$1.75 A YEAR,
FEBRUARY 2, 1905.
5 CTS. A COPY.
@ NE small duck was all
that Farnum was able
EER@ to shoot that day and
the next. Watch was driven to
catehing grasshoppers and frogs for food. And
day after, Farnum was himself reduced to
Makal was too ill to eat.
s stretched away the apparently
interminable flat country, often boggy and over-
grown with rushes and water-grass. Farnum
put the mare at her best pace, and ran after her.
Toward evening of the third day they came
to the trees, which were found to grow along
the bank of a large river. It was the Irtish,
one of the great tributaries of the Ob.
Being very hungry, Farnum had immediate
recourse to his fish-hooks; and although dusk
had fallen, he succeeded in catching two fish
resembling salmon. Ieaps of driftwood
furnished fuel. ITere Farnum turned doctor.
IIe had no medicines, but he boiled some
Dbirch twigs in water, and made Makal drink
a great quantity of the hot decoction. Owing
to this, or to the change to a better country,
the young Pole improved during the night
and next day.
The TIrtish, in this portion of its course,
was flowing toward the west, and they
proceeded along the bank for two da
entering a beautiful river valley of good s
Watch at last started a young bear. It took
refuge in a birch-tree, where Farnum shot
The report of the gun attracted the atten-
tion of three Cossacks, who, with their
families, were living on the other bank of
the Trtish. Two of them, who seemed to
be ferrymen, came over to see if the strangers
wished to cross the ri
Makal understood many words of their
language; and having learned from them
that the river was a good route for a part
of the¢ way to Ekaterinburg, Farnum
“‘swapped’’ the white mare with them for
a skiff, which was made of planks hewn
from the trunk of a large cedar-tree, and for
a hundredweight of dried fish, two pounds
of salt, and powder and ball for ten charges
for the musket.
Having driven this thrifty bargain, the
two travellers embarked on the Irtish. T'wo
oars, came with the skiff; but for a time
they were quite content to allow the boat to
float with the current, which ran at the
rate of about three miles an hour.
From this time on, for several days,
they fared much better, landing only to cook
food on the banks near some pile of drift.
Thus far they had seen no boats on the
1] but on the morning of the fourth
day, as they rounded a bend, they heard
shouts and the neighing of horses, and
immediately came upon a singular spectacle.
A raft, crowded with horses and camels,
was being drawn slowly ae he river by
means of a long grass rope, Jarge as a
man’s leg, which Ly on the water, but was
attached to tree trunks on each bank. It
was the temporary ferry of a caravan of
Kirghiz, on the way to the annual fair at
Petropavlovsk, a Siberian market-town a
hundred miles or more to the west of the
Irtish. On each side stood great munbers
of horses and camels, some laden with packs,
others bearing cloaked and veiled women, seated
on bales of goods. A mounted Kirghiz, evi-
dently a chief, wearing a red turban and a
voluminous white burnoose, and carrying a long
gun, was riding up and down the bank, shouting
Thinking that he could pass by pressing down
the rope and allowing the skiff to float over it,
Farnum took up one of the oars and approached
slowly, a hundred feet or more behind the raft.
But perceiving his intention, the mounted
Kirghiz shouted authoritatively and motioned
him back. © Kalarf! Kalazf!” he vocifer-
ated, brandishing his long gun. * Kalarf
Gherokai!” (Go back. Wait.)
It seemed an ill-natured command, for ther
were still a great number of horses and camels
to cross on the raft. But rather than risk
trouble, Farnum paddled the skiff back to slack
water, beneath the bank, and held on there by
a trailing bush.
He and Makal had lain there but a few
minutes when a newcomer appeared on the
river. A large eraft having two masts and sails
came in sight rounil the bend above them, and
bore down on the ferry. It was a large, high
vessel, more than a hundred feet in length.
Forwarnd, there was what resembled a vast
cage, occupying the whole deck back to th
with people. On the roof stood several men in
uniform, evidently the captain, starosta, and
other officers. From the flagstaff at the stern
This ¢age appeared to be crowded |
g4 THE - BO
Yours is the boldest exploit of which
IN TEN CHAPTERS.
a korable turma (prison bark), conveying con-
viets from the mines.
Wlen this ponderous craft hove in
great hubbub arose among the Kirghi: Their
raft, transporting not less than twenty camels
and horses with their loads, was hardly more
than half-way across, moving foot by foot as
the camel-drivers pulled on the rope.
“Kalart! Kalarf!”” bawled the Kix
ashore, and galloped up the bank toward the
bark. ““Nalapf!” (Iold. Go back.)
It is likely that the bark could neither stop
nor go back.
“Get out of the way! Be off!”” bellowed
the captain, from his lofty station on the top of
the convict cage.
Perceiving the danger, all the Kirghiz ashore
shouted excitedly, the women screamed, and
the men on the raft tugged at the rope. It was
quite beyond their power, however, to move
the raft except at a snail’s pace; and the barl
keeping the mid-channel, bore down on it.
Fortunately it passed a little astern of the raft,
but carried away the rope: and immediately
the rude ferry with its load of live stock, shout-
ing Kirghiz and shrieking women, drifted a
All the while Farnum and the young Pole
| had been lying by, under the river bank, holding
| on by a bush. But now, judging that the grow-
ing excitement among the Kirghiz might make
the locality a dangerous one for them, they let
go and plied their oars to pass down in the
wake of the prison ship. A few shouts followed
them; but the whole caravan was now chief
/| the bars of their cage.
