The Federal Vendue
The Federal Vendue. Abraham Auctionarius Loquitur.
“And going—going! Step up, friends,
I’ve lots of lumber here to sell,
Kickshaws and notions, odds and ends—
‘Without reserve.’ (Bob, swing the bell,)
Wall street’s ‘suspended,’ Cameron’s ‘broke,
And we, you know, must have the cash,
Or else our wheel will lose a spoke,
And fly into ‘eternal smash!’
“Lot One:—a famous old SCOTCH cap,
Also, an ARMY CLOAK to match;
Who bids? The cap is scant in nap,
The cloak displays a liberal patch,
But they have rendered service true,
In times when greater friends did fail—
They saved me from some blackguards, who
Wanted to ride me on a rail.
“Lot Two:—I name ELEVEN STARS,
Which poor old UNCLE SAMUEL offers;
His business suffers so from wars
That there’s no money in his coffers.
Bid high, my friends, a man’s around
To buy them, and that man a knave is;
’Twill give old Sam his mortal wound
If they’re knocked down to ‘traitor’ Davis.
“Lot Three:—A TABLE SERVICE is,
In handsome Gold and Solferino;
’Tis new, was bought at Tiffany’s,
And is ‘dirt cheap’ at cost—as we know;
But we must have the war, since peace
Gives time to folks to waken up
From sleep; and then, our reign will cease;—
So here they go, plate, dish and cup.
“Lot Four:—I name JOHN W. FORNEY—
(This lot’s been bought and sold before,)
Conveyed to me by power of attorney;
The purchaser must not be poor,
For John, although he’s wondrous handy—
Indeed, at kitchen-work, he’s ‘prime’—
Needs pay, and constant watching, and he
’S a dangerous nag to trot ‘on time.’
“Lot Five—A HERO! (step up, BUTLER,)—
Now here’s a bargain for you all!
Contraband, Strychnineous Butler!—
A ‘Picayune!’—shall the hammer fall?
No; pardon me, he’s sold and gone,
And for a price that’s fully five, or
Six times your bid; a Cuban Don
Buys him in as his—NIGGER-DRIVER.
“Lot Six;—Our empty PUBLIC PURSE;
Lot Seven; —Some reams of HICK’s twaddle;
Lot Eight:—The courage of ‘BETHEL PIERCE,’
(Our smallest lot, in a well-corked bottle;—
You’d better buy—not offered often;)
Lot Nine:—What’s written on the plate
Of Beauregard’s METALLIC COFFIN—
And GREELEY’S moral from his fate.
“Lot Ten:—This splendid Photograph—
‘Scott gulping breakfast and THE OATH;’
Our mighty chieftain and his staff—
Who bids? Two copies—one, or both.
Next Lot:—Some ARMY COFFEE—prime—
From the New York ‘Union Committee;’
And ARMY CLOTH, sold us ‘on time,’
By that honest old ‘Quaker City.’
“Lot Twelve:—Is one of GREELEY’S LIES—
Next often seen; I’ll warrant it;
Next:—MISTER SEWARD’S ‘Prophecies’—
(His right to make them ’s patented;)
They’re bound in calf, with notes by Beecher,
And correspondence with H. G.;
And teach how ‘Sixty Days’ may reach a
Full Lustrum or a Jubilee.
“Last Lot:—Cost me but little, and
I’ll sell my interest very cheap:
THE POOR OLD STATE OF MARYLAND—
(Takes thirty thousand men to keep;)
I bought it low of Hicks & Co.,
The deeds were drawn by Winter Davis,
It shall now for a mere song go,
For the State our humble slave is.
“Who bids? who bids?—‘without reserve’
I’ll sell you all these things for cash, sirs;
Who bids? who bids?—Come, have the nerve,
Plank down, and save us from the crash, sirs.
Who bids? who bids? Quck! One —two—three:
(They’re going cheap as dirt, consarn ’em!)
Three! going—GONE! Who may you be?
(Good Lord!—its—P. T. BARNUM!)”