Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm
The Stirring Of The Powers
Rebecca's visit to Milltown was all that her glowing fancy had painted it, except that
recent readings about Rome and Venice disposed her to believe that those cities might
have an advantage over Milltown in the matter of mere pictorial beauty. So soon does the
soul outgrow its mansions that after once seeing Milltown her fancy ran out to the future
sight of Portland; for that, having islands and a harbor and two public monuments, must
be far more beautiful than Milltown, which would, she felt, take its proud place among
the cities of the earth, by reason of its tremendous business activity rather than by any
irresistible appeal to the imagination.
It would be impossible for two children to see more, do more, walk more, talk more, eat
more, or ask more questions than Rebecca and Emma Jane did on that eventful
"She's the best company I ever see in all my life," said Mrs. Cobb to her husband that
evening. "We ain't had a dull minute this day. She's well- mannered, too; she didn't ask
for anything, and was thankful for whatever she got. Did you watch her face when we
went into that tent where they was actin' out Uncle Tom's Cabin? And did you take notice
of the way she told us about the book when we sat down to have our ice cream? I tell you
Harriet Beecher Stowe herself couldn't 'a' done it better justice."
"I took it all in," responded Mr. Cobb, who was pleased that "mother" agreed with him
about Rebecca. "I ain't sure but she's goin' to turn out somethin' remarkable,--a singer, or
a writer, or a lady doctor like that Miss Parks up to Cornish."
"Lady doctors are always home'paths, ain't they?" asked Mrs. Cobb, who, it is needless to
say, was distinctly of the old school in medicine.
"Land, no, mother; there ain't no home'path 'bout Miss Parks--she drives all over the
"I can't see Rebecca as a lady doctor, somehow," mused Mrs. Cobb. "Her gift o' gab is
what's goin' to be the makin' of her; mebbe she'll lecture, or recite pieces, like that
Portland elocutionist that come out here to the harvest supper."
"I guess she'll be able to write down her own pieces," said Mr. Cobb confidently; "she
could make 'em up faster 'n she could read 'em out of a book."
"It's a pity she's so plain looking," remarked Mrs. Cobb, blowing out the candle.
"PLAIN LOOKING, mother?" exclaimed her husband in astonishment. "Look at the eyes
of her; look at the hair of her, an' the smile, an' that there dimple! Look at Alice
Robinson, that's called the prettiest child on the river, an' see how Rebecca shines her ri'
down out o' sight! I hope Mirandy'll favor her comin' over to see us real often, for she'll