Click here to Download The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book by William Dean Howells Language English having PDF Size 2.9 MB and No of Pages 259.
WHEN Bartley Hubbard went to interview Silas Lapham for the “Solid Men of Boston” series, which he undertook to finish up in The Events, after he replaced their original projector on that newspaper, Lapham received him in his private office by previous appointment.
The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book by William Dean Howells
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“Walk right in!” he called out to the journalist, whom he caught sight of through the door of the counting-room. He did not rise from the desk at which he was writing, but he gave Bartley his left hand for welcome, and he rolled his large head in the direction of a vacant chair. “Sit down!
I’ll be with you in just half a minute.” “Take your time,” said Bartley, with the ease he instantly felt. “I’m in no hurry.” He took a note-book from his pocket, laid it on his knee, and began to sharpen a pencil. “There!” Lapham pounded with his great hairy fist on the envelope he had been addressing.
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“William!” he called out, and he handed the letter to a boy who came to get it. “I want that to go right away. Well, sir,” he continued, wheeling round in his leathercushioned swivel-chair, and facing Bartley, seated so near that their knees almost touched, “so you want my life, death, and Christian sufferings, do you, young man?”
“That’s what I’m after,” said Bartley. “Your money or your life.” “I guess you wouldn’t want my life without the money,” said Lapham, as if he were willing to prolong these moments of preparation. “Take ’em both,” Bartley suggested. “Don’t want your money without your life, if you come to that.
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But you’re just one million times more interesting to the public than if you hadn’t a dollar; and you know that as well as I do, Mr. Lapham. There’s no use beating about the bush.” “No,” said Lapham, somewhat absently. He put out his huge foot and pushed the ground-glass door shut between his little den and the book-keepers, in their larger den outside.
“In personal appearance,” wrote Bartley in the sketch for which he now studied his subject, while he waited patiently for him to continue, “Silas Lapham is a fine type of the successful American. He has a square, bold chin, only partially concealed by the short reddish-grey beard, growing to the edges of his firmly closing lips.
His nose is short and straight; his forehead good, but broad rather than high; his eyes blue, and with a light in them that is kindly or sharp according to his mood. He is of medium height, and fills an average arm-chair with a solid bulk, which on the day of our interview was unpretentiously clad in a business suit of blue serge. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book
His head droops somewhat from a short neck, which does not trouble itself to rise far from a pair of massive shoulders.” “I don’t know as I know just where you want me to begin,” said Lapham. “Might begin with your birth; that’s where most of us begin,” replied Bartley. A gleam of humorous appreciation shot into Lapham’s blue eyes.
“I didn’t know whether you wanted me to go quite so far back as that,” he said. “But there’s no disgrace in having been born, and I was born in the State of Vermont, pretty well up under the Canada line–so well up, in fact, that I came very near being an adoptive citizen; for I was bound to be an American of SOME sort, from the word Go!
That was about–well, let me see!–pretty near sixty years ago: this is ’75, and that was ’20. Well, say I’m fifty-five years old; and I’ve LIVED ’em, too; not an hour of waste time about ME, anywheres! I was born on a farm, and—-” “Worked in the fields summers and went to school winters: regulation thing?” The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book
Bartley cut in. “Regulation thing,” said Lapham, accepting this irreverent version of his history somewhat dryly. “Parents poor, of course,” suggested the journalist. “Any barefoot business? Early deprivations of any kind, that would encourage the youthful reader to go and do likewise?
Orphan myself, you know,” said Bartley, with a smile of cynical good comradery. Lapham looked at him silently, and then said with quiet self-respect, “I guess if you see these things as a joke, my life won’t interest you.” He and the Colonel went before, and helped the ladies down the difficult descent. Irene seemed less sure-footed than the others.
She clung to the young man’s hand an imperceptible moment longer than need be, or else he detained her. He found opportunity of saying, “It’s so pleasant seeing you again,” adding, “all of you.” “Thank you,” said the girl. “They must all be glad to have you at home again.” The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Download
Corey laughed. “Well, I suppose they would be, if they were at home to have me. But the fact is, there’s nobody in the house but my father and myself, and I’m only on my way to Bar Harbour.” “Oh! Are they there?” “Yes; it seems to be the only place where my mother can get just the combination of sea and mountain air that she wants.”
“We go to Nantasket–it’s convenient for papa; and I don’t believe we shall go anywhere else this summer, mamma’s so taken up with building. We do nothing but talk house; and Pen says we eat and sleep house. She says it would be a sort of relief to go and live in tents for a while.”
“She seems to have a good deal of humour,” the young man ventured, upon the slender evidence. The others had gone to the back of the house a moment, to look at some suggested change. Irene and Corey were left standing in the doorway. A lovely light of happiness played over her face and etherealised its delicious beauty. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Download
She had some ado to keep herself from smiling outright, and the effort deepened the dimples in her cheeks; she trembled a little, and the pendants shook in the tips of her pretty ears. The others came back directly, and they all descended the front steps together.
The Colonel was about to renew his invitation, but he caught his wife’s eye, and, without being able to interpret its warning exactly, was able to arrest himself, and went about gathering up the hitching-weight, while the young man handed the ladies into the phaeton.
