A Master of Craft
1899. Jacobs is known especially for his sea stories. His familiarity with the wharves and the people who frequented them gave him material for these stories. He is also known for some of his short ghost tales and stories of mystery and the macabre, such as the Monkey's Paw. A Master of Craft begins: A pretty girl stood alone on the jetty of an old-fashioned wharf at Wapping, looking down upon the silent deck of a schooner below. No smoke issued from the soot-stained cowl of the galley, and the fore-scuttle and the companion were both inhospitably closed. The quiet of evening was over everything, broken only by the whirr of the paddles of a passenger steamer as it passed carefully up the center of the river, or the plash of a lighterman's huge sweep as he piloted his unwieldy craft down on the last remnant of the ebb-tide. In shore, various craft sat lightly on the soft Thames mud: some affecting a rigid uprightness, others with their decks at various angles of discomfort.
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