The inhabitants of “the mirth-loving village of Newberry” always loved a good joke. They also loved a good fight. Sometimes they combined the two.
Newberry had a store with a piazza in front; it also had a hotel with a piazza in front.
After supper, when there was a large crowd collected in the long piazza of the hotel, some mischievous boys quietly toed a rope extending from one piazza to the other, suspending it about one foot above the ground. They then went down where Ed Scott’s now is and made a loud noise and uproar as if there was a tremendous fight going on. About fifteen or twenty men, anxious to see the fight, ran as fast as they could to get there before it ended. The rope piled them all, and suddenly the noise ceased and all was still. And as suddenly it flashed through the minds of all the fallen that they had been made the victims of a practical joke, and there was no fight.