January 16th, 1853 — Bothwell. — Smyth (or, as we prefer to call him, Nicaragua, from his Central American labours) has gone to Melbourne, to negotiate about a ship, Hobart Town being considered more dangerous, as well as offering fewer facilities. I brought him up by Lake Sorel, thence down the mountains to the great northern road. We expect to hear how the mission speeds there within a month or six weeks.
John Knox agrees to avail himself of this chance also, seeing that he and I both live in the same district, and have one common police office to deal with.
If the thing succeed, I must leave my family at Nant Cottage, to follow under Nicaragua’s escort, as best they may, to San Francisco. Yet my wife does not shrink from all this risk and inconvenience. She sees all the terrible evils and disadvantages of rearing up a family in such a country as this, and under such circumstances as ours; and instead of dissuading, urges me strongly on the enterprise. Of course we say nothing about our intention to any of our acquaintances here; as success must depend entirely upon utter secrecy, until the moment of making our formal communication to the authorities.
Feb. 12th. — No intelligence yet from Melbourne. A good horse being essential to our business, in addition to our present stock, I have been on the look-out for one. Mr. Davis, even the police magistrate himself, had one of the best in this district — a white horse, half Arab, full of game, and of great endurance. I knew Mr. Davis had offered him for sale; and the idea pleased me, of buying my enemy’s horse to ride off upon; which would have the double advantage of strengthening me and of weakening the enemy. Accordingly I secured the horse. Mr. Davis, on delivering him, very conscientiously thought it his duty to give me a warning.
“I must tell you, Mr. Mitchel,” he said, “that if you attempt to put this horse into harness he will smash everything — he never was in harness but once, and it would be dangerous to try it again.”
I said, I was aware of that peculiarity in the horse.
“It is right,” he continued, “to mention the fact to you, as I do not know the precise work you want him to do.”
“Merely to carry me on his back, wherever I want to go some time or other probably on a long journey.”
“Well,” said Mr. Davis, “I know you ride a good deal; and you may depend upon Donald for that.”
So I have my new horse out at Nant; and intend to give him regular work and feed him well, that he may be ready when called upon for this long journey.
March 18th. — At length a letter from the indefatigable Nicaragua. He says “he has made up his party for the diggings, and that all goes well with him” — by which I understand he has succeeded in procuring a ship. Further he says, “that he is to meet the rest of his party of diggers at the Bendigo Creek” (which is at present the favourite gold region), “three days hence”; which is nothing more or less than a notice that he will meet John Knox and me at Lake Sorel on the day specified.
25th. — We rode up to the lakes on the appointed day, met Nicaragua, accompanied by John Connell, of the excellent family of the Sugar-loaf. All is right. The brigantine, Waterlily, owned by John Macnamara, of Sydney, is to come into Hobart Town; clear thence for New Zealand, then coast round to Spring Bay, on the eastern side of the island, about seventy miles from Bothwell, and lie there two days, under pretence of taking in timber. At Spring Bay there is, of course, a police station; but it never has more than three or four constables; and we are to count upon disposing of them by bribery or otherwise. Mr. Macnamara, the owner, comes himself with the ship, and will go round in her to Spring Bay to see us safely off. Nicaragua takes Fleur-de-lis, and rides down to Hobart Town to-morrow.
April 9th. — All is ready. The Waterlily sails from Hobart Town to-morrow, and will be in Spring Bay on Sunday night, at anchor, with Mr. Macnamara’s flag (a red cross with the letter M in one comer). Knox and I, who are entirely passive, and do what Smyth bids us, are to present ourselves on Monday, in the police office, withdraw our parole, and offer ourselves to be taken into custody. Nicaragua brings with him five friends, all armed, as good lookers-on. If we escape the clutches of the Bothwell police, we are to ride straight to Spring Bay, a relay of horses being provided for us at half the distance, arrive there during the night, and be ready to embark at dawn. Then, up anchor, and away for the Golden Gate. If the police boat at Spring Bay attempt to board, the captain engages to run her down, or sink her if needful.