Then he lifted his hat, and the ladies all bowed, and the Laphams drove off, Irene’s blue ribbons fluttering backward from her hat, as if they were her clinging thoughts. “So that’s young Corey, is it?” said the Colonel, letting the stately stepping, tall coupe horse make his way homeward at will with the beach-wagon. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Download
“Well, he ain’t a badlooking fellow, and he’s got a good, fair and square, honest eye. But I don’t see how a fellow like that, that’s had every advantage in this world, can hang round home and let his father support him. Seems to me, if I had his health and his education, I should want to strike out and do something for myself.”
The girls on the back seat had hold of each other’s hands, and they exchanged electrical pressures at the different points their father made. “I presume,” said Mrs. Lapham, “that he was down in Texas looking after something.” “And you can’t ever tell what’s in you till you try. Why, when I started this thing, I didn’t more than half understand my own strength.
I wouldn’t have said, looking back, that I could have stood the wear and tear of what I’ve been through. But I developed as I went along. It’s just like exercising your muscles in a gymnasium. You can lift twice or three times as much after you’ve been in training a month as you could before. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Download
And I can see that it’s going to be just so with your son. His going through college won’t hurt him,– he’ll soon slough all that off,–and his bringing up won’t; don’t be anxious about it. I noticed in the army that some of the fellows that had the most go-ahead were fellows that hadn’t ever had much more to do than girls before the war broke out.
Your son will get along.” “Thank you,” said Bromfield Corey, and smiled–whether because his spirit was safe in the humility he sometimes boasted, or because it was triply armed in pride against anything the Colonel’s kindness could do. “He’ll get along. He’s a good business man, and he’s a fine fellow.
MUST you go?” asked Lapham, as Bromfield Corey now rose more resolutely. “Well, glad to see you. It was natural you should want to come and see what he was about, and I’m glad you did. I should have felt just so about it. Here is some of our stuff,” he said, pointing out the various packages in his office, including the Persis Brand. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Download
“Ah, that’s very nice, very nice indeed,” said his visitor. “That colour through the jar– very rich–delicious. Is Persis Brand a name?” Lapham blushed. “Well, Persis is. I don’t know as you saw an interview that fellow published in the Events a while back?”
“Oh, the Colonel!” cried Mrs. Lapham. She added tremulously: “Perhaps he IS right. He DID seem to take a fancy to her last summer, and now if he’s called in that way . . .” She left her daughter to distribute the pronouns aright, and resumed: “Of course, I should have said once that there wasn’t any question about it.
I should have said so last year; and I don’t know what it is keeps me from saying so now. I suppose I know a little more about things than I did; and your father’s being so bent on it sets me all in a twitter. He thinks his money can do everything. Well, I don’t say but what it can, a good many. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Download
And ‘Rene is as good a child as ever there was; and I don’t see but what she’s pretty-appearing enough to suit any one. She’s pretty-behaved, too; and she IS the most capable girl. I presume young men don’t care very much for such things nowadays; but there ain’t a great many girls can go right into the kitchen, and make such a custard as she did yesterday.
And look at the way she does, through the whole house! She can’t seem to go into a room without the things fly right into their places. And if she had to do it tomorrow, she could make all her own dresses a great deal better than them we pay to do it. I don’t say but what he’s about as nice a fellow as ever stepped.
But there! I’m ashamed of going on so.” “Well, mother,” said the girl after a pause, in which she looked as if a little weary of the subject, “why do you worry about it? If it’s to be it’ll be, and if it isn’t—-” “Yes, that’s what I tell your father. But when it comes to myself, I see how hard it is for him to rest quiet. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Free
I’m afraid we shall all do something we’ll repent of afterwards.” “Well, ma’am,” said Penelope, “I don’t intend to do anything wrong; but if I do, I promise not to be sorry for it. I’ll go that far. And I think I wouldn’t be sorry for it beforehand, if I were in your place, mother.
Let the Colonel go on! He likes to manoeuvre, and he isn’t going to hurt any one. The Corey family can take care of themselves, I guess.” She laughed in her throat, drawing down the corners of her mouth, and enjoying the resolution with which her mother tried to fling off the burden of her anxieties.
“Pen! I believe you’re right. You always do see things in such a light! There! I don’t care if he brings him down every day.” “Well, ma’am,” said Pen, “I don’t believe ‘Rene would, either. She’s just so indifferent!” The Colonel slept badly that night, and in the morning Mrs. Lapham came to breakfast without him. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Free
“Your father ain’t well,” she reported. “He’s had one of his turns.” “I should have thought he had two or three of them,” said Penelope, “by the stamping round I heard. Isn’t he coming to breakfast?” “Not just yet,” said her mother. “He’s asleep, and he’ll be all right if he gets his nap out.
I don’t want you girls should make any great noise.” “Oh, we’ll be quiet enough,” returned Penelope. “Well, I’m glad the Colonel isn’t sojering. At first I thought he might be sojering.” She broke into a laugh, and, struggling indolently with it, looked at her sister.
“You don’t think it’ll be necessary for anybody to come down from the office and take orders from him while he’s laid up, do you, mother?” she inquired. The Rise of Silas Lapham PDF Book Free