Charles Miner, a pioneer Pennslvania editor, observes his neighbors.
Parents, Keep a Steady Hand.
—Essay from the Desk of Poor Robert the Scribe.
If your children you’d command
Parents, keep a steady hand.
OUR parson used to say, “Just as the twig is bent the tree’s inclined,” and therefore every little fellow of us—rag-tag and bobtail—used to be obliged to say our chatechism every Saturday afternoon. And methinks I can trace the influence of the serious lessons in the conduct and opinions of every man who was brought up under the venerable pastor.
The government as well as education of children is a matter of the most momentuous concern.
Mrs. Hasty is as good a dispositioned woman as you will find in an hundred, but she “dont keep a steady hand” with her children. Tommy, said she, let that clock case alone. Tommy turned round, whistled for half a minute, and went to work at the clock again. Tommy, said she angrily, if you dont let that clock alone I certainly will whip you. I never did see such a boy, said the mother, he dont mind a word I say. She continued her knitting while Tom continued at the clock case till over it tumbled and dashed the clock and case to pieces. The mother up with the tongs and knocked poor Tomb sprawling among the ruins. Tom roared like Bedlam, and the kind woman took him up in her lap—was sorry she had hurt him, but then he should learn to mind his mother, and giving him a piece of cake to stop his crying picked up the ruins of the clock. What was the consequence? Why, Tom, who with “a steady hand” to govern him, would have became a man of worth, turned out a hasty, ill-natured villain.