Manuscripts/Mixed Material [Yankee Innkeeper]
I took it back to the hotel, wiped it up, set it out.
Man came up from New York the next summer. He looked like he could afford almost anything he wanted, and he got to wanting that clock. It was a beauty. Wanted to know if I'd sell it, and what I'd take for it. “A hundred dollars,” I told him. “Oh, no, no. I couldn't afford to pay a hundred dollars for it. Out of the question.” But he kept wanting it, looking at it. I let it set. Didn't say anything more about it. The day he went away he asked me about it again. “Well,” I said, “You've been a pretty good customer of mine. We're pretty good friends and all. I'll make it eighty dollars. “He went off with it, mighty tickled to get it.
'twas a great rage about those years of folks coming up into the country here and hunting up grandfather clocks. They got all they wanted, I guess. Some folks down Boston way helped out some. I don't know who manufactured them, exactly, but the racket was this. They made any quantity of imitation grandfather clocks, and they were such good imitations it took an expert to tell ‘em from the genuine. They looked like a hundred years old, all right.
Way they sold ‘em was to bring up a lot and set them around in old back farmhouses and let the families have the use of them, on the agreement that when these antique hunters came around they would let the antiquers have ‘em for whatever they could stick ‘em for. Then the makers and the fellows who sold ‘em would split on whatever they got.
No, rackets aren't confined to the city places. These old Yankees up here in the backwoods can give some of these city fellows handicaps.