Monday evenings— Bothwell. — At Bothwell still. Our plot blown to the moon! Yesterday we were informed, through a friendly resident at Bothwell, that Nicaragua’s whole plan has been intimately known to the governor for a fortnight — that the ship we were to embark in was known — the place where we were to embark — the signal we were to use — the friends who were to accompany us — that the Waterlily was purposely allowed to clear out at Hobart Town, without examination, for New Zealand; and finally, that a reinforcement of constables had been sent up from Hobart Town to Bothwell, together with two additional chiefs of police, to be in readiness for any move on our part. This morning I discovered that two armed constables had kept watch all night on the hill behind the cottage.
Council of war at Nant to-day. We had not, of course, calculated on having to deal with more than the ordinary force of constabulary stationed in Bothwell district; the attempt had always been regarded as contingent on our intention remaining a profound secret till the last moment. And certainly the police magistrate having charge of the district, and having at his command a force purporting to be sufficient for all police purposes within that district, for the coercion, if needful, of all the prisoners in it — had no right to such odds against us. If we should go in, and attempt to do our business in the mode intended, there would be, in the first place, a conflict in Bothwell street; and if we succeeded at Bothwell, against all odds, there would, doubtless, be another force at Spring Bay, where the vessel itself might be already in the hands of the police.
If we thought proper, indeed, to dispense with the formal business before the magistrate, there was nothing to prevent our riding away from Nant this day (or any other day), notwithstanding the vigilance of the constable patrol; and the Government, in that case, would certainly never hear of us again; for, with good horses; and all the population at our side, we might remain a year in the island in their despite, until another ship could take us up at the same point. But neither Martin nor I admitted this idea for one moment.
Council of war, therefore, decided that the enterprise could not be attempted this day, or by the help of the Waterlily. Our
friends dispersed; O’K — northward, R — and C — south. Smyth and Connell have started for Spring Bay to send the ship off; and all is over for the present.
But Nicaragua and I are determined to have another trial for it.
April 12th. — Note from John Connell. Nicaragua has been arrested. He found a large force of constables waiting for him at Spring Bay; they surrounded the hotel the moment he had dismounted, and took him into custody as John Mitchel. Connell had parted from him, before reaching Spring Bay, and had, fortunately, carried off his papers. In vain Nicaragua protested he was not John Mitchel: he was thrust into the watch-house, and kept there all night. From the windows he saw the little Waterlily in the bay, with the signal at her mast-head; she was waiting for us still. He was thence carried in custody, through the forest, to Hobart Town, and lodged in the police offices on his journey. The chief constable of Richmond knew me by sight: he volunteered his evidence that they had the wrong man; but the magistrate of Richmond would not hear his testimony, would not interfere in any manner with the execution of the warrant, and so, poor Nicaragua was passed on. One night he travelled all night, in an open spring-waggon, and the weather is becoming very cold; so that, by the time he arrived in Hobart Town, as well as from excitement and disappointment as from hardship, he was in a high fever. After being kept some hours in custody at Hobart Town, he was discharged without a word of apology or explanation, save that it was all a mistake. He now lies extremely ill in the house of a worthy friend of ours.
13th — Hobart Town. — I rode down, yesterday, to see how it fared with Nicaragua: found him ill enough, but convalescent. I went straight to the police office; saw the gentleman who officiates as police clerk; told him I understood there was a warrant against me if so, here I was; that I understood a gentleman had been arrested in my name; that I wanted to know who had issued this Warrant, and for what reason; and that I requested him to go and inform the police magistrate I was here. He said it was all a mistake; and treated it as a good joke. However, I told him I could not see the jocoseness of it — and neither could Mr. Smyth — that I conceived the arrest of Mr. Smyth for me, at Spring Bay, was not only an outrage upon him, but upon me still more — that they were all aware I had promised not to leave the island without first giving the proper authorities the opportunity of arresting me; but this proceeding assumed that I was making my escape clandestinely, and therefore disgracefully. Mr. Midwood said, if I would be good enough to sit down he would go and tell the police magistrate I was here, and what I had said. In a few minutes he came back, accompanied by two other well-dressed men, whom he introduced to me by names which I forget. I asked who they were —
“Chief Constables of Hobart Town.” —
“And you have come to take a look at me?” Chief Constables bowed.
I came back to Nicaragua’s bedside almost exasperated. He agrees with me, that the setting a watch upon my house, and the issuing of a warrant to apprehend me in the act of “absconding,” are most insulting proceedings, especially as the rascals must know that neither these precautions nor any other precautions could have retained me on the island for the last three years, nor for one week, if I had thought fit to abscond. He also is grievously outraged on his own account; and we have therefore resolved, so soon as he is sufficiently recovered, that we two alone will pay our formal visit to Mr. Davis’s office (with revolvers in our pockets) — and, if necessary, take our chance for a ship afterwards.
