A Scrap from the Author of “ Simon Suggs.”
LA FAYETTE, Ala. June 6th, 1845.

Dear Sir : “ The Big Bear” came to me a week ago, but the “ boys” got it immediately, and since then I have been unable to recover it. They say “ it’s a sight.” SUGGS was sent a copy by C. & H., which was opened at the county site, P. O., on the supposition that it was the Capting’s own history. Simon was terribly enraged at the liberty taken with his property, and horrified with the audacity which could “ bust” every one of “ nine —d--n big seals,” wherewith he avers the bear was secured. He is greatly pleased with the “ Bear,” and says the “ Big Dog Fight” cured him of an incipient “ cold distemper he tuk in the river.” He’ll write you soon.

* * * SOL. SMITH’S was a great game of poker—that is, it is called “ strong” by my friend the “ General,” who is himself a half hand. The General was playing once with three or four gentlemen, one of whom was decidedly green. “ I’ll go ten checks,” (worth $1) said the green ‘un. The General held only an ace, but “ bluff” is his forte ; “ I’ll see your ten, and twenty better!" said he. Greenhorn was pluck, however; "I'll see your twenty, and call you !” The General felt bad, but didn’t let on. “ What have you got ?” he enquired. “ Three kings,” was the reply. “ What’s YOUR NEXT HIGHEST card ?” again asked the General. “ Only a ten,” said the green one, trying to recollect how hands counted at poker. “ ACE here, by —!” shouted the General, with a look of triumph ; and coolly proceeded to “ rake down.” One of the other players now interposed, thinking the General was playing too strong,[1] and the green one took the pile. “ Well ! well ! well !” the General ejaculated, as he saw the pile leaving the centre of the table—“ Take it ! take it ! ANYTHING FOR PEACE !” Isn’t he amiable ?

Very respectfully yours, J. J. H.


Source: New York Spirit of the Times 15.18 (28 June 1845): 201. University of Virginia Alderman Library.

Erin Bartels prepared this typescript.

[1] "srong" in original, likely a typographer's error.

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