The Headless Horseman

[Full title: "The Headless Horseman or The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"]

1
On a late summer's day,
about the year 1790, the
little Dutch village of Sleepy
Hollow was agog with excite-
ment -- for the new school-master
was due to arrive on the weekly
mail-stage from "Nieu Yorke".

2
Katrina, the lovely daughter 
of Baltus Van Tassel, the
richest farmer of the Hollow,
was the acknowledged belle 
of the neighborhood.

3
The School-Committee
was top-heavy with 
its own importance.

4
Abraham Van Brunt, better known
as "the redoubtable 'Brom Bones',"
the dare-devil hero of the 
neighborhood, was Katrina's 
most favored suitor.

5
Ichabod Crane,
  a Yankee
school-master.

6
"I predict these coaches
   will soon be abandoned
   -- just on account of
   the disgraceful driving!"

7
"I am Brouwer, chairman of 
   the school-committee.
   Allow me to present --

8
Mynheer Van Ripper, though
a "short-pipe", a just 
and God-fearing man --
Master Crane.

9
"Dominie Heckwelder"

10
"-- and Mynheer
 Baltus Van Tassel!"

11
The Inn-keeper's wife,
   Dame Martling.

12
"The Committee should have 
 hired some honest Dutch 
 pedagogue instead of this
 strange Yankee!"

13
"That book-worm had
 better keep his eyes
 off Mistress Katrina!"

14
That Sleepy Hollow was a haunted
and most superstitious region,
Ichabod Crane had often heard,
but he little dreamed how
soon he was to encounter the
famous chief of its legions
of ghosts -- a mysterious
    Headless Horseman.

15
Historians alleged this ghost
 was that of a Hessian 
 trooper who rode forth 
 each night, from his church-
 yard grave, in quest of his
 battle-severed head.

16
At Ichabod's school-house,
the "birch of justice" 
soon became a constant
terror to evil doers.

17
Jethro, Dame Martling's
   noble offspring.

18
Adrian Van Ripper was
 one of the most
 wrong-headed of
  Dutch urchins.

19
"Lucky for you, young
 sprout, that this sketch
 was not of the present 
 Master!"

20
"The learned no longer
 hold that the earth
 is flat --"

21
"-- unfortunately Columbus
 lived before I did, or
 I should have discovered
 this fact."

22
"Behold, in yon weather-
 cock, the windy image
 of your pedagogue!"

23
"I am surprised at your
 lack of respect for a
 man of such polish
 and education!"

24
"Katrina Van Tassel
  coquettes with
  everybody!"

25
"I'll teach you to
   respect ladies!!"

26
"He thrashed me --
  but I didn't do 
  a thing!"

27
"What are you going
  to do about this
  outrage?"

28
"Nothing. No doubt
  he got what he
  deserved!"

29
"Then I will have
  this insolent Yankee
  discharged!!"

30
"Young Ichabod must
 be an uncommonly
 good teacher!"

31
As his pay was small,
 the school-master lodged,
 a week at the time, with
 the farmers whose children
 he instructed.

32
After various full meals,
 Ichabod could entertain
 by the hour with direful
 tales of ghosts and
 goblins -- in which he
 firmly believed.

33
"It's almost time for
 your singing class!"

34
As singing master, Ichabod
 picked up many bright
 shillings by teaching the
 young folks in Psalmody.

35
"The time to begin
 the lesson has long
 since passed!"

36
"I'm glad you've
   missed me!"

37
"Don't go, Brom!"

38
"Our first exercise will
 be Psalm Number Nine!"

39
"Too much falsetto, my
 good man, -- and psalm
 tunes should be sung
 doloroso, not impetuoso!"

40
"I can't find any such
   note in this tuner!"

41
"Try using your chest
  instead of your nose --
  there's bound to be
  an improvement!"

42
Harmony is being
 attacked from a
 new quarter.

43
"Don't be afraid, I
  won't choke you;
  God forbids!"

44
"You've forgotten to
 select the psalms
 for Sunday!"

45
"The lesson hour
    is over!"

46
"I must be going now 
 -- but won't you honor
 us by coming to supper
 tomorrow evening?"

47
"I have an invitation for
 supper tomorrow - but in
 order not to disappoint
 you - if you could have
 yours a little later, I
 will be glad to come!"

48
"Katrina, your flirtations
  are driving me mad!
  For the last time -
  will you marry me?"

