The Ballad of Silver Penny Slackjaw

Martyrs of a Forgotten Cause

Cumgather round the cracklin fire of Camp whilst I melodize for your post-prandial pleasure the legend of Silverpenny Slackjaw.

The Life and Times of Silverpenny Slackjaw: Part One: Originations
Silverpenny Slackjaw (born Baronness Barence von Böttshingle) began her life in the provisional town of Stavenport, Sweden, a waterlogged villa that abutted the maritime borders of Denmark, Poland, Germany, and what was then known as an overreaching but treacherously cunning Estonia. Composed entirely of sodden newspulp and flagging helium balloons, Stavenport was a town with an unsurprisingly short history and an even shorter future. Its residents were few enough to be counted even on Silverpenny’s famously foreshortened fingers: there were the von Böttshingles, Slackjaw’s mother and father and nominal rulers of the Stavenport archipelago, such as it was; there was Henrico, the foreign fishmonger, newsboy, barista and local architect; and there was the army of black, white, and pepper-colored cats who called Stavenport their home and relied on its ink-dyed islands for camouflage while they hunted the minnows and finches native to the geography. Slackjaw did little to distinguish herself academically. At the age of twelve, she took her first apprenticeship, studying abroad under a Copenhagen cobbler…

the majority of Silverpenny Slackjaw’s legendary early history has been excised from this account

The Life and Times of Silverpenny Slackjaw: Part Twenty-Seven: Dipsticks and Derringers
Before long, Slackjaw found herself a true queen among the New World desperados. Multi-volume encyclopedia sets have been devoted to her exploits, all mysteriously vanished in the Great Wipe of ’82. The hirsute annals of her history have since been relegated to the mimetic memories of ranging gaucho bardchefs such as myself. I present to you this evening an abbreviated (like her famously foreshortened fingers) history of the greatest extralegal crime deterrent ever to have sauntered these plains. Highlights include:

*Silverpenny Slackjaw’s famous duels, ’12-’14
*Signposts of the Flesh: a journey across America with SS’s illegitimate offspring
*a humorous anecdote concerning flapjacks
*a brief interlude on fingerpipe
*Follicles of Power: Silverpenny Slackjaw’s excessive hirsutism
*SS’s famous duels, ’21-’23
*Martyrs of a Forgotten Cause: Silverpenny Slackjaw’s lost hats
*Wind-Tossed Flora of the West
*an appeal on the subject of Global Warming
*Q&A with the bardchef

Weenies and beans will be made available upon request. May the bonfire of her legend never die.

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