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This parody appeared in the Marion, Kentucky Crittenden Press in 1902. As far as I am aware it has not been republished since then.


This Great Detective Takes Up The Hayseed Clue.

Tracing the Missing "Cave" Party Through the Mountains --- Moonshine Whisky and Mystery.

MADISONVILLE, KY. - [By cable delayed, in transmission.] - I have solved the mystery of the Captain's disappearance; no one but I, Sherlock Holmes, could have accomplished it. It was simple to a man of my superior detective skill. You must have read of my wonderful doings. To resume. The Captain was missing at Nebo; I studied his characteristics; he was most of all a tobacco man; I found that out by noticing a field of tobacco growing near the hay wagon. Simple, of course, but that's Sherlock Holmes' wonderful detective skill.

Again, he was distinctly argumentative. I caught his last words on the morning air. The morning air was damp and held the words until I caught thern; I caught thern in a mosquito net; I have the words written in my detective series, pago 97, volume 40. They were: "I don't agree with you." A great detective always notices things. He was missing at Nebo. I studied the word; it is not an
ordinary one. Nebo. I transposed it. Oben. I put it in cryptogram shape. Obet. It was O B E T; "out buying early tobacco." Captain Baird was found. It was I, Sherlock Holmes, that did it. At once Ira Pierce and Creed Taylor fell on my neck, one on each side. I unclasped this necklace and resumed my normal position. I shall call the roll at 9 a.m. and see if the Innocents are all accounted for.

Mrs. R. F. Haynes,
" J.N. Todd,
" Compton, '
" Clement,
Miss Nunn,
" Spencer,
" Barnes,
Dr. Todd,
Dr. Clement,
Mr. Creed Taylor,
" Ira Pierce,
" Dave Yandell,
" John Wilson,
Capt. Baird,
Two wagons,
Eight horses, some of which are mules,

All answered "Yes" except the Captain and the horses, who neighed. I expected this. I expected this because 13 of the party said yes, so it was a dead moral certainty that the Captain would reply "No." I sprang to his side and hissed, "Are you not Captain Baird?"

"You give it the wrong accent, Sherlock," said the Captain; "you must live up in Mineral Point, Wisconsin, calling a man Baird, it's just Bard, plain Bard. No frills, Sherlock; they don't go even if I am going to open the best hotel in Western Kentucky," calmly replied the Captain.

I cryptogramed the word Baird, eliminating the letter "a". He's a "bird," the Captain is; a regular humming bird. It was I, Sherlock Holmes, that discovered it; no one else knows it.


The Crittenden Springs Hotel band met the Mammoth Cave party on their arrival in that city. They played their celebrated "two step." This peculiar piece of music seems to be their favorite. No one has over heard them play anything else. Anyhow, it was perfectly familiar to the entire party. Even the horses drooped their oars as if tired of two steps; but it was two steps or nothing.

The "Hustler" has issued an illustrated edition, in colors in honor of the cave party. They were black and white. The "Hustler" was eagerly purchased by nearly everybody who could read. The party stopped at the Hustler office and each one subscribod and paid a year in advance, something they have never done at the PRESS office. They say the "Hustler" is a good newspaper.

Preceded by the two step band they drove to the residence of our next Appellate Judge to pay their respects to a former resident of Marion, Judge Nunn. The Judge was somewhat in doubt at first whether the party belonged to the Salvation Army or were a band of perfectionists, but in looking thern over decided it was part of a stranded circus, and addressed thern accordingly. He said in part:

"My friends: I am glad you have reached Madisonville safely. You no doubt have had a hard time. You all look it. You can send one of your number back to the kitchen and the cook will fill your baskets with food. You must be hungry. You certainly look so. You keep right straight ahead on this road and you will soon be out of the limits of Madisonville. The air will be better for you away from the crowded streets, and you better start at once," and Judge Nunn carefully closed and locked the front yard gate and re-entered his home.

