LIFE OF GORDON.
RURAL LIFE OF GORDON.
When Charles was fourteen years of age, he
asked his brother-in-law what was the best thing
for him to pursue that he might give his mother
a better support, as well as school himself. His
brother suggested that they would farm on shares
—in partnership. This was agreed upon and
sanctioned by Charles' mother. To carry out this
project they purchased a yoke of oxen—it was
the custom in those days to have the use of an ox
two years for breaking. This was simply fun for
the high-spirited youth. Although he had a hard
time with his oxen, he succeeded in conquering them
and subjecting them to the yoke. He was once,
during the time he was engaged in breaking oxen,
thrown from the cart and barely escaped death.
They, however, had great success the first year. By
hard, earnest labor they were able in the fall to house
one hundred barrels of corn, and ship three bales
of cotton, and put up fifteen hundred pounds of
pork, beside raising a large amount of small grain,
such as beans, peas, potatoes, &c. Thus they had
means and facilities for widening out their prospects
for a better farm.
Meanwhile, Charles' mind was maturing steadily
and his muscular strength fast developing its re¬
sources. Not unlike most boys of the rural circle,
Charles had grown very wicked—had a great love
for dancing parties. The prosperity of the first year,