Was This in Hampden?
from Youth’s Companion.
Simeon Brash, or Uncle Simmy, as everyone called him, was one of the "odd sticks," who
lived on a little farm in the Connecticut valley a great many years ago; but many of his quaint sayings and queer
performances are laughed about to this day by the decendants of those who knew Uncle Simmy.
One day, mounted on a decrepit, bony, blind horse, minus saddle or bridle, he rode around
the neighborhood, accosting every one he met with, "Ye hain’t, hev ye? Ye hain’t, hev ye?"
"Hain’t what?" would be the natural reply.
"Hain’t seen a little red keow with a dingle dangle bell; hain’t, hev ye?"
His drawling sing-song manner of speech made this sound very funny and he always began
the inquiry with "Hain’t, hev ye?" and there stopped as though his hearers were gifted with mind-reading powers and could
tell for themselves what he meant. At one farmhouse he mixed matters up by asking, "Hain’t, hev ye, seen a little red bell
with a dingle-dangle keow to it; hain’t hev ye?"
When nearly seventy years old, and after being a widower for the space of six months,
Uncle Simmy concluded to marry Mrs. Kittery, a well-to-do widow of sixty-five, living near him.
Without giving the lady the slightest hint of the honor about to be done her, he drove up to
her door in his old buggy one day, dressed for the bridal, evidently thinking that Mrs. Kittery would gladly and
immediately array herself likewise and go one with him to the village, where they would be married. Mrs. Kittery had a
houseful of company that day, and was sitting with them at dinner when Uncle Simmy suddenly dew reign in front of the
open door, and without leaving his buggy, cried out in high-pitched, nasal tones:
A Picnic Party on Ashley Pond.
"Hey, you, Abby Kittery! Come along out hyar; I got something to say to you in
Mrs, Kittery had some inkling of Uncle Simmy’s intentions from other parties, and was very
indignant. Guessing what his pri-vate business was, she stepped to the door and sharply cried out:
"Well, I ain’t got a thing to say to you Simeon Brash, that I can’t say ’fore the whole
Accepting this as a final refusal of his suit, Uncle Simmy sat down and cooly said, "Hain’t?
Mighty independent! Some body else’ll git me then," and drove on, singing merrily.
Autumn Fields, East of Ashley Ponds.
A Waterside Avenue.
© Laurel O’Donnell 1996 - 2006, all rights reserved
This document may be downloaded for personal non-commercial use only
and may not be reproduced or distributed without permission in any format.
This is an edited adaptation from the original publication.