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Uncle Josh's Punkin Centre Stories

The Weekly Paper at Punkin Centre

WALL, t'other day, down in New York, I wuz a-walkin' along on that street what they call the broad way, when I cum to the Herald squar noospaper buildin', and it wuz all winders and masheenery. Wall, I wuz jist flobgasted; I jist stood thar lookin' at it. On the front thar wuz a bell and a couple of fellers standin' along side of it with slege hammers in their hands, and every onct in a while they would go to poundin' on that bell, and folks 'd stand 'round and watch 'em do it; they reminded me of a couple of fellers splittin' rales. And all 'round the edge of the buildin' they had hoot owls sottin', with electric lites in their ize, and thar wuz no end to the masheenery in that buildin'. If anyone hed ever told me thar wuz that much masheenery in the whole world durned if I'd a-beleeved them; biggest masheen I'd ever seen before wuz Si Pettingill's new thrashin' masheen. Wall, I jist stood thar a-watchin' them printin' presses a-runnin'; paper goin' in to one end and cumin' out at t'other all printed and full of picters and folded up ready to sell; it jist beat all the way they done it. Wall, we never had but one paper down home at Punkin Centre; we called it "The Punkin Centre Weakly Bugle;" old Jim Lawson he wuz editor of it. You see Jim he wuz sort of a triflin' no 'count old cuss, so to keep him out of mischief we made him editor. Wall, Jim he had his place up over Ezra Hoskins' grossery store. He never got any money for the noospaper—always got paid in produce, and Ezra's store wuz a mighty good place fer him to take in his subskriptions. Wall, things went along pretty smooth fer quite a spell 'til one day a feller he cum in and give Jim a keg of hard cider fer a year's subskription to the noospaper, and we all calculated right then that somethin' wuz a-goin' to happen; and sure enough it did. You see 'bout that time Jim had got two advertisements; one wuz fer Ruben Jackson's resterant and the other wuz the time table of the Punkin Centre and Paw Paw Valley Railroad. Wall, Jim he got to drinkin' the hard cider and settin' type at the same time, and when the paper cum out on Thursday it wuz wuth goin' miles to see. Neer as I kin remember it sed that: "Ruben Jackson's resterant would leave the depo every mornin' at eight o'clock fer beefstake and mutton stews, and would change cars at White River Junkshen for mins and punkin pise, and cottage puddin' would be a flag stashen fer coffy and do nuts like mother used to make, and the train wouldn't run on Sundays cos the stashun agint what done the cookin' would have to run en extra on that day over the chicken and ham sandwitch divishion."

I believe that wuz the last issu of the Punkin Centre Weakly Bugle.

Enthusiasm—Sometimes inspired, sometimes acquired,
sometimes the result of immediate surroundings, and
sometimes the result of hard cider.—Punkin Centre
Philosophy.


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