Poor Sam Tranter

The lot of the uneducated deaf and dumb in this world is a pitiable

one, and their isolation is keenly felt. Often have we seen some of this

portion of suffering humanity unable to plead for themselves, or tell

their tale of woe or hardship. Such was the condition of poor Sam

Tranter. Though Sam was never in a Deaf and Dumb Institution, his skill

and plans for worldly prospects were extraordinary. In his boyhood he

left friendless and uncared for, but persuaded a shoemaker to give

him work, at which poor Sam was fairly successful; owing, however, to

the man's ill treatment he had to leave, and, to save himself from

starving, went in the workhouse. After a brief stay he again went forth

to try his hand as a shoeblack, and after various attempts to shift for

himself, he began to master difficulties by wonderful energy and

perseverance, and there is no doubt had the poor fellow been properly

taught in a Deaf and Dumb Institution, he would have risen in life.

After a time Sam commenced selling cockles, mussels, and oysters.

From a small beginning he increased, and in course of time he took a

shop, and employed five women, at which he said he had made as much as

L20 some weeks. Owing, however, to his lack of education, the poor

fellow was continually robbed, and eventually got into trouble through

debt, and was worried with summonses; hence his failure as a cockle and

oyster merchant. He then took a stall, and afterwards a shop for the

sale of gingerbread, &c.; this was also doomed to failure. He then tried

street-hawking with a barrow, to keep himself from the workhouse; but

this also failed, and his barrow was seized for debt.

Poor Sam was again penniless, friendless, and homeless, which compelled

him once more to seek refuge in the Union, where he afterwards died

after great suffering, at the age of 60 years. His remains were followed

to the grave by a few deaf and dumb friends. Poor Sam might have said

with David "Whilst I would do good evil is present with me."