has erected a mansion that will compare with any in New Jersey. We have spacious grounds, and gardens, and orchards, and horses, and carriages, and all that can render us happy in the evening of our days, and yet we are very miserable. A dark cloud hovers over our magnificent abode, that we fear will soon belch the elements of destruction, and overwhelm us all in one common ruin. I have a sweet, and intellectual, and generous-hearted daughter, whose rare conversational powers, and vocal and instrumental music, cheered us in other days, who has been chained to a couch of illness more than two years. So disconsolate is her heart, that she will not permit her rosy and curly children to enter her apartment, nor a solitary mortal, save myself and husband. Her stomach rejects every species of food, and she has the piles most awfully, and several other diseases. Doctors Parker and Mott, and other eminent Americans, and two distinguished European physicians, have crossed the Atlantic, and toiled long and hard for her restoration. Now, my dear Mrs. Briggs, please listen very attentively to what I am about to disclose. A week since, I discovered a long article on Worms in the New York Daily Times, signed by Stephen H. Branch, and read it to my daughter, to elicit, if possible, a smile from her sad face. But I had scarcely closed it, ere she partially arose in her bed, and fixed her excited eyes upon me, and most terribly alarmed me, as she had not arisen in her bed for months, without assistance, and I said: ‘Why, my dear child, did you arise without my aid, and why, dear Caroline, do you stare so at your mother?’ She waved her hand, and faintly cried: ‘Go on, dear mother, go on, and let me again hear the delightful music of those words. I am saved, mother, I am saved, and Stephen H. Branch is my deliverer. Read, mother, read, and gladden the heart of poor Caroline.’ And I read it again, and she alternately wept and laughed until I closed it, and then she softly laid her head upon her pillow, and crossed her arms on her excited and swelling bosom, and breathed a prayer to God for the preservation of Mr. Branch, until she could behold him. Her words were perfect inspiration, and I cried until my eyes were highly inflamed, and until I almost fell upon the floor, and I dared not cry more, and I had to leave her and call my husband, who came and relieved me. She had not slept without laudanum for months, but in ten minutes after I closed Mr. Branch’s article on Worms, she passed into a gentle and natural slumber, and did not awake until the following day at meridian. And her repose imparted a rainbow glow to her icy cheeks, and exchanged roses for lilies. And she beckoned me to her bedside, and softly said: ‘Mother: I want you to visit Mr. Branch, as I believe I have got worms, and I am sure, from his glowing and truthful Dissertation on this novel theme, that he fully understands my case, which the most eminent physicians have failed to fathom.’ I smiled, and assured her that it would be useless. But for several days she has afforded me no peace, such have been her importunities for me to see Mr. Branch. And as I conceived it very dangerous to oppose her will, in her critical condition, I have come, and I desire you to exert all your influence to induce Mr. Branch to accompany me to my residence in the suburbs of Newark, and see my beloved child, who will salute him like a brother and deliverer, and who is nearly distracted to behold him.” Mrs. Briggs sent for us, and we personally responded on the following day, when we told her that we were[11] chasing Matsell night and day, and could not spare the time to visit Newark invalids; nor did we desire to, as we were not a practical physician, and if we assumed the awful responsibility of treating chronic piles and worms, if a patient died while under our care, we might be arrested for murder, and be tried by a jury packed by Dick Connolly, as County Clerk, and be condemned and hung. So, in comes Mrs. Doughty again, and again, and through her tears, and those thrilling and irresistible apostrophes of a devoted mother, she touches the magic cord in the heart of Mrs. Briggs, who resolved to get me to Newark, if possible. So, she comes at me like General Putnam’s or Samson’s wives, and demands me to visit Newark to gratify the invalid’s curiosity to see me, as a matter of humanity, and said that if I did not go, the daughter might die in a fit, and I would be responsible to God and man, and to woman also, for she, herself, would forever hold me responsible for the premature demise of the pale