A Chestnut Log

: Myths And Legends Of Our Own Land

There is no doubt that farmer Lovel had read ancient history or he would

not have been so ready in the emergency that befell him one time in the

last century. He had settled among the New Hampshire hills near the site

that is now occupied by the village of Washington and had a real good

time there with bears and Indians. It was when he was splitting rails on

Lovel Mountain--they named it for him afterward--that he found himself
surrounded by six Indians, who told him that he was their prisoner. He

agreed that they had the advantage over him and said that he would go

quietly along if they would allow him to finish the big chestnut log that

he was at work on. As he was a powerful fellow and was armed with an axe

worth any two of their tomahawks, and as he would be pretty sure to have

the life of at least one of them if they tried to drive him faster than

he wanted to go, they consented. He said that he would be ready all the

sooner if they would help him to pull the big log apart, and they agreed

to help him. Driving a wedge into the long split he asked them to take

hold, and when they had done this he knocked out the wedge with a single

blow and the twelve hands were caught tight in the closing wood. Struggle

as the savages might, they could not get free, and after calmly enjoying

the situation for a few minutes he walked slowly from one to the other

and split open the heads of all six. Then he went to work again splitting

up more chestnuts.