June 6th. — Nearly two months have gone by since the arrest of Nicaragua. He recovered his health and strength slowly. He is at present with us in Nant Cottage; and the day after to-morrow we shall probably proceed to business. A ship bound for Sydney is to sail on that night from Hobart Town; and if we can reach Hobart Town after dark, the agents of the ship, who are friendly to me, will place me on board at the mouth of the river, after all clearances by police and custom-house authorities. Nicaragua has been judiciously bribing so far as was prudent; but with all he can do in this way, the odds against us will be heavy at all times in the police office. John Knox has decided on keeping out of the affair this time; because, if we miss the vessel at Hobart Town, we might then have to spend several weeks on the island; and be subjected to much hardship (for it is now the depth of winter), and assume various disguises — for which he is not well adapted.
8th. — The town is full of police to-day — we put the business off till to-morrow. In the meantime I send James down to Hobart Town to ask the agents if they could delay the ship for a few hours longer. Whatever be the answer, however, we mean to see the affair out to-morrow. By the prudent employment of some money, Nicaragua has made sure that there will not be mere than the ordinary guard of constables present. We would bribe them all, if we dared trust the rascals. As matters stand, we are certain to meet not only the police magistrate himself, but also the police clerk, a respectable man, not purchasable by money, and at least two constables, neither of whom has been bribed, and both of whom will, probably, under the eye of the magistrate, attempt to do their “duty.”
12th. — In Westbury district, full seventy miles from Bothwell. On the 9th, as we had resolved before, Nicaragua and I mounted at Nant Cottage — he on Donald, I on Fleur-de-lis. The eldest of the boys walked through the fields into Bothwell, that he might be ready at the police office door to hold our horses. Before we had ridden a quarter of a mile from the house, we met James (boy number two), coming at a gallop from Hobart Town. He handed me a note from the shipping agents. Ship gone; it was impossible to detain her any longer without exciting suspicion; and the shipping agent conjured me to give the thing up or defer it.
As we now stood, therefore, there was no arrangement for escaping out of the island at all; and if we got clear out of the police office, it was a matter of indifference to me whether I should ride north, south, or east. Westward lay impassable wilderness.
We overtook Mr. Russell of Dennistoun, on our way into Bothwell. He asked me, with some interest, what prices I had got for certain grass-fed wethers which I had sold a few days before — also, whether I meant to put any of my land in crop for the ensuing season — to all which I replied with much agricultural sagacity and pastoral experience. All the while I saw John Knox, and the boy number one, hurrying along near the river bank, that they might be in the township as soon as I.
At the entrance of the village Mr. Russell parted company with us, and called at a house. Nicaragua and I rode leisurely down the main street. At the police-barrack, on the little hill, we saw eight or nine constables, all armed, and undergoing a sort of drill. At the police-office door there was, as usual, a constable on guard. Mr. Barr, a worthy Scotch gentleman, and magistrate of the district, was standing within a few yards of the gate.
We dismounted. I walked in first, through the little gate leading into the court, through the door, which opened into a hall or passage, and thence into the court-room, where I found his worship sitting as usual. Near him sat Mr. Robinson, the police clerk. “Mr. Davis,” I said, “here is a copy of a note which I have just despatched to the governor; I have thought it necessary to give you a copy.” The note was as follows: —
Bothwell, 8th June, 1853.
To the Lieut.-Gov., etc. —
Sir, — I hereby resign the “ticket-of-leave,” and withdraw my parole. I shall forthwith present myself before the police magistrate of Bothwell, at his office, show him a copy of this note, and offer myself to be taken into custody.
Your obedient servant,
Mr. Davis took the note; it was open.
“Do you wish me,” he said, “to read it?”
“Certainly; it was for that I brought it.”
He glanced over the note, and then looked at me. That instant Nicaragua came in and planted himself at my side. His worship and his clerk both seemed somewhat discomposed at this; for they knew the “Correspondent of the New York Tribune” very well, as also his errand from New York. I have no doubt that Mr. Davis thought I had a crowd outside. There is no other way of accounting for his irresolution.
