Home » Fiction & Literature » Merrill Tileston » Chiquita, an American Novel: The Romance of a Ute Chief's Daughter

September 09 , 2010

Chiquita, an American Novel: The Romance of a Ute Chief's Daughter


A tallow candle shed its sickly and flickering light in the front room of an ancient farm house, as Jack Sheppard announced his arrival on earth at four o'clock on a Friday morning. He arrived in a snowstorm, and it was a very select gathering of some of old Bozrah's prominent citizens who greeted his entry into the world. There was old Doctor Pettingill, with square-rimmed, blue-glass spectacles; Grandma Paisley, who didn't care for avoirdupois, just so it was a boy; Aunt Diantha, with portentous air and red mittens, while in the kitchen, dozing by the big fireplace, was Uncle Zebedee, who had driven over from Pudden Hollow the evening before to learn the news and "set up" all night in order to be of assistance in case of necessity. The whole Deerfield valley was interested, and it made no difference if the snow did play tag up and down the necks and on the faces of all Bozrah as they brought paregoric, feather pillows, goody-goodies and all the useful uselessnesses that each and every one had kept for years and years awaiting a possible occasion. There was an old brass warming-pan that Deacon Baxter used to warm the bed for Governor Winthrop, and a hot water jug which Great-grandma Lathrop averred warmed the feet of every one of her seventeen "darters and grand-darters." There was also a quilt made of silk patches, each patch taken from a dress that some colonial dame had worn when she danced the stately minuet at a great function in Boston or Albany.
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