RAILCAR GOLD Chapter 9 . . Lincoln . . Part 4
RAILCAR GOLD is a historically accurate multi-generational fictional tale of hidden treasure, primarily set in York County, Pennsylvania during the latter half of the Nineteenth Century. This is Part 4 of Chapter 9 . . . Lincoln. A new part will be posted every Thursday. Recent chapters stand alone, starting here; however new readers may want to start at the beginning.
CHAPTER 9 . . . LINCOLN . . . Part 4
The working of the nearby photographer quickly intrigues Dan. He steps closer for a better look. The photographer’s assistant is very talkative, he is soon telling tales of all the places he has been during the war. Dan, George and Roy are all standing there, transfixed and fascinated by these yarns.
By the time they return their attention to the depot, Lincoln’s train is at the departure platform to Hanover having been coupled to the Branch Railroad engine. They surmised that Lincoln had already returned to his railcar, because he was nowhere to be seen.
Roy suggested that they head to a place along the Branch Railroad tracks where they’d have a good view into the railcars. They scurried to that location and then they waited, and waited, and waited.
Roy told the boys, “Wait here. I know the telegraph operator. I’ll run up and find out what is going on.” It was not long before Roy returned and reported “Governor Curtin’s train broke down. He was to be here by now, so he could accompany Lincoln to Gettysburg. They’ve decided not to wait on the Governor and will be getting under way shortly.”
Sure enough, Lincoln’s train soon passed close by, however men were standing at the windows in the last car; as a result, they did not get another look at the President. All in all, George and Dan were glad they made the journey to see Abraham Lincoln at Hanover Junction.
A few days later, Charles Billmeyer is reading a copy of the newspaper National Republician. He has standing orders for one of his salesmen to pick up a copy whenever he returns from Washington, D.C. Charles Billmeyer is so impressed with Lincoln’s words at the Dedication of the National Cemetery in Gettysburg; he has the boys memorize Lincoln’s speech and then quizzes them on it.
Charles Billmeyer takes Dan to the side, “Dan, I need your help and you can’t tell George. George is slacking off in school. I want to do something to light a fire under him. I’m going to question George first about Lincoln’s speech, after which my question to you will be to recite the speech, word for word, applause interruptions and all. I know George, he’s competitive; that’ll get him going.”
Sure enough, George gave answers, although it was clear he did not have a complete mastery of the speech. Charles turned to Dan, “Show him how its done, can you recite the speech, word for work, applause interruptions and all.” George starts to laugh wildly but quickly becomes silent after Dan recites the first two sentences and just keeps going.
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. [Applause.] Now, we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any other nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war; we have come to dedicate a portion of it as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. [Applause.] The world will little note nor long remember what we say here; but it can never forget what they did here. [Applause.]
It is for us, the living, rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work that they have thus far so nobly carried on. [Applause.] It is rather for us here to be dedicated to the great task remaining before us; that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion; that we here highly resolve that those dead shall not have died in vain. [Applause.] That the nation shall, under God, have a new birth of freedom; and that Governments of the people, by the people and for the people, shall not perish from the earth. [Long continued applause.]
Dan proudly exclaims, “How was that?”
Go to Part 5