Then I said, “You see the purport of that note, sir; it is short and plain. It resigns the tiling called ‘ticket-of-leave,’ and revokes my promise which bound me so long as I held that thing.”
Still he made no move, and gave no order. So I repeated my explanation: “You observe, sir, that my parole is at an end from this moment; and I came here to be taken into custody pursuant to that note.”
All this while there was a constable in the adjoining room, besides the police clerk, and the guard at the door; yet still his worship made no move. “Now, good morning, sir,” I said, putting on my hat. The hand of Nicaragua was playing with the handle of the revolver in his coat. I had a ponderous riding-whip in my hand, besides pistols in my breast-pocket. The moment I said “Good morning,” Mr. Davis shouted, “No — no! stay here! Rainsford! Constables!” The police clerk sat at his desk, looking into vacancy. We walked out together through the hall; the constable in the district constable’s office, who generally acts as his clerk, now ran out, and on being desired to stop us, followed us through the court, and out into the street, but without coming very near. At the little gate leading out of the court into the street, we expected to find the man on guard on the alert between us and our horses. But this poor constable, though he heard the magistrate’s orders, and the commotion, did not move. He was holding two horses, one with each hand, and looked on in amazement, while we passed him, and jumped into our saddles.
We concluded that we had done enough, and that there was no reason to wait any longer; therefore
We gave the bridle-rein a shake;
Said, Adieu for evermore, my dear;
And adieu for evermore!
Mr. Davis and two constables rushing against one another, with bare heads and loud outcries — grinning residents of Bothwell on the pathway, who knew the meaning of the performance in a moment, and who, being commanded to stop us in the Queen’s name, aggravated the grin into a laugh; some small boys at a comer, staring at our horses as they galloped by, and offering “three to one on the white un” — this is my last impression of Bothwell on the banks of the Tasmanian Clyde.
We crossed the river just below the town, and held on at full speed for a mile to the south-westward; then, finding ourselves fairly in the forest, we pulled up, exchanged horses and coats, and parted — Nicaragua, on Fleur-de-lis, rode due north for Nant Cottage, intending to call there a moment, and then go to Oatlands, to take the coach for Launceston. I rode on about half a mile further into the woods, and found, according to appointment, my good friend J H , son of a worthy English settler of those parts, an experienced bushman, who knows every nook in the island, and “every bosky bourne from side to side,” and who had undertaken to guide me by shortest and obscurest paths to any point I desired. Brief was our consultation; the Hobart Town ship having sailed, all parts of the island were alike to me; and in all was I sure to find friends. We determined to strike northwards, and over the mountains to this district of Westbury, which is chiefly inhabited by Irish immigrants, and where we should be within a day’s ride of Bass’s Straits. Where we stood then, we were a hundred and thirty miles from the sea in that direction; but our horses were fresh. H — laughed at the idea of pursuit; and I, with the load of that foul ticket-of-leave fairly shaken off, and my engagement discharged, felt my pulse begin to beat again with something like life. To be sure, I must yet be some weeks in the country before Nicaragua could get a ship and bring it round for me. Nicaragua himself might be arrested; and, at anyrate, he does not yet know what direction I have taken. Also the Government would be sure to send special despatches all round the coast, to put their police on the alert to guard every landing place, and watch every boat; yet I was quite secure. Having once shaken the Bothwell dust off my feet, and resolved not to be retaken alive, I felt myself already a free man.
It was almost mid-winter. The weather was bright and clear; no snow on the ground, but keen frosts at night; on the whole,
favourable for hard riding. H — immediately took me out of all ordinary tracks, and we plunged into the wilderness of rocky wooded hills, westward of Bothwell, where I had sometimes hunted kangaroo. After ten miles’ hard riding, we came to the track leading from Bothwell to the Shannon river — crossed this track after reconnoitring the road a moment, and then pierced once more into still wilder and more desolate hills. For about two miles we rode along the ridge that bounds the Shannon valley, and, for the last time, I saw the gleam and heard the dashing of that bright river — then, turned north-east, continually ascending in the direction of Lake Sorel. High among the mountains, we had to plunge for three miles through the dreary “Soldier’s Marsh” (so named from two soldiers killed there of old by the bushrangers). The marsh was frozen over, so that our horses’ feet did not always break the ice, but occasionally slipped over it — a progress both perilous and slow; and after thirty-five miles’ travelling we found the night darkening round us, and Lake Sorel not yet gained. At last we heard the barking of the stock-keeper’s dogs at “Kemp’s Hut,” — avoided it by keeping to the left; and held on our way for six miles farther along the the western shore of the Lake.
