Before he leaves, Matt's father gives Matt his heirloom silver watch and his own rifle.
In Chapter One, Matt's father tells Matt that he will be gone for six weeks or more. He tells Matt to count time by making seven notches on a stick. He also advises Matt not to look for him and the rest of the family until he comes to the seventh stick.
Matt's father tells him to wind up the silver watch every time he cuts a notch on a stick. The watch had once belonged to Matt's grandfather, so it is a very special gift. Matt is so touched by his father's gesture that he becomes emotional.
Next, Matt's father gives him his own rifle. His father tells him that he will take Matt's old blunderbuss with him on his journey instead. According to Matt's father, his rifle "aims truer." This is why he wants Matt to have it. For his part, Matt is touched that his father trusts him with his rifle.
As the other educator pointed out, the rifle is stolen not long after Matt's father leaves on his journey. Matt makes...
(The entire section contains 2 answers and 615 words.)