distracted woman soon called the neighbours together, who instantly joined in the search. "It was not until this afternoon that any trace could be obtained of the lost children, when Brian, the hunter, found the youngest boy, Johnie, lying fast asleep upon the trunk of a fallen tree, fifteen miles back in the bush." "And the other boy?" "Will never, I fear, be heard of again," said she. "They have searched for him in all directions and have not discovered him. The story little Johnie tells is to this effect. During the first two days of their absence, the food they had brought in the basket for their father's dinner, sustained life; but to-day it seems that the little Johnie grew very hungry, and cried continually for bread. William, the elder boy, he says, promised him bread if he would try and walk further; but his feet were bleeding and sore, and he could not stir another step. William told him to sit down upon the log on which he was found, and not stir from the place until he came back, and he would run on until he found a house and brought him something to eat. He then wiped his eyes, and bade him not to be frightened or to cry, and kissed him and went away. "This is all the little fellow knows about his brother; and it is very probable the generous-hearted boy has been eaten by the wolves. The Indians traced him for more than a mile along the banks of a stream, when they lost his trail altogether. If he had fallen into the water, they would have discovered his body, but they say that he has been dragged into some hole in the bank among the tangled cedars and devoured. "Since I have been in the country," continued Mrs. H---, "I have known many cases of children, and ever of grown persons, being lost in the woods, who were never heard of again. It is a frightful calamity to happen to any one, and mothers cannot be too careful in guarding their children against rambling alone into the bush. Persons, when once they lose sight of the beaten track, get frightened and bewildered and lose all presence of mind; and instead of remaining where they are, which is their only chance of being discovered, they plunge desperately on, running hither and thither, in the hope of getting out, while they only involve themselves more deeply among the mazes of the interminable forest. "Two winters ago, the daughter of a settler in the remote township of Dummer, where my husband took up his grant of wild land, went with her father to the mill, which was four miles from their log shanty and the road lay entirely through the bush. For a while the girl, who was about twelve years of age, kept up with her father, who walked briskly ahead with his bag of corn on his back, for, as their path lay through a tangled swamp, he was anxious to get home before night. After a time Sarah grew tired, and lagged a long way behind. The man felt not the least apprehensive when he lost sight of her, expecting that she would soon come up with him again. Once or twice he stopped and shouted, and she answered, 'Coming, father;' and he did not turn to look after her again. He reached the mill--saw the grist ground, resumed his burthen and took the road home, expecting to meet Sarah by the way. He trod the path alone, but still thought that the girl, tired of the long walk, had turned back, and that he should find her safe at home. "You may imagine, Mrs. M---, his consternation and that of the family, when they found that the girl was lost. "It was now dark, and all search for her was given up for the night as hopeless. By day-break the next morning, the whole settlement, which was then confined to a few lonely log tenements inhabited by Cornish miners, were roused from their sleep to assist in the search. "The men turned out with guns and arms, and parties started in different directions. Those who first discovered the girl were to fire their guns, which was to be the signal to guide the rest to the spot. It was not long before they found the object of their search seated under a tree, about half a mile from the path she had lost on the preceeding day. "She had been tempted by the beauty of some wild berries to leave the road, and when once in the bush she grew bewildered and could not find her way back. At first she ran to and fro in an agony of terror at finding herself in the woods all alone, and uttered loud and frantic cries, but her father had by this time reached the mill and was out of hearing. "With a sagacity beyond her years and not very common to her class, instead of wandering further into the labyrinth which surrounded her, she sat down under a large tree, covered her face with her apron, said the Lord's Prayer--the only one she knew--and hoped that God would send her father back to find her the moment he discovered that she was lost. "When night came down upon the dark forest (and oh how dark night is in the woods!), the poor girl said, that she felt horribly afraid of being eaten by the wolves which abound in those dreary swamps. But she did not cry, for fear they should hear her. Simple girl! she did not know that the scent of a wolf is far keener that his ear, but that was her notion, and she lay down close to the ground and never once raised her head, for fear of seeing something dreadful standing beside her, until overcome by terror and fatigue she fell fast asleep, and did not awake until roused by the shrill braying of the horns and the shouts ofthe party who were seeking her." "What a dreadful situation! I am sure that I should not have had the courage of this poor girl, but should have died with fear." "We don't know how much we can bear, Mrs. M---, until we are tried. This girl was more fortunate than a boy of the same age, who was lost in the same township, just as the winter set in. The lad was sent by his father, an English settler, in company with two boys of his own age, to be measured for a pair of shoes. George Desne, who followed the double employment of farmer and shoemaker, lived about three miles from the clearing known by the name of the English line. After the lads left the clearing, their road lay entirely through the bush. But it was a path they had often travelled both alone and with their parents, and they felt no fear. "There had been a slight fall of snow, just enough to cover the ground, and the day was clear and frosty. The boys in this country always hail with delight the first fall of snow, and they ran races and slid over all the shallow pools until they reached George Desne's cabin. "He measured young Brown for a strong pair of winter boots, and the boys went on their homeward way, shouting and laughing in the glee of their hearts. "About halfway they suddenly missed their companion, and ran back nearly a mile to find him. Not succeeding in this, they thought that he had hidden behind some of the trees, and pretended to be lost, in order to frighten them, and after shouting at the top of their voices, and receiving no answer, they determined to go home without him. They knew that he was well acquainted with the road, and that it was still broad day, and that he could easily find his way home alone. When his father inquired for George, they said that he was coming, and went to their respective homes. "Night came, and the lad did not return, and his parents began to be alarmed at his absence. Mr. Brown went over to the neighbouring cabins, and made the lads tell him all they knew about his son. They described the place where they first missed him; but they concluded that he had either run home before them, of gone back to spend the night with the young Desnes, who had been very urgent for for him to stay. This account pacified the anxious father. Early the next morning he went to Desne's himself to bring home the boy, but the lad had not been there. "His mysterious disappearance gave rise to a thousand strange surmises. The whole settlement turned out in search of the boy. His steps were traced from the road a few yards into the bush, and entirely disappeared at the foot of a large tree. The moss was rubbed from the trunk of the tree, but the tree was lofty, and the branches so far from the ground, that it was almost impossible for any boy, unassisted, to have raised himself to such a height. There was no track of any animal all around in the unbroken snow, no shred of garment or stain of blood,--that boy's fate will ever remain a great mystery, for he was never found." "He must have been carried up that tree by a bear, and dragged down into the hollow trunk," said I. "If that had been the case, there would have been the print of the bear's feet in the snow. It does not, however, follow that the boy is dead, though it is more than probable. I knew of a case where two boys and a girl were sent into the woods by their mother to fetch home the cows. The children were lost; the parents mourned them for dead, for all search for them proved fruitless, and after seven years the eldest son returned. They had been overtaken and carried off by a party of Indians, who belonged to a tribe inhabiting the islands in Lake Huron, several hundred miles away from their forest-home. The girl, as she grew into woman, married one of the tribe; the boys followed the occupation of hunters and fishers, and from their dress and appearance might have passed for the red sons of the forest. The eldest boy, however, never forgot the name of his parent, and the manner in which he had been lost, and took the first opportunity of making his escape, and travelling back to the home of his childhood. "When he made himself known to his mother, who was a widow, but still resided upon the same spot, he was so dark and Indian-like, that she could not believe that he was her son, until he brought to her mind a little incident, that, forgotten by her, had never left his memory. "Mother, don't you remember saying to me on that afternoon, 'Ned, you need not look for the cows in the swamp, they went off towards the big hill.' "The delighted mother clapsed him in her arms, exclaiming, 'You say truly,--you are indeed my own, my long lost son!'"
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