Down in the mountains of Georgia lived a poor widow. She had a few acres of ground where she raised berries and one thing and another and made a little money keeping chickens and selling eggs. She also took in washing and did other humble work for a living. God gave her a bright son. He, too, surpassed every-one in the district school. The mother worked hard to get the money to send him to Emory College.
The son worked hard to get himself through the college. He graduated with high honors and won a gold medal for special excellence in study. When it came time for him to graduate he went up to the mountain home for his mother, and said, “Mother, you must come down and see me graduate.” “No,” said his mother, “I have nothing fit to wear, and you would be ashamed of your poor old mother before all those grand people.”
“Ashamed of you!” he said, with eyes filled with filial love. “Ashamed of you, Mother, never! I owe everything I am to you and you must come down. What is more, I will not graduate unless you come.”
Finally she yielded. He brought her to the town. When the graduating day came she went to the commencement exercises in her plain calico dress with her neat but faded shawl and simple mountain bon-net. He tried to take her down the middle aisle where the richest people of the town, friends of the graduating class, sat, but this she refused and insisted on sitting way off under the gallery.
The son went up on the platform and delivered his graduating address. He was handed his diploma and received his medal. No sooner had he received the gold medal than he walked down from the platform and away to where his mother sat off under the gallery and pinned the gold medal on her faded shawl and said, “Mother, that belongs to you ; you earned it!”— R. A. Torrey.
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