divinity of Newark. So, we proposed to go, if her husband, Alderman John H. Briggs, would accompany us. We then winked to Jack, and he hesitated, which pleased us well, and we peremptorily declined to go. But Mrs. Briggs then flew at Jack with a fork and pepper box, and Jack yielded like a docile lamb, and we also had to go, or perhaps receive the perforation of a fork, or a gill of pepper in our eyes, or listen to a tongue that might have blistered our conscience. So we saw our extraordinary physician, who had ejected eleven worms from our belly, (one of which was tied in a square knot,) and over we went to Jersey City, where Mr. Doughty, and the most beautiful horses and carriage, with driver and postilion, anxiously awaited our arrival, and on we go to the suburbs of Newark, crossing a stream in a ferry boat, that strongly reminded us of the immortal river Styx. We reach Mr. Doughty’s elegant residence, and drove through the meandering paths, and cull pretty flowers, and luscious peaches, and enjoy a rural dinner, and are escorted by Mrs. Doughty into the presence of her daughter, who extends her skeleton fingers, and archly lays them in ours, whose icy coldness thrills the fibres of our bowels. She strives to smile, and casts tender glances, and looks down into our soul, for a deliverer. Our eyes reflect the fondest hope, and as she beheld this cheerful word, on the surface of our vision, she sweetly smiles, and presses our palm with tenderness and love. And then she breathes patient words of her afflictions, and touching soliloquies, and sings plaintive verses, and eclipses the sad Ophelia, when moaning for Hamlet, or scattering withered flowers, or on the rosy margin of the glassy brook, where she meets a watery grave. In her lucid intervals, we describe her symptoms and emotions with such minuteness, that we quickly win her confidence, and she is ready to show us her piles and half a dozen other diseases, including worms, and she directs her mother to remove the bed clothes, and let us behold her scabs and frightful probes and lacerations, and inhuman mutilations, by the leading physicians of Europe and America. But we very emphatically direct Mrs. Doughty to replace the sheets, and quilts, and blankets, as we were not a physician, and had no license, and as the authorities of New Jersey (which were rather severe when they caught a foreign barbarian in their dominions) might cage us, if they learned that we were examining female patients without a Jersey permit. But we assured both mother and daughter, that the gentleman below, in company with Alderman Briggs, was the very physician who drove eleven worms from our stomach, and that he could critically examine her diseases, as he was a licensed physician. So, although the invalid abjured her own[12] lovely children, and her dear kindred, and doctors, and all save her father and mother, yet she had such confidence in us, that she permitted our physician to enter her chamber, where he critically examined her person, and immediately assured her that he could not only save, but cure her in six weeks. She spooned at this thrilling intelligence, and did not recover her consciousness for two hours, when ourself, and the Doctor, and Alderman Briggs, returned to New York. Two months afterwards, we called on the Doctor, who informed us that he had just returned from a very large party in Lafayette Place, where he had passed the evening very pleasantly with Mr. and Mrs. Doughty and their lovely daughter, who was entirely restored to health, and who played the great piano music of Thalberg and Lizt for him, and sang nearly equal to Alboni, and that he had the pleasure of a waltz in her graceful and bewitching embraces, who darted through the parlor in a dance, like an eagle through the air, and that the father, and mother, and daughter, warmly inquired for Mr. Branch, whom they regarded as the saviour of their earthly happiness. And thus closes the lamentations and humanities of a ghastly Grahamite, whose narrative on Worms restored a marble statue to vitality, and her parents, and children, and kindred and friends, to the divinest hilarity and joy. And for miles around the residence of the Doughtys, invalids have been rescued from early graves by this supernatural physician, who recently was compelled to conceal himself from the regiments of skeletons who applied for his magic skill and medicines, which is the only reason why we do not disclose his mighty name, lest his patients waste him to the mournful realms of Greenwood, where his slender frame will soon repose forever.