A lurid silence fell upon the party as they watched the retreating form of the Judge, finally broken by Dr Clement, who said, "Now wouldn't that jar you?" Dave Yandell said, "It's all on account of that two step band and these tents we are toting along." Ira Piorco allowed that they better fight shy of Hopkinsville, on account of the lunatic asylum being located there, while John Wilson said he wished he was in Texas.


"And the band played on."

A charming scene was the opening maroh at the Alexander home. The Cave party resplendent in toilettes that would have graced one of Queen Alexandra's drawing rooms were in high spirits. The ladies especially seemed to have forgotten the unpleasant incident that had to some extent marred their journey and wore their brightest smiles.

Mrs R.P. Haynes, the chaperone of the party, was gowned in black velvet with traceries of silver embroidery and diamond ornaments. Mrs Dr Todd was charming in a garnet silk costume made en train, rucheings of belgian lace and ruby ornaments.

Mrs Compton wore an all-over of duchesse lace, lilly of the valley pattern, and carried an elegant Chinese carved ivory fan.

Mrs Dr Clement, petite and winsome as ever, was in plain blue mousseline de soie, pinked out with blue bells, and wore a necklace of pearls.

Miss Nunn of Madisonville, tall and graceful, waa gowned in heavy ivory satin, with flounces of rare old lace.

Miss Spencer's costume was composed of a rich colored gold satin, with demi-train, caught up here and there by opals. Opal jewelry.

Miss Delia Barnes looked quite divinely in a perfectly white costume, with a plumed hat of the same color, and string of pearls for ornaments.

The gentlemen were of course in ordinary evening dress.

It was a late hour when the Captain announced that it was time to "tent."


SOUTH UNION, KY. - [By underground railroad].- This is the hoeo of the Shakers, these pleasant faced men and women to whom thee and thou mean much.

Ira Pierce and Creed Taylor brought their worldly arts into play and the hearts of Ruth and Bessie are somewhat shaken in consequence.

* * * * *

The following telegram has been receivod:

Upon leaving South Union the Cave Party unfortunately mistook the road and headed for Butler county. It is supposod the Captain got hold of some moonshine whisky and is making for a moonshinery.

LATER, by Wireless. - Cave party oaptured by moonshiners and held for ransom money. They offered to leave the Captain as a hostage but the moonshiners would not consent. They say they want money or blood, and they repeat the latter word in a manner that sounds bad. John Wilson offered to send to the stockyards and have a shipment of blood expressed thern but they scorned the suggestion.


Second Telegram. - Moonshiners threaten to hang three of us, to be deoided by drawing lots, if money not paid by Saturday.


Another Telegram. - Where is Sherlock Holmes?


[Moonshiners probably cut wires. We have put Sherlock Holmes on the trail, ED. PRESS,

Crittenden Press (Marion, Kentucky), 9 October, 1902



The Marion Mammoth Cave Party Escape from the Mountains.

A Thrilling Ride Above the Clouds. ---A Guardian Angel.

[SYNOPSIS. A party of fourteen ladies aud gentlemen leave Marion Ky., for an overland trip to Mammoth Cave, camping at various points along the route. The Captain disappears from the hay wagon in which he has been sleeping and the party fears he has been eaten by some wandering cows who were noticed feeding from the wagon. It being the season of year when green things are scarce this supposition is not unreasonable.

The great detective, Sherlock Holmes, arrives on the scene and by reason of his 4-11-44 ability he discovered that Capt. Baird was still on earth and finally rounds him up and restores him to the party.

After leaving Union City, Ky., the wrong route is followed, caused probably by too
much moonshine. Reaching the rnoonshinery the entire party are captured and threats of hanging three of the gentlemen made unless a certified check equal to four dollars eaoh, amounting to some $56, is not immediately paid.

Application is at once made to Mr. Carnahan, Mr. Pierce, and several other public spirited citizens of the town and nearly sixty cents is subscribed, but as this delay consumed nearly two days it was theught best by the Press to again assign Sherlock Holmes to the rescue -


I theught so.


