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PAGE 3

The Best Man Wins!
by [?]

Anderson submitted himself to be led–or rather dragged–around the corner into Sickle Street.

Several business men aroused from mid-morning lassitude allowed their chairs to come down with a thump upon divers mercantile porches, and fell in behind the two principal citizens of Tinkletown. Something terrible must have happened or Marshal Crow wouldn’t be summoned in any such imperative manner as this.

“Order!” called out Marshal Crow, in his most authoritative voice, sweeping the convention with an accusing eye.

“Mr. Chairman, fellow Republicans and voters of the opposite sex,” began Harry, in a distinctly lugubrious tone, “we have now come to the most critical moment in the history of Tinkletown. It is with ineffable sorrow and dismay that I stand before you this evening, the bearer of sad tidings. On the other hand, I expect to derive great joy in offsetting this sad news later on in my humble speech. I am now, gentlemen–and ladies–speaking of our most noted and most cherished citizen, Mr. Anderson Crow, known to you all, I believe, without exception. I–“

At this juncture, up jumped Alf Reesling and shouted:

“Three cheers for Anderson Crow!”

And three cheers were given with a vim. Uncle Dad Simms, a patriot of long-standing but of exceedingly short memory, took the convention by storm by crying out in a cracked but penetrating voice:

“Three cheers for the President of the United States! I don’t keer if he is a Democrat! Come on, now, men! Three cheers for President Cleveland!”

A roar of laughter went up and Uncle Dad, being quite deaf, followed it with two squeaky cheers, all by himself, and then looked about in triumph. Alf Reesling proposed three cheers for President Wilson, and again the welkin rang. Having established a success as a promoter of enthusiasm, Alf mounted a chair and roared:

“Now, let’s give three cheers for General Pershing an’ the boys over in France, includin’ the four noble young men from Tinkletown who are with him in the trenches, killin’ the botches! Now, hip–hip–“

And once more the air shivered under the impact of vocal enthusiasm.

Mr. Squires held up his hands and checked what might have become a habit by thanking the convention for the timely and admirable interruption, explaining that the digression had given him an opportunity to regain command of his emotions.

“It is, however, with pain that I am authorized to announce, not only to the glorious Republican Party, but to the City of Tinkletown, that–Hold on, Alf! We can get along without three cheers for Tinkletown! To announce that the name of Anderson Crow is hereby withdrawn from the consideration of this convention for the–er–the nomination for Town Marshal. Mr. Crow positively declines to make the race. It is not necessary for me to dilate upon the manifold virtues and accomplishments of our distinguished marshal. His fame extends to the uttermost corners of the earth. For nearly half a century he has kept this town jogging along in a straight and narrow path, and I for one–and I feel that I voice the sentiment of every citizen here and elsewhere–I for one do not resent the frequent reproaches and occasional arrests he has heaped upon me in the discharge of his duty. It was all for the good of the community, and I am proud to say that I have been arrested by Marshal Crow more times than I have fingers and toes. And, I am further proud to add, that on not a single occasion did Marshal Crow hesitate to admit that he was mistaken. Gentlemen, it takes a pretty big man to admit that he is mistaken. But, if you will read the next issue of the Banner, you will see that I can write about him much more eloquently than I can speak. He has positively decided not to be a candidate for re-election. While we are thereby plunged into grief of the darkest hue, I am here to tell you that our grief is mitigated by the most gorgeous ray of light that ever beamed upon the human race. It is my pleasure, gentlemen of the Republican Party–and ladies of the same sect–to present for your–“