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faded from sight, like a little white cloud melting away in the summer sky.

The appearance of this ship threw the governor into one of the deepest doubts that ever beset him in the whole course of his administration. Fears were entertained for the security of the infant settlements on the river, lest this might be an enemy's ship in disguise, sent to take possession. The governor called together his council repeatedly to assist him with their conjectures. He sat in his chair of state, built of timber from the sacred forest of the Hague, smoking his long jasmin pipe, and listening to all that his counsellors had to say on a subject about which they knew nothing; but in spite of all the conjecturing of the sagest and oldest heads, the governor still con

tinued to doubt.

Messengers were despatched to different places on the river; but they returned without any tidings-the ship had made no port. Day after day, and week after week elapsed, but she never returned down the Hudson. As, however, the council seemed solicitous for intelligence, they had it in abundance. The captains of the sloops seldom arrived without bringing some report of having seen the strange ship at different parts of the river; sometimes near the Palisadoes, sometimes off Croton Point, and sometimes in the Highlands; but she never was reported as having been seen above the Highlands. The crews of the sloops, it is true, generally differed among themselves in their accounts of these apparitions; but that may have arisen from the uncertain situations in which they saw her. Sometimes it was by the flashes of the thunder-storm lighting up a pitchy night, and giving glimpses of her careering across Tappaan Zee, or the wide waste of Haverstraw Bay. At one moment she would appear close upon them, as if likely to run them down, and would throw them into great bustle and alarm; but the next flash would show her far off, always sailing against the wind. Sometimes, in quiet moonlight nights, she would be seen under some high bluff of the Highlands, all in deep shadow, excepting her topsails glittering in the moonbeams; by the time, however, that the voyagers reached the place, no ship was to be seen; and when they had passed on for some distance, and looked back, behold! there she was again, with her top-sails in the moonshine! Her appearance was always just after, or just before, or just in the midst of unruly weather; and she was known among the

skippers and voyagers of the Hudson by the name of "the storm-ship."

These reports perplexed the governor and his council more than ever, and it would be endless to repeat the conjectures and opinions uttered on the subject. Some quoted cases in point, of ships seen off the coast of New England, navigated by witches and goblins. Old Hans Van Pelt, who had been more than once to the Dutch colony at the Cape of Good Hope, insisted that this must be the Flying Dutchman, which had so long haunted Table Bay, but being unable to make port, had now sought another harbor. Others suggested, that if it really was a supernatural apparition, as there was every natural reason to believe, it might be Hendrick Hudson, and his crew of the Halfmoon, who, it was well known, had once run aground in the upper part of the river, in seeking a north-west passage to China. This opinion had very little weight with the governor, but it passed current out of doors, for, indeed, it had already been reported that Hendrick Hudson and his crew haunted the Kaatskill Mountain; and it appeared very reasonable to suppose, that his ship might infest the river where the enterprise was baffled, or that it might bear the shadowy crew to their periodical revels in the mountain.

Other events occurred to occupy the thoughts and doubts of the sage Wouter and his council, and the storm-ship ceased to be a subject of deliberation at the board. It continued, however, a matter of popular belief, and marvellous anecdote through the whole time of the Dutch government, and particularly just before the capture of New Amsterdam, and the subjugation of the province by the English squadron. About that time the storm-ship was repeatedly seen in the Tappaan Zee, and about Weehawk, and even down as far as Hoboken, and her appearance was supposed to be ominous of the approaching squall in public affairs, and the downfall of Dutch domination.

Since that time we have no authentic accounts of her, though it is said she still haunts the Highlands, and cruises about Pointno-point. People who live along the river insist that they sometimes see her in summer moonlight, and that in a deep, still midnight, they have heard the chant of her crew, as if heaving the lead; but sights and sounds are so deceptive along the mountainous shores, and about the wide bays and long reaches of this great river, that I confess I have very strong doubts upon the subject.

