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Hi

Two women are talking. One said the other that she knows where she went yesterday, who she was looking for.

The other woman asked: How do you know I went to look for them?

She answered:

Elementary,my dearWatson. At five thirty-five, or so
near as makes no matter, you were seen inquiring the
direction of the Rigby cottage of one Gertrude Flack,
Postmistress in this village. The said Gertrude Flack has a
sister Ella, who is number one in Aunt Edith’s chain-gang
of daily helps. She laid information about your movements
– together with the kippers – on the breakfast table this
morning.’

She's using the phrase "chain - gang" and I think she says that playfully.

I take it to mean that Aunt Edith has many daily helps and Ella in this "chain-gang" (sounds like she thinks that the daily helps of Aunt Edith are prisoners) is the best one?
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NewguestShe's using the phrase "chain - gang" and I think she says that playfully.
Yes, playfully. She's joking.

NewguestI take it to mean that Aunt Edith has many daily helps and Ella in this "chain-gang" ... is the best one?
Yes. Ella is Aunt Edith's favorite.

CJ
Comments  
Hi

I think you have described this quite correctly

As you may know..

A chain-gang is a group of prisoners who are sent to do work outside of their prison. In order to make sure they don't escape, they are chained together in a line. The speed and conduct of the line will be affected by the person who is in front. So it makes sense to choose - for your number one - the person who is most obedient and hardworking. (If you choose someone who is unruly or a trouble-maker as the front of your line, that is going to lead to problems)

Best regards, Dave
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
 CalifJim's reply was promoted to an answer.
Thanks Calif!