A Melancholy Postscript!—We called last evening to read these lamentations to the Doctor of Mrs. Doughty’s daughter, and we learned that he was reposing in the dark and silent caverns of the globe. O, the rats and mice and pigmies and shadows and phantoms of life’s funny and tearful and mysterious fandango. We open our eyes in the sweet twilight of the morning, and behold the gorgeous panorama of the Universe, and form the warmest attachments, and go to our rest at sunset, never to awake! Peace to the soul and ashes of Dr. David Perry, who is the lamented Physician of our narrative, who was the student of Dr. Cheesman, and preserved the life of ourself and brother and other kindred and friends.


For American Youth to Read, and for Thieves and Traitors to Ponder.

With the Declaration of Independence in his right hand, John Adams, on the Fourth of July, 1776, rose and said:

“Mr. President:—Read this Declaration at the head of the Army; every sword will be drawn from its scabbard, and the solemn vow uttered to maintain it or perish on the bed of honor. Publish it from the pulpit: religion will approve of it, and the love of religious liberty will cling around it, resolved to stand with it or fall with it. Send it to the public halls—proclaim it there—let them hear it who heard the first roar of the enemy’s cannon—let them see it who saw their sons and their brothers fall on the field of Bunker’s Hill, and in the streets of Lexington and Concord, and the very walls will cry out in its support. Sir, I know the uncertainty of human affairs; but I can see—see clearly through this day’s business. You and I may not live to the time when this Declaration shall be made good,—we may die—die colonists—die slaves—die, it may be, ignominiously and on the scaffold.—Be it so—be it so. If it be the pleasure of Heaven that my country shall require the poor offering of my life, the victim shall be ready at the appointed hour of sacrifice, come when that hour may. But while I do live, let me have a country, or at least the hope of a country, and that a free country. Through the thick gloom of the present I see the brightness of the future, as the sun in Heaven. We shall[13] make this a glorious, an immortal day. When we are in our graves, our children will honor it. They will celebrate it with thanksgivings, with bonfires and illuminations. On its annual return they will shed tears, copious, gushing tears—not of subjection and slavery—not of agony and distress—but of gratitude, of consolation, and of joy. And I leave off as I began—that live or die—survive or perish—I am for the Declaration. It is my living sentiment, and by the blessing of God it shall be my dying sentiment—Independence now, and Independence forever!”

Reflections at the grave of Charles A. Jesup, who reposes in the suburbs of Westport, Ct.; written by Stephen H. Branch, in his early years:—

To thy loved tomb I’ve come to day,
To sing of thee a mournful lay:
Not in the strain I used to sing,
For life is now a weary thing.

As I came here, I gladly found
A pretty bird upon thy mound:
It lingered long, and sang as though
Departed worth reposed below.

By thy lone grave, in this strange land,
‘Neath April skies, I hapless stand:
While num’rous flocks and herds I spy,
With honest farmers ploughing nigh.

I can but think, as I look round,
That you once played upon this ground:
The hills! the stream! the velvet lawn!
E’en house I see where thou wast born!

Where thou wast born? Alas! where died,
And all our best affections tried:
Aye, on that drear, autumnal day,
When, round thee, dying, all did pray.

That was, indeed, a cruel year,
To cut down one to kin so dear;
So full of promise, and so young,
To whom we all so fondly clung.

Was’t not enough, with fatal blow,
A nation to o’erwhelm in woe?
In that fell year, a chieftain died—
Brave Harrison—his country’s pride.

But we’ll not chide—’twas God’s decree:
Thy day was come—He wanted thee:
Thy sudden death spread gloom—indeed,
Caused many a manly heart to bleed.

Yon weary farmers cease to plough,
To mingle with sweet twilight now,
Which warns me to depart this place,
And wend my way at rapid pace.

Hear Charley! all the past I see!
Our fav’rite walks! thy happy glee!
O God! farewell! in tears I leave!
My heart would here forever cleave!

The following meritorious gentlemen are wholesale agents for the Alligator.

Ross & Tousey, 121 Nassau street.
Hamilton & Johnson, 22 Ann street.
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Mike Madden, 21 Ann street.
Cauldwell & Long, 23 Ann street.
Boyle & Gibson, 32 Ann street and
Hendrickson & Blake, 25 Ann street.

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THE RED FLAG (JOBSON’S JOURNAL) will be unfurled on Saturday, May 15th, with most terrific cuts, by the sanguinary editor, at Bennett, Sickles, Rynders, Old Buck, and even Branch, though to that Dear Boy he is in no degree a “stern parient.” Give your orders—down with the dust—3 cents each—at the office, 102 Nassau street.




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—Obvious print and punctuation errors were corrected.

—A Table of Contents was not in the original work; one has been produced and added by Transcriber.

—The cover image has been created by transcriber and placed in public domain.