It was dark as Erebus; and we had still to go through the most difficult part of the journey to the lake-river, where we proposed to spend the night at the hut of Mr. Russell’s shepherd. There was a high, steep, and rocky mountain to descend, where even in daylight the track is not easy to find; and H — thought it prudent to call at a hut on the shore, to procure a guide. There were three men in the hut, the first human beings we had seen since we left Bothwell. They told H — it would be dangerous to attempt the descent on so dark a night; and, with the customary shepherd hospitality of those Arcadian swains, invited us to share their fire and opossum-rugs. But we were too near Bothwell yet for this. So we got one of them out to show us the best way to the “saddle” — that is, the watershed between Lake Sorel and the lake-river, from whence we thought we could make our own way.
The guide lost himself, and of course lost us. Told us that, after all, we had better come back, and that, at anyrate, he would go back himself. We thanked and paid him for his services, and then tried to feel our way over the edge of the mountain. We found ourselves evidently descending, yet certainly off the track, and on very rough ground, where to dismount and lead the horses was an absolute necessity. Presently, we came amongst precipices and fields of loose rock, a mere wilderness of shattered stone, but still thickly wooded; for this gum tree seems to live by breathing through its leaves instead of drawing nourishment from the soil. The horses began to stumble against us in the darkness, striking us now with their forefeet, and again knocking us down with their heads. It was midnight; the frost was intense; we had no overcoats or other muffling; neither ourselves nor our horses had eaten anything since breakfast; there was no herbage, and the horses were starving; no water near us, and we were devoured by thirst. Yet we heard far below us, through the still night, the rush of the Lake-river, and now and then the barking of old Job’s dogs.
Neither backwards nor forwards could we move one yard: and there, within three miles of our proposed shelter for the night, we were forced to make our dismal bivouac. We lighted a fire with some dead branches (for no true bushman goes without matches); tied our poor horses to a honeysuckle tree; looked to our pistols; picked the least polygonal stones to sit down upon; lighted our pipes, and prepared to spend eight hours as jovially as possible. Soon sleep overtook us, from utter exhaustion, and we would lie a few minutes on the sharp stones by the fire until awakened by the scorching of our knees, while our spinal marrow was frozen into a solid icicle. Then we would turn our backs to the fire, and sleep again; but, in five minutes, our knees and toes were frozen; our moustaches stiff with ice, our spinal marrow dissolving in the heat. Then up again — another smoke, another talk.
The dawn reddened at last; and the mountains beyond Arthur’s Lakes to the west glowed purple. We expected to find the horses stiffened and half dead; for they were both accustomed to be stabled and bedded at night; and this was the most savage night I had ever experienced in the country. But well-bred Van Diemen’s Land horses have great life and unconquerable pluck; they were fresh as the dawn. We soon found the track, and in half an hour rode up to old Job’s door. It happens that Job’s house was the first place Meagher had stopped at for rest and refreshment, a year and a half ago, on his ride from Lake Sorel; and the moment Job saw me, he knew what business was in hand. He received us joyfully, bade his wife prepare breakfast, and we went with him into the stable, to get our horses fed. Then breakfast before a roaring fire. Meagher, it seems, had shaved off his moustache here for the better disguise; so, after breakfast, Job presented me with a razor, looking glass, basin, and soap, wherewith I made a complete transfiguration of myself. I wrote a short note to my wife, to tell her which way I had taken, and without the least hesitation entrusted it to Job Sims, who was to go over to Bothwell the next day with some cattle for Mr. Russell, and who undertook to deliver the note personally at Nant. This man is an Englishman, and has been an old prisoner; yet I know he would not sell that note to the enemy for a thousand pounds. Mounted after three-quarters of an hour’s delay; and Job rode with us two miles, to show us the ford of the Lake-river. After that H — and I held on over a rough mountain, but with a pretty well-defined track. We intended to make first for the house of a Mr. Grover,1 whose son, a well-affected Tasmanian native, was known to be ready to aid me in any such affair. Neither of us had ever seen this young Grover; his father is a magistrate of the colony; but we had no hesitation about going straight up to the house.
