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The Ashburton Guardian. Magna et Veritas et Prævalebit SATURDAY, APRIL 5, 1890 "DEIL'S BAIRNS HAE AYE DEIL'S LUCK.

The abovo is a proverb well known m Fcotlatd, that laud of proverbs—for Scotland is great in proverbial wealth. One writer says there are three P's in Scotland—Poverty, Pride, and Proverbs ; bat then he was an Englishman fond of a hot dinner, especially on Sunday ; and the (Scotch people were too Sabbatarian to cook hot dinners on Sunday. Probably he wrote with an empty stomach on a Sunday afternoon, while his landlady was sitting in a stiff pew, vigorously plying her scent bottle to keep herself awake until the " nine* teenthly " should be reached. At anyrate we have quoted a Scotch proverb, and We fancy its truth can be shown in one case at least—that of Jonathan Roberts, the prison breaker,. The I " deil's am luck" has followed him ever sinco he has got into the hand 3of the police. Had. he taken advantage of the luck that followed him after committing the offence at Mount homers ior which he was sentenced, he might have given the police a long start, He did not do so, however, and he was " run in." The "deil's luck" stood by the rogue in grain when a convenient door in Timaru gaol was left unlocked by which he made his exit and first •' trek" for liberty. It followed him northwards for a long spell, but deserted him when he again fell into the hands of the guardians of the peace. Once again-in durance, his captivity was thought to be certain when, under a strong guard cf armed men, and isolated upon an island in Lyttelton harbor, he was put to work with a hard labor gang. Bat here again the "deil wrs quid to his am.'' The Timaru gaol authorities c^uld not hold Mr Jonathan in their iron grasp — the Lyltelton men had now a chance to retrieve the laurels lost at Timaru. Naturally one would have thought the lesson taught at Timaru would have been well laid to heart at Lyttelton—that the guards would have bad well skinned ey-'S for such a criminal a? had been entrusted to them for specially safe keeping. Bat the deil's luck of the man was too much for the gaol guards. While one sentinel—" ownly one"— paced with " measured step and slow " in front of the dining shed, the deil's luck (and perhaps the treaohery of someone else) provided .Roberts wilh a loose sheet of corrugated iron at the bach, aud through the hole it insecurely covered Jonathan made his exit and wa9 on tho H trek " for liberty once mortf. While Jonathan was taking full advantage of ihe slice cf devil's luck that fell to him in ihe loose sheet, another big slice was being pat off for him by bis patron and adop'.ed parent. The officers -in blissful ignorance cf the fact that the man they were qiost ia tereb/ed in keeping bod evaded th?m, and wis then in full fight over :h.3 hills and far away as fast as a grand pur ot race-running legs could cany him—werf enjoying a hearty dinner. The other prisoners of the gang ? win woll know what hud happened, where w;nk;ng to ench other and c joying the fun in the quiet suppressed way common to prisoneis who know that their keepers have been outwitted. Tnere was only one place on the island from which an escape to 'ho mainland could le made, unseen by the epnj;inel. The devil's luck of Jonathan was such that :his was the only spot left totally without a guard Jonathan had a full hour's start of the officers, for dinner waß well over before his absence was discovered.

f jWj, then and there was hurrying to aod 'ro Aoi getting tears, and tremblings of detr#3B f And oheeka all pale"—-» when the officers found that the bird they had guarded bo care'ullj, had broken the bars of its cage, and flown— Whither? Ay, whither? 'J id ings of h tn re>ch us from Sydney ; and hero a?ain the d^jj's luck .follosvs him. .[{cognised in $ pausing saloon by a boy ivho gave evidence against him in New Zealand, the youngster writes gleefully to a friend ju this colouy of what he had seen. That letter l&id the police upon fchs rogue's track once more ; but here again the dcii's luck comes to his rescue. The photograph of J nathan supplied to the. police in i Sydney was a ten year-old affair taken when Jonatban was " young and curly,' and before the dangers he had passed and the hardships he had endure^, had cast over his firm and features a very rubbeyj>»d roughcast manhood. It was (asy for him to deny his identity, and wilh an assurance, seeing the photograph, that was bound to stagger the Sydney police. J3« told them he had been in Lytlelton three years ago, that his name was Newui*n, £&4 that tho csptain of tho voluntr,er force there could vouch for his ])ona fides. "Doil's luck "-ily the police took" the c.lory, and let him rff. Wh^re will he turn up next ? His assumed name of Newman has not yet bsen found oa th& roll books of either of the Lyttelion Volunteer Corps, bo that the JSVw Zealand prison breaker hce been to windward of the Sydney as well as of the iSew Zealand police.

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18900405.2.3

Bibliographic details

The Ashburton Guardian. Magna et Veritas et Prævalebit SATURDAY, APRIL 5, 1890 "DEIL'S BAIRNS HAE AYE DEIL'S LUCK., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XII, Issue 2393, 5 April 1890

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903

The Ashburton Guardian. Magna et Veritas et Prævalebit SATURDAY, APRIL 5, 1890 "DEIL'S BAIRNS HAE AYE DEIL'S LUCK. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XII, Issue 2393, 5 April 1890

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