49
The rural riches of the 
Van Tassel domain enraptured 
the poor pedagogue's fancy, 
and made his heart yearn 
after the damsel who was 
to inherit all this wealth.

50
"From a distance I thought
 you were a lovely swan
 that had forsaken the
 water!"

51
Ichabod's mouth watered
 as he looked upon
 these promises of
 luxurious winter fare.

52
"My mother -- Master
       Crane!"

53
From the moment Ichabod laid
 his eyes upon these regions
 of delight, the peace of
 his mind was at an end, 
 and his only study was how 
 to gain the affections of 
 this peerless daughter of 
 Van Tassel.

54
Brom Bones was always
 ready for either a
 fight or a frolic --
 but had more mischief
 than ill-will in his
 composition.

55
"This is the finest cooking
 it has been my good-fortune
 to taste. Your mother is
 to be congratulated upon
 her skill!"

56
"Indeed not, but you must
 compliment Clarinda, for
 she has prepared every-
 thing here."

57
"Still you should be
 praised for your selection
 of so good a cook!"

58
"No, I never smoke -
  it sets a bad example
  for the youth of the
  community!"

59
"I have only one
   weakness --"

60
"-- the ladies!"

61
"I hear that you've read
 several books quite through
 -- and are a perfect
 master of Mather's 'History
 of Witchcraft'."

62
"Oh yes, I've studied
   a great deal --"

63
"Folks learn things from
 me they wouldn't hear
 of otherwise."

64
"Meet me at the school-
  house. We'll give this
  brazen Yankee a scare
  he won't forget!"

65
"I enjoy imparting knowl-
  edge to rural people!"

66
"And may I ask what
 city you're from?"

67
"Why - er - near Danbury,
     Connecticut."

68
The hour when ghosts
    come forth.

69
"The Headless Horseman's
       coming!!"

70
"Nonsense -- only Brom
  Bones and his gang!"

71
The next morning poor
Ichabod was sure that
all the witches in the
country held their meetings
in his school-house.

72
"Let this sight be a
 warning to you. Study
 your lessons and respect
 your betters - or the
 Devil may set upon
 you next!"

73
"Master Crane must be in
 league with the Devil
 -- for last night --"

74
On Sunday Morning --

75
"Crane's nose is tuned
      up again!"

76
"My text for to-day is:
 'The prophet cried unto
  the people with a loud
  voice - but they heard
  him not'."

77
Sermons were lengthy
   in those days.

78
"- and fiftiethly, 
    Bretheren - "

79
"The prophet cried unto
 the people -- with a loud
  voice --"

80
"-- but they heard
      him not!"

81
"Fire!!"

82
"FIRE!!!"

83
"Where? WHERE?"

84
"In HELL -- for such
 sleepy Christians as 
 you are!!"

85
Between services, Ichabod
  was the lion of the
         hour.

86
"Here lies the body
    of John Mound.
 Lost at sea, and
      never found."

87
"The fact that the witches
 meet in his school-house
 proves that Crane is a 
 servant of the Devil -
 and unfit to instruct
 our children!"

88
"Her lower lip hung feebly down,
  Her pulse was only two;
 She gave an awful groan,
  And bade the world adieu."

89
"I've found the Headless
 Horseman's grave -- read
 us what it says there!"

90
"Stay away from that
 grave - don't you know 
 -- it's haunted!"

91
"Get Crane over to
 the tavern. I'll help 
 you trap him!"

92
"Won't you have supper
 at the Inn tomorrow
 evening?"

93
"Let's see! This is Sunday.
 Now if you could have
 your dinner a little
 later --"

94
Ignorant of Dame
Martling's plot -

95
"You men folks are selfish
 to play by yourselves --
 I'd enjoy hearing of Master
 Crane's experiences with
 witches and ghosts!"

96
"They've been so numerous,
 and I've read so much
 on the subject, I hardly
 know where to begin; but -"

97
"The departed spirits of
 great writers are my
 constant companions -"

98
"Young man, you need go
 no further. Your own evil
 tales prove that you are a
 witch-doctor -- and must
 resign as school-master!"

99
"And you must leave
  town at once!!"

100
"This is a foul plot to
 get rid of me! I know
 nothing of witch-craft, --
 and I shall not resign!!"

101
"There's a real singing-
   master for you!"