I have ever heard.—Tsar Alexander I.
erm DOIES lower in the hroadside thes sea craff,
interpreting; but while doing
this, the Pole contrived to say:
“We must get away at once.
That Cossack recognizes me,
Tle was one of those who escaped when our gang
overpowered the guards.”’
mum soon rose, therefore, shook hands
with the captain, and was about to climb down
into their skiff, when the sfarosta of the guard,
coming forward, said, ‘“Not so fast, thou,”
and seized Makal by the collar.
The young Pole remonstrated hotly; but the
Cossack who had recognized him approached,
exclaiming, ““‘You are the scoundrel who struck
down my lientenant! I know you very well!””
Thereupon the captain swore a tremendous
oath, and shouted, ‘“These rascals have fooled
us! Throw them into the hold!”*
Resistance was out of the question. The
Cossacks hustled them roughly down a
ladder into the foul hold of the bark, and
closed the hatch over their heads. Watch
flew at the legs of his master’s ilants,
and after they were down in the hold,
Farnum heard him barking fiercely. Ile
continued barking after his master had
disappeared, and perhaps bit some of the
soldier: Farnum heard him yelp sud-
denly; and this outery was followed by a
splash alongside. They had ki 1 him
overboard. For some time there was laugh-
ter and shouting, followed by a shot.
Farnum, nearly beside himself with anger
at this cruel treatment of his faithful little
pet, had no doubt that Watch was drowned
or shot; but in point of fact the dog had
reached the bank of the river, and the shot
fired after him had missed its mark.
As his eyes became accustomed to the
darkness of the hold, Farnum discerned a
light at several places along the bark’s
side; and on reaching up he found that
there was a row of port-holes covered by
heavy shutters of plank. Thes or barks,
not being exposed to ocean weather, had
— i p. facilitate takiog in and discharging cargo.
to drift on a rocky point half
where the current was swift. num did not
see it again, however, for as they rowed down
in the wake of the bark, the captain came aft
and shouted, ‘“What boat is that?’”
num did not understand the hail, but
Makal replied that they were Americans.
The captain laughed incredulously, and asked
what they were doing there among the Kirgl
Makal replied that they had nothing to do with
the Kirghiz, but were descending the ri on
their way to Ekaterinburg and St. Petersburg.
“Sol? laimed the captain. ‘‘But that
is a long journey! Come on board.””
‘ Immediately a Cossack threw them a line,
and after drawing alongside the bark, Farnum
| tossed Watch up to the deck and climbed up
| himself. Makal followed, but they left their
gun and other property in the skiff.
The captain, a very tall, thin man, observed
them curiously. ‘‘America?’” he exclaimed.
““Ts not that beyond where the sun 1i
Makal replied dryly that it rose there also.
The crew and guard had gathered round; and
all the convicts were staring at them through
Farnum produced his
letters; but after a glance the captain returned
them and ordered vodka and bread and cheese
| to be brought. e seemed a jocose man.
While they were eating, one of the Cossacks
| approached and looked Makal in the face for
| some moments. Farnum saw that the young
Pole started and turned pale, but he said nothing.
They went on eating bread and cheese and
a mile below,
¢ | sipping vodka, Farnum asking many questions
floated the Russian imperial ensign. It was | intent on the fate of the raft, which bade fair |as to the route to Ekaterinburg and Makal
Determined to obtain light if nothing
more, Farnum began prying off one of the
shutters with a loose piece of scantling, and
at last so far displaced it that he could look
The bark was floating with the stream,
and the west side of the river was hardly
more than a hundred yards away. The
trees, bushes, and even the flowers on the
bank seemed close at hand. The spectacle
brought new hope to Farnum’s heart, and
he at once began laying plans to escape.
After dark he could easily crawl through
the port and let himself down into the
water alongside. ITe was a good swimmer,
and if not discovered by the soldiers on
deck, had no doubt that he could reach the
bank. But it was necessary to wait for
night, and as yet it was hardly past noon.
The hold was frightfully filthy and foul-
smelling, particularly that portion of it
beneath the conviet cage.
Makal grew more hopeful as Farnum
explained his project, and agreed to make
the attempt. Farmun understood him to
say that he could swim; afterward he had
doubts as to this, and reproached himself for
not ascertaining more carefully.
Shortly after sunset the bark was anchored,
instead of proceeding on by night,—owing per-
haps to rougher water ahead,—and this for a
time disheartened the prisoners. Farnum had
thought it would be easier to get away from
the bark when it was moving down the river.
The distance to the west bank, too, was now
greater than it had been during most of the
Farnum had succeeded in prying off the port
| cover without much noise; and as soon as it
| had grown dark he put his letters inside his
| fur cap, pulled it down hard, and made ready
to drop into the river. The rifle, ammunition
and all their other property, except the gold in
his belt, were in the skiff.
Makal had also made himself ready, but
| Farnum advised him to wait a few minutes,
| since both together would make more noise in
| the water than one alone. From the sounds
on deck they concluded that the soldiers were
eating their supper; and after peeping out at
[ the port and listening, Farnum erawled through
[it, let himself slowly down into the water,
| and turning on his back, floated away past the
bark aith the current.
| He did not turn over to swim until he was
seventy or eighty yards below the bark. Then,
with as little noise as possible, he made for the
| west bank of the Irtish, and reached it without
| difficulty in the course of a few minutes.
‘ lis feet had no more than touched bottom,
however, when he heard a low whining in the
g suMe[l v £l