And Sherlock Holmes laid the yellow telegraph form down by the side of a large silver plated bowl filled with Louisiana "perique" tobacco grown and cured near Carrsville, Ky,

The great detective looked at his best; his hair had not been combed for weeks, and there were great dark circles at bhs finger tips. He took from his left hand his right finger and gazed at it intently.

"Oh yes," he remarked, "I see the mountain soil,'' and he laid the discolored finger back with the other three as a sigh of relief escaped him. I will show these bloodthirsty moonshiners what Sherlock Holmes can do. Bzzz.


"Wilhehn Bard, Johannes Wilson, Irastacus Pierce, step forward and be hung," was the cheerful salutation that greeted three of the Cave party as they finished
their morning bowl of moonshine.

"Reef the halliards; haul up the bowline and set the sour mash," trumpeted one of the executive officers, as the party of three slowly approached the trinity of closely wound Manilla ropes.

The strongly guarded men were followed by the entire push of Mammoth cavers, who gazed earnestly at the condemned, and in low but earnest tones conversed on the peculiarities of eaoh. One of the ladies who is rather a swell dresser herself, said that a red necktie on Mr Baird did not harmonize with the surroundings; the color scheme should have been blue, both the Delineator and Miss Qui Vive favored blue shading into a purple, and if they couldn't have things harmonize properly she wouldn't stay; so there!

The banditti were evidently uneasy; a blue purple color scheme was a new one on them; they held a consultation but finally decided that it would be as difficult to produce a blue purple as to find the pocket in a lady's gown, and forthwith ordered the drama to commence.

A four in hand bow was made of the Manilla rope, the wings standing both east and west resting under and just south of the north ear of eaoh of the condemned. As the cold Manilla rope was felt coiling around his fair living flesh like some great serpent strangling life the Captain remarked, "Dewey was a much overrated man; anybody could take Manilla."

John Wilson said, "Phillipine."

Ira Pierce shouted, "Hurrah for Ollie James."

The men were standing in the shadow of the gallows; the last ten words are from Dumas.


Was Sherlock Holmes busy? Was he busy? He was doing not only a manufacturing but a jobbing business. On his shoulders rested fourteen lives, nine fair-faced woman and five redheaded, freckly faced men. The wires were kept hot. Pigeon Miles life in ''Central" was mndo up of buttons, falling over themselves and revealing numbers; the suspense was intense; even Cort Pierce was busy; Tom Clifton neglected to figure up the electrio light profits for the month; Sam Gugenheim offered Marion Mineral company stock at fifty; Tom Yandell discounted paper at 4 per cent; everybody was looking for a daily paper but the post office was closed it being Sunday: still the three men were standing in the shadow of the gallows - also from Dumas.

It was 7 in the morning. Sherlock Holmes sat in his studio smoking stogies - they were made in Wheeling - a plug of Tennessee staple manufactured by Porter was in evidence. A cablegram had just been received; it read:

Commercial Cable Company; Six direct cables to all parts of the world From Santos Dumont, Paris, to Sherlock Holmes, PRESS office:

Hickory, Dickory, Dock.

That was all; just these three words, "hickory, dickory dock," yet they told volumes. The great detective was in high feather; something was going to happen.


As stated in this historical romance seven or eight times previously, the three men were standing, etc , etc.

Suddenly a noise like the firing of ten theusand cannons, a great rushing of wings in the upper air, a shock as of an earthquake, a world breaking into fragments, a
continent in formation, Hurricane campground on its busy days, in fact a whole lot of noise.

The Manila four in hands were untied as if by magic. The galluses were replaced by suspenders, the color returned to the pale cheeks of the three who were standing, etc , etc. Slowly a mass of freckles spread over the northeastern portion of their countenances. The buccaneers were bound hand and foot, and Sherlock Holmes and Santos Dumont stepped back into the air ship and invited the Mammoth cavers to follow.

But little more remains to tell. The moonshiners were dropped from a height of 1,000 feet and landed in the Old Jim open cut, the cave party reached home in safety and Billy married the girl after all.

Crittenden Press, 16 October, 1902

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