102
The next morning a
thousand scurvy rumors
were set on foot.

103
"What further proof do we
 need of the school-master's
 guilt? He should be
 discharged to-day!"

104
"We must have actual
 evidence before he
 can be accused!"

105
Bones saw something
must be done to
discredit Ichabod once
and for all.

106
"Mashter Crane has
 bewitched me - for
 not goin' ter school!"

107
"I demand that this witch-
 doctor be tarred and
 feathered -- and ridden
 out of town on a rail!!"

108
"The school-master is to
 be tarred and feathered -
 but I saw Brom Bones -"

109
"One gun won't stop
 them -- -- call the
 school-committee!!"

110
"If you have any knowl-
 edge of Adrian's affliction,
 a confession may save you
 from torture!"

111
"I know not why I am here.
 I have no knowledge of
     witch-craft!"

112
"'Vengeance is mine',
   saith the Lord!"

113
"You're the cause of
  all this trouble!"

114
"Master Crane is innocent -
 this boy can prove it!"

115
"Bones hired me to play
 that Master Crane had
 bewitched me!"

116
"Yes he did - and - he
 gave me some awful
 stuff to drink - and
 - it's made me sick!"

117
"Bones is the man we
 should tar and feather!!"

118
"I think the best way
 to punish Heer Bones
 is to have him make
 a public apology to
 Master Crane!"

119
"It was just a joke 
 - I didn't mean
 it to go so far."

120
King again in his now
  undisputed realm.

121
"Mynheer Van Tassel bids
 you attend our merry-making
 and quilting frolic this
 evening!"

122
"Where have you been keeping
 yourself of late -- and where
 did you get those handsome
 clothes -- they have trans-
 formed you!"

123
"I returned only yester-
 day from a trip to
 Nieu Yorke."

124
Altogether, Ichabod and his
steed presented an apparition
that was seldom to be met
with in day-light --

125
-- yet his spirit was
that of a Knight Errant
in quest of his laurels.

126
"'Daredevil' looks as
   fiery as ever!"

127
"Won't you ask your
 friend Bones to come
 to the party?"

128
The far-famed step 
in dancing called
"Double - Trouble".

129
"Anyone with athletic
 ability couldn't enjoy
 the minuet - I wouldn't
 waste my time on it!"

130
Tales of great deeds in
 the Revolutionary War
 having been worn thread-
 bare, no subject so
 enthralled as that of
 the Headless Horseman.

131
"I met him the other
 night. He compelled me to
 mount behind him and galloped
 with the wings of the wind,
 over bush and brake, over
 hill and swamp -- until we
 reached the church bridge --"

132
"-- then he turned into 
 a skeleton, threw me
 over the bridge-rail
 into the water, and
 sprang away over the
 tree-tops with a clap
 of thunder!"

133
"The Headless Horseman is
 nothing but an arrant jockey!
 One night I offered to 
 race him for a bowl of
 punch --"

134
"Daredevil beat the goblin
 horse all hollow -- but
 the Hessian bolted and
 left his debt unpaid!"

135
"Everybody else has gone
 home -- but I wasn't
 sleepy!"

136
"You realize I have no
 superior intellectually
 -- and I am sure I'm
 not without physical charm!"

137
"If you haven't made any
 other plans -- would you
 mind becoming my wife!"

138
"I had sort of planned
     on it --"

139
All the stories of ghosts 
and goblins he had heard 
that evening now crowded 
in upon Ichabod's memory.
Moreover he was approaching
the very place where many of 
these tales had been laid.

140
Just ahead was the 
haunted bridge where 
Major Andre had been 
ambushed.

141
"Who are you?"

142
Ichabod's only hope 
was that within the 
hallowed precincts of 
the near-by church
he might find safety.

143
As Ichabod's pupils awaited 
him in vain all the following 
week -- his mysterious
disappearance was the cause 
of much speculation.

144
"Poor Master Crane was
 carried off by the
 Headless Horseman,
 without a doubt!"

145
Shortly after his rival's
   "disappearance" --

146
Home from Nieu Yorke, several 
years later, Old Brouwer
brought the news that Ichabod
Crane was still alive, had
kept school and studied law
in other parts of the country,
and finally had been made a
justice of the Ten Pound Court.

147
The old country wives, how-
ever -- and they are the 
best judges in such matters
-- maintain that Ichabod was 
spirited away. And his is 
the favorite story, told about 
their winter evening fires,
to this very day.


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