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Young Man of the House

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C A P T A I N   
T U T T L E   
G O E S   T O   W A R

     FATHER was going away. Eben and Jerry thought he looked splendid in his new army uniform. But strange—not quite like Father.
     “In his gray suit he was a doctor,” declared Jerry. “But in this suit he’s a soldier.”

   Author:  Mabel Leigh Hunt
Copyright Date:  1944
Publisher:  J.B. Lippincott
Pagination:  171 p.
Dedication:  to Stevie
     “He is still a doctor,” explained Eben. “He is going into the army to doctor the soldiers who get sick. So he has to dress like a soldier. It’s a rule. One of Uncle Sam’s rules.”
     Thoughtfully Jerry felt of Father’s khaki trouser-leg. It did seem odd that even Uncle Sam should be able to boss such a knowing man as Father. But then he remembered. “Uncle Sam is not a real person,” he said.
     “Of course not,” answered Eben.
     “Of course not,” echoed Jerry. A kid only five years old would know that. Jerry frowned. It was queer how you sometimes thought of Uncle Sam as real—a gentleman loved and respected by all, and whose name you often heard. Other times you thought of him as someone like Santa Claus. Or as a picture, or a red-white-and-blue costume in a play at school.
     But it was really the fault of Great-grandfather Ebeneezer, who hung in a large frame in Granzie’s room at home, that Eben and Jerry had always felt rather mixed up in their minds about Uncle Sam. Because Great-grandfather Ebeneezer, who had once been a real person, and Uncle Sam who is NOT a real person, looked so remarkably alike. It was their chin-whiskers that did it. As old as Eben was, there were still moments when he thought of these two be-whiskered gentlemen at the same time.
     Staring up at Father in his new army uniform made the boys’ necks ache. For they were squeezed tight against him in the center of a close crowd of people. Mother and Granzie and baby Joe were there, too. Every member of the family, except Pansy. Father had said good-bye to her at home. . . . . . . . . . . .
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