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Old 09-30-2010, 08:58 AM   #1
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Ballantyne, R. M: Jeff Benson, or the Young Coastguardsman. V1. 30 Sep 2010

R. M. Ballantyne (24 April 1825 – 8 February 1894) was a Scottish juvenile fiction writer.
Born Robert Michael Ballantyne in Edinburgh, he was part of a famous family of printers and publishers. At the age of 16 he went to Canada and was six years in the service of the Hudson's Bay Company. He returned to Scotland in 1847, and published his first book the following year, Hudson's Bay: or, Life in the Wilds of North America. For some time he was employed by Messrs Constable, the publishers, but in 1856 he gave up business for the profession of literature, and began the series of adventure stories for the young with which his name is popularly associated.

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A poor schoolmaster named Benson died, not long ago, in a little town on the south-east coast of England, which shall be called Cranby.
He left an only son, Jeffrey, and an elder brother, Jacob, to mourn his loss. The son mourned for his father profoundly, for he loved him much. The brother mourned him moderately, for he was a close-fisted, hard-hearted, stern man of the law, whose little soul, enclosed in a large body, had not risen to the conception of any nobler aim in life than the acquisition of wealth, or any higher enjoyment than a social evening with men like himself.
The son Jeffrey was a free-and-easy, hearty, good-natured lad, with an overgrown and handsome person, an enthusiastic spirit, a strong will, and a thorough belief in his own ability to achieve anything to which he chose to set his mind.
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