As we slowly descended the narrow track, at a sudden turn among the trees, we encountered two gentlemen, riding up the mountain. We exchanged salutations and passed, when H — said to me, “I never saw Charles Grover, but I am almost sure the elder of those two is he.” The “natives” of this island generally know one another by some sort of freemasonry — a circumstance which I had not at that moment time to investigate and trace philosophically. “We must not let him pass,” said H — “Then coo-ee to him.” H — sung out the coo-ee loud and clear; and in a minute the two gentlemen were seen riding back to meet us.
“You are Mr. Charles Grover,” said H —.
“This is Mr. Mitchel.”
He asked two or three eager questions; found out in a moment how the case stood; asked if our horses were fresh, and where we intended to stop that night. The horses were tired; we were making for Mr. Wood’s2 place in Westbury. Our new friend instantly turned with me; gave up the business, whatever it was, that urged him to his journey; told H — he might go back to Bothwell, and leave me with him; made his companion give up his horse to me, and mount Donald, with directions to take him to his (Grover’s) father’s house, to be cared for after the journey; and then started off with me, to bring me by the most secret road to Mr. Wood’s. “I am glad I met you,” he said, “because it will save you the necessity of calling at my father’s house; the governor, you know, is a magistrate; and it is as well not to run risks.”
Most gratefully and affectionately I parted from H —, who turned, intending to go back for that night to Job’s; and next day, by a circuitous route, to Bothwell. For me, I committed myself, without a moment’s thought, to the care of my new acquaintance. We rode on merrily, got out of the mountain region, and skirted along the base of the great Western Tier, at its northern side. Before dusk we rode into the yard of a large and handsome house, where a tall gentleman came to meet us. It was Mr. Wood.
“Here is our friend,” said Grover (I had never seen Wood before), “Mr. Mitchel.”
“Ah!” he said, quietly, “I have been expecting you here these two months.”
Last night I spent with this gentleman and his amiable family. But as there is a police station within a hundred yards of his gate, and as the police of Westbury were certain to be on the watch all over the district, from this day or to-morrow, it was thought best to remove me this morning to the farm-house of a fine young Irishman, named B —, six miles from Mr. Wood’s, and here I am this day, awaiting news of the movements of Nicaragua and Sir William Denison.
June 13th. — Mr. B. and his wife are very kind to me; keep me in great privacy; seem almost proud to have the charge of so illustrious a patriot (as myself); and assure me I am safe enough here, for a month to come. However, I do not go out, even into the woods, except at night, and never without loaded arms. No news yet of Nicaragua.
16th. — News at last of Nicaragua. On the day he and I parted in the woods near Bothwell, he arrived safely at Oatlands, but was hotly pursued; left Fleur-de-lis, a well-known mare of mine, in the stable of the inn, reeking with sweat; made urgent inquiries whether he could have a horse to travel eastward to Spring Bay — then, at night, left the hotel, through the garden; climbed over several walls at the back of the houses; came round to the road outside the village; waited for the coach, and travelled northward to Launceston, where he is now, duly shaved and disguised.
At Bothwell there was violent excitement. Seven mounted police were instantly despatched thence, to scour the country on all sides in pursuit. They traced Nicaragua to Oatlands; found my Fleur-de-lis in the stable; learned that the gentleman had asked for a horse to carry him to Spring Bay; and, accordingly, all that region is diligently scoured, and videttes, on the promontories of the coast, are exchanging anxious signals.
I find, also, that Mr. Davis, at Bothwell, charged one of the constables who were present (an Englishman), with failing in his duty, by not securing me, when ordered; and, further, charged him with having been bribed. He, therefore, dismissed him; whereupon the man got drunk on the spot, and spent the evening invoking three cheers for me. It is not true that this poor fellow was bribed: but I wish he had been; for, it is now clear he was open to a bribe, wanted a bribe, and deserved a bribe.
The Westbury police are patrolling night and day, for my sake; but this is no more than the constables of all other districts are doing; evidently, all trace of me is lost; and the government folk have no reason for supposing me to be in this district, rather than any other. At anyrate, in any case, whatever may befall me, I feel absolutely out of the enemy’s power. The end of the enterprise now, must be America or a grave.
1 Grover is not the gentleman’s real name.
2 Wood is also a fictitious name.