Draper in a brief note [12H] says Mason spent much time at Palmyra and on Stack Island. Palmyra then, as now, was a very small settlement on the Mississippi, about twenty miles below Vicksburg. Stack Island, also known as Crow’s Nest or Island No. 94, was washed away shortly after Mason’s day, and in time most of its traditions disappeared. It was on Stack Island, near the mouth of Lake Providence, about fifty-five miles below Vicksburg, that we first hear of Mason—after organized bands began to search for him.
So much for that. At least he had made one simple decision on his own, he thought with grim humor. To that extent he had reestablished his mastery of his own fate, and it made him feel a touch better.
For a number of years there had existed among the small farmers numerous societies for mutual aid of various kinds. After the Socialists began to turn their attention to the agricultural population they succeeded in gaining leadership in these societies and used them as a means of encouraging agricultural strikes. It was from these same societies also that they recruited the members of those organizations of farm labourers and tenants which have attempted to form large estates on a coöperative basis. By this means
It did not take much to violently excite West Harrowby; and therefore when the Harrowby union-Palladium published one morning, with a big display head that covered half the first page of the paper, the burning of the Northern Lunatic Asylum, a certain circumstance connected therewith gave West Harrowby something to talk about for a week. Five inmates of the women's ward were missing, and among them was Mrs. Eleanor Thorburn. Five bodies, charred beyond recognition, were found in the ruins. Some days after a notice appeared in the obituary column of the union-Palladium: "Suddenly, on the 17th of February, Mrs. Eleanor Thorburn, wife of the Reverend Edmund Thorburn, of East Harrowby." That was all.
"Quite true," said the marquis, turning pale, "but Saturday, my pet—"
He grinned sheepishly.
"I hope," he said, with injudicious haste, "that, if I do go on this shoot, you won't let that boy hang round the bungalow and follow you about all over the place while I am away."
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