Summary (Masterplots, Definitive Revised Edition)
Worth Luckett was a woodsy with an itching foot. By the time he had five growing children and one left in its infant grave, he was ready to take off again. He had already been west when he was a boy with Colonel Bouquet. Jary, his wife, had never wanted to leave the settlements, but game was growing scarce in Pennsylvania; without food brought down by his gun, Worth could not see how he could feed his family. He was wary of telling Jary outright that he wanted to move on, but she knew what he wanted and was half resigned to it when she heard that the animals were clearing out of places where men lived.
Because Jary had the slow fever, the care of the younger children fell on Sayward’s shoulders. She was nearly fifteen, a strapping girl scared of neither man nor beast. It was not beyond her strength to drown a white-faced buck when Worth had neglected to bring meat home. The girls, Genny, Achsa, and baby Sulie, and the boy Wyitt knew they had to step when Sayward spoke.
Worth led his family across the Ohio River and on until they came to a wilderness of trees that reached as far as the eye could see. Near a spot covered with deer antlers, Worth laid out a place for a cabin. He was handy enough with tools to have the shell of a cabin up quickly, but the game in the woods drew him away so often that fall came before the cabin was finished. The darkness under the big trees had disheartened Jary so much that she did not even speak of the cabin,...
(The entire section is 1217 words.)
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