|Newspaper Title||Northern Star (Lismore, NSW : 1876 - 1954)|
|Trove Title||Curly Harry: A story about Old Times|
Four years' afterwards I wont up to look nt a station property with a view to Íiurchaso . it, and ns there was some very
landsome parrots, nnd paroqueets in tho' neighborhood, I. borrowed n gun nnd wont out shooting. . . A Scotch collie dog, which, belonged to ono of tho shepherds, followed
, "Going out shooting, sir?" enquired tho shepherd who owned tho dog.
I told him thnt was my intention.
" Hotter not go too far awny from tho out station," snid the man. " Curly Harry has
boen seen within a few miles of here."
"And who is Curly Harry?" I asked, laughingly.
"Who is ho,; sir?-well, you aro green him ns stuck up Bonliba, station, nnd_ no end of other places. He's ri. terror 1 ho is," said tho old man ; '.' but I don't think he'd come round about hero. Good morning, sir ; you'll get plenty of parrots on tho top of that range (pointing'to a . very lofty ono about four miles oil). If you loso yourself, follow tho gullies till thoy tnko you to tho creek. Como up it, and it will bring you close home."
Half nu hour afterward I had clcnfi for gotten that such n person ns Curly Harry ever existed, mid the parrots being numerous, I potted a lot of beauties. I was talcing aim at a mngnificont roselin, when n growl from, my dog mnde mc look round. Seated on a log nbout thirty ynrds off, I saw n big rough fellow, with a gun leaning on his shoulder from beneath his knees, carving away nt n hugo lunip of, damper nnd n piece of meat.
HG had a heavy,; coarse board, mid had tho ' appearance of sómo digger bn thc tramp. I had clean forgotten about tho shepherd's warning, and, after a casunl glnnco in thc fellow's direction, I took aim nt my rose fron tod quarry, mid brought him down. I had just seized him, when , a rough, coarse voice said- '
" Hold up your arms and drop, that gun, or I'll blow thc root of your skull in.".
Looking round, I saw..that tho follow who had boori so quietly haying his feed had
covered mo with a formidable looking rifle, nnd was within ton feet of nuv
I am not easily frightened, and give mo an o von chance 1 would tackle anything or any body; but' I did what most
sensible men would have dono
-I '-dropped my gun and held my arms nj) above my bend.
"Call that dog tu. you," said
I did so.
"Now drop one hand into your pockets on that side, and empty them on tho ground."
' I dirt so without hesitation,
for 1 know 1 had no other alternative than to obey.
" Now putihat hand np. and put. tho other hunch .of lives into your other pockitt,", said tho rutilan;
I complied with" thu samo alacrity.
" You're, pretty-smart, you are." said the fellow, grinning admiringly. " Seems ns if you had been . through tho mill bc
foro, I slinnt hurt you. Now just walk up io that trco wlioro you knocked, that bird off his
perch, and put your.face agin it, and if you j move for hnlf-nn-hour, nil you'll want is a sheet of bark'to carry, home .what's -loft of you.". , ' .. , -, '. .??.'..
... There was. somethingso familiar in the sound of tho man's voice that I could- not restrain myself from having a good look at him before obeying his commands, and sud denly it Hashed across mo,that tho villain in front of mu was Harry líenlo, tho murderer oE my poor moto. . llcganTlcss of consc quanccs, f felt inclined to rush at him, but I romomborcd, bef oro I made what would havo been n fatal stop, that I could not possibly have a chanco with him, so I controlled tho intense desiro 1 felt to avenge poor Tom, and
"I know you,'Harry Fonlo, murdorcr and robber that you ard, and If I could meet you on equal tenus, 1 would soon mako you suffer for your treacherous and cowardly return for
For ono minute tho fellow lookod as if ho scarcely understood mo ; then, bringing his gun on dead line for my chest, ho said-- '
." Sri, you're, ono bf those coves that, 'cos they gave d man n'feed, and a slinko-dowii, fancied lib ought to'Avork his eyeballs out for n note br two, and,"'oceania ho wouldn't you turned him but, nnd when ho culled np to try aud.mako a riso.out of you imported now .chums, ono of you salted mo yvith a.charge
-of shot, ch 2 I know you ! I ain't likely to forget you 1 Look here 1 "-and he pointed to one of his eyes, which was apparently sightless-" this . was some of your work, although that big chump paid dear enough for it. And now I'm going to square up a balance that's been standing a long time ; " as he finished ho pulled tho trigger with a smile of malice, but the gun snnpped. .
Tho next moment I had seized my gun and wont for tho scoundrel ; but he was too quick for mo, and had darted for tho gully, gnining about thirty yards by the timo I seized my gun. Tho sheep dog, however, kept nt his heels for some time, until suddenly stooping as tho dog ran alongside of him, ho seized her in his arms and threw tho poor slut far away from him, amongst some rough basaltic boulders, which injured tho poor animal so much thnt wo soon left her far behind. On wc wont at n break-neck pace that I know couldn't last long, until sud denly rising a very steep range that on one side had a most precipitous face, ending in a deep dry watercourse, I lost sight of him.
Honestly, I was quite tired of the chase, nnd when I retraced my steps I lost myself for many hours, but was found by a search party that hnd .been sont out for me ; and
arrived at the station about six in the morn ing, thoroughly exhausted. I told my host nbout my ndventures, and, ns nenrly ns I could, whens I hnd lost tho ruffian ; but, nlthough wo senrched for three or four days af terwnrds, I could never point out tho exact spot wliero ho had disappeared ; and tho generally-expressed opinion was that ho would not at any rato hnng about tho station after what had occurred, and thc search was not persevered in. ' '
Before I. loft tho station I lind rando up my mind to purchase it, nnd on my return to Melbourne concluded nrrnngemohts with tho agents.
After getting mnrricd to nn old sweetheart who came over to tho colonies to share my loneliness, I removed to my now purchase, and, writing ns I now nm nftor twenty-five years' oxperioneo of station business, I can safely say that I never regretted having in fested my enpitnl in so profitable and pleasant'a speculntion. My children, five
in number, nro likely to do credit to their nativo land ; nnd my denr old wife and I considor ourselves muong tho happiest of
Lost Ch "¡fitinas twelvemonths, as throe of my station linmls wore returning from a ride to. tho neighboring township, they struok through a piooo of country that lind rarely been visited by anybody on tho station, nnd never hy myself. It was n jocky,- barren gully, with no feed for anything near it ;, but olio of my riders fancied ho recognised .thc hoof-marks of n favorite llorac of mino that lind been lost some time previously, trending in, lids direction. Crossing over some boul ders in a narrow gorge, nf ter dismounting, one ot (hem saw something white,.and closo investigation showed it . to bo a skeleton, whitened by ngc. Tho only thing about it likely to lend to its' identification was an earring that lay on thc solid flat rock along side tho remains'. AVhon it was shown to mo I at once recognised it ns ono of. those worn by Curly Harry, and n visit to tho spot nt once confirmed mo in my belief, for on tracing the position of tho skeleton from the top of tho precipitous range I could identify thc spot ns being tho hist pince whore I lind seen tho murderer. He must have fallon on' tho hard rock below and never moved after
wards, ns the bones were fractured in ninny pinces ; but being in such nu un frequented ?nook-n pince thnt nobody lind any necessity
to visit-his remains hnd not boon'discovered' until found, after so many years, by-.my;
So my poor murdered mate wns, after all, avenged, and-his assassin received his duo
W. WATKISS. I