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Bartleby by Herman Melville

 I am an old lawyer, and I have three men working for me. My business continued to grow and so I decided to get one more man to help write legal papers.

I have met a great many people in my days, but the man who answered my advertisement was the strangest person I have ever heard of or met.

He stood outside my office and waited for me to speak. He was a small man, quiet and dressed in a clean but old suit of clothes. I asked him his name. It was Bartleby.

 



  


A Piece of Red Calico by Frank Stockton

  I was going to town one morning when my wife gave me a little piece of red calico cloth.  She asked me if I would have time, during the day, to buy her two and a half meters of calico cloth like that.  I told her that it would be no trouble at all.  Putting the piece of brightly colored cloth in my pocket, I took the train to the city.

During the day, I stopped in at a large store.  I saw a man walking the floor and asked him where I could see some red calico.

 



  


John Henry

 Today we tell a traditional American story called a tall tale.  A tall tale is a story about a person who is larger than life. The descriptions in the story are exaggerated much greater than in real life.  Long ago, the people who settled in undeveloped areas of America first told tall tales. After a hard days work, people gathered to tell each other stories.



  


Pigs Is Pigs by Ellis Parker Butler

 Mike Flannery, the agent of the Interurban Express Company, leaned over the desk in the companys office in Westcott,  and shook his fist. Mr. Morehouse, angry and red, stood on the other side of the desk shaking with fury. The argument had been long and hot. At last Mr. Morehouse had become speechless.



  


A Pair of Silk Stockings by Kate Chopin

  Little Missus Sommers one day found herself the unexpected owner of fifteen dollars. It seemed to her a very large amount of money. The way it filled up her worn money holder gave her a feeling of importance that she had not enjoyed for years. The question of investment was one she considered carefully. For a day or two she walked around in a dreamy state as she thought about her choices. She did not wish to act quickly and do anything she might regret. During the quiet hours of the night she lay awake considering ideas.



  


The Story of a Life in Writer Margaret Mitchells Atlanta Home

 The writer Margaret Mitchell is best known for writing "Gone with the Wind," published in nineteen thirty-six. Her book, and the movie based on it, tell a story of love and survival during the American Civil War. Visitors to the Margaret Mitchell House in Atlanta, Georgia, can see where she lived when she started writing it and learn more about her own life. Shirley Griffith has our story.



  


A Story for Halloween: 'The Boy on Graves-End Road'

 NARRATOR: Kelly Ryan was making dinner. Her ten-year-old son Benjamin was watching television in the living room. Or at least she thought he was.

KELLY: "Benny-boy, do you want black beans or red beans?"

BEN: "Red beans, Mama."

Kelly: "Don't do that, Ben. You scared me half to death! You're going to get it now ... "



  


Athenaise by Kate Chopin

 Athenaise went away one morning to visit her parents, ten miles back on the Bon Dieu River in Louisiana. She did not return in the evening, and Cazeau, her husband, was worried.

Cazeau expressed his worries to his servant, Félicité, who served him dinner.

He ate alone by the light of a coal-oil lamp.  Félicité stood nearby like a restless shadow.

Only married two months and she has her head turned already to leave! It is not right! she said.



  


'The Gift of the Magi' by O. Henry

One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it in the smallest pieces of money - pennies. Pennies saved one and two at a time by negotiating with the men at the market who sold vegetables and meat. Negotiating until one's face burned with the silent knowledge of being poor. Three times Della counted it. One dollar and eighty-seven cents. And the next day would be Christmas.



  


'Rappaccinis Daughter' by Nathaniel Hawthorne

   Many years ago, a young man named Giovanni Guasconti left his home in Naples to study in northern Italy. He rented a small room on the top floor of a dark and ancient palace. Long ago, the building had belonged to a noble family. Now, an old woman, Signora Lisabetta, rented its rooms to students at the University of Padua. Giovannis room had a small window. From it he could see a large garden that had many plants and flowers. Does the garden belong to you? he asked Signora Lisabetta one day.



  


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