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could do more good in the world and create more real happiness therein by putting the teeth of its inhabitants in good order, than in any other way; so Tushmaker became a dentist. He was the main that first invented the method of placing small cog-wheels in the back teeth for the more perfect mastication of food, and he claimed to be the original discoverer of that method of filling cavities with a kind of putty, which, becoming hard directly, causes the tooth to ache so grievously that it has to be pulled, thereby giving the dentist two successive fees for the same job. Tushmaker was one day seated in his office, in the city of Boston, Massachusetts, when a stout old fellow named Byles presented himself to have a back tooth drawn. The dentist seated his patient in the chair of torture, and opening his mouth, discovered there an enormous tooth, on the right-hand side, about as large, as he afterwards expressed it,
as a small Polyglot Bible.” I shall have trouble with this tooth, thought Tushmaker, but he clapped on his heaviest forceps, and pulled. It didn't come.
Then he tried the turn-screw, exerting his utmost strength, but the tooth wouldn't stir. “Ge away from here," said Tushmaker to Byles, “and return in a week, and I'll draw that tooth for you, or know the reason why.” Byles got up, clapped a handkerchief to his jaw, and put forth. Then the dentist went to work, and in three days he invented an instrument which he was confident would pull any thing. It was a combination of the lever, pulley, wheel and axle, inclined plane, wedge and screw. The castings were made, and the machine put up in the office, over an
iron chair, rendered perfectly stationary by iron rods going down into the foundations of the granite building. In a week old Byles returned; he was clamped into the iron chair, the forceps connected with the machine attached firmly to the tooth, and Tushmaker stationing himself in the rear, took hold of a lever four feet in length. He turned it slightly Old Byles gave a groan, and lifted his right leg. Another turn; another
up went the leg again. “What do you raise your leg for ?" asked the doctor. “I can't help it," said the patient. “Well,” rejoined Tushmaker, " that tooth is bound to come now." He turned the lever clear round, with a sudden jerk, and snapped old Byles' head clean and clear from his shoulders, leaving a space of four inches between the severed parts! They had a post mortem examination—the roots of the tooth were found extending down the right side, through the right leg, and turning up in two prongs under the sole of the right foot! “No wonder," said Tushmaker," he raised his right leg." The jury thought so too, but they found the roots much decayed, and five surgeons swearing that mortification would have ensued in a few months, Tushmaker was cleared on a verdict of "justifiable homicide.” He was a little shy of that instrument for some time afterward; but one day an old lady, feeble and flaccid, came in to have a tooth drawn, and thinking it would come out very easy, Tushmaker concluded, just by way of variety, to try the machine. He did so, and at the first turn drew the old lady's skeleton completely and entirely from her body, leaving her a mass of quivering jelly in her chair! Tushmaker took her home in a pillow-case. She lived seven years after that, and they called her the “India-Rubber Woman." She had suffered terribly with the rheumatism, but after this occurrence never had a pain in her bones. The dentist kept them in a glass case. After this, the machine was sold to the contractor of the Boston Custom-House, and it was found that a child of three years of age could, by a single turn of the screw, raise a stone weighing twenty-three tons. Smaller ones were made, on the same principle, and sold to the keepers of hotels and restaurants. They were used for boning turkeys. There is no moral to this story whatever, and it is possible that the circumstances may have become slightly exaggerated. Of course, there can be no doubt of the truth of the main incidents.
The following maritime anecdote was related to me by a small man in a pea-jacket and sou’-wester hat, who had salt standing in crusts all over his face. When I asked him if it were true, he replied, " The jib-sheet’s a rope, and the helm's a tiller." I guess it's all right.
Many years ago, on a stormy and inclement evening, “in the bleak December," old Miss Tarbox, accompanied by her niece, Mary Ann Stackpole, sailed from Holmes's Hole to Cotuit, in the topsail schooner Two Susans, Captain Blackler. “The rains descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon" that schooner, and great was the tossing and pitching thereof; while Captain Blackler, and his hardy crew, “kept her to it," and old Miss Tarbox and her niece rolled about in their uncomfortable bunks, wishing themselves back in Holmes's Hole, or any other hole, on the dry land. The shouts of Captain Blackler as he trod the deck, conveying orders for “tacking ship,” were distinctly audible to the afflicted females below; and “Oh!” groaned old Miss Tarbox, during a tranquil interval of her internal economy, as for the fifteenth time the schooner “ went in stays," "what a drefful time them pore creeturs of sailors is a having on't. Just listen to Jim Blackler, Mary Ann, and hear how he is ordering about that pore fellow, Hardy Lee. I've heerd that creetur hollered for twenty times this blessed night, if I have onst.” “Yes," replied the wretched Mary Ann, as she gave a fearful retch to starboard, “ but he ain't no worse off than poor Tavpsle Hall-he seems to ketch it as bad as Hardy.” “I wonder who they be," mused old Miss Tarbox; “I knowed a Miss Hall, that lived at Seekonk Pint oncet-mebbe it's her son. " A tremendous sea taking the “Two Susans" on her quarter at this instant, put a stop to the old lady's cogitations; but they had an awful night of it and still above the roaring of the wind, the whistling and clashing of the shrouds, the dash of the sea, and the tramp of the sailors, was heard the voice of stout Captain Blackler, as he shouted, “Stations ! Hard a lee! Top'sle haul ! Let go and haul,”—and the “ Two Susans” went about. And, as old Miss Tarbox remarked years afterward, when she and Mary Ann had discovered their mistake, and laughed thereat,
Anybody that's never been to sea, won't see no pint to this story."
Circumstances over which I have no control, will soon
call me to a residence in Washington Territory, a beautiful and fertile field of usefulness, named for the “Father of his Couatry," who, I am led to understand, was “ first in peace, first in war, and first in the hearts of his countrymen.” As the Kentuckian remarked, "I may be heered on again, but I stand about as much chance as a bar going to the infernal regions (not to put too fine a point on it) without any claws." Before I go, however, I will endeavor to give you a little history of the rise, progress and decline of " My San Diego Lawsuit,” which I think you and your readers will find curious, if not amusing. Adieu.
P. S.-You think this a stupid letter, perhaps ? Think of my surroundings, young man! 'Tis not often you get a good thing out of Nazareth. Oh, Benicia, Benicia," don't you cry for me," for I positively assure you, the feeling will not be reciprocated.