The Anarchist Picnic.
Yesterday was the day set for the Anarchist picnic at Sheffield, Ind., given for the benefit of the Alarm, the Internationalists' sheet. A band stationed at the depot played for some time in its own peculiar way. Anarchistic music, at least, has freed itself from all law and precedent.
At last Spies, Parsons, editor of the Alarm Sam Fielden, and Dynamite Dousey arrived, and at their heels "a huge infectious troop of foes to life." Some 1,500 were expected to join the excursion, but a scant 200 boarded the train. The men carried guns and bottles of whisky, and the women carried babies and bottles of milk. The women were few, but there were enough babies there to have made Malthus turn in his grave.
When the train reached Sheffield the party scattered through the grove or roamed along the lake. Targets for shooting were put up, and the red-shirted Anarchists spent most of the day bashing away with muskets, rifles, or revolvers. Two saloons, in addition to the one already there, sprang into existence, and the she-Communists vied with the others in emptying beer-mugs. There was dancing, of course, of the usual unique and vicious kind. It is to be noticed that the genuine he-Anarchist is always smoking. All without this trade-mark may be set down as spurious articles. He seems to look upon a cigar as a vestal fire, to be kept burning under pain of death.
There were other amusements, too. There was this thin man who called out. "One baby, one cigar. Two babies, two cigars. Three babies, ten cigars--down she goes!" There was a man with one leg, and three cards, and $5, which he wished to bet. Not far from him was his pal, the man with the three nut-shells and the elusive bean. He also had $5 which he wanted to bet. There were swings--in great favor with the girls who had no holes in their stockings--and all the other paraphernalia of a well-regulated country picnic. No speeches were made. It was a pleasant sight, though, to see Sam Fielden, the explosive leader of the extremists, as he plucked farms and flowers, forgetful of his "mission." Mr. Parsons, whose gory speeches are well known, spent the afternoon wading in the water or chasing immature frogs along the lake shore. In fact, had it not been for the saloons and the three-card-monte men, one might easily have imagined that he was at an orthodox Sunday-school picnic. The home trip, made vocal by the sucking Anarchists, would not have helped to dispel this idea. It is not known what amount the affair netted. Probably after the train hire and the band have been paid there will be enough to buy cigars for the staff of the Alarm if he smokes.