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The Wood Fire in No. 3

Francis Hopkinson Smith

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Mixed in your statements, old man: can't be salt and fresh at the same time. But go on! So far we've only got five clams to be hilarious on——"

Marny reached over and grabbed Boggs by the collar.

"Will you shut up, or shall I throw you over the banisters?"

"I'll shut up—like your clam; won't say another word, so help me!" and Boggs held up one hand as if to be sworn.

"These clams," continued Marny, releasing his hold on Boggs's collar, "coming as they did on an empty stomach, made every man ravenous. French shrimps, Dutch pickles, and Swedish anchovies—all the appetizers you ever heard of—were mild compared to them. Uncle Jesse had opened them himself, the ten men standing around taking the contents of each shell from the end of Uncle Jesse's fork and then waiting their turns until the fork came their way again. All this was under a shed in full view of the harbor and the old man's boats and buildings.

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