It is certain, nevertheless, that strange things have been seen

in these highlands in storms, which are considered as connected with the old story of the ship. The captains of the river craft talk of a little bulbous-bottomed Dutch goblin, in trunk hose and sugar-loafed hat, with a speaking trumpet in his hand, which they say keeps the Dunderberg. They declare that they have heard him, in stormy weather, in the midst of the turmoil, giving orders in low Dutch, for the piping up of a fresh gust of wind, or the rattling off of another thunder-clap. That sometimes he has been seen surrounded by a crew of little imps, in broad clothes and short doublets, tumbling head over heels in the rack and mist, and playing a thousand gambols in the air, or buzzing like a swarm of flies about Antony's nose; and that, at such times, the hurry-scurry of the storm was always greatest. One time a sloop, in passing by the Dunderberg, was overtaken by a thunder-gust, that came scouring round the mountain, and seemed to burst just over the vessel. Though tight and well ballasted, she labored dreadfully, and the water came over the gunwale. All the crew were amazed, when it was discovered that there was a little white sugar-loaf hat on the mast head, known at once to be the hat of the Heer of the Dunderberg. Nobody, however, dared to climb to the mast-head, and get rid of this terrible hat. The sloop continued laboring and rocking, as if she would have rolled her mast overboard, and seemed in continual danger either of upsetting, or of running on shore. In this way she drove quite through the Highlands, until she had passed Pollopol's Island, where, it is said, the jurisdiction of the Dunderberg potentate ceases. No sooner had she passed this bourne, than the little hat spun up into the air, like a top, whirled up all the clouds into a vortex, and hurried them back to the summit of the Dunderberg, while the sloop righted herself, and sailed on as quietly as if in a mill-pond. Nothing saved her from utter wreck, but the fortunate circumstance of having a horse-shoe nailed against the mast, a wise precaution against evil spirits, since adopted by all the Dutch captains that navigate this haunted river.

There is another story told of this foul-weather urchin, by Skipper Daniel Ouslesticker, of Fishkill, who was never known to tell a lie. He declared that, in a severe squall, he saw him seated astride of his bowsprit, riding the sloop ashore, full butt against Antony's nose, and that he was exorcised by Dominie Van Gieson, of Esopus, who happened to be on board, and who sang the hymn of St. Nicholas, whereupon the goblin threw

himself up in the air like a ball, and went off in a whirlwind, carrying away with him the nightcap of the Dominie's wife, which was discovered the next Sunday morning hanging on the weathercock of Esopus church steeple, at least forty miles off. Several events of this kind having taken place, the regular skippers of the river, for a long time, did not venture to pass the Dunderberg without lowering their peaks, out of homage to the Heer of the mountain, and it was observed that' all such as paid this tribute of respect were suffered to pass unmolested.

"Such," said Antony Vander Heyden, "are a few of the stories written down by Selyne the poet, concerning this stormship; which he affirms to have brought a crew of mischievous imps into the province, from some old ghost-ridden country of Europe. I could give you a host more, if necessary; for all the accidents that so often befall the river craft in the Highlands are said to be tricks played off by these imps of the Dunderberg; but I see that you are nodding, so let us turn in for the night."



Wild. Kind lady, I attend your fair commands.

Worthy sir,

Souls attract souls, when they're of kindred vein.
The life that you love, I love. Well I know,
'Mongst those who breast the feats of the bold chase,
You stand without a peer; and for myself,

I dare avow, 'mong such none follows them

With heartier glee than I do.

Wild. Churl were he

That would gainsay you, madam!

Con. [courtesying] What delight

To back the flying steed, that challenges

The wind for speed!-seems native more of air
Than earth!-whose burden only lends him fire !--
Whose soul, in his task, turns labor into sport!
Who makes your pastime his! I sit him now!
He takes away my breath!-He makes me reel!
I touch not earth--I see not-hear not--All
Is ecstacy of motion!

Wild. You are used,

I see, to the chase.

Con. I am, Sir! Then the leap!
To see the saucy barrier, and know

The mettle that can clear it. Then your time
To prove you master of the manage. Now
You keep him well together for a space,
Both horse and rider braced as you were one,
Scanning the distance then you give him rein,
And let him fly at it, and o'er he goes,
Light as a bird on wing.

Wild. Twere a bold leap,

I see, that turned you, madam.

Con. [courtesying] Sir, you're good! And then the hounds, sir! Nothing I admire Beyond the running of the well-trained pack. The training's everything! Keen on the scent! At fault none losing heart!--but all at work! None leaving his task to another!--answering The watchful huntsman's caution, check, or cheer, As steed his rider's rein! Away they go! How close they keep together!-What a pack! Nor turn, nor ditch, nor stream divides them-as They moved with one intelligence, act, will! And then the concert they keep up!--enough To make one tenant of the merry wood, To list their jocund music!

Wild. You describe

The huntsman's pastime to the life!

Con. I love it!

To wood and glen, hamlet and town, it is

A laughing holiday!--not a hill-top
But's then alive!-Footmen with horsemen 'vie,
All earth's astir, roused with the revelry

Of vigor, health and joy! Cheer awakes cheer,
While Echo's mimic tongue that never tires,
Keeps up the hearty din! Each face is then
Its neighbor's glass--where gladness sees itself,
And, at the bright reflection grows more glad!
Breaks into tenfold mirth !-laughs like a child!
Would make a gift of its heart, it is so free!
Would scarce accept a kingdom, 'tis so rich!
Shakes hands with all, and vows it never knew
That life was life before!

Wild. Nay, every way

You do fair justice, lady, to the chase.

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