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The Cynosure

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and the greasy water rose higher and higher and we trudged in the slime.

We worked twelve hours one day and fourteen the next, with five hours off every other Sunday. Damp food hardly fit for dogs and fiver or six dollars a week was the pay. After eight months I left the place for fear of contracting consumption.

That was a sad year. What toiler does not remember it? The poor slept outdoors and rummaged the garbage barrels to find a cabbage leaf or a rotten potato. For three months I searched New York, its length and its breadth, without finding work. One morning, in an employment agency, I met a young man more forlorn and unfortunate than I. He had gone without food the day before and was still fasting. I took him to a restaurant, investing almost all that remained to me of my savings in a meal which he ate with wolfish voracity. His hunger stilled, my new friend declared that it was stupid to remain in New York. If he had money, he said, he would go to the country, where there was more chance of work, without counting the pure air and the sun which could be had for nothing. With the money remaining in my possession we took the steamboat for Hartford, Connecticut, the same day.

From Hartford we struck out for a small town where my companion had been once before, the name of which I forget. We tramped along the road, and finally for up courage enough to knock at a cottage door. An American farmer opened to our knock. We asked for work. He had none to give us, but he was touched by our poverty and our all to evident hunger. He gave us food, then went through the whole town with us, inquiring whether there was work. Not a stroke was to be found. Then, out of pity for us, he took us on his farm, although he had no need of our assistance. He kept us there two weeks. I.shall always treasure the memory of that American family -- the first Americans who treated us as human despite the fact that we came from the land of Dante and Garibaldi.

Space limitations do not permit me to trace in detail our subsequent wanderings in search of some one who would give us bread and water in return for our labor. From town to


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